I realized this week that my first book probably won't see the light of day, I let that sucker float down the river into oblivion and shed a tear. I don't know what kind of wisdom decided this for me, but it feels like a huge weight has been lifted off of my back. It would take more experience than I have right now to clean that sucker up. But I did feel accomplished looking at all the work I've done the past couple of months.
I feel pretty overwhelmed and a little sick right now, so I guess I'm going to give this a break for a week or two.
Writing, revisions, and some heavy reading are going to be required. At least at this point I know I'm going to be writing about Mars or The Fae-not both of course.
-It is a cool idea though-
Happy blog vacay to me!
I will admit sometimes I post WHEN something isn't quite ready.
When writing (book/or blog) you need to research sometimes-even if it feels weird-you need to make sure you aren't making a dumb mistake, like saying there are innings in a soccer game.
I try and make sure to read as much as I possibly can-if you're a writer you know it keeps you fresh and in the storytelling loop. If you start writing without having read for a while it starts to sound disconnected.
Especially if you are high and dry mentally or revising. I hate revising.
My writing days should consist of the above-
-not of this. But this is what it normally looks like.
Until somebody interrupts me. If someone interrupts me too much I just can't keep going. Then I start to play games or do something else that requires no real thinking on my part.
Then before I know it, I'm in two day old sweatpants telling my daughter not to crawl through the shattered pop tart on the carpet. It's all good.
I'm lucky that my hubby lets me do what I'm doing right now. I watch our child, home-make, and write as much as I can - because it's not going to last. I can do the things I really love right now-and I wouldn't change it. This blog is something I do for me-not really for anyone else-If someone happens to read it- awesome- but for me It helps keep track of my thought processes during this chaotic creative part of my life. I am thankful. Especially for my hubby. (P.S. Hi grandma!)
I just wanted to make a quick list of some of the fictional, and not so fictional, female characters that have had an impact on me one way or another-or maybe I just thought they were badass.
Why: She's the kind of person you would hope you could be if you were in a race for your life against the cylons. She was smart, clever, and tough. She was able to fight through a lot of things I think weaker people would have come out of broken. So say we all.
Why: She didn't give a crap about what people thought about her and went for what she wanted. Even when that went a little sour she still pushed through.
Why: She kicks dead things' asses. She looks into hell and it looks back at her. And she has a white cat I'm pretty fond of.
Lyra/His Dark Materials
Why: She's young and deals with a lot of stuff way over her head-but somehow she manages to persevere. Her father and mother are literal psychopaths and she has to journey into other dimensions with very little help (at least for a little bit ;) ) The bit with separating a child from their daemon is super disturbing-it's like separating a child from their soul and personality. (If she could survive that (the attempted separation) and keep pushing on, she deserves props)
Why: Orphan chick lives in dire conditions until she groups up with some people with some pretty amazing abilities. But she's special, and she's survived a lot of really twisted experiences within her own family group. Spoilers: Still kicks ass and is able to help put a new god on the throne
Elizabeth Bennet/Pride and Prejudice
Why: She didn't give a flying bleep about what a super handsome, super arrogant, rich boy thought of her-she kept doing her own thing. This is during a time where turning down any suitor could send you down a very depressing path of a permanent spinster. Yeah, she didn't go down that path.
Marion/Indiana Jones -Raiders of the Lost Ark
Why: So, she got royally screwed over by Jones. From what I can tell she was 14 and he was 24 when they started a relationship. Then he dipped a couple of years later (After their reunion he apparently left her at the alter too, but that's another story). She has a ton of moxie for having to survive for so long on her own-I think she could have made it without any help from Indiana Jones, but that's just my two cents. If you really read up on Jones he's kind of a scum bag. I can't help that I love the movies though, it was kind of integral to my interest in the 30's and 40's.
Why: She's cheerful, feminine, and makes sure stuff gets done with a little sass to the cap'n. She's also pretty patient when it comes to a certain doctor on the run.
Why: Her determination, loyalty, fierceness, intelligence, and-EVERYTHING.
Sonora Webster-Carver/Wild Hearts Can't be Broken (movie)
Why: When I was defiant as a young girl, I would follow Sonora's lead and wrap my feet around and under a chair and fold my arms. Watch the movie if you haven't seen it.
Deanna Troi/ Star Trek TNG
Why: I'm not sure any girl who grew up watching Star Trek TNG didn't want to be her when they were little. Even if she wasn't sure of herself she faked it 'till she made it, and you have to be kind of a badass to deal with your ex on a daily basis and still be friendly and courteous-we all know that Riker look. Such a boy slut.
