August Ishness {2015}

ishness

Another month has come and gone, so Ishness once more comes our way!

It was WAY too hot again, but it also rained — yay! I mean… I hear tell it was rain. I mean… there were, like, drops of water falling out of the sky. Like… lots of drops. And the weather cooled off and it wasn’t scorching and… it was… wet. For a couple of days. Like… who knew that water fell out of the sky — ISN’T THAT A MYTH? O_O (Ahem. Okay, so maybe it’s not THAT dry around here… BUT STILL.)

Of course it’s hot again NOW, so… So much for that. I WANT IT TO BE AUTUMN, FOLKS. I really do. Of course, then I’ll freeze in 70 degrees… (Seriously, it was 70 and I was COLD. :P) But OH WELL, I guess I can’t win. XD

But enough about the weather… I feel like I got a lot accomplished in August! I’m a happy little writer. ^_^

Writing

For one thing, I wrote 16,000 words in August. Which makes me very happy. 🙂

9d7f4ec3b9d76b65b071b3a86e7a5fbcFirstly… I finished writing my contemporary / mystery / slight romance short story Darkling Reflections!!!

Excuse me while I go run around in reckless circles screaming with ecstatic abandon.

I fiiiiiinished it! I’m so very very proud of me and I love it to death, and it was 11,000 ish words — which is long for a short story but still short, so I’m happy — and it’s kind of gorgeous and I’ve never written anything like it, and I NEVER finish writing stories, so I’m just happy and in love with it. ❤

CAN I JUST FLAIL PLEASE. I FINISHED WRITING A SHORT STORYYYY.

Ahem.
Sorry.
That just… called for a little excitement. >.>

I actually did write a summary for it, so here it is:

Darkling Reflections

A young heiress left alone in the world finds solace in her melancholy by nightly visiting the restaurant she always went to with her father, where she pours her overflowing thoughts into scribbles on napkins. Between avoiding the man who wants to marry her, trying to uncover the mystery of her father’s death, continually running into a mysterious young man in a trench coat, and forgetting to smile at the waiters, she’s keeping quite busy. But there’s still a murderer out there, who will stop for neither rain nor romance.

KW2coverPI also started really writing in The Secret of Kedran’s Wood (KW2) again for the first time since… February. I feel really good about that too! All of the productive feelings!

And I roughly outlined my Sleeping Beauty idea, The Rose and the Raven (not sure if I’ll be doing anything with it yet or not…).

I started some preliminary plotting work on The Silver Forest (this year’s upcoming NaNo Novel; please tell me how NaNo is only 2 months away…), like NAMING ALL THE CHARACTERS. Yes, I’m excited about that. *huggles all the Irish-sounding names* Like, I have a Prince Finnigan. (Come on, tell me that’s not cool??) I’ve gotten a tiny glimpse of the characters I’m having in this ENORMOUS cast this NaNo and I’m ridiculously excited. I’m going to have so much fun (if I survive NaNo and can manage that many characters, of course… Eheh).

Twelve Dancing Princesses ❤ (Pinterest)

Miscellaneous

I took up crocheting again! I hadn’t in YEARS but somehow I got it in my head that I wanted a purse/book bag combination thing and that I could make one… So I did. I kind of love it and feel like it turned out remarkably well, considering I probably hadn’t crocheted a thing in like five years, and that I made it up out of my head and kind of winged the whole thing, hoping it would turn out… Behold its beauty.

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(The blue part is actually much darker than that; my camera's flash has delusions of grandeur and thinks everything is only as it shows it, not how it truly is, and thinks it should be a bright neon blue; but it isn't.)

(The blue part is actually much darker than that; my camera’s flash has delusions of grandeur and thinks everything is only as it shows it, not how it truly is, and thinks it should be a bright neon blue; but it isn’t.)

Watching

Wow, what a weird collection of stuff I’ve been watching… Sci-fi, western, and period fantasy…

moviesaug2015I finished rewatching all of the Star Wars movies to prep for the new one, which was fun. December is soon! I forgot how much I love Obi-wan in the prequel trilogy and Han in the original trilogy. HAN SOLO. SO MUCH SNARK. I love him and young-Obi so much. ❤ (Also Chewie and R-2 are adorable and I love the lizard thing that Obi rides in Episode III. Want one, I do. Also, Yoda.)

I also watched some of this old western TV show about Jim Bowie, which was fun, and saw the BBC mini series version of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, which was… interesting. (CHILDERMASS. I know, nobody’s read that book let alone seen the show, so nobody understands me when I fangirl…)

Bookish

I also got dozens of books from a friend who was moving and was incredibly nice and gave them to me. Like… how do I even express my feelings. ❤

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These are a few of the books I’m most excited to read.

