WoRd PoW #9: Staying Organized & Finally Able to Stream

WoRd PoW #9: Staying Organized & Finally Able to Stream

See, told you guys I’d get back on track here. πŸ™‚

 

WRITING: I’m still working on that new story idea I mentioned last time. When I’m jotting down notes I don’t count the words. There has been a fair amount of doodling this time as I’ve sketched out rough maps and stuff. Since this is a fantasy that takes place in a totally different world I get to design how it looks. Really, really wish I could draw because the dragons I’m picturing in my head are pretty darn awesome. πŸ™‚

 

13638125READING: So Jacob has started this thing where he asks to go to the library every Monday after school. It’s impossible to say no to that. This week I picked up Vicious by V. E. Schwab. I read her most recent book A Darker Shade of Magic a couple weeks ago and enjoyed it so I’m excited for this book too.

 

DOING: I recently learned about this new (to me at least) form of staying organized called a Bullet Journal. I’ve been experimenting with it this month and so far I like it. If you want to learn more about it I’ll link to the videos I found on YouTube that taught me about them. 20160831_091057This is mine so far. I’m using this small journal because it’s what I had on hand and I like how portable it is. I found that I’ve done similar types of organizing in the past without realizing it was a thing. But this is a little more formatted. I’m not perfect with it, but I do think it’s helped.

20160831_091205I like having it for tracking my word counts and what days I do write. And the simple weekly planner is perfect for me and my sometimes busy, sometimes easy weeks. The rest of the pages I use to make notes, reminders or just get thoughts out of my head and onto paper.

20160831_091131You can find a ton of ideas on Pinterest, and don’t be discouraged by what you see. Some people get really, Really, artsy fartsy with their’s, and that is not a requirement. You can keep it simple or go all out, whatever works for you.

 

PLAYING: I’ve been doing something new with Hearthstone this week. Blizzard has announced that you can now easily live stream their games (Hearthstone, Overwatch, World of Warcraft, etc) using Facebook Live. I’ve tried it out and it works okay with my crappy computer! The video quality isn’t amazing and I can only do it for about 30 minutes before my processor starts to freak out on me. But hey, it’s streaming and that’s what all the cool kids are doing now. πŸ˜‰

If you’re interested you can follow my gaming persona, KorkySquirrel on Facebook, Twitter,Β and YouTube. I post all the streams on YouTube after the stream is over. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get a decent computer early next year, but we’ll see. Being a responsible adult with kids cost money.

 

dpligcj0WATCHING: There aren’t any TV shows or movies I’ve seen recently so I’ll share one of my favorite YouTubers. I don’t watch many vlogs in general and I’m real picky about Mommy Vlogs, the only exception is Linz DeFranco over at TheDeFrancoFam. She is the wife of my #1 YouTuber, Philip DeFranco and they have an adorable 2 year old son. I love how real she is in her vlogs about her struggles with being a mom and having depression and anxiety. She’s not afraid to curse or show her kid throwing a tantrum. She also doesn’t let the vlog rule her life. She vlogs 3 times a week but she’s honest when there are times that she just can’t post because life just gets overwhelming. I love how imperfect she is and normal, just like the rest of us. If you like mommy vlogs you should totally check her out.

 

As always, thanks for dropping by! Be sure to like, comment, share and follow if you haven’t already!

WoRd PoW #8: Dragons, Spaceships, Dogs, Cards & Aliens

WoRd PoW #8: Dragons, Spaceships, Dogs, Cards & Aliens

Ok, so it’s been over a month, but you know me, I always come back. πŸ™‚ I’ve been busy, as this post will show.

 

WRITING: My creative juices dried up over the last few months. It’s been a struggle to write, even this blog (i.e. 6 weeks between posts). But this last week the juices have been roaring through my veins and it feels great! While I haven’t been working on my current Crow novel, I have come up with a new story idea and have been world building. Lots of notes written down and research done. I’m pretty excited about this idea because there’s dragons and I LOVE dragons. The basic premise is like How To Train Your Dragon but with a female lead and the dragons are a lot smarter. There are other major differences but I’ll get into that in another post.

