Thursday, December 23, 2010

My oh my.

Guess who is undergoing major blogger's block? You got it. This blogger right here. Confession: there are currently 82 published posts on this blog, and 97 under my 'edit posts' tab. That means I have 15 unfinished drafts. I would start one, with varied amounts of enthusiasm, and lose whatever vigor I had after typing a sentence or two. It's not that bad of a feeling, I guess. Blogging is way less important to me now than it was a few months ago, thankfully. It was annoying to subconsciously think in blog posts and not be able to do just about anything without thinking about the post I could write about it. :) Maybe you know that feeling.

Anyway, I don't feel like deleting this little ol' blog, because I have put way too much time and energy to do that without being sure to regret it. I like having it; in case something remotely interesting comes up, I can get people's thoughts on it and have the satisfaction of writing something readable. :) {This post is certainly not an example of readability...sorry!}

I will now stop blathering about the intricacies of a blogger's life and move onto a girl's life. Far more interesting, hopefully. *cynicism*

Christmas is very knew that, right? I went to my old friend's house today to walk around in the snow and eat Christmas cookies and discuss the pros and cons of killing characters in your novels. Very stimulating discussion about the "Voyage of the Dawn Treader" movie took place as well! No matter how much I talk about that movie, I still have trouble figuring out just how much I like it. Because I know I like it, but there are some things that really shave off respectability. Like corny green mist. Moving on.

Are you familiar with Arcangelo Corelli? The radio doesn't stop playing his Christmas Concerto, and that's fine by me. LOVE baroque music! The orchestra I was in long ago played it. I hated it then, but that's changed for the better now. :) Why deny myself good music because of petty dislikes?

My newest bad habit: harvesting five or six good-enough looking books from the library even though I have positive mountains of books already at home that I want/need to read/re-read. It has to stop. Right now, I have bookmarks in The Scarlet Pimpernel, I Capture the Castle, IronHeart, and Wuthering Heights. And then there is a delightful book of Robert Frost that I love. Oh, and I am also reading the best book on photography ever written. It's by Chris Orwig and called Visual Poetry. If you have any interst in photography, you will love this book.

News! The role play blog I take part in has a new makeover and lots of improvements. You really should go check it out. :)

I jusy scrolled over thispost and am aware that it reads like I just dashed it off to post for the sake of posting. Disregarding the fact that blogging is not a key aspect in life, I really didn't. I haven't posted in over a week, probably won't for another one or two, and wanted to remind readers that I am still alive and very well. :)

Well, it has been nice to talk to you again and I will see you again in an undefined amount of time! Thanks for being my readers, followers, and commenters-- I appreciate you all very much. And Merry Christmas! Remeber what God did when He sent Jesus to earth--it absolutely blows my mind.
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. ~John 3:17
~Margaret ~Who didn't edit or proofread this post. Could you tell?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Electric Color

My brother put these lovely lights up in the windows, and I simply love the vivid light they give off in the cold, winter nights and twilights.

This one turned out a bit cloudy, but... I still kinda like the icy color.

Horizontal, colorful, icicles, perhaps?

And yes, my friends, this is a bokeh shot! Bokeh is still a fluke for me, but when get it, I am very happy. :)

My entry for Hannah's photo challenge:

Electric Color

Aspire Photo Challenge

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


1. Violin.

Okay. I like violin. But my recital is in three days, and my piece is not recital-ready, and that is stressing me out a bit a lot. Ugh. But on a funnier note, here is a story: I was just doing my normal stuff the other day when my little sister, Ruth, emerged from the hallway carrying her little violin. "You should name your violin, Margaret. I named mine Susan," she announced. Leave it to her to apply names to instruments at random times. :) So we thought of names for my violin, looking for the perfect one. It needed to be elegant, because I am a classical violinist, and down-home style, because my violin is a fiddle. Now we can't decide whether it should be Clara or Johnny. It's not that bad of a predicament, I guess!

2. Thumbdrives.
I was going to add more to my NaNo novel on Sunday, but to my small horror, the thumbdrive I the keep the file on had disappeared. A mad racing over the house ensued, with me asking everyone, "Have you seen a tiny silver colored thumbdrive? No? Are you sure?" It was awful, but as I continued to search, I started to realize that losing the first draft of the novel wouldn't be that terrible. That made me feel like a traitor, for some reason... But I eventually found the thumbdrive in the pocket of my vest and of course was very glad to have it back. :) Remember this: USB thumbdrives are devious little implements of matter that will disappear if given the tiniest chance. Do not give them that chance.

3. Tangled.
Have you seen it yet? It's really great. Rapunzel makes a lovable heroine, and the details added to the story are just perfect. Good movie. :)

4. Flickr
It's so fun! I started one the other day and have really enjoyed it. But I still have stuff to learn about it, too. :) Click here to see my photostream!
Well, I am off to do algebra, bake cookies, and prepare for a busy weekend. Have a lovely winter day and thanks for reading!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Winning NaNo

*Warning: this post is a wanderer*

I won NaNo! It was a week ago today that I officially validated the word count and won, but technically, I haven't attained the title of Novelist yet and don't have those glorious bragging rights, because my novel is certainly not completed. The last place I stopped writing was when Secondary Character is thanking Primary Character for doing something valiant (kinda). Bad place to leave readers hanging.

