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Showing posts from January, 2013

Provex City by Michael Pierce - Review

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Provex City, written by fellow blogger Michael Pierce, has been on my to-read list ever since he posted an extract on his blog. He's just done a blog tour for Provex City, and has revealed the cover for the second book in the series, SUSY Asylum.



Fifteen-year-old Oliver Grain begins his school year fighting off bullies, learning about the boy who committed suicide in his room, and trying to understand why his history teacher, Mr. Gordon, has taken such a personal interest in him.
Do you believe in ghosts? Do you believe you can make bullies simply disappear? Do you believe you can walk through walls?
Mr. Gordon tells Oliver: "When you truly believe anything is possible, you will be able to open doors where there were only walls." And one of those doors leads Oliver to Provex City, which puts him in far greater danger than he can possibly fathom. From Goodreads

My Review

Positive Aspects:
The book has excellent characterisation. I adore Oliver, the main character, and not on…

Hidden by P.C. and Kristin Cast - Review

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Hidden is the 10th book in the House of Night series, written by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast.



At last, Zoey has what she wanted: the truth is out. Neferet's evil has been exposed, and the High Council is no longer on her side -- but she's far from done wreaking havoc in the vampyre world. First, a mysterious fire ravages the stables. Then, Neferet makes a devastating move that will test them all. With the seeds of distrust sown and Darkness breeding chaos at the House of Night, everyone must band together -- but that's proving to be more difficult than ever before. The twins are barely speaking and the House of Night's former enemy, Kalona, has now become their warrior, pushing their trust to the limit. To top it off, Zoey is pretty darn sure she might be losing her mind. She saw something when she looked at Aurox through the Seer Stone that she can hardly explain to herself, let alone her friends. Is it possible that Heath has come back in a different form? Is that why Z…

100k Update

Ok, so my goal to catch up really didn't go so well, but I should get a lot of time in the next few days! 
Here's my stats for the last week:
Tuesday Jan-22 - 2114

Wednesday Jan-23 - 607

Thursday Jan-24 - 410

Friday Jan-25 - 100

Saturday Jan-26 - 0

Sunday Jan-27 - 1369

Monday Jan-28 - 0
So I had a couple of good days, but the rest were awful! On Friday I had work and then my sister came home from university for a couple of days, so I didn't get much writing done. On Saturday I had work and then went out with my boyfriend for our anniversary, so no writing at all. Then yesterday I had a long day at work and then saw my boyfriend again, so again, no writing. 
I had a good writing day on Sunday, and for the first time I wrote most of my posts for this week in advance. It saves me a lot of time, so I think I might carry on doing it. 
I'm hoping to get lots of writing done today, although I have a lot of blogging to catch up on. I should get a lot done on Thursday, too. My …

Lunar Lovin' Hop!

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If you're here for the Re-Introduce Myself Blogfest, scroll down to find it.

So, it's time for the Lunar Lovin' Hop, hosted by Mina Lobo over at Some Dark Romantic.


All you have to do for this blogfest is post a picture of the moon!

Here's my picture, not amazing since I only used my iphone:


It was a lovely clear night, no clouds in the sky at all! Probably would have made a beautiful picture if I'd used a proper camera!

Re-Introduce Myself Blogfest

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The aim of this blogfest is to re-introduce myself to all of my new followers (or old followers who don't know much about me!) Brought to you by Mark Koopmans, Elise Fallson, and C.M. Brown, and Stephen Tremp.

So, here are a few things about me that you may or may not know. My name is Laura, and I've been blogging for almost a year now, and writing for even less time than that. My life was incredibly boring before I started blogging and writing; I just worked and sat around playing games at home.

I live in England, in a town called Grimsby, and currently work at Asda. I'm in the middle of my MA in Creative Writing, which I'm enjoying immensely. My main aim in life is to get a job related to writing, hopefully in either Publishing or Journalism, and eventually I'd like to be published. I think most of this involves moving away from Grimsby, which I'll be sad to do.

I love reading, mostly young adult/fantasy/paranormal or anything with magic in it; I'm a huge…

Celebrate the Small Things!

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So I signed up for this blogfest over a week ago, but couldn't participate last week due to my 12 hour shift at work. I'm glad I have the time this week!


The idea is just to post things you want to celebrate. This week I'm celebrating:

- that I'm starting to catch up on the writing that I missed last weekend, slowly but surely.
- I've also got a lot of reading done this week.
- I've nearly filled my very first writer's notebook, and I'm excited about getting my next one. Simple things!
- Tomorrow I'll have been with my boyfriend for 3 years, so we're going out to a restaurant to celebrate.
- the fact that my computer still works; it died for a while yesterday and I didn't know what to do! I must start backing up my work.


