Tuesday, June 18, 2019

June 2019 Planner Vlog

I decided I wanted to share how I utilize my Business Projects arc rings bound Happy Planner, since it’s really starting to feel streamlined and simplified.  Gone are the days of shading completed items for ten minutes at a time, marking lines through finished projects only to end up with dizzy eyeballs and eye strain, and wasting ink shading entire columns of white space to ensure I saw quickly that a whole page or section was complete!  Argh!

From square sticky notes on completed days to block the extra visual “noise”, to transparent, colored page markers to reveal important, movable dates/appointments without marking up a beautiful, crisp, white page—to newer methods of carrying over unfinished items, I’ve definitely improved at this.

I use colored pens to code my projects, and I’ve begun to use small bullet journal symbols to trick my brain into thinking I’ve got less to do than what’s really waiting to be dumped onto the paper.

And marking things off has gotten a whole lot easier using the gray Super Tips Crayola broad tip marker, and/or the mid gray Zebra Zipangu Select mildliners I’ve bought.  Best yet, because of this gray marker mark-it-off-as-done method, I can still see almost every color very vividly while avoiding confusion over whether I meant to underline something, or if I meant to cross it off, or what color code the item was before.  (And the page looks neater when I’m finished!)

I’ve added a few pages to my Happy Planner that don’t typically come with them, and I mentioned a few tips on how to keep the edges of the paper from fraying or bending over a longer period of time, as well as how to get those reusable pages that don’t get all marked up and gross.  And I even make my own custom lined sticky notes for multiple uses—from documenting character arcs for every chapter, to writing chapter names, to making To Do lists, etc.  I’m excited how the process will change over time!

And I haven’t even covered my other Happy Planner!  (You do get a glimpse of the crazy, though!)

You can also find me across social media by typing the ID 7Bloodfire.

Monday, June 10, 2019

June 2019 Blog

Progress has been slow-going, but I am definitely seeing it.

So far this year I have completed the designs for my publishing company's logo, updated my media banners across most of the social media outlets I am on, and other important items for Brand Design.

I've created a board for business steps I need to complete, and one by one I am checking them off.

I researched a bit about free video editing software and created a YouTube channel to be able to connect better and develop my professional ability, and I'm very excited about my main project!

My first book is in its final quarter of the first draft at last...It's much too big to be published as a single book, so it'll be broken down into two novels.  This is something that can happen if you tend to overplot or overwrite the first draft and use multiple POVs.  I am currently at the most exciting part of the book, writing the crisis point.  And I think I may be getting the hang of writing less words per chapter--that's always been difficult for me.

In another year the plans to pay off our house should come to fruition, so we'll be able to have more financial freedom and make a lot more time for the things we enjoy and want to work toward.

That means all of this will speed up.  I'll begin creating books and art more quickly, I'll get the rest of the business in order, and I'll start working on my help videos on YouTube for aspiring artist/writer entrepreneurs.

I've considered also bringing back my old writers' book club.  But that will be a decision for another day.

In the meantime, I've gotten pretty heavily into planning, and I adore the amount of sticky notes I've got.  I've a few plans in the concept stage there, too.

Anyway, I wish you luck on your own projects!  May the rest of the year be fruitful!

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Tuesday, June 26, 2018

June 2018 Blog

Hi, guys!  We're halfway through another year, and I've got about a quarter of my 1st novel written.  It's exciting!  No more changing the story from here on out, this is the final version of my story.

The book is already at 70,000 words, so I'll have a huge edit to do, but it's great so far!  It's amazing to look at the completed outline and see so easily what needs done and what has been accomplished, where tiny fixes can be added, and what scenes will inspire some artwork for future merchandise.

Our vacation to Turner Falls and Castle Collins was a blast this year, and we revisited the Renaissance Fair in Muskogee, Oklahoma as well.  A first, however, was a trip to Oklahoma City, to visit the Myriad Botanical Gardens.  It was all very lovely, the various cultivars of exotic plants and the large school of coy.  We watched baby ducks and small turtles dip into the water while attempting to avoid the worst of the sun.  (Photos are at the end of this post.)

I still hope to finish my 1st draft by October of this year, but we shall see.  I will be giving out teasers as we get closer to completion, and maybe I'll post some of the art concepts, too.

I plan to continue working on the huge tasks I've set for this year.  I'm building cabinets, creating a garden, and working on a large number of business and writing related goals.

This year is still going strong, and there are still many things to keep me a mad little busywoman.

