9 awkward moments with that office eye candy

1. Weird eye contact

When he walks past your table and you’re secretly like

 photo sungmincheekysmile_zps6e68b5cb.gif

But then he suddenly looks your way and you’re like

 photo siwonsurprised_zpse19485ee.gif

Wait … is that a smile? Should I smile back?

 photo zooeydeschanelcreepysmile_zpsdb877c16.gif

Too late.

 photo dammitdammitdammit_zpsbe5c15f8.gif

2. The water cooler walk

Is he heading for the water cooler now? Damn, I’m thirsty too.

 photo kyusprayinwater_zps337c6045.gif

3. Facebook stalking

Nothing?! Why is he so mysterious?

 photo zooeydeschanelintrigued_zpsdafb33fa.gif

4. Lunch break

He’s lunching at his table alone again! Should you ask him out for lunch?

 photo amandaseyfriendmeangirls_zpscce10df2.gif

… Yeah, just a thought.

 photo krystalareyoucrazy_zps4380c150.gif

 photo thatscrazy_zpscb6c54f0.gif

5. At the cafeteria

Oh, shit. He’s there getting lunch. Turn back or say hi?

 photo ronweasleyfailwave_zps3233fcc4.gif

6. When you’re lunching in

Do I have food down my shirt? Oh crap, please don’t let him turn around when I’m wolfing down this chicken.

 photo ronweasleyeating_zpsaa1869d1.gif

7. At office parties

Some cake for you? Not you. You.

 photo donghaeyouyesyou_zpsa7c2d036.gif

8. Lift encounters

You’re in the same lift as him! Enclosed space! BUT. He’s with a friend and they’re talking about some trip he just came back from. Should you join in or hope for this unending lift ride to end?

9. Klutz alert!

When you think you’re all

 photo samwinchesterfabulous_zps9f2490fc.gif

That’s the moment you end up like this

 photo clumsypenguin_zps9feb82b3.gif

And he TOTALLY SAW.

 photo jlawsarcasticokay_zps7523e06c.gif

Crushes are much more effort than they’re worth sometimes.

Advertisements

some Disney (boy) loving!

Nathan Bransford offers some advice to writers struggling with their manuscripts:

Force yourself to get going – That very normal hump that you have to get over to force yourself to sit down and start writing when you don’t want to can feel like Mount Everest when you’re stressed out. So start climbing. Open up the computer, make yourself get started.

Don’t be afraid to cut back – Even if you do power through and keep writing during a stressful time, chances are you’re not going to be as productive as you are normally. That’s just the nature of being distracted. Plan ahead for this and don’t put extra pressure on yourself to maintain the same pace.

Also, more hard but very sound advice from author Charles Finch over at Writer’s Digest. These particularly stood out:

PATIENCE

To me, the single biggest mark of the amateur writer is a sense of hurry.

Hurry to finish a manuscript, hurry to edit it, hurry to publish it. It’s definitely possible to write a book in a month, leave it unedited, and watch it go off into the world and be declared a masterpiece. It happens every fifty years or so.

For the rest of us, the single greatest ally we have is time. There’s no page of prose in existence that its author can’t improve after it’s been in a drawer for a week. The same is true on the macro level – every time I finish a story or a book, I try to put it away and forget it for as long as I can. When I return, its problems are often so obvious and easy to fix that I’m amazed I ever struggled with them.

Amateur writers are usually desperate to be published, as soon as possible. And I understand that feeling – you just want it to start, your career, your next book, whatever. But I wonder how many self-published novels might have had a chance at getting bought, and finding more readers, if their authors had a bit more patience with them?

HABIT

“Routine, in an intelligent man, is a sign of ambition.”  ~W.H. Auden

If there’s a single idea I emphasize when people ask about writing, it’s that there’s no right way to produce a book.  But I do think that whatever you do, you should do regularly, whether it’s waking up at midnight and drinking vodka or waking up at dawn and drinking tea … The more consistent your habits are – and this ties into having your tools nailed down – the more secure your brain will be to run free and create.

PRACTICE

There’s more mystical nonsense written about the process of writing than almost anything. Inspiration, genius, “the muse”. So I want to lay out one huge, comforting, wonderful fact: the more you write, the better you get at it. Writing is like a forehand or driving a car or playing guitar. Practice makes you better.

That’s not to say inspiration and genius don’t exist.  Not everyone can become Tolstoy through hard work. What it means is that, wherever you start, you can improve. And the way to do it is to write a lot.

As long as you produce a little something every day, every week, in time, invisibly, you’ll get better. Trailing behind every successful writer are a million words that never saw the light of day. Sometimes it takes five million words. The most important piece of writing advice anyone can give or get is simple, and therefore can seem uninteresting, but it’s true: just keep writing.

