Monday, December 31, 2012

Welcome to 2013 (One Day Early)

Hello and Welcome to 2013, Everyone! I hope everyone came through the Mayan End-of-the-World okay. If you're reading this, I'm assuming that's a yes. :D

I know 2013 doesn't officially start until tomorrow, but I have a weirdness about starting things in the middle of the week. I think it may be a rare form of OCD. (And by rare, I mean common.) So, I've been offline for over a week (SOOO weird since I've been on every day without exception for the past seven months) but now I'm back! Feeling refreshed after a break and ready to tackle the new year...

And I'm starting on Monday.

So, just a few things today. I'm going to list my Resolutions for 2013. Nothing personal on the blog like weight loss or finding a way to marry Chris Hemsworth. Just things pertaining to writing, reading, blogging, marketing, etc.

I'll also introduce some new blog features. So let's get started.

New Years Resolutions -- 2013


This year, it's my goal to read at least 50 books. Now I know most of you book bloggers out there are used to reading several books a week, but I am author. I have writing, editing, and marketing to do. Not to mention I'd like to have a life at some point. So, I have very little time to read. However, I'm no longer working a day job so I'm going to try and read at least one book per week from my TBR list.

In addition, I want to be reading one classic novel and one personal improvement book at all times. I'll be reading them slowly--just a chapter or a percent per day. So, I'll probably only read 2-4 of each this year, depending on length. I figure I'll set up my months like this:

Week 1: a Dystopian or Fantasy novel
Week 2: a Historical Fiction novel
Week 3: a Mystery/Thriller/Crime Drama novel

as these are the genres I write.

Week 4: Freebee. Something of another genre or one of the above--just whatever I want. Or, if I want to take a break, I'll do it during this week.


My goals in this area are many and varied. My first novel, Persistence of Vision will be released nation-wide on January 29th. I'm hoping to get the 2nd installment of the Interchron series out by the end of the year. It's nearly ready to send to the publisher as we speak.

I also already have a second novel, Citadels of Fire, Book 1 of Kremlins, slated for release from Jolly Fish Press in September of this year. It's the first of a trilogy. Kremlins is an interesting case because I wrote it as one continuous story, but it was too long to publish that way. I had to break it into three separate installments. So, while the second and third books definitely need some work, for all intents and purposes they are already written and just need some editing love. My goal as concerns this series to get both the second and third parts of this edited and ready to turn in to the publisher.

In terms of planning, I'd also like to get books 3, 4, and 5 of Interchron planned and outlined and perhaps the third book completely written.

I'm also working on an epic high-fantasy series that has to do with dragons. I'm not sure I could get an entire volume written this year, but I'd at least like to get the series planned out/outlined and, you know, if I could get book one written, that would just be a happy bonus! :D

I'd also like to foray into self-publishing a bit this year, even if it's just in small ways. I want to get to know every part of the industry. In the next couple of months I'm going to publish a small anthology of my own short stories and simply upload it to amazon, using it both to make a little extra income and to explore that aspect of the industry.

Are my goals ambitious? Obviously. A little unrealistic in their scope? Probably. But I believe in reaching for the stars. Even if I can get half of this stuff done this year, it will be a very productive year.


I'd like to reach 500 followers on Facebook, 5000 followers on Twitter, and 1000 followers on my blog. I think these types of goals are good to set, even if you have less direct control over who follows you, because it gives you something to aim for and makes you unconsciously (if not consciously) aware of what works and what you can do to improve your social networking.

That's most of my Resolutions for 2013. What are yours?

Of course, talking about blogging is a great segue into the second part of my post: New Blog Features.

New Blog Features, 2013

You may notice that the page about my Persistence of Vision Art Competition is gone. I'm officially cancelling it. I just didn't get enough interest. I'd hoped to use it to promote my book, but hey! You win some, you lose some. Besides, I've gotten an awesome response for my book's blog tour (which will begin January 14--more on that next week) and it's going to be really long-running, so I'll still get plenty of exposure. :D

I'm going to start doing two new sections on my blog: Announcements/Entertainment News and Glorious Gadgets.

