I usually boot this up when I need more more interaction than usual, like if my thoughts are racing I’m not functioning and I need a lot of hands on engagement. Sometimes my compulsive behaviors get destructive and I pick at my cuticles, or my face, or my hair, so keeping my hands busy when I feel this way is important. And what’s more relaxing than harvesting a farm https://great-britain.org/esports-tournaments-tips/? Or looking for someone to date? And then marrying them? And then...you know what, it didn’t work out so then you’re divorcing them.
Then erasing their memories because you totally regret it and you’re a different person now and this time you can make it work so you marry them again? ...Wait What? There are a lot of different ways you can play STV; you can be an adventurer and combat monsters, you can be a farmer, you can fish all day long, or you can do social stuff. Or everything. I did everything. It was that engaging to me. And though it’s not a funny game, it has all of these heartwarming moments that just feel...nice. It’s nice.
Stardew Valley is nice. I do caution you if you have compulsive tendencies but for some days, it’s super engrossing and can keep me away from harmful behaviors. Or maybe you don’t want heartwarming. Maybe you’re not in the mood for that. Maybe you’re having a life sucks and so do you kind of day and you need to exert that negative energy before it causes your brain to melt. I hear you loud and clear, love ain’t always the answer and I don’t always want fluff to help me cope, sometimes I need WARCRAFT II. I think this choice is pretty self explanatory, sometimes I need distraction in the form of destroying everything.
This is another game that gives you very specific objectives and I think that really helps helps me; sometimes if I am playing an open world game all willy nilly I get overwhelmed, especially if my OCD is in my goddamn face, but when I have a list of things to do in order to progress, I am a very happy person. It gives me a sense of accomplishment in a way, and though it’s also not what I would call a comedy game, it definitely has its cute moments. I think a lot of strategy games can be really beneficial because it encourages you to think, create plans, and that stimulus is really, really good for you if you’re feeling stuck or uninspired. Now I am not always in the mood to think, I’ll admit that, but I’ve learned over time that my mental illnesses are not created equal, and I will have different symptoms that requires different forms of management. So when I do need to get in a rut and I need some structure, or feeling angry and need a harmless way to release energy, I pick up an RTS.
My personal preference is Warcraft because I grew up on it, so like other titles mentioned here, I get an added bonus with the nostalgia attached to it. I am also a fan of the Civilization games but have the most experience with Civ VI. Unlike Warcraft, Civ is a turn based style game, so if you’re not in the mood to make quick decisions, this plays more like a board game, like chess or risk, where you can take your time with your turns. I like to play this game with a friend over a phone call because even though most of time we’re both going to be taking our turns, I find hearing a friendly voice, even sporadically over the span of the game, really helps my mood and concentration. I like games that are very goal oriented, and I also like competing with people because let’s be honest, nothing is more important than WINNING. Like Warcraft and Quest for Glory, Civ does have an ending so I’m not just going on forever and ever with no end in sight. Speaking of no end in sight I put way too many hours into Final Fantasy 8. And yes, I know.
The love story is corny. The story in general is convoluted and forced, and of course there’s this weird space scene but I just...I can’t help it. I love this game. The settings and music are big reasons why; everywhere I go I just feel totally comforted, like being wrapped in a big cuddly comforter.
Wonderful energy in this room. This is-- oh, I'm just going to get right to it. OK. Because something crazy is happening.
No one has won the Mega Millions lottery yet. It's up to $1.6 billion. $.16 billion. With a B.
As in big and bonkers and bananas and Beyonce and bootylicious and-- [LAUGHTER] I'm just thinking of words with a B now. But the lottery director is calling it uncharted territory. I'm calling it holy crap. I want to win. $1.6 billion. So before you start shopping for the yachts and getting excited about everything, because I'm sure you've all bought tickets.
The odds of winning are 302 million to one. 302 million. To put that in perspective, you have a better chance of being struck by lightning, giving birth to identical quadruplets while being attacked by a shark at the same time. [LAUGHTER] All of those things check this website.
You have a one in 33 million chance of being elected president if you meet the qualifications. And if you do meet the qualifications, please run. Please. Please run.
It doesn't take a lot of qualifications. Anyway, $1.6 billion is insane. It's the largest jackpot in history. And if you do win-- you won't-- but if you do-- I mean, you might.
But probably not. You won't. I doubt it. Anyway, someone is going to win.
But probably not us. Anyway, there are some things that you should know. And you should do right away. First of all, you have to choose between a yearly payment or one big payment.
And after taxes, you, well, after taxes it's $905 million. So it's not the $1.6 billion you were hoping for. So anyway, they say if you win-- you won't. But if you do, you're supposed to sign the back of the ticket immediately to claim it. So this is very important.
You get yourself a Sharpie, you flip the ticket over, and very, very neatly, you write out E, L, L. E, N. Big D, little e, big Generes.
So, and they say if you win, to remain anonymous and stay at your job so your life doesn't drastically change overnight. Although people may be suspicious when you show up to work with those new boobs you always wanted.
Greg, did you get new boobs? The next drawing is tonight. You got to be in it to win it. So I went ahead, and I bought a ticket for each one of you.
Shadow on the Wall: Book One of the Sandstorm Chronicles
by Pavarti K. Tyler
Fighting Monkey Press
Elih, Turkey has established its own set of laws that seek to control and dominate the population, in the name of Islamic law. This does, of course, affect women’s lives most of all, as the regime of the RTK (the ‘Morality Police’) targets women in an attempt to keep them docile and subservient.
