All My 2022 Goals! (New ideas, plans and needing YOUR input!)

It has happened, I’ve given in! I’ve made resolutions for the year 2022, which are neither quantifiable nor necessarily something one can track, but I’ve still made them. I’m someone who very much decides things on a whim, so setting goals for an entire year is super off-brand for me. Nonetheless, there’s a couple things I’d at least like to work towards in 2022 and seeing all my friends and fellow bloggers post their amazing resolutions and goals, I figured I should join in as well. Seen as I don’t like to put undue pressure on myself though, I’m going to try and see this more as a list of intentions than things I *have* to accomplish.

READING

I’ve set my reading goal for 2022 to 45 books on Goodreads as well as Storygraph. I know that the latter offers a lot of different challenges to participate in, but I don’t want to make this too hard for myself. The goal I chose is lower than the number of books I read in 2021, but still something I consider challenging with my work and life schedule otherwise. However, that doesn’t mean I don’t want to spruce it up a little.

Read more diversely! 

This is genuinely always a goal of mine, but with the reading experiments and the restraints that came with that in the second half of 2021, I have to admit that everything was a bit … white. In the books I’ve chosen for myself, I’ve noticed more authors of color, but I still want to up that number (only 12 out of the 50 books I read were written by non-white people).

It’s not just that though! I’d also like to have a wider variety of characters in terms of sexuality, body image, mental health, disability, etc. in my future books. I’ve never shied away from reading LGBT+ content, but last year seemed a bit bland in that department as well.

Read more books in German!

German, for those of you who don’t know, is my primary language. I don’t particularly enjoy reading in that language, but I feel like I may be prejudiced from my time at school? I want to give this a try and chose nothing too overwhelming. I’m aiming to read 1-3 books max. 

BLOGGING

As I’ve mentioned in my “Year in Review” post (which you can check out here), I have a very solid and consistent blogging schedule. I usually have about 3-5 posts up per week, but I can see that changing a little bit in 2022. No worries, the Sunday Trailer posts will keep coming. They’ve been a staple for years now, but there’s likely going to be a shift otherwise.

Which regular features will change?

Well, I won’t be doing Thursday Movie Picks anymore, because while I enjoyed myself this past year, I’m just not that much of a movie person. I feel way more at home with my TV shows, but even in that department, I’ve watched a lot less in 2021 and have no idea where I’m going. I just don’t think I have the appropriate amount of movies in my personal watchlist that would justify continuing with it. There was a point where I just constantly reused films.

Also, I am a little unclear on the whole Marvel Wednesday posts. Granted, they took a break on several occasions anyway, but while I’m aware of the planned Marvel releases for 2022, I don’t know if Disney+ will stick to Wednesdays for their shows (I did prefer Fridays, if I’m being honest) or when exactly they’ll air anyway. And there’s just not enough new movies or content to talk about weekly. So, let me know in the comments if you’d like me to continue with my episode and movie recaps! I’m sure I can fit it in, it’s just a matter of interest, which has waned considerably with each release since WandaVision.

What’s planned? What is new?

Seen as the reader compatibility series/the celeb book club is so well received, I already have two more posts planned. However, I also want to broaden and develop that feature, because I feel it fits the “Life and Other Disasters” brand so well. Initially, I wanted to read the favorite book of each actor from a show or something like that, but logistically, that didn’t pan out. I just don’t have the pull to get the information from the cast directly and the internet only provides so much. I do hope to grow the feature regardless and have some more ideas. If there’s an actor/actress/musician/youtuber/celeb you’d like to compare reading tastes with, let me know and I’ll see if I can add them to my list!

I also need another weekly or at least monthly feature I can participate in, but I haven’t found the right fit for me yet. I might go with something TV and movie related again, but I was actually thinking of maybe looking for a writerly link up! Back in the day, I used to participate in some tags for writers and even created my own. The thing is, potentially, I might have to create something for myself. This is still open as of now, but would any of you writers be interested in a monthly tag to help explore your WIP and characters? If there’s something like that out there, feel free to point me in the right direction ,but otherwise I’m really considering creating one of my own.

WRITING

Writing, as in doing anything for my works in progress, my personal novel-projects, in 2021 was … uhm … how can I put this? Non-existent?
I actually outlined something for NaNoWriMo, but then didn’t follow through and hated every word I ever wrote. I do miss the rush of creating my own characters, dialogue and worlds and I really, really, really want to make a conscious effort to just write in 2022. It doesn’t have to be anything quantifiable as in a certain number of words, it doesn’t have to be writing every day, just something. Anything. A chapter maybe!

There’s one story in particular that’s haunting me and that I’d really like to get on the page, but I have to start from scratch, because I’m not happy with the way the first chapters are now. It’s annoying how hindering it can be when you have written several thousand words and you can’t bring yourself to toss them, even though you know it’s necessary, ultimately putting you in a stalemate with yourself. I did create some nice aesthetics though …

    


Do you have some goals or intentions for 2022? What did you think of mine? I DO NEED YOUR INPUT! Let’s chat!