Announcements/Entertainment News will be for my own announcements, those of fellow authors and blogger buddies, and other fun stuff I just want to feature. You'll probably see a lot of movie trailers and announcements. I like to keep up with pop culture and movies/T.V. are just another story-telling avenue that I love to follow. :D Of course not every post will feature this section. It will only appear when I have something in particular to put there. :D

Glorious Gadgets will be a section where I feature cool stuff I've found. Most often it will be gadgets, software, apps, etc. that help make life easier or more fun!

Finally, I'm re-vamping my Thoughts for Thursday meme. Check out the tab above to see what it's all about. I'm really just adding prizes to get more participation. I've been a bit inconsistent about having a linky list in each post, but I'll always have one, now. Anyone can contribute a quote via linky (on their blog) or just in the comments section. I'll read every quote contributed and decide which I like the best. This will just be based on my own tastes. Whoever contributes the best quote for the week will get a small prize. (Very small. Probably just a bookmark.) But, every 3 months, I'll have a drawing. Everyone who has won the weekly prize in the last quarter will be automatically entered to win a free book or amazon gift card. This will be a 1 in 12 shot, so pretty good. I'm hoping this will encourage participation in this meme.

That's pretty much it. All other aspects of my blog(s) will remain the same. Happy New Year's Eve, Everyone!

How about you? Doing anything to re-vamp your blog this year? What are your New Year's Resolutions?

Sunday, December 30, 2012

The Eye of the World Read Along--Week 2

Hosted by Anya at On Starships and Dragonwings

1. The stories of Moraine and her sisters don't seem to always match up with who she is, but other times they do (the whirlpool). How do you think these two versions of Moraine compare?

I think she is hiding a lot. The most telling thing was when she told the boys she'd destroy them all herself before letting the Fade have them. I think her intentions are good, but she definitely has an agenda that comes first.

2. Rand has now had two dreams that seem to be more than dreams. What do you think they mean?

It sounds to me like someone or something else is in his head, trying to make him believe certain things or act in certain ways. I don't think he should take/trust the dreams at face value.

3. There are two other boys that could be significant to the Trollocs, but Moraine seems to be paying special attention to Rand. How do you think all of them are involved? Also why do you think all of this is happening now all of a sudden, instead of when the boys were younger?
They are almost grown. It could be some manifestation of manhood that triggered the events. Also, I'm not sure Moiraine is paying special attention to Rand. He thinks so, but we're getting this from his POV and he's a nervous kid, away from home for the first time. Who's to say Mat and Perrin don't think she's paying special attention to them as well? :D

4. Thom has hinted at an interesting past and reacted to Moraine's presence when she first appeared. What do you think of this mysterious gleeman?

I think he's more than he appears to be. I think he knows a lot more about Moiraine and the world than he's letting on. I also think it's significant that Lan doesn't trust him. He'll be an interesting one to watch as the story progresses.

5. We've been learning more about the Aes Sedai, but also about the lack of male counterparts. What do you think of this? Is it somehow related to the prologue?
Uh, yeah. Definitely related. Also significant that the man in Rand's dream that called himself The Dark One said he was present during the events described in the Prologue.

6. Lan noticed Rand's sword and commented on how Rand's father taught him to concentrate. How do you think these coincidences are related?

Mostly it shows that Tam, once again, has been places and done things he never let on to Rand. Lan was teaching a professional battle technique, and Rand already knew it because his father (the so-called farmer) had already taught it to him. Lan's weighing, calculating stares are always mysterious, yet telling.

I like the maps-as-you-go thing. Jordan does this often and I think it helps envision the land/city they're in to have the maps. I'm personally a fan of that technique. :D

Great chapters! Can't wait for what comes next! :D

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Follow Friday--What We've Learned 2012

Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs! 