Okay, enough of the serious stuff. Time for something frivolous – Disney!

Some life lessons that Tangled apparently teaches.

Some more life lessons that Disney movies teach.

And a few more:

Okay, the last two probably aren’t the best lessons to take home!

And this one … I just find it funny. It’s about Flynn Rider from Tangled. He’s not my favourite Disney male lead (that would be John Smith from Pocahontas), but he’s becoming one of my favourites.

Speaking of Disney boys, ever wondered what they would look like in real life?

I knew I was into Prince Phillip for a reason!

Although I’m not complaining about the Hemsworth brothers and Ryan Pretty-Face Reynolds, I don’t agree fully with this list. For instance, wouldn’t Ian Somerhalder be better suited for Prince Eric, with his raven hair and electric blue eyes?

Well, hell-o!

Or Jamie Campbell Bower for Prince Adam (aka Beast from Beauty and the Beast)?

I’m hopeless when they have hair like this and a smile like that.

Or Sam Claflin?

And, um, Jared Padalecki for Flynn Rider?

Oh, Moose!

Which Disney guys were your favourites?

I’ve always been into Prince Eric and Prince Philip (from Sleeping Beauty) because:

Eric’s hair! Eric’s eyes! Eric in that white shirt!

 photo princeeric_zps0707fed3.gif

TOTAL. DREAMBOAT. Though my favourite Disney princess was Aurora (aka Sleeping Beauty), Ariel totally had a sweeter deal.

But Prince Philip wasn’t that bad either. He had style – who else can pull off that jaunty cap and cape combo?

Plus, so broody.

 photo princephilip_zps05918de8.gif

Broody boys are a pain in real life, but in Disney, they’re just yummy.

Yes, even back then I was a superficial piece of shit. Haha.

BUT.

It wasn’t until I got older and rewatched Pocahontas (my all-time favourite Disney cartoon) that I learned to appreciate John Smith.

 photo johnsmith_zpsc80fc027.gif

“I’d rather die tomorrow than live a hundred years without knowing you.” My favourite line out of all the Disney movies. Swooooooon! ❤

 photo john_zps25bd21a9.gif

This moment when they first met was pretty darn magical too. Swoon swoon love! ❤

Besides, doesn’t John Smith look like a blonde Daniel Henney, especially in the lips?

Okay, I think that’s enough male appreciation for one post. How about some male un-appreciation.

You know you should back the hell off when a girl has that reaction to you!

How about some girl talk? Disney/Mean Girls crossover, anybody?

I love how well-cast the Disney princesses are: Ariel the redhead as Cady Heron, spacey-eyed blonde Cinderella as ditsy Karen Smith and Queen Bee Aurora as Regina George!

(By the way, can you believe Mean Girls is 10 years old? I watched it when I was 15! Man, I feel old.)

Happy mid-week! :0)

PRETTY is a lovely word (as is LOVELY)

Ex-literary agent and author Nathan Bransford dishes out some hard truths:

The thing people should really be worried about is whether they have the willpower to write a novel. That is the hard part. The setting aside of time, powering through when it stops being fun, and getting the whole thing written and edited.

I think I’ve said before that writing can be lonely at times. It’s just you and your words. You slaving over your story. You and your own thoughts that can easily morph into doubts. You don’t know if what you’re writing is any good, if anyone will ever get to read it, much less love it. And because of that, you’re hesitant about showing anyone your work. And then it becomes REALLY just you and your story. After a while (usually around the middle), your story starts to get tiresome, and you’re not sure if you should just give up on the whole endeavour.

But then you remember how immensely gratifying it had been to complete your previous stories. And you decide to push through.

Aww thanks, Ryan!

So that’s where I am now, trying to keep up my flagging enthusiasm for Neverland, keep my eye on the finishing line, so to speak.

Thank goodness for little reprieves such as these:

This has to be one of the most hilarious interviews of McFly I’ve seen. Alan Carr + the boys = a total riot!

This one NEVER gets old. Some people say this is a terribly display of how spoiled First World kids are, but I think they were crying about the injustice of losing what they’d earned (how much trick-or-treating do you have to do to get two bags of candy?)  more than they were crying about the candy itself (though, of course, they were crying about the candy too).

And this! Another classic: Dominic Monahan prank-interviews Elijah Wood.

I died laughing.

And to those who say Orlando Bloom is just a pretty face who can’t take the piss out of himself, check out this video:

Still love him. Once my Legolas/Will Turner, always my Legolas/Will Turner!

 photo Donghaeprettyeyes_zpsb88cf928.gif

Oops. Those eyes though!

.

.

.

.

