Saturday, December 28, 2013

Lost

I don't know about you, but I'm feeling lost.

As in literally lost.

Last night my family got lost on vacation. We didn't remember where we parked, so we spent an hour looking. Turns out there's a ton of Central Parking Lots in a huge city.

At least I got back. Thank God for miracles.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Well...

Your eating disorder self-assessment score is 34

You scored 38 or less

Strong tendencies toward anorexia nervosa.

I clicked on a bulimia ad and then got here. Well, that just shows how badly anorexics are portrayed. I'm not even anorexic! People are terribly misled about anorexia.

Braingle

Click here to help me earn a point. Just by clicking, I get a point. Additionally, you access a great site.

Create an account for free.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Pro-Ana

Should I change this to a pro-ana-ish blog?

I mean, I talk about a bunch of topics. So I guess I shouldn't categorize it.

But still.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Mememememememememememe

Hey.

I'm back home.

I slept fourteen hours last night.

Enough about me!

CW released a Carrie Diaries episode and the penultimate episode of Nikita.
The Nikita episode, Bubble, killed me and all the other viewers. It's just too good and too sad. How will life go on now?

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Wampires (not a typo)

Created by yours truly.
Ribbet.com is amazing as usual.

This is my interpretation of The Vamps' "Can We Dance."

Which is basically another One Direction before they get famous.

Which is basically mainstream.

Vegan

I'm being totally legit. Maybe all those ana blogs inspired me. Maybe this is me trying to be ana. Maybe I'm just sick of meat. I'm trying. Not eating meat is super easy. It's the avoiding butter part and eggs and dairy that scares me a little. It's hard. But hey, soon I'll be vegan Valerie. Valiant Valerie.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Help?

Fudge. Fudge. Fudge. FU--.

I messed up so badly.

Please pray for me.

PLEASEPLEASEPLEASE. I need some support.

Mono so far

did 2 days apple mono and on an egg mono today.

I'm sick of peanut butter from Friday's incident. Let's just say I'm quickly getting over my past cravings.

I should try a gelato mono.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Peanut Butter

is so dead and gone to me.

Don't try a mono diet if you actually want to LIKE the food after a day or a week. Yesterday I only ate peanut butter for experimentation purposes. I'm SICK of peanut butter. This is to be expected though. Honestly, you have it for a long time, you get annoyed with it.

On the bright side, the cafeteria will no longer be missing its peanut butter.

There'll be plenty for everyone but me to share!


Friday, December 13, 2013

MONO

diets.

Are really fun. So far.

Honestly, basically unlimited peanut butter. Too good to be true? We'll see. I don't think so though.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Ribbet... no not a frog

Fun with editing. I use Ribbet. It's great, and no this post isn't sponsored. It's just what I've been doing lately. Screw homework. Let's do something real.



Sunday, December 8, 2013

ana. ana. ana. ana. ana. ana. ana.


Choose what to write: Guest Post

Hey peeps! Here's a guest post by the wonderful Melinda Brasher! Please buy her books. She's fantastic.

You hear a lot about how you should "write what you know, write what you know."  I take issue with that.  I think you should write what you love.  Obviously, if you're going to write a thriller that takes place on a nuclear sub, and you don't know anything about nuclear subs, you have to do your research.  But if that's what you love, go ahead and do the research, write your story, and then bake some brownies to bribe a sailor into reading your manuscript for technical flaws.

I've never cast a spell or met a king or ridden a horse all night through the dark, yet I write about these things a lot.  That's the beauty of the human imagination.  So write what stirs you, what you can't sleep at night thinking about.  Write the kind of story you would like to read.

If you need inspiration, here are some strategies: 

-Watch people.  A writer I know has a T-shirt that says, "Be careful;  you might end up in my novel." 

-Listen to people's stories.  I once met a British brother and sister on a train in Europe.  They told me about how their train had broken down once in the middle of a snowstorm.  A couple of years later, when I decided I wanted to try to write a short story for a local contest, I remembered them, and wove a story around it, straying wildly from what really happened, peopling it with my own characters with their own motivations and back stories.  I won the contest. 

-Look for story prompts or interesting pictures to start you off.  The internet is full of them.  Search for "creative writing prompts" or "story prompts" or use Writer's Digest's Some magazines base entire issues around certain ideas or even first lines.  Here are a couple I have fun with:  THEMA Literary Journal, The First Line.

-Check out NaNoWriMo's "dares."  In the genre lounges of NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) forums, look for threads like "Fantasy Dares" where people dare you to write a story with a certain character or premise.  An example:  "Have a non-rebellious princess who WANTS to go through with the politically-important arranged marriage."  A lot of these dares give you extra points for including other twists or details:  "Your princess really likes her princessing lessons."  Some are silly, but others are fantastic ideas, many of which turn clich├ęs on their heads.   

-Read fiction.  I get inspiration from little things in books—a minor character, a comment, a bit of politics.  I look at a fantasy world and think, "but what if it were this way?"  "What if a character did this instead?"  Just be careful not to borrow too much.  Take a little thread of something you read and twist it into your own unique tale.

-Read non fiction.  I once read a book about strange animal habits and abilities and anatomy, and it gave me so many ideas for science fiction aliens that I had to keep stopping to take notes. 

-Go out and gather experiences.  Try new things.  Meet new people.  Travel.  It's research for future ideas. 

-Write, write, write, write.  The more you write, the more things you'll think of to write.  If you're completely blank, just start writing something.  Anything.  You'll probably have to throw away a few pages of garbage, but soon something will form out of the chaos.

No matter where you get your inspiration, the most important thing is to write.  The best idea is nothing until you put pen to paper. 


