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Thursday, December 20, 2012

Trip to Witch City

In October, Will took me to Salem, Massachusetts to celebrate my 21st birthday. We had lots of fun, nice weather, and bought stuff from the many magic shops dotting the city. We spent three days there (the day before, of, and after my birthday on the 23rd).

We got there kind of late on the first day, but we had food at a little bakery. The next day he bought me a cake from that bakery, we walked all over the city and shopped, and we spent a good amount of time on the wharves collecting rocks. He found a chunk of what I think is green fluorite, and I found an old corroded bullet. We also got a bunch of rocks with marble. Later that night, we did a candle-lit ghost tour of the city, learning about all the haunted buildings. Our last day was spent attending a presentation at the Witch History Museum, then wandering around doing just a little more shopping.

All in all, lots of fun, and I'd go again. Here are some photos!







Thursday, November 29, 2012

Moving

Moving is a weird thing. It's been a long time since I moved into the house I'm now leaving behind in favor of an apartment with my fiancée. He took a promotion at the Walmart in Wilkes Barre, PA, about an hour away. We found a great little place and we're mostly moved in.

It's odd to have to pack up years of accumulated memories, sifting through what I can take and what I'm leaving, separating the person I used to be from the person I am now and cutting ties with things that no longer hold meaning. Photographs of people I haven't spoken to in years, ex boyfriends, and friends that probably don't even like me anymore don't have a place in my life, and it's kind of hard to let all of that go.

Will is already living at the apartment and doing his new job. I, meanwhile, am stuck in a half demolished room miles away. It's lonely and depressing, and the empty shelves aren't making it any better.

I can't wait to get my transfer through so I can get fully moved in. The two nights apart have seemed like weeks. The drain on my bank account has been enormous, and the drain on my energy from constant driving and packing and unpacking is even worse. I'm ready for everything to be done already so I can get on with my life.

Monday, October 29, 2012

NaNoWriMo 2012

I'm once again pushing myself to write 50,000 words in 30 days. It'll go better this year, I promise. I'm completely restarting The Devil's Blade, which I started last year and failed to complete.

This year, I've had a year to think of better ways to do it. I have an outline written out. I shifted from a focus on Catholic lore to the Pagan aspects of the lore, though both always were and will be present. I've fantasized it up and stopped worrying about the accuracy of the 1400's.

It should be quite a bit better.

I'm also in sort of a competition with a coworker who will be watching my word count closely. There will be write-ins closer to home, so I'll be doing those, too.

Overall, should be a much better year than last year. For the Wrimos finding my blog through the NaNo site, welcome and enjoy the ridiculous writing tips!


About The Devil's Blade

Valdius is the Grim Reaper, a collector of souls that have been sold to the devil. Valdius possesses unearthly powers and immortality, quietly following orders to kill while holding onto what little humanity he has left. When he meets Anastera, a mysterious woman with abilities of her own, Valdius must tread carefully to keep her out of the devil's grasp without getting caught himself.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Pinterest

I've been spending quite a lot of time over on Pinterest lately. For those of you unfamiliar with the site, it's basically a place for digital hoarders to "pin" links to stuff they like and share it with their friends. It's a nifty way to see what kind of things your friends are up to, find lots of new ideas, and share cool stuff you find online.

I think one of the best things about Pinterest is the positive atmosphere. Design-wise, the site looks nice. It's not quite minimalistic, but it's far from cluttered. It's bright and pleasantly styled. On top of that, there's the concept of the site itself. The whole premise revolves around sharing things you love. Everyone on the site is on there looking for things that make them happy, then passing that happiness on to their followers. Even if I'm not particularly interested in things my friends repin, it's still nice that they liked it enough to share and added a smiley face.

It's a refreshing break from Facebook, where you'll get posts ranging from furious to ecstatic and everything in between. Pinterest is a nice change of pace from the drama and low points of life, instead focusing entirely on stuff that's interesting, funny, cute, or clever.

I think that's a lot of why I'm on that site so much. I love trying new craft projects and finding new artwork, and I always find something I haven't thought of yet. Digging through all that stuff and being really excited to try a new project is a great way to spend an hour after wearing myself out at work all day.

Go check out Pinterest!

My Boards -> http://pinterest.com/eternalnight11/

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

LGBT Pride Month

As I'm sure most people on the internet know, June is LGBT Pride Month. It's a month for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transexuals (among others) to accept who they are, the straight members of the community to show their support against prejudice and harassment, and the closed minded people of the community to lose a couple friends by being jerks.

Pride seems like an interesting word for this sort of thing. I've heard the argument that it's weird to be so proud of what you were born with when there's the same chance any random person is the same way. The way I see it, it's not a flaunting sort of pride, but rather an accepting one.

If you grow up getting complimented on your blue eyes in an area where brown is the majority, I bet you'd appreciate having them. If you grow up being picked on for being different, you're going to resent them and wish you could change. Same with being gay. It wasn't up to you, and in today's society, you are, in fact, a minority. You have likely been picked on, oppressed, and shunned. To overcome that negativity and come through it accepting yourself for who you are, getting to the point of liking yourself and readily expressing yourself without fear, is its own form of pride.

I know a big divide is the one between religion and the LGBT community. Screw them. I know gay Christian ministers and I've seen religious figures trying to change the way the church sees things. Remember that no god, whether the Christian God, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, or freakin' Zeus, would preach hatred and intolerance. Those are human ideals; not divine ones. If religion is something you want, there are accepting people in every following that aren't blinded by what they're told.

Keep being yourself. Keep liking yourself. The ones who don't accept you aren't important; the ones that support you are. 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Writing Tip #15

I'm participating in Camp Nanowrimo, which is the same as normal Nano, but less formally organized and such. Probably not coming near a 50,000 word novel, but I'm trying, at least. I just kind of fell on this particular idea I hold when I write, and I figured I'd blog about it instead of raising my word count.

Tip #15 - Keep love levels realistic.

Assuming you're not writing a romance story, love is something a lot of writers tend to avoid using as the main focus. We typically care more about how our hero's battle with the dragon progressed or how far the adventurers are from home than what was in the letters they sent home to their lovers.

Still, having a little love - even just a little attraction or a few sexual encounters - is important and realistic. Romance is a part of life. Very few of us go through life without ever falling for someone, liking someone they can't have, or making a mistake with their best friend.

