Rules for the tag:
- Thank the person who nominated you.
- Post a quote for three consecutive days.
- Nominate three new bloggers each day.
I didn’t pick them with a specific theme in mind (like picking quotes from a specific book), but I’m now realizing that they’re all by some of my favorite band members. So I guess I got lucky.
The rules are really simple:
And finally, the first quote!
Want an example of how not to write a romance? Try this book.
When Adam meets Robyn at a support group for kids coping with obsessive-compulsive disorder, he is drawn to her almost before he can take a breath. He’s determined to protect and defend her–to play Batman to her Robyn–whatever the cost. But when you’re fourteen and the everyday problems of dealing with divorced parents and step-siblings are supplemented by the challenges of OCD, it’s hard to imagine yourself falling in love. How can you have a “normal” relationship when your life is so fraught with problems? And that’s not even to mention the small matter of those threatening letters Adam’s mother has started to receive . . .
Teresa Toten sets some tough and topical issues against the backdrop of a traditional whodunit in this engaging new novel that readers will find hard to put down.
I think that Adam’s OCD was very well portrayed. It totally messed up his life, but it also didn’t totally define his character. Near the end of the book, you could really feel his downward spiral, and his desperation to get better. I felt sympathetic for him through about half of the story (more on the other half later).
The mystery portion of the story felt well written. It didn’t take center stage in the story- it was definitely a subplot- but it was enough to keep the tension up, which was nice. I don’t remember ever feeling like the story was dragging too badly. Without the mystery, it definitely would have dragged.
The superhero codenames were such a cute idea, too! And it was an interesting concept, too- the ultimate fake it ’til you make it.
Adam said some really icky stuff though??? Like, most of the time he was a total sweetheart but he was REALLY demeaning to girls (all girls except Robyn, of course) and he was somehow an elitist about mental illness? He would be like “I may have OCD, but at least I’m not anorexic, haha! Anorexics are the REAL crazies!!!” and it was really gross. Basically, he thought OCD was okay, but anyone who was anorexic or a hypochondriac or self harmed was “crazy”. He thought he was somehow better than everyone else in his support group.
Robyn was totally cardboard, which is weird considering that she was one of the most major characters in the story. I just didn’t GET her character. I didn’t really see any motivation for her except being in love with Adam.
This story should’ve been told in first person, and you could tell that the author felt the same way, at least subconsciously. It led to some really wacky storytelling. It was third person omnipotent most of the time, but there would be moments where she wrote things like “Adam must have nodded because…” which doesn’t make any sense??? It’s third person. There’s no “he may have nodded”. He either nodded or he didn’t nod. So… I don’t know. The voice felt weird and awkward, and it was confusing for the reader.
I WAS NOT AT ALL SOLD ON THE LOVE STORY and it makes me really angry because it had so much potential for cuteness. It was bizarre. Adam was obsessed with Robyn, in a totally unhealthy way. Their relationship was not love, it was infatuation- mostly on Adam’s side. And so little characterization was given to Robyn that it was impossible to feel any chemistry between the two of them. I’ve heard people raving about how cute this story is, and just… no??? It’s not cute??? It’s creepy as heck and totally unbelievable and I just DON’T GET IT.
It had potential to be a great story about struggling with mental illness but it was kind of ruined for me by a crappy instalove plot (not to mention Adam’s weird elitism). So… my reaction to this one is basically “no”. I’m going to be generous and give it two stars for a good premise and some redeemable parts.
Recommended for: as I said- anyone who wants advice on how not to write romance
Thanks to Elly @ A Hufflepuff’s Thoughts for letting me steal this tag! It looks like a super cute idea, and it was a lot of fun to do.
The tag is pretty simple- you just handwrite the answer to each of the following questions, then take a picture and post it on your blog. The questions are:
Music Monday is a bi-weekly blog link up to encourage the sharing and discussion of people’s favorite music. Join in to share your own music and find new songs to listen to! A new playlist theme will be posted every other Monday.
The moment you’ve all been waiting for- Music Monday number four! I’m actually really looking forward to this one. The theme? Battle anthems. Songs that pump you up, make you feel like you can do anything. If you were a superhero (or villain- no judging here), these would be your theme songs. Of course, if you want to take your own spin on the topic, go ahead! As long as it fits under the theme “battle anthems”, anything goes. And have fun!
