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an arts review//

Hello there my fine friends! So wonderful to be back again. It really has been too long, hasn’t it?

(Which is why we need the perfect entrance)

*flops exuberant bow*

I will have my regular post hopefully next week, but this week I wanted to share a project I have been working on when I have had time this year; my Silver Arts Award.

*hails all fellow artists and/or art critics*

For this Arts Award you have to share what you have been creating for part of the project, so I thought it would be cool if I told all of you about what I have been working on. So here goes.

My Silver Arts Award:

Review of My Own Work |

I had a very interesting experience creating my own artwork for this award – it was challenging but I really enjoyed it and there was a lot of fun along the way.

                The first painting I completed was of a VW Campervan making its way through a lonely mountain pass in the dead of winter. I wanted to convey the cold and darkness of winter in this painting, but also the camper’s security and cosiness in this otherwise desolate scene, as well as the beauty of the mountains at sunset despite their harsh appearance.

                I think the depth of the scene went well, and especially the sketches looked very appealing, but the actual painting itself did not go as well as I’d hoped. For one thing, I forgot that (generally) it is better with watercolours to leave a space unpainted to make it look like snow, an instead tried to paint white watercolour paint on top of the areas I had accidentally made a darker colour. This could have been avoided if I had researched a little deeper into the subject or perhaps have used gouache for the snow effect. Also, the camper turned out a bit less well-defined, as the art pen I used to outline it had a nib that bled a bit into the paper as it was not good quality. What I would change next time would be to research more in how to paint mountain scenery and where to find better art pens.

                My next painting was an acrylic on hardboard canvas of two hillwalkers in the mist of a mountain. I had fun creating the damp look of this painting, and how the eye is drawn to the centre of the scene, where the bright clothes of the first hiker catch the attention. I wanted to show the mystery and strangeness of being on a mountain clothed in mist, as this picture was actually based on a photo of me and one of my friends climbing a mountain during the summer of last year.

                I was very pleased with how this painting turned out, as I’d never used acrylics properly before and wasn’t certain of how it would be different to watercolour. However I was surprised of how similar they were and how interesting and fun it was to be able to blend paint colours and create layers, which you can hardly ever manage with watercolour. I enjoyed creating shadow and the mist swirling overhead as well, it gave depth of field and connotated secrecy and intrigue. The hikers are exploring an unknown world that they know hardly anything about, and the mountain appears to be keeping it from them unless they take another step forward.

                I think what could have been done better would be making the path slightly clearer; also I think what I could change with this painting if I did the same another time would  be  to make the hiker farther away slightly clearer and perhaps use more imaginative colouring; but all in all I was very happy with how this piece turned out.

                In my final painting I portrayed a girl crouching on a mountainside, taking photos of the breathtaking autumn scenery surrounding her. Since autumn is my favourite time of year, this was a very exciting scene to create. I used watercolours for my outline of her face and body this time, rather than using my art pen like I did in painting #1. I wanted to convey a cosy, falling leaves sort of feel to this landscape, so muted reds, browns and the yellow of the photographer’s jumper complemented each other perfectly. I tried to capture her concentration on the scene she is photographing, and show how far up the mountain she is despite it being shrouded in mist by her hillwalking gear (backpack, boots, etc.) and only the tops of trees being visible, with a farther away summit in the distance. These peaks are quite opposed to the previous mountains I had painted, looking more like rolling hills than rocky crags but still a large distance from the ground.

                What could have been improved in this painting was probably how the girl by making her less ungainly in how she was positioned, making the other hill in the background darker and therefore providing greater strength,  and perhaps also the shape and height of the pine trees as they are sometimes too different in height and have differently shaped branches to each other; however, I was very pleased with this painting. Next time I do a similar painting in the future I will probably make these changes and perhaps also adjust the lighting so that it is slightly darker so I can focus more light on one object.

                I learned from my friends reviews that I need to improve my technique for positioning different objects (people, trees, roads, etc.) by making them less awkward and more realistic, and also that my colouring of the different areas could be improved by using vibrant shades and colours to improve the focus and catch the attention better. In conclusion, in future projects I would hope to incorporate these ideas.

The Paintings |

And, there you go, folks!

Something I would really, really appreciate is if you could comment your thoughts below; as part of my project I need lots of feedback. 🙂 What stood out to you in the art? What do you think I could have done better?

See ya next week!

Featured

introducing me. and books. and life.

Never trust anyone who has not brought a book with them.

-Lemony Snicket

Never trust anyone who never reads.

-Me.

And to be quite honest, in my mind, there are only three kinds of people in the world: those who can’t read, those who won’t read, and those that do. Welcome, readers, to my blog. 🙂

My name’s Abbie, mocha-drinker, horse-rider, sesquipedalianist and all round book-lover; and together we’re going to delve into the magical world of reading, writing, culture and everything else in between. Care to join me?

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this wild adventure we’re starting on. Gettin’ excited yet?

Please don’t hesitate to ask questions, suggest post ideas or even just have a chat. Until next time… 😉

reality check//courage

what does true courage look like?

That’s the question I’d like us to ask ourselves today. With all that’s been going on in our currently messed up world, a lot of us have been left wondering how we could be so selfish sometimes.

(I know that’s a lot of “s”s)

Take for example the start of lockdown when people were actually literally physically bashing each other’s heads for toilet roll or bread or paper. There’s been some serious heroes out there, giving help to those who need it and putting others first; but…

I kinda touched on this in last weeks post, but courage isn’t just getting what you want when you want it. It’s not even always punching the bad guys in the face (though it feels good and probably does help in certain situations). True courage is standing up to people who are doing wrong with the RIGHT reasons in mind, not just mindlessly throwing your punches at people because you like feeling you’re “doing the right thing”. We all know that these are excuses for just trying to look cool or getting one over on people. Real courage goes deep.

Real courage also shows true bravery by doing things that most of us wouldn’t consider brave; talking to someone you don’t know, fighting through the pain of a loss or betrayal, looking after those uncool kids who don’t have anyone to protect them from bullies. Those are the things that should matter a lot more than simply getting rid of a threat because courage is so much more than that. In my experience, courage is having the strength to do something even if you’re afraid to — BECAUSE IT’S RIGHT. Not because you want to or someone else wants you to or because you feel like it will help in some way…if it’s the right thing to do, do it!

Courage can mean different things for different people. You may not feel very brave or like you can make a difference, but in your own world in your own way you can show your courage by doing simple things that might be taken for granted. This shouldn’t make us proud – it should make us humble, willing to get up and do some good but not for our own feelings or benefit. There are various ways we each show our courage; here are just a few down below.

1. Sacrificing something. If you missed your bus because you helped an old lady with your shopping, you have a kind of courage that sacrifices. It’s amazing to both see and do this kind of courage – it’s grounded on true dignity and bravery. But even though helping an elderly person can seem big at times, you can also sacrifice by not getting in a fight with your mum after she’s argued with your dad, not bringing up past hurts or sharing; which leads us to the next kind of courage…

2. Sharing something. There are always days when we need me-time, self help and a bit of something to ourselves…but in the long run sharing takes its own kind of courage. Giving away what we have is so full of bravery but actually letting your younger sister play with your watercolour brush pens can take a lot more stamina than you would imagine. When we share something we are not only using/doing something we love, we’re spending time with and helping another who is also enjoying it. This is also a type of self-sacrifice because we are giving up our energy and time to let others help.

