Friday, September 19, 2014

"Why can't you stay dead, coward?"

 Wherein Jack has a character reveal

 I've not done one of these in a while. I thought it might be fun.

 I was going to do another of the Blade boys, but I don't have their pictures back on my computer after wiping it. (It is for this reason I felt it only right that I name my computer Barnes.) Therefore, I will be giving you a sneak peak at Franz from Brothers-in-Arms.

 Franz Kappel is the youngest of six children. He has five older sisters, sisters he believes it is his sole purpose in life to annoy. The Kappels have lived in a little German village for generations and are a well known family there.

 Franz's life changes when he is eight and meets a Jewish boy named Japhet Buchanan. The two become fast friends, forming a brotherly bond which is tested when trouble starts to show up for the Jews. 

 As he gets older, Franz begins to feel responsible for the safety of his family - both his Kappel and Buchanan families. After tragedy strikes, he is determined to get them all out of Germany no matter what.

 Franz is the kind of person who doesn't think things through all the way and regrets it later. He is rash and so determined to save everyone he charges into things without fully realizing the risk he is putting not only himself but others in to. But he is also protective. Especially of Japhet. He believes if he doesn't look after Japhet and keep him alive and safe no one else will, and he isn't about to let anyone send him to a concentration camp.

 Had things been different, Franz would be the kind of carefree person who never stops laughing and is always getting into trouble just for the fun of it. As a boy he goes out of his way to prank his sisters and schoolmates. He also loved playing war games and getting into snowball fights. School was never something he was very fond of and usually only did it so Japhet wouldn't get a head of him.

 Franz hates what Hitler and the Nazis are doing to the Jews, but over time begins to second guess himself and his convictions when he is continually told the war has nothing to do with Jews but with saving Germany.

 And I know this is a bit shorter then what I normally do, but I still have a lot of work to do and it is already nine thirty. I'd like to sleep tonight so I need to get started on it.

 Quote is from Strax....the potato man from Doctor Who.



Wednesday, September 17, 2014

"Hello, hello, rubbish robots from the dawn of time."

 My boss was hired after me. (You know, my normal job boss. Because I'm not famous enough yet to live off my writing, so I have to have one of those normal jobs.) He moved up in rank fast. He has one of those personalities, were he can manage employees and they love him, sooth over grumpy costumer issues, and keep a cool head when we are slammed. He was perfect for the boss position and no one begrudged him it. But that has nothing to do with this story.

 I arrived at work one day feeling slightly out of sorts. I'd only been working for about six months or so and still was adjusting to being around people, and having to talk to them, so often. This was before I'd become good friends with my Mercenary Friend, so work was not something I jumped up and down over.

 When I walked in, I noticed two new employees, which was always good because we always seemed busy and short handed. One girl looked sweet and friendly the other had long blond hair and a face I couldn't help staring at, because she looked just like one of my dear friends. I was delighted.

 "This is going to be just like working with (I never use real names on here, so just go with this.)!" I thought to myself as I went to clock in. When I came back, I got to meet the two new employees.

 The blond head, who looked just like my dear friend, turned out not to be a she but a he. (And later became my boss.)

 Sometime passed. When boss became boss he often worked in drive through. I didn't hear most of the conversation of what happened next, just the tail end.

 A lady pulled up and ordered and somewhere during the conversation and getting her food she called Boss a girl. When she realized her mistake - or Boss said he was a boy, as I said I didn't hear all of it - the woman apologized over and over. Finally, before driving again, she tried to redeem her awkward situation by saying, "Well, you're too pretty to be a boy and too ugly to be a girl."

 Once she was gone, Boss related some of what happened, adding, "I don't know if I should be insulted or complimented."

 Meanwhile, Mercenary Friend was having a grand time with this and laughing his head off. (One reason Mercenary Friend and I got on so well, we both had wrapped senses of humor.)

