Sunday, November 29, 2015

NaNoWriMo Update Four: DONE!

Actually, I got to my 50,000 words last Tuesday! So I made my goal of finishing before Thanksgiving, which is always helpful since my attention needs to be so many other places then.  And I haven't looked at my story since I declared myself a winner... and I must say, I've been missing it. Dying to know what happens next!! Because no, it is far from finished.

But I'm also frustrated with all the stuff I skimmed over and left out and forgot. All the stuff I meant to do! So here's hoping I can keep up the everyday writing habit (once this crazy weekend is over!) and finish, then fix this story.

I want to be brave enough to share an excerpt with you... let's about this dance moment:

He smiles and brings her close. In her ear he whispers, “I’m watching you.” Then he spins her away and hands her off to the next guy. Her head explodes and the dreaded dizziness descends on her again. Her feet tangle up, twisted into each other. She stumbles. But hands grab her and keep her spinning and spinning and spinning from person to person to person. How long does this crazy dance last? She’s not sure she can make it much longer and keep her dinner down.
And then, the music changes again. Slows, clears, shifts. She is handed off one last time, to someone who keeps her and holds her, steady and sure against him. She knows without looking that somehow Khol has found her in that frenzy of spinning bodies. She lays her face against his chest. It’s damp and heaving, so she knows he too has been out here dancing, this whole time. Her arms come up and around his waist. She refuses to move again for now. Maybe forever. If this dance is a throw-a-girl-around-dance, she won’t play. But his arms hold her tight, his hands press hot through the thin material of her shirt. It appears they are staying put for at least one song's worth. They barely move to the music. She closes her eyes and tries to catch her breath and dispel the spinning in her head. The movement of his chest calms her. Their breathing slows, bit by bit, and syncs together. Now, this, this she could do forever. 

The first he and the second he are two different he's in guess that's not clear from this bit! And yeah, it appears there's a dance of some sort in every story I write. Or several dances for that matter. There's just something about dancing, is there not? :)

Anyway, so there you go. Nano 2015 is a wrap! I can't believe it's over already! And now here's to another year of revising!

Friday, November 27, 2015

The Walking Dead S6E7: Head's Up (Spoilers)

Finally, finally, finally!!!


Guys, they were replaying this terrible scene so I was hiding my eyes, and then my family's all like MOM, YOU HAVE TO WATCH NOW! And there was Glenn pulling himself out from under the walkers and to safety under the dumpster, just like so many people speculated!

And then he meets up with Enid, who's doing I don't know what, and they have some words and deep thoughts and he has to convince her to go back and when they get there.. they see the walkers pounding up on the fence. Not good.

Back inside the fence, Morgan gets in trouble because Carol figures out he's hiding someone.

Spencer tries to get over the fence and the walkers to... you know.. I don't know what he was trying to do!! And Tara basically saves him, but it makes Rick mad.

What was he thinking???

Oh, can I just say, Rick is all cleaned up in this episode and he's looking good... so good!

But my favorite face to see was definitely Glenn's.

A beautiful face!

What else happened? I can't even remember because GLENN'S ALIVE!

OH!! That crazy kid ends up stealing a gun and is following Carl around. GAH! STOP HIM!

The hat is back and everything feels right in the world.
Make this kid go away!

And then, Maggie sees the green balloons that Enid had and lets loose and she knows that Glenn's okay. And just when we are all smiling about that, the watch tower falls, crashing into the fence, which breaks and all the walkers start coming through.


One more episode before the big long mid season break. I'm scared.

Oh, and P.S. We just learned this week that Daryl aka. Norman Reedus is coming to Comic Con here in March! Sweet!
He would be scary looking if you didn't know how nice he is!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Movie Review: Mockingjay Part 2

Movie: Mockingjay Part 2
Genre: Drama Dystopian
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth
Rating: PG13
My Rating: two thumbs up

Yes, this movie picks up right at the moment the first one ends, which is after Peeta is rescured from the Capitol and trying to recover from what happened there. He has been conditioned to kill Katniss, and has just tried to choke her to death.  So the movie starts, Katniss is hurt but okay and Peeta looks terrible.
A key scene that will make you weepy.

They end up sneaking into the Capitol to try and get Katniss to the President so she can kill him. Both Peeta and Gale are with her, and also Fennick. They have to run through a bunch of booby traps and it's intense and insane. Then when she gets almost there, she sees Prim just about at the same time some bombs are dropped and bam.

