Thursday, December 22, 2011

Review of Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

In a nutshell: Cool filming, great intense music, plenty of sweet slow-mo action scenes, superb comical relief. Really though, I could do without the torture scene, yeesh.

I’m not sure if Arthur Conan Doyle really wrote Sherlock Holmes with smart-alecky Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law in mind, but it worked. Plus Jude Law just has a cool name. And the English accents? Awesome.

The comical relief is really what kept up my interest. Law and Downey are hilarious (or should I say Holmes and Watson are simply uproarious). And yes, seeing Robert Downey Jr. wearing lipstick, blue eye shadow, and blush as he snuggles up next to Jude Law’s austere character, made me laugh. (You laughed too, admit it).

Also the camera shots of every detail that Holmes noticed, I LOVED. How cool would it be if Arthur Conan Doyle could see what his short stories about Holmes have become on the big screen? His stories from 1890 (or around then) have been produced into a huge, multimillion dollar film in 2011. So cool.

And no, I’m not too embarrassed to admit I came home and began acting like a detective.

Hmm, my pug Rufus looks guilty, and I see a hole in the dog food bag…What does this mean?


On a random note (which is kind of this whole post), did anyone else notice that Paolo from Friends was one of the gypsy guys? I kind of thought that was crazy.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Love Triangles


Katniss, Peeta, and Gale. Bella, Edward, and Jacob. Elizabeth Bennet, George Wickham, and Fitzwilliam Darcy.

What is it about these hopeless trios that are destined to end in heartbreak? Why are we so captivated by the angst and strife these characters must endure? (I know, I know, that sounded like it came out of romance novel. Which isn’t a bad thing!)

Here’s a couple reasons why I get sucked into love triangles:

1. I naturally choose someone I want to prevail. When there’s an odd number, you’re kind of forced to choose. Usually I feel terrible for one of them, but everyone likes choosing a team.

Photobucket2. There’s so much at stake! Whose heart will be broken? The vampire or the werewolf? The humble gentleman or the black-leather-wearing bad boy? So many questions! No matter who the protagonist is (Okay, it’s probably going to be a girl, let’s be honest), when they choose their true love/boyfriend/supernatural being, it doesn’t come without a cost.

Photobucket3. Usually the two suitors have some sort of dramatic face-off. Remember that part in Phantom of the Opera (I know we're getting into cinema triangles now) when Phantom traps Raoul? That was such an important moment. The phantom eventually released him, thus letting Christine and him live happily ever after—and we saw that the phantom really did have compassion. So yes, I like that spectacular moment when the two suitors confront each other and battle it out.

In my novel I have a few different love triangles that intermix with each other. I’ll do a post soon about the different characters and you can tell me your first impressions.

I’m fascinated by love triangles because you know there is going to be a lot of internal conflicts mixed in with the external conflicts. And it’s always scandalous, right? And I don’t mean that in a dirty way (haha).

What are your favorite love triangles? Who do you root for in these trios?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Crabs in a bucket

Competition. Yuck. I hate being competitive. I know a little healthy motivation is good—but why the meanness, spitefulness, and negative criticism?

Remember the phrase “crabs in a bucket?” If you put one crab into a bucket it will easily be able to crawl out. However, if you put in a whole group of crabs, they will constantly pull one another down so that no one can get to the top.

Why do we often pull down others if they begin to succeed? I’ve been thinking about how this applies to the writing community. So often I see writers tear down successful authors. I always think to myself how strange it is. If I don’t like a novel, I might not read it, but I wouldn’t bash it. We don’t all have the same taste. We don’t all like the same genres—but that’s exactly why there are so many to choose from!

Also, why do people criticize novels that were not written for them? If you’re a guy who hates fantasy, romance, and mushy dialogue, then you probably shouldn't read that kind of novel. You’ll never give that book a fair chance, because, well, you hate that genre to begin with.

Most of my experiences as a writer have been so positive. But I have had those few mind-boggling moments when people give disapproval that has more to do with my choice of genre than my writing.

As authors we should try and help each other. We all know how hard it is to write, edit, and perfect a manuscript. And as friends and family shouldn’t we try to uplift and not tear each other down?

I’m going to try my hardest to work on this, because when it comes down to it, I just don’t want to be a crabby person ;).

Monday, November 28, 2011

Someday we'll find it, the Rainbow Connection.

