Friday, May 31, 2013

What the People Don't Tell You

So, it's here, the much waited for and anticipated day.
The school year is over. I'm no longer a Junior. 11th grade is done with...FOREVER!!!
I'm hoping that 12th grade will be easier, 11th grade nearly killed me, but my older sister says that 12th grade sucked for her, so now I'm slightly worried, but you know, there's a whole summer between then and now.
Anyway, I have a pleasant story to tell (yes, another one) I put it off for almost the whole week to publish my post about Steve, (oddly enough I keep dreaming about him, like I was the Little Mermaid and he was my prince and then he drowned...yeah, I agree, odd!) but now here it is.
My story about stupid people, we all have one. And just to warn you, I'm going to talk about death, so if that's too heavy or tender for you, you don't have to keep reading, nobody's blaming you, it's a tough subject. =D
So on Tuesday I went with my young women's group (kind of like a girl's scout troop, just less fun) I hardly ever go because I have the same problem here that I do in school, I get ignored no matter how loud I am. But there I was on Tuesday with my mom and younger sister.
We came to this bread factory thinking it was a tour but ended up sitting in this conference like room with a table up front and a large mirror glaring down at it. The table had some cute little bread animals on it and we realized it was a demonstration on how to make those adorable little animals and other things out of bread.
How fun.
Just to clear up, I'm not a cook. I like it enough, but after a while, I get bored and I don't really like touching raw meat, I'm not a total cheerleader when it comes to being grossed out, I mean I just spent three hours yesterday getting dirty with horses, but raw meat takes the cake. Gross.
And just as a personal preference, I like making sweets, even though the dough always tastes better than the end result. I made cookies once that looked like cookies but tasted like French-fries, my siblings joked about needing fry sauce (Utah weirdness, for those who don't know (and I can't say that I blame you) fry sauce is an odd mix of ketchup and mayonnaise with an added bonus of pickle juice in between. I'm not that fond of it, especially not when I have to wash it out of the bowl!)
Sorry, rambling there =)
So we waited for this preppy cheerleader lady in her fifties to come talk to us about bread. At first I liked her, she was funny and I expected it to be boring.
Then she got too funny.
She started asking questions to hand out adorable (and by italics I mean sarcasm) little bags of bread.
"Who's the Laurel president?" she asked, then, "Who's the Beehive president." (Two ranks I guess in young women's? It's a church thing I'm not really fond of, don't judge us by our young women groups! It's like high school with all the drama, girl's camp is that hyped up to about a MILLION!)
Those questions weren't really fair, I mean, who could win unless you were the lucky one to be called as el president. I was okay at this point, but I could see my mom shrinking in her seat with every word the preppy cheerleader lady said.
Then things got REALLY ugly.
The lady asked who had been married the longest. No big deal, until you know the rest of the story. Mom has a friend who lost her husband in a car crash four years ago, THIS WEEK! That poor lady was there and EVERYONE turned to look at HER.
Pressure much? Completely especially when Little Mrs. Cheerleader marched over there and said, "How long have you been married?"
Mom's friend was totally cool about this, "Only a year."
"What?" Cheerleader said. "How could it only be a year? Now I'm confused! Are you married or not?"
Mom's friend's daughter piped up, "I'm her daughter, I can testify that she's married!"
"Then how could it only be a year?" the cheerleader demanded.
"She remarried," the daughter said.
"Oh," the cheerleader said.
And to make matters worse, she kept pouring salt into the wound by making jokes like, "I'm still married to the same husband, yadda yadda, wonder why sometimes."
Mom was getting more than a little irritated with this lady, especially when she wouldn't stop! She even jokingly told Mom's friend that she "couldn't participate" because she already had a stupid little prize.
I was getting a little annoyed now. I know what that kind of pressure feels like, I've lost two sisters, both babies. It really hurts when someone starts digging around in your heart in places where those loved ones should've been. I don't like looking at other babies, jealous for the life my sister's didn't get, but it has to hurt like a spear in the heart to have someone joke about your beloved husband as if he split not died.
We got our free samples of food (after all that suffering we weren't going to leave without it!) and then with Mom's friend racing out behind us, we ran for the parking lot, desperate not to have preppy cheerleader lady follow us.
Mom was angry, compassion, understanding, she said that no one has it anymore. Sometimes I have to agree, I've been in that same situation, in that class (for 10th grade) we had a sub that started talking about how wonderful it is to be a mother, holding that precious child in your arms...blah, blah, blah, it was the day before two years after my sister died as an infant. I ran for it, my older sister was close behind me.
In this day and age it seems like people want us to erase the pain, pretend it never happened. I can't pretend that I don't have a little sister as much as Mom's friend can't pretend that she wasn't married. People don't tell you how much it hurts to see life and then watch it fade. It does hurt! I never got to know my sister, and at first I never wanted her, and then she died and all I want now is to hold her little body and feel warmth, see her eyes and have her look back at me.
How can I pretend that she never existed?
This ends up in my books, naturally. I started writing Twisted on March eighth 2011, on March 9th 2010, we learned that my sister had died. The pain is there with my heroine's, Allie Taylor's grandma, Laura Sylvia Hawkins Taylor. Long name, but there's a reason she keeps it like that.
Laura's twin brother died at 22 years old and everyone around her told her to just get over it, that Payton was in a better place. Basically what everyone told my family about my sisters. Just get over it is NOT something we want to hear. Just getting over it is like not acknowledging my sister's life, like we don't care.
I know this post really has nothing to do with my books, or my violin, it's just something that I saw that shocked me.
I'm calling for compassion. If you know someone who has lost a loved one, why do you ignore them? Pretend their loss isn't real? That hurts when people ignore you, especially for WHY they ignore you. Most of you don't know what to say, but I do, I know what I wish people would say, just talk about the loved one. You think it might make us cry and how could it not? But we want other people to acknowledge that someone we love is in heaven and part of our hearts have died with them. Ask questions, listen, ignoring is the worst thing you can do.
And sometimes you don't even have to say anything at all. Just let us know that we are loved, that you're worried for us, that you care.
That you're there.
Actions speak louder than words.
Ignoring speaks nothing but knives.
And I know there's compassion out there, Rachel K Johnson's comment on my other blog post about her concern for me nearly makes me cry, for a good reason (don't worry Rachel! =D) and there have been people who have made an effort to reach out. Compassion exists, it's just getting squished.
And for the record, I don't hate cheerleaders, seriously, I just hate the movie stereotype of cheerleaders. Sheesh. I know you have brains! Just because you cheer doesn't make you a bubblehead! And I'm kind of jealous of how flexible you guys are, if I did the splits, I'd know about it for weeks as I tried to walk.
So anyway, be compassionate. People tell you not to be, to ignore blaring grief, but they only say that because they don't know and they don't know because they don't ask.
What people don't tell you is the difference between the brightness of day and the darkness and unknowns of night.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

