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Robert Reads some more discworld

Title: The Truth
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: I really enjoy this one, though I suspect that there are still a lot of jokes that I dont get because I don't understand a lot about newspapers and such. However, I adore the various typos (especially around 'The Truth Shall Make Ye Free') and the amazing vegetables.
And, of course, the newspaper and the people working on it appears in various other Discworld books and I'm always pleased when I can find a "FIRST MENTION OF!" like when I spot the old post office and its sign with the missing letters before Going Postal ever was written.

Title: Thief of Time
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: I sometimes have mixed feelings about this one actually, which is a little odd. It is the last of the Death/Susan books, though Death does still appear in the others from time to time of course, and it does provide a possible ending for Susan, though not one that I personal would have gone with. I enjoy the stuff with the signs like 'Do Not Feed The Elephant' and stuff like that, because that just makes me laugh, but I think, on the whole, it's a bit... nothing. It's one of those ones where I remember little bits of it really, really well and then the rest just kinds of drifts into this big pool of "oh yes, that was probably a quote/ scene from a Discworld book"
It's a shame, because I do enjoy it and I have a fondness for the History Monks (especially Qu), but I just... I think I just done care all that much.

Title: Last Hero
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: The only problem that I have with this book is that a lot of the "Also by Terry Pratchett" lists don't actually put this in the right position! It lists all of the other Discworld books in order, but then it puts Last Hero in a different list. It's only thanks to having one of the later published books which has all of the books in order AND NUMBERED that I'm ever able to remember when this book is actually meant to appear!
This is one of those ones where I've actually moved a lot of what happens into other books. So, for example, when they're trying to work out which lever to pull or what button to push because Leonard is out cold, and they almost try the TROBA button, I'd put that into the submarine from Jingo, because it's the Patrician who stops them!
I love that this is a Rincewind book that I actually really enjoy (possibly because he volunteers by saying that he's not volunteering and he's not actually spending the entire book trying to get away), and I love that it also includes Carrot and the Patrician, the other wizards and the Silver Hoard. Though I suppose I should say that Carrot on his own is sometimes a little difficult to deal with. It's why he's best when he's pair with people like Vimes, Gaspode and Rincewind because he needs someone completely cynical to balance him out.
I adore the ending that the Hoard get because that's the sort of ending I think all heroes would like really.
It being full of pictures and all of Leonard's little doodles and such just make this book so much more fun as well. Spotting the parody is a huge part of the enjoyment in this book!

Title: Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: I can't remember which book it was that mentioned the educated rodents before, but I know there was one. It might have been a Watch book because in my head it's Nobby and Colon talking about it. Anyway, I really enjoy that there is a book all about them now and that it even makes reference back to Sam Vimes who probably isn't in any sort of hurry to see them again other than to lock up the Stupid Looking Kid and his cat.
I don't think we have to go through the whole "I love fairy tales" thing this time, let's just take it as read that one of the reasons that I enjoy this book is that it's a take on the Hamlin story, and of course the little bit at the end which could lead into a whole new story for a boy with a name which just lends itself to innuendos!
I have a version of this which was done for radio and so now, when I'm reading it, I hear their voices, even the bits which aren't in the radio version. And it's funny reading it because the radio version is all being told by Maurice as a looking back thing as he's talking to Dangerous Beans whereas the book, obviously, isn't!n And they both work really well and they're really enjoyable. I think one of the things I really enjoy about this book is actually all of the bits told from the perspective of the rats themselves; their language, the smells, the things that they notice but humans (and cats) would miss. Rats as the good guys- let's have more of that please :)

Title: Night Watch
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: Another one that I have an audio radio production of, and another one that I LOVE. I adore pulling out all the references to various rebellions that I recognise (Les Mis references are fairly easy, Braveheart is bloody obvious!) and seeing the old Ankh Morpork and all of the characters that we know not yet being the characters that we know. Like Nobby as a kid- I LOVE THAT!!!! No, seriously, you don't understand, I absolutely adore child!Nobby! I wouldn't mind having a book just about child!Nobby because I personally think that would be amazing!
Anyway, when I first read this book there was a little voice trying to pull my attention towards something, but I couldn't work out what it was. Then I read Guards! Guards! again (for probably the fifth time by that point) and realised what it had been. Nobby tells Carrot that the reason that Vimes is in the Night Watch is because he was "done low by a woman", but in this book it's Vime's first job and from things that he says when faced with Rosemary Palm and the other ladies, it's pretty clear that young Sam hasn't yet had the pleasure of being done low.
Of course Pratchett did give us a reason for any and all little slips in continuity by simply saying that it was due to the History Monks not quite putting things back together properly. I mean, I accept this canon willingly, but there is a little part of me that's just going "No, but... wait, no! That's not right!"

Title: The Wee Free Men
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: People who do not like the Nac Mac Feegle are people who do not enjoy life! The Nac Mac Feegle are possibly my favourite Discworld creation.
So we've got new takes on fairy tale characters, we've got a girl who is young but can still just do what needs to be done, we've got witches who aren't the three that we're used to, and we've got sheep. Lots of sheep.
I love this book, as I love all the Tiffany books, but I can't quite pin down what it is I like so much about them. Maybe it's because of the whole fairy tale characters thing, or maybe it's having a witch who isn't just Headology. I love Granny Weatherwax, but sometimes it's nice to see the other witches doing things their way, instead of hers.

Title: Monstrous Regiment
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: Right, so let's see. We got a little bit of foreshadowing for this one in a way because Moldavia and Borogravia were mentioned at the beginning of Night Watch, and Nuggan was one of the Gods that appears in Last Hero, but now we get a lot bigger picture of what's going on over there and it's fun, I'll admit.
But, I have to admit, on this re-reading there were a few bits that irritated me and the problem is that I don't know if I'm reading too much into some of them or what. Ok, so take my usual complaint about the way that Agnes Nitt is always described- always focusing on her weight, on her size, and I always say that I might feel better about it if a male character of a similar size was described in the same way. And finally, in this book, we have that in Sargent Jackrum. Except we don't. Because Jackrum is not, in fact, male. I don't know if I'm complaining about this unfairly because, technically, we don't know that Jackrum isn't male until pretty much the end of the book, but on a reread, with that knowledge already, it's a lot harder to accept it.
And all of the things about acting like a boy/ acting like a girl. I mean, the stuff about the socks and how "the whole world revolves around your socks" is funny, and I do like it because I get what it means and everything, but at the same time, I feel that some of what the message could be, is lost. At the end girls are allowed to openly join the army As Girls, and that women are just as good as men at doing these sorts of things. Jackrum says "they were better at being men than the men". There's always this... separation, this distinction between the sexes and I get so tired of it. And it works, in a way, for those characters in that place at that time, but I just... I wish that there could have been a bit more volume given to the idea that there's no such thing as acting like a girl or a boy, acting like a man or a woman- it's just people being people.

Title: A Hat Full of Sky
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: I finished reading this last night so technically should be the one I remember the best. *LAUGHS MANICALLY!*
Again, I love the Nac Mac Feegle and they are the best in so many ways. I love that when I read their dialogue, I read it in a strong Scottish accent and anything that's written phonetically (as most of their speech is), I will take the time to make sure that I am translating it in my head properly. There are a few times where two or three words are put together to make what looks like a completely foreign word, but if you read it slowly, bit by bit, you realise what it actually says and then I can't stop laughing!
I feel that the Tiffany books still have a few issues when come to from a purely feminist perspective. I am not going to give a whole thing about everything that's wrong with it, but there is a point where it pretty much literally says that the Kelda of the Feegles, the ONLY female, will literally spend her life inside the mound having babies. Yes, she's in charge, but her role does kind of come down to mother and wife.
It just bugs me a little. But I will save that for another day when I'm more in the mood to do a whole feminist theory.