When I wrote Among the People Lost, I didn't have a set plot in mind, and all the romance I put in really pushed it in a different direction than what I think I was going for. I think it worked out in the end, but someone reading it for the post apocalyptic setting might not get as much out of it.

If we look at works of major importance, regardless of setting, there's typically always at least a little romance present. It's what gives characters drive to defeat their foes, seek brutal revenge, or find their way home. The Lord of the Rings movies have a wedding after the day is saved, partly symbolizing the rebirth of happiness and peace after the war. I Am Legend (both book and movie) has a main character who frequently has flash backs to his wife and child, both of whom died years ago. Just to shift to video games for another kind of love, Drakengard's main character is a sadistic psychopath killing to avenge his parents and protect his sister.

Love of all kinds is a great way to make a point, especially where missed chances are concerned. Killing off your main character's love interest before he has an opportunity to tell her how he feels is the perfect way to ruin his life for a little while. It can really help make a point of the sacrifices involved in going off to save the world or being too lost in finding himself.

Like everything, I think it's all about balance. You'll have some characters who will abandon the quest to start a family, some who will fight side by side with their partners, and some who will never have any interest in any of your other characters. You'll have the over-protective and the tragically unrequited. You'll have romantic and platonic and fraternal. To some degree, though, you'll have it. 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Forgotten Tunnels

I had a pretty miserable year most of 2011. There were some highlights, sure, but most of it was downright bad. It was bad enough that it leaked into 2012, with January and February seeing the worst depression I'd had in a while, if ever. I was starting to think I was completely losing my mind and all fragments of myself, and I wondered often if I'd ever see the light at the end of the tunnel. Maybe it was a tunnel that only went down into the dark, or it was a dead end. It might never open up again.

Sometime around the 10th - 12th of March, Tim and I were at Denny's for dinner. When we were leaving, I asked if we needed anything from Walmart, since it was late and that was one of the few things open. I just really felt like going, I guess. I like wandering around Walmart. Well, we went, and we met up with a friend I had worked with at Target. She was also a seasonal hire there, so, like me, Target dropped her when the season ended. She told me to apply.

I can't explain the draw I suddenly had for Walmart, and if I tried, it would sound so absurd. I'm sure not many people look at Walmart and say, "Oh my God, I absolutely positively want to work there. That seems like the best idea I've ever heard!" I hadn't even been actively looking for a job. I was still way too busy being sad that I existed, but I went home, got on my computer, and applied.

Needless to say, I got the job, and that was probably the best spontaneous and stupid decision of my life. Because of my job, I'm far healthier, both physically and mentally. I posted about the end of my relationship with Tim and the beginning of one with my coworker Will, and almost a month of officially dating later, we're doing great. We're both wonderfully happy to be together, and I think we're improving each other's lives a lot without even really trying.

Look at this guy. He's adorable!

Because of the hours of my job, I barely see my family anymore, which means much less stress at home. I wake up, Will gets me for work, I enjoy a day of unloading trucks and moving things, and then Will returns me to my house, where I usually make him food and we talk for hours about very random things like lemon turtles. He's there for me when I'm too tired to scoop my own ice cream, and I'm there for him when he's hacking up a lung and needs soothing tea.

I was just looking back over my blog earlier tonight and saw all the posts about being very depressed. It feels like that tunnel I was in is now a lifetime behind me, completely overgrown and hidden away. It feels like everything has settled into place, like everything is where it should be, and like this is how it was supposed to be all along. 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Love and Stuff

I'm mostly posting this for the friends on Facebook who are probably very confused about the change in relationship status. Well, it's going to get more confusing.

Tim and I have known for a months that there was a very strong possibility he would be moving to Florida. There were times I really wanted to go with him, and times I really wanted him to stay. Sometimes I felt like he was abandoning me or pushing me aside, even though I consciously knew that there was so much more to it than that.

The people he knows in Florida are very important and special to him. He'll have a far better life down there than he's known up here in Pennsylvania all his life. At the same time, the life he's going into just isn't a life for me, and a large part of me has always known that. We've seen a break up coming for a long time.

He decided not too long ago to make a visit to Florida, and we decided that would be a deciding factor. Obviously, he decided to move down there, so we ended our relationship.

Here's the other big chunk of fun. It's called Will.

About two weeks before Tim would be leaving for Florida, I started talking with one of my coworkers. I'm not a very outgoing or social person with new people, but I opened right up to Will, and we got really close really fast. We were texting constantly and started going out to lunch together at work.

When Tim went to Florida, Will was my ride home most of the week. Sometime during that time, whether it was in my kitchen while I cooked him dinner or at the table where I talked to him about work, we got really damn attached.

Everyone at work noticed, of course. There were lots of jokes about it, and we didn't care. It was better to laugh about it at work than try to hide it and go home unhappy. There's no shame in admitting you care about someone. Still, there was the return of Tim looming on the horizon, and we had only a vague idea of where things would go from there. 

As it turns out, Tim found his calling in Florida. He found everything he could have ever wanted, all rolled up in one little town. When he came home, we talked for hours about our situations, laughed over the absurdity of it all, and mutually decided that everything had worked out far better than either of us had expected. We decided that his place is in Florida with his friends, and mine is here, with Will.

I'm sure that all seems to be some combination of stupid, sudden, and bizarre. In the end, we all know what we're doing is for the best. I'm very happy with Will. It's the kind of happiness that kind of overuled all other happiness and even took away the attraction I had for Tim. I've never experienced anything like it before. Tim's calling to Florida is the same. In that one week, we found where we need to be, and we're completely okay with the fact that our places are taking us in different directions. It's sad to see a long relationship end - it always is - but we'll stay friends, and there are absolutely no hard feelings on either side. After a long time of uncertainty, everything feels right, and in the end, that's what matters most.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Where Life Is Headed

Life's been a little insane lately, to say the least. I've got a lot going on in quite a few different areas, and there's a lot I want to balance out and get done.

Life
Personal life has some major shifts, which there will be posts about later. They've taken effect already, but it's just that they're such a huge change, they'll need a post all their own.

Gardening
I have plants growing! Sage, oregano, spearmint, and habanero peppers, to be exact. They're doing so well. It's happy-making. :)

Writing
I'm considering tackling the sequel to Among the People Lost and getting it done already. Not sure if that's what I'll do, but that's an idea. I've still got the prequel to finish writing and a few other major chunks of literature concerning the characters, and that's a lot of work. In other projects, I have The Devil's Blade and my futuristic cyborg dragon story to write.