November 2021 Wrap-Up

Can you believe we are about to head into the final month of 2021? In part, this year really dragged on but simultaneously, it also just wooshed by. However, we’re still in November now and I’d like to start wrapping up the month by talking about some books I read!

  • Teen Titans: Beast Boy Loves Raven by Kami Garcia/Gabriel Picolo (4 stars)
    This is the third installment of this particular run of Teen Titans and I’m still enjoying myself. The art style is sweet, but not too cutesy. There’s honestly not *that* much happening in the story, but I like the characters, although some might argue that they aren’t always portrayed how we might know them. The next comic will be about Robin and I’m looking forward to that change.
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (3 stars)
    Honestly, I’m just not that much of a fan of the story. More about that in an upcoming post!
  • Love, Lists & Fancy Ships by Sarah Grunder Ruiz (4 stars)

Teen Titans: Beast Boy Loves Raven Jane Eyre Love, Lists, and Fancy Ships

As per usual, click on the covers to get re-directed to Goodreads, where you are always welcome to add me as a reading buddy! My own reviews (where there is one) you’re able to find by clicking on the titles in the list above if there are posts for them.

Again, I would also like to mention that I have created a Storygraph profile and try to link to the books on that platform as well when I do my reviews. Feel free to add me as well here, but know that I’m struggling with the navigation on the web version a little bit. I can’t use the app on my phone (I have zero storage left), but I’m not vibing with the desktop version as much. Still, the stats are very cool and I want to support the site!

So, I have a couple things to confess. First of all, I did not end up participating in NaNoWriMo after all. I was really excited at the beginning of the month, but then I just got busy and distracted by other things, dropping my writing entirely. It’s sad, because I even did an outline for the most important plot points and am generally passionate about the story, but I’m really not happy with my writing and the quality I put out there. So, I didn’t want to be dissatisfied and just stopped. I’ll write and edit a whole book eventually … I think … here’s how I spent my time instead:

However, I did spend some time getting back into drawing. While Eternals is not my favorite Marvel movie, I fell head over heels in love with Druig and Makkari and I couldn’t stop myself from creating some art. It’s been half a year of me not picking up a brush and if I had more time, I’d love to get into this more regularly again. It’s just that it takes roughly 8 hours to complete a piece and that means there’s little else I can do on that day, so I often don’t want to spend my weekends or days off just with that.

I’m forever happy to have Lauren Ridloff be Makkari and therefore giving us the first deaf superhero in the MCU, paving the way for better representation in the genre. I’m also very glad to have a hard of hearing Hawkeye now and that Echo is getting her own show soon.

MY FAVORITE THINGS

Aside from Drukkari having stolen my heart, I really truly earnestly am obsessed with the Amazon adaptation of Wheel of Time! The show is absolutely fantastic, it even has me out here considering if I should read 14 books with 700+ pages each, because I cannot stand the one week wait between episodes. (But let’s be real for a moment, I’m not actually going to do it. I don’t have time for this!)

There’s so many characters I already love, but I’m particularly sad to have learned that Barney Harris, who is portraying Mat, was recast for Season 2. I know that no one owes me or us an explanation, but the secrecy around the departure has me worried and a bit sad. He is really the perfect Mat and his successor has big shoes to fill, but most of all, I just hope Harris is alright? I’m definitely overthinking this, but I get so easily attached sometimes.

ELSEWHERE ON THE BLOGOSPHERE

I’m still not the best at blog-hopping, but I’m trying! Please go and show some love to these amazing blogs and bloggers!

MY OTHER POSTS

MARVEL REVIEWS

TV SHOW/MOVIE RELATED

THURSDAY MOVIE PICKS (HALLOWEEN EDITION)

TRAILER POSTS


I hope you had a good November and wish you all the best for this upcoming December! Let’s talk some more in the comments!

October 2021 Wrap-Up

Welcome to this little wrap-up, which we’re going to do a little different. I see no point in starting it off with what I’ve been reading, because it was literally just one book and it’s part of the reading experiment, so there won’t be a separate review anyway. I know I said I’d post a new reading experiment in October, but there was just no way I could have finished it on time, so I stopped trying at some point. My hopes are still up for November, but I make no promises at this point. However, to make the wait a little bit more fun, I’m telling you who the reading experiment is with this time around – Pedro Pascal! I think you’re going to enjoy that post! (or at least I hope so)

As bad as a reading month as October was for me, I really got a lot done in terms of moving to my new flat! I have all my furniture, pretty much all my books, clothes, toiletries, kitchen gadgets, drawing and writing gear – so, in less words, I’m all settled in! I’ve been living at the new place pretty much the entire month already, just staying at my parents to grab more boxes etc. on the weekends. I was really fortunate to not have to move *everything* all at once, but the vastly diminished commute to work meant that I just didn’t schedule in as much reading time as I used to. I have to find my groove again.

