Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Iceland Reflections: Part Two (PHOTO GALLERY)

My Reflections on Iceland continue with today's entry on sightseeing. Please enjoy the photos.

Sightseeing in Iceland

Tourism has blown up in the last few years in Iceland, ever since traveling there has become easier and less expensive. It’s not hard to see why people want to visit. The landscapes are pristine and, especially in the winter, unlike anything I’ve ever seen. 

Mike likes the beach and the VOLCANO SAND
I got to see beautiful mountains and waterfalls (see above), frozen lakes and black sand beaches (see below), geothermal fountains and massive craters... everything was new and amazing to me. Every natural formation was different from what I was used to, it seemed. The sand came from volcanic activity and the greenhouses ran on geothermal energy. On clear nights, we could see them glowing orange and warm all the way across the lake in Laugarvatn. 

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Iceland Reflections Part One

The past calendar year has been full of residencies for me, and they have completely changed my life and my career. 

Most recently, I spent January as a resident at the Gullkistan Center for Creativity, in Lugvagartn, Iceland. I had my own room and shared studio and living space with 1-4 other women. I aimed to spend my time there working on the manuscript for The Last Stand, as well as developing my presentation and pitch information.

I reached that goal, or at least I’m pleased with the amount of progress I made on the manuscript and I’m ready to start in-depth edits of what I’ve created. I also worked on my PowerPoint slideshow, which I will have to present along with my manuscript and potential cover art for my book, should it be chosen for publication. I hired an artist for that part of the project as well and worked with him to come up with a concept for the cover. I didn’t do as much online writing as I wanted (you’ll notice this blog has been on a bit of hiatus), but that’s alright. I needed to focus on the novel.

Here are some more detailed thoughts on my time at Gullkistan!

Friday, February 23, 2018

Fixation Friday: Homeward Bound

Yes, I've been home for almost a whole month. Readjusting to life at my own desk has been a little more complicated than I expected! A month away, a month to readjust. Seems fair. Anyhow. Here's what's going on here in casa de Pendragon:

Fixations of the Week:


Finer Things Book Club

My friends and I like to read. A lot. And we like talking about what we read. It follows, pretty logically, I like to think, that we should start a book club. So we did. This month's read was Parable of the Sower, by Octavia Butler which I didn't love. Perhaps if I had read it when I was younger, when it was "newer" to the sci fi scene and I wasn't yet burnt out on dystopian futures....or perhaps when it wasn't quite so....possible?
An image of Lauren from Parable of the Sower

Monday, February 12, 2018

BOOK REVIEW: Stephen King's "It"

As it turns out, It has an unearned reputation. Pennywise the Clown is not the scary part of the book. Maybe he’s scary in the film, I don’t know, but in the book he’s only a symbol for a much bigger evil. It the creature is a glimmer or a spectre—she (yup) can change into whatever form she needs to, and Pennywise is her friendly shape, to lure children to her den. So let’s start there—clowns have been destroyed forever thanks to Stephen King. I’m okay with that because honestly, they weren’t doing themselves any favors before Pennywise. Clowns can rot, but I do want more people to read It.

Pennywise is arguably not even what the book is about. The heart and soul of It is the found family created by the Loser’s Club—a group of exhaustingly brave kids. By the end of their journey together, they’re bonded in more ways than one.

Without spoiling a major emotional event of the book, I will say I read the end of It through uncontrollable tears. Movies and television shows pull at my heart strings pretty easily, but I don’t remember the last time a BOOK had me in tears. Probably The Fault in Our Stars, which was about four or five years ago now, and nowhere near as powerful. 

Spoilers ahead, though it’s not a play-by-play of the book.