I think you all know the rest, yes?

It's a sad movie. Depressing. Just like the book. Even thought things wrap up and end somewhat happy. But that being said, they do a great job, just as they do in all the other movies, of getting it right and true to the book.
I can't help but love Gale.

So, I liked it. The movie was great. But the story itself still depresses me what with all the people that die and the way that Gale is treated, which just kills me. (Jenny and I are thinking of a Book Banter on this so I'll go into it more then.) And anyway, I feel mixed about it since I have a hard time separating movie from story. Know what I mean?

Oh, my favorite moment? At the end, a little thing between Haymitch and Effie. Watch for it!

But seriously, it's the weirdest thing to me is that this whole Hunger Games journey is over! All the books and now all the movies! I've been there for them all! And it's over! So sad!

Bottom Line: Of course see it. SEE IT PEOPLE! Embrace the emotion!

Here's the trailer:

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Music Stuck in My Head: Kendji Girac

Time to share another music obsession! I discovered this guy awhile back, I can't remember how now, and I can't get enough! It seems he won the The Voice in France last year (where he was coached by MIKA another Frenchie favorite!) and since then has done a couple of albums but they aren't yet readily available here in the US sadly. But you can find the songs on YouTube! (So far, he's not even on Spotify yet.)

Anyway, please meet, Kendji!!

Um, yes, he's extremely nice to look at. OF COURSE he is! In fact, I think this calls for a collage! (You knew that was coming, didn't you?)

Gah. Those eyes.

But I do also love his songs, which he sings in what sounds pretty much like French, but sometimes sounds a little like Spanish. It's very trippy. In fact, what I think it is is, Catalan, the official language of Andorra. Actually, I'm not sure if he sings in Catalan, or just a mixture of French and Spanish. Gah! I told you it's trippy!! Whatever it is, I love it. According to Wikipedia, he was born to a family of travelers, which to me means, he's a gypsy! How fascinating is that? Yes, I've seen him referred to as that in many other places too. And he learned how to play the guitar from his grandpa. Which is just the coolest.

Oh, and he's like, only 19 years old or some such ridiculous young age.

Anyway, here are some of my favorites of his. I hope you give him a listen and let me know what you think. I tend to want to blast these songs and dance around while cleaning, or just chair dance while doing computer stuff. See if you too want to move around when you hear it.

Here's the first song I heard:

And the second one. I can't decide which one I like best:

Here's a slower more ballad-y one:

And I just discovered this one, and I love it because it really shows off the awesome language thing he has going on:  (What say you? French? Spanish? Both? Neither?)

And if you are in the mood just to hear his guitar playing... you HAVE to listen to this one:

Gah! I can't stop! I threw this one in because it shows him singing live, some popular folk song I think, with a ton of people singing along, and it's just so much fun!

And now, you must tell me. Did you listen? Have you already heard of him? Did you like? Or is this not quite your sort of thing?

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Thanks

It's sort of a random freebie prompt over at The Broke and the Bookish today. A thanksgiving free for all! Yes, there are some categories suggested, but I thought maybe I'd do a random bookish thanks list, as I've been known to do in the past. Let's see what I come up with.

Ten Bookish Thankful Things

1. I'm thankful for those in between novella books that usually make me crazy but right now make me happy because I plan to use them to bump up my Goodreads number!

2. I'm thankful for libraries that do author events! Pretty much my favorite thing ever. My very own library is planning one for not this Sat. but next, on the 5th and some of my favorite authors will be there. You'll know where to find me that morning!

3. I'm thankful for a daughter who said today, when I asked her what she wanted for Christmas, answered... BOOKS!

4. I'm thankful for the magic that is ebooks. That technology I pooed pooed back in the day but now I embrace with wonder.

5. I'm thankful for the authors that just keep writing and writing and writing because one thing I know and that is, I will never ever run out of things to read.

6. I'm also thankful for the authors that come to writing conferences and teach the stuff they've learned. They make me feel like I can totally join their ranks.

7. I'm thankful for words, those amazing brilliant things that happen when we put a few letters together, because words make it all happen.

8. I am thankful for the ability and the means to support authors by buying their books even though my house just might crumble any second from this habit!

9. I'm thankful for friends who happily discuss, argue, cry, laugh and squeal over books with me. It's a little insane just how much fun this can be!

