Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Beautiful People -- Interview Session!

Yo!

As promised, for Beautiful People this month, I'm going to present it in interview form.

This is slightly (*cough* very) unorthodox considering the type of meme this is, but hey, it'll be fun.

I'll try not to get too carried away. You know how I am with interviews with my characters o_O

This month, I'm going to be featuring two characters: Dantere and his half-sister Keziren.

Well.... what are we waiting for, then?

'Tere! Keziren! Come on out!

1. If your character could be played by an actor, who would it be? 


Dantere: *glance*


Keziren: *shrug*


Me: *headdesk*


Okay, off the tippy top of my head, I wanna say that Josh Hutcherson could have played 'Tere when he was younger, but that's just a rough guess. I have to be honest, I've never really thought about it for either-- ANY-- of my characters from this series. 


2. Do you have a specific theme song? 


Dantere: Theme song?


I knew this wasn't a good idea. (I'm actually going to post a song for 'Tere in the next excerpt post!)


3. What's your worst childhood memory? 


Keziren: That one time you almost threw me off the castle wall......


Dantere: Sssh! 


Me: Whaddabout you?


Dantere: Probably the day that child said my eyes were scary.  


Me: *tries to be sympathetic, but it's my fault so yeah*


4. If you had a superpower, what would it be? 


Dantere: Don't I sort of have one?


Keziren: What?


Me: Oh, he hasn't told you yet?


Dantere: It's cause my mom is from Eleren. *smile* Half-breeds get bonus travel powers.


Keziren: I thought we didn't talk about that. Oh yeah, and I sort of have a superpower too... or is manipulating wind and healing people not enough?


Me: Don't get feisty just 'cause he's here. 


5. If you crashed on an island with a bunch of other people, how could you help the group survive? 


Dantere: Well, that's ludicrous. I would get a door to open up to Eleren. And then once we're there, I could get us back to Verria. 


Me: You make it sound so easy, but you would have to take a serious nap in between steps 1 and 2. 


Keziren: He's such a show off. If we made a boat, I could get the wind to blow us back to the mainland. That's much easier 


Dantere: Except you're not a very good navigator. 


Me: *cough* OKAY! Moving on....


6. Are you married? If not, do you wish to be? 


Keziren: Married, no. Want to be, yes, someday.


Dantere: Will you kill me if I say, "not really"?


Me: You haven't met Tiril yet, that's all.


Dantere: Wha....?


7. What is a cause they would die for? 


Dantere: Saving my friends. 


Keziren: *cough* What about family? 


Dantere: (Really wants to say, "You only half-count" but knows that that would be reeaally rude...) ...... Yeah. Family too. 


Keziren: Thank you. Me too. That, and the war against the Riteiyans. 


8. Would they rather die fighting valiantly, or quietly at home?


Keziren: *coughcoughsplutterplutter* Is dying at home even an option? I'm going down fighting. Or on a quest. Or something. Just not something.... boring. 


Dantere: But I don't like to fight that much. I'd rather get old and die normally. 

9. If a stranger walked up to them and told them they were the child of the prophesy, would they believe them? 


Dantere: Uh huh. I mean, yes. Yes I would. 


Keziren: Not if they told him.... but I probably wouldn't believe them if they told me either. 


10. Do they prefer the country, or the city?


Keziren: City. 


Dantere: Country. 


Both: REALLY?


Me: *shakes head*


***


Well, that was a mild fail, but not a total waste. I think we'll be going back to the normal way next month, hahaha........



Guest Post: Christopher of There and Blog Again



Well, here we have our winner of December's Script-A-Month! Christopher was kind enough to write a guest post for us, on the subject of what, as a Christian, makes a book or movie something he would want to recommend. 


[Note: the views expressed are his, not necessarily mine. But they are very wise, nevertheless!]


Again, please welcome Christopher! And read on :]

***

When you're looking at various books, or movies, it's hard to lay down hard and fast rules about what you can and can't watch. Obviously, there are some movies that aren't age-appropriate, but is following the ratings always the way to go? I'm 13, and I've seen The King's Speech, an R rated movie. I've seen Super 8, which should have gotten an R rating, but yet I still like those two movies. I've read things that contain words, beliefs, or actions that I don't agree with. Percy Jackson and Harry Potter are just two. But should I read and watch those things?

Like I said before, it's not the best idea, in my view, to set down hard and fast rules. This wouldn't work because, if I have a rule that says that if there are 3 curse words in a book I'm going to put it down, what if a very good book comes along, one that shows good vs. evil, but yet has flawed characters? Do I read it?

Here are a couple of verses to keep in mind as you are reading this post.

“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.” Deuteronomy 6:4-5

"I will not set before my eyes anything that is worthless." Psalm 101:2

"As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand."

