So... Breaking Dawn...

So... Breaking Dawn comes out in two days.

I'm excited for it, but in a purely pessimistic way.

I'm also really glad that this will end it. No more getting together with my girl-friends and having them go:

"Oh my gosh! Will Bella turn into a vampire or what?"
"Like, totally!"
"I actually think Jacob is really hot."
"No way! Cuz I totally love Edward!"
"Oh my gosh!"

Okay... so my friends aren't that ditzy, but you get the point.

Volume II is out!

All righty! I sent off Volume II of Squeaky News last night. How was it? Could you see the images this time? Was your text all weirdly centered and squished? Was the content amazingly brilliant and informative? ;)

Also, what do you guys think of the blog colors changing every month? Or should I just stick with red and blue?

~Enna Isilee

Duh! If you want more color, add color!

Okay. So, Q, I read your comment about missing the flowers and I thought "Yeah. I miss 'em too." But I was sick of having just green.

So, ta da! I changed the colors!

I wanted to have something to do with butterflies, but I didn't like how much white space was left over. So, the colors may fluctuate, but I think I'm going to stick with the flowers. Because, to be honest, I wasn't getting a vibe that people liked the butterfly layouts so much as the flowers.

What do you guys think of having different colors every month? That could be cool.

This project has consumed me today. I have made absolutely no progress on my writing, but my photoshop skills have improved.

Switchin' it up again

Okay, I made changes to the layout again:

1. Obviously, it's pink now. I hoped that would get rid of the "Jenna Fox" feel, because that was NOT what I was going for.

2. I dimmed the crease in the back, because people said that was distracting.

3. I gave the rick-rack a shadow and lightened the butterfly more, hoping that would make the butterfly less distracting. (I'm not sure it worked...)

Also, even if you don't or do like this layout, you may like this one better:

Click for full size

I've changed my poll on the side, now you can vote for green or yellow. But I still really want you guys to comment, because I want to make this right. If you still don't like either, let me know!

What think my judges now?

New Blog Look

Okay, so I re-did my blog look again. Please vote in the poll. Is it better? No? Questions? Comments? Concerns?

EDIT: Is there still stuff that's hard to read? What? I tried to fix some of the colors. Also, I can't fix the text below the poll, that's stuck that way.

Are there any clashing colors? My goal was to make my blog more colorful while still making it seem a little classy (too much color makes my eyes bug out!).

If you have ANY suggestions, please give them.

A week of interesting events

My week has been crazy! Nothing really happened on Monday, but on Tuesday I had to go take a huge test on alphebetization at this really great library because they were trying to weedle out from a group of people the ones that were good. I got called in for an interveiw today, in only a few hours! Squee!

Plus, we had our first critique group meeting on Wednesday and it was great (hwalk, check your e-mail. And, Gretchen... I would have e-mailed you, but I don't know your e-mail). Unfortunately almost as soon as I got home I was hit with gastroenteritis (or, Stomach Flu) it's been going around my family/neighborhood all month. Bleh.

But, while feverish with the stomach flu, I send a very wierd e-mail to Laini Taylor and made it onto her blog! Yay! This makes me happy.

And honestly guys, if you haven't read any of Laini's books-- well... her one book that's in print right now-- you should. She's really amazing, and probably one of the funniest/sweetest authors out there. I've ha her on my Reader feed forever and have never regretted it. You should have her on yours too!

Alright, that's it. Well... now I have to go find a skirt to wear to my interview...

~Enna Isilee

Journal Obsession

Okay, confession: I am obsessed with journals. I very rarely write in them, but I LOVE them. I just thought I’d post some pictures of my collection (and this collection has grown since I took the pictures):
Here’s all of the ones I could find.

This one’s probably the oldest. I wrote quite a bit in it, but it’s still less than half-way full.
This one’s written in a different language that I made up.
This one contains a story that I wrote. The story I never finished. It was really… not good.
These two are both completely empty.
This one contains the same story that’s in the polka dot one, only typed up.
This is one of my newer acquisitions. It’s like an old-fashioned sketchbook. I really like it.

I also have bought a cream colored one with colorful flowers, and a purple and green one with butterflies, since I took these pictures. I’m too lazy to take new pictures.

