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‘Tis the Season

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I wrote this whole long post about my 2016 NaNoWriMo experience, but I let it sit for a day and then decided that I didn’t like it. So, I offer you this silly tidbit instead, along with my apologies for my twisted sense of humor.

My brother’s family is doing homemade Christmas gifts this year. I think that’s a lovely endeavor, but it does require advanced planning, and you can probably guess what sort of gifts I might give if I had to make them myself.

(My artisanal cat sweater would be very tasteful, mind you. Not that I would recommend tasting it.)

Whatever your traditions this holiday season, may you feel the love of God in your life and reflect that love upon others. A little kindness goes a long way.

Too Many Irons in the Fire

An olive tree, just because.

An olive tree, just because.

For a plethora of reasons, I’m taking a mental health week. I’m not crazy, but I have too many deadlines and commitments to cram into my (currently) limited time, and this is the endeavor that drew the short straw.

The Adventures of Average Everygirl will return next Monday. (Maybe, haha. Something will be back next Monday, at least.)

For your viewing pleasure instead, here is a picture of an olive tree. Because it’s peaceful and I like it.

Happy Leap Day, everyone!

 

Literary Influences: Lloyd Alexander

“Melancholy men, they say, are the most incisive humorists; by the same token, writers of fantasy must be, within their own frame of work, hardheaded realists. What appears gossamer is, underneath, solid as prestressed concrete. What seems so free in fantasy is often inventiveness of detail rather than complicated substructure. Elaboration — not improvisation.” ~Lloyd Alexander, “The Flat-Heeled Muse”

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Sometimes, you just have to curl up with a blanket and a nice stack of books.

When it comes to fantasy, everyone has a starter series, right? That first set of books that gives you a glimpse of worlds beyond, that whets your appetite and cultivates your imagination: the starter series sets the bar for every series that follows. Is it better? Is it worse? Does it have similar themes? Similar characters? Similar plots? Similar settings? Does it evoke that same sense of wonder, or a greater sense of wonder, or does it leave the acrid taste of disappointment in your mouth?

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Literary Influences: L.M. Montgomery

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The Essential L.M. Montgomery Personal Libary (plus Jane of Lantern Hill, as a bonus)

Cynicism taints almost every facet of my life.  This may seem like an odd confession to make at the start of a literary influences post—especially one that focuses on the eternally optimistic works of L.M. Montgomery—but I feel like it has to be said. I acquired my cynicism by degrees from a pretty young age. By the sixth grade, I was a smart-mouthed, sarcastic, socially isolated 11-year-old. My only reliable friends were books (and with little wonder, given my temperament).

That was the year I met Anne of Green Gables.

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Literary Influences: Thomas Hardy

"Thos. Hardy"  LOC, LC-DIG-ggbain-13585

“Thos. Hardy”
LOC, LC-DIG-ggbain-13585

Heaven forbid that any of Thomas Hardy’s characters should ever get a paper cut; they’d probably saw off the injured limb in response.

I feel kind of odd listing him as one of my literary influences. He’s more my template of “what not to do,” which is terrible, because he’s generally considered to be a good writer, and many of his works are counted among the classics. I’ll set the stage for my dislike, shall I?

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