Bio: 

Melinda Brasher is the author of Far-Knowing, a YA fantasy about two young mage apprentices—one the hard-working and blindly loyal daughter of the High Commander, the other a baker's daughter with undisciplined power bubbling cheerfully inside her.  Their task is simple:  track down a man no one has ever been able to find, convince the ruthless and powerful mage that they're no threat, and capture him without becoming the next in his long string of victims.  Simple. 

She has also published Leaving Home, a collection of short stories, flash fiction, and travel essays.  Her writing appears in Ellipsis Literature and Art, Enchanted Conversation, Go Nomad, and International Living, among others. 


Melinda Brasher has lived in Poland, Mexico, and the Czech Republic, teaching English as a second language and traveling every chance she gets.  She loves hikes, season changes, games that require more skill than luck, grammar debates, and shelves stuffed with books.  Connect with her online at http://www.melindabrasher.com.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

In Which I Can Edit Photos

Found background online.
Added my caption. Recognize it? Guess whose song it's from.



Answer: Taylor Swift's The Moment I knew




Thursday, December 5, 2013

Chrome Apps

AKA how I customized my Chrome experience so much that it's completely Valerie-fied.

1. AdBlock
This extension isn't particularly unique, but it is lifechanging. Basically all ads are gone- Youtube ads, my blog's ads (LOL), ads on AOL....

Never again will you be distracted by that Amazon ad.

2. Disconnect
Fact: Valerie is super paranoid when it comes to the internet. I've tried to stop my internet provider from tracking my ISP address and my browsing history. Unfortunately, that feat has not been completed. However, I've accomplished a different mission, to stop websites and companies from tracking me. Hey Disconnect, thank you so much!

3. Ghostery
This app does what Disconnect does except that you can actually see the companies tracking you. There's also an automatic setting that automatically disables tracking.

My parents would call using two extensions for the same thing overkill, but I call it being cautious.

4. Google Dictionary
One of those convenient things so you'll always have a dictionary without opening a new tab.

5. HTTPS Everywhere
For security purposes.

6. Invisible Hand
Make sure you have the best deals on the internet!

7. Momentum
My new tabs always say "Good morning, Valerie." It's so pretty and clean.
MOMENTUM, I LOVE YOU. Momentum= mv.

8. Pocket
Save all your favorite websites for later!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

SO

life's hard.

and i can't stop. (cue Miley Cyrus reference here)

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Weekend Worship with The Fu

Please support them. If I were about ten years older, I'd want to marry them.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Second to No One Blog Tour!

I've done quite a few blog tours these days, as you've probably noticed. That being said, most of the authors I've toured with aren't exactly the easiest to communicate with. That's not the case with Natalie Palmer. She was super nice all throughout, even when I requested a print copy :)

button resized photo 572cd1c6-014b-47ef-b231-8429d663f291_zps245f9282.jpg
Natalie is genuinely kind and skilled. (Hey Natalie!) I would've given her a nice review even if the book wasn't as phenomenal as it is. Luckily, Second to No One is easily a fabulous book!

 Here you have it:

Second to No One
By Natalie Palmer
Out now!
Summary from Goodreads:
“Things change. People change. Jess and I weren’t above it.”

Gemma’s first year of high school isn’t starting out the way she hoped. Jess is back from California and before she can memorize her class schedule their summer romance comes to a screeching halt. To add to her misery the gorgeous new girl in school also has eyes for Jess and despite Gemma’s unfailing attempts to win him back she keeps finding herself alone. 

But when a late night car crash lands her a three month grounding and twenty hours of community service she discovers that there’s more to life than just romance and boyfriends. 

Unpredictable and heart wrenching, Second to No One is the perfect continuation to the magical beginning of the Gemma and Jess romance.  


Review: 
If you haven't read Second Kiss, go read it now! I'll review that one later, but honestly, my love for Second Kiss goes without saying. It's a masterpiece, a beautiful piece of YA literature.

Let's move on now.


Second to No One raises the bars. Gemma develops a lot as a character. She learns to overcome her flaws and face her fears. In the beginning, there were parts when I was really mad at Gemma. She was acting like a teenager! ( I know, I get ticked off easily.) Eventually, she overcame her teenage tendencies to grow into a better, more mature version of herself. Reading about Gemma's internal maturation is quite satisfying. I'm so glad that she's so much better.


Now what isn't there to say about Jess? He's gorgeous, kind, caring, perfect.... and taken.

He's the boy I wish I could have in my life. Gemma is so lucky to get to know him. In Second to No One, Jess has to get a little courage. Right now he and Gemma are both caught up with other people. Jess is seemingly unattainable. His untouchableness (I know that's not a word, but hey!) is his only flaw. I love how he overcomes his flaws and matures as well.

Natalie Palmer is unnatural. By that, I mean she's unnaturally skilled at writing. I love her writing style. It's the poetic, beautiful writing style I've been searching for ever since I've read If I Stay and The Sky is Everywhere. In other words, Natalie Palmer is great with infusing sadness and laughter and emotion into her flawless poetic prose. Natalie's writing is the writing to aspire for. It's young and mature and slightly hedonistic, which is perfect for this book.


Please do check out Second to No One! It would mean a lot to me if you support this book. 

If not, check out Natalie's website here and her Facebook here. Buy an autographed version of the book on her blog! It's so COOL. BTW, if you buy her book and email me your confirmation, I'll be your BFF. I can get you access to so much as a student of a prestigious high school. (I'm not saying which one.... yet.)
LOL just buy the book!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

GIVEAWAY

Carolyn Meyer is giving Thanks for her readers! 