.

Sigh. Is it any wonder why the writing’s going slowly?

Anyway, remember Graffiti Moon, that wildly beautiful contemporary YA book by Cath Crowley that I raved about a while back? I only just discovered her blog (how did I only find it now?!) and OMG it might be one of my favourite blogs now, along with Laini TaylorNathan Bransford and Maggie Stiefvater’s. I mean, just look at these random gems Cath posts!

Some prose (click on the link for the full piece!):

Someone will offer you the last page of your life today. You won’t know it’s the last page. They won’t say and you won’t ask.

They’ll be waiting for you on a corner that you walk past every day. You’ll think maybe you recognise them. It’s something about the way they’re clicking the thumb and index finger of their left hand together when they speak – you do that all the time, you’ll think.

So you’ll take the page, they know you’ll take the page because you’re that kind of person. You say sorry when it’s not really a sorry kind of situation. You say sorry at least five hundred times a day. You counted once. It’s a habit. You don’t even know where you picked it up.

You’ll get a strange kind of feeling when you walk down the street. The sky, an uncut blue overhead and the mist coming out of your mouth like a ghost. At one stage you might get the idea that you can suck the cold air right back inside. You can’t, you’ll realise. Air that’s breathed is breathed for good.

The paper will stay in your pocket all day – maybe along with a couple of chocolate wrappers and a piece of gum you didn’t know what to do with because you couldn’t find a bin.

You’ll probably touch it a couple of times during the day – feel the corner when you talk to the one you want but spend most of the time looking at the air just to the left of their ears. Maybe you’ll touch it when your boss says you messed up and you believe him.

In the end you’ll take it out and read it on the train. You’ll be coming home like everyone else, watching the blur of lights out the window, the glass between you and the night, between you and the breath of stars.

Some poetry:

You is my mad aching ship

My sad puzzled light

My honey ocean

My late night, impossible wish

I’m sure the grammatical choice (“is”) is there for a reason, but I don’t want to delve into literary criticism here.

And some more prose:

You’ll look up today. You’ll notice the sky. It might be streaky or blue or brushed with white buckled clouds but there will be a piece of it that seems exactly right. You might take a photograph so that you can remember.

You’ll think about the words that you love – maybe nova and opal and shadow and nest. Maybe flicker and frost, kismet or linger. Maybe bliss. Maybe kiss.

SO MUCH BEAUTY in her words. All that imagery! So tender and sweet it’s almost heart-breaking. I just want to hug those words…

Like this!

 photo samtoopreciousforthisworld_zps0c3e47eb.gif

MAD MAAAAAD LOVE! I wish I had her sensitivity for words. Graffiti Moon was gorrrrgeous. It’s just the kind of intense, bittersweet, funny, poignant contemporary YA romance centred around two characters looking for themselves and each other that I wish I had written. Or will someday be able to write with much much aplomb.

Speaking of pretty words, there’s something soothing about finding pretty art in the sinkhole that is Pinterest on a lovely blue-skied morning.

Wolf painting by chantelyoung on Etsy
a painting by Carson Ellis for Wildwood, a lovely MG book series by Colin Meloy
Obviously, Quentin Blake.
The Little Prince by Woo Hee Kwon

Okay okay okay. Enough procrastinating. I’m gone. Have a great week, everyone! :0)

a post of random things (it’s Friday – anything goes!)

This is going to be a whole post about random, unrelated stuff. But whatever. Nobody said everything in life has to be related.

1. Have you seen Zuhair Murad’s spring/summer 2014 collection?!?! IT. IS. INSANE. SO. GORGEOUS. CAN’T. FORM. COHERENT. SENTENCES. THOUGHTS. WHAT? PRETTY. I DIE.

 photo vanessahudgensexcited_zpsbee55c06.gif

Get ready for the onslaught of pretty! (Pictures all found from Pinterest – I swear, that site is a Black Hole!)

Don’t these remind you of Elie Saab’s designs? Murad’s creations are pretty similar to Elie Saab (also a Lebanese designer), except that the latter’s designs are a tad more girly and feminine and dreamy, while Murad’s are a little bolder, more risque, and contain sexier elements.

Saab’s designs:

Elie Saab can do no wrong.

Soooooo dreamy and ethereal!!

 photo rapunzelexcited_zps24772edc.gif

❤❤❤

I’ve been in love with Elie Saab’s designs ever since I first laid eyes on them, while Zuhair Murad’s designs are usually a hit or miss for me. Remember those crazy numbers Kristen Stewart wore to the Breaking Dawn premieres?

… Yeah. Not completely crazy about those. Good thing for her makeup in both instances, though.

But Murad’s SS14 collection is LOVE. LOOOOOVE!

