Monday, December 22, 2014

Teens Can Write Too Blog Chain

I'm back, Internet! And I'm back with another post in the Teens Can Write Too! chain! The question this month is: What works of fiction have taught you by example, and what did they teach you? So... I shall make a list!

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer:

I am a pantser by nature. I'm realizing, though, that plotting definitely has its perks, so I'm starting to make the transition to the dark side. (They have less revisions, you know.) Plotting, I've learned, can especially have its perks when writing a series.

Because if you plot a series, you know what's going to happen later on, so you can drop all the fabulous little hints and cameo appearances that your reader isn't going to get until after the Big Twist. Then, when they go back to reread your book because the Big Twist was just so awesome, they will realize all of these little cookie crumbs that led up to it. Then they will be in even more awe.

Marissa Meyer is so great at this. I'm still in shock at all of the amazing little cameos and hints she dropped in her books about what was going to happen in the subsequent books. It's amazing. It takes an already awesome series and makes it three times more awesome.

Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi:

I'm just going to come write out and say it. Authors are cruel, cruel beings. They deliberately try to torture their readers by writing scenes with the intention of soliciting the most emotional reaction. Of course, the type of scene with the most emotional reaction possible is a character's death scene. But wait. A character dying isn't enough to cause us readers emotional pain. No, we also have to sit through the other characters' reactions.

Characters' reactions to traumatizing moments multiply the emotions in the reader.

Through the Ever Night holds within its pages one of my favorite literary characters of all time. I'm not going to tell you who it is, though, because then this post is suddenly chock-full of spoilers, and we wouldn't want that, would we?

Well, this favorite character, code name Verity (sorry, I had to make that reference. It was right there.) code name AwesomeSauce (because this person is completely and totally awesome), experienced losing someone in a very traumatic way. Yes, the actual death of that character was very sad, but what broke me down was AwesomeSauce's (okay, I admit. That's a really weird code name) reaction.

The grief this character experienced and how s/he (because I can't risk spoiling anything) handled it just drove. me. to. tears. It upset me so much.

This book taught me to really wring out the emotions by taking a character that's pretty tough, or kind, or funny, or optimistic, or whatever that character's defining characteristic may be, and turning said characteristic on its head when he experiences a loss. Play out the emotions. Don't let the other characters just slide by when they lost someone they were close to.

And wow. That was a really long-winded description about Through the Ever Night. XD

Anyways, that's all for me. What about you guys? What books have taught you by example?

And check out the other blogs in the chain =D

25th – [off-day]
31st – (We’ll announce the topic for next month’s chain.)
*Note: Banner for The Lunar Chronicles from

Friday, November 7, 2014

Best Blogging Buddies Award :-)

I was nominated by Ginny (Spirit Working In Me) for the Best Blogging Buddies Award. :D Yay!!! :D Okay, so the rules are:

1. You must make a post to show your award on your main blog.
2. You must tag the person who nominated you in your post.
3. You must nominate all of your best buddies, and those whom you want to become best buddies with, who, to your knowledge, have not been nominated for this award.
4. You must ask your buddies at least 15 questions in your post.
5. You must answer all of the questions your buddies ask you. On your post.

Alright, here goes nothing! :D Here are Ginny's questions.

1. Sweet tea or lemonade?
Lemonade. I can't stand sweet tea. :/

2. What's your favorite era?
Ahh!! This is the impossible question! I can't possibly answer that! *runs in panicky circles* Umm.... Maybe, if I absolutely had to pick, I would choose... colonial times to live in and the Mongolian empire times to study.

3. French fries or onion rings?
Another hard question! Okay, if they're Chick-fil-A's fries, then definitely fries. If they're (insert name of burger place that none of y'all will have heard of) onion rings, then onion rings. Hehe... I kind of cheated, didn't I? XD

4. What's your favorite band?
Skillet! No, Flyleaf! Ummm.... *winces* Skillet.

5. Which is worse? Having a sore throat or a stuffy nose?
Oh, the wonderful timing of this question. I've had a stuffy nose for the past few days, and because I get a stuffy nose all the time due to my allergies, I'm going with stuffy nose. It's so annoying!

6. What's your favorite NFL team?
Umm... I prefer college football, but if I had to pick one, I'd say the Cowboys, but I like the Seahawks as wel.

7. Cream cheese or cottage cheese?
Neither! Do I really have to pick? Umm... I guess I'd pick cream cheese if I had to....

8. Crab or shrimp?
Shrimp. I don't think I've ever had crab.

9. History or science?
History!!! This is probably one of the easiest questions so far (besides #1). I love history! Science, at least in school, is not one of my favorite subjects.