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you! 

Q: What have you learned from book blogging that you didn't know before about the publishing industry?

Okay, I really wasn't going to do this blog hop this week. Weird, I know. I don't think I've missed one in six months! But then, just out of curiosity I tuned in to see what the question was...and knew I needed to answer.

My answer is EVERYTHING!!! I only started blogging seriously in May of this year (2012) so my blog is a baby compared to most others. But literally everything I know about the online community I've learned from my blogger buddies. Everything from how to run a blog to promotion, internet etiquette, creativity, how to grow your audience, using other networking platforms. Yeah, other than the actual process of writing, everything. And I do mean everything.
So, if I might just take the opportunity--you know, before the zombie apocalypse hits at midnight or whenever--I'd like to thank all my awesome blogger buddies, book and otherwise, for all their support, knowledge, enthusiasm, and friendship. Here's to hoping that when (I mean if!) the zombie apocalypse happens in the next few days, those of us who have read the relevant literature will end up on top! :D

Everyone have a Merry Christmas, a safe apocalypse, and a Happy New Year! :D Cheers! *wink*

Thoughts for Thursday--16

devor/123RF Stock Photo

Thoughts for Thursday is a new meme hosted by Musings on Fantasia and LKHill.  In this meme, we share thoughts or quotes that we know or have recently come across. Each week there is a specific subject or theme. These can be quotes from books, quotes by famous people, (quotes by YOU, perhaps ;D). Anything from anywhere is game, though we do ask that you keep your quote to a few sentences at most. Don't quote, for example, entire passages of a book or essay. These can be funny quips, cool sayings, hair-raising antidotes, movie lines, any kind of quote you can think of!

Readers may respond by either commenting on the quotes I put forward or contributing a quote of their own.

Just have fun, collect awesome sayings by awesome people, and try to be inspired!

This week's theme is Christmas!!!

"Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love."--Hamilton Wright Mabie
"He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree."--Roy L. Smith
"Christmas is doing a little something extra for someone."--Charles M. Schulz
"Christmas waves a magic wand over the world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful."--Norman Vincent Peale
"There's nothing sadder in this world than to awake Christmas morning and not be a child."--Erma Bombeck

What do you think? What's your favorite quote about Christmas? Everyone have a Merry Christmas, a great apocalypse, and a Happy New Year! See you in 2013! ;D

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

My Favorite Martial Blogfest + Links & RMQ

Happy Wednesday, Everyone!

I'm just going to give an announcement and share a link today.

Hosted by The Geek Twins

Co-Hosted by Musings on Fantasia, Just a Dash of Geek and Comic Book and Movie Reviews

Come join us for an uber-fun blog hop on January 14th! 

Hosted by the awesome Geek Twins, this blog hop is all about our favorite aliens. To participate, put your name in the linky below. Then on January 14, 2013 just write a post about your favorite alien of all time (Martian or not) and why you love them.
From Evolution Movie
If you don't have a blog, feel free to leave your answer in the comments, or just hop through to meet new bloggers and read some fun posts. 

I'm SO excited for this! I participate in a number of blog hops, but I've never hosted before, and this is such a fun topic. I know I'm going to have a hard time choosing just one favorite alien. There are so many great ones! 

Feel free to put the badge on your blog, and help us spread the word. Let's give our alien buddies as much love as possible this January! :D

A quick link:

I found a great article in Orion Magazine entitled Feed the Hunger. It's about the psychology of dystopia, especially for the young adult audience. I found it very informative and insightful. I probably won't get around to discussing it this week, but will probably reference it next week. Have a gander if you're interested. :D

What do you think? Will YOU participate in the blogfest? What did you think of the article?

Random Movie Quotes (RMQ)! 

 Yesterday's RMQ was, "You know, somehow "I told you so" just doesn't cut it."