3. Being honest. Sometimes the hardest thing to be brave about is to be raw and real with people. Now I’m not saying do that all the time — there are definitely different places and situations that is NOT a good idea and you should be careful who you choose to confide in…but that should never stop you from swallowing whatever it is (guilt, shame or worry) and honestly telling someone how you feel, what you really want to do or where you are in life just now. This courageous act is so important because being honest with people will help you see another’s perspective and not feel caged inside all the time because you don’t want to let anyone know what you’re struggling with.

4. Have hope. We human beings seem to have an enormous capacity to make ourselves and everyone around us feel glum. It may take courage to be happy when you feel like things are going wrong but there’s always a bright side if we choose to look for it, like a nice coffee you managed to snatch before that terrible meeting at work or the little kid from your childminding who finally smiled at your jokes after throwing a fit. Even if there seems nothing left to be happy about, choose to look forward to a new day. For those who find it hard to keep organised and spend a lot of time beating themselves up about it, I know the feeling! That is a key way that I can become unhappy, but I’ve found writing lists and forcing myself to get up in time really helps despite how hard it can be. Look forward to better things and your entire outlook on life will be transformed if only for a short amount of time. Find hope in the small things, and eventually the bigger things won’t seem like mountains.

It’s crazy how so many things can come from a root of choices, thoughts and ultimately courage. We can change the world we live in, no matter how small it may seem or how insignificant. Having courage helps us to aim better, stay happier and get closer to those around us.

Will you choose it?

BACK TO THE FUTURE

Yes y’all.

YES.

Yes.

This golden classic (and that is PRECISELY what I am going to call it) has completely hooked me; and this post is to tell you how and why. Please stick around for a dangerously long review of the amazing blockbuster trilogy, Back to the Future. Despite the fact these movies were made in the 1980s, I instantly fell in love with them.

Okay so if you know me now you will definitely know what I like to do – write extremely long reviews of my favourite moves. And why not, right? I mean it’s an awesome way to waste someone’s time (mine and yours)…

So let us begin. Just make sure your watch is one minute late, and let’s go…

first thoughts.

Okay so there was a lot running through my head while watching this film – one of these things was how similar the eighties are today. I KNOW, I know, they had weird TVs that looked like they were from the year zero and they dressed a little….weird. But seriously, there are more parallels than you’d think. I mean, take clothes. We may not wear two sweatshirts on top of each other but we do wear…sweatshirts. Check shirts. Skinny jeans and leggings. I’d have to say that my favourite parts were with the girls who walked about in Chernobyl green leggings and sports shorts AT THE SAME TIME. That is just.

But think about music – we didn’t exactly get our cool new music ideas from nowhere did we? Michael Jackson styles, beatboxing, and synthesizers…any of those ring a bell? We have them all in modern music to some extent. Weird eh? Who knew this blog post would turn out to be a history lesson.

Some other things about the films – probably the most “old” thing about it was how they envisioned 2015 to look like. I mean, you just KNEW they were imagining it from the perspective of the 1980s, with the weird space-like fashion, self-lacing shoes, electronic gear and flying cars. The odd thing is that often history in 30 years doesn’t change as much as we think it will, but in other areas it does.

And now, onto the review!!

the storyline. DO NOT READ IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS

This awesome trilogy covers the life of teenager and guitarist Marty McFly, an ordinary kid with an extraordinary friend in a local scientist, Emmet Brown. With a wandering eye and a talent for getting in trouble Marty is your typical Han Solo style character; cute and flattering but good with his fists. Plus he’s played by Michael J Fox. BIG PLUS.

*MICHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAEL*

yEAH I’m just a tiny bit of a fan atm. Moving on, I loved the first and second films tremendously – they basically cover Marty’s first and second adventure in his inventor friend(Doc)’s time machine, but of course the second movie overlaps the first because if he hadn’t gone back in time the second time certain things would have not worked out the first time.

In the first movie we are introduced to Marty McFly, an ordinary kid with high hopes of becoming a famous rockstar. I personally thought he (Michael J Fox) was 12, he is that tiny, but I guess that’s just coming from a young(ish) teenager who is already 5′ 7″ and has an eighteen year old bro who is…well, 6′ 5″. Now you can probably understand my amazement. I am not used to guys being 5′ 4″ (but that doesn’t take away anything from who he is as a person. I still think he’s totally awesome).

Back to Marty. So he eventually ends up through a series of unforeseen circumstances in the time machine and accidentally goes back to 1955 when trying to outfox (DID YOU SEE WHAT I JUST DID THERE?!) some Libyan terrorists which sounds far-fetched but is definitely true, and ends up messing up his dad meeting his mom. Upshot is his mom falls in love with HIM instead of his dad…by the way if you don’t think that’s creepy then, go figure!

“He’s an absolute DREAM!” Well yeah but not your one, honey

And the entire rest of the movie is basically him teaching his dad how to fight bullies, not be a loser and get back together with his mom so him and his siblings can actually be born and don’t….disintegrate into nothingness.

The second movie instead takes Marty to the future with his rather elusive (through no fault of her own) girlfriend Jennifer to the future so they can stop their kids from going to jail. Jennifer spends most of it unconscious and so there isn’t much of her in them but I’ll forgive Steven Spielberg because of course there’s the Doc. And, as everyone knows…

Why is Doc the best? Because of both his hilarity, smartness and his ever-present creepy, mad scientist gaze.

Not only that but Doc Brown is also incredibly sweet despite his crazed exterior and is one of the most loyal friends that Marty will ever have. *cue tears for the ending of #3* What I love most about him is how he is so scatterbrained and forgetful but when it comes to Marty and trying to find a way to get him safely back home he’s all in.

In film numero tres, Marty has got stuck again in 1955 and has to head back to the past to find Doc’s 1985 self and get him back home. Things get interesting but I felt it was a TINY bit of an anti-climax after numbers 1 and 2 being so darn good.

And this leads on to our next topic..

main characters//Marty

Marty is your average kid at the beginning of the series, despite being definitely un-average in both popularity and looks. He kind of seems like he has everything together on the outside but really he is struggling with his family relationships and on the inside just wants some real love and real friends. I think it’s incredible how this was put together because by the end of the trilogy he has transformed into a really smart and capable young man.

He could still get in punch-ups and have adventures before but one of my favourite scenes is when he deliberately ignores his “friend”s taunts about him being a coward in the last film, mans up and actually saves himself from breaking his hand and therefore making him unable to do his favourite thing in the world: play guitar.

I am not joking this inspired me to rock one of my favourite instruments; ukulele. Lol.

One of the best lessons in these movies was that what you do now will definitely impact you later, it could even be life changing! Marty goes from being just a little bit arrogant to having real courage in not giving in to every single jeer he receives.

I don’t think I’ve ever built a truer sentence out of GIFs. Go get em, Marty. You’ll learn your lesson in the end. 😉

(The funny thing is that SOMETIMES, him getting in a fight IS necessary….but I believe his character is learning to do it for the RIGHT reasons)

main characters//Doc

The Doc is cute. I know he’s weird and he’s old and he has absolutely nooooo sense of fashion…but he’s such a nice human being who really just needs another crazy person beside him and his inventions all the way.

Marty when he realises who I’m talkin ’bout. That’s right boy. It’s you.

I think what is so sweet about this mad inventor is how he really understands Marty and his need for good, solid friends; and though he can sometimes be a bit daredevil and silly he knows what matters most. Even though he seems like your typical touch-feely high school guy with oodles of girls around him, Marty really just wants true love and friendship and couldn’t be more loyal to his girl and his bud.

