Filtering by Tag: doctor who

Blogwarming Party!

When I first started blogging on Blogger in 2010, I never thought I'd leave it. I was in my second semester of graduate school, still young and innocent and green (probably from teaching anxiety), and I remember deciding that blogging would be one big step towards becoming that writer I wanted to be.  

2015. With my debut novel on the way, it was time to move on. So please say hello to my new internet home on Squarespace. 

Squarespace is SO different from any other platform I've used before. I love it, but it's weird, so don't be surprised if you see some changes over the next... few months? Yeah. 

Have fun exploring the site! I now have the very lovely option of having drop down navigation. This is kind of luxury for me. Excuse me while I metaphorically rub it against my cheek like cashmere. 

Both my work life and writing life have been pretty busy - so much so, that April came and went without me getting to try the new blog. The biggest excitement is Love Fortunes and Other Disasters' release - May 12th is so close. I can almost taste it. I don't know how I'm going to survive the wait (though there's a lovely blog tour happening this week, and a Twitter chat on Wednesday at 9pm, and the Gotham season finale tomorrow night AHHHHH).

My editor has the first draft of my second Swoon Reads book. As I wait for my edit letter, I'm working on the next potential project (and by working, I mean gingerly typing out the opening paragraphs and brainstorming so hard it looks like I'm trying to make my utensils float in midair). 

But listen. I need to share with you some things. Some awesome things. Some first things. Hang on to your hats. 

Twitter is just the greatest thing ever

Yeah, it needed its own subheading. Twitter is one of my favorite social media sites, and it just gets more and more fun every day. Dreams come true on Twitter. Who knew such things were possible with only 140 characters to work with?

For instance, this made my week:

What do you think? I can see a resemblance.


And here's a fairy tale: 

Once upon a 2013, when I was working hard in grad school and extremely active on, I wrote a short story for a time traveling writing contest with THE Tamara Ireland Stone as the judge. 

The fact that I was just talking about David Tennant up above, THE DOCTOR, is not lost on me.

"Afternoon at Noodledom Palace" was born - you can still read it on Figment - and I submitted it to the contest. 

And Tamara chose my story for first place. Not only that, but she wrote about why she loved it. I don't have the words to describe how awesome that was. And how hard I fell for Anna and Bennett when I got my hands on Time Between Us.

This week, in a flurry of Love Fortunes activity, I had shared a photo of me seeing a sign at B&N for my local event happening on June 6th - I was so shocked to see signs up so early (and for the first few seconds, truly believed that I was sleepwalking or something. No way that sign was real, right, Kim? GAH. IT WAS REAL). 

Then Tamara commented on it, and we tweeted (or rather, I was fangirling), and then she wrote this:

AHHH. There is no GIF to describe the feels. Ohmygosh. 

Magical magicky week on Twitter. 

Summer of Swoon Tour around the corner

Next week I'm going to be on plane. I might even be coming to YOUR city. 

I might be meeting you. 


My suitcase is ready. Next weekend is reserved for mostly packing and repacking, burning the itinerary into my skull, and making last-minute errand runs. 

I also need to figure these things out, as illustrated by Buster Keaton. 

1. Be prepared for meeting readers, which includes being a wonderful speaker. I taught for three years, so I'm hoping that even though I'm rusty now, it's like riding a bike:

2. Keep calm and temper the feels. The excitement of seeing the Swoon Staff again. Of meeting my fellow Swoon Authors for the first time (save Karole). Getting to meet readers from all over the U.S. Be still, my heart:

3. And manage to avoid looking at not-so-positive early reviews:

Will I be seeing you on tour? If so, which stop?


The Revision Game

As you might have guessed, my tardiness has much to do with THE BOOK. July ended on a bittersweet note, with both my job getting crazy-busy and my dog falling ill.  Misty is much better now, though still recovering, and I'm getting used to the roller coasterish excitement that is now becoming my day-to-day life at the office. 

Meanwhile, Swoon Reads has been full of surprises! In case you missed it, voting for LOVE FORTUNES AND OTHER DISASTERS' cover totally happened. These lovely covers had been the choices:

Which one did you vote for?