Sometimes when I hear this song I Just want to cry because it's so beautiful. For me it's not just a song I listened to when I was little--it's my family. It takes me back to memories of all of us living together in Alpine. We were as silly as ever with a family of six kids. I remember my siblings making up their own version of this song. “Someday we’ll find it, the peanut connection, the cashews, the almonds…”

Recently I was writing a scene in my novel where a character recalls a childhood song and sings it to Julia (my protagonist). Instantly this song came to mind.

I heard that The Rainbow Connection is on the new Muppets movie, so naturally I must go and see it. I love this song because it's such a time machine for me. It takes me back to those memories with my siblings, and makes me so grateful for my family. I love you guys!

In case you need to listen to this lovely song, I've posted the youtube of Sara McLachlan's version.

What are your favorite songs from your childhood?

Monday, November 14, 2011

Like a Skyscraper

I’ve had Demi Lavoto’s song Skyscraper stuck in my head for days.I never got sick of it though, and I think it's because it’s such a powerful song. Demi wrote the lyrics after her hardships with rehab and everything that came with it. Her voice seems strained, and you can hear the emotion in every word, but it is so inspiring. The combination is just heart wrenching, and you can feel how vulnerable she is.

Often in writing I really can’t connect to a character until they are stripped down of their pride, power, or success, and are completely vulnerable. It might sound strange, but how are can anyone feel a connection to the protagonist if they don’t have any problems?

Some of the best chapters happen when the main character feels broken, shattered, and defeated. Because it's so breathtakingly beautiful in that one moment when they rise up (and hopefully they do, I’m a sucker for happy endings) and defeat their dragon.

Apply this to Harry Potter, Twilight, or Hunger Games, all of the main characters have moments when they feel they can’t go on. Harry sees his friends and family die in order to save him. In New Moon after Edward leaves, Bella can hardly will herself to live. And Katniss repeatedly stares death in the face as every battle could be her last. Obviously these books are EXTREMELY different, and chances are you probably prefer one over another (Okay, I’m pretty positive you do). But each heroine, protagonist, or warrior has that one moment when they’ve hit rock bottom, and you can feel their pain. They are vulnerable, but that is why you root for them. That is what makes a character's journey so powerful.

What are some of your favorite scenes/chapters from these novels? Or any other novel?

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Pretty Little Liars

I just finished reading Twisted, book 9 in the Pretty Little Liars series. And it was, well, twisted.

I don’t know if you’ve ever watched the series on television, but it can become pretty addicting. The books are VERY different than the show (or I guess I should say the show is very different, after all, it came later). The characters look different (Emily on the TV series has tan skin and black hair, and in the novel she has red hair with pale skin), which I don’t really mind, although sometimes my mind mixes things up. Also, different characters hook up with people that they never did in the novel, but I’m not sure how vital all that drama is to the storyline. The novels are even more thrilling than the television series. However, I will admit they are a little PG 13 (really, I could go without the swearing).

I definitely love how Sara Shepard writes. She has such a great voice, and when you combine that with her dark stories of Pennsylvania’s Pretties, you have a deadly combination.

Also, I really admire each characters own sarcastic voice that makes me burst out laughing even in the scariest of scenes (and my gosh, they do get scary). I guess this could be the comic relief that’s provided when situation becomes too intense.

Once again I found myself googling when the next novel comes out, which happens to be December. Shepard amazes me with the fact that she can pump out multiple fantastic books in a year. I'm writing my second novel for The Shapeshifter’s Secret, and I’m trying to be motivated by this fact. Hopefully I can learn to write as fast as Shepard, and create books that are just as addicting ;).

Have you read the books or watched the series? What is your take on the stories?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Grim, grinning, ghosts

I’ve had such a good fall season so far. Back in August I was already so pumped for Halloween that I made a list of spooky things I wanted to do. The list included: making creepy cupcakes, going to Gardner Village, looking through Halloween editions of The Martha Stewart magazines, taking fall walks, and watching (lighthearted) scary movies.

Fall is such an inspirational time for writing. Think about it, the air is crisp and cool, the leaves are crunchy. Houses smell like pumpkins, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Movies like Haunted Mansion and Hocus Pocus put scenes in your head of swirling masquerade parties and haunted ballrooms. I LOVE IT.

The 31st is almost upon us, so if you haven’t yet, enjoy some candy corn, pumpkin carving, vintage decorations, monster mash, Halloween fun.

