Monday, September 24, 2018

Five Things I Learned From Lord of the Rings

You may have noticed the influx of Tolkien appreciation sweeping the internets lately. That’s because September 22nd was Hobbit Day a.k.a Bilbo’s and Frodo’s birthday! And we Tolkienites always look for an excuse to celebrate our beloved author.

Obviously, I couldn’t let this Tolkien-ish time pass without doing some of my own fangirling. I mean, OF COURSE.

There is so, so much I can talk about when it comes to Lord of the Rings and Tolkien in general. Buuuut being the list-lover I am, I thought I’d list five specific things I learned from those beloved books (and movies of course). Because wow, have they made an impact on my life!


Five Things I Learned From
Lord of the Rings


There are No Limits to Your Story

I don’t think Tolkien ever, ever limited himself when it came to his story and world and characters. I mean, Middle-earth has more history than America! Think about it. Then there’s the emotional depth and complexity of every. single. one. of his characters. And that doesn’t even cover the vast plot! Tolkien had a story idea, and he ran and ran and ran with it. And as a result, we have the brilliant classic that is Lord of the Rings.

When I was a younger writer, I limited my stories. I took a concept and didn’t broaden it as far as I could. I got scared or overwhelmed and kept to things that were simple and comfortable. And that’s where I made a mistake. If I forever stayed in my comfort zone, my stories would never reach their full potential.

But whenever I think of Tolkien’s world, and the immense amount of work he put into it, it inspires me. It inspires me to reach farther and vaster and wider. To not stick to the first simplistic, cliché ideas that pop in my head, but to expand them into something big and complex. To really put my whole heart and soul into every story I write.

I still have to remind myself of this whenever I get overwhelmed or scared. But I also have to remember imagination is a glorious gift that we should all use to its greatest potential. Just like Tolkien did.


Small, Ordinary People Can Do Extraordinary Things

If there is any single message that I gleaned from LotR, it’s this.

Most fantasy these days has the “Chosen One”, but, ironically, the very standard of classic fantasy literature really had no such thing. Frodo wasn’t “chosen” to take the Ring to Mordor. He wasn’t forced to be the hero, or obtained magical abilities when he turned 16. No. In fact, Frodo was of the most simplistic, quiet, non-adventurous races in all of Middle-earth. He was a mere hobbit. The least likely person you’d ever think would save the world.

But what happened? Amidst mighty men and ancient elves and stout dwarves and even a powerful wizard, it was a hobbit who volunteered (not forced or prophesied) to take the Ring to Mordor and destroy it. He didn’t look at his size, his background, his lack of powers and fighting skills. He just saw a need and took a stand.

I so very often fall into that lie that I’m worthless and can’t make a difference. But God called all of us to take a stand for what is right. Unfortunately, I did not wake up on my 16th birthday to find a mysterious, wizened mentor at my front door claiming I have magical powers and am prophesied to save the world. But I was called to be a child of God. It’s only a matter of if I’ll be brave like Frodo and stand up for what’s right.

Because if Frodo and Sam, two little, ordinary hobbits, can walk all the way to Mordor, destroy the One Ring, and save literally the entire world, I firmly believe we all can find the strength and courage to fight for what’s right.


Never, Ever Give Up

Speaking of walking alllll the way to Mordor…

Let’s be real, if I had been Frodo or Sam I would have given up probably before we had even left the Shire. Much less gone on to endure eeeeverything that they went through. But they were tempted. I’m sure they were tempted every single day to give it all up. To return back to their comfortable lives in Hobbiton and put all this unpleasantness behind them. To let someone else do the hard work, or just let Sauron win, because defeating him seemed nigh impossible.

But they didn’t stop.

Again, it was their choice. They weren’t being forced to keep going or had some prophesy that said everything would be okay. But they chose to keep going anyway. Why? Because they knew you should always fight for good in the world, and never, ever, ever give up.

There is always darkness in the world. It spreads and spreads and spreads at a rapid pace, and if we stop fighting it for one moment, it will eventually consume everything. I know it feels hopeless sometimes. I know it seems so easy to just give up. But Lord of the Rings would have ended up being a verrrry different story if Frodo and Sam had chosen to let Sauron win. Now that would have been a depressing story, and not exactly the type of characters you’d want to root for.

But they didn’t give up, despite being sorely tempted to many a time. Instead they kept going and, in the end, light triumphed over the darkness, as it always does.

This life of following the Light, of following Jesus, is not an easy one. It’s a long, hard, tiring journey, with many bumps along the way. But we can never stop. Because, in the end, it’s always worth it.

And to continue the amazingness of Frodo and Sam…


We Want Heroes Who Inspire Us

In this day and age of morally gray heroes, I’m often hard pressed to find good, true protagonists who inspire me. More often than not, especially with TV shows and movies, the protagonists just teach me how not to act.

