News

News: I moved the keyboard to my room and now I feel strongly inclined to tell the world that I adore Phantom of the Opera. Everything is perfectly normal and no, I don't have access to any secret underground labyrinth...yet.

--12 August 2017 --

Quote: Words are pale shadows of forgotten names. As names have power, words have power. Words can light fires in the minds of men. Words can wring tears from the hardest of hearts. --Patrick Rothfuss, The Name of the Wind

The Fellowship

August 31, 2011

M.I.A

I have been M.I.A for quite some time...and I'm going to be returning to that status for quite a while. Pardon my rather LONG absence from blogging. I've been up to so much lately (and so little; depends how you look at it) that I just haven't felt the desire to pick up my keyboard and write. In fact, I haven't even touched nary pen nor pencil since...July, I think.

What HAS been taking up all my time? Let me explain...


  • Spent 4.5hrs today chasing our bull, Obadiah, across our property as we tried to get him into the hayfield :| Here's how it went...
    • Get called by neighbour: "Your bull is in our hayfield, please come and get him."
    • Get in car with mom, grab grain, drive 3km (ish) to neighbour's hayfield to find Obi.
    • Find Obi & coax him over our main cattleguard with grain. 
    • Manage to get him over our first bridge with grain, but he REFUSED to go up the hill :|
    • Drove home.
    • I saddled up Cearazo and rode 3/4 a km back to Obi and tried to herd him up the hill. He wouldn't go; went and hid in the bushes. 
    • Went back home.
    • Got mom; mom saddled up John and rode down with me. 
    • Herded Obi through brush & over creek; herded him all the way up to hayshed -- he started getting testy (butting trees and snorting) so we...
    • Went home, unsaddled horses, & got water. 
    • Went back to try and fetch him with grain; couldn't find him.
    • Went home.
    • Found SOTK; got in farm truck, loaded on a bale of hay (which we ended up not using).
    • Drove down to original place he rebelled -- bottom of creek (oh yeah, Shinzou (our Akita) was on the truck with us :D)
    • Mom took SOTK and bucket of grain and went into forest to search for Obi. 
    • I drove the truck back up to hayshed.
    • Shinzou and I got off the truck & went into the forest, searching for mom, SOTK, and Obi. 
    • Found them all across the creek; so I crossed the creek and helped herd Obi through the dense forested area. 
    • Obi tried to escape several times; we managed to get him travelling along the fence that borders our hayfield. 
    • Kept walking Obi.
    • Got into sight of the gate that opens into the hayfield. 
    • Mom and SOTK pushed Obi along the fence while I crawled through the fence and sprinted up to the gate to open it. 
    • FINALLY GOT THE DARNED BEAST INTO THE HAYFIELD!!! HALLELUJAH!!!
    • *sigh of relief*
  • We just finished getting our second crop of hay off the hayfield :) We probably won't get anymore off, rather we'll grow the grass out for the animals to eat once the frost hits. Our hayshed is the fullest we've ever seen it. We can't even fit the main machinery into it (usually we're able to). 
  • We've had boatloads of uncles & aunts (ok, only two lol) come and visit. My grandma & grandpa are coming this weekend :) 
  • SOTK and I have been fishing in the big creek; the trout are really awesome...stinky but awesome. 
  • I got a new Chuck Black book & have been learning the piano music from it *big grin*
  • I've also been studying up the university books I currently have; school starts up September 7th! I can hardly wait!!! (don't look at me like that -- I honestly LOVE school...although I might state otherwise later into the semester XD)
  • OOooo the list goes on :P lots of different things...lots of interesting, fun things. But for now....
That's all :D I would write more, but I shan't. Already my ideas are beginning to dwindle :( perhaps a few weeks in school will jump start my creativity once more. At the current moment, I shall take my leave!

God bless ya'll! Have a great last-few-days-of-summer :) 


Signed with arrows & bear fur, 

Squeaks.

August 8, 2011

Anything that's Fuzzy or Furry, Please Stand Up

The title explains it all. However, on the other hand, I need to do some explaining, since the title really doesn't explain everything all that perfectly.

If you follow the Minstrel Warrior then you've been subjected, recently, to a bout of terribly random blogging. That was yesterday when said post made its way online and exploded upon the dashboards of many unwary writers/readers. It's all good though! Everything turned out great!

Now *ahem* for the post of today. I figured I'd give you HD followers a little something...out of the ordinary. A something special. A something...something. Thus the title Anything that's Fuzzy or Furry, Please Stand Up came instantaneously to mind. It's entirely random and has no meaning at all. Well, it didn't until now. I shall proceed to give it meaning.