2. So it seems apart from writing good stories, being a people person is also vital to a lucrative writing career:

If you’re in business, you’ve got to be a people person … Be genuine, be funny, be yourself. Reach out to your contacts and connections to build bridges. Go to writer’s workshops and befriend everyone there. Talk to everyone you meet in your town, and tell them what you do. Organic and sincere networking is the best way to develop a bridge to success. The friend you meet at the workshop could introduce you to his or her agent. However, don’t go into it thinking about what you’ll get out. Just focus on relationship building and the rest will flow naturally.

This does not bode well for a hermit like me. For the sake of my dream, however, I will do what needs to be done.

3. Here’s something funny that English majors can probably relate to. I know there a quite a few that ring true for me. Most ardently ;0)

Crush on fictional characters?

Check.

(Shiver remains my favourite book from Maggie Stiefvater. There is nothing quite like reading that beautiful, intense story for the first time.)

Geeking out on authors?

YesIWouldThinkSo.

Wow. I really seem thisclose to kissing the ground she walks on. So, check.

In love with my book collection?

Check.

(Speaking of books, I headed down to the bookstore two days ago and got my hands on Wonder Show by Hannah Barnaby. Yay for new book purchases!)

And one more thing:

Isn’t that the worst?

4. An update on Neverland: it’s slow going but it’s going. Can’t ask for more than that sometimes. I don’t know where it will take me for sure, or how it will meander towards the end, but I’m having fun on this journey so far.

At least Neverland isn’t as disappointing as Blood Promise.

My critique partner has just finished reading Blood Promise (a million thanks, Jenna!!), and although she was very very kind and constructive with her feedback, the bottom-line is that she didn’t love it like I hoped she would.

 photo samanddeanuglycrying_zps79b446cb.gif

I feel SO BAD, like I’d just wasted her time making her read a substandard story. I actually don’t hate Blood Promise. I actually thought it was better than it had been previously. But I get this way: I’d love my story if people gave me positive feedback, and absolutely hate it when they’re not crazy about it.

And once Jenna said it out, I saw the truth in her words. It did need more work. I probably did need some time away from it, until I heard the story that begged to be told. Because Jenna may just be one reader, but she’s also representative of my target audience. Listen to your readers, I say!

If anyone’s willing to invest some time in reading my manuscript, I’d be happy to hear your thoughts on it! In the meantime, I’m hiding out in Neverland.

5. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t bummed after reading Jenna’s email. While I deeply appreciate her forthrightness (why are people so afraid of hurting a writer’s feelings? Just tell me honestly what you think and I’ll be eternally grateful!), I am desperate for some perk-me-up right now.

So…

Awwww!
Paros, Greece
FABULOUS pink hair! LOVE, WISH, WANT.
Russian doll cookies! SO cute.

Can you tell I’m a sucker for guys with hair falling over their eyes?

And finally:

Love these boys (plus the drummer, Harry, who isn’t in here)! They’re one of the few groups that sound good live, write their own songs and have lasted for almost a decade (has it really been that long?!). Long live McFly!

Goodbye, Nelson (and other news)

Woke up this morning to learn that Nelson Mandela has passed away. He died in his home at the age of 95, after succumbing to a lung infection. I don’t like to write tributes to famous people and pretend like I knew the guy so well to pass judgement on the things he did or said. It just feels like I’m jumping in on the bandwagon, like how everyone who’d pretty much forgotten about Michael Jackson suddenly became his fan again after he passed away. But Nelson Mandela fought – hard – for peace and love and equality, and for that alone I think I should at least share something beautiful that he’d once said:

And my personal favourite:

nelson mandela quote 2

This can be applied to so many things in life and is thus such a powerful, empowering statement. Mandela embarked on a tumultuous journey to lead South Africa out of its apartheid shadow, and emerged victorious in the end. Despite his illness, I think leaving at 95 only means he’s led a deep and full life.

*

In less somber (and more self-absorbed) news, this is what happened to me this morning on my way to work and at work (though not in that order). You know sometimes when you see a cute guy who sort of smiles at you that you’re supposed to go:

 photo cuteemmastone_zpsb799b846.gif

But then what you end up doing is:

 photo lookaway_zps4efa40d6.gif

And then afterward you’re all like:

 photo 1329500787_chloe_moretz_reaction_zps398db391.gif

And:

 photo dammitdammitdammit_zpsfc922366.gif

But then you walk on the street and a semi-cute guy goes:

 photo joey-how-you-doing_zps3a9b6d0f.gif

And you’re like:

 photo samwinchesterfabulous_zps9f2490fc.gif

But then you trip on your foot and it’s like:

Please tell me I’m not alone in this.