May the year continue to be as prosperous, busy, inspiring, and productive for you as well!

Castle Collins...

Turner Falls...

Myriad Botanical Gardens...

Renaissance Fair...

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Getting Back in the Game

Now that the extensive training is out of the way at my new job, I am looking forward to being able to focus on some fun things again.  I've missed blogging, and writing, and sleep, and people!  I'm ready for my next step, which means getting back on track and letting go of the anxiety of having soooo much left undone.

Who should let themselves become anxious over the things they love anyway?  It's just fun things to do!  Building custom shelves, writing, art commissions, concept designs for possible games, etc.  It's wonderful!

My New Years' Resolution is currently underway, and I predict this will be my biggest, most eventful ear yet.  I'm planning vacations, reclusive art and writing trips, some epic new business adventures, and a whole lode of self-improvement projects!

I'm embracing my To Do Lists and getting my assets in order!

If you're ever feeling overwhelmed, don't fret.  I promise you can overcome this.  Plan for success and reach for the sky, and welcome life with wide open, excited arms.  Don't give fear and self-doubt  any time to form in your head.  As soon as you feel it, get up and do something impulsive, or do something on your list.  Embrace your next step.

And most of all, forgive any failures in favor of seeing the progress you have made.

Me?  I'm about to start delving into my 1st book again, rewriting the entire thing.  I'm also tinkering with some concepts for a board game based off of part of the story I am writing.  I am enjoying my new job, looking forward to becoming a self published author, and I intend to illustrate my own novels.  I have a lot to both hone and share, and though I don't claim to know everything, I do have my own way of doing things that streamlines and organizes my own processes in a fun and beautiful way.  I love color coding and themes, and I love seeing everything organized!

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Strife of the Mighty - Julius Bailey

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Thursday, February 16, 2017

Don't Doubt Your Writing Instincts

I haven't written a thing for my blog in a while because I've been crushing my brain with self-doubt and worry.  Writers, the worst thing you can do in your craft is question your motives for writing and use that to doubt yourself or your abilities.  Just don't do it!

I've been struggling with the fact that my first novel Eccentric Daughter is turning out to be much bigger than planned.  But I seem to be doing something else right despite that fact.  Why?  Because I've reread it ten times now.  And every time I read the book, it sucks me in and then I get excited to edit and write some new material.  The work-in-progress is conforming to my pre-made plot, but jeeze.  My creative side keeps fighting the plot I laid out!

I suppose that's where I'm having the most trouble: Conform to my own executive decisions.  (Haha!)

Anyway, Nymeria's one heck of a unique child character in my book.  I also love her family and the people around her.  I hope the drama catches you guys when it's published.  (Blizzards and horrible, post-apocalyptic, child-eating cults aside.  Yikes!)

So far, I've got about 46,000 words in.  I'll likely cut half of the finished book for commercial purposes because it'll be far beyond 46,000 at that point.  For now, I will give you another tip: If you are prone to overwrite and overthink, don't change that.  Do that in your first draft, as I have decided to do in mine from now on.  I have discovered that when I ignore the aim for smaller word counts, suddenly everything gets easier.  There is less worry.  There is less trouble with outline conformity.

Don't worry about the word count.  Keep track of it only to see that you are making progress, and to try to prod yourself to hit a certain weekly goal.  (If I don't meet my mark by a certain date, I have to pay my husband $100 that he can use on literally whatever he wants.  Yep.  An OUCH factor for my wallet is a good boost to get my butt off the chair...so to speak, haha.)  If you fail your certain goal, there really isn't any worry.  If you succeed?  HOORAY!

Your main focus should always be to enjoy yourself.  Enjoy your story.  Figure out all of the kinks and the twists, and make the words beautiful.  Later you will worry about the word count.

Tell me a little about your stories, and the kinds of struggles you have had in finishing them.  I enjoy hearing about others' journeys.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Giving Book Club Book Reviews

Book Reviews
Questions to Answer
Many writers know a writing group or a book club can help them improve.  Some join existing clubs, others create their own.  But what do they all have in common?

The writers involved look over each other's manuscripts, analyze and comment, and review what has been mentioned on their own.

