T5W: Settings I Would Like to See More of

settings

It’s time for Top 5 Wednesdays, a weekly meme created by gingerreadslainey and hosted by Sam @ThoughtsOnTomes. If you want to know more or join as well, just go to the Goodreads group by clicking here. Today’s topic is Settings I Would Like to See More of, which was both difficult and easy at the same time. Here are my setting-wishes.

Contemporary Vienna

Authors either seem to associate Vienna with it’s imperial time or during WWII, but I just want a nice and normal (not typical Austrian-sadness and cynicism) contemporary novel, best case also YA. And I mean targeted at 17 year-olds and not 12. I want people to find a good medium and represent my hometown.

Vienna

Underwater World without Mermaids

Does this sound weird? I like water and the ocean … maybe I just want something Atlantis-ish? I don’t even know, but I don’t want to write it myself, so I expect someone else to come up with it.

Cut off Civilization Living In Forest

Whenever scientist find a group of people living somewhere in the wild, cut off from everything, I am just so fascinated with how they live. Why not make up a whole book about them?

Greek Mythology Inspired

Everything that has a touch of Greek mythology is just awesome!

Oregon

Oregon has stolen my heart and I love it and people don’t use it enough as a backdrop, but it is gorgeous. I shall always squeal if it is mentioned!

What are some settings you would like to see? Tell me all about it!

Souvenirs From Across the World: Vienna Waits For You!

souve

Souvenirs From Across the World is an amazing project that my very dear friend Marie @Drizzle and Hurricane Books came up with! Basically, it’s about the blogger community getting to know each other better by talking a bit about their culture, home country or even home town. If you want to find out more about the project itself, just click here. Also, Marie has already stared off the event by talking about herself, so if you’ve always wanted to know more about France, then click here.

Vienna

I’ve lived in Vienna (the capital city of Austria) my whole life. Wait, that’s a lie. I have spent months at a time abroad, but those were nonetheless always temporary stays. If we are talking about permanent residency – Vienna was that place, always. There were times my heart was torn between state lines, never quite knowing where I belonged. I am not even sure I want to stay here much longer, but there is that certain feeling of coming back. An appreciation for the city itself that I definitely didn’t have back when I was younger. Because let’s face it, this is my home and I am always coming back here at some point.

I still don’t really know how to do this, so let’s go about this as random as I go about most things:

rfVienna

Vienna is a small town and a big city at the same time (In fact it’s even a whole state and a city at the same time!). You can run into the same person three times a day and then not see them for months, depending on where your social circles interact. I live rather on the outskirts of it all, so whenever we would go do something noteworthy, I’d actually tell my parents that I would be going “into the city”. However, I would also say that I’d go out of town to visit my grandma, who lives like 10 minutes by car away from us. My standards are skewed like that. The point of all this rambling being, I consider myself a city girl, even though I never lived in the hustle and bustle of the city center. Sometimes it can get too loud with construction sites on every corner and a tram passing by on the next street even during the night, yet, I grew up with those sounds and I just feel like they are an ordinary part of life now. And funny enough, you can also find the most peaceful, green and quiet places here as well, so there isn’t that much to miss.

Vienna has so much to offer, I don’t even know where to start. It is a mix of imperial culture and very modern elements. You could go to the Sissi museum, the Spanish Riding School, the former palace or go visit the zoo or aquarium one day and (if you are there during the right time of the year) go to a free open air concert on the Danube Island, take part in a Holi Festival or go to the Vienna Comic Con on the next. There’s just so much to see, not even I have experienced it all.

dd

Whenever I am in a new environment, I try some places that are nice and low key to just hang out at. To make things easier for you, here are some of my favourite places in or near the city center to go:

  • Comic Book StoreBunbury’s Comics is fairy new but the owner is a real gem, knowing almost everything about everything. You can easily loose a couple of hours just talking and discussing comics there.
  • Food & DrinkEuropa is a bar/restaurant that has menus in English and German. It may not be the cheapest option, but it has a cool and artsy atmosphere. Also, I’ve spotted one or two Austrian actors there … just saying!
  • Bookstore – sometimes there is nothing wrong with going to a chain shop and if you want to get lost browsing shelves, Thalia is definitely good for that. It has various locations all across Vienna, it is especially convenient that the one at Landstraße is open on Sundays.
  • Movie Theatre – I either go to the Artis or to the Haydn cinema. Both show the movies in their original language, so those are obviously the places to go if you hate dubbed versions like I do.
  • Frozen Yogurt (because I am just too cool for ice cream) – I mostly go to Kurt, because they don’t overdo it at all but offer fresh and yummy produce instead. One of their shops is situated right next to the Artis cinema.