 Giving it some more thought, Boss finally decided to take it as a compliment. "I guess it means I'm a pretty boy and not an ugly girl."

 I silently stood off to the side, not sure if I should join Mercenary Friend in laughing or duck behind something so Boss couldn't see my red face, because the only thing I could think to add was my first thoughts when I first saw Boss. (I didn't say anything about that, by the way.)

 And this is why I am quiet. I'm not shy so much as I don't want my first impressions and thoughts jumping out into the world and greeting people before I have a chance to make sure they're safe to be revealed.

 The End

 Quote is from 12 again. I'm tempted to use it when costumers come in to work.



Thursday, September 11, 2014

"You should make that thing voice activated....oh, it is, isn't it?" "I don't want to talk about it."

 I live in a valley. I am surrounded by mountains on all sides, and I have lived here my whole life. I visit other states. I've seen corn fields, places where there are so many trees you can't tell you're in a city, and states with lakes so large you can only see across them if the day is clear. I like other states, I love traveling, but every time I leave I long to be back in the mountains.

 The mountains aren't looming over my head. I don't live at the foot of them. It takes me fifteen minutes to drive to them, so I am not far, but I am not right under them either. I live in a prairie. I can go out and stand in a field of yellow grass and watch as it bows to the constant wind. I like to stand, surrounded by grass, and watch the mountains rising up in the distant. 

 There is something about mountains. They hold a secret kind of majesty. Clouds settle over them, the sun shimmers down and casts long shadows. Storms roll off them, snaking down into the valley like a monstrous beast coming to devour us whole. And I can stand and watch it all. It is almost like watching a play, actors on a stage, telling a story. 

 Mountains inspire me. The crisp wind, the smell of pine and leaves. I go hiking, scaling rocks and hiking through the thick trees. When fall arrives I like to go for long drives and look at the yellow and orange leaves of the aspens. Whenever I can I will wade into the icy cold lakes which are really nothing more then ponds of melted snow.

 Maybe it isn't really the mountains I love, but the fact this is my home. I have lived here for so long I understand it. I know when light grey clouds roll in just before bed I will wake up to snow on the ground. I know if I go camping during our brief summers there will be snowbanks where I can have a snowball fight with my brothers. I know where the best rock climbing places are, where you can stand and feel like you are on top of the world. I've spent most of my life running through the trees, dodging under branches, climbing trees and dropping pine cones on the heads of siblings as they pass underneath. I've gone swimming in muddy swamps because they were there and I had little cousins begging me to join them. I've sliced my feet open on twigs and stabbed them on pine needles. I've gone camping in the pouring rain, and spent the day in it spying on family members who thought it would be more fun to sit under a tent flap then brave the wet.

 Winters here are long and bitterly cold. I've learned how to bundle up, learned the importance of wool socks and good snow boots. I am used to only having a month or two of summer, of squeezing in every possible summer activity one can in that short of time. I've learned the best places to sit when there is a fire blazing in the fireplace. I've learned how to cut wood and lug it into the house when there is five feet of snow outside in the middle of May.

 We are all attached to our homes, no matter where they might be. They inspire us in ways we might never understand. There is something special about God's creation, but the creation we always see around us has a way of endearing itself in our hearts. All the places I have gone and plan to, a part of me will always long to come back and stand on top of the highest rock I can climb to.

 There, a bit of sentimentality for over the weekend.

 The quote this time is both 12 and Clara.



Wednesday, September 10, 2014

"Don't look in that mirror, it's absolutely furious!"

 Wherein Jack says Good Bye

 No, not good bye to you all. But to summer. 

 I woke up this morning to the sound of pattering rain, a sound I've been hearing more and more over the past few weeks. Only today was different. The clouds were darker, the air held hints of winter on the breeze. Even if a couple nice days sneak in with dazzling appearances of sunshine, summer is officially over in the state were winter loves to come and stay as long as possible.

 Last year I listed the books I read over the summer. I've decided to keep it as a tradition and go again this year.


