My Two Cents: Tauriel is only part of the problem…

I’m a little behind on my Hobbit movie watching, so I just watched The Desolation of Smaug and met the character, Tauriel.

I like Tauriel – what woman in her right mind doesn’t like a beautiful kick-ass role model to look up to?  And as a redhead myself, I’m even more partial.  BUT, she has NO place in this story.

Why was she added?  Presumably so the Hobbit movies would be more PC in a modern age.  So what does Hollywood do?  They throw in ONE female character – who doesn’t belong – to show how embracing and feminist they are.

Tauriel is not a feminist – or feminist sympathizer – creation.  She is nothing more than a symbol of sexism trying too hard.

Now, I don’t consider myself a feminist.  Frankly, that term has too many negative, man-hating connotations to it.  (I’m sure somewhere it is still used in the pure sense, but in my personal experience it now has nothing to do with equality).

That being said, had The Hobbit movie people really wanted to show how “modern” they were, all they had to do was mix the elves.  Some mixture of men and women fighting together.

As far as I recall, Tolkien did not specifically say that all the elves in every scene in his books (apart from Galadriel and Arwen) were men…that is an assumption.  Therefore, why can we not assume that there were women warriors alongside the men.  After all, the elves seemed to be pretty progressive.

Only that unspoken addition would have shown how modern they are…

Dear Hollywood: if you want to write your own stories, go ahead!  But stop it with the piggy-backing on already proven stories.

P.S. I would love to see a story about Bella Donna Took…she may just be the female character you’re looking for…

A Tab Called “Demon Digest”

A Tab Called “Demon Digest”

Yesterday, I had a very productive day writing out background information for my characters and some story-world details, I even got over the naming-hump (thanks, in part, to my husband).  Still a lot to do, but I feel pretty great about it.

Earlier in the week, I decided to try and visualize aspects of my book and series and ended up drawing a banner for the series which I’ve decided to call Demon Digest:


I also drew a picture of the main character, Alio, from A Twist of Fates:

Alio, the Fate, is a part of the same series in development.  She is the lead character in my NaNoWriMo novel "A Twist of Fates", which is also the first novel in the series.

Oddly enough, when I was writing the story I couldn’t quite visualize her..

At any rate, I’ve added both of these images to the new tab “Demon Digest” (formerly entitled Flights of Fantasy), along with a couple of other pictures of what some of my characters may look like.

I will be updating the new tab whenever I’ve got something to add.  I’m not much of a drawing artist, but with practice hopefully that, too, will improve.

Happy editing!

Pain in the “A”!

The editing process has officially begun!

My NaNoWriMo novel, A Twist of Fates, is just beginning the exciting adventure of editing.  As I have mentioned, when I started writing this novel I did so with little more than an idea, so I wouldn’t get bogged down in the details.

And so now I’m starting by going backward.

Before I even open my novel for it’s first read through, I’ve decided to start by writing out the background details, character descriptions, etc. in order to have tangible details to add, and ideas for better pictorial description.

So here’s the thing – there’s always a ‘thing’ – some of what I’m missing in my original draft are names for characters. Names are fun, right?

Sure…if you don’t put an ‘a’ at the end of every single one of them!

Now, I am Canadian, so perhaps there’s a little more leeway in my excessive use of ‘eh’, but at some point it just looks like I haven’t tried hard enough.  For some reason, almost every fantasy name sounds better with an ‘a’ at the end.  It’s like the perfect ending to a beautiful song…but now the composer is stealing from himself and it sounds just a little bit too familiar to everyone else…  *cough* John Williams *cough*

Sigh, a writer’s lot I suppose.  Now I’m off to tackle this mole-hill… after all, it is the mountain that awaits!

Meditation: 2nd Attempt

A few years ago, I was back home in Toronto and I was out walking with my husband.  He decided he wanted to go find the shoe tree that was along our route down by the Humber River.  At that particular moment, I didn’t much feel like wandering through the brush, so I opted to sit by the river instead.

As I sat there alone listening to the river and the gentle breeze I simply breathed consciously.  It was a temperate summer day and was very comfortable.  The clean air filled me and surrounded me.  I became so caught up in nothingness that I managed to attract a lovely blue damselfly who chose me as his/her perch.  It landed right on my left hand and seemingly stared at me for a long while.

It was a very peaceful moment that I’ve been missing for some time.


Recently, I’ve been gearing up to start editing my book from NaNoWriMo and have felt the need to shut down the constant assault of thought.

Now it’s near impossible to get pure silence (or a nature-infused one) around here.  There’s a car wash that moved in next door, ticking clocks, dogs barking, stomping elephantine neighbours upstairs, and the radiator hissing intermittently.  So, constant noise.

But despite all that I gave meditation a go today.

I set an alarm for 5 minutes as a friend of mine suggested and just breathed.

The result?

Well, the first two minutes seemed to go by no problem without thought,  then the waves began.  I could no longer shut out the tick-tock of the clock.  But I brought it back and focussed on my breathing…

I wonder how people manage this regularly with a stuffed nose?  Stop it, back to breathing.

*Tamagotchi goes off.*  Stop it, back to breathing.

*Dog starts barking next door.*  Oh for crying out loud!  Stop it, back to breathing.

You know, I could write a blog about this…  Stop it, back to breathing.

I wonder how much longer.  Stop it, back to breathing.

But who gives a rat’s arse about me trying to meditate, I don’t want to seem like one of ‘those people.’  Stop it, back to breathing.


*Timer goes off.*  Hmm, I guess we’re done.

Was peace of mind achieved… not so much.  But at least it was comical.

And HEY LOOK, I’m writing!  Mission accomplished.

Happy Sunday!!


Photo Credit: Common Blue Damselfly

And now for something completely different!

Well, not completely different, but fun nonetheless…

A couple of weekends ago was the 40th Annual Science Fiction Marathon at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.

As it was such an auspicious occasion, an extra-special prize was raffled off – the opportunity to stomp around like Godzilla on university buildings from 40 years ago that were no longer in existence (or had changed in some key aspects rendering them almost unrecognizable).

My husband, being the faculty advisor for the student organization, took it upon himself to build those defunct buildings.  The only stipulation was that the winner had to become the dreaded Godzilla.  For the 2 weeks worth of work on the selected buildings it was imperative the winner ham-it-up.  Hilarity ensued…enjoy!

Reading Jar 2014

At the beginning of 2014, I started a Book Jar – for every book I finished reading I would write down the title and author on a different coloured post-it note (I have quite a little stockpile of unused notes) and put it in the jar so I could go back and physically see how many books I read in the year (without leaving an unruly pile of books in the middle of the room).  I’m sure I picked up the idea from somewhere online.

I have to say it was actually a lot of fun!  I didn’t read as many books as I would have liked, but typically nowadays I only really read at night just before bed – which sometimes means not for very long, or not at all depending on the day.  But nonetheless, a cool exercise.


Last year I apparently read 35 books total.  I had read somewhere that the average person reads about 50 books a year and I wanted to see how close I was to that average – admittedly, not as close as I’d like, but still I feel pretty good about it.  So good in fact that I’m challenging myself this year to beat 35.

What am I going to do with the post-its, you ask.  I’m planning on making some sort of crafty art project out of them – haven’t decided on how it’s going to work yet, but I’m definitely not going to waste the opportunity to make it even more fun 🙂

And I’m already amassing reads for 2015!  Bring it on, Book worms!

MyReads 2015