Life Update

Do you ever get so overwhelmed by how far behind you are and how much work you have to do that you just don’t do it? And then you get even further behind and it stresses you out more so you just continue to avoid it and this horrible cycle continues.

That has been my life for several months now. I don’t mean I’ve been sitting around doing nothing all the time. Quite the opposite actually. I’ve been working a lot since Christmas and when I’m not at work I’m at home desperately trying to get things done.

I’ve been writing blog posts and book/film reviews; I’ve been working on fanfiction chapters; and I’ve been making progress on my book. But I think all of you can relate when I say there just aren’t enough hours in the day!

Seriously, sometimes it feels like I never stop and yet it never feels like I actually got anything done.

I used to get a couple posts done or a couple chapters written and I’d start to get back into my routine of posting regularly, but then I’d fall out of it again and it was like starting back at square one.

So, since I’ve been MIA for quite a while now I figured I’d post a quick update just so anyone who reads this blog doesn’t think I’ve fallen off the face of the Earth.

I am very excited for things coming up later this year. I’m attending Fan Expo and the Supernatural Convention again and I will be blogging about those. I’m desperately waiting for Fan Expo to post it’s schedule so I can start making arrangements and figuring out if I’m going to be getting any photos or autographs this year (let’s face it, I probably will).

I will definitely be returning to the blogosphere and the fanfiction world. I can’t say exactly when just because I don’t want to make any promises or guarantees and then not stick to them.

Other than that my life right now consists of working, reading, and, as of today, playing Pokemon GO. I’m sure downloading this game will be absolutely no help in my trying to get back to writing on a regular basis. However, I think it will help with the lack of exercise I get (or rather, don’t get).

So, thank you to any followers of this blog for your patience. I look forward to rejoining you regularly very soon!

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Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring, 2001

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December 19, 2001
Dir. Peter Jackson
Prod. Barrie M. Osborne, Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, Tim Sanders
Genre: Epic High Fantasy
Starring: Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler, Viggo Mortensen, Sean Astin, Cate Blanchett, John Rhys-Davies, Billy Boyd, Dominic Monaghan, Orlando Bloom, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, Sean Bean, Ian Holm, Andy Serkis

I love Lord of the Rings. The whole series is amazing and it’s definitely what kicked off my love for New Zealand.

I’ve seen the first film in the trilogy more times than I can count and think it’s absolutely brilliant. I recently bought the extended edition (finally) and have really enjoyed seeing all the behind the scenes stuff that went into making the film.

If I were to ask you to name a film (or several) that you thought was truly great I’m sure everyone would have a different answer. However, I don’t think anyone can deny that Fellowship of the Ring is definitely on that list.

Fellowship brings together an intriguing plot, fascinating characters, and a beautiful landscape and creates what is probably one of the best films of all time.

The film follows Frodo Baggins, a hobbit from The Shire, as he embarks on a quest to destroy an all powerful ring. A ring that could bring an end to Middle Earth if it fell into the wrong hands. With the help of several companies along the way, Frodo takes great steps on his journey to saving all of Middle Earth.

Now, as I mentioned before Lord of the Rings is full of interesting characters and in this first film we meet the original ‘fellowship’: Frodo, Sam, Merry, Pippin, Gandalf, Aragorn, Boromir, Legolas, and Gimli.

All of these characters are very different and not only do they each bring something unique to the fellowship, but they bring something unique to the screen that makes the film all the more enjoyable.

On the surface each character appears very simple, Frodo is the hero, Sam the loyal companion, Merry and Pippin the comic relief, Aragorn the warrior, and Boromir the traitor. But they are all so much more than that. Each character, from Gimli to Gandalf, offers comedic moments and heart wrenching moments; moments where you admire their bravery and moments where you want to slap them for their stupidity (you know who I’m talking about).

However, even at their lowest moments you can’t help wanting these characters to succeed. Maybe not at everything they attempt to do (like, you know, stealing the ring from Frodo), but at most things. You want to see what happens next, where these characters are going, what they’re going to encounter.

And what they encounter is a whole lot of adventure and a whole lot of beauty as they travel across Middle Earth aka New Zealand.

