Saturday, July 30

In Depth Look into Miss Jean Louise

Miss Jean Louise’s ability to understand what we treasure is unique to the world.  In her Facebook bio she states:

“If you have one thing you hold dear, you have too many things. Just drop a few and see what breaks - those are what you needed. Pick them up and re-assemble them but not in the same order. You will enjoy them more.”

To the untrained eye, this sounds ludacrise and confusing. But I implore you to take a step back and listen to what she is actually saying.

We’ll start with the third point. ‘Those are what you needed.’ What breaks is what you hold most dear in life. If it wasn’t precious, special and important, it wouldn’t be fragile. Are your friendships so strong they won’t crack or break under pressure? The ones that could crack are often the ones we need the most. If your actions have no consequences to your friends, are they actually your friends?  Think it over.

Now, point 1. “If you have only one thing you hold dear, you have too many things.” When you look around you, if you can point to only one thing that’s important, one relationship or piece of clothing that you will do anything to keep sacred, there is a problem. Chances are, you have more than that, but there are so many you can’t see the forest through the trees.

This leads us to the forth point. “Pick them up and re-assemble them but not in the same order.” Madness you say? No, far from it. Instead, you have watched as something important slipped away from you and shattered into a million pieces. Yes, you could just build it up the same, but it would now be flawed and a constant reminder of what you lost. Instead, take it and rebuild it into something new. There may be pieces you thought important, that you now discover aren’t! Toss them away, keep what matters.

Point 5, “You will enjoy them more” Hot on the heels of reassembling those pieces is what you have afterward. Something new and fresh, made from something old and comforting. Perhaps a friendship that went through some ups and downs, before settling into a new element, or a vase that has a new life as a plate. How often did you use that vase? Be honest with yourself. Now, how often have you used the plate? Yes! There, right there is the answer!

Finally, we end of point 2. “Just drop a few and see what breaks…” No, Miss Jean Louise isn’t asking you to drop your friends, or break things off with them. Instead, its about the hard times we all go through and deal with. The difficulty that life throws at us. When you experience those, see what friends go through the fall with you, who breaks and who bounces away. If they break by your side, they were willing to take the fall. And from there, you have learned who matters to you and can rebuild into something stronger.

Life is about the breaks and cracks that happen. Miss Jean Louise points out how important it is to see beyond the cover art of life and dig into the actually book it presents. It is this aspect that inspires you to move forward through the curveballs, the missed chances, the pokemon that ran away and the rain drops that got through the umbrella. Maybe, those are the important moments that you would have missed out on, had you not listened to her and ‘dropped’ a few things.

Kristy C

Saturday, October 10

Interview: Lorna George

The lovely Lorna George has a book that's just been released, The Redwood Rebel. Below is an interview with her. Beyond that, you'll find info on how to go out and PICK UP her book!!! Which, btw, I demand you do. Now... Ok, after you read her interview. But then! Go out and grab it!

First off, I’ve preordered the book already and checked out the summery…

Thank you very much, I appreciate it.

… But tell me, what is it all about?

It circles mainly the story of Naomi, a prisoner and disgraced knight, as she tries to take back the country of Ffion from the evil Princess Adrienne.

Naomi finds herself accidentally married to the King of a neighbouring country, something neither of them are particularly happy about, all the while being hunted down by harpies, mercenaries, and Lord Cygnus, a dark sorcerer and Adrienne’s lover.

At its heart it’s very much a traditional fantasy story, good versus evil and all that, but I’d like to think I’ve put my own spin on it at the same time. I think Naomi’s character alone has given it a kick it might otherwise have been lacking.

What drew you to writing and why this story?

I suppose the best way to describe it is as a sort of love letter to the fantasy genre. I grew up reading stories about magic, dragons, princesses, and knights, and I loved them. I spent a lot of my childhood –and actually, my adult life, too- with my head up in the clouds, dreaming about adventures and magical lands, and when it first occurred to me to write them down? Well. That was it for me, really.

The main premise of The Redwood Rebel is that I took a lot of old fantasy tropes and a lot of pre-conceptions about character roles and had a little play with them. The dragon is in fact the “prince” (he’s actually a king, but you get what I mean), the princess is evil, the virgin sacrifice is the knight, but thinks the whole concept of virginity is stupid, and as the story progresses even these roles become questionable.