I haven’t posted here in… almost a week. Oops. I don’t really even have an excuse, honestly, except that I’ll start writing a post and then just… lose all motivation to finish it. I don’t know. Maybe I’m reserving my energy for when school starts? Yeah. That’s what I’m doing. It’s totally intentional~
Anyway. I stole this tag from Horse Feathers (hope you don’t mind). Enjoy!
1. How tall are you?
I’m short. Very short. Last I checked, I was at 5′, although I like to hope that I’ve grown to 5’1″ or maybe (*gasp*) 5’2″. My brother (he’s 11) just overtook me in height this year which totally sucks. I’m still trying to deny it but it doesn’t work.
2. Do you have a hidden talent? If so, what?
I’m very good at coming up with dumb/ witty puns, usually long after it would be appropriate to use them. One memorable incident was at rehearsal for a play; a friend stepped on a screw and got her shoe stuck to it (her foot was fine, otherwise this would not be an entertaining story). Several hours later, I burst out laughing and all my friends were freaking out because they couldn’t figure out what was so funny. I finally managed to wheeze out “I guess you could’ve said you were screwed”.
3. What’s your biggest blog related pet peeve?
I have a couple, but one of the biggest ones is ugly/ hard to navigate/ just plain bad blog themes. It’s just part of having a mom who’s a graphic designer. I’m picky about web design and logos and the like, and it bugs me when they don’t look nice. One of the design-related things that irks me most is neon text on a black background. Like, yeah, it looks cool in theory but it’s impossible to read? Oh. Another pet peeve: comic sans. Enough said.
4. What’s your biggest non blog-related pet peeve?
Being told I’m wrong. This is gonna sound really narcissistic of me, but… I can’t stand being told I’m wrong. And most of the time, even if I know I’m wrong, I refuse to admit it. So being told that I’m wrong usually just leads to drawn out arguments and it’s no fun for either party involved.
5. What’s your favorite song?
It’s always (always) changing, but at the moment I’m really liking Mad as Rabbits by Panic! at the Disco, Dollhouse by Melanie Martinez, and New Americana by Halsey.
6. What’s your favorite Etsy store that isn’t yours?
I don’t really know a whole lot of Etsy shops, honestly.
7. What’s your favorite way to spend your free time when you’re alone?
Listening to music (singing and sometimes dancing when I’m alone- shhhh), watching TV and movies (especially Agent Carter!!!), drawing and crafting- basically the same as what I do when other people are around.
8. What’s your favorite junk food?
CHOCOLATE. Candy bars, fancy chocolate candies, brownies, cakes, basically any form of chocolate I am guaranteed to love.
9. Do you have a pet?
Well, my family has a lot of pets. Let’s see… a dog (Lily), two cats (Daisy and Jazzy, short of Jasmine), three chickens (Elf, Delilah, and Miracle), a bearded dragon lizard (Sydney) and a corn snake (Neville Longbottom- geddit? Because he’s a snake so he has a long bottom? hahahaha). The only one that’s technically mine is the lizard.
10. What is your favorite non fiction and fiction book?
Non fiction… I’m going to go with A World Without Fish. It’s basically about the importance of preserving marine life and how the extinction of fish would essentially destroy the earth, not just the oceans. It’s interesting (if a little scary) and a lot of it is told through comics, which is cool. For fiction, I’m totally in love with Lies We Tell Ourselves.
11. What’s your favorite beauty product?
12. When were you last embarrassed?
I don’t really know? But I mean it happens a lot so odds are it was sometime recently.
13. If you could only drink one beverage (besides water) for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I’d like to say hot chocolate or lemonade or something but honestly, I couldn’t live without tea. And, I mean, it’s so flexible. There are teas that will wake you up, make you sleepy, make you feel better when you’re sick, and teas that just taste delicious. So goodbye, hot chocolate. I will miss you.
14. What’s your favorite movie?
Captain America: The Winter Soldier. That movie is FLAWLESS. With PEGGY and BUCKY and NATASHA and SAM and oh my god I just really love that movie. Too much to put it into words.
15. What were you in high school (prom queen, nerd, cheerleader, jock, band geek, valedictorian, loner, artist, prep, etc)?
I’m basically homeschooled (and I’m also still in high school, so it should technically be ‘are’, not ‘were’, but oh well), but I like to think that I’d be one of the weird artsy kids.
16. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
IRELAND. But I do also love Oregon, so that would be a nice (and far more realistic) compromise).
17. PC or Mac?
I… don’t know. PC, I guess? I’m more used to them.
18. Last romantic gesture from a crush, date, boy/girlfriend, spouse?
I went on a date with Netflix last night.
