The Doctor And Thales – Part 1

Being a huge Whovian, I look for lots of way to sneak Doctor Who into my writing and daily life. I was handed a golden opportunity when, for the philosophy curriculum we were using, I was supposed to write a story using the philosopher we were currently studying. What better way to sneak the Doctor into a story! So, take a trip in the TARDIS with the Eleventh Doctor and my OC, Arley (also a Time Lord), to meet Thales, an ancient Greek philosopher!

“So, where are we going this time?” I asked, jumping up onto the platform where the controls of the TARDIS were. Amy and Rory were gone for a week, leaving just the Doctor and me.

“Two Time Lords, one TARDIS, and all of time and space,” the Doctor flicked a lever. “Where do you want to go? The future, the past?”

“The past,” I told him, pressing one of the blue buttons he’d forgotten. “Let’s go somewhere ancient.”

“You want ancient? How about the beginning of Carsus?” The Doctor’s hand was on the lever.

“Naaaa…too ancient,” I told him. “How about…” I looked down at a book Amy had left on the floor of the TARDIS. “Rome?”

“Wibbly, wobbly, timey, wimey. The timeline is way to wibbly. Pompeii with Donna…you remember? And you know…Rory the Roman?”

I had to admit he was right. “Fine. Greece?”

“Greece it is! There’s a lovely solar eclipse in 585!” He yanked the lever. The TARDIS groaned and shook.

“Did you forget the stabilizers again?” I hollered.

“Who are you, River Song? Of course I didn’t!” he shouted back.

I found the blue stabilizers and pressed them down. The TARDIS was instantly quiet.

“See? I told you I didn’t forget the stabilizers!” he said, tapping my nose as he walked by.

I rolled my eyes, not bothering to mention it’d been me who’d turned them on.

“I’ve a friend in ancient Greece you know. His name’s Thales! Great guy, a little distracted.” The Doctor skipped down the steps and under the platform of the TARDIS.

I sat on the edge and watched him. “Thales? Isn’t he the Greek guy who said ‘Know thyself’ or something like that?”

“Yes, he did. Well, actually I said that, and he shamelessly stole it,” he assured me. The TARDIS suddenly jolted to a halt. “There’s your beautiful Greece! Lovely view. Parked the TARDIS right by the Halys River.”

I skipped over to the door, opened it, expecting lovely river views. Instead, I got a battlefield. I slammed the TARDIS door shut just as a large spear went splintering into the side.

The Doctor looked up. “I wasn’t expecting that.”

I moved out of the way. “You landed us in the middle of a war!”

“Sorry ‘bout that. We should be off in a min- ”

Just then the doors opened again, and in stumbled a man. He tripped over the door frame and papers went everywhere, causing me to jump backwards.

The Doctor looked down. “Hello, there, Thales, my old friend!”

Thales looked up. Splinters of blue wood were stuck in his large curly beard. “Doctor?”

Part 2 is next week. Thanks for reading!

~ Kayla

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An Interesting Word – Pyrrhichios

Imagine this: It’s Ancient Greece and you’re at a festival. Two figures come out of the crowd, and the crowd forms a circle around them. The two men draw knives and begin to circle each other, blades clashing as they dance and spar with one another. Suddenly, you see one of the figures stab at the other, and he falls to the ground, blood pouring out of his wound. You gasp in shock, as you see the other fighter dance around his fallen enemy’s body. The other fighter looks down, and as if realizing what he’s done, all the joy drains out of the man’s face. He drops to his knees and holds the dagger above his chest, about to plunge it in. You are pushed forward along with the rest of the crowd, as they try to get to the man, hoping to prevent him from killing himself. As you are shoved closer and closer to the center of the circle, the laughing and the shouts begin to ring out. “It’s fake! It was just a show!” You didn’t realize it at the time, but you just witnessed a pyrrhichios.