The Dragon's Claw
I really need to sit down and come up with a game plan for this thing. I really want to get back into it, but it's really hard to do all the work myself when half the point is getting people to submit articles and such. I have enough time to put it together each month, but writing five articles an such makes it tough work.

College
I'm putting it off at least another year because (and you're going to think I've lost my mind) I love working at Walmart too much to quit.

Work
I'm really loving my job in the back room at Walmart. The people are great, and it's like getting paid to go to the gym. I've put on a lot of muscle, likely gained some weight, and generally gotten a little healthier.

Art
I'm going to be doing a lot of photography soon just because of how nice the weather should be getting and everything. I'll keep fractaling, and I haven't had much time to do drawings, but I have a bunch I need to finish and I'd like to do more speedpainting practice. Craft fairs are sprouting up this time of year, and I would do more if I had stock, but as it is, I mainly need to sit down and have a jewelry-palooza.

Summer
My friends are rebooting their gaming series Snack and Fitzgerald, so I imagine I'll be spending a good chunk of my summer days off filming videos. It should be a good excuse to get lots done and play lots of board games. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Writing Tip #14

This is one of those things I think of every time I see something I consider to be poorly structured, and something I think is a requirement for long prose.

Tip #14: Learn how to use hated punctuation.

Semicolons, colons, dashes, and ellipses must be the loneliest punctuation marks out there in the big world of English grammar. I use all of them on a regular basis; they're pretty handy.

Semicolons are a comma/period hybrid, even in appearance. They're way easier to use than most people seem to think. The semicolon is used in those awkward sentences that would be a run-on if you used a comma, but would seem broken up if you used a period. Examples:

"It's not that it's too heavy; it's just bulky." 
"I didn't get a chance to wash the dishes; they're still there."

Colons aren't quite hated, but they're certainly misused. I think the biggest rule about colons is they never follow a verb. "The following items I need are:" is not a proper use of a colon, yet that's the way many writers use them, from what I see around DeviantART and such. Proper usage of a colon actually varies quite a bit because the examples are so specific, so if you're curious, take a look over on Wikipedia. Just for the record, I don't like the use of a colon in independent appositives. I think a semicolon looks much more intelligent. To me, using a colon seems like you aren't really sure what you're doing. I've never seen it in published writing.

Dashes are, in my opinion, a really good way to establish a voice in your writing. They can break up a sentence for more impact, whether something is just that important or it's being said or thought by a character whose thoughts happen to be very muddled. They're another punctuation mark that has lots of uses, but in prose, they're really good for one thing - cramming extra stuff into a sentence. Examples:

"I went to the store - without you, I might add - and got those billion things you wanted."
"Every time you laugh - even when you just smile - it takes my breath away."

Ellipses are one of my favorites. They're another that adds voice to a piece of writing. Let me get this basic, simple, stupidly easy rule out of the way: three dots; no more, no less. I get where a lot of amateur writers are coming from when they make an ellipsis with twelve dots. It's a longer pause in their head, so it should be more dots...right? No. English (most languages, probably) doesn't work like that. The rules on spacing varies, but as a general rule in writing, as long as you're consistent, it never really matters too much. I never use a space on either side of the ellipsis, but there are a multitude of spacing options considered grammatically correct. Ellipses are used to indicate a pause, but they're different from commas. A comma indicates different clauses and should never be used solely for a verbal pause; ellipses can pop up anywhere. Examples:

"I just don't know...which one do you like better?"
"I...you...I don't even know what to say." 

Ellipses, unlike a lot of other punctuation, can also be followed by another punctuation mark in certain cases. I've often seen an ellipses followed by a period for a total of four dots in a row, which I've done myself after seeing it in a lot of published books. Personally, I feel an ellipsis on its own isn't really a closing punctuation mark, but that opinion varies, and grammar rules are a little loose there. That's different than making an ellipsis four dots just for the hell of it. Examples:

"We're going where...?"
"She's just...I don't know...." 

So there you have it. A few rules on some very neglected and misused punctuation marks. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Fear Has Been Doubled!

On Easter, I slept in pretty late, and since I needed to wake up for work the next day at the early hour of 1 PM, I decided to take a sleepy pill and get to bed early.

I dreamed I was in a field on a clear, sunny afternoon. I don't know what season it was, but everything was yellow. The leaves and grass, all yellow. The real life equivalent of this field is actually at the end of my street, where there's a pond on the right, woods to the left, and a highway. In the dream, though, all traces of man were gone. There were no power lines, no light posts, and no road. Just a grassy, yellow field. I had the knowledge in the dream that some sort of catastrophe had occurred, and I was one of very few survivors.

My mom was with me, walking through the grass, and my friend Travis was off in the distance. My mom left to go to Travis, leaving me with that big wet field area to my right where the pond is/was. In that area, there was a guy probably about 20 years old, and he was afraid. He only liked me. No one else was allowed near him. I gave him food and helped keep him alive.

I gave him a bundle, started towards Travis and my mom, and then decided to explore instead. I turned around to go the opposite direction. After this point, my mind stopped including Travis, my mother, and that guy in the dream. I found a very quick way I could have gone to give the guy that bundle of food instead of the way I took, and I was pleased that next time I wouldn't have to travel over thick underbrush.

Then ghost children started pouring out of the woods.

They were lead by a little boy, about ten years old, with short, dark hair. I don't remember was he was wearing, but his shirt definitely didn't have sleeves. That's important. I also feel he may have been very dirty, but I'm not positive. I know for a fact that his hands were dirty, with yellowed nails that had dirt under them. I knew in the dream that he had been my son, and that he and the other children behind him - several dozen - were dead.

The boy mentioned something about the parent suffering as the children had suffered, and how I would feel the pain they felt. Using his right hand's middle finger, he tore a very deep gash in his own left arm, starting near the shoulder and going down about three or four inches. It must have been half an inch deep.

I felt a searing pain in my own arm, and I clutched at it as I backed away from them. Typically, pain will wake anyone from a dream, but not when sedatives are involved. I chose a bad night to have sleeping pills in my system. I don't remember if my own arm bled, but it definitely hurt a lot.

I turned to run, and when I turned around, a little girl - about six or so and in some kind of ruffly dress - was standing there. I knew that she was another ghost, and also my other deceased child. She didn't do anything. She just stood there, as I was panicking and unsure of which direction to go.

