FAQs: Book Recommendations?
I am frequently asked what books I can recommend for people waiting for book 3 to come out. My answer to this question is always “well, it depends on what you like or what you’re looking for!” which isn’t terribly helpful, so I’m going to do my best with this list.
In order to not get overwhelmed by possibilities, I have restricted this list to 1. books that I have read in the past year or so, 2. books that have come out fairly recently, and 3. books that came to mind first. It is by no means intended to include all the books I have read and liked, or all the books that are good and worth reading within these categories. It’s just sort of off the cuff.
Still on a dystopia kick?
Delirium by Lauren Oliver
Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi
Feeling a sci-fi vibe?
Insignia by S.J. Kincaid
What’s Left Of Me by Kat Zhang
Across the Universe by Beth Revis
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Sci-fi with more action?
False Memory by Dan Krokos
Excellent YA fantasy?
The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
How about something beautiful and creepy?
Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma
A hybrid of contemporary and fantastical?
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
Straight up contemporary?
Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard
A Midsummer’s Nightmare by Kody Keplinger
The List by Siobhan Vivian
Favorites: Scenes, Generally
Sometimes while I’m writing I struggle to figure out what to blog about, because my brain is so firmly lodged in Divergentland that there isn’t much to say except “ALMOST DONNNNNEEEEEE,” which really isn’t helpful. Anyway, in these times I usually rely on reader questions to spark blog ideas, and recently I got this one: what’s your favorite kind of scene to write?
So I’m going to do a series of “favorites” posts, because I do often wonder about authors’ favorites— favorite scenes in particular books, favorite characters, favorite parts of the process, etc. Today I’ll stick with that original question, though— my favorite kind of scene.
The person who asked this question wondered if romantic scenes are my favorite, and the answer is, well, not really. Not that I don’t enjoy writing those scenes, but my first drafts of them are always very clinical, like “and then this happened and soandso did this and then there was this.” And then I have to revise several times to make those scenes sound less like a list of actions and more like, well, actual scenes that you want to read.
No, my favorite scenes are always denouement scenes. Oh, look, a vocab word!
Denouement: the final outcome of the main dramatic complication in a literary work. (According to Merriam Webster.)
Most books follow the same dramatic structure: they begin, there’s rising action, that action reaches a peak, or climax, and then the story winds down until the end. It’s that winding down part that I like best. (This was somewhat problematic in Insurgent, because there really was no denouement. I found other things to enjoy, though.)
I like those scenes for two reasons: first, I’ve usually fought so hard through the middle that it’s just a huge relief to reach the denouement, period. Second, there’s something peaceful about them, even if some terrible things happened in the climactic scenes, and something very organized— in the denouement you’re tying up all the loose ends, wrapping everything up, making sure you’ve touched on everything. It puts my Type A mind at ease.
Coming in second place are probably “building romantic tension” scenes. So, not the actual smooching, but the little tense interactions beforehand. Like the entire Ferris wheel scene. Or that time Tris randomly grabs Four’s hand. I guess I mostly just love how intense and significant it is when you make contact with someone before you’re sure of what you mean to each other. I still remember the first time I casually touched my husband’s arm— I would have done that to anyone, in the course of conversation, but because it was him it felt like ZING, heat, nerves, heartbeat. And trying to figure out how someone else feels about you in those early stages is an extremely nerve-wracking, exciting guessing game. I like to play it with my characters.
Anyway, there you have it: my favorite scenes, generally.
Why I Dislike The "Take A Picture of a Transgender Person who Passes and Post it To urge Equality" Thing
There seems to be more and more people posting pictures of transgender people who “pass.” But to me this doesn’t seem to help. It’s almost like “see, we conform to your gender standards too, so can we be equal now?” Gender is a spectrum and we shouldn’t be teaching people that we can conform, we should be teaching people not to judge based off of what they see.
Do you guys know any tweakers like @vikki-xo?
ya i have an entire list of them. i bookmark theme makers
i have more. if none of them interest you, feel free to ask.
A Guide to Marriage and Inheritance in FE Awakening
I’ve played Awakening an awful lot, as you might have guessed, and after numerous playthroughs I think I’m finally starting to hone in on some “ideal” pairings. I thought I’d write down my discoveries in marriage and inheritance thus far in hopes that they’ll help out anyone who needs it. Keep in mind - while based on extensive experience, these pairings/inheritance options are still tailored to my particular playstyle and, as such, should be taken with a grain of salt.
