A Thousand Things to Say #1

I’m thinking of starting a new thing on my blog.  I’ve got quotes from other people–famous, writers, personalities, book characters–but I think it’s time I share a bit of my own wisdom.  I’m not sure how this will go, or what I will say in these parts, but I think it’ll be a nice change.  I’ve needed a bit more change on my blog–that and time.   This will be a temporary segment though, lasting only 1000 pieces of wisdom.

A Thousand Things To Say #1 —-  Don’t hate what you love.  If you like it, you like it. There’s nothing to be ashamed of.

It’s a cliched piece of wisdom, but it’s wisdom none the less, and I definitely believe in remembering it whenever I face a situation where it’s evident I’m not sharing the majority opinion.  In incidences like these, I have been known for declaring my opinion just a little too loudly, and usually after saying what I really think out loud, I some times feel that widening circle of wariness around me.  Yet, it can’t be helped, I just don’t agree, and remembering that it’s okay to say that I like something has pushed me through.   I won’t lie, I’m sometimes not the strongest person in the world and seeing that I’m different has sometimes shakes my nerves.  After all as a kid, I had to deal with being the only Asian girl in my year–despite the multicultralism of my city, it was still pretty uniform.  And while I appreciated my ethnicity, I didn’t really learn how to appreciate it until later on–and this meant rejecting traditional foods of my ethnicity, and foods that other people weren’t eating.  I didn’t like being short (I’m petite btw and I have a complex about my height, though I don’t try to think about it much, and I would wear heels, but oh boy, you’ll never guess…finding heels for my feet…..is worse than looking for a needle in a haystack to use a common idiom).  I didn’t like looking different.  I wanted to be taller (don’t we all want to be taller? And if we’re not short, then, don’t we all want to be a little shorter?  Just a little different because we think it might make us feel a little bit better?)  It was later on, in highschool, after feeling like a coward for letting myself be bullied–it was partially my fault (no matter how much one says it’s not your fault, you sat idly by…), even if I definitely blamed the bully who bullied me–and not make a stand (too quiet for my own good, henceforth the point where I decided I wanted to speak up, even if a little bit) that I learnt this piece of wisdom.  I was never suicidal, I like to think despite being weak sometimes, I could learn to be strong, and where better to start with appreciating my difference?  It was me who was maing a big deal about things, and hence emphasised how I saw others looking at me.  Truthfully, I like how I look.  I like eating what I like.  I like that I can be cute and small even if sometimes it sucks ( like if I happen to want to sit behind the driver’s seat, I need a cushion so it doesn’t look like Aunt Petunia craning her neck to see what the neighbours are doing).  But then, there are heels for that! (But only when they fit, and I have come into a bit of luck about that over the last few years and still have a functioning wallet.)  From there, it was only a matter taking it step by step to be unafraid of saying ‘I like this’.  Of course when it comes to guys, there is still that ever present fear–but hey, that’s another story.

The Curse Mark: Chapter Four

WHY WE FALL: BLAYKE FERAY

 

He was a typical customer to Adrienne’s, and yet, he did not possess the air of a typical customer.    Blayke Feray was nervous.  If he was not so conscious of where he was currently sitting, then his knee might have been bouncing up and down mimicking the intense beating of his heart.  Apparently he was not good at deception, even though he was fallen and no longer sitting amongst the puffy clouds of heaven with Cassia and the rest of Leora’s charming crew.  Not that Blayke had wanted anything to do with Leora’s crowd to begin with, it was just well he somehow managed to find himself running into them more often than not.

Glancing left at the woman who appeared to hold the bar mistress’s attention, Blayke was mesmerised.  He had not realised how mesmerised he was until the bar mistress said, coldly, “So you found me.”

Blayke blinked and sculling the rest of his drink, he decided to clear out of the bar as soon as possible, it didn’t look like the place someone like he should be.  Throwing down the appropriate number of colourful bills, and a few coins, Blayke stepped down off his chair and in one swift move, with a brief glance at the intense air between the bar mistress and the new comer, he made his way out the door.