Anyway, writing is happening and that makes me insanely happy. πŸ™‚

 

16278318READING: I’ve read a few books over the last 6 weeks, I’ll list them with a simple star review for now, if you want a fuller review just ask for it in the comments. πŸ™‚

Fortunately, the Milk: 5 stars

Inkheart (re-read): 4 stars

The Queen of Distraction: How Women with ADHD Can Conquer Chaos, Find Focus, and Get More Done: 5 stars

A Darker Shade of Magic: 5 stars

Just this week I read Armada by Ernest Cline, the same guy who wrote Ready Player One (no, I have not read that one).

Overall I give it 4 stars. It’s a good story and the characters and their reactions to this crazy situation are all very believable. The one gripe I have, and the reason I haven’t read Ready Player One was all the sci-fi/pop culture references*. I got most of them, but there were a few that went over my head. Fortunately, even if you’re a sci-fi noob you’ll understand the story. Most of the references are *Star Wars* based anyway. So if you like gaming and science fiction in all forms you’ll enjoy this book.

 

DOING: A lot has been going on this month. Both of my boy’s started school. William is in first grade and Jacob is in pre-school for half the day. Which means I get about 2.5 hours Every Weekday All To My SELF! Woohoo! It’s been a beautiful thing.

13908865_10101384549503958_1448679658704517337_o
Rascal & Happy begging for treats πŸ™‚

Also, a month ago we got a second dog. This is Rascal, he’s a beagle mix. We got him from Foothills Animal Shelter (same place we got Happy about 6 years ago). It’s been different having a larger dog. He’s able to grab food off the table and counters and it’s a lot more annoying when he jumps and barks compared to little Happy. He doesn’t bark at everything but he greets everyone with a trumpeting beagle howl when they come home. He’s super, almost aggressively, affectionate and has a lot of energy. We love him, he’s a great addition to our family. πŸ™‚

 

 

nexus2cee_one-night-in-karazhan-trailer-details-optimalPLAYING: My addiction to Hearthstone is still strong. I don’t think I’ve mentioned this before but I have spent about $60 on this game over the last few months. I’ve bought the adventure packs. The adventures are single player games where you follow a story line and and defeat different bosses. As you defeat the bosses you get new cards that can only be had by plying said adventure. Each adventure rewards you with about 45 new cards total. I’ve played and/or currently playing all of them and it’s totally worth it. The bosses are challenging and fun and the cards you get are super useful. There’s no way I could beat most other players without these cards. Also, I’d rather pay $20 for a fun gaming experience and knowing what cards I’ll get in the end, rather than for just a bunch of random cards.

I’ll do a more in depth review of the newly released adventure, One Night in Karazhan, when I finish it next week.

 

fho3g9oowqh1rw7fcdoiWATCHING: So a couple weeks ago I binged watched Defiance. It’s a show from Syfy that’s already ended 😦 but it was so good. The production value is amazing with great graphics and a lot of cool makeup and costumes (which is part of the reason they canceled the show, it gets expensive covering people in white or purple body paint). I enjoyed every minute of watching it. The story is non-stop, with a large cast of characters, most of them not human. They do a great job of showing you these different alien cultures and how weird Earth is now, without bogging down the story. Defiance - Season 1The characters are all awesome. Lots of strong female characters of different types and wonderfully flawed, yet lovable male leads. You know a story is good when it makes me love the main bad guy and cry when he is being slowly put to death. Like seriously Datak Tarr and Stahma Tarr are some of the most well written/acted antagonist, even characters, I’ve ever seen.

If you haven’t seen it, the whole series is available on Amazon Prime.

 

So that’s what’s been going on for the last 6 weeks. Now that I have this dedicated alone time every day, I should be able to update this on a weekly basis like I always intend to.

Thanks for dropping by! Be sure to like, comment and/or share!

