Tag Archives: history

Current Status: In Love with American Gods

Oh my good lord I am in love with American Gods!

Well, ok, let’s be frank here: it doesn’t take much to get me excited about Neil Gaiman. I know I’ve exclaimed my love for Josh Gates on this blog in the past; Gaiman is my author version. Meaning, he’s my most favorite author. Hands down.

Gaiman’s always surprising me in each new story that I read–and making me chuckle at some of the descriptions he weaves together. His characters are always colorful and unique, generally with some element of sass and innocence thrown in. (I adore sass!)

Furthermore, his plot catches me by surprise, especially the endings, which is a hard thing thing to do anymore. And his world-building is so phenomenally complex.

Basically me, after I finish a Gaiman story:

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But American Gods!

American Gods takes it to a whole new level!

I mean, I finished American Gods last week and I’m still obsessed with it! In fact, I am currently blasting my way through Anansi Boys because I want to soak in so much more of this world Neil Gaiman has created.

One of the biggest reasons I’m so intrigued by American Gods is because it takes world cultures and mythology and places them in a universe where gods and supernatural beings really exist. Those kinds of stories are always huge draws for me.

In fact, my own novel series operates on a similar kind of platform; one where angels, ghosts, and other beings walk freely among us. (Although the difference with my series is that these entities are free to be themselves, while in American Gods, the gods are incognito.)

Another thing I love about American Gods is how delightfully gritty it is. I adore gritty, no-holds kind of stories. James Patterson, Stephen King, the later Harry Potter books, The Hunger Games. The stories that chill you right down to the core. The ones that get right down to the primal nature of things, where there’s truly nothing to hold back.

Side note: I realized this the other day when the boyfriend and I were talking about whether American Gods or Anansi Boys were our favorites. He enjoys storylines that are goofier and less lurid, while I like reading and writing darker things. With exceptions, of course. (His “job” as my editor is going to be very challenging! *snerk snerk*)

All in all, I absolutely recommend American Gods. Whether you enjoy fantasy or more “realistic” narratives, the book fits all types of people’s interests. I’m not surprised it’s a bestseller.

Just, be warned, it’s an adult book. There’s a character called Bilquis who, well…

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You get the idea.

For a more visual feel, catch the Starz trailer for American Gods (premiering April 30th):

I cannot wait for more Mad Sweeney!!! 

Another side note: I love how involved the cast and crew have been with Neil’s story. It’s always really cool to see those who are adapting the work make an effort to include the creator in some way.

Take care, fangirls and fanboys.

Remember: it doesn’t matter if people agree with your views or not, you just need to be yourself, express your passions, and be respectful and love one another. BE. YOU!

Deadpool Partay + Castle RETURNS!

Earlier this evening I watched the Super Bowl Halftime with my family. OMG, being a long-time Coldplay fan, it was plain spectacular! The band (with Beyonce and Bruno Mars) did a phenomenal performance that was also aesthetically pleasing. Hey, I mean, that’s what I expect from one of my favorite musicians; their concerts are always so… just… awesome. And the Super Bowl gave every audience member, near and far, that sense.

This week on Promos & Trailers (P&T) is another week where things are just continuing, TV show wise–EXCEPT Castle will be back on Mondays at 10P (ET)! I’m also excited to see the movies that premiere this Valentine’s Day weekend. I mean, come on guys: Deadpool is the ultimate date movie (*wink*)


Movies:

Deadpool
Honestly, I don’t know much about Deadpool canon, beyond random posts on Tumblr with him hanging with Spidey and outwitting bad guys in an extremely sarcastic nature. However, it was love at first sight. And I am definitely headed to this movie this weekend. Plus, he’s Marvel. And I will always go to a new Marvel movie. Always.

