Randomosity on Fridays: Halloween Edition

Happy Friday my darling cupcakes! I'm excited for Halloween even though my costume is still only at about 90 percent. It's ok though because I still have tomorrow and Saturday (sort of)! Alz had to come over and teach me her crafty wire skills. If all goes to plan, there WILL be pictures.

My sister's costume is mostly complete though. Best $8 on fabric she ever spent & it helps our grandma has skills.


1. My sister and I have eaten like 3 bags of mini Reese's peanut butter cups. Yeah, we don't buy candy for Trick or Treaters. We buy it for ourselves.

2. We have also never carved a pumpkin before. Seriously, never.

3. I can watch Supernatural, but I'm a total chicken when it comes to horror movies. I have to watch in the day time with people and something to hide behind.

4. Something else I'm kind of scared of is the fact that NANOWRIMO begins on Monday! What the heck?! How did this happen? I was supposed to be all organized and prepared this year!

5. A book I finished reading recently is PERFECT for Halloween. I am, of course, talking about The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff. It is a creepy, beautiful, achingly sweet book. I ADORE Mackie, and I love how he has such a great non-supernatural support group - an awesome sister, cool friends, and parents who are involved in his life and care about him.

I also can't mention Halloween books without mentioning my literary crush and hero, Ray Bradbury. No, I'm actually not talking about The Halloween Tree (another confession: haven't read it!). I actually mean The Dust Returned, which is a beautiful sort-of-collection of short stories about a normal boy whose family is a motley crew of supernaturals. Isn't the cover gorgeous?

Specifically, one of the early "chapters" is the short story "The Homecoming," originally published in 1946. The writing is lyrical, the story exuberant and bittersweet, and if you get the special illustrated edition of just "The Homecoming," the illustrations by Dave McKean are a perfect match.

I just love the design and typography of this book!

Happy weekend and happy Halloween! Don't eat too much candy, and watch out for little monsters. And for those of you not Halloween inclined, get ready for November!

P.S. Emy Shin (formerly Sandy Shin) is celebrating her recent move to her new blog with a giveaway! You can win an ARC of MATCHED by Ally Condie. Go check it out and say hi!


DOs and DON'Ts of NaNoWriMo

As promised, lovelies, here is the NaNoWriMo post. Most of you know what it is, but here's a friendly reminder in a nutshell. The month of November is National Novel Writing Month, "30 days of literary abandon" where nothing matters except WORD COUNT. That's right, quantity over quality. You hit 50,000 words and you win.

I'll be doing it this year, and if you are too, I'd love to be your buddy since we are clearly crazy people together. Just click my participant badge on the side there. I'm kangaru.

Anyway, here are my and Alz's tips for staying chic in the midst of NaNo madness.

DOs and DON'Ts of NaNoWriMo

DO bring a butt-kicking attitude. As they say, confidence can do wonders for your looks and books. Work it!

DON'T delete!!! Remember what we said about confidence? Yeah well, confident people don't worry about suckage, and I did mention this is about QUANTITY, right?

DO let yourself suck. Yes, we're giving you permission. We're even ENCOURAGING it if it means you up your word count. And yes, you will suck, but that's the beauty of being human. (Unless, of course, you're like the novel-writing equivalent of Mozart, in which case, don't talk to me.)

DON'T freak out too much about plot points. You can fix them later (just make a note somewhere for yourself). Unlike zits, they are not red and prominently displayed on your face.

DO have some kind of plan before you start though. Fortune may favor the bold, but it helps to know where you're going.

DON'T think sleep is more important than writing. I know, you need your beauty sleep, but hey, the whole sleep-deprived vampire look is IN.

DO keep your caffeine and candy/snacks stores well stocked. No on likes a grumpy writer, and hungry writers are grumpy writers.

