I need advice from editors and publishers!

Hello everyone! In case you didn’t know, I recently graduated college with a BA in English. One of my main goals is to get into the editing and publishing business. Preferably, I would like to start with some freelance work. The problem is that I’m overwhelmed with all of the information online. I knew it wouldn’t be easy but I do have a general idea of how the business works and I have had practice with editing.

The question I am posing to all of the freelance editors that are on this website is: how did you get started? Maybe you took some online classes. Maybe you found a website you use to get your business going. Either way, I would love to know what has worked for you. Feel free to leave any links in the comments below if you have any on hand. You can even advertise yourself on this post. I’m encouraging you this time.

I can’t wait to hear back from you all. I’ll also be happy to take some regular old advice.

So I’ve Graduated! Now What?

Hello everyone! I know its been taking me forever but I finally found time to write here. It’s been taking me forever to finish what I’m reading but I’ll get there soon enough. In the meantime, I wanted to reflect on college graduation and get the conversation going. I officially graduated from Kent State University on May 12th. It was a wonderful ceremony. Also, it was actually the first college graduation I’ve ever been to. The iconic Michael Keaton was our main speaker and he was hilarious and inspirational. The weather was nice except, because I’m so pasty, of course I left with a beet red face. Now, I have returned home with little to no idea of what the future holds. Because I like making lists, I’m going to do a pros and cons list of being an official graduate.

Pros:

  • Free from the general pressures that come with academia
  • Don’t have to deal with dorm living
  • Don’t have to deal with the hectic atmosphere of the college campus
  • Don’t have to pay for things like textbooks, parking, etc
  • Not having to go to any obligatory events like meetings in the dorms
  • Finally feeling like a truly independent adult (even though I still live at home)
  • Not having to travel back and forth two and half hours to get home
  • Being able to feel settled in my own space
  • Not having to go to lecture classes (I hated those especially)
  • Being able to partake in my own hobbies
  • Not being overwhelmed by classes
  • Finally having home cooked meals
  • Having a new found freedom

Cons:

  • Not having the convenience of a college campus
  • Not having my friends close by
  • Having to deal with “adult things”
  • Missing some of my favorite spots on campus
  • Not having my clubs
  • Not having a routine with classes
  • Not having my fun classes
  • Having roommates to talk to
  • Being able to go to events with free food
  • Free stuff, in general
  • Not feeling as productive as I used to be (working on changing that though)
  • Having a new found freedom

I’m sure I’m not alone in how I feel now. I certainly feel accomplished and I can’t wait to get my diploma in the mail. It is hard to not feel apprehensive but I know that I have a lot to look forward to. I’m excited for the future and I can’t wait to share what I experienced with all of you. While I’m at it, I’m going to post a picture of my Harry Potter-themed graduation cap below.

Just Some Updates

Hello everyone! It’s been a hot second since I have posted anything but I just wanted to do some life updates. If you don’t care, then I completely understand but I would appreciate if you stuck around to read this.

First thing I wanted to talk about was my lack of activity. I am about to graduate college the week after this (!!!) so I have obviously been super busy with that. The build has been chaotic but fun, nonetheless. I’m prepping for finals week so it hasn’t given me time to finish any books. I’m currently trying to finish book two of the Themis Files, Waking Gods and I know that the third book is going to be released tomorrow. I’m also reading Tomi Adeyemi’s Children of Blood and Bone. That one is a bit longer but I’m very excited to share my thoughts on it. There are some new book releases I’m very excited for that I will be sure to share with you since I will have more time. In the meanwhile, please forgive my on-and-off social media presence. Speaking of that, I do have a twitter now so you can follow me @capt0bvious96 and I will follow you back, I promise.

Next thing I wanted to address was doing more requests. I really want to start engaging more with all of you and would love to start reviewing suggested books. I also really want to start doing movie reviews, if you are interested. I’m really glad you all like my Current Favorites articles so I will definitely do more. The next thing I want to talk about is my favorite tv shows. If you have any suggestions for me, though, feel free to leave them in my comments or now you can tweet at me if you so wish.

