This Isn't Even For You

So, I'm not gonna lie to you anymore. This blog just isn't anywhere near my priority list. But it's not like you guys are missing out on anything anyway. It's like a win-win situation except that there isn't any winning involved.
So Brandon Sanderson, who I might have mentioned is my favorite author of all time, (I even got to meet him! Might talk about it later.) put out a challenge and I have taken it up! This scene I wrote is a snippet from a project that I am currently reworking from its previous status as a fanfic. So here it is.


"A self powering spaceship simply cannot exist."

"Uh huh."

"And yet we are flying in one."


"This makes no sense!"


"I am a scientist, and I can tell you that a self powering spaceship is impossible!"

"Of course."

"Are you even listening to me?"

"Uh huh."

"Would you put that newspaper down and look at me!?"

"Hey, look, there's a world where the Chicago Yankees won the Super Bowl."

"What the-? Never mind."

"Look, maybe you're just frustrated about this ship cuz you don't understand how it works."

"It violates several major laws of physics. All scientific reason says that this isn't possible."

"That depends on what kind of science you're talking about."

"There is one kind of science! One set of laws that the universe operates on."

"Isn't that a bit naive considering we're talking about the multiverse? You know, multiple universes and all that?"

"It shouldn't be any different."

"But it is. The way your science works is obviously very different from Eric's. I mean they don't even have guns on his world."

"Guns would work in his world, it's just that they don't have any because they have those - what did he call them?"


"Right, metaboosts. Those operate off of chemicals found in that world, but this - this just...can't!"

"And what about magic? Like me and Emily use?"

"Magic is...strange. I haven't had time to formulate a hypothesis yet."

"Then you should put self powering space ships on that list of not yet determined stuff."

"It's not on the 'list' as you describe it because I'm trying to work on it right now. The best I can determine is that a spaceship like this would have to use a perpetual motion engine. Impossible."

"Maybe it's magic."

"That is...not a possibility I'd considered before. I must think on it."

"While you're at it, can you leave me alone to read in peace?"

"I would, that is, if you weren't sitting on my bed."

"Oh, right."

"If you want to 'read in peace', I'd recommend going onto the bridge. There's lots of chairs there."

"You mean those back breaking torture devices with a lame excuse for a swivel seat?"

"Whatever you want to call them."

"I think I'll stay here."

"Then I should word it more strongly. Get out of my room!"

"What are you, twelve?"

"You keep distracting me. I'm trying to set up my workstation, and for that I need to concentrate. Some of these settings need to be tuned very precisely."

"Isn't your workstation on the bridge?"

"This is for me to work with my chemicals and has little to do with my 'official' role on the bridge."

"Alright, so what do you do here in your room that needs to be so finely calibrated."

"Make crystal meth."


"Relax, I'm kidding. I'm working on my chemicals."


"You remember that mech we fought?"

"Yeah, pretty hard to remember dropping out of the sky onto a giant robot."

"Some of the abilities it used seemed familiar. I took a closer look and what did I find? A sample of one of my chemicals. I use these to fuel my powers in much the same way the robot did."

"But you're not a robot."

"More than you'd think."

"Wait, so you are a robot?"

"No, but I have cybernetic implants."

"Can I see?"


"Oh, c'mon!"

"Maybe later. I'm busy right now; this device requires a particularly fine touch."


"What was that?"

"Just, uh, frustrated."

"No, that was a grunt of pain."

"They're very similar."

"Not in my experience. What's going on?"

"You remember how the fight ended?"

"Of course, it was only yesterday."

"Well, I don't. I wasn't conscious for that part."

"But you were fighting with the rest of us. I remember you had some excellent skill. That transformation skill of yours was remarkable."

"The power comes with some...drawbacks. My entire being is swapped out for the angel figure you saw."

"So that was a completely different person?"

"Yeah, and he's here, in my head. Sometimes they - he - likes to make his presence felt."

"Raw psychic contact can be unpleasant."

"Speaking from experience?"

"A little, yes. You'd be surprised how many powered individuals I run into in my line of work."

"Which is what?"

"Working with these chemicals."

"Right. Because chemists have cybernetic implants."

"I might tell you about it sometime."

"Uh huh. Okay."

"And maybe you'll tell me the truth about what's going on in your head."