Now, I’m all for complex characters, and you guys know my love for antiheroes and the like. I absolutely am fine with some morally gray characters. I write them all the time myself! And I certainly don’t want a perfect character either. That’s not what I’m talking about. What I mean is, I want protagonists who inspire me. Because with this new obsession with morally gray people, it seems like the truly good ones are dying out. In fact, even the LotR films turned some of the good heroes into jerks. (*cough*Frodo and Faramir*cough*) Because apparently that’s appealing??? Er…no.

Lord of the Rings—at least the real, actual book—is filled to the brim with what I firmly believe “hero/heroine” truly means. We’ve already discussed Frodo and Sam. But what about Aragorn? He wasn’t perfect. He ran from his past and future for a long, long time. But, in the end, he rose to who he was meant to be. Merry and Pippin were also little hobbits like Frodo and Sam who went on to do great things. Eowyn joined the men in battle to fight for her land. Legolas and Gimli got past their prejudices against each other and stood together in the battlefield. Boromir was actually morally gray. He almost let the temptation of the Ring take him over. But he, too, chose to fight for what is right and died in honor.

These people have inspired me since I was 10 years old. They have stuck with me for years and years and years, and will forever be a part of me. And why is that? Because they were heroes. Because the inspire me to do better, to be better. They had their struggles and fallings, absolutely yes, just as any well-written character should. But they still followed the Light. They still taught me deep lessons that have forever changed me. They still inspire me day after day after day.

That is the type of heroes/heroines we need again. Because pretty much everyone loves the LotR cast, right? And I firmly believe that is because they inspire all of us.


Fantasy is EPIC

Lord of the Rings has some amazingly deep, intricate themes. The type of stuff professors fall over themselves for. But you know what else LotR proves? That fantasy is EPIC!

I have always been a fantasy fan. I lived off the Disney animated classics and fairytales and the like when I was young (okay, I still totally do). But it was when I was introduced to Tolkien that I realized just how utterly, spectacularly, insanely cool fantasy really was. I had found my element, and to this day I have not looked back.

Yes, much of what we see in LotR is considered cliché now. But it wasn’t cliché when Tolkien wrote it. He made those clichés! He literally invented so many of the fantasy clichés we have today. Because he wasn’t scared to try something new, and make it totally epic. There’s tiny people who save the world and talking trees and lost kings and majestic elves and an evil overlord whose life source is in a magic ring and dragons and a ridiculously vast world. How is that not cool???

As I mentioned in my first point, I so often limited my stories when I was young. But the most awesome thing about fantasy is there are no limits. You can literally do anything. ANYTHING. Why would we limit ourselves or be afraid? Look what Tolkien did. If he had limited his stories, or even been afraid to get them published, where would we be? I shudder to think! His works have impacted generations.

Fantasy is an amazing, wonderful genre that mirrors so many truths of our world in a new, thoughtful way. Maybe I don’t have to take a powerful ring to a deadly land to save the world. But I do find myself wanting to give up in other hard things. And through Frodo and Sam, I’m reminded that I should never give up.

Fantasy stories have power. But more than that, they’re fun. The possibilities are truly limitless. If not for Tolkien, I may have not fully grasped that for a long time.

And there we have it. Just a sampling of what Tolkien’s works mean to me. If you can’t tell, I’m kiiiinda of fond of them. *grins*



What’s a book and/or author that impacted you? And if it’s Tolkien (because it probably is hehehe), what are some lessons you’ve learned from Lord of the Rings? I’d absolutely love to hear them!

Monday, September 17, 2018

7 Fictional Characters I Wish Were My Best Friends

Today we’re talking friendships. More specifically fictional people I wish were my friends. So often we talk about our fictional crushes (which I have plenty of too *cough, cough*) and fictional worlds we want to visit. But what about the fictional people we’d just want to call bestie? Because, let’s be real, there are some cool characters out there who I’d give my left pinky to be able to hang out with. You know it’s true!

There are many (manyyyyy), but here are seven specifically that would cause me to lose appendages if it meant being their friend. (Um wut???) I’m actually sticking to literary characters because if I did this with books, movies, and TV shows there’s no earthly way I’d only be able to narrow it down to a few.





The Dragons in Our Midst/Oracles of Fire series
by Bryan Davis

Walter is the best friend of this series’ protagonist, Billy. And what a best friend he is! He’s the epitome of the fun friend. Not only is he well versed in puns, super carefree, and non-judgmental, he’s totally supportive when you reveal to him your dad is a dragon and he discovers your crush has dragon wings. I mean #FRIENDGOALS

At first, Walter seems like the mere comedy relief character but OH NO. He’ll dive into battle without a thought to save those he cares about. But he’s also the one that will give you a word of comfort or throw out a ridiculous joke when he knows you need a laugh. He’s both calm and hilarious, which is one of my most favorite combinations!

