Saturday, April 29, 2017

Monthly Summary: April 2017

April was a busy, but overall pretty good month. I had a great time with friends for my birthday and made a lot of goals!

What I did:

1.) I won CampNaNoWriMo for the third year in a row with a 30K goal! And I've gotten almost 50K written total in the Starbloods rewrite! I'm hoping to bump it up to 70K but we'll see how close to that I can get. 

  2.) Life outside of writing has been a blast this month. ^ ^ On my birthday, my sister and I went out to the mall then ate dinner together with her fiance and my mom at my favorite French restaurant. Then when I got home I took a bath with a LUSH bathbomb, ate chocolates, and watched Howl's Moving Castle

Trying out my new purple lipstick. ^ ^

Violetta chocolate is so good!

Then that weekend Casey and Amy came to visit and we had a blast! We had Korean BBQ which is absolutely amazing. Then the next day went to Hmart and Buford market for goodies and that night played King's Quest and watched the first two episodes of season two of Attack on Titan! The next day we went to downtown Marietta and got to have a carriage ride around the square and lunch at the Australian Bakery. Then we went to Kennesaw Mountain and hiked all the way to the top then back. ^ ^ Lastly, we finished the trip with yes, more King's Quest!


Amy and I holding a jackfruit!

Traditional Totoro pic!

Bubble Tea!

Standing at the top of the mountain!

I spent Easter with my family and got to hide Easter eggs for my little cousins.  ^ ^

Parfait my cousin made. :)

I also worked a lot of temp gigs this month from being an office assistant for a restoration company to demoing for a sausage company (Yes, it's weird, but it pays well. XD). Thus I've saved up the rest of the dough for Realm Makers registration, registration for MegaCon Orlando, spending money for Orlando, and my bus fare for Orlando. Whoo hoo! Hard work paying off!

Cutest sushi ad ever at one of the places I worked.

3.) I finished Red Queen and King's Blood! Both great! Reviews up soon. ^ ^

4.) I didn't do a whole lot of drawing this month, mostly because I've been focusing on bigger art projects, but I did get this piece of Bryce done and I've gotten the sketch of another drawing done (One I had to rage quit like three times but it was worth it. XD) that I'm hoping to reveal to you guys soon. ^ ^

5.) I've also posted articles about Tangled and conventions on Geekdom House!

The Geeky Department:

1.) I've finished my new cosplay! This is a fem version of King Graham of Daventry from my favorite video game series King's Quest! This characters is so near and dear to my heart and I'm so excited to have it ready in time for MegaCon! His little friend is named Cedric and he's from King's Quest V. ^ ^

2.) As I mentioned before I played King's Quest with Amy and Casey! We played King's Quest VI, King's Quest VII, and the first part of King's Quest VIIII. ^ ^

3.) I've been watching season two of Attack on Titan and OH MY FREAKING GOSH IS IT GOOD!!! The episodes can't come out fast enough!

I hate this guy.

4.) I'm on an anime kick so I watched Vampire Knight. Some friends of mine watched it years ago and I hadn't cause I'm not a big fan of vampires and it got cancelled mid-season. I gave it a watch and it was interesting. Neat vampire lore.

What I Learned:

Hiring - I've actually been on the flipside this month and hiring new writers for Geeks Under Grace! This has been a really interesting experience learning what it's like to be the one looking through applications and deciding which ones fit. I'm going to have to write a part two for my editor post ...

What I'm Going to Do:

1.) I'm going to finish rewriting Starbloods then give it a rest before I start editing in it June, which will mean I'll be needing betas soon. Squee! With any remaining time I'll have in May I'll be reading over Red Hood to look at some of the reasons why it was rejected so maybe those revisions will help get it published. *headdesk*

2.) Next month is MegaCon!!! So pumped. ^ ^ I'll be in Orlando for almost a week hanging out with friends and having some cosplaying fun!

When I'm not at MegaCon, I'll be working hard on saving up for my flight to Reno. Why you so expensive, city?!!

3.) I'm currently reading Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas and Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin, so I want to finish those two. Then I'm hoping to start Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling. :)

4.) I'm hoping to finish this drawing I'm working on then start the next one in the series. ^ ^

5.) I've got several Geekdom House articles in the queue to go up. ^ ^

Last Month on Wanderer's Pen ...

