Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Movie Review: The Hunger Games (twice viewed :p)


So I was lucky enough to be invited to a secret preview screening on the 21st! My mates won some tickets and, knowing my intimate love for the book series, invited me to use one of their coveted prizes :). It was quite an experience really - they take your phones and bag them up and scan you to make sure you don't take any video recording devices in!

So, onto the review. My final score (drumroll please!);

The movie was pretty accurate to the book, which I give it huge props for. The only thing that bothered me about the deviation was where Katniss obtained the mockingjay pin. In the movie it shows her purchasing it from Greasy Sae (who ends up giving it to her) whereas in the book, one of the 'rich kids' that she's friendly with gives it to her in a moment of solidarity. I thought that this was a special moment in the book and was a smidge sad to see it removed for the movie.

Liam Hemsworth did a fantastic job of portraying Gale, he captured the attitude of Gale and I thought he did a great job. Josh Hutcherson as Peeta? Not so much. It wasn't until the cave scene that I thought that Peeta really was Peeta from the book, it just took too long for him to seem like himself - he lacked... I don't know, personality? Until then... just too wishy washy for my tastes. Jennifer Lawrence did a great job as Katniss, however in several scenes throughout the film I felt that she wasn't representing the Katniss in the books. The character in the show didn't have that complexity that the Katniss from the books did. Her conflicting emotions about Gale & Peeta, her love for Prim, I mean it was evident, it was there, but it wasn't the rich person that we got to know in the books.

Overall the film was a joy to watch, the character of Rue - played by Amandla Stenberg - was my favourite character. She was fun, innocent and deeply likeable. The scene of her death was the hardest to watch of the entire film.The best scene, hands down, was towards the grand finale when the gamemakers release the muttations into the arena. When Katniss & Peeta are making their way upto the cornucopia and the first one jumps out of the bushes at them - the WHOLE cinema jumped. The second time I watched it, I knew it was coming and so watched everyone else - HILARIOUS! I highly recommend going just for this experience :p

Also a real highlight - the costumes! I was concerned that the film might not actually follow through with the whole 'girl on fire' and just have a sparkly jewelled dress as it's described in the book. So glad they ACTUALLY included fire. Definitely a highlight of the film to see this. I also thoroughly enjoyed the character of Caesar Flickerman... when he turned his head and smiled for his introduction I laughed out loud every time - great actor and a great character!

All in all a great film that just lacked some character depth for me. Hope you all enjoy it! Have you done a review? Leave a comment! I'd love to read it!

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

My Very First Blog Award!

It is with great pleasure that I can announce my very first blog award here on Fish & Frivolity! It's courtesy of my very first guest poster, Diane Carlisle! The fantastic award is the Liebster Award and I could be more happy to receive it - I'm pleased as punch! This honour is designed to award blogs that motivate and inspire us - how amazing to receive it eh? The basic guidelines are that it's awarded to blogs with 200 followers or less, designed to increase blog traffic to those pages and increase awareness of those blogs we love to check each and every day!

Diane's blog 'Are We There Yet?' is one of my favourite to sit down and read and I'm so thankful that she's seen fit to bestow this award on me! Be sure to head on over to her blog to check out her writing, inspiration & experiences.

I accept this award in a whirl of excitement, jumping up and down and trying not to pee my pants... yeah I wish I could say I lied about one of those :p

Here are the blogs that I've selected to receive this award;

Woman Condemned
DA Confidential
Michelle Krys
Orphaned Ink
The Journey: It's only rough blindfolded

To accept the award;
1. Thank the person that nominated your blog and link back to them
2. Nominate upto 5 others for the award
3. Let them know by commenting on their blog
4. Post the award on your blog

Simple as a pimple :)

Have an excellent day all! I know I will be. What awards are out there, have you been awarded any? Be sure to check out the blogs I awarded, they really are fascinating to read :)

Monday, 26 March 2012

So am I totally unjustified?

Would you let a man you've met once stay at your place, that you love and rent, on a weekend that you're not going to be there?