What the Boy Didn't Know

Yesterday was the last day (until 12th grade starts) of that class that was literally a living torment for me. I was so happy I practically danced as I drove home (don't worry, I was contained until I parked the van!) Starting from the first day, it was like a fresh torture every single time I walked inside that building.
It was so horrible because I didn't have any friends and the attempts I had to make friends ended quite bitterly, the one girl didn't want anything to do with me and the other that would talk to me and made me feel included turned the cold shoulder on me at the end of the quarter when the classes changed and her best friend ever came into the class turning me into 'that other girl.'
I've always been her. =(
Things got so bad, I was tossed and turned on every corner, shamed and taunted as I struggled to keep up. I felt like one among the undead trying to run a race with the living, I was just as shunned, and left lying in the imaginary road dead or at least wishing I was.
After a particularly bad day, I came home sobbing, my thoughts turned suicidal. It scares me now to realize how close I was to doing something really bad, inches from cutting, just ending all the pain. I know that sounds extreme, but you've got to understand that this has been going on my entire life! I'm not exactly a social butterfly, more like a completely reclusive rock. I've always been outside the 'cool' circle and I could never figure out why, I guess because I'm not like them. I'm not into doing my hair, painting my nails or guys. I'm not into fashion, seriously, I wear what I feel cozy in and cannot stand tight jeans, I'd cut myself out after wearing skinny jeans for half an hour, anyway, from grade school, right up into middle school, I feel like I've been the wart on the fine foot of society. The gross thing, the thing that no one wants.
Somehow I survived that very dark night, but the idea of going back made me want to curl up and sob once more, the class was too big and I literally hated everyone in it, it was packed to the gills and every person I had tried to befriend was giving me the cold shoulder. I felt like a leper, I wished I was, so I wouldn't have to go back. I relished everyday that I didn't have to go, Christmas holiday was heavenly.
Finally I reached my snapping point. I was either going to drop out or switch to a different day. Since I really couldn't drop out, I swapped days. I was dreading going back as much as a "death row" prisoner dreads ending up on the gallows.
But this time it was different. I told my teacher I was now in that class, sat down in my seat in the back thinking that I wasn't worthy of sitting in the front with all the sainted students. The moment I had my stuff out a boy came back and sat down in the seat next to mine and introduce himself to me. I was completely taken off guard, I almost did the movie, "Me?" as I pointed at myself.
Steve (as I'm calling him for the sake of his privacy, not his actual name) talked with me for a minute and then as the class started went back up to his seat in the sainted front. I noticed throughout the class that he was looking back at me constantly.
My face was probably as red as a overripe tomato. No boy that I know of has ever had a crush on me. Ever. I don't consider myself a drop dead babe (thank goodness!) I'm pretty in a pixie kind of way, or so my grandmother tells me. I personally went through a phase where I thought that I was so ugly it was a wonder why mirrors didn't crack as I walked by them. I hated the sight of myself in anything, and I was possessed with looking at my own faults, so it was a moment out of the blue when Steve actually spoke to me.
Later I figured he was just being nice. I turned bitter. I didn't want someone to be nice to me (as appreciated as it was) I'm tired of the one time talk and then getting ignored for the rest of eternity. I spent spring break gnashing my teeth and snarling like a wounded animal. It was a wonder, I snarled to myself in my Grinchy way, that Steve had even bothered to look at me. He wouldn't do it again, not when there were prettier girls to talk to.
I was wrong.
Steve not only spoke to me again, but he showed me how to make the wire and stone rings that I asked him to show me how to make on the first day in the new class. I was so startled when he actually showed me how, I nearly fell out of my chair in shock.
And I spent the next few weeks doing that.
Again, I sat in the back feeling unworthy, and useless, but low and behold, here came Steve who planted himself in the seat next to mine and started a conversation with me as I stammered and gaped in amazement. We started talking about dragons (a favorite topic of mine) got shushed by a lot of people, but it was still amazing. Steve chose sitting by his friends in the sainted front rows to come back and sit with me, the riled little devil that I was. I still had claws and they came out nicely when a girl completely rejected my compliments with the "someone taught it to talk?" expression that I get way more than I enjoy.
I walked out on that day grinning like an idiot. Thus was the habit for the next few weeks. Steve was amazing, funny, even though he talked a bit more than he should've. I was worried for the first half every time I walked in that he would've changed his mind and gone back to shunning me like everyone else was.
He never did, and believe it or not, the seating arrangements changed and I ended up in the sainted front row with Steve grinning wickedly in the seat next to mine. He even shared gum with me. Big deal, I know. But it goes back to my primary years where I watched as a pack of gum was passed between every girl in my class except me. I chewed on my tongue and tried not to try as it happened week after week after week. Steve sharing his gum with me brought me back to those young days, and believe it or not, warm gum from a pocket really wasn't such a big deal anymore.
I remember driving home with my mom complaining that I kept grinning like an idiot after the class was finished and she said, "I like it."
I looked at her like she was nuts, "You like it when I grin like an idiot?"
My mom was completely serious, "Better than you coming out grouchy with the world."
Oddly enough, after that, I liked it too.
Steve had a crush on me, my teacher could see it even though I couldn't. It was surprising, I've never crushed anyone (cough, cough, Prince Caspian!) And in doing so, Steve was an answer to my prayer as I begged and begged and BEGGED God with everything I had to let SOMEONE bother to care about me. Steve doesn't know it, but he probably saved me from doing something tragic.
What happened to Steve? Are we like boyfriend girlfriend now? Sorry to disappoint the anxious reader, but we're not. I liked Steve, but he was a little too young, a freshman and I'm a Junior. I believe in not dating until you're sixteen and old enough to handle yourself, I'm not going to allow someone else to compromise that by going out with them before they're sixteen and that would be kind of weird. :)
Actually I was okay with walking away, Steve started flirting with another girl and I thought okay, enough! I wasn't mad, I didn't want to care. I never even learned his last name. It's like he was a phantom, coming into my life when I needed it, and exiting when I was able to stand on my feet again.
Am I looking forward to going back for my senior year?
No, I can honestly say I'm not. I don't know if Steve will be there again, or if he'll even recognize me, I hacked about five inches off my hair because it was driving me crazy. But it still remains, because Steve noticed me, spoke with me and acknowledged me, it kept me alive emotionally. I was turning into a bitter monster, a wraith of my own making, acting like a pit of spikes so people would know if they tried to poke me, they'd walk away more hurt than I did.
My heart was turning black.
My heart was turning cold.
The cruel actions from others led me to snap, I got sad and then I got angry. I wanted to retaliate. I wanted to treat them as viciously as they treated me and let's face it, when I want to be, I can be very cruel myself. I knew that I probably could make them scurry into their dark corners and make them sob with the same amounts of agony they'd poisoned me with.
I was becoming one among the walking dead. My body was alive, but the inside, the part that really matters was dying of a kind of cancer that no doctor could cure. I needed God's care and love.
Steve saved me from falling into my own darkness. Saved me from turning bitter and cold and black. His actions healed my cankered soul and I forgot about being angry, being hurt, being sad, I forgot to think that I was ugly or fat, I forgot. I forgot! I feel alive again because a single person introduced himself to me and complimented me at exactly the time I needed it.
You doubt that a single person can make a difference.
Rethink that please.
You can save a life.
Steve saved me, and I doubt until we're face to face in Heaven that he'll ever know.