"I told you the truth."

"Not the whole truth."

"Whatever you say, mister scientist."

"That's doctor scientist to you."


So there you go, Brandon/anyone else reading this post, hope you like it!


I Just Hope This Works

So...It's been a while...and I'm sorry. But I have good news! I'm taking this baby public! This is going on Facebook and stuff, so hopefully I'll get some traffic. On to the post!

I think it's time to break my anonymity, at least a little. My name is Grant, but as far you are concerned, random internet person, that's all. I'll talk about different stuff, LOTS of stuff, from my life to my opinions. So lets get started!

STATUS: Public
FORUM: 17th Shard

If you've found your way here from Facebook or Twitter, hi! If you've gotten here some other way, how'd you do that?

Looking over my previous posts, it's a little...scattered. So I've got a couple of ideas for stuff to do. I might do both, but I'll give you guys (if there turn out to be any) to decide a priority.

1. Probably the most nerdy thing I've ever done. An (approximately) episode by episode comparison between a couple of my favorite TV shows: Doctor Who and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I'm really interested to see how these two stack up against each other.

2. My Favorite Stuff. I'll go through different media and show you my favorite thing in each with some commentary.

Either way, you'll get different things like events in my life, but this'll give it some structure. Let me know what you think!


Look At Me! I'm A Blogger!

Current Status: Ashamed of absence
Twitter Status: Active
Current Music: Chameleon Circuit (Doctor Who music, yes, I'm a nerd)
I realize that it's been almost three months since my last post. I also realize that nobody really cares...we'll call it even.
I have recently discovered the incredible community that exists on YouTube. I know! You'd never guess from the amount of crap comments that there happens to be a large amount of incredibly made of awesome people. Hoo! Ha! Nerdfighters! If that confuses you, check out the vlogbrothers, who are made of awesome, despite my political views clashing with theirs from time to time. Also check out Charlie Mcdonnell and Alex Day, a couple of British youtubers who are really awesome too.
Guess what comes out in thirty days! The next Brandon Sanderson book! It's been no secret on this blog that I adore this guy, but this book, titled The Way of Kings, is shaping up to be his best yet. If you need evidence, I recommend you click here and start reading.
I have Twitter. Just thought you might wanna know. Username's Flame_Soul is you're interested in following me. I also have Facebook, but I don't want you guys finding me there, thanks. I also have a YouTube account, but you might want to hold off on that until it doesn't suck.
I have an interesting with my local library. I will go for long stretches of time without anything checked out. Then I'll get a half dozen plus books at a time, kind of like a negligent boyfriend who makes up for his absence with lots of expensive gifts. I'm currently in the "lots of books" phase of this cycle. Here's my current reading list:
Oathbreaker: Assassin's Apprentice - S.R. Vaught and J.B. Redmond - spontaneous pick up (first in a fantasy trilogy and I'm liking it a lot so far, I'm about half way through)
Leven Thumps and the Eyes of the Want - Obert Skye - reread (I've been slowing making my way through this series again so I can finish it, about 1/4 of the way through)
Spells - Aprilynne Pike - sequel, recommendation (second in a YA romance series that was recommended on Writing Excuses, let me put it this way, it's everything Twilight tried to be in about a third of the pages, but better, and with fairies instead of vampires, a great read, haven't started this one yet)
Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief - Rick Riordan - reread (same sitch as Leven Thumps, but for this I'm wanting to compare it to the movie, which I saw recently, haven't started)
Hero.com: Virus Attack - Andy Briggs - sequel, spontaneous pick up (second in a middle grade series about a website that lets people download superpowers, has a parallel series called Villain.net that's from a bad guy perspective, very interesting and likes to mess with some typical comic book tropes while embracing others, haven't started)
The 13th Reality: The Journal of Curious Letters - James Dashner - recommendation (another Writing Excuses recommendation, I've read the first chapter and it seems quirkily fantastic, can't wait to read it)
Leven Thumps and the Wrath of Ezra - Obert Skye - sequel (waiting to finish rereading Eyes of the Want to start this one, eagerly anticipating)
In addition to all that, I'm picking up a couple MORE books at the library tonight. Yeah, I'm kind of a maniac.
I've also found myself totally enamored with Doctor Who, if I haven't metioned it already. But in June I saw the finale of series 5, the first under the control of Steven Moffat, who wrote the best episodes up to that point. And he did NOT disappoint. It was so awesome. You should watch it.
One that that DW has done differently this year is the inclusion of the Doctor Who Adventure Game. Which are fully canon Doctor Who episodes, but in downloadable game format. You don't need them to have the full arc of the season, but they're still awesome. The thing is, though, that the developers seem to be about a generation behind the times when it comes to game design. It looks and plays like a game from 2004. And while it may feature voice talents of the actual actors of the show, this only minimally enhances the experience. Matt Smith and Karen Gillan, while great screen actors, don't measure up when it comes to voice only. You don't get the same character dynamic present in the show. Also, the voice bites to match up with the lip syncing in-game, which isn't really noticeable most of the time, but sometimes the audio clip will finish a full five seconds or more before the on-screen model finishes its lip flapping. Apart from some severe technical difficulties, the game plays pretty well. It's stealth and puzzle mechanics, which make up the majority of the gameplay, aren't exactly original, but the backdrop they're presented against, meaning plot and setting, really work well. Plus, dodging right behind a Dalek or Cyberman makes you feel more than a little smug.