10. Leading or following?
Leading. In some instances, I think I am definitely more of a leader, but in others not as much.

11. Beef or pork?
Beef definitely!

12. Pencil or Pen?
Usually, a pen. If I'm doing schoolwork, though, I guess a pencil.

13. Pizza or fried chicken?
Pizza. Fried chicken's good, but not my favorite.

14. Divergent or The Fault in Our Stars?
This question. Roar. I guess I'll have to go with TFIOS. It's just so adorable! :D

15. Flip flops or sandals?
Flip flops. They just seem to be more comfortable than sandals.

Phew! That's done! XD Now for my questions! *rubs hands together* Mwahahaha! XD

1. Summer or winter?
2. Favorite candy?
3. Travel to Australia or France?
4. Favorite subject?
5. Favorite Disney movie? (Yes, of course I asked that question! XD)
6. Harry Potter or Hunger Games?
7. What is your favorite book in the series you chose above?
8. Ice cream or cookies?
9. Favorite type of food?
10. Biology or chemistry?
11. Chocolate or vanilla?
12. Dog or cat?
13. Skydiving or paragliding?
14. Rock climbing or ziplining?
15. Morning person or night owl?

I nominate *drumroll*...

Myth at Panda With a Pencil
Hannah at Plottinger Twist
Katie at A Writer's Faith

Monday, October 27, 2014

Why Books and Movies are Absolutely Amazing

Okay, so I haven't posted in around a month. Sorry about that! That's been partially because life is busy, but mainly because I couldn't think of anything to blog about- oh, who am I kidding, just because life is busy! Come on, let me have my moment... Lol XD

Anyways, I was scrolling through quotes from The Selection series by Kiera Cass the other day because I was going to include one of them in an English essay and I wanted to find the page number it was on. And some of these quotes were completely and totally awesome. 

A sampling of said quotes:

  • "True love is usually the most inconvenient kind." --The Selection
  • "Break my heart. Break it a thousand times if you like. It was only ever yours to break anyway." (D'awwww) --The One
  • "The best people all have some kind of scar." --The One
  • "It's always the fear of looking stupid that stops you from being awesome." --The Selection
  • "'One can never help being born into perfection." (Aw, yeah! Not that that applies to me at all... Oh, who am I kidding? Of course it does! XD) -- The Selection
Aren't those so incredibly awesome?! I couldn't put them all on here because I wanted to save room for quotes from other books (and movies- can't forget about the movies!), so you guys should definitely go look up more quotes by Kiera Cass. 

Now onto the other quotes- from books!:

  • "Love is a rebellious bird that nobody can tame." --Through the Ever Night (Btw, I am totally in love with this series! If you haven't read it, you definitely should. The first book is Under the Never Sky, and it's by Veronica Rossi.)
  • "If there was no fear, how could there be comfort? Or courage?" --Under the Never Sky
  • "Aria... everyone feels lost and low. It's how a person acts that makes them different." --Under the Never Sky
Now for the movie quotes:
Okay, who am I kidding? These are mostly going to be quotes from Once Upon a Time, Disney movies, and Sherlock. XD

  • "There's one thing my sister taught me, you don't give up on people. If someone's important to you, don't give up on them even if they say hurtful things or send a giant snow monster to chase you away." -- Once Upon a Time, Elsa
  • "Anderson, don't talk out loud. You lower the IQ of the whole street."(Oh, how I love Sherlock XD) --Sherlock (the BBC version)
  • "I'm not a psychopath, Anderson. I'm a high-functioning sociopath. Do your research." --Sherlock (the BBC version)
  • "Sometimes the right path is not the easiest one." --Pocahontas
And now to close with a really vague announcement because I want to torture you guys with suspense

There is something completely awesome that I'm working on with some other writers right now (if you know what it is, don't tell- you'll ruin the suspenseful torture!) and I am sooo incredibly excited about it. I'm just not going to give details about it until it's actually up and running. (See, I'm not just being vague to torture you; I actually do have a reasonable explanation. XD) 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Code Name Verity Book Review

Summary from Amazon:
Two young women become unlikely best friends during World War II, until one is captured by the Gestapo.

Only in wartime could a stalwart lass from Manchester rub shoulders with a Scottish aristocrat. But then a vital mission goes wrong, and one of the friends has to bail out of a faulty plane over France. She is captured by the Gestapo and becomes a prisoner of war. The story begins in “Verity”’s own words, as she writes her account for her captors.Truth or lies? Honour or betrayal? Everything they've ever believed in is put to the test . . .

A gripping thriller, Code Name Verity blends a work of fiction into 20th century history with spine-tingling results. A book for young adults like no other.

“This is a remarkable book” Daily Mail

I love, love, love, love this book. I love it.

