Quotes of the Week, August 31st 2015

Researching this post was a barrel of laughs, but when it came to writing it, I had so many quotes from certain films that I decided to focus solely on one film at a time. Today’s quotes come from the awesomeness that is Zoolander.

  1. ‘Did you think I’d be too stupid to know what a eugoogly is?’ ~ Derek Zoolander.
  2. ‘I’m pretty sure there’s a lot more to life than being really, really, ridiculously good looking. And I plan on finding out what that is.’ ~ Derek Zoolander.
  3. ‘Oh, I’m sorry, did my pin get in the way of your ass? Do me a favor and lose five pounds immediately or get out of my building like now!’ ~ Mugatu.
  4. ‘I’m sorry that good-looking people like us made you throw up and feel bad about yourself.’ ~ Derek Zoolander.
  5. ‘This has been an emotional day for all of us. I think we should get naked.’ ~ Hansel.
  6. ‘I’m not an ambi-turner.’ ~ Derek Zoolander.
  7. ‘Mugatu is so hot right now he could take a crap, wrap it in tinfoil, put a couple fish hooks on it and sell it to Queen Elizabeth as earrings.’ ~ Maury Ballstein.
  8. ‘Todd, are you not aware that I get farty and bloated with a foamy latte?’ ~ Mugatu.
  9. ‘For Christ’s sake it’s a casserole Sheila… it’ll stay!’ ~ Maury Ballstein.
  10. ‘Now if you’ll excuse me, I have an after-funeral party to attend.’ ~ Derek Zoolander.

Film trailer: Zoolander

Word Count Weekly #3

I’m happy with my progress this week. I’ve hit my target of 400 words per day unlike last week. As you can tell, mid-week was busy for me, so my word count dropped, but I’ve picked up once again. Just one more week of the summer holidays and I will have a little more time to spend on my writing.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed writing this week.  My narrative is at a crucial cross-roads and it’s a lot of fun to see which route my characters are choosing. Only time will tell, but I have a good feeling.

  • Monday- 2220 words
  • Tuesday- 501 words
  • Wednesday- 448 words
  • Thursday- 428 words
  • Friday- 540 words
  • Saturday- 751 words
  • Sunday- 614 words

Excerpt from my work in progress:

“Who, Silvain? Who needs what? Stop being so damn cryptic. Tell me now or I’ll read you- everything you’ve ever thought, every embarrassing moment.” I sound so cruel, so heartless, but I’m on my last nerve. Adam is probably doing his nut back at the surgery.

“My wife, Vera. She needs to meet you, to know you are as real as the sunrise. She is EVO with an ability for precognition, but has lost her grasp on reality, and had to be institutionalised seven years ago. The future speaks to her, but I think it got too loud. My poor Vera. Imagine it, Teddie. Imagine knowing what lies ahead; the good, the bad, and the ugly. She knows it all, but cannot change it.”


Book One: EVO Nation

All excerpts are the works of K.J.Chapman

Choice by Angela Morgan

Choice by Angela Morgan (1875-1957)

I’d rather have the thought of you
To hold against my heart,
My spirit to be taught of you
With west winds blowing,
Than all the warm caresses
Of another love’s bestowing,
Or all the glories of the world
In which you had no part.

I’d rather have the theme of you
To thread my nights and days,
I’d rather have the dream of you
With faint stars glowing,
I’d rather have the want of you,
The rich, elusive taunt of you
Forever and forever and forever unconfessed
Than claim the alien comfort
Of any other’s breast.

O lover! O my lover,
That this should come to me!
I’d rather have the hope of you,
Ah, Love, I’d rather grope for you
Within the great abyss
Than claim another’s kiss-
Alone I’d rather go my way
Throughout eternity.

This poem has inspired me in my writing recently. Book two in the EVO Nation Series has its fair share of loss and pain, but ultimately this all stems from love; the strongest force in the universe. Love carries on through time, through death, through absence, and can hurt like hell, but in the words of Adam Lovick from EVO Nation (book one) ~ ‘Why do you think we feel pain? It’s so we appreciate what amazing feels like.’


Book Link: EVO Nation: book one in the EVO Nation Series

All excerpts are the works of K.J.Chapman

Friday Fun: Quick Glimpse

I shall dub today’s Friday fun post as a ‘quick glimpse’ post. Today’s glimpse is of the contents of my handbag. Most women have a hand bag, and most women fill their handbag with weird and wonderful things.

