Posted in Uncategorized on February 26, 2011 by Becka

Life has been crazy.

And yet life hasn’t moved.

I’m still not in school (but I’m enrolling soon). (Promise!)

I still have those two close friends up here in the Pacific Northwest.

And I’m working the same job I’ve had for the last 7 months. Yay me!

But then some things haven’t been so great. Or, at least, devastating to my still, glossy lake of a life.

I slept with one of my brother’s friends. His best friend, actually. A guy I’ve known for nearly half my life (that’s eleven years, for those who don’t know), and it was great. But now I’m having thoughts about it, and that’s not good for a variety of reasons.

New books: Karen Marie Moning’s Shadowfever came out this year (which I’m reading) and Kim Harrison’s Pale Demon (which I just finished).

I’m also getting into the Artemis Fowl series, although I’ve only read the first three so far. Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series- I’ve read the first four volumes of… and that’s it as far as series go, I think.

I’m also currently reading Libba Bray’s  A Great and Terrible Beauty, which is really good. I have Going Bovine for when I finish it. And I’m going to give the Anita Blake series another chance by starting at the beginning (instead of trying out a book from the most recent releases in the series, which contain the Ardeur which most critiques I’ve heard/read called it a Deus Ex Machina. I’m hoping from starting at the beginning I can have a clear and open mind toward the series.

Other than that… I read a biography on Einstein, a memoir on eating disorders, The Doors of Perception by Aldous Huxley, as well as Brave New World. The Time Machine by HG Wells, which I very much enjoyed. And my absolute favorite read from last year was The Goats by Brock Cole.

steady footing

Posted in Uncategorized on July 24, 2010 by Becka

I’m in Washington again. I have a job here, and get to go to church twice a week. There’s a coffee place in downtown Everett that has poetry readings on Thursday nights. Jennings Park has live music on Fridays, and a movie on a huge inflatable screen on Saturdays. I’ve had contact with two of my friends from way back in the day (we’re talking ten years ago) who I try to hang out with whenever I can. And there are boys, of course.

Intro-Reality Crisis

Posted in Uncategorized on April 21, 2010 by Becka

I’ll be turning 22 on the 25th of April (this upcoming Sunday), and I feel like I’ve  done a lot with my life but still haven’t accomplished anything.

I have three years of college under my belt, but zero degrees. I’ve lived in Southern California, Washington State, Florida and currently reside in Houston Texas… but I’ve never really rooted myself anywhere and called it home.

I’ve traveled all over North America and parts of Europe, but I’ve never recorded any of it in a journal. I’ve never had a diary to regularly document my thoughts (wordpress and livejournal do not count).

My biggest disappointment is that I’ve never finished a book. And here I was, all my life, expecting to be published by 18. Use the money to further my career and pay for college. That didn’t really happen. I’m still hopeful, but I’ve come to that point where I realize I’m so far behind schedule.

I can play the Villain…

Posted in Uncategorized on April 18, 2010 by Becka

“… because it makes you the good guy.”

Villains make the story- – for me at least. A good villain defines a hero. Some of my favorites are Frollo from The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty, but those are D*sney so let’s get to the meat:

Caster Troy (as played by Nicolas Cage and John Travolta), from Face/Off.

Hexxus (as voiced by Tim Curry), from FernGully: The Last Rainforest.

Lord Rahl, from The Wizard’s First Rule by Terry Goodkind.

The Wicked Witch of the West, from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L Frank Baum.

George- – Sheriff of Nottingham (as played by Alan Rickman), from Robin Hood.

Ilithyia (as played by Viva Bianca), from Spartacus: Blood and Sand.

Vaako (as played by Karl Urban), from The Chronicles of Riddick.

tear jerkers

Posted in Uncategorized on April 15, 2010 by Becka

I’m going to have this post be about stories that make (or have made) me cry. For the most part, this will probably be books and a couple movies, however there may be the occasional song put in (because poetry- well done- creates a story, and songs are poems set to music).

