Posts Tagged With: meme

Last call for magnets + random cute animals!

Just a reminder that the super exciting, knock your socks off, totally rad (do we still use that word?) FREE MAGNET GIVEAWAY!!! is ending tomorrow morning. So if you haven’t done it yet, hop over to this post and leave a comment about any old thing to be entered for a chance to win A MAGNET!!! I know it’s not the most exciting thing in the world, but work with me, people!

Here’s a comment prompt: You win a million dollars. What type of exotic animal do you acquire as a loveable household pet? I was originally going to say tiger, ala Jasmine and Rajah from Aladdin, but then I remembered that tigers eat people. So I’m back to the drawing board.

And now, as promised …

Unrelated cute animals of the day:

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Categories: Random | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 27 Comments

3D Food Printers? Super hot guy cast in City of Bones? Sign me up!

The title of this post might have clued you in to the fact that today’s topic has nothing to do with writing, or self-publishing, or any of that good stuff. Instead, I will share with you a super-cool new technology I found out about, as well as several pictures of Godfrey Gao (aka the super hot actor cast as Magnus Bane in the upcoming City of Bones movie). Oh, and at the end, I will reveal undeniable (read: ridiculous) proof that God exists.

To begin: 3D Food Printers? Really?

First off, I will direct you to this website. What you will find there is a series of machines which are essentially food printers. I didn’t know such a thing was possible, at least, not outside of sci-fi movies. Clearly I was wrong.

Digital Chocolatier Prototype

The Digital Chocolatier is a prototype for a machine that allows users to quickly design, assemble and taste different chocolate candies. This machine is composed of three primary elements: a carousel of ingredients, a thermoelectric deposition cup and a user interface. Through a graphical user interface, users can select and combine the ingredients housed in the different carousel containers to create customized candies. The carousel rotates to extrude these ingredients into the thermoelectric cup that rapidly cools and hardens the chocolate, making it ready for consumption. The interface also makes it possible to save and rate favorite recipes for later use.

That’s … insanely awesome.

Yes, yes it is. And here’s an example of what it can make:

Mouth … watering …

They also have a few machines that can make actual meals. I would feel safe buying the Chocolatier, because you can’t really go wrong with chocolate, but once you start printing out lasagna, I just don’t know how good it could realistically taste. And I wonder how they’d get the texture right, if they’re squirting the ingredients out of tubes?

Still, interesting food for thought.

Hot guy time 

If you haven’t read Cassandra Clare’s City of Bones, and you have any interest in YA fiction, you should definitely check it out. It’s a fantastic read, and there are currently 4 sequels and 2 prequels, so the fun never ends. Except when you run out of books, and then the fun does end.

Anyway, one of the characters in the book is Magnus Bane — aka the High Warlock of Brooklyn. He is possibly the coolest character in the book, and he now has an actor portraying him live on the silver screen: Godfrey Gao.

Here’s another one:

He seems to have some trouble smiling. There’s got to be a smiling picture somewhere … aha! Victory.

I think I’m so enchanted with this gentleman because he’s kind of how I pictured one of the characters in my novel to look (Varrin). Although my mental image of Varrin is constantly shifting, so I might have a completely different opinion in a few months. Regardless, if I could get Godfrey Gao to star in the movie adaptation of my novel, I would probably die of happiness.

And now for something completely different …

Image creds (in order of appearance): http://web.media.mit.edu/~marcelo/cornucopia/http://www.vancitybuzz.com/2011/04/godfrey-gao-vancouvers-louis-vuitton-model/http://www.tumblr.com/tagged/godfrey-gao?before=1342735719http://superadrianme.com/2012/07/01/godfrey-gao-launches-sk-ii-men-in-singapore/http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2906770/posts?page=5

Categories: Random | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Versatile Blogger Award + 100 followers!

Candace Knoebel was kind enough to nominate me for the Versatile Blogger award! Thanks so much! I like winning things. And I like blogging! So this is, quite literally, a win-win.

But before I get into the nitty and gritty of the award, I just wanted to shout out a THANK YOU to all my followers – I hit 100 today! Woo! That’s 100 people more than I knew three months ago when I first started blogging. You guys are awesome, and I’ve loved my time here on WordPress thus far, so thanks again for reading, following, and supporting 🙂

On to the Versatile Blogger award!