The cover voting made me even more inspired as I work through my revisions. Which, by the way, has been going pretty well despite facing some intimidating changes. When I say "intimidating," I'm not talking about the meaning in a classic sense. My editorial letter rocked. After combing through the letter with my editor, Holly, and finding solutions and brainstorming for a good few hours, I'm excited. I can't wait to share the new scenes, the twists and turns that are forming underneath my fingers as I type them out into what's becoming a shiny new draft.

But if you've ever written anything, be it a short story, novel, or even essay, you know what I mean when I say that there are intimidating parts of everything we write. Those scenes that you want to revise and make better, that you're just itching to unravel - but you remember the mountains you climbed to pull that idea from you head in the first place, and wonder if it will stay intact once you start making it better.

And so, while I bravely plunged into my manuscript with sword and shield in hand, I had some moments where my attitude was more like...

... and I'm pretty sure that's normal. Going slow, and taking these scenes piece my piece, usually helps me. If you poke a hole, ignore the whizzing sound of the air rushing loose, or plug it up temporarily with a giant I Shall Return note in the margins. Or highlight. I love highlighting. Listening to perfection in the form of movie soundtracks doesn't hurt either (if you peeked at my Twitter feed this weekend, you knew I was half-bawling, half smiling while revising to A Little Princess and The Secret Garden soundtracks).  

I've got a few more matters to attend to before turning in my first round of revisions *snaps on surgical gloves*

When the headaches subside and the night wraps stars around my house, I recover a sense of adventure and revise.

Thanksgiving, Karalius Style

Oh yes, I'm really sitting at my netbook right now, writing a blog post on a holiday. Other people, I suppose, are watching TV and sharing stories with relatives, while the children hide under turkey-patterned tablecloths. And someone's already breaking into the dessert.

Not me. Nope.

The thing about moving to Florida is that you say goodbye to such legendary get-togethers. No more paper plates piled with slices of pies that you have no intention of eating. No more dozing, lulled to sleep by a combination of turkey and your uncle's story about the great-grandparents you never met. I've been living in Florida for over ten years, and while those memories of huge Thanksgiving dinners are fondly remembered - that's it. They're memories.

With all my relatives up north and my brother living 4+ hours away, this Thanksgiving would have been a quiet one... if me and the 'rents didn't decide to continue our Thanksgiving tradition of going to Disney.

Please. Don't pity me.

This year, we went to the Magic Kingdom. Upon filing out of the monorail, I got the sense that there weren't many Florida natives in the park today. People snatched maps from the park entrance, pouring over the times tables and huddling to make plans. Strollers nipped the backs of my heels. A herd of cheerleaders here for competition shivered in their uniforms. I heard the names of many cities, all over the U.S, being whispered like secrets. Thanksgiving Day is always crowded, but this year's atmosphere was caked with confusion. No one knew where they were going. In a way, that makes traversing the park more fun.

While on line for The Little Mermaid ride in New Fantasyland, I admired the dresses that the girls in front of me were wearing. The one dressed up as Aurora had glittery silhouettes of Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather on the hemline; Cinderella's dress had similar silhouettes of the carriage and Gus and Jaq. Who knew that such detail could go into those dresses? It's not something I normally notice, but with the lines as long as they were today, staring at the rock formations only remains interesting for so long.

Although we didn't have much luck with rides, the park was full of music. The dance party in Tomorrowland was in full swing. Goofy, Chip, and Dale start out on stage, but eventually join the crowd of kids and parents as they dance along to the DJ's catchy tunes. the Move It! Shake It! Celebrate It! Street Party parade dogged us whenever we went back to Main Street. With such wonderfully cold weather, everyone seemed full of energy - both the performers and the crowd. I even saw a few fathers take off running with their strollers full of squealing kids (something that NEVER happens in 90 degree weather here).

After lunch, we decided to walk over the the Contemporary Resort. And that's where I had this sugar cookie:

Special for the holiday season, this cookie is part of a sweet series of treats inspired by the yearly gingerbread houses ("houses" being a loose term. You never know what to expect) that some of the resorts participate in. I'm not really a gingerbread person, so I decided on the sugar cookie. What sold me on it? Mary Blair's characters sitting on the monorail was enough to convince me. 