So, what else is new? I decided to participate in NaNoWriMo again this year! I know many of you are well aware that I only finished NaNo once before and often stopped doing it somewhere midway through it. I don’t think participation is a must and that there really can be circumstances that prevent you from fully being able to commit. Having said that, in case you don’t know what NaNoWriMo is, it’s a yearly event where writers try to write an entire 50K word-novel in the span of the month. It’s not about perfection or a brilliant first draft, but rather to have a rough draft ready to work with by the end of it all. I spent quite a lot of time plotting and creating a character arc, which means this is legit the most prepared I’ve ever been. I won’t talk about the plot or any details, but if you are interested, I will do weekly updates? Either way, feel free to add me as a writing buddy on the site, if you want to be able to keep track or send messages! You can find my profile here.

MY FAVORITE THINGS

My favorite thing all month, and the show I was looking forward to the most, remained The Big Leap! Every single week, I cannot wait to watch what happens next. All the relationships and the story move so fast, but I can’t get enough of them and I’d really like to see more still. I hope it will be available somewhere to binge and attract a bigger audience once the season is out in full.

Gabby from the Big Leap
Gabby is my favorite character! She is amazing!

MY OTHER POSTS

Usually, I’d preface this section of the post with a little look at what was going on elsewhere in the blogosphere, but just like reading, I haven’t had much time to go blog-hopping. Feel free to link to your favorite posts (of yourself or someone else) in the comments and I’ll happily take a look. Here’s to hoping I’ll get around to more in Novemeber, although I have to say I’m proud I kept up a blogging schedule of a minimum of three posts per week.

PREVIOUSLY ON WHAT IF …

BOOKISH CONTENT

TV SHOW/MOVIE RELATED

THURSDAY MOVIE PICKS (HALLOWEEN EDITION)

TRAILER POSTS


I hope you had a great time at Halloween and that November will be a fun and busy and kind to you! Are you taking part in NaNoWriMo as well? Let’s talk!

November 2020 Wrap-Up

November was A MONTH for me. I was glad that I had already finished my reading challenge for the year in the previous month, because I barely had the energy at the beginning of November to do anything. However, I did end up reading the following books:

The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily (Dash & Lily #2) Mind the Gap, Dash & Lily Admission

As per usual, click on the covers to get re-directed to Goodreads, where you are always welcome to add me as a reading buddy! My own reviews you’re able to find by clicking on the titles in the list above if there are posts for them.

I still remember mentioning that I got a job last month. Well, I am not at that job anymore, but I also don’t want to talk about it. I think it’s just better for now.

Additionally to me having to get tested for Covid (I was negative, woot! woot!), my country went into a hard lockdown with all shops and restaurants closed (unless they can provide take out) for the second time. Weirdly, I think people aren’t taking it as seriously as the first time, which in turn makes me angry because it’s gonna drag out things even more. As much as all of them want to go back to “normal”, a whole lot of them refuse to do the bare minimum necessary to achieve that. But here’s to hoping the lockdown will have positive effects (in all ways except for covid testing results).

I have found myself in a really big life slump. Even after finding out that I might be able to get an extension for my Canada work permit, I could not motivate myself to do anything. It’s been a pretty arduous time for a lot of us and I know I am not the only one struggling occasionally, but it definitely didn’t feel nice. I didn’t draw. I didn’t write. I barely read anything. However, I DID create a tips and tricks post for watercolour art and if you haven’t checked it out, I’d really appreciate it if you gave it a look HERE.

If you have any specific questions about my process and art in general, I’d really love for you to post them in the comments of the tips & tricks post! I am more than happy to collect them and give it my best shot at answering them in a possible new post! (please don’t let it flop!!)

MY FAVOURITE THINGS

I was really, really looking forward to Dash & Lily on Netflix and I am so happy that it didn’t disappoint. I already watched it through several times and it’s the reason I also finally read the sequels! On the show, Lily makes this puppet of Dash and it looks so funny and *drum roll* I have decided to give it a try myself and I now have it as a goal to recreate the puppet until Christmas.

I already have a lot of the materials, except for the hair, eyebrows and these floofy balls. I am not sure I am gonna get them until Christmas, but I will try and get as far as I can.

Also, in a desperate attempt to feel productive in some shape or form, I finished my MasterClass for TV writing with Shonda Rhimes as well as the Art of Storytelling with Neil Gaiman. They are both incredible instructors and have provided great course material even beyond the videos. I have to say, it’s easy to listen to them for hours though, they did a great job and it did make me feel just the tiniest bit more motivated to do something … even if I didn’t follow up on it.

MY OTHER POSTS

VARIOUS TAGS AND POSTS

TV SHOW/MOVIE RELATED

TRAILER POSTS


How was your November? Did you get into the holiday spirit a little bit with all the topical shows and movies releasing?

The Writer Tag: 20 Questions

I pretended I didn’t have like a billion tags in my drafts and looked one up that was writing related. I found the Writer Tag: 20 Questions on a blog called InkBlots and IceBergs and just thought “this fits the NaNo month!”, so, here we are! Let’s do this!