Literally from the moment I started the first book in this series all those years ago, I’ve wanted Walter as my bestie. He and I would have a blast together goofing off, coming up with over the top cheesy puns (#PUNAPPRECIATION), and being utterly obnoxious together. It’d be great!


Howl’s Moving Castle

by Diana Wynne Jones

I mean, you knew there’d be a Howl’s Moving Castle character on this list. (I’m so predictable.)

I’m like 97% sure Sophie and I would get along swimmingly. Sophie is much like me, in that she first seems mousy and quiet, but soon taps into her utterly sassy, fiery side and can tell people off when she gets the mind. #Relatable I’m a strangely calm, carefree person while also living off sarcasm as much as oxygen, thus I get along with calm people (like Walter) but also love finding fellow sass-masters (like Sophie).

Sophie and I could spend all day complaining together about stupid people, throwing snark to the world, yelling at Howl for his ridiculous antics, all while just in general enjoying each other’s company. I relate to this girl at a deep level, guys. She’s seriously my favorite female fictional character. BFFs forever please????


The Lunar Chronicles

by Marissa Meyer

Ah yes, my Cress bby girl. I love adorable cinnamon rolls, and Cress is the epitome of one. She’s awkward, soft, and kindhearted, but by no means stupid. (I hate when “kind and innocent” is considered “dumb” buuut that’s a rant for another day.) This girl spent most of her life locked away in a satellite, forced to use her expert hacking skills for the evil queen. Being as how she’s barely had any contact with the human world, it’s no wonder she’s a little awkward and shy. But that just makes her all the more endearing.

Cress and I could totally be awkward penguins together. I feel like we’d be the type of friends who’d stay up all night watching Disney movies and singing aloud to the songs, texting each other cute cat photos, painting each other’s nails, and swooning over Carswell Thorne together. Cress would be a precious companion to have.


Beaumont and Beasley series

by Kyle Robert Shultz

Crispin is the younger brother of Nick Beasley, the main male character of the Beaumont and Beasley series, and his antics knows no bounds. His flighty, optimistic attitude is such a contrast to his brother’s grumpy, pessimistic, no-nonsense demeanor and I love it. I mean, when his brother turns into a beast his response is something like, “Oh. Okey doke then.” Yeah, he’s pretty casual about whatever life throws at him. (And he has a lot of bizarre stuff happen to him, let me tell you.)

My friendship with Crispin would probably be a lot like with Walter, in that we’d drive everyone crazy with our dumb puns, laugh at inappropriate times, and just kinda shrug and roll with it when the world is threatening to end. I’d also totally support him in his endeavor of adopting like all the cute mythical creatures in the world. Because YES. Gimme all the animals (especially if they’re mythical)! <333 We’d probably accidentally start our own mythical menagerie and who knows the disastrous consequences that would ensue… Good times, good times!


DragonKeeper Chronicles
by Donita K. Paul

Kale is one of those indescribable characters. She’s so complex and unorthodox, which is why I love her. Throughout the series, we watch Kale become an unsure young girl, to a feisty, confident woman. Oh, and did I mention she has a group of minor dragons (which are literally kitten-size dragons)? Yeah. She doesn’t go anywhere without like a dozen tiny little dragons following her around. Who wouldn’t want to be best friends with her?

I love Kale’s free spirit. One day she goes out wearing ostentatiously colorful clothes just ‘cause, and yet, at the same time, she has a very no-nonsense attitude, while living a life of nonsense. That kind of contradicting personality is so relatable to me. She really doesn’t care what other people think, but will absolutely give her opinion to others when she feels like it. We’d totally have fun judging the world together while also caring two cents about what the world thinks of us. That’s what true friendship is made of, amiright?


Ilyon Chronicles
by Jaye L. Knight

Kaden is technically the twin brother to Kyrin, but he really encompasses that “big brother” type. And I’m a sucker for protective big brothers. In fact, my first ever story I wrote when I was 9 had a fun, protective older brother. I love writing them, reading about them, and hanging out with them.

Kaden has a very cool, carefree attitude, but will totally beat someone up for you if the occasion arises. Perfect combo, in my opinion. And, to top it all off, he’s very fun. I’m always drawn to fun, easygoing people. I feel like Kaden and I can totally just chillax while the world burns around us. Or go to an all-you-can-eat buffet and stuff ourselves silly. Or, ya know, join the Resistance and ride dragons together and save the world. Whatever situation comes up. Either way, I’d love having Kaden’s fun, casual self around.


The Enchanted Forest Chronicles
by Patricia C. Wrede

Cimorene actually reminds me a lot of Sophie, just maybe even more feisty and rebellious. She ain’t gonna take nonsense from anyone. And letting a knight save her from a dragon? Naaah. Why not go to the dragon herself, befriend it, and become its housekeeper? That’s the type of logical thinking I can get on top of.

