Ramblings and Ruminations

Allison’s Well 1st Birthday: Blog Party – Q&A.

Several months ago I asked all of you to ask me a question – any question, and I gathered those questions accordingly.  Thus, we have this post.

 

Note – this one’s a whooper.

 

 

 

So – without further ado – unto the questions!

 

 

 

1) Have You Read Any L.M. Montgomery books.  If So, Which Is Your Favorite?

 

Yes!  I have read several books from the Anne of Green Gables series – but not all of them.  I know, I know.  *dodges vegetables and plugs ears against horrified wailing*  The rest of them ARE on my TBR list . . . just like they were last year.  *coughs*  I WILL finish the series.  And I want to finish it this year, because I do enjoy them.  Rest easy on that point.  They’re nice.

My favorite would be Anne of Windy Poplars, I think.  I really felt that the letter format suited Anne’s over-dramatic personality much better than having the book written in third person.  it was like putting a gem in a proper setting – having the melodramatic letters suited Anne and made more sense in a narrative to me, then third person.

I also remember there were some parts of that book that made me laugh out loud – and I always like a book that makes me do that.

 

2) Your Favorite Character Of All Time.  

 

 ARE YOU KIDDING ME??  What kind of question is that?

*pulls hair, bites lip*

A-HA.  Some really good biblical fiction books I love featured amazing portrayals of Jesus Christ – so He’s my favorite “character” of all time.

 

3) Your Favorite Brand Of Chocolate.

 

 Lindt.  Definitely.  Especially the truffles.  #faints

 

4) Tell Us About One Of Your Early Writings.

 

 

Oh dear – it’s about to get ugly.

Okay, the first story I ever wrote, I was ten years old.  It was about a young girl named Kate who was staying with her grandmother.  Her grandmother’s golden necklace was stolen.  Kate wandered into the woods and stumbled across some bootleggers on her grandmother’s property (yes, this was a contemporary story – and yes, these bootleggers were stupid).  She eavesdrops and she realizes they stole her grandma’s necklace.  she runs into their camp, grabs the necklace and runs.  They chase her back to the house.  The police have arrived to question the grandmother about the robbery and Kate runs between them.  the bootleggers, who are apparently suffering from extreme target-fixation run right into the police.  Kate is pronounced a little heroine – the end.

As a note, i was just as technically challenged then as I am now.  I thought I had to type the whole thing on a single page, I didn’t realize that if I kept tying, I would go to another page.  *face palms*

 

5) What’s The Most Dreadful Thing You’ve Ever Written?

 

 I think I just answered that question.

 

6) Have You Read Any Jane Austen?  Do You Enjoy Her Books?  Which Is Your Favorite?

 

I read Pride and Prejudice.  I didn’t like it.  in fact, I intensely disliked it.

 

 

7) How Many Siblings Do You Have?

 

I have three amazing siblings!  An older brother, an older sister, and a twin who is (technically) older than me.  And no, we’re not identical.

 

8) What Is Your Favorite Type Of Food (i.e. Italian, Chinese, Mexican, etc . . . )?

 

 Mexican!  Definitely.  Oh great . . . now my mouth is watering for guacamole and tacos.  Thanks a ton!  *folds arms*

 

9) Would You Rather Cook Or Bake?

 

Bake!  Confession, I don’t really cook – but I’m a proficient baker and I really enjoy it.  (who needs to cook when you can just eat doughnuts?)

I enjoy it so much, that it worked it’s way subconsciously into my book, The Reluctant Godfather.

 

10) Would You Rather Go Skydiving, Jump Off A 50 ft Cliff Into The Ocean, Or Walk Across A Tightrope At The Circus?

 

Um – should I be worried about any kind of ulterior motive behind this question?  *blinks*

I would go skydiving. That already looked appealing to me before this loaded question was put to me.  I think it looks extremely elating and adrenaline-packed.  I’ve always enjoyed the sensation of falling.  Of course, I don’t have the guts to DO IT – yet.  And I have a family that loves me sooo . . . maybe some distant day when I’m tired of living.

 

11) Do You Have A Favorite Store?  What Is It?

 

Ummmm. . . .  Used bookstores?  Or perhaps Goodwill?  (not even embarrassed, I unabashedly proclaim my thrifty bargain-hunting).  Barnes and Noble is wonderful simply for atmosphere, but I never really buy anything there.  So, I guess I would have to say those wonderful, little used and dusty bookshops that I stumble across during vacations!

 

12) Would You Rather Live In The Amazon Jungle Or The Wilds of Africa?

 

Hmm – somebody keeps wanting to see me in life-threatening situations….

 

AFRICA.  You are NOT getting my in the jungle, no way.  Why?  I’m claustrophobic.  You are so . . . . hemmed in, in the jungle.  You can’t see the sky, you’re pressed from all sides.  *shudders*  It’s creepy.  Plus, I’ve read a lot about jungle diseases, pestilence, death-carrying bugs (let’s not even get into the snakes) – soooo, nope.  And if I’m going to be attacked by a wild animal, I would like to SEE IT COMING TOWARDS ME (at least then I have time to scream) not have it jump on me out of the shadows.  So – yes, definitely the African savanna for me.

