Thursday, April 23, 2015

Meet Evy, or Heather!

I'm pleased to interview my writer-friend Heather today:

1. Tell us about yourself!

  My real name is Heather. I've done Evy as a pen name, partly just for fun and partly for publishing reasons. I've been writing since I was young and have come to enjoy it, probably as much as I like scaling mountain sides and nearly breaking my neck. One must have a bit of excitement in their life after all.

2. What is your book about and when will it be available?
 My book is about two siblings and a mummy curse. (Or at least a mummy which wishes to pass off his midnight wanderings as a curse.) Nate travels to Egypt as an Archaeologist and takes his younger sister Jessie with him.The idea was for Nate to help complete a dig on a tomb before he starts working for his new boss, Jeremy Huddleson. Instead, they end up trying to fight off a mummy and solve the mystery behind his nighttime walks.

3. What first got you interesting in Archaeology?
 This series of books actually. I wanted to write an adventure series and made Nate an Archaeologist to give him a reason to travel the world. However, to make it work I had to learn about Archaeology and my long love of history caught on fast and I became fascinated with the profession. Ancient things and dirt, what more could one ask for in a job?

4. Have you ever been on a dig yourself?
 Last summer I went on my first dig and loved every moment of it. I volunteered at a Spanish fort which the natives had burned down. The first pole was discovered while I was there, which I was extremely pleased about.

5. What are some of your favorite stories that feature Archaeologists?
 The Mummy. I'm not exactly sure why as curse stories tend to just bug me, if the curse in the story is real. I never mind if it is a hoax later discovered. But for some reason I love The Mummy. I also really like Crocodile on the Sandbank which is a really fun book. I can add to my list The Cooper Kid Adventures and all but the second Indiana Jones movie, which I just watch for fun from time to time.

6. Do you wear a brown fedora?
  Oh yes, I do. I bought it as something of a joke, since when I mention the fact I am studying Archaeology most people will bring up Indiana Jones. I figured I might as well get the hat. I've become attached to it though and wear it often.
7. Where can we find you online?
 This is the blog I have set up. And I am pleased to finally say I have a Goodreads author page.
 Thank you so much for the interview Abbey! I had fun! 

Thanks for coming around, Heather!

Saturday, April 4, 2015

It's Saturdaaaayy

My internal clock woke me up at 5:00 saying: "ABBEY GET UP THERE'S AN ECLIPSE HAPPENING! GO SEE IF IT'S TOO CLOUDY TO SEE!" So I got up and it was, indeed, too cloudy. Or, maybe it wasn't. Maybe I just couldn't see because I'm short and there was a shed and a couple of evergreen trees in the way. Anyway, I went back to bed and curled up with the dog who—miraculously—stayed curled in my arms until my mom came in at 8:00 to say that she and my dad were going to church to plant flowers.
I intended to sleep only until nine, but the next time I opened my eyes it was 10:30. Oops. I got up, poured myself some cereal, and finished reading The Penderwicks on Gardam Street. 
Now, I'm typing this blog post in an attempt to put off an essay quiz as long as possible.

Don't tell my teacher that I'm showing you this picture. I'm not sure if it's technically allowed...

I have a big day in front of me and thought I'd take you along for the ride. Stay tuned for further updates...

11:57 AM: WOO HOO! 100% on my essay quiz! This is really quite amazing because my average score on these quizzes are 70%. I think this is only the third 100% that I've gotten.
At first I though there was seemingly no rhyme or reason why one week I would get 40% on a quiz and the next week I would get 80%. Now, I think I know the reason. I don't do well on the quizzes that ask vaguer questions; questions like "In this sentence, what is the author trying to convey?" "What is the most probable reason that the author wrote two sentences instead of combining them into one?" "What is the intended tone of this passage?" With these types of questions, I always end up second guessing myself and changing my answers (usually from the right answer to the wrong answer).
With more logical questions like, "What is Kennedy's main argument?" or "Which rhetorical mode did Broadhurst use to get his point across?" I do much better. I'm more confidant in my answers and I don't end up switching my answers so often and, therefore, get better scores.

I have several options of what to do next. Lunch? Shower? Finish 1984? I think I shall eat some chicken and then take a shower.

Chicken, and celery with cashew butter and raisens.

It's 5:00 and I've finished 1984. Let me say... huzzah! The book went downhill as it progressed, in my opinion (though I still like Orwell's writing style), and I shall tell you why in my review (which will be written sometime in the nearish future, hopefully). Now I can give my attention books I am infinitely more interested in:

This is why I shouldn't be allowed in the library. I'll probably end up reading only a few of these books... Although now that I've finished 1984, I feel fairly confidant that I can whiz through several of these books quickly. Young Adult books and books in the children's section tend to be quick reads for me, more so than books which are deemed "classics," which doesn't make sense to me because I enjoy reading classics more than I enjoy reading YA (though perhaps not children's fiction). Maybe because I don't feel like I have to concentrate on YA, whereas I WANT to concentrate on classics. Classics certainly stay with me longer than YA books.