Chani Kynes/ Dune
Why: She will never be her lover's wife, yet she will bear his children. Her children will be rulers, yet she will never be empress. It's a bitter pill to swallow, but with the culture she was raised in, and the love she has for Paul, I don't think she feels threatened in the least. She just continues on as a warrior until the end, when poison and childbirth eventually kill her.
Anne Shirley/ Anne of Green Gables
Why: Breaking slates and taking names. She has one of the best examples of a realistic friendship in fiction I think I've seen. Also, I will admit I have never read the books, but the scene from the river-The Lady of Shalott, is the best ever. My favorite saying when I was younger came from her lips-If anything was bad it definitely put you into "the depths of despair".
Why: If I was in the dark with a large alien predator searching for me I don't think I would move, much less look for a cat-so props Ripley.
Why: She's so amazing, I'm not really sure I can explain why I love her. I think her skepticism is her strength. After all of the physical and emotional stress she deals with in the series she probably would be in a mental institution in a different world. She pushes through it, only to deal with a delusional partner who she pretty much babysits for years on end-but there's no doubt she wouldn't change it for the world.
Manon Blackbeak/ Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass)
Why: I almost quit the first book in this series, I am so glad I didn't. It's one of those series that keeps getting better with each installment. My favorite character isn't the firing breathing bitch queen though.
It's the Irontooth witch, and heir to her coven, Manon Blackbeak. She's so tough and brutal that when she showed the slightest bit of empathy it literally made me sigh. I want her to be good so very badly, not just because she's tough as nails (ha, pun), but that she represents a little of the hardness I think we carry within ourselves.
Jo March/ Little Women
Why: I am Jo. She's kind of tom boyish, was raised a little unconventionally, and had a ton of sisters. She also made it though okay. She struggled a long time with her writing. Her desire to prosper in dramatic prose wasn't really in the cards for her, even though it was her passion. But she did end up continuing to write, and she ended up good at it because she adjusted her expectations. Sometimes you don't get what you want, you get what you need.
I cleaned today, I'm very proud of myself. It was the microwave-the bane of every kitchen chore. I did it in my slug shirt so that made things better.
I play Hearthstone and World Of Warcraft quite consistently (WOW until I ran out of stuff to do, now I'm just grinding gold at my garrison with followers until my prepaid time runs out). I just started Hearthstone in the fall - while I've been playing WOW off and on since 2009 (I actually tried it when the game first came out and was lost-so I quit). My main was a a gnome affliction warlock named Gidgett until they super nerfed the class into oblivion (I think it had a lot to do with PVP - as it always does). Now I play a human arcane mage named Liet so that I can casually raid when I want to. I use all of this jargon and meandering to prove a point-I know what I'm doing in WOW. I am literally falling all over myself trying to get past level 20 in Hearthstone. It's a hot mess of a learning curve with either game, and if you don't have help or haven't played either type of game before you'll probably give up pretty quickly.
Blizzard just announced they are changing the formatting of the game (Hearthstone), along with giving us little perks-like a new expansion, more slots for decks, and two different styles of play for starters to help soften the learning curve (and put more change in their pocket before they trash old content). Yeeeeaaah. So I just started -and then I have to start again - when all of this kicks in. I'm in the middle content wise-I don't have enough cards to make a significant enough difference in "Wild" play and I have been hording GVG packs before they ditch them - so I don't have enough of the more current decks to make play in "Standard" realistic. It sucks.
If someone is looking for something to do though, these are great games and they really don't cost that much if you know how to do it. WOW always has specials regarding their expansions-and you can play until level 20 for free to figure out if you like it or not. Also, Hearthstone is 100% free if we are talking about money. Emotionally and time wise not so much. Patience is key and if you don't have that, you're going to fail, hard.
I included some articles below that are current and, I thought, helpful or funny.
