Merlin Club S01E13: “Le Morte d’Arthur” or “What do you mean magic will work exactly as everyone has been saying it will?!”

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Merlin club is a weekly feature in which Jessica Jarman, Bronwyn Green, and myself gather at 8pm EST to watch an episode of the amazing BBC series Merlin, starring Colin Morgan and literally nobody else I care about except Colin Morgan.

Okay, I lie. A lot of other really cool people are in it, too.

Anyway, we watch the show, we tweet to the hashtag #MerlinClub, and on Fridays we share our thoughts about the episode we watched earlier in the week.

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IMPORTANT! CHANGE IN MY APPEARANCE SCHEDULE!

Hey guys! Due to my boob getting sliced up for a biopsy last week, and then the strep throat I that is so magnanimously gracing me this week, I’ve had to pull out of my Ransom Library appearance on the 17th. I’m really sorry for disappointing those who were planning to attend. Those of you who have mailed books to the venue to be signed, you’ll still be getting them signed, just probably the next week. Again, sorry everybody, but after my boob thing… let’s just say I understand why flaying is torture.

5:23 a.m.

At 5:23 a.m. this morning,  I shot straight up in bed and screamed, “GODDAMN YOU BRON!”

Last night, I had what had the potential to be an awesome dream. I’m not generally a fan of  listening to other people’s dreams sharing my dreams, but I’m gonna do this because it’s my blog and you are powerless to stop me. Other than just not reading it, I guess. In which case, I guess I am utterly powerless and shouldn’t have come at you so antagonistic right out of the gate. But anyway.

To follow this story, you’re going to have to be aware of several things. Which you probably already know from other posts but probably did not retain due to remembering stuff that’s actually important, but I’ll bring everyone up to speed.

  1. I am the president of a small NFPO called the Grand Rapids Region Writers Group, a professional organization dedicated to helping writers in all fields achieve their goals. We usually meet at a restaurant so we can all have lunch.
  2. My friend Bronwyn Green is also involved in this group.
  3. I wrote a book called Such Sweet Sorrow for a guy named Nick Harris and his company The Story Foundation.
  4. I have a very slight, very minor crush on a celebrity I may or may not have mentioned in the past: tumblr_lsv3b7sPNG1qf9xz0o1_500
  5. I am a Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones fanatic. As in, I know the geography of Westeros better than the geography of my own country, which one prompted my husband to interrupt my excruciatingly detailed description of the location of Pentos with, “Jen, what’s the capitol of Wisconsin.”
  6. The capitol of Wisconsin is not Cheesebaywaulkee.

So, now that we’re all caught up, here’s what happened in the dream:

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Merlin Club S01E012 “To Kill The King” or “To Fuck Your Dad”

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Merlin club is a weekly feature in which Jessica Jarman, Bronwyn Green, and myself gather at 8pm EST to watch an episode of the amazing BBC series Merlin, starring Colin Morgan and literally nobody else I care about except Colin Morgan.

Okay, I lie. A lot of other really cool people are in it, too.

Anyway, we watch the show, we tweet to the hashtag #MerlinClub, and on Fridays we share our thoughts about the episode we watched earlier in the week.

Continue reading

Guest Post: Authors After Dark 2014!

Authors After Dark is coming QUICKLY and OMG this year is going to be INSANE!
As always AAD is about the readers, and the amount of awesome we have put together for you this year, you would be INSANE not to attend….
First, our amazing Master of Ceremonies is none other than Alexandra Ivy! She will be doing a cool little event to celebrate your favorite gargoyle, Levet on Friday! Wanna know more? Check out the FB group where Alex will be talking about the awesome that she has going on!
Torquere and authors BA Tortuga and Julia Talbot will be Sponsoring our Welcome event, the Midnight Rodeo… And it looks like we will have some VERY COOL goodies and… riding… happening… *SNICKER*
How about Parties? This year we have a special event called the Leather and Lace Ball! Curious? We thought so!Take a ride on the wild side and let your inhibitions fly with five New York Times Bestselling Authors of erotic romance. Cuffs and corsets encouraged.
 With:
J. Kenner, Liliana Hart, Carly Phillips, Janelle Denison, Jasinda Wilder and Lorelei James
The ladies will be talking more about this on the FB group starting soon!
New for 2014 is the Paranormal Party! Join over 20 Paranormal authors who will be giving away goodies, some books and hanging out with you to snack and chat! Wanna know what authors are involved? You will have to join the FB group to see!