The biggest surprise today by far was spotting Captain Rex as a new Vinylmation figurine on Main Street. For those of you who don't know, Captain Rex used to be the pilot of Star Tours, the Stars Wars simulator ride that took you all over the galaxy. Rex's optimism, combined with poor piloting skills, added character to the ride, making it one of my favorites growing up. But after Disney bought the Stars Wars franchise and rebuilt the ride, Captain Rex had been ousted and reduced haunting the cargo bay, doomed to echo his lines for all eternity. It's depressing, really. 

And no, the knowledge that due to the new timeline, Rex has not yet become the pilot I remember (and is currently defective), does not make me feel better. 

... I just had a Doctor Who moment. Woah. 

So anyway, as you can imagine, seeing him again in all his plastic splendor was awesome. Actually owning a Rex figurine? Near impossible. I'd either have to be very lucky or empty my bank account buying all the mystery boxes. 

Oh well. At least I have a picture. I'm thankful for that. 

Hurricane Who 2013

You need to meet my little brother.

... not sure... which one?

Saying he's little is ironic. Although I'm the older sister, he somehow grew as tall as a tree (at least, from my height), but I assure you, he's the baby of the family. Now that I've thoroughly embarrassed him, I'll tell you how it is he became a special guest at this year's Hurricane Who convention.

Hurricane Who is a Doctor Who convention in Orlando known for drawing in passionate fans and engaging speakers; the convention's small size makes for a cozy atmosphere with plenty of Tardis blues and Dalek reds on parade. This was a new experience for me because I'm used to going to large conventions with stadium-sized vendor spaces, endless panels, and very long lines for overpriced food, so the slow, yet charming energy of Hurricane Who grew on me the longer I was there.

Bill's projects in card form
My brother is an amateur voice actor, though it's hard to call him an amateur when he worked on so many projects. You'll find a list of his projects on his website, here. Bill voices mostly cartoon characters, whether it's playing a beloved character in a fandub or embarking on an original project. Sometimes it surprises me that he fell into voice acting - not because he can't do it (I grew up being entertained by his uncanny ability to mimic my favorite cartoon characters), but because I can't stand the sound of my own recorded voice, haha. I'll stick with the written word, thank you.

I went to one of the panels that Bill was on all about voice acting. So, despite my dear sweet brother's lack of Doctor Who knowledge (he's still stuck on Martha's season...), the audience was eager to pick his brain about voice acting. With him was Ashlee Webster, another budding voice actress who focuses on voicing for audio books and radio dramas. Also, there was a dalek. She had good questions.

Growing up, if you wanted to be a voice actor, you were told that you had to live in one of the major cities, line up outside for auditions, and cross your fingers that you, out of hundreds of applicants, would get your coveted role. But with all this new technology, becoming a voice actor isn't reserved for only those who live in a convenient location. As Bill said, you need to invest in a good mike, some fabric to sound-proof your office, and start perusing a handful of websites and forums where writers / animators / directors are looking for voice actors. Granted, they are usually tech-genius high schoolers and college kids, but it's a good way to start.

Paul and Bill, up to no good

Later on, Bill appeared again with Ghost Hunter's International star, Paul Bradford. I mean, you know, before he got into voice acting, my brother was a ghost hunter. But that's a story for another day (oh boy). So Bill and Paul shared a table during the convention and they told ghost hunting stories during their panel (or rather, Paul shared the stories. Bill just provided witty quips, since he wasn't part of GHI). 

I also attended a panel called "It's the Coat." I scratched my head over that title when I read the schedule, but it makes sense. After all, Doctor Who has some of the best coats in television history.

The entire panel was a celebration of costuming in Doctor Who, starting with the panelists calling up every Doctor cosplayer to the front of the room. I was disappointed that the topic of bow ties never came up in conversation, but it was fascinating to hear about monster makeup from the classic episodes and a theory about how the Doctor's coat pockets must be linked with the Tardis (and are, therefore, endless).

No, that guy isn't David Tennant


How could I even dream of writing about this convention without sharing some fantastic cosplayers and sights? Strangely enough, while there were a lot of doctors, I think I've seen more of them at a typical convention. However, I saw many Amy Ponds (her clothing is pretty easy), River Songs, a few impressive weeping angels, and a lot of little kids who had great costumes. Paul Bradford, a big Whovian, even donned his Ood costume - and ran into a little boy who had also dressed up as an ood. 