Current Status: Somewhere between wanting to sing out loud and break down crying.
Current Music: Why Worry ~ The All American Rejects
Current Obsession: Doctor Who

I graduate from high school next week.
It's really a scary thought/concept that's staring me in the face. Yet also kind of a relief. That's all I have to say right now on that, promise!

Well, I managed to drag myself here in less than a month; yay for that!

Choir has been a huge part of my life for the last three years, and I honestly don't know what I'm going to do with my time once school is over. Wait, I promised I wouldn't do that! Dangit.

I have to say the last year has been a roller coaster; so many highs, so many lows. It's been a rush. I had a really nice high last week at our school's Night of the Arts. It's a program where all of the various performing groups at our school perform together. We had some really interesting joint performances. But what really stood out to me was that this was the first and only time that Music Theatre performed. Perhaps a bit of background on that. Since our crash and burn at the end of first semester, everyone in the class transferred out except for me, to be replaced by a couple of better friends of mine. What our teacher had us do was put together various independent scenes from different musicals for us to rehearse and maybe perform. We had a few, but the first one I worked on was a scene from West Side Story. I was Tony singing the first major solo, Something's Coming. We moved on from that to other scenes and the three of us were going to perform a scene from The Sound Of Music for the Night of the Arts. That is, until our only girl had to go to a funeral the day of. We scrambled to figure out what to replace it with and decided on Something's Coming. Who sings this song; by themselves to boot? ME And how did it go? Really well, actually. I'm pretty pleased with my performance. This is really my personal climax for the year, an accumulation of everything I've done in the performing arts for the last three years. It was cool, but totally terrifying at the same time.

A few days ago I discovered Google Chrome! It works dang well, I must say. Slick, that's what it is; it's slick.

The new season of Doctor Who has been running for a while, and I gotta say, Steven Moffat is a genius. It's really good! And the next one, which I have yet to see because my parents cancelled our cable (grrr) is supposed to be really good.