And of course, we have the amazing Masquerade Ball! This year it’s the SINS AND VIRTUES BALL! Are you a sin or a virtue? Join us for a wild costumed event! Prizes for the best costumes, including a 200$ gift certificate to Lori Ann Costumes!
Sins Virtues AAD
Your Sins and Virtues Sponsors:
Sin Lust 
Boone Brux
Opal Carew

Sin Pride 
BA Tortuga
Andrew Grey

Sin Envy 
Stella Price
TJ Michaels

Sin Gluttony 
Desiree Holt
Saranna DeWylde

Sin Greed 
Ann Mayburn
Heather Long

Sin Sloth 
Lizzie T. Leaf
Julie Morgan

Sin Wrath 
Stacey Kennedy
Marianne Morea

Virtue Charity
Kerry Adrienne
Trista Ann

Virtue Chastity 
Jenn LeBlanc
Annabel Jospeh

Virtue Humility 
Milly Taiden
Donna McDonald

Virtue Kindness 
CJ Ellisson
Alexandra Ivy

Virtue Temprance 
J. Kenner
Sidney

Virtue Diligence 
Denise Grover Swank
Jenna McCormick

Virtue Patience 
Lousia Bacio
Kallypso masters

And if THAT isn’t enough awesome that will be going on… This year we have an amazing off site costumed event… the Ladies on the Green event sponsored by the AAD Anachronistic Society! This will be an hour and a Half on the famous GREEN in Charlotte (a half block from the hotel). It will be a Costumed event (though Costumes are not required they are encouraged!) to celebrate Gothic, Victorian, steampunk dark historical literature! Your hosts will be: Sahara Kelly, Amanda McIntyre, Leanna Renee Hieber, A.L. Davroe and S.A. Price. Prizes and readings will happen, as well as photo ops!
3D computer graphics of a brunette lady with fantasy hairstyle

And NEVER forget the Amazing Open bar with Mel Schroeder and friends! They have SO MUCH awesome set up for you just before the Bookies… you do NOT wanna miss that!
Getting excited yet? How about some info on the AWESOME mini events we have going on? Ready?
On Wed. Night,  Join Sasha White and Joey W. Hill for a wild party and Q&A, Also, the Blind Date Book Party will be open to start your con right! (If you have never done a BDBP, you are MISSING out! You need to attend, Get your blind date book, find the author that wrote it, and hang out with them!)
Thursday?  Panels up the wazoo, and the Bookie Awards—– goodies and books to be given out! The hangout with The GNO girls lead by CJ Ellisson and Boone Brux for some crazy fun! And if that wasn’t enough? Readings and a Blogger Sleepover party as well!
Friday? More panels, a games carnival with Nina Gooden and PalsName that Author with Cat Johnson, and some other fun surprises!
Saturday? A few panels, the Big ass booksigning with 100 authors,  the Cowboy Stampede party, theReaders Mad Tea Party with Hildie McQueenAn after the bookies event with a special publisher sponsor, And Jess Michaels’ Birthday extravaganza!
SEE? SO MUCH AWESOME! All the authors that are involved with parties will be talking about their involvement on the FB group, so join up and get ready to rock.
Oh? You say you’re not registered for AAD yet? You need to be! All registrants get put in the hat for the welcome party prizes, and these prizes are AMAZING! Breakfast with authors, Booze and Books, side trips to Carrowwinds…. We have a minimum of 90 special prizes…. So…
You need to rock this con! And as if this wasn’t enough…. AAD will be giving away something really awesome to registrants…. Wanna know what?
 
How about 5 VIP registrations for THE NOVEL EXPERIENCE 2015 in LAS VEGAS? YES… 5!
TNEEVegas
And…
 
How about this… If we hit 100 more registrations from TODAY April 10th to June 10th, we will give away 2 AAD registrations for 2015…  2!!!!! So get registered, get your room and get ready for one HELL of an amazing year with us!
 JOIN US! WE CANT WAIT TO HANGOUT WITH YOU!

