10.10.2014

5 Fandom Friday (2)


5 Fandom Friday is a geek-blogger community building project started and hosted by The Nerdy Girlie and SuperSpaceChick. Every Friday, post a top 5 list based on a predetermined topic that can be found on this master post - you can also find more info on the project there. Participate as frequently or infrequently as you like, and if a topic doesn't especially appeal to you, feel free to put your own twist on it.

This week's theme: Geeky Clothing Items I Need In My Closet Immediately (I'm expanding this to include accessories)

1) Let's be real, I pretty much want Blackmilk everything. I'm addicted and it looks so good. But in particular, I am eyeing these Kawaii Mecha Leggings (esp. after the Sister got a pair of the regular mecha leggings) and maybe something from their Disney collection. Cheshire cats everywhere.


2) Goldbubble Clothing is still a small company, so their order fulfillment takes a while, but I do love the SHERLOCK-inspired BORED Leggings I got from them. Since The Last Unicorn is arguably my favorite book in the world, you can imagine how tempting Goldbubble's licensed The Last Unicorn line is, particularly their Unicorn Tapestry Skirt and Battle Dress.


3) Kate Spade always makes adorable things, but I wanted practically everything in last fall's library-themed collection - especially this book scarf!


4) Speaking of book scarves, I love these literary scarves by storiarts on etsy. They take the actual text of a book and put it on a scarf! Love!



5) And if I had my ears pierced, I'd snap up these "Quote Couture Earrings" from Modcloth in an instant!


What's on your geek-chic wishlist?

10.08.2014

What's Up Wednesday (48)


What's Up Wednesday is a weekly meme geared toward readers and writers, so we can check in with each other. To join, just check out Jaime Morrow or Erin Funk's blogs for the link widget and sign up!


WHAT I'M READING
Same books. Unfortunately, my loan time with them is up, so I'm not sure I'll be able to finish before I have to return them. Will have to come back around to them later.

Taking the Kindle on vacation with me and it's loaded up with a bunch of good stuff like Sarah Rees Brennan's UNTOLD (which I'm finally getting to), Brandon Sanderson's MISTBORN, and an e-ARC of Marcus Sedgwick's newest THE GHOSTS OF HEAVEN.


Scratch that, I was just approved on Netgalley for BLUE LILY, LILY BLUE, the next book in The Raven Cycle. And if you know me, you'll know this is like my favorite on-going series right now. Perfect timing because the book is released while I'm away, but this way, even though I won't be around to receive my pre-ordered hardcover, I can still read it! Yaaaaay!


WHAT I'M WRITING
I hope to get back to the verse novel at least a little bit while I'm on vacation, but currently I've still been writing bits and pieces of my old Luck story. It's been fun being back in that world.


WHAT WORKS FOR ME
Stealing bits of time to jot things down. I've been too busy to really set aside chunks of time for writing, but I've been managing a little here and there. While waiting for files to update, I'll write a bit, or this weekend while I was waiting to get a manicure, I typed a few paragraphs into my phone.


WHAT ELSE I'VE BEEN UP TO

Well, the Sister and I got our nails done over the weekend. I got feather-tips and she got baroque swirls. The lady who does our nails is great.


I also got my hair done and finally said goodbye to my red/pink/purple/blond hair. It's so many colors because it's been fading out for months. I've had fun-colored hair for like 2-3 years now, starting with just the streaks to the entire bottom section of my hair. Well, thanks to an amazing hairstylist at a new salon I tried out, I am more or less back to my natural color. It's crazy; doesn't even look like I've dyed it!
Tada! Thanks to Sally at Brenton Lee Salon.

Lastly, I've been so busy partly because I've been preparing to go on vacation! In fact, I'm probably on a plane as you read this (or will be soon). I'm going to Italy - my first time!

So, on that note, this will be my last What's Up Wednesday post until probably the end of October. HOWEVER, I do have a few 5 FANDOM FRIDAY posts scheduled. What's 5 FANDOM FRIDAY? Check out my first post from last week to find out! I wrote about the fandoms that shaped the fangirl I am today! Be sure to come back for more.

Ciao, lovelies!