Step One: Share 7 things about yourself

Okee dokee. Here goes!

1) My head is super sensitive. By that I mean that if I put my hair up in a ponytail (even a low one), it starts to give me a headache within minutes. The only solutions I’ve found thus far are leaving it down, clipping it high up, or doing a french braid.

2) I keep a book of Sudoku puzzles in the bathroom. I bought it in South Korea, and I have stopped doing the puzzles because I don’t want to have to throw out the book. Sentimental value and whatnot.

3) I have recently developed a crush on Alex Pettyfer. My celebrity crushes usually last about three days or so–but man, it’s going to be a brutal three days.

4) My jedi teddy bear guardian has now been joined in his security detail by Tibbers, the five-foot tall bear I bought at Costco.

5) I really enjoy K-Pop, and I wish that English musicians would cover K-Pop artists’ songs, because A) K-Pop songs are awesome, and B) I want to be able to understand the lyrics!

6) Today I found my door unlocked, and became convinced that someone had broken into my apartment while I was in the bathroom. I proceeded to grab two knives from the knife block and stalk around the apartment yelling, “I’ve got two knives, intruder! I suggest you leave before I find you, because it won’t end well for anyone involved!” I never did find the intruder, so clearly my bluff worked.

7) People talking in movie theatres drive me absolutely insane. I usually just get up and move, but sometimes I will turn to my friend and do the passive-aggressive, “Do you think these people sitting behind us will EVER stop talking? It’s so annoying!” and hope the chatterboxes hear. It’s not hard! Just keep your mouth shut! Ack.

That took a turn for the dark. Let’s lighten things back up.

Step two!

I hereby nominate … hmm …

Clotildajamcracker

Keri Peardon

and

Tania L Ramos

Congrats!

Now all y’all gotta do is accept the award, thank the person who gave it to you (me!), share 7 things about yourself, then pass the award along to as many people as you like (the official rules suggest 15).

Happy blogging!

Link of the day!

Erm, this one’s a bit racy, so I’ll provide a link instead of just showing you the image. It’s Game of Thrones related, btw.

http://www.memecenter.com/fun/139647/game-of-thrones-memes

Categories: Blog-related | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Be Still — Book Review

Me with my copy of Be Still!

The Book

“Be Still”

The Genre

Romantic Drama

The Author

Tania L. Ramos. This is her second novel, which is self-published through iUniverse. Check out her blog and her website for more information!

The Plot

Plastic surgeon Jack Silver thinks his life is perfect – until he loses his daughter and wife in a series of tragic events. A decade later, Jack discovers that he is dying. He desperately wants to reconnect with his estranged son Travis, but Travis wants nothing to do with his father. Enter Dr. Christina Amity, Jack’s protégé and dear friend, who strives to help father and son work out their issues before Jack’s disease claims him. But even as Christina and Travis grow closer, Jack finds himself inching towards death, drawn by what he thinks is the spirit of his dead wife. Will Jack make peace with his son before he rejoins his wife and daughter in the afterlife? Will the emotionally-damaged Travis ever find love? Read Be Still to find out!

The Review

Let me start by saying that, despite the genre of this book being the polar opposite of what I usually read, I really enjoyed Be Still. The plot was engaging and well thought out, the characters relatable and believable. It’s a tragic story that’s at the same time uplifting, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who likes the romance/drama genre.

I’m going to be honest, I wasn’t the hugest fan of Jack Silver. He basically gives up on living after his wife dies, withdrawing from the world and from his son, all of which really irked me. I have a hard time connecting with parent characters who emotionally abandon their children. At the same time, I totally understand why he did what he did because his plot arc was beautifully written, so even though I didn’t really like the character, Tania still got me to sympathize with him.

On the other hand, I loved Travis and Christina. Their romance is sweet, and realistic, and flawed, because when does love ever go smoothly? I actually found myself caring more about Jack because I was seeing him through Travis and Christina’s eyes, and it was bittersweet because their shared grief over his impending death is one of the things that brings them together.