Let’s start from the top, with the big, bad, bossman and his marriage options.
Chrom: best with Sumia or Olivia, preferably the latter. Automatically passes down Aether to daughters, Rightful King to a son. His wife of choice should pass down Galeforce.
Sumia: good with either Chrom or Gaius. Very limited marriage options, but Cynthia is worth investing one of these two powerful husbands in for sure. Have her pass down Galeforce and her husband pass down either Aether (chrom) or Counter (Gaius).
Olivia: good with Chrom in particular, but also does well with Lon’qu and Gaius, who both help in making a very fast and well-balanced Inigo. Pass down Galeforce from her and Astra/Counter from LQ/Gaius respectively.
Maribelle: very good with Henry, but can easily pair up with another magic user like Ricken or Libra. Henry gives Brady the Sorcerer class, however, which is a huge boon. He also keeps Brady’s stats more balanced than Libra, who can pass on Sorcerer as well. As usual - pass down Galeforce from Maribelle. Pass down either Counter or Tomefaire from the father.
Cordelia: awesome with Gaius, good with LQ, works well with just about anyone with good SKL/SPD mods. I recommend prioritizing her pairing because Severa has incredible potential. Pass down Galeforce and either Counter or Astra/Swordfaire.
Lissa: hard to match up. If you want good magic, Libra and Henry are good choices. If you want balance, Vaike is good. Vaike x Lissa makes a fearsome Dread Fighter Owain, for what that’s worth. Lissa should pass down GF, Libra can pass down Lifetaker or Tomefaire, Henry can pass on Counter or Lifetaker, and Vaike should pass down Counter or Sol.
Sully: Sully has kind of “meh” modifiers, so you should just pair her up with someone left over from your other pairings. I find myself often pairing her with Virion, who augments her SKL/SPD nicely. If unmarried, Stahl is probably her best option. Although I would recommend marrying him to someone else for better results. Sully should pass down Aegis, Virion should pass down Lifetaker. If you end up picking Stahl, he should pass down Astra.
Panne: Panne has some of the better modifiers in the game, but some pretty lame class options. Marrying her to Gregor or Stahl is ideal. It doesn’t matter much what she passes down… Swordbreaker or Lethalithy are decent. Gregor should pass down Astra or Sol, Stahl should pass down Aegis or Astra.
Nowi: Nowi’s ideal partner is Donnel. He will keep Nah nicely balanced with a surge of luck to make use of Armsthrift very effectively (dstones are expensive after all). Nowi should pass down Lifetaker and Donnel should pass down Aptitude. Kellam also works for awesome defense - he should pass down Pavise.
Miriel: Ricken is a good match for Miriel. Libra and Henry work as well, but don’t make quite as powerful a Laurent. With Tome Toddler Ricken as his daddy, Laurent will have peerless MAG. Miriel should pass down Lifetaker and Ricken should pass down Aegis.
Tharja: another magic user. Once again, her options are Ricken, Henry, and Libra. I would recommend Libra here, since I think Henry is better suited to Maribelle and Ricken is better suited to Miriel. She should pass down Pavise and Libra should pass down Lifetaker or Tomefaire.
Cherche: with the highest STR modifier of any woman in the game, Cherche packs a punch. And Gerome should too. Pair her up with Vaike or Stahl for the best results. She should pass down Swordbreaker or Renewal, Stahl should pass down Aegis, and Vaike should pass down Counter or Axefaire.
Note: I did not include My Unit because he/she has so many options that revolve around what asset/flaw the player picked at the beginning of the game. However, it is worth noting that My Unit almost always pairs best with a child character.
Hope this helps everyone! :)
A Few Important Things to Know About Buddhism
This is an edited version of an article I wrote by the same title on my personal blog.
#1. There is no required ritual of initiation into Buddhism.
No baptism, creed, or anything. Traditionally all you do is to say,
“I take refuge in the Buddha,
I take refuge in the dharma (his teachings),
I take refuge in the sangha (the community of people that follow the Buddha and his teachings)”.
