Books Read in 2011

Tessa's books-read-2011 book montage

Clockwork Angel
The Hunger Games
Catching Fire
Sleeping Beauty: Vampire Slayer

Books Read in 2011 »

Wednesday, October 27, 2010



I'm back after three days of intensive shopping. We shopped until 3 AM on Saturday (we ended up in Wallmart), so our feet were literally crying by the time we got back to the airplane. Everything was absolutely lovely, from all those polite, easy-going Americans, fabulous stores, and to the amazing food. I'd probably be four times my size if I lived in America! We ate breakfast twice at the Ihop - the first day (Saturday) we ate there at eight o'clock (four strips of bacon, scrambled eggs, hash brown, two pancakes, and a huge glass of orange juice), and we weren't hungry for the rest of the day. I think we ate again around 10 PM or so, some yucky food at Wallmart that I sort of just nibbled at. 

So yeah, we started out in the outlets, which may have been a mistake. The day after, we went to Target where the clothes were soooo cheap (I bought, like, 12 pajamas for my sons, each on $5 (pajamas here never go below $25)), and there were these cute little jogging pants for $7 and such. I'd bought some for $10 at the outlets, but that didn't stop me from buying more at Target! I know that the quality is better from Carters and such, but my boys grow so fast that it's pointless to buy expensive clothes for them. 

I did shop for myself as well. I bought three Levi's for $100! You can get one pair here in Iceland for no less than $160. So you see how the price difference is and why I literally lost it over there. I also bought four pairs of shoes, two purses, a wallet, loads of shirts and sweaters, belts, underwear, and anything I could get my hands on that's seriously overpriced in Iceland (Mascara for $5! It never goes below $20 in Iceland). 

We went to bookshops on the final morning. I didn't get a chance to go to Barnes & Noble (pout), but I did go to Boarders and some half-price bookshop. I bought these at Boarders: The First Five PagesWriting Dialogue, and The Copyeditor's Handbook, which I'm really excited about. I bought these at the Half-Price Books: Building Believable Characters and Comma Sense (for a dollar). I know that these books are a lot cheaper on Amazon, but since I was only staying for 3 days, I didn't want to chance having them sent to the hotel in case I'd miss them. They're also cheaper the way I bought them, because the tax in Iceland is very high (not to mention the shipping).

Anyway! When I got home, I learned that the my PC had died for no apparent reason! I turn it on and it stays on for like five seconds and then just dies. I took it to the shop that sold it to me and they're having a look. I'm so dead if the data is ruined! All my Creative Writing assignments, and a years worth of pictures of my boys! ...I should call them and make sure they don't swipe the memory clean...

Anyway, I'll blog less until I've gotten my computer back.

Thursday, October 21, 2010



I'm going to the USA tomorrow! The plan has changed and I'm going to Seattle. I'm so going to raid Barnes & Noble (if you see headlines in the newspapers - that'll be me!).

I'm not taking my computer with me, so that means that I won't be blogging or reading blogs for a few days. I'll be busy shopping my head off (I wanted to scream when I saw the price difference! Sometimes living in Iceland just sucks). And who knows, maybe I'll see that space thingy in the picture.

Anyway! Have a great weekend, and see you next week!


(I apologize for the excessive use of exclamation marks - but I'm going to the USA!!!!)

Monday, October 18, 2010

A Joke

13 year old kid: My mom thinks LOL means Lots of Love, so I got a text message from her one day saying "Your grandma died this morning, LOL!"

Yeah, okay, I actually laughed more at the picture than at the joke ^.^

Sunday, October 17, 2010



You know you've got a cliché when you see the exact same line in another book.

I was reading a free first chapter of  A Better Place, by Mark A Roeder, when I came across this sentence: "Every girl wanted to be his girlfriend and every boy wanted to be him." (Roeder, Kindle locations: 54-58). Yeah, I know, I've heard this sentence before, in a movie or somewhere, but it just really shouted at me when I saw it in print. Luckily, I had already cut that sentence from my manuscript.

Have you seen a cliché sentence in a book you've read that you recognized from your own manuscript?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Hillarious Harry Potter Trailer

For you Harry Potter fans out there, you have got to watch this!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Write what You Like!

Write what you know, is something most of you have already heard. This seems to be a popular saying in the industry. I can understand that if you dive into a new culture and decide to write about it, or from it's PoV, things can get a little askew. But I still think that shouldn't top a person from doing it! Heck, it could shine some light on new and interesting perspectives. And the author would never do it unless he/she's researched it to bits. Any sensible author, that is. The "write what you know" just sounds restrictive and boring.