First and foremost, we need a list! *summons up list* -->

The Fuzzy/Furry List



  • Anything that purrs, meows, woofs, neighs, moos, or makes any other un-human sound that resembles something you'd hear in the kitchen -- it's probably fuzzy.
  • Anything that snorts is probably not fuzzy.
  • Anything that is huggable is probably fuzzy and dangerous (e.g. bears, cougars, lions)
  • Anything that is furry is probably fuzzy.
  • Anything that is fuzzy may or may not be furry.
  • Anything that is furry might be furious. 
  • Anything that is fuzzy may not be real.
  • Anything that is fluffy is neither fuzzy nor furry. 
  • Anything that has a really long neck may be furry but probably not fuzzy. 
  • Anything that does not speak English is either furry or fuzzy or fluffy.
  • Anything that is not huggable might be furry. 
  • Anything that has sharp pointy teeth could be fluffy. 
  • Anything that breaths may be furry, fluffy, or fuzzy. 
  • Anything could be anything. 

That's the end of the anything list. 

So what are fuzzy/furry things? Let me show you by means of a complete and wonderous set of Google images (*hint hint* none of these images are mine).

Let's start with fluffy -- the ancestor of the furry and fuzzy. 

This is what happens when you're too fluffy. You get over fluffified and become rather wrapped up in your own looks. Beware!

Another example of what over-fluffification can do to your poor soul :( 

Fluffy the penguin. This is the prime example of what all over-fluffifiers want to achieve. The ultimate look of cuteness and fluffiness. Enter -- the arctic fluff suit.

Fluffy the furiously fluffy emperor. Beware the fluffy; it can turn your insides to mush and detonate inside your heart to make you the evil world nemesis who wants to destroy everything...like Fluffy here. 


Now we know about the fluffy we can move on to the furry...

Some furry things are really quite harmless. Like this furry facebook flop. Err, pillow. They're really not all that bad, until they try to smother you while you sleep :S

At the other end of the furry spectrum, we have the freakily fantastic furry things. Like this monster here. Just look at the size of that fur! I don't want to know what he's thinking about my cookie jar right now...it can't be anything good.

Now that we've seen the horrible furry things. Let's continue to the fuzzy. 

Fuzzies are slightly more innocent than fluffies or furries. Just look at these numiferous fuzzy peaches! They couldn't do anyone harm (very nummy too!)

Of course...everything has its odd points. Just like this fuzzy >.<

Despite the fact that fuzzies may be nummy or strange, they can also be useful. Welcome to stage the once-puppy-now-fuzzy-slipper thing :) What a genius invention!

There you have it, my fluffified readers! The whole take down on anything that's fuzzy or furry, with an introduction by the ancestral fluffy. I hope you have enjoyed!

(further reading material of more reasonableness to come in the following days/weeks/months/years; stay tuned!)

Signed with a fountain pen that has a plume of fuzzy/furiness on the top, 

Squeaks.

August 3, 2011

"Rumors of God" by Darren Whitehead & Jon Tyson

Rumors of God by Darren Whitehead & Jon Tyson

  • Religion, Christian Life, Spiritual Growth
  • Published by Thomas Nelson
  • Copyright 2011
  • 187 pages


Synopsis:

Life is busy. We live like slaves to our fast-paced, suffocating schedules. We spend our energy and time in triviality, relegating God to the background. He seems distant to us, and we resist the idea that God wants to give, say, and show us more; we dismiss it as rumor. But Jesus calls us to a better way. Another dream -- an unimagined future. Close the gap between what you hear about and what you see. 


My Thoughts: 


Rumors of God is a book meant to stir the hearts of Christians and encourage them in their faith. While the text may be choppy and poorly spliced in some areas, the message is true and edifying. Alan Hirsch stated that Rumors of God is an antidote "For those who are jaded by the church, or have become cynical about the power of the Gospel in our time..." I agree. This book is for anyone who seeks refreshment and encouragement when it comes to experiencing the power of God.

As I read the first few chapters of this book, I felt myself begin to groan in disappointment. There were grammatical errors and the fluidity of the text was poor. However, as I continued to read on, the message that the authors were trying to get across began to grow and become more clear. By the halfway point, I found myself actually enjoying the material. 

I found the most moving part of this book to be chapter 8, Loving Beneath the Surface. I truly believe the authors captured the essence of Christian community and the power of love within the pages, urging the reader to have faith -- that the following rumours are true: we are handiwork, there is a God who loves us, and there is grace for even the worst sinner.