NaNoWriMo is one of the best things that has ever happened to me, and I highly encourage anyone, writer or not, to try it out. :) It's amazing what it can do to your level of jubilation. Before November, I had never written more than eight consecutive pages of anything resembling fiction. But as of November 27, I had over seventy pages of pure imagination. It felt incredible.

After finishing a writing session, I wouldn't be able to help jumping up and down the stairs, almost crowing with satisfaction. My family was a little creeped out, but they are very understanding, thankfully. ;)

Yes, the going was sometimes tough, like the night I briefly took my fists to my computer out of frustration (true story), but altogether, the ecstasy outweighed the misery and it all was amazing. The only thing I am keeping myself in blissful denial over is the fact that my novel is so meaningless it hurts. There are not a lot of solid reasons why any of my characters are doing what they are doing. Yes, I know that this is the first draft, but seriously, I am almost worried about how big the injections of purpose it needs will have to be.

Anyway, I am going to finish the first draft, not let anyone read it, and alter it until it isn't quite so laughable. Then I will pass it on to willing editors (grandparents, a friend or two) and cross my fingers. I am very glad I used a story idea I am not too fond of, because if I had put my characters from The Pace [pet story of mine, but you already knew that] through the humiliation I put Cadish [MC for the NaNo novel] through, I would would never have been able to forgive myself.

Aside from having a good, satisfying time in November, I learned some stuff, too. Like when to indent. :) I also learned that writing to reach a strict word count goal with a plot in mind is detrimental to your sanity. I was constantly worried, especially in the early days, if I was writing too much introductory stuff to get the main plot going before it was too late, or if I would reach the climax by 30,000 words by not writing enough intro (aka blather). But by November 15 or so, I realized that I had committed the former and would certainly reach 50,000 before the climax was within sight. That was a comfort, but also a bit of a let down. Winning NaNo with a gawky, semi-big, unfinished novel is not overly exciting and induces feelings of guilt, for some reason. But don't get me wrong! I am very grateful that I made it with room to spare. Next year, though, I am going to head into NaNo with absolutely no plot or characters in mind. The story will probably need to have a contemporary setting, but I am OK with that. But it will be hard keep my imagination off of that unknown plot for the next eleven months.

I also learned just how much I love my characters from The Pace through NaNo. One night, quite early in November, I was experiencing frustration with Cadish and Company, and, out of desperation for people I knew, I scratched out a few paragraphs for my other idea. Writing with a pencil felt wonderful, but writing the names of Pace's characters felt even more wonderful. (Footnote: writing this post is also feeling very nice, because I don't feel guilty for using don't and isn't instead of do not and is not. It's very refreshing to not need to worry about the meaning of an extra word. :))

Perhaps you remember when Cadish and I weren't on the best of terms. That changed, because she changed. She was supposed to be this regal, perfect, person, but she has turned out quite a bit more insecure than I had envisioned her being. But that's okay. I can either fix it later or learn to live with.

Anyway, this has been a very rambling post and I should stop here. I could write about NaNo for quite a lot of time, but I will spare you. If you got this far, I thank and admire you for your patience! It's beautiful day where I am, and I spent the morning shoveling seven inches of snow off of the driveway with my family, which was very fun, and now I am foreseeing a trip to the library. I hope that your day is a blessed one!

~Margaret R.

PS- Check out the daily quote in my sidebar: A goal is a dream with a deadline. ~Napoleon Hill
I have no idea who that is, but what he said is ideal for NaNoWriMo. :)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

This Christmas

December 1st! Christmas draws near! Everyone I know is excited. I am, too. I love Christmas. But this year, I think that I might be loving it in a different way.

Christmas is the celebration of Jesus' birth. Before it partially morphed into a day in December centered around buying stuff, decorating stuff, and doing stuff that you usually don't do {bringing trees indoors, etc.}, it was for remembering Jesus and the awesome things God used Him for. I have really lost sight of that. Of course, my family reads the Christmas story from the Bible each year and lights Advent candles and keeps it real, but it had become simple routine for me.

Due to changes in the family and such, this Christmas is probably going to be without lots of the usual trimmings, and now I see that God planned things thus so that I could get a really good perspective for seeing the real meaning of Christmas. The Jesus meaning. While family and thankfulness and love are nice themes to attach to Christmas, it is really for the remembrance of Jesus' arrival on earth.

So this year, I am going to look for God's Son everywhere.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

It's a happy day

Today has been special. I went to a Write-In for the first time ever with some very fun, wonderful, writer friends. I loved that. And it was at Borders. I love being there! And while writing NaNo novels, with friends I haven't seen for a while, exchanging funny sentences from our stories? It could not be more blissful!

Then it started to snow. Thicker and faster it came. I love snow.

And my college-student brother is home for a few days! It's so nice to have him back. Today, he took me out to Burger King for lunch, just because he's nice. I love him.

Then some other friends we hadn't seen for a good amount of time unexpectedly dropped in for tea! It was a very nice impromptu visit.