DON'T procrastinate. You let one day slip by without writing, and it turns into two, then three. Before you know it, you are on a one way trip to FREAKOUT Land when the last week of November rolls around and all the people you've told ask you, "So how's that novel coming?" and you've only got 100 words written, and no, your name and the title don't count. Trust, you CANNOT write 10,000 words a day for 5 days and hope for it to have any semblance of being a novel. ROME WAS NOT BUILT IN A DAY.

DO kill characters when things get boring. Seriously. Do it. Alz does it every time she gets bored with a scene. Besides, it'll show those uncooperative people who really holds the power here. Mwahahaha!

Alternatively, you could also just blow something up. If anything, it will at least make you feel better.

DON'T forget to save and back-up your file. It's like always keeping some gloss and powder in your bag for touch-ups. Or you know, having a back-up printer the night before a paper is due because yours will inevitably jam while you're trying to print it.

DO congratulate yourself for whatever you manage to write. It's awesome. You're awesome. We're all awesome. Just don't try to sell it.

SO, you all ready for this?! Do you have DOs and DON'Ts for this month of madness? Please share!

Now, I'm off to be pre-occupied with Halloween! See you Friday!


Randomosity on Fridays: Getting to know me/you!

This is a not so usual Friday 5! I had some stuff in mind, but now that I'm sitting here typing this, it has all slipped my mind. Don't you hate it when that happens? I can't believe it's already getting to the end of October!

1. My sister was studying this weekend, so I stole The Lost Hero from her and read it in like a day. The set-up for the new series is quite intriguing! Also, PERCY!!! Yes, I already wish the next one was out, but mostly because I like the direction this is heading and I can't wait to see if what I suspect is indeed true.

2. Shopping this past weekend was successful! Not only did a find a nice dress for my costume, the dress is also totally okay for wearing when it's NOT Halloween! Don't think I outright said it yet, but I'm going to be a wind-up doll of the Victorian/steampunk variety.

3. My co-blogger (yeah, I have one... she's here somewhere...), Alz, is furiously working on her MFA thesis, which is soon due. This means I have recently been bereft of her company, but I wish her well. Cheer her on as she approaches the finish!

4. I'm going to start watching True Blood this weekend. My friend's costume has something to do with it and I would like to get the reference. Plus, said friend bought me Season 1 for my birthday. It's about time I started watching it.

5. Now, here's where things get a little different. The lovely Jen at Unedited did a Why You're a Stalker post yesterday. It's short and cute, and it's a cute way to let everyone get to know everyone else a little better.

So without further ado, here's my random set of stats.

Who are you?

Easy Answer: Krispy, 24, Writer/Procrastinator/Chocolate-eater

More detail

Unabashed nerd
Internet addict
Loves dogs
TV show marathoner
Sometime, wannabe poet
Karaoke mic hog
Muse at best in shower
California girl
But I don't like driving
Laughs a lot
Weakness for shoes and jewelry
Giant sweet tooth
Slow reader
Food lover

I think that's quite enough about me. I want to hear about YOU. Your turn to spill. Tell me about you! Also, anyone else going to read Lost Hero or has anyone already read it? What did you think?

By the by, I've got my Nano profile linked in the sidebar for those of you who are NaNoing this year. Let's be buddies! :)

Peace out for the weekend, friends!

P.S. If you haven't heard about this or checked it out yet, take a look at the It Gets Better Project. It's definitely worth your time. Let's raise awareness about the dangers of bullying and let our youth know it gets better.



Teaser Thursday

Talk of NaNoWriMo is popping up everywhere lately. This post was going to be about that very topic, but I'm switching it up with a Teaser THURSDAY. I'm also tired and my brain is too preoccupied for writing an actual NaNoWriMo post.

So despite my distraction, I've been working on that new short (it's not very horror-ish) and finally making good use of my moleskine notebook. It was within those sporadically used pages that I found a snippet of a poem or something that I scribbled last year. If I recall correctly, I think it has something to do with the in-universe folklore of my NaNo project from last year.

So for your viewing pleasure, some lines:

She sits upon her sliver of moon,
tossing comets that trail...
Golden dust
from her hands.

