Monday, July 30, 2012

Glad to be home, and blog awards/memes!

I just got home yesterday. The time away was good and I was able to read 7 or 8 books while away. Well, technically, I finished the last one this morning.

Since I'm a little draggy this morning, I'm extra pleased that two people tagged me so I have an excuse to not have to think a lot today ;)

TL Bodine tagged me for the 'Be Inspired' Meme and Kathy McKendry tagged me for two blog awards.

For the 'Be Inspired' Meme:

Q: What is the name of your book?

A: "Brake Fluid, Blood & Body Bags"

Q: Where did the idea of your book come from?

A: Honestly I don't have a good answer for that. At the time I had a fully finished MS out with a published author who was going to edit it for me (but for personal reasons had to pull out) and I was experimenting for the first time with 1st person POV (for a MG Magical Realism story), when one night, I just opened up a blank document and spilled out over a thousand words of new material. The character just came out of nowhere and blindsided me, making it impossible to continue writing the MG story.

Q: In what genre would you classify your book?

A: YA Contemporary, though there is a sort of murder mystery-ish quality to it as well.

Q: If you had to pick actors to play your characters in a movie rendition, who would you choose?

A: uhm... I suck at these, especially in this case 'cause I'd need a 14 year-old-kid who is so androgynous you can't tell if they're male or female. They'd also have to be tall and super skinny. For Triss... hmmm, again, I'm bad at this. Short (like 5'-5'2" tall) with a clearly-Jewish nose. Really, I'm not picky about what any of the characters look like.

Q: Give us a one sentence synopsis of your book.

A: A nameless, gender-ambiguous teen rides shotgun with Triss, the driver of the car and the situation, on a mission to dump the corpse of a classmate whose death they might have, sortof, maybe had something to do with.

Q: How long did it take you to write your book?

A: Well, I wrote about 4,000 words in September/October, then about 20,000 words for NaNo 2011. After that, I put it on hold to start a YA Northern Fairytale. I started back at 'Brake Fluid' a few months ago and finished the first draft in June.

Q: What other books within your genre would you compare it to, or readers of which books would enjoy it?

A: Courtney Summer's "Cracked Up To Be", Justine 
Larbalestier's "Liar" (with no werewolves), Nova Ren Suma's "Imaginary Girls", and to a much lesser degree, Anonymous's "Go Ask Alice"

Q: Which authors inspired you to write this book?

A: Probably "Go Ask Alice" would be first on this list. I read it when I was 9 or 10 and since I was so young, most of it went completely over my head, but what stuck with me was how fascinating it was not to know the main character's name... and I remember, even then, thinking how cool it would be not to know the gender either.

In the past, I've experimented writing short stories with gender-ambiguous characters, and most of what I write is from male perspectives. I didn't plan 'Brake Fluid' to be this way, it just sort of happened.

The other books mentioned in the previous question were all ones I read before starting this one and all had certain aspects that, like the nameless character in "Go Ask Alice, leaped out at me and got my brain working on new possibilities. None were planned for, but in retrospect, I can recognize the influences.

Also, I know I've been heavily influenced by Banana Yoshimoto's writing. In all her books, the story starts after a *big* event, like death, and focuses on the fallout. If you've read anything of mine, and go check out any of her books, I'm sure you'll see some similarities in character development/growth/theme.

Q: Tell us anything that might pique our interest in your book.

A: Drunken teenage parties, twisted/manipulative bets, sex, love, desire, revenge, death, and a genderless main character. What else is there? Oh yeah, someone gets stabbed in the gut with a butter-knife. It was a party. Things happen.

Q: Now tag five others:

I'll get to this later :)

For the 'Versatile Blogger' Award:

1. Thank and link back to person who gave you award


2. List the rules


3. List seven random facts about yourself

a) My favourite colour is green

b) If I could only pick one meal to eat forever, it'd probably be salmon sashimi, gomae (a cold spinach salad) and unagi (eel) with rice. And I'd wash it down with green tea and hot sake.

c) I tend to stand far away from people when I talk because I'm tall* and all my friends growing up were really short. It's easier to make eye contact/converse standing farther apart when there's a big height difference. Also, apparently I'm intimidating, so it helps when I'm not standing right beside/towering over people. It's something I'm overly/unnecessarily conscious about.

d) There are very few material things I'm attached to. One is my Sims snowboard, the last edition they sold in Canada. It's blue with butterflies. It's a replacement for my 1995 collectors edition Shannon Dunn designed snowboard which was stolen the first year I lived in Victoria. I'm still ticked off about that and look for it every time I'm on a mountain, even though I know it's completely ridiculous since it was such an old board, the thieves probably just trashed it.

e) I don't normally like reading novels about werewolves/vampires/etc, but I'll happily read about them in comic books. I have no idea why. The latest one I'm reading is 'Blood Alone' by Masayuki Takano. I like that it's so *quiet*.

f) I follow a lot of online comics. Like, easily over a thousand. Yeah, that's a vice I should probably scale back on...

g) If I could choose any pet in the world (taking into account realistic parameters of food/upkeep/etc), hands down, it would be an ocelot. When I was a kid, I was able to pet one at a zoo in Belize and have been in love with them ever since.

4. Nominate 10 people for the award and notify them
I'll get to this later :)

For the 'Fabulous Blog Ribbon' Award:

1. Post the rules


2. Name five of your most fabulous moments in real life or in the blogosphere

a) The first time someone commented on my blog, and every time thereafter :)

b) My first dive (scuba)

c) My second snowboarding experience

d) The first request from an agent

e) Every time I come *home* after being away

3. Name five things you love

a) Rain

b) Flavourful, delicious food

c) My family, friends, and pets

d) Reading

e) Snowboarding

4. Name five things you hate

a) Racism and any other form of thinking it's okay to believe some people are worth more than others

b) Bad drivers

c) Liver, cabbage, cucumber & overcooked fish

d) Irresponsibility (in life, actions, words, etc)

e) Getting a fever

5. Pass it to five other bloggers

Okay, I kept saying I'll get to this... but I also know how many people get tagged for the same awards, SOOOOOOO, I'm going to do what I usually do:

Any readers who want to participate/play/join/accept any of these, please post a link in the comments.

I promise to read/respond to every last one of them :)

Thanks again TL & Kathy! I had a blast answering these :)

* I'm only 5'9", but when all your friends are Asian and around the 5' mark, it makes a big difference.


  1. ALL my friends growing up were taller than me. I'm under 5 foot and my best friend is around 5'9" too. Great stuff! And I woul love to go scuba diving someday.

    1. Awesome! if the two of us talked in real life, neither one of us would feel uncomfortable :D

      I loooooooove scuba diving :D several items on my *bucket-list* involve specific diving sites/activities.

  2. Ideas come to us, we don’t have to be able to track them lol
    I dislike that question what actors? Why? That’s a blog in itself
    You’d have to stand on the other side of the room to talk to me, I’m that short
    Your fabulous moments are..fabulous don’t think I could do that

    1. Some people love imagining the actors because it solidifies in their head what their character looks like, and often, what their body language is like and the intonation in their voices.

      It makes them three dimensional.

      So, I think it's a wonderful tool for some people, it just doesn't work for me :)

      How short are you??? One of my sister-in-laws is 4'8", so I stand about 3' away when we talk.


Type me out a line of Shakespeare or a line of nonsense. Dumb-blonde-jokes & Irish jokes will make me laugh myself silly :)