November 22, 2014

Guest post: Ron Jayes

Today's guest post is written by Ron Jayes, author of A Disturbance in Time?.

Ron suffers from Ataxia which affects his balance and co-ordination which means he can only type with one finger. He is here to talk about his disease, and how that's (not) an issue with his writing. His book is being published by Book Guild this month.

Writing with Ataxia

Ataxia is one of those weird conditions; even the effects cannot be fully explained, but it arrived with me slowly when I was around the age of 40. A very easy way of (partly) explaining it is: While walking, my feet will only rarely land on the exact spot my brain tells them to, therefore the brain will attempt to compensate – but how much? In which direction? For how much pressure? So the brain very often gets it wrong too. Walking would normally be in an automatic mode, but I have to concentrate… Also, one of the many side-effects is that much of my memory of my younger life has randomly disappeared and co-ordination is a thing of the past.

Now that’s done with, I’ll talk about my writing. Many years ago I read the classic ‘The Time Machine’ by H. G. Wells and sometime later the early James Herbert books, (‘The Rats’ and other gory stuff), I became hooked and thought, ‘I can do that.’ But I was busy and unfortunately it became ‘mañana thing,’ then the Ataxia arrived – forcing a stop to my work, (at the time I was a photographer) and suddenly my ‘tomorrow’ came! I tried other work before accepting early retirement. While typing from a seated position (!) it took a long time to write a book with a one fingered style of typing (the co-ordination required in typing was almost immediate lost), to explain: My left hand forefinger clicks all the digits – except one – my right hand forefinger hovers over the capitalization button, ready to pounce at a moment’s notice, like a coiled spring!
My book “A Disturbance in Time” spilled out of me at an exciting rate and hopefully gives a new slant on time travel, without it being the main subject of the book. The main subject is Elizabeth and how her fate twists and unravels in an entirely unexpected way. 
About the book

In this disturbing, exhilarating debut novel, three apparently unconnected events and places are all mysteriously bound up across time and space…

In 1668, in an isolated community in the wilds of Exmoor, a poor peasant family is terrorized by a crazed witchfinder. More than three-hundred years later, the crew of HMS Leopard welcome on board two distraught young girls, the survivors of a shipwreck off the coast of East Africa.

And at the beginning of the new millennium three geeky lads build an experimental computer, ending up with much more than they bargained for.

Part fantasy, part thriller, this is a powerful novel that asks profound questions about the nature of destiny and responsibility, power and love.



About the author
Ron Jayes’ varied career includes engineering, engraving and photography, but his love has always been writing. A few years ago he had to accept part-time work and then early retirement, due to Ataxia, which is a progressive illness. This new found freedom helped him to produce his first book, A Disturbance in Time? Ron, who was born in Leicester, now lives in East Riding, Yorkshire. 
 

November 20, 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week

This is a meme hosted by Leah at Uncorked Thoughts. The aim of this meme is to share with fellow bloggers a character, spell, chapter, object or quote from the books/films/J. K. Rowling herself or anything Potter related!

Free week: Spell I'd use most often

I would hex people left and right, especially if they annoyed the hell out of me. I can just see myself in trouble at school because I adopted some of fake-Moody's "educational techniques". But you can't deny Malfoy had it coming so...

Petrificus Totalus


I get sick of people easily, especially when they are loud and obnoxious and pushy and annoying and get on people's nerves. You see such dumbasses on daily basis in school, on public transport... you name it. And I would just love to make them stop, be quiet and still for a moment. Get some peace and quiet. I'd do it in class, on the bus, in the library... whenever. Even when having a meal, some people are just really inconsiderate. I'd even use it on my brother and his mates when they come over and are loud at 1 am. 
It's a wordy sucker but I'd get a hang of it. If not, Stupefy would do but I'd rather people suffer in not being able to move and know it.

The Full Body-Bind Curse, also known as the Body Freezing Spell (Petrificus Totalus) is a curse that paralyses the opponent. It is often used by inexperienced or young wizards in duelling. This curse can be found in Curses and Counter-Curses by Vindictus Viridian.