BEAUTY'S DAUGHTER: 


What is it like to be the daughter of the most beautiful woman in the world?

Hermione knows . . . her mother is Helen of Troy, the famed beauty of Greek myth. Helen is not only beautiful but also impulsive, and when she falls in love with charming Prince Paris, she runs off with him to Troy, abandoning her distraught daughter. Determined to reclaim their enchanting queen, the Greek army sails for Troy. Hermione stows away in one of the thousand ships in the fleet and witnesses the start of the legendary Trojan War.     In the rough Greek encampment outside the walls of Troy, Hermione’s life is far from that of a pampered princess. Meanwhile, her mother basks in luxury in the royal palace inside the city. Hermione desperately wishes for the gods and goddesses to intervene and end the brutal war—and to bring her love. Will she end up with the handsome archer Orestes, or the formidable Pyrrhus, leader of a tribe of fierce warriors? And will she ever forgive her mother for bringing such chaos to her life and the lives of so many others?

Author bio:


Carolyn Meyer is the author of more than fifty books for children and young adults, and has no intention of quitting any time soon. She lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.


The Story of Hermione and Helen of Troy: 

After years of writing about the young lives of fascinating women of power, from Cleopatra to Victoria, in BEAUTY'S DAUGHTER I've drawn on the myths of ancient Greece to tell the story of what it must have been like to be the daughter of the most beautiful woman in the world.

When Helen leaves her husband and daughter and runs off to Troy with handsome Paris, a thousand Greek ships sail for Troy to bring her back..and her daughter, Hermione, goes with them as a stowaway. Hermione's adventures on the Trojan beaches, her struggle for survival,, and her search for true love of her life drive this story.

Social media:
www.readcarolyn.com
Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/cmeyerbooks
Facebook: Carolyn Meyer Books
https://www.amazon.com/author/carolynmeyer

Victoria Rebels


Queen Victoria’s personal journals inform this captivating first-person account of one of history’s most prominent female leaders.

Queen Victoria most certainly left a legacy—under her rule as the longest reigning female monarch in history, the British Empire was greatly expanded and significant industrial, cultural, political, scientific, and military changes occurred within the United Kingdom. To be a young woman in a time when few other females held positions of power was to lead in a remarkable age—and because Queen Victoria kept personal journals, this historical novel from award-winning author Carolyn Meyer shares authentic emotional insight along with accurate information, weaving a true story of intrigue and romance.

Cleopatra Confesses


It is the first century B.C. Cleopatra, the third of the pharaoh's six children, is the one that her father has chosen to be the next queen of Egypt. But when King Ptolemy is forced into exile, Cleopatra is left alone to fend for herself in a palace rife with intrigue and murder. Smart, courageous, ambitious and sensuously beautiful, she possesses the charm to cause two of history's most famous leaders to fall in love with her. But as her cruel sisters plot to steal the throne, Cleopatra realizes there is only one person on whom she can rely--herself.

In Cleopatra Confesses, award winning author Carolyn Meyer writes the story of the teenage girl who would become Egypt's most unforgettable queen, from her early years to her her ultimate destiny.

The Wild Queen


Mary Stuart was just five years old when she was sent to France to be raised alongside her future husband. But when the frail young king dies, eighteen-year-old Mary is stripped of her title as Queen of France and set adrift in the harsh world, alone. Determined to reign over what is rightfully hers, Mary returns to Scotland. Hopingthat a husband will help her secure the coveted English throne, she marries again, but the love and security she longs for elude her. Instead, the fiery young queen finds herself embroiled in a murder scandal that could cost her the crown. And her attempts to bargain with her formidable “sister queen,” Elizabeth I of England, could cost her her very life.

Win the books above by entering below:

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Lately

I just bombed my physics final. (Okay, so everyone else bombed it too. That doesn't mean it's okay though.)

MOMENTUM SUCKS. NEWTON SUCKS. SCREW PHYSICS.

Today The Fu released their weekly video.

"to all the brokenhearted" <3

I love you, the Fu.




SCREW SCHOOL. I'M COMING HOME.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

I'm sick

It's finals week and I've puked a ton.

Anyone know how to cure yourself from vomiting?
I'm living on saltines and dry toast.

I kind of want to go vegan after this.

Monday, November 18, 2013

How to BS Your Way through Essays


1.Get your laptop out.
         
This step is ESSENTIAL. You need to have your paper on a computer. Save, save, save!
 (Paperless technology has been invented for a reason. USE IT.)

2.Get your other junk out.
          
As in the books you're writing your essay about or the sites you've found through your research.
Whatever you think you need, get it out. This includes water and stress balls, not DISTRACTIONS
           
3. Write the thesis/ introduction/ junk.
This stuff is easy. Intro facts. Set the reader in time, location, and whatever other background info you need. (The thesis itself might take a bit of time, depending on your familiarity with BS.)

4.Write the conclusion if you can.
Use a quote, a current situation, finish up your intro in a sense. Do whatever. Just make it seem final. Remember, a good conclusion should be the intro to another essay.

5. Look throughout your sources or books for some non BS info.
Get RELEVANT info. I know, sometimes it's hard. It takes a lot of time on your wild goose chase to actually find evidence supporting good points. But hey, it's a lot easier than not BSing your essay!

6. Quote everything essential.
As in copy and paste. As in word for word. REMEMBER TO PUT IN QUOTATION MARKS AND CITE.

7. Explain said quotes.
Give explanations. How does your freaking evidence support your freaking thesis?

8.Take out some quotes and paraphrase.
You can't have too many quotes. Paraphrase, rewrite, DON'T FORGET TO CITE.