Some part of my mind recognized that I needed to escape, and even that I needed to wake up, in a very primal, basic sense. I turned again to face the boy and his followers, and since I was clutching my arm, I lost my balance and fell. As I was hitting the ground, I woke up.

I woke in a room that was not my bedroom. It was another dream. The room was a perversion of my bedroom in my old house, which had my bed on one wall, a closet on the opposite, and a window on the wall to the left, with the door on the wall to the right. Only the layout of the room was from memory; the rest was created from nothing.

My bed was a black bunk bed with many pillows, and there was a nightstand near the door with a purple lamp. The room was dark, with a purplish glow from the lamp. It looked like it was sunset outside by the lightness of the sky, though I suppose it could have been dawn, too.

I knew instantly that it was not my bedroom. It wasn't where I was supposed to be, and again, that primitive need to escape surfaced. For those of you unfamiliar with lucid dreaming, breaking free of a dream is like clawing your way up through tar. It feels like you're drowning and struggling to break the surface. Doing it while sedated is even harder.

I managed to break through the layers of fog to wake in my own bed, in my own, real, physical bedroom. Too tired to know any better, I went back to sleep a minute later.

I had a dream about children with their parents on some strange kind of elevator made of chairs. It's strange and mostly unimportant, I think.

I woke up in that dream bedroom again, and it was even more horrifying. There was a large panda plush, and this time Tim was there, holding this panda and telling me to go back to sleep or something. I don't honestly remember, but I know he was there and talking to me. Once again, I had to pull myself out of that dream world to fully wake up.

Over the course of the night, I ended up in that freakish, demented bedroom a few times, and it was always slightly different. I don't know how many times I was there in total. Most notable about the night was a painful dream of creepy ghost children in a destroyed world, and a distorted bedroom.

It was not a fun night. 

Friday, April 6, 2012

Writing Tip #13

It's been a while since I've done one of these, and my laptop is pretty much the only entertainment I've got all day, so I'd better get some writing in. This is something I think should be pretty obvious, but sometimes we writers get so wrapped up in our epic battles and raging gunfights that we forget about stuff like this.

Tip #13: Write vignettes for practice.

Vignettes and flash fiction pieces are quick pieces of writing that are not exactly "stories," as they lack a specific plot, conflict, and conclusion. They give a short glimpse into everyday life when your characters are interacting simply to interact, rather than to save the day and advance the story.

Writing vignettes has several purposes. First off, it helps with character development. Anyone following my blog at all should know how high I value that particular device. We all know how our main hero responds when someone points a gun or a sword at him, but what about his days off? Would he ever just go for a walk to enjoy scenery, or does he have people he talks to and jokes with when he's not off saving the world?

Another good use is to develop your setting. Take your characters on a little adventure. I have friends who have explored a nearby park and gone diving off a small waterfall. There's an even closer park with big tunnels that go beneath the interstate. I think a lot of people in the area must know that area like the back of their hand. Even if the reader never sees any of these little adventures your characters have, you at least have the locations in your mind and can draw upon them when you need to add a little padding to your main plot.

Vignettes are also great for focusing on characters who don't get much attention. I often notice that I end up with a few characters who have only a small handful of appearances, and that makes them harder to write when I feel they should come up. It goes along with character development, though this is more for determining their mannerisms and how they carry themselves rather than how they respond to stimuli.

Perhaps the most fun part of vignettes is releasing them to your readers after they've finished your novel and want more writing. It's fun to read about our favorite characters outside of the main plot. It gives us more information on what it would be like to know them, or even to be them.

Overall, I'd say vignettes are a great way to practice. I must have a dozen at least, and I plan on filling in enough gaps in Among the People Lost to eventually combine them into one book.

Monday, April 2, 2012

6 Language Things I Want to Learn

I did really well with languages in school. I pick up on grammar rules really well, and I'm good at spelling. There's lots I'd like to know if I had the time to take classes. I'd teach myself, but I have a hard time learning from a text book. I'm better off when I can hear people talking and such. 

1. Latin
More like, finish learning. I have to pick it back up and remember what I've forgotten, then get in all the stuff I missed out on in school. Latin was and still is hugely important to me.

2. German
I just want to know it.

3. Greek
I barely even know the symbols' names.

4. Norwegian, Swedish, or Finnish
Because I want to go to Scandanavia.

5. Spanish
I can't understand what my coworkers say when they talk to each other in their native tongue, and it seems like something I should mostly be able to understand. 

6. The Daedric Alphabet
Just to be that kind of person that memorizes video game alphabets.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Appreciation

We all have the desire to be appreciated. We want our efforts recognized and our accomplishments known. We want to feel like we've made a difference to someone or something we've worked on.

I've drawn all my life. I was always better than average, but never super great. My art was appreciated among family, but really paled next to classmates work. I guess it just wasn't my strongest point. Writing was. 

I started writing in sixth grade. It was for a school project where we would write a story and put it in a nicely bound book. I remember being in the spotlight through that class, between the books I wrote (smaller than a chapter of my published novel, but at the time, very lengthy), the six foot long scroll I made on a history of dragons, and my published poetry. I can't even begin to imagine how often my friends told me I should be a writer.

By the time I was writing Among the People Lost, friends were in college. To a lot of them, it probably seems like a really stupid thing to do. Why spend a couple hundred hours writing a book when I could be learning how to make thousands as a doctor? It was just generally ignored, for the most part.

The people who really appreciated it and kept me writing it were people on the internet and Tim. Tim read over every chapter as I wrote it and helped make sure everything was clear, well-written, and not stupid as hell. Halfway through the book, I started posting it to DeviantART, since by then, I knew how the rest was going to go and I was confident that I wouldn't have to backtrack and change the beginning.

I had several people tell me they were really enjoying reading it, and that meant a lot. It helped dull the fact that at least 98% of my friends didn't even care enough to read a chapter. When I learned how easy it was to self publish on Kindle, I decided that if the people reading it enjoyed it, it was good enough to be my first published novel.

Even after I put the book on Kindle, most of my friends didn't seem to be too impressed. I must have at least eight people that said they'd pick it up and never have. It's disappointing to think that very few people are actually willing to put in a few minutes to read a bit and support your work.

When I applied at Target in November, the interview was a series of questions on accomplishments and team work and all sorts of things that really don't indicate how well you work a cash register. I used my book publication to answer a question about a big project, and the guys interviewing me seemed really impressed. I've mentioned it to a couple coworkers at Walmart, and they seem really damn impressed, too.

