Monday, January 30

12 things to do when there's no electricity -- Writing Prompt (#4)

Brought to you by Creative Writing Prompts ^-^

Well there's an obvious one. Unless it's dark or something--then I guess you could read by candlelight? Moonlight? How romantic.
By the open fire. Mmm. Or better yet:
Never been to one, unfortunately. Not at a bonfire permitted area? No worries. Open up that fireplace you never use, strike up a match, and there you go. Or if that doesn't work out, get a candle, light it up, and stick it in a glass jar--Harry Potter style. Or maybe you could just make do with the candle.
Once you have that bonfire-fireplace-candle jar going, gather up a few friends and relinquish your horror-filled creativity capacity. Maybe play a little of that Mafia game.
The never-ending board game, as I call it. Because, frankly, Monopoly has never ended for me. I dunno, maybe that's a good thing? The fact that no one I've ever played with (including myself) has ever gone bankrupt? Or maybe I just have an extremely short attention span, which is very probable. If Monopoly doesn't suit your fancy, then may I suggest LIFE? Or Sorry? Or maybe even that iCarly Charades game? (I do own that.)
Self-explanatory. Dance without music. See how your self-esteem ends up after that.
Time to get started on those chores. Perfect time to get to them. Even more fun to do when it's dark outside. And it would be pitch-black as well, mind you, without the electricity.
'Course, no one would really do that...
Stop being a hermit, and get out of the house. It's time to reconnect with your friends through a nice game of basketball, or a nice match of tennis, or whatever else you prefer. Go biking, go running. Go ice skating on that one frozen lake near your house if you must. 
Peel apples, grapes, oranges, mangoes--anything, really. Even tomatoes. Which I strongly believe to be in the fruit group.
Percy Jackson style. Minus the swords and shields and magical weapons. 
A store, maybe. A restaurant. Or better yet, a forest, a hill, some place people seldom go. Who knows? Maybe you'll find something interesting there.

What's on your list?

- E

Sunday, January 29

Novels 'n' Notes [City of Bones]


Novels 'n' Notes is a weekly event hosted by Mag at Geek Chic ^-^

Music plays such a huge role in everyone's lives (unless you happen to hate music. Then...I don't really know what to say to you *). It's present everywhere--even in books! Books! Ah, books. Have you ever wished that music would start playing when you read a scene in a book? Kind of similar to having your own theme song in real life. Except in book-form.

It'd be pretty epic.

Anyway, the song below is for the book City of Bones by Cassandra Clare. The Adventure - by Angels & Airwaves. **

I wanna have the same last dream again
The one where I wake up and I'm alive
So...kind of like Clary's total surreal experience with the Shadowhunters.

Hey, oh here I am
Here we go
Life's waiting to begin
Marks Clary's "adventure" in the series...the changes she will have to face. You know, all of that good stuff.

Any type of love it will be showed
Like every single tree reach for the sky
If you're gonna fall
I'll let you know
That I will pick you up
Like you for I
Clary and Jace. Self-explanatory.

I want to know: What is your theme song? What are some songs you can connect to books?

- E

* Though, of course, you are entitled to your opinions. And I respect that!
** Also featured in my Depravity Playlist ^-^

Saturday, January 28

Cinderella the Bounty Hunter -- Writing Prompt (#3.5)

You can read Part 1 and what the whole prompt is about here. I'm about to change the story of Cinderella ^-^


"Come out, Alexandra."

Outside, everything was still, a warm afternoon filled with blinding sunlight but a stifling atmosphere. It was too silent. Too still, too stationary. Cinderella felt like she was suffocating, even standing on the balcony, motionless. She stayed there for a few seconds, counting to five, her breathing slow and controlled. Then she frowned.

"Alexandra," she said. "Come out. I know you're here."

Once again, no one replied. Cinderella exhaled and rubbed her face, suddenly feeling considerably exhausted. A breeze stirred the top of her head and a moment later, a new voice interrupted the stillness of the afternoon.

"Upset, are you?"

Cinderella didn't even turn around. She only nodded her head, her fingers clenching and unclenching. "What gave it away?"

A shadow fell across the railings of the balcony and a new figure joined Cinderella. She wore a long robe of spun indigo, her face young and smooth, her gold hair twisted into a tidy bun. Her eyes were an eccentric color--ice blue, lighter than even Prince Charming's--her lips pink and full. Cinderella faced her Fairy Godmother with a dry smile. She did not know where such strength came from, such rebellion over submission. If it had been yesterday, Cinderella would never have spoken out like that if Theresa and her step sisters had been in the same room. And the Prince and Sir Matthew--no, she would never have spoken like that in front of them either.

"Cinderella," said her Fairy Godmother kindly. "I don't understand. You were able to get what you had wanted, weren't you? The ball, the dance with your Prince--it was everything we had bargained for. And yet," she said, "you're not happy."

"Of course I'm not. The Prince doesn't even recognize me, for one...and the slipper, Alexandra. The slipper fits Lucy."

"Lucy?" To Cinderella's immense surprise, Alexandra seemed amused. "Well," she said. "That is indeed unexpected."

"Is it?" Suspicion threaded through those two words. Cinderella eyed her Fairy Godmother, brows pulled into a straight line. "Do you know anything about this, Alexandra?"

The Fairy Godmother smiled and poised her hands on her hips, arching her back so that her gaze was on the sky. "Me?" she said softly, her eyes brighter than usual. "Of course I don't, of course I don't."


Alexandra snapped her head back to its original position. "So what if I am lying?" she said. Her voice was soft. Dangerous. "Your Prince has abandoned you. You will never have him, you will never leave this atrocious shack again. Everything has been lost. Nothing should matter anymore, Cinderella."

"But it does," she said calmly. "Everything still matters. There is a way, isn't there, Alexandra? A way to get him back? A way to change things?"

Alexandra studied her charge with a tight smile. "Tell me, Cinderella," she said. "This...resolve of yours. Is it truly genuine?"

"Genuine," Cinderella repeated. "As in...?"

"As in true. Pure. Without greed and malice."

