Sisterhood Blogger Award

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Sarah @ Dreams & Dragons tagged me for the Sisterhood of World Bloggers Award, which I’ve done before, but I couldn’t pass up these awesome (and difficult-looking!) questions!

1. If you were tossed into a fictional world, which genre would you want it to be?  (In other words, which would you have the best chance at surviving?)

I wouldn’t necessarily have the best chance of surviving, but I’d definitely pick fantasy. Not going to even try saying anything otherwise. (Of course, odds don’t look good for survival in a dystopian or sci-fi place, so fantasy is better than that…)

2. After arriving in that world, what would you do first?

Quickly make friends with the most powerful (good) person or creature I could find so that they would keep me safe, and then proceed to explore. Or possibly sit in a castle library and read. Either/or.

3. You have an adventure in that other world and now have the choice of whether to stay there with the friends you’ve made or to return home to your family and former life. What do you decide?

*shifty eyes* That entirely depends on circumstances. But I’d probably just make sure to get the best of both worlds (literally) and have a magical door like Howl does so I can live both places. 😀 (Let me live in my delusions…)

4. Changing the subject: what’s your favorite Christmas song?

Ring Christmas Bells/Carol of the Bells.

5. Your favorite Christmas movie?

Muppet Christmas Carol.

6. If you were a superhero, what would your superpower(s) and code name be?

My superpower would be the ability to transfer thoughts/words/scenes perfectly directly onto paper (or computer) and my code name would be the Page Dreamer.

…What, you never heard of someone wanting to have a writer superpower? *cough*

7. Also, who would your arch-nemesis be? (Name, powers, etc.)

The Great Horrifically Humongous Procrastination of Doom and Despair and Apocalypse.

. . . I think his powers are pretty obvious. >.>

O, Arch-nemesis of mine, ye shall rue the day you ever– ! Um. I’m not sure what you shall rue the day of. I’ll figure it out later… Ahem.

8. What villain would you most want to show up on your doorstep (if one had to show up there)? How would you react to said villain?

ACK. What even, Sarah?? Erm. I’m just going to say Loki and hope that he’d be more amused than deadly at that moment in time. *nods* And I would probably react with wide eyes and quickly slam the door and lock it, or else very very politely ask him in to tea and try not to offend him.

9. What good guy (from one of your favorite books/series) would you least want to show up on your doorstep? Again, how would you react to him/her?

This one is the. hardest. A good guy from a favorite book that I don’t want to meet…? Hum. I’ve literally got nothing. Zilch. I’m going to have to sidle casually on to the next question and pretend I had an answer. *sidles casually on* >.>

10. How long did it take you to answer these questions?

Longer than I would care to admit. XD I didn’t time it. I should’ve… Then I could have knowingly cackled while refusing to tell the number… (I think these villainous questions are getting to my brain. O_O *is alarmed* Thanks a lot, Sarah. ;))

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So! What about you, my roadlings? What genre would you visit, what would you pick for a superpower, and what villain wouldn’t you mind showing up on your door? 😉 Answer in the comments, or consider yourself tagged and do the tag on your blog!

“mine is an evil laugh” a.k.a. favorite villains

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Today we have a post about villainy. MWAHAHA! *maniacal cackle*

Once upon a time, Victoria tagged me (thank you!) for “Sunshine and Villainy” two unrelated (at the time) tags… one of which was Top 10 Villains.

I don’t know if I have ten but here at least are half a dozen villains who I love to hate or hate to love or… ya know, something like that. Either the scariest, or the ones I go “IT’S COMPLICATED” (a.k.a. I kind of wish they weren’t villains…). Because abject terror or mangled confused feels are both high compliments for villains.

I don’t think a lot about villains, preferring to focus on the heroes, but these are a few who’ve made me think about them. Which means they must be pretty impressive in their villainy.

Warning: There may be spoilers for those who have not read Entwined, Orphan’s Song, and Plenilune.

(Source) Quote in title is from Firefly, of course.

In no particular order, villains from page and screen . . .

