Serial Novel: EuXomai

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I’ve decided on Wattpad I will be publishing a serial novel entitled EuXomai, after the Greek word to wish. This is a more frivolous for fun read while I work on Lilith for publication. My goals are to create a community fo my readers to share future and current projects with. Only the first chapter is up and will be updated bi-weekly on Tuesday and Friday evenings. Read below to gt a sense of the adventure that awaits you this YA/NA Space fantasy!

It all started with a wish…

“Twinkle Twinkle little star how I wonder what you are…” Thea hummed to herself as she walked around Lunaria’s outer wall. What was she? She was a wish made real. She was the wish of Katherine “Katie” Reynolds, to fall in love. Her skin is made of constellations, her hair of starlight, and in the sunshine, she becomes less corporeal because she isn’t real, she’s a Wish. Children in the planetary sister city to Lunaria, Alaria are warned, “Do not wish upon a star demons and nightmares are all they are” but Thea preferred the old version of the nursery rhyme. What was she? Why was she?

Katie straps on her leather vest, calf and forearm braces, shoulder pads, and wraps a piece of leather around her midsection. Her curly hair curls about her ears and she pulls it back into a knot at her neck. A moonstone dagger sits in a sheath at her hip. She leans over and rests a soft kiss on her the hard granite stone before her. She gets up, takes a breath and walks back into the hustle and bustle of Alaria heading toward the capitol building to sign up to visit Lunaria and kill her Wish.

https://www.wattpad.com/myworks/120501671-euxomai

Book Review: The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco

This book seemed to follow me, a spirit in the corner of my vision waiting to be noticed. I saw it at stores, in facebook groups, suggested in ads, so finally for some reason after reading a negative review of the book is when I decided to pick it up.

Bone Witch follows Tea in a high fantasy world with heavy Asian influences. Tea has just learned she has the powers of a Dark asha and can raise the dead and her whole life has changed as she trains to be an asha far from home with her familiar- the corpse of her dead brother and the help of a variety of characters.

The book switches points of view I suppose you could say. There are small glimpses between chapters. These glimpses follow a Bard who has come to a cast out asha, who is the present Tea. The rest of the chapters are Tea telling her story. It reads very much as a movie. Not in the sense of it making a good movie but the reader is lead along in a similar way to which an audience is lead in movies by a narrator telling the past. Without even realizing it you are invested in Tea’s story following her events of an asha in training and wondering how she came to be the person in the glimpses.

I can see why for some people this book would not be a good pick, it is unlike anything in YA in terms of writing style. The plot is slower than most YA and the romance and adventure not as center of attention. However, once its got you, its got you and I cannot wait to read the next book when it comes out!

 

Rin Chupeco is also the author of The Girl From the Well series which I most definitely plan on reading as soon as possible!

LIS 518: Why Should You Go To My Site

Ever seen the fun and colorful world of anime and manga but not known where to start or what’s available? Let alone who even puts out the anime in the US? Well I have created a web page that tells you just enough to get you started. On https://sites.google.com/email.arizona.edu/viz/supporting-document?authuser=2 I have built a site using Google which gives a brief overview of one of America’s anime studios, Viz Media. On the site you can see a  brief list of it’s most successful shows and a comprehensive list of the rest. There are also key terms and a brief explanation of the nature of the website. If this seems like your godsend I hope you enjoy!

Online, Offline, and What’s On the Line: A Blog Post for Library School

As a millennial I grew up with many warning labels about the internet and the mysteries and depths of it. Some of the statutes drilled into me were as follows: The internet is forever; Don’t post anything private; and never believe everything you read or see online. Such warnings came to be as it became more and more obvious that anything could get put on the internet and be claimed as “real”. In our lectures and class discussions we have discussed how to find verifiable information online as well as how to ascertain such verifiability. We’ve all heard of fake news, Photoshop, click bait articles, etc. This all threatens the accuracy of what can be found online. The same is true of people. In the world of online dating we are all familiar with the phrase cat-fished.