What type of writing do you do? 

I write exclusively fiction. I’m not sure that’s what was really asked for, but to expand a little on it, I write long formatted fiction and every once in a while a short story. However, as much as I enjoy essays and poetry, I could never …

What genres and/or topics do you write about?

A lot of my stories focus on the found family trope and by that I really mean A LOT. I dabble in YA as well as in adult and like to switch it up with Fantasy, SciFi and regular contemporary stories. It’s really a “whatever strikes the mood” kind of thing for me.

How long have you been writing?

As corny as it may sound, but I am pretty sure I’ve been writing since I learned how to write. Even in grade school, I was the one who had to get up in front of the class and read out loud the story I had fabricated and I just never stopped creating ever since.

Are you published?

I am not and I am super undecided whether I want to be.

What was the first story you ever wrote?

That feels impossible to answer! I can, however, talk about the first really long story I attempted to write and even shared with some friends. It was called Elementals and about a group of teens who could each control one element (aka water, fire, air and earth). Their enemies were the Society of the Iron Mask, as they believed that metal was not affected by the element wielders. Little did they know that the main character, who could control the element of earth, also discovered that she could manipulate metals. She also had about three love interests. I was super proud for writing this before Avatar, the Last Airbender aired and everyone wanted element stories.

Why do you write?

To me, writing is like a necessity. When a story or scene or character pops into my head, they won’t let me go until I write them down somewhere. It doesn’t always have to amount to anything, but it would never leave my system unless I jotted it down somewhere.

How do you find time to write?

Honestly, this is something I struggle with a lot. I wish I could write all the time and make it a priority, but a lot of the time I am just tired. And when I am tired, I do not want to write. I also don’t think that I can write anything I’d actually like in those cases.

When and where are the best times to write?

There is no such thing as a bad time to write (unless you are at work and not doing your job or behind a wheel or something else where it’s just not logical to write in that particular moment). Whether it be night or day, if you have an idea and you want to work on it – go for it!

Favorite food/drinks while writing?

No such thing for me. I generally either drink water or tea and nothing else. And I am not really that much of a snacker. Maybe some wallnuts?

Your writing playlist?

I actually do have one. Click here to listen to it!

What do family/friends/loved ones think of you writing?

I think they approve? I’ve been told that I am not a bad writer (not gonna actually praise myself here), but I am also pretty sure they’d like for me to actually finish something for once.

Here, for example, is something I am currently working on. Judge my writing ability for yourself:

Parts of writing you enjoy the most?

There are few things that I adore more than when a scene just spills out on the age effortlessly. That moment, when choices I made before and was unsure about suddenly make sense and everything fits together like the perfect puzzle pieces they are. Sometimes I really do lay bread crumbs throughout my own story that I will not have realized I put there until I get to a certain moment and it’s pure bliss.

Parts of writing you find challenging?

I often really wish I could connect my brain to my laptop and that the words would just spill out the way I intend them to instead of me actually having to formulate sentences. It’s not always hard, but sometimes some scenes just don’t want to work the way you want them to. And it annoys me to no end.

What do you write with and on?

Technically pretty much anything and everything, but most often my laptop for sure.

How do you overcome writer’s block?

If only I knew … hit me up if you got tips!

How do you motivate yourself to write?

I think my stories motivate me and I have a habit of sharing my stories with people I trust, even the ongoing rough drafts. Hearing their thoughts and reactions to what I write really gives me a boost!

Authors who inspire you as a writer?

This doesn’t really mean that I think I write like them in any way, but here are some people I’d read a grocery list from:

  • Leigh Bardugo
  • Victoria Schwab
  • Tahereh Mafi
  • Pierce Brown
  • Ben Philippe
  • Morgan Matson
  • Nina LaCour

Books that inspire you as a writer?

There’s so many books I appreciate and try to learn from, but here are some that always stay with me:

Wolf By Wolf (Wolf By Wolf, #1) Red Rising (Red Rising Saga, #1) This Savage Song  (Monsters of Verity, #1) The Martian The Serpent King Since You've Been Gone We Were Liars My Life Next Door The Book Thief The Light Between Worlds Words in Deep Blue

Best advice you’ve gotten as a writer?

I never quite liked the whole “write every day” and “write about what you know” mindset, because I cannot for the life of me write every day and there is way more that I do not know than what I do know. My experiences are still so limited and while I am sure there is value in that, I also need to step out of my little world every once in a while. I write about many things I do not actually know about. Frankly, I write about things I want to know more about sometimes or things I wish for. More often than not, I write about things I have dreamed about.

And that brings me to the advice I got, which is to write down my dreams. To not wait until I have had my morning tea and am fully awake, but to always have a pen and notebook ready at my bedside table and just jot down those ideas my brain fabricated in the night. Alternately, if it’s too dark to write yet and I am super groggy, I will make a quick note on my phone.