"One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. The one who observes the day, observes it in honor of the Lord. The one who eats, eats in honor of the Lord, since he gives thanks to God, while the one who abstains, abstains in honor of the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's." Romans 14: 1-8

Just as a little note, I myself am only beginning to look at this vast subject. The following is where I am now, but my views may change. Right now, though, this is my conclusion. I'm not going to deal with individual issues, but look at deciding as a whole.

I should add here, how important it is to have your parents help you in these matters. They are older than any of you, and they have seen so much more than you have. They've watched you grow up, and they know what's best. Maybe you might think a book is alright to read, but they know it's not. Always submit to them. The Proverbs constantly talk about how the old have wisdom. Take advantage of that, and learn from it. And if your parents say "no" to a book, know that it's for a reason; you may not understand that reason now, but someday you will, and you will thank your parents for saying that.

First off you and your parents need to decide if what you're reading has anything redeeming about it. Is it a book filled with bad writing, stock plot and characters? Even if there isn't anything "wrong" with it morally, that still may be setting worthless things in front of your eyes. So let's assume for the moment that the book you're considering does have good in it, or so you've heard. But you've also heard that there's some bad language, and a good bit of violence. Do you read it?

The answer is: it depends. Here's how I judge a book or movie: If the book shows forth Christ's redeeming power in sinners, or if the book displays characters that seek to do right; if I can see Christ's perfection in some form through this book, then I will begin to consider it. Say this book has some Language. I'll ask the question, is the language so frequent that it drowns out the good of the book? For violence, I tweak the question a little bit. I ask, is the violence in the book necessary, and if not, is the violence over the top? What is over the top? Again, it depends.

Maybe you're starting to see a pattern. I'll say it right now. Each book, for me, is a judgement call. Personally, I believe that if God hasn't forbidden it, or directed us away from it, than we are allowed to do it. I believe that I could, if I was mature enough (which I'm not) read Twilight. Would I, though? Probably not. But here's the thing. There's good in Twilight. There's good in Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Lord of the Rings, Chronicles of Narnia, and all those books. There is good in them. How do I know? Because it's impossible for there not to be.

This world belongs to God, and he is the ruler of everyone and everything. He sustains and upholds the universe. Therefore, in everything his perfection will be shown forth.

Let's take a book like Eragon. I believe this book is an absolute, and complete exercise in plagiarism, and is not a good book in the least sense of the word. I read Eragon almost completely unawares as to what it contained. I had gotten some information from trusted friends and they told me that there wasn't anything overtly "bad" about it. And they were right. Ethically speaking they were right; but that's not the point. The point is that if I had known what was coming I probably wouldn't have read it. While morally it was alright (for the most part, there were still some very questionable things in there), writing wise, and value wise it was hardly worth it. Yet I would read it again. Not willingly, but I would. Because even in Eragon I saw Christ. I see him more in something like Lord of the Rings. But I still saw him in Eragon–and that's why I'm not sad that I read it.

The point I'm trying to make here is simple. In this corrupted, evil, dark world that we live in there are going to be bad things. You and I are going to hear and see things as we grow older that are horrendous and completely sinful. We can't escape that. But we don't have to. I recently reviewed Lois Lowry's The Giver on my blog. In it, the main character is shielded from everything around him, and the entire community in which he lives is hiding in fear from what is outside. They are hiding from sin. But we, as Christians, with the promise that we will never be forsaken, don't have to hide. "There is good in this world, and it's worth fighting for," Sam says in The Two Towers. That scene always hits home with me. When Frodo and Sam are surrounded by the wreckage that is Osgiliath, and there seems to be no hope, Sam realizes that "It's only a passing thing, this Shadow. Even darkness must pass, and when it does the light will shine out the clearer."

We are guarded, and protected and we are called to go into the world and spread the light of the Gospel. And one of the ways you can do that is to respond to what is in the world. Don't hide from it; don't cower in the dark like there's not light. Confront the darkness in this world and in the things this world produces. But find the light, and point that out. You can be taught by many things. Maybe a wizard with a wand can teach someone something. Courage, honor, valor, and the power of love. I see all of these and more in Harry Potter. That's why I like it. Do those characters do things I don't agree with? Of course! So does the world. What are you going to do? Build a bubble around yourself and hide from everything? Is that confronting the evil that is in this world, and overcoming it?

You and I and the rest of the 7 billion other people on this planet sin. We "have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God." But as Christians we don't have to fear that sin. We can go forward and confront this sin, and we can fight it. We can take the good things in the popular literature and media of the day and amplify it. Whenever I'm at school and I engage in a discussion about Harry Potter I always try and bring up one of the true, or noble, or honorable things in it. But this is just so that I can help people see the greater story in who's shadow Harry Potter lives. The ultimate novel. The novel being written write now, this second.