The last thing I will talk about is my writing. I’m starting to really get into the swing of this new story I’m writing. If you are at all interested, I would definitely like to do some writing challenges in order to keep myself on track. I’d like to know what writing challenges any of you have done in the past. I am trying to be more consistent with my writing schedules and I will have more time on my hands to do that.

Thanks for sticking around to read this whole thing. I truly appreciate. I know that realistically most of you aren’t too invested but, to those who are, I want to give you my biggest thanks ever. If you are reaching the end of your school year, then I wish you the best of luck on your finals.

 

Current Favorites: Movie Edition (Part 2)

Hi everyone! I’m getting close to publishing my review of Sleeping Giants but I wanted to do something else in the meanwhile. I mentioned before that I am a huge movie buff and I already posted a list of favorite movies. Most were pretty mainstream but I still felt they were somewhat under appreciated. I decided to do another one in the same vein. So here are some more movies that I love and recommend to you all.

pacific rim

Pacific Rim – directed by Guillermo Del Toro, 2013

I’m a huge fan of science fiction and Guillermo Del Toro so I couldn’t resist adding another of his movies to a list. I already talked about The Shape of Water but I wanted to talk about this particular movie. Pacific Rim delivers on amazing visuals and classic robot vs. monster action. It’s a delight to watch as it doesn’t pretend to be anything other than a fun sci-fi romp. It also stars Idris Elba, who I have a massive crush on. It really is just a fun movie to watch. Sadly, I heard the sequel isn’t that great but at least the first one is good.

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Captain America: The Winter Soldier – Directed by the Russo Brothers, 2014

I already mentioned one Marvel movie in my previous list and I didn’t think I would mention another one as most of you are more than aware of the MCU. I, however, cannot fail to mention how much I adored this movie and I will even go so far as to argue that it is one of the best Marvel movies or at least it is one of the best sequels. The action sequences in this movie are so well done and I loved the emotional stakes this movie brought. This movie also introduced two of the best MCU characters: Bucky Barnes as the Winter Soldier and Sam Wilson as the Falcon. This movie is just so wonderfully composed. It has a perfect balance between action and emotion. Also the cast is just wonderful. MCU is really great at casting in general. If you haven’t seen this one yet, I cannot stress enough how good this movie is.

heathers

Heathers – Directed by Michael Lehmann, 1988

Now, it’s time to take a sharp left turn from sci-fi/action to dark teen comedy. I have never been a fan of teen movies and that includes the slew of movies that the 1980s produced but Heathers changed my mind. Winona Ryder is probably more relatable in 2018 than she was in 1988. I enjoy the dark, twisted humor in the movie. It definitely bends the classic teen genre in more ways than one. I also enjoy the “girls with guns” trope in this movie. I don’t think it is for everyone but it is still a good movie for anyone with a sick sense of humor. It’s also incredibly quotable. (Note: I know that this isn’t the original poster for the movie but I liked it better. Also the musical adaptation is really great.)

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Call Me By Your Name – Directed by Luca Guadagnino, 2017

Let’s get into some romance, shall we? When the Oscar buzz was going around, I heard this movie come up a lot. I was very bored one Friday night and decided to see if I could find it. I was very glad that I was able to watch this sweet and unconventional romance. The movie has a very intimate vibe that fits the beautiful aesthetic of the Mediterranean. Timothee Chalamet deserves recognition for his wonderful performance. The relationship between the two main characters is touching and understanding. I know a lot of people have gripes about the age difference in the relationship but it is in no way portrayed in a creepy Lolita-type way. This is a wonderful story about two men uncovering the truths about themselves through each other. I should note that this is based on a novel that I would love to read one day.