A pyrrhichios is a Greek war dance. It’s thought to have originated from the days of the Trojan war when Achilles first saw the body of his dead friend Patroclus. Achilles expressed his grief through this intense dance. There’s also the belief that the dance could have come from Pyrrhus, Achilles’s son, who danced it around the funeral pyre of his enemy Eurypylus. The pyrrhichios were popular with the Spartans who taught this dance to their children at a very young age as light war training. My story of the dance is based on a description from Xenophon, a Greek historian, who tells of a pyrrhichios in his work Anabasis.

I managed to find a video of someone performing this dance. It’s very cool!

Thanks for reading!

~ Kayla

Fan Art

You all know how much I love to write fanfiction. I’ve posted a few of my fanfictions for Owl City, Doctor Who, and The Hobbit on my blog. Well, I also enjoy drawing my favorite characters! Today I’m sharing a few of my fan drawings!

This is the Eleventh Doctor played by Matt Smith from the episode A Nightmare in Silver. In this episode, the Doctor is in the process of being turned into a Cyberman, a human in a robotic suit with no emotions. I loved the way he looked with all the wires on his face and his creepy cyberman grin, so I drew it!

Nightmare in Silver version of the Eleventh Doctor

A Nightmare in Silver version of the Eleventh Doctor

This is Rose Tyler as the Bad Wolf/The Moment from The Day of the Doctor, Doctor Who’s 50th anniversary special. Rose is one of my favorite companions, and I loved her as the Bad Wolf.

Bad Wolf girl

Bad Wolf girl

So, maybe I’m a little older than the intended audience for Disney’s Frozen, but hey, I like the music, and Elsa is pretty awesome. I love drawing her and her sister, Anna, so I did matching drawings of them.

20150118_213047

Anna

Elsa

Elsa

I mentioned a few months ago that I read The Hunger Games books and watched the movies for the first time. For my first Hunger Games fan drawing, I wanted to do a cartoon version of Effie. I never get to use bright colors like she wears or draw in that heavy of makeup, so this was really fun to color in!

Effie Trinket

Effie Trinket

My very favorite character from The Hunger Games is Finnick Odair. He’s a complicated character, and through most of the books, I just wanted to make everything better for him! I’m still not over the ending. Anyway, here’s my drawing of him from Catching Fire!

Finnick Odair

Finnick Odair

This isn’t actually a drawing. However, this was too cute not to share. I made my own baby Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy. I saw the movie and loved it, especially baby Groot dancing at the end. I knew I needed to have my own baby Groot for my desk, so I made my own out of polymer clay. 🙂

Baby Groot

Baby Groot

Do you do fanart or write fanfiction? Who are your favorite characters? Comment below and let me know!

Thanks for reading!

~ Kayla

Quote of the Week

This quote comes from Evan Hunter (Ed McBain), author of King’s Ransom. I’m working on revising Snow, and it’s not easy! I’d rather write a rough draft than edit any day! However, I know editing and revising is something that has to be done, so even though it’s not my favorite, I still try to work on it.

“The only true creative aspect of writing is the first draft. That’s when it’s coming straight from your head and your heart, a direct tapping of the unconscious. The rest is donkey work. It is, however, donkey work that needs to be done.” – Evan Hunter

~ Kayla

Four Tips For Fanfiction Character Writing

By now, all of my readers are well aware of my love of writing fanfiction. Not only is it really fun to explore and expand on someone else’s world, it also gives me the opportunity to try writing as characters and personalities I wouldn’t normally write. However, sometimes it’s not always easy to get the original characters sounding like themselves. So, today I’m sharing four tips of what I do to stay in character while writing fanfiction.

1. Actor Interviews

Actor interviews are great when trying to get inside a character’s head. They have literally been that character for months at a time, and they can often offer some great insights into how their characters think and act. Also, a lot of actors have great backstories they’ve made up about their characters that can give some ideas for future fanfictions.

2. Rewatching scenes/Rereading book lines

Whenever I start “losing my grip” on a character, I always rewatch a scene with them in it or reread their lines in the book. That helps to remind me how they talk and the gestures they make so that my fanfiction is more authentic. I do this a ton while writing Doctor Who fanfiction. The Doctor’s a complicated character and watching a clip of the show always helps me to refocus on who he is as a character and get the little quirks that make the Doctor the Doctor.