As I said, Cimorene is friends with dragons, which is a draw to be besties with her in and of itself. (The key to being Christine’s best friend: Have a dragon.) But I also feel like we could snark people off all day together. In fact, can I just form a squad with Cimorene, Sophie, and Kale? Although I don’t know, that much sass together might be too much for the world.

There ya have it. Just a little sampling of the type of fictional characters I’d call my BFF at the drop of a hat. (But seriously, why haven’t we found a way to bring fictional characters to life yet???? I have NEEDS.) I apparently really like carefree, funny guys and sassy females? And also cinnamon rolls. I just want all the cinnamon rolls in the world.


Your turn! Give me one (or three) fictional character you wish was your bestie. And do you agree with any of mine? Let’s share all the fictional characters appreciation!

Monday, September 10, 2018

For the Love of Writing

A strange thing happens when you get older. The things you love to do suddenly become chores. This is a weird occurrence I’ve noticed within myself, as the years have gone on, and it’s getting worse and worse.

I love to write. That’s nooot exactly a secret. *grins* Fewer things make me happier than coming up with new stories, meeting new characters as they appear in my head and introduce themselves (because, really, that’s how it always goes, it’s so rare I “create” a character, they’re just…there, ready to take over my life and drive me crazy), creating new worlds to explore, thinking up fun concepts and crazy adventures to throw my characters in. That moment when I come up with that just right first sentence (after wailing about it for an hour) brings satisfaction like no other. Those times the words flow and I disappear into the story and forget I’m even writing are like no other. It is magical.

But at the same time? Writing is HARD.

You’ll see a thousand memes of it online, about how writing is 10% writing, 90% crying. See all the twitter posts about writers procrastinating and doing anything else but writing. See us spend waaay more time pinning pictures for our story on Pinterest than actually WRITING IT.

Because here’s the thing, writers don’t always like writing.

And it’s crazy! No on is making us write. This is our chosen profession or hobby or whatever. We could literally do ANYTHING ELSE with our lives. And it’s not one for the faint of heart. Writing is one of the most vulnerable careers in existence. We spend possibly years of our life poring over a single book, putting our heart and tears into it, just so random strangers can take a day or so to read it and possibly tear it apart. Plus, unless you’re name is J.K. Rowling, you’re not really gonna make that much money selling books.

So why do we do it? BECAUSE WE LOVE IT. But if we say we love it, why do we spend over half our lives complaining about it???

Well, that’s a question I’ve been asking myself for years. It’s a strange paradox that I firmly believe all creatives experience. Whether you’re a writer, artist, dancer, musician, whatever it may be, you don’t always love doing that creative thing you’ve chosen to pursue. Even though…you chose to pursue it.

When I was nine years old and randomly decided to write a book, I was enamored with the idea. I’d almost daily take my Lisa Frank notebook (‘cause I was a cool kid *puts on sunglasses*) and pencil outside, lay on the grass, and write. It was unlike anything I ever experienced, being able to come up with stories on my own, putting them on paper, seeing the images in my head come alive in words. The process was utterly fascinating and delightful. I couldn’t get enough of it. I carried that notebook eeeverywhere. I wrote in the car, at restaurants, on the couch, in bed and staying up way later than I should because I just couldn’t stop. And when I finished that book, I started another. Instead of flipping on the TV, I chose to write because I wanted to. Because it was magical and fun and I couldn’t get enough of it.

That magic stayed with me for a long time. But as I got older, and started studying the craft, and being more careful about how I wrote and what stories I told, some of that fairy dust fizzled out a bit. Because suddenly I wasn’t doing it as a chosen fun activity, but as something serious, as a potential career.

Next thing I knew, writing was a chore.

And I think that’s the answer to this question that’s been bugging me for years. Writing lost a bit of the magic because I was no longer doing it with reckless abandon for fun. When I was that nine year old, I didn’t care how the story turned out, I just liked putting words on page and watching it unfold. I wasn’t writing it for anybody, I was just writing. But as I got older, it became so much more than that.

I think there are multiple factors as to why writing is so often a grueling task for us.



    • Once we start seriously learning the craft, that inner editor gets bigger and bigger, and soon we stress over every single word we put on the page.
    • Often we put our own personal struggles into our stories, and putting our literal heart out for the world to see and judge and have opinions on is hard.
    • We’re told often that we should be writing regularly and making goals and having a certain amount of words written within a certain amount of time, etc., etc. and all this pressure turns into guilt that we’re never doing enough.
    • The writing world is a extremely comparative one, and seeing other people’s successes compared to our own makes us want to give up, or try so hard we wear ourselves dry.

There are many other factors, but those are some big ones I see, and all things I struggle with all. the. time. Serious creative killers, amiright?