 Some I cannot list because they were beta reads, and I don't have permission to talk about them or name their titles. But one trilogy was so good and left me shocked at the ending. Then another had me crying for half an hour.

  Scottish cousins, mishaps, Archie, Mac. I've had this one on my to read list for years, I am sorry I didn't get to it sooner now, though it was perfect for this summer. I loved it.

 I read this one because I make Oz references in my newest book. It wasn't what I was expecting, but I enjoyed it. It was my first book journey into Oz, and I plan to return soon.

 I read other books my Molly, even her newest one, Resistance. While I enjoyed this one, I didn't enjoy it as much as her fantasy series. Though I am not sorry I read this one.

 I recently reviewed this one. It wasn't my favourite, but not bad. Just wasn't really my type I believe.

 A brother story. I loved it and wanted more. Sadly, there is no more with Ross and Travis, which means I will need to reread it.

 LOVED the first one, and adored this one just as much. Stefan Bachmann is one of my top favourite Authors.

 This one had a Narnia feel to it. I loved it. I was thrilled to have the honour to read and review it.

 A Cinderella Beta read retelling. I wasn't sure about it, but in the end I decided I liked it. Even though I'm not crazy about the Cinderella story.

 More Cinderella retellings, A couple of them made me re-evaluate my thoughts on the story. I can now say I like the story of Cinderella.

 The last book I read before fall hit. While there are some things I didn't like, I did like the overall story but am glad I am reading the rest of the series with a friend of mine.

 And there it is. As I said, a shorter list then last year, but I am hoping to make up for it by reading more this fall. I'm already off to a better start.

 Now it is your turn. What did you read this summer?

 I am going to leave you now. I have things to do, like watch The Winter Soldier. So there.

 Quote is from 12, because I like quoting him.



Monday, September 08, 2014

"Ah! You've got a dinosaur too!"

  Wherein Jack has nothing important to say

 Some friends and I were at dinner the other day. While waiting for our food to arrive, we realized we'd gone through the normal conversation subjects of, "How have you been?" and "It is going to be a cold winter this year."

 With no interesting topics popping up, I threw one of my own out which was more or less, "If you had to cut off two of your fingers, which would they be?"

 My buddy in reading and world domination, who has learned to just take these questions and usually go with them, had to point out, "Normally you don't get to pick when you lose fingers."

 "Well, I read this book where this brother had to cut off two of his fingers to save his twin. If you ever have to save my life, I just want to know in advance you have this thought out."

 He contemplated the matter, finally naming his two, after I named the two I had already decided - about a year ago - which I would cut off. But, since it was the two of us, we couldn't stop at fingers. We had to move on to the rest of our limbs and most of the evenings conversation contained well thought out debates of which arm we would cut off if we had to, leg, toes, and so on and so forth. By the time our dinner showed up we knew which side we would land on if we ever found ourselves falling out of a train, which leg we would give to be chopped off and replaced with a robot one, and if we would give up our eyesight or our hearing.

 And this is one reason why I am socially awkward and quiet around dinner unless I am with people I know extremely well.

 That is all. Today is laundry day and the dyer just informed me it has completed its task and now it is my turn.

 Quote is from 12, his first episode when he crash lands in London after running away from a dinosaur.



Thursday, September 04, 2014

"What's wrong with your accent? Now you're doing it too! It's spreading!"

 Wherein Jack hopes to make a return

 I saw hope, because I had a friend tell me she got an infection after more then a week of having her wisdom teeth out. The way things have been going, I won't feel safe until everything is completely healed. But I THINK I am making a recovery - I say think because my teeth thus far have liked to prove me wrong.

 That said, I am here today with a few...things. Happy things. Exciting things. Just THINGS in general!! Things are wonderful, never forget that.