 

 

 

*I’ve heard RPO is full of 80’s and 90’s pop culture references and while I was born in the late 80’s and grew up through the 90’s and into the 00’s, I didn’t get a lot of expose to pop culture at the time because my parents never had cable, TV was only hooked up the antenna half the time and I spent a lot of my childhood listening to oldies music and reading about unicorns. Sooo, I’m pretty sure a lot of things in RPO would go Β over my head.

WoRd PoW #7: Queens, Castles, Monsters & A Gate

WoRd PoW #7: Queens, Castles, Monsters & A Gate

Did you miss me? I missed you, honest. πŸ™‚ I meant to post this yesterday or Wednesday but I got sick and then Jacob got sick. We’re all better now so let’s nerd out.

 

Writing: …. XD It’s been a busy couple weeks so… yeah.

 

51ymuhjx4ql-_sx330_bo1204203200_Reading: I know I talked about this last time but I did finish The Hollow Queen. I give it 3 stars. It wasn’t awful, it was better than The Merchant Emperor, but it still wasn’t good. It was real rough in the first few chapters, but I plowed through.

WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!

The thing that makes Queen better than Merchant is that stuff actually happens in Queen. There’s a war going on so there’s battles and stuff. The pacing is better in Queen, but the parts that drag really drag. Haydon has been insanely wordy these last two books. Taking time to give us unnecessary back story about horses and anti-rape devices.

What I did like is how bad ass Rhapsody was. I know it’s because she gave up part of her soul to protect her child, but it was refreshing to see her take charge with out being apologetic. I liked her “get shit done” attitude. Of course, everything with Achmed was great, except the very beginning when the characters are dealing with the aftermath of Achmed killing Tristan. He was too chatty and it just did not feel like him at all. It got better as the book went along.

Surprisingly, I did not hate Ashe in this book. While some of his parts were the slower bits, when he’s walking through the ocean and stuff, we did get to see new places and meet new people through him. Plus he wasn’t obsessing over Rhapsody as much as he did in the last book.

88a8166de4352d16677890d175f07c70Anborn’s death made me cry. He was one of my favorite characters, he ranks above Ashe by a lot.

Two big gripes that I had was the Dragon Ex Machina near the end and the god-moding baby. Addressing the dragon first, Ashe comes across the dragon Elynsynos at the bottom of the ocean and she makes it very clear that she’s not interested in helping him fight a war. Then, near the end, after Ashe get all ragey and sends a tsunami across the world, she just pops up and offers to help, and there’s no good explanation for it. It feels very much like Haydon just wanted a quick and easy way to end the war.

The second thing, the god-moding baby. I’ve always felt that Rhapsody was a Mary Sue Special Snowflake of epic proportions. So if Rhapsody is a Mary Sue then her baby is f*ing God. In previous books he’s put himself back inside his mother’s body after being born for crying out loud. So of course, when Grunther is injured beyond Rhapsody’s amazing ability to heal, only the god baby can fix him.

As horrible as this sounds, I almost would prefer that Grunther had died. It would have felt more real.

In conclusion, I like Queen better than the last one, but that’s not saying much. And yes I will read the final book, I need to get this story out of my system.

 

20160709_124150
This is Bishop’s Castle. It’s got a crazy history, check out their site.Β 

Doing: As I said last time, my parents were here for the 4th of July weekend. We had a blast, so much so that I forgot to take hardly any pictures. Then this last weekend we went to southern Colorado to visit one of Daniel’s cousins. It was a blast and we ran the boys to exhaustion with hiking, playing in streams and visiting a weird, not entirely safe, “castle”.

 

Screenshot_2016-07-15-17-21-56
Some of my Pokemon. Go Team Instinct!

Playing: Like the rest of the world, I’ve been playing Pokemon Go this week. I’m only a level 6 right now because I haven’t been able to get out much this week, what with me and one kid being sick. I tried a gym this morning and got my butt whopped, I’ve done some research, so I think I’ll do better next time.

I haven’t touched Minecraft in about two weeks now, it feels weird and I’m itching to get back.