Hope you all have a lot to celebrate, too!

Editing

While working on the assignments that I handed in last week, I realised that I really enjoy editing. I've never really edited properly before (I know, terrible) but for one of the assignments I had to do a portfolio and show the process of writing. So I had to include notes, planning, and all of the separate drafts of all of the writing that I put in there.

My first drafts are always horrendous. It takes me a long time to know what I want to say, so I tend to just scribble down the first thing that pops into my head. This makes for a lot of cringing when I go back to re-read. When I write my first drafts, I usually don't know how the story is going to end up, so I'll get an idea near to the end, which will need to be incorporated into the beginning. In short, my first drafts are confusing, badly written, don't make sense and are full of plot holes.

What I found during this assignment was that editing is the part of the writing process where my writing actually starts to…

Upcoming Blogfests!

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So the blogfests that I've decided to join are mounting up, so I thought I'd do a post about them all! This is the first time I've scheduled a post, so I hope it publishes alright!


The first is the Lunar Lovin' Hop hosted by Mina Lobo from Some Dark Romantic. I love the idea of this blog fest, all you need to do is take a picture of the moon on Sunday night (the 27th) and then post the picture up on Monday (the 28th); simple! I love full moons, so I think I'll enjoy this one, assuming I remember to take a picture!


The next is the Re-introduce Myself Blogfest, hosted by Mark Koopmans, Elise Fallson, and C.M. Brown, and Stephen Tremp, also on Monday the 28th of January. For this one, the idea is to re-introduce yourself to all of the followers you've gained who may not know much about you. 

Celebrate the Small Things is a new weekly meme being hosted by Viklit over at Scribblings of an Aspiring Author. All you need to do is put up a post every Friday to celebrate…

100k Update!

I knew it wouldn't last! Since last Tuesday, I've barely managed to write 1000 words over 7 days, never mind each day! That was also the last post I put up, although I had plenty planned for the last few days; I've had a busy week!
Well, here are my pitiful stats for the last week:

Tuesday Jan-15 - 333

Wednesday Jan-16 - 311

Thursday Jan-17 - 0

Friday Jan-18 - 0

Saturday Jan-19 - 0

Sunday Jan-20 - 163

Monday Jan-21 - 348

Three days where I got no writing done whatsoever - terrible! I do have an excuse, though. Here in England, it's been snowing. When it snows in England, even if it's just a tiny bit, the whole country panics. It's quite pathetic, really. Where I live we probably got the least snow of the whole country, but still people thought they were going to get snowed in. 
I work at Asda (Walmart in America) and I work on the home shopping department, which means I have to get up at an ungodly hour to pick people's shopping for them when they order …

100k in 100 days update!

I'm still doing quite well with this challenge. At least, I'm keeping up so far! I have days where I don't get much written, but then I have days when I get a lot written that make up for that.

Not sure how I'll do once I've handed my assignments in; they're responsible for the majority of my word count so far! But I'm hoping to start my next assignment fairly soon, and there are other things that I'm planning on writing as well.

Writing every day really does make a difference; the more I write, the more ideas for stories and poems I get, and the more I want to write. Hopefully I'll keep writing every day even after the challenge is over.

Anyway, here are my stats from the last week:

Tuesday Jan-08 - 779

Wednesday Jan-09 - 391

Thursday Jan-10 - 824

Friday Jan-11 - 1004

Saturday Jan-12 - 1750

Sunday Jan-13 - 1128

Monday Jan-14 - 2560
Obviously the closer my assignment hand in date, the higher my word count! I don't think it'll be very high today,…

My Fear of Failure

So, two assignments are due in on Wednesday for my Creative Writing Masters. I've never been so scared to fail something in my life! Possibly the reason for this is that I'm doing something I really enjoy, and I really want to do well at it. When I was at university doing my English Literature undergrad, I worked hard on my assignments but I didn't give them my all. I kind of thought, "Oh, I'll be alright!" With these assignments I'm dedicating all of my spare time and energy to them, but every time I go back and read what I've done I feel like it's not good enough, and that I'm just going to fail.

For the first assignment I did on this course, I got the best mark I've ever gotten while at university, better than all of my undergrad marks. You would think this would make me feel better, instil a little confidence in me, but it tends to make me think "What if that was a fluke?"

I'm spending all day today and tomorrow going ove…

The Beginnings Blogfest!

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Today's the day of the Beginning's Blogfest, L. G. Keltner's first blogfest!