That’s the man I’m talkin about, people! Role model alert!

(Lol just went into another thing about Marty. Where was I?)

Oh yes. The Doc. I love him so much because he’s a perfectionist and also loves to create things (he also receives weird inspiration for what he creates when standing on a toilet and has an odd obsession for antique clocks – in these areas I couldn’t agree more, he is definitely like me. Except I prefer to look at the clocks, not hoard them. Who knows, maybe when I’m old I’ll get a Delorean and hook up my massive number of clocks to my dog feeding thingy).

*This. is. literally. me.*

Anywho, away from that STRANGE subject…

Finally Doc finds true love in a human being rather than his machines which, gotta admit, I did not see coming. I mean, he then builds an express train time machine with his true love after the Delorean’s destruction; I KNOOOOOW THE DELOREAN GETS DESTROYED!!! How could they do that?

*MY BABYYYYYYY*

(For all those who are watching who have not yet watched, please note this is not the Delorean exploring. I’m not meant to spoil it for you – so I’ll just say that that’s what it’s NOT doing. There.)

Three words to sum up Doc: lovable, messy and absolutely hilarious.

That was four.

lessons learned//

Okay so we’ve already touched base on how Marty grows throughout the series in character but I just wanna close with four things that really shape this movie series.

  1. Having Courage is Not Necessarily Punching Someone When You’re Called a Coward. We’ve already touched on this but just for the sake of reiterating it, being brave isn’t just about getting in punch-ups. It’s about saving who you care about and having the courage to stand down when it counts.
  2. Drinking and Smoking Aren’t for Kids. I think this one is so important especially for younger viewers, to show the downsides of either (be it in a rather funny-not-funny way)
  3. True Friendships WILL Change Over the Years But Should Inevitably Grow Stronger. This is such a true one because people do move on but that won’t change your relationship with them for the worse – in fact if you nurture it right you could have a life-long friend!
  4. What We Do in Our Everyday Lives Has an Impact On Our Future. This one is kinda self-explanatory but so so true. We need to be careful what we do with our time and think about how are actions now could affect us later, for better or worse.

I hope you’ve all had as much fun with this series as I have; if you have not you MUUUUUUST go and watch the moves, I just know you’ll love them. And to close: a great big round of my favourite BTTF GIFs!!

And with that…

reality check//happiness

I know what you’re thinking. This title sounds a little scary, but there’s a very obvious and normal reason for why I headed this post, ‘reality check’. Please don’t be scared.

Lockdown has done a lot of rubbish things to all of us, and in more ways than one it has been less than enjoyable; but the increased amount of downtime alone and with my family has given me a lot of time for reflection and thought. I do love my good ole funny blog posts and thinking of good jokes to squeeze in there but I’ve decided that some days I’d really love to spend just a little amount of time on a bright or more profound thought I’ve had that week. You see I want to truly be able to share my own thoughts this way as well as my usual quirky posts, and I decided a short thought would be just the thing.

I am not exactly what you would call an optimist — in fact I most open hope for the worst! But the truth is we all need a little bit of sunshine in our lives (including me) and the way I would like to express that would be to share a little tidbit of life with you as often as I can so we can all learn a little more about how to deal with life’s joys and journeys.

(Plus I really need to start practicing using joy in my own life, and for me writing something really helps me learn and DO it more; hence this post)

So if I hadn’t hinted at it enough already this post is about happiness. I know, I know — pretty much every teenage blogger on the web has already posted about this and I can’t possibly compete. Which, in fact, I can’t. There’s a lot of good stuff out there and it needs to be thought over; today I merely want to focus on how we can gain a happy, optimistic perspective and what that looks like.

We’ve all read those cheesy books about happiness and wondered who the heck these people think they are…but secretly feel jealous that they’re so upbeat (at least, that’s my experience). But I seriously believe that everyone is different, simply because none of us are the same. Okay, I know that sounds like a redundant sentence, but our fingerprints are unique — so is our DNA. We have different blood types, personalities and genome structures. Mind boggling but true. What can we gather from that? We’re all unique and therefore we can’t all expect to fit in the same “happiness” box the experts try to place us all in. In spite of this, I think there are three basic things that all of us can try to make our lives happier.

  1. Be grateful. This is probably the hardest one for me to grasp. I’ve been struggling with mental health issues for a while now and let me tell you, being grateful is HARD, especially when your world feels like it’s literally falling apart. I don’t know if this is the same for you all but gratitude journals and lists generally don’t work for me because I often think of the rough side of things as I try and think of the good. So how do I practice gratitude? I actually admit to myself that I felt rubbish the other day, and look forward to when I feel better, and when I do I use my time as wisely as I can. I think about my feelings and experiences, and use them to empathise with others. I accept that some days will not be as good, but I CHOOSE to have a great day whenever it is possible AND ENJOY IT WITH A THANKFUL HEART. Because unlike a lot of those cheesy books out there, gratitude doesn’t just mean sitting on your butt for five minutes a day and getting down some things you think make you happy. Happiness should come from a deeper place than just a cappuchino from Costa, though yes that is nice. And that’s where we move on to the next point…


2. Choosing happiness. I know very well that feeling when you get up in the morning, look in the mirror and all you can see is a tousled, grumpy and rather grim faced version of yourself. Another slog in the long list of days I have to get through before the weekend, you think. Another day of feeling sick and dizzy from medication after getting up two hours late and nothing to do because of lockdown. Happy Monday. Notice something about what you just thought? You actually have a choice here. You can set yourself up for another “awful” day or you can grow your happiness through the small things that matter; picking you your three year old sister, making a craft,enjoying that feeling of accomplishment after a bike ride even though it hurt and watching a silly family comedy with your older brother. Even in lockdown life has perks — don’t ignore them and in doing so miss it.


3. See the best in people. Perhaps this is the hardest one of them all because we don’t like it when people say something in a particular way to us. This is a really difficult situation because it’s another choice — you can choose to accept the rudeness of your best friend, the swearing that guy gave you when you parked your car “too close” or the depression of your uncle, or you can lash out, sulk or whine. Despite how “good” that might feel at the time, you won’t really be happy; just angry and loving that instead of feeling joy at knowing that you held your tongue. The truth is people just like you are going through struggles just like you every day, no matter how big or small compared to yours. We need to show them we aren’t going to be brought down by how they act, and we need to encourage them the best we can, even if it’s just not shouting back or giving them a smile when they pointedly ignore us. It’s not weakness; it’s something that takes a lot of strength. Even the best people can be brought low by their situation, and they need lighting up!

I just want to let you know that no matter where you are or what awful things you are going through, you have a choice to be strong and be brave. You WILL get through this and when you do you will see how much stronger you have become because of that.

So choose joy.

Choose happiness.

an arts review//of another artist’s work

Today I would like to focus your attention on a little review I did of another artists work, namely Victoria Crowe. Don’t worry, it’s not too long! I would love it if you could post your thoughts down below, but if not absolutely no pressure.

Let’s get on to the review, shall we?

review of an artist’s work>>Victoria Crowe, Beyond Likeness

For my review of another artist’s work, I went to Inverness Museum and Art Gallery to see the temporary exhibition, ‘Beyond Likeness’ by Victoria Crowe. There were about twenty paintings in the exhibit; my favourites were the artists paintings of the shepherdess, Jenny, ‘Group of Trees’, ‘Range and Semmit’ and sketches of the artist and her daughter. There were also more impressionistic works of her son and self-portraits in Italy, plus some interesting still-lifes and portraits of an author, and actor, a psychoanalyst, a musician, and Prince Charles. Most were oil on board/canvas, but some were watercolour.