Monday, May 27, 2013


It's the last week of school. I survived. Eight weeks ago I wasn't so sure I'd make it this far, now I can't believe it's gone by so fast!
Not that I'm whining about school being over or anything. I'm just amazed that I actually made it to the end. One more year to go and I will officially be out of 'the grades' and grown up. It's actually kind of scary to think about.
Oh, good news, my cold is a thing of the past, though the mysterious health problems remain and the cough hasn't skedaddled yet (I love that word, skedaddled, sounds so weird!)
Also I had a breakthrough with writing this morning. On Friday I rewrote the same chapter 3 times to no avail until I finally backtracked and thought about what I'm doing, I'm thinking about it now and going, this is going to make people HATE the Secret Keeper, but we all fall for temptation, and the Secret Keeper realizes what's really going on and flees. It's the first major character development for him in the series, it's perfectly natural for a wraith to do the easy thing, they're lazy! But it's harder for them to look back and think, whoa, that's bad, REALLY bad! Usually they're the ones causing the bad!
On Friday I watched the Fellowship of the Ring and as you can guess I was fascinated by the Nazgul. Just the way they move, and oh man! The shot they had of the standing in the Prancing Pony in front of the bed was terrifying I said to my sister, "If I saw that, I'd wet the bed! And it'd be the last thing I ever did!"
"Lame last thing to do," my sister said.
I was also completely freaked out by the way that the Nazgul surrounded the hobbits on Weathertop, how the first one just appears in the crumbling archway. Man, I realized that though I joke about them all the time, wraiths aren't that funny and I wouldn't have the courage Sam did to fight one. I'd take one good look at the Nazgul and jump off the other side of the hill screaming my brains out.
My sister and I didn't watch the whole movie, we got to the part where the Nazgul were washed away in the river (saddest part of the movie!) and it was eleven so we decided to go to sleep, but I had to pace. It's what I do to get my brain going with creative juices. I was pacing in the dark with my music and the only light was coming from nightlights in the hall (darker than the inside of a dragon's stomach otherwise, nothing quite like stumbling for the bathroom in the dark after a creepy dream!) and from a stationary exercise bike.
The bike turns itself off unless you're peddling and since I was pacing, I had no concern with peddling and I kept going until it turned off and I suddenly found myself in the dark. I was like no big deal, I'll just pace in the dark, and then I remembered how the Nazgul had just appeared on Weathertop and I thought, light is good, and turned the bike back on!
I didn't get attacked by Nazgul as I paced, (I'm sure you would've heard me screaming if I had) but it's brought me to this nice realization, my imagination is way, way, way! too active! It helps me imagine every step my characters take, but in the middle of the night when I'm listening to things go bump, it's a wonder my imagination allows me to survive at all!
Awesome prank people pulled as a Nazgul haunts a movie theater for the opening of the Lord of the Rings in movie.
Don't get between a wraith and his popcorn =)

Friday, May 24, 2013


You know how a bad chapter can just wreck your day? Yeah, I'm having that today. I started writing today and pretty quickly I came across this general problem of suckage. My chapter sucked. It had no purpose. Oh sigh. It was from the Secret Keeper's POV and as I've said before, it's REALLY hard to write from his POV, especially if I don't set it up correctly. It's like, I set it up wrong and the Secret Keeper is like, "I'm only going along with this because I know you'll feel stupid in the end." Yeah, I figured it out, I've got to come in with a different POV and then go to the Secret Keeper.
I'm also really tired. Tired of school, tired of coughing all the time, and just tired in general. It's been a LOOONG morning for me :)
But I have to admit something this week, in about three days, I became a Lord of the Rings fan. I read 200 pages in that time. I don't know how good that is, but considering last time I tried to read it, I only got about 40% of what was being said and I probably only made it to page 40. I just passed the part where Frodo gets stabbed by the Witch King and tonight (hopefully) I'll watch the first movie.
Total nerd now. :)
But I'm not really the biggest fan of Frodo, I watched this review thing that said there's something in the Lord of the Rings for everyone to connect with. The hobbits, Aragorn, Legolas, and so forth. I'm sorry, I'm not really voting for the good guys, the Nazgul is where I connect, as it probably should have been easy to figure out. But everyone has something they're possessed with watching right? I like watching the Nazgul to try and figure out how my wraiths would act and react to things and what they would look like as they did.
Oh, totally random fact, even if you did see a wraith, there's no possible way to capture it on film or with a camera no matter how advanced your camera is. It will either freeze over in your hands, or the only thing you'll get is a large black blob where the wraith is. Their auras are so dark, their essence so evil, you can't photograph them, in fact, in real life you can't even see them that well.
Okay I'm done being a nerd =) oddly enough, though I know all this about wraiths, I'd never make it as a shade hunter, that's a person in Twisted who is trained in the art of hunting and eliminating darker beings, the darker the being, the more they get paid for destroying it. I couldn't survive doing that, especially since you can't quit, once you've established the fact that you're a shade hunter, the undead have this nasty habit of trying to get rid of you, even after you've claimed to retire, they'll take advantage of your retirement and come in to get you. I'd be the Cowardly Lion version of a shade hunter.
Sorry, I'm blabbing about wraiths again. They fascinate me.
Anyway, for those of you wondering about the health issues I've been facing, they haven't gone away. I mean the palpitations stopped for a while, but came back on the 22nd, it was so bad yesterday I could hardly breathe. My cold is mostly gone, except for the cough, and I start wheezing if I do anything too intense. Sigh. I wish some doctor could figure out what this is, it's part of the reason (I'm guessing) that I'm so tired.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Today While the Sun Shines

I've had this cold for a week. I know all I've done recently is whine about it, but it's a pretty bad cold. I think I'll look up the professional term of a cold in Latin so I sound so much cooler when I say I've got a common cold.
Yeah aside from the cold I'm actually pretty okay today. I practically slept through all of my alarms and had to drag myself out of bed, but that was all right because it meant I got to write and I was excited because I finally got to introduce a character I've fall heads over heels for, Prince Shegya.
I've been struggling for ways to introduce him, he ranks pretty high up there on the stubbornness scale (the Secret Keeper topping and breaking the scale) and I wanted to show that stubbornness without actually coming right out and saying, "he's stubborn" I prefer showing.
I think I've got it down this time, actually managing to show how Shegya feels about his father, the sultan of Aramabi and Amaarzar, the general of the Aramabic armies. I didn't have to go into this in depth explanation like last time, I just put down a few words and ba-bam! As Amy Duncan would say, you could see that there was tension.
I love being able to do that, but it takes a lot of drafts and fighting to be able to get there, I'm currently on the 7th draft of Entangled (book after Twisted) and this one has been fighting me ever since I first started writing it, but this time I think I'll actually be able to finish it.
Oh nerd moment here, I started reading the Lord of the Rings, I mean actually READING it and I discovered that I like it. My siblings think I'm nuts because I've got my head stuck in it, and we just spent the last who KNOWS how many years making fun of it. Oops. =D
I want to see the movies again if that punctuates how nerdy I'm feeling right now, but you know, I'm only watching it for the Nazgul, Frodo whines way too much for my liking, the Nazgul don't whine at all, just get the job done, though since they're wraiths, I suppose they're whining on the inside. No wraith likes being told what to do, especially not by another wraith, that's like having that person you REALLY, REALLY do NOT like telling you to go do something, but I don't think that the Witch King would take kindly to whiners, so the other Nazgul keep it to themselves.
Amaarzar probably wishes his Terrors would take a few pages from the Nazgul's book. If they don't want to do something, they gripe about it and then act sluggish and half dead (wait! They're undead! For them is it acting half alive?) as they're doing it.
Viral rhinitis, is a Latin term for a cold, BTW. Sounds much cooler than, "I've caught a cold."
"I have viral rhinitis."
"Oh, you poor thing."
"I know."
Oh and for the record, I've started feeling quite partial to the Nazgul second in command, Khamul. Can't say why, maybe because Amaarzar and the Witch King are best buddies in my mind and I don't want to be in the same place they are while they're scheming to kill hobbits together. Khamul seems like a cool customer and could probably stand my craziness, unlike most other wraiths who'd look at me like, "what died in your head?"
I just realized why I like Khamul, he reminds me of Mullin, one of my wraiths. Mullin is seriously calm because he's missing his tongue (his mother cut it out, but she was a wraith at the time and didn't remember that she was his mother, Shazaar was one vicious cookie for a really long time!) and has no other outlet for anger. After getting cited over three hundred times for unprovoked attacks, Mullin decided that being calm was a better answer than attacking. He's so calm, an airplane could be disintegrating beneath him and he wouldn't even blink at it, that's how I imagine Khamul.
See, I'm a nerd. I just went on forever about wraiths, I do that outside my blog too and I notice that people start to get oddly silent when I start talking about them. Wish I had someone to nerd out with. =(
Sorry you probably missed everything I said.
Shazaar is Amaarzar's lieutenant. If you remember from my last blog post about Amaarzar, I think I said that he's the general of the army that's attacking the good guys. And BTW her title is pronounced Sha-zaar, not Shazar. Sha-zaar, really drag it out through the nose. =)
Okay, I'm done being a nerd.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Weekend Status: Failure