Robert Reads

I have decided that due to the sheer amount of time that it's going to take to do all of my Discworld books, I've split them up into two. Hopefully I'll be able to remember all of the things that I wanted to say about them!!!

Title: The Hogfather
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: Probably my favourite of the Susan/Death books (and this really is a Susan book more than a Death book!). I adore the use of all the mythical characters, and how they are completely real in the Discworld, right down to Jack Frost starting to paint other things on the windows rather than his usual fern patterns. I like the Oh-God of Hangovers, though I don't completely love the way that the Tooth Fairy (not the main one, the one they kidnap) is handled because she's made out to be very, very annoying and it's annoying that she's written so annoying, especially with Susan being so able and in control.
Its fun seeing how often the Wizards are in the Death books really, probably because of Wizards being able to see, and to summon, Death and I like how different these various encounters have been. And with this one we even get a reference back to Soul Music, what with Susan having met the Arch chancellor back then too!
So yes, I love the book, I really enjoy seeing Death attempting to be the Hogfather, the kids and their reactions to him, the way that the whole Father Christmas myth is turned around, using both the traditional story that we're generally told, and the actual origins (and even mentioning the whole colour of the costume!), but, and I don't often say this, I think that the live action version managed to handle certain things a lot, lot better.

Title: Jingo
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: OK, so I normally quite like this book and I get a lot of enjoyment out of it. I like the commentary about war and how it's handled, I like that the patrician, Nobbs, Colon and Leonard are off on their own little adventure, I like the little bits with the fishermen still arguing over who owns the island (and the driftwood) and I like Vimes being Vimes in an unusual set of circumstances.
BUT!
There is a part in this book where Mr Terry Pratchett and I have a bit of a falling out and, I'm afraid, I haven't quite forgiven it yet. So, there are Nobby and Colon getting disguises in Klatch and Nobby ends up dressed in a dancing girl's costume. And at some point there is a line which goes something like this: whenever a male character is forced to dress as the opposite sex an otherwise healthy and normal male will fall in love with them.
There are other lines where Nobby is "getting in touch with his feminine side" where Colon states that he's getting Worried about Nobby. Nobby I think makes reference to the fact that the clothes are quite comfortable (something that's continued in the next Watch book) and he is told that he will have to change out off the clothes.
Oh, and the throw away line about Mrs Palm stating (about the Blue Pussycat Club- which it is implied is a gay club) that "Unnatural desires are only natural"
So, yes, it's sort of funny. Ha, ha, Nobby is the least feminine person there is, he's dressed up as a woman, even the usual trope of the mistaken identity falling in love thing doesn't work because it's Nobby. But no. I got angry this time. I didn't like that this book, which I enjoy, by a writer I really enjoy reading and have utmost respect for, included those specific lines and mentions.

Title: Last Continent
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: For a Rincewind book, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this one. I don't really remember it very well from previous readings (it being a Rincewind book and therefore not as well read) and it turned out that there were loads of things that I had completely forgotten all about that were genuinely funny! There's Rincewind inventing Marmite (well, Vegemite), the wizards accidentally creating the Duck-Billed Platypus, references back to Eric and Rincewind's sandwich (from which all life sprang forth), and all of the many Pricsilla, Queen of the Desert references which I never got originally because I had never come across that film!
I adored the way that the Girls called the Luggage Trunkie and "She" when Rincewind always called the Luggage "He", especially as the narration at one point pretty much says that the Luggage is just the Luggage and doesn't have a gender, and yet these two have both given it the gender they feel is right. A couple of the bits with the Priscilla references did bug me, because it felt a little like the way that Jingo went, but mostly this was better, especially as a lot of it was coming from Rincewind's complete non-grasp of the situation!

Title: Carpe Jugulem
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: This is what I consider to be the last Witches book, because I consider the Tiffany Aching books to be a separate arc of their own (which they are), much in the same way that I don't consider Susan books to be Death books. And, honestly, I think this makes a good out for the witches.
I love the way that the 'Things Everyone Knows About Vampires' is used, and even the lesser known things which come from various cultures- some of which I do actually recognise, or at least recognise what they're based on- and it pleases me that Agnes is handled a lot better this time. There are still one or two too many comments about her weight, but at least this time they are mostly from people like Lacrimosa, who would be making comments about people being overweight because that's the sort of character she is. I think I would be a little less irritated by the concentration on Agnes' weight if it was treated in the same way when it's a male character who is overweight, but it isn't really. There might be a few comments or a few descriptions, but nothing like the amount that we got in Masquerade, or, to a certain extent, this one.
But one of the things I really love about this book is that we get our first glimpse of the Nac Mac Feegle, though they are a lot harder to understand than in the later Tiffany books!

Title: The Fifth Elephant
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: So, minor rant about how even Angua reacts to Nobby being quite happy to stay in his women's clothing. Rant rant rant!
Anyway, another one that I really enjoy, and one that sets up things quite nicely I feel, because this is referred back to a couple of times in later books, and of course we get the Igors who appear a number of times over the books and they are so much fun. The first Igor was in Carpe Jugulem, but I feel that it's really from here that we start having them properly, what with one of them going to Ankh Morpork and all!
It's always a bit funny reading a book with Vimes, but not with Colon and Nobby, and especially with this one where he doesn't even have Angua or Carrot for most of the book. I love watching him a Sybil, because I really believe in their relationship and I support it totally!
And, I have to say, I ADORE the ending, both the bits with him and Sybil having a bit of a holiday, and Carrot going back and dealing with the mess made back at the Watch House!

(Next time we'll have The Truth, Thief of Time, Last Hero, Amazing Maurice, the Night Watch and any others that I feel I can do nice and quickly!)

Oh yeah, I suck!

I have got really bad at posting anything on here, I know. I keep meaning to and then I put it off because there are so many other things that I want to get on with (or pretend to get on with when in fact I'm just staring at it vaguely and using it as procrastination!)

But let us have some Robert Reads! I have quite a lot of reads at the moment, so I'm going to do these in parts otherwise it's going to take me a month just to get it all written up.

Robert Reads
KINDLE BOOKS

Title: The Bone Shop
Author: T.A. Pratt
Opinion: I got this in one of my StoryBundle bundles and I read it in dribs and drabs at first because I was reading it, mostly, on my phone during lunch break at work, but then when I got my tablet with the Kindle app already installed on it, I figured this was the perfect time to get in some proper reading.
And I really, really enjoyed it! There were a couple of little bits where I was a bit unsure about whether I liked the style used, or the way that the time had moved and things like that, and I think there might have been a couple of moments where I felt that a word or two had been missed out or misprinted, but otherwise really enjoyed.
Also, I didn't realise until reading the author's notes at the end that it was (a) a prequel to an established series, one that I'm thinking of tracking down and reading at some point and (b) originally written as a weekly (or was it monthly?) serial and posted online before being complied and turned into the e-book.