Some facts;

  • He drinks, a lot
  • You didn't invite him, someone else did
  • You. Aren't. Going. To. Be. There
  • It's a rental
Any and all opinions would be welcome. All my writing mates - would love an opinion on this. Thanks :)

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

A Lesson in Life

So I was stalking Facebook the other day and happened across the profile of a girl that I use to be incredibly close with - who I use to be the closest with. It inspired me to write about how I'd ruined that friendship and how life can throw you a curve ball, and what happens when you mishandle it. I tried to write as honestly as I could (inspired by the writing of the lovely Helen Garner), and after some great critiquing by my lovely fellows on AW I have posted the revised version below. Beware it's a bit of a downer, but it was a huge learning piece for me.

One of life’s toughest lessons we learn is that friends aren’t always forever. It’s a hard thing to lose a friend, but really, it’s inevitable that we lose one here or there on our journey through life. Friends can be lost for many reasons, we drift apart, move away and lose contact. Sometimes we grow too different to enjoy ourselves together anymore. The ultimate reason of my lost friendship was a betrayal of trust, on my part, but the friendship was doomed anyway.

The day of the confrontation we exchanged heated text messages. I had told a secret. A secret that was not really mine to tell, however I thought I was doing the right thing, and thus ended a friendship I once had treasured above all. I still look back fondly at the times we shared, but now we’re two different people, worse than strangers in the wake of my betrayal. When I received the text, my breath caught in my throat, my stomach dropped and my eyes filled with tears. I knew that I had ruined the friendship beyond repair. It was an absolute, no negotiations could be made. It was a request to cease all contact.

I curled in a ball on the couch and cried until I couldn’t cry any more. I hated who I was and what I’d done, but a small part of me, tugging at the back of my brain, knew that I would do it again. I’d do it differently, but I’d do it again. I was alone in a cold 100 year old house I’d once shared with this beautiful friend of mine. Lover was over 3000km away and I was alone in the dark, cold, stone house with no escape from my self-loathing and pity. I didn’t beg forgiveness in my following texts. I was stubborn, rude and immature. I’m loathe to even mention it, I detest my actions and how I handled it, but hindsight is 20/20.

It was almost poetic. It was that morning, when I was most alone, in the darkest, loneliest place I’ve ever had to call home, the worst possible moment to receive that message. The words that cut off the one friend I treasured most. I suppose I had it coming. If any moment of my life was planned and timed perfectly this was it. The action, the mood, the event, mirrored my environment so superbly that I couldn’t have designed such a moment better myself.

I still hear of the beautiful woman and her adventures. I hear about her life, her new, better friends that she has more fun with. While a small slice of my heart longs to rekindle what we had and go back to those fun times we spent together, my head reminds me that we want different things in life now, and that it was inevitable that we grow apart. We had beautiful days spent together, cradling each other when upset and rejoicing together over boys and pay rises, but that time is over.

Feel free to critique - you know I love a good ear bashing. Have you ever lost a close friend? Was it your fault or theirs? Does it hurt to remember better times you shared with them?

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

New Blog!

I know I've said it before, but I've started a new blog. I just think that this one would be better off as a writing only interest blog, and my other blog will focus on my other love - organising and prettifying my home!

I love sharing money saving tips & tricks to organising my house and getting that great look without buying all that expensive stuff... so that's where I'll be doing all of that from now on. If any of you writerly people are interested, you can find the new blog by heading on over to Pretty Home Projects. Thanks!

New piece of writing coming soon - it's a bittersweet look at losing a friendship.

In other news, my mate scored free tickets to 'The Hunger Games' and we're going to go see it in the cinema tonight! I hope hope HOPE that it does the books justice because I'm harboring a secret love affair with them :) I'll let you all know how it is! I hear it's not out in America until the 23rd, lucky Aus for once! Yay!

Monday, 19 March 2012

I do declare I have a crush!

My first author crush. I don't think it would have developed into such a crush had I not delved into the author behind the book as a result of my upcoming uni assignment. Be that as it may, I am terrifically and wonderfully glad that it did happen, and I have a big, fat ol' crush on none other than the frequently discussed;

Yep. It's love. Or lust. Or maybe jealousy?  I think the number one reason that I have this little crush is that Garner is someone I want to be. I know it took many years for her, and so will take many years for me, but she embodies all that I want to be - what's that you ask? Check out my totally awesome list below;
So, you can see I have a serious love affair going on. I have to admit, it's mostly infatuation at this point, having only read one whole book of hers - The Spare Room. Yep, she's amazing, I'll admit it. I fully recommend you go read it. I'll post a review before long, it's a great book that can easily be read in one sitting!

