JUNE Update: As Life Flows, It Goes. #amwriting #update


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It feels as if it’s been a while since I have posted a personal update. I would think a month, then again, I start writing and get lost at times, not realizing for instance, how far along we are in June. I hope everyone is having a fantastic month and is  looking forward to July and August, our summer here in Canada and many other places.

As many of you know, How Was Last Night For You, my novel is finished in first draft. In second draft, I have edited until about Chapter 6, but you’ll want to note, the finished version, will probably have more chapters than the thirty-one chapters, the first draft has. When I start to realize I’m at three-thousand words or over, I consider splitting the chapter if it’s possible. It isn’t always, but sometimes it is, I only have to insure I hook the reader into the following chapter. I have connected chapter 1 to all chapters proceeding it in first draft. If you wish to read, you can start here: Chapter 1

At the moment, I’m letting my novel sit for a couple of weeks. I’ve read you’re supposed to leave it months, but I feel separation anxiety when I think of leaving my could-be book, for so long. As it is, some of the first few chapters were originally written more than a year or two ago anyways, so I think it is fine for me to go back and edit those chapters. By the time I get to the end chapters, I’m certain it will be late August or September, so I think I’m okay for editing as a whole.

Some issues I want to work on is developing my main character Nina. I feel as the central character, and main point-of-view for the novel, she is a bit flat as a character. I’ve been reading and researching, and would like to give her greater depth. I believe her lover John develops as the story goes on and has depth, so does my antagonist Talise or Tia. Talise has an interesting background, and so does John. Nina needs work though. She is a flirt right now who believes in the paranormal, and that things occur that can’t always be rationally explained. She also believes the best of people, this can be a flaw for her as well.

One blog I read said that we need to be careful we don’t create our characters after ourselves. They might share bits of us, as our so called “darlings,” or our “children” in a sense; it follow that they would. But there are all kinds of people in life and in stories and they need distinctive features and personality traits. This blog suggested, giving your main character a trait which is opposite of one of yours, this immediately makes them different than you. It makes you think about your character in a significantly changed way. So I’m pondering this advice, one reason for the editing break.

Another thing I have been considering a great deal is setting and how it impacts characters and the story. In my novel, I have set this story in Adare, a small fictional city outside Vancouver, BC , Canada. Adare’s down town has a harbor where there is the Sirene Lake. Many events happen at this harbor and in downtown Adare, as well as by or at John’s house, which is beach front property. Although, I have changed much of what I told into dialogue, this isn’t possible with everything. A descriptive setting is still important. 

Funny enough, a great writing blog I follow, posted an article today about working “showing” into your setting. It is exactly what I needed to read, having your setting represent a characters state of mind or mood. Or setting showing certain character attributes. The article is called: Setting – Why A Picture is Worth A Thousand Words. I recommend the article and following Kristen Lamb’s blog. She also holds online courses and I thinking about taking her course on character and plotting, I believe it would be quite helpful. 

On a sad note, I lost my beta reader for my novel, so I’m working on doing corrections on my own, as well as comments you all have left. My plan is to do my best, then higher an editor to look through the whole novel in a substantiative manner, and after those corrections I can decide whether I want to self-publish or start sending off query letters on the outside hope I can get an agent. That’s the plan, but one day at a time.

I have also been submitting smaller works to be published. I have had some success with poetry, but not so with fiction. I’m searching through literary magazines, and other websites etc. which publish writer’s work, jotting down what each place wants in terms of style, writing, and submission standards. I enjoy the rejection emails which give you ways to improve your writing the most. Either way, a rejection email means they at least read your work and considered it. Many places who don’t even consider your writing, don’t send any rejection email. You get nothing. 

Submitting is an ongoing process, and I hope eventually to have some fiction pieces published. As well, I’m beginning my work on a Masters Application. Haven’t started yet, in the thinking stage. I’ll let you know how it goes. Application at UBC isn’t open until late summer so I have a bit of time.

Also, I’m hoping to go on a small vacation somewhere. I’m not sure where, but somewhere in Canada. Probably go somewhere with my Mom or my eldest brother. But I’m trying ‘adulting,’ in some places, putting money away every month for RRSP’s and got some extra life insurance/accident insurance, so if something ever happened to me, my parents and brothers are covered for cost. I want to be out of debt and put more of my money away. It’s difficult in as all budget.

Happy to visit a friend on Whyte Avenue tomorrow, at a favourite newly renovated Cafe called Block 1912. Also, attending Shakespeare in the Park at an amphitheatre outside on Thursday, seeing Loves Labour Lost. I’ve never read this Shakespeare play so I’m excited to see it. What is more exciting than Shakespeare, is Shakespeare, good friends, and beer. 

