Lessons to be learned from the Irish

When you think of the Irish, what is the first things that come to mind?

Leprechauns, 4-leaf clovers, green beer, celtic music? Probably all those things.

What about the stereotypes of an Irish person? Stubborn, crass, loud, violent, drunks, and all have red hair.

Granted as is the case with all stereotypes, these do not apply as a whole to the Irish people or culture.  But I think we can learn a few things from the Irish to apply to ourselves that are beneficial.

Firstly, the stubbornness. Yes, the Irish people are known for being stubborn. It could very well be linked to their heritage of being farmers in a very harsh climate. If they were not stubborn then they would not have survived. I think we should be a bit more stubborn in more areas of our lives. Maybe if we were more stubborn (or perhaps a better word would be determined) at getting our dream job then we would get it, or at least another step closer. Or maybe if we were moer determined, then we would generally be more successful in more areas of our lives.

Secondly they can be crass and loud. Which basically means they really don’t care about how they come across to people. If they are having a good time, then they are going to make sure that they express it and share their joy with the people around them. I think this is something else we can apply to our lives. We should not care as much of what others think of us. Especially if we are having a good time, we ought to be able to share that joy with others and not feel like we are disturbing them or in the wrong somehow for showing it. Dance around, loudly sing a song, go up to random strangers and hug them (that last one might be frowned upon a bit more)

All I have today is those two lessons, but if anyone can think of more, definitely leave them in the comments.

I for one am very proud of my Irish heritage, and hope I can apply these lessons from my culture to my personal everyday life. Now if you will excuse me, I am going to go learn how to dance an Irish jig.

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Dear lovely readers! My friend Heidi just published a book, and I had the opportunity to interview her and ask some questions. Read on, and enjoy, and maybe pick up a copy of the book yourself!

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Q: Who or what inspired you to become an author?

I don’t know that I could pin that down, but I was definitely inspired by what other people had written before I started writing. When I was little we would go to the library almost every single day, and I had a deep love for books. I guess it came from that.

Q: What was the turning point in your life when you decided to start writing?

In 2009 I moved out for the first time and one of my roommates was a friend from high school who said she had “published a book.” She told me all about NaNoWriMo and how she had got her book printed because of a place called CreateSpace. Before this point I had started so many stories, but it wasn’t until I took the challenge to do NaNoWriMo in 2009 that I finished my first novel and knew I couldn’t stop writing more. In 2012 I decided to be a full time writer, and I’ve never been happier.

Q: What is or are the genres of your book or books?

I generally write fantasy, which is my favorite, though I have written one young adult book that was general fiction/romance.

Q: Who is your favorite author, and how did they inspire you to write?

Lisa Mangum has by far inspired me the most. It is my goal in life to be able to write books that are as gripping as hers are!

Q: When you write do you take notes, organize your characters and plot, or you write freely as you go?

Yes. I didn’t in the beginning, but I have come a LONG way since then! I have a writing notebook where I keep all my plot ideas and such straight. Sometimes I draw maps in there, or make timelines, but I don’t usually write character bios. I have for some stories though, just to keep things straight if there are a lot of characters.

Q: Where does your inspiration come from?

Random ideas that pop into my head mostly, especially at night! Also from phrases I hear while other people are talking, or from events I hear about or see, or even things that I wish would happen.

Q: What is your favorite scene in your story?

Honestly, I’m torn between two of them . . . I’d give too much away if I said the first one, so I’ll just say the fight scene. I really thinks it’s great.

Q: Are the characters in your story based on people you know?

I have named characters after people I know, but that’s it, unless you count me, in which case it would be the other way around.

Q: Do you have any books in the works?

Besides “Through the Paper Wall,” I am also working on publishing “Ontario,” which will probably be released in May, and I am finishing up a young adult fantasy that I am particularly fond of, which is entitled “Lorn.”

Q: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

I this particular story, yes there is a message, and that’s to realize the good in what you have. You can’t spend your life comparing it to what could have been, or what someone else has. The people in your life are doing their best and you choose if you are going to be happy or not.

Q: Do you see writing as a career?

Oh yes! Besides being a mom, it’s really all I want to do. Unless some day I use my degree of course, haha.

Q: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

I was homeschooled until seventh grade and before that I was always reading and writing, thanks to a very encouraging mother. I’m sure that’s where it came from.

Q: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

This time around it was really interesting because this is the first juvenile fiction book I have written, which is pretty strange because that is my favorite group of books to read.