That’s it! There’s nothing more to it. I did it about 3 years ago when I was lying on the floor looking up at the ceiling. Nothing special. That’s because all of life should be special. There’s no magic bath, no sword placed on your shoulder, nothing like that. All of life is ‘magic’.
You’re also not required to attend a temple every Sunday.
This is because, unlike religious traditions in the West, Buddhism isn’t an institutional religion. In other words, in Buddhism your attendance to a temple isn’t relevant to your salvation. However, that is not to undermine the practice of Western religions in any way, nor that there is no value in attending a Buddhist temple.
On the contrary! Attending a Buddhist temple will reinforce and encourage your practice, and you will find people that share similar interests and problems.
In fact, I highly recommend that you do. However, in Buddhism it is only optional.
#2 Buddhism does not worship an ultimate God.
Buddhism doesn’t place an emphasis on whether or not there’s a Creator responsible for the Universe. According to Huston Smith, Buddhism is more pragmatic and psychological than it is metaphysical . The focus is being liberated from suffering, which is called Nirvana—the ultimate goal in Buddhism.
However, there certainly is nothing wrong if a Buddhist believes there is a God.
The term “Buddha”, by the way, does not mean “god” or “God”. It literally means “the awakened one”. A person who has overcome suffering and is entirely at peace.
#3 There is no creation story.
Again, this is because Buddhism is a religion that isn’t concerned so much with metaphysical speculation—that is, it does not guess what the afterlife may be like, where we come from, and so on.
The Buddha didn’t create the Universe, nor did he didn’t rest on the 7th day or anything like that. In fact, in the Hinduism of his time, it was always assumed that the Universe had always existed since beginning-less time.
The Buddha once said this, “My job is to show you suffering, and the way out of suffering. Nothing more”.
#4 There is no “sin” per say in Buddhism.
“Sin” here meant in the sense of committing an action that might offend a higher being. This isn’t the case in Buddhism. Instead, in Hinduism and Buddhism, it is well-understood that all actions have a consequence. This is called karma. Thus:
- If we make negative choices, negative results are bound to occur.
- If we make neutral choices, neutral results will occur.
- If we make positive choices, positive results are bound to occur.
People have a choice every second of their lives, and they can always turn around. They must learn to forgive themselves before they can forgive others. Instead of self-blame, Buddhism encourages us to gain self-understanding and from there, forgive ourselves.
However, karma is a very complex subject, so I will go more into detail about it later. Right now that we are at a beginner stage, let’s not worry too much about it.
#5 On Reincarnation
In Hindu and Buddhist cosmology, our actions determine our destiny. Therefore, our actions in our earthly life determine our next life. This concept of cyclical life is called reincarnation.
Life can be filled with pleasure, but eventually all thrills get old. Sometimes, people—despite their pleasures, money, wealth, or fame—get the feeling that they’ve had that before. They no longer feel satisfied with those things. That is because when things repeat too much, they become undesirable.
Imagine that somebody offers you a pancake. Is it yummy? Most likely yes. How about a second one? Is it yummy? Sure, why not. How about a third one? Is it yummy still? Maybe, maybe not… How about a hundred pancakes after that? Pretty soon, we start to feel disgusted with the same taste of pancake over and over again.
That is the case with the Hindu worldview from which the Buddha drew influence. This constant cycle of life, and death, and rebirth becomes tiresome, even nauseating.
And because every time we come to love things and people, we end up hurting ourselves because all things are impermanent.
Therefore, the point in Buddhism is to escape rebirth and suffering by attaining Nirvana.
And while there is reincarnation in Buddhism, a Buddhist is not required to believe in reincarnation. As a matter of fact, there is little required to “believe in” in Buddhism.
#6 On Belief
One time the Buddha said to the Kalama peoples to not believe everything they hear, even from a teacher with a good reputation. Instead, the Buddha advised us to find for ourselves whether the practices are “skillful, blameless, praised by the wise, [and whether they] lead to welfare and happiness” .
Then he said before dying,
“If I ever taught you something that is harmful, then immediately throw it away. If I ever taught you something that was helpful, then keep it”.
Therefore, we can agree that Buddhism is a religion not concerned with doctrine as much as it is concerned with practice. Practice compassion and develop wisdom and self-insight. That’s the idea.