the imitation game

The Imitation Game – Directed by Morten Tyldum, 2014

I still remember seeing this one in theaters because it was the only one available that particular night. The theatre was super busy so my mom, sister, and I decided we might as well see this one because we all love Benedict Cumberbatch. Anyways, I ended up becoming incredibly invested in this movie, which is about mathematical genius Alan Turing and his struggle to crack the German Enigma code in order to help the British forces during WWII. If you don’t know who Alan Turing is, he essentially paved the way for artificial intelligence. Sadly, his life was tormented as was on the autism spectrum and he was a gay man during a time when you could go to jail for that. This movie is more about humanity than it is machines, which makes it so enjoyable to watch. It is dramatic and heart-breaking. Cumberbatch and Knightley both give award worthy performances. I would recommend this movie to the history buffs out there.

Types of Literary Narrators I Hate

Hello everyone! I am currently catching up on the last new novel I got so, hopefully, I will be giving you a review of that soon. I’m coming up on spring break so I might wait till then. In the meanwhile, I’ve been thinking about certain story telling styles I don’t click with. These mostly apply to first person narrators but there are some things in third person stories that I can’t stand. There are certain things writers do when it comes to their narrators that just piss me off and make the story less enjoyable. Now, I’m going to share with you the kind of narrators that I am tired of reading about.

The Skeptic: The is narrator mostly shows up in horror or science fiction. From the beginning of the story, they have to remind you that they don’t believe in the paranormal or supernatural. This narrator has to remind you every other sentence that they have always thought ghosts were stupid. You don’t have to remind me every five seconds that your are skeptical. This is when the “show, don’t tell,” rule should come in to play.

scully

The Philosopher: This narrator loves to ask sweeping, broad questions or statements in order to get the reader thinking about the meaning of life or something like that. When a story begins out with some line like, “since the dawn of time, there have aways been things hidden from humans…” then I start to roll my eyes. If you want to incorporate philosophy in your story, that’s fine but there’s a way to include without immediately boring the reader.

philosophy

The Romantic: This narrator has the biggest crush on another character in the story and they will stop everything to go on and on about the love of their life. Their crush breathes and the world stops turning. Their crush has the most amazing eyes in the whole entire universe and not a single other person’s eyes compare to it. Listen, I like romance as much as the next person but there’s a better way to convey a relationship between two characters.

romance

The Pessimist: Life sucks and this narrator won’t let you forget it. This narrator is hard to read because you start to feel depressed over fictional things. I want to enjoy a book to a degree and I can’t do that when the narrator won’t give me anything to enjoy. Believe it or not, there’s always some sort of “silver lining.” Don’t let this narrator get you down.

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The Narrator Who Is Not Like Other People: This narrator is just so unique and different. They are not like average people. They are so extraordinary because of whatever talents or features they have. You mostly find this narrator in YA novels because teens want to live vicariously through this super special character. The author takes great care to let you know how different their character is from the rest and it’s exhausting. Again, “show, don’t tell” is a good rule here.

special

The Hardened and Angsty Soul: This narrator is a step up from the pessimist. This narrator has seen some sh*t in their time and everything they do comes back to whatever traumatic even they experienced. They always refer vaguely and bitterly back to this event and all of the other characters tell them that they need to move on but they just can’t because angst. I’ve seen this one pop up in plenty of detective stories and it’s pretty common in action movies as well. You’ll probably know who I’m talking about.

angst

Note: This is not meant to shade any specific authors. These are just observations I have made while reading. Feel free to debate me or agree with me in the comments. I like to hear your feedback.

So you’ve just had a panic attack? Here’s how to help yourself!

Hi everyone! I keep saying that I wasn’t planning to post more but I felt like this was something I needed to talk about and, hopefully, I can open up a conversation about anxiety. As of today, I have experienced probably the most severe panic attack that I’ve ever experienced in a while. It was bizarre. I honestly thought I was having an allergic reaction. It was that bad. I have had some bad panic attacks in the past but I’ve since learned better coping mechanisms and I wanted to share those with you. Whether you have experienced panic attacks before or you’ve had your first one, there are some useful things you can do before or after.