A Hop Skip And A Jump In Time

CURRENT STATUS: Time-shocked
CURRENT MUSIC: Shut Up And Smile ~ Bowling For Soup
CURRENT AILMENT: Early stages of Senioritis
Darn tab, sitting there, making me feel guilty despite my lack of a readership.
Prom was awesome! I got a be a terrible magician and a stomach drum soloist in 13 Ways To Screw Up Your College Interview for Drama Rama. I read I Am Not A Serial Killer, which was disturbingly amazing, psychological horror is better than I thought!
Why does time go so fast? Just a little while ago I was auditioning for choir, and just last week I find myself informing Juniors that they made choir at five in the morning! (school tradition [amen])
I had a curious experience relating to this. I had to get up at about 4:30 in the morning to go kidnap people for breakfast, and afterward I went home to get ready for school. I was driving back to school and was, frankly, exhausted. I almost fell asleep while driving. It was DANG scary.
Youtube is a curious place, but there are some truly unique pieces of art going on over there. David Choi is a musician who does some simply remarkable covers. Eric Whitacre, who's the closest thing that the choir community has to a rock star, has a virtual choir that's simply astounding. And MysteryGuitarMan makes music videos that are clever, funny, musically and technically impressive all at the same time. And Cobus Potgieter is an extremely talented percussionist with some astounding drum covers. And these are only a sampling of the amazing work being done on this free website. I myself have only one video. Yeah, I know.
Glee is a show of questionable plot and even more questionable morals, but, man, is their music cool. I'm a personal fan of their mashups. Halo(Beyonce)/Walking On Sunshine is a really fun song, while its counterpart, It's My Life(Bon Jovi)/Confessions Part II(Usher) is a rock-tastic rush. Young Girl/Don't Stand So Close To Me(The Police) is a great thematic piece, while Hair/Crazy In Love is, well, crazy. While they take some songs and make them amazing they take other songs and make them meh. Defying Gravity, perhaps the best song from the current musical hit, Wicked, went from amazing beyond imagination on the cast recording to being simply okay on the Glee version. But you can't have all home-runs, right?
On the subject of mashups, this is also something that I've come across recently that I find very sweet. Youtube has a suite of mashups, while some aren't so good, some are impressive. My favorites are the United States of Pop series, which take the top 25 songs of a year and mash them together spectacularly. (There's one for '07 as well, but you'll have to find that on his website, which can be found in the description for either of the videos. You'll also find mp3s for the bunch of them.) Another one that's very popular, going so far as to appear on the radio, is Boulevard of Broken Songs.
Have you stumbled today? Well, you should. What do I mean by that? I mean that you should go to stumbleupon.com and enter into the internet's most awesome slot machine. You tell it what you like and hit the Stumble button. From there it randomly takes you to a website it thinks you'll like. And it works. If you're ever bored of the internet, like I sometimes find myself, this'll find you things to keep you occupied for hours, if not days or weeks.
And I'll leave it at that for now. You probably don't want to hear me blabber on about time getting away from me again.


Dating And Driving, NOT The Same As Drinking And Driving

CURRENT STATUS: Anticipatory
CURRENT MUSIC: Believe ~ The All-American Rejects
The Prom is tomorrow, I'm going and not throwing a prom rejects party like last year...this is going to be SO much more fun. :P The date and pictures are being done uber-cheap, and the ticket the actual dance was only 25 bucks, with a mug and flute glass thrown in for free! Yeah, I don't know either.
And I've FINALLY gotten my Learner's Permit! My friends and family have given me considerable flak about not getting it sooner, but, being a senior in high school, I've gotten mostly used to it. Now I'm getting closer to being a licensed men- I mean driver! Yes!
Auditions for Drama Rama, a collection of student directed one act plays that our school does every year, were today, and I think I have a good chance at getting a decent part. Which would be much improved over my non-speaking role from last year. Oh so very much. Not that I particularly minded as a junior, but not getting a speaking role as a senior AGAIN would be a serious sting to my actor self esteem, which is already kind of in the toilet.
Webcomic recommendation!
I have a couple of webcomics that I frequent, but my favorite so far is a hilarious space opera (which has nothing to do with overweight people in viking helmets, you uncultured swine) called Schlock Mercenary. Starring Tagon's Toughs, a mercenary company with quirky characters, including the goatee boasting resident mad scientist, Kevin Andreyasn, his sister the admiral, Breya Andreyasn, paycheck chasing founder of the company, Captain Kaff Tagon, sarcastic ex-boy band AI, Ennesby, and the titular crap pile resembling, highly omnivorous, gun-loving, psychopathic alien, Sergeant Schlock. It has TEN YEARS of back comics and is quite hilarious. The author is Howard Tayler, who runs the Writing Excuses podcast alongside my favorite author, Brandon Sanderson.
Now I just have to wait for my library to get I Am Not A Serial Killer, and I'll have read the stuff from all of those authors.