So very, very often I question my life choices. Why am I pursuing writing when there are so many other outlets out there? When it causes me so much stress and overwhelms me? Because it’s not always just the writing that is hard, but the dozens of other things that are required of writing. I spend waaaay more time just networking and marketing than actual writing. Then there’s the research, editing, constant rejections, conferences, staying vigilant on social media, and on and on and on it goes. And it gets tiring. The work for a writer never really stops. As I talked about in this post, writers don’t really get to clock out like with a regular job. So again I ask WHY? Why do we torture ourselves?

I think the root of that answer is back to the early days of writing, those summer days laying in the grass with a Lisa Frank notebook and nothing but my own imagination holding me back. Because IT’S FUN. And I love it.

As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, I recently started a new story just because. I haven’t really started a new story “just because” in years. Usually I have a goal in mind or am participating in NaNoWriMo or something. And usually I plot to great lengths and set deadlines for myself and work until my eyes bleed. But then I went to the Realm Makers writers conference, and I was surrounded by hundreds of writers. When I saw the enthusiasm and joy this crazy thing called writing brought to so many others, I remembered. I remembered back to my first days of writing all those years ago when I didn’t have a care in the world and chose to write. These days, it seems like I only write because I feel the need to finish some self imposed deadline, where really I’d much rather be reading a book or watching Netflix or playing a video game or doing anything else. And I hate that.

I miss choosing to write because it’s a task I want to do, not have to do. I miss throwing caution to the wind and just vomiting words on a page and seeing what happens because it’s FUN.

Now, with that said, if you’re writing because you want to make it a career, of course it’s a very good, not to mention important, thing to have goals. To learn to work on deadlines, and to study the craft and not write disastrous novels and never fix them. That’s what I did for years, and as a result I have a dozen messy drafts sitting in my computer and no publishing contract. But this year I started writing intentionally and am truly pursuing getting published. And that’s good. Sometimes we have to be career-minded if, ya know, we’re making a career of it.

But at the same time? We have to remember why we’re choosing this as our career in the first place. Not because it’s a high paying job. Lolololol. Sadly noooo. We do it because at some point in our lives, a story came into our hearts and we put pen to page or pencil to a Lisa Frank notebook or opened our laptops or even scribbled on a napkin in a restaurant, and we found joy.

And that should always be the root of why we write. Because it is something we find joy in, and can’t live without.

Realm Makers reminded me of that. It reminded me that writing does not have to be this chore I dread. It is an activity I LOVE. And though yes, sometimes I need to do hard work and take it seriously and be career-minded, that does not mean I can’t find the joy in the process.

And so one day a few weeks ago I opened my laptop and just started writing because I wanted to. Not because I had to, not because I had spent weeks carefully plotting out the novel, not because there was some goal in mind. But just because I felt like it. How I’ve missed those days.

And you know what? Sometimes those stories you write for the fun of it turn out to be the best work you’ve ever done.

Yes, writing is overwhelming and stressful. It’s laborious and competitive and takes an immense amount of patience and will probably cause lots of discouragement and tears. But when you’re feeling that way, remember back to your early days of writing. Remember those days of reckless abandon. Remember the joy you had stirring thoughts and words into a beautiful mess. And HAVE FUN!

In her closing note at Realm Makers, Mary Weber had this to say:

Remember to have fun. After all, what do you have to lose? We have nothing to lose, because we’ve already been given it all.


That struck me so hard. Because she’s right. Through God, we’ve been given it all. And if we seek our writing through Him, what is there to lose? Making up stories is downright fun. Have we not been doing that since we were little kids playing in the backyard? When you’re a writer, you never have to stop playing pretend! You get to do it for a living. And you get to make up literally whatever you want. How is that not the most fun thing in the world???

I don’t want to forget that again. I want writing to once more be an activity I choose to do because I love doing it. Yes, I want to be intentional, but I also want to forever find the joy in this crazy art we call writing.

Because, let’s face it, being able to literally create people and worlds and insane plots and swirl them all into an actual book? That is AWESOME! Being a writer is the coolest thing in the world, guys. And I feel so blessed to have the joy of doing it.



Do you struggle with writing (or any creative task!) feeling like a chore sometimes? How do you combat that feeling and find the joy again? I’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions!

Monday, September 3, 2018

These are a Few of My Favorite…Fandoms!

Today I’m letting my fangirly side out uninhibited so THOU ART WARNED.

I was tagged by my awesome friend Victoria @ Wanderer's Pen to share Some of My Favorite Things (total The Sound of Music style yesh). This tag was originally created by Sara Letourneau, and I think it’s such a fun idea! Because who doesn’t love gushing about their favorite things???

Now, the original idea is to share some random stuff you love that your followers may not know about you. Buuut, me being me, I have to break the rules a smidge. Instead of talking about things I like, I’m going to be fangirling over FANDOMS. Because, erm, my entire world revolves around story in some form or fashion. Like…I have other things I like? What nonsense!