  • TALK TO SOMEONE!!! Honestly, the worst thing you can do while feeling anxious is isolate yourself. A tiny bit of alone time is fine but you need to reach out to someone and it doesn’t matter who it is as long as you trust them. This has been my biggest source of help.
  • Find a distraction. When you’re coming down from anxiety, your natural instinct is to analyze everything you’ve just been through. This isn’t the best idea. Turn on your favorite show, read a book, go for a walk, or do whatever your favorite hobby is. I find this to be very centering.
  • Get a “totem.” My mom stole this idea from the movie, Inception. If you remember, each of the characters in the movie had a distinct item that they used to help them tell if they were still in a dream or not. This is the same concept. Find a small item that you like  and keep it on you. If you start feeling anxious, find that item and use it to center yourself. My choice is a small Iron Man plushie. I like to keep him in my bag and he makes me a little happier.
  • Breathing exercises help a lot. You feel a panic attack coming up and your breathing starts to pick up. This can lead to a few more problems. Look up breathing exercises to use in order to prevent any shallow breathing or hyperventilating. This can also prevent you from feeling light headed or faint.
  • LET IT HAPPEN!! If you feel a panic attack coming on, the worst thing you can do is to try to fight it. I’ve had panic attacks in public places and it’s not a fun feeling. It doesn’t matter where you are when it happens but you need to let it pass. You will feel better when it is over. I’ve only felt better after a panic attack. It feels like a giant balloon bursting and then I’m just deflating. Afterwards, I just feel tired. Don’t be embarrassed. Just take care of yourself. Someone will understand, I assure you.

I’ve realized that I’ve started getting into lifestyle territory now but I’m going to connect this back to literature because I’ve read a few books that specifically tackle anxiety and other mental conditions. Some have been accurate and some are not. I’ve learned to incorporate some of my feeling in my writing. I hope that this helps some of you. Feel free to leave some of your tips in the comments. I’d like to keep the conversation going.

A Few of My Favorite Musicals

Hi everyone! I just finished my Harry Potter re-read and, alas, a new book did not magically appear before me. Rather than dwell on that, I decided to talk about another passion of mine: theatre. I have been involved in theatre since I was very young. I did musicals with a summer theatre group until I was in middle school. Once I got into high school, I immediately became involved in drama club and it was what made those four years stand out. I did a little bit of acting but then went to working the stage crew. Eventually, I became a student director. When I graduated, I debated doing a minor in theatre but decided against it. That, however, doesn’t mean that my passion for theatre has stopped. I decided to share with you some of my favorite musicals and maybe I’ll do a post about my favorite plays later.

hamilton

“Hamilton: An American Musical” by Lin-Manuel Miranda: Call me basic but I absolutely adore this musical with all my heart and soul. It is so well-written and you feel as though you learn something new every time you listen to it. “Hamilton” really brought me back to Broadway after I was starting to fall out of love with it. It’s fun, inspirational, unique, and heart-warming. I never fail to get excited once it pops up on my playlist.

the great comet of 1812

“Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812” by Dave Malloy: This is a good musical for you book lovers out there. It is based off of only 70 pages of War and Peace but it still captures so much emotion. With Josh Groban and Denee Benton as the titular characters, they help bring the story so much life along with the rest of the incredibly talented cast. The music is a great blend of modern pop music and classical music, dubbed “popera.” I highly recommend this energetic and engaging musical.

rent

“RENT” by Jonathan Larson: Again, you can call me basic but this musical helped me fall in love with Broadway. It has such a diverse cast of characters and some of the most iconic songs known to theatre geeks. I could recognize the first note of “Seasons of Love” from 100 miles away. This musical also never fails to make me tear up when I watch it.

sideshow

“Side Show” by Bill Russell and Henry Keiger: I saw this one about two years ago when my college put it on. I was required to go for my Art of Theatre class. I’ve always had a fascination for the “freak shows” of the past so I was interested. This particular musical is based on the lives of Violet and Daisy Hilton, who were conjoined at the hip. The musical didn’t initially do well when it was on Broadway as it is kind of controversial. Regardless, it is still a great musical that has only recently been revived. If you liked “The Greatest Showman,” then I recommend you check out “Side Show.”