Do any of you have author crushes? This is my first one, and guess what? She's AUSTRALIAN, which is going to get an automatic tick from me regardless :D

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Ethics in Writing - What is our unwritten code of ethics?

This week in my studies, the topic is the ethics of writing - our ethical responsibility if you like. Our set readings were extremely engaging and I would recommend reading Malcolm Knox's article 'Should I... Or shouldn't I?' in Australian Author Magazine. I apologise but I can't find an online version to link you too I'm afraid! I'll keep looking I promise :)

The article takes root in the idea of the hidden ethical conditions that we, as writers, found ourselves bound to. I thought, sure ethics are pretty straight forward when writing, right? Uh no. Malcolm Knox kindly woke me up to that!

For example, when Knox's first novel Summerland was accepted for publication, he immediately sent a copy of his manuscript to a friend of his that had featured predominantly as the main character. His friend was happy for it to be published, as both he, and Knox, knew when the character began and ended. Unfortunately, Knox and his buddy didn't forsee the problems that would be cause by other people. There are three types of people who will read your book;

  • Those that know you, and know when the character begins and ends and that's fine.
  • Those that don't know you, and never will, so that's fine.
  • Then there are those that know of you, or know your friend a little, that see the fiction writing as a glimpse at truth.
This last group of people are the ones that will cause problem. I personally, had not even considered this consequence of publishing a novel, but I suppose it would be inevitable that those around you, that knew you wrote the book would assume that several of the characters are based on real people. They may be, to an extent, but it's the 'non-writerly' way of understanding that characters take on their own qualities and characteristics that make them totally independent of the original inspiring person.

Phew... lots to think about anyway :)

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Gotta Love a Game of Tag!

I've been tagged for the very first time! Courtesy of the wonderful Author Alden (be sure to check out his blog!).

The rules of the lucky 7 meme are as follows;

1. Go to page 77 of your current work in progress.
2. Go to line 7.
3. Copy down the next 7 lines.
4. Tag seven authors.
5. Let them know.
6. It didn't feel right
7. Not to have seven points for this thing :p

Now, as  I don't have a WIP on me that is 77 pages long... I decided to head to page 7 of one... crappity crap, here goes :p

(for a bit of backfill... the MC is trying to define love)

I could never define it, as one would hope to - it's an intangible holy grail of the human condition. But it exists.

Unfortunately, I can't pinpoint what love is - by golly I wish I could. It's a feeling deep withing us, a feeling that is ever-present, stable and unyielding. It's the thing that makes me stand up and protect my little sister, the thing that keeps me warm on cold nights, and what brings tears to my eyes when I see lover for the first time in six weeks. I have no doubt that there are those out there that have never felt love. I can't say that I pity them, as truthfully, I've never not known love, not since the moment I was born.

Wow, that's a crazy chunk of long sentences! The few authors I've tagged are below! I'll be sure to warn them, but due to the impromptu nature of the tagging world, they might not be able to commit for whatever reason. Be sure to check out their blogs!

Al from AF12
DA Laschelles
View of Sue
Beyond Tourism
Living & Working in China
Magic Mint

Head on over and check it out!

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Work Wardrobe Makeover

Ok so I'm not loaded... I'm actually pretty damn poor, just affording rent, bills, loans and sometimes (when I'm lucky) groceries. However I've been chipping away and saving up bit by bit, and can now start looking at where to spend some moulah. Not yet! But in the nearer-than-never future anyway :)

So here is what I'd like to spend it on;

I work in reception, so I need to have smart office clothes. I also work in an accounting firm, so they'll also need to be professional. First, give me a chance to explain the above - a lot of the shirts I don't actually love but I plan to be wearing them under item 1 most times. See below for a full explanation.