Writing goals this year

Finishing just about anything would be great!

A girl can dream …

Are you taking part in NaNoWriMo this month? Are you currently working on a story? Feel free to steal this tag if you want to!

Spooky Scary Writing Tag

I meant to do something else today, but this seemed oddly more fitting for today. You know that I enjoy doing Write Tags every now and then and with NaNoWriMo RIGHT THERE and it being Halloween and all, it just works? The Spooky Scary Write Tag was created by Emma @Emma T. Fink but I saw it over at Caro’s blog. Therefore, this is once again not a creation of my own, but I am so, so looking forward to doing this anyway!

A lot of the questions are general ones about writing, however, a couple are about a specific WIP. In those cases, I will be answering for the Football WIP! I haven’t talked about it a whole lot, but most recently mentioned it in the All Hallows Write Tag.  I haven’t changed the blurb since, but I have worked on it mentally … you’ll still have to contend with this one though:

After a devastating loss, teenager Ivy moves to her estranged family in a small town in Texas. All she wants is to get through school as fast as possible and start over away from everything and everyone she knows, but this town has other plans. She never intended to get mixed up in the lives of the local Football team, who are worshiped like heroes in the community, but soon their drama becomes hers. If she can face her grief and guilt, she might just be able to find a new family in them.

Haven’t shared this aesthetic with anyone yet, so … it’s a premiere!! One that will likely only make sense to those that know more about the story and the main character.

1.Ghost // Have you ever originally put a character/scene/theme in the book and then later taken it out?

Character – no
Scene – yes
Theme – yes

I usually tend to stick with characters, although I will not hesitate to alter their personality/appearance/general role in the story. But when it comes to scenes and themes, I am often less attached.

2. Bat // Most misunderstood character in your WIP?

I feel like that has to be Taylor. He has this carefree attitude and seems like nothing in the world fazes him, but it does. His bad boy/charmer image is just a way to hide what’s happening on the inside for him. In his heart, he’s a good guy. He’s just really hesitant to attach to anyone.

3. Jack-O-Lantern // What’s your most common source of inspiration to write?

I can find inspiration in almost anything and everything! Sometimes it’s a song, sometimes it’s a theme in a TV show that I would like to explore on my own. Very often it’s just daydreams that get stuck in my head and need further development or I will never ever get rid of them again.

4. Zombie // Preferred form of writerly fuel? Coffee, tea, etc.

Tea. Always.

5. Vampire // Cheesiest trope that made it into your novel?

Okay, this is actually from the only novel I finished, as I don’t want to talk about WIPs in that much detail, but … Break Up Buddy literally ended with a proposal on live television. It was Hallmark-level-cheese perfection!

6. Spider // What’s a character in your WIP that’s fine from afar, but you would NOT want to interact with if they ever got close?

I … don’t know? Especially in the Football WIP, I don’t have any “villains” per se. There’s definitely conflict, but the characters are all just humans with flaws and mistakes. I don’t think I would really mind being close-ish to any of them. I might imagine Laurie stressing me out … let’s go with that if I have to answer.

7. Frankenstein’s Monster // Ever combined two characters into one/split one character into two?

Dang, my answers are so boring, but … no. I don’t think that option ever even crossed my mind.

8.Skeleton // Best tips for adding in character baggage without info-dumping?

Ha! I didn’t know I was supposed to offer actual helpful insight. Uhm, I would be lying if I said I didn’t struggle with that every now and then. I like to hint at past trauma/baggage in dialogue and actions until a certain reveal becomes inevitable. That way you prepare the reader that something is coming, even if they don’t yet have the full picture and/or understand it all. I’m not saying that always works and very much depends on the baggage you intend to include, but I definitely prefer behavioral clues rather than just lengthy explanations myself.

9. Cat // What’s a polarizing writing/bookish opinion that you have?

I don’t believe that you HAVE to or SHOULD write every day. There’s definitely people who it’s helpful for to write on a regular basis, but if you are not feeling it one bit and hate what you create because you forced yourself to write, what’s the point? I’d rather take a break and clear my head, maybe find new inspiration and then get back to it with all the more motivation. Obviously, that’s tied with a bit of self discipline and making sure a short break doesn’t turn into weeks and months of inactivity. But to each their own!

10. Demon // Most frequent writing distraction?

TV shows! I think I can handle not checking social media all the time, but when I get enamored with a TV show, I forget all other standing responsibilities and live in that world in my head. Especially my own stories take a back seat then, even if they shouldn’t.


What did you think of this tag? Could you relate to my answers? Let’s chat!

All Hallows Write Tag – AGAIN!

Soooo, I am bringing this back! As a lot of you know, I have created a number of write tags myself. They are incredibly helpful in delving into the mindset of your characters as you answer questions on behalf of them. I’ve tried to create them for various occasions and seasons, but the All Hallows Write Tag is not a creation of my own. It took me a while to find the original creator (forgive me for not tagging them the first time I did this!), but you can see Sam Kassé‘s post here.