3. Use their actual lines as much as possible

Sometimes, it’s not easy to get a character sounding like themselves. I try to use the actual lines the character has spoken as much as possible. I try to be careful when I do this so that the lines aren’t awkwardly forced into a scene which never sounds good! However, if it fits in naturally, then I add it in. I wrote a Psych/Doctor Who crossover fanfiction, and to make Gus sound more like Gus, I included a bunch of his actual lines from the show. It really gave Gus his trademark sound and made it easier to recognize him as Gus.

4. Practice, practice, practice

Whenever I first start to write fanfiction for a series, the characters never sound exactly like themselves the first time around. It takes a lot of writing to finally get them to the point where they sound recognizable. So, even when I don’t get it right the first go-round, I know that with a bit more practice, the character will eventually get there!

Do you write fanfiction? If so, what do you do to make the characters sound authentic? Let me know in the comments below! 🙂

Thanks for reading!

~ Kayla

Weekly Writing Wrap-Up: January 2 – 8

Welcome to my Weekly Writing Wrap-Up for this week.

Total Word Count for the Week: 5,026

Top Writing Day: My top writing day was Wednesday with 1,059 words.

What I Worked On: I worked on Hunger Games fanfiction, my novel, and editing Snow.

The Good News: I did edit chapter 8 of Snow this week!

The Bad News: But I didn’t edit the entire chapter.

Lesson Learned: I was rereading chapter 7 of Snow to remember where I left off, and I was surprisingly pleased with it. I remember not being too sure of the scene I added in, but I think it sounds okay now. So, my lesson learned is that some time away from a project can be good as it really gave me a new perspective on the scene.

Goal for Next Week: My goal is to finish editing this chapter of Snow!

If you’d like to share your weekly wrap-up, go ahead and post it in the comments below!

~ Kayla

Monthly Link Share – Cliches and Chapter Breaks

Welcome to January’s Monthly Link Share. Today I’m going to be sharing links that have helped me this past month. 🙂

From when to use clichés to how to turn them on their head, this article is really interesting and helpful in dealing with clichés in your writing.

https://lisavoisin.wordpress.com/2013/08/29/fiction-friday-ya-authors-speak-out-about-cliches/

Since I never divide my rough draft into chapters, a question I have to answer when I go back and edit is where to put the chapter breaks. This article gives some great advice as to where those breaks should be!

http://www.writersdigest.com/writing-articles/by-writing-goal/complete-first-draft/3-ways-to-know-when-to-end-your-chapters?et_mid=466821&rid=2960426

This article gives 25 tips that are relatively quick and easy to help improve your writing. Number 15 has some great ideas that I’d like to try next time I’m stuck.

http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/25-ways-to-improve-your-writing-in-30-minutes-a-day

I love movie soundtracks, and one day, when I was looking a song from Pirates of the Caribbean, I came across Taylor Davis’s cover of it. It turns out she is a violinist who does covers of movie, TV, and video game soundtracks, and I recognized a lot of my favorite songs from the Legend of Zelda, Doctor Who, The Hobbit, and the Hunger Games. If you haven’t seen any of her videos, check her out! 😀

Thanks for reading and clicking! 😉

~ Kayla

The Silence – Part 5

This is the final part of my Doctor Who fanfiction about the Silence. Last week, Karen discovered it was the Silence that was following her, and Amy Pond told her to find the Doctor.

I turn back to the diary, my hands shaking. I take one more look around the room and, reassured for the moment that I am alone, search the few pages left for an answer.

The next thing I remember, I was walking back to my house with Anthony. The afternoon had been such a blur. I remember eating a muffin, saying good-bye to Mrs. Williams, and now I was here. Still, I felt like I was forgetting something. We arrived at my house, and Anthony gave me a smile and a wave, before turning to walk home.

“See you tomorrow,” I called.

“Bye!” Anthony called back as he rounded the corner.