1. City Dressing Blazer - $55.20 (Target)
I would need one or two suit jackets to wear over most of the shirts a majority of the time. I like the contrast of this one, but would also need a plain one, in black or charcoal, to match my suit bottoms. Which brings me to the next item;
2. Myer Pants - $89.95 (Myer)
I would need at least two sets of pants, preferably one in charcoal and one in black, perhaps having a lighter grey colour as a third option should I be rich enough :p, this would have to match a jacket to combine as a suit (see item 1).
3. Limited Edition Skirt - $47.20 (Target)
This fills the same role as the pants. I would need a couple of skirts, in differing colours however keeping to black/grey theme would be best. Would have to match a jacket so that I could wear a suit combination.
4. Saba Blue Top - $129 (Saba Online), 7. City Dressing Blouse - $31.20, 8. Basque Knot Shirt - $59.95 9. City Dressing Blouse - $31.20
These shirts I would cover with a jacket and probably stay that way all day, while I don't like the tops, I do like how they'd look under a jacket, with just the bright colour & nice middle design showing.
5. Sheike Blouse $89.95 (Online)
I LOVE this top, I would wear it with and without a jacket easily. Love love love.
6. Hot Options Top - $28.00 (Target)
I would wear this with or without a jacket, I do like it better than the others but not as much as item 5. Love the bright blue - it just seems to pop!

So there you are, my ideas for a wardrobe makeover. Ideally I'd have two sets of each essential (2x jackets, 2x pants & 2x skirts) all of (as close as I can afford to) exceptional quality. Then I'd have many many tops that I could change and play around with. Ideally I'd love to expand bit by bit and maybe incorporate some navy coloured suit bottoms or tops as well.

Do you have a work wardrobe? Do you find it as hard as I do to co-ordinate for work?

Monday, 12 March 2012

March 2012 AW Blog Chain Post!

So, I had so much fun in Feb with this (even though I went over the word limit - oops!) that I've signed up for another month of it. At the bottom of the post you'll find a direct link to each of the other posts made this month by other AWers!

This month the prompt is Rainy Days. I didn't really know where this prompt would take me, and was surprised with where I ended up, even though I still don't like it. I don't really write to be told I'm perfect, so feel free to crit my writing if you so desire - no need to be gentle with me :) So without further ado...

Write wherever the prompt inspires you. It can be fiction or non-fiction, all wet or high and dry, mushy mud or hard-packed earth. If you want to go with snow, hail, boiling hellrain, biblical frograin, or some other kind of precipitation, knock yourself out.

I sat by the window and stared out at the rain. The thick sheets made it impossible to see all the way across the yard, but it didn't matter. There wasn't much to look at anyway. Especially today. Today it would be slick with mud, torrents of water washing away what little lawn we had. I had. What little lawn I had. It was the first day that it had rained since he'd left. I was thankful for the rain, despite it's dreary misery. For the first time since I'd lost him, the weather finally matched my mood.

It wasn't long ago, that the sun had shined down on our meager backyard as we lay together, snoozing in the afternoon sunshine, bellies full and hearts warm. Those were the days that sunshine was intended for. Fingers laced with those of a lover, happy, worry free. Now, as the rain pummeled the glass in front of me, I thought bitterly of those days I'd once had. No more would my hands feel the rough warmth of his as he held my tiny fingers tightly in his huge ones.

As I sat and watched the rain, I didn't cry, sob or lose control. I just felt empty and hopeless. I welcomed the rain, for it shrouded me from the outside world, keeping me to myself, a barrier of grey sheets separating me from the people that still had what I lost. I didn't think I'd end up staying in the house, where too many beautiful memories lanced my heart with every scent of oak, every creak of the stairs and howl of the wind. Too many years we'd spent together in this house, welcoming the sun and shunning rainy days. Those were the days we cursed, but ended up cuddling on the couch or spending the day in bed making love.

Now all days seemed endless. I welcomed the rain, it seemed a part of me, the only part I was willing to hold onto as I moved on from the memories that tortured me.


Holy crap that was a bag of... well anyway, I didn't quite go where I thought I would and still don't love the piece, I think it's too choppy changey. Let me know what you think harshly if you so desire :)

Best of luck to you all, and be sure to check out the fellow bloggers by using the links below!