 

d16fb346b905a0e7d0b1edea39215ebd
Yes please! πŸ˜‰

Watching: I’m still watching Stargate: Atlantis. I just started the 5th and final season. It’s fun to watch when I’m having a hard time sleeping.

 

So there you have it, my WoRd PoW for the last couple weeks. What have you been Writing, Reading, Doing, Playing and/or Watching lately? Leave a comment and share!

Thanks for dropping by! πŸ™‚

WoRd PoW #6

WoRd PoW #6

(Insert excuse for not updating the blog for almost 3 weeks) πŸ˜€

Let’s get to it shall we!

Writing: I managed 2474 words last week. Doing much better than past weeks. And the majority of those words were for my WIP, so yay! I tend to either not write at all or write a lot in one day. Not the best way to finish writing a book, but at least words are going down on pages.

 

51ymuhjx4ql-_sx330_bo1204203200_Reading: I just started reading The Hollow Queen by Elizabeth Haydon. I picked this up at the library last week and have hesitated to start it because the last book in this series was just not good. Here’s my review of that book .

The reviews for The Hollow Queen aren’t very promising either. Sure there are die hards who love this book, but some reviewers seem to share my mind set and they don’t speak very favorably.

Now I thought Hollow Queen was the end of this series, but I just found out that the real, final, 9th book came out just last week. I will probably read it, no matter how bad Hollow Queen is. I’ll wade through all sorts of bad writing to hang out with Achmed. Unless, Haydon manages to make him annoying then I will cry. Pray I don’t end up crying, I’ve spent a lot of day dreaming hours in this world, I don’t want to loose it.

 

Doing: My parents are coming into town for the 4th of July, like they usually do. We’re all pretty excited. We only get to see them once a year, so it’s a big deal.

8 yearsAlso, yesterday was Daniel and I’s 8th wedding anniversary. It’s been an intense ride the last 8 years, but it’s still been a good one. I won’t get all mushy here, but it’s amazing to look back on 8 years and see all the ups and downs we’ve been through, and honestly, I’m in awe of how far we’ve come. This should have fallen apart years ago, but we stuck to it, and each other, and I don’t regret a single moment.

 

Playing: Have I mentioned that the private white list server that PilchPlays (my brother) started on the Bruno’s Realm server, The Nether Enders Serever, is now in it’s second “season”? By “season” I mean that when 1.10 came out we took the opportunity to start a totally new map and start from scratch once more. It’s been fun to start from square one.

If you want to see what we’re up to over there, go check out Pilch’s channel .

ION gaming type news, I should be buying a new, better computer in about two weeks and hope to have my YouTube channel up and running a week or two after that. I’m excited and really nervous about all of that, but we’ll see how it goes.

 

250px-sgaseas2Watching: Daniel made a fatal mistake a couple weeks ago when he told me that all the Stargate shows were available on Amazon Prime. Stargate SG-1 is my second favorite science fiction show. The list goes: Firefly, Stargate SG-1, Stargate Atlantis, Star Trek: Next Generation. Don’t hate me Trekies, Star Trek was my sci-fi bread and butter growing up. I even own all the movies.

I just love Stargate, like a lot. It’s funny and super interesting to me because it takes place in present day (granted present day late 90’s, but still relevant today). The whole premise just fascinates me. How would our current society/government/military handle being able to travel instantly to other worlds and deal with the constant threat of destruction by aliens?

So I’ve been re-watching Stargate Atlantis because I’ve seen SG-1 at least twice now. Atlantis is a little heavier and angstier than SG-1, but I love the characters and I find the Wraith to be a much scarier alien than the Goa’uld. What’s worse, brain worm that takes over your body or alien vampires that can slowly and painfully suck the life out of you? Vampires are freaking terrifying, as long as they don’t sparkle. πŸ˜‰

 

So there’s my WoRd PoW for the last couple weeks. Chances are there won’t be a post next week since my parents will be here, but we’ll see.