It was a lot of fun for me to write, so I really hope that enjoyment will be passed along to readers, too.

How many cover ideas did you go through?

Well, honestly the scene that’s depicted on the cover has been in my head since the very beginning. It’s such a pivotal moment in the books, and despite not mentioning this to my illustrator, Juliette Brocal, it was still the scene she picked to work with after I sent her the manuscript. She’s very clever that way, and it was wonderful to work with someone who was as enthusiastic about the work as me. That’s a lot rarer than you might think.
In the aftermath of civil war, the people of Ffion starve. The trade has dwindled, the harvest has failed, and all power belongs to the cruel and corrupt. Those few who could have fled the forest continent for other lands, but most are trapped by their poverty and love of their homeland, with little hope for change.

Far beneath Chloris Castle, the rebel Naomi has been incarcerated since the tyrannical Princess Adrienne stole the Redwood Throne. Starved of light and warmth for the past four years, she has had only her rage and determination to keep her going as she both fears and yearns for death to claim her at last.

In a violent sweep of fate, she is dragged back into the light once more, the Princess and her Councillor hoping to use her as a pawn against the powerful Dragon King of Koren. Faced with an almost impossible choice, Naomi strikes a deal with her captors that will set her free at last.

Unfortunately, she soon finds she has taken on much more than she bargained for.

Is there one book that inspired you more than any other?

I wouldn’t say one in particular. I wouldn’t be doing this without Terry Pratchett though, just because his work showed me that there was nothing to be embarrassed about for writing fantasy. There’s a lot of snobbery attached to the genre, unfortunately, and young, impressionable me was very nearly put off writing altogether for a long time. His work was instrumental in building up the great big shrug I give now when people try to look down at what I enjoy.


Oh dear, haha! Okay, you may fire when ready!

What’s your day look like?

Coffee first, then dog walking, then a bit of social media. By then I’m usually on my third coffee or so, and I’ll write until I hit my quota, or until it’s time to walk the dog again. Most evenings I read and fluff about on the internet, or if I still have words left in me I’ll sit up late and squeeze them out.

Three days a week, I have The Day Job, which is at a well-known stationery shop, and helps fund the writing. It also forces me out of the house to interact with other humans, which is possibly a good thing. Possibly.

…Well, it helps me write dialogue, at the very least!


It’s just me, The Man, and Pilot, our Sprocker Spaniel. I have family down in Dorset, my mum and sisters, who I’m very close to despite the distance, and my lovely niece and nephew, both of whom have Auntie Neenor wrapped very firmly around their little fingers.

How do you juggle your family and everything else?

It’s not very difficult in my situation. Pilot and The Man are both sufficiently house broken, so that’s nice. Sometimes I curse The Day Job, just because I would always rather be writing, but then payday comes and I remember why I like it.

Last, what’s your playlist?

I listen to a lot of different things, depending on my mood. I like Florence + The Machine, Nero, Lorde, Fall Out Boy, Sia, Taylor Swift, Lana Del Rey, Ed Sheeran, Kesha, Lady Gaga… At the moment I’m listening to a lot of Tobu, which always has a good rhythm for typing to!

Big thanks to Lorna George for stopping by. You can check out her links and more below.

Kristy C

Lorna George lives in a crooked little house in Norfolk with her husband, a lot of books, and a fifty year old begonia named Frank. She spends an inordinate amount of time dreaming up magic, dragons, and fearsome ladies, and has decided to try and make some sort of career from it by writing them down. She hopes this will give her a reasonable excuse when caught staring wistfully out of windows when she should be paying attention to the not-so-mystical "Real World". 

Since she has become increasingly vulgar with age, she writes predominately New Adult stories, and despite what a lot of people seem to think, she seriously doubts she will ever grow out of fantasy.  
She doesn't particularly want to.
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Illustrations by Juliette Brocal 

Friday, October 9

Review: Where are you now? Audio Book

I want to start this review off by telling you that I ADORE Mary Higgins Clark. Now, her books fall into a simple category...

Mystery - Modern - 'Least likely to do it, did it.'

That said, I enjoy her books. I love to figure out who the bad guy is.

Where are you now? however... Well....