The victim's arms and legs snap together, and he/she will fall down, stiff as a board. However the person's skills to hear, see (however just straight forward), feel, and think still work properly.
The Full Body-Bind Curse is fundamentally different from petrification, which is highly advanced Dark Magic and which cannot be reversed by a simple counter-curse.

Sources: gif - text

November 19, 2014

Odlomek: Strah za metulje v nevihti [SI]

Strah za metulje v nevihti - Feri Lainšček

Na kratko
Leta 1972 postane vojašnica v predmestju Beograda za nabornika Marka Hribernika in gimnazijko Ljiljano – vsem pričakovanjem navkljub – prizorišče tiste vrste globoke ljubezni, ki jo je posamezniku dano doživeti le enkrat v življenju. Toda preplet človeških slabosti in muhavost usode grobo zarežeta v zgodbo mladega para, kar v Marku pusti neizbrisen občutek nedovršenosti. Ta v njem vztraja, vse dokler dvajset let pozneje, med desetdnevno vojno med Jugoslovansko armado in slovensko vojsko, ne prestreže poročila o smrti mladega vojaka z nenavadno znanima imenom in priimkom … Strah za metulje v nevihti je roman, kjer se avtor podobno kot v romanih Ločil bom peno od valov in Muriša z jezikovnim slogom prepričljivo približa duhu časa, ki ga opisuje. Predvsem pa v vsakem od delov trilogije ne pove zgolj zgodbe o izkušnji ljubezni, temveč o človeški naravi nasploh.

