Inspired by Emma’s post over at Books Forget Me Knot, I an trying a “reflection” on the month of August. It has been a rather busy month, with all my exams, my dad’s birthday, zero time leftover for writing/reading, etc. However, I quite liked the month. I think. (Honestly, I don’t quite remember much about it)
Anyway, why not jump into my favourite moments/discoveries of August, 2013?
Update: I have now added a “September Goals” list to the end of this post! Check it out? 🙂
The cherry blossom tree is so beautifully drawn, and the petals floating through the air is extremely relaxing to watch. I reblogged this on my Tumblr in the month of August, so it all seemed fitting.
(Read on August 9)
The idea of A Monster Calls came into existence through Siobhan Dowd, who is my all-time favourite author. Unfortunately, she passed away in 2009 due to cancer, and the mere idea itself was handed over to Patrick Ness.
It was written exceptionally well, a dark story with elements of healing, which I wouldn’t particularly recommend to middle-graders willingly, but is an excellent book which steers away the usual “happy-go-lucky” concepts. Needless to say, I can tell it’s one of Siobhan Dowd’s ideas, as nobody else (in my opinion) can come up with a plot so heart-wrenching.
Yet, there are other elements –the subplots, the powerful writing style– which didn’t belong to Siobhan Dowd, but Patrick Ness himself. It was a perfect collaboration.
What is A Monster Calls about? The following blurb is copied/pasted from Goodreads, and even if I wasn’t a big fan of Dowd, I would’ve picked it up anyway.
The monster showed up after midnight. As they do.
But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting. He’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the one he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments, the one with the darkness and the wind and the screaming…
This monster is something different, though. Something ancient, something wild. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor.
It wants the truth.
I recently discovered this beautiful song, and it was featured in my “7 Instrumental Pieces I Fell In Love With (Part 3)” post. The melody is so emotional and lovely, along with the brilliant picture the video-maker added. Which brings me to the point that, indeed, anime music is brilliant. Apparently it was featured on a anime called Pandora Hearts, but in all honesty, I have no idea what it is. Oh well. Beautiful music.
As the name implies, I have been happier since I’ve been using Happier. It isn’t the most out-of-this-world concept. Rather, it’s quite simple: it’s a social networking site which encourages you to post daily of three things which made you happier. If you’d prefer, you can always put your account on private. But immediately after thinking about all the positive things in your day, Happier is an encouraging app which changes your thinking style.
Most importantly, after you share three positive things, you get a mini animated congratulations (streamers, balloons, smiley faces, etc.) It’s just extremely cute and it does, like the name implies, make me feel happier.
This is currently on replay. You see, I’ve always known the rhythm and beat of this song since forever, but I’ve never known the song by title. The last time I heard it on the radio, I quickly scribbled down aspects of the lyrics. I Googled it (twenty-first-century kid here) and found the song. And have been listening to it nonstop since then.
It’s strange, because I really love the lyrics –it offers a different perspective of people with a mental disability; a lovable, sensitive side. It’s strange to think I’ve known this song for so long, but only recently discovered it.
Have you ever watched an episode of an anime (or television show) and known, right there, that you’re going to love it? I have only watched one episode of Monster, and I feel exactly that. I am still getting over the intensity of the first episode, and planning on devouring the episodes soon. But until then, I have good old school to keep me occupied.
On a more positive note, it’s a brilliant series (from one episode alone!) It deals with morality/ethics, and it really makes me question my own beliefs and values. Characters with conflicting perspectives are grouped together, and though it’s clear (to some extent) that one perspective is more favourable, I can’t help questioning it. Every time.
Anyway, you can tell something is brilliant when the first episode alone makes you think. It’s intellectually engaging, perfectly paced, and the foreshadowing is done flawlessly.
So, I bought this from Aldi and have fallen in love with it. 20 little chocolate mouses in a condensed packet, each more delicious than the last. What more can you ask for? Also, my parents absolutely love it, including my mother (who usually doesn’t admit to liking food) labeling it as delicious and asking for seconds.
[3/3/2013 – On behalf of the Daily Post Challenge]
This is an additional aspect of this post. I want to take the initial question itself –“If your day to day responsibilities were taken care of and you could throw yourself completely behind a cause, what would it be?”– and change it so that it’s not idealistic, but reality-based. The following are small, achievable goals I can accomplish to contribute to the causes I support, which are multiple.
- Earn a total of 10,000 grains on FreeRice.com [Cause: poverty]
- Write blog-posts supporting and raving on my favourite unknown books [Cause: undiscovered literature]
- Compliment 10 people’s blogs on Tumblr [Cause: friendliness/just something extra]
- Write a math “cheat sheet” for the unit we’re currently learning and share it with friends [Cause: education]
- Write a blog-post on gender equality [cause: feminism]
- Design some more graphics for those who desire them [cause: general interaction]
- Volunteer at a local charity –something I’ve always wanted to do [cause: helping out the community]
So that concludes my August! Looking back, it was a wonderful month. Can’t wait to see what September holds!