Saturday 31 October 2015

Foggy, Spooky Night

Merry Halloween everyone, the moon and the weather have combined to make the perfect Halloween where I live. I've actually got a story idea from tonight, not that I'm likely to use it any time soon. It was a foggy night and made driving in the country a nightmare.

I went to three Halloween Events this week. A horror movie showing where I saw most of Grave Encounters so now I know where that meme comes from and also V/H/S which was hilarious. I don't think it was meant to be as funny as we all found it. Hardly any of the short films had any real scares in them. It was one of those nudity for the sake of nudity ones.

In terms of horror films that's one of the worst things do. It's the thing that sinks down horror film to the Misogyny
levels of other Hollywood films. They have female protagonists that are left to deal with what evil that they have to fight. It's the one place where the audience is expecting a female point of view. Very few films work There is a whole argument in there about what that says about Society but I dropped out of Sociology. I want to film and write stuff that fixes that stuff.

My horror dream is making a female horror icon that's not the victim. There is the girl from the ring and 'Sleep Away Camp' franchise but 'The Ring' isn't that relevant any more and the latter just has issues at it's core (also not really thought as good).

The other vent was drinking whilst dressed up. Well, I wasn't drinking. Yeah, still don't know the appeal. Tonight, I went to a 4+ event to see a thing I sort of helped make in the summer. It seemed to be mostly recaps of the other films. My beautiful door opening is gone. I will never recover.

This week horror of reality is my sleep pattern is back to being whack and uni is stressfully. We need to do a presentation with each other. I could potentially get out of it, but there's whole not having the diagnosis. Screw having the actual word.

I got a letter for appointment to see if I'm magical mushroom. I'm sick of using the word and that was what came out. I usually censored the dumb shit I write when bored. I'm off to enjoyed the last of Halloween whilst I picked off the terrible job I did of my make-up this year. Cotton wool and liquid latex.

Wednesday 28 October 2015

Book Review: Frozen Charlotte by Alex Bell

We get it Sophie, you have the hots for your cousins.

We're waiting for you to come and play.  
Dunvegan School for Girls has been closed for many years. Converted into a family home, the teachers and students are long gone. But they left something behind…

Sophie arrives at the old schoolhouse to spend the summer with her cousins. Brooding Cameron with his scarred hand, strange Lillias with a fear of bones and Piper, who seems just a bit too good to be true. And then there’s her other cousin.

The girl with a room full of antique dolls. The girl that shouldn’t be there.

The girl that died.

This is another book in the Red Eye series and so far it's my favourite. Not just because it mostly takes place in Scotland and an isle of heritage importance to me (heritage is meaningless). This involves odd Victorian dolls with a matching folk song if that doesn't scream creepy then you have never seen an a doll or know the horror of Folk singers.

The chapters are headed by lyrics of the song Frozen Charlotte. This was interesting tactic as the song isn't creepy or really at all related to the dolls. It does involves two idiots dying but that's all. Okay, maybe some people would find that creepy.

The Protagonist Sophie is a likable character, surrounded by sympathetic characters. Some of the characters are almost horror archetypes, but they didn't feel that way when I was reading it. The horror is built up well, with a extreme start but Sophie's fear gradually grows and there is an effect to create tension.

This is also involves an old house in an isolated cliff that was once a bordering School (see, it checking off a lot from the Spooky List of Horror). Also Ouija board and at least one ghost. There is one small modernisation but I think it really works and it is realistic thing someone would do.

The ending does play more like a horror film punchline than a novel conclusion(, Slight Spoiler:it really reminds me of the start of Jurassic Part II). Especially, if anything it's a prequel this novel deserves, more than a sequel.

Overall, I give this book 4 out of 5 stars for Sealed Windows. Whilst not being that scary, the horror elements are done well and I buy the story.  Also I loved anything with evil dolls that tell you to do bad things. Update: I have now reviewed the prequel, Charlotte Says.

I got this for review off NetGalley and it' is published by Stripes Publishing. (Though, I also actually owned a copy for ages, this was getting review no matter what, but I'm at uni and I couldn't take every book I own and ebooks are handy for times when feel awkward taking a book and reading it, say the student union). 