FROM THE PAGE

Keeper (from Entwined by Heather Dixon)

Woo, boy, this character. O_O I’m the first to admit that for the first half+ of the book, I wanted him to be good. I liked this guy, and that in itself is kind of scary… Keeper is just utterly suave and smooth and dark and shadowy and mysterious and elegant. He would have made an amazing anti-hero, which meant I was rather surprised/sad when he suddenly turned all-out-villain. Of course then he was completely terrifying. I still have complicated feelings about this and am kinda torn, because yes he’s creepy, but he was also kind of awesome and had great potential to be a different kind of character… It’s probably the reason that though I loved this book a ton I haven’t re-read it yet. I’m not sure I want to revisit that right now. But the fact remains that he’s definitely a villain I’ve thought a lot about and is so well written.


Carhartan (from Orphan’s Song by Gillian Bronte Adams)

Carhartan’s a bit of a mystery, but he’s a pretty scary fellow. The problem was, I started feeling like he had a shred of decency back there behind his darkness, and eventually the big reveal comes out that he used to be friends with certain good people and turned traitor. OW. The pain in my poor reader heart! Think Bucky-and-Captain-America levels of pain except worse because this Bucky is actually bad and not redeemed. Yeesh. So this was simultaneously a character that I loathed and yet felt for, a little. That takes some incredible writing skills, I tell ya. My emotions were a tangle for this book… I think I may be the only person who feels this way, but all you have to do to turn me into a wreck of emotions is say “Carhartan”. (Whoops, shouldn’t have told you that.)

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(so I obviously don’t have a picture for Rupert buuut Richard Armitage can fill in for him because he’s cool like that.)

Rupert de la Mare (from Plenilune by Jennifer Freitag)

So I wanted to like Rupert. I wanted him to be a Beauty-and-the-Beast type person, but the longer I read the book, the less possible that was. He’s the kind of cold villain that literally freezes your blood. But he’s just fascinating to read about! All the scenes he’s in, they’re just freezingly fascinating. I’ve hardly ever met as well-written a villain as this guy. His personality is incredibly overpowering and I just really liked reading about him even though he was terrifying. But I really didn’t WANT him to be a villain! I wanted to love him but eventually I couldn’t… So I think I’d have been quite disappointed in the book if it wasn’t for a certain character whose name starts with D and ends with ammerung because that way I could pour all my love of a character into him and not be too disappointed that Rupert was bad. Not to mention that Dammerung and Rupert as facing off characters are magnificent together. Eeek. Rupert’s just WOW in his villainy. I’m super impressed. Definitely a favorite on-page villain.

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FROM THE SCREEN

Darth Maul (from Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace)

Definitely the scariest Star Wars villain, and one of the scariest on-screen villain in the history of ever, in my opinion. I’ve been terrified of Darth Maul about as long as I can remember. His double lightsaber, always scowling, scary black and red alien with horns, his black cloak… Everything about him is creepy. Plus, as Victoria said, the lightsaber duel in The Phantom Menace has to be the best sword fight ever, so you’ve gotta give him credit for that… I don’t know, he’s just a villain you love to hate, and I know a lot of people aren’t a fan of Episode I but it’s a favorite of mine simply for the lightsaber duel. Here’s a villain done right. *shivers*

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Colonel Tavington (from The Patriot)

(THAT HAT THOUGH. O_O) This guy takes the cake for terrifying. …He would also literally take your cake. This guy is BAD. He goes around killing people without remorse and being perfectly level-headed and cool about it. He just gives me the shivers. The things he does are downright awful. Plus that British accent takes him to a whole new level of villain. Even his VOICE is creepy. He’s utterly ruthless and that makes him terrifying. Also, he’s scary with his hair both pulled back and out. Eeek. This guy’s always been my standard for villains. Nothing redeeming about him, just coldhearted ruthless villainy.

P9

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Loki (from The Avengers)

Ah, Loki… Note that I’m referring to his role in The Avengers and leaving whatever his roles in the Thor movies might be out of it. (Because he’s more of an anti-hero in Thor 2…) In The Avengers he’s definitely a villain, but one that might be what is termed a sympathetic villain… He’s got his own bad agendas but he’s also being used and has his own fear and pain and that makes me feel for him (while at the same time, not being a fan of his villainous actions). He’s also got great lines and is hilarious and fabulous AND he’s literally always smiling. Now tell me that’s not really cool and creepy. XD

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How about you? Have you read/seen any of these villains? Do any make your top ten villain list? And who are your favorite nefarious types?

