Getting to Know Me

Hello, hello! I have nothing worth rambling about, so I thought I would just do one of those random “about me” questionnaires that spontaneously float around social media. Yes, I know all the warnings about people using these things to guess at your passwords and security questions, but I don’t care. None of these answers have anything to do with my passwords/security questions. Don’t waste your time. And if you do waste your time with it, well… I told you so. But seriously, I’m bored and enjoy filling these things out.

Since I probably won’t put any other images in this post, here’s a picture of me with a tail in my face after the doggo’s last grooming a couple of weeks ago.

1. Were you named after anyone?
Sean Connery (RIP) and Nichelle Nichols.

2. When was the last time you cried?
I’m not entirely sure. Probably the last time someone made me want to punch them in the throat. I’m an angry crier. Leave me alone.

3. Do you like your handwriting?
It’s legible. That’s all that matters. If I can easily reach the page and write at a proper angle, my writing is nice enough. If I have to write upside down or sideways, it’s crap but you can still read it.

4. What is your favourite lunch meat?
I don’t really have a favorite. If you mean the super processed stuff, we don’t eat that very often anyway. But I just like meat, so I wouldn’t have a favorite anyway.

5. Do you have kids?
Nope. I’ll just borrow some if I want the experience, that way I can give them back to their parents when I’m tired of them.

6. If you were another person, would you be friends with you?
Probably not. I’m kind of a dick. >__>

7. Do you use sarcasm a lot?
I don’t use sarcasm. I’m sarcasm incarnate.

8. Do you still have your tonsils?
Yup.

9. Would you bungee jump?
No, not even if I could. Being a human yoyo doesn’t appeal to me.

10. What is your favourite cereal?
I don’t eat cereal, but I used to like Rice Chex. I guess I still do when it’s mixed with stuff and drizzled with chocolate. Oh, and I like rice krispie treats. Does that count?

11. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off?
Depends on the shoe. My Converse, yes. My boots, no because they also have zippers.

12. Do you think you are strong?
Physically? Nope. Emotionally? I have super strong and unhealthy coping mechanisms, so probably not.

13. What is your favourite ice cream?
Coffee? Cookies and cream? Both? Both. Both is good. Preferably mixed together.

14. What is the first thing you notice about people?
It really depends on whether they’re facing me or not and whether they’re sitting or standing. I should probably say something stupid and mysterious like their aura or vibe, but honestly… usually the ass. I’m at the perfect height for it. If they’re sitting, then probably their hair.

15. Red or pink?
Red. Dark red.

16. What is your least favourite thing about yourself?
Aside from everything? Uh… I guess that I don’t keep up with people even though I know I should. I’ve said it before. I’m a shit friend.

17. Who do you miss the most?
No one I’m willing to talk about.

18. What is your favourite tea?
Does boba count? I like tea, but I don’t drink it enough to have a favorite.

19. What colour shoes are you wearing?
Invisible? I’m not wearing any.

20. What was the last thing you ate?
Nuggets (catfish) and shrimp with a side of fried pickles. Mmm… be jealous. It’s okay.

21. What are you listening to right now?
The whoosh of my ventilator because I didn’t think to turn on the radio when I started working on this post.

22. If you were a crayon, what colour would you be?
Probably one of the glittery ones. I’m partial to the purples, but anything is fine as long as it’s sparkly.

23. Favourite smells?
Rain. Fresh cut wood. Old books. Roasting garlic.

24. Who was the last person you talked to on the phone?
I don’t talk on the phone unless I absolutely have to, so probably Dad.

25. Mountain hideaway or beach house?
Beach. Ocean view, please.

26. Favourite sports to watch?
Sports are not my thing. Baseball is okay if I’m actually at the game. Is skateboarding still a thing? I don’t mind watching that. Dancing is okay too.

27. Hair colour?
Somewhere between blonde and brown, I guess.

28. Eye colour?
Blue.

29. Do you wear contacts?
Nope. I don’t like being touched at the best of times. You really think I want someone jabbing their fingers in my eyes?

