Get My Books at Amazon

Monday, April 25, 2011

Blah-dee-dah

My previous excitement over the internet was short-lived, as my internet was out pretty much the entire weekend. I'm starting to think that Charter must have some kind of vendetta against me. But it's working now, and that's what counts.

I've been listening to a lot of Peter Bjorn & John's "Gimme Some," Florence + the Machine "Lungs," and the Beatles "White Album." Not sure that that has a ton of relevance, but I like to share what I'm listening to.

Not getting a ton of writing done yet. It's hard getting comfortable in the new house. I want to write but the space all feels wrong and incomplete. Plus, I'm not sleeping very well. I just toss and turn a lot.

I had this bizarre dream that I cut up my favorite bra because I couldn't figure out how to take it off. And then I was really sad in the dream, because the bra was ruined, and I tried to put it back together with staples and duct tape.

Nearly every day since we've moved has been chilly and rainy, and it's depressing. I'm really happy that I didn't run away to Seattle like I had planned when I was eighteen. I don't think I would've liked it very much.

So I don't have a lot to say today. I will have stuff to say soon. And it will be good stuff.

But now I'm going to escape and try to get some writing done.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Quick Note

Moving is no fun. Whoever said it was is probably a crazy person.

But the good news is - I have internet at the new house! Yay!

I don't have a lot to say right now, but I just wanted to pop in and say hey. I should have a blog pretty soon with tons of information about stuff. But that's all I'm saying right now. But it's lots of good news.

Oh, and I fixed the cover for the Trylle Trilogy...

Monday, April 11, 2011

Moving and Book Stuff

My blogs are probably going to be sporadic for a bit. We're beginning the move into our new place this week, and that process is probably going to take over my life for a couple weeks. Plus, I need to finish polishing Lost Without You and get it ready for a May release.

Every day it seems like there are a million things going on, although lately, it's just been my personal life that's hectic. My mom had a semi-emergency appendectomy last Tuesday. I say "semi-emergency" because it hadn't ruptured yet, but it probably would've in a day or two (I think). But she's doing great now, and she didn't even understand why anyone was worried about her having surgery because it was so minor.

Plus, I'm going to a new dentist and trying to get that straightened out (ha! a pun!). I had a couple doctor appointments (routine check up stuff).

But mostly I've been getting ready for a house. The most difficult thing has been getting a bed. I currently have a full-sized bed, but since my new bedroom will be larger, I wanted to upgrade to a king sized bed. And I knew exactly what kind of bedframe I wanted.

Here's what I learned: Pretty much the only bed that comes in "white" are kid's beds. And despite their apparent popularity, it is really hard to find platform beds.

After searching countless online furniture stores, I found the bed I wanted at Target.com. (I know, right?) It won't get here until May, though, so it looks like I'll be sleeping on a mattress on a floor for awhile. Oh well. It'll be worth it.

So, with all that aside, I'm hoping to get the first chapter up of Lost Without You some time around the end of April/beginning of May, with the release of the book mid-to-late May. The hold up with the teaser chapter is that the opening of the book is what I'm having the most problems smoothing out. But once I get settled into the new place, my whole focus is going to be on getting that ready and published.

In the meantime, you should check out J. L. Bryan's new book, Tommy Nightmare. It's the sequel to Jenny Pox, and it's out now Amazon. I haven't read it yet, because I'm an idiot, but I will be reading it very soon. Because it sounds awesome. You can check out Tommy Nightmare: here. And the first book, Jenny Pox, is on sale for only $.99 right now.

Also, I'm working on a little something for the Trylle fans:

More info on that to come later. ;)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

My Really Long Review of Insidious

I'm tired, and I'd like to go to bed, but Insidious traumatized me.



Okay - I know what you're thinking. The first time I saw the trailer for Insidious, I thought, "That looks ridiculous and stupid. I don't want to see that." Then Roger Ebert told me it was quite good, and I thought, "Well... maybe."

Me and Eric decided we wanted to go see a movie tonight, and the only two he wanted to see were Hop or Insidious. And I wasn't in the mood for Hop, so I chose Insidious. When we got to the theater, I saw it was PG-13, and I was like, "Oh no, this'll be crap."

(Side note: Before Insidious, they had a trailer for Guillermo del Toro's latest production Don't Be Afraid of the Dark. It was the first time I'd seen the trailer in theaters, although I had seen it before, and that looks like it will be terrifying fun). 

But let me tell you - it scared the hell out of me. I can honestly say I haven't been that scared during a movie in my entire life, and I watch a lot of movies. For comparison purposes, my favorite scary movies are: The Hills Have Eyes, 28 Days Later, and Pan's Labyrinth. (I don't care if Pan's Labyrinth isn't technically horror - the thing with the hands is the most terrifying movie creature of all time).

When we were leaving the theater (and I was still shaking in terror - something that has never happened to me before), Eric commented, "It was like they took the part that scared me the most in The Exorcist and turned it into a whole movie." And that's fairly accurate.

A few months ago, I had a brain storming session with Eric where I talked about what would make the scariest movie ever. After some talk, we came up with a lot of ideas. I worked out a rough idea of a horror novel, but I'm totally scrapping it now. Because everything we talked about was in that movie.