Note from Jenny: Heads up, Trout Nation, this is a great time. I’ve been to this con almost every year (I missed one last year, and I wished the whole time I hadn’t) and it’s always an amazing time for readers. You get tons of access to your favorite authors, and lots of fun events. Plus, it’s not a mega-sized con, so you can go and not feel overwhelmed like at BEA or some other cons. I’m on the bill this year, so if you come, find me and we’ll hang out!

Wednesday Blogging: 10 Random Things About Me

This week’s Wednesday Blogging topic is ten random things you didn’t know about me. Which is going to be difficult, because I’m pretty much an open book on social media. But I’ll try.

I cry every time I hear the song “Little Wonders” by Rob Thomas.  In part because I am an epic Disney nerd, and it reminds me of the beautiful Walt Disney quote woven into the movie Meet the Robinsons. But mostly because my BFF Jill and I are coming up on our twentieth friendiversary in September, and we trade that song back and forth as a little friend note on Spotify. It reminds me of how much I love her, and I get choked up.

Literally nothing on this planet scares me more than the looming spectre of my own mortality, and WebMD isn’t helping. This one is a little odd, for someone who spent the last four years battling suicidal thoughts, but I am terrified of dying. Every little ache or pain I have, I attribute it to some possible disease I’m surely going to succumb to before my time. So I get on WebMD’s symptom checker, find out I have every possible cancer, and then stay up all night panicking.

Whenever I need a lift, I watch YouTube videos of turtles/tortoises humping things and each other. These shelled bastards are apparently full-time horny, and indiscriminate about their sexual partners.

This one is a boot.

This one is a bag of trash (this one is gold for both the fact that this turtle is humping a bag of trash and the inquisitive child in the background whose mom provides hilarious off-the-cuff answers).

When I was younger, my friend Holly and I used to have weird shared dreams. I don’t believe in most supernatural stuff, but my friend Holly and I used to have frequent dreams wherein we could call each other the next day and know what we said to each other in our dreams the night before. It was never, ever important stuff.

I’m actually a pretty good singer. Not at karaoke or anything, that’s just for fun and generally ends in tragedy. But I’ve received both classical training and musical theatre training. I’m a bit rusty (haven’t had a class since 2008), but I do try to practice and keep up on my skills. I’m a lyric mezzo with a high tessitura. I’ve done solos in a few musicals and have a fucking excellent amount of Sondheim in my personal repertoire.

I believe I have been messed with by aliens. Not in a funny, quirky, hey guys, I’ve been abducted way, but in a really disconcerting way. I was fifteen, riding in a car with my friend Holly and her parents when all four of us saw a really bizarre thing in the sky. It was dark, so we couldn’t see the actual object, but there was a crazy bright light– the intensity of the light on the cop car that shines right into your fucking side mirror when they pull you over, but a bluer white– that would dart forward, disappear, then reappear a distance behind its position when it disappeared. We figured this meant some part of whatever this aircraft was had some rotation to it. Anyway, the next day all of us distinctly remembered seeing the object. But we couldn’t remember getting home. All of us were “missing time” from just after we saw the thing to the next morning, and all of us had slept in our clothes.

im-not-saying-it-was-aliens

If something can be cooked on the George Foreman Grill, I will cook it on the George Foreman Grill. Even if it seems wholly unadvised, I will try. I have cooked swordfish on the George Foreman Grill.

Due to a misunderstanding regarding change of address and voter registration, I did not vote in the 2000 election. To this day, I am convinced that I am solely responsible for George W. Bush’s presidency.

I'm sorry I'm so sorry

 

 Speaking of Presidents, I spent my thirteenth birthday at the White House and The Pentagon. My uncle was in the US Air Force, and he was on a flight that was awarded the Mackay Trophy, which, if you’re unfamiliar, is a BFD.  They received the award for “extraordinary resourcefulness and unusual presence of mind during an unprovoked attack in international airspace,” and you can see the info here. My family got to travel to Washington, D.C., for the ceremony and fun stuff like meeting congress people and generals and stuff. On my birthday, we toured the White House, then the Pentagon, where the ceremony was held. We even got a special Air Force escort who had a lot of impressive decorations on his uniform. Even though it was basically an amazing birthday already, my aunt and uncle were worried I would feel like my birthday was overshadowed, so they got me a cake and presents and we had a party in the hotel room.

 I have really ugly feet. They’re like a horror show of thick and peeling dead skin, malformed toenails, weirdly bent toes and corpselike discoloration. Mr. Jen says he loves me in spite of my feet. That’s how bad they are. They are such a nightmare, I wouldn’t show them for my Jenny Tries column about foot scrubs. They’re just hideous.