Yes, the title states it all. My weekend was a complete failure, I was positively too sick to do anything. I woke up feeling just dandy, then put it into my fool little mind that I felt great enough to exercise and went outside to run around.
I started wheezing after the first run, but I kept going figuring that every out of shape person gets like that (note: I'm not out of shape, I've just been too sick for the past two weeks to do much and you know how muscles get after two weeks, floppy) and I kept running until I just about collapsed. Any person with any knowledge of exercise would probably state that I pushed too hard while I'm sick.
All Saturday I felt nasty, I swallowed some jelly bean sized pills that were supposedly made to help bad colds like mine, but all they did was make me loopy. I'm sure I said some really stupid things after I took them, but hey, at least my older sister surprised me by giving me an iTunes gift card on Friday, I've been yearning after another one after I had too much fun with the first!
I've had some bad colds before, but this one takes the cake! I've had myriad of symptoms ranging from headaches, to earaches, from chest pains to feeling absolutely positive that dinner (Subway, no!) was going to come back up.
And it didn't help that I had a bad writing day as well. The Secret Keeper's POV just about killed me, and no, he wouldn't care know that his chapter reduced me nearly to tears as I imagined all my possible readers picking it up and reading it and going, "what IS she going on about?"
I also had a sobbing session last night and discovered that yes, your eyes CAN get swollen if you cry too much. I felt like I had two cantaloupes instead of eyes, and they still hurt now.
I'm not going to go on about what made me freak out last night, but trust me, in my eyes, it was pretty bad. I'm all sobbed out now, too tired to want to cry, and I STILL feel gross. I'm beginning to think that I should let my body have its way and I won't exercise until I can run without wheezing or feeling like my lungs are going to collapse.
Ultimate question here: am I a runner or not a runner?
A. I'm not a professional runner, but I do enjoy a nice hard pounding run, I'm trying to build up my stamina so I can keep running, but thanks to this cold, I can't. :(
Anyway, I'm sorry for whining, but hey, my weekend was pretty nasty, except for yesterday, my little sister's birthday and I gave her a Twisted shirt. We both look pretty snazzy in our Twisted attire. I'll post pictures when I get around to plugging my iPod into the computer, but until then, as Barney the purple dinosaur once said, "just imagine."
I do have happy news though, on the 30th, next Friday, school is officially over. Finally, I can't wait for summer vacation.
Just for the sake of it. This picture has an odd meaning to me since it was on the day before all these weird health problems started creeping up. The Wasatch Mountains looked especially gorgeous on March 17th. ;)

Friday, May 17, 2013

The World of the Wraith Explained

Friday morning...bleck. I feel like I've been run over by a Trax train. I've just noticed that I've been feeling awful for the past 2 weeks...and yeah, I didn't even have enough appetite to eat pancakes, that's sad because normally all my family eats for breakfast is cold cereal. Pancakes are a sweet release from that, until today.
Anyway, I'm done whining about my less than healthy couple of weeks (that's all I feel like I've done this week, sleep and whine, not a very productive week if you ask me!) I'm now going to explain about one of my most favoritist characters ever!
I talked about him during my last blog post, now you get a better in depth version (lucky you!) I've already explained about Amaarzar, now I get to explain about his arch enemy, the Secret Keeper.
First off, you guys already know the basics, the Secret Keeper is a wraith, he's evil from the tip of his boots to the top of his unseen head. In form, he kind of looks like the Nazgul from the Lord of the Rings. You know, robed and faceless, but if you pulled back the Secret Keeper's hood, you wouldn't see nothing, like the Nazgul, you'd see a rotted corpse.
Gross right? Okay maybe not so much for you zombie enthusiasts out there, but I'd probably be haunted for life if I saw the Secret Keeper without his hood. But anyway, the Secret Keeper fascinates me. He's so different from all the characters I've ever had before and I've had some pretty odd characters, like Black Beard and then a couple flesh-hungry kelpies, but they were all easy because they had the same thought pattern as I do. The Secret Keeper doesn't.
Here's pretty well the basics of being a wraith in Twisted, and you're going to be thinking in a couple of minutes wow, she spends way too much time thinking about this! I have to agree with you, I do!
Here's how I pretty well have to think when I'm writing from the Secret Keeper's POV or pretending to be him.
(Just to get us into the mood, not my picture, it's copied from Google images, if it's yours, awesome, leave your URL in the comments and I will give you full credit, promise :D!)
In Twisted a wraith is basically the shell of a once living person that lost his soul and fell into darkness. There are so many ways that this can happen (i.e. greed, lusting for power, denying one's own light...) I'm not going to go through and list all of them (I'd have to write a whole book to do that!) Wraiths are always on the defensive, guarding themselves against possible attacks from the living or their brethren among the undead. They may appear humanoid, but they are definitely not human, their minds revolve around darkness, and their bodies are nothing more than an animated corpse.
Grossed out yet? No? Here's more.
Wraiths cannot step into sunlight. I mean they physically can't do it. Sunlight may feel warm and welcoming to us, but to them, it's so cold it burns and if they stay in it for too long, they'll fade, meaning the dark magic essence that keeps them animated will dissolve and the wraith will be nothing more than a rotted body in robes.
They also can't see light, so more than 75% of the time, the wraith is wandering around nearly complete blindness, even in forests, think about how much light spatters in, to a wraith, that's complete agony! Looking at light to them is like for us when we've been sitting in a dark room and the lights suddenly flip on. Ouch. But despite being practically blind most of the time, wraiths have this uncanny ability to be able to find you, even if you're invisible. They can sense the living, and usually when you're facing a wraith, you're terrified! The wraith tracks you by the beating of your own heart and your terror.
Most people in Twisted don't escape the wraith. They're too scared. I mean seriously, you're facing something undead that looks horrifying and you know has absolutely no love for the living. It also doesn't help that wraiths cast dark auras. These auras can squish the light of fire from a distance of over a hundred feet, they're so cold, it's like standing outside during winter without a coat, and the darkness never allows your eyes to adjust. Where you can't see the wraith, the wraith can see you just fine and will delve on your fear. Basically saying, the wraith is eating your fear like it's candy and the more you're afraid of it, the more it's going to be able to dominate you.
The Secret Keeper is different from your average wraith in that aspect. He doesn't feed on fear, he could if he got bored enough, but rarely does. His power comes from stealing secrets out of the minds of men (hence his title) the darker and heavier the secret, the more powerful he becomes. This makes him practically impossible to beat in battle because he knows what move you're going to make before you make it, he'll counteract that move before you've even lifted your sword!
Wraiths seem completely impervious to defeat now, but they do have weaknesses. Sunlight for one thing, it's their natural enemy. Fire is another thing, if you can manage to light one, a wraith will burn as easily as anything else. But their most guarded weakness is their identities. When a wraith falls, he forgets every memory he had during life. His mind is a blank slate of darkness at this point. He even forgets his name, and that name is his heaviest weakness. If a person can figure out who a wraith was in life, they can say the wraith's name and the wraith will have no choice but to do as that person says. Names are a powerful thing, it's why wraiths go by titles. The Secret Keeper is a title, it's not his actual name, he doesn't know what his name is and doesn't care to figure it out. But be warned, if you know a wraith's identity, you best keep it to yourself, if you make it known to that wraith that you'll be dead before the sun rises.
Yes, wraiths are nasty beings. They kill, destroy, and plunder for their own reasons and trying to figure out the mind of a wraith is about as easy as sticking a camel through the eye of a needle. But they also have vulnerable places in their black essence, the reason for their fall. As much as the wraiths hate the living, they're jealous of us because we're still alive, we're still learning and growing and they're stuck sleeping in death.
Yeah, I know, not much about the Secret Keeper, but it explains what he is. His thought process is basically bipolar, switching from one thing to another, he can't see color so his descriptions are general short and to the point, and amazingly he's very eloquent with his speech, meaning, he's actually really proper with the way he phrases things, unlike Aster the Terrible who is a thief and has as sloppy way of phrasing things.
Here's something from the Secret Keeper's POV, it's on the spot so it's nowhere in the books (yet, I may use it.)
I stand at the ready, bemoaning the fact that I even have to face this man at all. I had no intentions of fighting him, but he makes it completely clear that he has ever intention of battling me.
These fools!
They are the same fools who try to carve a reputation out of dragon hides, this man is trying to carve a reputation out of my own rotted skin. I pity his foolishness, but not enough to spare him.
See? He's pretty proper, especially when he's annoyed. This passage is like when he's feeling neutral, or not really feeling anything at all and is just going about a wraith's day to day business (or should it be night to night?) when he's angry, annoyed, or passionate his descriptions become a bit more lively and he tosses insults here and there.
like this, same passage, but let's say that he's annoyed.
I stand with my sword ready annoyed that this fool is wasting my time. I would have preferred to move on with our own existences, without confronting one another again but this brainless man has made it clear he desires to return to the stars early.
I shall not waste his last living breaths on glaring at him. He desires a reputation, he shall get one. The reputation of a halfwit who bothered the wraith that told him to skedaddle.
In other words, the ever-desired reputation of a fool.
Why do so many humans desire this reputation? The world has enough fools already.
See? You can tell that he's annoyed. His narrative gets a bit more entertaining when he's annoyed, because seriously, who hasn't thought like this? His POV is just difficult to navigate because he's one among the undead, meaning human emotions are lost on him. I've had to fight and struggle to get it to the point that I know how he's going to react in certain situations. It's also kind of difficult because of the physical limitations he has, he's almost completely blind, he can't step in sunlight, his physical form can only take so much abuse, and all wraiths despise getting wet and can't cross running water unless they positively have to. Also, he doesn't cast a shadow, it is physically impossible for him to cast one and only he can see his reflection in mirrors or glass, everyone else just sees a shadow vaguely shaped like a human.
Okay, I'm betting you're tired of reading this. I could go on for a while, but I think I should go lie down for a bit. I'm still not feeling all that great.
Just a final word, as awesome as the undead may seem, they just desire to be left alone. Never antagonize a wraith. They're great at antagonizing back and they don't stop with just poking you with a stick. First rule in combating the undead is (1) leave them alone!
This is roughly what the Secret Keeper would look like. I don't have any pictures great of him on this computer. This picture is actually of a Nazgul, Khamul I think, again NOT my picture, it's from here, 
So looking at that, why on Middle Earth would you want to go poke it with a stick? And yet some people in Twisted are stupid enough to try!
Here's what I view as the Secret Keeper's theme song, (yes, most of my characters have one) I was listening to this song when I first started writing Twisted (I mean literally, it was the music playing as I wrote Oh what a world...)
Okay, no worries, I'm shutting up now, seriously, even the Secret Keeper would get bored of listening to me blab about him.
Oh last note, the Secret Keeper has a Russian accent, what's so awesome about that is that he picked it himself! I was reading Twisted to my little sisters, started reading some of his narrative and bam! I was speaking with a horrible Russian accent. Though in Twisted Russian is basically Silverdalian, I based each kingdom of the Four Kingdoms (the world of Twisted) off an actual country. Silverdale is probably my favorite kingdom and I really want to go to Russia because of it.
Sorry, off tangent. I'll explain more on the Four Kingdoms later, now, I'm serious, I'm stopping. :)