This is honestly going to be a teeny, tiny list of the fandoms I’m in. (I have a problem, okay???) And I’m not sure this is really my top ten. Just ten of some favorite fandoms of mine. Some I’m sure you all know I love and you’re gonna be like DUH CHRISTINE WE KNOW YOU LOVE IT (I make no apologies for talking about my loves 25/8!), while sooome you may not have seen me mention much. Buuut I probably actually have because I’m not exactly subtle about the stories I love… *cough*

I just like to fangirl okay?! So COME. Fangirl/boy with me!



I’m sure you’re all soooo surprised! It’s not like I mention my love for Tolkien like five times every post. Noooo. But but… It’s Lord of the Rings!

The moment I entered the world of Middle-earth when I was ten years old, my life changed forever. My love for fantasy was awoken as I plunged into a land of elves and dwarves and evil immortal beings and magic rings and great towers and talking trees and brave men and selfless little hobbits. I had found my home and I’ve never gone back.

I love how vast and deep the Tolkien fandom goes. Most all fantasy we have now is because of Tolkien, but it’s not just that his stories helped us define fantasy, he changed the world. He showed us hope in the midst of terrible darkness. He gave us stories that proved the smallest, seemingly most insignificant people can do great, enormous things. He inspired us to break the boundaries with writing. To not be afraid to make something new and strange, and not limit ourselves. The amount of work he put into Middle-earth is mind-blowing, and the stories he gave us are truly life changing.

Many fandoms tend to only have one type of person they appeal to, but LotR has captured generations and generations of all types of people, and it is beautiful. I’m proud to call myself a Tolkienite.



Obviously this was coming next.

I think C.S. Lewis himself summed up the magic of his stories on the dedication page of the very first book…

“…some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again.”

Because isn’t that the truth of it? Sometimes it takes us growing up to truly appreciate children’s stories. But Narnia is so perfect in that it is a magical, wonderful journey for children and adults alike. It’s a story I never tire of, and though it is for children, I find something new and insightful with every reread. That’s how powerful of a tale it is.

The love and impact Narnia has spread through the world is amazing. When people say stories have power, Narnia instantly comes to mind for me. Because it truly is a powerful tale, wrapped up in a whimsical children’s story. This story helped my walk with God and understanding of Him grow by leaps and bounds. And it’s another story, like Tolkien’s, that has such a vast and diverse fanbase. Because Narnia is twofold—it is a story full of depth and powerful theology, but, at the same time, it’s a fun little fairy tale. The brilliance of C.S. Lewis is unmatchable!



Bwahaha! Taking a big shift to TV shows now.

Sometime in 2009 or 2010 I believe, I started noticing Doctor Who being mentioned all around the internets (because, really, it’s impossible to get on the internet and not be slapped with DW references). The idea and everyone’s love for it appealed to me, so I started watching it with my brother. The first episode with the Ninth Doctor and killer plastic dummies was…erm…interesting. Not exactly TV gold buuuut it kept me interested. Then by the second or third episode I was lost in the void that is the Doctor Who fanbase and I’ve never found my way out.

Doctor Who became my new favorite thing EVER. I adored the Ninth Doctor, the Tenth Doctor is life and there will never ever ever ever be a Doctor I love more, I cried and screamed when he regenerated into the Eleventh Doctor but soon I grew to love him as well, and the Twelfth Doctor was fabulous and I’m gonna miss him dearly. I thought Rose would forever be my favorite companion with Donna as a very close second, but then my bby girl Clara came into the picture. But, really, all the characters are utterly loveable in their own ways.

The whole show is so wild and different. And I think that’s why it appeals to so many people. Not one episode is like the other. It’s like you’re getting a new show with every single episode. And the zaniness while at the same time utter complexity of the Doctor is storytelling gold. Plus, the show is a bout an alien with two hearts time traveling in a police telephone box. Yeppp. Talk about a unique premise. It’s really no wonder why people have loved this show since the 60s. It is one of a kind.

And us Whovians know how to geek hard. I don’t think there’s such a thing as a casual Whovian…



As much as I love Doctor Who with all my heart and soul, Merlin is my top, top, top favorite TV show. I’m actually not a big sci-fi fan (though Doctor Who certainly has tried to turn me into one!), so though I love Doctor Who, it’s not exactly my element. But Merlin now…it’s like the show was made for me.

If you’ve never heard of it, Merlin is a twist on Arthurian Legend in that Merlin and Arthur are both young men…and Merlin is Arthur’s servant. Oh yeah, and magic is forbidden in Camelot so Merlin can’t actually reveal he’s a wizard. FUN STUFF.

You guys may already be aware but I am a huuuuuuuuge Arthurian Legend nerd. The stories of King Arthur have enraptured me since I was a tiny thing. I believe it was in 2011 that I heard about this Arthurian Legend show BBC was doing. By this point I was already a rabid Doctor Who fan, so I had faith in BBC to make epic shows. So a KING ARTHUR show by BBC??? I MUST HAVE NOW.