Title: Mrydin's Heir; Wizard of Dreams
Author: Robin Chambers
Opinion: I bought this when I was looking for a different book but this looked kind of interesting, not least because I know that Mrydin is one of the many spellings of Merlin. It was clearly aimed at a younger audience but it was quite pleasing in many ways, though there were a couple of bits which I kind of skimmed because there was just a lot of description and I get so damn bored of description sometimes.
It was quite interesting reading the author's notes at the end because he had highlighted certain words and phrases at the end of each chapter and in the notes he either gave definitions, history or a little note about pop culture references that he'd used, which I quite liked, but there were a few moments where I felt like I was being talked down to a bit, but as the book was meant for a younger audience, maybe they wouldn't have felt like that.
Though there was one moment in the book that really, really annoyed me. Without spoiling anything too much, there is a bit where King Arthur appears and speaks to the main character and he was an arse. I'm sorry, but if you are going to have King Arthur appear anywhere in your book, even if it's as a mirage, a dream, a vision, or only for a split second, please don't make him a complete and utter arsehole. I know that some of the... let's say the "official" texts do kind of write Arthur as a bit of an arsehole, but from what I remember, they are few and far between.
Grrr.
Not sure I'll look for the second book, if it's even out.

So, that's my Kindle books so far... I'm currently reading another... three or four books on the Kindle app, though one of them is a writer's guide to writing about horses properly, which is genuinely interesting and I will try to keep some of the information in mind for when I'm writing my fantasy books so I don't write them too badly

And that's... two books out of... 19 (including comics) *sighs* This could take some time! And then I shall do Robert Listens (to audio dramas!) and maybe Robert Watches too!

Merlin S1 Ep 9- Excalibur

It has been SOOOOOOOOOO damn long since I did one of these. Let's see if I can have some serious thoughts about this episode!

(LINKS TO PREVIOUS EPISODES!!
Dragons Call
Valiant
Mark of Niumeh
Poisoned Chalice
Lancelot
Remedy to Cure All Ills
Gates of Avalon
Beginning of the End)

Black Knight Always Triumphs!Collapse )

YAY! Next episode has Will! It's darling little Will!

Tags:

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT!!!

Due to the current state of our home internet there shall be no Friday Fiction today, nor will there be posts on Monday, Tuesday or (possibly) Wednesday!!!

Basically we are waiting for our home internet to be connected and since the 1st everyone has been connecting using mobile data, and, specially, getting wifi via my mobile date allowance. However, this does mean that, due to one particular programme leaching a load of data when I wasn't even using it at the time (when I found out I uninstalled it straight away!!!), I am close to my limit. Even doing this post now is using precious, precious data!

Our new connection should be ready on Wednesday the 13th so as soon as I get home from work I will be setting it up, but there may still be a few teething troubles while we try to get all of the people with all of the devices connected. I'm hoping that this won't be too bad and that I will be able to backdate the Friday Fiction and Tuesday Drabbles.

I MIGHT be able to get a Prompt Me Monday post in after work on Monday if I go to Costa for my after work coffee AND remember to take my Freddy laptop with me.

So, please be patient with me (and the rest of the family, as we try to get our internets back up and running!

Robert reads, watches and rambles

So I had an interesting conversation at work today. There are two women at work who are... well, they worry about things. Everything. If they think that something is dangerous, they won't do it, even if in fact it isn't dangerous in any way, shape or form, they just think that it is. You can explain to them how very safe it is, and they won't believe you. The fitters and setters can tell them that it's safe and they won't believe them. The Boss can tell them that it's safe and they won't believe him. It's that bad.

Today one of them was talking about voting and stuff, and at that point I zoned out because I absolutely don't want to know what other people at work are thinking of voting (mostly because I know two people have already suggested that they might vote for UKIP and they were NOT being sarcastic!), however, I started listening again when she started saying something about Wind Farms. Apparently there's one that's going to be set up not far from where she lives, and she's worried that the wind created by the wind farms will cause the smoke from the chimney (chemical plant/ factory chimney I'm guessing) to be blown down towards the houses.

I then spent the rest of the tea-break trying to explain that this wasn't actually how wind farms work. That the huge turbines are basically giant versions of pin-wheels that you used to get at the beach and that they don't create any sort of wind, but use the wind to create energy, and that if there was a chance that they would bring that pollution from the chimney over to the houses, they wouldn't have put them there (kind of defeats the object of clean energy really!)

I guess the reason I'm putting this here is actually because I then started doubting myself. Did I tell her the truth? There was someone who backed me up with what I was saying, but she was the only one and I'm just a little worried that someone's going to come along and go "Oi, you were completely wrong about that whole wind farm thing" and then I'll have to admit that I have no fucking idea what I'm talking about half the time and just try to sound like I do! So, does anyone else want to chip in here and back me up on this one? Was I telling her the right thing? And I know that I'm right about the turning wind into energy thing, but the whole not creating extra wind and affecting the chimney thing, that's the bit I'm not 100% sure on now! (I was when I was telling her, but self-doubt is a bastard!)

I've been to see a couple of films recently, both of which my older brother worked on (just by coincidence) and so I'm just going to do a very quick summary of each
(WARNING: THERE ARE A FEW SPOILERS IN THE THIRD SUMMARY!!!)

Title: Cinderella
Opinion: So, as we should all know by now, I adore Fairy Tales and even before I knew Dan had worked on this (and his name was actually in the credits this time!) I knew I was going to see it. It was based on the Disney version of the tale, which meant that there were some very fun mirrored scenes which, if you're familiar with the animated Disney film, were very fun to spot, but it was different enough to still be very interesting.
I loved the repeated use of the 'Dilly Dilly' song (lavenders blue dilly dilly, lavenders green, when I am king dilly dilly, you shall be queen) and the way that they did the testing of every maiden with the shoe. It was also very interesting how they changed the reason why they had to check the shoe with every maiden rather than him just recognising her and going "SHE'S THE GIRL!" and the same with their first meeting and then meeting again at the ball.
I actually really liked the prince, which is really what you want, and I like that he was just a bit dorky. I apparently have a HUGE soft spot for dorky characters!

Title: Winter Soldier
Opinion: I saw this for the first time as a part of the Avengers Triple Bill on Wednesday (Avengers Assemble, Winter Soldier and Age of Ultron) and here is my VERY brief review;
I think I can see why the slashers wet themselves over that film ^_^

Title: Avengers: Age of Ultron
Opinion: I REALLY enjoyed this. I suppose I was a little worried that it wasn't going to live up to the hype and that it was going to be a bit boring, because I do find too many action sequences kind of dull, but it was great fun and I think it was the best of the three films. I am in love with the Scarlet Witch, I loved her brother, I already loved Banner/Hulk and Black Widow but I think my love for them kind of exploded all over the place, and there were so many genuinely funny moments, and lots of people were laughing, which just made it really great.
CUT FOR SPOILERS!!!Collapse )
So yes, very much enjoyed that film, would possibly watch again! (so far I think the only other Marvel film I've said that about straight away was Guardians)

And now I have to go looking for my list of books so I can do Robert Reads!