The Shawshank Redemption, story by Stephen King. In a word: Brooks. The bit in the movie where we follow him through the outside as he writes a letter to send the guys in prison, ending with him hanging himself… ugh, I cry like a pathetic mess EVERY… SINGLE… TIME. It could be the only scene I watch in the film and I still cry.

Animal Farm by George Orwell. I think this was the first book to ever make me cry, and it jarred me. I don’t remember the character’s name, but the horse that worked and worked until his legs snapped… oh man. When he was sent to the slaughterhouse because the pigs couldn’t use him anymore, my heart was broken. This book took me about an hour to read, and for the last ten minutes of that story I sobbed like a baby.

A Fistful of Charms by Kim Harrison. Peter’s death scene. Haha, I actually acted out Rachel’s lines while I was reading it with tears streaming down my cheeks. I got so into that scene!

For A Few Demons More by Kim Harrison. When Rachel discovers she’s too late to save Kisten, believes Ivy and Jenks to be dead, and destroys the relic. I cried the first time. Now, I just think it’s a kick ass scene.

Petals On The Wind by VC Andrews. Technically, this should be all the three books concerning Catherine and Christopher Dollanganger, but that boy tugs on my heartstrings. This is “especially” in Petals On The Wind. Since he has to deal with Cathy choosing Julian, then Bart, and then the doctor before finally settling for Chris. OUCH!

Pay It Forward directed by Mimi Leder. Kevin Spacey’s monologue where he tells the story of how he received his burns. The entire scene actually. Wow.

Lilac Wine performed by Jeff Buckley. “I feel unready for my love…” (sigh)

Whiskey Lullaby performed by Brad Paisley. I was raised around recovered alcoholics and addicts. This song strikes a chord with me on that note alone.

I think that’s it. I may add more as time passes.

reader’s gibberish

Posted in Uncategorized on April 14, 2010 by Becka

Hold the phone! Stop the obsessive multiple book reading habit – – I have the Story Structure Architect by Victoria Lynn Schmidt, Ph. D.

My best friend Judy (quick disclaimer: I have two bests, and a best-est friend – Judy, Stephanie and finally Michelle) bought this book approximately a year ago and we used it a lot for our workshops on Riah, previously titled Harlequin or our HQ Workshops. So I searched B&N a week or two ago for this title and I’ve had it at my side ever since. When I go to job interviews and they force you to wait in the main room, I pull this lovely little blue book out and “educate” myself. :)

Okay, rant time:

I still don’t have Black Magic Sanction! And I say “still” even though the book was only release a month and a half ago, because Kim hasn’t really talked about the paperback release. I’m okay with waiting (since I did that scorned by booksellers ‘reading-first-hundred-something-pages-in-corner-of-bookstore’ thing… which I can honestly say I’m not proud of), but if it’s coming out in December, I want to know. And I’ll mark my calendar, I’ll read other authors until the release, and life will be peachy keen.

Good news: Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning is due to come out in December 2010! And even better, her release dates usually get bumped up a month, and then a week or two. So she says December, but fingers crossed it’s released mid-November.

Bad news: It comes out in hardcover. Again, I’ll be waiting until August, or September 2011 unless I hide in the corner. I don’t have Joy anymore, and she used to let me borrow her hardcovers when she finished reading. But who knows where I’ll be in December? I might be back in California, hounding Joy for her hardcovers. (grin)

Another thing – Bloodrush, the Fever Series Soundtrack was pretty interesting. I just listened to it and I didn’t really care for the lead singer since I found his lisp distracting, but the instrumental sound and lyrics were cool. And that final track was wicked with all the fans shouting the lyrics. Very cool. Karen Moning has an amazing fan base. I love those women.

favorite characters of Fictionland

Posted in Uncategorized on March 23, 2010 by Becka

These are some of my favorite characters in fiction. Everything from musicals, to television shows, to books and movies. I’ll try to put them in order, but quite a few of these are equal to the others.

