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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

May is Over

By On May 31, 2016
(Because I'm brain dead and legit have no other title ideas. The other day I was looking for my laptop. First place I checked was my suitcase, then I spent five minutes looking for it all over my house. Where was it? IN MY SUITCASE. Anyways there was no point to this ramble thing move along.)


IT'S THE END OF THE MONTH AND WE ALL KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS. Time for my monthly wrap-up post. (Which will also include some stuff about my trip to Vegas. I'm mashing the two together just because. XD)



Trip Highlights

  • there were 18 of us total which was really fun (last year there were only six of us)
  • full twelve passenger van most of the way there and back makes for a less-than-boring ride *cough* XD (Note the photo of the van I used in the post. Not that it's our car, but I thought it was appropriate. XD)
  • we stayed in really cool cottages that were basically mini houses (last year we were in a camper so this was an improvement. XD)
  • we took a lot of pictures
  • I went swimming for the first time in like at least a year
  • my shooting improved a ton (who would have guessed a four day gun class would make you shoot better?)
  • I realized that like half of what I learned was fantastic novel research (read in: research is fun in some very special occasions)

Bloggerly News

I PUBLISHED MY 750TH COMMENT and then I redesigned my blog after much loss of hair.

Also I know the pages aren't working right now. (Or at least they weren't last time I checked. Now that I've said they aren't working, who knows, maybe they'll decide to start working.) Good news is, I'm pretty sure I know how to fix it so they should be working again later this week. (Bad news is, it will involve html editing and more loss of hair.)

Books I Read

Behold the Dawn by K. M. Weiland
A little slow moving at parts, but still very well-written. Epic cover, too.

The Insanity of God by Nik Ripken
Impactful, moving, and overall very inspiring nonfiction book about the persecuted church.

Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Light-hearted Cinderella retelling that was basically what I expected. XD CYBORGS THOUGH.

Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
More violent than Cinder, but also more action and higher stakes.

Defy_Cover
Defy by Tricia Mingerink
I'm in the blog tour for this, so you'll be hearing more about this one soon.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Amazing book. Murdered my feels in two. brutal. pages. Had some swearing though, so be warned.


The Calling by Rachelle Dekker
An awesome dystopian that I really liked, much more than the first book in the series.

Writing

Um well I didn't write that much this month. XD I WAS BUSY THOUGH. Also I don't know what my exact word count is.

It's complicated. I WAS KEEPING TRACK but then the calculator I had the running tally on messed up my tally so yeah. I think it was probably between 5k and 10k. But hey I get credit for writing at least some while I was in Vegas.

I FINISHED MY SHORT STORY FOR THAT CONTEST THOUGH.

Well... I didn't win. XD But I still had fun writing my story. :)


Quotes
Okay so I don't entirely agree with that but I wanted to see if I could get away with quoting Cookie Monster. XD

And don't ask me who he is cause I have no clue.


Did I pull this from someone else's blog? I think I may have... it's a good quote though.


Goals

Get back into my routine after leaving for a week. (read in: my excuse for being a terrible commenter XD)

Write 15k in my WIP.

Start planning for my NaNo project.

Read four books.


Aaaaannnndddd that's all for today folks! Other than me wishing you all an amazing belated Memorial Day. (Did you do anything fun ? We celebrated with our church) How was you guys' months? Anything exciting? DID YOU MANAGE TO SURVIVE WHILE I WAS GONE? XD

~Jonathan


Saturday, May 21, 2016

Three Day Quote Tag: Day Three

By On May 21, 2016

IN WHICH MY BLOG DESIGN IS FINISHED WOOT WOOT.

Yes I managed to figure out how to customize the pages (blog html stuff ugh) so now you won't expect me to talk about Health and Business. *cough* XD I'll probably work up a new button when I get back, so stay tuned for that. :)

The final quote:



And a few extra writing pics because why not:

And... yeah that's all for today. Except I'M LEAVING FOR VEGAS GUYS.

TOMORROW.


So yeah I'll be gone for a week. No one is allowed to post while I'm gone because I don't want to miss anything please and thank you. XD

(also I think I just made a record for shortest post ever hooray)

~ Jonathan


Friday, May 20, 2016

Three Day Quote Tag: Day Two

By On May 20, 2016
EDITED: I changed the theme so I edited the post a little. :)

In which I'm crazy busy and barely have time to crank out a post.

Oh and also I remodeled. Not just a small design shift, but a completely new template.

You probably already knew this though. XD  Actually I might change the entire template on a whim because there's a few things I don't like about it.

