Wednesday, 19 March 2014

What's Up Wednesday

In case you’re new to WUW, it’s a blog hop created by my sister Jaime and me, intended to help writers keep in touch with one another. If you’d like to participate, please sign up on the linky below, and be sure to spread some writerly encouragement around to at least a few other people taking part.

What I’m Reading:

Last night, I finished Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi. While I loved Shatter Me, this last book in the series was a disappointment for many reasons. I'll leave it at that.

Next, I think I’ll read Unhinged by A.G. Howard. I’m hoping I enjoy it as much as Splintered.

What I’m Writing:

Jaime and I had our mini writing retreat over Google Hangouts on Saturday, and it turned out to be a very productive day. I rewrote the scene I mentioned I was struggling with last week (once I figured out where to slot it) and I also got a nice chunk of other revisions done. There was plenty of tea, lots of helpful conversation, way too much candy, and loads of fun. We plan on having another joint writing session this Thursday, seeing as this one went so well.

What Inspires Me Right Now:

Setting aside Thursday for another writing session with my sister, of course.

What Else I’ve Been Up To:

Jaime and I started what we refer to as “The Roswell Challenge.” Seeing as we’re both fans of the WB show Roswell, we challenged each other to watch at least four episodes a week while on the treadmill. It’s been quite a while since I last watched this teen sci-fi gem, and I’m enjoying it all over again. Besides Shiri Appleby’s tendency to wear mom jeans (hey, it was the 90s) it’s actually still a great show, and it’s providing the motivation to get off my duff and get some exercise.

For St. Patrick’s Day, my family watched Waking Ned Devine (hilarious) and The Secret of Kells, the latter of which has become a tradition in our house. It’s one of my favourite movies because the art style is just so unique and beautiful. If you want to read more about it, check out my post from last year here. Supper was a team effort. My husband made Guinness beef stew, my son baked Irish soda bread, and I made an Irish tea cake with lemon yogurt on top. Okay, so the lemon yogurt isn’t Irish, but it’s delicious and much healthier than some sugary topping. There was also additional Guinness for the hubby and me.


I know we’re about ten years behind on this, but my husband and I started binge watching Veronica Mars this weekend. With all the hype about the movie, we thought it was high time to try it out. It probably won’t come as a surprise that we’re addicted. Yes, my husband too. We watch almost all of our shows together. I’m already dreading the end of the series, but I’m looking forward to seeing the movie, especially since I’ve heard good things about it.

So what’s up with you these days?

47 comments:

  1. I need to catch up on Veronica Mars :-) So happy you and Jaime had a good session together! And working out that way is also a great way to stay motivated! Have a great week, Erin :-)

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    1. I can't believe it took me so long to get around to watching Veronica Mars. It's such a well-written show! Jaime and I have been big on accountability lately--with the writing and the exercise--and it's a huge help. Hope you have a great week as well!

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  2. For years I've been telling myself I need to start binge watching Veronica Mars. I have one episode of House of Cards left, and then I'll make VM my next series.

    And I love the idea of the Roswell challenge. Good luck!

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    1. Me too. I'm really not sure why it took me so long to get to it, because it's exactly the type of show I like to watch. Can't say that I'm disappointed I waited though, since I now have something awesome to watch and can see the movie right after I'm done the shows.

      Jaime and I have been talking about doing our Roswell Challenge for ages now, so I'm glad we finally got around to that too!

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  3. Roswell is in my Netflix queue to watch at some point. I'm trying to catch up on all the teen shows I've missed over the years :)

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    1. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! It's not without its cheesy bits, but overall it's a great show--mom jeans and other 90s details aside, of course. :D

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  4. VM is next in my to-watch queue. I've heard it's awesome, and with all the buzz about the movie, I think it's high time. I'm watching Gossip Girl now, which I'm kind of digging. The characters are pretty much all jerks, but there's something charming about them, too. I'm only about 6 episodes in, so hopefully it'll hold up. I love that you and Jaime had an online writing retreat. I think that's a fantastic idea, and I'm so glad to hear that you were both super productive. Have a great week, Erin!