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

My Little SuperNova

I know, I'm late. I normally publish a post in the morning, but eh...I didn't feel that great this morning. I caught a cold (or, since it's spring, is it a warm not a cold?) and didn't feel like doing much today. So here it is at last. Voila! A post where I don't have much to say.
Really, I just don't feel good. People keep telling me it's stress, but I'm not stressed about anything except getting stressed about people telling me it's stress! I don't think it's stressed, I wasn't stressed about anything when this started 3 months ago.
I just stress about 5 times. Sorry.
I also realized I have this writing tick (completely off of the other topic) where I write lose as loose. Oops, completely different meanings and I caught a few in the version of Twisted that was sent to the editor! My face is red even thinking about it! Definitely something to look for later.
Anyway, my editor should be sending my book back by now. I've been haunting my email for two days waiting. I'm in desperation for my book back. I mean, not that I don't have anything write, but you know, a book back from the editor doesn't happen everyday, and I'm really anxious to hear what the editor says...yeah. I'm going crazy with anxiousness, every time I get an email, my hopes rise until I realize it's not from my editor....ugh.
Anyway back to my other subject. My violin teacher insists that my mysterious illness is nothing more than horseinjitis, commonly caused by an open exposure to horses. I have to agree. I even dreamt about my violin teacher's horse last night! (and then I dreamt about some of my characters warning me that I couldn't sleep in anymore and I was sleeping in on accident and whoops...) The only cure for the deadly horseinjitis is more exposure to horses, it's a curious disease, and there really is no cure, it may fade for a bit, but it will come back.
Oh and a funny moment? Today in my class (yes the one that I've been whining about before) the teacher told us to spit out the first thing that came to our minds when we saw the word apocalypse. People were zombies, and death, but the first thing out of my mouth was something completely deadly and disastrous, I said, "cheese!" for some reason the word apocalypse made me think of Subway, which lead to cheese, which was the first thing out of my mouth.
Nice right? Death by cheese, what a way to go.
Yeah and yesterday I spent and hour and a half working on a drawing I'd like to share with y'all, (see how lazy I'm feeling today? I don't want to type full words!) It's of the Secret Keeper and his horse the mighty Nova, please don't steal my art, I worked hard to draw this sucker!
And yes, I know it looks creepy. But the Secret Keeper is a wraith, so why would he want to look like a happy guy giving out cookies? He'd take one good look at that image and probably throw up!
I might change the background of my blog to be this...hmm. Maybe, but it might be creepy for some people, so maybe I'll just leave it the way it is.
Want to know more about the Secret Keeper? I can blather on for hours about him, just ask my poor dad, I did to him. Leave a comment, I'll post something else about him if you do :)
And look when the books come out you can tell your friends, "Ha! I knew about the Secret Keeper before you did!"
Like it's something to brag about, but you know. Bragging is bragging and if you say anything in a really snotty voice it tends to sound like bragging. So go brag about the door you just closed the other day, definitely something worth mentioning ;)
See, I'm so not in my proper frame of mind right now...pardon me while I go to bed and try to find the rest of my brain, wherever it is.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Finally A Bad Guy Worth Mentioning

I'm sure you've noticed by now that I have a tendency to vote for the eviler guys in movies. In the Lord of the Rings I was voting for the Nazgul, actually, I really like the Nazgul. I'd be totally creeped out to actually meet them in person, but they inspired a lot of my characters, so I like them.
 (Nazgul, this is the Witch King, in case you didn't know :D, Amaarzar's best bud, the Witch King is one seriously evil wraith!!! Also, NOT my picture, if it's yours, awesome pic, it's totally credited to you. I claim nothing of it!)