RULES

  • Provide a short description of your story!
    I was debating about which project to talk about today, because as you know there are many! However, the one I am most focused on right now and am trying to prep for NaNoWriMo some more is the Football WIP (yes, it still doesn’t have a title). And since it doesn’t have a title, it also doesn’t have a polished blurb. Sorry about what comes next:
    After a devastating loss, teenager Ivy moves to her estranged family in a small town in Texas. All she wants is to get through school as fast as possible and start over away from everything and everyone she knows, but this town has other plans. She never intended to get mixed up in the lives of the local Football team, who are worshiped like heroes in the community, but soon their drama becomes hers. If she can face her grief and guilt, she might just be able to find a new family in them.
  • Don’t use the same character for more than 3 answers!

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

It’s Halloween night! What is your protagonist dressed up as?

I think the whole Football team would get an easy group costume. They’d want something easy that wouldn’t require massive effort (at least for the majority of them), so, I say they’d go as Football player zombies.

As for Ivy, the real protagonist and narrator, I don’t think she would go all out now that she has moved to Eden. Back in Portland, with her friends, she put in more effort, but not now. She’d likely get a cheap wig, put some fake blood on a dress she has no use for anymore and go as victim #27, just so Landon (her 10-year-old cousin) wouldn’t be too bummed when she took him trick or treating.

Who in your cast refuses to dress up and shows up at the Halloween party without a costume?

I honestly can’t see anyone downright refusing to dress up. Maybe the adults would only put on a hat or something, but out of the characters that I actively mention on the regular, they’d all do something.

Which character wears the most outrageous costume, and what would it be?

My mind immediately went to Isaac! He is a quirky dude and I could totally see him going as a demigorgan or some other ridiculously intricate monster. He’d be way overdressed, sweating and still dancing his ass off anyway at a Halloween party.

On Halloween, werewolves, vampires, and zombies are on the prowl. Which of your characters gets caught in their clutches, and which creature do they subsequently turn into?  

The whole theme of my novel is that Ivy gets caught up in something she had no intention of getting caught up in, so … her? And just because I said earlier that the Football team would go collectively as zombies, I’m gonna bring this full circle and say they turn into real zombies and then turn her!

Who wins the contest for best costume?

Even though I feel like Isaac would deserve it due to putting so much effort in, it’s probably more of a popularity contest in the end and someone like Gina (who is the sweetest and head cheerleader) would get it. She was dressed as Liz Ortecho in her Crashdown uniform, because she thinks they look alike and aliens are fun but not scary.

Who hands out toothbrushes to the trick and treaters?

Laurie – 100%!! But Hal would be right there with her and sneak the kids something else before they left, but not candy, cause he did not think ahead of getting any. He knows she means well, but he can’t just let his wife sour the mood.

Which two of your characters decide to pair up and do an angel/devil costume together?

Liv and Dusty? Carter and Taylor? I don’t knoooow. The more fun version would definitely be Taylor and Carter. They are best buds, and Carter is the town’s golden boy, whereas Taylor is the screw up in comparison. They could switch roles for a night or embrace their perceived images. Whatever floats their boat.

Someone is too scared to even attend the Halloween party. Who is it?

Dustin might be an option here, but not because he is scared of Halloween, and instead because he is having a tough time with the social judgment going on in town. He just doesn’t want to expose himself to all the stares and whispers, my poor baby boy.

Who overdoses on Halloween candy and ends up sick?

Lando – cause he is a kid and has no restraint!

Which character is most likely to place a curse/hex on someone and who would they curse?

Right now, I just imagine Liv inviting all the girls over and they’d get into some sort of Light as a Feather kind of trouble and … it wouldn’t be intentional, but Liv would definitely be the one who messed up something that would set off the trouble.


I TAG THEE

I don’t know who of my lovely writing buddies is currently up for the challenge, so this tag is up for grabs! Don’t hesitate to link back to my post, so I can see your answers too!


If you are interested in more write tags, here’s a list of the ones I created:

What did you think of my answers? Would you like more updates on my writing, especially with NaNoWriMo around the corner? Let’s talk!

July 2020 Wrap-Up

So, as you may have noticed this past month, I wasn’t super active on the blog. That mostly had to do with the art challenge I was participating in (more about that later). It all swallowed up so much time, I could neither read nor blog very much.

A Pocketful of Crowsad ONE book. It was called A Pocketful of Crows by Joanne M. Harris and the reason I did not review it on here was because I did not enjoy it. Despite it being told in a very fairytale-like fashion, which is usually very much in my wheelhouse, I ended up giving it 2 stars only. I neither liked the characters nor the message of the book and I was very unsure about a white author using this to also talk about the topic of racism. Something about it all just felt off.

I don’t feel worried about my reading challenge though! I am still three books ahead, because I made sure to set a very achievable goal for myself.

As per usual, click on the covers to get re-directed to Goodreads, where you are always welcome to add me as a reading buddy! I don’t have any reviews this time around, but normally you can find them by clicking on the titles in the text!