The people I'm getting the most appreciation out of are the people who wish they could have done the same thing rather than going into a job unloading trucks or asking nervous people tons of questions. I imagine that once all my friends are done with school and hating their careers, they'll look at me continuing to do my art and my writing, and some of them will wish they hadn't given up on their own personal goals.

A little appreciation really goes a long way. I've barely gotten any, and it's still been enough to keep me going on this path lined with words and painted trees.


My recent digital paintings:

Friday, March 30, 2012

Things I Did This Week

1. Ate fish sticks! I've never had fish before in my life. Seriously. XD

2. Started unloading trucks at Walmart. It's kinda fun. :D

3. Learned how to speedpaint from watching a very good tutorial.

4. Ran out of money from Target and tax returns.

5. Got my first Walmart paycheck to replenish that money.

6. Made chicken marinated in whiskey. It had lots of flavor.

7. Took nice portraits of Tim.

8. Tried Nutella. Not as tasty as everyone thinks it is, in my opinion.

9. Started eating bagels with peanut butter instead of plain.

10. Pulled super heavy pallets ALL OVER WALMART.

11. Made a meal schedule to incorporate more variety and healthiness into my diet and Tim's.

12. Spent minimal time on Facebook and maximum time being productive.

I guess this is a spring for getting in shape, getting healthier, and lots of food. :P

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Art Features

I just found a whole ton of super crazy awesome art, and I want to share it, so here's a list of arts. :D Be sure to check out the artists' sites for the rest of the photos in the series.

Book Carvings by Guy Laramee
That's a bunch of books that have had the pages carved. 

Flower X-Rays by Brendan Fitzpatrick

Finger-painted Charcoal Mural by Judith Braun

Ink in Water Photos by Alberto Seveso

Pinned Skin Collages by David Adley
All the pieces of paper used are cut from magazine photos of people and pinned to form a collage.

Daily Art - Closed Doors

An abandoned building at the baseball field across the street from my house.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Friday, March 23, 2012

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Skyrim Love and Hate

I like lists, so let's take a moment to list some very good and very bad features of Skyrim.

Things I Love About Skyrim

1. The world.
I think Bethesda did a really great job building the landscape and scenery of Skyrim. It's not as sparse as previous games, and it's very uneven and mountainous.

2. The people.
The people look pretty great. I'm not super fond of the altmer, but otherwise, I think they did a great job - especially with the khajiit.

3. The Morrowind references.
My God, I'm so thrilled about all the Morrowind references. All the subtle references to things like Gnisis and House Telvanni, the mention of Red Mountain, and the things like draugr and werewolves that carried over from Bloodmoon.

4. Dual wielding.
The best. I kind-of-sort-of do it in Morrowind with a mod, but my off-hand sword just works like a shield, so not really. I love that I can use two weapons.

5. Chickens.
The farm animals in general. I was happy with the sheep in Oblivion, and I'm very happy that there are adorable little chickens and cows sitting around in towns.

6. Dragons.
I love how the dragons look. My only complaint is that I can't ride one, and I'm sure there is/will be a mod for that.

7. Smithing.
Why didn't they do this sooner? This is wonderful!

8. The soundtrack.
Best music so far compared to the other games. I'm also really happy about some of the Morrowind music being recycled. 

Things I Hate About Skyrim

1. It's glitchy as hell.
My graphics break all the time. There are tons of little bugs and things that break that they really should have caught before release.

2. The skill revamp.
No attributes? No birthsign? No more acrobatics and athletics? This is not okay. I miss the old skills.

3. Lydia.
She's always in my room eating my sweetrolls! Get out! >:O

4. Nighteye.
I liked it in previous games. I don't like it in this at all. It makes vision worse, not better.

5. The menu.
What is this mess? It's easier to use the keyboard arrows, and even then, it's a big pain to sort through lists instead of seeing a nice table or having a scroll bar. 

6. Buttons.
I don't understand why R is used for somethings, E for others, and F as a reject action button. I miss the days of Morrowind where space did everything. I also don't like that I can equip things while trying to put them in a chest. I'm in chest store mode, not inventory mode. That shouldn't be an option in my opinion. It seems like they couldn't decide which controls to use half the time. 

7. The alchemy downgrade.
I want my fourth item, damn it. 

8. One ring.
Two was most certainly not too many. I would like to wear one on each hand, please. 

Things I'm Mixed On

1. The cities.
Solitude is the best thing ever, but why the hell is Morthal even a city? It's, like, the same size as Riverwood. Some of the cities just really should have been bigger, being as important as they are.

2. Marriage.
Sure, there are benefits, but it's sort of obnoxious having a guy in my house telling me to make myself at home and to let him know if he can be of any assistance. Also, someone really needs to get on making khajiit and bosmer marriable. I'm forcing bestiality on my poor dunmer husband.

3. Cooking 
I love that we can cook, but I'd love even more if the food items were also alchemy items. If I want to mix sweetrolls and daedra hearts, that's my business.

4. Kill cams.
Meh...? They're cool, but I generally don't like things that break the flow of the game like that. I'm iffy on them.

5. Equippable magic.
Seems like a step backwards to Morrowind from Oblivion. Morrowind required your hands to be in casting mode, and in Oblivion, they eliminated that by simply having a cast button, so you could use magic while using your sword and shield. I hate that I have to have magic on one of my hands instead of just casting it. Sure, you can cast with some things, but why not all? It seems kind of weird.

6. Nirnroot.
I like that it respawns, but it's really not supposed to, so I wonder if that was even intentional? If it is, doesn't that defeat the purpose of it being super rare and all that? 

Daily Art - Lelouch Trace

I traced a screenshot from Code Geass in an attempt to study all the layers of shading and how everything is put together. I learned that it's way more than it looks like. :P

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Daily Art - "Dream Coil"

A New Job

Yesterday, I went to my orientation for my new job at Walmart. I'm going to be unloading trucks and stuff. I look forward to getting some extra money in my bank account.

I'm also dedicating a lot more time to important things and not as much to things like Skyrim. I love you, Skyrim, but you don't earn me real life money and vegetables. I have some more jewelry to make and lots of photographs to take. The weather is great right now, and I'd really like to get more in shape for once in my life. I'm even going to spend money on real shoes and start walking and running. Lifting 50 pound boxes at work will help build more muscle, and that's always nice, too.