10.03.2014

5 Fandom Friday (1)


5 Fandom Friday is a geek-blogger community building project started and hosted by The Nerdy Girlie and SuperSpaceChick. Every Friday, post a top 5 list based on a predetermined topic that can be found on this master post - you can also find more info on the project there. Participate as frequently or infrequently as you like, and if a topic doesn't especially appeal to you, feel free to put your own twist on it.


Today's topic is: Gateway Fandoms That Made Me Who I Am Today

1. The Black Stallion books: these books were the thing that my friends and I shared and talked about. We even played games involving characters from the books or set in the world, and it got us interested in the world of horse-racing.


They were one of the earliest things I was obsessed with, that I couldn't get enough of. Good thing this was a little before the internet-as-we-know-it and the fanfiction and fandom that engendered!

2. Boy Bands - specifically the Backstreet Boys: I don't think anything quite prepares you for fandom like being part of a boy-band phenomenon. I was just the right age during the 2nd Golden Age of Boy Bands during the late 90s to the early millennium to be swept up in all of that. It was probably my first true taste of fandom as we know it today - the obsession, the community, the rivalry (were you in the BSB camp or the NSYNC camp?), the overwhelming feels, the fanfiction!

Classic! Also, I'm not posting actual pics of me from this era because it's kind of embarrassing.
I also gained these valuable fangirl skills:

  • dealing with crowds / loud masses of people
  • defending your fandom from critics and skeptics
  • ability to wake up early / be sleep deprived for subject of affection
  • navigating forums, online communities, fanfiction archives
  • collecting merch
  • patience for waiting in long lines
  • rote memorization (play me a BSB song, and I can 99.9% guarantee I still know most-if-not-all of the words)

3. Anime: my co-blogger Alz got me into anime in high school, and that took my geekery to new levels. I had grown up with a fair share of Miyazaki and Sailor Moon, of course, but this was a whole new level. I binge-watched so many series, the big ones being: Escaflowne, Fushigi Yuugi, Rurouni Kenshin.
Okay, seriously, this was like my first real OTP. Like I will fight people over their OTP-ness.
I loved the stories, the different art styles, the music. And then there was the other fan-culture: merchandise, conventions, fanfiction, cosplay. I didn't get into all of that, but Anime Expo was the first convention I ever went to (not that I go to lots of conventions now).

4. Star Wars: I'd seen bits and pieces of the original trilogy on TV as a kid, but it wasn't until high school when my friends and I started obsessing over Ewan McGregor that we really got into Star Wars. For all its faults, The Phantom Menace did manage to hook us with its flashy CGI, gorgeous Ewan McGregor, and crash-course intro to that galaxy far, far away. From there, we watched the original trilogy (which, obviously, was amazeballs) and started reading fanfic and buying lightsabers, and it's been a thing from then on. When Episode III was released when I was in college, I dragged my roommate to the midnight screening post-finals. I had literally written a 2-hour Classics final before meeting up with my roomie and walking to the theater downtown.

Friends and I even made a Star Wars video (not quite as epic as the infamous original youtube Star Wars kid), and my friend had lightsabers and a Vader mask as part of her wedding photobooth.


By the by, I am way excited for the new animated show Star Wars: Rebels!

5. Harry Potter: Last but not least, this list wouldn't be complete without HARRY POTTER. This book series was and in many ways still is such a big part of my life. I love the compelling characters, the magic, the adventure, and world of these books. It was the geeky thing that even non-geeks were in to, and its massive success was the precursor to the YA and kidlit boom we've had recently. It changed the pop culture landscape, and I will forever be grateful for the wonder it instills and the doors it opened.


Books are a great love of mine and one of my first great loves, so it's so awesome that a book series about a bunch of kids and magic school has spawned movies, theme parks, pop culture memes, and clothing lines. I love it all. I was lucky enough to go to the WB Harry Potter Studio Tour in the UK this year, and I was so excited that all my first pictures inside were blurry because my hands were shaking so much.


Harry Potter always! FYI, I'm a Ravenclaw and the Sister is Slytherin through and through. What House are you in?


Bonus: Disney. I grew up with Disney movies and soundtracks, and I went to Disneyland every year for most of my childhood. I know that place like the back of my hand, and I used to memorize entire soundtracks before the animated movies were released. So this needs a mention. (And uh, Disney owns like two huge geek properties now, so there's that too.)


What were your gateway/earliest fandoms?