As mentioned above, but just in case you missed it, I did a little art challenge for the entirety of July. It wasn’t with different tasks every day, but rather establishing a routine and being consistent with your output. I set mine for drawing AND writing every single day, while friends joined me along the way to just do one of the two or something they wanted to work on. It was really motivating and I got a lot done!
If you want to know some details, you can read up on my half-way check-in and the entire recap. However, here are my favourite art pieces I made during the time:

Having finished this art challenge and having gotten some of my creative spirits up and moving again, I decided to start a new unrelated challenge. I am currently doing Chloe Ting’s 25-day-hourglass-workout. It’s already day 11 and I am actually having fun with it. Don’t think that I can do all the exercises at high intensity the way Chloe can, but I was happy that my lockdown workouts have prepared me for it to some extent and helped me with finding alternatives to exercises that made sense when I couldn’t do the suggested versions. So far, there is no weight difference, but my clothes definitely fit differently! I am super intrigued to see results.

MY FAVOURITE THINGS

I could say Stargirl again and it would not be a lie. But there is only one more episode and I think I will have to move on from it after that … maybe … probably … hopefully? That show took up a lot of my mental space.

I did also watch Outer Banks this last month and kind of get the hype, because I keep thinking about it and totally can’t wait for the next season. I feel a bit betrayed, because youtube ship videos made me believe that Kiara and JJ were gonna be a thing and that just wasn’t the case? But now that’s what I want, neigh, NEED! Like, I did not make these videos, but watch them and tell me there’s nothing there!?!?

As almost per usual, I’ve unfortunately still not been as active as I would have liked to be on everyone else’s blog. If you are up for it, feel free to share one of your own posts that you consider one of your faves from this past month in the comments below! I’d love to check it out!!

MY OTHER POSTS

VARIOUS POSTS AND TAGS

TV SHOW/MOVIE RELATED

TRAILER POSTS


Hope your August started out well and that your July was as good as can be expected during these times!

Recap: My 30 Day Art Challenge

I posted about this challenge at the half-way point already (read more about it here), but now the challenge is done and I just wanted to recap what all went down and share some more of my art!

STATS

I am happy to announce that I have managed to write more than 13K words this past month. I know that it’s not nearly as much as many reach during their NaNoWriMo challenge or camp sessions, but it catapults me to over 35K words for my current WIP (a YA contemporary), which means I am more than halfway through what I want the first draft to be in terms of length.
I will admit that I skipped out on writing during a couple of the last days of the challenge. I was just so stuck with where I wanted to go and wanted to do some plotting. I really wasn’t sure what to do in the last third of the story, to make sure it actually had tension and wasn’t just trickling along. Therefore, I plotted, which is writing-related, but had no word count to speak of.

I drew a total of 14 more drawings since the last update. I followed my own advice and didn’t overdo it by trying to complete a drawing per day. Sometimes I would do the line work on one day and then the colors on the next. It definitely helped me feel less stressed about it, while I was still doing something daily.

REALIZATIONS

I think I already covered quite a lot of the realizations last time and they still sound true to me. Doing everything all the time is impossible, external validation helps and so on, but I will try and tell you a bit more anyway.

  • Forcing yourself to do something every day will yield results, but not necessarily good ones. I am happy I did the challenge and it really got my creative juices flowing again, but there are days where you just don’t have it in you. I still ended up doing my writing (or writing related activity) and drawing every single day, but the results weren’t always something I was happy with. Accepting that not everything will be perfect is another thing you need to learn as an artist, but it’s still frustrating when things don’t work. Just make sure that doesn’t deter you.
  • It’s perfectly okay to draw something because you know it has an audience. While I didn’t stick to just Stargirl portraits in the end, the cast and characters still made up the majority of what I drew. I just knew, and clearly saw in my stats, that these posts worked a lot better and make up the posts that perform the best. The fact that the cast likes to interact with that stuff helps too, of course. So, I don’t see why I shouldn’t lean into doing something, even if it seems repetitive in terms of motif, knowing that there’s a group of people who will hype it up.
  • Try to make yourself do something new and get out of your comfort zone! It’s obvious that I only did portraits, however, I leaned more into doing pencil instead of watercolor work again, which wasn’t something I felt too comfortable with earlier. And I also started experimenting again with gold/silver foil and am really happy with the results.

DRAWINGS

This time it’s really a mix of things! There’s Jeanine Mason from Roswell, New Mexico, cast and characters from Stargirl (where I often made sure to focus on characters/scenes that were important for the airing episode) as well as Bess from Little Voice, the weeping monk from Cursed and two self-portraits (one experimental and one more traditional).


I hope you enjoyed this look into my challenge! Feel free to ask me anything about it! In hindsight, I think it was more about being consistent than making progress with my skill set, although I think I came into my style some more as well.

Never Have I Ever – Writing Tag!