Over the years my dream destination has changed drastically. As a child of course I wanted to go to Disney World. Then as I got older I wanted to go to England and Scotland, two places my family comes from.

Well now I’ve been to Disney World and I’d still love to go to England Scotland one day, for many years now I’ve wanted nothing more than to go to New Zealand. And Lord of the Rings played a big part in that.

Fellowship was my first memorable view of New Zealand and every time I watch the film and the ones that follow I desperately want to walk the same paths the fellowship follows over mountains and trails.

 New Zealand is Middle Earth, it is magical and mysterious and full of creatures that don’t exist anywhere else.

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Fellowship of the Ring is a cinematic masterpiece. Not only does it contain all the things required to make a good film (interesting plot, characters, etc.), but it also contains something that keeps the audience completely entranced. I don’t quite know how to describe it, but anyone who has watched Lord of the Rings will know what I’m talking about.

There’s just something about these films, and Fellowship in particular, that keeps you watching over and over again.

Near the start of this review I called this film one of the best films of all time and I stand by that statement. There are many films that could fall into that category, but for all the reasons stated above and many more, I think you can see why Fellowship belongs there.

What do you think of Fellowship of the Ring? Which character is your favourite?

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Goodnight Mommy (Ich Seh Ich Seh), 2015

Goodnight Mommy.jpg

January 8, 2015
Dir. Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala
Prod. Ulrich Seidl
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Starring: Susanne Wuest, Elias Schwarz, Lukas Schwarz

****WARNING: Major spoilers for Goodnight Mommy, if you haven’t seen it yet and don’t want to know what happens, STOP READING!****

When I first saw the trailer for this movie I thought it looked creepy, but not terrifying. That was definitely part of the reason I was willing to watch it. While it wasn’t terrifying (at least I didn’t think so, thankfully), it definitely messed with my head and had some majorly scary bits.

Goodnight Mommy (original title: Ich Seh Ich Seh) is a psychological thriller from Austria. Starring Susanne Wuest, Elias Schwarz, and Lukas Schwarz, this film does a lot with very little. You will be cringing at certain points all while marvelling at how beautiful the overall film is.

After returning home from getting cosmetic surgery, Lukas and Elias’s mother is different. They’re not sure how or why, but they’re convinced she’s not really their mother. Now the boys must work together to figure out the truth and what the truth is is a twist you won’t see coming.

This was a great film. I’m not one for scary movies, but like I said before, this one didn’t look too bad. It looked creepy, but not like it would have me cowering in the corner of the room with all the lights on. I definitely jumped at a few points, cringed at several more. There were a few times I had to close my eyes and mute the film because it was either gross or super uncomfortable (I’ll explain why in a minute).

Overall though I really enjoyed it. The acting was great, I know some people said they called the ending, but I definitely wasn’t expecting it, and it was really just a beautiful film. Not everything, obviously, as there were cockroaches and gross things involved, but the house was beautiful, the entire setting was just amazing to look at.

This film doesn’t have a lot of dialogue and there are many scenes where it’s completely silent, but it’s not an awkward or uncomfortable silence like what you might get in some films, Goodnight Mommy is just… quiet. And it’s nice. It gives you a chance to take in the scene.

You know how with some films there’s so much going on that you can watch it 100 times and still notice new things by the 101 time you watch it? Goodnight Mommy has three main actors and the silence allows you to take in everything. It’s definitely a film you’d need to see more than once to fully understand it, but your eyes aren’t darting back and forth trying to see everything.

I think the worst (best) part of the film is that it relaxes you with how beautiful it all is and then swoops in to mess with your head.

I have to give seriously high praise to Elias and Lukas Schwarz who play the boys in the film. They had to do some seriously messed up stuff and they played their characters so perfectly. Elias at the end was just breaking my heart and the way they interacted with each other and their mother through the whole film was perfect.

Some of the things they had to do, well, let’s just say there’s no way I could ever have done that. These boys will have you questioning their sanity and your own until the credits roll. And if I’m being totally honest, you’ll still be questioning even after.

I’ve never been a huge fan of foreign films before simply because I don’t want to have to sit and read subtitles for the whole thing. The only thing I normally will sit and read subtitles for is anime and even then the episodes are only a half hour.