Q: Do you have any advice for other writers?

Never, ever, give up! That’s always the first thing I tell people. I always dreamed of this happening, but I don’t know that I ever thought it actually would until a couple years ago. You never know what will happen, and the only way to find out is to keep going.

Q: Tell us about Through the Paper Wall. What’s the story about?

This story is about Jesse, a lonely thirteen-year old boy who has been drug across the country by his father, who is pursuing his old high school love after the death of his wife. In Jesse’s search of his new house he finds a tunnel leading from his basement, and he recruits a new friend to help him explore. The two of them find themselves in a city completely run by teenagers who control everyone using microchips. Jesse and his new friend Jake have to work to overthrow the ones in control in order to free themselves and everyone else.

Q: How did the idea of the story come to you?

It just sort of hit me. The first part, about a kid finding the tunnel in the wall, came to me a long, long time ago, and I just decided to run with it this past November. I got stuck for a really long time, and then all of a sudden the fantasy stuff just appeared and I ended up writing an insane amount, writing half the book in only three days, if I remember correctly!

Q: Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

Three of my fellow writers graciously chipped in to help me edit and proofread: Caitlin Hensley, Tameka Armstrong, and Nicole Wells. All of us worked on it, and they did a fabulous job! I am so happy with what this book has become.

Q: Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: randomly, dome, and memorize.

Cara let her eyes trace each and every golden line, memorizing every stroke that randomly made its way around the dome.

*Links to all your social media sites and where to buy the book

http://www.twitter.com/HeidiNicoleBird http://www.facebook.com/HeidiNicoleBird http://www.heidinicolebird.blogspot.com http://www.authorsdb.com/component/content/article/8-authors/122-heidi-nicole-bird

*An author pic and small bio

Heidi

Heidi Nicole Bird has been writing for as long as she can remember and it is her favorite thing in the world. Heidi is a regular NaNoWriMo participant and is mostly a young adult fantasy writer, but also likes to write juvenile fiction and other genres. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Brigham Young University and she looks forward to exploring the genre of historical fiction. Heidi lives in Utah with her family and three dogs, and loves working from home as a full time writer. To learn more visit heidinicolebird.blogspot.com.

Buy the awesome book here!

Musings of 2012

2012 will be missed. I learned a lot in this past year about myself, about life, about the direction I wanted to go in, and what my passions are. (Even though I am still trying to figure out that last one a bit)

I am not going to sugarcoat it. I had some really dark times in 2012, part of which included living out of my car for a period and dropping out of the Masters program at Liberty University. But quoting The Doctor, the bad things don’t take away from the pile of bad things. And there were plenty of good things.

To name a few highlights we had the London Olympics, Adele winning her Grammy, The Presidential Election, and a bunch of amazing movies such as Avengers, Skyfall, and THE HOBBIT! (still a bit too excited about that one).

Personal highlights, I discovered the beautiful thing called NaNoWriMo and gained some amazing friends, I have rediscovered my love for writing, I have an awesome family who are willing to do their best in helping me with whatever, I have amazing friends in general, I have discovered a beautiful thing known as Thomas Hiddleston and all the Hiddlestoners, and of course continue my obsession with Doctor Who. I also have discovered an interest in running. Specifically training for races around the area which thankfully there are many of. I have ran one so far, and am looking forward to another in a couple weeks.

I almost didn’t survive 2012, as on New Years Eve I got into an accident which has probably totaled my car. I am physically fine besides sore muscles and bruises all over. If only one factor had been different in the situation, I probably would not be here typing this out right now.

Yes, I will miss 2012, but the good thing about a new year, is it offers many different opportunities for one to explore and new things to experience. Here is to a great 2013!

Google’s lists for the year:

http://www.google.com/zeitgeist/2012/#the-world

End of the Year Musings

This time of the year means different things to each person, but for most, it is the time of the year to reflect on the year past, look to the year ahead, examine their habits and lifestyles and determine whether one is happy with the way things are going.

The thing is, if you went up to most people and asked them why they think over the same life aspects every year, they wouldn’t be able to give you a good answer beyond it being the coming of the new year.

I admit that I fall into this season of reflection as well. I suppose it is contagious. Don’t get me wrong. Taking time out of ones life and pondering what exactly ones interests and passions are is a wonderful thing. Especially if you find that something you continually are doing, such as a job or a habit is something you no longer enjoy or does not get you excited to get out of bed. I am of the opinion that you should fill your life with things you enjoy. Granted you might not enjoy your job, but do you enjoy aspects of it? If you don’t even have that privilege, then maybe you should look into getting a different job, or in the least make sure you are doing something for yourself in the evenings.

