Wednesday, February 29, 2012


I'm It!
I've been tagged by Lostarial. It's been a loooong time since I've been tagged, and it makes me happy.

The Rules Are:
1. You must post the rules.
2. Post eleven fun facts about yourself on the blog post.3. Answer the questions the tagger set for you in their post, and then create eleven new questions to ask the people you've tagged.
4. Tag eleven bloggers, however, you can break the rules and tag fewer people if you want. Make sure you hyperlink their names/blogs.
5. Let them know you've tagged them!
6. Have fun!

Eleven Facts about Me:
1. My favorite Doctor on Doctor Who is the Eleventh.
2. I help with Awana on Wednesday nights.
3. My pen name is Catherine Veritas.
4. My favorite fruit juice is apricot.
5. I have nine DVDS in my room.
6. My stuffed puppy is called Moffat.
7. I remained my giant teddy bear after Sarah Jane Smith.
8. I take "weird" and "crazy" as compliments.
9. My favorite color is purple.
10. I am done with Writing of Fiction class.
11. I have completed four NaNoWriMos.
I was tagged with the following questions:

1) If you were a jar, what would you be filled with?
Bubble solution, so that one could blow beautiful bubbles all the time.

2) What is your favorite version of your favorite fairy tale? (My definition of fairy tale is not only Grimm, btdubs.)
Birdwing, an adaptation of The Seven Swans written by Rafe Martin. It's absolutely beautiful in making the fairy characters into real people.

3) What song are you most likely to burst into when you're alone?
Owl City's "The Real World"

4) How do you react when people photograph you?
Oh, okay. Why the picture?

5) If you could change either your name or an aspect of your appearance, what would you do? (Include the changed name/aspect.)
It'd make my hair less prone to tangles. It's a knotted mess.

6) What do you think is the best death scene in a children's movie?
Define "children's movie" first. I guess the two--no, three that come to my mind are Draco's death in Dragonhear, Aslan's in LWW, and Flynn's (almost) in Tangled.

7) A hawt vampire is stalking you! How do you react?
AG! Call the Doctor and get the stupid fish vampire out of my room!

8) Dr. Seuss or Jim Henson?
Dr. Seuss

9) Finish this sentence: If I ran Disneyland...
I'd make a Narnia attraction--either a show or some sort of ride.

10) What is your favorite book to read aloud?
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tuilane by Kate DiCamello.

11) Who is your favorite villain?
Morgoth from The Silmarillion

My questions for others:
1. What is your pet peeve?
2. Favorite genre of books?
3. Two things you like that don't normally go together.
4. What do you see when you hear the word "elf?"
5. What would you do if dropped in a lake of jello?
6. Tumblr or Twitter?
7. If you had to develop an allergy, what to ('work' doesn't count)?
8. What would you dress up as for Halloween?
9. What flavor ice cream would you be?
10. What would you do to torture someone if you were an evil overlord?
11. Best gift you've ever given.

Lady Claire
the Traveler
Madis Hartte

Commuter to Reality: I No Longer Dwell There!

I am done with my writing of fiction class!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Fanfiction Spotlight: Lyricwritesprose

Today's Featured Author: Lyricwritesprose
Don't quite remember how I stumbled upon her work--a recommendation from TV Tropes, I think, but she's brilliant! Here most recent work, for example, is a marvellous take on Amy's absent Aunt Sharon. She even managed to make me like Jack in one of her stories,
Recommended Reading:
Everything! Seriously, everything. Start at the top of her page and work your way down.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Quest for a Book

A sticky note tacked above my desk lists my expendures for the calendar year--$10 for laundry here, $22.11 for groceries there. But the most significant expense is one that isn't on there:
$20 for the Elisabeth Sladen autobiography. Not for lack of effort, though. Four failed interlibrary loan requests attest to that. And out of six Barnes & Noble stores within 10 miles, none of them have it in stock. To be honest, I'd be surprised if they ever will.
Not that I blame them--much. The autobiography of a middle-aged British actress probably isn't a huge seller in the Midwest. Never mind that she was a star in one of the longest-running sci-fi dramas ever. Never mind that she was co-star to two amazing leads. Never mind that she regularly tops fan polls for best companion ever. Never mind that she returned over 25 years after she left the show and because hugely popularly. Never mind that her spin-off set records for viewing on its channel. Never mind that SFX named a new award after her this year. Never mind that the whole fan community was stunned by her untimely death. Elisabeth Sladen just isn't newsworthy on this side of the Atlantic.
But what really irks me is what happened today. Due to lack of plastic money, I requested a copy be sent to the local Barnes & Noble, where I could buy it with real money. The website had listed a price below twenty dollars, and I'd set aside the cash accordingly. Today, I stopped at the store to see if it was in. It was. I was pulling the money out of my pocket when the cashier announced the price: "$29." I had less than $25 in my wallet. So I had to walk away and leave it.
Wah!At this rate, I'll have to go to Britain to get a copy!

