Monday, December 23, 2013

Monday Music 14

Hello, lovelies! I hope the holiday season is treating you well. This is always the busiest time of the year, and time somehow has a way of getting away from me.

Alas, this will be my last Monday Music post until sometime in January. A girl's got to get some time for the holidays! (And not to mention how much reading I have to do, both for myself and for others).

Anyway, here is your Monday Music selection! It is called Strong Hold by Beyond Music.


Hope you enjoy! Lots of good things are to come with the New Year. I hope your Christmas is bright, white, and full of eggnog and cookies. 

Happy Monday!!

Kate

Monday, December 16, 2013

Monday Music 13

The year is officially nearing its end. Can you believe Christmas is next week? NEXT. WEEK. Where has the time gone?

To top off all the holiday cheer, I've caught the bug that's been going around my family. It's hitting full force, and I just hope it's cleared up by this weekend because it's going to be incredibly busy for me. Can you say back-to-back performances? 'Cause I can.

Also, quick update: I got picked as mentee for PitchWars! My awesome mentor is Stephanie Garber, who is one awesome person and you should all get to know her.

Anyway, without further ado, here is your music selection. This one is called In My Head 2 by Unstoppable Music.


Hope you enjoy! 

Happy Monday,

Kate

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Monday Music 12

Hi, everyone! Sorry this didn't get posted yesterday. It was the last day of the semester so it was kind of hectic.

Anyway, hope all's well with you and yours. =) Here is your Monday Music selection! This week's is called Nothing Left to Lose by Ethos Music.


Hope you enjoy!!

Happy Tuesday,

Kate

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

PitchWars Mentee Bio


So what can I tell you about me? *cue lightning flash* I'm a college sophomore working toward a degree in Global Affairs so I sort of live and and breathe school right now. However, somehow I manage to squeeze in time to write. I am the middle child of five, with two older brothers and two younger sisters so I'm what I like to consider a mix of girly and tomboy. I can belch a good one but I do like painting my toenails.

Now, as for me as a writer, I've been writing since I was in seventh grade. I started out writing mostly YA contemp novellas, which I then posted on a writing community similar to Wattpad called Inkpop. It was hosted by HarperCollins, but then they joined forces with Figment. But anyway, back to me. From there, I learned how to be a better writer and made awesome writing friends, some of whom I am still in contact with today.


Now, onto a more personal level. I'm a Grammar Nazi because I love words and it makes me sad when they're surrounded by the improper usage of periods and commas. I love Supernatural (if you can't already tell) and I love gifs, so be prepared for both when you get to know me. High/epic fantasy will always be my first love, but historical anything takes a close second. I'm a huge history buff and proud of it.


Beyond writing and Supernatural, I love to gather random and useless facts because it's a goal of mine to know a little about a lot of things. I'm a kickboxer for fun. I absolutely love the cold weather, which is why I may one day move to Maine. Or Alaska. Right now I'm considering Colorado. (And yes, where I live in Arizona, we do get snow.) I hope to one day own a black 2006 Dodge Charger SRT8 (and if you can point out which car inspired this, you are an awesome person). I work part-time in a nursery with lots of babies, which has most definitely been a very thorough education in the art of child care.


Some of my favorite movies are Lord of the Rings, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, Silver Linings Playbook, Tangled, Zero Dark Thirty, Jane Eyre (with Michael Fassbender), A Cinderella Story (despite the semi-bad acting), Pearl Harbor, The Mummy, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Indiana Jones. As you can see, it's a pretty eclectic mix.

Now, onto more important matters: Favorite books are those by Rae Carson, Kristin Cashore, Leigh Bardugo, Sarah J Maas, Cora Carmack, Beth Revis, Jessica Spotswood, Y.S. Lee, Laini Taylor, Robin Lafevers, Ruta Sepetys, and Elizabeth Wein. However, these are by far not all of my favorites, just insta-buys for me. I also love to recommend good books, as my friends and family can fully attest. My TBR pile is always miles long.