9. Make everything concise.
The more your teachers read, the more they want to lower your grade.

10. Add in good transitions.
"Hence, quality ads will bring in more customers." "However important Aden may be, it still cannot overcome the severity of the situation in Yemen." Boom. 

11. Print a bunch of copies.
In case you spill food on one, in case you accidentally rip one.

12. Edit said copies until perfection.
Be harsh with yourself. Be your worst critic.

13. Print again.
That is, after you revise.

14. Turn in.
WITH A SMILE. YOU'RE DONE.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Won't Last Long Blog Tour


won't last long

Hey peeps! I haven't posted too much lately... maybe cause I'm prepping for this review!
I'm so honored to be touring (ish) Won't Last Long by the AMAZING Heidi Joy Tretheway! Check out her website, check out her book, check out my blog (or not).

Won't Last Long
By Heidi Joy Tretheway
3.5 stars

Synopsis :
Can two people who are totally wrong for each other ever be right?
She's a feisty, sly marketing exec intent on hiding her small-town roots. He’s a laid-back engineer with a shaggy mutt and a pushy ex.

When Joshua asks Melina out, she asks what kind of car he drives. She’ll do drinks, not dinner. She’s always in control. But with Joshua’s easy confidence and sharp wit, Melina is soon breaking the dating rules she made for herself.

Opposites attract—but friends think Melina and Joshua can’t possibly last. When crisis throws their world off its axis, Melina must confront her childhood family, the people she’s come to care about, and the destruction of her pristine image. (Goodreads)

Review:
This book hit home for me. I have both Joshua and Melina's flaws, so reading about them made me realize that. Is Won't Last Long secretly a self-help book? If so, it's the best self-help book because it doesn't feel like one!

Melina's the resident ice queen and control freak. Her condition is so bad that it even affects dates: no dinner, keep them hanging so they'll want more. It's really interesting how in control she is until Joshua comes along. When he does come along, she starts to break a little.

Joshua has a mission. He wants Melina to be his. Of course, with his easy demeanor, Melina can't do anything but agree. I think he's a great character because he isn't like typical love interests in novels. He's his own character, unaffected by all those other guys in romance novels.

The writing is in third person. It switches between Joshua and Melina's viewpoints. The writing is fairly well-written. No sucky third-person for you!

There's a lot more than just the romance. Joshua and Melina have to deal with emotional baggage, lies, broken houses, false impressions, and protective friends. They have to learn to solve all of their problems to be good together.


 Overall, an excellent novel. 

Thanks Samantha from Chick Lit Plus and Heidi, the author, for letting me read this. I LOVE YOU BOTH.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

THE FU

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The Perfect Love Interest: Guest Post

Yes, it's guest post day! Today we have the wonderful Meredith Schorr, author of the book Blogger Girl. I asked her how she creates the perfect love interest in books. Without any further ado, here we are:

Valerie asked me to write a post on how to create a perfect love interest in a book. My initial response was, “thanks, Valerie, for asking me such an easy question! *sarcasm*” but then I decided to look at the post as a challenge since it is not a question I have ever asked myself or even discussed with other writers.

In real life, one man isn’t perfect for all women. By that same token, one fictional hero isn’t perfect for every book heroine. I think it is really important to know your leading lady when creating her leading man. For instance, if your main character is extremely bold and sure of herself, a compelling hero might be one who offers a challenge by putting her in her place and mellowing her out. If your leading lady is introverted and reserved, it could be fun to spice things up by creating an “alpha” love interest that takes her out of her comfort zone and makes her see herself in a different light.

There are some genres, most notably “romance,” where the leading man is always as swoon-worthy on the outside as he is on the inside, i.e. physically unflawed – tall, muscular, six-pack abs, smoldering eyes, winning smile etc. but my brand is “Real Chick Lit for Real Chicks” so while my leading men are always attractive, I often throw in a physical flaw to make them more relatable/attainable. For instance, Nicholas in Blogger Girl is gorgeous but he’s also only 5’7’. In a sex scene, I describe his body as lean and well-built but not overly muscular or perfect. While the handsome yet imperfect hero works well for my books, since my heroines are also based in reality and flawed, the “realistic” hero might not be appropriate for other books.

Although as noted above, what constitutes the perfect hero depends on the heroine herself, there are some factors one should keep in mind when choosing the right man, certainly in the “real world.” I am going to share an excerpt from my first novel, Just Friends with Benefits, where Stephanie, my main character, gets some helpful advice from her mother on the topic:

Giving me her “mommy knows best” look, my mom said, “Well, if it’s right, you should feel safe with him.”
“Safe how?”
My mom looked straight ahead as if the right words were somewhere in the distance and then nodded. “Have you ever been infatuated with someone to the point that you practically walk on eggshells fearing he’ll stop liking you at any time?”
I thought back to almost every guy I had ever liked. “Uh, yeah!”
“Well, when it’s right, you shouldn’t feel that way. You should feel safe and secure in his feelings for you.” Pointing her finger at me, she said, “Unlike my relationship with your father.”
I was pretty confident Ryan wasn’t on the verge of losing interest in me. “Cool.”
“And when it’s the right man, you should also feel confident he’ll take care of you.”
I should’ve known this was coming and waved my hand in protest. “I’m not looking for a sugar daddy, Mom.”
My mom shooed my hand away. “That’s not what I meant.” Chuckling, she said, “Well, that’s not entirely what I meant. I don’t want you marrying a man who can’t support you and your children economically. Does Ryan do as well as Hille?”
“Mom!”
“I was just asking. But what I meant by ‘taking care of you’ was that a man who loves you will do whatever is necessary to protect you from dangerous people and dangerous situations. Even with his bad knee, Allan insists on taking out the garbage if it’s after sunset so I don’t have to walk outside in the dark.”
Maybe that’s why Ryan always insisted on coming with me when I got drunk and wanted to leave a bar to grub a cigarette from a stranger. “Okay. What else?”
Looking thoughtful again, my mom said, “He should accept and adore you the way you are while at the same time encouraging you to be even better.”
Ryan still liked me no matter how often I knocked over my drinks. And he was trying to persuade me to train for a half marathon. This was looking good. I beamed at my mom. “You amaze me, Mom. You’re so wise.”