ODLOMEK

Ljubil sem Ljiljano to poletje, joj, kako sem jo ljubil!
Z besedami se tega ni dalo povedati, ne s pesmijo, molitvijo ali kletvijo, še manj z romanom, ki ga takrat seveda ne bi znal niti napisati. Bilo je to, kar sem čutil ob njej, povsod v meni in me je celega prežemalo. Obhajalo me je, grelo in opijanjalo, tako da sem se moral kdaj ščipati. A tudi to ni zares pomagalo. Dogajalo se je z mano nekaj, česar nisem še doživel in nisem imel s čim primerjati. Bilo je, se mi je zdelo, iz take snovi kot sanje in ni se dalo zmeraj kar tako prebuditi v resničnosti. Bolj je zaleglo, ko sem začel verjeti, da sem poslej dojemljiv za razumevanje sveta v nekaki četrti dimenziji, o kateri vsi ti pritlehni ljudje okoli mene, razen seveda Ljilje, niso imeli pojma.
Ljubil sem jo torej brezmejno.
A kako je tudi ne bi?
Bilo je dekle iz deških sanj, za kakršne doslej nisem verjel, da v resnici obstajajo. Še manj sem lahko upal, da me bo, če jo bom kdaj po kakem čudežnem naključju vendarle srečal, sploh pogledala. Ona pa je kar stala tam na tistem zlizanem stopnišču stare zemunske gimnazije in me je gledala, gledala, gledala in me je za čuda gledala, gledala, gledala tudi še, ko me je že spreletaval srh. Doumeval sem, da je prav ona tista, ki je običajno v življenju nikoli ne srečaš, če pa ti že prekriža pot, je edino odrešujoče, da se čim prej obrneš vstran in si niti slučajno ničesar ne obetaš. Vlekel sem glavo med ramena in se s podrsavajočimi koraki vzpenjal proti vhodnim vratom, ki so bila, hvala bogu, na stežaj odprta. Bil sem z vsako pohojeno stopnico vse bolj mimo nje in torej tudi iz območja, kjer bi me lahko kako prazno upanje še premamilo, a povsem vstran se kljub vsej krčevitosti nisem zmogel več obrniti.
Še zmeraj je stala tam in me gledala, gledala, gledala.
Njene velike oči so bile modre, kot je bilo v tistih dneh vedro nebo nad sremskimi ravnicami in Fruško goro. Toda tukajšnje široko nebo, najsi je bilo še tako čisto, je bilo le osončena nebeška praznina, njene oči pa so bile polne veliko bolj skrivnostne lepote. Kako, za božjo voljo, sem si na tihem pravil, lahko vidiš v teh očeh nekaj, kar zagotovo ni tebi namenjeno? Kaj natanko je bilo to, kar me je begalo, pa si seveda tudi še nisem znal pojasniti. Zdelo se mi je, da je lahko tak le srčni smeh. Ali morda povsem nedolžno otroško veselje. Toda pod gladino njenih iskrih oči se je potem zganilo še nekaj, kar me je dokončno zmedlo in zaustavilo. Zaželela si je, da ne bi šel mimo, se najverjetneje celo ustrašila, da se ji bom izmuznil, me je na lepem prešinilo...
»Zdravo,« sem torej rekel.  »Mi lahko pomagaš?« sem v en dah tudi vprašal. »Do tovariša ravnatelja moram.«
»Kaj pa,« je pritrdila. »Starega pač na tej šoli ni težko najti,« se je  namrdnila. »Je zmeraj in povsod tam, kjer ne bi smel biti.«
»Ne vem, če razumem,« sem kar priznal.
»Saj ni kaj razumeti,« se je nasmehnila. »Domišlja si, da je tu njegov dom pa ima lahko vse pod nadzorom,« mi je pojasnila.
»Ah, to,« sem nekako na pol prikimal.
»To, to,« je povzdignila glas. »Ampak nima,« je zmignila. »Bogme, da nima,« se je posmehnila. »Naj mu pes mater!«
»Naj mu pes mater?« sem zamrmral in obmolknil.
Tega pač nisem pričakoval iz njenih ust in učinkovalo je nadvse neobičajno. Bil sem že dobra dva meseca tu in tudi najhujše vojaške kvante mi niso več mogle do živega, ta pa me je zdaj kar zasačila. Ni bilo videti, da bi ga res sovražila in ni bilo slišati, da bi mu to res želela, pa vendar je bil cenjeni tovariš, h kateremu me je poslal zastavnik, da bi se dogovoril za sodelovanje dijakov na kasarniških prireditvah, zame odslej pokveka.
»Uf,« je kar pihnila. »Oprosti,« se je raznežila. »Res sem koza,« se je karajoč se skesala. »Lahko bi pomislila, da si mogoče prišel sem iz krajev, kjer ženske ne prdnejo.«
»Ne, ne,« sem ves odkimal.
»Kaj – ne?« je smeje vprašala.
»Pravzaprav ja,« sem takoj tudi obrnil.
»Kaj – ja?« se je še bolj smejala.
»Saj veš,« sem še iztisnil in zopet potihnil.
Doumel sem, da je pravzaprav le prepolna radoživosti in navdiha, ki mu sam takrat nisem bil dorasel, zato sem se moral umakniti. No, zapravil sem s tem, hvala bogu, le prvo priložnost in moja olesenelost ni bila usodna. Saj že tedaj, v tistih naslednjih, kratkih, res bliskovitih trenutkih, ko sem se vzpenjal za njo po notranjih stopnicah do ravnateljeve pisarne, sem bil še bolj prepričan, da grem za dekletom, ki me neubranljivo zasvaja.
Resnično, bilo je na njej nekaj čarobnega.   
Bila je iz drugega sveta in očitno tudi iz drugačnega testa.
Njeni bežeči koraki, s katerimi se je poganjala navzgor in vmes  preskakovala tudi po dve stopnici, so izpod rožnatega krila izrisovali take noge in ritnici, da bi z njimi zlahka prišla na naslovnice vseh moških revij tega sveta. A saj tja bi gotovo lahko prišla tudi zaradi ozkega, ribjega hrbta, dvignjenih ramen in res polnih prsi. Obenem pa pri vseh njenih čarih najverjetneje sploh ni šlo za to. Skrivnost je bila v nekem posebnem skladu, ali pač nečem, kar jo je napravilo res samosvojo. Kaj natanko je to bilo, takrat seveda še nisem uspel zgruntati. Zvrstilo se je vse to pred menoj z naglico, ki me je zopet puščala ob strani. Počutil sem se kot polž ob splošnem umikanju na Noetovo barko. Vendar sem preživel, tako kot so navsezadnje tudi polži preživeli vesoljni potop.
Ostal sem že naslednji hip sam pred vrati ravnateljeve pisarne, si dolgo popravljal uniformo in se skušal spomniti, kaj vse mi je predpostavljeni pravzaprav naročil. Čeprav sem še malo prej prihajal s strahom in se mi je zdelo povsem neodgovorno, da je tako pomembno nalogo prepustil navadnemu vojaku, sem bil zdaj za čuda prepričan, da tokrat ne bom zamočil. Bil sem odslej nekdo, ki ga je Ljiljana opazila, tovariš tu notri pa je bil zgolj stremuh, ki se mu je ptič podelal na glavo.
O avtorju
Franc ( Feri) Lainšček,  slovenski pisatelj, rojen 1959 v Dolencih v Prekmurju, končal gimnazijo v Murski Soboti, od leta 1983 imel status samostojnega umetnika, od leta 2007 zaposlen kot urednik pri založbi Franc-Franc v Murski Soboti, živi v Murski Soboti, Grajska ulica 16. Avtor številnih literarnih del, bibliografija njegovih samostojnih monografskih izdaj obsega že več kot 100 naslovov. Po njegovih romanih je bilo doslej posnetih 5 celovečernih filmov, med njimi tudi za film Petelinji zajtrk, ki je najbolj gledan domači film v samostojni Sloveniji. Trenutno nastaja celovečerni igrani film po njegovem romanu Nedotakljivi.