I fully admit to listening to Christmas music before Thanksgiving, something I am mercilessly teased for. I'm sarcastic. I am what some would call a mutt of different heritages, though most belong in Europe. I'm always on the lookout for awesome writing music, so if you ever need a good recommendation just ask me. I don't bite, I promise.

                                            (At least not often.)

Okay, I think I've said enough about myself. I'll probably remember something to add in the most random of times, but alas, over and out!


P.S. You should pick me. Because I'm awesome. And I have chocolate.

P.P.S. Some of the characters in my book were inspired by Supernatural, so if you like feels, you will probably enjoy it. If you like Pirates of the Caribbean, my book has pirates aplenty.

P.P.P.S Check out even more awesome mentees on Dannie Morin's blog.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Monday Music 11

Hello, all!

It's the last week of the semester for me, so I'm thrilled to pieces. Writing time, reading time, RELAXING time, they will be mine come next week.

So without further ado, here is your Monday Music selection! This one is called Call for Freedom by Aran Zayne. Hope you enjoy!!


Happy Monday!

Kate

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

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Monday, November 25, 2013

Monday Music 10

So LOTS has happened over the weekend, but I'm choosing not to share. It's unprofessional to do so, but it's been hard to remain positive.

Thank GOD for my crit partners, family, and friends. They've all been wonderful in keeping me looking toward my goals and seeing straight.

Anyway, onto your Monday Music selection. This one is called Inner Strength by Veigar Margeirsson. To me, it sounds very hopeful and uplifting, something that would play at the end of an epic fantasy movie. Hope you enjoy.



Happy Monday!

Kate

Monday, November 18, 2013

Monday Music 9

I have been a VERY bad blogger, but blame college. It's nearing the end of the semester, so all sixteen credits have been kicking my butt.

Plus, it's November now, so the holidays are coming, but I am VERY sorry. I will try to do better

Anywhoo. Excuses and apologies aside, here is your Monday Music selection. It's called Glimmer of Hope by Ivan Torrent.


Hope you enjoy!

Kate

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Random Musings: Novella Writing

So, I know I once said I wouldn't blog about writing craft, but I'm about to become a hypocrite. Why? Because of one very simple reason:

Novellas.

Or, more specifically, writing novellas.

You see, I started out NaNoWriMo thinking I'd write a stand-alone fantasy that was a mash-up of Beauty & the Beast, Jane Eyre, and Ella Enchanted. I got 20k words in before realizing this character's voice just wasn't clicking. (And believe me, I know the difference between non-clicky characters and clicky characters. While writing Monsters, Alek's and Kaia's voices came as easy as if they were sitting on either of my shoulders telling me what to say.)

So then I stopped that WIP and started a new one. This one was an NA noir, complete with sexy boy (a college hockey player...YUM), awesome setting (Boston, anyone?) and spunky protag (she quotes Supernatural, which puts her high up in my book...no pun intended). But, once again, this voice did not click.

Thus, I decided to finally start working on the novellas I'd been sitting on that are about Alek, Kaia, and Alek's little brother Andras. So now I have three novellas plotted and outlined and ready for me to write. (I've just gotta get off the internet long enough to do so. Bad writer.) And finally, I arrive at my point of this post: Writing novellas.

When I was outlining, I quickly realized outlining novellas was a helluva lot different from outlining novels. Why? Because novellas are way shorter than novels, they only have one main storyline (very few subplots, if any at all), and they generally are only from one point of view. Why was this a problem? Because Monsters is from two perspectives, and its two sequels both have a third voice narrating.

So, I decided to bend the rules for one novella. But this still left an even larger problem: How to plot one! I had the ideas but not the gist. Once again, I was stuck...until I opened my Supernatural Pinterest page, which, as you can see by the amount of pins, I spend way too much time on. But that led to something just clicking in my head. Each episode is about forty minutes long (this would be about novella length, with a feature film being a novel) and has its own main storyline (while still hinting at subplots).