People like him who wanted nothing more than to lie low knew better than to stay in an environment where a major conflict was potentially going to break out.   Adrienne’s Bar, he’d frequented it every so often, but usually he stuck to the wall, drinking in quiet as he frustrated himself over the very fact that he had been in the same town for too long.

Riverton, a safe zone.   If there were beings such as Adrienne and her mysterious guest holding presence here, it was no surprise that it was a safe zone.  But Blayke knew that it wasn’t the only reason why it was so safe here.  Blayke wasn’t safe here.  He was just a tad bit more fortified, but safe.  The secret in his mind was hardly safe, as was the object locked in a box in his wardrobe.  The key, well that was safely around the neck of an angel who was safe in heaven who did not entirely know the truth about the last gift he gave her.

Walking down Riverton Main Street, Blayke felt the roiling unease in his chest for the very fact that he had potentially put his sister at risk.  No wonder he fell.  A man as selfish as him did not deserve to be up in heaven.  He could not even excuse his actions.  They had not been for the better good.  In the beginning, he had been acting selfishly.  One action at a time.  No wonder he was fallen.

Arriving at his brick apartment block, Blayke climbed up the stairs one step at a time.  Looking down at where he walked mainly to avoid the puddles of water that seemed to never go away.  Stepping over a step that had an extremely large puddle of water, he kept his black leather brogue boots clean.  Glancing up once as he passed by an open door, Blayke caught sight of a woman with a dark red bob looking agitated.  When she saw him, she scowled, causing Blayke to quickly drop his gaze and stride quickly past.

Continue reading

Book Slumps due to Overexposure

Nina:

Read my mind Sam.

Though for me, it was fantasy, the whole genre apparently, because I can’t seem to get into anything fantasy related that I have to read….and yet got into the first contemporary book I read in ages.

I think it’s time for a change xD, even though I love fantasy with all my heart, I definitely need to go reading into other genres that I also love. When was the last time I read a historical? Or something sci-fi/dystopian? It seems I fell into reading so much fantasy, I didn’t even notice….!

Originally posted on Poison For The Senses:

Today I wanted to talk about something that has been on my mind lately. I really don’t know what to call it other than over stimulation, maybe?  I’m not quite sure. I’ll tell my story, and maybe you can tell me if theres some sort of official term for it.

Contemporary is my favorite genre of YA fiction. Its what got me into reading with authors like Sarah Dessen and Laurie Halse Anderson. I’ve been trying to branch out more and I think I’ve been successful and finding some really great books. I started off this year reading a lot of contemporary books, with both new releases and some old ones as well. And then I noticed something strange. I had read about four books all dealing with suicide. Its not really a lot, but its more than half the contemporary books that I have read this year.

I’ve read…

View original 424 more words

Finnikin of the Rock. Melina Marchetta.


4932435Finnikin of the Rock
by Melina Marchetta

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This will be a brief opinionated piece. Read as a Choice Read for the first Quarter Read for the Quarterly Book Club!

Plot: Based on the premise, predictable in an all out high fantasy manner. I guessed Evanjalin’s secret in the beginning. And the lack of discussion about her true secret (about her history) was interesting though. It makes sense when I think about her character’s history. For someone not noticed often, it was no surprise. But yet, the absence of it, made it kind of easy to predict the answer. Plotwise, pretty standard and predictable, but that wasn’t the highlight of the story. The highlight of the story is reading of Finnikin and Evanjalin’s traipse across countries and territories to return back home to Lumatere. Now THAT was the best part. And I think this kind of story is what Melina Marchetta is good at telling.

Writing: I’m used to stories by Melina where she weaves an intricate yet heartfelt story about the characters involved. Everyone is important and all their feelings are dealt with adequately. There is never a word wasted. Although I had no opinion on Finnikin to begin with, it was perhaps Marchetta’s writing that brought me to love him as a character. Same with Evanjalin. Marchetta has that magic in her words. The way she wrote Finnikin of the Rock however, is different from her other novels. This is told in true High fantasy style, from third point perspective, and not at all in a manner that can be mistaken as ‘first pov but using third pov stylings’. No, this was a story. Marchetta wove a tale here, a tale of Finnikin of the Rock and how he deals with the words laid upon his head.