30. Favourite food?
Food in general. I just like to eat.

31. Scary movies or happy endings?
I don’t watch enough movies to have a strong preference either way, but I guess happy. I like my horror in book form.

32. Last movie you watched?
No idea. Troop Zero? I don’t remember any movies since then.

33. What colour shirt are you wearing?
Black with a red Oz logo. A Japanese band that’s no longer around.

34. Summer or winter?
Summer. Bring on the heat!

35. Hugs or kisses?
Like the candy? I’m on team Hugs. The actions? Please don’t.

36. Favourite dessert?
Creme brulee!

37. Strength training or cardio?
Cripple privilege allows me to not exercise and no one says anything about it.

38. Computer or television?
Computer. Always.

39. What book are you reading right now?
Open for Murder by Mary Angela for this month’s review post and HP and the Chamber of Secrets for fun.

40. What is on your mouse pad?
I don’t have one.

41. Any tattoos?
Not yet. But I want one.

42. Favourite sound?
I’ve never thought about this. Water sounds, I guess.

43. Rolling Stones or Beatles?
Beatles.

44. What is the farthest you’ve been from home?
Out of the places I remember, Wiscasset in Maine is around 1,900 miles from us, but so is Quebec, so one of those two places.

45. Do you have a special talent?
I can turn pretty much anything into something perverted, but otherwise no.

46. Where were you born?
A hospital.

47. Where are you living now?
The same place I have always lived.

48. What colour is your house?
If you had stalked me properly, you would know the answer to this question. Step your game up.

49. What colour is your car?
I don’t have a car.

50. Any pets?
A dog and a bunch of fish.

As always, feel free to share your thoughts and comments here or on my social media pages!

Character Questionnaires: Yes Or No?

Howdy, howdy!  While I was searching for something writerly to blog about, I kept coming across ideas for character questionnaires (getting to know your characters, things to know about your character before you start writing, etc.).  The questions varied from basic stuff about looks and personality to weird things like “what’s in their fridge right now?” (the main character of my novel-in-progress currently has pizza, coffee creamer, and pouches of blood in her mini fridge, in case you were wondering).  And, at first, this seemed like a really neat idea, until I came across a list of 1,000 questions I was supposed to know answers to for my characters.  Yes, three zeroes.  It seemed pretty excessive to me.  I started to wonder when something like that went from a useful tool to being something to procrastinate with.

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Pretty sure this would be the reaction from my novel-in-progress’ main character and her bestie.

I just feel like there are things you should naturally know about your characters before you start writing, even without a questionnaire.  Name/nickname, the basics of how they look, main personality type, any distinguishing features.  For me, these are all things that come naturally with the voices in my head.  I don’t need to write them down, because I know them.  Occasionally, I’ll make a conscious decision to change an eye color or hair color if I have too many blue eyed blondes or whatever, in which case writing it down somewhere is helpful.  But all the questionnaires that start off with these things feel more like a way to procrastinate than anything useful.  On the other hand, if you’re the type of writer who works on multiple projects at once, I can see how you might mix up characters without having some kind of reference sheet.

Then, there’s the group of questions about character motivations which seems a lot more helpful to me.  Knowing why your characters do things helps when you’re writing and trying to decide how they’ll react to different scenarios.  It makes writing believable scenes easier.  Say your main character freaks out when their roommate pulls out a sword in a non-threatening manner.  Why?  Well, if you know they witnessed their sibling getting stabbed, you can hint at that or build around it even if the reader doesn’t know it yet.  Something less severe: why does your main character throw a tantrum every time her boyfriend steals her Oreos even though she’s a grown woman?  Maybe her siblings always ate all the cookies when she was a kid.  If you know their motivation, you can figure out how they’ll handle things realistically.

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A completely acceptable reaction.

