Guys I got this cool badge! Out of the blue! It was given to me by the fantastic Michaele Stoughton (@MLStoughton), apparently for my sidebar-writing skills. Yesssssss.
On her blog, she states that the Liebster Award is for "blogs with fewer than 200 followers" and apparently has a running theme of 11.
The rules? Answer Michaele's 11 questions, nominate 11 bloggers, and then write up 11 new questions for those 11 nominees to answer on their blog. Like a pyramid scheme except wait no not like that at all.
(Go check out Michaele's answers to her 11 questions - they are great. And they're pretty much guaranteed to be more well-put and insightful than mine, eheheh.)
So onto answering Michaele's 11 questions!
1. What inspired you to start writing?
Tough question because I honestly don't know. Like, in kindergarten, we were supposed to write about our spring break, and then our stories would be published by the in-school "Publishing Shop" (meaning, our pages would be bound with plastic or cardboard covers. I wrote so much that I had to make 2 books. I was also an illustrator back then, haha.
I guess it's easier to say why I wanted to keep writing.
The Publishing Shop must have been a lot of it. There was something I loved about seeing my work bound more officially than by staples along the side, probably because I always loved reading, so seeing my work be closer to real books was inspiring. In third grade, I wrote my first book with chapters, and I received positive feedback from my classmates. Even then, I felt like I was bursting with ideas. This was encouraged when I figured out how to use my dad's typewriter.
My cousin Allie was also an adversary in gradeschool writing-like-mad-but-mostly-in-secret, so it was neat to have someone to talk to about it. She was even more prolific, and she showed me some of her techniques that I still use to this day (like writing by hand in composition books and how to notate passages you want to insert when using that method).
So I guess I was inspired by reading, and then encouraged by a lot of different things.
Oh gosh that was long. My other answers will be shorter, sorry.
2. What are your all-time favorite books?
Single books: The Sound and the Fury, Paper Towns, As I Lay Dying, and To Kill a Mockingbird.
Book series: The Harry Potter series, A Series of Unfortunate Events, and The Hunger Games. I should also mention The Bailey School Kids because I first became an avid reader because of them.
3. What would be the best thing about being published?
It's not guaranteed for any published work, but if a fandom came out of my work, that would be the best thing. Like, fanart, fan theories, fan interactions and just... knowing that I make people happy and give them a sense of community. I've seen fandoms save lives and that's so awesome. That's what I love about this era. It's never been easier to find connections over common interests.
But besides that, I guess just knowing that my work can make others happy, or at the very least, escape.
4. What is your greatest achievement in life so far, and why?
I feel like I've climbed a lot of hills but not a lot of mountains. Nothing stands out as a "greatest achievment." Nothing concrete, anyway. Maybe "maintaining a stable support system of family and friends" but that's more like "Okay so far so good" as opposed to something I've overcome or stretched to get when there was a deep lack. Erm. Sorry.
I'm pretty proud of my black belt in Tae Kwon Do, though.
5. Tell me about an embarrassing moment.
Freshman year of college, I auditioned for a musical theatre workshop, and we had to audition in front of our peers. I watched a bunch of excellent singers audition to great applause. When I sang, the director cut me off before I was done with my audition selection, which not only made it very clear that I was not going to be in, but it meant I'd just been pretty bad in front of a lot of cool students.
I really love where I grew up, which is in suburban Ohio. I don't know where my career will carry me, but I could see myself back there for good someday.
7. What is the most exciting thing you’ve ever done?
Last summer, my cousins and siblings and I took a limo to Chuck E. Cheese's. I've done other stuff that maybe should be more exciting but that's still something that makes me think, "Wow. That happened."
Oh and a year ago, my college's independent theatre association produced the musical I wrote. Whoops, maybe that should have been my first thing. But I mean... limo. Chuck E. Cheese.
8. Who would you be most excited to meet in person?
(I took this to mean "still alive.") Ah ha, I'm a dork. Andrew Hussie, Barack Obama, and JK Rowling top my list.
They say never meet your heroes, but whatever. I'd be happy to just shake their hands and thank them. Besides, AWOLNATION wrote a really great song about how disillusionment can set you free. At least, I think that's what it's about.
9. Fur, feathers, or scales. Pick one and tell me why.
Feathers. In middle school, I got really into bird-watching. There aren't many bird species in my old neighborhood, but it was still fun. I found out blue-jays like peanuts.
10. What are your biggest pet peeves?
Advertisements that use excessive or flat-out incorrect punctuation. It sets me on edge and makes me want to avoid their product.
Also, spitting. I am at my most mysophobic about saliva, including sneezing/coughing. It's not a fear of getting sick, it's just this thing about others' bodily fluids invading my personal space. Gross, right?
11. What are your hopes for 2013?
Oh man. Many, but I'll keep this one writing-focused. I really want to make progress on my WIP's stagnant condition. I've finally edited it to a point where I feel like I've worked out the kinks, but I'm so bad at queries and pitches. So even if I could steadily get requests for partials or fulls, that would be progress. 13 is my lucky number, so maybe this is even my year for an agent.
Woo, you made it through to the end of my answers, or managed to accurately scroll to this next section! Now, for my 11 nominees:
1. MJ Perry - MJ is one of my followers and has such an interesting blog that blends life + writing/book feedback and the writing style is smooth to read.
2. Cherstin - Self-proclaimed hipster and has laid down some cold hard facts about the point of Facebook. Takes guts, man.
3. Lisa McCourt Hollar - OK I'm shocked she's only at 174. She runs an awesome 55-Word-Challenge that everyone should check out. Plus, zombies.
4. Jeffrey Hollar - Runs the Monday Mixer challenges, which have, on multiple occasions, caused me to learn new vocabulary words. (For the record, that should encourage you to visit his site.)
5. Lily Tequila - Strong employer of imagery - and impressively consistent.
6. Jo - SHE NEEDS MORE FOLLOWERS because she runs an excellent blog. Seriously, I dunno how people like her aren't flooded with memberships. Also that thing she mentions about needing to come up with a written abbreviation for "usually"? YES WE NEED THAT thank you- I've wondered in the past about the same thing. (I think it'd be "uzh" but... yeah.)
7. Kai - Teen blogger and dedicated to the writing craft.
I've spent way too long looking up followers numbers and stuff so... I think I'm going to leave it at 7? Sorry! BUT oh yeah - I nominate anyone who follows this blog and meets the requirements! I couldn't find all of your blogsites (if you have them). But yeah please do this and send me the link to your response post!
Nominees, your questions!
1. What is the best piece of writing advice you've heard?
2. What is your most irrational fear?
3. Have you ever obsessed over some form of entertainment, like a book or a TV show? If so, what? (And how deep into the fandom did you go? If you drew fanart, I expect to see some fanart. :P)
4. What's your favorite way to beat writer's block?
5. Quick: pitch me a new TV show that's going to save my network!
6. The site Figment.com had this neat contest where you had to write a 6-word autobiography. So, taking a leaf from their book, what's your micro-fic bio? (You can use 5-10 words.)
7. Name something peculiar or weird that you just don't understand.
8. What's your favorite genre to read? To write? (Are they different?)
9. What are you reading now, or what was the last thing you read?
10. Is there a project you're excited about/anticipating, whether yours or someone else's? Care to share a bit about it?
11. [INSERT SHAMELESS PLUG HERE!] <--Go on, now's your chance! Talk about your blog, your WIP, or just post your Twitter handle. Anything you want. It's promotion that you don't have to feel weird about!
And here's the badge again so you can stick it on your blog!
Awesome, thanks guys. I really hope all the nominees consider accepting, and thanks again to Michaele for nominating me!