Write what you like! Heck yeah! There's no point in not writing something because you're afraid to "offend" someone, just because you got a fact or two wrong. So what? Most people read for the sake of a good story. And if you really like what you write, it will shine through.

Write what you read! I both like to write light fantasy and paranormal, because that's what I read. I'm trying to broaden my reading though, because I can well picture myself writing historical one day, dystopia, and even a sweet YA gay (I have an idea for a unique and fantastic one!). I even have an idea for a second contemporary (the gay one would be contemp. too), so I'm going to have to read some contemporary books in each genre to see if I like it enough to write it ;) 

So, don't just write what you know - write what you like and write what you read :)

Picture source:

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Mid-term exams are over! I got 9 out of 10 for the one I took today (it was online multiple choice only, which is why I already know the outcome). Not bad for phonetics ^.^

Anyway, I wanted to know if any of you have bought a book for the sake of the cover? I'm seriously considering buying Matched, if I don't win it. I've heard the story itself is so-and-so, but the cover itself is art! I'm even considering buying the hard cover and place it front-out on my book shelf.

I don't think I've ever done this before. The covers of House of Night, Sookie Stackhouse Novels, and Vampire Academy are just...bleh (except for the NEW Sookie novels, which features the cast of True Blood - drooooools over Eric). Eragon I bought for the story, although the covers are nice. The Harry Potter covers are also just bleh, although a little fun, I suppose. 

Oh! And I'm going to shamelessy plug Sara's ARCs giveaway, because one of the books being given is a signed Matched! The other one I want is A Tale Dark and Grim. That cover also looks nice, though not nice enough to buy just for the sake of the cover.

So, have you ever bought a book for the sake of the cover, even if you've heard the book is only so-and-so?

Sunday, October 10, 2010

NaNo and Award


First - Are you taking part in NaNoWriMo this year? I am! I even have an idea of what I'll write about (my first contemporary with zero magic). I'm TessaQuin there if you want to add me as a buddy. 

Second - Lovely, amazingly funny Melissa Gill awarded me the Cherry on Top Award a few days ago. Thank you so much, Melissa. I would award this to you if I you hadn't already awarded it to me! The name and image remind me of you because your blogs bring a smile to my face.

There are three things I must do now:

1. Thank the one who awarded it in (check!)
2. Answer a question: If I had the chance to go back and change one thing in my life, would I, and what would it be?

My answer: I would have gotten into writing much, much earlier. Although I believe that my life has shaped and matured me into the woman I am today, I wish I had decided to become a writer back in 2003 when I moved to Denmark. I had time back then, but I used it on computer games! I believe those games have enriched my imagination, and also shaped me, but still, I could have played a lot less and written a lot more.

3. Choose up to 6 people to pass on the award to! This one's going to be tough! There are so many bloggers who deserve this, but here goes:

1. Rachael Harrie! Because she's adorable and a funny little pygmy-puff (you don't have to write these after the names - I just like to).
2. Marieke! Because she's the girl with the whip! And she's on a mission.
3. Lisa Potts! She's fantastic and I love reading her blogs and get insight into American life! Seriously, this has nothing to do with all three of them being in my critique group! But I should probably move on to prove my case.
4. Quinn! Yeah, the first boy to make my list! We're new buddies, but his blog is so fantastic and unique that he deserves this and then some. And this has nothing to do with me winning his contest! Seriously! Just read his one-of-a-kind blog and that'll prove my case ^.^
5. Elana Johnson! *Gasp* Yes, I'm venturing into celebrity land now! But how can I not award her? Her blogs are amongst the first I go to check each morning, and although I'm totally intimidated by her, still - despite all the kind emails she's sent me - she's so nice.
6. Carolina Valdez Miller! Another one with over 1000 followers! Seriously, these people must be super busy! I hardly dare interrupt them with blog awards (not that blog awards are not something worthy of interrupting someone with!). Carol is a super nice, super beautiful woman. I love her blog!

Now, it's completely up to you if you pass these along, stick them on your wall, or do nothing. This is just me saying that I appreciate you, with a cherry on top ;)

So there! Oh...and I probably have to let them know. Add that as nr. 4! Comment on their blogs to let them know they've won a super cool award!

I'm all exclamationed out and need to get back to my exam studies >.<

Image borrowed from:

Friday, October 8, 2010


I have a little game for you!

Rearrange the letters "New Door" into one word.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Crusader Challenge I

I sat down to write the other day and...Veronica Mars called me. She sounded a little nasal when she asked me if I had time to go over some puzzling notes for her new mystery case. You know, the one about the love fountain in Rome. I told her I had to study for next week's exam. Yes. Two exams, two days in a row. She understood, and then she sneezed "quidditch!" 