I love the idea for this one, and knew what I was going to write about straight away. I want to write about the beginning of my writing journey.

A year ago, I had no direction. I had no blog, I didn't write, all I did was work and play games. I had no motivation because I didn't know what I wanted to do. I had wanted to be a teacher, but after two failed PGCE interviews I was losing faith in the idea - maybe teaching wasn't what I was supposed to be doing.

Then, last January, an idea struck me, seemingly out of nowhere. What if I tried to get into Journalism? I was good at writing, spelling, and editing, and I thought I would enjoy it. So I looked into it, and decided that it sounded like something I would want to do. I got some work experience at a volunteer magazine, writing articles for them, and most importantly, I started my blog. I thought it would be a good way to practise my wr…

100k in 100 days - update!

So I've decided that every Tuesday I'm going to do an update on how well I'm doing on the 100k in 100 days challenge. I've made myself a worksheet on Microsoft Excel to make sure I keep up to date with my numbers.

I've done quite well so far, and was even ahead for a couple of days. I don't expect it to last, and think it'll be harder as it goes on. Plus, with my assignments due in next week I've had a lot of writing to do! It'll be interesting to see whether I can keep up when I've handed them in.

Here are my numbers so far:

January 1st – 1582 
January 2nd – 338 (I was at work, and I never get much writing done when I've been at work - I'm always too tired when I get home!)

January 3rd – 413 (I got a migraine on Thursday, so I'm impressed that I managed to write anything at all!)

January 4th – 2862

January 5th – 1049

January 6th – 114 (I was at work again, but I did a little poetry before bed)

January 7th – 964

I intend to get a lot o…

The Casual Vacancy by J. K. Rowling!

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After weeks of promising it, here is my review of The Casual Vacancy, at last!

When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.
Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty fa├žade is a town at war.
Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils ... Pagford is not what it first seems.
And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations? From Goodreads

It took me a while to get through this book, but I loved it! It’s absolutely nothing like Harry Potter; it’s amazing in a completely different way. It’s a story about how one man’s death can affect the lives of others, and cause events to snowball. The initial death is the most minor in…

Goals for January!

I have quite a few goals for January, it's going to be a busy month! That's fine with me though, I'm feeling really motivated at the minute!
My goals for December were:
Do my Christmas shopping! – I managed all of my Christmas shopping in time for the big day, but I feel like I was a bad daughter this year. I didn’t get my mum as much as I wanted to; I wanted to get her a Kindle, but in the end I couldn’t afford it. I’m hoping to get her one for her birthday in March.
Symposium – The Symposium went fine, I got through my reading with no problems.  
Portfolio – I’m quite pleased with my portfolio at the minute; I have a lot of things to put into it, which are very nearly ready.  
Get back on top of my blog posts – I feel like I’ve been quite a good blogger in terms of blog posts over the past month, and I mean to keep it that way. I still have a lot of ideas, so that’s good. Now I just need to comment more, I’m terrible at commenting!
My goals for January are:
Open a savings a…

My First Ever ISWG!

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I've been meaning to participate in Alex J. Cavanaugh's Insecure Writer's Group for months, but I've never got around to it, until today!


My main writing insecurities at the minute are related to the two assignments that are due in on the 16th of January for my Creative Writing Masters. One is a portfolio, which must contain quite a lot of different pieces of my writing, including notes, edits and the final piece. I'm pretty confident about this. It's the other assignment I'm worried about. It involves taking a 21st Century play written by somebody else and adding a completely new character to it. I'm finding this very difficult; deciding which play to use, how big the scene should be, what character I should add to it. 
I've chosen a play (although the scene I'm using is quite long, so I'm hoping there isn't a limit) and I know what character I want to add, it's just adding that character that I'm finding difficult. 
However, I …

New Year Resolutions!

Happy New Year, everybody!

2012 has been quite a good year for me. This time last year, I didn't know what I wanted to do in life. I didn't write, I didn't blog, all I did was work; it was a pretty boring life! And then I started my blog on a whim, and it all snowballed from there! I found out that I loved blogging, and through blogging I found that I really loved writing, and creating stories of my own. If I hadn't started my blog, I doubt I'd be in the middle of a Creative Writing Masters right now; in fact, my life would probably be the same as it was this time last year.

One of the main things that has inspired me this year and helped me on the right path is the blogosphere, so I'm taking this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for reading my blog, and commenting, and for encouraging me. Thank you all for being so amazing. I honestly think that starting this blog was the best thing that I've done this year.

So, onto my resolutions, starting …