Then I did a bit of enjoyable school (algebra), taking a break to write down a piece from random story idea that has been in my head for a few days. Loved that! I am thinking that it has to do with Italy...

Then I made spaghetti for dinner while singing along to my parent's choir's CD. Fun!

Then I blogged, something I haven't done in a long-ish time. I realized this: when I tell you that I won't be posting for a while, I get this sudden onslaught of post ideas and go right back to it. But when I give myself to freedom to do it, I simply don't feel like it. Funny how that works.... But I still love reading all y'all's blogs. You guys are the best. :)

Now I am going to have movie night with my family. A vintage one from 1939 and Robin Hood are on the itinerary! And of course, movies mean knitting. :)

And tomorrow is Thanksgiving! My family is heading to grandparents house for the feast. What are your plans for the big day?

And then on Friday, it will be..... Black Friday! I can't wait for the insane shopping and people watching. :)

So tonight, I am very, simply, happy. Thank you, God, for giving me happiness!

The Lord is good to all, and His mercy is over all that he has made. ~Psalm 145:9

And for your viewing pleasure, here is a picture I took last November. :)

What are you happy for today?

Monday, November 15, 2010

First Impressions

When I peruse the shelves at the library, the first thing that draws me to a book is its title. Then I look at the cover. That is when the decision of whether or not I want to read the book really begins. If the cover features art or a photo that does not appeal to me, maybe I will scan the description to see if there's a possibility that it's a good book, but most of the time, I just put it back.

In many ways, the book's cover decides its fate with every different prospective reader. I have been playing around with cover designs for my NaNo novel lately, which started me thinking about all of the covers I have come across in my life, and which ones have stuck with me. Here are some of them:

My Antonia by W
illa Cather
Whoa. Isn't this the most beautiful picture ever? It is s
o perfect for this lovely story about Nebraska . I also am loving the font and layout.
Peace like a River by Leif Enger
This is one of my top favorites of any cover an
ywhere! I would sit down, intending to read the book, but would often end up simply gazing at its cover. It ties in perfectly with the title; don't you just feel instant peace when you look at it?
The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke
This is one of my absolute favorite books! And the cover is amazing, too! I love its magical, mysterious feel.
A Charmed Life b
y Liza Campbell
I have not read all of this book, which is a memoir
about a girl who grew up in a European castle, but I do know that the cover is darling! Don't you love how sweet and innocent she looks on her drawbridge? Sorry that the image isn't bigger!

Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Mariller
This is another one I haven't read yet, but intend to sometime soon-ish. I love the details of the gorgeous painting; everything is so brilliantly vibrant. And don't you love that fish? What is it doing out of water? I think that I need to read the book and find out . . . :)

The Two Princesses of Bamarre by Gail Carson Levine
This is one of my favorite books from a few years ago. What I like about this cover is how regal the princesses look. Meryl is brave and adventurous and Addie is humble and timid, and they look perfect in the painting.
Tell me about your favorite book covers!

Monday, November 8, 2010


I said I was not going to post for a while, didn't I? But my brain is feeling a bit fried right now and I need a bit of "purposeful" screen time that does not include the words 'word' and 'count' bouncing around in my head. NaNo is super amazing and I could write a gushy post that would take all night for you read. But I won't. :)

And now, for some accumulated tags. (Sorry, guys, that I did not post them until now!)

From El'rania:

1. What was the first word you've ever said?
I do not remember. It was probably something exciting like 'da'. ;)

2. Would you rather only be able to eat fruits, or vegetables the rest of your life?
Hmm... fruit, I think. That would satisfy my insane sweet tooth. :)

3. Do you plan to move or stay where you are when you grow up?
Wherever God leads. I wouldn't mind moving farther north, though.

4. Going into battle, do you choose a longbow or a crossbow?
Longbow. Crossbow's are too... technical.

5. Have you ever passed out? If so, when and why.
Nope. I quote my doctor: "You are disgustingly healthy!" He's a really cool doctor. :)

6. What was your most memorable Halloween costume?
When I was a toddler, I wore a huge yellow turtleneck in an effort to be a piece of cheese. (Not my idea!) One of my brothers was a mouse. From what I am told, we were a huge hit at the party. :)

7. If someone told you that you won the lottery of $1,000,000,000 what would your reaction be?
"Snap, you must have the wrong girl! I don't but tickets and besides, I am underage. But if the real winner doesn't want it, you know where I live..." :)

8. If you could change your name, what would you change it to?
Ooh, hard question. But I think I would do something like Jane Doe, then give myself a really snazzy middle name!
From Lily:

1. If you could marry any male book character, who would it be?
I am not telling. ;)

2. What book character is the closest to your personality?
Hmm. . . I am not sure. Someone who is mostly shy. Any ideas?

3. What is your favorite Disney movie?
Ahh! I love Disney! Beauty and the Beast is probably my very favorite, but Mulan and Pocahontas are close behind.

4. Are you a spender or a saver?
A saver, probably because I so rarely go on true shopping trips, though. But I could easily go nuts in any Macy's, American Outfitter's, or J. Crew.