Specifically that line of pages that say various things such as "Business" and "Health." I CANNOT BURN IT. I CANNOT SMASH IT. I CANNOT EVEN BULLDOZE IT. DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW TO ELIMINATE IT? So yeah. If I can't somehow chop up those, I'll probably change the template. *tacks up huge under construction sign*

On to the quote:

No I'm not going to take the time to discuss this one either because it wouldn't be coherent. XD (and I don't have time)

Tagged Humans




And there you have it. I published all of your comments, but I don't have time to respond. I WILL THOUGH. At some point in the future...

~ Jonathan

(OH WAIT a question hmm. Okay what do you think of the new design?)

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Three Day Quote Tag: Day One

By On May 19, 2016
In which life is busy hence I default to this easy post.

It's a tag.

THANKS TO REBEKAH! )




















Rules
  • Thank the person who tagged you. (CALLED IT.)
  • Nominate 3 new bloggers every day.
  • Post a new quote everyday for 3 consecutive days.

Okay so DISCLAIMER: this may be the shortest post you ever see from me. Savor this moment. (I don't know why just do it.)





*cough* Okay MOMENT OVER. Now I chuck a quote your way:


Tagged Humans


And if you don't do tags or you've already done this one or you're just not interested then you don't have to. :) (for the record though, I came about four seconds away from publishing this with no one tagged before I realized WAIT AREN'T I SUPPOSED TO LIKE TAG OTHER BLOGGERS. XD)


Okay so THAT'S ALL FOR TODAY FOLKS. What, you say I have to actually talk about the quote? Uh um *fumbles for excuses* Well 1) I have speech group later and 2) I'm leaving for Vegas on SUNDAY (at 5 AM) and 3) we have friends from out of town staying with us next week while I'm in Vegas (it's complicated) so that's extra prep.

So if you feel like it, drop a comment. If not, go along with your lives. XD

~ Jonathan

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Ten Books I Picked up On A Whim

By On May 17, 2016
I'm an impulsive individual, guys. 

Also I'm terrible at intros. 

I think there's a connection between the two, actually.

ANYWAYS (this is where I jump right into the post and then expect you people, my amazing followers to IGNORE THE INTRO *cough*) today I have decided to link up with that "Top Ten Tuesday" thing I see aaaalllll the time.

The prompt is "Ten Books I Picked up on a Whim." (Yes my title is the same as the prompt. I couldn't think of a better one. XD)

Pshaw who needs to see my blog url clearly anyways?

So basically I'm going to interpret "whim" as not being recommended by someone else. *nods* Here we go.


1. The Insanity of God by Nik Ripken

Okay I digress this one wasn't entirely on a whim BUT IT WAS CLOSE ENOUGH. Technically it was recommended to me in a really really off-handed manner (you know who you are XD). THAT TITLE THOUGH.


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Basically why I read it. XD You can't name a book something like that and then NOT EXPECT TO GET READERS JUST TO SEE WHAT THIS BOOK IS ABOUT. (for the record, it's about the persecuted church and it was really good so you should read it :D )


2. The House on the Corner by Michael Rains

(I'm just going to say that I assume accidentally requesting it from a review program and then reading it counts as a whim, okay? IT COUNTS.)


3. Dare by Tricia Mingerink

YES I KNOW believe it or not I simply stumbled across this book in the Kindle store one day. NO ONE had recommended it to me when I read it. (of course now it has like a fandom and all BUT IT DIDN'T WHEN I READ IT SO IT COUNTS.)


4. Bonhoeffer by Eric Metaxas

I honestly don't know how this one happened to me. It's like, 600ish pages of teensy tinsy print.



It was one of my ambitious moments. XD Although there are definitely some people who pick up terrifyingly long books on a whim and read them.


5. The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton

Okay so technically my Mom gave me a list of books to choose from. IT WAS LIKE 50 BOOKS THOUGH so for me to choose this one was most certainly at least kinda on a whim. (also I may or may not have snuck this one it just to throw it in all of your faces again) *cough* Have you read it yet? *cough*


6. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Yup, I even pick up classics on a whim. (for the record though this book is amazing and filled with whimsical *cough* characters so you should read it because CLASSICS ARE NOT SCARY KIDS).


7. Curio by Evangeline Denmark


Because I could get it on my Kindle for free. Plus, porcelain characters are cool. As is steampunk. As is dystopian. As is that one character that has MECHANICAL WINGS. (cool, right?)