However, as soon as I saw the preview for Goodnight Mommy I knew I had to see this film and I’m so glad I did. It’s such a great movie and it’s definitely turned me on to seeing more foreign films, especially creepy ones.

Goodnight Mommy is the perfect film for all horror movie fans, but may not be great for those with weak stomachs. I seriously recommend seeing this movie, I can assure you that you won’t regret it.

Have you seen Goodnight Mommy? If so let me know what you thought!

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Things Read in 2015

2015

When I was younger I would read all the time. Literally, just one book after another. I carried one with me everywhere (still do) and even when I wasn’t supposed to be reading, like, during class for example, I did anyway.

Now, being older, I don’t have nearly as much time to read as I would like, but I still try to read as often as I can.

That being said, way back in the summer of 2007 (it’s actually quite a while ago if you think about it), I started keeping a record of how many books I’d read and how many pages they were.

It started being divided by the summer and school years, but then I just started doing it by year. So, now that I’ve babbled on and explained (poorly) how this system worked, here is a list of the things I read in 2015!

The Walking Dead Books 1-4 (Issues 1-8), Robert Kirkman

TWD Books

I was a fan of The Walking Dead show before reading the comics, but after hearing repeatedly how different the comics are from the show I decided I had to read them. I’m not going to get too much into what I thought of the books as I reviewed books 1-4 last year.

I will say that so far I’m thoroughly enjoying the storyline both on the show and in the comics. I plan on reading at least books 5-8 this year (hopefully more, depending on if I can get them from the library).

 

Death Note Black Edition I, Tsugumi Ohba

black edition i

The only book I read this year that I haven’t reviewed yet. Not because it wasn’t good, but because I wanted to read Black Edition II first.

I’d already watched the anime of Death Note before reading the manga novels and I absolutely loved it. I knew immediately that this was something I wanted to read and when I discovered the Black Editions I was even more excited.

The Black Editions are basically two of the novels in one. Instead of spending twice as much and buying the books separate, you spend a couple extra dollars and get two of the books.

Death Note is amazing and I’ll definitely be posting a review of it this year as I recently bought Black Editions II and III.

 

F*ck! I’m in My Twenties, Emma Koenig

Fck Im in my TwentiesThis book is brilliant. I had wanted to read it for ages and was so glad when I finally did. Emma Koenig perfectly captures the feelings that come with being in your twenties, whatever stage you may be at.

I read and reviewed this book back in February and it is crazy how much changes in a year! Last year I wasn’t in school, had no job, and wasn’t doing too much. Now I feel like I hardly have time to slow down!

It’s absolutely insane how quickly things can change and I definitely need to read this book again to see just how different things are.

 

A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Reptile Room, Lemony Snicket

Reptile Room

I still haven’t finished this series! I started it like a year and a half ago and I still haven’t finished. I’m not going to say I’ll finish it this year cause I think we all know if I say that then it won’t happen.

However, I will say that I’m excited to read it again and actually finish it this time because all of these books, not just The Reptile Room, but all of them are amazing and enjoyable.

 

Handle With Care, Jodi Picoult

Handle With Care

This book still gets me even when I just think about it. I read this book in a matter of days and to this day I would say it’s probably in my top ten favourite novels.

I loved this book, but to this day the ending gets me sooooo angry. If you’ve read it you’ll know what I’m talking about. If not, read this book. Read it because it’s beautiful and wonderful and Jodi Picoult is truly a literally marvel.

And then I want you to come back here and tell me what you thought of the ending and if you were raging for days while simultaneously existing in a state of shock like I was.

 

Slaughterhouse Five, Kurt Vonnegut

Slaughterhouse FiveThis book is one I need to read again simply because I still don’t think I fully got it. But, like I said in my review (which wasn’t really a review), I think not fully understanding the book actually just makes me like it more.

This is definitely one of those books where even if you don’t fully understand it you’ll enjoy it. This is also one of those books where if you’re a book nerd you should read it. It’s not like the great novels of our time now. There’s no magic or great battle against an evil, superpowered villain.

But there is a story and at the end of the day Slaughterhouse Five is exactly what all great novels start out as and what they all end up being.