So I decided to follow Supernatural's example and outline my novellas like they were episodes of the show. And it worked. Voila. Brand new way of outlining.

Okay, I'm done rambling now. And I really do need to start my novellas.

Happy Sunday!

Kate

Monday, November 4, 2013

Monday Music 8

Hello, all!

I hope you all had an amazing Halloween. I, for one, am greatly looking forward to Thanksgiving. Not so much for the food (although that's always a plus) but because my oldest brother is coming to visit! Super excited for that!

I'm also super happy it's NaNoWriMo. If ya want, go ahead and add me!

Anywhoo, here is your Monday Music! It's called My Own Worst Enemy by Robert Pettersson. Hope you enjoy.


Happy Monday!

Kate

Monday, October 28, 2013

Monday Music 7

Hi, all!

So because I have managed to fail at posting these past two Fridays, I've made the decision that with my crazy work load, I won't be able to post a trailer review every Friday. Now, I will be posting them every first and third Friday of every month.

That may turn out to be a good idea, or it may not. We shall see.

Anyway, on to your Monday Music! This one is from the Zero Dark Thirty soundtrack because I'm in a political-thriller type of mood. Hope you enjoy!


Happy Monday!

Kate

Monday, October 21, 2013

Monday Music 6

Holy wow. I am so sorry I've been a bad blogger and didn't post on Friday, and almost forgot to post today. I've been super busy, but I seem to be freeing up a bit this week.

So! Here is your Monday Music selection. This week's selection is called Awakening by Lucas King.


Hope you enjoy!

Happy Monday!

Kate

Monday, October 14, 2013

Monday Music 5

Hiya, everyone!

As far as Mondays go, this one hasn't been all that shabby. It's gorgeous here, with the trees turning color at last and the air becoming nippy. The sky is clear and blue and perfect for fall weather.

Plus, I get to wear boots and sweaters.

Without further ado, here is your Monday Music! It is called Lost to the Dawn by West One Music.


Hope you enjoy! 

Happy Monday!

Kate

Friday, October 11, 2013

Trailer Review: THE BROKENHEARTED by Amelia Kahaney

A teenage girl is transformed into a reluctant superhero and must balance her old life with the dark secret of who she has become. 

Prima ballerina Anthem Fleet is closely guarded by her parents in their penthouse apartment. But when she meets the handsome Gavin at a party on the wrong side of town, she is immediately drawn into his dangerous world. Then, in a tragic accident, Anthem falls to her death. She wakes in an underground lab, with a bionic heart ticking in her chest. As she navigates her new life, she uncovers the sinister truth behind those she trusted most, and the chilling secret of her family lineage...and her duty to uphold it.

The Dark Knight meets Cinder in this gripping and cinematic story of heartbreak and revenge.

THE BROKENHEARTED on GoodReads

video

This is an example of a book trailer done right. I had heard of THE BROKENHEARTED for a while, but I had never gotten around to clicking on the title to learn more. Based on the title, I thought it was simply another romance about a girl whose heart is broken.

I never expected it to be about a superhero with a bionic heart.

The trailer starts out with a bit of back story, which we don't often get in trailers. You almost think it's going to be another BUNHEADS. And then suddenly we get an abrupt change in music, an old elevator, and people wearing freaky masks that I haven't seen since The Dark Knight. And, to up the ante, the music has taken an abrupt change and suddenly it's got you sitting up, wondering what on Earth has possibly gone wrong for the ballerina and her somewhat-cute boy.

The gyrating on the table seems a bit odd. However, I'm sure that I would be doing the same thing had I just been given a heart made of gears. And the boy suddenly goes from awesome fighter to on his knees, leading you to wonder what just happened.

*Cue freaky chest stitches and table full of bloody tools*

The voice over is done extremely well. The girl's voice is easy to listen to, with just the right amount of inflection to keep my ears perked.

