I’d like to thank Erika of Geeky Mythology for my third Sunshine Blogger Award nomination! If you like book bloggers with a snappy wit and an eye for character nuance, check out Erika’s site! She primarily reviews books and movies, often in the YA vein, as well as covering larger pop culture phenomena. Some of her reviews feature astonishing image collages that convey a visual summery of characters, either individually or in relationship. Also check out her Top Ten Tuesday posts for some fun lists. Thank you, Erika! You always make me smile and think at the same time!
- Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
- Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
- Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
- Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.
- List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.
Questions from Erika:
1. What life advice would you give a high school senior who’s undecided about which major to study? Would you be idealistic or realistic in your approach?
First, ask yourself some questions. Is there anything you’re passionate about? College can be a lot of work, but if you have a passion to follow, you’ll be able to sustain your energy better. If you aren’t that passionate about anything, what are your skills? Even if you do have a passion you want to pursue, consider your skills as well. Skills can be developed, but sometimes there are certain things we just can’t do without putting in so much effort we end up running down. Maybe you dream of being a rock star, but you can’t carry a tune to save your life. You could be a music mixer instead, or a casting agent. Dare to dream, but try not to let your dreams confine you to one “perfect” road.
Also consider how your skills work together. Careers are rarely made out of a single skill. A cook needs to work well with food, of course, but they also need time management skills, some degree of people skills, and the ability to function under pressure. If you have one but not the others, you may run into problems down the line. Identify at least one skill you’re already good at, one that you’re doing fine at, and one you’re terrible at. Really hone your strongest skill while also working on the middling one and see if you can improve the terrible one at all. Take all your skills into consideration when deciding on your possible paths.
The major you chose should be matched to a career you’re hoping to pursue later. It doesn’t have to be a big money-maker, but if you do chose a path that is artistic or in any way unpredictable in earnings, make sure you have a plan for a day job. Your passion will just suffer if you don’t have some kind of financial security. And even if your target career is fairly stable, make sure you have at least one back-up plan. Life is unpredictable, and if you’re only prepared for one path, losing it will hurt more than if you can switch tracks. Have a plan, but make sure you also have options.
2. Share one “crossroads” story where you had to make a tough choice in the past and now you feel like you made the wrong one, like your life would be a lot better if you made the other choice.
This is a really tough one. I’m prone to regrets, but most of the things I regret come from choices where either I did not make them fully conscious of what I was choosing or I was not in full control of the choice. To be honest, I’m not really sure how many of my conscious choices could have changed the quality of my life for the better.
However, if I had to pick a tough choice I wish I could redo, one of the big ones would be not to asking my grandmother about our family history before she died. It’s not like she died young or suddenly. As she neared 90, I knew any year might be the one I lost her. Yet even though recording a prose version of our family history has been a dream of mine since childhood, I kept putting off asking her about it. She knew so many stories, and while I remember snippets from the many she told, I never made notes about the details or asked her for an organized account of either her life or the many people in our family she remembered.
I actually did struggle with the question of whether to bring a notebook and a recording device with me the last time I went to visit her, but I decided at the last minute that there was no need. I kept thinking that if I asked her those questions, I was accepting and thus hastening her eventual death. I don’t regret not questioning her on that last visit, as she was already starting to experience the pain that would lead to her terminal diagnosis. However, I wish I had made the effort before, when she was full of energy and loved to tell her stories late into the night. Now I’ve discovered it’s hard to even connect with many of my extended family members without her, and most don’t remember or don’t want to talk about the past.
3. What would you tell your younger self?
“You’re going to be ok!” That’s really all I can think of. I guess I could tell her to learn more languages while she had extra time, or write down my grandmother’s stories, or be nicer to various family members, but let’s be honest: She’d be weirded out enough by some stranger popping into her life and telling her things without needing any criticism from said stranger. Besides, it’s something that I still struggle with believing, so it would be great if I could help my past self believe it more.
4. If you’re given the chance to watch “a day in the life” of your future self, at what age or on what date would you want to see and why?
I think I’d like to see the day I die. Unless it’s violent or scary; in that case, I want to see my last happy day. I just want to get a sense of the ultimate achievement that I’ll manage, and that seems like the day I’ll know that best. I know what I want to have happen in my life, right up to retirement. But I don’t know if my plans will happen and if I will be satisfied with the results either way. Getting to see myself at the end, hopefully finding some peace, would do a lot to ease my mind.
