Sunday, March 31, 2013

Good News

It took about three dozen pictures to get a good one. Crazy, huh?


Happy Easter!

         
      

        

Thursday, March 28, 2013

DF: Life Winds


          I am officially back! And yet, our internet is slower than a slug.

          I will be preparing the Oddball blurb. Excitingness! Yeah, that's. . . not a word.

          Sometimes it's hard to keep my head above water. Life is like a whirlwind. Maybe I've said that before, but it's so true. The world sucks you in and you swirl around with all the things in your life. You're not really managing these things: work, school, writing, anything else you might do. You just pass by them, touch base with them before you tumble to the next thing.

          I was late for speech class the other day. That was the first time I had ever been late for class. I had forgotten to bake a cake for clogging class, which I was supposed to teach for my instructor since she was away. I had to teach my own clogging class too. Among other things throughout the week. It all just compresses together and builds in pressure.

          And just when the whirlwind threatens to drag me under, something happens. I don't know what exactly. Something in me quietly reaches breaking point. The scary part is the quietly. I break inside and even I don't realize it because it's so quiet. Until I notice it surface in my attitude. That's when I ask God, "What is wrong with me?" When I feel so low, there's no where left for me to go-

          Except up.

         And that's when God reaches into the whirlwind and snags me from the push and pull of the winds. He re-centers my life. He puts me in the eye of the storm. In the calm. In the peace. He says, "If you keep Me at the center, all will be right." And I can breathe.

        When I can breathe, I can write. So that's what I plan to do today.

        Yeah, I didn't mean to write about all that. I was hoping for something more wrtier-ish. But that's what came out.

        So what stifles your writing the most? How do you break out of it?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Character Update

         Yes! I actually wrote this week. Two scenes. But it was amazing that I had time, sort of. In truth I told homework that it would have to wait in line. Oddball and Rocky are still in the same place in way, since Oddball is still dragging Rocky through the snow and Rocky is still unconscious. Yeah. . . slow process.
  
         And since these character updates can be tedious it seems. If I wrote in giant leaps (do I wish I could!) then it would be more interesting. But since I don't have that highly coveted writing ability, I will make the Character Updates monthly instead of weekly.

          I am still not officially back. But the blurb is underway (other self- it is? me- yes, didn't you know? other self- since when do you communicate with me about what you plan to do?).

          Picture this: a series of scenes about two boys on the slow slope to death. Snow is the only scenery allowed. One of the boys is out of commission. And the other one is alone in this snow world. And it has to be riveting. That last part, eh, it's not working out so well.

          Have you had trouble with scenes that were supposed to be one of the nail-biters, but every time you wrote it, and rewrote it, it always seemed to fall flat? What was it about? What did you do?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Snippets


          As promised, I am linking up with Whisperings of the Pen for Snippets. This is where I share with you some random sentences from what I wrote last month. But since my writing has been here and there lately I'll just give you what I've been writing "recently." Forewarning: it's still rough. I apologize that there are no pictures. This was rather spur of the moment so I have nothing prepared. But I thought after my (continued) long absence you deserve another post. Thank you so much for following! Just you know, to throw that in too.

         The third package, much smaller, was also a box. A familiar box. Oddball's fingers trembled as he opened it. A small vial of a liquid, tinted blue. Unlabeled. It didn't need a label. He knew what it was.

          Niftle.

 
                                                                                                              -from Oddball

         And Rocky was singing again. He must feel better now. Oddball wished he could say the same thing for his ears.

                                                                                                                
-from Oddball

          A crude wooden sign was posted in front of it.
Echo Passage- Doom of the Big-Mouthed. Make not a sound.

         "That's funny," Rocky said.
         "Yeah, who labels a sign like that?" Oddball said.

                                                                                                                
-from Oddball

  

       Besides I'm twenty-one now, official adult ready to face the world. Yeah, right. The world faced me a long time ago. And dragged me under.

                                                                                                                 
-from c. sanity

          He shrugs his broad shoulders again. 'Little brother' is a deceiving term.

                                                                                                                 
-from c. sanity

          I toss the dishes in the sink. Without breaking them, yes; it's an art form.