"Well," said Cinderella, "why would it not be?"

It seemed that was all the Fairy Godmother needed. She reached inside the sleeve of her robe and pulled out a long stick. Her wand. "The Prince recognizes you," she said, twirling the instrument between two fingers, "but he cannot go back on his word of marriage. He said he would marry the woman whose foot fit in the single glass slipper, and the Queen took this oath as seriously as she could. Marriage is not a light discussion topic among the royal family, Cinderella. It's bound by a magic even the Prince cannot break."

"Then what will I do?"

"I will turn back time, give you one more chance. Go to the ball and make the Prince bind himself to you before he can make a silly mistake and give Lucinda the chance of trying on the slipper. He loves you, Cinderella." The Fairy Godmother laughed, shaking her head. "He loves you more than he does Lucinda at least."

Cinderella swallowed, keeping this piece of information close to her heart. "And if I fail?"

"You have until midnight. If you fail, then you will return to the position you are in right now, one day before Prince Charming marries your step sister. And then there will be nothing you can do to stop it." Alexandra raised one eyebrow. "Are you sure you're ready for this, Cinderella?"

She didn't even pause to think. She nodded right away, pressing her lips together.

Alexandra smiled, raising her wand. "Then let's begin. And this time, may I advise not to lose your slipper?"

- E

Friday, January 27

Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Title: Under the Never Sky
Author: Veronica Rossi
Genre: YA - Dystopia
How I Obtained Said Book: Public library. 'Tis a beautiful place.
Series: Book 1 to the Under the Never Sky series
The Blurb: (from Goodreads)


Aria has lived her whole life in the protected dome of Reverie. Her entire world confined to its spaces, she's never thought to dream of what lies beyond its doors. So when her mother goes missing, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland long enough to find her are slim. 

Then Aria meets an outsider named Perry. He's searching for someone too. He's also wild - a savage - but might be her best hope at staying alive. 

If they can survive, they are each other's best hope for finding answers. *

The Review: (As always, there could be spoilers)

Aria lives in a post-apocalyptic world where the inhabitants of it are divided into two distinct groups: the Dwellers (known as Moles to the Outsiders) who live in heavily protected "Pods" with hundreds of virtual worlds made possible by their special eye patches known as Smarteyes, and the Outsiders (known as Savages to the Dwellers), who live in tribes outside these supposedly perfect domes, in the wilderness, surviving without technology and luxury.

This is probably one of the few books where I can actually tolerate switching POVs, and thankfully it's in third person. The book opens through the perspective of Aria who, along with her friends, are fooling around in a section of Reverie. Led by the son of the Man Who's In Charge of Security in Reverie, they disable their Smarteyes and sink into the real world. Unfortunately, the son, Soren, is plainly a madman; he's a pyromaniac, mind you, as when the group make it out of the dome and to the Outside, Soren starts a fire in a forest without any experience on fire whatsoever, just to see an actual unvirtualized fire. Of course the fire spreads, putting Aria and her friends in potential harm. Some are killed, and Aria would have been as well if it weren't for the Outsider who saved her.

Perry is the brother of the Blood Lord of his tribe, Tide. He has a conflicted past and values, as he wants to be Blood Lord (believing that his older brother is not doing that good of a job), but he can't become one unless he kills his brother or forces him into submission, which Perry believes would emotionally hurt his young nephew whom he cares for very deeply. But Perry also brings constant trouble to his tribe without meaning to, even though he always has the best intentions at heart. Finding Aria, for example, in a forbidden area way out of his tribal domain was a huge risk and a huge mistake, despite the fact that Perry had only wanted to find medicine to help his sick nephew (and besides, Reverie had some high-tech stuff, really). Upon saving Aria, however, Perry also takes her Smarteye, and his action eventually causes his nephew to be abducted by the "Dwellers". It also causes Aria to be exiled from Reverie, left alone to die in the wilderness. But Perry ends up finding her once again after he was exiled from Tide, and together they struck up a grudging bargain marred at first with mutual hatred: if Aria helps Perry find his nephew, then Perry will take Aria to her mother in another Dweller Pod.

I think one of the main reasons I loved this book so much was because of the fact that THERE WAS RELATIONSHIP DEVELOPMENT. And: NO LOVE TRIANGLES.

It was a hallelujah moment. But I'll get to that later.

I've got to say, at first I thought I would strongly dislike Under the Never Sky. After reading the blurb of the book, I thought the plot was weak (except for the implied character-relationship-development part. Amen to that, man.) and typical (if you ever happen to pick up the book and flip to the front flap, you'll see that in the blurb it says, "Perry views Aria as sheltered and fragile", and the sheltered-fragile combo of a MC is a huge pet peeve of mine). Probably the one thing that got me to read it was this little section from Veronica Rossi's author bio in the back:
"'s since captivated publishers in more than twenty countries worldwide and been optioned for film by Warner Bros."
Holy crap! Twenty countries as a debut! And a movie option to top it off. So, yes, I was impressed, and yes, I wanted to see just what has interested twenty countries and Warner Bros., even if the blurb sounded a little tacky.

Man, oh man. I made a pretty smart decision.

First off, Aria is not sheltered nor fragile. Yes, this goes back to the whole "appears to be sheltered and fragile--but really isn't!" part I mentioned in my Love Triangle post (and how I dislike MCs like that), but in my defense...! Aria was different from typical fake-sheltered-fragile MCs. Normally if you're a fake-sheltered-fragile MC, you have that inner "fiery personality" that can be both adorable and endearing. Aria doesn't have this. She really doesn't. She's silly and ridiculous and doesn't try to be tough or fiery or whatever, and throughout the book, she makes some pretty stupid mistakes--which, by the way, is a GOOD thing. I LOVE flaws. Love them. Plus, Perry spends half of the book hating her guts, and vice versa, which doesn't make her a Mary Sue. Thank goodness.