Paul Bradford (left) with little Ben Ben Defrin and Paul Defrin

The funny thing is, as soon as the boy took off his mask, he got scared of Paul and started backing away with a nervous smile on his face. So cute. 

Vincent Van Gogh, a little Cyberman, and a plastic, remote-controlled Dalek
If you haven't seen the episode of Doctor Who with Vincent Van Gogh, you should do that right now.


Okay. You're back, right? 

Well, the guy who dressed up as Van Gogh had not only looked the part, but also had Van Gogh's character down pat. He came to our table spewing a rambling monologue about "hearing colors," which had us almost in tears, remembering how the particular episode ends. But you know all about that, right? Because you just watched the episode.

There was a little Cyberman, pictured in the middle. I don't know how he lasted so long in that costume, but it was brilliant. The last photo isn't cosplay (after all, the lady dressed as a dalek is already pictured at my brother's panel). However, this remote-controlled dalek was the most popular item of the day. And each time someone bought one, it was immediately opened and used. I had to watch where I was stepping in case I bumped into one of the daleks.

Other Stuff

Bill was nice enough to lend me a corner of his table, so I rolled out my Pocket Forest gear. Selling an e-book is a difficult feat when you can't literally hand a copy to a potential reader. So. I made handouts in the hopes that if anyone was interesting in reading Pocket Forest, they had only to hang on to the paper. And it's pretty. It was a fun experiment, but I feel like it would have gone better if I included something on the handout about how I think that Rose Tyler is epic or something. Because it's true.

I also decided to dress up for Hurricane Who - kind of hard to resist when Hot Topic came out with such a cool collection of costumes for Halloween. The Tardis dress I settled on was comfortable and fun to wear and I certainly wasn't the only girl at the convention wearing one.

The entire weekend was packed with Doctor Who-induced adventure. I'm still fairly new to the fandom, having started with the ninth doctor with no classics under my belt, but I feel like watching Doctor Who has been a writing-changing experience for me. I learned so much about character development, plot twists, logic that's not so logical, and making readers laugh and cry and laugh again. As a writer, this show has a lot to teach. I'm proud to say I love Doctor Who

So on I trek, catching up with Season 7, Part 2, and wondering what Moffat and the crew have in store for future seasons. Oh, and wearing my Tardis dress out beyond the borders of the convention, haha.

... like Jellyrolls.

Megacon 2013

So... Megacon '13:

Ghosts, Ghosts, Ghosts

Going to conventions can be, well, rigorous. You're on your feet all day, moving from panel to panel, dodging people in the dealer's space aisles, talking to strangers, waiting in line for everything, and keeping your camera ready. Rest is for weaker fans, haha.

But I'm very sneaky.

I happen to know Scott Tepperman, an investigator on Syfy's Ghost Hunters International. He's the coolest guy you'll ever meet: funny, easy-going, and kind. He had some great stories about what it was like to travel the world, exploring haunted castles and prisons in pitch black darkness. Although Scott is branching out into other avenues, like starring in low-budget horror movies, he still goes to conventions around the U.S. I was thrilled to hear that he'd be going to Megacon this year!

The GHI booth became my home base for next two days. I met fellow investigator Paul Bradford as well (who turns out to be a big Doctor Who fan, haha).

Dodging the crowds lining up for autographs in the special guest sections, I always returned to the booth to check in, eat my lunch, and listen with a huge grin on my face as fans came to the booth to share paranormal experiences with Scott and Paul.

Sci-Fi Speed Dating

Speed Dating was so much fun! The people behind the TLC show, Geek Love, were indeed running the sessions; just knowing that helped calm my nerves because they are the best, haha. Ryan Glitch had a slew of hilarious jokes to keep all of us distracted and calm. What I liked most is that he was very concerned that us girls were comfortable - and if we needed anything, he'd rush to our rescue like a superhero!

Luckly for me, I had no issues. I got to talk to thirty-five guys, three minutes each. My mouth went dry after the first three minutes, but I soldiered through it somehow. I had a water bottle, but time went so fast that I'd probably miss talking to someone if I reached for my water and took a drink (I kid you not). For the most part, three minutes was more than enough time to feel someone out and see if you like them. After the first four guys, I relaxed and started having fun.