*Cue Batman-esque gazing out at city clip followed by chasing of bad guys*

(Side note: Am I the only on who thinks the crates the guy knocked over look like gigantic Legos?)

Lastly, the sound effects are just awesome. They sound like a rapidly ticking heart, which just ties it all together with a big purple bow.

Final rating: Five out of five stars.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Monday Music 4

Hey, everyone! The weather in Northern Arizona is so wonky! It keeps going cold, then warm, then cold, and warm again. *shakes fist at sky* Right now it's cold but that could be because it's nighttime.

Arizona needs to get its act together. (And yes, in the mountains, we do feel the effects of autumn. It will snow come winter. And it's beautiful.)

Anyway, here is your Monday Music! (Sorry it's way late. Today has been super busy.) Today's selection is called Legions of Faith by Two Steps From Hell. (TSFH has a TON of awesome songs, so I totally recommend looking them up.)


Happy Monday!

Kate

Friday, October 4, 2013

Trailer Review: UNBREATHABLE by Hafsah Laziaf

One hundred and fifty years ago, Earth was destroyed, and the remaining humans fled to the dusty red planet of Jutaire, where the only oxygen is manufactured, food is scarce, and death strikes often.

When Lissa's father discovers Earth still exists, she accidentally inhales the toxic air of Jutaire, and in one breath, discovers she isn't quite human.

Her father hangs for his discovery, and Lissa knows the Chancellors will come for her, for she saw Earth that night too. With nothing to lose, she sets out to expose the truth. It isn't long before she meets Julian, a beautiful boy who can breathe the toxic air like she can--and shows her that the Jute, the original inhabitants of the planet, are more tangled in their lives than she knows.

But the Chancellors are only pawns in a greater game--one where the Jute control everything. Worse, the Jute plan to leave Jutaire for Earth, but to get there, they need her. And they'll stop at nothing until Lissa is in their clutches, even if they kill every human in the process.

The race for Earth has begun.

UNBREATHABLE on GoodReads

video

The beginning of this trailer is quiet and spooky, much like space seems to me. The music isn't truly music, but a mixture of sounds that cause your spine to tingle with anticipation. I love the main circle image that pops up from time to time throughout the trailer, with its gorgeous color and the lens flare that truly makes it feel like a space novel. However, my favorite part is when we're zooming through the stars. (Reminds me of that old Windows screen saver.)

The beginning lines are pretty fantastic: Earth destroyed? Neat. However, it's the line "Galileo discovered Earth" that really hooks me. I was under the impression this was a futuristic novel (and it probably is) but it also leads me to wonder if this Galileo is the original (and maybe he was cryogenically frozen), if he's reborn, or is someone new entirely.

The lines used in the trailer give me just enough of an inkling to know what the book is about, but also leave just enough out to make me want to read and discover what's so special about Lissa and her blood.

Finally, my favorite thing is that the humans and the Jute are racing to get Earth. So often, there seems to be a race for another planet...not one we've already been on. Brava, Ms. Laziaf!

Final rating: Five out of five stars.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Monday Music 3

It's the start of a new week, and guess what I'm doing? That's right; you guessed it: HOMEWORK. What else is new in the life of a full-time college student? On the bright side, my most-amazing crit partner Sarah finished the fourth draft of my manuscript. And on the even brighter side, I've finished hers and soon her agent is going to be subbing it to editors.

We kind of feel like this:

Anyway, here is your Monday Music! This week's selection is called Tree of Life by Audiomachine. 



Happy Monday!

Kate

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Trailer Review: FROZEN by Melissa de la Cruz

I'm a bad blogger, and I apologize. Yesterday is a story for another time, but here I am now. =]

Welcome to New Vegas, a city once covered in bling, now blanketed in ice. Like much of the destroyed planet, the place knows only one temperature--freezing. But some things never change. The diamond in the ice desert is still a 24-hour hedonistic playground and nothing keeps the crowds away from the casino floors, never mind the rumors about sinister sorcery in its shadows.