Digging my door key out of my pocket, my fingers brushed a scrap of paper. I pulled the paper out and unfolded it. There were black marks all over the page and three simple words, “Find the Doctor.”

Suddenly, everything I’d forgotten came flooding back. Huddling on the floor with the Silence surrounding us in Anthony’s apartment, Mrs. William’s instructions, and my absolute terror. I unlocked the door and pushed it open, eager to get inside, though it wasn’t like the Silence couldn’t be in there, too.

I rushed into the living room, calling my parents. “Mother! Father?” I gripped the note in my hand and shouted for them again, but the only response was the echoing of my own voice. There was no sign of my parents, in fact, it was just like I’d left it this morning. Where are they? They’re usually home at this time.

Unsure of what to do, I unfolded the note again and smoothed the paper, rereading it, looking for direction. “Doctor who?” I asked out loud. “How am I supposed to find him? Who knows how many doctors there are in New York?”

I looked up, catching sight of my reflection in the mirror and covered my mouth with my hand, a scream stuck in my throat. Tally marks covered every inch of my face. The Silence were here. I didn’t know what to do. Escape? Run? No, they’d just track me down again. What I needed to do was to remember. Mrs. Williams said they’d erase my memory of them. I’d write it all down. That way I couldn’t forget. I raced out of the living room and dashed up the stairs to my room. And that is where I am now. Writing down what happened to me. I don’t want to forget.

That’s where it ended. I look over the faded page. The rest of the page is filled with tally marks, once black but now turned grey with age. There has to be more. There has to be help. How did Karen escape? Desperately, I turn the page, and in my haste I rip it out of the book. Holding it up, scrawled across the page in big, black letters it says,

FIND THE DOCTOR. REMEMBER.

That can’t be it! That can’t be all there is! I pick up the diary again, clawing through the pages. What did I miss?! There has to be an answer! There has to be a way out. The pages bend back, revealing one more page in the diary. My fingers tremble as I yank it free from the binding.

THEY ARE HERE.

Tally marks make the page almost black, they’re so many of them.

“NO!” I shriek. My heart feels like it stops beating for a moment as I realize what that means. Karen never got free. Karen couldn’t escape. “NO!” I stand up, burying my face in my hands. There’s no way out. I’m trapped. I stand, facing the window, trying to collect my panicked thoughts enough to think of a plan.

My eyes catch sight of something moving behind me. I spin around, and there are the Silence. I don’t know how many. They stare at me with their hollow eyes sunk into their long gray faces. The Silence in front of me tilts his head as he raises a three fingered hand.

In that moment I remember my mom. Where was she? Why wasn’t she downstairs? Had they killed her? Trembling, I take a wobbly step backwards, trying to get away from the monsters. Poor Karen never had a chance to find the Doctor, and I don’t think I will either. My boots slip on the edge of the rug, and I twist, catching myself on the window sill.

“What was I doing?” I ask out loud. Sitting on the carpet, I rub my wrist that is aching and red. I don’t remember hitting it. I know I was frightened of something, but of what, I couldn’t remember. It was something about my mom, which is funny because she is downstairs, cleaning. I stand up, dusting myself off, turning towards the window. As I do, I catch sight of my face in the window. It’s covered with tally marks. And then I remember.

Thanks for reading!

~ Kayla

Quote of the Week

Today’s quote is from Terri Main, author of Dark Side of the Moon. The quote isn’t so much writing advice as it is humorous. Last night, my family was discussing flu shots. A fairly normal topic this time of year, right? Meanwhile, I was deep in thought about how a government could use a flu shot and control people with it through mini microchips or nanobots. I was half-way through plotting that book by the time dinner was over. So, yes, the “normal” ship has sailed without me on it. 😉

“You are a writer. The ‘normal’ ship sailed without you long ago.” – Terri Main

~ Kayla

The Silence – Part 4

Today I’m posting part 4 of my Doctor Who fanfiction about the Silence. Last week, Karen and Anthony were running away from whatever was following them. This week we find out what is following them and meet Anthony’s parents. I mentioned last week that Anthony is the adopted son of Amy and Rory Pond (Williams), the Eleventh Doctor’s companions. This week, Amy makes a guest appearance in my fanfiction. Those who watch the show know that Amy is typically referred to as Amy or Amelia Pond by the Doctor, but her married name is actually Amy Williams, which is how Karen knows her. 🙂

Our pounding feet on the metal stairs echoed through the apartment building’s hallway. We came to a halt outside Anthony’s front door. Pulling the key from his jean pocket, his fingers fumbled as he inserted the key into the lock and twisted it. We burst through the door and slammed it shut behind us with a loud bang.