5. If you had a $10,000 shopping spree to any store, which would you choose?
Toast!!!!That would mean I would have to go to the UK to claim my prize. Fine with me! :) Or is there such thing as a Nikon store....?

6. Who is your favorite Disney princess?
Belle. Wait, Pocahontas. No. . . it's Belle. :)

7. Describe your favorite piece of jewelry (or show a picture!)
Do you remember the ring in this post? I feel like someone fresh out of any kind of amazing novel when I put that beauty on. :)

8. If you were a color, which would you be?
Green. It's so peaceful. I am big fan of peace. (Middle child characteristic!)
From Ellyn:
I share seven likes, eight hates, and one love. Here we go!

Music in a minor key
Blogging (Apparently! I couldn't stay away from it!)
Bridal magazines
Hello Kitty
Beautiful photography

Hates: (Hmm, this is a strong word)
Politics with seemingly no possibly good outcome
Turmoil with friends
Slow computers
Rampantly immodest clothes in any juniors section at any store
Writer's Block
Broken piano keys
All those millions of ridiculous fan pages on Facebook (Sorry that this is mundane, but they bother me.)

One love:
What? Just one? Okay, fine.

My loving, forgiving, wonderful God and Savior
I also love writing.

I am going to tag anyone who:
a) Loves someone
b) Thinks this looks fun and wants to do it.

Signed with a flourish,
Margaret Rowena

Thursday, November 4, 2010

October and a note

These are some photos I took over October. The tenth month of the year has got to be one of the best for photography--I love the dynamics of the light and color. :)




Perhaps you noticed something on these photos? A watermark, maybe? I am a lonnng way from being a professional, but it's nicely satisfying to see a name that bel
ongs to you your photos! :) Vivant la paix is French for "living the peace". The kind of peace I am thinking about for the name is the kind the comes from God.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 4:7

You maybe were expecting this. I am going to be taking a Blogger break for a week or three while I write my novel, keep up with school, begin Thanksgiving prep (Can't wait!), and start reading 'fun' novels again (I haven't touched Les Miserables for days, and then there's The Book Thief, which I have yet to get into....). Basically, I will posting far less frequently, unless something amazingly relevant comes up. But before I go, here's a funny conversation that took place the other night:

{Setting: It was quite late and I had turned off my light after a catch-up writing session. Now I was trying to fall asleep, but my little brother Daniel pokes his head into my room, disturbing my efforts.}
Daniel: Margaret? Are you done writing?
Me: Yup, for tonight.
Daniel: What's your book called?
Me: Cadish the White, for now.
Daniel: What's it about?
Me: It's a fantasy. [My usual reply to such a question]
Daniel: No, what's it really about?
Me: *gives itty-bitty nutshell synopsis*
Daniel: Sounds weird. *pauses* I can't wait to read it.

Wasn't that nice of him to say? NaNo has really loosened up my hesitations to talk about my writing, even to my family! But if they asked me anything about The Pace { my pet story}, I will remain tight lipped. :)

Now I leave you with a picture of what my beautiful cottonwood tree looks like right now in the autumn sunlight:

Au revoir, my friends!


Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Wow. Last night was magnificent.

It all started at 5:50 PM, when I began to prepare for my very first NaNoWriMo writing session. My room was perfectly organized, as I spent all day Sunday making the War to End All Wars in there. I love having a perfectly clean place to write in. :) So I moved around my room, turning on Enya, praying, and booting up my computer.

Then I began to write. "The Memory of Trees", one of Enya's best songs, was simply perfect as I typed that first paragraph. I felt like I was embarking on an incredible journey. After ten minutes, my mom came in and gave me a nice little pep talk before. I checked the word count at that point. Under 200. I was a bit a miffed, but then remembered that this is Day 1. Hint: Never check your WC often. Wait a page or so before doing it. And then I kept plugging along.

An hour or so later, my older brother James popped in to ask what I was doing. He doesn't read my blog and I have never talked about NaNo in his presence, so I gave him the nutshell description. He was full of *helpful* questions like, "What's the point?" "To write a novel." I said. "Yes, but what's the main idea of it? What is the thesis?" He is such a student! I was nearly frustrated and said, "I am writing a novel! That is point enough!" Then he relented and left me alone. {After reading that, you may doubt my love for my brother. Don't worry, he just likes making me think and I appreciate that in him. And he's teaching me self defense, and that's really fun. :)}

So then I pecked away for another hour, until I exceeded my daily goal and decided I had better eat something for dinner. It was nearly 9:00, and I gleefully pranced around the kitchen making toast. Then James gave my sister Ruth and I an impromptu karate lesson in my, uh, less than large enough room, which was great. :)

What really made last night special is that I started out with my main character and her friend, but by the time I finished, Cadish had a mother and sisters, all of whom had the makings of personalities. It's amazing where a single character will take you.

Yeah, last night was wonderful. :)

Have any of you read Chris Baty's book?