Saturday 24 October 2015

Early Horrors

As of Monday, I have not been having a very good week, after having a weekend ruined of no internet. I could blame that on being missing online deadlines, but it’s not true. I never filmed the footage, I should have, I never wrote the words I needed, nor did I completely have no access to the internet. Though, it was terrible quality and only accessible through hanging out windows where its cold. This continued to Tuesday, till noon.

I ordered the special edition of the Welcome to Night Vale novel and on blink of its publishication, I got email saying there was issue with my order of book that had already arrived, but was in the same order as the Night Vale novel. When I called to find out what the issue was, I got a place I swear was called Kingies. Eventually, I got through to Waterstones (who else would I pre-order with?) and was cut off as the customer service person said it was not being published till…I called again and it was an issue with my payment which was another five minutes of me hanging out the window because I have no internet or landline. 

I also pointlessly emailed them in a bid to confirmed that I had miscalculated the publication of the new book. In the end, it was me being idiot and everything was fine in the end.

I am idiot with money.

Yarny is shutting down next month, just in time not to be there for NaNoWriMo. I probably won't do it, because of uni deadlines. Though, maybe I will because of uni deadlines and I'm feeling creatively stifled, because doing a writing course has been me feel limited.

Next Saturday is Halloween and you might get horror. It could be creative or just life horror. However, the most horrifying thing has already happened. Life without internet. 

Wednesday 21 October 2015

Book Review: Welcome to Night Vale by Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor

My mother doesn't like it when I mimic the Night Vale style.

Night Vale is a small desert town where all the conspiracy theories you've ever heard are actually true. It is here that the lives of two women, with two mysteries, will converge.

Nineteen-year-old Night Vale pawn shop owner Jackie Fierro is given a paper marked 'KING CITY' by a mysterious man in a tan jacket. She can't seem to get the paper to leave her hand, and no one who meets this man can remember anything about him. Jackie is determined to uncover the mystery of King City before she herself unravels.

Diane Crayton's son, Josh, is moody and also a shape shifter. And lately Diane's started to see her son's father everywhere she goes, looking the same as the day he left years earlier. Josh, looking different every time Diane sees him, shows a stronger and stronger interest in his estranged father, leading to a disaster Diane can see coming, even as she is helpless to prevent it.

Diane's search to reconnect with her son and Jackie's search for her former routine life collide as they find themselves coming back to two words: 'KING CITY'. It is King City that holds the key to both of their mysteries, and their futures . . . if they can ever find it.

 Do you like the Night Vale Podcast? Then you probably like this book. The thing is that this book is very much written in the the style of the podcast and I have no idea what someone whose not familiar with the podcast would think it about it. Compared to other books, it would be jarring I imagine.
 It's interesting to see this town from another point of view, other than Cecil's (or whoever somehow took over the local radio signal). He's still there as a character and radio presenter with radio updates through out the novel, with the latest happenings in Night Vale. It also made me realise how annoying Cecil's infatuation with Carlos can be. It's not that charming when written down.

With it not being tramped inside a radio booth, sending the latest intern to their report on what's happening, we get to see a lot of Night Vale fixtures for ourselves such as the library and surprisingly where our protagonists work.

The characters are appealing and very real people despite being a very surreal setting. They deal both with the strangeness of Night Vale and struggles we all have or can have, like raising children. I do like the dynamics between the most important characters to this story.

Overall, I gave this book four out of five stars for absentee fathers. This is the Welcome to the Night Vale Novel, it very much of an extension of the podcast. The story is contend within the novel, but reference things that have been going on in the podcast since it's start. The thing is I have no idea what someone who hasn't listen to the podcast would think of it. It doesn't really matter as the podcast is free and great listening. The novel is good reading and I got the same experience from it as I do with the podcast. You should definitely pick it up, if you regularly visit Night Vale or you just a tourist.

I got this for review off NetGalley and it was published by Orbit on 20th October 2015. 
(Though, tune in this Saturday to hear my story with my odd experience of pre-ordering the special edition of this novel).

Saturday 17 October 2015

Short Story: Burning Memories

Meh. I have nothing to say this week. Here's another short repost.