The new Hearthstone changes are great for eSports, bad for casual players
Win more at Hearthstone using mind games and the art of BM
Why Leveling up your WOW character is like getting an MBA
I just want to preface this with my "bad" may not be your "bad"- and just because I don't like a book doesn't mean it's not well written. THAT being said, I feel like too many Bibliophiles fall into the trap of "I started this book so I have to finish it now". It's my trap. I have fallen into it more times than I can count. If not to at least to say you read the thing (especially if it's something like War and Peace or Les Miserables ), or just because it's popular (Fifty Shades of Grey or Twilight), reading is supposed to be enjoyable. Don't force down a book like a bad piece of sushi if you don't have to. Sometimes it might be too many grammatical errors that send a book flying against the wall (I'm reading for errors as I type this part, ha) or maybe it's just too tedious. Don't make yourself do it. We all love to add that one last book to Goodreads- but sometimes it just doesn't hit the spot if the whole experience was painful. I personally just end up being bitter about having to flip through multiple pages of words that end up having no real meaning for me. Doesn't that sound like a waste of time to you?
I actually had this epiphany the other day when I still had the same amount of books staring out at me from my library pile. I just couldn't keep reading a couple of them, and this was after I forced myself to finish Big Magic (that takes a certain personality type to appreciate it in all of its odd glory). After trying to read Cruel Beauty I decided to start a new book (The Darkest Part of the Forest) and I definitely didn't regret it. Part of my reading desert may be the genre I'm reading in (If you're a writer you need to read a lot in your genre to help cultivate your style and see what kind of themes are current). Young adult books are a little more simple in plot, so sometimes it takes a little time to find a book that portrays realistic young characters, while also being entertaining or sophisticated enough to keep my attention. If it does that to me, what kind of attention are these books getting from younger readers? Because I sure know they aren't stupid. Now, I do know that some tedious reading is required in high school and college, and that some of it is needed in order to gain reading comprehension and experience. But I think we can make it more enjoyable by switching some of the older books out with newer classics that have some of the same advanced themes and comprehension levels. We want kids to want to read, right?
It has a lot to do with the publishing industry. They follow what sells and they take clones of whatever is popular and pop them out like Tic Tacs until something unique takes off on Amazon, then they get to start chasing that instead. This is one of the best times to be a reader if you know how to use tech. E readers have opened up a whole new can of crazy, imperfect, unique, and interesting books that otherwise wouldn't be available in the traditional publishing market. Try a new author, a new genre, a new medium (Audible anyone?), just don't read a book that makes you miserable.
As for my generation, pre-Amazon, we lucked out with Reading Rainbow. Who doesn't remember that theme song?
I have been a feminist ever since I was in high school. I argued politics and was aware of a lot of stuff I knew my classmates weren't even worried about then. If they debated they also tended to spew out a lot of what they had heard their parents say in arguments-so it was kind of a moot point.
At this point in my life I'm pretty submerged in my own interests: Writing, computer games, tv, and movies-the normal kind of thing for a self proclaimed geeky girl. What I've found more and more, especially when reading book or comic sites, is this absolute need for everything to be inclusive- and if it's not people start getting their panties in a bunch.
Lets start with Skullpoopl
I just read a "very disappointing" article on Tor by a female author. She says how she enjoyed the movie, taking time to occasionally roll her eyes at certain derogatory statements made by said anti hero, but enjoyed it despite overused villain tropes. She then ends the article with a list of feminist complaints: There was female nudity that was only incorporated sexually (even though she had just said it was cool they showed male nudity) and some flippant, not even overtly sexist (lets call it female general-ism), comments made through the narration. What are you expecting exactly? There are reasons why people like Deadpool (women included). A lot of that has to do with his flippant disrespect for everything-it's not just you sister. It's like I'm reading high school compare and contrast papers in the media at this point. This kind of reporting is encouraging mislead social justice warriors and will eventually lead us into another gamer gate (don't get me started on that). I was a super fan of the Mary Sue-then they went way to the left on the crazy girl train too. There's a reason I think this is bad-and I'll explain that next.
The Mary Sue and BookRiot
I quit reading the Mary Sue because it was turning a little SJW for me, everything felt like a "triggered" article. It made me sad-because they have some great articles for girls and women about comics, fantasy, and science fiction. There are just so many articles I can read about what was wrong with a game or video due to the lack of armor on a female character I can take.