I snagged a copy last week and read it in a day. It was just what I needed, full of advice and comfort for a newbie like me. This is how I looked after reading an especially fabulous page:

I was thrilled. I still am thrilled! NaNoWriMo is just. . . altogether thrilling! I am so happy I signed up. And if you haven't yet, there is are still 29 days in November! You can do it! You seriously do not need a plot in mind. A few characters will give you a plot in return for their lives.
Well, I need to go finish up the mundane daily tasks so that I can start writing again! How are your NaNo projects going?

Have a lovely day, everyone!


Monday, November 1, 2010


Hi folks! Well, I made some major changes around here. The header was made with the help of Carlotta's extremely useful tutorial. (Picasa users rejoice!) But I have a question for you: does this new design remind you very too strongly of another blog you have seen? Are there any annoyances you see? Don't be afraid to tell me your true opinion. :) One thing that annoys me is that I can't get
the gadget titles to not be capitalized. Any advice on how to alter that? And do you like the double sidebar, or should I go back to the single?

Whenever I am clothes shopping and I find a shirt that I like and my mom doesn't, she says, "It may be your clothing, but we are the ones that will see you wear it!" :) That's why I am very open to your thoughts, lovely readers.

News flash: it's November 1...... I haven't written anything yet. Yet.

Thank you for responding!
~Margaret Rowena

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Photo Entries

There are some great photo blog hops going on right now! Right now, I am entering two:

For Polka Dot's photo contest, I am entering this one:

Purple Sun

I took last June while I was up north enjoying the sunrise. Need I say it was the most beautiful morning of my life? God is so incredibly good to have given us this world to live in. For editing, I sharpened, warmed, and saturated it. I think. It was fun to mess around with! :)

For Carlotta's photo challenge, themed COLOR, I am entering this one:

Le petit océan

Thanks for looking!


PS- NaNo! Less than 48 hours away!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

A friendly conversation?

Today, I am going to show you a conversation I had with one of my characters. I saw Gwyn and Ellyn do this a few months ago and highly enjoyed their conversations. :) Today, my conversational partner is Cadish, my MC for my NaNo novel. Enjoy!

Margaret: Hi Cadish! How are things?

Cadish: Uhh, fine. But why are you grimacing?

Margaret: *fake smile* No reason! Anyway, how are you? Do you like my blog?

Cadish: Your blog is fine, but come on! Something's wrong with you. You can tell me. If you want. And I want you to.

Margaret: You almost sounded threatening right there. But... since you seem so eager, fine, I will tel you what's on my mind. But you may be offended...

Cadish: I am thick skinned, and you know that. Now stop stalling and continue.

Margaret: *laughs* I don't know what I was thinking when I made you bossy. But seriously, something is off in our relationship. Why is it that I really have to think about it before I start being your friend? Why are you so... distant?

Cadish: Whoa, wait a sec. You are asking me why you don't like me? This is a super awkward position, you know! Should I just start listing all my faults? Let's see here, I can be proud, bossy-

Margaret: *interrupts* No, no, it's not like that. You are just so confident, unafraid, beautiful-

Cadish: *interrupts right back* You speak as though those traits were my evils! Am I a vain, egotistical, show off or something?

Margaret: *frustrated* NO! Cadish! We have to become friends, and within the next three days, too. So let's just start over. *clears throat* Hi, my name is Margaret! How are you doing?

Cadish: *scornful* This is stupid. I have known you since my whole life. You are the one that started my life! How can you expect me to just 'start over' and look at you with new eyes?

Margaret: Lightbulb moment! cadish, we are just such different personalities! That's why we can't connect!

Cadish: Ahh, I think you have it. But what now? We can't change ourselves or each other at this point.

Margaret: Okay, you're right. We just need to see past each others faults and differences, like true friends do.

Cadish: *interested* Wait a second! That word you used! 'Okay'? What in both out worlds does that mean? It sounds interesting....

Margaret: *scrambling to right the mistake* Nothing! Nothing important. It's just, ah, a silly nonsense word. Forget I said it. *pauses, then darkly* And don't you ever say it again. If by some whim of fate I lose control of you and you repeat that word, oh, the sky will fall in and all will perish.

Cadish: *unconvinced* Yeah. Right.

Margaret: *becoming desperate* Please, Cadish! Just trust me. Listen, we got really off topic. We were supposed to friends, right?

Cadish: *Hopelessly*But if we have to work this hard to be friends, maybe we should we just give up.

Margaret: No! Cadish, we are spending the next month together in very close quarters. Either we love or we hate each other. And I think we should go for the former. So let's not give up.

Cadish: You sound like that person I have heard of named Dr. Phil. You writers live in a strange world, do you know that? But I am willing to be your friend. Just please don't do anything too brutal to me!

Margaret: I wouldn't be worried. As far I can see, you stay pretty intact throughout the story. But I am thinking of changing your name...

Cadish: What?! But my name is... special!

Margaret: Don't take this wrong, but it really isn't. When I first thought of you, I just took a name off of my "name list" and attached it to you. And I bet people read it as "Ca-dish", not its true "Cay-dish".

Cadish: *subdued* Well, maybe you're right. But you need to replace it with something really good.

Margaret: Don't worry, I will try to. And remember, I may not even rename you after all.

*Not awkward pause in conversation*

Cadish: *happily* You know, I really am looking forward to November.