Hoping to catch celestial fish,
she casts these
Glittering lines and
in the dark
It rains stars.

Have you found any interesting snippets lately? What random side things do you do to world-build? Can you rec me some good poetry?

See you lovely peeps on Friday for Randomosity. Stay warm and dry (it's cold and rainy here)!


Randomosity on Fridays

Hello lovelies! I hope you had a nice week. Mine was okay but marred by my inability to predict the traffic on my daily commute. Anyway, LET'S IGNORE THAT and celebrate it being FRIDAY! Yay!

Here's a quick five.

1. In other news, I'm trying my hand at writing horror. Just a short story, but eh, we'll see how it goes. Must be Halloween getting to me. That and my frequently RAGE-inducing commute. Yeah. Horror.

2. I think I need to cut back on the caffeine intake. I love coffee, but I've been drinking a lot more of it than usual. It's losing its effect. In college, I used to cold turkey it a week or two before I knew I would need it - say midterm week. Speaking of college and coffee, I really miss the bianca mocha from Cafe Strada by campus. It is arguably my favorite coffee drink. SO GOOD.

3. My sister's home and has The Lost Hero with her. She's not done yet, so I need to control myself and not steal it from her.

4. My epic summer of concerts has finally come to an end (I think). September ended with Muse and Vampire Weekend. This month finished it all off with Maroon 5 and opening act, One Republic. SO. MUCH. MUSICAL EPICNESS.

5. I'm putting together my costume for Halloween. Last year, I was Alice in Wonderland (harhar). This year, I'm going steampunk because steampunk is awesome. Also, I love Victoriana and accessories, lots and lots of accessories.

Those are my 5. What are yours? What are you planning for Halloween? Have a splendid weekend!

P.S. As a reminder, the amazing Tahereh is giving away more money for books on her blog. You have until Oct. 19 to enter!

P.P.S. For those of you who follow college football, specifically PAC-10 football, this weekend is the formerly epic match-up between USC (frequent Pac-10 and National champs) and my darling California Golden Bears (frequent breakers of my non-existent heart - that's how much angst they've wreaked upon my college life). Now, neither team is as good as they were in past years and Cal hasn't upset USC since 2003 (the year BEFORE I started college), but it's still kind of exciting. Plus, the game is down here this year, which always makes me nostalgic for my freshman year when I made a trip back home to see the game with my friends. So, for old times' sake, GO BEARS!


Your MG Lost Heroes

Surprise, a post for me early in the week! What's the occasion? Well, today is the release day of Rick Riordan's The Lost Hero, the first book in his 2nd Camp Half-Blood series. You may have heard of the first series; it went by Percy Jackson and the Olympians. The second series is called The Heroes of Olympus.

I am SO EXCITED to read this book. I'm going to drop everything else I'm reading for this. No, seriously.

But my sister has called dibs. She sort of loves Percy Jackson, and who am I to come between a love like that? The only other book she was this excited for this year was Mockingjay.

Anyway, this got me thinking about the MG books I read when I was actually, you know, in the age-range of the target audience.

I'm putting in a disclaimer now that I did not read a lot of fiction before 5th grade. I was, however, very into Greek mythology. I read every Greek mythology book I could get my hands on at my local and school libraries until I ran out of books and had to move on to other mythologies. So I would have absolutely loved to have had the Percy Jackson books back then. Don't get me wrong. I do very much like the books now, but if I had read them as a 6th grader, I would've thought they were the best thing since sliced bread or peanut butter on bread sprinkled with sugar and toasted. (Try it! It's good!)

Back in my elementary school days, I loved reading The Boxcar Children series, enough that I collected the books. I still have a bunch I haven't read because I outgrew them before I could get through them. Then there was The Black Stallion series because I went through a horse phase, and who doesn't like a good boy-and-his-horse type survival-adventure story? Hmm, that's probably why I read The Horse and His Boy like second when I tried the Chronicles of Narnia.

Julie of the Wolves is a book that has stayed with me over the years, as well as Island of the Blue Dolphins - the first full-length novel I ever read by myself.

