"For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream." ― Vincent van Gogh
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November 23, 2018

New Art #7 + Holiday Giveaway

~ color me coral ~
This new art is titled 'color me coral' which you can see why. I had wanted to work more more this but decided I like it this way. Also, this comes in a notebook format. I just posted the artwork so you may not see it yet. If there is an art piece that I posted here that you would like to get as a print or other formats, let me know in the comments. Check out my art shop over here. 

holiday giveaway
To thank my readers, here is a holiday giveaway: 10 (US) dollars off on anything you purchase at Society6.    
The Rules:
1 - To enter, just leave a comment. And if you like, tell me about your favorite artist or artists.
2 - One winner will be chosen at random. He/she will get a 10 (US) dollars Promo Code (by email) to use toward any purchase at Society6. The code expires on December 31, 2018 at 11:59pm PT.
3 - Last day to enter is November 30, 2018.
4 - Any questions, feel free to email me at lissawrites(at)gmail(dot)com

November 19, 2018

the tea rain girl

'the tea rain girl' - closeup
'the tea rain girl' - closeup
I have joined the land of social media namely Instagram under my pen name yk faith @ the_tea_rain_girl (the link is at the bottom of the page). I had set it up on a desktop and used and will continue to use safari's developer tool to post. I don't know if I'll ever use Instagram on a phone because I have all my artworks on my computer and I just see no reason to transfer them to my phone. Perhaps I'm old fashion but I don't like working on a small screen and typing on small buttons and viewing web pages on a small screen. I'm more used to working on a computer screen though it's only like 12" wide. Just so you know, I will probably post whatever I post on this blog so you won't miss much. Those of you who are on more than one social media platform — don't you find it exhausting having to update at so many places? I don't blog much these days so having another platform might not be a good idea. Who knows, I might just quit in a month or two. (And if you want to use Instagram on a desktop, check out this tutorial.)

November 14, 2018

The Postmistress' Mail Forest

closeup 1
'the postmistress' mail forest'
This week's Scribble Picnic is Forest. I started this piece last year so you can say I took a year to finish this piece but it's only the last few weeks that I worked on this. The story is this creature (I don't have a name for her) - half human, half tree, some bits of bird - is responsible for mail delivery and this is her office. So that's the story or something like it. [ Click on the images for a larger view.]

For more Scribble Picnic, go here.

closeup 2

closeup 3

November 13, 2018

Writing, Not Writing — NaNo 2018 Update

I would update you on my NaNo progress with a word count but I can't because I haven't been counting words at all. But I can say I did a lot writing and a lot of thinking.

I started writing digitally but then switched to writing by hand into a notebook. I found that it is easier to put down my thoughts this way and it almost keeps me from editing my writing. I would show you my notebook pages but my hand writing is terrible and there are so many crossed out words and misspelled words, that I would be embarassed if you see them so no photos.

This time around, I seem to think a lot more about the characters and what's going on than before. This of course make me keep changing everything but that's not a bad thing though I think I might be thinking way too much and not writing enough. Maybe I should join in some of the writing sessions that are going on at NaNo but I don't know. No matter where you are, when you write, or who you write with, the work is still yours alone. But it's nice to know other people are writing too and probably having the same problems.

(My user name at the NaNo site is lissa26 if you want to add me as a buddy.)

If you're participating in NaNo, how are you doing?

November 3, 2018

Books Read in October

Here are some books I read in October.

01/ The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare > link
I guessed how it would end but it didn't make it less enjoyable though this did seem like a very short read.

Favorite quote: "There is no escape if love is not there."

02/ The Keepers of the Lost Cities by Shannon Messenger > link
Just some thoughts:
- I hate the preface - like I need a preview of what's going to happen? No, I don't. It just makes me have high expectations and it's just so unnecessary
- What's with the licking? I can't count this as magic because it's ridiculous & kind of unsanitary
- Too much explanations from other people to Sophie, so she's new to the world but does everything have to be explained? Can't Sophie discover them?
- Nothing happens until chapter 30, well, nothing I thought worth reading - this is a fantasy book and yet all they seem to talk about is day to day school stuff
- What's with all the love thoughts? She's barely 13 and already there's a bunch of love interests?  I see future quad-angles and it's sure to make fans scream for mercy and also isn't it weird that the boys are older than her and yet, they have interest in her? I'm not saying older boys wouldn't like younger girls but this is kind of odd to me.
- I just don't like that everything revolves around Sophie, anything that have to do with anyone involves Sophie, it's all Sophie all the time. If I like her, it might not be so bad but I don't. She's too perfect, too self-involved, even her sacrifices didn't seem like sacrifices. All the conflicts she have with other people is a waste because everyone eventually likes/accepts Sophie. Sophie is accident-prone and the joke about her getting injured a lot (which she does but she recovers so it's like it never happened) is not funny at all. We are to believe her being accident-prone and failing some classes makes her imperfect but it doesn't. And how many special abilities does she need anyway?
- I often found middle grade books to be entertaining even for adults but this is a bit on the dull side, so many school-related things and the constant talk of things Sophie have yet to learn/know is annoying. Secrets are keep from her for reasons, I guess, will probably be revealed in the other books but knowing that is not any less annoying.
- This is not a bad read but it's not my cup of tea so I won't be reading the rest of the series.