Margaret: Good! I am too. Well, it has been lovely talking to you, dear girl!

Cadish: *skeptical again* Dear girl? What am I, your pet? Are you trying to sucker me into some evil trap or something?

Margaret: *manically yelling* CADISH!! PLEASE COOPERATE! Oh, where is a knife? I feel the need for a dramatic death scene. Should it be mine or yours? I think yours.

Cadish: Alright! I doubt you would actually whack me off, but alright. I will behave.

Margaret: Truly?

Cadish: *honestly* Yes. We will be friends, even if it kills both of us.

Margaret: *smiling broadly* Then I will see you in November.

Haha, that was fun. If you are having trouble connecting with your characters' having a conversation really helps. :) Hey, did you check out my new art page? What do you think?

Thanks for reading!


Friday, October 22, 2010


Nela at Beloved Star and Marie at Marie Loves tagged me! This is how it works: I answer the eight questions the person who tagged me wrote, then make up eight more for those I tag to answer. Here are my answers for Nela's questions: :)

1. If you're writing a book what would be the title, plot, and characters?
It would take me a few posts to fully answer this one! The temporary title I have given my book is The Pace, the plot is... uhh, moving on, it has three MC's. :)

2. What animal would you prefer to be for a day?
My little sister asked me this just last night! Haha, I told her I would be a raven. Flight, oh, flight....

3. Did you ever have a baking disaster? (like the cake didn't turn out right, or the cookies were too thin, etc) If you did, what happened?
Ohhh yes! Read about it here. :)

4. Whose you favorite Christian singer?
Hmm, I am not a big Christian music fan, but I don't mind Britt Nicole.

5. Tell about your favorite birthday celebration that you've personally experienced.
My fourteenth birthday was fun; I went to the zoo with my family and had DQ, then my friends and their parents came over in the evening. Simple joys. :)

6. What is something you've done that you never thought you'd do?
Made it down the double black diamond at the ski resort my family always goes to. I was scared stiff and basically snowplowed the first half on the my first time, but now I can do it with relative ease. My friend and I always told each other we would never attempt so frightening a slope. But somehow we got dared or talked into it or something and we did it. And now it's so fun! (I am really getting ski fever right now, can you tell?)

7. If you could add any person to Mount Rushmore, who would you add and why?
Well, since they are all presidents, I would say George W. Bush. He was our president during some of our toughest times ever and handled everything very well. Sure, he made mistakes, but he's human! Why couldn't people give him some slack? Okay, I'll stop before I start ranting. Politics don't agree with my conservative self. :)

8. If money were no obstacle, what would be the perfect birthday gift to receive?
A Nikon D3100 and plenty of lenses to go with it!! Or my own really nice set of skis, boots, and bindings. *Sighs blissfully*

And Marie's questions:

1. What is your favorite Winter accessory?
Tasteful hand knit lovelies! I love my scarves and mittens. :)

2. How do you like to spend your Winter weekends?
In the piles of snow, having cookies with friends, and being cozy at home. Mmm, I love winter. (And it's almost here!)

3. List your top 3 favorite things about the Winter season.
1. Skiing
2. The cold
3. The SNOW

4. What is something new you'd like to try this year?
I want to solidify my new crochet skills! It's lots of fun, but I need to, um, get better. granny squares are my highest aspiration.

5. If you could spend your Christmas abroad, where would you go?
Scandinavia. It may not be home, but at least it would have the chill of my wonderful Northern home.

6. Your favorite historic monument and why?
The Washington Monument. It has the the words Laus Deo carved onto the eastern top, so the first rays of sun that hit our capital light up the words Praise God. How sweet is that?

7. What museum would you most love to visit?
Well, I have been to NYC's Metropolitan Museum of Art once already, but it was a very short visit and I would love to go back and really, really look at that art.

8. If you won a shopping spree tomorrow, which store would you want to spend it at?
J. Crew. I have never bought anything from this store, as it isn't in my price range, but I love their stuff. Or maybe I would choose Toast, if I could figure out my Euro sizes!

Here are my eight questions:

1. If you could be rich or famous, what would you be?
3. How do you feel about The Lion King?
4. When did you begin blogging?
5. Do you like bonfires?
6. If someone gave you a pet monkey, what would you name it?
7. Which continent would you most love to have a nice, long, wonderful tour of?
8. Pens or pencils?

I am tagging:

Kaley Grace
Charming Elephant
Polka Dot

Have a beautiful Friday, lovelies! I have some good news from my life: NaNo is once again looking amazingly fun to me! It had lost its appeal for a little while there, and that scared me. But that's over, thankfully. And my brother is coming home from college for the weekend! I haven't seen him since August! Eeee! Okay, those were a lot of exclamation points. I am going to give us a breather and sign off for now! :)

Signed with a few grins,
Margaret R. :) :) :)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Immanuel's Veins by Ted Dekker

Toma Nicolescu is a very accomplished warrior in the service of the empress of Russia. He and his friend, Alek Cardei, are given a break from the battlefields to guard the Cantemir's, an important Moldavian family of two daughters and their mother. The daughter's are twin sisters, each very beautiful. Alek wastes no time in falling in love with Natasha, but Toma is resolute and will remain emotionless over the gorgeous Lucine.