I took Speed Dating very seriously. I vowed to myself that I'd only write down the numbers of the guys I'd like to get to know more - guys that I could see going on a date with. So... at the end of the session, I only wrote down one guy's number. Ah, well. I talked to so many nice guys, but the chemistry just wasn't there for me.

My sheet, however, had a lot of numbers on it. Wow! I'm very flattered.

I'd love to do Sci-Fi Speed Dating again. Really, truly. The only tough part is that the two hour sessions are huge chunks of time to lose when you're at a convention. To do more than one session per convention would mean that you'd ultimately miss out on other panels or, well, eating. Eating is very important... but tends to be ignored during cons, haha.


The panels this year were a mixed bag, but for the most part, I enjoyed them. My first panel of the weekend was "Crafting the Character Arc: How to Successfully Navigate Your Character Through Your Narrative." Going in, I expected to see a full panel of comic book writers, but instead discovered that the entire panel was going to be conducted by one lone woman: Jennie Jarvis, an MFA instructor as Full Sail University.

With less than a month away from holding my MFA degree, I felt a swell of pride in seeing her up there, kicking butt and taking charge of a large room packed with writers. Some of what she taught was review for me, like how she used a story diagram to talk about character growth (rising action, climax, etc). However, Jarvis has written in various mediums, including screenplay writing, so she had a lot of tiny but glittering gems of great advice. The best for me was when she defined the difference between goal and motivation. Readers, Jarvis says, expect to see a character win or fail at a goal (aka a tangible thing). You can't rely on a character's internal conflict alone. Ex: seeing two characters wed at the end of a story is more powerful than just having one character feel that the other character loves him/her.

Another memorable panel was "Q & A with Vic Mignona." For anyone living under a rock (seriously, guys), Vic is an amazing voice actor; some of his roles include Edward Elric from Fullmetal Alchemist,   Zero Kiryu from Vampire Knight, Tamaki Suou (!!! *passes out*) from Ouran High School Host Club, and, like, a million others.

I've gone to Vic's panels before, and it's probably a miracle that I had because his legion of fans keep growing every year. What makes Vic so, well, lovable, I suppose, is that he has a very warm and encouraging personality. He always does a great job with voice acting, but when you meet him in person, it's almost as if those shiny anime sparkles surround his face, haha! During his panel, he talked about his journey in becoming a voice actor, pursuing your dreams, and speaking in the voices of our favorite characters. I would have liked to have seen more of him, but Saturday was insanely crowded, making even the smallest goals seem quite impossible (my, have these conventions grown!).

In the evening, I attended an indie film festival, showcasing award-winning short films in various genres. In addition to seeing Creepy Crawly, an aptly-named horror short film with Scott Tepperman as one of the actors, I got to watch Pupsock and Wendell vs the Sky Pirates.

The humor is wonderful, and a bit eyebrow-raising, but the mixing of mediums is the best part. I love that puppets and digital characters share the screen, along with special effects and real actors and actresses. I met Thomas Mumme, one of the masterminds behind Pupsock. Somehow, we got on the subject of Buster Keaton (always a good thing) and then we geeked out about Hugo - he insisted that I need to put the book up at the top of my reading list! And it is. I have The Invention of Hugo Cabret on my desk, ready to be read.

The Haul

Despite the gigantic dealer's space, I walked away from the convention with only a few items. Many booths sold the same exact t-shirts, plushies, posters, etc. - an unusual phenomenon. As you can see, I didn't get any Doctor Who merch;Hot Topic sold about eighty percent of what was there (and, if I had really wanted them, I would have already emptied by wallet at Hot Topic, thankyouverymuch). 

I am a big, big, big fan of the Portal series, and practically slobbered over the small, but good wares. I got a huge, stuffed Wheatley and a "Wheatley Laboratories" t-shirt. Yes, Wheatley is my favorite character, haha. 

I also got issues #1 and 2 of the Fionna & Cake comic book series. Adventure Time is pretty awesome, but the gender-bent characters have stolen my heart. I wish there were more issues! The artwork inside the comics was gorgeously-drawn and I'm so excited to see more of Flame Prince.

In regards to anime, I finished my collection of the Earl & the Fairy manga. I fell in love with the anime, but the manga is also great. And, last but not least, I got a keychain of Sailor Moon's disguise pen, the first weapon of sorts she ever used alongside her tiara. The disguise pen doesn't get much love, so it's wonderful to have one!