November 18, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Sequels I Can't Wait To Get

I think we already had this theme once before but one can never have too many sequels so of course I have another ten! As previously declared, I think sequels should actually be just book two in whatever-long series (hence the name) but as I have some other # as well I'll just use this week as 'waiting for the next book in series' and post accordingly. Some may already be out, some are not. Point is, I have
none of these and I want them all!


This weekly meme is from The Broke and the Bookish.

November 13, 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week

This is a meme hosted by Leah at Uncorked Thoughts. The aim of this meme is to share with fellow bloggers a character, spell, chapter, object or quote from the books/films/J. K. Rowling herself or anything Potter related!

Which Weasley character would you be?

Ugh! All of them? Or rather, a future missus Weasley. *wink wink*
Not really sure, I love the Weasleys, all of them, even Percy to a point, and would love to be part of that family. They're all pretty kickass and fearless, starting with the parents and going down the line through Bill and Charlie, then sort of skipping in an awkward tumble over Percy but coming back full force for the last four kids. I love them all for different reasons, but if I got to be just one, I'd probably pick

Ginny


I'd wanna be a female, a kickass one at that, and one that has 6 brothers to protect her. She was a great character, a hero, and a strong and amazing woman that was a great example for many. I really liked her in the books and would love to see/hear more of her. I am also a tomboy, no-sappy-crap-allowed kind of gal who'd hex you for any small reason, so definitely Ginny!
Not that being a twin would be boring. Mischief ftw!

Ginevra Molly "Ginny" Potter (née Weasley) was a pure-blood witch, the youngest of Arthur and Molly Weasley's (née Prewett) seven children, and the first female to be born into the Weasley line for several generations. She attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from 1992 to 1999 and was sorted into Gryffindor house. During her first year, she came under the influence of the memory of Tom Riddle's sixteen-year-old self, preserved in a diary, and was forced to re-open the Chamber of Secrets, endangering the lives of many students, including herself.

Following that ordeal, Ginny grew into a confident young woman, becoming an important member of Dumbledore's Army, an organisation taught and led by Harry Potter. She would later fight in the Battle of the Department of Mysteries in 1996, the Battle of the Astronomy Tower in 1997, and the Battle of Hogwarts in 1998. She was also an accomplished Quidditch player, playing Chaser and Seeker at different times for the Gryffindor House team.

After the Second Wizarding War she became a professional Quidditch player for the Holyhead Harpies. Upon retiring from the Harpies, Ginny became the senior Quidditch correspondent for the Daily Prophet. She married Harry Potter at some point in the early 2000s, and they had three children; James Sirius, Albus Severus, and Lily Luna Potter.