This was said by Will Smith in the Movie I, Robot. Alex Cavanaugh guessed this one. Great job, Alex!

Today's RMQ is a conversation between two guys:

Guy 1: Hey, hey, hey. Calm down. Just calm down, big boy!
Guy 2: You calm down! This is MY house!
Guy 1: You're gonna tell me what I want to know or I'm gonna beat you to death in your own house.

One point for each character and actor and one for film, so five possible points on this one. Good luck! :D

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Top Ten Books for 2012 + RMQ


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.

Top Ten Books I Read in 2012

Confession: I shamelessly borrowed from last week's list. As I explained last week, I didn't actually read very many books in 2012. Most that I did read were from authors I've read before or was re-reading. So, a lot of these were on last week's list. Hopefully I won't have this problem next year. :D

These are in no particular order.

1. Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers. My review here.

2. Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin. My review here.

3. Sleepwalkers by Paul Grossman. My review here.

4. Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake. My review here.

5. Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry.

6-10. The Song of Fire and Ice Books: Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords, A Feast of Crows, and A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin. These were probably my top favorites. I've been totally obsessed with this series all year! ;D

That it for me! How about YOU? What new authors did YOU read this year?

Random Movie Quotes (RMQ)!

Don't know what this is? Click the tab at the top of the page.

Sorry I haven't been very consistent with RMQ lately. I'll try to be better. :D

Last week's RMQ was, "Here? Lousy. So far I'm more affected than she is. I damn near cried twice!"

This was said by Harrison Ford in the 1995 film Sabrina. This movie is hysterical. He was playing billionaire Linneus Laraby. No one guessed this one.

Today's RMQ is:

"You know, somehow, 'I told you so' just doesn't quite say it."

One point for film, one for character, one for actor. Good luck! 

Monday, December 17, 2012

8 Story Points for Crafting a Dystopia

I spent the weekend trying to sell my book at my first ever vendor fair. Unfortunately, it was a bit of a bust. Everything went just fine, but it was very poorly attended, so I only sold a handful of books. :( But, all was not lost. I actually spoke to a lot of people and had at least a dozen people tell me that they wanted a copy but that they would only buy digital copies. I gave them bookmarks with links to the website for download. Now, granted, they may or may not download it, but I felt like I did pretty well at spreading the word.

I'm not sure why no one came to the fair. Usually this one turns out pretty good numbers. The inclement weather probably kept people home. I also think the horrendous tragedy in Connecticut was a factor. While that was going on, no one felt much in the Christmas-y, go-shop-for-gifts mood, and I can't blame them for it. I didn't much think about it while at the fair. I was afraid I'd become a soggy mess. It wasn't until I got home Friday night that I finally watched some of the coverage and felt the full weight of what had happened. I rocked my baby niece to sleep last night and cried while doing it. I think she thought I was weird.

My deepest condolences to the families of the victims and all those touched by this tragedy. My thoughts and prayers are with them.

While at the fair, trying to occupy my mind during the down time, I started thinking about story structure, especially as it applies to dystopian stories which are so popular right now. As I said, I also talked to a lot of people about my book. I always started by asking if they knew the word, 'dystopia.' Some did, but many didn't and to explain it to them I would say, 'Dystopia just means an undesirable society. So, something like Hunger Games.' That was enough for most people. That's what got me thinking about dystopian story structure. Here's what I came up with.

I can't take complete credit for this template, because I heard a more generalized version of it for generic story structure. The guy I heard it from then got in trouble, not because he didn't give credit for where he got it, but because the people he got it from didn't give credit for it. I know, I know, it's like a bad game of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon. I've adapted it and put in my own ideas to make it my own but, in short...I own nothing and don't claim I came up with this on my own. Don't sue me!

I'm going to use three well-known stories to illustrate my points: a) Hunger Games, b) Harry Potter, and c) Star Wars. Granted, HP and SW aren't generally considered dystopias, but 1) they're well-known stories and you can adapt this structure to any story, not just dystopias and 2) I've made the argument before that all stories with a conflict are, by definition, imperfect societies, and so can be considered dystopias.