"Bless you," I said, holding my phone between my cheek and shoulder.

She thanked me, and then blew her nose as loudly as an elephant warning its heard of incoming landslide. 

"Are you coming down with a cold?" I asked while flipping through my notes on phonetics. Allophones? Fortis and Lenis?

"Yeah- Quidditch!" She blew her nose again. "Sorry, how about I come by on Wednesday?"

"See yah then. It'll give us chance to go over some gossip." I hung up the phone. 

Poor girl. Ever since Sylar set her on fire in Heroes, her clever mind just hasn't been the same.


Yeah, I know it's LAME. But I don't have time to write a proper story. I still wanted to take part. I seriously AM studying for two exams. One is on Monday, and the other on Tuesday. And then I have to turn in a short story for creative writing tomorrow. Talk about teacher collaboration! 

This is the first challenge of the Crusaders (a group of people working towards building an online platform - new members are welcome and should visit Rach's site to sign up: Writers' Platform-Building Crusade).

The bonus words were: Mars, quidditch, and elephant.

The prize this round is an interview with Rach, which will be the first with a Crusader of Rach's Insider Scoop Interviews. Which is, of course, a great way to get online coverage. (She has already interviewed Jody Hedlund and Caitie Flum).

Oh, and of course I know what quidditch is - I just decided to use it this way.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

You can't...

Image borrowed from:

You can't smile a sentence...
You can't laugh a sentence...
You can't sneer a sentence...
You can't glare a sentence...

That's what I learned in my creative writing class today. I was like, but...but...but... Yeah, I use "blah blah blah," he smiled/laughed/grinned/[insert anything here] a lot. 

I also learned that you can't write "Get out," he hissed. Because there's no s-sound at the end of out! I never even thought of that. 

I've finally managed to edit out all my "and's" and adverbs (see how I used an adverb at the beginning of the sentence?). I'm working on my repetitions. Now I'll have to check my dialogs to see if someone's doing something that's not possible. 

Anyone else guilty of the above, or some other no-no's?

Sunday, October 3, 2010


Because Marieke's Marieke, I'm going to post this here, too! Marieke's How-To Thursdays interview with Kristin Cronn-Mills was posted last Thursday (sorry I'm a little late with this!). She's hosting a giveaway of Kristin's book. 

If she reaches 30 followers (only 6 more to go!), she'll draw a second winner for banned-book Annie on My Mind!

And another buddy is hosting a giveaway. Quinn just reached his 100 follower status and is giving away $40 gift card from Amazon and a critique! 

Yeah, I know, I'm directing you to my BookAways posts. You'll get easy info on deadlines and such there (plus, I get to promote my blog. I'm not going to deny that!)

Go check out those great bloggers!

Friday, October 1, 2010

To Those I Haven't Followed Back

Those whom I haven't followed back - could you leave a comment? Sometimes I don't get a link with the little pop-up window when I click your little icons on the follow list. Your blog comes linked to your name if you leave a comment (you don't even have to write anything, just a dot or something so that I can click the link). There's an ugly, hairy bug in Blogger.

Banned Books Week

Everyone and their grandma have been blogging about banned books lately because of the Banned Books Week. I wasn't going to take part in this, because I didn't have time, but then I looked at the list of banned books and my eyes nearly popped out! Instead of doing a review of the books I've read, I'm going to gush my amazement and bewilderment of why these books were banned in the first place! A lot of those are books about changes in the body when growing up. What kid couldn't use this information from a book? We had education on this at school, but I'm sure that not all kids get that very embarrassing privilege (I still remember all the blushing and giggling), and some kids might want to sneak into a library and secretively read more about those changes. 

Harry Potter! Come on! I do remember that JK Rowlings books were banned amongst Catholics some years ago. I remember how silly I thought it was. I don't know if others banned the books as well, but I think it's just mean to keep kids away from my favourite series of all time! It's not like people can go to London and find a secret passage to Diagon Alley! It's fiction!

The Earth's Children series!? Honestly? What was offensive in those books? I read them as a teen and I loved them. I seriously can't imagine what made those book be banned. Was it the interspecies mating? The Neanderthals? They existed, you know.

Lord of the Flies? What on earth could have made people want to ban that book? I read it in High School and it was one of the few books that I actually loved. Was it the development from kids being lost on an island to kids building a hierarchy and becoming violent? I'm guessing it's because of Piggy's death, but it's an excellent story of how a society can go wrong.

The Color Purple? I read that as a teen as well. I loved it. I suppose that Uncle Tom's Cabin must have been banned as well in its time. Ignorance. That's what it is. Thi book is amazing.