“His seed will issue kings, but he will never reign.”

Marchetta writes, like always, a story of discovery for her characters. There are dull moments, and raw moments, and painful moments. You read this for a story about Finnikin. Although I classed this as romance, the romance here is both essentially yet the side story of Finnikin of the Rock. It is essential, because it is partially responsible for his development as a character. It is a side story if you think about the plot.

Furthermore, Marchetta’s writing is detailed, and instantly draws you into her world. There are plenty of descriptions on the location and environment. Some of it was a bore to read through, yet other times, you can’t pull your eyes away because here it is. This land she presents and this world that Finnikin and Evajalin live in.

Characters: I hate to compare, but like always, the characters Marchetta brought to life in Finnikin of the Rock, they are as complex as her characters in Looking for Alibrandi, On the Jellicoe Road, Saving Francesca, and The Piper’s Son. Oh yes, if you can’t tell, I’m a huge fan of her work. And as always, I am not disappointed by her beautiful words and her wonderful characters. Finnikin, you really are a great fantasy character. Alike and not alike the others I’ve seen. Evanjalin, I’m glad this wasn’t written from your perspective. Because I enjoyed your character better from Finnikin’s. She had some funny moments, and there were times when I was frustrated with her, because Finnikin was frustrated with how she acted. Specially the scenes involving Froi, Finnikin, slave traders, a ruby ring, and horses. Oh and did I mention the part where Evanjalin sold Finnikin out and let him to be imprisoned before she rescued him. But then, she did that because his father was imprisoned too, but yet, from Finnikin’s perspective, it was all really quite outrageous. I lived for those moments, because really, the interactions between Finnikin and Evanjalin were really enjoyable.

Overall: I would definitely read the sequels. Definitely want to know about Froi’s story. I would recommend this for other lovers of high fantasy purely because it is a good read, and it really is worth reading.

View all my reviews

Random Music Moment #141

Of late, I’ve been in the mood for something more instrumental.  And while I was looking around Goodreads, I noticed this song that had been posted as a theme song for an original character.  I clicked the link became absorbed, then went with the flow on youtube and started clicking all the suggested videos on the side, and boy was it like I hit the treasure spot!  Anyway, the one that has me hooked lately is Life goes on by Florian Blur and it sounds like the most accurate soundtrack for my life right at this moment.  Even if I’m stuck in the middle of one place and another, I can’t just stay still.  Life goes on no matter what, waiting can wait until my last days, until then, I want to be doing something, so I do.  In the midst of waiting to find out if I can indeed get an offer for postgrad, and putting in job applications, I am also filling up my time working on an academic journal article (my first! but also the thing that’s got me on my toes because I do and don’t know where to begin) AND enjoying my personal writing project and art/design/hobbyist project.  One of which is here (the Curse Mark) while the other is on my deviantART and is essentially my interpretation of the Tarot cards.  I’ve always wanted to do one of those!

Book review: Writing for peer reviewed journals

Nina:

A reminder to myself, that I don’t have to freak out—not that it stops he natural process of entering a new world for the first time.

Originally posted on The Thesis Whisperer:

Here at the Whisperer we know you read a lot, so we try to do some of the reading for you. There’s a lot of books out there on doing a PhD and being an academic – which ones should you buy?

If you are a regular reader you will know that Pat Thomson and Barbara Kamler wrote one of my favourite books ‘Helping doctoral students write’. Last year they produced a book on writing for publication called ‘Writing for peer review journals: strategies for getting published’. Pat Thomson authors the fabulous ‘Patter’ blog and we collaborate on some mutual research interests, so it is fantastic that ANU PhD student Briony Lipton sent in this review and you can get an unbiased view!

Briony Lipton is a PhD candidate in Gender Studies in the School of Sociology. Her research explores the relationship between academic women, feminism and university leadership in…

View original 1,643 more words