Trouble starts the first night of their arrival. The mother, Kesia, who loves merriment of any kind, throws a sparkling party. Among the guests are some of the Castile clan, a mysterious family of Russians, headed by Vlad van Valerik. They charm the Cantemirs, except Lucine, who is dubious of their unconventional ways and quick work of wooing Natasha. Toma is flat out against the Castiles, forbidding Kesia to ever see them again. But the foolish woman refuses and repeatedly sees them.

They are a very seductive group. Alek, who was at first infuriated at them for taking Natasha's affections away from him, is eventually infatuated with the strange Castile's as well. He and Natasha run away every night to their castle in the mountains, coming back . . . changed.

Toma is overwhelmed. His best friend is turning on him, his usually unquestioned authority is being disregarded, and he is quickly falling deeply in love with Lucine. Things are getting out of hand at a very high speed, and something life changing for everyone involved is going to happen . . . soon.
*Warning! Plot spoilers ahead!* I was very disappointed with this book. Usually I like Ted Dekker a lot and I wanted to read Immanuel's Veins as soon as I heard about it-- an intense plot and a love story? Great! I started it with much zeal, loving it immediately, but the love was not to last. The plot quickly became awkwardly paced, and the storyline sensuous. Very sensuous. The book is advertised as one about overcoming seduction, but I didn't realize that until I was right in the middle of it.

The Castile's are vampires. They are never called that, but that is obviously what they are. Dekker is a Christian author, but I felt like I was reading a cleaned up Twilight anyway. I have not read those books, but I saw the first movie. Never watching that one again! I really don't like vampires. At all.

Another thing that bothered me was Toma. He becomes all weird and desperate in his love for Lucine. I can't bear that kind of thing in an otherwise cool character. I was convinced she would be killed in the end, and he would be a wandering madman the rest of his life, but the two of them end up living happily ever after. That was a bright spot. :)

But Alek and Natasha are killed. Toma even kills Alek himself. That was a hard part to read. Ohh, how I despise it when best friends kill each other! (Uhh, who does, I guess?) Sure, Alek had basically become a vampire himself (*major dislike and a long story*) but. . . argh, why did the author have to do that?

One last thing that probably won't bother you: there was a line that almost perfectly matched one from my book! One that is essential and I thought original! But maybe it isn't after all. Oh well.

Okay, I have expounded on most that I disliked about this book. But I did like something: the ending. Dekker can write such fantastic, satisfying endings.

Have you read any Ted Dekker? And what do you when you start disliking a book you're in the middle of?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

November cometh

Fact #1: NaNoWriMo is 15 days away.

Fact #2: Margaret is shamefully unprepared.

Can she do it? Can this waif of a writer truly pound out 50,000 words in 30 days? Oy, I am nearly frightened. This is my first attempt ever at the great achievement: the title of novelist. *sighs*

I first learned about NaNo through my friends Evergreena and Hepzibah, during many animated conversations on the way to and from homeschool band. Good memories. I remember sitting in the band's break room during November, watching them passionately peck at their laptops. I loved watching them and hearing about their stories and woes that came with them. I thought, I will do that someday. When I turn 13.

Well, I have been past 13 for two years and still haven't done NaNo. I am not sure why. But now, in 2010, I am aspiring to do it. *trumpet tune*

I have speculated much over which of my story ideas to do, and settled on this one. I have tried many forms of outlining, but nothing was working. I tried many times to do the Snowflake, but I felt like such a loser when I couldn't see very far ahead in the story. Then I found these questions, which are a golden treasure. Sure, it's not quite outlining, but they are helping me get to know the world better, so they are winners.

But they are only winners if I actually do them! I have been procrastinating, preferring my favored story to my NaNo one. Why don't I just do that favored one for NaNo, you say? Honestly, I can't bring myself to. It has grown too near to my heart to subject it to the ferocity of NaNo. I would love to tell you more about it later, though. :)

Anyway, I have just snooped around the NaNoWriMo website and found some lovely inspiration to keep going (even though November hasn't started yet. . .), and now I will chain myself to my desk and get some more ideas for this novel!!

So, are you going to be a NaNoWriMo participant as well? Are you as scared as I am? Do you have any advice for this desperate writer? I would love to hear your thoughst on November!

Want to add me as your NaNo buddy? Click here!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Cold no more.

Hmm, I am not sure if I love this photo or not. I edited it slightly, and I would like to hear what you think of it. I took it last winter when my family and I were enjoying a backyard fire, something we do quite often. I tried to make it warm and cozy, but do you think it looks too hot and stuffy?
Isn't October lovely? I have positively loved the incredible sunlight of late. My camera has been a great friend to me as well. . . ^_^ September and gold go together perfectly, but October and gold are not a bad pairing, either. But I would appreciate the traditional nip in the air- the temps have hovered between 70 and 90 degrees! It doesn't seem right to watch my sister rake leaves with bare feet and shorts on.

Thanks for all the comments on my last post! I loved hearing about all of your names.

Be blessed!

Monday, October 11, 2010

What, exactly, is in a Name?