Perry is short for "Peregrine", and once again, thank goodness that's true because the first image that popped into my head when I saw his name was this:

'tis here

I'd like to say that I didn't let this mess up my judgement of him in the beginning, but then I'd be lying. However, that did end up changing, so I think that's some redemption. I ended up loving Perry, not because he's dedicated and noble and totally not shallow. Also, he has flaws. And like I said before, he ended up hating Aria throughout half of the novel, but then gradually began to like her--which, guys, brings us to the development section of this review.

There was character development! Relationship development! I loved how Ms. Rossi didn't automatically put Aria and Perry at a lover's status. I loved how she didn't make them two people with raging hormones either (and yes, I know this is a YA novel but come on, it doesn't always have to be like that, right?). She made their relationship unfold gradually and change carefully with believable elements. It was beautiful, to say the least. And by beautiful I mean it actually made me feel emotion while reading the book, which is exactly what an author should be able to do. Joyful emotions and heart-wrenching emotions. For example (SPOILER ALERT. Highlight to read.) When Perry and Aria were going to part ways in the last few chapters, I was actually feeling absolutely awful and torn. I mean, all right, I knew they were going to end up eventually in the end, but that didn't change anything. How Perry felt afterwards was written so well that I really felt myself sympathizing with him. With both of them. Thank you thank you thank you, Ms. Rossi.

The world building itself in the novel exceeded my expectations for various reasons: while I initially thought it was going to be a Typical YA Dystopia, I was proven wrong when I was introduced to the different abilities Perry's clan has, and its clan affairs. Also, there were cannibals. I have had yet to read a book that has to do with cannibals (this might either sound very familiar, or very sad). And freak, electric-charged storms (called Aether storms. And I know all storms are electric-charged, but trust me, this one is different). And I still have about a billion questions on how Aria and Perry's dystopia world came to be. Plus at the end of the book, it's hinted that there's a possibility a world exists away from the Aether storms, which is pretty intriguing. Where could it be? Dystopian Antarctica? 

In Conclusion...!

I loved loved loved Under the Never Sky, and I'll definitely be picking up the sequel Through the Ever Night. I must. Find out. What happens. To Aria and Perry. Their relationship was freaking amazing. Plus, I have to know if the Aether-free-world is in Antarctica or not. Which it probably isn't, but we'll see.

Rating: 9 - I love you.

- E

* The Goodreads blurb really doesn't do this book justice. You can read what I believe to be a much better blurb here. Though the Goodreads blurb still did a good job :]

Thursday, January 26

Cinderella the Bounty Hunter Part 1 -- Writing Prompt (#3.5))

This week's prompt was way too long for me to copy down (because I couldn't just copy and paste the text) so I made a screenshot of it.


Time slowed down when the dreadful news delivered. 

Cinderella blinked and stared at Lucy's foot, her fingers curling into fists. Ridiculous, she thought faintly. They can't believe this. Clearly it doesn't make sense. 

But clearly it did. Sir Matthew managed a pained smile and stepped back, taking the glass slipper with him. "Well now," he said, nodding as if he too was trying to shake away his shock. "Well now," he said again. He glanced at Cinderella for one brief second before switching his gaze to the girl on the armchair. "Your name is Lucinda, correct?"

Lucy bobbed her head up and down eagerly, looking like a broken doll. "Oh, yes," she said, her voice light with fake breathlessness. "Yes, I am. And may I say that I am positively honored--"

"Wait one second," said Cinderella. She stepped out from her hiding spot behind the single white pillar of the house and Theresa gasped. Cinderella ignored her and continued forward, her eyes only on Sir Matthew. She could not bare to let them go to the Prince. "That slipper," she said loudly, "does not belong to her. I know you know this, Sir Matthew. Does she sound like the girl you talked to last night at the ball? Does she have the same figure, the same appearance as the girl who danced with you, who made you laugh--"

"Stop this at once Cinderella!" Theresa said shrilly. She pointed one shaking finger at her, her chest heaving from the exertion. She seemed paler than usual, a contrast that satisfied Cinderella; she was so used to seeing her step mother with rich, but obviously artificial color on her cheeks. "You stop this at once, Cinderella. Your words are nothing but lies, nothing but poison to our Prince's ears." Her lips curled into a sneer. "Do you honestly think he cares for what you have to say?"

"No one knows what you are talking about, Cinderella," said Lucy with a small smile. She sat up straighter and patted down a few strands sticking out from her bun. "It was a masked ball. I had been wearing wig, you see," she said, turning to Sir Matthew, flashing him what she believed to be a dazzling smile. "My natural hair color is of course a dull brown. Blonde is just so much brighter in comparison, don't you think?"

"I am blonde," Cinderella pointed out, but Julissa merely shook her head. 

"Not your kind of blonde," she muttered, rolling her eyes. "Obviously not your kind. Yours is the color of soiled bricks, not the gold spun brilliancy Lucy wore last night."

Seething, Cinderella clamped her mouth shut, swallowing down a truthful and verbally violent retort that most likely would have earned her two days without food. She finally let her gaze flicker to the Prince, who had been staring at her the whole entire time. When their eyes met, she felt herself flush red, but the Prince remained impassive. The only indication that he felt anything was the twitch of the corner of his mouth. 

Cinderella swallowed, feeling suddenly very numb. She let her hands relaxed, but she felt nothing for the relinquishment of her anger. Her body seemed to have just lost its will to feel. "All right," said Cinderella quietly. She brought her eyes to the ground, a gesture she was so accustomed to by now. It felt right. Safe.

But no one was paying attention to her now. Sir Matthew was trying to wrench the glass slipper away from Lucy's greedy clutches while an insistent Theresa tried to convince him to let go. Julissa watched them, but she appeared as bored as always. Only Prince Charming seemed to have part of his attention on Cinderella.

Stupid, Cinderella told herself. He feels nothing. He doesn't even recognize me. And of course he didn't. Why would he? She was nothing more than a poor servant to her step mother and sisters. A dull color compared to Lucy's bright vibrancy and Julissa's bold shades.

Silently, while everyone else bickered over the glass slipper and wedding affairs, Cinderella slipped out of the room. But right as she left, she saw the Prince smile, as if he knew exactly what she was about to do.