I've just really got a lot of stuff I need to be doing and better time management will help get that stuff done. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Seasonal Depression

There's a specific kind of depression known as SAD, or Seasonal Affected Disorder. Basically, certain seasons make you unreasonably sad, and it passes when the season passes. Usually it's winter. Anyway, I've never had it. I love the fall and spring for the colors and temperatures, the summer for the time outdoors, and the winter for the snow. All year round is great in my area, as far as I can see.

This year, though, winter just really got to me. We had temperatures that fluctuated on a weekly basis between 20 and 55 degrees, and any snow we got (which was not enough) was gone the next day. I've very much been ready for spring to come so I can at least have fun doing things outside.

Yesterday, I was pretty sure I wasn't feeling up to doing stuff, but I'd already made the commitment and had nothing better to do, so I was willing to go out. I went out onto the porch to see what kind of jacket I needed to wear. It was a wonderful 73 degrees outside. I ended up leaving my hoodie in the car because I was starting to get too hot. It was the best damn thing ever.

My bedroom window was open all night and my room is still warm. I can do things outside without my fingers going numb from the cold and the joints aching, and I can get ready for starting my veggie garden. Most importantly, it's about time I get back to doing things. I've been neglecting massive amounts of stuff, and that needs to stop. I have art to make and things to write. 

Friday, March 2, 2012

Neglect

A lot of my things are getting neglected lately. My DeviantART inbox is all sorts of overflowing, and my email still has messages from November that are untouched. My room is a little messier than normal, and now there's a broken microwave on my floor taking up space. I got halfway through dismantling the thing for parts and got tired of it.

I'm sort of living in this big sea of clutter. If Tim didn't live with me, I might just build a nest on my bed and spend all day there. I've been known to hoard things like that. I'd clean stuff, but I just haven't had the energy lately. I'm constantly tired or busy being really sad about doing things.

I know I really, really should be doing things. I have a big long to-do list and grandiose visions of me getting stuff done. All I'm actually doing is playing some Skyrim, eating, and watching '90s fantasy shows while telling myself and Tim that tomorrow is the day stuff really needs to get done.

It's all very sad and pathetic. 

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A Newspaper

Tim and I went to a bunch of different McDonald's restaurants today in an effort to burn through some coupons we had. At the final stop, the drive-thru lady asked if we wanted a free newspaper. Always eager to hoard free things, Tim gladly accepted it.

It's rare I even look at the front page of the newspaper, let alone read it. I've never in my life sat down and looked over every page, but I felt compelled to do so for this particular newspaper. I didn't really read any of it. I just looked over all the columns of text, scanning for anything of interest. I skipped the sports, the NASDAQ readings, and the obituaries.

As soon as I skipped the obituaries, I decided I'd better look over them. What if someone I knew had died and I'd never know about it? That's always been a sort of irrational fear. I can't really say why. Anyway, as it turns out, someone I knew had died. A man who was my psychologist when I was a kid died of leukemia (if I remember correctly).

It's a weird sort of thing. As a kid, getting your mind analyzed is one of the most irritating things in the world. I hated going. I hated his dumb games and how he tried to dredge up memories I didn't want to talk about. I'd like to think that I would have turned out the same without him...that he had no bearing whatsoever on my life.

He likely did, though, and that's kind of weird. I barely remember the appointments themselves. I mainly remember hating going. It's odd to think that someone I very much disliked in the past may have actually helped, and now that person is gone. It's strange to feel neither happiness nor sadness over someone being dead; surely most people feel something. What is there to feel when you don't even know how someone influenced you? 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Photography

I used to think photography was a cheap form of art. Anyone can take a picture and call it art. Just use the standard rule of thirds, make it a clear shot, and hope people like it, right? Or you can go the photojournalism route and not even bother with interesting composition, just so long as you get your subject in there.

When I got a camera for Christmas a few years ago, I figured I'd experiment a little with photography. Take some pictures, sell prints...easy. My first few photos were pretty dull in retrospect, but one won a weekly photo contest, and that was cool.

This won something. I was sort of surprised.
I started taking more interest in other photographers on DeviantART very gradually. Even now, I only follow two or three photographers. I prefer digital paintings and such. Below is the first photograph (besides an adorable kitten) that I added to my favorites on DA. I was drawn to the surreality of it. It's far different than the average cityscape.


Eventually, I found a lot of interesting photographs. People who played with shutter speed, infrared lenses, blurs, and all sorts of things to get really interesting effects...even just really great shots of cool landscapes or buildings.





I took an interest in photos with models, too. I came to learn that there's a lot more to photographing someone than just taking a snapshot.



He has unfortunately deactivated his account. It ruined my life a little.
I've done a lot of photography since I first started. I've found a new appreciation for it. I plan on getting a more expensive camera at some point to get into the fun shutter speed stuff. For now, lots of nature and still life, and that's okay. It's something I've found I actually enjoy doing.



Thursday, February 23, 2012

Difficulty

It's been hard to do things lately. I've had no energy, no motivation, and no inspiration. I've hit one of the worst walls of depression I've ever seen. There are days (like today) when getting out of bed is just too much effort. Even while I'm typing this, I'm on my bed wrapped in a blanket because the prospect of taking a mostly cold shower (dying water heater) is just too much to deal with.

I have a massive pile of things that need to get done. I have tons of board game accessories and computer part jewelry to make for a craft show I'm planning on doing, and if that's hard to do, I can't imagine building up the stock for a later craft show.

Due to the incompetency and uncooperativeness of my family, I wasn't able to send in my medical assistance form on time, and I likely have another few thousand dollars of medical debt on my record that I can't pay. All they needed to do was give me some info I didn't know. Did they? Of course not. They just yelled at me that it was probably too late and never did anything.

I'm growing to hate a great deal of things and people. Lots of things are just getting to me more than usual, and it's becoming clear that very few people really grasp how difficult it is to do certain things, how mentally unstable I am, and how much of a rut this is.

This is the most writing I've done in a while. I've sat down to this blog many times and tried to express all of this, but somehow it never went well. I always decided I'd better stop writing before someone criticized me or tried to give me advice, both of which would irritate me and probably make me stay in bed for a week straight.

I'm very tired of getting advice, most of all. Just because you can do something doesn't mean everyone else can. There are many, many people below you, and maybe you're unaware of how difficult normal, every day things can be for other people.