I quite enjoyed Tania’s writing style. It flowed nicely, and it was very easy for me to lose myself in the story. One criticism I would make is that the description sometimes got a little flowery, but for all I know that’s the norm for this genre of writing. It certainly didn’t detract from the story, it just made me pause and think, “Goodness, that’s a lot of adverbs”.

The Rating

4 out of 5 stars, plus an “Awww!” factor of 8 puppies.

Remember that blog tour I mentioned?

If you have an excellent memory, you’ll remember that I’m participating in a blog tour next week – the blog tour of Tania L Ramos, to be specific, aka the author of Be Still! Whoa. Crazy coincidence, right? Anyway, here’s a reminder of the blog tour dates:

July 19 – http://katherinenader.tumblr.com

July 20 – http://nerdybookreviews.wordpresscom

July 21 – http://freebies4myfamily.blogspot.com/

July 22 – http://davidmcgowanauthor.com/

July 23 – https://michelleproulx.wordpress.com/ ((ME!))

July 24 – http://www.youtube.com/user/tramossnvvc/videos ((video blog))

Tania is also holding a sweepstakes right now, which can be viewed on her Facebook page. Basically, for every 100 books she sells by August 30th, she will donate a copy of her book to a high school of the winner’s choice. It only works for U.S. schools (something about foreign policy), and she promises to donate a book even if she doesn’t hit the 100 books sold mark. And if you’re poor like me and don’t want to buy a copy, you can still go to the Sweepstakes tab on the Facebook page and enter anyway.

So come back next Monday for my leg of the blog tour!

Tania will be writing a guest post about … about … okay, we really don’t know yet. If you have any ideas, sound off in the comments! She’s a self-published author, so maybe you have some questions you’d like her to answer? Just relay them in the comments section here and I’ll forward them to her.

Cute and addictive game:

http://www.silvergames.com/nyan-cat-lost-in-space

Categories: Book Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

My Bizarre Inspirational Moment

Have you ever been doing something completely normal, like walking in the park, or watching an old Disney movie you haven’t seen in years, and then see/hear something that just reaches right down into your soul and makes you feel like anything’s possible?

This happened to me recently. I was playing Kingdom Hearts (if you own a PS2 and haven’t played this game, you need to go buy it right now), and one of the levels is set in “Deep Jungle”, which is based off Disney’s Tarzan. I realized that I hadn’t seen Tarzan in years (probably not since it came out), and I was like, “Heck, why not, I’ve got nothing better to do.”

So I downloaded it. Not going to lie, it’s not the best Disney movie out there – probably doesn’t even crack the top 5. But the Phil Collins musical montages are great, and Jane Porter is hysterically British. Then the third and final montage of the movie came on — “Strangers Like Me” by Phil Collins, in which Tarzan learns all about humans and their achievements, and all the wondrous things he’s missed while living in the jungle.

If you want to just watch the clip, click here. If not, here’s what happens. Basically, Jane fires up a slide projector and shows Tarzan various images – a gentleman in a suit, a city, etc. Then a dancing couple appears, and Tarzan and Jane start doing this really bad yet adorable dance … and then this happens:

The music has been crescendo-ing since the first note of the song, and now it reaches it’s peak as Phil Collins howls, “I just know there’s something bigger out there! I wanna know! Can you show me?”

And I got the most massive case of chills all up and down my spine. My skin is goosebump-ing right now, just thinking about it. Something about that combination of space imagery (man, I LOVE anything to do with space), music, and lyrics just makes me feel incredibly inspired, like I’ve just been a part of something special and unique that no one else has experienced. And that’s crazy, because hundreds of thousands of people have seen Tarzan … but I have to wonder if they were so impacted by it in the way that I was. Maybe I’m crazy. The evidence is as of yet inconclusive.

Does anyone else feel this way? You’re doing something totally innocuous, and then you see/hear something that staggers you, makes your whole world spin, makes you feel like you’ve just been privy to something unbelievably amazing, even if just for a brief moment? That’s what inspiration feels like, for me.

I’d love to hear about what inspires you. When I hear that Tarzan song, I just want to sit down at my keyboard and write until the sun rises. How do you get inspired to write? Are there certain things you do to get you in the writing mood? Or do you just get randomly hit by things that strike you as incredibly profound?

A #2 pencil and a dream can take you anywhere.