I think I'll post Part 2 on Saturday o.o If I put the whole entire thing in one post, I dunno, it will clutter everything. And I hate cluttering. >.>

Reviewing UNDER THE NEVER SKY tomorrow !

- E

Edit: You can no read Part 2 here. ^-^

Saturday, January 21

5 things you should know about love triangles.

Note: This post is based solely on the love triangles observed in many books of the YA genre.

Lately, there's been a lot of mixed feelings on love triangles of some of the YA books: many people hate it, many people love it, and many people could care less about it. These feelings can evolve from the genre of books the people read. Like, for example, if you love the typical YA Paranormal Romance novels (Twilight! Fallen! Hush, Hush!), you'd be used to love triangles. You might look forward to reading them, even. If you're like this, then you are definitely in one of the majority groups. Because strangely enough, many books with these Love Triangles sell fairly well (Twilight Saga, Mortal Instruments, Vampire Academy, The Hunger Games, Matched, etc. etc. etc.), so, well, that probably means love triangles flow well in the market.

And I say "strangely" because I'm not, you know...
Love triangles make me wince.

There are 5 things you should know about love triangles (based off my observations 'course):

So many people have different takes on it. Generally, readers think love triangles are, you know, a three-person conflict with two people pining for the love of the third. Usually, the two people are males and the third is a female (hello, YA novels). But in Shakespeare, a love triangle is literally a love triangle: Person A loves Person B, who loves Person C, who loves Person A. Another difference is that in most of the YA novels out there these days, there aren't that many homosexual characters involved in love triangles (unless you count Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments series, but I don't because the triangle really wasn't that defined). 

Other people take the topic of love triangles subtly; if two guys so much as develop a crush on a girl--even without the girl knowing--it's a love triangle. might not be to some other people. They might claim that in order for a love triangle to work out, the third person must know in order for the triangle. Different interpretations at work here.

Take this picture for example:
'tis here

In the blurbs of books (and again, I'm focusing on YA), it's all, "Will she choose super hot Guy 1 who makes her feel calm and collected or super hot and wild Guy 2 who's always been there for her?" The players in the triangle always make the MC feel differently towards each one, creating the central conflict that may or may not turn melodramatic if the author isn't careful. Distinct feelings = distinct possibilities. The Girl realizes she could live happily ever after with Guy 1, but then she'd be missing out on an epic adventure with Guy 2. Distinct possibilities = birth of distinct teams. Are you Team Guy 1 or Team Guy 2? 

Why is it that the hottest guys in the series always end up falling in love with our lovely MC? A MC who either thinks she's bland (but really isn't!) or appears to be weak (but really isn't!). A MC who has a best friend who's been in love with her since the Beginning of Their Friendship. Or, even worse, a MC who radiates such an amazing personality that at first glance, Guy 1 or 2 falls in love with her (Hourglass by Myra McEntire! I still don't understand, Kaleb, I really don't...). 

The Girl usually chooses the first person she meets--not including the best friend. So, in other words, the Girl wouldn't choose the best friend. Bella chose Edward. Katniss chose Peeta (Why, Katniss? Why?). Clary chose Jace. The list goes on. Maybe it's because the non-best friends are new characters, new and interesting in the MC's life. Or maybe since the MC hasn't connected/felt the connection with her best friend, well, why start feeling them now? (or at least a connection stronger than the one with the New Guy) But there are still examples of resolved love triangles with a twist, or love triangles that keep readers continuously guessing on who the MC would choose in the end (such as Aprilynne Pike's Wings series because I honestly have no idea who Laurel will end up with, or Kelley Armstrong's Darkest Powers Trilogy which had a pretty surprising outcome). 

I'm sure everyone's figured that out by now. I could list a whole bunch* off the top of my head. Some books focus primarily on the love triangle. Others have it as a strong sub plot and let the other major elements of the story take over (I prefer that one personally ^-^). And even others actually develop the love triangle relationship fully before unleashing it out into the world (I love this). Either way, so many authors use it in their books these days, and it can get a little exhausting, especially if the triangle feels rushed.

And those are the 5 things you should know about love triangles...if they weren't all just a bunch of mumbo-jumbo, rant-ish stuff to you o.o

What are your opinions on the ever famous love triangles?

- E

*Twilight Saga, The Host, Mortal Instruments, Infernal Devices, Matched, Vampire Academy, Iron Fey, The Hunger Games, Hourglass, Wings, House of Night, Unearthly, Faeriewalker, Books of Faerie, Wicked Lovely, Darkest Powers, Nightshade. Whew.

Thursday, January 19

The Ink Timeline that I probably won't follow / Another Challenge-Thing

T h e  I n k  T i m e l i n e

- AKA: the-flawless-timeline-so-I-can-finally-finish-something. Honestly.

Well, it's a timeline. You know, your average line with times...and events...
But the important part is that this timeline doesn't give us a glimpse of the past--it gives us (specifically me) a glimpse of the future. So it's like--like--an outline of all my writerly goals. It will include everything I hope to achieve in the year 2012 before I start junior year in high school, which is supposedly The Hardest Year. This is the ultimate timeline. So it overrules every past thing I've said about my NaNoWriMo or my WIPs or whatever (by the way, after this post, I'm updating my other post on my WIPs just to keep everything as consistent as possible).

Because I've realized my lack of progress in everything I've been writing, and have decided to do something about it. Will I follow this timeline exactly? Probably not. Will I at least try to? Probably. And the trying matters the most. At least I'd be getting somewhere with my life.

The timeline is this:
(UPDATED: 3/3/12)

January - February: Finish the Wikia-Article Profiles (WAP) and the Giant Outline of Dread (GOoD) for Depravity. 

  • This did not happen whatsoever. Instead, I finished all of my Pre-GOoD (the timeline of the era before the start of my WIP series), about half of my Wikia-Article Profiles, and have only started on my official GOoD. Epic fail of the year. So far.

March - April: Write the rough draft of Shadowed; meet the two-thirds mark for Depravity revisions (no idea where that would be). EDIT: As of now this will include:

  • Finish the Wikia-Article Profiles (WAP) and the Giant Outline of Dread (GOoD) for Depravity.