19. Favorite celebrity?
Probably Gerard Way (former lead singer of My Chemical Romance and current glittery alien loving Britpop singer).
20. What blogger do you secretly want to be best friends with?
Everyone who comments on my posts, honestly.
Since I wasn’t technically tagged, I’m just going to go ahead and tag everyone reading this post.
Slight disclaimer: if for some strange reason you have been living in a hole most of your life and haven’t finished the Harry Potter series yet, there are spoilers in this post. You have been warned.
Anyway. Time for some Harry Potter appreciation!
Up until my last read (a few months ago, I think), I would’ve answered The Prisoner of Azkaban, mostly because it introduced two of my favorite characters at the time- Lupin and Sirius. And I still love The Prisoner of Azkaban, don’t get me wrong.
But I think that now I prefer The Deathly Hallows. I just love the way that everything you thought you knew about all the characters got twisted around (I’m actually not on Snape’s side any more, but that’s a conversation for another day). It’s a lot faster paced than Prisoner of Azkaban, and it’s… long. A more complex story. I like that.
I actually… don’t remember the movies that well? It’s been a while since I watched them. But I do remember really liking how The Half Blood Prince was executed. They did a nice job mixing humor and creepiness, and I liked that. And it was also the first Harry Potter movie I saw in theaters! So it has a pretty special place in my heart, which is funny considering that I didn’t particularly like the book (I didn’t dislike it, it just… doesn’t really stand out to me).
Okay, don’t kill me here, but… I don’t really like The Sorcerer’s Stone. It all seems so cheesy to me? I mean, I get that that’s mostly because everyone is so young, but I just feel kind of bored by it. I love the entire series, really. But I like it most later in the series, when things get more three dimensional and layered. Everything is so black and white in The Sorcerer’s Stone.
Least favorite film?
Oh my god I HATE THE GOBLET OF FIRE ADAPTATION. They changed it so much and left out so many of the things I loved about the book? And I’m never going to forgive movie Harry for killing that dragon when he was clearly capable of getting the egg without killing a dragon in the book.
Parts of the books/ movies that made you cry?
Well, a couple years ago, the moments when Snape’s backstory was revealed. But I’m over that now. That guy was a jerk and a creep, albeit maybe a little bit of a sympathetic jerk.
But anyway. I digress. Dumbledore’s death was one of the first scenes in a book to make me cry- I was in tears. These days, it’s usually Lupin and Tonks’ death (THEY DESERVED BETTER) but Dumbledore’s death still hurts a lot too.
ALL OF THEM (except for Snape, as I’m sure you’ve realized by now).
But if I had to pick one… probably Luna? I really like how everyone assumes she’s… well… loony, but she doesn’t let it get to her. Like, she’s creative and open minded, but a lot smarter than she seems. I also have a soft spot for Ginny and Neville and Hermione.
Least favorite character?
Take a wild guess.
The guy was an abusive, manipulative creep… but he’s still a bunch of people’s favorite character??? How about a little more love for Remus or Molly or literally anyone but Snape.
I… honestly don’t know? I have a lot, and I don’t have time to go back and reread the books to find my favorite. So for now, I’m just going to go with one that I remember- “We’ve all got light and dark inside us. What matters is the part we choose to act on, that’s who we really are.” -Sirius Black
Least favorite quote?
“Always.” I’m actually seriously considering writing up a post on how much I hate Snape because I have a lot of feelings on this.
Favorite music from the films?
I don’t really know? But I do love Hedwig’s Theme.
What would your patronus be?
A mantis shrimp. The things are beautiful and can see waaaay more colors than any other animal we know of (including humans), but they’re also, like, super vicious. You should seriously Google them, because I can’t do them justice.
I’ve also once had a friend tell me that I looked like “a murderous fairy princess” so I feel like a mantis shrimp would be an accurate patronus for me.
If you could have the Resurrection Stone, the Invisibility Cloak, or the Elder Wand, which would you choose?
I don’t know. The Elder Wand sounds cool, but I feel like it would be more trouble than it’s worth? So I’d probably go with the Invisibility Cloak.
Honestly, I’m not sure? I’m pretty ambitious and I have big dreams- I want to do something big with my life, make the world a better place- so I feel like Slytherin would be pretty fitting. But then I feel like creativity is a pretty pivotal part of my personality, so maybe Ravenclaw?
If you could meet any member of the cast, who would it be?
If you were on the Quidditch team, what position would you play?
