Wordless Wednesday...not really.

This Wednesday post brought to you by Krispy nanoing furiously with Alz as her Taskmaster. Also, I doodled this entirely on my touchpad because I didn't have my pen tablet with me am a BAMF. Also again, that is indeed Krispy, as I have always drawn her, because that's what she REALLY looks like, despite what you may otherwise think based on mere photographic evidence.

I asked Krispy just now if she has anything to add.  She says, "I'm dying."  This because of actually writing nano and not because I have full-body-tackled her for failing to write.


Randomosity on Fridays: Liebster Award

I'm a little behind on spreading the love with this award. So it serves me right that a bunch of the people I was going to give it to already reached 200+ followers, which makes them ineligible! That and some of them passed the award on to us...

So a big THANK YOU to Sophia, Ani, and Lori for giving us the Liebster Award.

This award is intended to connect bloggers, specifically those with less than 200 followers. In accepting the award, I must:

  • Show my thanks to the blogger who gave me the award by linking back to them.
  • Reveal my top 5 picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
  • Post the award on my blog.
  • Bask in the love from the most supportive people on the internet—other writers.
  • And best of all – have fun and spread the karma.

In any case, there are many of you who I would love to give the award to, but you have well over 200 followers. So it has made this award incredibly difficult for me to pass on without including the people who passed it on to me. That and I can't remember who already got this award.

Here are our choices. There might be repeats, and regardless, we appreciate ALL OF YOU anyway. :)

1. XiXi at From Elysium: One of the first bloggers I stalked - is smart, funny, & loves Percy Jackson!

2. Linda at Wistfully Linda: A newer blog friend, who is like my online doppleganger. Seriously, it's almost a little freaky. That and we almost knew each other in Real Life. Almost.

3. Akoss at Fantasy Pen: Blogger I met at ninjachat who runs a book review blog featuring a diverse selection of books. She also has a writing blog here: Nye Louwon - My Spirit.

4. Connie at A Merry Heart: Cool and smart lady who writes entertaining posts about writing, bugs, and appliances-gone-crazy. She also has a blog for her book, Screwing Up Time.

5. Barbara Kloss at Barbara Kloss (the adventures of a writer): I love her anecdotes and writing posts and her gorgeous, gorgeous pictures of the great outdoors. This is possibly because I am not an outdoorsy person, so I enjoy the vicarious experience. Also, w00t for taking German in high school!

So that's that! Have a great weekend! I'm off to CampNaNoWriMo like a mad woman!


Let's Talk Love Triangle Dudes

Inspired by the lovely Linda's post on YA Romance Pet Peeves and poked into actually writing something by Krispy, I shall use this Wednesday to talk about YA love triangles.

Linda says that "two guys = double the angst"; I refined that formula a tad and came up with the following:

love triangle = 1 mysterious guy + 1 childhood friend guy + 1 girl = angst^n

Math was my least favorite subject in school and if not for the fact that my cell phone has a calculator function I would be more mathematically incompetent than a retarded jellyfish. Even so, I dislike the aforementioned formula because that's what love triangles have become—a formula applied to a story like a band-aid to cover up the gaping wound left by lack of chemistry and/or character development and/or plot.

A typical basic YA love triangle includes a hot new boy (often styled as a bad boy) with the heroine's childhood friend as a rival. She loves her childhood friend but at the same time is swoonily attracted like an iron filing to the dark magnetic mystery of the new guy.

The guy who is almost always the loser and is also the one usually strung along is the childhood friend. The new/mysterious guy wins nine times out of ten—or maybe ten times out of ten, actually, in YA. Why? Naturally what is new and mysterious is intriguing and more interesting than the familiar, which is safer and therefore boring.

A generally fatal flaw of childhood friend role is that the heroine has known him for a long time, so the reader usually doesn't get to know him as well. Which makes sense, of course, that the most time would be spent on the mysterious new guy, because that's where the interest and excitement of new discovery lies. Unfortunately that means that the childhood friend almost always gets the short end of the character stick.

A slightly better but still all-too-frequent scenario is when the childhood friend does get more character development and an actual personality, but still pales in comparison to the mysterious new guy who elbows his way front and center and gets the lion's share of everyone's attention. The childhood friend is safe, familiar, and ; the new guy is unknown, possibly dangerous, mysterious and therefore intriguing.