Book Riot made me angry. There was an article on a woman who pledged to read only women for a year-the title ended with something like "-And I Wouldn't Change A Thing". I posted a quick comment about how if this was flipped it would be considered sexist-and didn't that professor that only taught male authors (albeit for a sexist reason) get pretty much laid out to dry for the same thing? My likes started to ping. A lot. Then they DELETED my comment. Then they posted THEIR TERMS OF CONDUCT. Their thing was making it a safe place for people with minority voices to be heard. I looked at the author's bio. She was ME. Early thirties, kids, she even played roller derby. I was angry-I wrote a few more comments directed at the moderator, I hadn't attacked the girl-I had stated my opinion. They gave me the bye Felicia wave. Who does that? Apparently a millennial that has too much SJW craziness running through their veins. If you want to hear what people think you can't only take what one female says and ignore the rest of the female voices trying to join the conversation if they disagree with your own. Women have the right to be zoo keepers, police, lawyers, teachers, presidents, queens, doctors, nurses, or maybe they even have the right to be a stay at home mom that wants to pop a couple of kids out. As a feminist it's our duty to hear everyone of our gender out, even if it disagrees with our own, or it's not really feminism is it? Also, you may disagree with the statement I made on her article-that's fine-but guys had a lot to do with how we have come to (more or less) equality in this century. We can't discount them as our opposing gender. We should be their champions just like we demand for them to be ours.
I personally feel that there are more males that want women to succeed (at least in this culture) than not. There are those crazy outlier sexist jerks that think rape should be legal-but I think that is a minority.
College and Military sexual assaults (both for males and females) need to be addressed harshly and taken care of- instead of the blame being shifted around by officials. We need to teach our sons and daughters to respect each other in a way that is mutual to everyone. Raising our children in a good educational atmosphere along with a healthy upbringing will develop individuals more able to cope with and read social situations. It's time for people to take responsibility and start to fix the emotional health and limits of our culture.
As for us females, in particular, we need to change US. Stop the slut shaming. Stop the judging. Stop demanding things be all inclusive. Don't demand change without wanting to help be the change-It's like charging into a guy's apartment and reordering it to the way you want it. Let's make our own apartment the way we love it-then I think people might want to come over. We have our girl stuff. Sometimes I think it's okay that they have their guy stuff without having to include us-and if it's a Deadpool movie- then so be it.
This book is getting a lot of hype right now-so I thought it was pretty cool that she sent some signed bookmarks out. The book is Genesis Girl-and the blurb is enticing. Check it out below if you have time-
This week has been a little crazy. I got to take my son to a Harry Potter themed party at our library, and that was pretty awesome. Our local library is really good at keeping the kids engaged, especially during the summer season. I definitely have to admit I was a little jealous of my kid last night. They got candy from the Weasley's Wizard Wheezes store in little plastic containers, Butterbeer (which tasted just how I thought it should), got sorted into a house, ran obstacle courses, and they made little trees at the Herbology table. A lot of work went into it. It was the best.
I had the best two hours of television in my life this week. The Expanse more than lived up to anything I was expecting. I also heard that people that read the books weren't let down either-I think that is a crowning achievement in a world where companies usually kill your literary darlings when they move it to the screen.
I haven't liked Amos until these two episodes really, but something did it for me, I'm now a little bit of a fan. Maybe it's that he's loyal to Naomi to a fault even though he's kind of psychotic (in an unnervingly calm way). I think it was when he carried the guys down into the ship even though he wasn't fond of either one of them. He does what he has to survive-even when some people ethically can't.
So, I have been pretty loyal to the SyFy channel for a while, specifically after BSG ended. I waited in vain for them to pump out some quality work, or at least something I enjoyed. My hubby liked Defiance-as for myself I hated the characters-so it was a no go for me. Then this year I guess they just decided to be badasses. What happened SyFy? All I have to say to them is this-
Thank you! For The Expanse-for Killjoys- for Childhood's End-even for Dark Matter. Because you are trying again. Thank you!
I'm not a huge fan of Dark Matter, I also didn't enjoy Childhood's End like I wish I could have (it was just missing something), but the quality of programming that is coming out of SyFy right now is what everyone wants. It looks nice, the plot lines are awesome, and to be honest I don't know if they are going to be able to put anything else this good out for a while-but thank you all the same.
Which brings me to-
I love you. Absolutely love you.
I can't say enough good things about this show. The visuals are worth watching it alone. Just when you think it's winding down they push people together you didn't think would run into each other in a million years.
Characters I hated I now kinda like. People I thought I liked I'm not sure about anymore. Everyone has a backstory. Even if it isn't said aloud -every character's history is implied- you just aren't sure if you are imposing the right history into the narrative.
It's not BSG. There is less personal drama and more political prowess. I like it that way. I like the noir side of it, and I really appreciate the fact that they didn't really let it bleed out into the rest of the show. If you haven't seen it yet you need to. Just hold on for the ride, Earther.