Books


Title: Interesting Times
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: This is my dad's favourite book, probably because of the teacher in the barbarian horde! I think I've only read Interesting Times... twice before. Once when I was first reading the Discworld books, and the second time when dad bought me the remaining missing books from my collection (thank you daddy!). So yes, it's not one of those that's right up there, but it's actually more enjoyable than I remember.
I love the Silver Horde, and always have (I have a soft spot for Cohen actually), and I absolutely adore when Mr Saveloy is talking to them as a teacher, saying all those things that we KNOW are stereotypical of teachers, like "can anyone tell us what [whoever] did wrong?" and his brilliant berserker moment. I adore that.
I'm always a little bias against Rincewind books, but I think this is one of the ones where he doesn't annoy me quite as much. Also, for some reason, I've never quite forgotten his obsession with potatoes! ^_^

Title: Maskerade
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: So I think I started this literally straight after finishing I.T., and then finished it in the same day. it was one of those glorious reading days :) OK, so we had Wyrd Sisters which mocked Shakespeare (primarily Macbeth), Witches Abroad, which was fairy tales of various natures, then Lords and Ladies which was also mocking Shakespeare (mainly Midsummer Night's Dream) and now here is Maskerade which is poking so much fun at Andrew Lloyd-Webber (obviously, mostly Phantom of the Opera). There is a reason why, despite the fact that occasionally some of the characters do get on my nerves, the witches books are almost all fairly high in my opinion.
So I have always adored Phantom of the Opera, both book and musical (and later, the film), and I probably got more jokes in this book than any of the others combined when I first read it, and so it very quickly became one of those books that I had happy feelings about, therefore I was a little saddened when I reread it this time and realised that it really, really annoyed me about how often TP goes on about Agnes Nitt (whom I adore, by the way) and her weight. It got to the point where I was relieved when someone just called her fat, because it was just pissing me off! yes, we get it she's "A big girl" and "has a great personality" and "great hair" and there's "so much of her" and all of these other things. We get it. Shut the fuck up about it!
Sorry, didn't realise just how much it really did get to me.
That aside though, the rest of it was excellent and still brought those happy feelings back.

Title: Feet of Clay
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: Yay! The watch! So, we get the first (dis)organiser, which is so brilliantly done, and we finally get the golems! I don't know why I love the golems so much, but there's just something about the idea of them, and the fact that in Going Postal they're now a major part of Ankh Morpork and all the personalities that start to come through, and here it all started with just Dorfl.
I think Feet of Clay is one of those funny ones where I don't particularly have any opinion either way. It's a good book, and it's a watch book, which I love, and some of the characters I really enjoy appear in this book (Wee Mad Arthur for a start!), but when I think about it I'm just kind of "oh yeah, it's the one with the golems"
I kind of wish that I'd done this right after reading it because I'm sure that I had intelligent thoughts about it then, where now I've just gone back to "Yay Watch, Yay Golems... that's it really"

Title: Divergent
Author: Veronica Roth
Opinion: So over the last... few years I suppose now, I've been hearing quite a bit about this series, and then the second film was coming out and I managed to find the first one on DVD, and I thought that maybe I should actually find out about this series. And then, literally the day before I went to see the second film (and just before I watched the first one) mum bought me the books in a box set because she happened to come across them in TK Max. I decided that I would watch the film first and then read the books so I wasn't constantly comparing them, as I found that this was the better way around to do this when I was doing the Hunger Games books and films.
I really enjoyed the films and I really enjoyed this first book. It was interesting to see the differences that had been made to the book while still managing to stay pretty faithful, and how they changed certain characters to be more likeable. IN the book it's find for certain characters to be a bit dislikeable, but in the film you really need to like them and to be on their side as well as Tris', and Tris needs to have someone in the film that she can be close to, whereas in the book it isn't quite as necessary in the same way. She still needs that, but because it's a first-person-perspective book, that can be shown in different ways than in film.
I'm really looking forward to reading the second book, but I'm giving it a bit of time in the hope that if I space them out, the next film will be out before I'm desperate to read the third book. heh!


Comics

Well, I said I'd add them this time!

Title: Xena: Warrior Princess
Opinion: This was a book of short stories by various artists and it was fun to see the different styles, and seeing how accurately some of them were done! They were mostly very fun and entertaining shorts, and in many ways seemed to be kind of an advertisement for the show, especially as it included a couple of photo stories with shots from episodes, rather than as a stand-alone collection of shorts. Enjoyable, pleasing, nice easy read

Title: Xena: Warrior Princess; Slave
Opinion: This one contained two stories, though the first seemed to be continuing from either a previous comic, or from an actual episode (one that would have occurred much later than I've watched up to), which meant that occasionally references were made to things that didn't quite make sense, and then it seemed to completely forget that Xena has canonically met Cleopatra before (there was sexual tension between them at one point!), but the story itself was still entertaining and exciting. Sometimes I felt that the art work wasn't quite right for some reason, but I think that's just because it wasn't quite my style. The second story was more amusing and a little more my sort of thing, but both were fun.

Title: Guards! Guards!
Opinion: I'm pretty sure that I've read this one before, years ago, and it's rather fun seeing them cartoonised really, and my one little issue with it is the fact that practically every woman in it is sexualised, including Magrat's very brief appearance. In all of the books that ever describe Magrat she's thin and plain and has messy hair, and I'm pretty sure that she's at least once described as having "peas on a washboard" kind of chest. This graphic novel gave her breasts, like big obvious breasts. She appears in one single square of comic, and they gave her boobs. That bugged me. But the rest of it was very pleasing, and sometimes it's fun to have visual jokes with the Terry Pratchett books

Title: Fables; The Dark Times
Opinion: I have been reading the Fables comics for a while now, but in no particular order, just what I'm able to find in the library, and funnily enough I've read the one that comes directly after this, and I've read one from maybe... not right before, but before that, so this fills in some of the gaps that I've got. I love a lot of the characters and the plots, and there's a good mixture of humour, terror, sadness and action. I think my one problem with these comics is that because there are a lot of different artists working on them, the artwork changes quite dramatically at times, and so certain characters, Pinochio in particular, are drawn very differently. When I first read them I actually thought they were completely different characters before I realised that it was just a different art style.

Title: Anita Blake Vampire Hunter; Guilty Pleasures
Opinion: I think that I've actually read like a little snippet of one of these comics before, possibly thanks to Free Comic Book Day, and while I remember literally nothing about it, little bits of what I was reading this time around seemed to be ringing bells in my head. I would actually really like to find more of these because what I read was really fun, and I would like to know a lot more about it. I think it helped that Anita Blake was clearly a fucking kick ass lady!

Title: Legendary Star Lord; Face it, I rule
Opinion: I decided that I wanted to know more about the Guardians of the Galaxy characters, and so I picked up the first one that I was sure was actually about at least one of them. I'm really glad that I decided to, because this was great fun to read and I am definitely going to have to track down more, because I think this is one series that I could really get into. I like characters who don't completely take themselves seriously!

Title: We Are the Avengers
Opinion: This was keeping with the Marvel theme and my continued education in the characters that I've mostly only watched on TV and film. When I was younger I wasn't really into comics all that much, but now I want to catch up on everything I missed out on. This was a collection of shorts, and some of them were HILARIOUS! And it was great to see some of the young Avengers (KATE BISHOP! I FINALLY GOT TO MEET KATE BISHOP! I LOVE HER NOW!) and, oh, it was wonderful! I really, really enjoyed it!

Title: Fantastic 4
Opinion: This one I have to admit I didn't finish. It was a collection of stories from... I think it was the sixties, and while I could cope with the artwork, the actual writing was really awkward and clunky and really, really difficult to read. I gave up after about.. one and a half, two stories? I felt bad that I couldn't finish, or even get half-way through, but I just really couldn't do it. Maybe if I found something more modern and work my way back?


Kindle Books

Again, I did say that I would add any that I finished.

Title: English Fairy Tales
Author: Joseph Jacobs (collector)
Opinion: They're fairy tales. I loved them! It was reading this book during breaks, lunch and waiting for the train that made me really want to write my fairy story last week. I've recently downloaded a book of Celtic Fairy Tales collected by the same guy, and it's going to be interesting reading them because with this book I recognised most of them, or at least a variation of them, and I think it'll be interesting to see how many of the Celtic ones have a counterpart that I recognise. though I have to say, one thing that did surprise me with these stories is the amount of times the gender of one or more of the characters have been switched in the version that I already knew.
I had recently read somewhere that the Brothers Grimm did this a fair amount and that much of the violence and gore that we know as being part and parcel of traditional tales were thanks to them as well, but this is the first time that I've seen just how true this was, though I would say that quite a fair amount of violence and gore remained!