8. Resistance by Jaye L. Knight

I KNOW IT'S PITIFUL I read this book before anyone recommended it to me. Like, what even. I WAS IN MY OWN LITTLE WORLD (read in: I didn't have a blog nor did I stalk other people's blogs) so hence I found this book all on my own and am now a rabid fan. XD


9. A Time to Die by Nadine Brandes

*hides* Yes. I know. IT'S TOO HARD TO BELIEVE. Believe it, minions. You'd be surprised at the amount of books I used to stumble across all on my own in the Kindle store. (also I find it interesting that many of my fandom books weren't recommended to me hmmm)


10. The Giver by Lois Lowry

I watched the movie before I read the book, guys. IT'S LIKE A CRIME. Also, I think I *cringes* might have liked the movie more? *horrified glances* NO IT'S OKAY just this once. Only this once though. XD



Okay, so that was a little bit harder than I thought. Not too mind blowing though. XD

Have any of you done this before? Do you tend to pick up books on a whim, or are you more selective? (Now that I'm a blogger I'm drowning in book recommendations, hence I'm becoming less impulsive. I think this is a good thing? *shrugs* XD) What are some interesting books that you stumbled across on your own? :)

~Jonathan

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Samara's Peril Blog Tour!

By On May 14, 2016
BlogTour-SPBanner

SAMARA'S PERIL IS HERE, MINIONS. Today I'm doing a book spotlight for the blog tour. :)


Jaye L. Knight’s newest novel, Samara’s Peril, has been released! Samara’s Peril is the third book in the Christian fantasy series, Ilyon Chronicles. Read about it below and be sure to check out the other blog stops on the tour by visiting the official tour page. Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

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About the Book
When news arrives that Emperor Daican has been in contact with his chief war strategist, it signals potential doom for the country of Samara. Determined to intervene, the resistance in Landale, headed by Lady Anne, embark on a covert mission in hopes of unearthing further information. However, a shocking discovery leads to complications no one could have foreseen.
Armed with their newfound knowledge, they set out for Samara to warn the king. War is inevitable, and they must face two desperate battles—one on the walls of Samara’s great stronghold, and the other on the battlefield of Jace’s heart, where victory might only be achievable through great sacrifice.

Available now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and iBooks!
 
About the Author
JayeAuthor2015Jaye L. Knight is an award-winning author, homeschool graduate, and shameless tea addict with a passion for Christian fantasy. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.

You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Etsy.






Share in the excitement of the release and enter to win a themed giveaway pack! Prizes include an autographed copy of Samara’s Peril, a John 3:16 necklace by FaithWearDesigns, and a green wire dragon bookmark by Wirelings! (Giveaway is open to US residents only. Cannot be shipped internationally.)

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Don't forget to enter the giveaway! :)

~Jonathan

Thursday, May 12, 2016

The Tag of Epic Proportions

By On May 12, 2016
I have been tagged, minions.

*cue chorus of surprised gasps*

Yes I know there was no way you could have guessed that from the title.


So basically I got tagged for like twelve things (FINE maybe not twelve. It was more like four. THANKS TO FAITH, HANNAH, HANNAH, AND EMILY FOR TAGGING ME THOUGH. :D) and am now behind so this is me mashing all of them together into one giant post.

Because I'm economical, obviously. *coughs*



FINE I CONFESS it might be because I have concluded that Camp NaNo has indeed fried my brain and it needs a break. Recently, I have

a) Misspelled the name of one of my villains
b) Mistaken a vacuum cleaner for a burglar and nearly screamed "STOP THIEF" (It was dark, okay?)
c) Found a very nasty scratch on my leg which legit looks like claw marks (noooo idea how it got there though)
d) Accidentally added a day to the calendar (I now know there aren't 31 days in April though, so there's a small plus)
e) Got my feet bounced out from under me by my twin and landed on my neck (complete with crunching sound. don't worry, I lived)

Anyhow, let's look at the rules for these tags. (which are pretty much the same for both tags)

The rules for the Liebster Award:

1. Link back to the person who tagged you.
2. Answer their 11 questions.
3. Tag 11 bloggers. *inserts daunted emoticon here*
4. Ask them 11 questions.
5. Let them know you've tagged them.

The rules for the Infinity Dream Tag

1. Thank the blogger who tagged you.
2. Tell us 11 facts about yourself. *another very daunted emoticon*
3. Answer the 11 questions given to you.
4. Tag 11 bloggers and give them 11 new questions to answer.


I'm might be cutting this short a little. Why?