 First up, I have JUST finished my Five Enchanted Roses Contest entry! I am extremely proud of it at this moment. It is my first short story and I think it is a dear little thing. I am currently looking for willing readers, to take a peak at it and see how well it works. Since it is a short story, and it is for a contest, I'd like a bit of feed back before I submit it. Anyone interested? It is 13,000 something words long. It is titled Finding the Magic. It has some French characters in it. Set in WWII. Has a British girl. Some snow. Roses. All those wonderful things. And maybe even a Dragon or two.

 Second, and I am going to find a non boring way of explaining all of this. But it is huge, and important. And a bit scary, and wonderful. So, there is that.

 As you know, I just published my fourth book! I have worked so hard at this point, getting these books published that I fear my marketing has somewhat slipped, not that my skills ever laid with marketing to begin with. With the release of my fourth one, and both the next books in both series taking longer to work out the plot then I had planned, it has given me a chance to step back and look at the marketing side of things, and where I plan to go from here.

 I've been giving this a lot of thought, especially during the month I was gone and working on Brothers-in-Arms. I have decided I would rather spend more time on the third Loyalty book and the third Haphazard book and get them to work rather then have them out in January and July. Coming to that conclusion, I am still working on both books, trying to iron out the plot issues that are keeping me back from finishing the drafts I am working on.

 I have also been considering getting a new publisher, instead of keeping with Lulu. I do like Lulu, it has given me a nice spring board to start from, and their formatting is lovely. But I've been thinking of going with someone else, maybe someone who could work with me one on one with formatting, since that is another point I haven't completely grasped. I've even been looking into companies my friends and fellow Authors have gone with, which leads me to one of the highlights of my Author life.

 I got home from work on Monday and checked my email, surprised to find a publishing company had emailed me while I was working. They saw the reviews for Haphazardly Implausible on Goodreads and have requested to view my next book and consider it for publication.

 I must admit, I am not quiet as giddy over this as I thought I would be - on the far off daydream I always harboured that this might happen. I am still in a state of shock, and it is taking time to sink in that this is for real. But, I am looking into the company and preparing to send them Brothers-in-Arms. It isn't my only completed novel at this time, but it is the only completed one not in a series, and I don't wish to start publishing another series until I publish the last Loyalty book.

 That said, I am giving this a lot of prayer and consideration, while allowing myself moments of glee when it hits me that this is real. Even if I don't end up going with them, the fact a publisher has contacted me has been one of the best things I've ever experienced.

 And that is where I have to end. I need to dart into town because I put The Maze Runner on hold at my library and it just came in, so you can see why darting needs to be involved. And that said, I would like to thank all of those who read and reviewed Haphazardly Implausible. This wouldn't be happening if it wasn't for those reviews.

 Quote is from the 12th Doctor again


 P.S. I should be back to my normal posts on Monday


Saturday, August 30, 2014

"Five foot one and crying, you never stood a chance."

 I had a kind of fall back with my teeth. My jaw didn't heal correctly, so therefore, I am back to being careful what I do and only eating things I can swallow until the bone covers up. (This means short walks outside since whenever the cold air hits the bone it hurts like crazy.) Therefore, I am not fully myself still, so I leave you with this for the time being.

 A moment of appreciation for the silent characters. (Or ones who say little.)

 First up, the adorable Sandy from Rise of the Guardians.

 Whom everyone loved or should have loved - and if you didn't WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?! - even in his less adorable state.

 Next is Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy

 And for those who didn't fall in love with adult Groot there was dancing baby Groot

 And we can't have this list without adding The Winter Soldier, also known as James Buchanan Barnes. Someone counted all his lines in the movie, I just don't remember how many there were.

 Nope, not doing the shirtless one, because that would be awkward

 Can we add the Hulk? He had no lines

 Though I'm not sure how much he was loved. He was liked, I'm sure, but I am also sure it was Bruce Banner everyone loved.

And that is the end of my list. Any added suggestions?

 Quote is from Doctor Who, 12 and Clara.