I like tofu, but it is pretty bland by itself. Just sayin'.
 Of course, not all love triangles involve a childhood friend. It could involve two (childhood) friends or two new mysterious guys.

Side note: Let us not forget that hair color is absolutely critical in a love triangle. The two males must have different hair colors. If they do not, your love triangle will be a failure. Eye color should be different too, although this is less important since I barely remember anyone's eye color except for Edward's because of how many times Bella driveled on about how topaz they are.
Ideally, a typical YA love triangle would feature two guys whom the heroine is torn between because they are equally attractive (though this can be in different ways—intellectual, physical, charismatic, etc.), and it would not be generally pretty freaking obvious whom she's going to end up with. Ideally, I the reader would also be torn between these two awesome guys instead of thinking the heroine is an idiot for various reasons.

A good love triangle is dependent upon character development, relationship tension, and believability. The crux of a good love triangle is the girl. What does she see in these two guys? Is it just that they're equally hot and equally interested in her? If so, that's lame, and the Alz fails to approve.

I expect exploration of emotions, character depth, confusion, questioning, maybe some guilt—in short, I expect to empathize with the heroine. There are these two different guys and it's because of their differences that I am torn between them! Not their similarities—so they're both hot, or they're both supernatural, or they're both smart—so what? I want to see two guys who are awesome in their own unique ways but also have flaws that the heroine is capable of seeing.  I want to learn more about the heroine through her consideration of the two guys and her ultimate choice.  I want to see growth on the part of all three characters, dammit.

Krispy's Addendum: In the comments of Linda's YA Romance Pet Peeves post, Linda and I had a brief conversation about what makes a good love triangle or at least how a love triangle would better serve a story, and I liked the point we circled in on.

A love triangle best serves the story when it isn't just there as a romantic plot point. It works when the two guys represent more than romance for the heroine. As Linda said, "Like, if the choice between two guys was actually more about what kind of person the heroine wants to be and what kind of life she wants to live."

The two guys should serve as foils to the heroine, helping and hindering her, and thus revealing different aspects of her character. [End Addendum]

As a final note, I do not necessarily recommend all of the following books.  They're simply the ones I was thinking of when writing this post, with suggestions and brainstorming help from Krispy:

Fallen by Lauren Kate
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Matched by Ally Condie
Nightshade by Andrea Cremer
Personal Demons by Lisa Desrochers
Possession by Elana Johnson
Twilight (series) by Stephenie Meyer

Now some questions for you folks: Do you like love triangles or do you hate 'em? Do you like knowing who the girl's going to end up with or would you prefer it not to be obvious? Got any good recommendations, bad recommendations, so-so recommendations?


Randomosity on Fridays: Quarter Century Birthday Edition

And we're back from blogcation, although I have to warn you now that the blog will likely go dark again in early September as I will be on ACTUAL vacation, but that's the future. On to the blogging!

We're back to our regularly scheduled programming, even as Camp NaNo continues to pwn me. Oh, but Alz already hit the golden 50,000 words. She is now in charge of curbing my procrastination.

Some other stuff happened while we were away.

1. Both Sophia and Ani awarded us with the Liebster Blog Award.
2. I had a birthday on Aug. 16, wherein I became a Quarter Century old.

We're just going to talk about #2 because we haven't come up with a list of bloggers for #1 yet. Next week!

This past Sunday, I did a joint birthday dinner with fellow vlogger & Boba4Lifer Sophia at the ritzy Club Cicada in downtown LA. Ritzy how, you may be asking. Well, it's located in a historic building - the 1928 art deco Oviatt Building.

The sister is very color-coordinated.

It's 1920s-40s themed, meaning you have to be in either vintage dress or evening dress to get in. So it was an excuse to get all dressed up, and people that go there really get into the dressing up and the theme.

With my favorite gals!
There's also a live band on Sundays, and they play songs from the time period. There's lots of dancing, which I did not partake of because that kind of coordination is not in me. BUT it was fun watching other people because they were really good.

Sophia and I got candles in our desserts and serenaded by our friends.

Then on Tuesday, G took me out for dinner and we stuffed ourselves at Kabuki. We topped it off with this ridiculously delicious tempura ice cream. It was green tea and coffee ice cream inside. There was also chocolate sauce.

After that, I came home to find my dad had bought me an ice cream cake from Coldstone's. For those of you who have been here a while, you will know that ice cream is like one of my FAVORITE THINGS EVER. I also really love chocolate and coffee.