Finally here are some pictures:

I hope you enjoyed this post, but I am not sure I can offer you the same as Marie and be your tour guide if you ever do come visit. (Pretty sure I’d suck at it) But tell me nonetheless if you stop by! We can be tourists together!

Have you ever been to Vienna or Austria? Would you like to visit? What are some clichées you’ve heard and want confirmed now?

Nicholas Sparks in Vienna

It’s no secret that Vienna, my hometown here in Austria, isn’t the go-to place for all international authors. In fact, it happens so rarely that they stop by and it is communicated so poorly, that I am shocked (with positive surprise, of course) whenever I find out about a signing here. Admittedly, most of the time it’s not even me who finds out about it, but another person who sees the tiny add in the paper or some random post on Facebook that announces it. Either way, I am going on a tangent here, this is a topic for a whole other kind of post. Yesterday, I was lucky enough to meet Nicholas Sparks for a couple of seconds!

He is like the King of Romance and I own about 11 of his books and intend to read everything that is becoming a movie as well. I think since all of them get optioned for the big screen before he has even finished writing the story, it’s a safe bet to assume that there will be many in the future. Speaking of movies, this is also the reason why the encounter was very short. The Choice (which I talked about here) is being released in movie theaters next week and he came to visit for the premiere, which was also yesterday. He had a tight schedule and the amount of people that came to see him was crazy. The queue went through half the shop, the rest of the building and even continued outside, even though it was raining. He signed like a champ, but didn’t have time for questions or dedications in the books. That was a real pity, but he still seemed nice. I mean, he signed 3 of my books, so that was totally awesome!

So, after Cecelia Ahern (read the post here), he was the second author I got to meet in person, even if it was only for a really short time. If I could choose who to meet next (and spend more than a brief “hi, how are you?” with), I’d definitely go for Cassandra Clare, Tahereh Mafi, Pierce Brown, Rainbow Rowell, John Green, Stephanie Perkins or Erin Morgenstern. Not many people at all, huh? Who would you like to meet if you got the chance?

Vienna Comic Con 2015

Some of you may have wondered what I have been doing the past weekend since I’ve been noticeably absent from the blogging realm. Well, I was at the first ever Vienna Comic Con! I originally was scheduled to work on both days, but due to some changes, I only worked Saturday and had the whole day to roam free on Sunday.

I loved the whole experience, especially since I got to see both sides. The first day wasn’t exactly stressful, but definitely a lot busier than Sunday. I met a ton of interesting people and had fun with the rest of the crew members. The second day was great because I got to roam through the Comic Con myself though, and with my Crew badge, I even got access to all areas. I’m surprised that I came out of the venue with more money than I spent, having really restricted myself since I only made one purchase. It’s extremely difficult to sum it all up, so I’ll try to pinpoint my personal highlights:

  • Cosplayers: I put some pictures above, but there were so many more costumes I didn’t catch on film! Surprisingly (at least to me) there were a lot of One Piece cosplayers. Other fandoms included (but weren’t restricted to) 2 Broke Girls, Supernatural, Doctor Who, Assassins Creed, Transformers, pretty much all the Marvel and DC superheroes and villains (a lot of Jokers and Harley Quinns in particular), Simpsons, Star Wars, Star Trek, Harry Potter and many more. It’s really impressing seeing all those costumes in real life. I can’t imagine how much work was put into them, but they were all happy to pose for pictures when asked and they got asked a lot. Someone even stopped me because they wanted to take a photo of my TARDIS tote bag that I got back in the day at the Doctor Who Experience. Another girl thought I was dressed as Clara, which I loved, because I adore her style of clothing.
  • The entertainment and artist guests: Considering that it was the first ever VIECC, they really got a great assortment of guests. I didn’t take a picture or got an autograph from any of the entertainment guests, which included names such as Natalia Tena, Giancarlo Esposito, Finn Jones, Neve McIntosh and William Houston. However, that doesn’t mean I didn’t get to meet them at all. It was only briefly, but they were all nice and really fun. I even got to shake Esposito’s hand, so I am cool.
    I strolled down the artist alley a couple of times, definitely wanting to buy something from there. I found the table of Rahsan Ekedal, a Californian artist who currently lives in Berlin, and I simply loved his style. If you look at the pictures above, you can see the print and the sketch that I bought from him. He even signed them both and took a picture with me. A friend from the crew and I spent so much time at his stand, talking with his wife and himself. I am so glad I got to meet them and that I now have something memorable to put on the empty walls in my room.
  • All the people: I think it has become obvious from the two previous points above, I mostly loved getting to know everyone. That should in no way mean that the exhibitor booths weren’t great, because they were! You could pose on the Iron Throne of Game of Thrones, take pictures with Deadpool or a Storm Trooper or you could by yourself a BB-8 at another booth. They had almost all the merchandise you could ask for, but in the end it’s the people you talk to and connect with that stay in your mind. I still know that there was an incredibly nice guy dressed as John Constantine who was so enthusiastic about meeting LeeAnna Vamp. Another dude cosplaying as the 10th Doctor soniced me and told me that I wasn’t his TARDIS and it was hilarious. Also, some of the best people were definitely the guys and girls who were my fellow crew members.