Plus, I’ve always been more interested in Africa in general, and I think the idea of a safari sounds rather interesting.  But if I went to Africa, it’s more likely I would be studying music – I absolutely love African music.

 

13) Do You prefer Fictional Character To Be Lively And Numerous, or Serious and Thoughtful?

 

 

As long as it’s an exceptionally well-written character, why wouldn’t I love them?  🙂  #givemeallthecharacters

 

14) North and South or Pride and Prejudice?

 

 

 I read Pride and Prejudice and watched the 1995 version and I flipped through North and South very quickly to see Richard Armitage, but the story didn’t interest me (people whining about social injustice never interests me) and I was snorting and sniggering through most of what I saw, even though Armitage is a brilliant actor.

 

15) A Lake Or The Ocean?

 

IS THIS EVEN A QUESTION???  OCEAN, OCEAN, OCEAN.

 

 

16) Your Favorite Meal (or dessert) To Prepare?

 

Emmm . . . .   Those treats that are super-easy to make and yet taste smashing are always fun – it’s like “Look Ma, No Hands” in baking form.  So that definition includes some delicious molasses cookies, I make and some wonderful yeasty bacon cheddar fluffins.

 

17) What Is Your #1 Tip For Other Writers?

 

Don’t cut out your alpha readers.  I think some indie authors don’t have an alpha reader to look over the first draft.  Instead, they give the first draft to beta-readers (who should really be the second group that sees it) and ask for little more than affirmation that it’s good.

You should give your first draft to an alpha-reader that is really savvy with pacing, plotting and theme and actually expect and want your book to change.  And then the second draft should go to your beta-readers and you should expect it to change again.

And my other top piece of advice would be not to take criticism personally, and not to ignore it.  There’s a difference between critiquing and being nasty – but indie authors are over-sensitive and have lumped critiquing into hating.  It’S NOT HATING, anything but.  Take notes!  It could be helpful.  And some of it could just be their personal opinion – it’s good to learn to separate helpful hints and personal opinions and not get offended by either of them.  Don’t just automatically think the person’s stupid and “didn’t get it.”

 

18) Did You Ever Have An Imaginary Friend?

 

 

Nope.

 

19) Do You Like Crafts?

 

Yes!  I used to craft, mostly making interesting little creatures and fairies (ever heard of the Klutz books?) out of wild collections of crafting materials.  Some of them were pretty interesting and I might have been able to do something Etsy related with them – but alas, I had to give up my crafting as I got busier.  Writing, singing, and art are the three major things that have taken precedence in my life and something had to go.

 

This is slightly pathetic looking, but since we’re all friends here – this is one of the stuffed animals i made years ago.  He’s supposed to be a cat, and his name is Mortimer.

I also love to quilt and I still try to do that when I have the time though it’s probably been seven or more months since I’ve touched the sewing machine.  *wails*  Here’s a couple of pictures of some quilt tops that are completed expect for the borders.  And yeah, I didn’t have time to iron them before i took the picture and they’ve been folded and put away for some time.  🙁

I love this fabric so much –

20) What Is The Worst Thing You’ve Ever Eaten?

 

Jujube grape-flavored bites.  I have never, ever, had anything like that before – I threw what was left of it in the yard, and I swear the grass died.  It was horrendous.

 

 

I tried jujube for the first time on a Try The World Vlog, which will HOPEFULLY be up soon, barring any more unforeseen technical problems.  In that video, you’ll get to see my humorous reaction to jujube.

 

21) If You Had A Dog, What Would You Name Him/Her?

 

I would have a male dog and call him Guff!  As in “He Don’t Take No Guff From Nobody!”  I think that would be cool – especially for something like a doberman.  And it would let people know not to mess with him – or me.

 

22) Who Is Your Favorite Author?

 

*tire screeching sound effect*

OKAY, I REBEL – I REFUSE TO ANSWER THIS QUESTION IN IT’S ORIGINAL FORM.

I will give you my top seven – at least the seven that instantly occurred to me.  C.S. Lewis, Rosemary Sutcliff, Constance Savery, M.I McAllister, Jan Karon, Louisa May Alcott, and Jeri Massi.

That will have to do.  and I just want to take this opportunity to tell all the readers in the world, you don’t have to answer these kinds of questions!  You don’t need that kind of pressure in your life!

 

23) If You Could Travel To Any Country In The World, Where Would You Go And Why?

 

Croatia!  Specifically Dubrovnik. Why?  I’ve always wanted to see the Mediterranean – but I like how Croatia seems like a more out-of-the-way spot to see it, unless known, less chosen.  And there’s something fun about confusing people – I could see you blink when I said Croatia.  It has myyyystEEERY.

And it looks like such a gorgeous place, like some kind of faraway kingdom full of ancient stories and hidden things.

Apparently, i’m not the only one who thinks it looks otherworldly, since I believe some of the Last Jedi was filmed in Croatia.

 

24) What Was Your Favorite Age That You’ve Ever Been And Why?