19. Blind Mag from Repo! The Genetic Opera (musical/film). A woman with the voice of an angel, who sold her soul for a life in the light. Her eyes can do more than see. They work as a projector, showing brief segments of her past memories, flickering from her eyes. She’s made a lot of mistakes, and decides it’s time for her to pay her dues.

18. Darlene Connor from Roseanne (TV show). Particularly her with David, but from the very first episode Darlene had a special place in my heart. She can be mean, sarcastic and loosely crude, but she’s the only family member that can put Roseanne in her place.

17. Evelyn “Evie” O’Connell from The Mummy (films). Sexy geek, gorgeous librarian. Enough said… well, not really. She’s a no nonsense, slightly prudish dame, a bit too understanding sister, censored and clumsy, wishy-washy in love and INTELLIGENT. Besides, we women have to admit that the competition between Anak-su-namun and past Evie in The Mummy Returns absolutely screams girl power.

16. Jasper Hale from the Twilight Saga (books and films). Not a big fan of the movies, but I’ll give it to Jackson Rathbone- – he’s fantastic as my favorite vamp in the series. Why do I love Jasper? He struggles more than any other character in the series. Yes, some vamps/shifters/humans have a lot more to fight about, but his internal conflict bases around fighting those natural instincts he surrendered to in his immortal birth, and has basked in for half a century before even considering a different means of survival.

15. Sookie Stackhouse from Charlaine Harris’s southern vampire series (books). It’s fairly rare that I’ll find a first person narrative where I love the main character, but this series IS Sookie and it wouldn’t work if she wasn’t so interesting.

14. Tara from True Blood (TV show). Yes, same story line as the Stackhouse series, but they are different. Tara’s got this beautiful chip on her shoulder, and I think she really shines. She genuinely cares for Sookie, may be in love with Jason Stackhouse, has a strangely cool but worrisome cousin, and stumbles into some trouble with disturbing Maryann- – but it is her relationship with a drunkard mother that reveals the most in her character.

13. Norrington from Pirates of the Caribbean (films). Because I ship Norri-beth, and I think he is the most honorable character in the series. Sorry Will… nah, not really. Norrington has a dramatic shift in character between the first and second film and is hybridized in film three. I was devasted when Bootstrap killed him (bastard).

12. Sonny Corleone from The Godfather (book & film). He may have a temper, but Sonny is the stud of the family. He has one of the best death scenes on film, and he makes some fantastic love in the book. Not really, but we should let a player play- – right? James Caan is a gem in the movie, especially in the scenes with (and/0r concerning) his sister Connie. I was pumped when he kicked Carlos into the gutter.

11. Gabriel from Blood & Chocolate (the book). The film “based” on this book destroyed him (made him into a sexist tyrant- – which is so not him), but he is one of the more complex characters. He has a reason for everything he does, and on first read it can be difficult to place him with the goodies or the baddies. I don’t care if it’s a spoiler, I’m telling everyone that Vivian chooses Gabriel by the end of the book. Aiden is NOT Rambo- in fact, he nearly kills Vivian in the book. Dumb human- Weres for the win!

10. Shota from the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind (books). Don’t watch the TV show, please. It’s… okay, but if you really want to dip into these characters, than read the damn books!!! Shota has been my favorite character since her introduction. My favorite moment with her is when she’s had to escape her home, and she told Richard that she would be skinning the bastards that snatched her land and use their flesh to cover her throne. She is one bad ass woman.

9. The marquis de Carabas from Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (book). Again, another character whose death devastated me. Luckily for me, the story follows his corpse through the sewers and to better days. The marquis is a run-between-the-raindrops type character. Everyone may love Jack Sparrow, but give me the marquis de Carabas any day.