Genre: Action-Adventure
Rating: R
Director: Tim Miller
Cast: Ryan Reynolds, Gina Carano, Morena Baccarin, T.J. Miller, Ed Skrein
Plot: Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) is a former Special Forces operative who now works as a mercenary. His world comes crashing down when the evil Ajax (Ed Skrein) tortures, disfigures and transforms him into Deadpool. The rogue experiment leaves Deadpool with accelerated healing powers and a twisted sense of humor. With help from mutant allies Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand) and Colossus (Stefan Kapicic), Deadpool uses his new skills to hunt down the man who nearly destroyed his life.

Zoolander 2
Oh lord. I was practically raised on Zoolander so there’s no doubt in my mind: I’m going. I have to visit my lifelong friends: Derek Zoolander and Hansel. (Hansel’s my faaaave…*hugs*) Bonus points: Ben Stiller directed Zoolander 2. Ever since I watched Secret Life of Walter Mitty (one of my favorite movies of all time that he directed), I will always go see a Ben Stiller-directed movie.

Genre: Comedy
Rating: PG-13
Director: Ben Stiller
Cast: Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Penelope Cruz, Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig.
Plot: Models Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller) and Hansel (Owen Wilson) must stop a conspiracy to kill the world’s most beautiful people.


TV Promos:

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Downton Abbey @9P – PBS (ET)
Well, good news, friends, is that Lord Grantham is alive and well! Yes, we’re still on the drama train (as with every Downton episode) but at least he didn’t die. That, absolutely, would’ve been crushing. Hope he’s out of the clear. Also I’m beginning to feel sympathy for Barrow… which is… understandable… but weird.

Mercy Street @ 10P – PBS(ET)
Now this is a show I haven’t mentioned before but is due for a recommendation. Mom and I have been watching it for a few weeks now and each time it keeps getting better and better. For any of you history buffs out there who love Civil War era (especially Union vs Confederate drama with some slavery themes mixed in), it’s definitely a good show to check out. Also it’s based off of actual events and diary accounts of what went on inside this Union hospital.

Monday, February 8, 2016

CASTLE!!! @10P – ABC (ET)
Ahhhh! You guys! Castle is finally back! This is the TV show I am most excited about this week. I always love watching what new antics Caskett gets into (especially Rick since I aim to have a similar writing career as him–that and we’re personality twins). But OMG Castle fans! I’m so excited to see our beloved couple back together again! AHH!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Supernatural @ 9P – CW (ET)
I mean, yeah, let’s face it guys and dolls, I’m a Hunter through and through. So Supernatural’s going to be on each Promos & Trailers post. I look forward to it every week. This week’s promo cracks me up though. Things are getting pretty hot and heavy for the boys this Valentine’s day (*wink*)

Criminal Minds @ 9P (ET) – CBS

Whoa… just whoa… so I just came across this article when looking into 11×14’s “Hostage.” Apparently the BAU hunts down a man who is kidnapping little girls, and the episode itself is based off of the kidnappings that took place in Cleveland — it especially reflects the story of Amanda Berry and Ariel Castro. Well, I mean, the episodes of Criminal Minds are all based on true stories, in some form or another, so it’s no wonder this story was going to come up. Just… wow though. I mean, that case was all the news stations here in Northeast Ohio. So I’m curious to see how the story compares, and how this episode is. Kids in horror stories are creepy as hell.

New TV Show Obession: TWD!

My opinion of The Walking Dead? Wow. Just wow.

A few weeks ago mom and I were stuck in the house, sick with terrible chest colds. I had caught up with all of my TV shows, finished reading Welcome to Night Vale: The Novel (which was brilliant and nostalgic and–ahhh feels!), and was blazing a trail through the Crimson Peak novel. Soon, I was looking for something new to watch. And what was already on my Amazon video account? The Walking Dead.

I had started watching season one a year or two ago (when I was also sick) but stopped the show mainly because I got better and distracted with other things. So, this time around I started TWD at the end of season one… and down the rabbit hole I went.

Over the last three weeks, I’ve binged seasons one through six and am now on my way to watching Fear The Walking Dead (the prequel). I’ve gone from casual interest to mild anticipation to complete fangirl. And for the past couple days, I really wondered: “Why? Why am I so obsessed with this show?” I mean, yeah, Daryl’s my favorite character; he’s a complete badass, yet has a soft, meaningful side. Rick is a pretty strong leader: he makes hard choices, is a great dad, and has a spectacularly precise aim (also he looks like my brother Donnie and shares his name with my brother Rick).