Wise words indeed!

Thank you to Valerie for asking the tough questions and for having me on her blog!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Confessions

Here are my confessions to the whole world. It's not like anyone knows exactly who I am. It's not like anyone even reads this blog. And if you do, prepare to laugh, cry, and dance your way out onto the street.


  1. I had/ still have this burning crush for this one guy
    1. He's 22.
    2. I know it's hopeless. I CAN'T HELP IT.
  2. I want to make it to this math summer program called MOSP.
    1. They take the top 60 people in the nation.
  3. I'm a chronic worrier.
    1. I physically stress.
  4. I just got a Facebook two nights ago.
    1. YES I CONFORMED TO SOCIETAL NORMS. I'M SORRY.
  5. I have this thing for older men.
    1. 22, 18.... the list goes on. I can't help it.
  6. I started writing at the Young Folks.
  7. I'm such a failure sometimes.
  8. I met CASSEY HO OF BLOGILATES.
    1. Boston Meetup was cool, even though I only got to do the meet-up part and barely. She's my all-time hero.

Friday, November 1, 2013

From Rum to Roots Blog Tour

Picture
BAM. Here you have it, a certified-by-Valerie playlist. Now in all seriousness, I'm so honored to be a stop on a virtual tour featuring From Rum to Roots. From Rum to Roots ROCKS. Or should I say RUMS? Sorry, I'm so bad with names and stuff. It's crazy.

From Rum to Roots
From Rum to Roots
By Lloyd G Francis
Summary from Goodreads: In 1937 near Portland Cottage, in southern Jamaica, on a huge sugar estate, Linton McMann, the illegitimate son of the owner of the plantation, works making rum. Meanwhile in Kingston, Daisy, helps her mother managing an ice business and dreams of joining her elder sister in New York.

Seeking opportunity, Linton leaves the deep Jamaican countryside for New York and the collapse of the ice business and family crises force Daisy to leave Kingston, seeking a new start in the United States. They encounter a vibrant Jamaican-American community in New York, where they meet at the Audubon Ballroom in Harlem. Becoming American citizens, they marry, and start a family. Ambition drives them to start a business and Linton capitalizes on a skill he learned as a young man in Jamaica, making a drink known in Jamaica as “Roots.” It proves wildly popular and the company, Family Roots, prospers beyond Linton’s and Daisy’s wildest dreams.

By 1986, the drink is a sensation. Money flows in, but something is missing. Happiness is as scarce as freshwater in the middle of the sea. Wrestling with their past while living in a land of plenty, Linton and Daisy discover that truth is the only avenue to happiness.


1. America from West Side Story
I love West Side Story. That movie makes me cry. I imagine the feelings in this song are shared with Linton and Daisy.






2. Hate to See Your Heart Break by Paramore
There's so much love and suffereing throughout this novel. However, throughout it all, love triumphs through all. Hate to See Your Heart Break is the perfect song.




3. Call Me When You're Sober
Note the Rum in From Rum to Roots. Of course I need to stick in a song about rum. I CAN'T HELP IT. I'M SORRY. I'm just a teen! (Or at least about getting drunk and all). Here's to you, Evanescence.


4. Mean by Taylor Swift
People are mean. That's one important lesson in From Rum to Roots. Here's a song to all the people who've ever hurt anyone.



5. Here Comes the Sun by the Beatles
A lighter, happier song is definitely needed to offset the other ones. Here's a beautiful, happy one that suits the book as well.



6. Try by Pink
What can I say? Linston and Daisy definitely try. They overcome their demons and obstacles quite well.


7. Make You Feel My Love by Adele
She knows what she's taking about.


Interested in From Rum to Roots yet? Buy it on Amazon here! Check out the author's website here!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Reign Ep 2

WHY WOULD YOU GO INTO A PASSAGEWAY ALONE?
Hello, common sense?

Other than that, I LOVE REIGN.

An Interview


1.  *Poof!* A genie appeared in front of you!  He can grant you three wishes- but they must all be wishes related to books! What three things would you wish for?
For me to finally finish the book I'm writing and get it published and lalala
For all the books I'd love to come into my house
For Marie Lu, Courtney Summers, Jandy Nelson and Gayle Forman to write a book together
2.  What book (s) do you wish more people knew about?  
The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson. That book is perfect.

Dash and Lily's Book of Dares. I love Dash so much. Dash and Lily make the perfect couple.


Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers.


Anything by Victoria Schwab.3.  Favorite authors and favorite books from said authors?

I love Courtney Summers, Jandy Nelson, Cassandra Clare and Marie Lu.
4.  Any books you wish had a sequel?  How about books that you wish were stand-alones?  Why?
Not really.
5.  What do you think of multiple point-of-view novels? 
Not entirely for them. If they're written well, I'll advocate it. For the most part though, I am against multiple point-of-view books.
6.  First book character crush?
Probably Jace Lightwood. Jace is a classic. 7.  Favorite classical novels?
ANNE OF GREEN GABLES. I love everything about it. Gilbert, Anne, Marilla, Diane, GILBERT.8.  What was the first book that sparked your book-lovin' soul?
The Cupid Chronicles by Colleen Murtagh Paratore in elementary school. Even though it was the second book, I read it first at promptly fell in love.
9.  Favorite genres?
YA contemporary. It has to be a bit poetic, slightly romantic, really tragic, and altogether beautiful. See Some Girls Are, The Sky is Everywhere and If I Stay.