Sources: gif - text

November 11, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Characters You Wish Would Get Their OWN Book

HARRY POTTER EDITION

1. Hermione Granger
I'd love to read about her wit and such, she'd be like a female Sherlock Holmes of the witching world. We'd read about her absolute kickassery when she'd solve crimes, reveal mysteries, maybe do some inventions in the mean time to 'clear the head'. 

2. Neville Longbottom
The other 'chosen one' who had a struggling life as well. I want to know more of him. His family history, how he grew up, what was going through his mind while Harry and his friends were famous, and what he felt when he became part of the gang. Maybe what would happen if he were the chosen one instead!

3. Fred and George Weasley
That'd be some class A hilarity! I loved these two characters and would definitely read about them, their inventions, their rise in the joke shop game, basically behind the scenes story. They had to be pretty smart to get where they were, they just never showed it, so I'd want to see that hidden part of them.

4. Ginny Weasley
The only Weasley girl who was such a great female character in the books. Even though she was nearly always present, always great and everything, we don't know that much about her. She was always on the margins so having her in the spotlight would be fantastic.

5. Lord Voldemort
I love books with villain POV! It's a great change of pace, and you always get to see more of them than just the black vs white in villain vs hero mold. I want to see his start, learn what happened, how it turned and why. Those flashbacks from HBP were great but very limited as they were just the memories of bystanders. I want the accounts in first person, that'd be fascinating!

6. Albus Dumbledore
Obviously. We know next to nothing about Dumbledore, and even what we do is from Rita Skeeter's book which is about as legit as Wikipedia. I want everything about him. He was like a million when he died so he lived a long and full life, he saw so many things, did so much more even, and I want to know about it! Most of all I want to know why he was so mysterious and if those scandals in which he was involved were true at all.

7. Severus Snape
I want to believe he was a great person, but his petty actions against Harry are making that very hard. I just cannot forgive him for being so childish. I know he had a shitty life but that is no excuse. Still, I want to know about it.

8. Marauders
I want a book about the era before Harry. About his parents and their friends, about the rise of Voldemort and the original Order. I want a whole series of books on that topic because they would be just as amazing as Harry's were.

9. Draco Malfoy
The boy who I will forever believe could have been a good one. I always felt he was a nasty little fudger but inside, deep down he wanted to be good and kind and accepted. He just never had a chance. I would love to read the seven books from his tortured POV.

10. Bellatrix Lestrange
That level of crazy is bound to be friggin entertaining. I want to know about her growing up, turning so very sour, becoming who she was in the books. She had to be a very charming evil genius and I want to see that!

This weekly meme is from The Broke and the Bookish.

November 6, 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week

This is a meme hosted by Leah at Uncorked Thoughts. The aim of this meme is to share with fellow bloggers a character, spell, chapter, object or quote from the books/films/J. K. Rowling herself or anything Potter related!

Best 'Luna Moment'

I always found Luna too whacky for my taste as I much prefer a bit of order and sanity. I think I was judging her like Hermione did, and then warmed up to her just as Hermione did. She had some seriously weird moment like fruit for earrings, walking around barefoot because she was too polite to demand her things back... I mean I'd go ballistic, but then again I glare around a lot so I dare anyone to steal anything. I did however find her amazing one time when she proved her worth (she did that many times but one moment stayed in my memory vividly).

The Riddle at Ravenclaw tower


In the last book, when Luna helps Harry get into Ravenclaw tower that is guarded by riddles, she just owns that door like it's nothing. I mean half the riddles (okay, most) in the series were completely too hard for me, even now that I reread the books. The one from the sphinx is one I can finally solve, but that's pretty much it. So Luna proving being really smart despite all her oddities just warmed my heart. At that moment, she's powerful and I loved it, even though the riddle seemed easy. I wonder what crap I'd come up with in the middle of the night when a door would quiz me. 

Question: "Which came first, the phoenix, or the flame?" 
Answer: "A circle has no beginning.