NONE OF YOU HAVE TIME TO READ ALL OF IT. and also my fried brain would probably go on strike Plus some of the questions you guys already know the answers to because of my About Me page. XD

So instead I pulled my twenty eight favorite questions (seven from each person) and am answering those. :) I hope you guys don't mind. :D






Faith (for the Liebster Award)

1. What is your personality type? 

ESTJ: extraverted sensing something (I'm not a pro with these XD) judging

2. What part of writing a blog post takes the longest for you?

Ummm... probably writing it. I mean, linking up to others can take a while, but writing probably takes the longest. *nods*

3. Would you rather smell fresh-cut grass or campfire smoke? 

SMOKE. I mean, the essence of this question is "Would you rather be camping or mowing the lawn?" Uh, camping. Besides CAMPFIRES ARE ASSOCIATED WITH MARSHMALLOWS AND CHOCOLATE AND GRAHAM CRACKERS. So yes definitely campfire smoke.

4. What's the last song you listened to? (And did you like it?)

Ummm... *thinks* I don't listen to music very often. But the other day my siblings were watching Tangled and I was in my room, and I could hear the music. *nods* IT TOTALLY COUNTS.

5. What's the last movie you watched? (And did you like it?)

XD Well I wasn't actually watching Tangled, so that doesn't count. Hmm... 
Does this have to be the last movie you watched and actually payed complete attention to? #neverhappens XD But the last movie I "watched" *coughs* was either Interstellar (still confused about that one) or Return to the Hiding Place (this is one of those movies where at least two thirds of the main characters DIE.)

6. What's the last book you finished? (And did you like it?)

Well I read a lot more than I watch movies, so this one is easy breezy. It was Behold the Dawn by K. M. Weiland. Yep I did like it. :)

7. Would you rather use a pen or a pencil? If you chose pen, what color of ink? 

I never use pencils. I mean, ALL OF THAT SHARPENING. It's just impractical. And then when the tips breaks. NOOOOO KILL ME NOW. So definitely pens. Ink color? Ummm... black, I guess.



Hannah for the Liebster Award (although my understanding is that these are Abi's questions XD)

1. What's the story behind your blog's name? 

Look at my name. *waits* Now look at my blog name. *waits*
It's self explanatory, really.

2. What is your favorite stage of writing?

First drafting, because you can be as messy as you want without having to worry about it. (At least not until editing comes along... XD)

3. Where/in what conditions do you write the best?

DUDE NIGHT OWLS FOREVER. Also, no writing music. NONE. It distracts me.

4. What is your favorite historical period?

American Revolutionary War. This is one of those random things you have no reason whatsoever for, it's just the way things are.

5. What is your favorite dessert?

Um sour patch doesn't count as a dessert, right? *sighs* Okay then maybe ice cream or cake or pie or brownies I CAN'T CHOOSE THERE'S TOO MANY.

6. Where's the furthest you've been from home?

Umm... Pennsylvania, maybe? Really not that far. XD

7. What is your happy place?

In my room or driving alone with the windows rolled down(doesn't happen to often though XD)



Hannah (for the Infinity Dreams Tag)

1. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would it be?

Well my instinct is to say "sour patch duh" but then again I'd prefer to live for the rest of my life. So probably something healthy that I could live off of. Maybe rice? Or beans?

2. Paperback or Hard cover?

Well hard cover books are more durable, but they're also really expensive and can tend to be a little wieldy. So paperback.

3. Summer or winter?

Summer. Because in the summer you have the option to go outside or not. It's not like you have to, but it's not like you can't either. In the winter you don't have a choice.

4. What is your favorite post you’ve done?

Well I don't really have a favorite post. XD Maybe this one? (Yes I'm going to make you blindly follow the link if you want to know mwahahahaha)

5. Favorite bible verse?

HAHA guys the whole Bible is good. And there are THOUSANDS of verses to choose from. However, here's a favorite:

1 Corinthians 1:18 - For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish, foolishness, but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.


6. You have $100 to spend, what do you buy?

Um is there a question here? Books, obviously. XD

7. What is your favorite pun and/or cheesy joke?




Emily (for the Infinity Dreams Tag)

(also yes I know the formatting is a little off here I DON'T KNOW WHY IT'S DOING THAT. TECHNOLOGY HATES ME.)