Still, why was I almost drooling over my laptop at the merest possibility of news about the show? Why was I reading fanfic after fanfic, into the early, early morning? I’m not usually a fan of zombies, and am becoming increasingly picky when it comes to post-apocalyptic storylines. But here I was, obsessed with The Walking Dead.

The answers clicked as I explained the show to mom over eggs, biscuits, and coffee this morning. First, the show is realistic: when you feel a character is going to die, they probably will die. As a fan of some action movies (*cough* Transformers *cough*), I do like watching the stunts characters pull. However, I also know that said daredevil feats, if applied to real life, would probably end in death. TWD has a way of putting you on edge, making you mentally plead: “Oh no, they certainly wouldn’t kill this character! He’s a good man and has to stick around for his family!” And then, with one clean stroke, the character’s gone.

(Sidenote, TWD is almost opposite of Supernatural with their deaths: characters that die typically stay dead. Although both TV shows are well-written, this is an interesting, fresh, draw to AMC’s hit.) TWD, furthermore, deals with harsh truths. At one point, early in the show, a character becomes pregnant and she actually considers aborting the baby due to the terrifying world they now live in. I found myself relating. Even though I would never choose to abort a baby, I could honestly see myself considering it just as she did, if I were in a post-apocalyptic world myself.

That brings me to the second reason why I love The Walking Dead: the characters are well written. They’re complex. Grey. There is no clear division between right and wrong, black or white, good vs evil. Even with season three’s villain, The Governor, who wrecked so much havoc on Rick and his group, I didn’t 100% hate him because he was relatable. He wanted his zombified daughter to be cured with every fiber of his being that when Michonne killed her, he literally went insane. Again, I could see the same happening to me if I was in a similar situation.

Everyone has a story, everyone has a darkness to them. Even Daryl had his moments when I was cursing him. Especially in 4×12’s “Still” when he drunkenly raged at Beth. His character is one of the few I am actively excited to see develop. In season 1 he started as a stereotypical hillbilly; a younger child in the shadow of his asshole big brother, Merle. When Merle disappeared from the show, Daryl connected with the group he was with and became a stronger, courageous hero with a messed-up past. He’s even been a great leader at times when Rick was unable to carry everyone due to his mental anguish. Daryl is a loner but a loyal companion and if I ever find myself in a zombie apocalypse, I hope he’s right by my side.

(Here’s hoping I won’t though.)

Check out one of my favorite Daryl scenes:

Daryl vs Tank:

All in all, I fully suggest watching The Walking Dead. It has kickass action sequences, dramatic moments that will melt a cold heart, and a great, devoted cast, crew, and fanbase that, I hope, will keep going for years to come. Robert Kirkman, author of TWD comics, just… wow. I honestly hope to create something as great as this myself. Bravo!

For further Walking Dead ambiance, I think this fan video (not mine) best explains the atmosphere of the show:

Best Scenes of TWD (spoilers ahead!):

:::

Personal updates: with us now in the throes of 2016, I’m implementing a posting schedule that is working really well.

  • Sundays: Promos/trailers masterpost via my blog (here) – where I gather a collection of movies and TV promos premiering every week.
  • Mondays: Media Mondays via my YouTube channel – a discussion series on pop culture news, TV shows, movies, and reviews. Come fangirl with me!
  • Wednesdays: New blog posts via my blog – on random topics.
  • Fridays: New fanfics! via my blog, Tumblr, and Fanfiction.net – while most new fanfiction posts will be with my Transformers series, I do have some oneshots I will throw out here and there.

This is the skeleton I’ll be following, although look out for unexpected reviews, posts, and other treats during the week too! I’m excited to be bringing all this content to you guys and gals!