Burning Memories

I woke from the the fire alarms going off, It didn't register at first just what that meant. I jumped from the bed and ran to the door when my brain started to function. I open the door I could see the an orange light coming from down the stairs. I didn't pause to see how bad it was, I felt my way to my three-years old bedroom. She was fast a sleep. Kids, it amazing what they can sleep though. I wrapped her in her in the blanket at the end of the bed. I carried her to the top the stairs to see if it was possible to get past the fire. I could see the door with the keys still in the lock. I slowly walk down the stairs with a still sleeping Kate in my arms. I made it to the door safely and use the sleeve of my pyjama top to open the door. I ran out on the front yard. I stopped running when I got to the other side of the road. I sat down on the payment. I made sure Kate was aright, she was still sleeping. We were safe, that was all that matter... for now anyway

Fire, giver of light, healthy food but so much destruction. It could flatten forests in days. It destroys homes, life's and as I watch as all my hard work go up, quite literally, in flames, the tears leaked out of my eyes. It had took us years to turn that house into our perfect home. All of it was gone, every single thing was destroyed.

It had been where Katie had taken her first steps, her first everything. It had been where we had taken our first steps as adults together. Buying our first house together, it was where you had asked me to married you. God, you had almost set the house on fire that night. You burned the dinner and there was open flames everywhere. You asked me, as we were eating the chains take-out. I of course said yes but pause just to make you even more nervous. I probably should of realised you were up to something but I hadn't expected a thing. You sneak into the house the night before our wedding, you were meant to be staying over at your Best Man's flat instead he came over here and dragged you out of our bed. You still saying that you didn't need any luck after you had me as your wife. Saying traditions were stupid but you still banged my head carrying me over the threshold. Our last happy memories as a family happen in that house and now all I had left was memories and your eyes peaking out at me from our daughter.

Everything was a blur except the fire that night. I stayed as it burned without anything to stop it, I watched as the firemen tried to put out the fire that already destroyed our home. I didn't even leave to call them, it must of been one of the neighbours. I still sat there as the sun raise and the fire finally went out leaving nothing left but ash and an empty structure that had been our home. I wasn't even sure how long I sat there with Kate still wrapped in my arms. I don't think they even noticed us sitting there until it was all over.

"I think she in shock."

Shock, yes possible, most likely. I had lost everything but nothing really. I still had Katie and I had still had you. I would always have you, won't I?

Wednesday 14 October 2015

Book Review: Books That Changed the World by Andrew Taylor

A book about Books has never went so wrong.

Books That Changed the World tells the fascinating stories behind 50 books that, in ways great and small, have changed the course of human history. Andrew Taylor sets each text in its historical context and explores its wider influence and legacy.

Whether he's discussing the incandescent effect of The Qu'ran, the enduring influence of Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations, of the way in which Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe glavanized the anti-slavery movement, Taylor has written a stirring and informative testament to human ingenuity and endeavour. Ranging from The Iliad to Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, the Kama Sutra to Lady Chatterley's Lover, this is the ultimate, thought-provoking read for book-lovers everywhere.

I never actually finished reading this book. Mainly because wasn't what I was expecting and never managed to force myself to finish it on time. It includes non-fiction books which never enter my head when I requested it for review.

The selection was bit weird and I did not enjoy the type of information that was given to the Harry Potter part of the book. As a major fan it was not all interesting, nor do I agree with what was said in it.

Overall,I give this 2 out of 5 stars for dull data.  I did not find the information interesting nor did I like the writing of what I read. I was looking for more fictional and less the hard data books, the ones that would not obviously make a difference unless it was explained. Like obviously the medical and map books made a difference. Does that need to be explained? My point is I did not enjoy much so I waited over a year to review it and longer than that to post the review. It just wasn't for me.

I got this off Netgalley for review and from Quercus.

Saturday 10 October 2015

Overwhelmed Procrastinating

I have been editing lots of footages, but writing not so much. I'm watching Doctor Who two epsideos at a time. I'm currently on the first one and I watch the next the one live. A hour later or something.