– Joyce A Myers

Awesome meme(s) of the day:

Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Monday Fun — Random Name/Plot/Place Generator

So remember how I wrote that post about a character creation quiz? From the awesome that is Dungeons & Dragons comes yet another cool tool to help out we imagination-starved authors.

Squid.org’s Random Name Generator doesn’t just generate random silly fantasy names. It also generates random silly fantasy plots, silly fantasy town names, silly fantasy monsters, and even tree-types. The trees aren’t silly, but it’s still fun that someone made a random generator for them!

There’s about 40 different generators to choose from, and they’re all fantastic. Even if you don’t want to write a fantasy story, I’d say it’s worth checking out just for the sheer entertainment value. Here are some of my favourites:

Generator: dramatic-situation

LOSS OF LOVED ONES
Elements: A kinsman slain, a kinsman spectator, and an executioner.
Witnessing the slaying of kinsmen while powerless to prevent it.

Generator: title

Gryphonslinger

Generator: Book Titles

History of Hassitic Architecture, by Care Carhan the Magnificent

Generator: QuestGen

  1. Grimald Shortbreath the Architect (impulsive elder high elf male, quiet) sends party to talk to Duryaith the Messenger (tender short teen dwarven male, gap-toothed).
  2. Duryaith the Messenger (tender short teen dwarven male, gap-toothed) gives party heavy ballista.
  3. Heavy ballista needs to be used at forgotten mansion in swamp.

Random Meme of the Day: Nyan Cat!

 

Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Free Marketing Tips eBook link

Greetings, blogosphere. Today’s post will be a short one, as I’m off to my cousin’s graduation this afternoon and then home for Father’s Day weekend.

As usual, I was wandering around the internet looking for interesting things when I came upon this free eBook on Smashwords.com. It’s called Smashwords Book Marketing Guide, by Mark Coker, and it’s very informative. Basically, he goes over 33 tips on how to market your eBook. I was hesitant about downloading it, because I figured it would just be promotion for Smashwords, and it was, but it also had some pretty great ideas for marketing. I’ll share two or three of the tips below, and then I encourage you to go download the eBook. It is, after all, free!

Tip #1: Update your email signature. Your email signature is one of the most powerful marketing tools at your disposal, yet few authors take advantage of it. Most of us send emails to dozens if not hundreds of people each week, and each of these people (often friends, family, business associates, fans) represent potential customers for our book. By updating (or creating) an email signature, you’re providing email recipients a low-key, unobtrusive path to discover and purchase your book. Nearly every email program and service allows you to create a single email signature file, usually a simple text file, that then automatically appends to every email you write.

Tip #18: Invite other Authors to Post to your Blog. If you operate your own blog, invite your favorite authors to write guest posts for your blog. This is a great way to offer your fans interesting new content that increases the value of your blog. It also helps fans of the other author learn more about you.

Tip #26: Create a reader’s guide at the end of your book. You’ve probably seen these in print books: Publishers append short discussion guides for reading clubs and book groups at the ends of their books. Make it fun and easy for a book group to discuss you book. While most of us like to read books in private, we enjoy talking about books with our social circles, both online and offline. If you create a reading guide, be sure to advertise it in your book description with a simple statement such as, “Contains a helpful discussion guide for reading groups.”

Tip #27: Insert sample chapters from your other books. The last page of your book is valuable real estate. Your reader just loved your book, and they want to read more from you, so give them more book samples to read at the end of your book.

He also lists a variety of top eBook listing sites that you can put your book on for maximum exposure at the end of the document. A lot of them deal with free eBooks, but some of them list normal eBooks as well.

So check out the eBook — again, here’s the link to the site where you can download it for free.

And now for something completely different:

Categories: Self Publishing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Character Creation Exercise

So I play a little game called Dungeons & Dragons (heard of it?) which can be either an amazingly fun or horrifyingly dull experience based on who plays with you. One of my favourite parts of D&D is character creation, where you get to build your own character from the ground up. I think I actually started playing D&D before I started writing, which leads me to wonder if I didn’t get into writing because of D&D. Running a game in D&D is basically the same as writing a novel – you lay out the plot, the characters, the conflicts, the rewards, and then you play out the story as your fellow D&D players help you fill out all the details.