10. I'm thankful that my eyes are still letting me read without too much trouble and annoyance. They are bugging me in many other ways, but not reading!!

What bookish things are you thankful for this Thanksgiving week?

Monday, November 23, 2015

Beta Book Review: Year of Origin by Maren

Book: Year of Origin by Maren
Genre: YA Science Fiction
For: Beta reading
From: Maren

Short Synopsis: Blu is mad at her dad because he has just told her his plans to move the family,  which takes away any chance for Blu to go to ballet school as she has planned her whole life. She storms away and then, something happens, and she is whisked away from all she knows, to a new world. Well, actually, it's the same world, but a new time. After getting her bearings, she learns that people in this time way into the future (about 100 years actually) have come from all different time periods (except the Nobles who rule the place) and she is special because she is from the Year of Origin. She makes good with some of the higher ups and finds herself living her dream of being a ballet dancer. But all she really cares about now is finding her family, trying to see if they've been whisked to this time period too, or what happened to them. She finds a friend who comes from her same time and they bond and together, they try to figure out what's really going on in this place. I say try because yes, there's more! There's book two being worked on right now!

My Response: This was my first time reading someone's unpublished book, from cover to cover, the whole thing all at once, as if it were a "real" published book. It's quite the scary task being both the reader and/or the one being read! But I totally forgot all that while reading and just got wrapped up in the story, the characters, the setting... all of it. Maren is an amazing writer and I hope to learn from her skills at word choice and description. So good! This book of hers was her Nano project two or three years ago I think, and she is now getting it ready to query, I hope! And currently she is working on book two for this year's Nano. I can't wait to see what happens next! It's been fun to be part of the process with her. Even if this one doesn't make out to the published world, I know one of many other ideas will!

Bottom Line: A fun fabulous time traveling science fiction story complete with a strong main characters, her quirky boy and a prince that is a little crazy!

Let's Talk About: What do you think about me reviewing unpublished stories? I did get Maren's permission, but you all might think, why do I care about this book that I may never see?  But then again, I thought it would be fun to share the process a book goes through, not only just my experience trying to write, but the experience of being part of a writing group and reading things other aspiring authors are writing. Also, if she does get this published, then we can already be spreading the word! Or something. Anyway, hopefully you will find it fun.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

NaNoWriMo Week Three Update

Just in case you're following along, here's my week three report. And wow, that week flew by, did it not? I did have a couple of bad days this past week, writing-wise, just as I expected, though even then I managed a couple hundred words just so I could update the page and say that I've haven't actually missed a day! Even that's a pretty crazy goal and accomplishment really.

So, I loved my story up until Thursday/Friday and then BAM, I hit a wall. You know all the feelings... why am I doing this... this is crap... what a lot of time to waste doing something that will go nowhere... I don't know what to write next... it's terrible so why try...blah blah blah. I hate it when that happens. But then Saturday things picked up again, I got over the little hump of "what happens next" even though the story is going its own direction and I'm just hanging on for the ride. I wish I was more imaginative than I am so I could truly figure things out but who knows. Maybe something cool will happen.

My story has three distinct parts... and I've just crossed over into the third part. While that doesn't necessarily mean I'm nearing the end, it feels like things are going to start getting crazy in anticipation for that climatic moment (assuming I can write myself there) which makes me excited. I'm frustrated because I keep thinking of things I need to go back and change, or add or fix or delete, but that's not what Nano is about, so there's a huge list that's started and hopefully I can remember what/how/who/when I need to make those changes.

I was pondering sharing an excerpt but I'm vetoing everything. Instead, I thought I'd share a list of some of my characters names. A few of them have been nameless until today and I'm excited that they finally have names! So I give you, my characters:


Speaking of characters, one thing that happened this week, I started reading last year's Nano story, which I haven't looked at for pretty much a whole year. And I'm dying to work on it again! And revive those characters! And actually finish it and polish it and see what someone other than me, thinks of it. So that'll be the project starting just as soon as Nano ends. I wonder if I can revise two stories at the same time. Or three even.

Well anyway, as of the beginning of today, I'm at about 42,000 words. One week to get 8000 more. I can totally do this, despite Thanksgiving!

How about you? Feeling strong? Pushing on to the end? Giving up? Wondering what the heck is happening to your story?

Isn't Nano so much fun!?!

This is how I keep track of my word counts.

Brand new writing buddies. Aren't they so cute!?


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