My Rating: 3/5


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 

August 2, 2011

On Being Concise

As of recent, I've picked up The Adventures of Ramsy Motch book 1 and have started editing. As I look through the 8x11 in. paper pages that hold the words I penned into existence, happily bound by silver rings in a transparent green binder, I wonder about the author. Oh wait, that's me right? The roughly sketched cover art with the title of my work makes me grin, that is, I grin until I flip open the first page.

What ever became of good writing, proper grammar, and fluidity of language? It appears that, once I take it upon myself to write any literary piece at all, my skill level is gravely diminished until it seems I'm but a ghost of the person I once was. All this talk I've been conducting online has taken a toll on my previously enjoyable, smooth writing abilities. I cringe every time I see parentheses and multiple interjections within one sentence. I wish I could turn my eyes every time I catch the sight of an emoticon or abbreviated term.

You're kidding, right?


Is this really me, writing all this rubbish? I sadly assure you that it is. You see, what prompted me to face the facts came in the form of white paper with blue lines. Notebook paper. Every year, I take it upon myself to write snail mail. This year I've written four letters total; it's rather pitiful, that I spend so little time on meaningful communication.

One of my letters was casually written to a girl in my church; I wished her well on her job and made simple small talk. The point of the matter was to encourage her and hopefully brighten her day. I know snail mail definitely brightens my day.

A second letter was written to an old friend of mine; I actually composed the letter 6 months before and had just recently found it, tucked away between loose sheaves of paper adorned with poetry. Refusing to let my work go to waste, I sent her the letter, along with some added information about my life and such.

The last two letters were sent to a relatively new friend of mine. This girl was in the foster care system and had very few real friends who cared about her well-being. I felt compassion for her situation and decided to befriend her; now we converse fairly regularly. My friendship with her is perhaps one of the better things I've invested my time in this year; while she isn't a Christian, I truly believe God is doing a new work in her life.

I spent the last few paragraphs talking about seemingly irrelevant information. Letter writing? What does that have to do with the previous topic of woe-is-me-I-suck-at-writing? Snail mailing is an art in itself. Not only do you attempt to harness the pen to produce calligraphic beauty on sheets of white, but you also attempt to squeeze as much meaning into as few sentences as possible.

Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. --William Strunk, Jr.

Anyone who has hand-written a letter will tell you that it takes far longer than typing an email, given that you're a slow writer and fast typist. While writing emails, I generally include a lot of junk that doesn't need to be included. There are those nasty extra words that take up space and do nothing for the reader except to make you sound like an uncertain, bumbling buffoon. Snail mail, on the other hand, demands that you exclude those redundant expressions and cut to the chase.

Now what does this have to do with my personal writing, my novels?

Since I have recently picked up the pen and paper again, not only to journal daily but also to write to friends and family, I am reminded of how enjoyable it is to read witty writing that has good grammar and follows the rules of literature. Writing that is rarely sarcastic and does not draw upon poorly placed puns (sorry, alliteration not intended) to make the piece catchy; writing that does not skim the surface of the pond but dives deep into the heart of the matter. That's the type of writing I want to produce.

As I look through The Adventures of Ramsy Motch, both books 1 and 2, I find myself regretting the fact that I didn't take more time to think out the words I wanted to say. I have a plot now, at least for book 1, but there is little meaning within that plot. All I see now are characters on strings, like puppets, dancing away to whatever tune I play with the ink. I want those characters to grow and come alive. I want them to develop over the storyline and come out differently, or at least more abstract, than when I first wrote them into existence.

It doesn't just stop with the characters, though; the prose of the piece itself is lacking. However, I feel that with some tightening and tweaking, it will come out better than what it is now.

That is my lament as a self-editing writer. Now I don't just want to drop the topic here and go on as if nothing happened. I want to do something to fix the predicament I find myself in -- let me explain a bit here.

Yesterday I watched The Polar Bear King with SOTK; there is one scene where the evil witch is warned by her master that "too much evil destroys evil". Perhaps in this case, for us writers, we can say that "too much humour destroys humour" or even "too much wit destroys wit".

In my attempt to be witty and humorous, I fear I over-dosed on puns, slang, and interjections. The end result? Smelly writing that wouldn't be fit for publication, period. Therefore, I've concluded that I will use only the minimal amount of emoticons, slang, and interjections (like so) in my writing for the next week or so. We'll see how long I can keep it up. I dare all of you brave soldiers who wield the pen to join me in this endeavour. If you already write without slang, emoticons, or interjections then I applaud your style! If not, then perhaps you would consider joining me in this test to see whether cutting the junk will help us write more clearly and concisely.

I liked the challenge of writing in a very concise structure in which both meaning and form are important. --Jeffery Deaver

God bless!

Signed with a quilled pen,

Squeaks.
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