The novel that all other stories are mere reflections of.

Want to know what Harry Potter, Twilight, Lord of the Rings, Chronicles of Narnia, and any other book, movie, TV show, game, and anything else that you can think of all have in common?

They all live under the same shadow.

They all reside, under the beautiful, redeeming, powerful, and life-changing shadow of the cross.

And so do we.

Note: Like I said at the beginning, this a vast and difficult subject to study through. I am only beginning to scratch the surface myself, and am constantly looking for ways to improve my views, and come to more fully understand how we discern as Christians what we do or do not read and watch. Your comments and questions are appreciated, as they will help me see other views, and shape mine as I learn more. 



***


Thank you again so much, Christopher!


You can visit him at http://thereandblogagain.com

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Can We Has Excerpts?


Yes you may has :)

Again, from Dantere's Story, currently entitled, "Silver Eyes," that I wrote... last night or this morning, I think ;)


 I’ve asked father, but he doesn’t think it has anything to do with him being from Verria and my mother from Eleren. (Which makes me wonder, how many other half-breed children does he know?) He told me her eyes are light green. Like the way a forest looks when there’s sunlight streaming through it. That’s what he says, anyway.
   At any rate, their appearance isn’t the only odd thing about my eyes. Unless I’m going mental. But I’ve been seeing things that aren’t there. Not just once or twice, either. Half the day, I’m seeing stuff that doesn’t exist: trees, houses, people. Just this morning, I was standing on the walltop to enjoy the sunrise (actually I was avoiding my half-sister, Keziren, but don’t mention that), and to the north-east, there was a mountain range that, I promise, wasn’t there yesterday. I squinted at it. Blinked. Rubbed my eyes. Shook my head. It went away, eventually. But goodness, what an unnerving way to wake up.
   It’s worse than that, though. I’ll stop myself from running into a wall, or a tree, then put my hand out and feel nothing. I’ll even smile at people I pass by, and then Nerephides or my father asks what I’m looking at.
   Since then, I’ve discovered that living with my head down, studying the ground, is a much safer option. I know my feet aren’t an illusion.
   I’ve been able to avoid explaining to father and Lady Tela so far, but I don’t know how long that’s going to last.
   My eyes are so much more trouble than they’re worth.

   “Dantere, father says if you don’t get down to the main courtyard in twelve seconds, you’re going to spend the rest of the day doing drills.”
   That is my half-sister Keziren for you. She’s almost two years younger than me, but she talks like she’s my mother.
   “It takes two minutes to get from here to the courtyard, and if he’s planning on punishing me, he’ll give me tactical studies, not drills,” I said. I was in my room working on a painting, and I was close to finishing, too. I had even pulled out my good paints, the ones Lady Tela gave me for my birthday.
   “Why protest? You’ll still be late, no matter what I say or don’t say.”
   I sighed and stood up. She could be so frustrating sometimes. I wanted to take a nap. “What’s it for, anyway? I didn’t know there was a practice.”
   “It looked more like a meeting. Lord Teinvareth was there, too.”
   I almost dropped the paints I was putting away. Lord Teinvareth was a Knight of the Crown, like my father, and just as important. Being late for something he was attending “Keziren!” I winced as I listened to myself whine. But why does she never mention the important details?
   “What?” Those innocent-looking blue eyes were twinkling at me.
   “Forget it.” I swept my paints to one side of the desk and grabbed my cloak, and dashed out into the corridor. “If I have paint on my face, I don’t want to know now!”
   I think I heard her say, “You do,” but I was too far down the first flight of stairs to be sure. 



Oh, and by the way, I know what I'm writing for NaNoWriMo this year. Lord wiling, anyway. We'll see how the year goes. But yeah. I'm very excited. *preps for completely new series*





Monday, February 27, 2012

Hunger Games Linkage!


Amaranthine wrote a very, very thoughtful and totally true post on The Hunger Games. What with the dilemma of traumatized people, but the tempting lure of the movies, a believer can't help but question what is right and what is wrong here. And what choice to make.

Naturally, whether or not you read/watch The Hunger Games or not is a non-essential ;)

But still.

Read this post. 







Oh, and Lauren's post is also very convicting. Check it out :]

Lord bless, y'all :)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

In Which Dantere's Story Alters Some


I'll write a real "pitch"/"outline" for you guys one of these days. The right words are floating around out there somewhere but I haven't caught them yet.

But I re-started writing it again. 'Tere is fourteen, Keziren is his half-sister, and it's written in first person, past tense. And actually, if all goes to plan I'll be writing the whole series with each chapter alternating Keziren and Dantere's points of views o_O

It scared me to write with a "main" female character. That's actually a funny quirk about me: generally speaking, I dislike reading books with a female main character. Especially if there is no male MC. Same with my writing.