I am not sure where I was going with this post, but it is something I have been thinking about and feel a look at our lives ought to be done more than once a year. Maybe if that was the case, we would all feel more accomplished or at least enjoy our lives more. For it is no fun to walk around life like a zombie, especially if it is killing a talent or a passion of yours.

The big blog hop

This post is going to be dedicated to the blog Hop! I have never done this before, so hopefully, it will go smoothly. Thanks to The awesome Heidi Nicole Bird for tagging me!

——–What is the title of your book? The Two Tricksters

Where did the idea for the book come from? I was really bored at work, and was role playing as Irene Adler. Then I had a brilliant idea about Loki meeting Irene, and the idea was born.

What genre does your book fall under? Fanfiction

Will your book be self-published or represented under an agency? Probably will not be publishing this one, just on the grounds that it is not a publishable story. It will most likely be put on Ao3 though.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? 30 days exactly. Took me all of November to get it done. Then again, technically I am not done as I still have the last two chapters to write.

Give a one sentence synopsis of your novel: Irene is perfectly happy with her life, and then her world is thrown in another direction when Loki, the god of Mischief, decides to rope her into his newest scheme.

What other works would you compare your story to? I honestly have no idea what to compare this to lol.

Who or what inspired you to write this book? My friend was participating in Nanowrimo this year and told me I should do it to. Although she got behind on hers, and I got discouraged in mine. Then I discovered the awesome Facebook group, met a bunch of completely amazing people who stood behind me, and gave me some amazing ideas and motivation to finish the 50,000 in the time frame.

What else might pique the reader’s interest?  The fact that all members of the Avengers team also make an appearance? The fact Loki plays tricks on neighborhood people? The dialogue that takes place between Loki and Irene? The intense discussions over passages of Shakespeare which Loki makes extremely personal? If none of those work for you, then I don’t know what will.

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Now I get to tag five other writers so they can share in the fun! All you have to do is link back to me, and then post your answers to these questions on December 19th. When you are done, tag five other writers at the bottom of your post. That’s it! Have fun!

 

Tabitha Davis

 

Samantha Kay

Rahmatou Sangotte

 

I think I am going to start this up again

Just what the title says. I told a couple years ago now when I started this blog, that I would keep up on it, write 2-3 blog posts a month, and it would sort of become a running dialogue on my life weather anyone would read it or not.

But as you can probably guess it didn’t work out all that well. My enthusiasm diminished, I didn’t feel I had anything interesting to talk about, and so stopped writing these.

But for whatever reason, I thought about this bog earlier today, and decided that I was going to take it up again. This reason could be that I just completed my first NaNoWriMo (I won! WhooHoo!), and have this sudden urge to keep writing no matter what it happens to be, or maybe I just feel like sharing my life’s details again.

Whatever the reason it really is, I am going to attempt to write one of these things 2-3 times a month, and we will see how it goes.

(And maybe it will satisfy this need I have to continue writing something in this post-Nano world)

Thoughts on 2011

I know this is a bit cliché, and there are probably thousands of bloggers going to be doing very similar posts tonight, but I am still going to do it anyway.

2011 Had a lot of things going for it. I graduated college with my bachelors degree, I rented a place on my own for the summer, finally got my license, got a car, made my first road trip and survived. Then ended up moving (cause the Michigan economy sucks) which created a need for another long road trip. This one being at least twice as long as the first. Survived that one. Got settled in to my new environment, found a couple great jobs, and had new experiences and learned many new things.

Of course you can’t have everything in a year be all peachy keen. 2011 also had a good share of low points. People I care about getting really sick, or going through rough times, my graduation almost being cancelled, working three jobs over the summer at one time, and four at once over the Christmas holiday, not finding a job in my field, and the list could go on and on.

However, I think when you look back on the year that was, it is more important to remember the good things, the times spent with friends and family, the things you learned, chalenges you conquered, people you met, and the new experiences you had.

That is what I am doing this year. I am not going and getting drunk to ring in the new year, or forcing myself to go on a diet, or make a new years resolution that I know I will not keep past a couple weeks. I am content to just remember the things that happened, and be thankful for the year that I had.

Happy New Year everyone! Hope 2012 will be just as great as 2011