“Is that you, Anthony?” called a voice.

“Mom, I’m home, and I brought Karen,” Anthony said as we walked into his warm, bright kitchen filled with the smell of baked muffins that Anthony’s mother was pulling out of the oven.

His mother turned around with a smile. “Karen, it’s always good to see you.” I smiled back despite my anxiety. Mrs. Williams was always so nice and had the prettiest smile and red hair. And I loved her Scottish accent.

“Karen has a question for you,” Anthony explained with an encouraging nod towards me.

I took a deep breath. “I think I’m being followed.”

“In fact, we were followed here, ” Anthony added.

Mrs. Williams stopped filling the muffin tin. “Followed? By whom?”

“I don’t know. There are gaps in my memory that I just don’t understand. I thought there was this shadow following me the other day.” I stopped for a moment, trying to gauge Mrs. Williams’s reaction. She didn’t say anything. “I know you must think I’m crazy,” I started to say.

“I’ve seen some strange things, kid. Trust me. I don’t think you’re crazy.” She leaned against the kitchen counter and pushed her flame colored hair back with her red painted nails.

“Mom, I found this on my hand. I don’t remember how it got here.” Anthony held out his hand towards Mrs. Williams.

What happened next was fuzzy. I remembered turning towards Anthony, about to ask him something, and then the next thing I knew, I was huddled on the kitchen floor with Mrs. Williams beside me and Anthony on the other side.

“What’s happening? Why am I here?” I asked, my head spinning. I looked over at Mrs. Williams and covered my mouth with my hand to keep from screaming. Her face and arms were covered with black lines. “What’s going on? What’s happened to you?”

Mrs. Williams looked down at her arms. “Listen to me, Karen. You haven’t got much time. There’s something out there called the Silence. They’re an alien race that controls humanity. When you look away from them, the memory of your encounter with them is erased. That’s what the gaps in your memory are from. The only way to remember that you’ve seen a Silence is to draw a tally mark on your arm for each one you encounter. They won’t hesitate to kill you if they perceive you as a threat. The only way to escape is to listen to me closely.” Mrs. Williams grabbed my arm. “Find a man called the Doctor. Tell him Amelia Pond sent you. Tell him the Silence are here. And tell him he better rescue us all.”

A scream shatters the stillness of the room. I look up from the diary, my heart pounding. I put the book down on the bed and stand up, the floor creaking slightly. It’s deathly silent in the house, and even though it’s not cold, I have goose bumps on my arms.

“Mom?” I ask, cautiously taking shaky steps down the first two or three stairs, but the only answer is my own voice echoing back. “Mom?” I call, a little louder this time. My answer is a loud banging, and the whistle of the wind. I wrap my arms around myself, climbing down the stairs, forcing my feet to move. The wind bangs the front door against the battered wall, the rain pouring in onto the floor. I slam the door shut and lock it tightly. The rain is running down into my eyes as I turn away from the door. I shut my eyes for a moment, drying my face off with the edge of my shirt. When I open my eyes, I’m not downstairs. My back is against the heavy wooden door to the bedroom, and the diary is open in my hands. “What happened? Where am I?” My head is spinning. I look down at the diary in my hands, and flinch, my heart starting to race again. My hands are covered in tally marks. The Silence. I’d seen Karen’s shadows. They are following me, too. I flip open the diary, the pages making a slight rustle as I turn them. There seems to be only one thing to do. Find out if Karen escaped and how, if possible, I can as well.

Thanks for reading! Part 5 will be up next week.

~ Kayla