What I Liked:

  • Verity's voice. She's so resilient and somehow makes a book about an Allied spy caught by the Nazis almost funny in some places. 
  • The characterization. Verity is Verity throughout the book. In fact, I just reread the beginning, and something that might seem a bit outlandish at first is actually just so very Verity. 
  • The setup. The way this book is set up is amazing. It's so amazing, in fact, that I can't really tell you anything about it without spoiling everything
  • The title. I love the title. It fits the book so well, and I can't tell you why without, once again, spoiling the entire book.
  • The emotional plot. There is, namely, one big twist in this book that, I think, took every reader for a loop. It's one of the worst (emotions-wise) twists in book history. And it makes this book amazing. 
  • The cover. The cover fits this book so, so well. There are multiple covers and they're all awesome for different reasons. 
  • The theme. It's not about romance or anything like that. It's about friendship, something that, I think, is a bit overlooked in today's YA books. Most tend to focus on the romantic relationships, and sure, I'm a hopeless romantic, but this was a nice change of pace. 
What I Didn't Like:

There was some cursing in this book as well as some vulgar talk that I didn't really appreciate. That's my only real complaint, though.

In short:

This book is just plain awesome. Elizabeth Wein is so creative with the simple way she tells this story, and Verity is such a great character throughout it all. I absolutely love this book!

"I have told the truth." -Elizabeth Wein, Code Name Verity
*squeals and dances around giddily because I just made a reference that you people won't understand until you read the book!!!!* =D

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Favorite First and Last Lines

Once again, I'm joining in the Teens Can Write Too blog chain! The question for this month: "What are you favorite book beginnings and/or endings?" I decided that I'm just going to talk specifically about first and last lines.

First Lines:

"I am a coward."
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

I looove this first line. It's so blunt, and it gives you a hint as to the narrator's voice and a common... theme, I guess, throughout the novel.

"They called the world beyond the walls of the Pod 'the Death Shop.'"
Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Now that just sounds interesting. The Death Shop? I's gots to know mores!!!

"Late in the winter of my seventeenth year, my mother decided I was depressed, presumably because I rarely left the house, spent quite a lot of time in bed, read the same book over and over, ate infrequently, and devoted quite a bit of my abundant free time to thinking about death."
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Oh, Hazel. That line gives you a perfect glimpse into Hazel's voice. 

Last Lines:

"I do." 
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

SQUEEEE!!!! That is soooo adorable!!!!!! :D:D:D:D

"This isn't happily ever after. It's so much more than that."
The One by Kiera Cass

This just works so adorably amazingly for this series. I looooove it!!!!!

"But they would be looking for a ghost."
Cinder by Marissa Meyer

I love it. It's just so.... AMAZING!!! :D

"But there are much worse games to play."
Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Okay, those are my favorites. What are some of y'all's?

 Make sure you check out the rest of the blog chain!

September 2014 blog chain prompt/schedule:
Prompt: “What are your favorite book beginnings and/or endings?” 
and (We’ll announce the topic for next month’s chain.)

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Monday's Minute Challenge

Today, I am treating you to the joys of reading yet another one of my short stories! You may applaud now. (That was a joke. Kind of. XD) This is for the Monday Minute Challenge over on Christ is Write. I'm doing the picture prompt, which you can see over on the Monday's Minute Challenge page. :D

The boy stretched out his hand, tapping exactly the right spot. The green web illuminated the night forest, stretching as far as the eye could see.

“Yes, yes, yes!” I shrieked as I sprinted forward to the nearest bubble-like circle. Finally, I had my way in. “Here I come, Mom,” I whispered under my breath.

The green lines of the web grew closer and closer until they glowed right in front of me. I made the final jump. One moment, trees stretched up above my head and the sounds of the jungle filled my ears. The next: silence, complete and utter silence. And a stark whiteness. Absolutely nothing. This had to be right, though. I knew that was the portal. What else could it have been?

My heart started pounding in my chest. Forget the questions- I was floating in thin air. I had to find something, anything, to place my feet on.

Then, a field of burnt grass flashed before me, the horizon meeting with a charcoal gray sky spotted with dusty clouds. I dropped a couple feet to the ground. Having landed on my knees, I didn’t even have time to clamber to my feet before the world around me flashed away and the gravity-less whiteness returned.

What was going on?

Something green- the same shade of green that the portal was made of- flashed in front of me. I reached out, swatting at it, but it had already disappeared.

I was just about to throw my hands and shout in hopes that something would hear my frustration, when I heard a shrieking sound. I craned my neck towards it, trying to decipher the words.

“Our world is fading. We need Melody.”

Melody. My mom. 

And that is all for today! :D Let me know what you think in the comments! 