But whatever. I'll learn. :]

Anyway. For now, here's a little excerpt that I scribbled out sometime in the wee hours of this morning ;)

read: completely unedited ;)

DANTERE
   It's not my fault my eyes are unusual. I actually don't know whose fault it is, but it doesn't matter now. I've snuck into Lady Tela's chambers and borrowed her mirrors. I've looked into these eyes myself. I see why people avoid my gaze. It's not their color- they're only grey. One might call them silver. But it's the way they... shimmer. No, that's not the right word. They do something strange. It's as if you put a dragon's eyes into a dog's face: they look like they belong to another creature. 
   Not to flatter myself, but they glow; as if someone took a star right out of the heavens and poured the light into my irises. Not to jest, but they're otherworldly.
   I hate them. 

It's The Oscars! :)


17:44- Hugo wins Achievement in Cinematography

17:45- Hugo wins Achievement in Art Direction

17:55- The Artist wins Best Costume Design

17:58- The Iron Lady wins Best Makeup

*gets dinner*

*snacks on Thin Mints*

*mutes commercials*

........ oh no.


I can't post anymore.

19:13, and the Oscars completely fail.

It's Best Original Score.

And they spelled Tintin wrong.

Like, "The Adventures of Tin Tin."

*faints*

I can't do this anymore.

The End.

Hugo took half the awards home, but they didn't get Best Original Score which they should have, I think the Artist is gonna get Best Picture, none of the rest matters because Tintin is one word.

Good night.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

I WILL RETURN!


Wow.

A week of epicness. And it ends in but a few hours.

We're going to be catching a plane back home after dinner. I must say, something about Alaskan air is AMAZING for inspiration.... I have so much to post about Dantere's story....

We land back at home at about 5 in the morning. I am going to stay up long enough to see the sunrise, which always seems to evade me the rest of the time. And then I am sleeping, which I DIDN'T do this whole week. I'll wake up and recover sometime next year xD

Anyway. 

Here's a few pictures from our week of epicness until I return ;)


(^^ me and the sibs)


Below, you may be privileged to witness my tornado of hair going down the sledding hill. 

Sledding has never been more epic. 

:]


 
 But yeah. 

Hope y'all have been amusing yourselves in my absence. 

 Oh, and I've been culminating the next few scenes for Blue Ink. 

Dude, you guys.

It's gonna be EPIC!

:)


 Sorry.

That was random. 


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The lie that killed my friend.



Yesterday felt really wrong.

See, I left the house at 3:30 to attend a friend's memorial service.

A friend. My age. 15 years old. I went to school with her in 2nd grade.

And I was going to her memorial service. 

..... will someone please explain why I have to say such a sentence?

***

What had happened was, my dear friend had committed suicide just a couple weeks ago. From what I heard at the time, partly due to bullying.

I hadn't seen her in two or three years, but when I found out, I sat on the couch and cried for I don't know how long. It's an incredibly indescribable feeling... I'd never experienced facing the death of someone I knew before.

It broke my heart that she had come to such a place of hopelessness that seemingly, the only escape was death.

I knew this girl. I talked with her, played on the playground at recess, laughed at her jokes. Everything.

It's crazy.

It made me mad that I was there at that service. That she was dead. That so many people's lives were torn by this. That forever, people will wonder, "What if?" That now, there's an aching gap in the lives of a hundred people. That now I'll never be able to give her a hug, and say, "Hi! It's been so long!"

And that it didn't have to happen. That it shouldn't have happened.

How do you go on after someone you cared for is dead? How can you smile again, knowing they left this world without hope? How do you make it make sense?

It doesn't make sense. It's just wrong.

I'm not mad at God. I'm just mad. Mad, and incredibly sad. Bitter? No. Just frustrated.

(The one bright spot: I am 98% sure she is in Heaven. But the fact that her death was something completely preventable.... yeah. It seriously sucked to walk into those church doors yesterday, knowing what I was there for.)

I got all emotional again last night after I came home.

I thought about what the pastor at the church had shared. One of the things she had said in the letter she left, was that she felt unattractive, lonely, and that she wasn't sure anyone would even care if she was gone. She felt like her life was worthless.

And this, my friends, makes me want to cry with anger.

Because she fell for one of Satan's best tricks. To make you think that you aren't precious. And loved. And beautiful. And that where you are, you're stuck, and there's no hope. And that no one cares. 

So many people feel this way.

And I can't even begin to say how much this is NOT true.

Y'all, we get disillusioned real easy. Especially when we're young.