Passive Guilt-Tripping

I keep looking at this tab in Firefox and I keep thinking, "I need to do a new blog post" but I don't. So here's a post.
As I obsess over Brandon Sanderson, I come across a variety of interesting things. He has a podcast he does with a couple other writers called Writing Excuses. It's got some really great stuff for an aspiring writer like myself. His two fellow podcasters, Howard Tayler and Dan Wells, have some good work as well. Howard works on a long running webcomic called Schlok Mercenary that's very good. I haven't gotten a hold of Dan Wells book, I Am Not A Serial Killer, but from what I've heard of it, it sounds really good. I just have to wait for the stupid library to get the thing!
Speaking of good books, I recently read acclaimed graphic novel Watchmen, and while I don't intend to read it a second time due to some graphic content, I think its definitely a good book, a great deconstruction of the superhero genre as well as a commentary on some interesting real world issues. Though one of the big points of the book is that in this world full of costumed crimefighters there's only one guy with actual superpowers. The thought keeps popping up, "how do you accurately deconstruct the superhero genre with only one actual superhero?" And Dr. Manhattan's barely even that due to his overall detachment from the human condition. Not that he's not super, it's the hero part that he doesn't really measure up to. Then again, most of the excellently written characters don't really fit the perfect definition of "hero". Just looking at a character like Rorschach can tell you that much. Overall, great book, something to look into if you're thinking about writing superhero fiction.
People like to complain, especially on the internet. Take a spin around most of the comment threads on YouTube to see what I mean. One thing that pops up every so often is that Facebook changes its layout, and people whine and cry about how awful it is and how they want the old one back and waa waa waa. As long as I can talk to my friends and don't get too many Farmville invites, I'm perfectly fine with it.
Going back to YouTube, despite the average commenter lacking an IQ above that of a chimpanzee, there's some truly awesome videos. Three words: Muppets Bohemian Rhapsody. GO FIND IT.


Blog As A Verb, Noun, Or Onomatopoeia?

Beauty and the Beast didn't happen, and now it never will. That's all I want to say about that.
I finished The Hero Of Ages! The end was...unprecedentedly amazing. If you have any interest in a great fantasy novel, I wholeheartedly recommend it.
If you haven't noticed, I have a distinct interest in Speculative Fiction, and I've found a couple of really neat blogs with a ton of information on the subject.
Atsiko's Chimney is one I stumbled across a couple of days ago while looking for tips on how to write magic systems, and I found that is has some really good advice, getting down to some of the nitty gritty behind magic systems and how they are put together.
Flights Of Fantasy is a rather neat blog that's more about the writing process in general, with tips on general things like characters, little things like what kind of functions different animals can have in fantasy, or things beyond the writing process itself, like publishing.
I recommend both if you have any interest in getting writing tips.


Absolutely Brilliant

Sometimes you have those days when you don't want to do, you want to simply enjoy. Today's one of those.
Okay, but I just have to ramble about how much I adore the book I'm reading right now. It's called The Hero of Ages, and is the last in Brandon Sanderson's Mistborn trilogy. I've loved just about every bit of these books, the characters are so real, the world is intricately crafted, from its cities to to its trio of magic systems which are just about my favorite part. The plot takes most fantasy tropes and turns them upside and inside out...and that's when you find out the sky is backwards. Now you think, "how can the sky be backwards?" EXACTLY
The one gripe I have with these books (well, the first one) is that I felt that the main romance was a tad forced or overdone. But that was before I saw the depth to it later on. The big problem was that the street kid with access to awesome mystical power masquerading as a noble falls for the unsatisfied aristocratic heir. Sound familiar at all?
But I do heartily recommend this book. I think I have a contender for my new favorite book series, just let me finish the book before I make any final judgments.


Slow Down, Man!

A whole lot of things have happened since my last post. (I do admit I lied about doing another post that day, sorry) And I just wanted to skim over some of them.
Christmas! I got a few rather nice things, including the soundtracks to Wicked, Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-long Blog, The Phantom of the Opera, and The Scarlet Pimpernel!
It's 2010! Woot! A brand new year, nay, decade!
Things get crazy for me, being the choir librarian, since it's Solo and Ensemble Competition season, and now everyone's looking for music.
I discovered an amazing book trilogy called Mistborn at the recommendation of a friend. IT'S REALLY GOOD GO READ IT.
Beauty and the Beast premieres on Wednesday and we're totally not ready! AUGH!
Once again, Joss Whedon has ruined my life. (go to the last ten minutes or so and you'll see what I mean)
The end of Doctor Who was simply spectacular. Thanks for everything, David!
Lots of stuff goin' down right now. So...yeah.