 

Um, I guess sixteen or seventeen were okay, because you were old enough to participate in more things, but not so old that you had to really worry about college, career, whatever – you’re more trucking along in high school.

But honestly, every age is my favorite age.  You couldn’t pay me to be a teenager again, because then I would have to unlearn everything that I’ve learned in the last seven or eight years. Yeah, becoming an adult was a long enough journey and I have no interest in walking it again.  When you turn 21, you’re probably still panicking and have Peter Pan instincts to remain a child – but I haven’t felt that way in a while.  Every age, I learn more – and I am focused on moving forward, not looking back.

 

25) What Was The Best Day Of Your Life (so far)?

 

I have mentioned before on my blog how I went through a difficult time iin my early twenties.  I was really struggling with God, but through that time, he was planting seeds in me and one day, all my fighting came undone.  He broke the chains that I had put on myself and I surrendered to him.  That is a very special day, and I have it written in my Bible.

Even for those that have grown up as a Christian, there comes a time when the will must truly break if we are going to burst out of spiritual milk and start craving spiritual meat.  I thank God that He pulled me up higher, and took me out of “the noisy pit” of my own ideas.

What better day could there be, then the God of Heaven saving a worthless sinner from herself?  There isn’t one.

 

26) If You Were Going To Be Marooned On An Island for a year, And Could Only Have 3 books (other than the Bible) What Would They Be?

 

 

Uh . . . guys?

 

First I would have the seven Chronicles of Narnia in one volume and count that as one book.  Na-na-na-na-NA-NA!

Then I would probably have little Women, I’ve read that a dozen times and never tire of it.

Then probably one of the Mistmantle Chronicles by M.I McAllister or a book by Jan Karon, because those are my comfort books, and I would need a lot of comfort if I was marooned on an island without other people.  A lonely Allison is not a pretty thing.

 

27) Are You More Of An Extrovert Or An introvert?  Mixture Of Both?

 

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HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAASAAAHAA!!!!

*manages to stop laughing*

Okay – there are new people who genuinely don’t know the answer to this question so I’ll tell you.  I’m probably at least 80 percent extrovert.

 

28) Do You Have A Favorite Disney Movie?

 

Beauty and the Beast – the REAL one (the animated one).

I . . . can’t describe what that movie does for me.  Have you ever had something that was so beautiful, it hurt?  Something that awakens a secret chord, plays a melody that seems familiar, but you’ve never been able to sing it?  That makes you long for something you can’t even articulate?

Beauty and the Beast does it to me – it hurts almost to even talk about it, I can’t even say how and what that story stirs inside of me – but it is beautiful, and the redemption in its story never fails to touch me to the core.  Beauty and the Beast, awakens the song of eternity and the true love of someone good who loves someone ugly and evil –

it’s a story that reminds of God and His creation.  The Beast’s animator even used the scripture “If any man is in Christ, he is a new creation.  Old things have passed away and all can become new”  as inspiration for the spine-tingling transformation scene.  I find it very interesting that a Christian (Glen Keane) was the man who developed a character trapped in a beastly form and seeking salvation.  Only a Christian knows what that truly means, and can grasp at the joy of transformation and true redemption.

 

29) Do You Have Any Pets?  If so, how many, what kind, etc?

 

Unfortunately, we don’t have any pets.  *sniffs*

I think that might be what started my stuffed animal collecting fetish – I suppressed desire for a pet.  Hey, at least it sounds like a good excuse, right?

But, really – I’m too busy to devote the time and attention to a pet that they would require, at this point.  Maybe some day, I would love a dog named Guff!

 

30) What Is Your Current Desktop Wallpaper?

 

 

 

THIS.

And for anyone that doesn’t know – this is Cloud City orbiting the planet Bespin from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.

 

31) Do You listen To Music While Writing?  And If So, What’s Your Favorite Writing Music?

 

When I was very young, i used to listen to pop music while I wrote.  (I know, I have no idea how I did that)  Then for years, I didn’t listen to music at all.  It was only in the last year or so that I was really struggling with writers block that I started listening to music while I wrote as an experiment.  I actually do like it sometimes!

And here are some writing music playlists.  Keep in mind these are not conclusive (I listen to a LOT of different soundtracks and music) but this will give you a broad sampling from some of my favorite soundtracks.  *sits back eagerly to see what you think of them*

Pssst – as a note, I had a wee bit of trouble inserting my playlists. Make sure you click the area in red (see picture)

To access the entire playlist and see their titles (Western playlist, War playlist, etc).  You probably already knew this, but I’m dreadfully slow in these matters and didn’t see it.  *head desks*  So I thought I’d mention it, just in case.  *creeps away, blushing*  Happy listening!

 

 

And that just about wraps everything up!

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this post!  I would love to do this kind of thing again.

 

I have new friends and followers since I last asked for questions – so if you would like to see another Q&A or have some burning questions you need answered  – let me know!

 

 

THANKS SO MUCH FOR READING!   Love you!

 

 

 

ONE LAST THING.  Don’t forget to click on the link below –

To enter the “super-big-gulp” giveaway!   (translation: Big and terrific)

It ends tonight at midnight so HURRY SCURRY!

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