I suppose it would be safe to say that everyone has thought about suicide sometime. Most probably never consider it seriously. But almost everyone's had suicidal thoughts. I have. They were never serious. Just a fleeting, "What if?"

But in a day and age where the suicide rates are getting higher, while the age is getting lower and lower, the enemy cannot be allowed to have a single foothold.

My friend. If you have ever thought that your life is worthless, if you have ever thought that no one would care if you were gone, if you have ever thought that death would be better than life.....

stop.


You are falling into a terrible, terrible lie.

Suicide is never the right solution to the problem. My friend Sierra thought that no one would care if she was gone.

What I saw yesterday in the crowd of people in the church was grief. Grief at losing her. Sadness, emptiness. Confusion. Her family didn't understand. They miss her. I miss her.

There was hope, too. But it didn't add up that a young, talented, funny, much-loved girl would want to take her life.

But that's how screwed our culture is. That's what happens when we take our sights off of Jesus. That's what happens when darkness is let in with no light to throw it out.

That's what happens when we are not drawn close to our Heavenly Father. We become hopeless, and blind to the truth. Literally or figuratively, darkness will end in death. 

It can happen to any one of us.

I don't want to burden you with this. But I wanted to share it, because just by looking, you can never tell what someone is going through. How they really feel. Who they are outside of church, or school.

I told a friend in an email, "...it really just makes me want to love on every single person that I come across, whether I know them or not. 'Cause you never know what's going on, you know? A little part of me feels guilty every time I'm sarcastic or tease someone."


Because of Sierra. Because of the things I know I've felt. Because of the fact that lives are precious.

Suicide may sound like a good idea in the moment. But all that it will leave is devastation and heartbreak. 

I saw it. I'm living it. I came home afterwords, started playing the guitar, and completely broke down crying because the emotions of the day finally caught up to me. (It may not have helped that I was trying to play "How To Save A Life" by The Fray....)

But I digress. 

I don't want this to end on a despairing note. Because I will be seeing Sierra in Heaven, and the Lord has been able to minister to people even through the tragedy. He is still good.

And even if life doesn't make sense, He is sovereign. I can live with that. 

***

Can I just encourage you? 


If you've ever been in that place of hopelessness, it's because you aren't close enough to the light. Pick up a Bible. Start reading. Meet with Jesus. If you don't know Him, get to know Him, because He's the only one that can save your life. 


But also, talk to somebody if you can. I know that sounds cliched, but truly, when you let that kind of stuff build up inside you with no perspective but your own... that's dangerous territory. 


If you're saved, but have drifted or gotten disillusioned by the darkness of this world... remember, you are a child of God and the enemy is out to get you. There's a war going on. And if you truly, truly want things to get better, then remember your first love and get back to walking with Jesus. 


He loves you. He made you for a purpose. He's got an epic, epic ride planned for you, and if you don't get on board His will, you're gonna miss it.  Draw near to the Lord and He will draw near to you. He's not playing hard to get; He's being a gentlemen. You have to decide you want to get out of where you are, and follow Him. It's never gonna get better if you don't.


But you're not alone, and you're not a lost cause. I promise. 


Now, for those of you who are doing well..... can I encourage you to keep drawing close to the Lord, and to love on the people you encounter? It may not seem like much, but kindness and gentleness never are given in vain. It may take a lot of dying to self, but hey, it's good for you. 


Because really. Really. Who knows? The world is hurting. The people around you are hurting. Even those that are saved. Being a Christian does not mean that you are perfect! Even believers can get tripped up by the things of this world. 


Maybe that person who is always smiling and laughing, deep down feels like an obnoxious piece of crap. 


Maybe that person who looks like they've got life figured out is in the depths of despair. 


Maybe that person who is rude and snippy really just needs someone to reach out to them. 


Maybe that person who gets on your nerves, is the one that needs the love of Jesus the most. 


Don't get me wrong- I'm not saying that the entire world is on the verge of committing suicide. But it's a dark, dark, hopeless world out there, folks. People are dying, literally and figuratively. And who's going to spread the saving love of Jesus Christ if you don't?


I don't want to see other kids, other people, taking their lives because they have no hope. I don't want people to feel unloved. I don't want people to walk another day without knowing Jesus. I don't want to walk into another memorial service, wondering "Why did they do it?"


How to save a life? 


Nothing and no one but Jesus can do that. Let Him fill your life. 



It's almost odd, the way this post went, considering it's Valentine's Day. I'm sorry if it wasn't as concise as I meant it to be... my thoughts and emotions are still a wee bit jumbled. 

But all that said: Happy Valentine's Day. Live your life. And don't fall for the lie. 

You are loved. You are precious. You're here for a purpose.

You are worth the blood that Jesus spilled for you. 

Never forget that. 