                I loved the more muted tones in some of the pieces, where your attention was drawn to light and therefore the subject. In ‘Group of Trees’ for example, your focus is immediately caught by the person in the snow, then drawn up the crooked, dark limbs of the tree, which contrasts well with the white, snowy background. Though in the depths of winter, I personally found this a cheerful scene; you can almost pick out a smile on the walker’s face as they make their way through the snow, bundled up cosily in a hat and overcoat.

                I liked the variety of styles in Victoria Crowe’s work, ranging from impressionistic portraits to landscapes, to small, everyday details from normal life. Though the pieces were often very diverse, I liked the contrast and the artist’s talent in different areas.

                I was also very impressed by the sketches — the shading and shape of the eyes, nose and mouth of the subjects were both realistic and skillful. Her work also reflects her own impressions of her subjects — the background of the musicians’ portrait, for example, is taken up by a cluttered collection od sheet music, a small piano, and the paintings on the walls seem to depict previous composers: perhaps Bach or Mozart. The musician’s expression and countenance also give the impression of a serious, passionate composer, complimented by rather wild hair; Beethoven immediately came to my mind.

                The pyschoanalysts’ portrait was equally interesting; the subject had given up conventional cures for mental illness and embarked on his own search for a resolution. This was emphasised in the painting by the fact that his own book on his venture was in the side of the portait, signifying how he was a pioneer and didn’t rely on other’s information or knowledge. With a chin in his hand, he has a thoughtful expression, suited to his profession.

                I really enjoyed going round this exhibition, and cannot wait to see more in the future!

Here are some links to Victoria’s work, including one other painting from the exhibition and the ones I’ve mentioned today:

***

The musician
The Winter tree
The psychiatrist

Have a good week friends! Till next time.

HOW TO WRITE A GOOD, SOLID BOOK REVIEW:

*jives into your mailbox with a grin*

Hello there friends, how goes it with y’all? I have been feeling lately as though I have abandoned writing to you for a little bit – writer’s block, some have coined it, I believe. 😉 But here I am, back from The Maze, and no, I didn’t catch the Flare and I’m perfectly harmless. Except when it comes to what I write with my pen.

*Newt is da best lol*

Some of my characters have been going through such scariness, people! I wish I could share what but right now we all just need to hold our breaths until the book is out and then we can give a sigh of relief. When that will be I do not know, but I DO know that (hopefully) next week I will be releasing another sneak peek for you!

Yes, that is the plan anyway. So, into the Maze.

*you when you realise how long it’s gonna take to escape this blog post*

Of words, I wasn’t being literal!!

—Explain why it was extraordinary, inspiring, awesome/ hard, annoying, boring

One of the biggest and probably worst mistakes we reviewers make is having NO EXPLANATION WHATEVER. We jabber on about it’s excellence, brilliance, phenomenality (and yes, that is a word), but yet we fail to see how useless this information is to people who have never read it. And boy do I know how hard it is when you’re overflowing with gobbledygook about how great it was – people who have never read, perhap never even heard of this book won’t have a clue what you’re nattering on for and will probably get dissuaded or confused. And let’s not even BEGIN to mention the reviews that go something like:

When I read THIS BOOK, I was like – djbg;hurygw86394tr6834ogfybdhlrp3829yr7u3lhn.fkz/sl;kf[90u2r3p8934y579t3h4fe;u@*7$

What the heck does that lot mean??!! Angry, sad, betrayed, happy exultant feelings at the ending? WHAT DOES IT MEEEEEEAN??!!

I mean, does it mean you hate or you like, please tell me – I’d actually really like to know and you just dissapointed me. And therefore ruined my life.

I just really want to know what you actually thought, and then, after that, what you actually mean by it. WHY was it funny, awesome, cool, heartbreaking, sad, gory, messed up, engrossing, delightful hateful?

DESCRIBE.

CREATE.

TELL MEEEEEEEEEEEE!

Because, isn’t that the entire reason for a book review? To tell all about why it was good/bad? Just something to think on.


—Discern the trash from the treasure

We all know a good book from a bad one, don’t we?

Oh come on, you’ve got to have better than that! If you’re going to read a book, you have to tell whether or not it’s actually good or bad. Now we’re down to the nitty-gritty, guys..if we actually thought about it, IS it good? IS it bad?

Take for instance, a favourite example of mine that I love to impale on the spear of rubbish literature – Keeper of Reign.

Don’t be fooled by the pretty cover! Don’t be fooled by the glowing reviews by homeschool mums on Amazon (and this is coming from a homeschooler, people)! Don’t be fooled by the fact that the author is a Christian, and a mum, and a homeschooler too. Don’t even be fooled by how it doesn’t have swearing/sexual content. Or that it’s a kids book.

This book is probably one of the worst I have ever read. Ever. And that’s coming from a girl who has read literally thousands of books in her lifetime, I can promise you.

*your reaction to what I just uttered*

Well, I can’t actually prove it since I only started on Goodreads last Summer…but come, on guys! I have! I’m a bookworm, it’s in my blood. And if you want proof of how I critique my work look at my other book reviews.

(I’m actually thinking of posting more of them on here, so stick around for them)

Here is how Keeper of Reign was so awful:

///Frequent grammatical and spelling errors

///little to no clue of what was going on, they literally ran “for their lives” and I couldn’t even tell why

///literally no sense of heroism see above^^

///Jules whatsisface the MC has an absolutely stupid crush that in reality would crumble at the touch of the slightest breeze and he cannot focus because of it

///no plot basis – why are they all so high strung and ready to flee? From what? Why do we only find out a teensy fraction WHY when the book is almost over? I paid 3 bucks for this!!!

///I couldn’t discern why they have giant insects until I finally realised off my own back that they have become tiny due to a curse??

///there is little to no stranger danger

///enemies are all terrified or easily caught unless needed for suspense

///family members are left behind

Are you getting the jist here? That this book isn’t all it’s cracked up to be? It’s full of goofy, stupid characters that ooze disrespect and lack of commitment to their friends and families, the plot is horrifically messed up and not well explained at all and comes off as very badly done. I actually feel bad for not only Emma Right for getting posistive feedback about this book and therefore not seeing it’s total inadequacy, but the kids and parents who think it was excellent!


—take into account the plot, genre, characters and setting

I think so often we forget that a book is often designed in a specific way. Let’s unpack that a little bit. Do you remember reading chronicles of Narnia and about the UFO that landed on the Dawn Treader? Or flipping through a Starwars magazine and seeing a cartoon of Peeta Mulark in it?

Well?

Did you?

Hopefully not, because if you had there’d either be one of three things going on:

  1. you need glasses
  2. there was a serious inter-crossing of fandoms
  3. there was a big mistake when printing
  4. they are total rubbish

The bottom line? None of these things happened. Period. Because even cartoon artists should know when they’ve made a mistake by mixing medieval fantasy and sci-fi. When genres collide in this way it all turns into a bit of a jumble when you can’t exactly decide what’s going on because everything is so confused.

Now I’m not saying that ALL of these genre-mixing books are bad, but so far folks, I haven’t found a good one.

Please tell me if you have.

Generally (or genre-ally)…

Sigh. Don’t read this blog if you get heart failure from bad jokes, I completely understand.

Anyway

That was a lot of gifs.

But yeah, be aware of the genre – I’d say that the setting is the easiest, choose the genre and the setting should follow. Just use your brain.