Commuter to Reality: Transcripts

: So, Miriam, tell me about yourself. I know you have one grown daughter, Sara, who is married to Jonathan, and your husband Thomas died in a crash a few years ago
: Miriam: Yes
: And is there anything else you could tell me about yourself. Cause quite honestly, I can't stand you
: That;s a pity. Why don't you find someone else to talk to, then?
: Nathan: Tempers...
: Because I have to keep you in my story for class
: An assignment? I'm no English teacher, but why would you write about me if you like me not?
: Because my original, Mariam, was too odd for wearing a wedding dress all the time
: I sense you like oddities.
: Yes. And no offense, but the only thing odd about you was your scarf
: And that bugs you?
: Well, I'm sorry
: If you were sorry, you'd tell me something interesting about yourself, and don't try the skydiving lie again
: But it happened.
: In your dreams, girl
: Just because I only exist in your palty story is no reason to be rude
: Palty! Now listen here, girl, I am already planning on burning you to a crisp, so shut up
: But if you have that planned in the future, I have no reason to cooperate now.
: If you're not going to be polite, I see no reason to be myself
: Well, what are you going to be, a toad? That would be an improvement
: Gal1
: No need to be rude
: And you are being so borrowing I don't really care
: I assume you mean boring.
: Yes
: Shut up
: I'm really not getting anywhere here, am I?
: No

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I Am a Follower

From kindergarten games to corporate seminars, the emphasis is often on leadership. Who would want to follow when one could lead? This attitude has even infiltrated the church in America. I am a Follower by Leonard Sweet attempts to turn this obsession on its head. After all, Jesus called his disciples to "Come, follow me," not "Come, lead with me." This call to following does not diminish a believer’s responsibility to others, but shifts it: we are not leaders calling others to imitate, but followers inviting others to join us on our adventure.
Beyond the shift in vocabulary, I find something immensely freeing in the concept. I don’t like to lead—I much prefer working out the tasks someone else has laid out for me. As followers, we are imitating the pattern of Christ, not leaders establishing our own agenda. This discussion is strongly interwoven in the role of strengths and weaknesses in our lives. The emphasis on leadership is tied to an emphasis on strengths, forgetting that “His power is made perfect in weakness.”
I would recommend this book not only for leaders in the church, but also for those who shy away from positions because they don’t feel qualified. The perspective is well worth discussing.
3.5 stars.
I received a free copy of this book from Thomas Nelson’s Booksneeze program but was not required to write a positive review.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Of Roni'ith and Valentines

I was reviewing my old work in progress Three Dark Roses last night, and this morning they woke up with specific opinions on Valentine's Day. So just to make things interesting, I shall conduct a virtual interview with the Shoshannah Micah.
Background information: A Shoshannah combines the roles of viliage leader and healer. His healing methods use roses and music to treat illness.

So, what do you think of Valentine's Day,
Micah: It's childish and slighly horrifying.

Why? I explained the historical background and significance...
Micah: I still don't understand how someone could have enough power to outlaw marriage, but what modern people have made of it is childish. Do they not understand what marriage and love really are?

So let's break it down. What do you think of the candies and cards?
While sweet things are nice, they are more meant for children or the ill. And cards I also do not understand. Our system of writing is rarely used, and letters are precious, not just gooey expressions of mush

Ah. Now for the big can of worms. Flowers and Valentines.
Micah: Let me try to explain. In your world, you have a symbol called a cross, correct? And this symbol is of great significance to believers, though other people sometimes treat it as simple jewelry, although less so when it is a crucifix?

Micah: Now imagine a holiday where you doodled crucifixes on scraps of paper, handed out ones that were thrown away afterwards,and plastered you with advertisements to buy some.

Micah. Yes. That is why I find this holiday called "Valentine's" to be childish and more than slightly sickening. The holidays in our world focus on the King and the world he created, not mushy feelings.

What would your wife say about this?
Micah: She'd be slighly more sympathetic, but not much.

Well, thank you for taking the time to visit, and hopefully we shall work together more in the days to come. May the King bless your playing.

Love and Stars

I don't feel like turning out a whole spew of links or thoughts for Valentine's Day, but one discussion I will link to is Speculative Faith's series "Speculative Love." It has a lot to say on love in the speculative genres.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Commuter to Reality: My Response to Professor's Comments