Participants and posts:
orion_mk3 - (link to this month's post)Bogna - (link to this month's post)
Ralph Pines - (link to this month's post)
pyrosama - (link to this month's post)
Nissie - (link to this month's post)
Lyra Jean - (link to this month's post)
Domoviye - (link to this month's post)
magicmint - (link to this month's post)
areteus - (link to this month's post)
julzperri - (link to this month's post)
hillaryjacques - (link to this month's post)AFord - (link to this month's post)
randi.lee - (link to this month's post)
J. W. Alden - (link to this month's post)
SuzanneSeese - (link to this month's post)
Turndog-Millionaire - (link to this month's post)
Tomspy77 - (link to this month's post)
ronbwriting - (link to this month's post) 

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Word of the Week: Artifact

Today's word of the week was suggested by the lovely TerriLewis who's blog ties in nicely to the word! Head on over to check out her blog discussing antiques and their history. Let's get onto the word of the week! Artifact.

ar·ti·fact [ahr-tuh-fakt]
any object made by human beings, especially with a view tosubsequent use.
a handmade object, as a tool, or the remains of one, as ashard of pottery, characteristic of an earlier time or culturalstage, especially such an object found at an archaeologicalexcavation.
any mass-produced, usually inexpensive object reflectingcontemporary society or popular cultureartifacts of the poprock generation.
a substance or structure not naturally present in the matterbeing observed but formed by artificial means, as duringpreparation of a microscope slide.
a spurious observation or result arising from preparatory orinvestigative procedures.

The word artifact originates from the Latin word artefatto from arte which means 'by skill' and factum meaning 'thing made'. So quite literally, the word means 'thing made by skill' which makes perfect sense when we think about the artifacts that we uncover across the globe.

The definition of art is as follows;


the quality, production, expressionor realm, according toaesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or ofmore than ordinary significance.
the class of objects subject to aesthetic criteria; works ofart collectively, as paintings, sculptures, or drawings: amuseum of art; an art collection.
a field, genre, or category of art: Dance is an art.
the fine arts collectively, often excluding architecture: artand architecture.
any field using the skills or techniques of art: advertising art;industrial art.

The definition of fact is as follows;


something that actually exists; reality; truth: Your fears haveno basis in fact.
something known to exist or to have happened: Space travelis now a fact.
a truth known by actual experience or observation;something known to be true: Scientists gather facts aboutplant growth.

From these two definitions, I find the word artifact to be a beautiful and logical way to describe what artifacts are. They're beautiful discoveries of human made objects that exist.

The word is also lovely to say, crisply rolling off the tongue and adding a distinguished air to any conversation. I myself, haven't come across many (or perhaps any now that I come to think of it) artifacts, but the history of the word has indeed inspired me to change this about myself.

Any suggestions for next week's word of the week?

Thursday, 8 March 2012

KONY 2012 - Getting Onboard

So if you haven't heard of Kony 2012 yet, it's probably time to crawl out from under that rock where you've been kipping hard.

Below is a video that outlines everything that you need to know. It was the best spent 30 minutes of my life, and no matter where you come from, I believe you'll feel the same.

I signed up to the petition, the monthly donation, and my action pack is whizzing it's way towards me right now. Regardless of where you are or how much money you do or don't have, you can help. Signing the petition is a start.

I hope you take the time out of your day to stop, think, and help this cause.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Saint Petersburg Governor - an Idiot?

I don't know if you've heard, but the Governor of St Petersburg is attempting to pass a bill that - if allowed - will result in stiff fines for anyone that speaks, writes, reads or debates on anything 'gay'.

It's pretty disgusting it you ask me. I think the desired effect is to make gay's 'non-existant' basically. How do you feel about the government trying to stifle someone's sexuality? The sexuality of a whole city? I find it absurd, distasteful and too be honest - pretty stupid. Trying to ban people talking about, writing about or reading about something is a pretty tough thing to police. The only real proof you'd have are recordings or the written pieces by those who are guilty - and guilty of what? Free speech? I admit I don't know a lot about how Russia's government works, but they're going to have their work cut out for them.