I love reading. When people ask me what I like doing the first two things I always say are reading and writing. It’s been like this for as long as I can remember and, even though I don’t have as much time as used to, I don’t doubt it will stay like that.

I look forward to reading many more books over the course of this year. Hopefully I’ll be able to finish all the books I started at the end of last year and more. My reading goal every year is to do slightly better than the year before.

Total Books Read: 9 (technically 14)

Total Pages: 2595

But I want to hear from you! What did you read last year? Have any reading goals for this year?

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January 2016 Book Releases

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This Is Where It Ends, Marieke Nijkamp

This is Where It Ends

The start of a new school year can be an exciting time, but for one student it was a time for revenge. Told from the perspectives of four people, Nijkamp’s novel tells the story of a fight for survival when one student starts shooting.

 

Release Date: January 5, 2016

Buy This Is Where It Ends on Amazon

Passenger, Alexandra Bracken

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Etta Spencer is a violin prodigy who inherits a legacy she didn’t know she had. Nicholas Carter is living his life free from the Ironwoods, a powerful and dangerous family. However, the two are soon thrust together on a journey to stop a secret object from falling into the Ironwood’s hands.

Release Date: January 5, 2016

 

Buy Passenger on Amazon

Bookishly Ever After, Isabel Bandeira

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Phoebe Martin lives in a world of books and would give anything if the real world would resemble her favourite stories. When she finds out the hottest clarinettist, Dev, might have a crush on her, Phoebe tries to become just like the heroines in her books so that he’ll really fall for her.

 

Release Date: January 12, 2016

Buy Bookishly Ever After on Amazon

The Love That Split the World, Emily Henry

The Love That Split the World.jpg

In her debut novel, Emily Henry tells the story of Natalie, a girl whose life is turned upside when the world suddenly starts to appear wrong. It is then that Natalie is told by a mysterious being that she must save “him”. The next night, Natalie meets Beau and it’s as the entire world disappears all together.

 

Release Date: January 26, 2016

Buy The Love That Split the World on Amazon

The Siren, Kiera Cass

The Siren

From New York Times best selling author, Kiera Cass, comes a fantasy novel about a young girl, Kahlen, forced to live her life as a Siren in order to repay a debt. However, when Kahlen falls in love with a human, she must choose between following the rules of the Ocean and following her heart.

 

Release Date: January 26, 2016

Buy The Siren on Amazon

Shallow Graves, Kali Wallace

Shallow Graves

In this first novel from Kali Wallace, Breezy Lin is a seventeen year old girl who wakes up a year after she died. She has no idea who killed her or why, but what she does know is that she can now sense those with a murderous past. Breezy must use this to delve into the darkness of the world and find some answers as to what exactly happened to her.

 

Release Date: January 26, 2016

Buy Shallow Graves on Amazon

Happy Holidays everyone! I hope you’ve all had a wonderful holiday season whatever you may have celebrated and I know it’s only the second, but I hope you’re all having a wonderful 2016 so far!

I took a brief break from blogging for a little while at the end of the 2015, why? I got a job. Yes, unfortunately being an unpublished writer doesn’t make much (any) money, but I got a job over the Christmas season working in retail.

The best part? It’s one of my favourite stores (no it’s not a bookstore) and they’re keeping me! Apparently I did an okay job over the Christmas season because even though it’s over now they’re still keeping me on. I’m very excited about this, but I’m also very excited to get back to blogging, fanfiction writing, and novel writing!

Even though I’ll still be working, with the holidays over my hours won’t be as crazy which means I’ll have more time to write and work on blog posts and I’m incredibly excited to get back into it!

I look forward to an awesome and crazy 2016 with you all!

*Also, the rest of the months will have more books listed. For some reason it was a struggle to find books being released this month and then when I went on Amazon a lot of the ones I did find were only available for the Kindle*

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NaNoWriMo: Halfway Point!

nanowrimo-logo

We’re half way through NaNoWriMo! How are you all doing so far?

I’m doing something a little different for NaNo this year. I’m not working on a new novel, I’m using this month to finally finish rewriting Brave Young Boys.

So far it’s not working so well.