Last, they have the really out there questions.  The “what’s in the fridge” and “favorite sex positions” types of things.  These are the ones that I’m almost positive people answer to feel productive, but they’re really just procrastinating.  I don’t think my character’s preference for red Gatorade over blue has any impact on my story, unless there are monsters in the Gatorade, then maybe.  These are the questions that are fun if you’re having trouble writing one day and are hoping answering them will spark something.  Otherwise, you’re just goofing off.  And that’s okay!  I understand the desire to put things off, but don’t lie to yourself about it.

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It’s totally procrastination.  Own it.

Overall, I don’t find character questionnaires that helpful.  They’re fun and something to do if I’m stuck or really don’t feel like writing, but, honestly, I’d rather just write most of the time.  What about you?  Do you fill out character questionnaires wen you create your characters?  What are some questions you find the most useful?  Which ones do you ignore or consider unhelpful?  Feel free to comment here or on my social media pages!

On Accomplishments and Regrets

Howdy, howdy!  A friend recently sent me a questionnaire she received from a career coach, so that I too could experience the equal parts torture and enlightenment (her words).  I fully admit that I’ve never been able to take things like this seriously.  My answers always range from sarcastic to literal (and occasionally both).  For instance, one of the questions is “what would you do if you knew you could not fail?”  My initial reaction was “Walk!  No, wait… telekinesis!  No… take over the world.  That’s my final answer.”  I mean, if I can’t fail, why not aim big?  But anyway, one of the questions actually managed to get to me: “What accomplishments must, in your opinion, occur during your lifetime so that you will consider your life to have been satisfying and well liveda life of few or no regrets?”  So, I thought I’d answer it here since I don’t know what else to ramble about today.

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If that’s not achievement enough, I don’t know what is.

I suppose this is the kind of question where people write down things like having kids or becoming a CEO of some big company or founding a charity or whatever, which are all  wonderful goals to have, but I don’t think they’re musts.  I actually don’t believe any accomplishment is a must in order to lead a fulfilling life.  For me, that kind of thinking is sad.  I mean, do I hope to publish a bunch of books and become a famous author?  Hell yes.  If I die tomorrow without achieving those goals, does that make my life any less well lived?  No.  I’ll be dead.  I won’t care about that kind of unfinished business.  So, why should I put that kind of pressure on myself while I’m alive?  If I fail, I fail.  It’ll be disappointing, but ultimately, it doesn’t make my whole life unsatisfying.

The accomplishment itself is just the reward at the end of a very long journey.  I believe that journey, with all its little setbacks as well as its forward momentum, is more important than being able to point at a finished project and say “look what I did!”  Don’t get me wrong, achieving a goal feels great, but when you look back at it, you remember the path you took to get there more than the moment of completion.  At least, I do.  As long as the good parts outweigh the bad and as long as I know I’m trying, then I consider my life a success whether I have anything to show for it or not.

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Success is awesome, but don’t forget the rest of this stuff.

As far as regrets go, I think they’re useless and that’s probably what bugged me the most about the question.  I’m not going to have a bunch of regrets simply because I fail to accomplish my goals.  If I’m trying my best, why would I regret that?  I suppose when most of the things you would change about your past are out of your control, it puts all potential regrets in perspective.  Are there things I wish I could’ve done differently?  Yeah.  Would I have actually done them differently?  No, because then I wouldn’t become the person I am now.  Plus, my experiences that led me to those decisions would be the same, so the likelihood of me making different choices even if I had a do-over are slim to none.  So why worry about it at all?  Regrets change nothing.

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Because Uta no Prince-sama.

I guess maybe I’m weird to not worry about big accomplishments.  Or maybe it’s part of the whole cripple privilege thing that I can focus on other things without people judging me and making me feel like I’m wrong (not that I’d care what they thought anyway).  Or maybe I just worry more about the every day stuff than I should.  But to me, being happy, enjoying life, and knowing that I’m trying my best are more important than actual success (not that accomplishments aren’t exciting and fulfilling).  What about you?  How would you answer the question?