Anyway. If the bad guy is anything like a wraith, I usually like them. I don't however like the cheesy cartoon villains, ugh, they irritate me so much! I really don't like modern-day villains either...too predictable, they're going to get a gun and blow things up, big deal, we already knew what was coming, I prefer the more subtle bad guys, the ones you don't realize are a bad guy until after they're pulled out the gun, or in the case of my books, a dagger.
My main bad guy is Amaarzar and I've really struggled with him. At first, it felt so dark and evil to even think about him. He's a wraith, and back then, I really didn't understand what it meant to be undead like that, now, I feel slightly sorry for him now that I understand. The first time that I really thought about him was on my birthday two years ago when I was telling my sister his original name, Amar, and I distinctly remember saying something brilliant like, "Sounds evil right?"
My sister must've rolled her eyes and said something along the lines of, "Not scary enough, it doesn't have enough of a ring to it, try...Amaarzar."
Amar went out the window and Amaarzar stuck, then he pretty much went to bed in the back of my mind because I didn't think about him until I actually needed him later in 2012, he appeared once or twice, probably insanely frustrated by my lack of ability to recognize him for what he really is, a creepy, conniving, seriously evil, dude. I didn't realize that he was the real bad guy, not the sultan, it was Amaarzar pulling the strings.
Why am I mentioning all this? I feel like it, so there.
Just kidding, really, I'm marveling over how far Amaarzar has come, he started out as a dorky cartoon villain and now, yikes, if I were in the same room with him, I'd be terrified out of my mind! Amaarzar is a devil in his own making and form, his core is anger, his whole being composed of undeniable wrath. He holds a grudge so deep, it's more deadly than any of the poisons he brews to maim, and he's sneaky. He doesn't remove political enemies by killing them, no, he changes their point of view so that they agree with him!
That's why I'd be afraid of him, first off, he's a freaking wraith and they're terrifying enough to begin with! And then I'd be afraid that he'd start playing mind games with me, and I wouldn't know how to resist. I think that a defeated enemy is not a dead enemy, but one changed his beliefs and points of view so that they're not against you anymore, when they die in their beliefs, they're a martyr, when they switch sides, they're a traitor to themselves even if they don't realize what they've done!
That's what Amaarzar does. He gets into your head and whispers enticing words to you so that you're pacified and eventually switch sides, those that disagree too strongly, he removes from the scene.
He's come really far from this character I was so frustrated with because I didn't understand him. Now I think he and I would have some common ground, we both have a hard time letting go of the hurt others have caused on us.
Sorry, I'm still marveling, I introduced Amaarzar for the first time in the series this morning and I'm amazed at what a little devil he is! He's going to the Secret Keeper to try and cause him to switch points of view and Amaarzar knows some pretty juicy things about the Secret Keeper that the Secret Keeper doesn't even know! Woo, nothing like a bad guy to get those creative juices going, can't wait for the rest of you to view Amaarzar in his nasty halo of evil.
He comes around in the end, sort of, but he certainly doesn't trade evil for good. He understands exactly what he is and is more than happy to stay that way. Better than being full of emotions, like humans and the rest of the living.
This music is pretty much Amaarzar's theme song to me, it fits him perfectly. He's a raging fireball of contained anger and a soul wracked in indescribable grief.
And here's a picture I drew of him, just so you can see.
Yes, I'm aware that it's sideways, but I can't figure out how to rotate it, so tip your heads a little :)


Monday, May 13, 2013

News Over the Weekend, the Murder of One Really Dead Lawn Mower

Sorry for my lack of a post on Friday. I got lazy :)
Anyway, on Saturday I finished my NANOWRIMO book again (for those of you who don't know NANOWRIMO is National Writing Month, IE, November, a little confusing, I know) it only took me 3 weeks to write nearly 365 pages! I was pretty amazed, and relieved, now it's back to writing Entangled, the 2nd book in the Twisted series, and I'm only on chapter 2 and I've already managed to frustrate myself. My last week of being a ghoul has come back to haunt me, my wraiths are so insulted to be told what to do by a ghoul, that they're refusing to do anything at all. Thanks guys.
And on Saturday, I mowed the lawn. Normal Saturday feat not really worth mentioning right? Well, if you don't have my family's lawn mower. The thing was made in the 80s, (I think, it certainly would surprise me to learn that it was) it's incredibly hard to push and only mows the grass that's already been mowed. I had to fight to get that sucker to move through the backyard and when it came to the front yard, the poor little mower just about died.
It was a fight, I stepped into the front yard, it mowed for a second and then died. I was like, "sure whatever." because at this current point I was remaining in a calm frame of mind. I started mowing it backwards, literally. I was walking backwards pulling the lawnmower with me. I must've looked pretty ridiculous, but it was the only way the sucker was going to mow. When I tried going forwards, it died every single time. By the time I got to the last patch of grass, I was panting, sweating, cursing the day the dumb thing had been made as it died time and time again and I had to restart it again and again and again. I was ready to kill it. I'm still ready to go out and ring its little neck!
I kept thinking that the news flash for Monday would be, "lawnmower found dead in a pool if its own gas. Innocent-looking red haired girl at large for felony on lawnmower." Or something like that.
Sadly, I didn't get around to it. The lawnmower still lives, but I am more than happy to insist that the Mythbusters do a myth on lawnmowers and I would be REALLY happy to give them a lawnmower to test it on. I've got a great one that will NOT be missed if it blew up.
It was a fight to mow the stupid grass, and even though the grass was mowed, it was the lawnmower that won the fight as I crawled away gasping, red-faced and sweating.

Added a couple hours later.
I updated my FaceBook picture because I really didn't like the other one. Here's my new one in case you want to find me,
It was taken at Goblin Valley last year and for the record, I've grown up a bit since then so I don't really look like this anymore, but hey, it's better than my other picture! I know, I look a little flushed, but it was sooo HOT you could basically BREATHE it. I also clomped my head on a rock (distance, heat...sandstone not as soft as it looks...yeah) Oh, my hair looks so pretty too...bleck. I'm going through this phase where my long hair makes me want to cry. I think I look so ugly with it, but hey, what can you say about being a girl? Some days we got it, some days we don't.
Today is one of the 'don't got it' days for me.
I hope you're having a better one, this kind of sucks. :(

Thursday, May 9, 2013

How a Worried Sick, Tired Author Began Her Long Journey With a Pen as a Weapon and How She Wishes Her Story Would End

Okay, I know I don't normally post on Thursday, but I felt like I should, so here I am, all in a manner of speaking though. I don't feel all that great, so you're only getting about 25% of me, the other 75% is still in bed snoring.
I wish I was with that 75%! I'm so out of it today. :D
Anyway, last night my two younger sisters invaded my room after play-acting as my characters through the vent. It was insanely cute to hear my 7-year-old sister belting at the top of her lungs that she was Amaarzar leader of the Terrors of the Sands. I nearly passed out laughing.
We chatted for a bit, contemplating what it'd be like to actually see Twisted published. I personally just want to stick a bookmark in it. I know of all the things that I could do with my published book and I just want to put a piece of paper in it, but you see, I've been reading this off computers, in binders where the only way to mark where you are is either highlighting an area in the document, or sticking a Post-It note on the side. I want to stick a bookmark in it.
I also decided (yesterday) that if I couldn't have a horse for my birthday, which isn't looking very hopeful, I've been begging for a horse since I was five-years-old and as of yet, nada. Then I met this girl who got a horse for Christmas and I was all "Oooh, you don't know how lucky you are..." anyway. If I can't have a horse for my birthday, all I want is for Twisted to sell, truthfully I don't really care about the money, I don't want to be rich, I'm content not being rich. The only reason I'd use it was so I could lease Gypsy, my violin teacher's blue-nosed Arabian horse and then possibly buy a horse of my own, but not until I'm horse savvy.
Okay, you lucky readers, I'm going to share a personal story here (and now you're all suddenly interested right?) it's the reason I started writing and a copy of what I sent to my violin teacher. Uh...right after I dig it out of my email,
please hold.......