Utopian versus Dystopian: A Look at Two Societies

So Your Character is From Wales ... Featuring Ester @ To Write or Not to Write & Tasha @ 365 Days, 365 Photos
Small is Beautiful, Inspire Me, and Blogger Recognition Tags!
Villain Necrologies & Debacles: Marvel Cinematic Universe Edition
So Your Character Has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder ... Featuring Emily Walker
Now I'm 24 ...
Writing Lessons from Movies: Pocahontas
So Your Character is From France ... Featuring Victoire @ Mon Coin Arty & Fraise Fruitrouge
A Book Review of City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Read Rewrite Burn Tag & Bookish Lover Tag
So Your Character Has Autism ... Featuring Rebekah Hancock
Coming Soon to Wanderer's Pen ...

May 2 - So Your Character is from India ... featuring Shanti & Rachna - These two ladies have agreed to be interviewed about life in India. Don't miss it!

May 5 - A Book Review of King's Blood by Jill Williamson - 600 pages later I've finally finished this book and I'll tell you guys what I think of it!

May 6 - Elderly Characters 101 - Some of the most popular characters in fiction are sixty and up. Why? That's what I'll be analyzing in this post!

May 9 - So your Character has Asperger's ... - Elizabeth Hemingway is joining us to talk about what it's like to have Asperger's Syndrome.

May 12 - Beautiful People or a Tag - If BP goes up I'll do that, if not I have a tag in stock. XD

May 13 - Villain Necrologies & Debacles: Pixar Edition - A continuation of this series analyzing villain deaths and defeats!

May 16 - So your Character is From Indonesia ... - Cilla and Tasya will be telling us what it's like living in this south east Asian country!

May 19 - My Dream Reading Space - has asked me to come up with what my dream reading space will be and I'll be posting that on this day. ^ ^

May 20 - Writing Lessons from How to Train Your Dragon - This is one of my favorite animated films and I'll be talking about some great writing used in it!

May 23 - So Your Character is from Sri Lanka ... - Dash will be talking to us about the birthplace of the ceylon tea! (I freaked out a little bit when I found out it was from this country. XD)

May 26 - A Book Review of Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard - I loooooved this book! I can't wait to tell you guys more about it!

May 27 -  What I've Learned being a Social Media Manager - I've been a social media manager for Splickety Havok for over six months now and I'll be talking about some tricks I've learned while doing it!

May 30 - So Your Character Has ADD ... - Ari will be talking to us about what it's like to have this!

Elsewhere ...
Intentionally and Sacrifices by Liz @ Out of Coffee Out of Mind - I really enjoyed this post by Liz. It hit home. 

Overall this was a good month and I can't wait for next month!

How was your month? What did you do? Are you looking forward to any of the upcoming posts?

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Friday, April 28, 2017

A Book Review of Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Buy from Amazon!

Cinder is back and trying to break out of prison―even though she'll be the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive if she does―in this second installment from Marissa Meyer.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit's grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn't know about her grandmother, or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother's whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana.

Series: The Lunar Chronicles (Book 2)
Genre: YA Science Fiction
Publisher: Square Fish; Reprint edition (February 4, 2014)
Page Count: 512 pages

After really enjoying Cinder, I knew I had to get the sequel! For Christmas I got a hold of it and now I've finally been able to see the sci-fi retelling of Little Red Riding Hood's tale!

The Plot:
Unlike the first book, this book is told in two point of views: Cinder's and Scarlet's, Cinderella's and Red's. Both are very exciting and kept my interest as both tried to solve the mysteries hanging around their lives, Cinder trying to find her identity and Scarlet trying to find her mother. There were some great twists and I love how seamlessly their point of views wove together into the plot. The climax had me gripped to the end. 

The Characters: Cinder and Scarlet are great point of view characters. I loved having Cinder as the distrusting cyborg and techy and Scarlet as the hotheaded farm girl. Their point of views were very different as in Cinder's she thought more about technology and had her cyborg circuitry while in Scarlet she often made a point to describe food and often let her anger get the best of her. Kai also gets some point of view time. I really empathize with his need to do what is right, but the conflict in how that affects him personally. 