Speaking of books…

I FINISHED READING PLENILUNE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Plenilune Cover SingleYes, that requires caps-lock and that many exclamation points. It does. Seriously though, I’d been in that book since Christmas. It took me almost eight months to read it. I thought I would NEVER be done. But I was determined to finish it in August so I set myself a goal to read a chapter a day and I did it and finished early and just AAAHH I feel so free and so accomplished for making it through that monstrously large book! *happy flailing* Yes, it was worth it, in case you were wondering, simply because of Dammerung, who is a FABULOUS character, one of my favorites of ever. Dammerung is the best. That is all. ❤

I read these books in August. SO MANY BOOKS. I feel accomplished.

Aug2015books

  • A Wish Made of Glass, which I reviewed on the blog. Cinderella-ish and fey things and delicious writing! 5 stars.
  • Mixed on the Twelve Dancing Princesses Tales From Around the World collection. Fairytales are dark, y’all. 😛 Also not all of them were really 12DP but just shared themes. But still interesting, and useful research for my NaNo novel this year! Also Irish fairytales are the best because HUMOR. I kinda reviewed that on Goodreads. 3 stars?
  • Plenilune I already talked about but it gets 5 stars just because DAMMERUNG.
  • The Ankulen was… interesting. Hadn’t read anything like it before. 4 stars. (Reviewed it on Goodreads…)
  • House of Many Ways I reread, which means I’ve successfully reread the entire Howl trilogy this year and LKDJLFKJSDKJL I LOVE THEM SO MUCH. ❤ This one is hilarious and I love it. Also Twinkle. I WANT MY THTWIPEY ONETH. That is all. 5 stars (duh).
  • Loot: How to Steal a Fortune was a random YA heisty book from the library. It was enjoyable and had some fun heisty/con things but… I think something was missing. I don’t know. It was still fun though. 3 stars.
  • Enchanted Glass I also randomly got from the library because DIANA WYNNE JONES. Magical fun ensued. 5 stars (all the Diana Wynne Jones things get five stars).
  • Captive of Raven Castle. I reviewed this on Goodreads too… It was enjoyable. 4 stars.
  • Veiled Rose – I FINALLY FINISHED THIS. I started it in April so I’m so glad to be done. Of course, I’d read Heartless eons ago, so I hardly remember it so the parts that linked up with that I didn’t get as much out of as I should… But Leo and Rose Red are adorable, especially as kids, and Leo’s a mess now and laksdflkdj I need Moonblood this instant. (Also pink frogs falling from trees and I love you I love you. XD) 5 stars.
  • I read one of the novellas in Five Enchanted Roses last month, but I got around to the rest recently. It’s very convenient how there are five different star ratings and five different stories; I assigned a different rating to each. Stone Curse is still my favorite. ❤ The others were varying levels of enjoyable. *shrug* The overall still gets 5 stars because of Stone Curse (I LOVED IT SO MUCH) but the actual rating apparently would average 3 because of a 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 star rating… Anyways I added review-ish thoughts on Goodreads.

Nightstand Books (September)

Nightstand Books is done monthly by Jenelle and D.J. — join them usually the first Wednesday of the month (I know, I tend to rebel and be early…) and share your own nightstand books if you wish!

And heeeere is my Nightstand Book(s) of the month:

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YES! I’m only in the middle of ONE book right now and I feel so happy and accomplished that I finished all those books I was in and wanted to read in August! *happy flailing* I happen to be on page 50 and Percy only FINALLY arrived so I assume the story will pick up now. It’s fun and funny though, and has that “classics” feel that usually means I don’t have a CLUE what’s going on but I assume it’s probably brilliant and over my head. (Robert Louis Stevenson does that to me ALL the time and it’s fascinating.) I plan to finish The Scarlet Pimpernel ASAP and then to leisurely decide what to read next and try not to be in the middle of ten dozen books at the same time ever again. (Ahem. We’ll see how that goes…)

In other news, I seem to have re-discovered my addiction of parentheses. Sorry ’bout that. 😛

***

So! That was my August. No idea what September holds, yet, except that it’s going to be insanely busy. It’s rather a frightening thought…

Also! I’m going to be internet-less this coming extended weekend and very busy beforehand, so… if I’m not around, that is why. But I have something super fun and (hopefully) exciting coming up on the blog next week on Wednesday, so stay tuned!

Coffee Book Tag!