One of my favourite blogger buddies, The Orang-utan Librarian, has tagged me for the Never Have I Ever Writing Tag. I read their answers and it was great to read and I implore you to check out the post yourself, that is, after you read mine, because this is going to be fun!

The original was created by the Long Voyage – so definitely check out that here!

NEVER HAVE I EVER …

. . . started a novel that I did not finish.

Ha! That’s a good one!! I started about 15 different stories and finished one of them. My track record in that department is abysmal.

. . . written a story completely by hand.

I … don’t think so? I think I started stories and maybe I’ve written a short story here or there by hand, but definitely not a full one. I already get annoyed with regular editing, I can’t imagine having to transfer everything to my laptop first.

. . . changed tenses midway through a story.

Not on purpose. I think, sometimes, when I return to a story after a long time, I have to get back into the tense maybe and mess it up a bit. But never on purpose.

. . . not researched anything before starting a story.

What is research? No, in all honesty, I probably should do research sometimes, but I love winging it and then despairing in the middle of the story because I have no clue what I am doing. I really do the bare minimum sometimes …

. . . changed my protagonist’s name halfway through a draft.

Nope, not the protagonist’s name, but definitely some side characters.

. . . written a story in a month or less.

YES! The one and only story I ever finished writing – Break Up Buddy – was one I did during NaNoWriMo. I was so proud to have finished it in a month and I still am. I admire people that just throw out stories in days or weeks (and there are more than you might think).

. . . fallen asleep while writing.

I don’t think so?

. . . corrected someone’s grammar irl / online.

Guilty as charged. I’m not running around correcting everyone all the time, but sometimes I just couldn’t not say anything? Most of the time I just keep it to myself, especially since I make plenty of mistakes myself.

. . . yelled in all caps at myself in the middle of a novel.

Like … “started writing in all caps unrelated to the story, because I was frustrated with myself”-all caps? That’s not really something I do?

. . . used “I’m writing” as an excuse.

I just don’t think that people leave me alone or listen to me when I say that I am writing. At least I know a certain someone who will interrupt me like a thousand times, even if I have made it clear that I was trying to focus on writing. Guess that excuse doesn’t fly with people in my life?

. . . killed a character who was based on someone I know in real life.

I’m not even sure I’ve killed a character on page yet, so that’s a no? But also, no one is based on someone I personally know. On actors? That’s a whole different story … but not actual real life friends and/or enemies.

. . . used pop culture references in a story.

These questions should be so easy to answer, but I really have to think hard about them. I am pretty sure there must have been some kind of reference, right? Something to indicate a time period? I just literally can’t think of a single example …

. . . written between the hours of 1am and 6am.

100% YES!

. . . drank an entire pot of coffee while writing.

I don’t drink coffee ever, so that’s a clear no from my side. (Tea all the way!)

. . . written down dreams to use in potential novels.

I actually have a designated journal for my dreams. They are wild sometimes, people! I still like the timey-wimey one where Adam Driver turns out to be my son, but I am technically younger than him? We shall, however, never mention the dolphin story again. That was borderline body horror and that’s not my genre …

. . . published an unedited story on the internet / Wattpad / blog.

Yes, yes and yes? There used to be this website called figment, where I posted a lot of my really, really old stuff. But also recently, totally!

Arcadia is on wattpad. Click here to read it!
Dreamer was on wattpad, but is not published there anymore …
The witchy WIP is published on a private blog that’s password protected. However, friends can request the password and I’m pretty easygoing in sharing it.

. . . procrastinated homework because I wanted to write.

Absolutely! I have to agree with the Orang-utan Librarian here, I sometimes even spaced out in class to write my story. And honestly, even at work from time to time (imagine me doing retail work and there being zero customers for over an hour).

. . . typed so long that my wrists hurt.

That happens so easily, but also, I just don’t have the best set up for writing.

. . . spilled a drink on my laptop while writing.

Thank the heavens that never happened!!! THE HORROR!

. . . forgotten to save my work / draft.

No? I think I forgot to save something for school a couple times, but never the really important stuff aka my stuff.

. . . finished a novel.

As in, written a beginning, middle and end to a story? Yes. As in, edited the story to make it presentable and potentially marketable? No. no no no.

. . . laughed like an evil villain while writing a scene.

I WISH!

. . . cried while writing a scene.

I was close, but I don’t think so?

. . . created maps of my fictional worlds.

YES! But funny enough, not for a fantasy world, but rather a contemporary novel instead. I just printed out maps from Google maps from places that I’ve been to and liked/lived at. It was hilarious in hindsight.

. . . researched something shady for a novel.

I think I researched some illnesses and symptoms. Or “what to do when someone has a seizure”, but that’s not really all that shady, is it?

I TAG THEE

I would love for the sister-writer-duo Nyx and Marie to do this tag and also Caro!


I hope you enjoyed this tag and if you feel like doing it yourself, GO FOR IT! I’d love to chat some more in the comments and also feel free to ask me anything, if you want to know more!