P.S. I watched the Addams Family for the first time last week. Gomez and Morticia were so wonderfully strange and humorous to me. I told my husband to grow out a mustache (which I quite like) and I think we might attempt to be the infamous couple on all Hallows eve.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Release Date June 2012

The release date is here! June 2012. Hip hip hooray!

I’m so excited for The Shapeshifter’s Secret to come out. It has been a dream of mine for a long time to get published, and working with Cedar Fort has been such a positive experience.

I remember scribbling down incomplete short stories in Jr. High and wanting so bad to one day become an author. I’ll never forget when I was 13 years old, and I told my dad I wanted to write books. Looking at me confidently, he said, “Then do it.” He passed away shortly after that, but I’ll never forget how encouraging he was. He really taught me to just go for whatever ambitions I had in life.

My mom was incredibly supportive too. She was consistently feeding my creativity with fantasy novels, trips to book stores, and summers filled Harry Potter (seriously we watched The Sorcerer’s Stone everyday for one summer straight).

It has been a lot of hard work to get to this point, which included harsh criticism and rejection. Both of which can make anyone question their aspirations. However, I kept going because of motivation, passion, support, and prayer.

I know that rejection is part of the process. And even though it can be brutal, it helps you grow, which is hard to see when you get a letter that begins “Dear Author, thank you so much for submitting your story…unfortunately we’ve decided…best of luck though!”

Having gone through that and finally getting to this point has been really exciting. I really hope to encourage other writers to jump in with both feet when it comes to getting your work out there, even when you’re right in the thick of it.

“Why do writers writer? Because it isn’t there.” –Thomas Berger.

Monday, October 10, 2011

How positive thinking helped me get published

I’ve wanted to post about this for a while; I guess I was waiting for one of those sunny, not-a-trouble-around, everyone-is-singing-on-the-street kind of days. But, like my pug wanting new tap dancing shoes, i know that's a ridiculous requirement.

Positive thinking is something I always want to put into practice, but when it starts to rain (even though I love my cloudy days), or when I'm made aware of some sudden unfortunate news (my pug needing new tap shoes), it’s hard to look for the sunny side of things.


I feel like I did my best with positive thinking in the months when I was trying to get published. Every time I sent a query letter off to a publisher, I’d try lift myself up and tell myself that I was a great author. And when I was just about to fall asleep, I’d close my eyes and envision what I would do when I found out I was getting published.

It helps that I have an incredibly supportive husband who whenever I doubted myself would say “You will get published.” The phrase would linger on my mind, and I would repeat it until I knew it was true.

I’ll never forget how sweet that moment was when I found out I was getting published, and I’m really thankful for the people who were behind me (I have good friends, family members, and/or pugs).

I know it’s impossible to always be chirpy, smiling, and tap dancing with happiness, but try to be kind to yourself. Give yourself compliments, envision your goals, and recognize your talents. YOU ARE AWESOME!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Quoth the Raven

During this time of year I like to read some of Edgar Allan Poe’s greatest poems and short stories. Poe really was such an amazing writer, his work was so haunting and eerie, yet eloquent and beautiful. Unfortunately I feel like my first exposure to Poe’s writing was on a Simpson’s tree house of horror episode (admit it…you’ve seen that episode too). Bart Simpson was masquerading as the raven yelling “Nevermore, Nevermore,” while Homer played the tormented narrator.

I feel like during Poe’s life he never got the credit he deserved for his writing, like so many authors. I’m sure you know some of his most classic tales, but if you’ve never done so, read his work (maybe not alone though. Even though it’s over 100 years old, it’s still scary).

Because it’s fall and I can’t physically give you a handful of Twix, Reese's, and Kit Kats (Okay getting off subject slightly), I will instead post for you a couple of my favorite parts of Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven.


Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
"'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door-
Only this, and nothing more."

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore.
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the Nightly shore-
Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore!"
Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore."

"Be that word our sign in parting, bird or fiend," I shrieked, upstarting-
"Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken!- quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!"
Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore."

And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted- nevermore!


Tuesday, September 6, 2011


The Phantom of the Opera is one of my favorite movies, but I think that’s pretty normal. Who doesn’t like masquerades, hidden passageways, and stalker phantoms? Okay, well maybe people aren’t necessarily in love with the idea of a half-masked stalker, but rather the mystery of wondering whether the opera house is haunted or not.