10.  Favorite childhood books?

Anne of Green Gables.

PRINCESS

DREAMS DO COME TRUE IN NEW ORLEANS.

I love the Princess and the Frog

Friday, October 25, 2013

TRADE MY SOUL


  • to get a perfect GPA lol without any effort
  • to have no worries
  • To be INVINCIBLE
  • To be as awesome as Cassey Ho
  • To lose twenty pounds
  • To publish a book
  • To have a bunch of money
  • To not be so SECULAR

Monday, October 21, 2013

PBB

Had a banana with peanut butter for dinner. 200ish cals.

I'm listening to the Beatles. They're crazily skilled.

Let it be.

This is so not a pro-ana blog. Sometimes I wish it were.
Every time I think about myself:


I started binging again. This time I think I need to go pro ana. I can't do this anymore.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

How to Get Things Done


  • Stop flirting with electronics. Seriously.
  • SLEEP MORE.
  • No internet (see above)
  • Get everything done and then party, not the other way around.
  • Believe that you can be efficient and productive.
  • Meditate
  • Stop worrying about others. You're on your own journey.
  • Look at others, then look at yourself. Don't look away.
  • Exercise.
  • Eat right.
  • Stop reading this post.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Remember

What do you do when you think you've lost the person you were? What do you do when you've got all these leftover pieces from a past life you don't know anymore?

What do you do now?

I miss someone I don't know. I miss all things unnameable things.




"All Too Well" by Taylor Swift




 I walked through the door with you, the air was cold,
But something 'bout it felt like home somehow.
And I left my scarf there at your sister's house,
And you still got it in your drawer even now.

Oh, your sweet disposition and my wide-eyed gaze.
We're singing in the car, getting lost Upstate.
Autumn leaves falling down like pieces into place,
And I can picture it after all these days.

And I know it's long gone,
And that magic's not here no more,
And I might be okay,
But I'm not fine at all.


'Cause there we are again on that little town street.
You almost ran the red 'cause you were looking over me.
Wind in my hair, I was there, I remember it all too well.

Photo album on the counter, your cheeks were turning red.
You used to be a little kid with glasses in a twin-size bed
And your mother's telling stories about you on the tee ball team
You tell me 'bout your past, thinking your future was me.

And I know it's long gone
And there was nothing else I could do
And I forget about you long enough
To forget why I needed to...

'Cause there we are again in the middle of the night.
We dance around the kitchen in the refrigerator light
Down the stairs, I was there, I remember it all too well, yeah.

Maybe we got lost in translation, maybe I asked for too much,
And maybe this thing was a masterpiece 'til you tore it all up.
Running scared, I was there, I remember it all too well.

Hey, you call me up again just to break me like a promise.
So casually cruel in the name of being honest.
I'm a crumpled up piece of paper lying here
'Cause I remember it all, all, all... too well.

Time won't fly, it's like I'm paralyzed by it
I'd like to be my old self again, but I'm still trying to find it

After plaid shirt days and nights when you made me your own
Now you mail back my things and I walk home alone

But you keep my old scarf from that very first week
'Cause it reminds you of innocence and it smells like me
You can't get rid of it 'cause you remember it all too well, yeah

'Cause there we are again, when I loved you so
Back before you lost the one real thing you've ever known
It was rare, I was there, I remember it all too well

Wind in my hair, you were there, you remember it all
Down the stairs, you were there, you remember it all
It was rare, I was there, I remember it all too well

(azlyrics.com)

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Binge Eating vs. Overeating

So I used to be a binge eater. Over the summer, I would literally finish over a pound of nuts in a sitting. I could pack away a thousand calories worth of fruit and STILL eat after that. I would look through the pantry for food and secretly finish it all.

I was ashamed and disgusted on so many levels.
I was a TEENAGER. (I still am one, but still.)

It's disgusting to have that relationship with food. You're scared someone will find out that you're the reason there's barely any food left. You feel terrible knowing that you just cannot stop yourself from eating more and more. There's no satisfying your brain. You can only binge, binge, binge.

STOP IT. You have got to stop. There's no gradually easing out of binge eating, at least not in my case. You have to stop it entirely and get on with your life. Once you stop wasting your thoughts on binge eating, you will eventually stop worrying about it.

Sure you might overeat sometimes, but trust me, that's much better than binge eating.

Overeating is natural. Binge eating is not.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Ducks and More

Today we have a guest post from the amazing Amy L. Peterson! It's about ducks...
not the Will Herondale type of duck but the actual legitimate duck. Glory. Glory. Glory.

If you're interested already, follow her Twitter here or visit her website here.

Now, without further ado, here we are:


Something Furry Underfoot is my humorous, touching memoir about raising a whole bunch of pets my husband kept bringing home and how ended up caring for and falling for all of them. It includes 50 tips, some of which are about pets, some of which are about the spouses that love pets.  For example, consider Tip #4 8:  Even fish can be stressful. In my book, you’ll read how we went from one aquarium to three aquariums just because our discus fish didn’t all get along. 
Something Furry Underfoot is available as a paperback and an e-book on Amazon.com, and as an e-book in numerous e-formats at Smashwords.com. If you just make your way to Amylpeterson.com/MyBooks, you’ll find all of my books, plus photos of most of the pets in Something Furry Underfoot.  Some proceeds of all of my animal books will benefit animal rescue organizations.
Below is an excerpt from Something Furry Underfoot, from Chapter 7, Bumpkin. You’ll benefit in knowing that Nicole was a student where I worked at the state of Michigan; she’d informed me she’d found a domestic duckling wandering around a yard in East Lansing.  I’d agreed to provide the duckling a home.


