Tuesday, February 28, 2012

"Writing is the best way to talk without being interrupted." - Jules Renard

Have you ever heard of Six-Word Memoirs? They are kinda cool! We were assigned to do some for English class, which I will be posting later.
The point of a six word memoir is to make a point using only six words. It is kind of self explanatory actually...

If you check out this site , it will give you some examples of six word memoirs.

Now, when I started to write my six word memoirs, I immediately though that it would be really hard. I am the kind of person who always writes more than is needed, and I couldn't do that! I had to keep myself to a limit of six words! After filling a page with many, many, many strange sentences, I finally started to really get what was going on. As I said, I will be posting them later, so you'll see some of the ones that I came up with!

Out of everything else, the main thing that I had trouble with was keeping to the limit of 6 words. I usually ended up with 8. However, writing these really helped me become better at coming up with ideas, and shortening my sentences. These six word memoirs really tested my patience, because when I had finally gotten down to few enough words, usually the sentence sounded off. It would end up sounding like something that someone who didn't speak English very well would say (that sounds awfully mean, but I don't mean it in a bad way!)

So at my teachers suggestion, I am setting a goal for my blog. I didn't want to set anything too high, because that would probably just discourage me from actually keeping it. So I chose the following: by one week from today, I want to have two full book reviews done. I need help choosing books though! I am going to my local library today--- hopefully that will help!

Any suggestions for books to read? Seriously. I need help. The last time I went to the library I got out 10 books, and liked only 2 of them...

On the other had, while I finish up my six word memoirs, try some of your own! Post them in a comment or shoot me an e-mail if you want me to read them!


“And oh I want so much to sing, I tell myself no. But it is so hard to keep from singing.” - Donna Jo Napoli

Hush by Donna Jo Napoli

From the cover:

Melorka is a princess, the first daughter of a magnificent kingdom in mediaeval Ireland - but all this is lost the day she is kidnapped and taken aboard a marauding slave ship. Thrown into a world that she has never known, alongside people that her former country's laws regarded as less than human. Melorka is forced to learn quickly how to survive. Taking a vow of silence, however, she finds herself an object of fascination to her captors and masters, and soon realizes that any power, no matter how little, can make a difference.

Now, tell me if I am wrong, but doesn't that sound interesting??
I discovered (by reading the rest of the dust jacket) that the idea for "Hush" came from an ancient Icelandic saga. I think that this is really cool, because if someone had heard said saga, they could then find this book and have a way that the saga could've potentially ended.

If you click here, you can read more about the Icelandic saga about Melorka.

Now onto my thoughts on this book.,

I decided to colour-code my stickie notes!

So the different sections of stickie notes this time were:

Comments (Orange) : 5
Questions (Pink) : 3
Predictions (Green) : 3
Total :  11

Slightly less than last time, huh?

Now onto my commentation! (Is commentation a word...?)

My first comment that I had in this book was from page 6. It was something that I found strange, and slightly disgusting...

" Really?? Nasty... " That's why I picked the weld myself rather than sending a slave boy to the field. And that's why I urinated on my new tunic myself. My own urine not only holds the colour fast, but ensures that the spirit in the colour obeys me." " When  I read that- I quite literally did a double take. I stopped, made an interesting sound (something along the lines of "humh?") and my eyes jumped back to the top of the page and read it again, but sure enough, it actually said that! I was so taken aback that I did some googling. Although I didn't find anything regarding this exactly, I did however discover some other interesting facts. If you so desire, you can check out this site: http://www.pepysdiary.com/p/5345.php

Below is another comment, this one from later on in the book...
" Oh no! Melorka will be heartbroken. "It's Brigid. Her eyes are bright. She jerks her head once, then runs and jumps up and over the side of the ship. Before I can react, one of the youths jumps after her." " Now, I don't want to give anything away from the book - just in case you want to read it. I will however, say this much... when I was reading this book, I was on the brink of tears for probably close to 50% of the time. Donna Jo Napoli has done an excellent job of stabbing you right to the heart in the book.

Now, after that sad note, onto the questions I had whilst reading.

"What will he do with her? Why is she so important? "This crew won't dare touch me with Clay Man looking on. He protects me. How far, I wonder. I'm already untying the gag of the third new child. Then the fourth." " Although this is only a small snippet of what made me wonder why Melorka is so important, it was the easiest to get a sense of what is happening. Melorka uses her power over Clay Man to help keep others safe, but I am curious as to why she has this power. What is Clay Man planning to do with her?

The second question I had was just about something that I read that I really didn't understand.

"What is ford combat? - Google. " 'On the fourth day, Aedan chooses...' Ford combat, I say inside my head. '... ford combat' says Crazy Woman." " As you saw, I made a note to myself to google what ford combat was. After searching through countless articles on Google about the company Ford, I finally changed my search to "Ford Combat Fighting Techniques" and hit a bulls eye. I discovered a site that had the same story that "crazy woman" was telling. It however, still didn't tell me what I wanted to know. The story (found here) is really interesting though!

Finally, my predictions!

Volia! Here is the first one that I stickied.