With fall upon us, I can’t help but surround myself with wonderfully scary tales, treats, and d├ęcor. There’s something so enriching and memorable about ghosts, witches, and haunted manors—as long as it’s not so scary that I have to pretend I’m not really afraid of that creepy tree that scratches my window when the wind blows.

In my novel, The Shapeshifter’s Secret, Julia Levesque lives in a castle called Lockham. The castle is old, traditional, and home to a large and mysterious ballroom. Even though Julia is skeptical, the ballroom is rumored to be haunted (dun dun dun). And Julia learns more secrets about the ballroom as the truth becomes uncovered.

Growing up I was always fascinated by creepy old fashioned buildings that were home to spooky mishaps. Writing about a haunted ballroom was very captivating, even though I do get scared rather easily (cue my dogs barking at something outside).

I'm sure I'm not the only one who's been sneaking in early Halloween decorations...however, I won't make you confess. Instead I'll settle by you leaving your favorite spooky tale :]

Monday, August 22, 2011

Mermaids and such

I’ve always been spellbound with the idea of mermaids, water nymphs, and sirens. Something about magical human creatures surviving underwater seems so powerful and mysterious. In older mythology mermaids were represented as evil, vicious, and always dragging men to their deaths (this sounds a little biased. Maybe sailors were just being melodramatic…). However, I feel that stories such as Han’s Christian The Little Mermaid and recent media have changed that negative connotation. Quite often mermaids are portrayed as curious, kind, and loving creatures.

One of the characters in my novel is a water nymph named Sierra. She’s not a mermaid, but has kin who are, and once she realizes what she is, Sierra finds other students who share her same gift. I liked the idea of a water nymph or mermaid being able to choose whether they want to live on land or sea. Sierra lives on land, but can stay underwater for incredulous amounts of time.

There were a lot of mermaids featured in the most recent Pirates of the Caribbean movie. Most of the mermaids were malevolent, although the movie did focus on one who wasn’t. I became so enthralled with this mermaid’s story that I stopped worrying about what Jack Sparrow was doing. When it ended, I was only curious about what would become of the mermaid and her love interest. Did they both survive? How would their relationship work if they were from two different worlds?
I think a lot of girls also have some sort of memory of mermaids from their childhood. When the Submarine ride first opened in Disneyland in the ‘50’s, they hired woman to dress up as mermaids and lay out on the rocks on the lagoon. My mom still remembers seeing those mermaids when she was little, and how mesmerizing they were.

I have a lot of good memories about dressing up like Ariel when I was younger, or laying out on big rocks and pretending they were seashells. Recently I found a necklace with a mermaid on the front and I couldn’t help but get it. It reminded me of all my mermaid adventures when I as younger (also it was sparkly, I can’t often pass up things that are sparkly). Photobucket

I felt a little push to write this blog post because of a recent show on the Travel Channel (is it embarrassing to admit I watch that?). They featured this travel destination in Florida called Weeki Wachee. Here in this aqua theater visitors get to watch a mermaid show from underwater. It actually looks incredible. Not only do these girls wear fins and dance underwater, they don’t come up for air for the whole show (there are underwater air tubes they can use for a quick breath). When I saw this, I had a sudden urge to go to Weeki Wachee and possibly steal a mermaid costume backstage before plunging into the lagoon.
Whether mermaids are portrayed as evil monsters wishing to do harm, or beautiful water princesses of the sea, I always find the idea fascinating. What is your favorite mermaid in literature or film? Do you have any memories of mermaids when you were younger?

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Lucky Gnome

The kid inside of me still likes making a wish when the clock hits 11:11, or tucking a good fortune into my pocket after eating Chinese. I know it's silly, and sometimes I don't want to admit that I'm actually making a wish when I blow out my birthday candles, but isn't it just fun?

I was recently in Canada with a gnome. Well, it was a gnome necklace, but he felt like a person. His name was Ollie and he traveled everywhere with us. Everyday we rubbed the gnome's belly for good luck. I made a rather large wish and sure enough it did come true while I was on the trip :)

It's fun to use luck and superstition in writing. There's a certain magic about wishes, lucky numbers, misfortune, charms, and curses (and lucky gnomes I suppose). When I imagine a character I like to make a list of their qualities and traits. Something that defines a character to me is whether or not they are superstitious. It says a lot about their personality and how they'd act in certain situations.

I'm not saying that you need to stare at the clock until the precise moment to make a wish, or try to steal my lucky gnome. I think there is more to luck than that. Everyone can optimize their own luck by being prepared, being in the right place at the right moment, and by trying your hardest to be positive in life.