Dear blog, I have something terrible to confess. I have nothing to write. I have random sentences, words to write. I am several lies that I have been telling since I was young and I'm trapped to tell until I die. However, I don't want to add anything and I have to write something for uni so I should focus on that.

I also want to read three books this weekend, which is basically only a Sunday now which is sad. They need to go back to the library and my life is so buzy. I am constantly fighting being overwhelmed with stuff I should be doing but also other people ain't doing it, so less concerning. Except, I want to be the best and I want to do everything to be the best. Finding the time to do nothing, but not reading. Why can't I procrastinating be slightly productive?

I have watched films. I have applied for one job and been immediately rejected. I somehow ended up being director for project without fight. I was expecting a fight about it? I'm filming it and not editing it, that's should be great as I hate editing (though satisfying and the rest is pointless without it). I'm starting to get tired again and had to pull myself out of bed. I need to be better. Though, no distractings next Monday, dinner out of Tuesday.

I still have this blasted cough, which brings me back to getting my lungs check out because of the whole childhood of asthma and lung infections. I've had it for over three weeks so according

I'm going to watch British Bake Off finally. Also knitting. I like knitting. Fareoff.

Wednesday 7 October 2015

Book Review: Witch Crag by Kate Cann

Tree Rat or Mad One do not seem like great nicknames to have.

Kita must make a choice: 
survive in a life she will hate
forever, or run away and almost
certainly die.

Death is a risk is willing to take.
But there's more to it than that...

Soon, Kita will find herself fighting
for the very enemy she was trying
to escape. 

This summary leaves out the important tidbit that this is a dystopia with a Society that has degenerated into sexist, joyless losers. It does have very slight fantasy element.  It also a standalone which is a nice to find in YA Dystopia especially as this book could have been dragged out into two, or a horrifying trilogy as they almost feels like two parts of this book.The length of this story was perfect.

Kita is a our protagonist who decides to escape with her friends from their home to the mysterious, possible deadly Witch Crag, through the forest and the waste lands of what use to be. It's intense adventure with Kita wondering where she belongs.

The characters were good. Kita is likable and her friendships were nice. The romances were good and realistic in their nature.

The plot and the characters worked well together. The world building was great and we were exposed to each part at good rate. It seemed like a real society.

Overall, I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars for Forbidden Herbs. I really enjoyed this novel, it was reading a saga without the time committed and would definitely recommend to other dystopia Lovers. 

Saturday 3 October 2015

Short Story: The Short Cut

I witness someone adding salt to salad and it was most the horrifying thing I have ever seen. I hate salt and even with the the knowledge that is a thing, it is terrible. Salt is disgusting.  This story was totally based on this.

The Short Cut
We were twenty minutes into the walk when I realise we couldn't have possible gone the right way. I didn't know how to get where we going, but we had just walked pasted something that only took five minutes to walk to. Yet I didn't say anything, I wasn't that enthusiastic about where we were going so getting hopelessly lost sounded more fun. I finally said something due to Bert wanting to go through a graveyard and it was now dark.

"It's too late now," I protest, as he jumps the wall instead of using the gate. I followed him glumly through the gate. "It was meant to start at five."

"We still have ten minutes," he says rushing forward. I half run to keep up with him. The graveyard is unkempt and full of leaves from the trees that frame it so I'm having to watch where I'm walking.

"Bert, lets just go home."

"That is where we going," he shouts stopping. I stood shocked, trying to grasping  what he was saying.

"They left us," I said finally. He turns around ignoring me.

"We can still make it," he says and starts running through graves.

I run after him, but lose sight of him quickly. Damn his long legs.  I stop and decide to go home. He can go where he ever damn wants.

Home. I can't believe he thinks of them as anything like a home.

I scan around the graveyard, trying to find my way out of there, realising I'm not sure which way we came. Damn Bert, who runs into a graveyard at night? Why the fuck did I follow him?

Family. I had enough of family. I pull my phone, hoping it magically has a signal. Nope. The GPS is too crappy to tell me where I am on a good day. I start walking, we can't have got to far from where we entered.