As a mother, my handbag is full of practical items, and plain, old junk:

  • Mobile phone
  • Car/house keys
  • Notebooks
  • Pencil case
  • Purse
  • Change of clothes for my daughter
  • Plastic food bag with antiseptic wipes and plasters inside- (a basic first aid kit for  the common grazed knee)
  • Body spray
  • SPF spray
  • My daughter’s snap bracelet and loom band- as you do…
  • Loose change

Yes, all of that was crammed into my poor handbag. I’m a little surprised, and relieved, that there wasn’t a gooey toffee or sweet stuck to the bottom of my bag. Or an Opal Fruit… yes, I’m old enough to remember when they were called Opal Fruits!

Summer Reading Challenge Review

My little one has finally completed the Summer Reading Challenge. All six books have been read and reviewed before the holidays are even out. It required a lot of bedtime reading, but we got there.

Review of the overall experience: We loved it. We are already advocates of the library, and as parents we understand the importance of reading to our daughter for her educational, emotional, and developmental growth. This challenge just upped the ante for us. We spent a little longer on bedtime reading than usual to ensure we completed all six books, and it was great fun.

Sophie usually picks the shorter, picture books for bedtime (the read in five minute books), but after taking part in the challenge, she has asked for a longer story book to complete each week. I’m not sure who is more excited at this prospect- me or her. I have so many recommendations for her, not to mention all my childhood books to pass on. I think it is safe to say that we have a little bookworm on our hands, and I’m a little bit chuffed… okay, I’m a lot chuffed.

She has given me reviews for each book, and please bear in mind that she is only four years old. However, she has impressed me with her comments. I have also included my own ‘Mummy review’ to give a parent’s perspective.

To kick off the challenge each child received a f0rtune teller to make and use. All questions and answers related to the theme of this year’s challenge- record breakers.

 

1. Hello Kitty: The Magazine Mix-Up by HarperCollins Books (author not stated)

Sophie: I liked the part where Hello Kitty’s Mummy knocked the water over the magazine they made. Hello Kitty’s friends stayed to help her. Hello Kitty has kind friends.

Mummy: This book had clear moral objectives- work hard and you can achieve what you want to achieve, and always help your friends. I’m glad that Sophie picked up on this. It is a sweet story, and definitely aimed at girls. Sophie was enthralled as we read, and could relay to us what had happened. I would give this book 2 stars. The story and morals were sweet, but the concept was unoriginal.

2. Hello Kitty: The Beach Holiday by HarperCollins Books (author not stated)

Sophie: Timmy was naughty and played tricks on the girls. Then, he got stuck up a cliff, and should have listened to his Daddy. I liked this book more than the magazine book.

Mummy: The idea behind the narrative was to express the need to listen to your parents and to be yourself when trying to make friends. The story was slightly better than the Magazine Mix-Up book, but I would give it the same rating of 2 stars.

After reading two books, each child was given a wall poster- (the stickers received throughout the challenge can be added to the poster ). They also received a set of stickers, one of which is a scratch and sniff.

3. Petal’s Story: A Battersy Dogs and Cats Home Story (author not stated)

Sophie: Gemma got Petal from the dog’s home, and looked after her by herself. Gemma got lost at the funfair and Petal found her family again. I love this book. I want a dog.

Mummy: This story goes into brief details about what happens when you take on a rescue dog, and how much work goes into looking after a dog, without taking away the fun of having one. I give this book 3 stars. And no, we’re not getting a dog!

4. The Railway Rabbits: Wisher and the Runaway Piglet by Georgie Adams

Sophie: Wisher got lost looking for a piglet who was scared and ran away from the farm. She used her friends tunnels to get back… I didn’t like this book very much.

Mummy: Sophie was not as engaged with this book. Sometimes she couldn’t recall the narrative, but whether that was due to the narrative itself or boredom, I’m not sure. Either way, that is not a promising sign for a children’s book. To be honest I find it hard to recall the story. Wisher seemed to get away with a lot of disobedience because she is a ‘special’ rabbit. A mediocre, boring book, hence why I awarded it 1.5 stars.

After reading four books, each child received a key ring and stickers for the wall poster:

My Hamster is a Detective by Dave Lowe

Sophie: It was very funny. I liked Stinky the hamster. He’s a grumpy hamster, and made me laugh. The next door neighbour stole their kitten, but Stinky found out.