Working on the weightloss, slowly, it’s coming. I wish it were easier, but it’s not. Birthday’s are coming up in July, which makes dieting difficult. But I try. 

Have a great week! 

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©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

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Make Up Haul: New Year January 2016


Hi everyone. If you are interested in beauty products and reviews on them, today is a good day to be reading my blog. I had a few gift cards and points to use over the holidays after buying presents and building up points from Fall. I hope you like my beauty haul for the current time.

NARS Blush color Desire
http://www.sephora.ca NARS Blush: Desire
1. NAR’S Blush – (www.sephora.ca ) -$37.00 – I am a huge fan of NARS’ blushes. They are on the more expensive side for a blush but the pigment is always fantastic and a blush compact lasts a long time. I was looking for the colour ‘Gaiety’ in Sephora when I bought my blush and I couldn’t find it. I settled for the colour ‘Desire.’ ‘Desire’ is a wonderful bright almost neon pink colour. I had to be careful when I picked up the colour with Sephora blush brush. At first, I swept too much pigment up. When I applied the blush to my face the bright pink made me look like a saloon girl from bygone days. I only have to have my blush brush barely graze ‘Desire’ and I pick up enough colour pigment for one cheek. I don’t find this happens with every NARS’ blush colour I have as compared to other blush brands. You only have to be careful with NARS’ blush colour ‘Desire’ as far as I know. This NARS blush line is the same blush line which has the wonderful ‘Orgasm’ color which everyone loves because it looks nice on most skin tones.

If you’re looking for a cheaper blush which still has excellent pigment, I would recommend blush by Tarte. I have a few Tarte blushes and the pigment is superb. Plus, Tarte is a natural makeup made from Amazonian Clay; however, NARS has beautiful colours you can’t find anywhere else, and I think their pigment rivals most blushes I have tried. Years after I first bought a small NARS palette, I’m still scraping the lasts bit of the two blush colours remaining out of the container.

2. Benefit Hoola Bronzer – (www.sephora.ca) – $36.00 – I bought this wonderful face palette

Benefit Hoola Bronzer
http://www.sephora.ca -Benefit Hoola Bronzer
from Tarte this summer which had a Bronzer, Highlighter, and Blush. Unfortunately, I used the palett fast especially since the Highlighter and Blush were half the size of the Bronzer. It was a great palette for travelling in the summer because I had all my contouring colours together. The Bronzer by Tarte is awesome because it isn’t overwhelming on pale skin; it is a bit orangey; however, I didn’t want to buy the whole palette again because I went through the highlighter and blush so fast. I am scraping the last bits of the Bronzer out each time I contour my face.

I asked a fantastic beauty blogger named Victoria Styles to recommend a Bronzer I could use as a darker contour colour on my  light skin. Victoria’s blog is called Living Disrobed. She recommended’ Hoola’ by Benefit.

I have been extremely happy with this Bronzer as a darker contouring color. The pigment is great and who doesn’t love Benefit, they make great makeup with fun packaging. I think the Bronzer colour suits me a little better then the Tarte Bronzer as much as I liked it, because the Benefit Bronzer colour is cooler. I use only a little of it on my hairline, beneath my cheek bones, and to contour around the edge of my face. Contouring is great when you want to be wearing more makeup and make your face appear thinner for certain occasions. I adore a highlighter I have been using from Two Faced called ‘Candle Light.’ This Benefit Bronzer was exactly what I needed. I recommend the product and thank you to Victoria for helping me choose it.

Lancome Artliner 24Hour
http://www.sephora.ca Lancome Artliner 24Hour (NEW)
3. Lancôme Artliner 24Hour – (www.sephora.ca)- $38.00 – When I went to choose my favourite liquid eyeliner by Lancôme, I was a bit dismayed because they did not have my regular black liquid eyeliner at Sephora. The difference between the new Lancôme eyeliner and the old one I’ve been using is the old liquid liner was only ‘Artliner’ and not ‘Artliner 24 hour’ which is waterproof. There’s a difference and I didn’t realize it. The girl who was helping me at Sephora said Lancôme had come out with a newer liquid eyeliner. It was supposed to be a liquid liner with a better foam tipped brush.

It’s hard to convince me the new liquid liner is better because I have used the original ‘Artliner’ in black\Noir for five or six years. But they are not making the original liner anymore.

I am not impressed with this eyeliner. I kept getting a thicker line then I wanted and I couldn’t get the little flick I was always so able to artfully achieve with the original liner. But I have gotten used to ’24hour Artliner’ and the brush is actually more precise. You only need to hold it so the point is against your lashline, not the side of the brush as with the original Artliner liquid eyeliner. You also need ample time for this eyeliner to dry as in you have to wait five minutes so your eyeliner doesn’t end up all over your eye areas on your face. 