Authorly Bucket List

To wrap up my week of tag catching up…

Tag Catch-Up Post #7 (or #8, depending on counting…) – THIS IS THE VERY LAST ONE I PROMISE.

So, a few months back, I was tagged by Sarah @ Light and Shadows for a new tag, created by Erin Kenobithe Authorly Bucket List Tag! (It is also, apparently, known as the the Stuff-I-Need-To-Practice-More-Slash-Stuff-I’d-Like-To-Be-Better-At Tag. But Authorly Bucket List is easier to say, doncha know…) Go check out their blogs, do! You won’t regret it. 😀

Okay, so the the idea with the Authorly Bucket List Tag (Original Post) is to list three to seven things you’re not very good at, and another three to seven you’d like to try.

Shivers, y’all. This looks awesome.

Let’s get this show on the road! (And I may have to steal a couple of your things, Sarah, since I have some similar problems… >.>)

Things I Need to Work On

Actually Writing
Um. Yes. This is my biggest problem. I don’t often actually sit down to write. I procrastinate about it like you wouldn’t believe, I spend a lot of time plotting and thinking and doing little nothings, and basically everything except actually writing. But whenever I try to solve this with goals, or with events like NaNo, it works okay for a bit but then I get major burnout. If I specifically try to write several days in a row, for instance, I get burnt out and sometimes take a couple more weeks to recharge. I tend to write in large bursts (large here having the smallish meaning of like 2k words) with sometimes a couple weeks between. Yeah, it’s bad. But if I’m inspired, I can pound out a whole bunch. So it just depends. I guess I need to get myself inspired and keep it that way, and develop a bit of discipline.

Villains
Ah, villains. They’re what makes the world go ’round — or at least the plot. Usually. I never figure my villains out enough. They like to be kind of flat. And my main problem is that I never know their motives well enough or figure out what their plans are/their timelines. They kind of conveniently do stuff whenever the plot requires it, and… Yeah, enough about villains, let’s move on. I think my villains just don’t interest me much because I don’t LIKE them. I don’t want to spend all this time with them and figuring out their “deal”. I don’t understand people who are fascinated with villains and antagonists. O_O I mean, if they’re lovable/redeemable, sure… But yeah. The bad badguys I just want to stay away from, which does not help my writing since they’re kind of necessary! I guess I need some help in the villain department.

Battles / Fighting
I kind of majorly fail at fighting scenes. I don’t understand the concepts of swordfighting etc., no matter how much I read/watch about it. Much as I would like to! If there is fighting, I will be generally vague about it and move on because… what even are you supposed to do with that? It’s even worse with full-fledged battles. I haven’t attempted to write a battle in years, and I know even then I was horrible at it. How do you do it? You’ve got to focus on mini fighting scenes with individual characters throughout (see above…) and also keep track of all the sides and flanks and attacks and retreats and who’s fighting who and I just get so confused. How do you juggle all of that and make it remotely make sense?? This is probably partially why I’m terrified of returning to writing Epic Fantasy after being so long distracted in the shallower territory of contemporaries… Speaking of which…

Fantasy
So, ever since my first Kedran’s Wood story (The Owl of Kedran’s Wood) kidnapped me and held me captive to work on the adventures of Tare and the Chess Club for the last few years, I haven’t done much in the way of working on anything Epic Fantasy ish, my first love. I sort of popped back to work on my Starrellia series a couple times, and of course wrote most of Heartseeker for NaNo, but the truth is I’ve been away from Epic Fantasy for a very long time and want to get back to it. Which brings me to my thing-I-need-to-work-on: FANTASY. My fantasy is not as imaginative and full of fantastical things as I would like. It just doesn’t often occur to me that I can do whatever I want, and instead I just blunder along with whatever’s right there at the forefront of my brain. What about dragons, fairies, enchantments, intriguing magicalness, totally unique new things…? All the possibilities! My fantasy seems to normally be fairly tame, and I think some exploring of possibilities would not go amiss.