Check out ten random facts about these other authors:

Bronwyn Green
Jessica Jarman
Kelsey St. James
Kris Norris
Leigh Jones 

Happy Game of Thrones Season 4 (or “The second half of book 3: The Movie) day!

Oh my Hodor. I am so excited. Today is Game of Thrones day and last night I just finished up an epic rewatch with my cousin D-Rock and my #MerlinClub pals Jessica Jarman and Bronwyn Green!

Oh. Well, it was a rewatch for some of us. Brownyn Green hadn’t seen any of the series. At all.

And last night was “The Rains of Castamere.”

This is a screenshot of the chat window during the infamous “red wedding” scene. The text is all Bronwyn:

bron IM

 

If you’ve seen all three seasons or just don’t give a shit about spoilers, here’s the hilarious Honest Trailer for Game of Thrones. I wish they would have left out the dig about Martin’s weight, though. But the rest is true on so goddamn many levels.

Are you watching tonight? Or, if you’re in elsewhere locations, tomorrow? Come back and leave a comment after you see the episode and tell me what you thought of it. I won’t read them until I can see the episode myself, but I’m totally psyched to talk Thrones with people again after so long.

 

Merlin Club S01E11: “The Labyrinth of Gedref” or “Let’s Go Kill A Unicorn”

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Merlin club is a weekly feature in which Jessica Jarman, Bronwyn Green, and myself gather at 8pm EST to watch an episode of the amazing BBC series Merlin, starring Colin Morgan and literally nobody else I care about except Colin Morgan.

Okay, I lie. A lot of other really cool people are in it, too.

Anyway, we watch the show, we tweet to the hashtag #MerlinClub, and on Fridays we share our thoughts about the episode we watched earlier in the week.

So, here’s a quick rundown of episode eleven: Arthur kills a unicorn and everything in Camelot goes all to hell.

I’m leaving it at that, because that is really the entire plot of the episode.

If I had written this episode, I would have changed: From the moment Athur kills the unicorn, people are saying, “Historically, there are consequences to killing a mythological creature like a unicorn.” Then when weird shit starts happening (grain being spoiled, water turning to sand), Arthur and Uther are still like, “No, I think we’re being too hasty jumping on this unicorn thing. Let’s explore some other options. Like sorcery.” But dude, wouldn’t unicorns fall under the sorcery umbrella? I would have had them realize the link way earlier. Way, way earlier. Then I would have shown Arthur’s successes and failures at the tests affecting Camelot in positive and negative ways. Basically, I would have spread the tests out more and made them the center of the episode, rather than bringing them in during the second half.

The thing I loved most about this episode: There’s a fucking unicorn in it.

The thing I hated most about this episode: Besides the unicorn blindness that made Uther and Arthur lose their common sense? I hated the amount of comedic relief that was taken over hunger and lack of clean water. From a storytelling standpoint, it removes some of the urgency and forward momentum if you’re downplaying your main conflict for funny shots of characters eating bugs.

Something I never noticed before: The unicorn is alive again at the end of the episode. I don’t remember that happening at all before. Or maybe I thought I was confusing Merlin with Legend and mentally corrected something that wasn’t wrong in the first place.

Favorite Costume: The Unicorn dude’s bitchin’ druid robes:

druid dude

Here is proof of some random headcanon I created: None this time around. I would say it’s a welcome change, but it’s just laying low until next week.

What object would Bronwyn steal from this episode? The unicorn’s horn. And she would give it to me, because I could put it in my unicorn collection. UNICORN!

What Merthur moment did Jess have the naughtiest thoughts about? I assume that in Jess’s mind, the scene where Arthur makes Merlin try the rat dinner ended much differently. Probably with a spanking.

Check out Jessica Jarman’s take on the episode here

Check out Bronwyn Green’s take on the episode here

Or check out The Merlin Club drinking game, which, you know. I’m sober, so I can’t endorse it. But it’s still funny. Also, there’s a banner that shows you what I’m like when I’m not sober, which I never will be again, so enjoy the snapshot of an era gone by.

That’s it for this week. Join us on Monday as we watch S01E12, “To Kill The King” at 8pm EST on the hashtag #MerlinClub.

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