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If anything can be “true” online so can anything about YOU. The biggest identity crisis of the generation is who are you? Which you is the real you- Online or off? And you’d be surprised how complicated that question can be. In the NY Times article Who Are You Online? Considering Issues of Web Identity various difficulties and issues with reconciling our online selves with our IRL selves are brought up. The issue being: how to verify your identity.

 

Discussion Questions:

How is the verifiability of people a problem in the accuracy of information online?

Is it possible not to “edit” ourselves online?

 

And for a little fun Online by Brad Paisley

A Jill of all Hobbies

I love to create. In case that hasn’t come across yet. And I don’t enjoy creating through only one platform. I love to write and do so often. A lot of my job is writing though you wouldn’t think it initially. I write emails all the time of course, but I’ve also written blurbs for brochures, announcements, press releases, library blogs, you name it. I write for myself in diaries. I’ve been journaling or attempting to as long as I can remember. My most solid time of keeping a diary was from fall of 2007-Spring of 2012. This chronicled most if not all of my middle and high school years. In my senior of high school I also wrote a fan fiction diary, which I’m not even sure if that makes sense. But if you don’t know fanfiction is where people go with their own stories for characters and lands that already exist in shows, movies, books, etc. and share these stories with other fans. I’ve written three of my own (two permanently on hiatus unfortunately) but this was different. This fanfiction was personal and not to be read but instead it was a post apocalyptic Superman story with a self-insert character that helped me get through the worst of my anxiety and depression. And for that reason that sad little fanfiction will never be deleted. I also write fiction and as I’ve expressed before if I can kick my ass into big enough gear someday I’ll pursue publishing what I’ve written.

Of course writing is not all I have fallen in love with. Though not very good at it I do love the serenity that comes with drawing and painting. And I use those meager skills to help in other hobbies- for example costuming (cosplay) and makeup. Cosplay is a hobby that requires a constant learning of trade skills and I love it for that reason. I’ve learned to sew, to re-imagine garments and miscellaneous knick knacks to create characters I love. recently in the past year I’ve gotten into makeup- a hobby that gives me a huge range of daily creative outlets.

I also recently learned how to loom knit and want to add that onto the list of things-that-keep-my-hands-busy-and-my-mind-sane. Unfortunately or maybe fortunately depends on how full you take your glass this leads the little librarian in me to want to read all I can and learn all I can about my new hobbies, old hobbies, beloved hobbies. This then leads me to check out zillions of books on such topics. I want to not only enjoy the things I do but be good  at them too. It’s a competitiveness that I have inherited from both sides of my family. We don’t just do things we excel at them. And its fun to put in the work to excel at them. So here I am currently buried in books from the library on writing blogs (wink wink) designing clothes, editing patterns, makeup artistry, as well as contributing to the other hobby I love ever so much- reading by having more for fun reading books out than I can get read before I must relinquish them. Ah this is the life though isn’t it?

A-N-X-I-E-T-Y: Spoken word Written Down

Anxiety is a mental illness. A psychological dis.order. Anxiety is a nervous disorder characterized by a state of excessive uneasiness and apprehension, typically with compulsive behavior or panic attacks. By definition.

I am not anxiety.

I am the inability to sit still. I am the inability to think only one sole thought one by one. I am the inability to hold my ground in a fight with her because if I lose her I’ll drown.

I am not anxiety.

I am tears I can’t hold back at my desk while I hope no one notices. I am a scream in my chest that echoes in the noisy silence of my head. I am the bite of nails in my skin to make the pain something physical.

I am not anxiety.

I am the clingy girlfriend who cannot help it because her thoughts will tear her apart otherwise. I am the IBS diagnostic because even my guts reject my thoughts and they don’t know how to fight it. I am a shaking that pulls my ability to breathe from my chest. I am a racing heart working overtime to keep it all together.

I am not anxiety.

I am physical. I am real. I am living WITH anxiety.

And that is so much worse.

I’m Not a Work-a-Holic, I’m a Millenial…

I’ve puzzled over just what I’ve wanted to say in this post for a little while now. I’ve played with witty lines and click bait titles but when it comes down to it this is how living as a twenty some year old in my life situation goes. 