Tag Catch-Up Post #1

Cait at Paper Fury tagged me for the Coffee Book Tag! WHICH EXCITES ME SO MUCH. For those of you who don’t know, Cait is a fabulous book blogger and also queen of the world. *nod nod* Go check out her hilarious blog, do! And become a minion/pineapple while you’re at it — you know you want to. Know why? *whispers* Cait gives out cake.

FergusBadge
So here’s the funny thing: I don’t really drink coffee. I really enjoy it when I do! But I just… don’t really drink it all that often.

BUT. I am still doing this lovely tag because of many reasons including how cool of an idea comparing books to coffee varieties is.

I am also taking a page out of Cait’s book (ha ha!) and getting a bit into book photography. Mwahaha. It’s super time consuming but sooo fun.

So let’s get to it!

The Coffee Book Tag

BLACK: NAME A SERIES THAT’S TOUGH TO GET INTO BUT HAS HARDCORE FANS.

1

The Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien

I am a hardcore fan of The Lord of the Rings! …Not so much of black coffee. Ahem. But SOME people seem to think LotR is hard to get into. What even. I can’t even imagine what is wrong with them. It’s fabulous! Okay so maaaayybe it starts a little slow and is enormous. I can understand that. But it’s so so so worth it. Just look at that sweeping epic and the fantasy and the elves and the Rohirrim and the hobbits and Aragorn and Faramir and Eowyn and Eomer and Merry and Legolas and Gandalf and all of the epicness that ensues on their adventures and isn’t it just positively the best ever, preciousss? Yes, we are hardcore fans.

PEPPERMINT MOCHA: NAME A BOOK THAT GETS MORE POPULAR DURING THE WINTER OR A FESTIVE TIME OF YEAR.

2

Wintermoon Wish – Sharon Shinn

I had the hardest time with this, because all I could think of was A Christmas Carol. Which I enjoyed, but it doesn’t taste like a peppermint mocha! It’s more like… cinnamon. So instead I’m actually going with a short story (don’t shoot me) which is in the collection “Firebirds Rising” edited by Sharyn November; most of the stories in it were frankly blech. But there were a few I liked, and my favoritest of ALL was “Wintermoon Wish” by Sharon Shinn. I ADORED IT OKAY. It’s some fantasy-world-ish version of a winter holiday like Christmas, called, yes, Wintermoon. And it’s just the most perfect little short story ever. Plus it has Jake. Which is reason enough for fabulousness. So maybe I’m bending the rules a bit, since probably no one’s even HEARD of it, but it gets more popular with ME, so that’s got to count, right?

HOT CHOCOLATE: WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE CHILDREN’S BOOK?

3

A Bear Called Paddington – Michael Bond

I just love Paddington. Everyone read this book. It’s perfect and hilarious and adorable and just perfect. Paddington Bear is one of my favorite characters, and he gets into such delightful scrapes and messes, but you know everything will be okay… eventually. I just love how he’s a BEAR in the midst of all the ordinary English people, and their reactions are the best. Plus, I love his hard stare, and his hat, and his love of marmalade and how he’s from Darkest Peru. Paddington’s the best, guys.

DOUBLE SHOT OF ESPRESSO: NAME A BOOK THAT KEPT YOU ON THE EDGE OF YOUR SEAT FROM START TO FINISH.

4

Illusionarium – Heather Dixon

Ohhhhh my did it ever. I was so hooked on this thing! It was my first (and only thus far) steampunk novel to read. MAN WAS IT TENSE. I was so caught up in everything and read it in one day and I loved the characters and it was all fascinating and terrifying and Lookwood might be my favorite character so far this year, maybe, just because I’ve never met a character like him!! I have pigeon-holes for character types I like and… he didn’t fit. HE WAS NEW. I love him a lot, that teenage swaggering blond royal-airguardsman with an ego and a temper and an eyepatch and a sort of fierce British temperament like you wouldn’t believe. ❤ The book was partially too scary for me, but it certainly kept me on the edge of my seat.

STARBUCKS: NAME A BOOK YOU SEE EVERYWHERE.

5

The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins

Disclaimer: I haven’t read The Hunger Games yet. And this one belongs to my brother. And it’s the only one of my list today that I HAVEN’T read (though I have seen the films thus far…) But it is positively everywhere, wouldn’t you say?