#7 The Buddha Does Not Discriminate
The Buddha was a very loving person, and sees all of us as his children. Also, in Buddhism everybody already is a Buddha. You just gotta realize your true naturally-good nature. Once you realize that, then you realize that the Noble Eightfold Path is not a set of rules; they are merely a set of ‘recommendations’ that naturally start occuring as you go through life listening to your true self.
Buddhism doesn’t clash with most other religions on the basis of doctrine. You could practice Christianity and practice Buddhism at the same time, if you so chose. The historical Buddha said that there has been many before him, and will be many more Buddhas after him. A person who understands the nature of reality and practices compassion to the fullest is considered a Buddha. In Buddhism, Jesus and Gandhi are some examples of what could be considered enlightened.
Buddhism does not exclude the value of other religions. It acknowledges that we are all on a path, and that as long as that path leads to be compassionate and selfless beings, it is a good thing.
Buddhism, therefore embraces all religions as useful for achieving peace.
Finally Buddhism, as you can see, is not a religion that is based on belief. What you believe is up to you, and it’s fine with Buddhism as long as it leads you to truth, compassion, and the end of suffering. It is about putting those teachings into practice.
The Buddha said, “However many holy words you read, what good are they if you don’t put them into action?”
The ultimate goal in Buddhism is not to reach some heaven out there, but to be happy in this life, and—while at least not being a pain in the butt for others—make others happy.
Therefore! If you ever find a temple, zendo, dharma center, etc. that tells you otherwise (pressuring payments, being intolerant, discriminative, dogmatic, etc.), I encourage you to think twice about attending such a place. Be careful for people pretending to teach the dharma, but be on the lookout for compassion, too.
Hi :) Can you recommend tumblogs who do Photoshop tutorials? Thank you :)
sure (some are not tumblr blogs but they have useful tutorials too ) .. you’re welcome !
Anonymous asked tweakingitup for links to themes
When someone blames Hitler for the deaths of "11 million people" please show them this.
The World Almanac for 1947 states that back in 1939 the world Jewish population was 15,688,259. The Almanac’s figures were supplied by the American Jewish Committee. Next the Jewish-owned New York Times of February 22, 1948 stated the world Jewish population for that year amounted “to 15,600,000 to 18,700,000 in addition to the 600,000 to 700,000 living in Palestine.” How could the Jewish population increase so rapidly over the war years if they had lost 6,000,000 people?
The International Red Cross had already reported in 1946 that of registered Jewish camp inmates no more than 300,000 could have died, and their audit to December 31, 1984 records a total 282,077 registered deaths of all internees in all German Concentration Camps from all causes.
Heinrich Himmler, chief of the Concentration Camps issued orders on December 28, 1942, that “The death rate in the concentration camps must be reduced at all costs” (Reitlinger, “The Final Solution”). The camps had been hit with a deadly typhus epidemic that spread by fleas and body lice. Stomach pain, high fever, emaciation and death can quickly follow. All of the camps were factories and the loss of workers was hurting war production. Inspector of the camps, Richard Glucks responded to Himmler’s order on January 20, 1943, “Every means will be used to lower the death rates” (Nuremberg Tribunal Document No. 1523).
On April 10, 1943, Oswald Pohl, head of the Economic Administration Office of the camps issued a letter stating that persons with tuberculosis were being sent to the camps resulting in the “shockingly high mortality figures” (Nuremberg Documents). Later, on September 30, 1943, Pohl was able to show that the camp death rate had been reduced from 8.5% in July, 1942 to 2.8% in June 1943.
The German SS arrested Buchenwald Commandant, Karl Koch in 1943 for mistreating and even executing some prisoners. After an investigation Koch was found guilty by SS Judge Konrad Morgen and shot. Does this sound like a policy of “extermination?”
So only 300000 died, mostly of diseases/starvation. No innocents were executed. Gas chambers were used to disinfect prisoners from getting Typhus, not kill them….and if someone thinks gas chambers killed millions of Jews, PLEASE show a single autopsy proving that? You can’t though, because there is none.
According to my birth certificate my full name is Raynald Ison Javaluyas, derived from my father’s name “Reynaldo”, but I prefer to be called Rj or Abarai (whichever you prefer) I’m currently living in Dubai UAE, a Licensed Nurse both here and the Philippines.