Title: Pet Shop Boys
Author: Kim Harrison
Opinion: This was a short story that I downloaded a while ago and while I was enjoying it, it took me some time to read it fully because I got it when I still only had the kindle app on Henry Laptop and most of the time I just couldn't get into reading it on there. With my tablet it's been a lot easier to read and so I finally finished it. It was a very interesting little story and with a fun take on vampires, but it has to be admitted that the title doesn't quite work as there is only actually one boy, so that confused me at first, but never mind!

Title: SandWish; Kalmari
Author: H. Stilwell
Opinion: So I actually only started rereading this because I wanted to find one bit of information and I ended up rereading the whole book again, because that's what I do! Anyway, yeah, just thought I'd put this here so I can keep track of my rereads as well as new reads!

Quick updates

I HATE allergies. I've been feeling like hell all day because my body hate pollen and dust!

So on Sunday I went to St Brides for the LGBT service in the evening, and it was really lovely (made a new friend), and I told them about the Constant Gender Flux, and one of the leadership members is going to put me in touch with a guy he knows that runs a FtM support group. He knows that I don't actually want to transition, but it'll be someone I can talk to about things, and if one day I feel that I do want to take it that far, I'll already have contacts and things.

I have a long list of Robert Reads for you, but I keep putting it off BECAUSE it's so long!! I will do them, I just have to be in the right mood. I've decided that I will add the comics that I'm reading to the list as well, so I've been trying to keep track of those as well!

At the moment lycoris is away. She claims that she's visiting friends, but I'm still not convinced that they're not just figments of her imagination. I mean, she says they're real, but she would! I mean, what sort of name is versipellis anyway? (What d'ya mean it's not her real name? Don't be stupid!) Anyway, before I tangent completely, normally when she's away, whether it's with family or visiting lovely people (imaginary or not, they're still lovely!), I would use that time playing online games and watching films full screen, and various other things that I don't usually do because I normally spend my evenings talking to her on messenger.

This week I have NOT been doing this because our internet has been getting worse and worse recently. And so we're switching because we're absolutely SICK of it! It's got to the point where I just connect my tablet to the mobile internet rather than the home wifi, despite that using up my data allowance, because at the moment it actually works better. I feel that when it gets to the point where your mobile internet works better than your home internet, it might be time for a change. So, because of this my internet is going to be patchy from time to time, and so I may not always be able to do my posts over on SandWish (Mon, Tue and Fri), or on Hans On Jewellery (Thu), or, if you see me on Facebook, my picture posts (Wed). In terms of this journal... well, it doesn't make a lot of difference really does it? :(

Uhh, I'm sure there was one more thing that I was going to post about... Oh yes! If you have not read my Friday Fiction I would really, really appreciate it if you did! I'm not just saying this as an "I wrote it so I want you to read it" thing, but I'm actually really pleased with this one and I want to hear people's thoughts. It's a fairy tale written in the style of the traditional tales, which I have been reading a lot of recently. I know there are a few typos that I need to go back to correct, and shall do so when the internet is a bit more reliable (I don't want to edit it and then have it crash on me as I try to repost it), but I would appreciate any comments anyone has. LINKAGE!

Questions

Ok, so over on SandWish I'm going to be doing a Q&A session with my characters. I've picked a few different characters from my long list of ones that I've created and they will answer any questions that anyone sends.

So far I've written a few questions down that I can use, some of them out of character creation and character prompt books, and then I'll get any that people send and add them to the list. Tomorrow I'll write it out, so if anyone wants to join in with that, you know, feel free and send me questions. They can be to a particular character (if you know the names of any), or just generally a sort of character question like... uh... favourite colours or stuff like that.

So far I've decided that I'll use characters from at least the following series...es: New World, SandWish, Hero's Tale, Music Academy, Times Too and Wambo. (and you can find out about each of them over on SandWish!)

On Facebook I gave people a deadline of 8pm tomorrow (Friday 10th), which should give me enough time to write up the interview.

Also, tomorrow I shall do a Robert Reads, which will hopefully include some comics as well (yep, I finally decided to add them), and I'll talk a bit about films I've seen recently. Ok, I need to go to bed! Love you all

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feet

For a while now I've been noticing that I'm having trouble with my feet, mostly that they're really bloody painful.

Today I went to the doctor. I have tendonitis in my foot! So I have to take ibuprofen and get some innersoles for my work boots.

Well at least now I know I wasnt just imagining the pain!

Tomorrow I'll post drabbles to the other journal

Robert Reads and talks about some stuff

I am really sorry that I have not been replying to comments and e-mails recently, but I got into a bit of a mood where replying was too difficult. I'm also sorry that I haven't been reading anything of the 40fandoms stuff that other people have put up; that is very naughty of me. I will get to it though, I promise!

So in the time that I've not been replying to people, I have been doing a fair amount of reading, including quite a few comics that I got from our local library. I'm still debating whether to include comics in the Robert Reads so I'll leave them out for now and include them once I make a decision. I have to say, it's nice to be able to read comics sometimes.

Title: Soul Music
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: This has always been one of my favourite books, along with Wyrd Sisters and Guards! Guards!, and I have read those three books more than any others in the series. Each time I read Soul Music I pick up on another reference, sometimes thanks to the Annotated Pratchett, which is a thing I found online once which lists every reference and explains it, but also because I know a little more about the subject. With Soul Music being about music, a topic I loved, I already got quite a few of the points, but now I get even more and I keep getting more and more that I hadn't spotted before.
This is also the first of the Susan Death books, which is both a good and bad thing in my opinion. I do like Susan, but sometimes I wish that I could just read a plain old Death book again because I'm rather fond of Death, but I suppose there comes a point where you have to say "what else can I do with this character on their own?" and either come up with some new ideas, or introduce someone new, and as I said, I do like Susan.
Anyway, Yes, still one of my favourites ^_^

Title: Robin Hood (complete and unabridged)
Author: Henry Gilbert
Opinion: I was fairly sure that I had read at least some of the stories of Robin Hood before, and I am guessing that it was either an abridged version, or a version written by someone else, because I don't think I would have been able to get through this book when I was younger. The language was old, as was the style, and much of the time it was actually quite boring, which isn't really how the stories of Robin Hood should be
Saying that, it was fun to see which of these old stories had been kept in the versions of the stories that we know now thanks to films and tv shows, and being amused at some of the changes that had been made, some because if they had done it exactly as it had been written, I think there would have been rioting!
I'm glad that I've read it though, at last, but if anyone would like to take it off my hands, I would be happy to send it to you!

Title: Goth Girl and the Pirate Queen
Author: Chris Riddell
Opinion: I am loving the Goth Girl series. They are clearly meant for kids, but they are so clever and funny and with so many references to things that kids wouldn't pick up on, but adults would. And the fact that so many literary characters appear in various guises, and often as women rather than their original male characters, pleases me beyond measure.
Basically these books make women awesome, make young girls awesome, and they are funny and well thought out and even short stories, like this one written for World Book Day, are excellent. HIGHLY recommended.

Gender Identity

I don't know if people remember, but some time ago I posted about the confusion I have with my gender. I talked to my mum about it, and while she's accepting of it in a general way (we have a trans friend who mum fully supports), I don't think she really got it in terms of me

This isn't a 'Not In My House' situation where she's fine with it so long as it's not her own family; it's more because of memories of a younger me I think.