Okay, I found it. Here it is.
Once upon a time there was a little girl. All she dreamt about was riding horses, she read book about them and drooled for wishing. She begged every star in heaven for a horse, but alas, stars don't answer prayers, and it would have been really painful for a horse to fall out of the sky on top if her.
So she begged her parents for riding lessons and for the first few years only got one once every year with a lot of begging and crying in between. So the little girl did the only thing she could, she decided to make that money herself. One should never doubt a horse crazy girl, and this girl did the only thing she could think of, meaning she grabbed a pen and started writing figuring she'd get money that way.
Needless to say her first few attempts at writing a book failed. Then at twelve she finished her first one, but it was hardly publishing material. The little girl wavered. There was no way the she could see to get money for a horse, she wondered if she should take up knitting instead.
Fortunately, God is merciful and gave this little girl something to write about and helped her through every painful moment when she wavered, thought she couldn't make it and even forgot why she'd taken up writing in the first place.
But she made it even though the first book that really got her into writing didn't quite make it to an editor. She finished it and since her ever wise older sister advised that she let the book sit for a month she had nothing to write, until one afternoon when she sat down to write these four words spilled into paper "oh what a world." Two years later those words are the first four in her book that was sent to an editor and she is praying with every ounce within her that this book will get her the money she has been trying to get since she was nine years old. The end.

Yeah, I know, not the happy ending most people wish for. Yes, that little girl is me and I've done my part. I've already spent hours staring at the computer willing words to appear on the screen. My part of this story is over, now it's your turn.
I promise, I'm NOT begging, I HATE begging, unless it's for fun and my siblings are doing the puppy face with me. I just felt like I needed to post this today. Perhaps it's just an appeal from an exhausted author to possible readers. I'm not sure.
I'm fighting the odds here. I'm a debut author (in the publishing world) I don't really have any strings to pull, and on top of that I'm self-publishing on Amazon, so there's no big publishing company shoving my book down people's throats, which is a good thing. Too much paper is too much paper. And you will choke on too much paper. ;D
Anyway, I've written about my fears. That I'll spend the time to write and no one will read, I know it's dumb, but what debut author doesn't wonder that? But what if I spent the last two years on writing when I could've been doing something else to get money to lease a horse? I can't imagine what, but the question remains, have I wasted two years?
Hopefully not, I love writing. It's the reason I get up at 5 in the morning! Except for this morning, I didn't feel that great so I just rolled back over, this blog post is the most my shaky fingers have written all day. The whole 8 hours since 12. :)
Woo, I'm tired now. What the doctors claim is nothing is making me sick. That's ironic. Nothing is making me sick! Kind of like the Greek story about, not spelled right, the Cyclopes yelling that Nobody stabbed him in the eye. Ahhh, I love Percy Jackson, made the Greek mythology part of English incredibly easy because I already knew what they were talking about!
I apologize for the grammar errors in this post. I'm not exactly accurate when I don't feel great. The little red line under the misspelled words isn't even bugging me like it normally does.
Okay, I'm done talking. :)
Remember for the story I told early, you're needed to finally give it a happy ending. I don't care about the prince carrying me off into the sunset (unless that prince was either Caspian or Shegya) all I want is the horse. The happy ending is coming nearly 10 years after the story started, but you know, happy times never makes a good story, as much as I hate going through the rough ones. :p

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Why Won't It End?

It seems like I'm stuck in a spinning world (okay, so I kind of am) where some things won't end. I'm trapping myself in this endless cycle of being okay at times and other times, I'm freaking out about my book. I can go through it and read it like it's candy (because we like, read candy) and other times I'm repulsed by my own writing, "This is awful!" and "Why would anyone want to read my book?"
Two thoughts that I'm basically haunting myself with. I look at the success of other authors and I feel so horrible because my book is doing nothing and I have to pull the reins on that runaway horse, my book isn't published, I don't KNOW what will happen.
I'm trying to get out of this cycle, but I feel stuck. I do okay, and then I watch something on YouTube and I start to sink back into that hole...and then I have to fight to get out of it. Sigh.
Another thing that won't end is the school year! Ugh! 3 weeks and 3 days seems incredibly long! I'm going CRAZY! I want it to end. I'm sick of school. I like learning, but after 11 years of this endless cycle, I'm getting kind of tired of the school way of learning. Endless notes, endless classes, endless days...uck!
Anyway, but at least on the upside, it finally looks like spring and we got our first thunderstorm of 2013 yesterday, and my family was picnicking in the middle of it. It was great fun. I was happy when it rained and didn't snow. I like winter! Not a month after the official start of spring! Now I just need to survive until June, but June is starting to look like a day dream. I won't make it *gasps.*
Sorry, I didn't mean to just sit here and whine, but I had a rough morning. I struggled through exercise, actually I struggled through everything! I've felt sick since waking up and I've been dizzy for two days straight, I can't even walk a straight line at times, it's kind of funny especially when I'm pretending to be a character who'd never bobble in his step (cough! Amaarzar! I'm horrible at being my main bad guy, he's so chilled and calm in his wraith way of being calm, that me, a bubbling bouncing ball of energy cannot compare to him at all, I'm only calm when I'm asleep!)
I also had a really stupid song stuck in my head all night and listened to the radio, something I only do when I'm desperate, namely because the Wi-Fi was off and I was too lazy to turn it back on, trying to get something else stuck in my head, but nothing would stick! Except for Selena Gomez's new song, Come and Get It. Finally Taylor Swifts 22 got stuck in my head. The angels sing. I want that stupid song out of my head. It's sooo annoying! :)
Yeah, that's about it. I'm still communing with zombies, probably ghouls now. There isn't much brainpower going on up there and I hate zombies so I wouldn't commune with them unless I was trying to annoy one of the higher ranking undead, and why I'd do that, I don't know. I'm a wimp (I even took a test that confirmed this fact! I'm a coward and proud of it!) and would probably pass out cold if I actually met one of my wraiths, and only a few of them could handle my craziness! The rest would be eyeing me with annoyance probably thinking "What is wrong with her? Did she get struck by lightning and her brains were fried? Why can she hold still!? She's so annoying!"
Yeah, back to school now. :( but at least there's only 3 weeks and 3 days until the end and I may get more interaction with horses than I ever had in my life! Wooo!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Communing with Zombies

My wraiths would be highly disappointed with me today. I'm usually up to their level in intelligence (but certainly not like their ability to hold still, I have to move, and they're dead!) but not today. Today I'm a zombie, or I guess ghoul since zombies have positively no mindset and ghouls barely have any.
I'm half asleep, I feel like throwing up, I hardly got any sleep last night, but at least my hair looks good. It looks like I straightened it, I did positively nothing to it except braid it and sleep on it. That's what I call service.
Anyway, I'm still waiting up on the editor for my book. I'm starting to get really anxious now. I want it back, but am trying to force myself to be patient. I'm like Joe Camp, the author of the Soul of a Horse, patience isn't my strong suit. Passion probably is, and where passion is patience can take a hike. I'm eager to get my book ready for publishing, but I must wait. Writing a book isn't instant, it doesn't happen overnight.
Also, I'm grateful for good people. The kind of people who understand and put themselves in your shoes so that they better know how to help you. I'm so grateful for this, I could cry. Yesterday, I sent a heart wrenching email to my violin teacher explaining why I couldn't lease her horse, and I was pretty sure I would be looking for a new teacher by today, that's just how my luck has gone in the past with riding instructors, they were like Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers for me. Every year it was a new one and I like my violin teacher a lot. Anyway, I was lying in bed feeling sick when I got her reply and she completely understood! I felt better amazingly fast. She said that I can still work with her and her horses until I have the money to pay her.
God is good.
People like my violin teacher are wonderful, you don't run into them everyday.
Now I hope that my book will sell. It's really a sob story of why I started writing in the first place, it was because of my love of horses. I have a passion for them. If I'm not drawing my characters, I'm drawing horses, and if I'm not drawing horses, I'm drawing my characters with horses. I started writing as a nine-year-old in hopes that I'd be able to sell enough books to buy my own horse.
Same story now, but it's shifted a little, I love my books, obviously I wouldn't write them if I hated them! And it would just about kill me to realize that no one is enjoying them! I want to share my characters with you guys! I want you to understand my jokes about my characters, to enjoy my world as much as I do! I want my books to sell so that you guys can enjoy Twisted and so that it can influence your lives as it has mine. A little Aster the Terrible goes a long way, I promise.
And speaking of him, I dreamt he was doing laundry last night, it was weird. And then he was eating ice cream...and was strange, about as strange as the dream I had yesterday night where I dream that General Grievous from Star Wars was telling his evil buddies that he didn't fear anything the Secret Keeper could toss at him and his buddies were all like, "We'll get the balloons for your funeral."
It made me wonder, wouldn't the Separatists want something like the Secret Keeper on their side? I know the Jedi wouldn't want something so obviously on the Dark Side. Too many bad vibes from the Secret Keeper's aura.
Sorry, I'm blabbing. Can you tell that I've barely got enough brain power to type? Wooo! It's going to be an enjoyable day!
Amazing flutist,

