Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Top Ten Must Haves for Questing

While I was packing for YWAM today, blaring music, and eating peanut butter cups, I thought about all the hundreds of heroes in books who leave on quests all the time and what they have to pack. Sometimes the hero is thrown into the thick of things so fast that they don't have time to grab anything and have to fly by the seat of their pants in order to get by. Usually though the hero has enough time to pack at least one bag, backpack, satchel, or suitcase, but packing is difficult. It's really tough to decide what to bring and what to leave behind, So here's the question: If you're a hero setting off on a quest, then what do you pack? 


Well, here's a list I made to help out any questing heroes. A list of the top ten must haves for any hero starting out on a quest:

1. Food and Water. Food and water are the most important things to pack when you're heading off on  a quest. You have no idea how long it might be before you find another restaurant, or grocery store, and I'm fairly certain that there are no McDonalds in Mordor. 

2. Weapons. Any quest you set out on is bound to be dangerous, so please don't forget to bring along your weapons! It doesn't even really matter what kind of weapon you bring, a sword, bow and arrows, spear, sling, gun, attack dog, just as long as you know how to use it to protect yourself and your fellow questers.

3. Matches. Matches, tinderbox, flint and steel, magical lighter, it makes no difference, just make sure you have a way to light a fire. Fires are lifesavers on quests, you can cook food, warm up, boil water to use for drinking or medical purposes, scare away wild animals, send an emergency beacon, light torches to explore caves and tunnels, burn down an enemy outpost. Really it is absolutely necessary so always always bring a way to light a fire.

4. Blankets. Bring blankets or a sleeping bag with you whenever you quest. It can get really cold at night and you need to get a good night's sleep if you plan on doing any great questing. You'd be surprised how devastating sleep deprivation can be. To stay on your guard you must be well rested! Blankets also serve as great emergency bandages, and can be used to tie things into bundles in order to carry loot, plunder, food, or anything else. 

5. First Aid Kit. Questing is not a danger free occupation. Odds are you are going to run into a dragon, rockslide, exploding volcano, full out war, poison, and all other dangerous things. You must have a first aid kit with you anytime you go questing, no excuses.

6. A Tent. Shelter is the next big thing you need to have, so packing a tent to protect you from the elements is a wonderful idea. Though if you can arrange ahead of time to stay in inns or taverns instead then you might want to do that and save quite a bit of room in your bag.

7. Rope. You'd be surprised just how helpful rope really is. Tie up your enemies, climb up or down mountains, use it to keep from getting lost in a labyrinth, secure a wounded friend to the back of a horse, escape from a tower. It might be a bit heavy but make sure you pack a nice long length of rope.

8. Pots and Dishes. You'd be surprised how easy it is to forget these and how important they really are. Have you ever tried to boil water or make soup without a pot? I mean really, you can roast meat over a fire, but that's about all you can do without a pot or pan. Also it's really difficult to eat whatever you cooked, especially soup without a bowl, plate, or some cutlery. If you're planning on eating at taverns and restaurants all the time on your quest, or going questing caveman style then you can forget this one, though you may wish you hadn't.

9. Spare Clothes. Bring along spare clothes and a nice warm cloak. I bet you it will start raining or you'll fall into a river or lake at some point on your quest and it's always a good idea to have an extra set of clothing along. Try to pack sensible clothes, no party dresses or high heeled shoes, and always make sure that you have a pair of nice strong shoes, odds are you're going to be doing a lot of walking.

10. Any Magical Items. If you have a magical tool to help you then don't leave it behind! Magical items can be dangerous so use your item sparingly and only in great need, though you may just find that it will save your life. 

Well that's about it though I'm sure if I sat here long enough I could think of plenty of other things that would be wonderful to have along on a quest like a map, compass, extra socks...

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So what do you think? Does this list pretty much cover it all, or do you have a few more things to add to the list? Are you or one of your characters heading off on a quest soon? If so comment below and let me know what they or you packed and how their quest turned out!

Good luck on your packing and questing all!

Monday, September 15, 2014

100 for 100

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Go Teen Writers is hosting their fourth annual 100 for 100 event. If you sign up at their website then you can join the hundreds of other people who have decided to take the challenge and write 100 words in 100 days, and I'm one of them, Today is the first day of the event and also the last day to register. So if you want to participate you should head over to www.GoTeenWriters.blogspot.com and sign up right now. 

During 100 for 100 you're supposed to work on one project, and if you finish that project you can work on the next one. I'm planning on working on my Beauty and the Beast retelling for Rooglewood Press's "Five Enchanted Roses" contest, which you will be hearing more about in the near future. After I finish that then I'll probably work on a children's book idea I've had for a while, or maybe I'll work on one of the many other story ideas I have planned out on my Pinterest boards. I'm sorry to tell you all that editing "The Paths of Thyme" has been put on the shelf for a little while as I won't have any time to work on it while I'm on YWAM.