                                                                                                                 
-from c. sanity

Tuesday Quips

source

         There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. . .

                                                                                                                 -
The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

                                                     
                                                                     If only it was that easy, Tolkien. If only.                                                                                                                                                 
   
source

Monday, March 18, 2013

A Review of Sorts



      
         I'm not back yet. So this is unofficial. Off the books. (Like I keep of records of when I post, please.) But as for a Character Update? Rocky is still were I left him. Unconscious. His young life flashing before his eyes. And Oddball, the moody hero of the book, still dragging his sick friend through the snow.
Yeah. Moving is taking it's toll on all things in my life.

         And the blurb? Remember now, I'm not officially back yet. So until then. Suspense shall reign.

         But I do come with something.

         I normally don't read book reviews. I love to be surprised. Suspense is one of my favorite elements of a book. I love it so much that if a series author has earned my trust (that sounds melodramatic) then I don't even read the back of his/her book. Book reviews tend to be riddled with spoilers. But there's this book I have finally finished. And so I'm going to attempt to talk about it without one spoiler.

         Here goes nothing.


        
                                                            Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta

          Bad stuff and Good stuff. I like to save the Good stuff for last. (Very unofficial terms for an unofficial post, huh?) So the down side? The POV is everywhere. Really. I had a hard time swallowing her style. It's very impersonal at times. She often down-plays some of the darkness by telling or vaguely describing it instead of giving a full-out scene. If I don't like an author's style, I usually pick up another book. I used to be very tolerant and keep reading. Now though I have so little time to read (so sad). But a friend liked it, and if my book-loving friends (they're going extinct, people!) like it then I'm willing to to go through all obstacles. And I haven't read enough fantasy for a fantasy writer. Don't tell anyone. Also, the plot moves fast and skates through many of the different kingdoms with little descriptions. Maybe the author was afraid to to give to many details. And maybe I'm just weird and geeky, but I love to read about the cultures of different kingdoms. But most of them were described just as wicked places, except for Belegonia and Osteria. Which could be summed up as the good places. 

         Good stuff. The style prickled me until the story engulfed me. It has an amazing plot with unexpected twists. I love that. How do people think of such of great plots? It makes me feels small and obvious with my own plot lines.
   
        Even though the different kingdoms were barely touched on, I love that they were there. And the names! It just rolls of your tongue. Sorel. Sarnak. Charyn though makes me think of the word chagrin. I laugh on the inside and have to remind myself that Charyn was supposed to be the most evil of all the kingdoms. So then I think of charred things. Which usually ends up as a charred burger. :P But it's still burnt black, stone hard, and grizzly all the same. The different types of people of Lumantere: River, Rock, Flatlands, Monts (am I forgetting one?). I really liked the depth they added to Lumantere.The Rock people sound so enchanting. The River people sound mighty. But the Monts (from the mountains) are my favorite. I wish I could give you a small piece from the book about them. Unfortunately, I've already returned it to the library. So you'll have to read it for yourself. All the same, if I was Lumanteran, I'd want to be a Mont.

         Now about down-playing the dark parts. Bad and good at the same time. Finnikin of the Rock is a very dark book. Sometimes distancing the reader from the darkness was a good choice. Honestly, if the author had shown some of the scenes in more depth, I wouldn't have finished the book. I still got a hold on what was going on and just how bad things were, but at the same time the author didn't violate my morals. It's one of those things I always ask myself as a writer when it comes the darkness, "How far is too far?" What I learned from Melina Marchetta: Include the darkness, do show, but when in doubt take a more passive approach, tell it in a spellbinding word picture, something abstract.