At the heart of this city is Natasha Kestal, a young blackjack dealer looking for a way out. Like many, she's heard of a mythical land simply called "the Blue." They say it's paradise, where the sun still shines and the waters are turquoise. More importantly, it's a place where Nat won't be persecuted, even if her darkest secret comes to light.

But passage to the Blue is treacherous, if not impossible, and her only shot is to bet on a ragtag group of mercenaries led by a cocky runner named Ryan Wesson to take her there. Danger and deceit wait on every corner, even as Nat and Wes find themselves inexorably drawn to each other. But can love survive the lies? Fiery hearts collide in this fantastic tale of the evil men do and the awesome power within us all.

FROZEN on GoodReads

video

Sometimes, live-action trailers are pretty cool. Sometimes, trailers with voice over are pretty cool. (For example, UNBREAKABLE) However, this is not one of those instances.

What the voice says, on the other hand, is pretty interesting. It gets me intrigued about why she wants to escape. (Call me weird, but I absolutely LOVE the cold.) Also, the clips we do get are pretty compelling. I mean, it's pretty typical with the girl looking out the window all longingly, and the flash we get of that birthmark-looking thing on her chest, but if you can look beyond that it does keep you pretty interested.

The point it takes a sour note, however, is after we get a glimpse of the guy. Is that supposed to be the cocky love interest, Ryan Wesson? Is it just me, or does it look like he's either A. planning her demise in his head, or B. planning to stalk her (like so many "love interests" in Young Adult novels do)? And I'm sorry, in those clothes, you would be FREEZING to death! Las Vegas is frigid now (which, believe me, is an epic twist), so why the cheese are those two dressed as if it's mildly brisk outside?

Lastly, the way she holds up that thing and looks through to a sunny, beachy place beyond leads me to wonder what, exactly, that thing is. Beguiling, no? And that teeny, tiny chirp of a bird we hear is kind of cute.

Final rating: Two point five out of five stars.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Monday Music 2

It's beginning to feel like autumn and I couldn't be more happy! I went to Bath and Body Works today and bought some fall-scented candles. I have one lit now, and every time I breathe in I get a whiff of it and it makes me so happy!

Pause for a happy dance.

Anywhoo. To continue, here is your Monday Music! It's called Monsters by Imagine Dragons. It keeps the same upbeat melody of the band, but it delves deeper into who this person is they are singing about. (And it makes me think of the third book in my trilogy.)

So here you are:


Happy Monday!

Kate

Friday, September 20, 2013

Book Trailer Review: THE BURNING SKY by Sherry Thomas

It all began with a ruined elixir and an accidental bolt of lightning...

Iolanthe Seabourne is the greatest elemental mage of her generation--or so she's being told. The one prophesied for years to be the savior of The Realm. It is her duty and destiny to face and defeat the Bane, the greatest mage tyrant the world has ever known. A suicide task for anyone, let alone a sixteen-year-old girl with no training, facing a prophecy that foretells a fiery clash to the death.

Prince Titus of Elberon has sworn to protect Iolanthe at all costs but he's also a powerful mage committed to obliterating the Bane to avenge the death of his family--even if he must sacrifice both Iolanthe and himself to achieve his goal.

But Titus makes the terrifying mistake of falling in love with the girl who should have been only a means to an end. Now, with the servants of the Bane closing in, he must choose between his mission and her life.

THE BURNING SKY on GoodReads

video

The beginning of the trailer is nice. It's not too dramatic, as it's a pretty ordinary line of "Just before the start of the summer half in the spring of 1883" against a castle-like college. However, the music more than makes up for the ordinary-feeling the first line gives off. 

I've only read a snippet of the book so far (as I don't have much time to read the full preview available here) but this is very fitting to the beginning. It's not all too dramatic, but it has just enough mystery to keep me interested, as does the trailer. 