So, I guess that’s just the writer/pack-rat in me. I love all kinds of notebooks.
~Enna Isilee

Writing for Charity

The Writing for Charity event was, first off, fun. I loved getting together with other writers and swapping ideas and criticisms. Shannon did a marvelous job orchestrating the whole thing, and enough money was raised to get over 50 wheelchairs!

It started with all of the authors (I think there were 16 of them) answering questions like “why do you write?” Then we broke off into smaller groups (I was in the fantasy group), and had a Q&A.

Then the part I was dreading and yet really wanting: the critique group.

Here’s where I, personally, made a few faux pas.

I mis-read the instructions. I just barely re-checked Squeetus and I don’t know how I could have misunderstood this. This is what Squeetus says:
On the day of the event, bring 15 copies of the first page of your novel
or picture book text (maximum word count: 300 words) for some hands on workshopping.

I read it as 300 words of picture book text, or you can bring the first page of your novel. When I should have read it as: 300 words of picture book text, or the first 300 words of your novel. And, honestly, maybe my subconscious really was trying to cheat and get in more words for critiquing. Oh, geez. I hope not.

Celes (who’s story was AMAZING, by the way) can attest to this: I felt so bad. Not only was mine WAY over 300 words, it was single spaced and not in Times New Roman because I had literally just printed it off my computer that morning and I like to write in different fonts. *sheepish*

Despite my blunder, however, I loved getting critique/compliments! I had a lot of my heart on the first line of my story (first lines are my favorite), and I got a lot of compliments on it. My first page was also a lot of stream-of-consciousness and a little rambly, so I took their advice and re-wrote the first page as soon as I got home. I turned it into a scene and I already like it better.

I only wish that we had more time for each person. I really benefited from hearing other people get critiqued because I would go, "Hey, yeah, that's really good advice" or "Ooh... I do that sometimes." but we had to hurry because we only had 90 minutes to get through 13 people!

Overall the experience was very positive. And it caused me to want to start a weekly critique group (which we are going to do, we’ve already set a date and time). I’ll definitely be going to the future Writing for Charity events.

Thanks, Shannon, for organizing this! You did fantastic!
~Enna Isilee

Woo, crazy week!

Woo! I've had a pretty crazy week. I've been at BYU's book symposium for young readers and this Saturday I'll be attending the Writing for Charity event.

Good news, I went book shopping today! I bought four new books including some Eoin Colfer, Nel Schusterman, D.J. MacHale, and Sherwood Smith.

So, no new book reviews as of yet, but they're comin' and they're good ones!

~Enna Isilee

Two years ago today

Two years ago today I first met Shannon Hale.
Two years ago today I first began The Goose Girl.
Two years agot today a chain of events began that caused me to:

Read squeetus. Join LRRH. Find out about book blogging. Go to all of Shannon Hale's events. Meet some amazing people (Laura, Celes, hwalk, Faith, Gretchen, Q, and so many more).

Two years ago today my life changed.

And it's rocked ever since.

Thank you Shannon Hale!
Thank you BYU!
Thank you all my wonderful friends who put up with my obsession with July 14th!

Thank you.

~Enna Isilee

P.S. Yes. I know it sounds crazy. And if you ask Shannon she'll say something along the lines of: "Well you really shouldn't be thanking me because my parents made me the way I am, and their parents made them the way they are and..." yada, yada, yada.

Whatever, Shannon. It's shorter just to thank you. ;)

The Adventures of Howl and Sophie--Diana Wynne Jones

This series has been my latest obsession. And for those of you who have seen Miyazaki’s animated version of the first book Howl’s Moving Castle know that, while the movie is really good, it’s nothing like the book. That being said, I’m going to write a review of each book in the series:

Howl’s Moving Castle (1986)

I don't know why I love this book so much. It's weird, it's wishy washy, and it's AMAZING. The little quirks it has just make it such a wonderful story. And how the romance slowly blossoms... ah! I love it!

It follows the structure of a European fairy tale and tells the story of Sophie Hatter. Sophie is the eldest of three girls and is thereby destined to lead a very average life. However, a visit from the Witch of the Waste changes all that when she turns Sophie into an old woman! Sophie strikes out on her own then and runs into the fearsome wizard Howl (who turns out to be not so fearsome) and sets out on the greatest adventure of her life: cleaning Howl’s Moving Castle, and falling in love along the way.