**Warning: Spoilers ahead. I'm using these three stories because most people in the world have either read the books or seen the films. If you haven't and don't want to know what happens in them, stop reading now!**

If you want to write a great dystopian story, follow these seven points to make your story complete. This is a bare-bones structure only, but it's a great place to start.

1. Dystopic Starting Point--This is the beginning of the story. Of course you introduce your main and other central characters, but we should also be introduced to the dystopia. In a dystopian story, the dystopian world itself is a central character. We must see it and its undesirable attributes.
a) Katniss lives in a poor district where they aren't allowed to take their lives into their own hands even to hunt their own food. The people are poor and oppressed.
b) Harry lives under the stairs with horrible guardians. His life is sad and boring.
c) Luke lives the life of a farmer on a planet far away from intergalactic events, but dreams of more.

2. Introduce Conflict--The character's life or world must change in some way.  Introduce your dystopia's "normal" (step 1) then turn it on its head.
a)  Katniss was happy to live in her world, doing what she could indefinitely. It was the Reaping that changed everything, throwing her into upheaval. 
b) Harry learns he's really a wizard. He leaves the only home he's ever known for a whole new world.
c) After Luke's guardians are murdered, he leaves with Obie-Wan for a new life as a Jedi apprentice.

3. Introduce Complications--This can be a dangerous/deadly situation, a villain, or just some other reason why the hero is doomed and won't be able to overcome the dystopia.
a) Katniss finds out about other, well-trained tributes who've been practicing for years and are brutal killers. 
b) Harry learns of Voldemort, who killed his parents (which will complicate his reputation at school) and who still haunts the wizarding world.
c) Darth Vader is introduced before Luke is, but Luke's learning about him and the Empire, and the Empire using their secret weapon to destroy Alderan, all qualify as complications.

4. Turning Point--The turning point is a change in character motivations. The character goes from reaction to action. Up until this point in the story, the character has been acted upon by outside, dystopic forces. Now, they decide to be active, or pro-active, in bringing down the dystopian conditions.
a) Katniss volunteers for the Hunger Games and actively tries to figure out how she can win.
b) Harry decides to go find the Sorcerer's Stone and take steps to stop Snape (Quirrel) from stealing it.
c) Luke decides become a Jedi and from then on takes steps to help bring down the Empire.

5. Things get worse--a mentor dies, the MC is hurt, things get harder, hope seems to be slipping away.
a) Things are going pretty well for Katniss when Rue dies.
b) Ron is hurt and Harry has to go one alone. (That's harder and scarier for him.)
c) Obi-Wan is killed.

6. Climax/Human-Passion Moment--this is where the MC and/or their buddies fight valiantly against the dystopian world. I call it the human-passion moment because often all hope seems lost, but they fight tooth and nail against the oppressive force because that's what human beings do. This scene/part always ends in despair. They can't do it. All hope is lost. 

a) Katniss fights to win the Hunger Games against everything they throw her way. Then it looks like either she has to kill Peeta or die herself. 
b) Harry does his best against a much more seasoned wizard (Quirrel), and Voldemort himself, but he can't win against them.
c) Luke helps the rebellion fight to destroy the Death Star but soon he's the only fighter left with little or no chance to prevail.
7. Ah-Hah Moment--This is when the MC finds the one thing they've been missing that will help them overcome the oppressive dystopian regime. Often, this is something they find within themselves.

a) Katniss uses something she learned from her father (about the poisonous berries) to manipulate the Capital into declaring them both victorious.
b) Harry obtains the stone magically because his heart is pure. Also Harry's touch is toxic to Voldemort. (Notice the reasons behind this don't necessarily need to be explained right away. Just sometime before the story ends.)
c) "Use the force, Luke!"
8. Resolution--Individual triumphs; dystopia overcome in some way.

a) Katniss and Peeta win together.
b) Harry destroys Quirrel/Voldemort.
c) Luke destroys the Death Star and gets a medal of Valor.