May - June: Revise Shadowed. EDIT: As of now this will include:

  • Write the rough draft of Shadowed; meet the two thirds mark for Depravity revisions

July - August: Revise Shadowed. Finish revisions for Depravity.

September - December: ???

Simple enough of a timeline, but as for actually meeting the goals...well, not so much.


I'm participating in the Harry Potter Reading Challenge! Through 2012, I have to reread and possibly rewatch all seven of the Harry Potter books and movies. I don't have to post a review about them, but I can post discussion entries on my blog or on The Reading Fever (<--well, I would comment in this case). I'm super excited because I. Love. Harry. Potter. (Even though I've got to say, the Potter Puppet Pals are pretty funny.)

This might be the sixth time I've reread the series. I can't wait.

- E

Tuesday, January 17

'Tis my MCs for Depravity.

I did a sorta similar post here on Shadowed's characters. But this time, it's all about Depravity. This really helps you get to know your characters ^-^

My Female MC's personality outline:

Global Personality Test Results
Stability (50%) medium which suggests you average somewhere in between being calm and resilient and being anxious and reactive.
Orderliness (60%) moderately high which suggests you are, at times, overly organized, reliable, neat, and hard working at the expense of flexibility, efficiency, spontaneity, and fun.
Extraversion (26%) low which suggests you are very reclusive, quiet, unassertive, and secretive.
Take Free Global Personality Test
Personality Test by

clean, secretive, does not make friends easily, observer, hates large parties, risk averse, perfectionist, reclusive, solitude loving, more practical than abstract, does not like to stand out, high self control, intellectual, mind over heart, very cautious, takes precautions, respects authority, irritable, emotionally sensitive

Aaand my Male [Somewhat] MC o.o 

Global Personality Test Results
Stability (73%) high which suggests you are very relaxed, calm, secure, and optimistic..
Orderliness (46%) medium which suggests you are moderately organized, hard working, and reliable while still remaining flexible, efficient, and fun.
Extraversion (70%) high which suggests you are overly talkative, outgoing, sociable and interacting at the expense too often of developing your own individual interests and internally based identity.
Take Free Global Personality Test
Personality Test by

social, outgoing, worry free, optimistic, upbeat, tough, likes large parties, makes friends easily, rarely irritated, open, enjoys leadership, trusting, dominant, thrill seeker, strong, does not like to be alone, assertive, mind over heart, confident, controlling, feels desirable, likes the spotlight, loves food, social chameleon, hard working, concerned about others

Polar opposites here. Woah. o.o

- E

Monday, January 16

Hourglass by Myra McEntire

Title: Hourglass
Author: Myra McEntire
Genre: Young Adult - Paranormal & Science Fiction
How I Obtained Said Book: from the wonderful public library
Series: Book 1 in a possible two-book series
The Blurb: (from Goodreads)
One hour to rewrite the past . . . 

For seventeen-year-old Emerson Cole, life is about seeing what isn’t there: swooning Southern Belles; soldiers long forgotten; a haunting jazz trio that vanishes in an instant. Plagued by phantoms since her parents’ death, she just wants the apparitions to stop so she can be normal. She’s tried everything, but the visions keep coming back.

So when her well-meaning brother brings in a consultant from a secretive organization called the Hourglass, Emerson’s willing to try one last cure. But meeting Michael Weaver may not only change her future, it may change her past.

Who is this dark, mysterious, sympathetic guy, barely older than Emerson herself, who seems to believe every crazy word she says? Why does an electric charge seem to run through the room whenever he’s around? And why is he so insistent that he needs her help to prevent a death that never should have happened?

Full of atmosphere, mystery, and romance, Hourglass merges the very best of the paranormal and science-fiction genres in a seductive, remarkable young adult debut.

The Review: (Warning: Possibles spoilers below)

Emerson Cole has a serious problem. Ever since her parents were killed in an automobile accident, she's been able to see ghosts--although that might not exactly be the right word for it. They're like memories, sort of, because when Emerson sticks her hand in one of them, they immediately disappear. Before, these "memories" used to be just people from the past, but at the start of the novel, Emerson starts seeing much larger and more complicated "memories": groups of people. Scenes. So when her older brother tells Emerson that he's brought yet another consultant whom he believes will be able to help her with her "issue", Emerson is reluctant at first but eventually accepts this offer. And so, she meets Michael Weaver, who is from a mysterious organization called the Hourglass, who is--you guessed it--gorgeous, amazing, understanding...and seems to know more about Emerson that she does herself.

Yes, Publishing World, I get it. The Main Male Character in any novel MUST BE gorgeous, amazing, and understanding. He just has to be or the books will not sell. And the Main Female Character MUST CONSIDER looks first. It's an absolute must. 

If anything, the one thing I disliked the most about Emerson was her shallow personality. Throughout most of the book, Emerson admits to herself that Michael can be infuriating and messed up and whatever--but, nope, that's all right, he's forgiven, because he's also gorgeous and amazing and understanding. Why does that matter? It shouldn't! The only redeeming parts Emerson had in this case were her proper reactions to Michael's Infuriatingness--and that was getting angry with him whenever he did something confusing and selfish, in Emerson's eyes (and mine) anyway. Later on, it's revealed why Michael behaved in such a weird way, and I would have been okay with Emerson's relationship with him after reading that part if I hadn't remembered that the only reason she felt so drawn to him in the first place was because of how ridiculously gorgeous he was. 'Course, Emerson is an independent young lady (there are too many independent, hot headed, reckless young ladies in YA books these days), and she supposedly doesn't take crap from anyone--except for maybe someone who's hot and sends electric sparks at you (more on that later). 