Mummy: This book was brilliantly written, and original. There was humour in places, and Sophie was literally rolling with laughter. We would definitely recommend this book. 5 stars for this book.

Whizz Bang Winnie by Laura Owen and Korky Paul

Sophie: Winnie is a silly witch and her cat is called Wilbur. He doesn’t talk, but he is funny. Winnie eats disgusting food, and makes silly spells. She says abracadabra.

Mummy: This book was made up of short stories all about Winnie the witch and Wilbur her cat. The stories are funny, and enjoyable for kids and adults. We finished this book in three nights. It was easy to read two stories a night, and kept Sophie’s attention. I’d give this book 4.5 stars.

The last reward for completing all six books was a wrist band and the final stickers for the wall chart:

We have been informed that one of the librarians will be going to Sophie’s school to award her a medal and certificate in assembly. It’s a lovely touch, and encourages the children in front of their peers, but I’m not sure all libraries are doing this with their local schools.

We shall definitely be partaking in the Summer Reading Challenge next year, and advise all parents of primary school children to do the same.

Three Free Reads

As a self-published author myself, I know the importance of getting the word out about your eBook and how hard doing that actually is.

I have decided to spread the eBook love and download three free eBooks to add to my reading list. (I shall cover my reads in a three monthly book review).

Here are my chosen free downloads from Amazon:

The Girl Inbetween by Laekan Zea Kemp

Blurb: Bryn Reyes is a real life sleeping beauty. Afflicted with Klein-Levin Syndrome, she suffers episodes of prolonged sleep that steal weeks, and sometimes even months, from her life. But unlike most KLS patients, she doesn’t spend each episode in a catatonic state or wake up with no recollection of the time she’s missed. Instead, Bryn spends half her life in an alternate reality made up of her memories. For Bryn, the past is a place, until one day a boy she’s never met before washes up on the illusory beach of her dreams with no memory of who he is.

But the appearance of this strange boy isn’t the only thing that’s changed. Bryn’s symptoms are worsening, her body weakening as she’s plagued by hallucinations even while awake. Her only hope of finding a cure is to undergo experimental treatment created by a German specialist. But when Dr. Banz reveals that he knows more about her strange symptoms than he originally let on, Bryn learns that the boy in her head might actually be the key to understanding what’s happening to her, and worse, that if she doesn’t find out his identity before it’s too late, they both may not survive.

Open Minds by Susan Kaye Quinn

Blurb: When everyone reads minds, a secret is a dangerous thing to keep. Sixteen-year-old Kira Moore is a zero, someone who can’t read thoughts or be read by others. Zeros are outcasts who can’t be trusted, leaving her no chance with Raf, a regular mindreader and the best friend she secretly loves. When she accidentally controls Raf’s mind and nearly kills him, Kira tries to hide her frightening new ability from her family and an increasingly suspicious Raf. But lies tangle around her, and she’s dragged deep into a hidden underworld of mindjackers, where having to mind control everyone she loves is just the beginning of the deadly choices before her.

True Calling by Siobhan Davis

Blurb: Two different worlds. One shared dream. Planet Novo, nestled in space twelve hundred miles above the surface of the Earth, is the new home of 17-year-old Cadet Ariana Skyee. Confused by the government-sanctioned memory erase and distressed at her impending forced marriage and motherhood, Ariana’s plans for the future are thrown into complete disarray.

As the traumatic events within her family life enfold, Ariana grows increasingly alarmed at the authorities apparent pre-occupation with her and feels progressively more isolated and alone.

Her growing feelings for fellow Cadet Cal Remus intensify as the recently announced pageant, ‘The Calling’, gets underway. Struggling to comprehend the continuous, inexplicable dreams of the mysterious Zane, discovering the past helps shape her future, with devastating personal consequences.

These books are currently free to download on Amazon, so get your copies before the promos end.


Link to my eBook: EVO Nation available from Amazon

To Plan or Not to Plan Your Narrative

What's your story

I don’t plan! There I said it. It doesn’t mean that I’m a lazy writer. It simply means that I don’t plan. If you do, then that’s fine too. Writing is creativity, and we all get creative in our own ways.

Creativity definition: The use of imagination or original ideas to create something; inventiveness.