And what is the plot like? That is a major thing I want you to just think on for a second. If you have the build up of everything else from genre to characters to descriptions and yet the plot is completely bogus, drop the book. Throw it across the room. Burnt it, smash it, disintegrate it into a pile of ash. Why?

Because alien space ships should not turn up in the Jane Austen fandom. Mary Poppins should not arrive on the Starwars set. Cade Quarter should not go on a hike with Bilbo.

Why you ask?

This gif says it all – the books you read should not be a needless warring between different worlds/ words; rather they should have a coherency that astonishes and agrees with you.

The plot is a main feature of this. But even apart from making sure that the world in which the book has taken you to is solid and mostly realistic, a plot should be well-founded and have several good points. For example:

//mysteries and/or questions are solved in the end – though I prefer to have a sprinkling throughout so not in constant suspense in that side of things

//suspense is in the right quantities

//characters learn from mistakes and triumphs, get to know each other better and understand their world better

//arguments, challenges and failings are added – but end up getting sorted out

These are just a handful of things I believe are essential to a good plot. What are YOUR ideas for what makes a good plot?

The next thing I want to discuss are characters themselves. We all know THAT character – the backstory one always on the sidelines, offers help when needed, but generally silent. Or the lame hero/heroin. Or the antagonist that actually has more paragraphs on his personality than the hero despite him not being the MC.

What do all these have in common? Rubbish character development. And it’s one of the things I believe modern authors are struggling with most. Even if you have amazing descriptions, characters, dialogues and settings, lame characters are like a poison that seeps through everything and destroys it all.

There is no point to these stories. The best thing you can do to save this author a lot of hurt is to tell them truthfully (but not unkindly) in a review of their book on Amazon or Goodreads that…it needs work.

A LOT of work.


—what is the overall message? IS there a message at all?

This may seem to be a smaller element of the tale, but also very much important to how the story is viewed.

Some authors like to have exceedingly long, prosaic, often tantamount sentences; there is a voluminous number of semi-colons; their words are very very elongated and tend to have archaic or outlandish words unused by most of us plebians.

Other.

Authors speak.

Through their work.

Like this.

Building momentum…

Adding suspense, until….

BA-BANG!

But back to my point – what IS the message of this book? Does it show you the ins and outs of modern society? That unicorns are good? That chocolate milk is bad for you (I’m being serious, look for detail!)? That is evil is okay to be repaid by evil or that you have to forgive every single wrong no matter how heinous? Is it in your writing style? Is it overly-wordy or easier to understand? I know that’s a lot of questions but rememebr to be on the look out for three main things when you are reading:

  1. Imagery. How is good and evil portrayed for example? In a good light or a bad light, and which way round? Did you LIKE how it was shown??
  2. Morality. Is there even a sense of right and wrong, for example?
  3. Decisions. How do the characters cope with tough choices and do their efforts pull off (again, as an example)?

I hope you enjoyed this post folks! What was the best/worst book you EVER reviewed? Please comment down below. 🙂

8 things I’ve learned so far in quarantine

Well well well my merry old friends. What have we here? A post by Abbie?! I don’t believe my own eyes. Surely they are misleading me!!

I have to say that my blog posting has been rather (how shall we put it) lacking as of late. Yes, I admit to it! Life for me has been rather difficult lately and I’ve just not had the time or the energy to write all that much. But despite all odds, my dear friends, here I am. Here to completely plagiarise on every other good blogger out there who has decided to write about lockdown.

Cause let’s face it, folks.

We ARE in a pandemic.

And despite my skepticism at first over whether or not it was all bigged up by the media just to scare us, I am completely certain now that this is NOT A JOKE. People are dying from this illness and we have to do our best to stop more of it happening.

So stay home. Wash your hands for twenty seconds while telling yourself happy birthday. I mean, that’s one of the ups of hygiene, right? Not everyone gets to sing happy birthday to themselves a THOUSAND times a year. 🙂

So let’s get down to the post//

-appreciate friendships

Isn’t one of our easiest faults as human beings is to forget to be grateful? I think it is at least. When you suddenly start to not see anyone – except your postman, your neighbour from fifty feet away, etc – you get a true glimpse of what life would be like if you had no friends. Weird huh? I think it would be downright sad, to be frank.

Okay so I do miss my buds. I really do. And I’m looking forward to meeting them after lockdown, gettin a coffee, comparing books, goin shopping…but actually when you’re separated from something or someone you really care about, you actually appreciate them MORE. You miss them. You wish you were with them. Or they were with you. Or vice versa.

But you get what I mean, don’t you?

Well?! Do you?!

After a time you end up missing them so much that you probably reached the end of your trip or sojourn or whatever by now and you go home back to your homemade mocha or favourite dog or friend group. But for a little time after, you really appreciate them more, don’t you? At least, that’s the way with me. Comment below.

So I think in this unduly unprecedented time, we should really appreciate and LEARN to appreciate the friends in our lives. Have a live chat, send a postcard, pm somebody – anything to remind your friends that you are there for them, that they are not alone and that you care about them. And who knows? Perhaps they will even reply back! 😉

-appreciate family

And here comes the hard one y’all – because who can’t say that sometimes, just sometimes, it can be difficult to get along with your fam. In our house alone we seem to have the tendency to create inter-family feuds. There are no Montagues and Capulets, just everyone bickering like mad! I believe that we so often find ourselves putting up a front of having it all together outside our home; and yet it seems to be that when it’s just all of us put together in one house for three weeks, it’s like a spark in a hayloft. Everything goes up.

*me attempting and failing to quench the flames of malice*

Now I’m not saying this happens all the time but when it does there can be…well…*puts hand up to face confidentially*…WILDFIRES. Most of the time we get on great but the hardest bits are when we notice all the littlw annoying things about each other; especially in this situation when you cannot physically leave your own home. But try and concentrate hard on the GOOD aspects of your family and try to help them see yours by trying not to be too…well…annoying, for a start.

I know it’s hard. But we will come through this soon, and though more time with family may seem burdensome it IS a blessing if we choose to see it. Remember to let God be your help when times get tough.

-guitar

I haven’t really got much to say on this one except that I would really recommend it to someone who already enjoys piano or other musical pursuits; playing guitar has really helped me concentrate better mentally and physically, plus if you get a good jam going everyone can sing along! And it hurts your fingers.

A lot.

But hey, all in the name of progress…and education…and cultured-ness (is that even a word?)…and musicality. It will really help you to strengthen your wrists while learning something fun and enjoyable.

-draw the human body (sort of)

Now let’s face it, I’m still learning. But since my art curricula needs me to do a course of some sort to help fellow painters (and for me this is gonna be a big challenge) I’m going to start my own YouTube channel on art soon.

I know! Isn’t it crazy or what?!

So because of all this I’ve been learning trying to draw our complex anatomy. THough in my own style of course; I’m not so advanced that I can draw a picture that actually LOOKS real.

(Look here if you want to see some of that!)

But I’ve been bumbling along in my own way and it’s actually been very interesting, I’ve really enjoyed doing it and practicing my art skills more often. I even ordered a new, 48 piece paint set just for the occasion, and because my other one is getting rather old and flaky.

I would definitely pick up art more if you have never or have already tried it it’s great for relaxing and getting more skilled.

-more archaic literature CAN be really interesting!!

Okay peeps, let’s face it…I’m gonna come clean on this once and for all.

For a long time I went through a phase of disliking older books – for no reason other than I thought they were too long and too boring.

Boy was I wrong.