Monday, February 13, 2012

A Blue Ink Question ;)


Hey y'all!

I've reached the point where Fabian, Christoff, and Mister Barwick embark on their journey to the Mountains of Nib. While I'm sure the cold and snowy region of Alaska will prove sufficient inspiration for their quest, I wanted to run a few things past you guys:

#1
Is there anything you want them to encounter/do on the way?

#2
Any characters you want added to the quest? For instance, a prominent female character...?

#3
Anything at all you wanted to see happen/do/meet/greet/etc.? You know, besides the end, in which they face the Pendragon ;)


Now, don't be afraid to speak up! 

Have fun and feel free to chat it up here while I'm off in Alaska. I might have a few updates but don't expect too much....

Alrighty, then.

I'm off to catch some subplots before I have to catch a plane :]

(Okay, no worries, I don't have to catch a plane for two more days. But yeah, you know....)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Guest Blogger Interview: The Great and Marvelous Farjag!


Oh my goodness, y'all are in for a serious treat!

Because he won January's Script-A-Month contest, Farjag is here for a blogger interview. He is one seriously cool guy, people, and there aren't enough guy bloggers out there, so get to know him!

Anyway, enjoy the interview!

***

TD: What first made you want to start a blog?


Farjag: Well, my sisters began reading a bunch of girl-authored blogs about biblical
womanhood, and sewing, and hairstyles… ad nauseum, and I thought to
myself: “Self? You should write a manly blog about writing!” So I did. And after a
bit of a choppy start, here I am.


TD: What's the funnest thing about blogging for you? What about the hardest?


Farjag: The most fun thing? I don’t know if I would call it fun, but when I’m writing a
new post, and God shows me how I point it back to him… that’s just the coolest
feeling ever. It reminds me that all my work should be for His glory, and that it is
only by His grace that I can even write at all, let alone well.


TD: Your poems always give me chills- what's your inspiration when you write
poetry?


Farjag: I tend to use a lot of description in both my prose and poetry, and my poems
usually tend to flow from that. I begin by describing the image or scene in my
mind, and then see where the words go. I think the main thing that inspires me,
though, are words. I often have to dig deep for the right ones, the ones that by
their very nature carry a sense of history and epicness. ‘Flicker’ and ‘flame’ go
deeper than ‘waver’ and ‘fire.’


TD: What are your favorite movies?


Farjag: The Lord of the Rings trilogy, hands down. Other contenders would be Gods and
Generals, Captain America: The First Avenger, The Eagle and Inception.


TD: Okay, the fact that The Eagle is one of your favorites earns major bonus points with me! :)


Recently you blogged your opinions on coffee/tea/cider. Any other strong opinions concerning overrated beverages/food? ;)


Farjag: Well, I have noticed that most burger joint burgers look nothing like their pictures
on the menu board. I have, however, found that Backyard Burgers’ burgers…
well, they look just as appetizing on your plate as in the advertisement. :)


TD: I know you play violin- favorite stuff to play?


Farjag: Anything fiddle. I love folk music, anything Irish or historical American is going to
have me fiddling in no time. Oftentimes I’ll just let the music do it’s thing and just
play whatever comes to my fingers. I love playing old hymns too.


TD: And while we're on the subject- do you plan on posting videos of yourself
playing the violin?


Farjag: Truth be told, I hadn’t thought about it :) I shall have to consider it now!


TD: How long have you been novel writing?


Farjag: I have been novel writing since early 2006, when I wrote my first full-length story
as part of a challenge given to me on my birthday.


TD: What's your writing preference: computer or paper?


Farjag: The computer. It’s faster and easier to share and edit. I do, however, often write
out snippets in my writing notebooks for use later on. Most of my brainstorming
takes place on paper, and then the actual drafts are typed.


TD: Do you ever specifically listen/watch anything for inspiration?


Farjag: Can’t say I watch anything, it would make me think about the story it is telling,
and not mine. But listening… you betcha! Thomas Bergensen does some
really amazing stuff, and he and Nick Phoenix do even more amazing stuff on
their Two Steps From Hell albums. I also like listening to movie soundtracks,
especially if they’re by Hans Zimmer.


TD: Favorite genre to read?


Farjag: I really enjoy fantasy, though historical fiction has been one of my staples as well.
Generally, though, I will read anything that is well-written and interesting.


TD: Favorite genre of movies?


Farjag: I enjoy watching all types of movies, but I guess my favorites are period pieces,
war movies, and just about any movies that has swords in it. :)


TD: Again, a blogger after my own heart... :P Okay, worst question- favorite book of all time?