I’d like to say Keeper. But, honestly, I doubt that I’d be on the team. I’m not the most coordinated of people- my talents (and interests) lie elsewhere.
Were you happy with the ending?
In a way? I mean, it felt satisfying, but EVERYONE I LOVED DIED (okay, not everyone, but almost everyone).
How much does Harry Potter mean to you?
It means everything to me, honestly.
I’m feeling lazy right now, so… I’m going to tag whoever is reading this post!
Halsey is pretty new to the music industry- her first album, an EP titled Room 93, just came out in 2014. But she’s taking the world by a storm- within just the past year, she’s performed at the huge music festival South by Southwest and toured with massively popular bands like The Kooks and Imagine Dragons.
I won’t hesitate to admit that I can be… just a teeny bit of an elitist about pop. “It’s factory made music!” “There’s no heart to it!” “There’s nothing artistic about it!” I don’t really mean to. I’m just… not really into pop.
But there are a handful of pop artists I do like- Marina and the Diamonds, Echosmith, some of Taylor Swift’s newer, less country stuff- and Halsey is at the top of that list. Let me tell you why.
So, Halsey is an indie/ electronic pop singer and songwriter. Her music is totally beautiful- it’s whimsical and pretty, but has a dark and gritty layer to it, too. She writes her own songs and does an amazing job at it, if I do say so myself.
She’s honest and heartfelt, something that I feel is missing from a lot of pop. She knows what she’s singing about, and she owns it.
She sings because she cares about it, not because she’s a particularly good singer (she is, but apparently she doesn’t think so herself). In one interview, she said
Yeah, I mean, I write all my own music—I’m a writer at heart. I’m not actually even a very good singer. I’m not. I’m okay with admitting that because some of the best musicians in history weren’t great singers: Patti Smith, Bob Dylan. I loved a guy named Conor Oberst who’s in a band called Bright Eyes. He can’t sing. Love him. And it’s cool because it’s almost like the most liberating thing ever. This is a side note, but I can go up on stage and not have to worry about if I sing good because I already kinda can’t. I don’t have to worry about hitting runs and being ridiculous. For me it’s about emotion.
She’s a breath of fresh air for pop music.
Also, she has the coolest hair!!!
But if that’s not enough to persuade you, there’s more.
Because Halsey is an outspoken bisexual, biracial, and bipolar feminist! Remember what I was saying about her being a breath of fresh air for pop? Because Halsey is what a lot of girls need these days- a positive role model. Someone who speaks out about homophobia, racism, mental health, and so much more.
Like, seriously. So much more. Just skim through her Twitter and you’ll see.
In one interview where she was discussing being bipolar, she explained
They’re like, ‘I want to be with someone who is like crazy.’ Well, guess what? It’s not all painting at four o’clock in the morning and road trips and great things. Sometimes it’s throwing things and, like, getting hurt and having to pick someone up from the police station at two o’clock in the morning. My biggest fear has always been being that woman.
Like, I cannot express how great of a role model Halsey is for girls.
I kind of just embraced the things about me that were a little odd. The thing about having bipolar disorder, for me, is that I’m really empathetic. I feel everything around me so much. I feel when I walk past a homeless person, and I feel when my friend breaks up with someone, or I feel when my mom and my dad get into a fight and my mom’s crying over dishes in the sink. I used to say to her all the time, like, ‘I hate this. I want to be naïve. I want to be worried about my prom dress. I want to be worried about getting my math homework done. I want to be like everyone else my age,’ and she would say, ‘Would you rather be blissfully ignorant or would you rather be pained and aware?’ That was one of the things that’s kind of followed with me through my whole life. She’s encouraging of what I’m doing because she knows that even if sometimes I might be in pain, I’m aware.
Like, seriously!!! It’s so nice being able to see someone in the media who actually speaks out about these things, and does it honestly.
Another quote, this one discussing the decision whether to cast a man or a woman as her romantic partner when she was filming a music video for one of her songs, Ghost.
The content of the video was me being a little oppositional actually. We were in a meeting talking about just doing a higher budget version of the original and someone said “alright well, we’ll cast a guy” and I think I kinda snapped. I wasn’t planning to, honestly, it wasn’t some political move, I just kinda went “why would you assume that you’d cast me a guy”.
That general assumption that a guy should be cast, like, that the video was about a hetero-normative plotline, just made me angry and made me realize how important it is to do something that people aren’t expecting. Like, I’m a bisexual woman so I’m interested in relationships with both men and women and I know how important it is to showcase that.