This is my first time doing 100 for 100, what about you? Have you participated before? What project(s) are you planning on working on? Comment below, I always love hearing from you!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Blog Poll Results

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Thanks for voting on my poll everyone! According to the above results the top three requests to see more of on this blog were: 1. Snippets from my projects, followed by 2. Writing tips and articles, with 3. Being a tie between photography and updates on my life. Thanks again for sharing your opinion with me I always love to hear your feedback. I'll be sure to post more of the things you voted for in the upcoming weeks. Have a wonderful day, and don't forget to comment!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Looking for Alaska-Book Review

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"Looking for Alaska" by John Green
About: "Before. Miles "Pudge" Halter's whole existence has been one big nonevent, and his obsession with famous last words has only made him crave the "Great Perhaps" (Fran├žois Rabelais, poet) even more. He heads off to the sometimes crazy, possibly unstable, and anything-but-boring world of Culver Creek Boarding School, and his life becomes the opposite of safe. Because down the hall is Alaska Young. The gorgeous, clever, funny, sexy, self-destructive, screwed-up, and utterly fascinating Alaska Young, who is an event unto herself. She pulls Pudge into her world, launches him into the Great Perhaps, and steals his heart.
After. Nothing is ever the same" -From Goodreads

My Review: An interesting book. It was very sad, and depressing, but still thought provoking. I had never read any of John Green's books before I read this one, though I enjoy watching his vlogbrothers videos on youtube on a regular basis. I finally decided to try reading one of his books, and I chose to read this one mostly because I heard a lot about a surprising plot twist at the end, but when it came I didn't find it all that surprising, or amazing, as I had been led to believe. If I had been aware of how much explicit content that is in this book I would surely have skipped it.

It wasn't really worth reading in my opinion, but at the same time it wasn't a total waste. I enjoyed the deep conversations and thoughts that the characters had in this book, and some interesting thought provoking points were raised. I kept thinking about this book for several days afterwards, but it kind of depressed me.

Questionable Content: There was so much questionable content in this book, that if it was a movie and included everything in the book I think it would get an R rating. Swearing, drinking, smoking, drugs, and sex, fill this book from cover to cover. It was pretty disgusting.  

I give "Looking for Alaska" ★★☆☆☆=It was okay. The only reason this book didn't get a one star rating is due to the intellectual side of the book, and John Green's wonderful writing style. Though I am sorely tempted to leave it at one star because of the gross amount of the questionable content. So my advice is you probably want to skip it.
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Rating System:

                                               ☆☆☆☆☆=It was terrible! I didn't finish it.
                                               ★☆☆☆☆=I did not enjoy it.
                                               ★★☆☆☆=It was okay.
                                               ★★★☆☆=It was pretty good.
                                               ★★★★☆=I really enjoyed it.
                                               ★★★★★=It was Amazing!
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What about you? Have you read "Looking for Alaska" or any other books by John Green? What did you think? Please leave a comment, I always love hearing from you!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

YWAM


Hey everyone, sorry for being absent from this blog for so long. I've started at least seven different "I'm back, sorry" posts each one beginning with a different form of "I'm not dead, I've just been busy." While that's true I haven't been so busy that I couldn't drop a note or two to let you guys know what I've been up to, and I'm sorry about that. 

You see, in a week and a half I'm going to be going to DTS (Discipleship Training School) with YWAM (Youth with a Mission). YWAM is an international, interdenominational Christian mission agency. Their mission statement is to know God, and make Him known. For over fifty years they have been mobilizing young adults to help meet the needs, and minister to, hurting people all around the world. DTS is a five month training school divided into two parts. The first three months is called the lecture phase. During that time the students learn more about God, the Bible, and sharing the Gospel, as well as getting to know their fellow students. The last two months of the school is called the outreach and it takes place in another country, helping the people there through service work, and evangelism. You can check out their website here if you would like more information about it.

I'm leaving on the 20th of this month, and will be there till February. So these past weeks that I've neglected this blog I've been stressing out about leaving for five months to a place I've never been before. I'm very much a homebody and an introvert at heart so leaving my home to go to a place I've never been to before, to live with a bunch of people I haven't met yet, is going to be quite a stretch. I've always fantasized about having an adventure like all the characters in my favorite books, but now that I'm on the verge of my own adventure, it doesn't seem all that appealing, just really scary and uncomfortable. Honestly I'd much rather stay at home and hide under my blankets away from all responsibilities, I guess I know how Bilbo Baggins felt now.

You might ask me, "Why are you going if you don't really want to?" and that's actually a pretty good question. You see, God told me to go on YWAM. I don't know if you really believe that God speaks to people nowadays, but he does, and I heard him tell me to go. So even though I'm pretty scared, nervous, and would prefer to just stay where I am, I know that God wants the best for me, and that He's always right. So I'm walking in Faith even though I honestly would prefer not to.

I'm not sure exactly what type of schedule I will have once I'm at DTS but I hope to continue posting on this blog twice a week, though I may have to drop it down to only once a week, we'll see, and I'll keep you updated. If you have any questions please leave them below, I always love hearing from you! I also want to thank everyone who has voted on the blog poll I posted a while ago, your votes really do help me figure out what kind of content I should continue to post. If you haven't voted yet I invite you to vote on the poll in the sidebar. Have a wonderful day everyone!