I have read them now. Multiply image by 11

Commuter to Reality: I Release Thee From My Service

"Miriam, mother of Sara, I release you from my fiction. Go now and exist in what realm seems best to you."
So I got my rough draft back today. I am not going to say what grade I got, both because it probably violates some sort of confidentiality rules and because it makes me mad. I spent literally hours trying to come up with a plot that wasn't 'genre' or too unrealistic; I wasn't expecting a great grade, but I wish all the time I spent on it could be taken into account.
As it is, I don't feel the professor is getting a realistic picture of my writing skills. Let me turn in Beloved, or even the most recent chapter of my fanfiction, because I care about those characters and want them to suceed. I try to express those character's feelings and emotions because I care about them. In fact, I'd rather wrestle my main villian, because at least my hatred of him is mixed with abiding concern for his fate. These guys, they can just wander off into the blue and never be seen again, as far as I care.
Witness the below exchange on my Facebook:
I don't care about my main characters. The last two times I didn't care about an MC, they died--one froze and one sleepwalked off a cliff. This could be a problem.
Bryan Davis And you call me cruel? :-)
Me: Clefy, they died and were not tortured, maimed, or awoken into a cruel afterlife. Your characters have parents die, parents transform, die/transform themselves, visit other dimensions, are forced to make hard chocies, and (most recently) treated as lab rats for 15+ years. Cruel? I beg to differ.
Plus, these are not naturally occuring characters. They are forced visitors via a class.
Friend: Is this the class you told LoriAnn about? If it is, then you're absolved of all cruelty. In fact, I don't blame you a bit.
Bryan Davis Right. Isn't it great?
Me: If you get emotion out of it. I don't even enjoy tormenting these guys.


The other night, my roommate introduced me to the film Dragonheart. It opens with a young prince and his mentor training on a hill, when news comes that the prince's father is battling peasants. They go to watch the battle, but the king is killed and the prince is wounded. To save her son, the queen takes him to a mighty dragon, who gives the boy half his heart to save him.
What happens after that is best viewed without spoilers, but it struck me as more of a fairy tale then a fantasy film, with all the best suggestions and myths implied. The uncertianties of allegiance and fallen heroes make it well worth watching.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Friday, February 10, 2012

Thursday Next

Who hasn't longed to jump inside a book and see the events play out?
Okay, maybe some people.
But for those who have, Thursday Next by Jasper Fforde is an excellent series to read. It takes place in a world where Baconists go door-to-door prostlytzing, the Crimean War is in its 158th year, and pet dodos are all the rage. The best part, however, comes after the first book, when Thursday becomes a member of Jurisfiction, an organization that makes sure books stay as they are written by keeping an eye on the characters from the inside. Tons of side jokes that writes will enjoy, and a fairly clean read.

Write These Laws On Your Children

Homeschoolers are an under-represented group in modern media. A wonderful post about the fiction side of things may be found here, but the nonfiction book that inspired this post was Write these Laws on Your Children: Inside the World of Conservative Christian Homeschoolers.
The author, who spent ten years employed in the public school system, attempts to provide a fair, balanced look inside the Christian homeschooling community. He acknowledges that there are many reasons for homeschooling, but chooses to focus on Christians as the most united segment of the the community.
I wasn't sure what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised by his evenhanded, noninflammatory tone. Instead of just studying statistics, he visited six different families from around the country, two visits per family and explored how they taught their children. He also stopped by various homeschooling organizations and explored them.
As a formerly homeschooled student, I had personal investment in this topic. While some of the families presented less-than-steller portraits, others were examples that I would stand behind. While I might have appreciated more examples from other families, I thought the results were fair for the information presented. He also acknowledges that some of the flaws presented by opponents of homeschooling are also present in public school or have their own tradeoffs.
The author's conclusion also gave me pause. He recommended basic literacy testing of homeschooled students, while acknowledging the resistance homeschoolers have to such an idea. While I can understand his concern for students who might slip through the cracks otherwise, I would like to ask him what he would do if the results showed a failing student? Would the student be placed in public school? Would the government force the parent to use certian methods?
Overall, though, a balanced portrayal.

Monday, February 6, 2012

No Heroes Tonight Followup

The new doctor at Leadsworth is a bit odd. Turns out he has his own experiances with sociopathic physicians who break your trust. Rory/Amy, Watson. No slash.

Saw it on Tumblr

requested by catielovespink.

#what’s so incredibly painful about this is that he thinks it is obvious. #He is genuinely and completely surprised when Amy and Rory didn’t know because he assumes every knows. #He hates himself and his guilt and what he does to his companions so much that he just naturally assumes that everyone else can see it too #He assumes everyone knows that out of all his enemies he hates himself the worst.

Source: splotches and splatters

Sunday, February 5, 2012

No Heroes Tonight

So I finally watched the last episode of Sherlock season three and this was what it made me think of...The God Complex. The last bit there, where Sherlock is telling John he's a fraud...that's the Doctor breaking Amy's heart to save her. It spawned a desperate little plotbunny in my heart that will not be denied.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

A Tip from Jim Butcher

I was hopping the web when I found this on someone's blog, quoting Jim Butcher, author of the Harry Dresiden series. It's a simple question to help clarify one's story.


That's an outline I can live with.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

In Memoriam

Today would have been Elisabeth Sladen's 66th birthday.

Image by Andy's Art