5. Warm weather or cold weather?
Cold weather. I can appreciate a sunny nap, but cool weather energizes me more and gets my creative juices flowing. Also, with cold weather, if it’s uncomfortable, I can generally add more layers or find some way to heat up. Warm weather usually isn’t too bad, but once it gets toward hot…well, there are only so many layers I can take off.
6. Your favorite foreign cuisine?
I’m bit of a picky eater, so I tend to like a few dishes from a cuisine and not the rest. I really like Thai curry, though. When I’m trying a new restaurant, Thai is the cuisine I feel the most confident that I’ll like. I love teriyaki chicken when it’s done well, but after visiting many teriyaki restaurants, I’ve realized it’s fruitless to expect it to be done well everywhere. I also love pasta, but certain restaurants manage to make pasta that I loathe. I have almost never, however, gone to a Thai restaurant and been unable to find something at least pleasing to eat.
7. Beach trip or city tour?
Depends on the beach or city. I don’t really like the bustle of cities, but they can have some very interesting places within them: museums, libraries, etc. A guided tour of a city might really bore me, unless I’m researching it for a writing project.
Generally, I’d say beach trip, but things can be complicated there. The last time I went to one of my more local beaches, I was horrified to see people snatching creatures from tide pools (despite signs prohibiting it) and poking at dead seagulls. There were a disturbing amount of dead seagulls that trip. However, on a better day, going to the beach is just exhilarating. I don’t sunbathe on beaches. In fact, a cloudy beach is more my style. I just like to walk in the shallows feeling the sand and water slip around my legs and through my water shoes.
8. Describe your fashion style.
Medieval. I love tunics, flared sleeves, and leggings. I used to scheme about making my own leather boots as well as a bow with arrows, though I never quite managed to scrape together the materials. My casual attire can look a bit like something the bandit dragged in, as I’m more interested in comfort than looks. However, when I want to dress up more, I like shawls, long cardigans, and full dresses with flowing skirts. Add a pendant or medallion with some rings or ear cuffs and I feel like a princess.
9. Your favorite line from a book/movie/song?
I always have a hard time picking favorite anything, but some of my favorites include:
- “Well, what if there is no tomorrow? There wasn’t one today!” (Groundhog Day)
- “There are no happy endings, because nothing ends.” (The Last Unicorn)
- “My name is Nao, and I am a time being.” (A Tale for the Time Being, by Ruth Ozeki)
- “‘Cause love’s such an old fashioned word
And love dares you to care for
The people on the edge of the night.” (“Under Pressure,” by Queen)
10. Did your childhood expectations meet your current reality?
Not exactly. When I was really young, I thought I wanted to be a field paleontologist because I love dinosaurs. I have since realized that’s not a good match for me because I hate camping and don’t like hot, dry places, which is where most of the best-preserved fossils can be found. I also wanted to be a “storyteller” at age seven. I thought in terms of oral storytelling at the time, but I later realized that isn’t really a thing in our modern culture anymore. I was around eleven when I shifted my focus to creative writing. I’m still working on that, although I think my child self would be annoyed that I haven’t published any books yet. Well, maybe someday soon, kiddo.
11. What’s your Briggs-Myers personality type?
INFJ. All my scores came back as “moderate,” although the Introvert score was at 56% and iNtuitive was at 50%. Feeling and Judging were pretty close to center. That’s typical for me. I often test toward the center rather than toward any extreme.
My questions for you:
- How do you like your eggs? If you’re allergic or don’t like eggs, what style of egg most repulses you?
- What is your opinion of squirrels?
- If you come to a fork in the road, what do you do?
- Are you afraid of the dark?
- What is the dark?
- Which of these is the most magical: snow, mist, or rain?
- If you went on a magical quest and got to pick a companion, would you rather have a human, a supernatural being, an animal, or a machine?
- Name a book, movie, or other story that you think more people should know about.
- If you could create a new blogging tool, what would it be?
- Have you ever seen one of the following: a solar or lunar eclipse, Northern or Southern Lights, the Milky Way, or a meteor shower?
- If someone offered you immortality, would you take it?