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J – Jigoku Shojo (Hell Girl)

  • Posted on April 12, 2017 at 4:54 pm

Jigoku Shoujo, or Hell Girl, as it is translated is another great horror anime. This particular series is about a young girl who people say you can call on to drag your enemy to hell. But the price is your soul. I loved the dark themes of this particular anime, and the piecemeal storytelling makes for a wonderful watch.

Why I reccomend it for writers: Specifically because of how the story is told. We rarely hear more than stock phrases from the main character, but through her interactions with the world around her, we slowly learn more about her. It’s a lesson in showing, not telling.

Warnings: creepy things, death, murder

For the rest of the articles in this series, please visit this page.

Have you seen this anime? What about it made you want to be a better writer? Do you intend to go shotgun this anime now that I’ve shown it to you? Comment below and tell me what you think!

Favorite Books

  • Posted on May 26, 2015 at 4:00 pm

Dirk

  •  The Tales of Sir Duodect, transcribed by Priest Bodelaire – An accounting of the great hero, his triumphs, and his vendetta against the BoneMan.
  • An Unabridged History of Sorciere by Danika Bleuwig. – A thick tome that describe the wars and politics of the countries that make up the continent of Sorciere, Kuryle, Shea, Durdil, and Thosfig.
  • Is Donato by Drata Imrun – A definition of how a prince is meant to behave, look, rule, and function in society in order to find peace within himself and peace with his people, written by a Durdilian noblewoman.

Yumil

  • Is Donato by Drata Imrun
  • An untitled black leather volume written by their master
  • Irveine’ The Beast Wife – A novel written by a Kurylian noblewoman. A young princess is cursed to be a hideous beast, until the day she can earn someone’s love.
  • A Treatise on Proper Gardening by Intir Lakayma – A Shaean gardener’s manual, which describes many way to cultivate plants and herbs in arid and often non-inviting locales.

Jorgan – Cannot read yet, however, he enjoy listening to others read, and looking at illuminations in the books.

Eamon

  • Is Donato by Drata Imrun
  • A Priest-Queen’s Role,  Translated by -ridiculously long list of names- -A book of poetic retellings of the history of Kuryle, based around it’s many Priest-Queens.
  • And She Broke by LaVire – LaVire is a penname for the most scandalous novelist in the continent. Her books end up everywhere, and they are filled with infamous descriptions of liaisons between women with almost no men present.

Lette

  • Irveine’s The Beast Wife
  • Irveine’s The Blackbird – Princess Ondine is turned daily into a crow, and during the night, she is kept like a queen by a sorcerer whom loves her obsessively. She meets her true love, and they escape together into the night, the sorcerer hot on their heels.
  • A Priest-Queen’s Role

Anelace

  • Is Donato by Drata Imrun
  • Durdilian History – Seven volumes compiled by numerous scholars and wise men.
  • The Book of Omens by Lady Andess do Extavir – the almanac by which Durdilian nobles follow to a tee, said to give good luck when followed, and horrible disaster when ignored. The book is reprinted every year with new information.

Espin

October IWSG – A Hard Lesson

  • Posted on October 1, 2014 at 9:53 pm

Today, when I woke up, I was excited. At my work, we get to put on special events every so often, and I’ve always been told that these events are the easiest way to make my monthly quota on sales. So, since there had been two and a half months before this particular special event, I worked my tail off, getting appointments set up, prospecting buyers, and making sure the merchandise would have what I needed to make my quota.

I ate a small breakfast, and coffee, and dressed in one of my best dresses. I put on my warpaint, and smiled my sweetest smile. I rode my bike to work, and when I got there, I put my best foot forward, trying to make sure everything was perfect for this day. You see, I had a goal. My goal? 15 grand in sales. This goal, clearly, was WAY over the top, since my bosses goal for me was only 2500 in sales.

You probably want to know what this has to do with writing books, and I’m getting to it, I promise. But first, you have to understand. I was pumped. I was confident, happy, absolutely sure that my work was going to pay off. That I was going to end up in the big leagues. For the last two months, my manager had filled my head with stories about how he made 34k once at one of these special events. How he’d managed to put his name on the board. I was looking forward to finally proving I was GOOD at something in the working world.

When the time for my first appointment passed, I found a sinking feeling growing in my stomach. I knew the next six hours would be tough, because the rest of my appointments were scheduled AFTER my normal six hour shift. You see, on special event days, we’re allowed to stay until our last appointment leaves. I was set to leave at three, but my next three appointments weren’t until five, five thirty, and six thirty. Which meant I’d be cutting it very close to my deadline to catch the final bus home, instead of having to ride my bike the four and a half miles home in the soon-to-be-winter cold.

Tensions rose, as more and more appointments passed and no one showed. My manager started coming down hard on all of us, and morale was low. I will admit, I’ve had issues with panic attacks at work before, and when under this sort of pressure, I tend to hide how absolutely wrecked I am. I had to take small breaks in the break room to avoid bursting into tears under the dark cloud of failure. As my appointments passed one by one, I had to accept the fact that all of my hard work had been for nothing.

The guests never showed. I didn’t get to sell the great big amounts I had hoped to sell. I sold perhaps 200 dollars today, and that doesn’t feel like any kind of victory to me, when, in order to hold up my end of our team, I needed 2300 more than that. I left my store feeling like a failure. And then, to find out the bus had already gone? Well, let’s just say, my bike ride was even colder thanks to my tears.