I have often been told that I look 'like a man' and asked 'are you a boy or a girl' and other ridiculous things, and I was almost always upset by it. Mum remembers this well and uses it to refute my argument that I don't feel quite RIGHT gender wise.

Now, first off, when this was mostly happening, I was in senior school. I knew little to nothing about trans issues, bearing in mind that this was back in... 1995/6 to, let's say, 2000. The T wasn't even a part of the acronym back then! I know because a few years later I was the rep for the LGB part of our student's union in college.

I was upset because I wasn't a boy, and people only said those things because I... 1; wore trousers, jumpers and blazer rather than skirts and cardigan
2; didn't wear make-up or jewellery to school
3; had many "unfeminine" traits and habits.

Also, to my annoyance, many of these comments were made after I "blossomed" and so clearly wasn't male. I couldn't understand why people said these things and I hated it.

It should also be pointed out that I hated being called a lesbian as well back then, but guess what??!!!!

The point was, this was all said as an insult to me. If someone called me gay as an insult, not realising that I am, I would be amused, but offended, because they are making judgements about me and using a term they find offensive to insult me.

An insult is still an insult regardless of whether it's understood, considered insulting by the recipient, or true.

Queer, Bent, Puff, Gay, Dyke. They all describe me, but one I find offensive all the time, one I actually use to describe myself, and the others depends on tone and context.

So, by being called a bloke I knew I was being insulted, but that's not to say that years later I wouldn't learn that some peoples physical appearances, including gender, doesn't match how they perceive themselves inside.

Now, fast forward to now with all my knowledge and experience, and I have come to know who I am (I think)

I don't believe that I am trapped in a female body, but nor do I feel that I am completely comfortable in this fairly obviously female body. The problem, I think, is that I kind of... fluctuate.

I'll have a week where I want to wear skirts and dresses and make-up and have pretty clips in my hair, and then I'll have a week where I want to hide all signs of femininity and may even go so far as to try to speak in a deeper tone.

And then there'll be random days within both of these where I just want people to not be quite sure.

The way I've been describing it in my head is 'constant gender flux' (and not consistent, which would make it quite different, but I still keep accidentally thinking it!) and for now, that'll do.

So, use whichever pronouns sound right to you at the time, you don't have to use gender neutral ones, though if you do I prefer They/ Them/ Their. If you know me as Robert or Bob, continue with those names, if you know me as Hannah, stick with that. There's also the option of Harry, which I haven't used in some years, or "crazy person making cat noises" (which gets used quite a lot really!)

At some point I'll try talking to mum again and explaining things better, but for now I'm, not happy exactly, but satisfied with the say I see myself and who I am.

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Robert Reads and some other stuff

OK, don't forget to send me prompts for Prompt Me Monday. You can send them to me on here, on the other LJ account, on twitter or on Facebook. Thanks to the wonders of technology, so long as I have my tablet with me I will get any prompts sent, and I've finally got my e-mail set up properly so no matter what account they go to, I will receive! ^_^

I did really badly last month with my colourful calendar. This is the calendar that I'm colouring in for each day that I do certain tasks. January was Read, Write, Edit, Fruit, Veg, Bed by 11. Then I realised that I didn't need to keep track of the fruit and veg intake anymore because we were doing that really well, and so I changed those last month to Tidy and Up By 6 (8 at weekends). Because I did so badly last month I've decided to use the same headings this month as well.

I have been thinking for a while that I should award myself achievements (like in games) for when I reach certain totals. So... if I managed to get through 3 months with 90% of the squares coloured in, that would get me, I don't know, a chocolate bar. I haven't actually worked out the details yet, but I think something like that might actually help me to be stricter with myself about doing them. I could even put them online and create actual Achievement Banners that I could put up each time I managed to complete one.

I'll think about it.

So, Robert Reads. I should have done one quite a while ago because I was reading loads and got through two books in as many days, which pleased me muchly, but oh well.

Title: Lords and Ladies
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: On reading this I realised that I actually like it a lot more than I remember. There's also a lot of bits that I'd mentally moved into other books in the series. For example, I thought that they turned Greebo into a man for the first time in either Witches Abroad or Masquerade, but in fact that was in this one. And I thought that Magrat found the warrior queen portrait and her armour in Carpe Jugulem, but again, that was in here. I don't think there was anything that I thought happened in this one that actually happens in a different one, which is interesting.
In terms of the Witches' books I think this one is probably around number two or three in my list of favourites, with Wyrd Sisters at number 1 of course! I have a fondness for it because of the amount of references to Midsummer Night's Dream, which remains my favourite Shakespeare play, and I love what they do with the Morris Men and the Elves. And I think I find Magrat a lot less annoying in this one than in Witches Abroad.
Oh, and I had completely forgotten that this is the first appearance of Agnes Nitt! I do love her and I look forward to seeing her again!

Title: Men At Arms
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: I do not know how many times I have read the City Watch books, but every time I do I think I remember WHY I keep re-reading them. I love seeing the progression of the characters and how they grow and change; even in this second book Carrot is less nieve than he was, and more of that Simple But Not Stupid side becomes apparent. I especially love the moment with him saying how he will regretfully follow out the order that he's been given if the Head of the Assassins doesn't answer their questions. I think I've seen that, or something similar, used somewhere else and it always makes me laugh.
The one thing that I find interesting in terms of continuity is that in Guards! Guards! there's a moment where Vimes asks Sybil if Ankh Morpork had kings, whereas in Men At Arms he is clearly riled up when kings are mentioned and he knows who Lorenzo the Kind is and that he was executed by an ancestor of his. It seems a very short amount of time for him to learn so much, and nothing is mentioned about him doing any sort of research into it or anything. It's just one of those rare little slips that are interesting to spot.
The only other one I can think of is when, in Guards! Guards! they're talking about why Vimes ended up in the Watch and then in The Night Watch, it's fairly obvious that he's clearly not been forced to join by circumstance or "being brung low by woman."

Anyway, I've started Soul Music now, which is, by far, my favourite Death Book! One of these days I should try making a list of the Discworld books in order of how much I like them and see where things actually end up

A fairly usual update

Title: Small Gods
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: This is another one that I've had as an audio for a long time, though this audio was a radio production whereas the other audios I've had in the past have just been readings with voices, which I'm fine with, but it's a very different listening-to-reading experience. When I finally got around to reading Small Gods for the first time in a very long time I could only remember what happened in the radio production and there were lots of bits that'd been edited for fairly obvious reasons really.
When I was reading it this time it was strange because the audio seemed fresher in my mind despite the fact that it's been longer than I last listened to it. It felt a lot slower this time, and slightly less enjoyable, though there were more jokes I got to do with the philosophers again, and I think there were a couple of things I spotted this time that I'd missed previously. I'm always a little proud of myself when I spot another reference that I didn't understand last time.
I... don't think it's one of the better ones
I'm onto Lords and Ladies next, which is... alright, but not one right up there. We'll see.

Don't forget to send me a prompt on here, on SandWish, on twitter, or on facebook for Prompt Me Monday. This week's optional theme is all things to do with nature, so go wild (pun half-intentional) with that one!

Reading, Wiring and being Ill!

Ok, in reverse order:
I have been ill this week. For the last few days I haven't been online at all, or on the computer at all, because it hurt my eyes to look at a screen. Today my eyes are doing better (though are still a bit sore, but my cough has got worse :( Stupid colds.

Over on the SandWish the latest Friday Fiction is up. This week they include prompts from versipellis and emeraldsword and Diana. (and my mum, believe it or not!)