This is one of the lists I always give to my own book club members.  For beginning writers, this is invaluable.  With it, you can begin to learn to look at a manuscript the way an editor does.  When you are ready to edit your own (or another's) work, crack open a notebook and answer these questions.
  1. Description or Blurb - Clarity, conciseness, consistent voice, level of tone / diction / syntax, grammar, intrigue, clear genre and age level.
  2. Opening - Lines & paragraphs have a spark or a hook?
  3. First chapter - Is it confusing or vague through the first chapter? Does it draw the attention?  What can be done to improve it?  Are things defined well enough for lay man readers?
  4. Draw - Does the first chapter(s) end where I am drawn to turn the page?
  5. Dramatic questions - Are the dramatic questions obvious?
  6. Inciting incident - Is the inciting incident obvious?
  7. Original world / actions - Are the original world and original default actions clear?
  8. Realistic - Are the details consistent and realistic, or a little bit...strange?  Unfathomable?
  9. Repetition - Are there any words or ideas that are repeated several times, or which are weird in the descriptions?  Which should be removed?
  10. Flow - Does it flow flawlessly and smoothly instead of bumbling with run-on sentences or awkward things that make reading difficult?
  11. Grammar / punctuation - How well did they do with grammar and punctuation?
  12. Tense and pov consistency - Does the tense or pov change, or is it flowing and consistent?
  13. First Person -  Is the word “I” repeated over and over in this pov?
  14. Voice (etc) - How well did they do with voice? Tone? Diction? Syntax?
  15. Descriptions - How well did they do with sensory / thought / emotion / picturesque descriptions?  Do the descriptions ever slow the progress of the plot in favor of pretty phrases?  Do the chapters use long passages of exposition to fill the reader in on histories and back information rather than let the story itself hint throughout the entire work what has happened before?  Are there moments where you begin to skim through rather than read diligently?  Beware that.  Are there symbols or metaphors relating to a bigger picture or theme wrought throughout the descriptions?  Is there too much dialogue?  Too few dramatic questions hidden in the descriptions?  Are the interactions between the characters riddled with enough tension or micro tension that the environment itself, as perceived by a character, has become a character in and of itself?
  16. Plot clarity - How clear is the plot?  Does it lag?
  17. Recommendation - How highly would you recommend it to others?  Would you buy this book, even from first glance?
  18. Overall judgment and flavor - Personal opinions.  Ideas on how to improve, or where.
  19. Minor opinions per chapter - Comment on what you liked or didn’t like per chapter.  Or other information.

Make sure you pay very special attention to your opening line / paragraphs / first chapter.  It can make or break your book for your readers.  Think of ways to shorten what you are saying in order to make it more concise, quicker in pace, and faster to reveal what is going on.  DO NOT DALLY.  That's my rule on Chapter One.  Hook, line, and sink.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Analyzing What You Read or Write

1. Does the summary (also known as the book blurb or jacket synopsis) hint at the story and / or introduce the book's dramatic question?
  • A dramatic question is what keeps the story going and keeps us turning pages to find the answer, like "will the hero find the bomb in time to detonate it?" or "will the main character find true love despite everything that happens?"  Some writers call it the spark, or the hook.

2. Is the opening line of the book a strong one that draws interest?  Or does it dip into setting or exposition without hinting immediately (and concisely) that something of great importance is happening, is about to happen, or has just happened?  Is there a point to the actual description, aside from showing us where and when?  If not, it's boring and should not be the actual focus of the first paragraph(s).  In this case, add the setting in small doses between whatever is actually going on, as embellishment to the moving emotional state of the character, or as seasoning to the opening action.  Make sure you never have a static opening.

3. Does the opening paragraph draw interest or curiosity?  Or does it just dive into the "bobbing heads syndrome", where characters are talking and you have trouble relating to them or caring for them for a few pages?  Or, does it begin flopping about like a dead fish with pretty prose or circular, not immediately important, description?  Fix this, or many of your prospective readers will drop your book.  There doesn't have to be action, but reveal tension and apprehension from the very first line / paragraph / page / chapter.  Always consider this: How do I hook a reader from Word One?
  • This step gives ideas on how to fix any weak spots in your own works, and it helps you to figure out what type of advice to give on others' works.  AVOID LAGGING IN THE FIRST FIVE PAGES.  The first five pages of a manuscript is one of the most important parts, where agents and publishers accept or deny, and it's where most readers keep the book or drop it.  It is just as important as the synopsis on the jacket, and the cover image and title.

5. Does each chapter have some small theme or question that keeps interest and draws you to want to read farther?  Are these questions related in some way to the main goal of the characters throughout the book?  Are they related to, or revolve around, the big picture for this book?  How do they apply to the questions driving the series?  How do the questions change over the course of the book as the characters and situations change?
  • Themes are things like "good versus evil", "rags to riches", "racial issues", "the bonds of family love", etc. Click here for the link to my themes page on my tumblr profile for some common book themes that will aid you in refining your own.  Themes are one of the things agents and publishers look for, and they are one of the ways in which readers relate to the books they read.  You want your story to have high impact, right?