I'm getting a new phone and a new brother tomorrow. I sigh as neither is possible. Though, I could save up for a new mobile if I really wanted. Brothers on the other hand are something you're stuck with. But I didn't need to speak to him. Nor did I have to speak tor our grandparents. They had proved that in the last twenty years.

He was younger than me. Maybe that's why he was more forgiving. Four years was long time at his age. We still had each other, we didn't need them. I stop walking and look around again. It's getting darker and I can't see the wall yet. I probably shouldn't have left a fifteen year old running into darkness.

I try to follow the disturbed leaves. It's hard to see and I'm probably going the wrong way. I struggle to hear the traffic from the road, but despite it being rush hour, all I can hear is the sounds of birds. The hoot of a owl is a distinct sound. I'm fight my urge to freak out and just to run wildly.


I jump at my name being shouted, without thinking run towards it blindly. I run straight into a gravestone flip over it on to my back. I can't breath. The stars tingling in my eyes. I breath in and out breathes gently. I roll on to my stomach and push myself up.

I look around, hoping to see Bert. It's too dark to see farer than the headstone I ran into. I rub my hip that took the blunt of the force.

"Bert," I shout as loud as I can, which is not. I dragged myself in the direction of where I think my name had.

I keep calling Bert's name as I wander through the headstones. There is no way that this is a short cut. We should have just too the damn taxi they offered to pay for. Or better yet just refuse to go.

"BERT" I shout desperately.

"Veda?" Bert says from behind me. I must have got really turned around, to see him standing there. I dragged myself towards him. "What happen?" he meets.

"I ran into a gravestone," I say, trying to down play. "Are you okay?"

"I'm fine," he says looking around. He's lost too.

"Why did you shout my name like that then?" He looks confused.

"I never said your name till I heard you shout mine."

"Now, is not the time to be messing with me," I say angrily.

"I'm not, I thought you left." I look hard at him, he must be lying, but I can't be arsed to fight him on it.

"I was trying to. Do you know the way out of here?"  He nods at first, before shaking his head. I groaned.

"Why did you think this was short cut?"

"They said they were staying at the north-side of the graveyard." I stare at him blankly.

"There's only woods to the north of here." They either confused or messing with us. He looks awkwardly off to the centre.

"Let's just get out of here," I say no longer wanting to get out of this creepy arse place. 

"We're walk straight till we find a wall or a path," I say, feeling a lot calmer, now that I have Bert with me. We don't say anything and just listen to the sounds of the Owls hooting to each other. Bert stops suddenly. 

"What's the matter?" 

"There's a house," he says, looking to the right of us. I squirt my eyes but see nothing. 

"You're weren't meant to bring her," a male voice says from our left. I swing my head around to see, who I recognize as my uncle from old pictures. He's obviously older, but still young looking. A lot like mum before she got ill.

"You never said that," Bert says insolently

"You have been raised wrong, so you don't know that girls are useless..."

"Don't fill his head with that nonsense,"I interrupt. Mum had warned me about the family attitudes that one of the major reasons I didn't want to meet them as proud feminist. I grab Bert's hand.  Uncle Win smiles at us.

"You have been raised wrong too." I fill with rage. How dare he insult my dead mother, his sister like that.

"I'm certain I was raised better than you." His parents threw out a fifteen year for being pregnant. I pull Bert along, deciding that I have should have went with the parent role left with me, more than the supportive sister. 

 "He's need to be introduced to his powers," he shouted behind me. I stop and smiled. I turn around slowly and decide to break mum's rules just this one time. I push into myself, feeling my pain vanish, pull out the light I keep hidden most of the time.

"I'm working on it," I say, walking into the direction of the exit. I'm so used to life without my powers than I never even thought to use them to find my way out of here.

I'm just glad that it was just our creepy uncle waiting in the dark and maybe voice of someone too feminine to be either Bert or Uncle Vin. 

"My mother still missed you at the end," I say hoping those words stab him. None of the came with news she was dying and that should have been enough for Bert to stay away. Still, I feel slight resistant from him.

"Next time you can visit us," I say finally.


Yeah, that didn't go where I thought it was going. Maybe werewolves. Oh, well, I'm now off to do the writing I should be doing for class.