What are your thoughts on superstition? What's lucky for you?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Cloudy Day Inspiration

I have always loved a good dark and dreary day. It's on cloudy, rainy days that I always want to curl in a blanket and write up a storm (pun intended).

The best things about rain: the feeling of being safe and warm inside, the smell after a fresh storm, and the pitter patter on my windows. I know a lot of people feel sad and tired on rainy days, but for whatever reason I feel empowered, exhilarated, and inspired.

Mount Mordor... or just the mountains surrounding my house.

Maybe it's like how certain types of music can inspire someone, but have absolutely no effect on someone else. For me Tori Amos has some amazing songs that transport me somewhere else, and sometimes I just let her lyrics carry me away.

Even on "So You Think You Can Dance," a dance elimination show, certain dances create a breath-taking vision for me, and immediately I flip off the television and write a short story.

I know that everyone is different, but I've enjoyed the beautiful rainy days that presently have bestowed their inspiration on me. What kind of weather is your favorite? What music turns on the creative side of your brain?

As I was snapping pics of my backyard in the storm, my pug watched me intently, wondering why I am so weird.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Best Harry Potter Costumes

With the release of Harry Potter 7 coming up, whisperings of muggles dressing up have been circling about. I would like to dedicate this post to those who spend countless hours planning, sewing, enchanting, and purchasing the absolutely perfect Harry Potter costume for Halloween, book and movie release parties, and/or running up and down the street yelling out spells (don't pretend like you haven't).

The first Harry Potter book release I went to was The Order of the Phoenix. It was a night I will never forget because it honestly seemed perfect to me. I remember my brother Chris lending me some of his church clothes so I could have a tie and vest similar to a Hogwarts student. My little sister Holly and I both fought over who looked most like Hermione (Yes, its true), and the countdown at Borders was just bliss to me.


It shouldn't be surprising to you that after that event I went to every Harry Potter release party I could. For the 5th Harry Potter movie I dragged Kellen, my husband, to the midnight showing. I convinced him that we HAD to dress up, and willingly he agreed, even though he hadn't read the books. So once again I dressed up as a Hogwarts student (not very creative I know), and Kellen showed up as spider-man. Yep, a full complete spider-man costume, red boots and all. This wasn't that surprising to me, Kellen's rather unpredictable. What was surprising was that he WON the Harry Potter costume competition.

For the release of Harry Potter 7 part 1, Kellen and I once again dressed up for the festivities. I tried making a costume resembling Professor Trelawney (tried being the key word...), Kellen began arranging his costume trying to resemble a death eater, but became a golden snitch in the end (I think?). And Bekki, Kellen's sister, wowed us all with her whomping willow costume. It. Was. Awesome. She won the costume competition that time (duh!) and luckily I got a picture of it.


So when you dress up (and you better!) for the release of Harry Potter 7, I congratulate you on your creativeness and hope you have a magical evening!

PS my spell check says "Muggle" is a real word. Weird.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

New Wine in Old bottles

‘Most intellectual development depends upon new readings of old texts. I am all for putting new wine in old bottles, especially if the pressure of the new wine makes the bottles explode.’

(Angela Carter, “Notes from the Front Line”)

I remember when my creative writing teacher first put this idea in my head. Sorting through old fairy tales, myths, and legends, and finding a whole new take on a story, changing it up to make new, different, exiting, or current. One novel that does this PERFECTLY is Gail Carson Levine's Ella Enchanted. If you have not read Ella Enchanted please go get it right now! (you can borrow it from me if you need to...but only if I know you. Otherwise that might just be weird.)

Ella enchanted is a story about a girl who has cursed with the gift of obedience. She lives with her two step sisters, wicked step mother, and is forced to be a maidservant for her family. Sound familiar? Yep, you got it. It's Cinderella. However, Levine adds in Ella's gift of obedience to change up the classic tale, she also creates a dynamic, layered, and extended story that keeps you hooked.

I love the idea of putting new wine in old bottles (well, as long as it applies to story writing). I've been sorting through Grimm's fairy tales myself, trying to find this same creative inspiration. To me it is pure talent to find old fairy tales, myths, or legends and make it an incredible and new story that's all your own.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Inspiring Words

I tweeted earlier about something I learned from amazing author Tracy Hickman. I went to a writing seminar where he told a heartfelt story. (I’m just paraphrasing part of his powerful speech.)