And then there's Michael himself. He's a great example of a Gary Stu with a tragic past. Everything about him is perfect--he's hot, he's noble, he's loyal, he's compassionate, and he might be rude and horrible at times but he has good intentions so it's all right. But he's not a believable character in my eyes.  I have read this kind of personality again and again and again, and I'm fairly tired of it. Julie Kagawa's Iron Fey Series is an exception, as is Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments Series because both Ash and Jace have some pretty obvious flaws whereas Michael has none. Plus, there were parts when his dialogue got a little funky: one minute he'd be talking like he lives in the 21st century, and the next his dialogue would flash to the 19th or 20th centuries (and this isn't a plot pun or anything, guys). He could get very formal very fast. Maybe Ms. McEntire felt the need to show Michael's maturity, but to me, it just turned out inconsistent and slightly weird.

There was another big thing that bothered me: Kaleb. 

Kaleb has a somewhat important secondary role in this book (but it's not as fleshed out because Hourglass's main plot centers around the typical Emerson-Michael-Otherworldly Conflict element), and he seems to be an interesting character because he has flaws. But then he falls in love (possibly) with our main character, Emerson, because she's so independent and blunt. And this happens in the span of a day or so. Which I just don't understand. 

I'm all right with love triangles, love conflicts, love anything between more than two people. But relationships take time to build, and Kaleb's relationship with Emerson is equivalent to Romeo's relationship with Juliet. Which basically means: I don't understand it and I don't believe it. I'm actually rooting for Emerson to choose Michael on this one. They at least had some relationship development. There's also another subtle love triangle between Michael, Emerson, and this girl named Ava who is no doubt the most gorgeous girl you will ever meet. Once again there's a love triangle between Gorgeous Girl, Gorgeous Guy, and our Underdog and Very Jealous MC. And once again Gorgeous Guy just brushes off Gorgeous Girl for MC, even though she isn't gorgeous--which makes me wonder, if the author can make a non-shallow Male Lead, why can't she make a non-shallow Female Lead? There's some kind of "unexpected" twist of character traits here.

Despite all of this though, Hourglass had some pretty redeeming qualities. For example, the premise itself is very interesting. I loved how Ms. McEntire created those Laws that even time traveling had to be built around. I was a little overwhelmed and irritated by the amount of different supernatural abilities (it reminded me a lot of the vampires from the Twilight Saga), but that's okay because the characters the abilities belonged to were memorable (though, of course, I didn't get to read much about them). I also loved the plot twists. Man. Those were the best parts of the book and probably the only reasons I want to read the sequel. The only part that didn't go with me was the whole spark-igniting thing between Emerson and Michael. I really didn't understand that one. Past Time Traveler + Future Time Traveler = igniting physical sparks? Maybe this was explained in the book somewhere, but if it was, I didn't catch on. 

(SPOILERS BELOW. Highlight to read)

And speaking of the whole Past-Future time traveling thing, in the book it's stated that anyone can travel to the future, but not many can travel to the past, making Emerson very special. But hang on a second. Didn't Michael, Future Time Traveler, travel to the past with Emerson using Cat's exotic matter ability? Doesn't that mean both Past and Future time travelers could easily go to the past? (Well, assuming they find another Cat). Maybe someone can clarify this for me.

Also, I liked how Ms. McEntire created a fairly 3-D MC (despite some of the MC's characteristics being a little overused) with an interesting past. I'm a little grateful that she didn't make Michael a dark, brooding type of male lead, but his perfection was still a little too much for me.

In Conclusion...! 

Despite Hourglass falling flat and infuriating me majorly at some points, it's still pretty gripping. I mean, the plot twists were excellent. The characters/relationships, not so much. But I'm still reading the sequel,  Timepiece. 

Rating: 7 - Now this, this is a book. Just a book.
I was actually going for a 6 (Hey you. Unless you have absolutely nothing else to read, I would recommend passing this book on the bookshelf), but the plot twists were seriously good and unexpected, so I felt like they redeemed the issues I had with the book somewhat. 

- E

Why I'm bad with vocabulary -- Writing Prompt (#2)

Get a dictionary and choose 10 5 words from it without looking at the definitions. Write them down and create definitions for them. What do the words make you think of? What do you think they should mean?


Oh, this brings back memories of SAT studying. The Critical Reading section of the SATs is supposed to be the most difficult section for a reason. Vocabulary is some difficult stuff (<--see? I used "difficult" twice. That's some serious vocabulary list I have in my head) Especially for me. Which might sound weird coming from an aspiring writer, but let's just forget about that for now.

If you do happen to know what these words mean beforehand...well. Don't laugh. I mean it -.-

- VESPERTINE: Did you know that Google Chrome says that this isn't even a word? It has a red squiggly line underneath it right now. Hrm. Interesting.
Anyway. I'm going to break this down: vesper + tine = vespertine. So what's a vesper? No clue. For some reason it reminds me of a snake (probably because it's sort of similar to the word "viper"), so I'm going to say that it's someone with...snake-like attributes. Or um...something slithery? Slimey? I'm just assuming this is a noun >.>
- MUGWUMP: Wait a second. Google Chrome says "vespertine" isn't a word, but when it comes to a word like "mugwump", it says it is one? Ridiculous, I'm telling you >.<
So mugwump. Probably an adjective. Definitely not having anything to do with mugs (just assuming that right now). Um...let's see. I'd be lying if I said that the first image that popped in my head when I saw this word wasn't an image of a mug, but that has nothing to do with the definition, I'm sure of it. It's probably an insult. Probably an offensive word someone would use. Like, "Hey, you're such a mugwump." Oh wait. That would make it a noun then o.o
- INCURSION: Curses? Cutting? Wait, no, that's incision. I think. Agh. I really don't know this one, I don't. All I can think of is incision right now.
- PURBLIND: All right, this one looks like pure-blind. Like "pure blood" but instead of blood, it's blind. So then...someone who's completely blind? No, that's too direct. Um. The definition of this word doesn't reflect anything good. There.
- VICISSITUDE: A pretty weird word to pronounce. Its pronunciation is equivalent to that of the name "Narcissus". Lots of "sss". Like a snake. Rhymes with "attitude". All I can think of is someone with some kind of harsh, offensive personality. But I really have no clue.

Well there you go. Some literary embarrassment right there, I guess. At least I can spell (what? what is this spell check you speak of?)