5. Do the descriptions need some extra work?  Suggestions for improvement?  Is it excessive in the wrong places?  Does it make your scenes lag in bad places?  Do the descriptions have undertones of tension or micro tension (as described by Donald Maas in his Writing 21st Century Fiction)?  I recommend that book highly, by the way.  It'll make things clearer for you than ever before.

6. What was your favorite / least favorite part of the book?  How can it be improved?  How can you turn it on its head?

7. How far did you write before it became difficult?  Or, if you are a reader analyzing a work, how far did you read?  The end?  The middle?  Do you think you'll continue reading this author, or writing this book or series?  Why?  What makes you passionate about it?  What is the work trying to say about life in general?

8. How highly do you recommend this book to other readers?  Scale from 1 to 5, if 5 is the highest.  How is your own work like this one?  How is it different?  Where do you fail where this one succeeds?  Where do you succeed where this one fails?
  • This is a useful tool if you are doing reviews or want to revisit a work later for more analysis.  You can thumb through some of these notes in order to remind yourself what to strengthen.

9. Does the ending satisfy you?  How?  Is it because enough of the underlying questions were answered? (Like "Did the vampires find him?" or "Did she get the guy?" or "Was the world saved?")  Did you get the ending you expected?  Did it blow your expectations in a good way, or a bad way?
  • If you're writing - Pick a different ending.  The first ending you choose can be very, very wrong because likely, it will be what the reader predicts.  Even if you choose to stick to your original idea, how can you add a new twist to it?  What did the endgame cost?  What has the character had to sacrifice in order to finally achieve his or her goal?  And, how does that character apprehend this change?  A twist like this, under the skin of everything else that is more obvious, will give the story even more meaning.

10. Does the story feel too short or too long?  Can you explain what you feel is missing or what is too much?   If you read through the story during edits or other revision processes, are their places that you begin skimming over or have trouble focusing on?  Can you pair down anything that is excessive, circular, redundant, too purple (as in purple prose--look it up if you are not sure), or not focused enough?  Are there places where only one goal is obvious, or one single risk, and nothing else?
  • Cut anything that meanders off point--like excessive sub plots that don't ultimately affect the book's main plot, but which are in there anyway because they were awesome.  (Save those for another story!  Or use them for free short stories to boost traffic to your stuff that is going to be on sale.)  Cut excessive backstory or exposition.  If you want exposition, create some side reading for readers who are interested, and publish those separately.  Detailed maps, concept art, genealogies, histories, et cetera.  Don't bog down the progress of your story by delving into a bunch of information that will only serve to get the reader to forget what is currently happening in the book.
  • If it is too short, add more.  Go more in depth.  Begin asking "What If?"  Always imagine the worst.  Throw your character through a physical wringer as well as an emotional one.  Give the hero goals that contradict one another, and needs that make achieving those goals almost impossible.  Make the hero war with himself.  Turmoil and conflict.  Use it.
  • Look at what happened in Chapter Eight; begin weaving hints of what is coming earlier in the book, like, say, Chapter Two.  Shift some of the character's ideas / morals / goals.  Make their original internal compass completely the opposite.  This will make change more difficult, more interesting, and more wrought with turmoil and conflict.  This is how you insert micro-tension and contrast, both of which are gold nuggets for writing.  The two convey change and motion even when there really isn't any.

11. What do you think were some other themes throughout the book, aside from the main one earlier?

12. What do you think the main dramatic question might have been?
  • Sometimes this can be guessed by the genre, as Romances are often about whether or not the woman and / or her lover can conquer that which threatens to keep them apart .  In a Thriller, it may instead be: Will John diffuse the bomb in time to save the city?

13. What genre do you think this book belongs to, and in what age group?
  • Does the story's tone and the writer's voice appeal perfectly to that age group?
  • Is the writing too mature?
  • Too old in style?  (Easy fix here, just pair down, simplify, and modernize your phrases and words a bit.  Only retain hints of the older style, and it will come across as archaic while also remaining understandable.)
  • Too technical?  Tone down the jargon, but make sure your facts are right.
  • Too immature?  (I'm sure, if you've ever been on Wattpad, you will have found books containing adult characters who pout and huff and stomp their feet like children, or who think the first kiss is the ultimate "encounter" of any relationship.  Ever.  And that once the first kiss is given, a character is ruined, becoming a pariah to all chaste beings everywhere, and numb to all other advances or proclamations of love.  Although some of them can have a first kiss with another character that is just as "amazing".)
If you guys want a more extensive list of questions to consider while you are reading or writing, let me know and I will compile a more comprehensive one for you.  This was kind of basic.