This book is, as I said, AMAZING. It’s got a lot going at the same time and yet I remained perfectly calm while reading it and was able to enjoy every last bit. It seems like it was written by a very… young writer. The story is just so pure and untainted that it just kind of… oh. I can’t find the word to describe it. Go read it yourselves.

Castle in the Air (1991)

This is my least favorite out of the series because you don’t see a lot of Sophie and virtually nothing of Howl. It follows a carpet seller who falls in love with a princess but she is stolen from him by a powerful djinn. Of course, the carpet seller(I’m calling him that because I’ve TOTALLY blanked on his name) goes off to save her.

This book had more the feeling of a middle-eastern legend (think Aladdin) and thereby didn’t connect with me as much. Plus, this one was really, really plot driven, unlike Howl’s or House which just seemed to float along, and I missed the innocence of the other books. (I don’t think innocence is the right word, but it’s the closest I can get)

House of Many Ways (2008)

I ran off to buy this as soon as I finished Castle because I could not wait to read it! The main character in this book is Charmain, who is volunteered to look after her great-uncle William’s house (He also happens to be the royal wizard of High Norland) while he is ill. While watching the house she runs into a great purple Lubbock, a clumsy apprentice, and is taken on to help with the king’s library. While at the royal mansion she meets the sorceress Sophie Pendragon, who has been called upon to help the royals with a very serious problem. And wherever Sophie is, you know Howl and Calcifer aren’t far behind.

LOVED this book, mostly because it had A LOT more Howl and Sophie than Castle did. Howl was so funny! This one seemed to carry the same “innocence” as Howl’s and thereby left me feeling happy and light when I finished it. Although when I did finish it I felt very angry that there was not a fourth book I could run to.

Which brings me to my last statement—you may have noticed that I added the year of publication after each title. Why? To show you that absurdity! Howl’s was published in 1986, and then people had to wait 5 years to get Castle and then another SEVENTEEN YEARS to get House. HOW COULD PEOPLE WAIT THAT LONG? I’m really glad I became truly obsessed with the series (I had read Howl’s about two years ago as well) after House came out. I may not have been able to go on.

Well, I believe I’ve blathered enough.

~Enna Isilee

Rapunzel’s Revenge--Hale, Hale, Hale

This book is so cute! It’s a unique take on a classic fairy tale and it practically sings of Shannon and Dean Hale.

I’ve never been one for graphic novels—1: because I don’t know how to read them & 2: because I prefer to create my own images for stories—but this one was so amazing that it was an easy and happy read.

This book only took me about 40 minutes to read, but it was a really great 40 minutes.

I really can’t say anything more about it other than it was so cute and great.

That’s really it.


~Enna Isilee

Janette Rallison Binge

I recently went on a Janette Rallison Binge and read a bunch of her books. I’m going to review two of them in this post, and then the rest in a later post:

Revenge of the Cheerleaders
-----This is the “sequel” to All’s Fair in Love, War, and High School but it follows a different character. I found this book absolutely delightful. I was expecting certain things to happen and then Woah! Twist! It didn’t happen like I expected. Sometimes this frustrated me but in a good ARGH-I-want-to-find-out-what-happens-next way.

Plus, I was totally able to relate to the main character having an annoying sibling. And I realized that my siblings weren’t as bad as I thought.

Fame, Glory, and Other Things on My To-Do List
-----Reason why I loved this one so much was because the main character was an actress, and so am I. I was able to connect to a ton of things throughout the book, and I even learned a bit about acting! ‘Course, the main character wants to be a screen actor and I have no interest in that. But it focuses mainly on a high-school musical (not the Disney one) production and I have a TON of interest in that. Plus it had the same good feeling that all of Rallison’s books produce.

All in all I’ve discovered that whenever I’m in a reading slump, or just a general slump, I pick up a Rallison. They always make me smile.
~Enna Isilee

Famille en ville

Famille en ville. Aucun temps pour signaler. Dès que j'aurai le temps j'écrirai un groupe de poteaux et de preschedule ils. Je suis derrière dans les critiques de livre (encore). Toodles !


Family in town. No time to post. As soon as I get time I'll write a bunch of posts and preschedule them. I'm behind in book reviews (again). Toodles!
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