dear evan hansen

“Dear Evan Hansen” by Pasek and Paul: As someone who has been dealing with anxiety and panic attacks, I felt a pull towards this musical when I first heard “Waving Through a Window.” Though it deals with heavy subjects, this musical has a very uplifting message that anyone can relate to. Ben Platt is absolutely brilliant in his role as Evan Hansen. “Dear Evan Hansen” embraces the age of social media and the teens who rely on it in their lives.

heathers

“Heathers: The Musical” by Laurence O’Keefe and Kevin Murphy: I have never been a fan of musicals that are adaptation but “Heathers” changed my mind. I ended up listening to the music before I even saw the iconic movie that the musical is based on. It is an incredibly quotable musical with attitude and depth that you wouldn’t expect. I now love the movie and the musical. If you love the 80s, then this one is for you.

phantom of the opera

“The Phantom of the Opera” by Andrew Lloyd Webber: This is yet another testament to some of my basic tastes but, you have to admit, “The Phantom of the Opera” has certainly held up over the years. I saw the movie for the first time and I was blown away by the drama of it all. I still want to read the original novel by Gaston Leroux one day. In the meanwhile, I will still struggle to hit Christine’s high notes in the titular song.

 

Thoughts I have had while re-reading Harry Potter

Hi everyone! I am still without a new book to read but I have filled that void with Harry Potter. I’m currently on book five and I’m about midway through. Even though I have read this series countless times, my thoughts have changed as I have gotten older. In this post, I’m just going to give you a list of thoughts I have had while re-reading this series.

  • Why did they leave baby Harry on a doorstop all night? Why couldn’t they have waited closer to morning before leaving him?
  • How can these two grown adults be so awful to their own nephew for things he doesn’t know yet?
  • Hagrid is actually the best character in these books.
  • Ron’s snarky comments are actually bits of foreshadowing.
  • Hermione is too nice. If my friends kept asking to copy off my homework, I would have snapped at them by now.
  • The Weasley twins threw snowballs straight at Voldemort like true legends.
  • Literally, how can anyone justify Snape’s behavior?
  • Everyone keeps punishing Harry for things he doesn’t even know about!!!
  • I’m sad Winky the house elf wasn’t in the movie.
  • Everyone keeps roasting Hufflepuff and it is hilarious. (No offense to the Hufflepuffs)
  • I’m convinced that Dumbledore hires the Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers mostly for his own amusement.
  • Does Draco have nothing better to do than to harass the Gryffindors?
  • McGonagall is a badass and I will fight whoever says otherwise.
  • Remember when Dumbledore calmly asked Harry if he put his name in the Goblet of Fire?
  • “We’ve done everything we can to make the TriWizard Tournament safer for the students!” *puts even more students in danger in the second task*
  • SIRIUS BLACK DESERVED BETTER!!!
  • All of this food sounds delicious. I would kill for a pumpkin pasty right now.
  • Oh shit, it’s Umbridge.
  • It’s comforting to know that even wizards have to put up with bullshit politics.
  • DOBBY DESERVED BETTER!!
  • Harry is an innocent soul who just wants to chat with snakes and play Quidditch.
  • The sass in these books is giving me life.
  • Voldemort is so dramatic. He just has to monologue.
  • I’m still sad Peeves wasn’t in the movies.
  • How about we give Neville a break?
  • Honestly, Harry and Ron making up nonsense for their homework is the most  realistic part of these books.
  • Hermione, do not get upset that exams are cancelled! Do you know how many people would kill for that?
  • They’re just kids, for god’s sake!!
  • These kids are in danger!! Let’s surround them with soul-sucking monsters!! – stupid adults
  • Yeah, I still want to go to Hogwarts.