After practicing piano, the family and I settled down for a nice game of Carcassonne.

And after that? Me and my dad finally buckled down and decorated the gingerbread house. Let's just call it an Easterbread house, shall we?

Side Daddy
Side Abbey. Someone strung my Christmas (um, Easter) lights crooked...
And now, after making a birthday card for a girl at church, I am finally starting on my Camp NaNoWriMo writing for the night. Let's see if I can get a thousand words before 11:00.

Until next time, live long and prosper.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

The 777 Challenge.

The rules of this challenge are to go to your current writing project, scroll or flip to the 7th page, go down to the 7th line, and then share the next 7 lines.
I have two writing projects at the moment: my fantasy novel and my Camp NaNoWriMo novel. Since I was tagged twice, I will take the opportunity to share seven lines from each!
Thank for tagging me Jenelle and DJ!

Fantasy story (this is technically eight lines, but I couldn't stop in the middle of a sentence, could I?):

[He was] just starting to lose his good form to sumptuous dinners [and] needed someone to compliment himself and give him an heir. She had to be beautiful, young, and ready to obey her husband. She had to be a princess, of course, and she had to be a little exciting. And what was more exciting than a rescued princess? reasoned King John. So, he poured over the Royal Magazine's pages about missing princesses and weighed his options.

Camp NaNoWriMo (for which I am writing a Daniel and Varina story. You can find out more about them in this post from 2013):

“You shouldn’t have put what off so long?” Varina asked.
“Telling you…” Daniel said.
“Telling me what?” Varina pressed.
Daniel sighed again. “Telling you that I have to go home. I have to go back to London.”
“My father is recalling me.”

As you can see, I have no qualms about stopping in the middle of a question. 
I tag whoever wants to do this tag.

Live long and prosper!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Nightstand Books—April

April. Otherwise known as Month of Crazy. My two online classes finish this month so I will be studying for exams, as well as my two AP tests and the second SAT test. For some crazy reason, I decided to do Camp NaNoWriMo. I'm going to a board game "convention" with my dad. Choir concerts are starting. I have three editing/beta-ing projects in various degrees off progress which need finishing, plus my own fantasy novel. And don't forget that senior recital to practice practice practice for!
And, I have a stack of books to read:

At the top is The Penderwicks on Gardam Street by Jeanne Birdsall. The fourth Penderwicks book came out last week and I devoured it in two days. I was feeling withdrawal symptoms, so I started to re-read the second book again, even though I re-read the series in December. They're just so good! I don't know how I will be able to wait another 3-5 years for the final book. I could have my own children to read this books to by then! O.o

Next is Five Complete Agatha Christie mysteries. I just finished The ABC Murders last night. If you aren't sure where to start with Agatha Christie (she does have about a hundred books), I would suggest starting with The ABC Murders. It was fantastic. I am berating myself for not seeing what was coming at the end. Next I'm going to read Cards on the Table which will be great because it has Ariadne Oliver in it. She's my favorite Agatha Christie character.
Other great Christie mysteries to start with are Murder on the Orient Express and And Then There Were None. The Mysterious Affair at Styles is also quite exciting. It was her first novel and introduces the character Hercule Poirot.

1984 by George Orwell. I don't know why I had it in my head that I would love this book. I started out enjoying it, but it's gone downhill. More in my review.
I'm reading 1984 for my reading challenge. It was supposed to be done in March but I'm having a hard time getting through it. Since April's book is The Hunger Games, and since I'm expecting it to be a short read, I figured it would be okay to finish 1984 in April. I'm nearly finished so I think I might plow through the rest over the weekend.

The Inimitable Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse. Every few days I pick this up and read a few pages. I don't actually consider myself reading it... more like browsing through it.

The Year of Reading Dangerously by Andy Miller. Isn't that a fantastic title? This is my nonfiction book for the month. Last month I was reading a book on the history of showtunes and Broadway by the fabulous William Zinsser, which I only got two chapters into. Instead, last month's nonfiction was Red Scarf Girl, a memoir of the Chinese Cultural Revolution. I was going to have the Broadway book be this month's nonfiction, but it sadly has to go back to the library. Instead, I will read The Year of Reading Dangerously (dun dun dun!), which is a book about a man's journey to read classic fiction that he missed reading earlier in life. It sounds like a great read!

And finally, A Tale of Time City by Diana Wynne Jones. This was on my pile last month and I still haven't read it. I think I will start it after I finish the Penderwicks book (and maybe after 1984).

Tomorrow I should be back with the 777 tag that has been circling blogger. I'm also hoping to have my reviews for both Twilight (last month's reading challenge book) and 1984 out sometime this month as well.

What are YOU reading?

Live long and prosper!