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    1. It's a really clever show and I don't know why I put off watching it for so long. Glad I'm not the only one though because with all the chatter about the movie, it kind of seemed that way! Our writing retreat was so much fun, and it felt great to get a nice chunk of rewriting/revision done. We're trying it again tomorrow, so who knows? Maybe it'll become a regular thing. :)

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  5. Everyone seems to be talking about Veronica Mars, so I guess that means I should watch it! :P A Google Hangout retreat sounds like fun, and productive, too! Have a great week! :)

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    1. I know right? I've heard so much about the movie lately that I finally had to get around to watching the show. And I'm glad I did because it's really good. I'm already feeling sad that there's only three seasons. Our retreat was a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to our next one. Hope you have a great week too!

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  6. I'm totally clueless about most modern TV shows. Somewhere along the line, I just lost interest in television except for a few shows. I'm now the exact opposite of how I was as a preteen, when I was seriously obsessed with watching TV, particularly the old shows from my parents' generation.

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    1. We've become a lot pickier about what we watch in recent years because there's just so much bad writing on TV. I was raised on a lot of classics too, like The Andy Griffith Show and Gilligan's Island, both of which we introduced to my son. He got a kick out of them, which I thought was cool because he barely watches anything on TV except sports.

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  7. Glad you had such a productive writing retreat. I wish I had a treadmill so I could go on it while watching something, that's a great idea! Good luck with it :)

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    1. I'm so glad we decided to have our writing retreat because it was a huge boost in motivation and we got lots done. As for the treadmill, it's a good thing I'm married to a marathon runner, otherwise I probably wouldn't have one! :)

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  8. As you know, I was pretty disappointed with IGNITE ME too. This seems to be happening a lot with series I initially love. Thank goodness for trilogies like Rae Carson's and Veronica Rossi's that hit it out of the park with their finales. Not sure when I'll get to UNHINGED. I kind of want to tackle Marie Lu's books next.
    I'm really looking forward to our joint writing session tomorrow! It's so hard to sit my butt down and get working on my WiP, but Saturday's session was super helpful that way. I'm stocked up on candy again, which is so NOT what I need right now, especially with this ROSWELL challenge in full swing.
    Your St. Patrick's Day festivities sound fun! (Also: yummy.) I had thought about watching The Matchmaker, Waking Ned Divine, or Leap Year, but didn't get around to it. I should get a copy of The Secret of Kells for next year. :-) Looking forward to chatting (and writing) tomorrow!

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    1. I was tempted to get into the reasons I was disappointed with IGNITE ME but decided against it. You and I read a lot of the same series, and I agree that there have been too many lately that fizzled out instead of going out with a bang. Rae Carson and Veronica Rossi set the bar pretty darn high. I can't wait to read whatever either of them puts out next. I hope you enjoy Marie Lu's books as much as I did. I thought she did a stellar job of plotting, especially in CHAMPION.

      I'm eager for our session tomorrow too! For whatever reason, I feel stalled out on revisions. I'm putting the time into it but it feels like slow going. I haven't bought any more candy for tomorrow, but I'm pretty sure we already have ample snacks stashed in the pantry. Weirdly, I've been chowing down on red and orange peppers this week. Since when do I do that? I need to hurry up and finish here so I can go do my Roswell Challenge actually.

      We wanted to watch The Matchmaker too but didn't have time to fit it in. Liam loved Waking Ned Divine. He cracked up at all the parts I thought he would and then some. See you tomorrow! :)

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  9. The writing retreat sounds like it was a lot of fun. :) The covers for A.G. Howard's books are gorgeous - I need to get my hands on them!

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    1. It was an awesome day and we got lots done! It always feels great when you can be productive on writing and have fun at the same time. I love A.G. Howard's covers too. They're so colourful and catchy!

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  10. Your Google Hangout writing day with your sister sounds genius. I want to do that! Loved hearing about your St. Patrick's Day. I put Secret of Kells on my "to watch" list. And Veronica Mars. And Roswell. So much to see, so little time. :)

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    1. I'm really glad we decided to pull an all day writing session. It was great motivation and we got a lot accomplished. Plus it was fun. I hope you enjoy all the shows! The Secret of Kells is pure eye candy, and it's such a creative blend of Irish history and mythology. And you're so right--too little time. Throw books into the mix and it's hopeless!

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  11. I still need to finish catching up on Veronica Mars. It really is a great show! I'm excited to see the movie when I'm done with the series.

    Your writing retreat sounds so fun! I love that you and your sister can have these writing dates together. :) Good luck with everything this week!

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    1. I'm already sad that there's only three seasons. I'm looking forward to the movie though too. I've heard a lot of good things about it. I love it when a show gets cancelled and they decide to add onto the story line with a movie after the fact (although I'd prefer this one didn't get cancelled at all).