Have you ever discovered the MAGIC of archaic books? If not, just give it a try. One try. Bronte or Hardy. Kipling or LM Montgomery (she count as older author?). See how you like it. It truly is a sight to behold (now I’m sounding like one). They can be so funny, so adventurous, so thrilling; I think I basically threw them all in the category of Jane Austen who is NOT my thing, and therfore wrote them all off as: DANGER. DO NOT PROCEED. ANCIENT, THEREFORE BORING BOOK AHEAD.

And yet, here we are. And I loved these books and they’re so so funny and fascinating.

Go on.

Take a look.

Inside a book.

-how to saw and cut better

I am not exactly known for having strong arms. But they say that pain is gain – hopefully that is true in my case. I have spent almost a week now in outdoor work and it’s fun but man it’s defintiely hard!! I love the birds singing, the smell of the earth, the sound of the saw biting the wood and the satisfaction of clearing a large area for garden space – but after spending a while in rest due to some medical complications, I forgot how much muscle I must have lost.

It’s been great to renovate the garden though, and I can’t wait to see how it turns out!

-what we can learn from older generations

Old people are tough. Tougher than you could ever imagine or believe. Thye’ve been through wars, they’ve seen nations rise and fall, they’ve seen people come together and split apart; they queued for rations, they watched the Berlin Wall come down, either in person or on TV; and probably most of all, they’ve had to grow up with OUR generation. Our strange generation.

A generation that seems to survive on Facebook and Instagram and comes up with weird and wacky trends that are here and gone in a few months or years. Hey, some of them were probably lucky to have one full set of clothing to last them a year when they were our age!! It’s such a different perspective on life.

All I can say is, respect these people. We may be in tough times, but they’ve been and are going through so much more than we can imagine. We need to follow their example to keep calm and carry on.

Despite all else.

-how we can prepare for the future

We need to remember to be strong and look ahead in courage once this time is over – but we also need to remember to be more prepared for the future. Buy a little more food with your normal shopping once the lockdown is over, to stock up. Make sure you have things you can control in case something like this happens again. And hardest of all perhaps, learn from your mistakes. No one was really prepared for this, but we can be more prepared in the sfuture.

Poppy’s Peril Book Release

Hey y’all! I’m so glad to be here today and I am really proud *squeals* to announce that my lovely author and blogger friend, Allison Tebo, is releasing her latest work, Poppy’s Peril, on Amazon! I have been reading Alli’s books for several years now and I can tell you that you will never be dissapointed. Her hilarious comedy, cosy tale and interesting twists add a real spark to the world of fairytale retellings – you cannot miss this book!

Unfortunately her paperback edition of Poppy’s Peril will not be available yet because her designer has been delayed due to coronavirus, but because of the quarantine this new release will be priced at only $0.99!! However this deal will only last a month or so before the price goes up, so hurry to get your copy now. 🙂

Here’s the blurb…

Princess Poppy doesn’t feel very royal, and she certainly doesn’t feel ready to marry. But when her father decides that a marriage to a foreign duke would benefit their small kingdom, Poppy obeys.

Stepping into an unknown world full of hidden dangers, Poppy must navigate betrayals she never anticipated and discover the inherent royalty and strength within her own heart.

A companion novelette to A Royal Masquerade.

And here is the Amazon purchase link – get your copy now:

And here is her blog address…

http://allisonswell.website/

Have a wonderful weekend everyone, and stay safe! xx

6 weird things about me that you probably didn’t know (or want to)

Let’s face it, fam-bam. People are just, well…weird.

Strange.

ODD.

And though we rarely care to admit it (who wants to in this sort of “perfect society”), it is true. All of it. So I’m taking this weeks post to jot down a few things about me that are weird. Though of course, not TOO weird….right?

But then again…

Onward we will go and find out weirder things than you even thought possible – please feel free to comment below on your own weirdnesses, I’d love to know! Though not too weird. A little weird is okay, but not TOO weird…y’know?

clothes are too short

Now I don’t know if I’ve ever said this before on my blog, but I’m tall – like REALLY tall. I mean, not so tall that my head bounces off every ceiling or somethin…but tall enough that it can makes things a bit awkward.

Especially in t-shirts.

I’m not tiny but I’m at that stage where the top that fits well IS tiny – in the length sorta way. And that can make things difficult, like reaching for things:

Or bending down:

And then (the ultimate):

STRETCHING.

*literally everyone – including me*

Now it may seem like such a small thing, but as a side note also getting massive shoe sizes and jeans being way too short is actually a big deal for tall people. Sure it’s great if you want to be a basketball champion if that is your ultimate goal in life, but it really does set us apart. And the annoyances don’t stop there.

High heels can be so awkward when you’re tall; I already feel like I’m looking down way too far to look people in the eye but with heels – with heels..

#my ultimate awkward nightmare : if your boyfriend was shorter than you

Heels do what they, well, do: they raise you about 4 inches off the floor! For someone who is already tall, that is what I call the definiton of awkward (and another weird thing about me).

most youtube hacks fail. miserably.

I don’t know if I’m the first person to have ever actually discovered this but using nail polish as LIP STICK or EYE SHADOW is not.

Just not.

Because it’s….not.

Thanks Father YouTube.

I’ll leave it to all you smart people out there to figure out WHY this could possibly be a bad idea.

Another few YouTube gems are: using a cheap razor to remove pills from your clothes – which creates holes, spilling coffee on a t shirt and then drawing the bahamas on it to “cover it up”, putting a wet wipe on top of a hair brush to remove hair after brushing, or using permanent markers to die your hair.

Has anyone noticed yet how insanely stupid these are?

LIKE REALLY?!

And don’t even get me STARTED on the hack-where-you-tie-your-hair-in-a-bun-on-the-front-of-your-head-before-bed-and-wake-up-to-“perfect”-hair?!

*Me in the morning – minus the maniacal smile*
*Also me*

So please, for the love of sanity, don’t trust every life hack on YouTube, ‘kay? It will only lead you to feel worse (though there ARE some hacks out there worth it, please proceed with caution and actually use your brain to discern which ones are legit).

i hate pineapple.

This is sort of self explanatory – it’s sticky, it’s icky, and it’s gross. I just don’t love it all that much, ma dudes.

*every one of my senses when the pineapple bops in*

dermot kennedy and justin timberlake look the same

They just do, kay? It’s not that difficult to determine even if they are completely different in singing areas..

They’re all singers, what’s the difference?

(Well of course, there IS a difference; you get singers that make you feel so good and others who completely stamp all your hopes and dreams and fears into the dust with a rubbish attempt at “art”. I almost typed ferraris there – though perhaps that’s included in hopes and dreams. )

Has anyone else seen this and thought the same thing? Like, really? They both have little hair and beards and likle wearing hoodies – perhaps they’re really the same guy, just trying to come off as two for the extra dough. AHHHHHH, that would make sense!

(Pay no attention to my conspiracy theories)

i am not a jane austen fan

Probably everyone knows this fact by now, but Janey and I just don’t see eye to eye. And yes, that rhymes. But back to the point: I am not into very “serious” romances, which is probably – no, definitely – why Emma is the only book by this gal that ever held my interest due to its comedy content. And when I mean “serious” I mean it’s “the-main-feature-of-this-freakin-book-romance”. I just don’t like over-romantic books, that’s all, enough is enough and I think that Jane Austen would actually seem pretty tame compared to some romances I’ve read; but still. You probably don’t want to know what THEY are like. They are definitely cray-zay.

electric razors are trash

Also the tiny little plastic ones. They are not worth your time, or your money…or your once-perfect skin either.