If you think it's disgusting, you can - like me - sign the petition. You should also watch the great video that's on their website too.

Hands up if your with me. Anyone not?

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Writing: Self & Other - Helen Garner's Honest Approach

So when I sat down to start studying writing, I never thought that there would be SO MUCH that I didn't know. Of course I realised the whole point of studying was to learn and that I obviously didn't know it all already... let's just say that the direction the first couple of weeks took me was unexpected - to say the least!

I mentioned in a post last week about learning responsibility as an author, and how we rely on the other to exist. It gets pretty messy when you start trying to define it and think of it logically, but here I'll put it as simply as I can;

We, as a writer, can not exist without our subject. That is, it is our environment, interactions and relationships with all that is around us, that shape our writing, and thus our writing can not be subjective in this sense.

So it's still a pretty hazy statement right? I hope I got some of my message across. We looked into Helen Garner's writing. A little history here - Garner is an Australian author, a pretty damn good one by most accounts. She's published some four novels, four non-fiction books, three screenplays, three short story collections and various articles. The first piece of writing of Garner's that I read was her personal essay 'I' which can be read here. This essay discusses and explores the 'persona' that a writer creates when creating a piece of writing, be it fiction or non-fiction.

First of all, Garner's writing is different to anything that I have so far experienced. Not so much to read (she does write well) but the subject of her writing and how she writes. The fact that a lot of her works of non-fiction are so raw in the fact that she writes a no-holds-barred account of her experiences. Garner immerses herself in various situations and documents it to write about later. She tackles highly controversial topics, such as the death of a toddler at the hands of his stepfather, and a 1992 sexual harassment scandal at Ormond College. Her writing is different to anything I've considered - she openly declares that she writes based on who she is, what she knows and her experiences.

I think that this is what I am supposed to be getting from the course - that as a writer, everything we write, be it fiction, non-fiction, or supposedly subjective articles and such, is shaped primarily on our own experiences, beliefs and opinions. In each piece of writing we sit down and complete, we inject it with our own experiences and shade it with ourself. This is what I think we're supposed to take from these first few lectures. I think we're supposed to realise when we sit down to write, that we can't be totally subjective. Nothing we write doesn't have an effect on our readers.

I hope this post made some kind of sense after all that. Thoughts? Do you agree or disagree? I think that Garner's writing is unique in the fact that she writes based almost literally on her experiences, but I tend to agree that to less of an extent, the writing we do (however fiction it may be) still contains all of our self.

Thoughts are welcome in the comments!

Monday, 5 March 2012

Word of the Week: Rigmarole!

Hi all! Sorry for the late word of the week post, but over here in sunny WA (Western Australia - not Washington!) it was a public holiday yesterday and my thoughts didn't flicker to blogging once! I apologise, but was temporarily distracted after another wonderful surprise visit from the Lover for the long weekend :)

Today I present unto you --- RIGMAROLE! I love this word. I was going to go for nincompoop today but decided a slightly less ridiculous, however still somewhat wacky word would be better. Hence, rigmarole!


an elaborate or complicated procedure: to go through therigmarole of a formal dinner.
confused, incoherent, foolish, or meaningless talk.

I learned this word around the age of 12 or so and love it. I use it frequently when trying to explain how I just want to escape life and work (I work in reception at an accounting firm and there are many many procedures to be followed for the correct record of work. It's also a paperless office - hence everything needs to be scanned and saved to file). So yes, plenty of rigmarole to deal with in the workplace.

Interesting history this word has. Basically in medieval times, people used to play a game called Ragman. It consisted of a rolled up scroll that had strings connected to lines or part of stories, then people would pull a string and read out the resulting story as a pastime. It was also a method of gambling, so some of my googling tells me. From this game, the word rigmarole, based on ragman, held a meaning along the lines of long, confusing discourse. From this earlier meaning, it eventually came to mean what we understand it to represent today... which of course is defined above by This earlier meaning - more obviously - is the second definition stated above. Cool word huh?

Isn't it just a lovely word to say? RIGMAROLE! Bahaha love it! Any word suggestions for next week's word of the week?