Reading. Right. So, I haven't been able to look at a screen, but I HAVE been able to read! On Wednesday I took my book to work, as usual, and was nearly at the end by the time the bell rang for the end of second break, so I figured that as long as I got on with my work and wasn't obvious about it, I could finish reading at my bench. So I did. When I got home I started another book. I got home from work on Thursday realised that there was no way that I was going to be going anywhere near a computer, got into bed (realised that I wasn't tired, just in pain), and read that book until I finished it. Started the next one. Today, got in, though I probably could face a screen, but I figured I shouldn't rush into it, just in case, and so read the rest of my book instead.

It's entirely possible that if my eyes decide to start hurting now I will just turn the computer off and go get the next book on the list. It's nice to know that I still have the ability to finish a book in basically a day, when I'm not allowing myself to get distracted by the wonders of the internet! Heh.

Title: I Am Spartapus
Author: Robin Price
Opinion: You can say what you like, but the title of this book told me that I was going to love it! I judged a book by its cover and I was so very, very right!
This was one of the books mum brought back for me when she and my brothers got to go to London Comicon without me! (I was busy, I can't remember what with) and she figured that I would like it because, hey, cats and puns! Yay!
In fact I could tell that I was going to like the humour in the book by reading the hand list of characters which includes: "Russell: a crow." which may well have made me laugh far more than it needed to.
I love the mix of anachronisms, puns, and cat behaviours with actual history, legend, myth and story. It's really a great way for someone who maybe isn't all that into ancient history to get a taste and then maybe want to read the actual stories in order to understand what it's all based on, while those who know the stories will be able to enjoy the references. And for those who don't know the stories it doesn't really matter because there is just so much in there that is funny!
I have the second book in the series (Catligular) so I'll hopefully be starting that soon.

Title: Moving Pictures
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: Yep, I'm back with the discworld books; I haven't given up on that. I love Moving Pictures, but for years I only had an audio version which I listened to a number of times. This does mean that when I read the book now, I mostly hear the voices on the tape (done of course by Tony Robinson who did all off the audios back then). Even when I was younger I picked up on a lot of references, because I am a fan of films, but as I've got older I've been able to spot more and more, and thanks to the annotated Discworld, once again, I'm able to find more that I would have missed because they're films or people or events that just wouldn't have meant anything to me.
Rereading it, it's really nice to see Ridcully for the first time, in his role as arch chancellor, and the Bursa being a lot more sane (not that it lasts long)

Title: Reaper Man
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: Oh I do love Death, and I love seeing him being human, or trying to be human. It's the same as in Soul Music, I love seeing him trying to forget. I guess I just really love getting to see this anthropomorphic personification trying (and often failing) to do the things that we, as humans, find so easy and natural.
I think there are still a few jokes that I don't really get in this one, but that's mostly to do with Reg Shoe and his Fresh Start club, but I think that that's just because it isn't really the sort of thing I have a real-world experience to compare it to. However, I had forgotten completely about the shopping trolleys and the giant shop and that whole sub-plot going on there. I think I appreciated that a whole lot more this time around.
And finally, Death Of Rats! Yay!

Title: Witches Abroad
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: So, thanks to Princess and the Frog, I now get a LOT more of the jokes due to all the New Orleans references! I mean, the first time I read this book I got all of the fairy tale and story references, but I only got a few of the other bits. In fact it took me bloody YEARS to even find out what the hell Mardi Gras was!! Seriously! It kept getting mentioned in all these American films and shows and I was always just like "what?" Not a clue. So yes, so many things cleared up for me now! Also being able to understand a bit more of what Nanny Ogg is *trying* to say makes it more hilarious again.
Oh, and I suppose I should mention this despite it being my moment of shame; It was only relatively recently that I got the joke about Cassanunda, the Discworld's Greatest Lover (possibly second greatest), who happens to be a Dwarf. Yeah... I was highly ashamed of myself when I finally worked it out!
I'm quite fond of Witches Abroad as a whole, probably because of all of the fairy tale references (and people should know what I'm like for fairy tale references by now!), but I would say that it's not actually one of my favourites. I suppose, in some ways, as I've got older I've realised that I am quite like Magrat in certain ways, while in others she really winds me up (though that might be the old case of getting annoyed at those traits you see in yourself!). My dad sometimes compares me to her as well. And I suppose I'm now a little less comfortable reading her than I used to be.
Oh well. It's still enjoyable, and I'm looking forward to getting to Carpe Jugulem and Masquerade, which probably come close to Wyrd Sisters in terms of liking them.

Ugh

How did it get to be Monday already?! So I didn't manage to get the Robert Reads up because I'm kind of poo, but I should get it up tonight.

So, it's Monday which means that it's time for another Prompt Me Monday. Today's randomly chosen optional theme is Songs.

Yesterday I put Feb's calendar sheet up. This is the calendar I'm using to keep track of things that I'm doing. This month the things that I should be trying to do every day are: Read, Write, Edit, Tidy, Up by 6 (8 at weekends) and Bed by 11. The changes are because I was managing eating fruit and veg every day thanks to our new healthy eating thing, so unless I get really bad after we finish it (two more weeks to go) I think I can afford to put something else up.

So I have decided that Writing now does NOT include writing things for LJ posts, so writing this doesn't count, and even my post on SW doesn't count! The reason I'm making this new self-imposed rule is because I was not actually writing any stories, or even notes for stories, a lot of the time and instead writing 12character memes and other things that I wanted to put online. And while that is writing, that wasn't the sort of writing I really had in mind. However, writing notes for stories counts, so actually the SW post COULD count because I also wrote about something story related. Though I'm going to be doing some writing for my RP game in a bit, so that will be actual writing.

Editing is still fairly open to interpretation, though there was something that I was doing some editing on recently that I decided didn't count. Really I want the editing to be about sorting out the Kalmari story and the drabbles. I actually want to get the drabbles done fairly soon because my dad has asked if I can send him some of them so he can read them. I've agreed because unlike some of my previous drabbles, I'm not too worried about a lot of them. When I have them ready I will start posting some every so often on SW, just to keep my busy on there ^_~

I had to be strict with myself about the Reading column, because I was reading a book of writing prompts recently and finished it and I was so close to colouring the box in for that and I made myself read something else because I decided right at the beginning that the reading, like the Robert Reads, should only be fiction! Oh but that was hard!

The new Tidying column comes from the fact that my room gets very, very messy, very, very quickly and I need to keep it in a better state, and a while ago mum suggested doing a little bit of tidying every day rather than having to do a great big tidy when it gets to the point where I can't cope with it anymore. I've decided that I'm going to try this, and I'm going to start tonight by putting my telly and xbox away and clearing off my desk a bit!

And the Up by 6 comes from me having way too much trouble getting up in the mornings, and now I'm going to bed earlier I feel I should be trying to get up earlier too. At the weekend I'm allowed a bit of a lie in, but as long as I don't go straight back to sleep, lying in bed and reading on a Saturday/ Sunday still counts!

I may do another post later! Love you all!

Today I give you...

Ok, so over on the SandWish there are three short stories for Friday Fiction, including one called How Scott Handcock and Alex Vlahos Ruined My Life which is partially based on real events (I've just exaggerated them quite a lot! Heh)

In other news, we got snow today. FRELLING SNOW! I hate snow. Hate it. Grrrrrrrrrr. Snow makes me grouchy. However it does appear to have all gone now and so I'm sitting in Costa Coffee in Frodsham trying to decide if I want to go to Liverpool, go to the shipping City in Runcorn and possibly the cinema) or if I just want to go home. These are terribly important and difficult decisions!