I'm undecided on whether or not I'm interested in getting another job before college. I'm partly looking for more money. On the other hand, it was hard enough to find the motivation to go to work when I came home every night in pain and occasionally felt like I would pass out an hour into my day. If I said my health was mostly stable, I think I was wrong. It seems like it's deteriorating again. I've been getting awful headaches and the fatigue is worse than it's been in a long time. I don't really know that I can handle a job, physically or mentally. I can't even find the motivation or energy for my own projects.

I guess I just have a lot of things to deal with. The people that can help won't, the people that think they're helping are making things worse, and the stress of every day life has no outlet. Stuff is piling up due to the depression and total lack of interest, and that in itself is a big stresser, too. I'm constantly hurting and not feeling well, and that makes everthing much harder than it needs to be.

Part of me is very interested in getting out of bed and starting my day. The rest of me wants to sleep for a few months and hopefully wake up with some motivation. 

Monday, February 6, 2012

Why I Love Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day is pretty awesome, I think. It's a holiday we celebrate simply by showing someone we care about them, then eating lots of chocolate. It's also a good excuse to be romantic, even if that's not really your thing, or if your relationship has just gone on too long to really be exciting all the time anymore. Here's a list of stuff I love about the holiday in general.

1. It's in winter.
Do you realize how boring the new year starts off after the fun of December is over? January has a couple days that we might get off from work or school, but none that we really celebrate. Valentine's Day is the first day of the year that has its own merchandise, candy, and general traditions.

2. It's a good excuse to approach that person you won't admit you like.
My first serious relationship started on Valentine's Day. It was weird. We were really close friends, and he knew I liked him, but he pretty much denied up and down that he liked me up until Valentine's Day, when he asked if I'd like to start dating. It was all very nice, and the relationship lasted 11 months, which is pretty long for being 14. Anyway, my point is that a day for romance is the perfect opportunity if you're in that sort of situation.

3. It's a good excuse for a date. 
I've been with my boyfriend Tim for 3 and a half years now. He sleeps in my bedroom every night, is pretty much constantly in front of me while we're on our laptops (like right now), and we go out to eat and grocery shop frequently. The restaurants in the area all know us as regulars. Valentine's Day is a good excuse to do something a little more special, like hang out at the local park or visit the local attractions you always ignore.

4. There are tons of fun edibles.
Any holiday is a good reason to make cakes and cookies, especially if they have cute red hearts all over them.

5. It's a holiday about love.
On Christmas, a lot of us can get a little greedy when it comes to gifts, or even a little overwhelmed trying to please everyone. Halloween is about hoarding candy, and New Year's is about...hoarding alcohol? Valentine's Day is all about the significant other in your life, spending some quality time together, and showing them they're awesome.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Tumblr

Go ask me questions and stuff!

http://eternalnight11.tumblr.com/

I have it set up so you can ask anonymously, so if you wanna have to give me your info, you can still pester me!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Starting Over

Before I go into this, I just want to point out that I'm in no way talking about being something you're not or running away from your problems. I'm talking about exploring parts of your personality and interests that you've always just sort of put on the back burner instead of delving into. That being said, read on. 

To many people, myself included, the idea of getting a fresh start is pretty appealing. Wouldn't it be nice to get away from all the problems in your life and go somewhere where no one knows about all your flaws or the embarrassing things you've done, and the only thing you need to do is give off a good first impression? Maybe you just want to try something totally different, like dressing a way you've never had the confidence to dress before, or start going by a nickname for a change.

In late middle school, the vast majority of my clothing was black, or at the very least, had some sort of dark, Gothic design to it. I loved that stuff. I still really love that stuff, actually; I just don't really wear it anymore. Anyway, in seventh grade, I bought a shirt that was super bright pink and orange. I liked it, despite the fact that it was pink and I've never really liked pink, so I got it. It sat in my closet for months because I never woke up in the morning and wanted to wear it. Eventually, on April Fool's day, I figured I'd dress super-girly and confuse the hell out of my friends, which worked far better than I expected. I wore that shirt, got compliments on it from people who never really spoke to me, and got a whole ton of appalled stares from the guys I hung out with. After that, I never really had the confidence to wear it again. It's probably still buried in my closet somewhere.

We all have comfort levels around our friends, and when one of those friends does something totally unexpected, it suddenly throws the friendship into question, even if it's really silly. "She never wore pink and always says she doesn't like pink, but here she is in pink! What if everything else she ever said was a lie!?" It seems totally ridiculous, but imagine if one of your friends suddenly showed up to a hang out dressed in a way that seems a polar opposite to how they normally are. It's hard to not judge them in some way at least a little, I think. Humans are very judgmental creatures.

Over the years, I've come to like a massive spectrum of things. There are a lot of styles I think are nice, but I generally stick to plain, dark-colored, fitted t-shirts and jeans. If not that, then some sort of spaghetti-strap tank top, either by itself in warm weather or under an unbuttoned button-down in cooler weather. It's simple, gets across the colors I like, and, most importantly, it's comfy. That doesn't mean I don't want everything in the window every time I walk past Hot Topic.

See, the clothes I have now can usually be adapted into something that looks nice enough to a job interview or is casual enough for a day lounging around doing nothing. I even sleep in my tees and tank tops when it's chilly, because they're comfortable enough to do that. I have a shirt made to look like a corset, and that's not nearly as versatile. I love it, and it looks nice, but I just don't wear it much. I'd wear make-up more if I wasn't too lazy to put it on every day.

What I'm getting at with all that (and wow, that was a lot more than I thought it would be) is that we might have tons of interests and likes, but we'll always deviate towards one over the others, regardless of how much we may like the others. If we were to start over somewhere new, it would be a good opportunity to pick up the interests we put to the side before, with the added benefit of not having anyone judge us for making that decision.

That being said, I think one of the biggest reasons that most of us don't change out style on a daily basis is because we worry about how others will think of us. If you walk into class one day with rainbow hair and tons of super bright colors, then a week later your hair is black and you look like a lace monster, people are either going to think you're insane, just following trends and can't think for yourself, or just trying to impress someone and not being true to yourself, even if you really do love rainbows and black lacy stuff.