I’m 5’ 9” in height, 67 Kilograms in weight and older than you (that’s for sure).
Whatever you read here is strictly confidential. don’t share it on your facebook page or your twitter account, its just between you and me ok? so here goes.
This is my profession now whether I like or Not, I worked in one of the Private hospitals in the Philippines and now here in Dubai. even though nursing is not really my dream job, I’m enjoying it now in some point, especially when people acknowledge your effort. its the best feeling you can have aside from good compensation.
The Wannabe Photographer:
I finally had a chance to buy a new set of Cam, I sold my Old Nikon D40 way back and had it replaced by a Nikon D90 +50mm Prime lense and a Basic Di466 Speedlight. I’m still learning the kicks of doing more advance shots since I haven’t had a chance to do it with my Basic Kit lens before. I started this PROJECT 365 where in I will (try to) post a day to day picture of whatever captures my heart. so expect some floods of photos in the near future.
Some of my shots here
The Epic-Fail Part Time Model:
I don’t really made it big here. the picture above is not even a real photoshoot. it just to give you an idea on how I look like when i’m still on that era. well anyway, its one of my “What if?” in life, the time where I almost had a chance to change my life, too bad my confidence way back then is not that tough. I was offered indie movies, commercial and even ramp shows but I declined and chicken out. I even had a Talent manager and signed a contract in one of the Talent Agencies in Makati. the only thing i had are some amateur photo shoot from some fine arts student and one RRJ jeans ramp show. and that’s it.
The Born Artist:
Art is my way of expressing my thoughts. doodles, paintings, digital vectors and such. I’m an artist at heart, I’m your guy when it comes to creating stuff made of pen & paper, photoshop, canvas & brush, name it. I founded an Art organization in my college days. art is my passion. art is my life.
more artwork goodness here
The Ambitious Architect:
In Lieu to my artistic craft, I’m also fond of architectural design, this is really my first choice when i’m still looking for a course to take in my early college days. but due to the trend of nursing, I was forced to follow my parents decision. but even though, I managed to design my own room with my own ideas.(see picture above) after that, some condominium from a friend and lastly the layout for my sister’s house. I like modern design and minimalist concepts. If the chance is still there, in future, I will be an Architect.
more photos here
The Crazy Writer:
I’m not really vocal when it comes to what I want to express, so I put it in letters. Writing is one of my means to channel my inner thoughts. I did a couple of stories even before tumblr exist. I have draft of stories in every corner of my gadgets. when inspiration strikes, I jot it right down on whatever device i’m holding.
I created this Tumblrserye not to gain fame or something. its just one of my crazy ideas to inject my wild imagination to the site where I publish them.
link to my stories here
The Tech Savy Guy:
I should at least include this here, since its a big part of me.this picture is outdated. some of the stuff above is either stolen, replaced or sold. like a normal human being ,collecting stuff is also my passion. aside from my Baseball cap and FHM magazine collection I have/had when I’m still a teenager, Collecting Gadgets are one of them. game consoles, Desktop, Smartphones, Music player and such. name it. I’m not rich so most of them are just refurbished or pre-owned. I really have a thing for technology since I’m a computer junky and I spent almost (maybe) half of my life in-front of the computer.
The Music Enthusiast:
I’m not a singer but I love to sing, I’m not a guitarist but I know how to play, It’s one of the things that I cant live without. Music is my passion, music is what makes my mood. it gives me this connection to what music I play, sing or hear. this is also a big part of me. because without music, my life would me boring.
Things that are not that relevant but worth mentioning:
- I’m a CANCER survivor
- I used to be FAT and UGLY, now im just UGLY
- I’m Left handed
- I love anything Japanese
- I ‘m a good Cook
- I have a Huge TOOL *lol*
So that’s it, thank you for reading this whole thing. that’s very kind of you! you may not know me personally, but at least this FAQ’s will give you an idea of what kind of person I am. don’t hesitate to leave a message if you want to discuss something. I don’t bite. seriously.
Hi, can u make a psd? sorry if a bother you :D
i really suck TT_TT but i can recommed you some sites to lookout fro psds :)