"Maybe she'll be stolen too? Then wish that she had asked Brogan? "Where was Brogan stolen from originally? I know he was a child when it happened. He told me once he was part of a group of children and women whisked from a hillock. That's how he said it - whisked. I didn't ask him anything then. Does he miss his mother? Does he remember his life before he was a slave?" " Now I find that this one pretty much explains itself. Since I don't want to give anything away, I am not going to talk about the fact of whether I was right or wrong... you'll just have to find out!!

My other couple predictions were things that made sense at 11 o'clock at night when I couldn't put the book down, but not so much now...

So stickie note wise, I am done. However, I do have one last comment.

While for the most part I found this book incredibly good (considering I was up at 11:00 PM reading it...) there was one thing that really irritated me.

THE ENDING!!! I found that I got to the end of the book and was expecting another 100 pages, if not more. It was a rather disappointing ending to me, an avid reader. But however, do NOT let that stop you from reading this book!!


Thursday, February 23, 2012

"Reading without reflecting is like eating without digesting." - Edmund Burke

Morning All!

How are you on this beautiful Thursday morning? I am sitting a table, typing on a laptop with a mug of hot apple cider beside me. My life is sweet.

Anyhoo - now to the point of this post.

My English teacher is really awesome this semester (so you will be hearing a lot about her!) She was talking the other day and said that we should do a reflection on writing/other forms of creativity. On the writing we do on blogs, or the doodles, drawings, stuff we have put in our WRNs (Writing, Reading Notebooks), and all sorts of other stuff. So of course, I am going to do that!

First off, I am happy that I am in this course, it has somewhat "forced" me to maintain my blog. My blog was something that I kept in the back of my mind. I kept saying to myself "I'll get back to it, I just need to have time. I need a better book to review" I just kept making excuses. But now, this will be my 5th post in February he same number that I had in 2011! Since you know... I didn't post from August until 2 weeks ago... I really love keeping up my blog. It gives me a chance to put my opinion out there, and even sometimes get feedback from people that I don't necessarily know.

My doodles on the other hand aren't my favourite thing. I am not that great at drawing and they weren't really the best things that I have ever done. I am definitely not an artist. (At least, not one that works with pencils or paint. Unless you want some interesting abstract paintings done.) I did however enjoy the "listography" doodle much more than the "digital footprint" doodle. It was more interesting and easier, because I have a lot of favourite books. Most of those books were also easy to come up with a doodle for.

Out of everything we have done so far this semester in Creative Writing, I most certainly have enjoyed the blogging the most. As I mentioned earlier, I love keeping up with my blog, which I never really did before. I have also so far like the fact that every Friday in class is a reading class. That is the best kind of class to me, because reading is the best thing ever in my opinion.

If I were to choose, I think that I would really like to have a chance to just do "creative writing" be given a broad topic and just let to write our own short story around that topic. That is something that I would find really interesting to do.

Ah well. You never know what might happen!!


OH! This is a picture that has been circling around the internet, and I just really love it.

So true, isn't it?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

My "life" in doodles

So my English teacher has assigned us an assignment (duh), and it has to do with doodling! I personally think that that is pretty awesome. An example of what a doodle might look like is right here.
Then two days ago, we were assigned another doodle to do. This one was to be a listography. By that I mean that we were given a page with different ideas of what to list on it. Things like "List the names of all the pets you've ever owned", and "List your favourite vacation spots". Being the proud bookworm I am, I chose the one that said "List your favourite books". So I did! In doodle form....

Volia! Here is my Digital Footprint Doodle! (DFD?)

Volia! (Again!) This one is my Listography doodle. Can you guess all of the books?

In case you couldn't guess the books, I'll list the ones that are represented.

Make Way for Ducklings
The Princess Bride
Hunger Games
Harry Potter
The Help
Pixie Tricks

I have a lot more favourite books, but those are the ones that I could think of a way to draw them! :)

I'll post again soon


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

“Every minute you spend with someone gives them a part of your life and takes part of theirs.”


Matched by Allie Condie

The Synopsis from dust cover:
In the society, officials decide. Who you love. Where you work. When you die. Cassia has always trusted their choice. It's hardly any price to pay for a long life, the perfect job, the ideal mate. So when her best friend appears on the Matching screen, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is the one... until she sees another face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. Now Cassia is faced with impossible choices: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she's ever known and a path no one else has ever dared to follow - between perfection and passion.
When I saw the cover for Allie Condie's Matched I was instantly drawn to it. The cover is simple and yet intriguing. I now know, after reading the book that the cover was the perfect choice, since in the one picture it interests and yet confuses people.  
I found that that is what this book did to me. Though Allie Condie has excellent writing skills, the story line jumped all around. I am one of those people that absolutely love dystopian societies. For instance, I already did a review on Veronica Roth`s Divergent, and Suzanne Collin`s The Hunger Games. However, what was different about those books was that you could actually understand what was happening. With Matched, I found myself confused within the first two pages.
To show you just how confused I was, I am going to show you a little system that my English teacher suggested using. When you are reading a book, use stickie notes to make notes in the book. Keep them along three concepts. Questions, Predictions, and Comments
In the first 100 pages of Matched, these were the stickies I had:
Comments: 5
Predictions: 1
Questions: 15
Total: 21!!