The keys words there are imagination, original, and inventiveness. Creativity is unique to the individual. Whether you plan and outline, or write by the seat of your pants, it is insignificant as far as your creativity and writing ability is concerned.

I plan and organise every part of my life, except my writing. I lose creativity if I plan, and I lose realism in my story and characters. I keep a notebook on me for name ideas, character descriptions, and so on, but I don’t meticulously plan my narrative. I enjoy the ride, the surprise, and the end result.

Reasons not to plan:

  • You may try to make your characters fit your outline and not the other way around. This can lead to unbelievable characters, dialogue, and unrealistic narratives.
  • Lose creativity during the writing process. Creative writing uses the left side of your brain, whilst planning uses the right, logical side. Non- planners can leave the logic for editing, and use a spontaneous approach in their writing.
  • No constraints; there isn’t a nagging voice telling you what you should and shouldn’t be writing.
  • Plot twists, and escalating tension flow naturally , and in turn, are more believable and true to the narrative.

Reasons to plan:

  • You know where the narrative needs to go. No time will be wasted trying to get back on track if you go down a wrong tangent.
  • You know what to write. No writer’s block.
  • Can determine, and correct plot holes before you start writing.
  • Saves editing time. Planning may omit issues that non-planners spend hours editing e.g character arc flaws and continuity issues.

It doesn’t matter how you write. It just matters that you do write. I shall end with a quote by Ray Bradbury:

‘You fail only if you stop writing.’

Quotes of the Week, August 24th 2015

Happiness is the theme this week. I want people to be happy, is that such a bad thing? If you’re not happy, make a change!

‘Don’t educate your child to be rich. Educate him to be happy, so when he grows up he knows the value of things not the price.’ ~ Author Unknown

Society values money over happiness. At school we’re educated to have high-flying jobs, not jobs that make us happy. Not one teacher taught me that happiness is what matters. It’s sad, but true.

There is a particular period in my school life, at around age sixteen, when I felt pressured in the wrong direction. I embarked on a business studies course because, and I quote, ‘You are more likely to make a decent salary in a business environment.’

I took the business studies into higher education, and graduated with an abundance of qualifications. Then, I went to work in an office, and hated it; hated it with every ounce of my being. I became a carer on a lower income and loved every minute of it. My happiness meant more to me than a fat pay packet.

‘Happiness is letting go of what you think your life is supposed to look like and celebrating it for everything that it is.’ ~ Mandy Hale

It’s funny how we have preconceptions of a life we haven’t lived before. We get one shot, one chance to experience life, and one opportunity to appreciate what we have. Enjoy yourself.

Word Count Weekly #2

My summer word count target of 400 words per day has been tested this week. However, overall, I did surpass the weekly target of 2800 words by 632 words.

  • Monday: 636 words
  • Tuesday: 352 words
  • Wednesday: 410 words
  • Thursday: 450 words
  • Friday: 458 words
  • Saturday: 624 words
  • Sunday: 502 words

Excerpt from my writing this week:

He takes a gulp of water, and raises an eyebrow over the top of the bottle. “You know that your mother had nothing to do with your being taken to Facility One or Rob’s death.”

“And that fixes everything?” I scoff into my own drink. “I was seven years old the first time I realised that she had a drink problem. Dad had been trying to shelter me from it, but Shana turned up at my school drunk and accused one of the teachers of making ‘sex’ eyes at my Dad. The other kids teased me about it for months. That was just one of the many ways Shana Leason ruined my childhood. It only got worse from there. I don’t want to talk about that woman anymore. Can we go for a walk? I need to be doing something.”

This week was not as productive as the last. On Tuesday I fell short, but I kind of justified this to myself with the extra words I managed during the rest of the week. I know that’s not the name of the game, but tomorrow is a new week, and with it I hope to experience some new motivation.


Book one in the EVO Nation Series: EVO Nation

All excerpts are the works of K.J. Chapman

My Top Five Book Review Bloggers

I enjoy reading a good blog post as much as I enjoy writing one. Today, I want to show appreciation for my favourite book review bloggers in this quick weekend post.

Some of these bloggers may not solely focus on book reviews, but I do appreciate their opinions and thoughts on the books they’ve read, and subsequently posted about.

  1. River Heights Book Review
  2. Cookie break
  3. Art and Soul
  4. Britanny Marie Reads
  5. The Bespectacled Mother

Head on over and check out their blogs. Spread the blog love this weekend…