The Bailey School Kids series appealed to my mythology/folklore/supernatural-loving heart, and seriously, who could resist such intriguing titles as Vampires Don't Wear Polka Dots or Angels Don't know Karate? How about Monsters Don't Scuba Dive?

Now, I love love love the contemporary MG series about a certain boy wizard named Harry Potter and the movie counterparts, but back in the day, I was THRILLED when they announced an Indian in the Cupboard movie beause those books were so freaking awesome. What kid doesn't dream that their toys will come alive?

So, now it's your turn. What MG books did you love when you were a middle grader? What MG books do you love now?

I'm off to start a new adventure at Camp Half Blood!

P.S. Be sure to check out Tahereh's newest EPIC contest at her blog: FREEEE MONEY. Yeah, you read that right. Use it to buy some new (or old favorite) MG books!


Randomosity on Fridays: NYC Picture Edition

Happy October, friends!

It's been another long and weird-weathered week. Last week, it was record-breakingly hot, and this week, it's raining and winter-cold. It's like California forgot what Fall is supposed to be like. In any case, it's back in the 80s again this weekend. I don't even...

ANYWAY, let's make this short and fun. I went to New York City a few weeks ago, where I had many adventures with the sister and my college roommates. One of them was our gracious hostess. For more deets, just refer back to my NYC Edition of Randomosity.

One last thing before I go, it may only be the first week of October, but November is just around the corner. You all know what that means: NANOWRIMO! Any of you joining in the writing madness? I'm already signed up. You can find me here: kangaru

Happy weekend, everyone!


Greenhouse Club

Cool fire station in SoHo

Cool wall!

Korean BBQ in K-Town

Heeey Olympus, I mean, Empire State Building

View from the balcony of my roomie's place

More food! Home-made brioche

My history crush, Hamilton, at the Met.

Sister on a Percy Jackson adventure at the Met

She also did some lunges.

Books of Wonder

Visiting Mr & Mrs Hamilton at Trinity Church

Badass Peace Fountain next to Cathedral of St. John the Divine

Hamilton at Columbia University


Randomosity on Fridays: BANNED Edition

Happy Friday, everyone! It has been one long week for me, so I can't tell you how relieved I am it's the weekend! This week, I'm doing something a little different for my Randomosity on Friday.

I felt a like I should do a bit more on the whole Banned Books Week thing, so instead of my usual 5, I'm going to point you to this handy-dandy list of the Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books of the Past Decade.

I'm bolding the books on this list that I've read.