Farjag: Yea… tough one there. I generally tend to list authors rather than specific
books… makes thing easier :). Based on the physical state of the actual books, I
would probably pick The Lord of the Rings (My copy is a one-volume paper back
edition that has been taped back together at least twice), but I think the one I
actually could read over and over again would be Jules Verne’s The Mysterious
Island. I’m not sure though.


TD: You're interested in architecture- any specifics in that field?


Farjag: Not particularly, but civic buildings interest me (libraries, fire stations, town halls,
and the like). What I would truly love to do, however, would be to design movie
sets, or maybe even 3D game environments, but I’d be just as happy designing a
a private home as Rivendell.


TD: You know what, maybe I should sign you on for set design once I actually make another movie. ^_^


Anyway. Do you have any thoughts concerning.... 


Sleep?


Farjag: Get it. Otherwise you’ll turn into a zombie and I’ll have to sic my wolfhounds on
you. :)


Christopher Paolini, writer of the Eragon books?


Farjag: Guy focuses too much on his world and not enough on his plot and characters.
I mean, what’s the point of the dwarves choose their new king if Eragon’s just
going to end the book right back where he started with a few new spells and a
new sword under his belt? (Brisingr, I’m looking at you!) :P
I personally don’t think he copied as much from Lord of the Rings as Star Wars
with a few added connections thrown in. (Copied isn’t the right word, but “inspired
by” didn’t work my sentence structure :P)


Donuts?


Farjag: Give me stomach aches and unpleasant memories of Homer Price if I eat more
than one


Thomas Bergersen?


Farjag: His music is what epic is made of. Period. End of story. Go look him up.


(I agree. My favorites of his are Homecoming and Heart (or, "<3"). And I just bought Gift of Life. Man, that guy....)


Okay, back on track- your thoughts on Kindles (and similar electronic reading sources)?


Farjag: I personally prefer a hardbound book, but I don’t have a problem with them, and
if I ever publish anything, it will probably be only for them at first. They should
make electronic books with aged pages and typeset font, though. That would be
way cool.


Vampires? :P


Farjag: Were way cooler when they weren’t stuck-up teenagers with love problems. And
werewolves are better anyways. I mean, being allergic to garlic, light, holy water,
silver bullets, stakes and the like gets old pretty quick. Besides, I think turning
into a wolf is way more awesome than having a sparkly face. :)


TD: Finally... you've been blogging for a long time- any advice for new bloggers?


Farjag: Long time? *cough* I’ve, uh, been blogging steadily since September of last year.
Though I started the blog in December of 2009, there are only twelve posts for
those entire two years. Hardly blogging. :) I would by no means count myself as
an expert blogger. I actually consider myself a novice compared to most of the
other bloggers in the Christian writer’s circle I’ve found myself in.


But I can still give advice:
1) Pick your topic. Those first two years suffered because I wasn’t really sure
where I wanted the blog to go. Was it going to be about my life? My writing?
My reading? The epic in life?
2) Like anything else, get on a steady schedule and keep at it. When I decided
I wanted to really blog, I blogged nearly every day for almost a month.
Then, once I it had become a habit, I toned it down to every other day or
thereabouts. Pick a schedule that works for you.
3) Find your voice. And don’t say leetspeak and obviously improper grammar is
your voice. Cause it isn’t. You personality shines through your writing all the
better when it is well-crafted.


TD: If you had one thing to say to other aspiring Christian authors and/or filmmakers,
what would it be?


Farjag: I’d put my hands on their shoulders, look them in the eye, and tell them: “You
have the Greatest Story inside you. Let it shine through. Keep your gaze fixed on
the Eternal Author and Director, and He will guide your hand and voice as you
seek to tell the stories He has placed in your mind.”


Thanks a ton for giving me this opportunity, D.! It was an honor to sit across from
you in my mind and answer your questions as I would have answered them had
we been talking face to face. May your quill stay ever sharp, and your inkpot ever
full!


In the Service of the King,
Farjag


Oh no, Sir Farjag, it's you who should be thanked! I'm blessed to know a blogger like you :) Lord bless you as you continue doing all things wholeheartedly for His glory. 


***


You can check out Farjag's blog, Ink On My Fingers, here.

Thank you again so much Farjag!


(Interested in being interviewed yourself? Wait for March! Script-A-Month will resume then :)

Friday, February 10, 2012

Proverbs Project: My English Assignment this week




I felt the need to share ;)

For a Bible/English assignment this week, I had to read a set of Proverbs and then write two fables based on them.

Because I slacked off all week, I made it up by trying to write one for each day's work.

I think I did.... four? Maybe I did do five.

Anyway, thought I'd share them, so, erm, yeah.....

*******************************************************************





************************************************

......anybody work on anything fun this week??