Now, you ask me again, what does this have to do with writing? Well, more specifically, it has to do with perseverance. Because writing, being an author, and getting published? Oh, you can bet there are times when they feel just like I felt on that bike in the cold autumn wind. There is nothing more heart-wrenching then putting your heart and soul into something, really breaking your back over it, only to find that all that work was for nothing.

Whether you’re choosing independent publishing or traditional, it doesn’t matter. You ARE going to experience the sort of heartache I describe here in vivid detail. Months without sales on your amazon account. Rejection letter after rejection letter in your inbox. These things WILL happen. Nothing can stop them. No one is a success overnight, despite what the tabloids say.

I bet you’ve heard what I’m going to say next many, many times. But I have a precursor to it. I’m not going to just jump into the ‘you have to shoulder it and move on speech’, because honestly? That’s the most emotionally bass-ackwards poppycock I’ve ever heard. NOTHING should be tossed aside like that, when you have put so much effort into it. Mourn it! Throw yourself a small pity party! Whine about it to friends and family members. Post about it on Facebook. Eat ice cream until you feel sick, all the while crying into your favorite blanket! Do what you need to do to get over that sick feeling in your heart.

Because once you’re finally over it. Once the hurt has settled, and you can look back on it and begin to analyze it carefully, you’ll see areas where you can improve. Where you can move beyond what USED to be your hardest work, your most effort, and turn it into more. You’ll begin to see the moments you can turn from sand into diamonds. And there is nothing in the world more valuable than that moment of clarity, after the tears, after the sorrow. So yes, today, I was a VERY insecure writer. However, after this important lesson, and a good bout of tears and apple crisp, I have found myself even more devoted.

Because the goals I set myself are just that. Goals. Things to work towards, no matter how far I fall flat from them for now. A mistake here, a failure there, these aren’t things to fear. These are things to persevere.

thanks to www.fanpop.com for use of their autumn background for this poster.October IWSG – A Hard Lesson

For more Insecure Writers giving you good advice, please visit the Insecure Writers Support Group.

CampNaNoWriMo July ’14

  • Posted on June 30, 2014 at 11:16 pm

And so it begins. My next journey into Nanowrimo, that is National Novel Writing Month is tied inexorably to Camp Nanowrimo, where writers get together for non-strenuous, less-extensive versions of the November rush that is the Nanowrimo phenomena. Camp is to the full thing what a retreat is to a vacation.

Basically, this month, we practice things we don’t normally do, or take it easy, while still reveling in the closeness and comfort of the writing community. Which is always lovely, because there’s nothing better when I get stuck than to talk it out with someone who knows what it’s like to be stuck.

This Camp, I’m aiming for 50,000 words, one third what I managed last November for my novel The Sorcerer and the Swordsman. This time, I’m attempting to write a Mystery novel, in the genre of Urban Fantasy.  I am trying my hand at writing the blue and orange morality of the Fae Folk, while also tying in a human protagonist who has to track down a missing child. Kaimi, my protagonist, is a twenty something college student, of Hawaiian descent, who happens to be Aromantic and a sugar-baby. So, this is going to be a blast.

I failed last Camp session, so I’m a bit nervous about this session. What if life gets in the way again, and I lose all will to write entirely? It has happened before. I’m trying to remember my patience, and remember to treat myself with respect, and that’s helping a bit. Reading about my new genre is also helping quite a bit too.

I found some very interesting articles about Mystery Writing that I find rather intriguing. But all of them are geared towards more deadly mysteries than mine. Most of them seem of the opinion that I would be better off killing the little girl in my novel, rather than having her be missing. Which… If you think about it, is kind of morbid. Not to give spoilers or anything, but I don’t want to kill children.

I think my next step will be researching Urban Fantasy, and see if there’s anything I can include that will make the book even better. My aim for this one is the type of popularity and enjoyment people get from the Anita Blake Series, or any of Neil Gaiman’s works. One day, people will read Seeker Born and fall in love with Kaimi Rowe.

Milk Maid’s Dreams

  • Posted on April 15, 2014 at 12:45 pm

Molly was a milk maid. She milked cows and tended to them sending them into the field. She dreamed all day, while her hands worked hard on what she was told to do. Molly had been sold a cow by a man named Jack, and that in and of itself made her happy, because now, just for some beans, she’d gotten her OWN cow. She didn’t need to work for Mister Onery any longer.

The cow was odd, however. It would only eat from her hand, while she sang a simple song. It was a song she was used to singing, but still. It made for good entertainment. She fed the cow, and the cow grew fat. How about that!

Then, she found out that when she milked the cow, she could make cheese. Then, as she made cheese, she sold it in the market. Soon, she was not a milk maid any longer. She was the Cheese Woman. She was making her own money, and when she moved towns, her father could say nothing, for she took the cow with her. She was making her living, her life.

But one day, the cow fell ill. It did not produce any milk, and Molly found herself in dire straits. She didn’t know what to do. So she went to a doctor. He said he did not heal cows.

She went to a lawyer, and he said he did not heal cows, but he could sue doctors. She did not need a doctor sued, and she did not have the money to pay the lawyer.

She went to the castle, and asked a man there if he could heal her cow. The man, kind, said no, but he could talk to a lawyer. So she took the man to the lawyer, who then sued the doctor, who then treated the cow.

By taking on so much just to save her livelyhood, Molly found a friend, the man at the castle, and it doesn’t matter who the man in the castle is, because he helped her, not because she could repay him, but because she needed help.

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