What’s my life situation you ask? Not too bad and not too unique. I’ve just graduated from college with my major in a liberal arts field, I live in a city with a huge job market and an even larger population and the highest living expenses in the US. I don’t work full time, at least not in one place. When added to together I’m working on average 33 hours a week. I’m also going to school online for an advanced degree to get the job I actually want. I live in an apartment with a roommate and a cat and have no savings as everything goes to rent, bills, gas, and food. I apply to new jobs constantly and dream of the day I see a book of my own on bookshelves in stores and libraries. I write on my old laptop. I eat junk food because I can afford it and it’s quick. My biggest addiction is that I’m a basic white bitch constantly in Starbucks for my fix.

Now ask almost any young adult on the street the bare basics of their life and they’ll tell you a variation of this same life. Maybe trade in the apartment for still living at home and the multiple jobs to one job that you work burning yourself at both ends to be good at. 

The reason I bring this all up culminates in how I make my living currently. I work ten hours a week on contract getting work experience toward the career I want in libraries. And the I nanny for three families. Yup- a stranger’s car seat lives in my car. I take two rowdy girls to school in the morning two or three times a week. I pick up, tutor, and occupy the time of a six year old three evenings a week plus occasional date nights. I am a mothers helper to stay at home mom who works from a home office in a townhouse in the ghetto because she’s a part of the millennial generation too and they can’t afford anywhere else. Now I love children and I love nannying- not cut out for customer service! Introvert alert! But kids and I get each other on a whimsical level. 

So then what’s the problem you ask? If I like it so much? It’s not steady. I’m not a teacher or working at the YMCA. My schedule is at the whim of a family, three families. So when I get a text from the mother I help out that yay I get the next week off, my heart sinks. Not because I don’t love sleeping in on a Tuesday morning but because that’s 80 or so bucks my bank account will never see. And that fluctuation of income is harsh on financial planning. So I take the housesitting gig from one family as they leave the country because I can’t afford for them not to pay me something for two weeks even though my commute for my other jobs just doubled, as did my gas, and I have to ask my roommate to take care of my cat or try introducing it to the dog…again. My days can start at five am and end at 10pm. And I work in masters level assignments so that I can get a job that hopefully will afford me a mortgage someday. So no I’m not a work-a-holic. I don’t enjoy less sleep and more coffee fueled days. I don’t thrive on it, I literally live on it. I’m not a work-a-holic. I’m a millennial.

To NaNo or Not to NaNo- That is the Question

Like any young unaccomplished, unpublished, but aspiring writer I love NaNoWriMo. Now if you don’t know NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. During this time aspiring and tried and tried authors sit down to write 50,000 words in one month that’s 1,667 words a day. Now I’ve known about this challenging movement for years and last year was the first year I successfully won. I wrote 50,000 words of a novel, Burning Alexandria. A year later and I haven’t finished the novel. In fact I’ve lost a lot of steam with it. It really unnerves me because what I want most in the entire world is to be a writer and one that people love and buy all the new editions and all of that. But how can I do that if I never finish it. 

So here’s what I’m asking and I’ve literally decided this as I’m writing his post for NaNo I’m going to write again, something new BUT I’m also going to look for a beta reader/editor to read Burning Alexandria and my notes for the rest of this novel. So I guess I’m asking if anyone wants to jump into this with me.

Burning Alexandria is a historical paranormal book. A young college student named Dahlia discovers she’s the reincarnation of the first witch who was brutally murdered as well as the first witch to die in Salem. To end the bloody cycle she must find the Grimoire, learn to be a witch from her past lives, and destroy the reincarnation of her murderer in this life. 

If this interests you please let me know!!!!

And if NaNoWriMo interests you go to this link.

Winter Solstice 2015: Happy Yuletide!

This is winter solstice, the longest night of the year. Darkness reigns triumphant, yet gives away and changes into light. All is cold, and I await the coming of dawn. As the sun rises, the triple goddess once more gives birth to the divine child. In silence and wonder I stand before the sacred cauldron of rebirth, knowing that one day I too must pass through the cauldron and be reborn. For this I now give honor to the triple goddess.”