Friday, May 3, 2013

That Distant Future

I'm pretty sure that by the end of this month, I will be a gasping zombie. School is killing me! I'm trying to make time for horses (total horse nerd here, if I'm not thinking about my book, I'm thinking about horses) but it's becoming really difficult, especially since I have to fit medical stuff in there too.  Gracious, how much to I have to pay the doctors for them to find out what's wrong with me?
Anyway, I'm in a pretty good mood, all things considered. I slept in late today, pushing right up to the time where I have to go to school because I was too tired to crawl out of bed a 5:00 AM today, I was blinking so much, I wouldn't have been able to see what I was writing! And I just wasn't in the mood to exercise like I normally do, being hooked up to a Holter monitor can do that to you. :(
But at least it's the last month of school. I'm glad I'm not in elementary anymore, they push you right through June and then you get two weeks in July off. That's hardly what I'd call summer vacation. High school, though so incredibly painful, at least has a reasonable summer break before you have to go back and do it again, but I'm finally going to be one of the top dogs, yeah, that's right, Tayla Durham is not fresh meat...I mean a freshman anymore. She's a senior, the big 1-2 grade. Yes sirs and ma'ams, I have senioritis, I want to be done, but there's still another 9 months (not counting the last month of 11th grade, it's gone already) and then I'm a college woman. Wooo!
Provided I can ever figure out what I want to go into.
Yep, now I better get started on school, but let me just say, I'm looking forward to getting my book back from the editor. It's probably going to be really painful to look at, but at least I did it! I got a book to that point! I'm also starting to realize that within the next 2 months, if I work REALLY hard, it's possible that I could have a published copy of my book on my bookshelf. The prospect made me do a happy dance in bed last night. I'm self-publishing so it's possible, I just need a way to spread the word about an amazing book by a teen author! ;)
Oh and an update on my violin. I think I'm doing pretty good. I'm not so crazy about scales, but I'm trying to change my attitude about them, they're meant to help, not torture me, though right now I think that I could use these scales as torture, "now play it really slowly! Mwhahaha!" they're very effective. But, at least I can vibrato my way through them.
Stay calm, vibrato on.
No sure what vibrato is? It's that movement you see from a person who plays a stringed instrument (not the piano though) when they look like their shaking their wrists over the strings. It gets this nice sound of the vibrating string and sounds a lot cooler than just a normal bowing. Oops, sorry guys, I'm getting all technical :) seems like I speak five different languages at different times. I can speak English, when I'm talking about my books I speak Novel, when I'm talking about my violin, I speak Music, when I'm talking about horses, I speak Equine, when it's five in the morning and I haven't gotten much sleep, I speak Troll.
Thanks Yvonne7Lee for following my blog, it makes me happy to see that I'm being followed (online! not by stalkers!) and I love getting comments. I myself promised months ago that I'm going to respond to every comment I ever get. I hate commenting and getting no response, so from me, as long as your comment isn't offensive or crass, I'll respond to it, just so you know that I'm actually bothering to read your comments, and it makes me happy to get responses, so hopefully I'll make you happy by responding.
Oops, there I go, blabbing again,
This is the Pianoguys cover of Titanium by David Guetta. Watch the cellist, Steven Sharp Nelson's hands, he's doing vibrato, that's why his hand on the strings is shaking. And how did they get the piano up there? To be honest, I really don't know, but hey, it looks cool and I love this song, they did such an amazing job.
Here's their YouTube page in case you want more they usually post a new video monthly so there you go, more awesome music ;)

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Why Won't the Weather LISTEN?

Welcome to May 1st. A lovely day where the birds are singing, the flowers are blowing in a spring breeze, the sky is bluer than ever before...
Well if that's what May 1st looks like for you, I'm jealous, right now in the lovely state of Utah, it's snowing.
No, really, I'm not kidding, it's snowing. I thought it was raining at first until I came upstairs (my window isn't exactly in the prime position for seeing things outside) and saw that it was indeed snowing.
It's not a happy spring, more like a very merry Christmas.
But at least my hair is working for me today. Yesterday, I wanted to shave myself bald, today, less so :)
Anyway, see that lovely example of a stream of consciousness? I love that kind of writing and currently, since I slept in on accident and am still mildly dreamy, that's the only way that I'm functioning right now, so bear with me. :)
Right, so last night, I stayed up late reading a book. It was pretty intense in the middle and I kept thinking, I just want to see how this thing ends...I know, really good middle and I want the ending, I just wanted to know how it ended! I mean, I've been waiting for practically three years for this and I'd like to now.
I regret reading ahead. Sigh.
My favorite character got killed off. I nearly cried. For the sake of not spoiling anyone else's day, I won't reveal who the character is, or what the book is, but I was really disappointed! I hoped that this character would get to live to see the ending, but he didn't! It was almost as shocking as when (wait! if you haven't read the Harry Potter series and want to, skip this line!!!) Sirius Black died. Sirius was my favorite character! I loved every scene with him in it, I even pretended he was my imaginary friend as a dog and my brother and me played some seriously embarrassing games where I was Sirius and he...actually, I don't remember who my brother was, this was years ago, anyway, we were screeching about the Fourth of July...and we were pretending to be British...and in England they don't celebrate the Fourth of July...oops.
Yeah, long story short, I don't like it when my favorite character dies! Other characters I'm like yes, he's dead! But no! I just about cried when the Witch King met his end, (okay, I do now, when I was actually watching the movie  for the first time all I could think, ew! That creepy dude just got his face sucked in! I don't want that in my head!) when the dementors were driven off (where are my priorities! I'm voting for the bad guys! Truth, I'm sick of the stereotyped hero, so I vote for the bad guys because they're cool, not that Harry Potter is stereotyped, it's just that the movies ruined it for me, the whole time it's like he's constantly going "my scar! my scar!" in a really whiney voice, sorry if you like the movies, I just prefer the books :D)
Also, I hate having to kill off my own characters. Except for that one guy...I was glad to get rid of him...I mean uh ;) but there is this one character that has to meet his end. It makes me sad to admit, he's such a unique character the only other character like him is Halt from Ranger's Apprentice no one else in my family has read a book with anyone like him in it, well the people I've asked, so two of my sisters.
So if you're writing a book where you're considering killing off people consider this,
1. Is it timely? Will I need this character later on?
2. Is it necessary? Or am I just making dramatics?
3. Why am I killing him off?
In the case of my character, I tried to keep him around, write it so there would be a happy ending for everyone, but I realize that if I were trying to do that to him in person, I'd just be making his agony worse. Writing out of love like that can damage your story. My character needed an ending as sad as it was for me to lose him. I thoroughly enjoy writing about him, every scene with him in it, I'm excited, even though he's a challenge. But he needed to let go, and my other characters needed a chance to learn and grow without him.
Yeesh, I sound all motherly now.
Sorry if I just went on and blabbed, but what can I say? I'm tired, loopy, ate peanut butter for breakfast, it's snowing, and I need to do school. I'm not one hundred percent here right now which probably means I'm going to be humming something really stupid in the next few minutes here.
Ooh the sun just came out!
See what I mean? Loopy! :)
Oh, and the sun's gone now. :(