Ugh, I disliked how it ended so much, I couldn't wait to move onto my next book.

Why? One simple reason.

At the end, after the MC had been badgered and hounded and damn near stalked, by the police... When we jump to the 'one year later' ending, she's working with them all 'Oh them? They're my friends now.'

I heard that and went 'What the FUCK?'

Sorry but the way they went after her was terrible. Not only that, but when they 'woke her up early' at one point to harass her, the cop was HAPPY about it.  As in, he liked that he was being difficult and annoying her and disturbing her already disturbed sleep.

Honestly it pissed me off. They weren't trying to find the killer. No, what they were doing was picking 2 people that 'worked' for them to be the bad guy, and going after them without a care in the world.

I'm trying not to give anything away here, but... Ugh, the ending bugged me. The cops were lousy and normally her books aren't like that. If anything, Ms. Clark shows a great deal of respect for police. But not this time.

Anywho, I'm working to read through most of her books right now. The ones I HAVEN'T read yet. And 90% of the time, I happen to have loved. Starting with 'Around The Town'.

Wednesday, September 30

Shopping with Stacy: Hastings on the South Hill

This week will be a bit different. Sandy's been sick and can't walk, I didn't feel like walking the Mall today. Friday I'll be setting up for the Spokane Ren Faire, so I'm using that as my 'workout' this week.

However, my good friend Sandy and I had our bi-monthly Writing & Coffee meet up at Hastings yesterday. Normally its at our Starbucks, but we thought that perhaps it might be nice to see if there's anyplace else nice out there.

Turns out, its not. While they have some of the BEST Chai I've ever had, its not the best place for us to write. Between noise and ADD distractions, we were lucky to get a couple hundred words written. I doubt it was over 1000 together!

Afterward, we wandered the store and I snapped some pictures of books I was interested in and general niftyness.

I LOVE this cover! Its just so creepy and awesome.
Even better, the inside of the book has the ORIGINAL drawings!

I judge books by their covers. This one looks interesting.

Again with the 'Hmmm, What's it about?'

I liked the idea of it. I'll have to look into what its actually about.

I want this to say 'Whoooo Arrrrrrrre Youuuuuuuuuu?'


They wouldn't fit me, but I love them.


Love Hawkeye ^^

Wanna curl up under Hulk's chest every night?

He smashed it!

:D Can't go wrong with the Guardians!

The cassette tape is awesome.


Its not me, but I also think its somehow cute...

Hehehehehehee. I want this.

Always nice to have up and perhaps SCARE the aforementioned small children.

As I'm sure you've noticed, I like Robin and Batman. You can win me over with Robin stuff. I mean, I'm yours. Its even better if you can get Tim Drake, but I don't mind Dick Grayson. Not a fan of Jason Todd or Damion Wayne. Stephanie wasn't all that bad.

Next week, we'll be back with our 'regularly scheduled Shopping Trips'

Kristy C

Monday, September 28


I felt a desire to post something... But I didn't know what to post.

Still, I'm going to post something. Even if its just random ramblings.

Today I felt pretty 'blah' and didn't both getting up out of bed until close to 10am. While I'd planned on walking to Rocket and back, but I had a Doctors Appt at 1:30 and since I'd started so late, and tend to rest for a while at the cafe, I knew it wouldn't work. Plus, it would be a waste of money.

Instead, I did some quick research and found a walk around Manito Park that sounded nice. It went around most of the sights and over to another park all together. Was supposed to be 2.4 miles, but when I added in a few other elements I think I added over a mile as well. Not that its a bad thing. More walking is good for me.

So, I walked, I took some photos and I enjoyed myself.  Afterward I went to PitaPit for lunch and that was fairly wonderful too.

Up next was my Doctors Appt, which I have every three months. We talk over my anxiety, depression, and health. Over all, she says I seem to be doing pretty good. Which makes me happy.

Just before going home, I instead went to a park and read a book. One I discovered, I'd already read.  I know because I skipped to the end and went 'Yep, I know it."

Took the book to a local Little Library and traded it out for something else.

I got home, made dinner [Turkey Taco's in a whole wheat shell.], we watched some Emergency and then, I put in Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit.

Not a bad day, if I do say so myself.

What about you? How was your day?

Kristy C