Recai Osman is the heir of a billionaire who lacks direction in his own life. Then, the unthinkable happens and he is forced to wander in the desert, alone and helpless until a Jewish father and daughter take him in to help him recover from injuries he has sustained and has no memory of receiving. While in Recai is in their care, the RTK brutally attacks Rebekah, the daughter, and Recai is left to pick up the pieces of his newly crumbled and torn reality.
After years wandering the desert in search of a new life, Recai is drawn back to the life he abruptly left years before. He returns with a new consciousness and understanding of the brutality and oppression of the ruling class of Elih. It is then that he discovers that he must fight against the system in superhero fashion by protecting the women who live there. While carrying out his vigilantism, he inadvertently draws more people into his plan of protecting those who need it. Soon, there is a complex network that is aiding him and encouraging his efforts.
Tyler gives us a triumph in feminist literature, while supplying a believable ‘superhero’. Recai possesses no overt unearthly powers, but instead relies on his faith in knowing of what is right and wrong. In reality, he is just a man standing up for what he believes in, within the confines of the predetermined regime. The humanity which is displayed throughout the story is what makes it a success. Tyler is also not apt to shy away from graphically violent scenes to save those who wish to hide from the realities she discusses in the story. While the graphic scenes are not what one may want to read and have so forcefully pushed in front of them, they are necessary to be delivered in such a manner in order to keep us from hiding from the brutal truths in the lives of her characters.
Shadow on the Wall is a brilliant work, in that it is incredibly real and simplistic in its delivery. Tyler masterfully weaves complex issues of violence against women, religious oppression, and vigilantism into a cohesive, straight-forward look at the issues. Every one of the many characters is equally important within the story, and their position is easy to sympathize with on some level- even if their actions are not. This is a work that shows the extremes to which the ruling class will go to keep their positions solidified, as well as the ability to control the population with fear, domination, and violence. This is a success in what is sure to be an engaging new series from a powerful new voice.
When author R.J. Keller first queried us to write an essay on her book, Waiting for Spring, back in 2009, we sadly turned her down. However, her book began getting so much attention, I decided to revisit it and bought a copy for myself.
Since then, R. J. and I have become great online friends through Facebook, Twitter, and other blogs. I have a lot of respect for her as a writer. So, last year I asked R.J. for an interview. She gladly accepted. But to make things fun and interesting for us and for our readers, we decided to do the interview via Twitter.
So, our questions and her answers had to be 142 characters or less. Enjoy!
LLBR: Let me start by congratulating you on the Amazon Encore acquisition of W.S. What are you excited about the most with the upcoming release?
RJK: Knowing that it has the potential to reach a bigger audience. I try to write stuff that connects with people…the more people the better.
LLBR: Did they request any changes, other than the cover, to be made to Waiting for Spring?
RJK: It got a very thorough (and very welcome) copy edit. I’m happy to say there were no major cuts. Plot-wise, there’s only one minor change.
LLBR: Tell us where this story came from when you first wrote it. What inspired you to write this book? Is it personal?
RJK: It’s personal, but not autobiographical. I wanted to explore the dichotomy between what we say out loud as opposed to what we think & feel.
LLBR: Tell us who you were as a writer BEFORE you wrote this book.
RJK: In terms of style I’m the same kind of writer now as then. I do outline a LOT more now, though. I didn’t outline at all for WFS.
LLBR: Are there any well known or famous writers (living or dead) that have influenced your style? If so, how?
RJK: Australian author/poet Luke Davies. His prose is gorgeous, but his stories are gritty as hell. He made me realize that blend was possible.
LLBR: Who (or what) else are you reading these days?
RJK: Three most recent: 33 AD – David McAfee. Pictures of You – Caroline Leavitt. Harry Potter series. I like a little bit of everything.
LLBR: What’s the one book, or Great American Novel, you wish you’d written?
RJK: Honestly, The Princess Bride. It might be the most perfect book I’ve ever read. It’s entertaining and funny, but it’s smart, too.
LLBR: What are you working on now? Will you self-publish it or are you seeking representation?
RJK: Currently working on The Wendy House, a follow up to WFS (not exactly a sequel). Encore has first dibs and I see no reason to go elsewhere.
LLBR: On being a writer or author, what’s the best advice you’ve ever been given? And who gave it?
RJK: ‘If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.’ – Toni Morrison
LLBR: What advice would you give for new authors considering self-publishing?
RJK: Have your book well edited. Research ALL your publishing options. Be patient. Overnight success is rare.
Success takes lots of hard work.
While I agree with most of the points we are going to make, I don’t feel like some of them are that important. And while this isn’t labeled a TOP 10 Things You Should Know, some of these points aren’t even the first 10 I’d think of right off the top of my head if I were creating my own list. But that’s just my opinion.
Sure, you need to #1 Pick a niche. But I don’t think you really have to #2 Study your competition. If only for the sake of avoiding plagiarism or copying an idea that’s already out there (vampires?), if you are studying the genre you want to concentrate on, then you already know what’s out there and you know which readers you want to target. However, do any traditional authors study their competition? For the most part, probably not. Just go study the teen section in your local chain bookstore and count how many covers have hot shirtless men on them that are either vampires or angels. Without reading the blurbs, I already can guess what all of those books have in common.
I agree with #3 all the way. You are often your own editor unless you have the money up front to invest in a professional. Buyer beware. I’ve reviewed books that claim to have been meticulously edited by professionals and I still find mistakes. You should definitely at least have a good friend or colleague read your book and look for mistakes. A second opinion helps.
#4 Make your title memorable is dear to my heart. If you’ve read my books, you know I love me some metaphors and hidden meanings. So, I’m all about a catchy title.
Look for the second part of this list in my next post! Want to keep you a little bit intrigued! I hope you do not mind! Let me know if that is annoying in the comments section below!