I loved getting to geek out with everyone and I hope it somewhat came across in this post. The Comic Con will return next year (Nov 19-20) and I hope I’ll be able to work there and visit it again. Do you have any experiences with Comic Cons? Were you by any chance at the one in Vienna? What is your take on it?

Daniel Sloss: Really …?! (Special Guest: Kai Humphries)

I want to do something new today and talk about Daniel Sloss and “Really …?!”, his latest program together with his opening act and roommate Kai Humphries. I was lucky enough to be able to go to his sold out live performance in Vienna with a group of friends last Monday night. I laughed so much, I thought I would share my experience with you guys!

standup

Now, I wasn’t sure how to start this. On the one hand, I don’t want to give anything away, because duh! Where would be the fun in that? You need to experience this live if possible, because that is just the best way to see a stand up program. But on the other hand, I have to tell you something or this whole post is pointless. So, prepare for a lot of fangirling! One thing is for sure, they both did an amazing job at keeping everyone laughing through more than 2 hours and I will make sure to see their next performance when they return in the upcoming year.

Kai Humphries

Whereas I had seen a couple a lot of Daniel Sloss videos online, Kai Humphries was rather new to me. I didn’t know what to expect, but whatever I had imagined, Kai topped it! He definitely did more than just warm up the crowd for Daniel, since I was sorry to see him leave the stage. I wouldn’t have minded if his act had lasted a little longer (but only if it didn’t take anything away from Daniel either). As a former ginger with a Geordie accent, he becomes instantly likable by joking about himself. After that he followed up with adorable talk about his girlfriend and a brilliant closing punchline.

Daniel Sloss

Daniel Sloss’ comedy is a bit controversial and he proves that right in the beginning of his act. But I didn’t feel offended. I don’t know who would feel offended (except for Allen Harper, which is a joke you will only get if you were there)? It’s a joy to listen to him ramble on as he often goes on a tangent just to randomly return to the previous point he wanted to make. It very much reminded me of how my brain sometimes works, but he is better at striking the balance between hilarity and making you feel like you also leave with an actual thoughtful message.
As much as we all laughed that night, there was this one moment where he shocked us all. I swear you could have heard a pin drop, that’s how quiet the room had suddenly become. Not many people can come back from something like that and make the audience feel comfortable again, but Daniel Sloss can! He is the kind of person that makes you laugh about things that you normally wouldn’t even consider laughing about, but he made an excellent point by saying the following:

“Laughter is not the opposite of sadness, happiness is. Laughter can be in both and that’s the wonderful thing about it.”

The End

After all that greatness, you sort of don’t expect there to be more, but there was! Daniel and Kai returned to the stage together and told hilarious and embarrassing anecdotes about each other. Then they waited outside the venue area and hugged everyone! Who does that? It was really cool of them. They also took pictures with us and I got a signed poster. Conclusion = awesome night that made my face hurt from laughing so much!

Have you ever seen Daniel Sloss or Kai Humphries perform? What did you think about them?

Meeting Cecelia Ahern

Yesterday was a very special day for all romance novel lovers in Vienna. After eating a typical Austrian Schnitzel, Cecelia Ahern did us the honors and came to a book signing. I know, I know … as of late, I’ve mostly talked about dystopian YA fiction, but from the movies and shows I like you all should have figured out that I’m into the cheesy sort of stories as well. What can a girl do?

Seen as I live in Vienna, we don’t often get the chance to meet authors from abroad. I cannot tell you how great and exciting it was, that Cecelia Ahern took the time to meet some fans, even though she was on a very tight time schedule. She was very polite to everyone and she even tweeted a picture from the event. There’s not much else to say about it, so, I’m just going to share some impressions from the book signing.

 

    

   

If you ever got the chance to meet an author, who would it be? For me, it would be a dream come true to meet John Green.

I already wrote a post about one of Ahern’s books. If you’re interested here’s the link to the post:

https://theimpossiblegirlblog.wordpress.com/2014/01/08/apparently-thats-where-rainbows-end/

It is pretty interesting, because that exact book is coming out as a movie this year, starring Lily Collins, Sam Claflin and Tamsin Egerton, but they are using the American title Love Rosie. I am not yet sure what to think about the adaptation, because I never quite envisioned it as a comedy. You can check out the teasers below and give me your thoughts on it!