I sort of went through a period (basically the whole month of October) in which I hardly did any writing. I wanted to write, but at the same time I just didn’t feel like it. Do you ever have those times?

Then I recently started a new job which has given me less time to write (hence why I’ve been so absent lately), but I’m definitely feeling more like I want to write so it’s sort of balancing itself out.

I’m getting caught up on reviews, fanfiction, blog posts, and am working on NaNoWriMo!

I’m determined to finish this novel by the end of this year, preferably, by the end of this month.

Let me know how you’re doing with NaNoWriMo so far!

Are you struggling? Pulling ahead?

Do you have periods where you feel like writing, but also don’t feel like writing?

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Supernatural Names of the Week

Anna

Female
Alternate Spelling: Ana
Pronunciation: an-uh; ah-na
Origin: Hebrew; England
Meaning: Favour of Grace
Well-Known Annas: Anna Milton (Supernatural), Anna Karenina (Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy), Anna Watson (The Girl on the Train, Paula Hawkins), Anna Oliphant (Anna & The French Kiss, Stephanie Perkins), Anna Fitzgerald (My Sister’s Keeper, Jodi Picoult), Anna (Frozen), Anna Kendrick (Actress), Anna Paquin (Actress), Anna Trebunskaya (Ballroom Dancer), Anna McPartlin (Novelist)

Ash

Unisex
Alternate Spelling: Ashe
Pronunciation: ash
Origin: England
Meaning: From the Ash Tree
Well-Known Ashs: Ash (Supernatural), Ash Fisher (Black City, Elizabeth Richard), Ash Matthews (Mindbender, Veronica Slemp), Ash Ketchum (Pokemon), Ashley ‘Ash’ Baron-Cohen (Filmmaker)

Balthazar

Male
Pronunciation: Bal-thuh-zar
Origin: Phoenician
Meaning: Baal Protects the King
Well-Known Balthazars: Balthazar (Supernatural), Balthazar (Character in various Shakespeare plays), Balthazar (Novel by Lawrence Durell), Balthazar Getty (Actor)

Bobby

Unisex
Alternate Spelling: Bobbi
Nickname: Bob
Pronunciation: bah-bee
Origin: America
Meaning: From Robert
Well-Known Bobbys: Bobby Singer (Supernatural), Robert ‘Bobby’ Pendragon (Pendragon, D.J. MacHale), Bobby Drake (X-Men), Bobbi Morse (Marvel), Bobby McFerrin (Singer), Bobby Lockwood (Model), Bobby Robson (Football Player)

Chuck

Male
Pronunciation: chuh-ck
Origin: American; French
Meaning: Form of Charles; Free ManWell-Known Chucks: Chuck Shurley (Supernatural), Chuck Bass (Gossip Girl), Chuck Lorre (Writer and Director), Chuck Jones (Animator)

Ellen

Female
Pronunciation: eh-len
Origin: England
Meaning: Light
Well-Known Ellens: Ellen Harvelle (Supernatural), Ellen Foster (Ellen Foster, Kaye Gibbons), Ellen (Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snogging, Louise Rennison), Ellen Rosen (Number the Stars, Lois Lowry), Ellen Degeneres (Comedian), Ellen Page (Actress), Ellen White (Author), Ellen Lupton (Graphic Designer)

Jo

Male
Alternate Spelling: Joe
Pronunciation: Jo
Origin: England
Meaning: From Joseph
Well-Known Jos: Jo Harvelle (Supernatural), Josephine ‘Jo’ march (Little Women, Louisa May Alcott), Joe Hardy (Hardy Boys, Franklin W. Dixon), Jo Qesem Ayela Aleh (Olympic Sailor), Jo Frost (Nanny), Joe Sugg (Youtuber), Joe Hill (Author), Joe Jonas (Musician)

Ruby

Female
Pronunciation: roo-bee
Origin: England
Meaning: Jewel
Well-Known Rubys: Ruby (Supernatural), Ruby Daly (The Darkest Minds, Alexandra Brackens), Ruby Gillis (Anne of Green Gables, L.M. Montgomery), Ruby (Once Upon a Time), Ruby Florene Murray (Singer), Ruby Ferguson (Children’s Author), Ruby Aldridge (Supermodel)

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