Found this little piece for the solstice online. Having grown up Christian and then converted to Paganism finding the parallels are so interesting. While in Burning Alexandria, I don’t much allude to the majority religion Christianity, it is interesting to note in my own life.

Burning Alexandria is a work in progress, soon to be published independently by the author. It is a historical Supernatural young adult work of fiction. Follow me here to hear all the latest!

 

Happy Yuletide! (and Merry Christmas!)

 

A.P. Runke

Spikey Spots a Beastie: A Christmas Story

By A.P. Runke

Spikey considers himself rather lucky in life for an ornamental hedgehog. Maybe it wasn’t always that way but life tends to twist and turn things around. Spikey was glad for it. It wasn’t too long ago on a November morning that he had his first turn of fate. Spikey first knew life in a factory; a loud but rather cheerful machine built him alongside many other ornamental hedgehogs. And at least Spikey assumed the machine that made him was cheerful, for although he never spoke to Spikey or the other hedgehogs he did always quietly whistle as he worked. From this factory Spikey was packed into a box and was shipped off. At the end of this time where Spikey knew only the inside of a very dark box the little hedgehog made of burlap, sticks, and twine was put on a shelf to be sold to the masses of mothers and daughters and mantle piece lovers who came by.

Shoppers came and went and various curios for homes were picked up. Turkeys and squirrels were picked up as was a rather impudent ceramic rooster Spikey happily saw leave one evening. However it seemed before Spikey knew it, he was the only one and the times were changing. Tall pine trees were being erected and boxes of baubles, and snow covered flowers unloaded. Spikey was removed from his shelf. No longer would he view the cuddly pajama section or smell the perfumes on women with gnarly stones adorning their fingers. Spikey was put on a new shelf. Here were decorations Spikey hadn’t known, a cat black as they come and more orange leaves than he had ever seen. A small red tag was attached to Spikey, ‘clearance final sale’. A tall spindly witch patted Spikey on the back in condolence. Spikey refused to give up hope, he was adorable gosh dang it! And someone would see that. Christmas cheer continued to surround Spikey and the others hidden away in the clearance shelves. Spikey gathered dust on his button nose and at night he’d let loose all the sneezes he had kept in check while customers had shopped the day away.

Then on one December morning that all changed. Two women sidled down the aisle, glancing at the clearance shelves. In their basket were tree ornaments and glittered snowflake placemats. Spikey’s heart deflated just so. But then with surprise in his eyes, Spikey found himself picked up off the shelf. The women babbled and thought and Spikey held his breath tight. And when they placed him in their basket he held back a squeak of joy with all of his might. A home! A home would be his! A mantle awaited him and with this job he couldn’t wait to begin. From the basket to the bag in the car to the kitchen of a brand new home Spikey went. The lady who had bought him set him on her counter and pulled out a ribbon with a plaid pattern. Spikey could have danced with joy when the lady gave him a new little touch, a plaid ribbon scarf just for him. He wasn’t just a new mantle piece anymore. Now he was Spikey the CHRISTMAS hedgehog.

Spikey was then placed in his spot. It was atop a column of drawers by a picture frame and Santa Claus ceramic candleholder. From his perch he could see the whole front room of the house. A long couch stood against the wall, two bookcases and a large television. The windows high up in the wall let in sun on the plush carpet. And directly there just inside the front door was the tree. A Christmas tree with lights and ornaments treasured and held dear. It was a handsome tree that glittered when lit and filled the rom with a luscious Christmas scent.

Over the hours Spikey learned the ways of the house, there was a woman and man and their all grown up children. But along with these people who he so sought to please were three little doggies always at their knees. The three dogs all seemed happy and cordial enough animals to Spikey. Though he doubted he’d let the young yellow one anywhere near him, slobber and all. However it was the smallest dog that ended up playing the biggest role in Spikey’s new life.