Yeah, I think my name's spelled wrong...
This cake was chocolate cake with coffee ice cream, topped with toffee. Needless to say, even though I was stuffed from dinner, I couldn't resist and had a piece of this too (though I forced Alz to share it with me).

So that's it for this week's bit of random. I hope you all had a wonderful week, and that you are enjoying the wonderful resources of WriteOnCon (because I know many of you are distracted by that)! Hope to see you back here again Wednesday. We missed you all!

What have you been up to? Learn or do anything interesting lately?


Blogging Break

Hello, darlings!

Following in the footsteps of a number of blogs, A Nudge will be going on a brief blogging break.

I've been a little slack in responding to comments and visiting your blogs too, and with Camp NaNoWriMo happening, I'm finding myself a little burnt out.

PLUS, I am turning a Quarter Century Old in less than a week, and I'm celebrating it with fellow August birthday-er & Boba4Lifer Sophia this weekend! So there's that to contend with as well.

So we will return to our regularly scheduled posts on Friday, August 19th.

Until then, drink up me hearties & don't be strangers! (I'll still be trolling twitter & tumblr and your blogs.)


NON-Randomosity on Fridays: Nano Update

Hello, hello, from Krispy and Alz!  Today we bring you a break from our normal Friday randomosity because we're both nanoing and should be nanoing right now except we're drafting this post reeeeal fast so that we'll keep to our regularly scheduled programming.

KRISPY: Beginnings are a sticking point for me. It's not the blank page that freaks me out; it's all the work that the beginning is supposed to do. Even then, I'm not so much worried about the hook as I am about setting the right tone. Trust me, I've gone off on things totally wrong because my beginning didn't set the right tone for the rest of it.

Basically, what I'm saying is it's been slow going. This NaNo, despite being more planned out than any other NaNo I've done, has been the hardest to start. However, word sprints are surprisingly helpful! They kind of stress me out more than I'd like, but it does force me to focus more and not get distracted by Tumblr every 2 sentences. I have Ani at Anime's Musings to thank for being my sprint partner these last two nights!

ALZ: I'm slightly less of a Wort Ungeheuer (word monster) this year because I wasn't planning on participating in Camp Nano, so my results are even less pretty than usual.  And usual means abysmal.  I've been having writing parties with Krispy that are the literary equivalent of frat parties with extra crack, only there's no actual drug or alcohol abuse and it's actually very quiet and all right, that was a crappy simile. This should give you an inkling of what my nanoing has been like.

All in all, our writing parties start with us inhaling a large amount of boba and/or frozen yogurt, complaining about not knowing things in our story, and then writing.

Q4U: How's your writing / NaNo-ing going?

P.S. By the way, for those of you who are good at identifying dialogue from movies, you should check out Ani's Dialogue/ Road-to-100 Followers Contest! It's fun, and you could win a $10 gift card for iTunes or Amazon!


Writing Wednesday: Camp NaNoWriMo

Short post for you today since I totally did NOT time manage myself well.

So after lots of peer pressure from Alz and Sophia, and then after I accidentally peer pressured Linda into doing it, I signed up for Camp NaNoWriMo!

You see, I've always thought November was a bad month for me in terms of number of outside commitments and time versus novel writing. So summer is actually a much better time for me. I just wish there had been a bit more planning involved on my part. On the other hand, I've always found myself jumping into NaNo all willy-nilly. So here we are.

The bright side is I'm starting work on a story that I've been mulling over since like January. So it's pretty exciting.

My fellow blogger participants are Alz, Sophia, and Linda. Hopefully, we can get in a cabin together. My username is kangaru, and I've linked all our NaNo profiles for anyone who wants to give us a hard time for not writing enough (or you know, encouragement is nice). ;)

So anyway, if the blog posts are strangely lacking and/or short this month, you now know why. That and I'm celebrating my Quarter-Century birthday soon & going to Disneyland like every other weekend. Needless to say, maybe summer isn't a better time for me for novel-writing.

Second order of business, I finally have the winner of the e-subscription to Danyelle's Fairy Godmother Dilemma! Using random.org, the winner is...


Congrats! I'll email you with deets on how you can start reading.

That's it for now, friends. Anyone else signing up for Camp NaNoWriMo? (We can sing songs and have s'mores!)