      Our writing retreat was awesome and I can't wait until our next one tomorrow. I'm super lucky to have a sister that writes too and is willing to spend hours on Google Hangouts. :)

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  12. It's wonderful that you and Jaime can support each other's writing. It must really be a neat relationship. Veronica is on my list, but I'm so far behind on things like that. Enjoy Thursday!

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    1. Jaime and I are great friends and writing has become a really big part of our relationship, which is cool. I know the feeling about being behind. Veronica Mars is kind of my treat for getting things done, I guess. I hope you get around to it too someday, because it really is a great show! :)

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  13. I haven't watched Veronica Mars either. I saw all three seasons at Walmart for $10 each and almost bought them. I probably should have. One of these days I'll get around to watching it.
    I always watch TV shows while treadmilling. It's the only way I can get myself to exercise!

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    1. I'm glad I'm not the only one! There was so much buzz about the movie this week that I was starting to feel like I social misfit for not having seen a single episode. If you ever have the spare time, be sure to treat yourself and watch it, because it's great.

      A while back I started rewatching Gilmore Girls on the treadmill, but I fizzled out on that for whatever reason. Pretty sure it had more to do with the exercise than the show lol.

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  14. The writing retreat sounds so much fun! Glad it was productive for you too.

    Your St Patrick's Day supper sounds amazing, it;s making me hungry!

    Good Luck with the Roswell Challenge! I did the C25km and am quite a convert to exercise.

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    1. It was a really good day, and I'm looking forward to our next writing session tomorrow. Our St. Patrick's Day supper was delicious, and it was fun to get the whole family involved in making it. There were also leftovers, which I was glad about.

      25km? Wow, that's impressive! My hubby is a marathon runner, so I'm amazed by people who can run long distances. I'd say maybe someday for me, but I'm not sure I'll ever have that kind of motivation. :)

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  15. The writing retreat sounds like a lot of fun. I had never watched Roswell before but recently I started watching it on Netflix. It's so good. I'm glad your enjoying Veronica Mars. It's one of my favorite shows. Have a great weekend!

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    1. It was a really productive and enjoyable day. We managed to rein in our chatting and got lots done. I'm so glad you discovered Roswell! I think it's what originally eased me into sci-fi actually. I can see why Veronica Mars is one of your favourites. I was hooked from the first episode! Have a great weekend yourself!

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  16. I'm just feeling SO behind on Roswell, lol.
    As in. I haven't watched A. SINGLE. EPISODE.
    But I'm gonna change that...
    soon.

    I enjoyed MAfI's series. BUT I read spec fic for brain-break fun, and for me, it was fun.


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    1. We watched it way back when it was originally on TV and were so bummed when it got cancelled. Apparently the show missed its teen demographic and was more popular with the 20-40 set. Go figure when most of the actors were already pushing 30 lol. I hope you enjoy it if you get around to watching it!

      I so wanted to love IGNITE ME, but since I write sci-fi I saw a lot of issues with it and couldn't give it a pass. Ah well.

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  17. Yay for fun sisterly writer retreats!! That sounds perfect. And happy St. Patrick's (belated). Your dinner sounds divine and the movies well, Devine. (sorry couldn't resist) I loved Waking Ned Devine though. I re-watched it recently and laughed my ass off. Have you seen Saving Grace? (movie, not TV series). It has a very similar feel and if you liked Waking Ned Devine, I think you'd really like it. (That scene with the stoned old ladies gets me every time.)

    Hope you have an amazing week with lots of Words and leftover Guinness. :)

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    1. Our writing retreat was awesome and I hope our next one (tomorrow) is just as productive and fun. Ha! Love the Devine pun and just realized I actually spelled his name wrong in my post. Duh! Better go fix that! Isn't it a hilarious movie? David Kelly butt naked on that motorbike is prime comedy. This was the first time my son had ever seen it, and he thought it was hilarious. I've never seen Saving Grace, but if it's anything like Waking Ned Devine, then I'd better check it out!

      Have an amazing week yourself! :)

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  18. I love Roswell and I am leaning towards to adding it to my watching list. I currently just started Friday Night Lights again and hubby pulled out the Battlestar series. We also watched Veronica Mars series for the first time about three months ago.

    Have a great week.