The whole story begins early one morning not a week into Spikey living in his new home. The sun wasn’t up yet but his house was. And the tree glittered in the early morning deep still with sleep. Spikey was admiring the tree when the smallest dog meandered in unaccompanied. Her tail was tucked close and her nose was held high. She walked slowly and carefully trying to look ever so sly. When the dog saw she wasn’t seen (for she could not perceive Spikey’s gleaming eyes) she ran to the tree with a nose for the ornaments hung not so high.

The little doggie started to wreak terror, pulling penguins, and snowflakes, and heirlooms down from the tree! Spikey held back his breath; this dog was tearing apart the tree and Christmas right with it. As his mind tumbled and his jaw did drop the only thought he could think was that this…why this little Beastie, for a beastie she was, just had to be stopped! Spikey shook off his astonished dismay and quickly turned his burlap head every which way. He must stop the beastie! These people gave him a home, a ribbon, and a job. He was a mantle piece hedgehog with a Christmas tree to guard!

Even though Spikey’s heart was courageous and his will determined he was stuck in his spot for it was a very, very long way to the ground. As Spikey scratched his head, knowing he must move quickly a bit of time was bought him, something had distracted the wee beastie. Another animal did call this house his home. He was small and fluffy and dark as obsidian stone. He was a cat. The only real live one Spikey had ever seen and just like the dear hedgehog this cat loved the bright Christmas tree. This kitty would take its long naps beneath the pine needles, stretched out enjoying its glory. It never tried to climb it, leap from it, or bat at the baubles. Spikey rather liked this cat and was thankful just now for his arrival.

When the beastie saw this body of fluffy black fur its attention was torn from the tree and its ornaments to try and get the kitty to play with it. Spikey recognized this was his chance. But how! How was he to get down? Carefully Spikey peered down the column of drawers and to his mind came an idea quite inspired. For every drawer instead of knob had a small iron wrung for the humans to pull on. ‘Aha!’ Thought Spikey ‘I’ll climb down with those, it’s just like a ladder though it will swing and sway. I have to do’ he says, ‘it’s the only way!’.

So with a gulp and squeaky small prayer Spikey heaves his feet out and over to start his descent. His spikes quake as he nervously climbs down and down; each wrung a welcome find. He was two wrungs away when his attention was grabbed by a hiss. The cat had become fed up with the beastie and wanted to escape it! Hurry he must hurry there were only three wrungs to go. He scrabbled to climb down and landed on the tile floor with a thump. Now was his time, to fight off the beastie and save Christmas for his new home! With a deep breath to stable his resolve Spikey stood facing the beastie. He spread out his feet and stretched his spikes before turning down his nose hoping his aim was just right.

For in a flash Spikey did charge a little ball rolling onward. His aim was true for from inside his huddle he heard a small yelp. The beastie was hit! Spikey unfurled himself to look and see what he had wrought. And he saw the little beastie shake out its head for Spikey had come straightforward and rolled over the beastie’s long ear. The beastie though was not deterred, it opened its mouth to give Spikey a bite but when its tongue touched his spikes however, it reeled back with fright.

Off it went! It’s whines following behind, Spikey had saved the tree and perhaps his tale, he thought, would even be told for generations to come on Christmas Day! Spikey took his win as graciously as any burlap and twig hedgehog can. He smiled and nodded at the tree, whose light was no longer as bright. For daylight was coming, chasing away the night. With that realization Spikey ran back over to the column of drawers. He nodded his thank to the once again lounging black cat and quick as he could scrambled back up the iron wrungs and at his spot he sat. Soon in came the woman and she gasped seeing the havoc the beastie had wrought. She scolded the small doggie and cleaned up what Spikey hadn’t been able to salvage. Still Spikey sat comfortably knowing the majority was safe.

Once all was cleaned up and the room was once again quite merry Spikey felt ready for congratulatory snooze. The people were waking and the beastie was gone. Spikey watched lazily as one of the other dogs meanders in and looks all about him to see if he’s seen. A shiver works it’s way up Spikey’s spine in dread. The dog sniffs the green needles of the newly saved tree and as Spikey’s eyes widen with horror the dog turns from the tree and lifts his hind leg.

The End