Keep in mind, this is just a bare bones structure. Characters, conflicts, plots, and especially worlds need to be fleshed out. If you include all these points in your story, though, it will continually move forward and be complete. Here's to creating dystopian worlds!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Eye of the World Read-Along, Part 1

Welcome to first part of The Eye of the World read along, put on by Anya of On Starships and Dragonwings and, this week, over at  Dab of Darkness.

So I've decided to participate in the Wheel of Time Read-Along. This is my all-time favorite fantasy series! Seriously. The final book will be out in January, so I thought it'd be fun to read the first one again just prior to that. It's been years since I read the earlier books, and I'm looking forward to reading them again. :D

So, here goes: I totally love the beginning of book 1. Because this is an epic series, the characters change and grow A LOT throughout the course of the story. To go back and read their beginnings is fun, sweet, and even a little bit sad. I think Jordan is a master at the beginning of this story. He immediately gets us invested in these characters. They're all 1) likable, funny, human or 2) mysterious, intriguing, somewhat hot (totally thinking of Lan there).
Now for the questions.

1) The prologue is a pretty bleak and dark place. Then we enter Two Rivers and meet the young folk, mostly farmers. Do you think these two very different scenes show the bookends of the spectrum we can expect for the book?

I think that's exactly what Jordan was doing. Obviously the story has to tie into the Prologue at some point. Otherwise what would be the point in having it? So there's these epic world events and then there are these farm kids from Hickville. The two worlds are going to have to collide at some point. (Ah, epic story-telling.) :D
2) Overall are you enjoying the level of description and the portent telling (the crow, the black-robed man on horseback, etc.)?

Yes! The portents are one of the (many) things I love about this story. The description is great, too. Description is something I struggle with as a writer, so I love to try and emulate Jordan. I think some readers will find his description over-the-top as the story goes on. There's not tons of description in Emonds's Field because everything is relatively plain (earthy tones for the clothes, good stout wool, etc.) but just wait until we run into richer clothing--uh, people. :D

3) What do you think the story is for Rand and Egwene up to this point?

I think their the kind of people that grew up together, were always close, and as they reach maturity, the natural thing is for them to start dating. They're at a point when it's all kinds of awkward because they're both having feelings for one another but don't know what to do about it. It's the kind of thing where, if they could just get the first kiss out of the way, things would be a lot less awkward. Hmmm...
4) The story takes a most serious turn once the trollocs attack the al’Thor farmstead. It also raises plenty of questions about Tam’s past. Care to guess on what some of that past is?

I'm not going to say much about this because I've read the series and know what Tam's past consists of. I will tell you that it's way awesome-sauce! I tried to get my mom to read this series years ago. She's not a huge reader and she's not big on fantasy either, so she never got through book 1. Just not enough interest. However, I remember her freaking out when the trollocs attacked. She was like, 'Geez! It was just a nice story about these farm kids and then these snarling monsters show up!' And I was like, 'I know!' :D

5) Chapter 7 leaves us with many questions, like Rand has many questions: Why trollocs? What was his father going on about in his fever? Who are Moraine and Lan and why are they really in Two Rivers? Will Tam survive? Which of these (or other) questions are you most anxious to see answered in the coming chapters?
Again, I'm not going to say much because I already know the answers to these questions, but I will say this: One thing I love about this story are the nuances. Sometimes the side characters and details are even juicier than the main story line--which all by itself is fantastic!--so pay attention to the details. Thom Merrilin is especially interesting to read about in these early chapters. The fact that he seems to know a thing or two about Moiraine and Lan is important. The fact that most gleeman have patched cloaks and his only looks patched is interesting. Ask yourself why me might be different than other gleemen. Also pay attention to the details surrounding the trolloc attack, like when Lan says there are many tribes acting together, which never happens. Great stuff!