On April 17, 2007, at around 3:00 p.m., Nicole approached me at work with a large shoebox, the contents of which was peeping. Word had gotten out that I was taking possession of a duckling, so with my new charge in hand and a half dozen co-workers gathered `round, I lifted one corner of the lid. Before I could see inside, the creature pushed upward on the lid of the box, and within seconds, we were face to face with a bright yellow duckling with orange feet and an orange bill. I heard several people say, “Oh, how cute.” One person asked, “What are you going to do with it?” but all I could do is wonder, “What kind of duck is this?” My next thought was that the little duckling would jump out of the box, so I had no choice but to replace the lid and carry my peeping charge out of the building and to my car.
Because the height of the box was only half the height of the duckling, I couldn’t bear to keep the duckling inside the box if I didn’t have to. Once I was seated inside my car and the door closed, I lifted the lid, took the duckling in my left hand and held it against my chest. It blinked, looked around, but made no attempt to wiggle or get away. So, using one hand to hold my duckling and the other to drive, we made our way the 10 miles home. The duckling never did wiggle; it was as if sitting on my chest was his or her preferred method of travel.
As we drove through the streets of Lansing, East Lansing and into Haslett, I was amazed by the heat coming off its little feet. Duck feet look rubbery, so I wasn’t expecting them to warm my chest. And when we took the turn into my neighborhood and I held the duckling close to my face, I wasn’t expecting its beak to be warm, too.
Once safely home, I carried the duckling inside where we were greeted by two curious dogs and one meowing kitten. The duckling blinked and peeped once in response. I told the three curious fuzzies that this was our new pal, and they would have to get used to it being around.
I carried the duckling down to the bathroom and placed her in a cardboard box I had retrieved from the local grocery store the day before. The box was lined with newspapers and soft towels, the former to throw out each day, the latter because a nest would likely have been soft and fuzzy, or at least not hard, I was thinking, and, well, okay, it was totally irrational to put towels in there, but I did anyway.
Above the box was a trouble light, which provided the primary source of warmth for the little duckling. The proper height of the light was very important—if it was too close to the bottom of the box, the duckling would bake; too far away and it wouldn’t be able to stay warm enough. What constituted too far and too close was completely beyond me and I had to trust that Mark would adjust it based on the fact that he had not baked any of his baby turkeys.
Everything looked to be in order, less the matter of food, and I was contemplating my next move when Mark appeared. Looking at the duckling he remarked, “Oh my, what a cutie. Do you know what kind?”
“I haven’t a clue.”
We stood there and stared at the duckling, who stared back at us, blinking every now and again. Finally, it peeped. Mark began talking to it, introducing himself and telling the duckling it had fallen into good hands. He picked it up and the duckling stopped peeping. As he was babbling on to the happy little duckling I asked, “So, uh, what do baby ducks eat?”
“Duck starter,” he said, and he turned as if snapping out a trance. “They’ll have it at Soldan’s.”
Since Mark had immediately assumed the role of the alpha male duck, I assumed the role of the alpha female duck, meaning, while he took up vigilance of the duckling, I found myself driving the fifteen minutes or so to a pet store in search of something I didn’t know existed. As I drove, I had plenty of time to ponder why anyone had named the substance I was looking for “duck starter.” The word “food” worked for just about every other species of animal, and the duckling I was going to feed had already started out in life without the substance I was looking for, so what I really needed was “duck keep growing.” On the other hand, I pondered, why isn’t human baby food called “kid starter”?
After wondering if anyone else has these types of issues, I asked the Soldan’s staff if they had duck starter. I was directed to the back corner of the store where, sure enough, there were five and ten pound bags of this pulverized pale tan-looking stuff labeled so that even I could determine what it was. The store also had turkey starter, which is probably how Mark’s turkeys had started out and why Mark knew duck starter existed.
After I found the duck starter, I wondered what other things I might find in the store for ducks, so I wandered up and down the aisles looking for duck grower, duck finisher, duck preening supplies, duck bathing gels, something else for ducks. I found row after row of stuffed toys and bones and food and kitty litter and even horse supplies, but nothing for ducks. To be sure I hadn’t missed something, I asked the clerk at the desk. She was a long-haired brunette with a narrow, horse-like face, a neck like a Rottweiler and a rear end like a hippo.
“Do we have what?”
“Anything for ducks besides duck starter?”
“Like—?” she asked, turning her mane sideways and snorting like a piglet.
“Like, you have all these squeaky toys and beds and bones and everything for dogs, so, what do you have for ducks?”
“Ducks only need food and water and to be kept safe and warm,” she said, waving a fat panda-like claw.
“And ducks are different than dogs, then, in what way?”
“Dogs are fuzzy and loyal; ducks are feathery and messy?” she asked, her face wrinkled like a perplexed monkey.
“And that explains why you don’t have anything else for them besides duck starter?”
“I guess.”
As I drove home with my little bag of food, I couldn’t help but count the number of stuffed toys we’d given to my childhood dogs, Candy and Ashley—God rest their souls—the plush beds they didn’t use because they’d slept with me, and the rawhide bones that once littered our house. How ridiculously spoiled our beagle and cocker spaniel had been, since all they needed was food and water, safety and warmth. And of course, we’d taken spoiling to a new level with Dusty and Little Dipper.
But rather than pondering the hundreds of dollars wasted on dogs, as I pulled into the driveway with my first of what would be many bags of duck starter, I came to appreciate ducks for their simple needs.
“Have any problems?” Mark asked. He was sitting on the bathroom floor while the duckling was running about, pecking at the newspaper.
“Walked right to it,” I smiled.
After tucking the duckling in the box, Mark took the bag and sprinkled some of the powdery stuff on top of the water bowl. This created a circular pattern of spinning tan speckles.
“That’s fascinating,” I said. I turned my attention to the duckling, who was also watching the water spin around.
“See, ducks are attracted to things that move,” Mark explained. “In the real world, it’s stuff like bugs and worms. But here, when powdery food is placed on water, it creates movement. The duckling will peck at it, realize its edible, and in no time, start eating the Purina duck starter.”
I raised a skeptical eyebrow and waited for Mark to stop adding duck starter to the water, for the water to almost stop moving. I was about to sneer when the duckling stepped up to the bowl, dipped his head in the bowl, mucked up his beak and began to eat. And while it ate, it peeped. It was the cutest thing to hear a duck happily peeping away while eating. At times, it peeped with its head in the food-water mixture and made bubbles.
Convinced that the little duckling would survive we named her Bumpkin.