Although the trailer is only pictures, they give me an idea of what the book is about. And then comes the lightning bolt at the :26 second marker, and we get the punch in the gut reviews have promised. (Read reviews of it here and here.) At marker :48, I'm not quite sure if that boy is supposed to be Iolanthe or Titus, so it kind of takes me away from the story being told. 

Lastly, the four blurbs are be authors I respect, and the praise they give it makes it seem like it's worth looking into, despite the typical "special one must save the day" trope of the book. It seems unique enough, in an alternate-history sort of world, so I think it's worth at least looking into. 

Final rating: Four out of Five stars

Monday, September 16, 2013

Monday Music 1

Hi, everyone! I hope your Monday's been splendid. I'm having trouble focusing on homework, but what else is new?

Anyway, here is your Monday Music! This one is called Glacial Supremacy by the Pfeifer Broz.


It's a pretty epic song, fitting for battles or death scenes, and it ends on a swirly note. Hope you enjoy!

Kate

Friday, September 13, 2013

Book Trailer Review: UNBREAKABLE by Kami Garcia

When Kennedy Waters finds her mother dead, her world begins to unravel. She doesn't know that paranormal forces in a much darker world are the ones pulling the strings. Not until identical twins Jared and Lukas Lockhart break into Kennedy's room and destroy a dangerous spirit sent to kill her. The brothers reveal that her mother was part of an ancient secret society responsible for protecting the world from a vengeful demon--a society whose five members were all murdered on the same night. 

Now Kennedy has to take her mother's place in the Legion if she wants to uncover the truth and stay alive. Along with new Legion members Priest and Alara, the teens race to find the only weapon that might be able to destroy the demon--battling the deadly spirits he controls every step of the way. 

UNBREAKABLE on Goodreads


There are times when live-action trailers really need help. However, this is not one of those times. The first line "I never believed in ghosts until one tried to kill me" immediately piques our interest (even if it is a little cliche). And the voice-over continues to give us hints of the story without making it too explicitly clear what the book is all about.

The actors are also pretty good. The girl isn't supernaturally (see what I did there?) gorgeous, and her voice is very fitting, with just the right amount of inflection to keep my interest. The bits and pieces of plot (the holy water, the crossbow, the ancient text and symbols, the two boys) give me just enough hints where I'm left with a sense of the world but leaving me wondering what more is to come.

The ghosts and kiss at the end leave me wondering who they encounter (and which twin she's kissing!). The music finale is perfect, with the lyrics ending on a perfect note: "Still you haunt me." How much more fitting can a book get?

Overall, this is a great trailer. I give it five stars!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Belated Song

Because I posted yesterday, I decided I'd postpone the song until today. So here ya are:

Color the Sky by Two Steps From Hell


It's dreamy and beautiful. Hope you enjoy!

Happy Tuesday!

Kate

Monday, September 9, 2013

The End Has Come

BUT IT'S GORGEOUS! Seriously, look at this beautiful cover.

I'm with Jessica on this one: My favorite is definitely the hardcover of Born Wicked, but the paperbacks are gorgeous and I own two of them. Now I just want to get this third one and my trilogy will be complete.

(mwahahaha!)

So now...feast your eyes...on this...



And now go enter to win some tasty ARCs on Jessica's website!

Happy Monday!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

In the Beginning...

...there was me.

I'll be the first to say I'm not a blogger. I'm not very good at it, and I feel like there are already a lot more blogs out there with writers who actually have things to say about the craft. But me? Nah, I'll do something else.

I'm a firm believer that music helps when writing, and there are dozens of different scenarios that call for different music. So every Monday, I'll post a different song that I use when writing.

Every Friday, I'll have trailer reviews. Why? 'Cause I love book trailers. I feel like they really benefit a book, giving hints of what's between the covers. And, often, they have pretty awesome music that accompanies it.

Hope y'all are having a great Sunday.

Kate