What I also do not like about the ’24hour’ liner is the colour on your lash line is not opaque. It’s not black and it should be. It looks like a see-through greyish colour and the eyeliner doesn’t apply well over eyeshadow. The tube is smaller as well. I’m not sure if it means it won’t last me for four months as the original ‘Artliner’ did. The tube of the original ‘Artliner’ could only seem bigger then the new tube but not actually be bigger.

 I should mention, I have altered this part of this blog since I published this post. I was sick of this eyeliner product and that it didn’t do it’s job. I was too late to return it to Shopper’s Drug Mart where I purchased it but I contacted http://www.lancome.ca by email and they are issuing me a cheque in the mail for refund. Great service Lancome, my faith in your products is restored. Please go back to your old liquid Artliner.

4. It Works Hello Lashes 5 in 1 Clinically Proven Mascara – (www.ulta.com) – $24.00 (US) – I

It works 5 in 1 mascara real
http://www.ulta.com It works 5 in 1 Mascara
wasn’t sure where to find this mascara in Canada. I’m sure you can buy it somewhere since I received it in Luxebox which is a Canadian beauty box. But even though our dollar is low, if you love this mascara, Canadians can order from Ulta. This five in one mascara is awesome. I don’t often say this about mascaras. I have gone through many and the fact this mascara is not a waterproof mascara, speaks to how good the product is. I apply ‘Hello Lashes’ first, and then I apply a waterproof mascara over top and the problem of my mascara travelling onto my oily eye areas is solved. You might want to check under your eyes in the day though, in case some of the mascara has made it under your eyes. I have had success with the Mascara staying on my lower eyelashes but not perfect.

What’s so special about this five in one mascara I received? Well the brush is a fantastic design. There is a little ball of a brush on the end of the mascara wand over top a regular mascara brush.  This brush is so helpful for putting mascara on every single tiny eyelash I have. Often, we forget about the lashes at the corner of our eyes, especially if your lashes are blond. This product is clinically proven to increase the length and volume of your lashes. It is a natural formula and contains ingredients which are good for your lashes and a lash enhancing serum. The Ulta website says it was developed with help from leading plastic surgeons. I find this mascara to be superb. My lashes are healthier and have increased in volume, length, and thickness since I started using the mascara. The brush really does get every lash. It surprises me it would work so well and so fast. But it does.

Soap and Glory Sugar Crush Body Wash
http://www.beautyboutique.ca Soap and Glory: Sugar Crush
Soap and Glory: Sugar Crush Body Wash – (www.beautyboutique.ca) – $16.00 –  I bought this product with Shopper’s Optimum points because I love the body butter I bought from Soap and Glory at Shoppers Drug Mart. Beauty Boutique is their newly launched online website. I wanted to try out some of Soap and Glory’s other products so one of them I am trying is this body wash which is more of a scrub. I use it a few times a week with another Soap and Glory body wash which is only a body wash. I don’t need to exfoliate my skin everyday. I find it becomes a little dry if I do that in Winter. But this body wash scrub smells great and sugar is a fantastic natural body scrub. Also, the product doesn’t cost too much. So, I might have to consider replacing my Lush ‘Sea Salt body scrub.’ If only for the reason, this product is more cost effective and lasts longer; not to mention the fragrance.

Soap and Glory: Clean on Me – (www.beautyboutique.ca ) – $14.00 – Generally, I like a

Soap and Glory - Clean on Me
http://www.beautyboutique.com Soap and Glory: Clean on Me
creamy body wash such as this ‘Clean on Me,’ to moisturize my skin in Winter. This is great because it moisturizes your skin well and smells good too. I use it when I am not using the body wash scrub. It contains mandarin peals, jasmine, and a list of other natural ingredients. This is probably, why I like it so much. Check out Soap and Glory products at your local drugstore you will be happy to discover them.

If you are buying at Shoppers Drug Mart make sure to use your Optimum Card or download their Optimum card application so you can download coupons for extra Optimum points each time you make a purchase from Shoppers. You can also get Optimum points off of Beauty Boutique online and Murale in store and online.

Sometimes when you need a lot of stuff from Shoppers you can receive ten thousand or eighteen thousand points for spending forty, fifty, seventy five, or a hundred dollars. They also have weekends where you can receive twenty times the Optimum points or the points you do have on your Optimum card or Optimum card application, are worth more. I buy stuff at Shoppers Drug Mart all the time so, during the entire Christmas season I was able to redeem points once for $60.00 and once this last time for $85.00. Your Optimum points build quickly so it is worth it to shop at Shoppers Drug Mart for makeup both more luxury brands and inexpensive brands such as Maybelline or L’Oreal.

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©Mandibelle16. All Rights Reserved.