Read more about Bumpkin in Something Furry Underfoot and also Bumpkin Gets Big, a rhyming photo e-book about Bumpkin for kids.  Just go to Amylpeterson.com/MyBooks.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

SUPERnatural

"There's no recovery. There's no bounce back. There's nothing.

You're trying to tell me my brother's life is in God's hands?"- Dean from Supernatural

I've watched two episodes of Supernatural now, the last episode of Season 8 and the first episode of season 9. I'm so confused.

"This is Dean Winchester, and I need your help."
"Just because you're dying doesn't mean you're dead."

Supernatural makes some people emotional.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Digits

My blood pressure has entered the 4 digits.
My views have entered the 5 digits. YAY.

My digits are kind of lacking nail polish.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Here I come

So you think that I'm too chicken to try anything.
Sorry world. I'm just trying to be successful. MOSP HERE I COME.


how to be successful
(blogilates.com)

Friday, October 4, 2013

WE ARE


  • the CHAMPIONS
  • FAILING OUR PHYSICS TEST
  • getting debriefed on Supernatural
  • getting confused
  • still a little sick
  • still not royal
  • confused
  • not reading lol
  • reading this post I hope

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Where did Everyone Go?

I've been sick.

As in I literally can not function without a tissue. As in I need some medicine now. As in you stupid cough drops won't cut it. As in I have a physics test tomorrow and I'm screwed.

As in SCREW YOU COLDS.

As in how do you get rid of sickness?

Isn't anyone trying to help me?

It's a freaking long day. I need some medicine and something warm and comforting.

I'm not with myself.

So You Want to Self-Publish? Guest Post

Great minds think alike. This guest post is from the great mind of Dustin Stevens, the author of 21 Hours. He reached out to me about doing a guest post, and this is a FABULOUS one about (gasp) self-publishing!
(By great mind, I mean he went to HARVARD. Come on, great doesn't get much greater than that!)
Unfortunately, I might be thin-skinned, but I enjoyed this post nonetheless.  (Post by Dustin Stevens, highlighting by me)

So You Want to Self-Publish? You’re Going to Need Some Thick Skin…
The first thing any person that has ever written a book hears from others is “Wow, really? That must be an incredible feeling.” Every time I hear this I smile and nod, because it really is. The first time you hold a book you’ve written, it can be quite euphoric.
What I often don’t tell them is the feeling can be short lived.
The reasons for this are varied, starting first with self-imposed expectations. While the first time  you see your book listed on Amazon can be incredible, the second time it becomes a little less so. Even more the third time. Writers are no different than anybody else with aspirations, each time wanting to climb a little higher up the proverbial mountain. While the first time just holding your own book is enough to make you smile, the next time you want to see someone else holding your book.
So, how does this equate to needing thicker skin?
While the various technologies that exist for self-published authors offer a wealth of avenues for producing work, it does precious little to help with getting that work to the masses. That process requires a tremendous amount of elbow grease that in many ways can be just as daunting as the traditional publishing world.
While agents often serve as the gatekeepers into major publishing houses, book bloggers are by and large the holders of the keys to self-publishing success. These are wonderful people that take the time to spread the word of good books through their own kindness and generosity…which of course means they are deluged beyond belief. Hoping to avoid the lengthy query process is why no small number of authors opt to self-publish, but getting the larger blogs to accept a self-published work can be just as difficult, and just as harrowing, as trying to get into a major agency.
Second, perhaps more important to a self-published author than even a traditional published one are reviews. While someone coming from one of the Big Six has a tremendous amount of marketing support, often time the hopes of the self-published reside on the written words of others in places like Amazon or Goodreads. Because of that, the self-published are much more attuned to the thoughts and feedback of others. After spending weeks, months, or even years carefully constructing a work, it can be quite terrifying to place its fate in the hands of strangers.
Finally, the entire self-promotion can be quite daunting. Generally speaking, most authors would rather stay at home writing than ever dream of going in front of groups of people and talking about themselves or their work. Often, we hope our stories do that so we don’t have to. Pushing that aside to openly stump for a particular work takes getting used to.
Make no mistake, this is all worth it. Obstacles like I just mentioned are but a small down payment on moments like the ones mentioned above and the hope of bigger things to come. It should just be known though…it isn’t for the faint of heart, or the thin-skinned.

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