1. Harry Potter (series), by J.K. Rowling
2. Alice series, by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
3. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
4. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson/Peter Parnell
5. Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck
6. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou
7. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
8. His Dark Materials (series), by Philip Pullman
9. ttyl; ttfn; l8r g8r (series), by Myracle, Lauren
10. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
11. Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Myers
12. It’s Perfectly Normal, by Robie Harris
13. Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey
14. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
15. The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison
16. Forever, by Judy Blume
17. The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
18. Go Ask Alice, by Anonymous
19. Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
20. King and King, by Linda de Haan
21. To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
22. Gossip Girl (series), by Cecily von Ziegesar
23. The Giver, by Lois Lowry
24. In the Night Kitchen, by Maurice Sendak
25. Killing Mr. Griffen, by Lois Duncan
26. Beloved, by Toni Morrison
27. My Brother Sam Is Dead, by James Lincoln Collier
28. Bridge To Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson
29. The Face on the Milk Carton, by Caroline B. Cooney
30. We All Fall Down, by Robert Cormier
31. What My Mother Doesn’t Know, by Sonya Sones
32. Bless Me, Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya
33. Snow Falling on Cedars, by David Guterson
34. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things, by Carolyn Mackler
35. Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snogging, by Louise Rennison
36. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
37. It’s So Amazing, by Robie Harris
38. Arming America, by Michael Bellasiles
39. Kaffir Boy, by Mark Mathabane
40. Life is Funny, by E.R. Frank
41. Whale Talk, by Chris Crutcher
42. The Fighting Ground, by Avi
43. Blubber, by Judy Blume
44. Athletic Shorts, by Chris Crutcher
45. Crazy Lady, by Jane Leslie Conly
46. Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut
47. The Adventures of Super Diaper Baby, by George Beard
48. Rainbow Boys, by Alex Sanchez
49. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, by Ken Kesey
50. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini
51. Daughters of Eve, by Lois Duncan
52. The Great Gilly Hopkins, by Katherine Paterson
53. You Hear Me?, by Betsy Franco
54. The Facts Speak for Themselves, by Brock Cole
55. Summer of My German Soldier, by Bette Green
56. When Dad Killed Mom, by Julius Lester
57. Blood and Chocolate, by Annette Curtis Klause
58. Fat Kid Rules the World, by K.L. Going
59. Olive’s Ocean, by Kevin Henkes
60. Speak, by Laurie Halse Anderson
61. Draw Me A Star, by Eric Carle
62. The Stupids (series), by Harry Allard
63. The Terrorist, by Caroline B. Cooney
64. Mick Harte Was Here, by Barbara Park
65. The Things They Carried, by Tim O’Brien
66. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, by Mildred Taylor
67. A Time to Kill, by John Grisham
68. Always Running, by Luis Rodriguez
69. Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury
70. Harris and Me, by Gary Paulsen
71. Junie B. Jones (series), by Barbara Park
72. Song of Solomon, by Toni Morrison
73. What’s Happening to My Body Book, by Lynda Madaras
74. The Lovely Bones, by Alice Sebold
75. Anastasia (series), by Lois Lowry
76. A Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving
77. Crazy: A Novel, by Benjamin Lebert
78. The Joy of Gay Sex, by Dr. Charles Silverstein
79. The Upstairs Room, by Johanna Reiss
80. A Day No Pigs Would Die, by Robert Newton Peck
81. Black Boy, by Richard Wright
82. Deal With It!, by Esther Drill
83. Detour for Emmy, by Marilyn Reynolds
84. So Far From the Bamboo Grove, by Yoko Watkins
85. Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes, by Chris Crutcher
86. Cut, by Patricia McCormick
87. Tiger Eyes, by Judy Blume
88. The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood
89. Friday Night Lights, by H.G. Bissenger
90. A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeline L’Engle
91. Julie of the Wolves, by Jean Craighead George
92. The Boy Who Lost His Face, by Louis Sachar
93. Bumps in the Night, by Harry Allard
94. Goosebumps (series), by R.L. Stine
95. Shade’s Children, by Garth Nix
96. Grendel, by John Gardner
97. The House of the Spirits, by Isabel Allende
98. I Saw Esau, by Iona Opte
99. Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret, by Judy Blume
100. America: A Novel, by E.R. Frank

I know, it's sad. There are a lot of classics on there I have not read, but I do plan on reading many of them.

So, how many books on the list have YOU read? Which ones are you surprised made the list?

Check out my awesome Threadless shirt, Fahrenheit 451
Finally, I've been mentioning To Kill A Mockingbird a lot when I talk about a banned book that I love, but there's another book I'd be remiss not to mention. It's a book by one of my favorite authors (though it's not one of my favorite books by him), Ray Bradbury. Of course I mean, Fahrenheit 451, a book about a future where books are illegal and firemen burn them. Now, Bradbury has said he didn't intend for the story to be about censorship, that it's more about the dangers of mindless TV, but how can a book where book-burning plays such a big part NOT bring to mind the dangers of censorship and the importance of intellectual freedom?

So I encourage you to READ, explore, and THINK. Make your own decisions.

Celebrate BOOKS!

For more Banned Books Week awesomeness, check out Le R and Tahereh's Banned Book Bonanza - where they and a bunch of other bloggers review their favorite banned books.

Have a lovely, lovely weekend, friends. I'll catch you on the flip side.