I’ll keep you updated as I finish the series. Let me know what thoughts you have had about Harry Potter or if you agree with me.

Here is my biggest thanks!

Hi everyone! I don’t mean to brag but I just wanted to thank you all because I have reached 200 followers! I did not start this blog thinking that anyone would be interested but 200 of you proved me otherwise. I am beyond happy at this news and will continue to do my best to give you quality content. I am still working on doing new blog series that will allow me to interact more with you all. Let me know if you have any ideas for me. I am always looking for feedback.

Anyways, I really just wanted to say thanks for following me and I hope you continue to enjoy my content.

My (Honest) DNF List

Hi everyone! While I still wait on a new book to magically appear in front of me, I decided I’ll tell you all about the books I DNF’d or Did Not Finished, in case you didn’t know what DNF stood for. Some of you may be shocked while others may not be surprised by this. I will do my best to explain my reasons for not finishing any of these novels and whether or not I will try to finish them.

IT by Stephen King: Everyone knows that Stephen King writes some super long books and It is one of the longer ones. Who knew a novel about a killer clown could be so complex? I did enjoy that complexity, though. I really want to finish It one day but not any time soon.

Origin by Dan Brown: I did a review/rant on this one a little while back. I got pretty far into the novel before I realized that 98% of was going to be build up to something that isn’t even substantial. Literally, the book was building up to a question. In other Dan Brown novels, you get some satisfactory answers or tangible victories before the big reveal, even if it is convoluted. The entire book felt like a mash up of Brown’s other cliches with no interesting history to back it up. Can someone prove religion wrong with one simple question? Well, Dan Brown can’t answer that.

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt: I’m a huge Donna Tartt fan and I did do a review on this novel as well but I didn’t exactly finish it. The style of this novel is “bildungsroman,” which is a novel that follows one character’s most formative years. Essentially, it is a coming-of-age novel. I liked the characters and the overall plot but it was just so damn long. My attention span can only take so much but I may have to try to thoroughly read it. I still recommend Tartt’s novels.

The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman: Pullman’s novels are particularly popular and I tried to read this book once or twice now. The first time I tried to read it I was in grade school and the movie was coming out around that time. I know that the movie isn’t good, by the way. I remember being confused by all of the terms in the novel the first time I read it. I also was a little baffled by the whole “daemon” concept. Now that I’m an adult, I will definitely have to give this another opportunity as I will probably be able to appreciate this more.

Allegiant by Veronica Roth: I shouldn’t need to explain again why I hate this book but I do. The final novel in the Divergent series still makes my blood boil. I skipped to the stupid ending just so I could be pissed at the stupidity of it all. If you’ve read the novel, then you know what I mean.

Crossed by Ally Condie: This one was the second book in the Matched trilogy. I really enjoyed Matched when I first read it because I enjoyed the world and the characters. The problem with the second novel was that it was completely removed from the world that we had come know. It was mostly just the two main characters wandering through a desert. My mom and I actually both ended up not finishing this book. It also had two unnecessary POVs happening, much like Allegiant. 

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larson: This is another really popular book series that I was just unable to get into. I thought that this one would be right up my alley with it being a mystery/thriller/suspense novel. I barely got to chapter five before I got very bored. Not only do I not know Swedish or really anything about Sweden, but the build up was just so boring. I wanted to know more about Lisabeth Salander but I felt like I wasn’t going to get to know her.

Requiem by Lauren Oliver: Lauren Oliver has written some of my favorite novels, including Rooms. Requiem is the third book in the Delirium trilogy and I really enjoyed the first novel. I did like the second book as well but not as much. Unfortunately, I simply wasn’t able to finish the third novel but I would like to re-read the entire series. The world of the novel was incredibly interesting and I liked the two main characters. I also felt it was a great twist on forbidden romance. I recommend this if you like YA dystopian novels.

These are at least some of the books I have DNF’d. Let me know if any of these are worth finishing or if I should just give up. Also, let me know what books you gave up on.