What have you been Writing, Reading, Doing, Playing or Watching recently? Tell me in the comments, share the things you love! Thanks for dropping by!

WoRd PoW! #5

WoRd PoW! #5

Hey look! WoRd PoW! is actually on a Wednesday, like I always intend it to be. πŸ˜‰ Let’s get started shall we?

Writing: My word count for this last week is 1822. I didn’t write everyday, but on the days I did write I wrote a lot. My daily goal is to write at least 500 words. I tend to either not write at all in a day or I write way more than 500 words.

I haven’t been working on my WIP, not sure what’s holding me back. I have it all planned out, even spent a lot of time a couple weeks ago planning out the next couple scenes in more detail. I’ve just been avoiding writing, like I’m scared of it or something. I don’t know, my brain is weird.

 

51isww2rpol-_sy344_bo1204203200_Reading: I started reading Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo this week and I’m about half way through. I’ve not read any of her books before, but I like her a lot so far. She’s on my growing list of new (to me) authors to check out.

The book is really fascinating. It’s classified as Young Adult but the characters feel so mature despite most of them being 16 or 17. I guess it’s because of the darker tone of the book and the characters tragic back stories.

There’s six main characters and Bardugo is great at letting the reader get to know each character. She head hops to a different person every chapter, giving everyone a different voice. I’m really enjoying this story and I’m eager to read the rest of Bardugo’s work, which is set in the same world as Six of Crows.

 

fabulousDoing: So, as you might already know, or have guessed, I’m a master procrastinator. I’m very good at spending my time doing a lot of nothing. I have a hard time getting motivated and doing the things I don’t want to do *coughdishescough*. In an effort to stop wasting my time so much I came across this app called Fabulous. It’s a motivational app that helps you break down your to do list, get stuff done and feel good about your self for every little accomplishment.

I’ve been using this app for almost a week now and I’ve already seen a big improvement. I feel more motivation to do the things I normally avoid, like cleaning. I don’t get as overwhelmed by a large task; and it feels good to have a little computer voice say, “Good job, Kristen!”

 

kindle-fire-hd-6-kids-edition-reviewPlaying: As I said last time, I’ve been curbing my gaming habit, but we did just buy a Kindle Fire for the boys to use. We had one a couple years ago that William loved to play with. It was through all the kid friendly, educational apps that Amazon has that taught William the alphabet and counting before he went into preschool.

My old Fire broke, or something, and we haven’t used it in a long time. But I saw that Amazon has this deal for $100 that includes a Kindle Fire, kid proof case and a year subscription to their Amazon FreeTime Unlimited program, which basically gives you countless books, apps and videos that are all kid friendly and free.

The other cool thing I discovered with this program is it allows you to set time limits for any one activity, or just for how long a kid can play with the Kindle in general. There’s also a feature that makes it so the kids have to read or doing something educational for a set amount of time before they can play with the just for fun stuff. Summer learning for the win!*

 

Watching: I am so late to the party on this but, I finally saw Guardians of the Galaxy the other night. I knew it would be a good movie, but I kind of had my expectations low because I am so done with superhero movies. I’m at the point where if a movie is part of Marvel** or DC I just don’t even care. But Guardians of the Galaxy didn’t feel like a superhero movie, it felt like a good science fiction/action flick. In fact, it reminded me of Firefly in a lot of ways, and Firefly is pretty much perfect in my eyes.

The humor was spot on. Rocket and Groot are perfect in every way. I’d totally watch a movie based on them alone. The #1 best moment for me was this post-58050-i-am-groot-smiling-gif-imgur-aubg. I mean look at that face! He’s just so gosh darn happy about brutally killing a bunch of bad guys. Tree people, no matter what story they come from, are always the best and should not be messed with.

 

What have you been Writing, Reading, Doing, Playing and/or Watching this week? Leave a comment so we can all share the things we love!

 

*Side note: I am not the kind of mom who thinks “screen time” is a horrible evil thing.

**Side note: Marvel and X-Men FTW!