Reviewing Hourglass later today! And Happy MLK Day ^-^

- E


- VESPERTINE: of, pertaining to, or occurring in the evening (way off with this one)
- MUGWUMP: a person who is unable to make up his or her own mind on an issue (bah. so it is a noun)
- INCURSION: an invasion of a place or territory (eh. cutting into a territory, maybe?)
- PURBLIND: nearly or partially blind (close enough)
- VICISSITUDE: a change or variation occurring in the course of something (right, I completely failed this one.)

Sunday, January 15

I'm killing trees/The Giant Outline of Dread.

Confession time!

What does a writer/potential author do best?

Kill trees.

No matter what kind of writer you are, whether or not you write brilliant stories or crappy stories, you will have to kill trees. Well, indirectly. Words go on paper, paper comes from trees. End of flowchart.

I try to avoid printing as much as possible. Since two weeks ago, I'd done all my editing on the computer, but it had been very slow. I felt restricted, like I couldn't see the Bigger Picture. Then two weeks ago, I started printing out my manuscript at school, 10 pages each time I managed to get a computer. So far I've printed about 100 pages, know. 100 pages. That's...a lot. Way more than enough to make me feel guilty.

*sigh* 100 pages. 200 more to go. *winces*

The reason for killing trees, however (at least for me) is to get ready to make the Giant Outline of Dread, or GOoD for short. GOoD will either drive me crazy or make my life considerably easier--or maybe even both. Or neither.

The point of GOoD is for organization purposes. So far I've been working on my WAP (Wikia Article Profiles--they're ideas/word building of my story based on the articles and format of Wikipedia), which also helps with the whole brainstorming ideas part of the organizing. But what I really need is GOoD:

story arcs > chapters > major events = post it notes
post it notes + more post it notes = GOoD

(^if that made any sense at all)

I hate to get all technical, but that up there is GOoD. It's time to stop spending hours trying to remember tiny details in my manuscript and start getting organized.


- E

Friday, January 13

Book Review Policy (ehhhh.)

I think I have everything covered on the FTC policy for book reviews. If not, let me know (pretty pretty please).

All right. Here goes nothing.

- Whenever I review books, it is done without any payment or compensation, and it is based solely on my own individual opinions. If I buy a book, borrow a book, or receive a book from a contest or an author/publisher/anyone else, or through any other process, the process through which I obtained the book will be specified in the review. Again, the review itself is all based on what I think.

Soooo...That's it.


Originally, I started this blog with the intentions of not reviewing books because I still do not like making authors feel bad. But then I changed my mind for several reasons:

1. There are some pretty good books out there. I mean, many people love books, right? And there are a lot of blogs out there that review books. There are blogs only for reviewing books, blogs that hold book-related contests, blogs that hold character competitions, etc. Unfortunately (or fortunately; it really depends on how you look at it), this blog isn't one of those blogs. Well I mean, starting now, I might post a few reviews here and there, but I'm not going to dedicate everything I have to book reviews. The point is, good books = compulsion-for-people-to-know-about-said-books. Which also brings us to reason two:

2. There are some pretty bad books out there. As well. And I mean awful books. Horrible, whiny books that make you want to throw it at a wall, or burn it, or do other violent things to it. Haven't you always wanted to rant about the crapiness of a book? I know I have. And frankly, sometimes the urge to complain overrules the guilt of insulting a piece of work someone poured their heart and soul into.

3. Book reviews are inspiring. Because they're all opinion, and they can even make authors or would-be writers question their own WIP(s). I know they have for me. (This is going to sound messed up and sadistic-ish, but I love reading the 1-star reviews of bestsellers on Amazon or Goodreads, especially of books I loved. So interesting.) (I'm not sure how this really pertains to me wanting to start reviewing books, unless I somehow manage to be inspiring.)

4. There's this one book called Hourglass by Myra McEntire. And other books similar to its genre/themes. That I really. Really. Want to write. About. Maybe this goes along with reason #1/2.

So guys, that's all there is to it. Four reasons on why I'd like to review books.

Oh, here's the review list thing in case you're wondering:

- Cover (o' course)
- Title, author, genre
- The very important "How I Obtained Said Book" part
- Series: Yes/no (if it's a series, the name of the series will be stated. hopefully.)
- The Blurb
- THE REVIEW (*cue epic music*):
  • First, overall plot summary
  • Then a bit on characters
  • And a bit on the plot
  • And a bit on the key elements/themes/creative ideas/premise/whatever else that was/was supposed to have a long-lasting effect on the reader
  • "In conclusion...!" part
- Rating--and what it means (this will go off a 10-point scale)
  • 1: No. Bad. Never again. Shrivel-up-and-die-worthy of a book. A-b-o-m-i-n-a-t-i-o-n. Grr.
  • 2: The appeal of this book was equivalent to the appeal of kissing a(n) (fill in blank here with horrific creature), though after being paid $20 (<-- why, you could buy another book with that money. ahem.)
  • 3: This was flat out awful. Save a few parts, I suppose. But very few.
  • 4: So much potential, eh? Too bad it failed to reach it.
  • 5: I could care less.
  • 6: Hey, you. Unless you just have absolutely nothing else to read, I would recommend passing this book on the bookshelf.
  • 7: Now this, this is a book. Just a book.
  • 8: Hey there. I think I'll read you again another time.
  • 9: I love you.
  • 10: The light of my life. Currently.
I'll be reviewing Hourglass next week. Heh.

- E

Wednesday, January 11

The Creative Writing Prompt Introduction / The Greasy Paper Plate (#1)

In order to motivate myself to do my Spanish homework, I decided to get my brain going by using this nifty web site: Creative Writing Prompts for brain juice...flowingness. I dunno if that made any sense (or if Spanish homework even needs brain juice creativity, but let's just forget about that part) but...I found that site a long time ago, though I just never had the motivation to do much with it. I guess that's changed now. Who knows?

These things will be weekly! I know, I know. I barely even post monthly, so how could I possibly post weekly?

Ah, but one of my new year resolutions is to be a better blogger. So...there you go.

Anyway, here's this weeks.