Things I’d Like to Try

Fairy Tale Retellings
Yessss. I actually hope to accomplish this soon, since I’m (currently) planning on writing a Twelve Dancing Princesses story for NaNo this year… We’ll see how that turns out. But fairy tales are awesome, and I adore retellings and they are so fun to read. So naturally I’d like to try my hand at a few! I even recently put together an idea for an epic fairy tale mashup conglomeration, so that might happen someday. I’ve never done a retelling, so it would be interesting to see how to make it similar to the original tales but also fresh and new and… yeah, it sounds like quite a challenge, and one I’m very excited to try at some point.

Mind Reading / Telepathy
There’s something really fabulous about mind-things, somehow. Mind communication. Yummy. I’ve always found it interesting to read about, and seeing the different ways different authors do it… I’d like to try it myself someday because it would just be awesome. Now I just need to find a way to do it… But there are so many possibilities! Maybe it’s been done to death, but I don’t really care. I just want to try because it sounds so fun!

Time Travel
Like mind-reading, there is something awesome about time-travel. Or, specifically, Timeslip, which is the version that’s my favorite and tends to involve someone ending up in an older time period with some sort of magicalness involved, I think… As opposed to the sci-fi-ness of a time machine. It’s also much less predictable, more uncertain, which I like. But I’d also like to try a time machine story as well, which I have an idea for, including dealing with the question of how can people go back in time without changing the future/their present… Yeah, it kind of makes the head spin. Which is part of the fun. I don’t have a specific timeslip idea but I really would love to try it someday if an opportunity presented itself. The main problem with time travel stuff is I’d have to do all the research just as if it was a historical fiction book, the thought of which terrifies me. So… we’re shelving those ideas for awhile. 😉 (Unless of course, it’s time-travel in another world…! Which would solve the research problem. I’ve only seen this done in Diana Wynne Jones’s book The Crown of Dalemark and I ADORED it so so much!! So it can be done.)

Cons and Heisty-ness
I’ve recently become obsessed with reading and watching crimey-heisty things, as I call them. TV shows Hustle and Leverage, the Heist Society books by Ally Carter, White Cat and its sequels by Holly Black (despite their ickness). Even milder versions like National Treasure‘s subplot to steal the Declaration of Independence. I just can’t get enough of the Robin-Hood-like (or at least not entirely bad) con-artists and grifters and thieves, and all of the cleverness involved in a good heist/con, especially when it involves giving the badguys what’s due them. I’m an upstanding citizen, honest, but this sort of thing is fascinating to read about. XD There is also a sad lack of such things, especially in the book (YA especially) world! (If you know of any, either books or films or shows, pleeeease do tell me.) I would probably never be able to write a con/heisty story because my brain just isn’t clever enough, but the thought is there and if I ever dared, I would love to try.

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Sooo… There’s my authorly bucket list, or some semblance thereof! What is yours? I guess I should work on these… Slowly… Somehow.

Or… I don’t know, maybe I should throw all of that together and actually sit down to write an epically fantastical epic fantasy full of full-fledged battles and deep villains who time travel (by means magical, scientific, and otherwise), with heroes and heroines from fairy tale stories, who use mind communication and carry out brilliant heists and cons.
. . .
UM. Actually, I would totally read that because it would be awesome. O_O OH MY GOODNESS. *facepalm* I need to stop coming up with story ideas and write some of my current ones.

What have I done.

(This is why I should not brainstorm when my brain is asleep and susceptible to madness…)

*hastily sweeps new plotbunnies under rug, tramples them quickly, leaves a large and heavy safe on top to keep them down, and surreptitiously walks away whistling as if nothing happened*

And I Tag

Abi // Ashlee // Kelsey // Jenelle // Katie/Robyn // Claire // Any writers who want to.

But please!! Do feel free to snag this if it looks interesting! (And let me know if you do! I would love to read such posts. :))

I’m just trying to spread out all my tagging this week, otherwise EVERYONE would
be tagged with EVERYTHING and it would be exhausting. XD

So there’s the last of my tag catchup posts! *queue cheering* I will now leave y’all in peace. 😉

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Do any of you writers have problems like mine, or tips to overcome them?

What would you like to try in your writing? (Different POVs, steampunk, talking umbrellas…?)

ARE YOU GOING TO DO THIS TAG?

Do you know any good heisty books/shows??

Tell me all! Let the Authorly chatting begin! 🙂