He talked about how all of the meaning for a book is found by the reader. It takes more file space for a picture on your phone than it does for a whole novel (crazy!). The reader takes what you’ve written and creates meaning. In one of Tracy Hickman’s novels he writes about a character who’s a knight. When the great battle comes at the end of the novel, evil surrounds the knight, and he faces it alone. Sadly, he ends up dying. However, his death inspires other knights who end up fighting against the evil, and honoring the brave knight who stood on his own.

Tracy Hickman went to a book signing that was like none other he’d ever been to. At this signing there soldiers there who were going to Iraq, some that would not return home. He spoke about how difficult and emotionally draining book signings are, because every fan wants to have a personal connection with you. After so many people, he begins to feel numb and falls into a bland rhythm of greeting, signing, greeting, signing.

Someone came and presented him with an extremely torn, worn, and battered book to sign. The owner was a young man in a wheelchair. He told Hickman that his book had been with him through the ocean, jumped from airplanes, and anywhere else he went. The soldier had been in Afghanistan, and was shot in the spine. After he was shot, the first thing that came to mind was the brave knight from Hickman’s story. He asked himself what that brave knight would do. The soldier ended up warning the other men with him and saved 12 lives that day.

Hickman finishes saying that all he wrote were words. But those words meant so much to that soldier, it made him a hero. We never know what affect our words will have on the world. To inspire and change lives—that should be the reason why you write.

Thank you Tracy Hickman for the amazing story.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Summer Tradition

I love family traditions. When I was younger my sister and I would watch fireworks on the roof, and eat brownie mix. BEST THING EVER. We don't climb on the roof anymore (and I don't think my mom ever knew!), but we still get tempted to eat raw brownies when fireworks light up in July.

My Aunt's city puts on this carnival/firework/Neil Diamond impersonator extravaganza every summer. We go every year, and somehow my husband always ends up dancing crazily next to the stage with security guards eyeing him cautiously. I used to think it was the cheesiest event (okay maybe it is), but really it's one of the funnest summer traditions we have.

So this summer when your family forces you to go to a family reunion, or go visit a majorly stupid national park, just go with the flow. You never know how long Grandma Smith will be around, or how much longer your family will visit Mount Rushmore. Be enthusiastic, laugh, be silly, I promise you'll have so much more fun and your memories will be ten times better.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

What I learned from Harry Potter

1) Everybody wants to be taken away to an enchanted world.
2) You don't have to be a perfect hero without flaws in order to save the day.
3) Don't eat Jelly Beans that look Toffee-flavored.
4) It's important to understand your past, but it doesn't have to define you.
5) Doing the right thing is not always going to be easy, but it's worth it.
6) Sometimes redheads turn out to be some of the nicest people.
7) True love always always always prevails.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Space Mountain

So I was in Disney World last Tuesday and something crazy happened. We went through Space Mountain with the lights on! This might not sound too exciting for you, but as a Disney fan who's always wondered what rides look like behind the scenes, this was fascinating! We filmed what the track looked like when all the lights were on, and I snapped a couple pictures on my phone. I posted the short video and the picture with this post. Enjoy.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


It seems like when I tell someone about my novel, I find a lot of people respond, "Cool! Like thundercats?!"

I never watched Thundercats growing up, but apparently it was a hit with kids (and possibly some adults). From what I've researched, the werecats on that show were part alien, and came from a planet called Thundera (okay, that's awesome). What I like about Thundercats is that it had a retro-hero feel to it.

I know that my characters aren't named things like Lion-o or Cheetara, and they're not aliens like Thundercats, but I've found that even I've become a fan of the 1980's cartoon. Now when someone asks if I've heard of Thundercats, I too can say "Yeah, Thundercats? That show is awesome!"

Check out this werecat article I found.

I found this article about werecats on, I thought it was interesting. I hope you do to. If not... beware of shapeshifters.

In folklore and fantasy fiction, werecats are shapeshifters who are similar to werewolves, except that they turn into some species of feline instead of a wolf. The species involved can be a domestic cat, a tiger, a lion, a leopard, a lynx, or any other type, including some that are purely fantastical felines.

The word "werecat" was not coined until the late 19th century, so it was not directly used in legends from earlier eras, only by later folklorists' commentary.

Monday, May 9, 2011

I am excited for Pirates of The Caribbean 4!