Insidious was totally brilliant. Leigh Whannel and James Wan clearly studied other horror films and learned from them. I expected something usual with a few scares like The Ring, but this was done so well, and the storyline was actually pretty good, too.

Here's a minor spoiler but not really: Usually in horror movies like this, the wife goes, "The house is haunted we need to leave!" And the husband goes, "No, you're just crazy. Let's stay, despite all the weird stuff is happening." But in this movie, fairly early on, the wife goes, "The house is haunted! I can't take it here!" And the husband - displaying a stunningly level-head for a horror movie goes - says, "Okay. We'll do what we need to do." And then they moved.

I have never in horror movie ever seen the people leave the haunted house. I really enjoyed Paranormal Activity, but I kept thinking, "There is no way I could sleep in that house with all that crap going on. I'd have to check into a Holiday Inn."

The one thing I will say - the last quarter of the film gets a bit wonky. When they explore "the further" (which makes sense if you see the movie), it feels a bit more like a Terry Gilliam project than a horror film. Which isn't completely bad but it does lessen the earlier terror it did an excellent job building up.

And also - "Tiptoe through the Tulips?" Seriously? I don't know if that was meant in homage to Jeepers Creepers or what, but Tiny Tim isn't scary. Well... at least not like that.

Oh! And the score was divine! It was total old school Hitchcock-ian crazy violins and piano crashes. This really was an old school horror flick. Very minimal CGI. It was nuanced and camera tricks and perfectly timed noises. No gore at all. Just straight up fear.

The only thing that would've made it better would have been if Doug Jones played the red faced thing. Doug Jones makes everything scarier. (See my previous post on the awesomeness of Doug Jones: Rambling...)

I've probably hyped Insidious too much. Now you'll go see it, and be all like, "What? This isn't scary at all. That Amanda Hocking is a total wuss."

Maybe I am. I have been in a weird mood lately. But I am big into movies, and I am particularly fond of action, horror, fantasy, and 80s movies, and most of them scare me not at all or very minimally. And Insidious really scared me. So much so, I don't think I'll ever watch it again. It was very much like a really well done haunted house.

I'm sure they'll be a poorly done sequel in a few years, but that doesn't change the fact that I personally would rank Insidious as the scariest movie of all time.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Vegas

Eric has been my friend for about ten years. In those ten years, I don't think I've ever gotten him a birthday gift. I've gotten him plenty of fabulous gifts for various occasions, but when it came to his birthday, I always seemed to be unnaturally broke by the time March 24th rolled around.

So I decided to make it up to him this year, and I said that for his birthday, I would take him wherever he wanted to go. We've been discussing it for some time, but by January of this year, he'd had it set to go to Vegas for his 25th birthday. We invited a couple other friends that we don't see very often, and we left for Vegas on Thursday.

We had fun. Nothing too exciting happened, but a good time was had by all. Other than a few mishaps (like the ceiling in our hotel room at the Palms leaking water on us and a cab driver attempting to murder us with his driving), it was fun.
Me and Eric in front of the Bellagio the day we go to Vegas

Here are some of the highlights:

-The views of the city were spectacular. I'm a big sucker for city lights.

The view from our hotel room at night

The view of Vegas from the Stratosphere

-I saw Jason Bateman walking around at the Ceaser's. It was funny because I wasn't paying attention, and my friend Fifi goes, "Hey, that's a celebrity! Isn't he somebody famous?" And I turned around and it was Jason Bateman. I squeed internally, but I didn't talk to him, because I am incapable of talking to famous people. 

Jason Bateman (not from when I saw him, because I didn't photograph him)


-The Divas drag show at the Imperial Palace was phenomenal.
Cher
Lady Gaga

Eric with "Joan Rivers" a.k.a. Frank Marino

-Getting to see my friends who I really don't see that often.

My friend Fifi and a Michael Jackson impersonator

My friends Fifi & Valerie at the Stratosphere

Valerie, Eric, me, & Fifi at the Stratosphere

Valerie & her husband Greggor inside the Stratosphere

-I got to play The Dark Knight pinball machine.



-We went to the David Copperfield show, and Eric got picked to go up onstage and Copperfield made Eric disappear. After the show, Copperfield gave Eric an autographed picture and said to him, "I loved you in The Hangover."

Eric Goldman                        Zack Galifinakis in the Hangover


They had tons of the tee shirts with the baby on them from The Hangover, and I kept trying to get Eric to wear one with the some Blublockers and pretend to be Zach Galifinakas. But he refused. And that was a bummer.

Also, for some reason, Eric wouldn't let me eat at Tom Coliccho's restaraunt, even though I love Top Chef more than I love him.

(On a side note, did you guys see the Chef finale last week? I totally cried when Blais won. It was great to see him pull through).

So that was it. That was my trip to Vegas. It was fun. The city was neat. I'm bummed that Barry Manilow was off when were visiting, because I would've loved to have seen him.

But in all honesty, I don't know if I'll go back again. Vegas is a great city, but I'm definitely Midwest girl.

The last pic I took of Vegas, when I woke up in the morning to catch my plane