Due to the fact that lycoris will be entertaining her OTHER friend this weekend, I am going to use the time wisely. And my wisely I mean I'm going to play World of Warcraft and Heroes of the Storm without feeling that I'm ignoring her or missing out of fun talking times!

You know, it's kind of funny, but when I was in York (at uni, not the recent visit) James tried to get me into WoW and I thought it was kind of fun, but not overly interesting. However I've been playing it this time and it's been so much fun and I've really been enjoying it and I'm actually invested in trying to level up my character and complete quests and stuff. Hell, I even briefly joined with a couple of other players in order to kick the shit out of a load of big ass elementals. I didn't do that last time. I didn't care enough last time really. it turns out that playing this game without James is a a lot more fun. Heh.

I'm currently playing as a part of the Horde and I have created various characters so I could try out the different races and classes. Currently the only race I don't have is the Tauren, and the only classes I have done are... I think it's the druid and... oh what's the other one? I know I can't do the death knight until at least one of my other characters reaches level 25, but I'm sure there's another one that I haven't created yet.

The only issue that I have at the moment is that I have to play this on my little Freddy (tablet/ netbook/ whatever you want to call them now) and so I'm peering at a small screen. Really what I should do is get Peter to show me how to hook Freddy up to his BIG TV and then occasionally I can play upstairs and actually be able to see everything clearly. But other than that, Freddy is great. He's faster than Henry, and the Internet seems to be more reliable too for some odd reason! I try to play Heroes of the Storm on Henry (laptop) because it does mean that I can see things better and it's easier to do certain things, but because it's slower and older, it does sometimes do silly things like lagging or randomly disconnecting when it's trying to load. Because Henry is six years old now and he's not doing well. Poor Henry.

I do have a Robert Reads for you, but I have left the book at home and I want to make sure that I spell the author's name properly, so I'll save that for when I get back. I'm finally back to reading my Discworld books as well. I know I did the Eric RR a while ago, but you might have noticed that that took some time to appear considering it's a much shorter book, and the reason for this is because I actually lent out my copy of Eric to a friend and I haven't seen him to get it back yet and I caught up sooner than I thought I would. So I thought that I would just buy the Kindle version and read it on Freddy, except then I discovered that I had a lot less money than I thought and so I couldn't actually afford the £3 whatever (or possibly less than that). Once my money went into the back I bought the book and then started reading, but because it's on Freddy I couldn't exactly read it at work like I do with my usual books, and I'm a lot slower reading things on the computer, and, of course, it being on the computer means that there are a billion and one other things that can distract me away from it.

But oh well, I'm onto Moving Pictures, which I really enjoy and that's a normal small paperback that I can shove in my bag and read on the go.

Right. I think I've made up my mind about how I'm going to use the rest of my day, so I shall try to remember to put up the Robert Reads later and then I'll be complete for the day... I think. *waves*

26th Jan, 2015

doing this really, really quickly before I go the loo and then to bed.

It's Monday, which means that it's Prompt Me Monday time! You can prompt here, over on SandWish, on Facebook or twitter. Oh so many ways! I shall do a Robert Reads tomorrow!! I kind of got distracted and left this too late!

Robert Reads and some other stuff

Title: Faust Eric
Author: Terry Pratchett
Opinion: It was a very long time before I got to first read Eric and I can't really remember what I thought of it back then. When I got to re-read it for the first time I found myself thinking that it was a bit of an odd book in the series really, and this time I still feel that it is odd compared to the rest of the Discworld books because, for a start, it is much shorter, and it's much more of a direct parody than many of the other books which will parody so many different things over the course of the book.
I also find that Rincewind is a lot easier for me to read in this book and I can actually enjoy him.
The books itself is an excellent way to bring him back into the series so he can have his own adventures again, which I'm sure he would be very unhappy to know were coming up.

and now I've forgot what else I was going to write about. ... OH YEAH!

Healthy Eating
Mum and I are currently on week 3 of our healthy eating plan and it's going really well. We're having a lot off really nice meals and there's enough leniency in the way we're doing it to allow me the odd day of eating whatever the fuck I want. I think I am doing better on the healthy eating thingy, which is good. please don't ask if I'm losing weight because I haven't weighed myself in a very, very long time so I wouldn't know even if I wanted to tell you.

Friday Fiction
I have managed to write one thing for this week's Friday Fiction, so go and check that out ^_^

Visitor
I have a lycoris here at the moment, which is lovely, and I do so love having a lycoris here. Obviously I prefer THE lycoris to just any old lycoris, but this one will do ^_~

Anyway, I think that is a very brief catch up of life at the moment, see you all on Monday

Read, Write, Roleplay

I had a bad week for actually getting to bed last week so I have a lot of empty boxes in that column on my colourful calendar, but I did start my editing, so, you know, pluses and minuses!

ROBERT READS!
Title: Goth Girl and the Fête worse than death (book 2 in the Goth Girl series)
Author: Chris Riddell
Opinion: I Love these books!
They seems to be aimed at children, but there are so many jokes and references that kids would have no hope of getting that I'm not sure whether they really are for kids.
Part of me wants to go online and see if there are any others available/ in the pipeline, but I'd be so disappointed if there's not that I keep putting it off.
Anyway, these books are very clever and very funny and definitely worth a read, especially if you like puns!

PROMPT ME MONDAY!
It's that time again, so send me your prompts!

Send me an inspiring quote, a snippet of overheard dialogue, a line of poetry, or whatever random words are floating around your head right now. Send me anything!

As usual, you can send your prompts via here, the SandWish account, my twitter or facebook, and remember to warn for Not Safe For Work content!

Oh, and if you haven't done so already, you should go and check out Friday's Fiction (which was posted on a Saturday) on SandWish. I managed three last week, I got bored in work and writing seems like a good idea at the time.

ROLEPLAY
I am still working on my game for the roleplaying, but I'm also hoping on running a monthly game online for a few people because some of us just really, really miss plain old D&D.

In my monthly meetings with the others we're playing Mutants and Masterminds, which is a Superhero Role play which we've set in Liverpool, but within the Marvel Universe, and then there's someone who wants to run a Call of Cuthulu game, which usually I would be really in for, but I'm just not in the mood for that at the moment. And so me and Diana have been talking about D&D and I figure that as long as we can find a way to fairly do dice rolls, I can DM a game with short quests so people can jump in and out of the game if they have to.

Prompt Me Monday and Robert Reads!

Yep, it's Monday, and we have officially kicked off Prompt Me Monday over on thesandwish. The full details of how it works is over there, or in my previous post. Feel free to prompt on there or on here. Whichever suits you most :)

So I managed to finish another new book today, so here we go with Robert Reads as well ^_^

Title: Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse (book 1 of the Goth Girl series)
Author: Chris Riddell
Opinion: So I actually bought book 2 first and only realised after reading a page or two. Luckily I found book 1 before I'd read much, so I was pleased.
These books are Hilarious! They are So funny. I am assuming that they are meant for kids, but there are so many jokes that an adult would get, along with many very clever puns and parodies, that I think any adult with a sense of humour would enjoy them too.
This was a really fun and easy book to read with lots of excellent and very funny pictures which often added a couple of extra jokes, and the book itself is beautiful with shiny purple edging and shiny silver inside covers. The story itself was interesting and engaging and rather lovely, if very, very silly in places.
There was also the added bonus of an extra mini book tucked inside a pocket at the back of the book!
I am sure that I will enjoy the second book just as much (once I remember where the hell I put it....)