Close your eyes briefly and think of one object in the room. Focus on it and try to recall as much detail as you can about it. After 3 minutes or so, open your eyes and write about that object without looking at it.

The Greasy Paper Plate

You are on the table, next to my netbook, taunting me like--like those pigs in Angry Birds (after I lose). You, with your grease spots and stains, compelling me to grab another blueberry muffin. Because once upon a time--well, five minutes ago--you once had a muffin upon you, but now that muffin is gone, consumed. By me.

You are white, but not completely clean; round, and not completely smooth. You were once a plate for pizza, a plate my dad picked up from Sam's Club. But you were left alone, by yourself, while the other plates were gradually thrown away one by one. But you, you were left alone until the moment my older sister put a blueberry muffin on you and carried it to me. You were the last paper plate. And now, you too are gone.

My sister asks me if I'm done with you, and almost without a second thought, I say, "Yes, yes I am", still with my eyes closed. I hear her move to the kitchen and the rustle of the plastic bag of the trashcan as you are dumped inside. I should feel guilty, parting with you, but I don't. I don't. All I can think about was how lovely that blueberry muffin looked on you.

I'm not sure why, but I really couldn't take this prompt seriously. Maybe it's because if I had, then it would've sounded REALLY boring. And dull. Possibly. Hm. Maybe you found what I just wrote dull as well. And silly. And ridiculous. 

Until next week then? :D

- E

Monday, January 9

Soul Screamers Reading Challenge !

Soul Screamers Reading Challenge

So guys, I just entered myself into the Soul Screamers Reading Challenge for Rachel Vincent's Soul Screamers series. Basically all I have to do is read (well, in this case, reread) the Soul Screamers series and write a review for each book that I reread. Participating in this challenge will put in you in the drawing for many fabulous prizes. You can find more information on this here.

Typically, participants would post their reviews on their blogs, but I'm not going to because of that review policy for blogs that still befuddles me (so if anyone by chance understands that policy--and I'm sure many of you do since you're not like me--feel free to comment and explain it to me. I wouldn't mind reviewing books on here every now and then). I'm posting it on my Goodreads Account instead. Hurray!

Basically, if you want to know what I think of each book of the series, go to my Goodreads account some time and check out my reviews. [As you can see from the banner above] I have five months to reread the series, which is a fairly long time for just five books (a book a month, apparently). I'll hopefully be posting a review on every 15th of each month. So I guess that means by review for My Soul to Take will be up on January 15th (Goodreads account, everyone :P)

And just in case you're interested in participating as well, here's the link again: clicketh me

That's it for now guys! I'm running on limited time, so I'm cutting this post short *shoots pre-calc homework dirty look*

- E

Thursday, January 5

Book List: Wings of the Wicked (#4)

My Ultimate Book List is a collection of books that I really, really want to read, whether they have been released or not. Some of these books might not be on the shelves yet; some of these books might have been on the shelves for ages. It doesn't matter. I just really, really want to read them.
 Life as the Preliator is harder than Ellie ever imagined. 
Balancing real life with the responsibility of being Heaven’s warrior is a challenge for Ellie. Her relationship with Will has become all business, though they both long for each other. And now that the secret of who she really is has come out, so have Hell’s strongest reapers. Grown bold and more vicious, the demonic threaten her in the light of day and stalk her in the night. 

She’s been warned. 
Cadan, a demonic reaper, comes to her with information about Bastian’s new plan to destroy Ellie’s soul and use an ancient relic to wake all the souls of the damned and unleash them upon humanity. As she fights to stay ahead of Bastian’s schemes , the revelations about those closest to her awaken a dark power within Ellie that threatens to destroy everything—including herself. 

She’ll be betrayed. 
Treachery comes even from those whom she loves, and Ellie is broken by the deaths of those who stood beside her in this Heavenly war. Still, she must find a way to save the world, herself, and her love for Will. If she fails, there will be hell to pay. 

Right, so there's this pretty amazing, good book called ANGELFIRE by Courtney Allison Moulton. It involves reapers and swords and angels and great characters. And a bunch of fight scenes I think you'll love (well, anyone who enjoys reading fight scenes anyway). And if you enjoyed Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments Series (or her Infernal Devices one) you might like this. Even though Will and Jace are pretty different. But still.

The point is, the sequel to ANGELFIRE is coming out soon (WINGS OF THE WICKED), and the first 100 pages of the book are up! Well all right, this probably means nothing to you if you haven't read the first book yet, but it means quite a bit to me. Which is why I'm posting it here. I guess o.o Even though I still haven't read it yet. *punches homework in the face*

But in case you have read the first book, here's the link to blog post that has the link (heh :P) clicketh me.

What's more, the lovely author is also hosting a see who can win the ARC of a pretty interesting book called INCARNATE by Jodi Meadows. The link to that contest is here. And the summary for INCARNATE is here.

That's it, guys! That's all I've got to say.

Actually, no. I lied. I have some other things to mention.

First, if you're a fan of Ally Carter's Gallagher Girls books (and even though it's totally out of my genre, I am a huge fan), The Gallagher Academy web site is up. If you haven't heard about this yet, this web site has some exclusive scenes, excerpts, and what not that are in the POV of many of the characters--including Zachary Goode. (Because Zach is amazing <3) Ally's next book in the series, Out of Sight, Out of Time will be out in March, so...remember that :P

Second, have you guys read the Soul Screamers series by Rachel Vincent? Because those books are pretty good too. At one glance, it might seem like another Twilight-Saga-based-series with the whole "helpless girl falls in love with mysterious guy!" thing. But it's not. Because there is another character in the series who is awesome, much more awesome than Mysterious Guy, who isn't even that mysterious. His name is Tod. And I suggest you read the books because Tod's pretty amazing. (My vocabulary's pretty bad tonight.) (Also, read the books because the word-building is quite unique and interesting--Tod isn't the only reason I've kept up with the series, though he is a main one.) Check her blog out for more info, or just read the summary here for My Soul to Take (book 1 of the Soul Screamers series).

Ahh...promoting books. Spreading the love.

What good books have you guys been seeing around lately?

- E