10.01.2014

What's Up Wednesday (47)


What's Up Wednesday is a weekly meme geared toward readers and writers, so we can check in with each other. To join, just check out Jaime Morrow or Erin Funk's blogs for the link widget and sign up!


WHAT I'M READING

I finished Sarah Fine's OF METAL AND WISHES, and guys, I definitely recommend it, especially if you like Phantom of the Opera. It's dark, romantic, bittersweet, and I loved the non-European setting and slight steampunk elements.

I'm back to reading THORN JACK now and hope to finish before I go on vacation...


WHAT I'M WRITING

I'm still tinkering with an older WIP, the Asian fantasy since I recently had a few thoughts on it. Last night, I practically dreamt a scene. So there's that.


WHAT WORKS FOR ME

Apparently, stress works for me (what?)! Work has not really slowed down with the busy-ness, and it's kind of worse because I'm trying to get things done in advance in preparation for my vacation. I guess that's the only sucky thing about being the main person who does certain things - no one can really cover for you!

But anyway, since high school, whenever I'm stressed, I procrastinate. And usually when I procrastinate, it means I write - like a lot (or at least a lot more than usual). I'm still trying to figure out how to harness this kind of productivity and creativity. I'll tell you when I've figured it out.

Guess I focus better (on wrong things) under pressure?


WHAT ELSE I'VE BEEN UP TO

Still super busy. I think my body is starting to protest... but exciting thing is I have vacation soon! Speaking of which, so Italy... what are your must-see/must-do items for Italy? ;)

Book haul! I am most in love with the edition of Hamlet that I bought. It has cut-paper illustrations throughout and is absolutely gorgeous!


I've been trying to figure out my Fall TV schedule. As you may or may not know, I watch A LOT of TV but that's mostly because I'll binge-watch things during the summer or save things to watch later. So with all the TV shows coming back, I have to go through my yearly ritual of checking out new shows and deciding if I'm going to stick with them, while also weeding through my old shows. There's like multiple tiers - what I'll DVR, what I'll save for binge-watching, etc.

Old shows (coming back now or soon) I'm sticking with:

  • Sleepy Hollow
  • The Walking Dead
  • Arrow (binged this & caught up right at the end of last season)
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine
  • Supernatural
  • Person of Interest
  • Elementary (it's definitely not a BBC Sherlock rip-off & is great in different ways! Also, A+ for a gender-bent WOC Watson!)
  • Agents of SHIELD (already so much better than S1 but barely hanging on).

New shows I'll probably stick with:

  • Gotham (my favorite pilot from Comic Con; been seeing a lot of mixed reactions on this one, but I enjoy the look of it and am intrigued with how it's going to play with the Bat-universe)
  • The Flash (saw the pilot at Comic Con and was a little disappointed but mostly because they gave way too much away in the extended trailer they showed at the end of the Spring season, but watching this for crossovers with Arrow)
  • How to Get Away with Murder (the pilot certainly hooked me with its ensemble cast, compelling central female character, non-linear timeline, murder mystery(s), and DEAN THOMAS.)
  • Gracepoint (this is the US version of BBC's Broadchurch, also starring David Tennant. I haven't watched Broadchurch but the Sis did, and I'm certainly intrigued.)

New shows I'm liking but have yet to decide where to place them:
  • Selfie (thought the pilot was cute and has potential. The charm and chemistry of the leads was enough to carry it through. Also, it's about time John Cho was a romantic lead!)
  • Manhattan Love Story (good show to pair with Selfie. Cute and amusing.)

Will update as more shows come back and such. But these are the things on my plate at the moment.

In other news, I watched the Liam Neeson movie Walk Among Tombstones this weekend. It was fine - kind of like an extended episode of a dark-ish crime drama. I also saw The Mazerunner, which was a well-paced, fun action flick. I didn't read the book, so I can't make the comparison there, but the Sis did and she said she liked it better than the book. The movie fixed some things that bothered her about the book, so yeah. (And yes, I do believe sometimes movies can be better than the books - blasphemy, I know!)

So, so excited to see Gone Girl this week!!! It has actually been one of my most anticipated movies for this year - probably because the book was so twisty and bananas.

The Sister bought these awesome-o Blackmilk Mecha leggings! I want them! She's one step closer to becoming a Jaeger pilot.