Some of the comments included things like:
"Allie Condie got right to the point of the title.”I've waited so long for my Match Banquet. Where I'll see, for the first time, the face of the boy who will be my Match." " I admire the fact that Allie Condie didn't waste any time on getting to the point, although, it didn't explain really what the Match Banquet is, it at least helped explain the title.
A second comment I had was
"Why are these 'tablets' so important?” 'Someone has lost their tablet container. Please, stand completely still and do not speak until we locate it.' Everyone stops immediately. I hear the clatter of dice and a soft thud as someone, perhaps Xander, puts down a game piece. Then all is quiet. No one moves. A lost container is a serious matter." " When I read this part of Matched, I was confused. Why are "tablets" so important? We learn a little later that there are 3 tablets people carry, they are distributed by officials, and are there to help the citizens. I still do not understand the reason to carry these tablets, even after finishing the novel.
The one and only prediction I had was from page 18. The quote is
"The tiny feeling of loss deep inside my heart surprises me. My peers will spend the next few days swooning over pictures of their Matches, bragging about them during meal hour at school, waiting for more and more bits of information to be revealed. Anticipating their first meeting, their second meeting and so on. That mystery does not exist for Xander and me. I won't wonder what he is like or daydream about our first meeting."
When I read this, I immediately thought "This is going to backfire" by that I meant Xander and Cassia's match. I just had a sneaking suspicion that something was going to happen. Cassia was going to realize that they didn't love each other, or something along that line. I felt that the plot seemed to lie itself out in front of me after that, it seems to be a typical YA story line.
Finally, some of my questions!
First question that I had was on page 6.
"What are these tablets for? " Now, I use it to hold the three emergency tablets that everyone carries -- one green, one blue, one red." " That information about the tablets was just tossed in, no former information. It threw me off, because it seemed so out there. Tablets? Do they keep you alive? A red tablet, that seems to advertise death.
A second question I had was a little later on. I did have other questions (many other) in-between, but this one seemed really strange.
“Die when 80?? WHAT?! "Today is Sunday. Grandfather's eightieth birthday, so tonight he will die." " That statement really threw me off. Why would someone die at age 80? What happened to people like my Great Aunt who is 107? One reason it really shocked me was because I realized that that would mean that I wouldn't have my Grampa (no, that isn't spelt wrong. Well it kind of is, but that is how I spell it. Just like I spell "Grandma" Gramma.) right now. He would be dead, since he is 88 or 89 (I cannot remember).

The last question I will comment on is from even later in the book.
"Why does everything matter so much in the society?? " I jump up. I tense my muscles and spring at just the right time and I hit the tracker running. Pound. Pound. Pound pound pound. My knees and elbows stream blood and I have tears in my eyes, but I am still going. The plainclothes will hide my wounds tomorrow and no one will ever know that I fell. No one will ever know what happened until it is too late." This passage showed me that the officials in the society have everyone under really tight lock and key. If someone might get in trouble for falling off a tracker (I assume that this is like a treadmill) then something is seriously wrong with this society. It irritates me that I couldn't mess up while exercising, because everybody does normally, but to have that threat of getting in trouble hanging over me, it would make it even worse.

All in all, this book definitely wasn't my favourite. It was confusing all the way through, and the story line jumped around all over the place. The only part of the story that I actually genuinely liked was the quality of writing itself. The main thing that I found irritating about this book is that the ending made me really want to read the next in the series. When it is a book like this one, that I found confusing, I don't always feel like reading a sequel, because it will probably be just as confusing. In this case, when I realized that I now feel a need to find out what happens next, that really annoyed me.



Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Deep in the meadow, under the willow

Alright, so here is an interesting idea of mine. I am going to badly draw one of my favourite scenes from a book and add them to my blog.... the result is here:

Here is the place where I love you.

That scene is from Suzanne Collin's "The Hunger Games". This has become one of my favourite series as I have read and re-read the books. This scene has always stuck with me because it is a time that Katniss' true character starts to shine out.
Rue has just been caught in a net and then struck by a spear. When Katniss gets to her, Rue's dying request is that Katniss sing for her. I find this scene to be very touching.

The small mockingjay in the lower right hand corner represents all of the mocking jays that take up Katniss' song to Rue after she finishes singing.

So. How bad was that drawing? Actually, that sadly is one of my better ones. I just cannot seem to draw people!

What are some of your favourite scenes? Maybe I'll try and draw some of those!

Monday, February 13, 2012

You Start Thinking Anything Is Possible if You've Got Enough Nerve

Those are words written by one of the modern time's great writers. J.K. Rowling. What she wrote inspired me to attempt something completley out of  my comfort range.

Changing my blog.


I am just kidding. Mostly. Don't worry, my book reviews will be coming even more often now (You know... more than once every 5 months...) but I am also going to add in other things. Maybe an interview with people, some of my own writing. All sorts of things. If anyone has any ideas for me of what to do, leave a comment, or shoot me an e-mail at

First post shall be coming momentarily!