Also, if you missed it, here’s Media Mondays 2: Let the Fangirling Commence! Where I FANGIRL over Mark Pellegrino’s Lucifer, 1940’s/50’s Hollywood in Agent Carter, and how well written Blackbeard is in Black Sails

So consider me a “walker”, fellow Walking Dead fans (is that the fandom name? If not, let me know in the comments!) What are your favorite Walking Dead scenes? Characters?

Tonight is also Supernatural night, Hunters! Are you excited to see more of Casifer? I sure am!

Catch the promo here:

Catch you in the next post, fangirls and fanboys! Let your geek reign!

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From Gettysburg to Fall; Time to Create!

Sitting at my laptop.
Apple cider by my side.
Long sleeves.
Typing away.


GOOD LORD did the weather turn! Last week I was in 70 degree Gettysburg, this week: FALL!

Yes. YES, ladies and gents! Fall is back in Ohio! That wondrous time of year! Time for spooky! For a midnight walk in the woods! Leaf crunching! Hot drink of choice! Long sleeves! Cuddles! Halloween!

Yes… this is the time of year I enjoy most.

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I only wish it had felt like this in Gettysburg. Something about tromping through the battlefields in a light jacket, browsing the historic downtown, crunching the occasional leaf. Well, I mean, some of that I did. However, even though the first day of Fall was last week, it didn’t feel like it until this week. Isn’t that what always happens?

Ah. C’est la vie. I still enjoyed being there.

I got to see urban legend hotspots like the Jennie Wade House, Devil’s Den, and Slaughter Pen. Check out the pictures I took:

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The Jennie Wade House. Jennie Wade was the only civilian killed in the Gettysburg war. However, the house is not haunted by her, but her father who was away and missed his daughter’s funeral. 
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Devil’s Den (the stone structure) and Slaughter Pen (the field across the street from Devil’s Den). Both places were occupied by Confederates, while the Union literally slaughtered them on Little Round Top (where I took the picture from). No wonder it’s haunted!

I also took part in a public ghost hunt with the Gettysburg Paranormal Association. It’s one of the few paranormal societies I’ve found that offers to take anyone on an investigation. Almost every night of the year… you just have to buy a ticket. ($35 per person for 9PM to 11PM, $65 for 9PM to 12AM) The perk? You get to use their equipment, experience the haunted locations they take you to, and they give you a certificate from the society, saying you were with them. They also mail whatever evidence was caught that night to your home address. Which is also cool.

GPA aims to teach anyone from newbie to experienced investigator the ins and outs of paranormal investigating. Bonus: they expect you to try out the gadgets you see on TV. I personally was excited to try out a Spirit Box, Dowsing Rods, a temperature gun, and even the Flir camera.

I’ll admit: I was absolutely nervous about seeing a random, unexplained energy form on the Flir. But… I didn’t. It’s probably pretty rare. Lovely overactive imagination.

In the end, my tactics of investigation haven’t changed. I still enjoy walking around haunted locations and sensing the room. For me, I know spirits exist. I know there’s Beings out there we can’t explain. It’s exciting. It makes the world so interesting. Yes, I’m excited for the future where I have kids. But to know that the unexplained exists out there… well it just adds spice.

After all, Tolkien himself said:

“… always I had the sense of recording what was already ‘there’, somewhere: not of ‘inventing’.”

Ah. Speaking of the unexplained, check out this picture:

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On the edge of the battlefields, I caught this picture of an orb floating above the fence. Enlarge it, and you’ll see this orb is not the only one. Maybe some soldiers are reminiscing, visiting where they once fought.

The purpose of this Gettysburg trip was to get away, by myself, and explore a new location. Whether it be haunted or not. I wanted to have one last exploration before I settled in for the latter part of the year. The time where I really love to be home and write. Plain and simple. Fall brings forward ceaseless inspiration. Honestly, if I didn’t need to sleep or eat, I could probably churn out multiple books in this three month period.

So, now I settle in for the “cold months”, hard at work on my novel’s completion. It will be circulating to agents soon. I can’t wait for you guys to read it!