THAT HIPSTER COFFEE SHOP: GIVE A BOOK BY AN INDIE AUTHOR A SHOUTOUT

6

The Book of Sight – Deborah Dunlevy

The Book of Sight was a random book I downloaded for my Kindle app for free, but actually got around to reading and kind of adored. It’s a contemporary fantasy about a few teens in a little town, who find this book and… yeah, I won’t give it away, but it’s awesome. It’s kind of whimsical and interesting… and in fact reminds me somewhat of my own contemporary fantasy I write, so it was fun and I just… really enjoyed myself reading it! So, shoutout! Go check it out, y’all.

OOPS! I ACCIDENTALLY GOT DECAF: NAME A BOOK YOU WERE EXPECTING MORE FROM.

7

The Ravenmaster’s Secret – Elivra Woodruff

So I should have loved this book! The main character’s name is Forrest, he lives at the Tower of London, it’s set in the 1700’s, has Scottish rebels, the heroine’s a Stewart, there’s schemes and escapes and basically what’s not to like?? Unfortunately, it did it all wrong and the ending was wrong wrong wrong and gaaahh I got so frustrated with this book! *flail* Rawr. It makes me upset. And such a pretty cover, too! Call me disappointed. *glowers at decaf*

THE PERFECT BLEND: NAME A BOOK OR SERIES THAT WAS BOTH BITTER AND SWEET, BUT ULTIMATELY SATISFYING.

8

The Westmark Trilogy – Lloyd Alexander

This trilogy by Lloyd Alexander, consisting of Westmark, The Kestrel, and The Beggar Queen… I LOVE THEM. They definitely have their share of bitter (*cough*characterdeaths*cough*) which normally should have made me dislike the books, but it didn’t matter because I just LOVED them so much and they left me jittery with book happiness because they were perfect and I loved them, despite the sad. So this is indeed the bitter and sweet and satisfying perfect blend. (Also, 1700’s type of tale, you know…)

GREEN TEA: NAME A BOOK OR SERIES THAT IS QUIETLY BEAUTIFUL.

9

Orphan’s Song – Gillian Bronte Adams

Orphan’s Song feels so quietly beautiful and green-tea like to me… The world and the characters and the tale and the allegory and subtle magical notes of song — it’s just gorgeous in a quiet sort of way and I adore it. Also griffin. GRIFFIN. And it feels so GREEN and fantasy ish and I love the characters so much and the writing is just lovely. (And by the way it ended bad and I’m still waiting for the sequel! I needs it, precious!!)

CHAI TEA: NAME A BOOK OR SERIES THAT MAKES YOU DREAM OF FAR OFF PLACES.

10

The Iron Ring – Lloyd Alexander

Most kinds of books I read make me dream of far off places, but most of them that I read about (fantasy worlds and the British Isles…) feel actually closer to me in a way than my own place of dwelling. So I’m going to say Lloyd Alexander’s India folklore type story, The Iron Ring, which just feels so rich and foreign and unique and culturally deep and golden but also familiar in that way a dream is, that I just want to go there and see it. Also elephants and tigers and gems and Ashwara.

EARL GREY: NAME YOUR FAVOURITE CLASSIC.

11

Kidnapped – Robert Louis Stevenson

Scotland! 1700’s! (Again…) Alan Breck Stewart! Kidnapping! The high seas! Murder! Traveling through the Highlands with redcoats on your tail! Friendship! Love! (Or… love if you tack on the sequel, David Balfour/Catriona, which I consider the second half and therefore inseparable…) What’s not to like? Plus the accents. I love the accents. And it sticks in me mind that Alan is delightfully droll and witty, ye ken? There’s nae gettin’ away frae it, e’en if ye’d want to — which, weel, why would ye, then?? And I love the relationship between Alan and Davy… And it’s just all around swashbuckling awesomeness! Best. Classic. Ever.

***

So! I’m supposed to tag people… Which means I’m trying to think of people who like coffee and drawing a blank. XD I’m afraid I don’t pay good enough attention to who the coffee fans are and aren’t… my bad.

I Tag:

Kayla @ The Wordsmithy’s Shop

Elfie @ Dream Dancer

Ana @ Butterflies of the Imagination

C.B. @ The World of the Writer

Katie Grace @ A Writer’s Faith

Emma Clifton @ Peppermint and Prose

And y’all only have to do it if you want, and are not required to. 😉

And all of you reading this: If you have a blog and either think it looks fun, or like coffee and books, then you are officially TAGGED.

…And if you don’t like books . . . oh my goodness what are you doing reading my blog you must be lost you poor soul!! O_O You’d best hop on along to… wherever it is online non-bookish people frequent. I wouldn’t know.

READERS, DO YOU LIKE COFFEE? Or any of these books? Favorite flavors…? Educate me about coffee or what books you’d pick for these categories! Tell me all!