Once again, I got sucked in a void and never came out. This show had everything. An utter cinnamon roll of a protagonist (seriously, Merlin is so good and precious and I can’t <3333), my favoritest bromance to exist EVER (Merlin and Arthur’s bantering friendship gives me LIFE), fun Arthurian Legend thiiiings, a fantasy version of Camelot (yesssh), and loveable characters all around. It’s one of the few shows where I don’t even care that the plot is absurdly cheesy of the swiss kind because the plot holes are laughable. Usually, bad, lazy storytelling turns me into a ranting Hulk. But with Merlin? I don’t CARE. Because I love the characters so much, I just love being with them, despite all the low budget cheese and illogical plot threads. IT DOESN’T MATTER. The writers may not have been all that skilled with plot, but they killed it with characters.

Also, the whole fandom is so fun and welcoming and we basically spend all day crying with one another because of reasonssss but ahem yeah. Aaanyways, it’s a great show and I will forever be obsessed. <3



Oh look, another BBC show. (I maaay have a problem?) Where the Doctor Who fandom is full of fun geeks and the Merlin fandom tends to be soft and friendly, Sherlockians, as we’re called, is infamous for being the craziest fandom out there. I don’t know what causes this insanity (prooobably because we only get 3 EPISODES every 2 years or so. NO JOKE). But yeah. Here we are. This show is a modern retelling of Sherlock Holmes and it’s just so fun!

I can’t recommend Sherlock to everyone. The first season wasn’t too bad content-wise, then the first episode of season 2 was shockingly bad and it caught me off guard and made me really mad. Blergh. Most of the rest of the episodes haven’t been that bad, but there is still some occasional TV ickiness because I guess having clean TV is too much to ask for. #RANT

Anyways, just wanted to warn you. But aaahhhhh, Sherlock. Aside from the content, I wish all TV could be like this. Our shows tend to be getting more and more mindless as the years go by and, like I mentioned earlier, bad storytelling brings out my ultra mega angry ranty side. But SHERLOCK. It is brilliant. It does not treat its viewers as dumb. It makes you think. But not only that, it has everything. Beautiful character arcs, intricately mind-blowing plots, a great setting—really all the ingredients you need for a good story. Plus Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. Also essential ingredients for a good story. ;D

But really, this show is what storytelling should be. And though what feels like lifetimes pass between each season and at this rate I’ll probably be watching season 5 in a nursing home, I’m still so happy to be a crazy Sherlockian.



If you didn’t see this coming, you really don’t know me at all. *grins*

BUT ALICE IN WONDERLAAAAND!!!! Another thing I’ve been obsessed with since I could breathe basically. And it’s not just the original Alice in Wonderland stories I love. It’s almost EVERYTHING Wonderland. Because that’s what I love about this story—it can be interpreted in so many different ways. Wonderland is a bizarre, wild place, and I feel like Lewis Carroll meant for us to perceive it how we wanted to. When people try to drastically change something like Middle-earth, I get mad. But different Wonderland renditions? I’m perfectly fine with! I don’t know, there’s just so much that can be done with Wonderland, because it’s not a set-in-stone place. You never know what you’re going to find there, and I adore seeing everyone’s perspectives of it.

I love the spacey-ness of Alice (I relate to her a lot…), I love the lunacy of the Mad Hatter, I love the idea of a never ending tea party, I love the utter nonsense of all the Wonderland inhabitants. Nonsense is my element. LOL. But seriously, it’s truuue. I’ve never been one for common sense and normal, quiet, sensible things. Bring on the crazy and wild! The loopy characters and illogical logic. It feels right. Because, hey, I’m a writer. We’re all mad here. *wink*

I truly love the Wonderland fanbase as well, because I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a more creative fandom. Like I said, people take Wonderland and make it their own, and I love that. You may see steampunk Wonderland things, or whimsical versions, or dark, creepy retellings, or frilly pink Wonderland merchandise. On and on it goes. The amount of things you can do and perceptions you can have with Alice in Wonderland is infinite. And that makes my creative soul happy.

Wonderland is my happy place.



Speaking of happy places…NEVERLAND. I wouldn’t even need a happy thought to fly to Neverland, going to Neverland would be my happy thought. Because NEVERLAND. Who wouldn’t want to go to a place where you never have to grow up?

Peter Pan is another one of those utterly timeless tales. The whole story feels like pixie dust, because there’s something so magical about it. Who doesn’t love the idea of a never-aging boy who can fly sweeping children away to a magical island? It’s delightful! And, like Wonderland, there’s so many different ways people see Neverland. It, too, brings out the creativity of the fandom.

But more than that, Peter Pan is a story that I think has helped us all keep our childlike wonder, which is something I find super important in this stuffy, dark, cutthroat world. In the midst of all our stress, Peter Pan reminds us that, yes, we all need to grow up sometime, but to still have fun, see the joy in the little things, and not take everything so seriously.