Names are fascinating, aren't they? They are the first thing your parents gave you and a big part of your life. When someone says anything that sounds even slightly like my name, I straighten up and temporarily put my life on hold. (Well, when I am at my obedient best!) A name is something that is kept for life, mostly. I have detailed lists of names I would give to my future children, which I update and revise often. :) Yesterday at church, my friends and I had an animated conversation about the good and bad of names. Good times. Okay, I will stop the rambling and get to the point.

Now, as you may know or have guessed, Margaret Rowena is not my real name. I have thought of using my true life name as my Blogger name, but decided against it. Besides, I have grown rather used to Margaret Rowena. That's what happens after eight months of blogging! I want to share with you what it means and why I chose it.

Margaret~ This is my real-life middle name. 'Margaret' means 'pearl'. I chose it because it makes my false name a bit more real to me.

Rowena~ I chose this name because I think it's pretty. Is that a good reason? :) Although it does make my blogger name a dramatic six syllables! I have seen lots of different meanings attached to it: white mane (?), well-known friend, fame, and joy. Wow, I don't think I could live up to this name!

So those are my web names. Now, for the sake of this post, I will give you a real name of mine.

Mia~ This what I commonly go by, but it is still a nickname off my real real name. Confused? I am too. ;) Mia is an Italian name that means 'mine'. I think that's a great meaning and look at it as "I belong to God." Which I do. :)
I know that most people pronounce this one 'mee-ah', but I say it like 'my-ah'. More confusion! Ahhh!!

Moving on. . .

Writers and non-writers, what are your opinions of pen names? I am fine with my name, but not sure how good it would look on a fantasy book cover. And there are some pretty amazing author's names out there, right? Think of Nicholas Sparks. That name is just too good to be true! If you were to be published, would you use one?

My apologies about the meandering-ness of this post! I feel out of practice with blogging for some reason. And thank you Kaley Grace, Squeaks, Lady Greenleaf, Katie Dean, Lily, and Emily for following my blog! I hope you enjoy it.

Au revoir! I am off to cheer for my favorite NFL team! :)

~Margaret Rowena

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Autumn Fashion Showcase - 5 -

It's the last day of the AMFS. :( This has been so much fun. Thank you again Marie for hosting it!

I saved a favorite outfit for this final day. I hope that you like it as much as I do!

The top of this dress is really weird, so I use a black jacket to cover it up and add some sophistication to the mainly casual feel of the outfit.

This is my favorite, favorite ring ever! I found it in my mom's jewelry box one day. She said it was my great-grandmother's and that I could have it. Yay!

My fringed boots, which I love passionately. I wear them everywhere and with everything. Sure, the whole fringed boot trend ended a while ago, but that is not making an impact on me! :)

Dress~ Converse One Star at Target (For $7.50!)
Jacket~ DKNY
Tights~ They appeared in my sock drawer one day.
Boots~ Xhilaration at Target
Ring~ Vintage

Now, on the topic of dressing in a feminine way. I was at a conference today with my grandparents. During a break, I was walking around with my grandma, who always and anytime looks her best. Today she was wearing a simple and classy outfit composed of a long skirt, white shirt, and silk scarf. An older man, a total stranger, stopped us and said to her, "I am so glad to see a woman who is dressed like a lady. There just aren't enough of those today."

Wow. People do notice and appreciate women and girls who are willing to be different and be feminine! While I am not going to stop wearing jeans anytime soon, I am very willing to make skirts and dresses parts of my everyday wardrobe.

Thanks for looking!
~Margaret Rowena

Friday, October 8, 2010

Autumn Fashion Showcase - 4 -

My fourth outfit for Marie's Fashion Showcase:

This outfit is good for chilly fall days, as the hoodie is very warm. I love color, and this outfit is bursting with it! It's a very casual and easy outfit.

Hoodie~ Old Navy
Pink shirt~ SO at Kohl's
Jeans~ Levi's
Scarf~ I knit it myself :)
Hairclip~ A gift
Shoes~ Xhilaration at Target

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Autumn Fashion Showcase - 3 -

The look I was going for with this outfit was friendly. The brown shirt was way too dramatic for my style without some tempering, so I added gentle touches with hearts, flowers, and a tee shirt in a happy color. Unlike yesterday's outfit, this one is very feminine and easygoing. It also includes my favorite pair of jeans. :)

Having fun with the autumn colors! ^_^


Brown shirt~ Gap
Pink shirt~ SO at Kohl's
Jeans~ Old Navy
Beaded necklace~ Burlington Coat Factory
Heart necklace~ Charm from Michael's
Watch~ Merona at Target
Hairclip~ Ragstock

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Autumn Fashion Showcase - 2 -

My second outfit for the Autumn Modest Fashion Showcase:

Urban cowgirl

This outfit is a bit of a joke. I would never be brave enough to wear it out of the house, but it's super fun to get out of one's fashion comfort zone every so often.


Jacket~ DKNY
T-Shirt~ American Apparel (It has my cousin's band's name on it. Cool!!)
Cords~ Analog
Boots~ They were my mom's from her Colorado days. Vintage sweetness! :)