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Blue Ink Progress Update #2-- Edits


I learned way more about vampires in one night than I ever wanted to know in the space of ten lifetimes. o_O I hate to say this, but it was kinda intriguing. I mean, there were vampires before Twilight, people..... they were actually interesting once. :P They're actually pretty sad. I want to write some weird redemptive vampire story now.....

Anyway, it was brought to my attention that Fabian realizes his vampire-ness too quickly/easily. And I agreed. I just wasn't sure how to alter that.

But thankfully, there exists such a thing as Google Search :)

Thanks to wikipedia and a few vampire-edia sites, I was quickly updated on all things vampirical. I then applied that and altered the first scene after he wakes up.

I'm not going to say anything stupid like, "Now it's perfect!" But I certainly think it's a start.

Whaddya think??








o_O

A little better, maybe???

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

So, what is Script Frenzy anyway?


I noticed a lot of my peeps have never even heard of Script Frenzy.

So, allow me to introduce it to you :)

It's the sister to NaNoWriMo. But instead of writing a 50,000 word novel in the space of a month, you write an 100-page script: film, TV, play, radio drama, whatever-- during the month of April.

Sound fun? It's great for beginners as well as.... er... not beginners. :P

Now, the Pros and Cons.

PROS
Let me say: Script Frenzy is, as a general rule, far easier than NaNoWriMo for multiple reasons:

a) It is not judged by word count, thus...
b) you write far less words than a 50k novel
c) you don't have to worry about the rhythm of your words like you would in a novel. Screenplays should read as smooth as possible, but they're pretty "choppy" naturally.
d) as long as you have a story that would fill up 100 minutes of film time, you're golden. :P

CONS
a) the format of screenwriting is a little tricky to get a handle on at first, so that can be a bit of a slower-downer.

b) if you don't have a screenplay-writing program, adjusting formats in Word, etc., is time-consuming. (I highly recommend the free program Celtx for script-writing.)

c) if you're naturally a novelist, going from novel to screenplay can be a rough transition. I personally lean toward screenplays, but the style of writing is so different that it can be hard to bounce between the two.

d) it's also hard as a novelist to go between story styles. Films play out differently than novels. (Hence why adaptions are very tricky....)

THAT SAID....


Once you get a handle on the formatting, screenwriting is probably one of the funnest things in the world. If it sounds interesting to you, I highly recommend you give it a go this year. Even if you don't win, you'll have done something new and exciting! :D

Oh, and here's a few links if you're still curious about screenwriting. This post of mine has some links at the end if you want to read some scripts.

And these links go to celtx and formatting 411:

http://celtx.com/

http://filmschoolonline.com/sample_lessons/sample_lesson_format.htm

http://www.scriptfrenzy.org/eng/node%252F2000045

Alright, well that's all for now folks!

Humor me while I amuse myself with stupid pictures....





*giggles*

Sorry, excuse me......

Got Titles?



Since a few of you asked, here are my nominations for my Script Frenzy titles. I think I already have a few stories forming for them, but if anyone else thinks of something, don't hesitate to speak up :)

Of course, if something here inspires YOU to write something, the titles are up for stealing... but let me know so I can read it when you're done :P As far as the ideas shared..... ask the original person before stealing it ;)

Anyway, the titles I came up with were:

Grievance

My Only Sunshine 
(or "When Skies Are Gray")
And yes, this is based off that song.............

Long Live The King

and

Henry's Letters
(or "Letters from Henry"... but that made me think of "Letters to Juliet" so I gave that one up xD)


Not to bias you with my ideas, but my take on each of these titles, straight off, are:

Grievance: something to do with a court hearing. Or one of those thrillers where everybody's stuck in the same house/room/closed space, and one of the people hates one of the other people and things get gruesome..... but thats pretty sick of me o_O 

My Only Sunshine: Something about a relationship between a daughter (or just a child) and her mom, who has some sort of disease that leaves her bedridden, or a memory lapse or something. I could come up with another story if I thought about it for a few days, though.... 

Long Live The King: I'm not really sure, but this title gets me the most excited for some reason. Far from a period piece or something about monarchy, I would take the title as something metaphorical.... maybe. For some reason the image that pops into my head is two boys that were childhood friends, and then later in life after something disastrous happens and they're practically enemies.... but I'll have to ponder a but more :)

Henry's Letters: This is the only one that I have a pretty definite idea: again, the memory lapse thing. But, it's about a boy who has like, a sporadic memory loss or some sort of memory condition. His brother comes to visit him, but his little brother is sort of... not there, you know? He thinks he's somewhere else. Anyway, the little brother writes letters to his older brother, and the older brother has to deal with pretty much losing his little brother. 

That's not a very concise summary, but I haven't seriously worked it out before o_O

Anyway, enough of my rambling: what do you guys think? Any other stories behind those titles??