Such!!! A!!! Great!!! Role!!! Model!!! A pop artist spreading a positive, girl power driven message!
And she doesn’t let the power get to her head, either- in this interview, she explains that she recognizes that she makes mistakes, and she’d rather have kids look up to her ideals than idolize her.
I don’t insist that any of my ideas or opinions are the perfect form, but I’ve kind of accepted the fact that I’m a role model for a lot of different types. I’m mixed race—my dad is black and my mom is white—and I’m very pale. Growing up there weren’t a lot of mixed people in the media who were as pale as I was. I always felt like I was too light to identify with anyone else. I now have girls reach out to me all the time and say, ‘I’m mixed race like you and I’m just as white as you are. Thank you for being that for me.’ Or, you know, someone reaches out with a mental illness or someone reaches out who is, you know, a feminist. I just like to be the in-between role model—the one I didn’t have growing up. At the same time, if I’m going to be a role model, I would rather kids idolize my intention to do good and my intention to be myself and my intention to be different rather than my actions. I think my intentions are more admirable than my actions.
So, I mean, if this hasn’t persuaded you to listen to her, I hope it’s at least showed you how amazing she is. I mean, I get it if you don’t like her music but she’s seriously so cool and it’s amazing that girls have someone like her to look up to.
Music Monday is a bi-weekly blog link up to encourage the sharing and discussion of people’s favorite music. Join in to share your own music and find new songs to listen to! A new playlist theme will be posted every other Monday.
It’s time for the third Music Monday! I feel like this one will be a lot of fun- the theme is “crush”! As usual, it’s really open ended. Wanna make a feel good playlist about falling in love? Or something more bittersweet? It’s up to you! You could even make a playlist about crushing your enemies, if that’s more your thing. Just interpret the topic however you want, make a playlist, and have fun!
Listen to it on Youtube
Monthly Wrap Up is a monthly (duh) feature on Stay and Watch the Stars! It’s the place to find out what’s going on in my life, what I’ve read, what I’ve posted, and more!
What I Posted:
I discussed the pros and cons of writing novels vs short stories and asked for your opinions.
I shared an excerpt from my WIP for the 777 Challenge.
I rambled about what makes a feminist character in We Don’t Need More Strong Female Characters.
This month was actually really relaxed, and I think I needed that.
I got a chance to work on a lot of art projects and listen to a lot of new music, so that was really nice. The library reading program finished, but I’m going to join their YA Book Club, so that’ll be fun. And I kept going to my singing lessons- they’re a lot of fun.
But the thing that I’m probably most excited about is that I started playing guitar! I’ve been wanting to try guitar for a while now, and I wasn’t disappointed- it’s sooo much fun. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep it up once school starts.
What I’m Listening To:
Bands/ Artists: Paramore, Panic! at the Disco, Fall Out Boy, Bikini Kill, Halsey, Marina and the Diamonds, Gerard Way, Patrick Stump, David Bowie
Albums: Self Titled by Paramore, Pretty. Odd. by Panic! at the Disco (weird punctuation is, like, their thing), Folie a Deux by Fall Out Boy, Room 93 by Halsey, Electra Heart by Marina and the Diamonds, Hesitant Alien by Gerard Way, Soul Punk by Patrick Stump
Currently Listening to: Coast (It’s Gonna Get Better) by Patrick Stump (this is such a feel good song for me, I love it)
I keep making mistakes, but it takes some time to get anything right. It’s gonna get better, it’s gonna work out.
Newly released songs I love:
Colors by Halsey
You were red and you liked me cause I was blue. You touched me, and suddenly I was a lilac sky, and you decided purple just wasn’t for you.
Hallelujah by Panic! at the Disco (the song isn’t actually new, but they just released the music video)
Then the time for being sad is over, and you miss ’em like you miss no other, and being blue is better than being over it.
Girls Like Girls by Hayley Kiyoko
Isn’t this why we came? Gotta get with you. Girls like girls like boys do, nothing new.
How was your summer? What were you reading, and what music were you listening to?
Scattered to the Chaos of Life
Science, philosophy and whatnot.
I've moved! Find my new & updated blog at karaterzis.wordpress.com
Writing by and for LGBTQ+ teens
The journey of a young adult trying to find a sustainable, happy life
a literary magazine by and for teens
Remembering to revel in the written word.
vive la jess
Writer, reader, doer, dreamer
Minecraft = COOL with 7 "O"s ~:>