I still don't really get the new social media site ello, but I am on it: ello.co/kangaru. Be my friend if you're on it too!

Starting this Friday, I'm hoping to at least semi-regularly participate in The Nerdy Girlie and Superspacechick's new blogging meme: 5 Fandom Friday. We blog to themes - some geeky, some not. Hope some of you will participate!


What's Up with you?

9.24.2014

What's Up Wednesday (46)


What's Up Wednesday is a weekly meme geared toward readers and writers, so we can check in with each other. To join, just check out Jaime Morrow or Erin Funk's blogs for the link widget and sign up!


WHAT I'M READING

I took a break from THORN JACK and EVERYTHING LEADS TO YOU since neither was completely grabbing me. I think I'm just not in the right mood.

I switched to the captivating OF METAL AND WISHES by Sarah Fine, whose first book SANCTUM I quite liked. But oh, I am really enjoying OMaW. It's inspired by The Phantom of the Opera and set in a meat factory, and I've fangirled over its gorgeous cover before.


WHAT I'M WRITING

I've been bad about my verse novel, but I have been tinkering with my older novels. This past week, I got reacquainted with some old characters and it's been wonderful.


WHAT WORKS FOR ME

Sneaking in bits of time here and there is what's been working best for me recently in terms of writing. I've been so busy and stressed from work and other Life things that it's been hard to find big chunks of time to write. So I try to get a few words down on my work-breaks or right before bed.


WHAT ELSE I'VE BEEN UP TO

First, thank you for your YA Book recs for Sarah! She found it very helpful. :D

Since my last WuW update, a few things of note have happened. Firstly, it's been super super hot here. Yesterday was the first day of Fall, and it only barely felt like it. We were in the mid-80s, but that's cool compared to the heat wave that hit us the week or two before. We were consistently hitting over 100F.

Hot weather means working on my selfie game and eating lots of shaved ice and ice cream.

During this heatwave, I went to Sarah J. Maas' signing for HEIR OF FIRE. It was on a Saturday, so I could actually make it out and it was kind of exciting because the last time I'd seen her in person was for her debut THRONE OF GLASS, and that was before I'd started chatting on Twitter with her. So it was super cool that Sarah recognized me, and she is as sweet and funny as she is online (and when I first met her). (Also, how does her hair always look so completely fabulous? It is a mystery and I am envious.)

Another cool thing from the signing was seeing Sarah's ToG "guestbook/yearbook" again. Basically, she has a copy of Throne of Glass that she has for readers to sign/leave messages for her in. I signed it at that first ToG signing, and I was surprised to find that it was the same book! Like I thought Sarah used a copy of whatever her latest book was for the yearbook. But no, it was that same copy of Throne of Glass, now filled with doodles and text in all its margins! I found my original message on the back cover and put a new note next to it. :)

 Aaaand of course, I got my book signed!

I've always wanted to be someone's Twitter guru. Mission accomplished!
In other news, some belated birthday updates. I didn't post a pic of this, but I got a Cat on a cake for the Sister (her name is Catherine) for her birthday. We also caught up with Alz, who gave me my belated birthday gift - a handmade Loki Kitty aka a LOKITTY.


The Sister and I also finally received our Comic Con swag shirts from Legendary! The Legendary booth was awesome because they gave us redemption codes for shirts, so we could choose from a set of designs and pick sizes. Finally, a free shirt that doesn't look like it's swallowing me whole! Obviously, the Sister and I picked Pacific Rim Jaeger Pilot shirts to go with our piloting badges. ;)

We didn't even match on purpose this day. Proof that we're drift compatible, I guess.
Lastly, the Sister entered an Instagram contest held by Legendary and fusion.net for the horror movie As Above So Below, set in the Paris Catacombs. You had to post a pic of one of your city's most beautiful sights and one of its most scary/creepy sights, and you could win a 3-day trip to Paris.

The Sister's entry: View of Downtown LA from Griffith Park Observatory & a torn down house in our neighborhood.

And...the Sister won a trip to Paris! She was one of 3 winners. So last week, she flew to Paris and just came back this weekend! Here are some of her pics.

The Catacombs - the main stop! Better lit than when the Sis & I went in February!





Meanwhile, I stayed home, had one really sick day (not fun, but am fine now!), and babysat this fur-baby.


What's Up with you?