If you really want to know the ins and outs of every successful commercially published bestselling work of fiction, I still recommend Donald Maas's Writing 21st Century Fiction.  It is very, very informative.  Click the link below to find it on Amazon.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Book Review - Strife of the Mighty - Julius Bailey

In April I bought a copy of this book at the end of a local self-publishing seminar by Julius Bailey.  The writer is not only very humble, interacting gracefully with those he teaches or speaks with, he is also a very talented writer.

I have always been rather thorough with my reviews, so, again, I have a lot to say.

As you can tell from the picture, the cover is beautifully done.  It fits the story far better than I had imagined it did.  The focus in the image is on two main characters, though a third surprised me in the book itself -- much as Hagrid from Harry Potter, and Hodor from Game of Thrones had.  The third man is not on the cover, but it is of little matter.  Right away, there is a sense of adventure, of peril, and of friendship.  The bonds that hold these characters together are beautiful, untainted, and strong.

The synopsis on the back had a unique grip that was its own, starting from the very first lines.  I was compelled to read further, so I opened the book and began to read.

The book itself, I found, had a rich, almost archaic tone.  It was a nice contrast to a lot of my other reads lately.  (Dean Koontz, yeah!)  It was not as fast paced as a thriller, but it did gradually build up an amazing arc--similar to The Lord of the Rings.  The opening was a nice, simple setting--quite homey.  Monstrous beasts emerged, and some life and death fighting led to both some grinning and some frowning.  I was a little slow to devour the first chapter, no thanks to all of the interruptions from Best Friend and Sweet Husband, however.  (Haha!)  But once I got some time alone to read, it became much easier.  (I recommend locking yourself in a closet!  Kidding.)

There wasn't too terribly much of a hook there at the opening, but I held on.  I was positive I would find something great, even without the amazing, snazzy first line or first paragraph I am used to trying to construct in my own works or analyze in bestsellers.  Evil was bound to be afoot, after all!  It was my duty to read on!

The exposition did overtake a few passages throughout the book, but that did not bother me much.  I had already realized this was a different beast with a different trot, so I settled in nicely and let myself enjoy the ride.

The first chapter was a great showing of the Original World, with the faintest shade of foreshadowing.  I turned the pages despite not having any overwhelming urgency to do so.  Because of my latest reading, I found myself wishing there was more...something.  Donald Maas calls it tension and micro tension in his book Writing 21st Century Fiction.  (Best book ever for writers!)  All that Strife of the Mighty needed was a few more contradictions pulling characters in more than one direction, with more than one thing at risk.  Tension is very, very good for a first chapter.  But not always necessary.

I did worry about repetition for a bit, but as the Inciting Incident took the main character Allon off on another tangent pretty much immediately in the book, I was pretty excited about the plot's developing craziness.  I even cried some, which is good.  The more emotional promise a book has in the beginning, the better.  It means it is relatable.  And this one was in places.

The dialogue, the character interactions, the default actions of the Allon--all of these were evident early on, and the story was good because of the things that pulled on his heart.  The writer showed restraint here, however.  I have seen many less experienced writers (myself included) fall into a pity trap, where the main character becomes a passive entity, trapped by his or her misfortunes rather than doing something.  But Allon makes choices, does things, and participates actively, even heroically, in his own story.

Even the mentor / hero figure Brandigan held me captive.  He was unique, even if slightly stand-offish.  I suppose he only seemed this way to me because of his radical intention to not reveal too many secrets to his companions.  (That's where the repetition worried me.)  Luckily, he does not hold back everything for the entire book, so have no fears, Readers!  (I loved the swords and the hair!)

Strife of the Mighty has the classic epic adventure, save-the-world theme, and the events throughout the story were very nice and transitioned smoothly without feeling forced, like some "And suddenly this happened!" books I have had the misfortune of crossing.

I loved the bog creatures!  Creepy, creepy bog creatures!

The settings were also grand.  I got to travel without ever leaving my seat!  Yay, lazy Me!