         Now for the characters, because tribute must always be paid to fantastic characters. I should start with the main character. Finnikin. It's great that he actually is manly. I have writing friends who are girls and they have trouble writing from a male point of view. Their guys end up sounding like girls. But Finnikin is definitely a guy. Now at times he does seem like a cliched guy, but a guy none the less. And there were surprises in him. I love his relationship with Lucian. Back to that later. Evanjalin was sometimes also a cliched woman, and yet she is just amazing. She's so clever. I can't stand dumb heroines unless they're for comic relief like Buttercup. But I should confess I have a weakness for secondary characters, so maybe I'm biased toward Finnikin and Evanjalin. My two favorites (who can choose one?) are Froi and Lucian. I didn't like Froi at first. When I saw that he wasn't just a passing character and was dragged into the plot, I said, "Why him? Really?!" Out loud. I wasn't exactly happy. But after a while I began to like Froi. I like watching him grow. How he cares, but doesn't realize he cares. I like how he always complains, but he never really means it. And I love his honesty. Lucian of the Monts. Finnikin of the Rock isn't a funny book. It does have it's light-hearted moments though, and when it's not Finnikin and Evanjalin, it's probably Finnikin and Lucian. Finnikin's best friend and rival. These two are so much like brothers. Always trying to best each other. Always calling each other names and getting in fights. But if you dare touch one, you have both of them to fight off. And don't tell Finnikin, but Lucian is better at most things then he is.

          Anyhow that's my book review of sorts. What do you think? Sounds like a great read? Or I am too vague for you to know for sure? If you've read it, what's your take on Finnikin of the Rock? Who's your favorite character? If you were Lumanteran, where would you want to be from: the Rock, River, Flatlands, the Monts?

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Thursday's The Dump File


          So on Thursdays (hopefully every Thursday) you should find an anything goes type of post hanging around here. Just for the fun of it.

          I would love to give you some amazing writing advise. I would love to say that I have been immersed in my writing all week and have barely come out to the 'real' world because writing has been way to fascinating. I would love to give a blurb of Oddball.

          But unfortunately my mind is on the dragging boredom of necessary things. Like work. History class and the essay I have to write. English class and the essay I have to write. Clogging and the performance that I hope will go well because my students seem rather unprepared.

          And then there is the people I'm around. Friends who I don't know well, but I'd love to know them more. I know they aren't living their lives right with God. And I want to be a light. But how close is too close? And I'm not a grand conversationalist. I'm not even an average one. I don't even know how to react to half the things they tell me. I don't want to seem like I'm judging them; I hate judging. But I don't want them to think that I believe it's okay.

         But I will be presenting some snippets soon. Yay!
   
         And I will leave you with a piece of random information. My English professor informed us that in Microsoft Word you have to press the space bar ten times in order to indent your paragraph five times. Because for some weird reason Microsoft only moves a half a space at a time. Why? The world may never know.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Art


         Writing is an art. A painting of words. A play of words. A music wrapped in the rhythm of words. Words that conjure images that are not there. Words that create the setting and cast. Words that sing and tickle ears. Words that drag down to the deepest, darkest depths of the human heart. Words that inspire the hope of dawn and light.Words that wail, and words that fly. Words that dance and words that cry. Writing is an art and words are its medium.

And then life hit


         I owe you an apology. I'm sorry.
       
         I left for a week. A whole week. I told myself I wouldn't do that. But it happened still. My family presently have no internet at our house. Mostly because there is no house. Just a bunch of dirt with these circular slabs of concrete randomly positioned on its surface. My family is in the process of buying a new house. So we are in an RV and a camper. The only real down side is that there's no internet which makes blogging and school more difficult.

         I'm at the college, that's why you are reading this. Please forgive me for another un-pictured post.

         Since school, work, and moving have consumed much of me time, I have not written much. In Oddball. Yes, I should specify that. I've written a paragraph (or a half) in some non-serious, just-to-keep-my-sanity project almost everyday. And I keep thinking about this other project I have. The weird idea. It's still rough.

         I really need to give you a blurb of Oddball. So you actually know what I'm talking about. And I should tell you that Oddball is the protagonist's name. But it's also what I call the book itself, because, well, you know. It doesn't have a title. None of my books have titles. I used to always call my projects after the protagonist, so Oddball is Oddball. There was a Sandy, an Anne, and a Mike and Libby (all hoping to be resurrected). Now my projects are developing more or less accurate names like the weird idea, c. sanity, or fairytale. How do you name you WIPs? Do they have a stand in title until you find something more permanent? Do their titles change every week? Did the title inspire the book?

         I will have a blurb of sorts of Oddball soon. When I find some sense of normalcy (as if normal exists).