This story means a lot to me, in a way I always have a hard time putting into words. But I will forever be a Peter Pan fangirl.



Ahhhh, yeesh. I can sense a lot of you nodding and grinning because, well, it’s MARVEL.

Confession: I used to not be much of a superhero fan. I KNOW. SCANDALOUS. It’s just…the idea of guys flying around in tights saving the world? Just…eh. Give me a dragon any day. Buuut then Iron Man came out, and all the Marvel movies following, annnd yeah. I was a goner.

Honestly, my first superhero love came from the Toby Maguire Spider-man movies. Yeeeah. XD Now I just watch them for a good laugh, but back in the day I was OBSESSED. Otherwise, I wasn’t a huge superhero fan (except for The Incredibles which is still my favorite Pixar film to date). Well, Marvel Studios fixed that. Now like 80% of my fangirling life revolves around Marvel and IT’S A PROBLEM. Though I still only watch the movies. I’ve never read the comics or anything, and have to frequently question my brother on references and things I don’t understand since he is much more knowledgeable with these things, but when it comes to the Marvel movies? I can probably quote any given one of them and I spend way more time than I actually have pinning Marvel pins on Pinterest (and crying over Bucky).

And if you’re curious, Captain America is my favorite (but really Bucky) and The Avengers is my favorite movie verrryyy closely followed by The Winter Soldier (Buckyyyy).



Another one of my faaavorite TV shows, but one I don’t yell to you guys about nearly enough. SO WE’RE FIXING THAT.

Leverage is set in modern times and is about a group of thieves who end up banding together and deciding to do the Robin Hood thing—stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. Except their thing is conning big, rich, corrupt people. And it. is. so. FUN! Every episode is basically a different con job, and just yessss to fun heists. I love ‘em!

This show is just a riot all around. Again, it’s basically this group of thieves-turned-good using their skills to pull off all sorts of heists, but ALSO, the character dynamics add years to my life I’m pretty sure. THEY’RE JUST SO GOOD. The five characters go from strangers who don’t really trust each other to a big family. It’s totally that motley-crew-turned-family trope that I ADORE. If nothing else, this show is worth a watch for the characters. But it’s also great for a smile. There’s absolutely danger and feels and action, but at the same time, it’s extremely funny. And, again, the characters are utterly loveable. I’ve seen every episode like 29734 times because I can’t stay away from my precious characters for long.

The content isn’t always perfectly clean though. Some language and immodesty and such, like most shows (*siiiigh*). But if that doesn’t bother you, I 12/10 recommend this delightful show!



No, this is not a joke! I mean…it’s My Little Pony, guys!

Okay, the thing about this show is for those who have never seen it, they wonder whyyyy on earth all these adults watch this “goofy kids show”. For those who have seen it, they know. I used to be the former. I saw everyone obsessed with it and I was so confused. Wasn’t it a kids show? And had like…singing and stuff? Why are people obsessed with it? Then it started coming on TV a lot and I caught snatches of it here and there and next thing I knew I was watching every episode until my eyes bled, singing to the songs (winter wrap up, winter wrap uuup!) including the title song because I had it memorized, counting down the days to new seasons, and wearing a My Little Pony t-shirt. True story.

This is just one of those shows you have to watch to get. I know it looks dumb, but the story is actually really good. The writers I think eventually realized that their audience made up of more adults than kids, and tailor to that now. There’s some surprisingly in depth storylines throughout the series, genuinely funny jokes, and one of the villains ends up having a very complex character arc. Plus it’s just pretty. Lol. The bright, colorful world and art style is pleasing to the eyeballs, and with all the different personalities of the ponies, there’s a character for everyone.

Also Pinkie Pie. Just watch for Pinkie Pie.

I love this fandom, because it’s so unexpected seeing all these adults obsessing over a My Little Pony show. Come on, you gotta love it!


Well there ya go! You’ve now seen a true glimpse at how far and deep my fangirliness goes. It’s a scary place, let me tell you. Hopefully I didn’t scare some of you off. Bwahaha.

Before I end this monster post (if you can believe it, I constrained myself some, I could have easily made an individual post talking about my love for every single one of these fandoms), I’m going to pass on this tag!

. . . TAGGING . . .

Deborah @ The Road of a Writer | Christine @ Overflowing Mind & Pen | Tracey @ Adventure Awaits | + anyone else who wants to join! (I think Sarah the creator originally opened this up as a blog hop for anyone to do, so definitely feel free to jump in!)

And remember, this is supposed to be a list of any of your favorite things, you don’t have to do stories like I did. It's just most all of my favorite things involves stories sooo…yeah. *grins* But you're TOTALLY welcome to do fandoms like I did. I loooove seeing what all fandoms everyone is in!



The best part about fangirling/boying is doing it with others. So FLAIL WITH ME. Are we in any of the same fandoms? (Fandoms unite!) What is one (or three) of your favorite fandoms?

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