But most of all, a single character rose to the occasion, stepping out of the shadows of his companions on the cover of the book...and letting me know he was as unexpectedly strong and courageous as any hero.  That tag-along drunk named Merch stole my heart.  He is mighty sweet, an' mighty loyal, with strong backwater speech and a huge mug of humor to boot!  (True Brandy!) I love how fearful he is, and yet his loyalty takes him into dangerous situations.  He is useful, he is the glue of the trio, and he will worm his way right into your head and stay there.  He will probably be singing alehouse sonnets while he stays.

The warrior, depicted on the front cover, is the unbreakable hope that leads the story through to its completion.  I did come to fear for his life near the climax of the story, even though I didn't think I would.  I found myself suspecting who he was from as early as Chapter Four, but I was not disappointed when I learned more about him.  I was not disappointed in being right.  Because I could have been wrong.  The slightest doubt made his revelation sweet enough to keep.

The main character Allon kept me tied to the plot, serving as a guide and giving me a side to root for.  (Although Merch is still the most adorable dufas of the trio!)

I would have loved to see a little more foreshadowing and a few more "Oh--I should have seen that coming!" moments, but there was enough drama to keep me reading--especially once I hit the mid point of the book.  From there on, I read avidly.  Like a piranha, if it read books instead of ate you...

Ha! Bad metaphor, but who cares?

The great scope of creatures, both large and small, wild and tame, intelligent and mindless?  Beautiful.  The contrast between each gave a delightful rainbow, of sorts, to the story.  The people felt very natural in their differences from one another from town to town, also.  This made the book very well rounded, and because of that, it felt full--but not uncomfortably so.

Just because I'm arrogant, I'll not deny I saw one of the villains for who they were the moment they stepped onto the page.  I won't name him / her.  NO SPOILERS!  Muahahahahaha!!!

Overall, there was very little lagging in the story.  I greatly recommend this book to my friends, my family, and my followers.  I even bought it.  At a library seminar.  Where there are hundreds of free books on the shelves, all of them whispering my name.  Still, I bought it.  (Hey!  A girl's gotta help out a fellow writer!...And maybe I felt guilty for spending thirty minutes of his lecture telling everybody about my fav apps and platforms.  Hehe.  I am glad I helped my peers, though!)

Strife of the Mighty is definitely staying in my collection at home, after Best Friend reads it.  I'm sure Julius Bailey's next book will be even better, as is often the case with series books!  I will be purchasing and shelving the next one, too.

My wall of books will grow, hooray!

Overall Opinion:

Buy this or you will die.  Hahaha!  Kidding.  But seriously.  It's gooood.

Strife of the Mighty on Amazon.com

Julius Bailey's Blog

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Renaissance Fair 2016 Cosplay - Shoulder Armor for the Hubby

My husband has been working hard on his Assassin's Creed outfit, updating it to personalize it for the Muskogee Renaissance festival this year.  Of course, he does the "easy" stuff.  Sewing.  I, on the other hand, am tasked with the serious details of designing and creating shoulder armor and stomach armor.  Turned out great, coming from a crazy nerd girl who was never taught to do anything crafty!  Tommy was stunned at what came from my staying up until 5 am a few days ago.  I would be much the happier if he voiced his opinions more, rather than lifting his devilishly arched eyebrows -- THAT EXPRESSION MEANS TOO MANY THINGS.

Ahem.  Anyway...Hehe.

The project made me think of my own characters and how their own armor will look.  Mmmm.  As a great lady (who is my friend) once said, "Thoughts, thoughtsies, thoughts..."

I would love to cosplay as one of my own characters, but I refuse to sew by hand ever again.  And my mother-on-law's sewing machine isn't working right.  Sad, indeed.

But look!  Isn't it gorgeous?!

The secret?  Draw it out on cardboard first.  Then use thin craft foam.  Layers are the secret sauce.  Lots and lots of layers (and repeating patterns).  And paint markers.  Those are required, too.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Renaissance Fair - May 2016

We are heading to the Renaissance Fair in Muskogee, Oklahoma again this year!  We will be there on May 8th, so if any of you spot me, make sure to introduce yourself! Or throw a frog on me as a prank.  I will laugh after I scream, I promise!

I love all of the shows they have!

The horses are so beautiful.

The live jousts are amazing.

The belly dancers are talented.

And there is sooo much more!  There are lots of comedy acts and...I heard this year there are mermaids!  Wha...?

Great for kids.  Great inspiration for writers and artists.  Great fun!

I will die if I don't go this year.  So I am going!  See you there!