Although I have yet to mention it in this blog, I belong to a pretty snazzy book club. We’re a small group (there are only eight of us), but we have a great dynamic and have managed to keep it that way for three years now as of this month. Each month, one of us is in charge of picking about four to five books for the rest of our lot to vote on. The winning book is what we end up reading and then we get together near the end of the month to discuss the book (honestly, only for like five minutes and then the talk always turns to inappropriate banter on one topic or another for the rest of the night). There’s also almost always booze and delicious food. Needless to say, it’s always a good time. 🙂
This month is my turn to play hostess. I suggested a variety of books, and the winner was The Girl With All the Gifts by M.R. Carey. A few of the girls even had it on their TBR lists already. I’d had a good friend of mine recommend it to me months ago. She literally squealed with joy when I told her I was finally going to be reading it.
Although I am not all that far into the book yet, I can honestly say I like it quite a bit already. It doesn’t suffer from any sort of a slow start or info dump that you sometimes have to get through in even the best of books. The chapters are short and interesting, with different characters’ POVs. The characters have depth to them and feel real. Your initial assumptions about them do not define them as characters. They’re complex.
I don’t want to give much about the plot away since I think it is kind of fun going into it without much background info like I did. It’s a book that doesn’t feel the need to spoon feed you all the answers right away. You learn more about the characters, plot, and setting the further you go along reading it. It is a dystopian horror, I can tell you that much. The world has seen better days in it, and although the outlook of the future is grim, there is hope. But what if you had to do horrible things to hang on to that hope? Unethical things? It’s a story that forces its characters to set aside their humanity at times all in the hopes of saving humanity. And all while questioning what exactly even defines humanity to begin with.
If you’re interested in it, here is the book’s goodreads page so you can read a little more about it, but I do honestly think this is a book that is fun to go into with very little background information on it.
Vacation (aka- “work-ation”) is officially done and over with. I spent most of it working and doing paperwork/classes and being sick, but there were a few fun points sprinkled throughout it so I can’t complain too much.
My bestie made some amazing baked goods again today. Peanut butter fudge and banana bread. I am convinced she is trying to ensure everyone in the house one day has diabetes.
Got to have a (mostly) fun pizza/movie night with my boyfriend. I say “mostly” because this was the first night I was sick so that tends to put a damper on things. He was sweet and took care of me though, so that was nice. We watched Princess Mononoke (my first time seeing it). I really enjoyed the film, though I gotta say I was surprised by how much darker and more violent this one was than the other Studio Ghibli films I’ve seen. Not that that is a bad thing, just very surprising to say the least. I loved it though. I like darker animation in general though. Anyone who says cartoons are only for children clearly hasn’t ventured far into the world of animation.
I’d have to say that out of any of the Studio Ghibli movies I’ve seen so far, Princess Mononoke was by far the most mature. There has been a magical childlike quality in the others I’ve watched that I didn’t feel in this one but the magic is still definitely there. It’s just a different type of magic is all. The movie explores the relationship between humans and nature, focusing on the conflict of gods, beasts, and man (man, of course, being the biggest beast of them all) trying to share the same earth.
Well, I would write more but as I said at the start of this post: vacation has come to an end and I have to work in the morning. Off to bed now.
What do you do when your vacation from your current job becomes a “work-ation” for your new job? Squeeze the tiniest bit of free time you have into huddling over your laptop with a trusty energy drink (nectar of the writing gods) at your side and write your little heart out.
One of my co-workers recently pointed out that there were only 4 months until Christmas. She was promptly met with boos, hisses, and the laments of the rest of us.
I’ll admit, I used to be a total grinch, but my best friend made it her mission to show me the festive side of the holidays and not just the stressful side I had been experience all my adult life, and the past couple years I’ve been enjoying it more and more.
Well, it’s only August and I’ve already been looking for ideas for Christmas shopping. I actually found something today that I plan on getting my best friend (who is honestly probably my favorite person to shop for). Recently I also found one of my brother’s gifts at a craft tent during my town’s summer fest.
It might seem early, but I like to pick up things here and there when I find something that seems perfect for the people I am shopping for. Plus, it makes holiday shopping wayyyy less stressful the closer it gets to Christmas.
Another perk is having more time to relax and enjoy the fun things like decorating a tree, drinking hot cocoa and watching holiday movies, etc. So it may seem too soon to some, but I regret nothing!!
Well, today was a triumph when it came to brainstorming plot points at work. My current job is extremely monotonous so this affords my mind time to wander. I’m frequently called out for daydreaming or zoning out, but hey, I can still get my job done in a timely fashion while my brain is far off exploring a completely fictional world. And when I say “called out” it’s more in a “you must really be in the zone” sort of way rather than a “you’re in trouble” fashion.
This is actually my first attempt at writing a multiple POV story and while it presents some challenges it also is allowing me a lot of new opportunities that I never had in storytelling when the tale was always from the same character’s point of view. It’s keeping things fun and interesting for sure. 🙂
That said, it’s time to eat some ice cream and then write out those plot points I spent all day thinking about without the time to actually jot any of it down.
Writing is probably the most demanding and simultaneously rewarding hobby/interest/passion I have ever had. At times it manages to save my sanity, and then there are other times where it will frazzle me beyond my damn wits. I’ll tell you one thing, though: I wouldn’t give it up for anything. ❤
Well, I was going to post an update on how that pop cake I made turned out (the triple chocolate fudge / Rock & Rye Faygo combo), and then I remembered that it’s Throwback Thursday which means it’s time to post creative past endeavors. So I’m just gonna post both! 🙂
Onto the first order of business:
The chocolate/Rock & Rye cake turned out great, but the chocolate flavor of the cake definitely overpowered the Rock & Rye soda’s taste (which may or may not be a good thing). I really enjoy the flavor of Rock & Rye, but I was a little hesitant to mix it with chocolate. Turns out I had nothing to worry about since it just tastes like a plain old scrumptious chocolate cake (a very moist one at that!)
If you have no idea what I’m talking about when I mention “pop cakes” see my previous blog post “Let Them Eat Cake”:
I should have taken a pic of the cake when it was finished but I assure you it resembled most other chocolate cakes you have seen.
(ALSO: One of my co-workers just made the “spice cake / ginger ale” pop cake mentioned in that post and it was to die for. She ended up making it in a bundt cake pan and drizzling a homemade cinnamon vanilla glaze over the top. Would highly recommend.)
That said, now we can move right along to the second order of business: TBT!
A birthday cake from a few years back I made and decorated for my buddy, Jared. (Birthday is purposely misspelled as “burfday”.) He greatly enjoys Final Fantasy, so I made him a black mage cake.
Alice in Wonderland themed cookies I baked for a dark fairy tale themed Halloween party a few years ago. They were pumpkin spice cookies with cream cheese frosting. I’m pretty sure I accidentally baked them too long while running around like a chicken with its head cut off to get things ready for the party. Oh well! 😛