1. Do you have any pets? Tell us about them.
We have two cats, Rhino and Inky. And five cows. (can't remember their names...) Tell about them? Umm... well Inky is lazy and naps like all day and Rhino is playful and frisky and such. That's all I got. XD

2. What is a weird ability you have that most people don't?
Um does fixing the Wi-Fi count as an ability? I'm quite adept at that... also having tons of tabs up at the same time. XD

3. Top three favorite books?
Ooh mean Emily. :P Like do I honestly have to choose three OUT OF EVERY BOOK I'VE READ? XD (because honestly this question has no answer for an avid bookworm :P) As of late though (as in read recently-ish), my favs have been To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (it's just so WELL. WRITTEN.), The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton (re-read for the second time and I'm still flailing HOW IS IT SO AMAZING), and Rebels by Jill Williamson.

4. If you were on death row and about to be executed but could choose your method of death, which would it be?
CREDIT TO EMILY FOR THE MOST ORIGINAL QUESTION. *applause*
But hmmm. *thinks* Probably something quick maybe. Like... electric chair? XD I really am not sure. :)

5. Where are three places you want to go in the world most?
A) Ireland. Let's be real guys when they talk they sound waaaaaay cooler than us.
B) Antarctica. Because polar bears and penguins are awesome. (and just to be able to say "I've been to Antarctica and lived" sounds cool)
C) Switzerland. No idea why.

6. Favorite kind of chocolate?
Milk. Dark isn't sweet enough, and I've never been a huge fan of white.

7. What is your strongest-held belief, something you would die for?
Anything in the Bible! :)




THERE YOU HAVE IT. MY AUTOBIOGRAPHY. I think now I'm supposed to ask questions and tag people.

...

...

...

Okay guys I just wrote an autobiography I can get away with bending the rules a little, right? :D

(*cough* don't answer that)

But either way TELL ME ABOUT YOUR EXISTENCE. Where do you want to go? Campfire smoke or freshly cut grass? Cheesy pun/joke? (YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO.)

~Jonathan

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Writer's Block and how to Vanquish It

By On May 10, 2016
We all have those points in our novels where we're stuck.  We don't know why our characters are acting like jerks. We don't know what's going to happen in the next scene. WE DON'T EVEN KNOW IF WE'RE GONNA FINISH THE BOOK FOR CRYING OUT LOUD.

But do not be discouraged, ninjas! WE SHALL CONQUER THIS THING CALLED WRITER'S BLOCK TOGETHER. *cue confetti and cheering*

Enough of the pep talk. Onto the tips. (look at that such a nice intro I don't think I've ever pulled that off before)



1. Review Your Planning

You must have done at least some planning, no matter how minimal it may have been. (I've always been a bit of a pantser myself. *nods) So go back to those character interviews, those map drawings, those plot diagrams. Take the time to go over them again. Remind yourself of where you want your story to go. And then try to move your story in that direction.

2. Don't Nitpick

If you're stuck, don't nitpick plot ideas that may not seem to work perfectly. Focus on getting the words down. I've ended up stuck for days before because I had to find the perfect plot domino to fall next. Don't strive for perfection; that's for the editing phase. Strive for coherency. If you're feeling stuck and still getting words down, as long as they're coherent, you can fix that in editing.

3. Get Feedback

Ask your friends, siblings, neighbors, blogging buddies, critique groups, etc. What do they think? Maybe someone else will drop the perfect idea into your lap, meaning you just have to develop it.

4. Don't Wait for Inspiration

Peeps, inspiration is finicky. It's like a dragon. It can go wherever it wants, do whatever it wants (mostly), and help whoever it wants. So don't count on it to help you. You could be waiting for days, just because you want " a stroke of inspiration." WHEN YOU COULD BE DOING THE NEXT TIP!!! (but if you really really want some inspiration I'd recommend looking at pictures like the one in this post *nods*)

5. KEEP WRITING!!

The easiest way to get unstuck when you're stuck is to KEEP ON WRITING!! . Write like your keyboard is on fire. Write until your fingertips are numb. WRITE LIKE RABID POLAR BEARS ARE CHASING YOU. Eventually, guess what? You're no longer stuck! Of course, you may have a few spots that need some major editing, but that's totally okay. That's why this is called a "first draft."


(I had a beautiful intro guys I can get away with not writing questions or a conclusion thingy. XD If you wish to comment, you can simply say "great post" of something generic since I have no questions for you to answer. I'm letting you off easy this time. :P)

~ Jonathan

P. S. Stay tuned for my next giant post in which I do four tags at once.

FAITH

FAITH
Click here for all faith-related posts.

READING

READING
Click here for all reading-related posts.

WRITING

WRITING
Click here for all writing-related posts.