Fashion is only a single aspect of the whole "fresh start" thing, of course, but I think it's the most appealing. After all, what you're wearing can say a lot about your interests, and it's inevitably going to attract and repel people. One of the whole points of starting over is attracting and repelling types of people that hopefully won't ruin your new life.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Creative Blocks

I have them. :|

I evidently can't even write a blog post about said creative blocks. This is not going well. I bought some clay tonight, and where that won't get anything written, maybe I'll just screw around with that for a while and then try to write everything I need to write in the morning. Yeah. Seems like a plan.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Why I Hate Wall Photos

Facebook introduced a feature not too long ago that lets us mindlessly share images with messages we agree with but are too shy to flat out say. It lets us share funny comics without having to link to the artist's site. Who needs credit for anything, anyway? It also lets us share news stories (which are often partly or completely false) and chain messages. I think it's the most irritating thing Facebook has done yet.

Facebook used to be a generally safe-for-work environment. After all, it's all text. Unless someone is right over your shoulder, it doesn't matter what's on your screen. Now, though, I frequently have pictures of babies with cancer, deer with cancer, naked men painted to look like a rainforest, women dressed like hookers, half-dressed fat people, and dogs that have been abused and mutilated. 

Then there are the thousands of not-very-witty phrases in image form, which everyone seems to use to throw their views up on Facebook without having to actually say those things themselves. Sorry, but I never heard you complain about your husband before. Now all of a sudden your wall is 90% shared photos with clever sayings about how dumb and lazy he is?

Let's not forget the dreaded chain letters. "This baby has cancer! Some Company Inc. donates $1 for every share!" No. They don't. All you're doing is posting some hideous baby on my newsfeed. Have I ever mentioned I hate babies? Like, to the point that it's a serious phobia and they're about as gross to me as spiders? Now you know!

Point is, Facebook is not where I want to be anymore. Instead of updates from friends I don't see, I get their political views, their religion, motivation I don't need or want, and their really old comics that keep resurfacing shoved down my throat every time I want to see what everyone's up to. Tumblr exists practically exclusively for this kind of crap. Why can't everyone do it over there? 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Writing Tip #12

I starting writing this a while back, had it almost done, and then never finished it. So here. I finished it and posted it finally.

Tip #12: Think of your story as a video game.

I explored a very specific incarnation of this tip when I went over turning characters into Morrowind characters. This is going to be much more general and focus on different gaming aspects.

The first thing to think about is how your characters interact. In The Devil's Blade, Valdius acts and fights alone. Anastera, my lead female, has no combat ability, and Zirk is really only ever a bystander. If it were a game, it would be very God of War-like, with one powerful character essentially fighting his way through tons of stuff to save/protect someone.

Among the People Lost could potentially follow a party format. Dante is, first and foremost, a sharp shooter. Put him in a fantasy setting, and you're probably looking at a skilled elven bowman. Solstice balances him out by being a very skilled martial artist. She uses hand-to-hand techniques and a dagger, meaning she can get up close while Dante hangs back. Hunter, a sniper, is sort of the equivalent to a mage in ways, being the stereotypical "glass cannon." He would be the farthest back of the group, protected by the others but dealing instant kills when he fires. Add in all the other characters that come and go, and you've got a pretty balanced party.

The point of all that is having characters who balance each other out. Action movies often have, like, five guys running around with guns, and that's not really that practical. In games like D&D, you need to have a group with a wide range of skills so there's always someone for the job when a tough task comes up.

In the first example, it's important to know your character's limitations. Maybe he gets better and gains more skills as the story goes, allowing him to go back to places he couldn't quite get to before and overcome enemies he never would have hoped to conquer. Characters that start out super powerful aren't particularly interesting. There needs to be some measure of growth and development.

Video games get more difficult as you go. A lot of books are the same way. Harry Potter's challenges in the first book are nothing compared to the seventh. As characters grow stronger, they're able to push deeper into enemy territory, take on stronger enemies, and, if they're good enough or lucky enough, win against their greatest opponent and save the day.

That's not to say, though, that there aren't really easy enemies along the way. Even weak enemies that are easy to beat can give a little experience here and there. They're more to keep the character from falling behind than to really make him move forward. Real learning experiences come from the difficult fights, the losses, and the power upgrades.

Thinking of your story in game terms can help determine if an ability or skill is really over-powered compared to other characters. If your character is really skilled, is he the only one? Or are all of his enemies roughly the same skill level? If your story follows more of a party format, where is the group really weak? Who gets tired after walking up a short hill and who can run five miles without an issue? All stuff to consider when writing stories and making games.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Writing Simply

I once believed that life was a gift. I thought whatever I wanted I would someday possess. Is that greed, or only youth? 

Green Angel is one of my favorite books. You probably haven't heard of it. I bought it at my school's book fair in 6th or 7th grade, read it over the course of 4 hours, and still count it right up there with Dragonlance and Drizzt. I have a review of it over here in my webzine, if you're interested in a review, but for now, let's just go over what this thing actually is. 

Green Angel is a pretty short novel aimed at the roughly 13-year-old range. It takes place in an unspecified location in an unspecified time period with characters with really vague names. The main character is called Green, and she's practically a plant empath. She's good with gardening to the point that it's a borderline magic power. The plot follows her from a first-person view as she recovers from losing her family in some sort of disaster, also very vaguely described.

What makes the book so fantastic is the way it's all put together. Absolutely everything about the book gives it a sort of dream-like, surreal atmosphere. When dialogue is spoken, it's italicized rather than put in quotes. It sort of makes you wonder if anyone is really speaking at all, or if it's all imagined in some kind of dream. Everything has a dark, poetic simplicity to it, and I think it's beautiful. It's full of things that hit me really hard just because of how simply they were put. No dramatic death scenes. No epic battles. Just simplicity at its finest. 

It's a kind of writing that's impossible to emulate by trying. It has to naturally flow, or you're going to break that simplicity. I've read through a lot of reviews of Green Angel, and it seems that the style is either loved or hated. It's too different to be somewhere in between. You can either appreciate the magical surrealism of it, or think it's the dumbest thing ever and go for something more realistic. Personally, I think it's one of the best ways to write a story, and whenever I find something similar, I love it.

I had similar feelings towards I Am Legend, though to a lesser extent. Some lines are so hugely important, and yet they're also super simple and blunt. There's nothing to say other than the simple truth. I think those lines can sometimes make more of an impact than several paragraphs explaining a heroic death.

Like everything in writing (and everything, really), there are times and places for everything. Simplicity doesn't always work. Still, I think Green Angel really did it right.