What is everyone else--especially those reading it for the first time--thinking of it? Hope you're loving it. It only gets better! :D

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Follow Friday--Sad Books

**I'm at the South Towne Expo Center in Utah signing selling books today and tomorrow. If you're local, come by and say hi! :D **

Follow Friday

Increase Blog Followers, gain Book Blog Followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers — but you have to know — the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.
trans Feature & Follow #123
The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee’s View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it’ll allow us to show off more new blogs!
How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools — keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them “hi” in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!
What is the last book that made you cry? Tell us about the scene...

In terms of fantasy, I think I'm gonna have to go with A Storm of Swords, Book 3 of A Song of Fire and Ice. I'm not going to talk about scene specifics because that would be all spoilers. To be honest, I don't remember whether I cried while reading it or not, but if I didn't, it was because I was stunned tearless. It was SOOO sad.
Suffice it to say, something happens that is the biggest jaw-dropper of the entire series. So twisted and so tragic! As in, Oh no he did not! I think they're going to feature it on this season of the HBO series. I read something about George R.R. Martin remarking that when a "certain episode" airs this season, he's going to have to go hide under a rock to keep the fans from murdering him.
Uh...yeah. Pretty much. Anyway, enough said. Don't want to spoil anything. I know a lot of my followers are either reading it or planning to.

So, what was the last book you read that made you tear up?

Red Dawn Movie Review + Thoughts for Thursday--15

Red Dawn Movie Review

I finally got around to seeing Red Dawn. It was awesome! Don't think there's a whole lot more to say than that. Totally made me want to buy a truck and load it with guns, ammo, and survival supplies, but hey! That's what good entertainment's all about, right?

My family was big on the old version of this movie. You know, the one that came out the year I was born and featured Patrick Swayze at about eighteen and Charlie Sheen as a twelve-year-old. Anyway, my mom always told me about how my grandmother sent it to her, saying it was a great show. My poor parents sat down to watch it together, expecting a happy, fuzzy, family-friendly show. Needless to say they were pretty shocked when Cuban insurgents parachuted onto a high school football field and opened fire on all the students. 

I didn't see the film until I was a teenager, but I loved it. Despite being dated, it was a touching story and tremendously tragic. Yet, awesome in all it's awesomeness.

When I saw that they were remaking it--and with Chris Hemsworth front and center no less, I was WAY excited! And the movie did not disappoint. The first ten minutes are ridiculously intense and are followed by a great film. It's still tragic, though they changed the story line a bit from the original. Still the same gist, though. 

The characterizations were great and they still manage to shock the audience a few times. If you want a great film, this is the one to see. 

Thoughts for Thursday--15

Image credit: 
devor / 123RF Stock Photo
Thoughts for Thursday is a new meme hosted by Musings on Fantasia and LKHill.  In this meme, we share thoughts or quotes that we know or have recently come across. Each week there is a specific subject or theme. These can be quotes from books, quotes by famous people, (quotes by YOU, perhaps ;D). Anything from anywhere is game, though we do ask that you keep your quote to a few sentences at most. Don't quote, for example, entire passages of a book or essay. These can be funny quips, cool sayings, hair-raising antidotes, movie lines, any kind of quote you can think of!

Readers may respond by either commenting on the quotes I put forward or contributing a quote of their own.

Just have fun, collect awesome sayings by awesome people, and try to be inspired!

This week's theme is abundance!!!

"When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears."--Anthony Robbins
"Happy people produce. Bored people consume."--Stephen Richards
"Doing what you love is the cornerstone of having abundance in your life."--Wayne Dyer
"Not what we have but what we enjoy constitutes our abundance."--Epicurus
"From abundance springs satiety."--Titus Livius

What are your thoughts on abundance? Which quote is your favorite? Do you have one to add?