Tuesday, August 30, 2016

A Book Review of Tainted by Morgan L. Busse

What Happens When Your Soul Dies?

Kat Bloodmayne is one of the first women chosen to attend the Tower Academy of Sciences. But she carries a secret: she can twist the natural laws of science. She has no idea where this ability came from, only that every time she loses control and unleashes this power, it kills a part of her soul. If she doesn't find a cure soon, her soul will die and she will become something else entirely.

After a devastating personal loss, Stephen Grey leaves the World City Police Force to become a bounty hunter. He believes in justice and will stop at nothing to ensure criminals are caught and locked up. However, when Kat Bloodmayne shows up in his office seeking his help, his world is turned upside down.

Together they search World City and beyond for a doctor who can cure Kat. But what they discover on the way goes beyond science and into the dark sphere of magic.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Monthly Summary: August 2016

August was mostly a month of getting things together. I had a bit of break from novel writing since I had to wait on beta feedback, but I had a ton of deadlines for articles. I did some job hunting and a lot of working. It was a much calmer month than others, which is good after the craziness of this year.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Interview with Elasa (Starbloods)!


Hey, everyone! It's time for this month's character interview! This month's is with my female main character from my high fantasy series Starbloods named Elasa. You can read a bit more about him in her bio before we start. Thank you to everyone who submitted questions! Let's get to the interview. *turns to Elasa* Hello, Elasa.

*smiles, sitting straight and with her hands folded in her lap* Good day. It has been a long time since I've been in this chair.

It has. Are you ready to begin?


Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Heroes 101: Yes, They Can Be as Interesting as Antiheroes

Heroes seem to be going out of style in favor of antiheroes and villains, yet some of the most beloved characters are heroes. They're characters who genuinely want to be good and strive to be even better. They inspire us to be better human beings.

"It's almost unbearable, isn't it... the pain of being all alone. I know that feeling, I've been there, in that dark and lonely place, but now there are others, other people who mean a lot to me. I care more about them than I do myself, and I won't let anyone hurt them. That's why I'll never give up, I will stop you, even if I have to kill you! They saved me from myself, they rescued me from my loneliness, they were the first to accept me as who I am. They're my friends."
~Naruto Uzumaki from Naruto Shippuden 

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Writing Lessons from Video Games: Twilight Princess vs. Skyward Sword

The Legend of Zelda is one of the most famous gaming franchises since 1986. Though the storylines are all unique, each of the games feature the main character Link, a chosen reincarnated hero, who fights many monsters, finds loads of chests, and navigates many temples to save the lovely Princess Zelda. 

My favorite Legend of Zelda game is by far Twilight Princess, originally released on Wii and GameCube in 2006. This game features teen Link fighting off the twilight that threatens to consume Hyrule and the surrounding lands. I was simply blown away by the games amazing storytelling and fun gameplay. In 2011, Nintendo released Skyward Sword, which also features a teen Link, but takes places generations before Twilight Princess. Anxiously, I preordered that game and played it on release day, but I was disappointed--like many other longstanding Zelda fans are. These two are often compared since they were both released on Wii and feature teen Link. 

So why do the majority fans prefer Twilight Princess over Skyward Sword? I recently replayed both to compare the differences. Today I'm going analyze that and show what it can teach us about writing.

Warning: Prevalent spoilers for both games. 

Friday, August 19, 2016

Beautiful People - Appearance Edition: Rouyn (Starbloods)

It's time for this month's Beautiful People! Yay! This is a link-up hosted by Paperfury and Further Up and Further In where you answer questions about your characters. I participated in Beautiful People #1#2#3 and the villain special last year. And I've done Beautiful People Author EditionBeautiful People Valentine EditionBeautiful People #7Beautiful People Sibling EditionBeautiful People #9Beautiful People: Parental EditionBeautiful People #11Beautiful People: Friendship EditionBeautiful People #13: CalebBeautiful People #14: Writerly Resolutions and GoalsBeautiful People: Valentine's EditionBeautiful People #16Beautiful People #17Beautiful People Childhood Edition, and Beautiful People #19This link-up has been just so helpful with character development. 

Since I'm officially going to do Starbloods for NaNoWriMo, I want to focus my BPs and interviews on characters from my long-neglected high fantasy series. Today I'm doing BP with Rouyn who is one of my three main characters from the story. He is a Starblood, so he has special abilities such as starlight manipulation, invisibility, and even foresight. He is the oldest character I have, but he's been through so many changes. It's fun bringing him up again after years of not working on his book. He's had a character interview and a Beautiful People a while back, but it's been well ... a while. If you'd like to participate in this link-up yourself, check out either Paperfury or Further Up and Further In to see how. Here we go!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

A Book Review of the Rule of Thoughts by James Dashner

Buy it on Amazon!