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    1. All the shows you mentioned are favourites of ours, especially Battlestar. We just rewatched the whole series a few months back too. There aren't a ton of shows I'd rewatch, but definitely all of these, including Veronica Mars if it continues on this good!

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  19. I read Shatter Me years ago, I think I actually read the ARC before it came out. I liked it, but not enough that it was still on my mind years later when the second book came out. I've been feeling like I should finish the trilogy since everyone is raving about Ignite Me right now. You're the first person to give a mixed review. Maybe I'll have to consider this more before picking back up the series.

    Have a great week!

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    1. I enjoyed the unique prose in SHATTER ME, but seeing as Juliette's character isn't actually "crazy" that voice (the crossed out sentences, obsessive counting, and abstract metaphors) is really toned down for the remainder of the series. I'd point you in the direction of some of the goodreads reviews that I agreed with, but I think they all contained spoilers. The five star reviews are shocking to me. I generally have a no negative reviews policy, which is why I'm keeping quiet on my reasons, although Jaime and I have had a thorough discussion on it. I will say that the book is more or less one big long conversation about the mc's relationships with both the love interests. Almost nothing of consequence happens. Ah well. Hope you have a great week too!

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  20. I'm sorry that the last book in Mafi's series was a let down for you :( I keep meaning to read that series, but... It's the worst when the last book is a letdown. I hated Mocking Jay. I'm glad your writing retreat went well! A virtual one sounds awesome, but I never thought about doing that. Such a good idea for friends/family that don't live nearby.

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    1. Yeah, it always sucks when the ending doesn't live up to what you were hoping because then there's no point in reading the first books in the series again. Mockingjay definitely had it's issues, so I can see why you felt that way. Have to admit I wasn't a fan of Allegiant either and not because of the controversial ending. On the upside, I did love Into the Still Blue by Veronica Rossi and Champion by Marie Lu, so at least I've been happy with a couple of the series I finished reading recently.

      Jaime and I rarely talk on the phone anymore because it's so much more like actual visiting when we're video chatting. I honestly don't know what we'd do without Skype and Google Hangouts. We're having another writing retreat tomorrow seeing as the first one went so well. :)

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  21. Yeah, I'm afraid of Veronica Mars actually. I just got done watching the season and entire series finale of Dexter and I'm devastated. Like for reals depression. Gah, I love them like they're family members! Your Irish treats look awesome. I also made Irish stew, but mine was lamb and without the Guinness. It was very...lamby!

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    1. Oh I know. I'm feeling sad already that there are only 3 seasons. I have to admit I can't watch Dexter. The concept just scares me. I'm a total fraidy cat. We've never tried making our stew recipe with lamb before, although technically that would be more authentic on St. Patrick's Day. Maybe next year!

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  22. I'm still reading IGNITE ME, so my verdict is still out, though I have no complaints so far. My wife made a Guinness cake on Monday. Of course, I had to wash it down with Guinness. Of course. :)

    All the best to you with the Roswell challenge. As I told Jaime, it takes a lot of motivation for me to exercise. It's just not something I enjoy. At all. But given that my work and my non-work activities are generally butt-in-chair, for my health's sake I have to. *sigh*.

    Have a great week, Erin!

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    1. I won't ruin it for you by mentioning any of my reasons then. :)

      Mmm, Guinness cake sounds delicious! At a local folk festival here, we've tried Irish Whiskey cake and that was quite tasty. I think I need to do some more baking!

      I despise exercise so our Roswell Challenge is a stretch for me too. Honestly, there are too many other things I'd rather be doing in a day. I'm not one of those crazy people that thinks exercise is fun, like my husband lol. Hope you have a great week too!

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  23. Waking Ned Devine is one of my favorite movies. So funny! I still quote it regularly. Your writing retreat sounds like a lot of fun! If wish my sister was a writer so we could do that too.

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    1. It's one of our favourites too, and this was the first time we watched it with our son so it was funny to see his reactions to all the shenanigans. My writing retreat with Jaime was so fun and productive that we had another one today. I'm sensing this could become a regular thing. :)

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  24. My brother's been trying to convince me to watch Veronica Mars and I've resisted because I feel like we already have so many shows! Hah! Maybe I'll save it for my next pregnancy (whenever that is). We flew through Lost in one trimester.
    That Google hangout sounds like a ton of fun. Love the idea! I'm bummed you didn't like Ignite Me. Bummer. :(

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