Anyway, I’m getting off topic. The point is that D&D introduced me to a method of character creation that, with a little tweaking, works great for authors trying to come up with new characters. All you need is a basic six-sided die (like the one in the picture above), a sheet of paper, a pencil, and the instructions I’m about to give you.

This basically works like a quiz, except you use the dice to choose your answer randomly. So, each question has a series of answers from 1-6. If you roll a 1, then your answer is #1. If you roll a 3, your answer is #3, etc. Record your answers on the paper so you don’t forget what you rolled. You can come up with some very interesting characters this way, because you never know what combinations you’ll end up with, and then you have to work out a back story that explains how the character ended up the way they did. Even if you don’t use this character in a story, it’s still fun to do the exercise and just see what ridiculous characters you can come up with.

Ready? Okay, go!

Where is my character from?

  1. Medium-sized city
  2. Cozy hamlet
  3. Isolated village
  4. Wilderness
  5. Sprawling metropolis
  6. Exotic locale

What is my character’s family like?

  1. Large family
  2. Only child
  3. Orphan
  4. One parent living, one dead
  5. Nuclear family
  6. Adopted family

What is my character’s favourite activity?

  1. Reading
  2. Sports
  3. Fighting
  4. Networking
  5. Intellectual pursuits (math, science, etc.)
  6. Breaking the rules

What is my character’s goal in life?

  1. Wealth
  2. Fame
  3. Love
  4. Relaxation
  5. Accomplish something great
  6. No goal

How is my character’s love life?

  1. Married
  2. Divorced
  3. Recently broken-up
  4. Unrequited love
  5. Single
  6. Complicated

What is my character’s spiritual belief?

  1. Monotheistic
  2. Polytheistic
  3. Atheistic
  4. Agnostic
  5. Spiritual, but no organized religion
  6. Formerly religious, but lost the faith

What is my character’s personality?

  1. Optimistic
  2. Curious
  3. Easily angered
  4. Compassionate
  5. Apathetic
  6. Nervous

What is my character’s worst memory?

  1. Death of a loved one
  2. Mugged/attacked
  3. Betrayed
  4. Loss of honour/social standing
  5. Natural disaster
  6. Abandoned

How does my character react in a crisis?

  1. Panics
  2. Keeps a level head
  3. Looks to others for direction
  4. Is only concerned with himself/herself
  5. Freezes
  6. Takes the lead

What is my character’s most prized possession?

  1. Book
  2. Vehicle
  3. Animal
  4. Weapon
  5. Trinket of sentimental value (e.g. locket, comb, etc.)
  6. Money

You’re done! Congratulations!

You have officially created a character. Now you need to figure out why they are the way they are. For example, I will go back and do the exercise, and share with you my findings. Hang on, let me find a die …

Okay, so my dice rolls are: 4, 1, 2, 1, 2, 4, 5, 3, 6, and 2. What does that mean for my character? For ease, we’ll say it’s a she.

She was born in the wilderness. She comes from a large family. She enjoys playing sports. Her goal is the acquisition of wealth. She’s divorced. She’s agnostic and apathetic. Her worst memory is being betrayed. She takes the lead in a crisis, and her most prized possession is a vehicle.

Now I take my answers and connect the dots. She was born in a remote location to a large family, so she comes from a large clan of traditionally-minded, down-to-earth country folk. She’s very athletic, because she loves sports. Her favourite sport is mountain biking, and she loves her bike above all else. She was married, but her husband betrayed her, and she’s apathetic to life in general because of it. However, she’s also very strong-willed, and wants to get ahead in life by accruing a large sum of money. From here, I extrapolate. Why does she want money? Perhaps her loving, down-to-earth family is in some sort of financial crisis, and she needs to help them before the whole family goes under. Or, maybe she is a professional mountain biker, and wants to win a competition and therefore the championship purse. Because of her apathy, she’s probably feeling very lost after her husband’s betrayal, and therefore has trouble connecting with people or opening herself up to the idea of dating again.

I’ll probably throw away this character. She doesn’t strike me as the kind of character I would spend time writing a proper story about. But you get the point!

Now go forth, create a character, and let me know in the Comments how it goes 🙂

Humorous meme of the day:

Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

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