8. Christopher Doll from the Dallanganger series by VC Andrews (books). Oh, Christopher Doll- – it’s okay. I understand you’re in love with your sister, and that it is your mother’s fault for locking you two together in an attic for years. You raise Cathy’s children as your own. You’re wonderful to watch. You and your lovelorned self. Unfortunately, there is no happy ending for you, lovely Christopher Doll.

7. Lestat de Lioncourt from Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles (the books). Mmhmm… provacative, alluring, arrogant Brat Prince. Need I say anything else? I liked him from Interview With The Vampire all the way up to Memnoch, The Devil. I don’t know why, but the Christian influence post-book 5 made him into someone I didn’t care for. And I know the spiritual journey is important for him. Simply put, it’s not as entertaining to read.

6. Jericho Z Barrons from the Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series (books). Um… what is he exactly? He’s not human, that much I know- – I think, but what is he? Okay, there’s too much to theorize over when it comes to Jericho Barrons. He’s worse than Trent Kalamack. At least we know what species Trent is. Why is Jericho on this list? Well, he owns a bookstore (I know, I’m shallow), he puts up with Mac, not only does he not kill her- but he protects her, he admits when he’s made a mistake but never apologizes, and he’s really-really-really dangerous.

5. Samwise Gamgee from Lord of the Rings (films). Only the films, because I haven’t read the books, and I don’t know a great deal about this guy apart from those films. But I love him in the movies because he is the ultimate, the essential halfing. He’s a gardener (a common profession for hobbits), he’s the only one I know of that marries and has children, and he’s the best of his people. Call it a personal preference. I’m not saying that Merry, Pippin and Frodo aren’t amazing characters, but Sam is strong when Frodo can’t be. He takes the ring when he thinks Frodo is dead and doesn’t want to give it back to him- – not because the power of the ring has held him captive, but because he sees what the ring is doing to Frodo and can’t bear to lose his friend to it (it’s on a par with a best friend addicted to heroin, demanding you return to them their drug when you know it’s going to kill them in the end). I love it when he says, “I may not be able to carry it for you, but I can carry you.” I <3 Sam.

4. Lucretia from Spartacus: Blood and Sand (TV show). Clever, manipulative, sexy and vulnerable. I will always be a guilty fan of Xena: Warrior Princess, and Lucy Lawless plays this character amazingly well. I will say that John Hannah’s performance has struck the deepest chord with me (seeing that I’m used to him as the cowardice Jonathan in The Mummy movies), but his everloving wife Lucretia is devious and strangely relatable.

3. Benjamin Linus from LOST (TV show). This spot used to be reserved for John Locke, but Ben shined in season three and he’s been my favorite character ever since. It was a pretty close parry between him and Juliet for a while, but Ben won out in the end. The infant whose birth killed a mother- the boy who became the manipulator and manipulated- the man who murdered his father and destroyed the Dharma Initiative- the Other who stole Alex away from her mother… I love you, Linus. You make the show for me.

2. Trenton Aloysius Kalamack from Kim Harrison’s Hollows series (books). Murderer, drug lord, “dumb” elf, CEO of Kalamack Industries, city chairman, and long time antagonist to Rachel Mariana Morgan. Even though I ship Trench, Trent has to be one of the greasiest manipulators I’ve ever read about. Caught between wanting to kill Rachel and wanting to hire her, Trent is a social elitest filled with a strange combination of spite and compassion. He has a love and dedication to his people that keeps him from doing the morally right thing (as far as Rachel is concerned). I can’t wait to see what else he’s got up his sleeve. Anticipation for the future books is nearly killing me.

1. Han Solo from Star Wars episodes 4-6 (films). Um… because it’s Harrison Ford!!! Really it’s because he doesn’t need a lightsaber or the force to kick ass. He’s got himself a wookie! He is and always will be the ultimate cowboy of the galaxy. That, and Harrison Ford is a sexy beast. This would either be Han Solo or Indiana Jones.

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