*to all those who think “I can just try it once more, maybe it won’t cut me this time”*

And there you have it, m’dears! Six weird things about me – ready to share your own weirdnesses?

*Ta-ta*

favourite male mcs that i don’t ship but love anyway…

Ok so you’ve all heard of shipping, haven’t you? Either that or you, well…haven’t. Let me open your eyes, if you want them to be opened, because you, my friend, may never be the same again.

*Me to every shipping comment I have ever read – that I disliked*

Sigh. Let’s get down to it then, shall we? Tis a terribly strange and formiddable voyage we are about to embark on, you and I.

But whatever the outcomes before we even begin you need to know the definition of shipping (and no *to unspoken question*, it is not putting people you like in a package and putting them out to sea). It is this:

Shipping, initially derived from the word relationship, is the desire by fans for two or more people, either real-life people or fictional characters (in film, literature, television etc.) to be in a romantic relationship. It is considered a general term for fans’ emotional involvement with the ongoing development of a relationship in a work of fiction.

(Thankyou Wikipedia)

Well, if you didn’t know what that was before, now you do. Tada. Just to give you some perspective here, often girls in these movies are literally shipped with whoever the heck people put into their minds to ship, but mostly one of the male MCs.

I just want to put a disclaimer out there that all jokes on here about me being COMPLETELY OBSESSED with those who I ship most is merely a joke, I actually feel bad for people who are so obsessed with their favourite characters that they can’t face their own real lives. This can actually be aproblem and I urge you not to become too obsessed with fandoms and shipping because really, they’re just imaginary like the characters and, – with real-life celebrities who are shipped – also are unlikely to ever have the kind of romance you dream up for them.

WARNING: PROCEED WITH THE KNOWLEDGE OF IMMINENT LOVE, HURT, BETRAYAL, ANGUISH, AND POSSIBLE DEATH. OF CHARACTERS. AND OF FEELINGS. YEAH THAT’S WHAT WE REALLY DO ON THIS BLOG. WHY ARE WE STILL IN ALL CAPS??!!

SHIPS NUMERO UNO – PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN

Elizabeth Swann

I get it, ok. Elizabeth Swann’s a pirate, and so pirate gals are unconditioning rogues who burn things and stab people and seduce whoever they like, but COME ON DISNEY. And/or people. My biggest problem with ships is that they often include people who could not and would not actually make good partners at all. But if I say who I ship, well, often the opposite side of fans would say that is completely wrong.

*They just said they shipped the wrong people, Peter*

But let’s get down to the nitty-gritty here: I ship Will and Elizabeth Turner.

1. Because they get married, for crying out loud

2. Elizabeth only made out with Jack because she was forced to because it would save herself, Will and the entire crew.

3. Her and Will are so cute together and Will would never leave her; they are both just so adorable and I love how they regularly sacrifice for each other, even though they have break-ups and rough spots.

4. Will was her childhood sweetheart and he only ever wanted the best for her as a person whereas Jack, in true pirate form, loved the feelings more.

So, in summary? I ship Will and Elizabeth; but I still love Captain Jack Sparrow as a character because he is funny, ironically loyal at times and a complete jerk at others. He is lovable because of his misfortunes too, but I wouldn’t ever really ship him with anyone just because, well…

SHIPS NO. 2 – HARRY POTTER

Hermione Granger

Everybody loves Hermione, from little girls to…erm…older little girls? And guys obviously. Her tenacity, bravery, wit and knowledge not only were prevelant in the books but also the movies when they came out, and by the way before we go on I say I’m rather biased since I love Emma Watson who plays her – but that is beside the point.

Hermione is always the book loving nerd but especially in the movies she becomes really beautiful when she grows up so is very relatable but also a role model at the same time. Judging from her wide knowledge, she almost always can come up with a plan to save Ron and Harry (her best friends) from any danger that they cannot solve.

So who do I ship with Hermione? You’ll be surprised.

HARRY. Yes, I ship Harrmione. Which is surprising because normally I only ship those who really are possible to BE together, whereas Hermione and Harry actually both get married to different people when they grow up.

Here are my reasons why I ship them:

1. They are often in such a better relationship than Ron and Hermione are, who are exact opposites even though they end up getting married in the end; I just didn’t quite like how that fit. Or rather, it didn’t seem to fit to me. They just seem to get along better.

2. The dancing scene in The Deathly Hallows. Aaaaaaaargh, this breaks my heart every time!

Harry is just so kind and cute and wants to make her feel better when Ron deserts them.

So I love Ron but not w/ Hermione, I just don’t ship them even though they end up being together.

For the rest of their lives.

*cough coooooooough*

AND DON’T.

JUST DON’T.

Get me started on…*chokes in complete and utter revulsion* Dramione.

(That’s Draco-Hermione for those who don’t know)

Yes, I did that willfully. Yes, I probably offended half the internet, but REALLY. Take an awesome heroine like Hermione who punches Draco in the face for goodness sake, and then says she is IN LOVE WIT DIS JEEEEEEERK??!!

Here is the actual proof, people – look! You think she LOVES him???

*seeing is believing ^^*

Ginny Weasley

I never really loved Ginny with Harry, just because I like him and Hermione better, so…I guess I’d like her with Dean or Neville.

Luna Lovegood

Errrr….Ron? What do you think, guys? Luna is just too cute.

*I don’t even know what she’s talkin about but she’s very cute*

Cho Chang

No comment. Literally no comment. I understand, in a way why people feel bad for her, but IF YOU SHIP HER WITH HARRY…

Ok let’s move on before somebody blows up.

Probably me.

*me letting loose all Dramione/Cho related fury*

SHIP NO. 3 – SPIDERMAN (Homecoming, Far from Home)

I wish I could do more movies, y’all but because I don’t want this to be boring I’ve tried to include a different famous movie from each genre I could come up with and I’m gonna try and not make this too long. Hopefully you’ll find something for you. 🙂

Also I want to make it clear that these are the main ships from the MOST RECENT movies of Spiderman.

*duh thanks Marvel for making three different series with different actors*

Since the most recent is my favourite, I love Homecoming and Far From Home with Tom Holland, and I love all the characters too.

Liz Allan

AAAAH, SHIELD MY EYES! I can’t bear not liking her!!!

*me when Liz enters*

I just…gah. This girl lacks so much, people even if she’s adorbs.

1. She doesn’t really defend Peter when he’s getting bullied – like EVER.

2. She only really likes Spiderman and notices his good qualities without paying attention to Peter at all as a person but only liking it when he gives her a good time. Why would she only like Spiderman but not him? Cause Spidey is cool and famous?

3. She isn’t understanding when Peter has to back out so many times. I mean this is hard; I’d find it hard if my boyfriend kept backing out on me. But wouldn’t you want the best for the person, if you REALLY loved him?

MJ

I know a lot of people don’t like her because of her sarcasm and dry humour, but I actually think MJ is perfect for Peter. Not only is she smart and can notice things (ie him being Spiderman) but she also has a unique way of expressing her feelings and is everything that Liz wasn’t for him. She is completely out there in honest but a little part of MJ we don’t regularly see is her caring, loving side.

So who would I love but not ship in this one? Errm, I don’t really have one! I mean I like Ned, he’s nice, but…I really just love Peter and MJ.