Thorne took a little while for him to grow on me, but eventually I really enjoyed his character as well. He made me snicker many times. Wolf was a very dynamic character. I couldn't figure out what he was and at the end when it was finally revealed I exclaimed "Ohhhhhh that's smart!" I love his version of the Big Bad Wolf and his tomato obsession was really adorable. I of course love Iko. I'm so happy she comes back!

Levana as always is a formidable and scary. I liked getting a final scene in her point of view. Normally I don't like villain point of views because I believe they break up tension, but this time it worked perfectly.

The Setting: I love the setting because most of it is in France, which is one of my favorite countries. It's the only country I've been to in your Europe as of now (I want that to change), so I am a bit biased. I love seeing the French countryside and the ruins of Paris, though the Parisian ruins made me feel a bit sad, especially the Opera House since I've been to that Opera House and it's absolutely beautiful. 

Epic Things: There were so many epic things from a fun spin on werewolves to Iko being the brain of Thorne's ship to so much France. ^ ^

The Theme: Truth is a big one. A lot of characters are seeking truth in this story.

Content Cautions: There weren't too many things to highlight. There was some violence from the werewolves (as expected), but nothing too troubling, a porn reference, and b*****d was used once.

What We Can Take Away For Our Writing:

1.) Villain Scene Done Well -
At the very end of the story, we get a glimpse of Queen Levana's point of view and a tidbit of her future plans and some fleshing out of what we already know. It's enough to pique my interest for the next book without spoiling anything.

How this can be applied to writing: Many times I have a problem when the book goes into the villain's point of view. I like being surprised about the villain's plans and I don't like it when they're spoiled and I'm waiting for half the book for the main character to catch onto what I already know. In this villain point of view, we get more what we already know and some popcorn kernels of information without giving us the whole picture.

Conclusion: Overall, loved this book. I'm looking forward to reading the next one!

About the Author:
Marissa Meyer lives in Tacoma, Washington, with her husband and three cats. She's a fan of most things geeky (Sailor Moon, Firefly, color-coordinating her bookshelf ...), and has been in love with fairy tales since she was a kid, something she doesn't intend to ever grow out of. She may or may not be a cyborg. Cinder, her first novel, debuted on the New York Times bestseller list. Visit Marissa at her websiteGoodreadsFacebook, and Twitter.

Other Reviews of Books by This Author:

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

So Your Character Has Autism ... Featuring Rebekah Hancock

I've heard much about Autism and I've even known some people with Autism. According to Wikipedia: Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impaired social interaction, verbal and non-verbal communication, and restricted and repetitive behavior. I had never looked into it with very much detail until now. This is why I'm so happy that Rebekah has volunteered to be interviewed about what it's like to have it. 

Let's welcome her!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Read Rewrite Burn Tag & Bookish Lover Tag

Since Beautiful People has not gone up this month, I'm using this extra slot to catch up on all of the tags I've gotten! I've only got three more to go besides this!

Friday, April 21, 2017

A Book Review of City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

Buy from Amazon!
When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder—much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. And she’s more than a little startled when the body disappears into thin air. Soon Clary is introduced to the world of the Shadowhunters, a secret cadre of warriors dedicated to driving demons out of our world and back to their own. And Clary is introduced with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is almost killed by a grotesque monster. How could a mere human survive such an attack and kill a demon? The Shadowhunters would like to know…

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

So Your Character is From France ... Featuring Victoire @ Mon Coin Arty & Fraise Fruitrouge

It's time for this week's So Your Character is ... Post! This is a weekly segment where I interview lovely volunteers from around the world to give you a firsthand account of being a citizen of their respective country or having a disability. I'm hoping to encourage international diversity, break stereotypes, and give writers a crash course on how to write a character from these different places on our planet. If you haven't checked out last week's  So Your Character Has OCD ... be sure to hop on over there and give it a read!

I had the opportunity to actually go to France on a mission trip for eight days. It was an amazing experience and my first trip to Europe (I plan to have many more!). I really enjoyed the French culture I experienced both in the countryside and in Paris. I also have French blood, so some of my family come from France. I've always felt a special connection to the country since I was a little girl and I'm so happy to learn even more about it from Fraise and Victoire!