Friday, September 5, 2014

A Dog's River

If I decide to stick with this, I am going to periodically (weekly, maybe?) post a little short story I've written. There will be a theme between all of these, but because I don't want to give anything away, I'm not telling you guys anything! Mwahahaha!!! XD Anyways, this first one is something I wrote for my creative writing class. Here goes...

Mom's quiet sobs draw me in to the kitchen. There, her fluorescent patterned robe stands out against the dim lighting. She slides the blade of the knife through the Wal-Mart Bakery Cake, her head tilted downwards so that her blonde hair forms a curtain that separates her from the world. A curtain that keeps me from seeing her somber expression, one that only I can really empathize with. 

"You okay?" I enter the kitchen, walking past her to slide into one of the chairs lined up around the kitchen table. 

She gives me a one-shoulder shrug in response. 

"We'll get used to it. It'll take some time, but the pain is bound to pass, right? It has to."

Mom sniffs. She places the knife on the cake platter and swipes a tear away from her eye. She doesn't respond until she has taken a seat across from me, where I can see the glisten of tears in her eyes, making the green of her irises more vivid. 

"Will it, Chelsea? Will it?" She barely manages to get the question out before the flood gates open. Her entire body wracks with the downpour of tears that comes bursting out. No, they aren't even tears. They're sobs. Real sobs, no exaggeration. She buries her head in her arms as her sobs only grow louder. 

"Mom, it's going to be okay." I get up and walk around to her side of the table. "Hey, why don't you go finish cutting that cake? It'll be a good dessert. Maybe it will even help us keep our minds off..." I shudder. "Off it." 

She lifts her head, sniffling a couple of times in an attempt to reign the tears back in. After looking around as if in a daze for a moment, she gets up. "Yeah." She nods. "Yeah, that sounds like a pretty good idea. I'm going to go do that."

As if in slow motion, she makes her way back over to the cake and finishes cutting it as I pull two plates out of the cabinet. Just after Mom and I each take a piece of cake and sit down, Dad bursts through the door, briefcase in hand. 

"Did you two hear that they cancelled A Dog's River?"

Before he can even finish his question, Mom breaks down again, this time with even greater force than before. 

I shoot Dad a look. "Yes. We've heard. Thanks for reminding her."

"Oh, sorry."

I sigh. "It'll take some time, but eventually she'll find a new show. It'll get better." Or, at least, I can hope. 

Alright! That's it for the first story! Let me know what you guys think! Be honest! :D

Saturday, August 30, 2014

What Characters Am I Most Like?

I'm participating for the first time in the Teens Can Write Too blog chain! If you don't know what that is, check out that link. :D The question for this month is: What characters are you most like?

Hmmm.... That's kind of a hard question. I'm going to make a list because, as I've said before, I like lists.

Tris from Divergent
Okay, let's just get this out there right now. I'm short, blonde, and look younger than I am. Ring a bell? That's because Tris was described just as that! Of course, I'm talking about the book version; the movie version of Tris didn't even have blonde hair. *sigh*

Iko from The Lunar Chronicles
I'm a very enthusiastic person. I get excited, and when I get excited, everyone within a two mile radius of me (okay, okay, that's a bit of an exaggeration :P) knows about it. I like to fangirl about things, much like Iko! Yes, I realize Iko is an android, and I'm not (or am I? Dun dun dun! <<Just kidding! I'm perfectly human XD) but personality-wise, we're pretty similar.

Christy from the Christy Miller series
Christy is a very organized girl who likes to have everything planned. That part of her personality *shakes head* is not very much like me at all. Yeah, sure, I like to make plans. I just don't really like to always stick with them. Secondly, if you could see my desk right now- wait! I can take a picture!- you'll see below that it's very disorganized.

You see that clear space in front of the laptop? Yeah, that's only there because that's where my arms go when I'm on the computer. XD Okay, now it's out there. I'm a disorganized person. That's definitely something I want to work on, and I plan to do so this school year. I mean, being organized is definitely an important quality to have. Anyways, by now you're probably wondering why in the world Christy is even on this list. Well, that's because I'm a worry-wart like Christy. When it comes to school especially, I worry about things sooo much, and I relate to Christy in that sense. 

Katie from the Christy Miller series
Okay, now here's a character that I'm more like. Katie is spontaneous, enthusiastic, and a little bit crazy. I'm all of the above. Yeah, sure in some instances, I'm definitely more like Christy, but in others, I'm a lot like Katie. 

Now for a question for you guys: What are some characters that y'all are most like? 

Schedule for the rest of the blog chain:
Prompt: “What characters are you most like?” 
and (We’ll announce the topic for next month’s chain)