SHIP NO. 4 STARWARS NINE

Rey Palpatine

(And yes I am now officially allowed to state that since the movie has been let out. Also yes I had already guessed this beforehand. ALSO yes, I have just ruined your speculations if you haven’t seen Starwars 9)

I have always shipped Reylo because Rey and Kylo are so close even though they are on opposite sides of the Force; though they are enemies they share the same connection, and though Kylo may not realise it at times, the same dream of freedom. However I actually HATED the portrayal of them in The Last Jedi, so I ended up shipping Finn-Rey…but now I’m back to where I began. I won’t spoil anything else for you but it all is shown in detail in the movie – please go and watch it.

*Starwars 9*
*Me when Starwars 9 explained it all*

I could possibly survive if Finn-Rey went ahead; but NOT Poe-Rey, there is something fundamentally wrong with that.

They are simply not compatible.

So Poe would definitly be my fave non-shipped one in this move. He’s so adorbale when he hugs BB-8 all the time, just too funny.

Rose

No offence meant sirs, but I REALLY don’t like Rose; in fact I’d rather Spiderman was with Liz than Rose was with ANYONE. She is just soooo annoying, she gallavants around with Finn with the apparent idea that she is in love with him, kisses him, dies, and then is back in Number Nine. She’s just one of those characters I couldn’t care less about.

That girl who is a defector storm-trooper who I’ve forgotten her name but thinks she’s Dana???

Definitely with Finn. She, as a fellow defector from the First Order, knows exactly how he feels and is not annoying in the slightest. Plus she has a pretty cool ride with her! It’s like a horse-yak-thing.

New Year chit-chat

Well would you look at that, my merry old friends! It’s going to be New Year. And that means entering an entirely new decade. ISN’ T THAT EXCITING?!

I mean, like, how often do we actually waltze into a decade, right?

*umm, every ten years Abbie. Duh.*

So, in honour of this brilliant occasion, I decided to interview my lovely, beautiful friend Gosia, a fellow blogger, about what she finds special about this time.

If you had one resolution at new year that you could keep the rest of your life, what would it be?

It’d be to always keep learning. I know that sounds vague 🙂 but I mean that in every way you could look at it! Never let go of that desire to know MORE about what interests me intellectually, and always be open to discussing my views and opinions with others. I thrive on debating and I want to always be open to at least learning and understanding the other side of whatever subject we’re talking about. And understand more of the fact that no experience, no matter how difficult, is ever wasted, and no person I meet, no matter how they treated me, is ever there without a purpose, but that there is always some way I can grow and learn from this. I’ve had my share of rather peculiar experiences and people in 2019 and rather than becoming bitter or wanting to simply leave that behind me, I’m trying to make sure I process it peoperly and let it grow me.

What is your favourite drink/food at new year?

CHEESE!!!! One thing I’ve definitely gotten from my dad is his love for all kinds of cheeses:) I can’t stand blue cheeses, but otherwise I could eat loads of cheddar, double gloucester, gouda, smoked cheeses, brie, with oatcakes, smoked sausage or on its own. I’m already half-closing my eyes, imagining a beautiful cheese board and only me to eat it…Yum! Unfortunately, it’s easy to get nightmares after ingesting too much cheese. Don’t ask me how that works!

Christmas decor left up or taken down?

Don’t get me even started on people who take their Christmas decor down before the 6th of January! For me, the days between Christmas and the 2nd of January are the most peaceful, family-focused, joyful and festive times of the year, and I can’t see why you would want to cut that short! I also think that’s because my ancestors are Polish…where you decorate right before Christmas rather than the first week of December, and that would mean only about a week of Christmas decor!

What are your thoughts on new year’s resolutions?

I think it’s a cool idea. I’m definitely a planner, so I love brainstorming work, travel and study ideas. I think it’s a good and healthy idea to sit down every so often (and it’s OK if it happens to be New Year’s) and think about your goals, whether they be at work, reading, fitness, health etc. For a few years, I did a list of Goals and Resolutions. Resolutions would include fairly typical ideas such as write more, read more, be braver, and Goals would be specific achievements, such as visit Germany, get my driver’s license, learn to swim etc.

I think the ideas is valuable as it helps with always looking to the future and the good things that are coming. On the other hand, if I’m creating resolutions that are either unfeasible or are going to make me feel guilty rather than inspired, then I hope I would have no hesitation about scrapping them.

Speaking of resolutions, what ARE yours, if you have any?

First of all, what I mentioned in the first question – keep learning, be more present, grow stronger. Secondly, there are a few things I want to start doing more of that I used to: read more and write more – I used to be fanatical about both before I finished school and started working, playing piano and learn guitar, and do more acting and drama again. I also need to start working out several time a week as my health permits. I got to do a lot of travelling and experiencing new people and different cultures in 2019 and that is something I want to carry on into 2020. In terms of specific goals, I plan to start university in the autumn and go hiking for two weeks in the mountains somewhere in Europe in the summer and also start a podcast. I used to blog but have totally lost my motivation and ideas so I plan to explore the direction I could channel my creativity.

What would your one year younger self think of you now?

I think she would be a little bit sad. It’s hard to explain, but this year was hard in all the ways I least expected it to be. She would be disappointed and a little angry that some of the different plans and dreams she held close to her heart were crushed and are gone. She would be proud, though, of the strength and tenacity I have gained and she would gasp in wonder at the beautiful moments and unexpected friendships I made.

How would you like your older self to think of you next new year?

I hope she will be proud and will have absolutely no regrets. I hope she will be stronger and will look at any mistakes I know I will make and be able to know that everything happened for a reason.

Are there any particular random aspects of your own new year celebrations that make you think of new year?

Taking down the kitchen calendar where the whole family writes down birthdays, holidays, visitors, trips, events etc. and going through the whole year starting with January and discussing and remembering all that happened that year. We laugh and we sigh and we wonder how on earth that was this year yet?! Also, making and eating sausage-sauerkraut baked bites – it sounds odd but it’s something we’ve made and enjoyed for many years now!

Let’s forget about snow for a moment – what sort of weather makes you think of New Year?

Clear, cloudlessly blue sky; crisp, freezing air; frosty, crackling and frozen hard ground underfoot. I like to take a New Year’s hike with my family, and this is how I imagine it. The night would then be starry and breathtakingly freezing.

What does your perfect New Year’s Eve look like?

I enjoy the way I usually spend it – an evening spent with family. Dinner at around five and then we light a fire in fireplace in the living room and then we literally wait till midnight, playing games, reading by ourselves, singing carols, watching movies. It’s generally quite chill, although we do get pretty heated and competitivie sometimes! We eat snacks (CHEESE) and drink mulled wine. We then enthusiastically count down to midnight, toast the New Year with champagne and crack the usual worn-out jokes about “see you later today” before going to bed. we then sleep in, go for a hike and eat a festive dinner.

Would you rather play games/watch movies on New Year’s Eve?

Can I be vague and say both? 🙂 When I watch a movie with other people, it is still an interactive experience, as I’m always commenting and discussing and reacting in all the right ways. Recently I watched a Christmas Hallmark with a few much younger girls and i think they were surprised how invested a 20 year old can get and how hard she can fall in love with the handsome prince with a British accent. I love to spend the six or so hours of waiting for midnight in watching either one movie or an episode of Planet Earth and then playing games such as Boggle, Carcassonne, Othello, Dutch Blitz.

Any other thoughts about this special start of the year? 

Regardless of what the previous year was like for you, you made it this far and that is enough. You should be proud of the many ways you’ve grown. I try to approach the months to come with excitement, not fear and worry.

It’s going to be a good year!