Michael thought he understood the VirtNet, but the truth he discovered is more terrifying than anyone at VirtNet Security could have anticipated.
   The cyber terrorist Kaine isn’t human. It’s a Tangent, a computer program that has become sentient. And Michael just completed the first step in turning Kaine’s master plan, the Mortality Doctrine, into a reality. The Mortality Doctrine will populate Earth entirely with human bodies harboring Tangent minds. The VNS would like to pretend the world is perfectly safe, but Michael and his friends know that the takeover has already begun. And if they don’t stop Kaine soon, it will be game over for humanity.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

So Your Character is From Thailand ... Featuring Melissa Gravitis @ Quill Pen Writer

It's time for this month's So Your Character is From Another Country! This is a monthly or bimonthly segment where I interview lovely volunteers from around the world to give you a firsthand account of being a citizen of their respective country. 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 month's So Your Character is From Algeria ... be sure to hop on over there and give it a read!

I love Thai cuisine, I know Thailand is very hot, and I have some coins from Thailand. That's been the most of my knowledge of Thailand, despite even knowing a lady from Thailand, until I read this post of Melissa's. I'm so happy to now know more about the country where my favorite Asian meals come from!

Friday, August 12, 2016

Questions for Elasa (Starbloods)!

Since I'm doing my high fantasy Starbloods for NaNoWriMo this year, I'm trying to better get to know some of the characters. Elasa was last month's Beautiful People, so I've decided to have her for this month's character interview. She is one of the three point of view characters of the book. Let me tell you a bit more about her!

Elasa is a sixteen year old noblewoman of the northern province of Calsidor, a country that's a mix of the U.K. and New Zealand. She is also born from a long line of Starbloods as most of the Calsidorian nobility. Thus she has inherited the abilities to read minds, move things with her mind, and heal. Since she was very young, she has also suffered from fibromyalgia.

Her many pets keep her company during her bad days, especially her wolpertinger, a wolf-deer-owl-rabbit creature, named Icha. Icha is also bonded to Elasa by blood which is called Iadlonu in Elasa's world. Normally, nobility would bond with a pegasus, but loyal Icha is just the fit for Elasa. Even if the poor beast is no match for Uncle Mavrom.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Keeping Morality in Fiction: Perfect and Good Characters Aren't Synonymous

Nowadays having your character dubbed as having "too good" morals can often be seen as an insult or a mark of bad writing. Antiheroes are rising in popularity for their tragic backstories, while heroes are being shoved into the background and even considered boring. It seems that being good is going out of style. Am I the only one that feels a little uncomfortable about that idea? Antiheroes are very fun characters, but do we really want them rising up as our most prominent characters in fiction?

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Monthly Summary: July 2016

The months of this year seem to go by so fast yet at the same time when I think of the beginning of a month it feels like ages ago. July started out slow with mostly prep for Realm Makers and then ended with a bang with my big trip to Philadelphia and New York City. After the trip I keep thinking of the line from the Hobbit:

Bilbo: Can you promise me that I will come back?

Gandalf: No, but if you do, you'll never be the same.

I definitely don't feel the same after the trip.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Liebster Award: NYC/Philly Edition

Time to break some rules! So I've been tagged in this award twice and I did it twice (here and here if you want to see), but I'm frankly running out of facts to give about myself so I'm going to give you eleven facts about my trip to New York City and Philadelphia instead! But first I'm going to answer Alexa's questions, because they're good ones. Thanks Alexa @ Summer Snowflakes for tagging me! I'm not going to tag anyone else because this tag has circulated so much. If you'd like to do this tag consider yourself nominated. You can check out this Liebster Award on how to do it officially and use some of the questions I asked before.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

So Your Character is Type 1 Diabetic ... Featuring Ely @ Teas and Titles + Lillian Taylor

I thankfully do not have diabetes, but I have known a few people who have had it, including a relative. Though, I wasn't close with any of this people, so I didn't know much about the disease. The only movie I'd ever seen it portrayed in was Steel Magnolias, hence the picture above. Admittedly, I did actually believe in some of the stereotypes Ely has mentioned, so this post has been very enlightening and this So Your Character Is ... post will in turn be immeasurably helpful for anyone writing a diabetic character.

So Your Character Is ... is an on going series where I interview or talk about myself about different people groups, countries, etc. for writing more accurate characters. I plan to start doing a few of these on Tuesdays, and this is the first of the Tuesday So Your Character is ... Yay! In this edition Ely is going to be talking about how it is to live with Type One Diabetes. If you haven't remembered, I also had her for the So Your Character is From Australia ... post. As with everyone whom I've had on the blog to talk about tough subjects like this, I commend her for her honesty and I'm very happy to have her today on the blog. 

Let's welcome Ely!

Edit: Lillian has also come to offer up her knowledge to the post as well!

(Images aren't mine)