03/ Kiss of the Spindle by Nancy Campbell Allen > link
I would not normally read romance, at least, if that is the genre but I love fairytales and this is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty. There are a lot of details/back stories that I could do without but overall, a very enjoyable read. But one question: why does Daniel seems a bit dumb at the end? The solution is right there and yet, he didn't believe his own feelings, for a man with so much capabilities, for someone whom have gone through so much, he sure gives up easily. Would it be a spoiler if I tell you there is a dragon in this book? Because there is and I was surprised by this but I like it.

Favorite quote: "My mother believes in soul mates. Two halves of the same whole and all that rot. I am hoping I possess my own soul in its entirety. So much simpler."

04/ Beauty & the Clockwork Beast by Nancy Campbell Allen > link
I only wanted to read this because the author's other book (Kiss of the Spindle – see above) had been a fun read and also because this is a Beauty & the Beast retelling. This book, however, is not a fun read. There is one thing in it that I have avoided like the plague – vampires – I do not like reading about them, they freak me out. Every time the word is used, I gloss over it. I could ignore them for the first half of the book because they aren't mentioned as much but for the second half of book, even when they don't mentioned them, I still think in my head one of the characters will suddenly be revealed as a vampire or one would show up suddenly so this sort of make reading the second half of the book a bit uneasy. The romance isn't all that great – one moment they are strangers with hardly any fun banters between them and the next, they are suddenly in love. The steps in between is not there or if there, is kind of vague. I didn't like the beast aka Blackwell or beauty aka Lucy – one is always sulking about his miserable life and doing nothing about it and the other is so stubborn, so determined that she puts herself in constant danger and the various ways she gets injured just makes me wonder why she didn't die at the end. Okay, so the romance might not be all that great but the mystery is sort of great, that is, until they start talking about vampires. I honestly thought there would be very little mention of vampires and I'm not sure why I think that.

Spoiler -->
The villain is simply someone who wants to marry her cousin because she loved him but then it became her way to survive, by marrying him, she would have the resources to continue to live as a vampire which seems like a secondary thing because she actually loved her cousin to which I say - Stop It! Stop falling in love with your cousin! But then her revenge is kind of dumb when you think how it got started. I sort of pity her just a little. And kind of wish they didn't kill her in such a gruesome way. End Spoiler.

Beauty & the Clockwork Beast could have been good but it's bogged down by too many things - vampires, shifters, ghosts, murders, steampunk, and stuck in between is the romance. If only the author have kept the story in one focus or just the romance and steampunk, it would have been better. 

Read any good book lately?

November 1, 2018

NaNo and a Book Cover

book mockup from covervault (click on the image for a larger view)
I have done NaNo a few times and succeeded but whatever history I have isn't on my NaNo page anymore which is kind of sad because I would like to see what I actually did. But I have never created a cover for any of those supposed novels so I try for one this year.

The artwork is one my older pieces but the objects here aren't really in the story but I like that they could be.  A Clockwork Journey is still a working title though it sounds right for now. Y.K. Faith is my pen name in case you're wondering who that is. Does it sound weird to you? I have been trying to come up with a good pen name for years but I've never found one that I really like. This one comes close. So I guess you're wondering why I don't use my real name. That's because I don't actually like it and also, I really love the idea of having a pen name. This is the synopsis that I came up with for A Clockwork Journey:

A young woman named Eddy tries to escape her past by moving forward only to end up somewhere unexpected.

It's vague and uninteresting so I'll rewrite this as soon as I know what exactly I'm writing. Here are some links to what I have written which prompted me to want to finish the story:
The 1st Eddy story
A Clockwork Journey - part 1
A Clockwork Journey - part 2

I'm not those people who writes outlines and know how the story goes from beginning to end. I usually just write what comes up. I write up random ideas that sometimes comes in the middle of the night which is probably not very efficient but it seems to work, most of the time. I have some vague idea of how it should end but as with most ideas, they don't always form in the way you want them to so it could all be different by the time I finish.

My user name at the NaNo site is lissa26 if you want to add me as a buddy. I would link you to my NaNo page but unless you have a NaNo account, you can't see it which makes no sense to me because not everyone's doing NaNo or have a NaNo account.

I just read this really good post and I thought I share the link: 10 Tips for Surviving NaNoWriMo

So are you doing NaNo and if so, do you already have a cover?