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Bristol & Cosplay

Bristol

There’s something dark and political lingering over our favorite Renaissance faire in Kenosha, Wisconsin…

Opening day was beautiful and glorious. Beau and I did everything and nothing. We traveled time and dimensions without ever leaving 2018. We ate, drank, and played merry all the day. What could be more perfect than a day spent in bliss at the faire?

But there were many changes throughout the grounds, we soon discovered. Delightful changes like new vendors and cast members to entertain, new buildings for drink and leisure out of the hot sun, and also subtle changes which left us with more questions than answers.

One of our favorite Steampunk stores were no longer allowed to sell their famous corsets and leather vest apparel? Why? To what purpose?

A brand new building tucked away by 3 Sheets to the Wind tavern houses only…lottery games? At the Renaissance faire?

And where was the music? Where were all the beautiful minstrels and dancers? Where were the plucky tunes and velvet strings, the belly dancers with their glittering garb and alluring eyes?

There is something dangerously political afoot, and it’s leaving a grim impression upon the patrons of the faire. We could forgive all the prices going up. We’re more than happy to support this 30 acre patch of magic! But too many unhealthy changes is akin to a blood cancer. It’s movement is untraceable, and one can only guess where next it will rear it’s ugly head.

We will continue to support Bristol. But I fear the lasting effects of these changes. In our humble opinion, all the money for those lotto machines and buildings should have gone to improve the tilt yard. The jousters have long since struggled with poor sound equipment and faulty electrical connections. One would think the biggest attraction should deserve the best equipment.

One would think so…

This has been,

Piratess Fanny T. Crispin

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Ponderings, Raw

Drifting

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I’m just a traveler on this earth, Sure as my heart’s behind the pocket of my shirt. I’ll just keep rolling till I’m in the dirt, ‘Cause I’m a traveller, oh, I’m a traveller. -Chris Stapleton

If you’ve been keeping up with this blog for any length of time, you may have noticed something absent. Maybe you realized it before I did. If so, you’ve seen through my facade.

I’ve been drifting content-wise with material for the blog as well as my personal writing. It’s going to be one of those years where I struggle to come up with a post for you. Somehow I keep plugging away at that bimonthy goal, but if I were truly honest, I don’t feel the content is worth your time or mine. What are we all doing here, people? What brings us back to this space? What are we searching for?


It bums me out when I fail to get motivated with writing projects. Stories are my escape from reality and my source of entertainment, but once again I’m trapped in this bog of ceaseless daily routines. Ideas wander fleetingly through my brain. Nothing interests me. I have more than enough projects on my bookshelf, sure. But I grow weary just thinking about picking one up.

My thoughts are definitely grounded this year. I’m focusing on my feet, keeping them moving, pushing one in front of the other. Winter usually does this to me, as well as big life changes.

I’ve got some big life changes on the horizon.

You see, the reality is, I can’t escape right now. I can’t run off. I have too many pressing details which require attention. If I lose focus on those, life will slip out of my grasp and I’ll scramble frantically, wondering where the time went. Duty calls. Responsibility knocks loudly.


There are writers out there who pound away at the keys even on days when they don’t feel like it. They’ve developed perseverance. They’re persistent and disciplined. I admire them greatly. Now let’s be perfectly honest in that a lot of writers are not this dutiful. We fall into writing slumps. We let the ink dry and dust cover the pages. It’s a sad truth. And not to make excuses, but we struggle just to maintain our lives. Things fall out of balance. Frequently.

It begs the question, What is this all for?

Or more accurately, For whom?

Sometimes we forget why we’ve started this journey.

What makes you write? What do you enjoy writing? Are you in a slump now? Let’s talk about it.

This has been,

Fanny T. Crispin

Ponderings

Unification

Life is not unified or balanced, despite our best efforts as human beings.

~Unknown

You have the best intentions. Your motivation is off the charts today. You lay out your best plan of action in the history of action plans. But as soon as tomorrow comes, all of those ideas seem to fade and your energy levels just aren’t there.

It happens to the best of us, doesn’t it? What are we lacking? Self-control? Determination? Resistance? Perseverance?

Some people seem to have it all together. They got the workout routine down. They nailed the healthy eating. Their houses are immaculate. And everything about them is just…perfect.

We all want that perfection. We see it. We recognize it. We desire it. What we fail to realize is how much work and attention to detail goes into perfection. It doesn’t happen in a day, a week, or even a month. It doesn’t happen in a year. It happens in a lifetime.


Perfect people sacrifice much of their lives for the sake of their lifestyle. They make the hard choices every single day. They fight against laziness, ease, and comfort to have the sort of pristine life we envy. And another aspect we fail to consider is this life comes with its own unique challenges and hardships.

So instead of being jealous, take a moment to be thankful for the zen qualities you already own in your life. Take a good hard look at yourself and find the things that make you unique. It’s fine to strive for perfection, but is it really worth letting it consume you?

Remember, it might not even be perfection we desire, but unification.

Wholeness.

Thought for today.

This has been,

Fanny T. Crispin

Mind & Body, Raw

Personalities

I recommend you go take the Meyers-Briggs personality test over at 16 Personalities . It’s a delightful 20 minute event.

When I first took this test some 9-odd years ago, I actually came up an ENFP which is classified as a Campaigner. I didn’t really understand what that meant, except that the description fit me to a T. Later, after my parents’ divorce, I became an ENFP-T. Turbulent. Unfortunately, I never saved my results, so I can’t remember what that meant for my personality, but it has an ominous ring to it, don’t you think?

Last year, I got the bug to take the test again. I guess I always believed your personality was set in stone, even though 16 Personalities clearly states “Your personality is not set in stone.”

My results shocked me, to be honest. I stared at this new description, I imagine, with my jaw somewhere near my belly button or even my knees. What was an Advocate? I still came up Turbulent, and I feel that is due to my impending career and life-event changes, but how does a Campaigner change into an Advocate, and what does that mean for me?

I have noticed an opportunity to practice my new skillset at work, where I am above the average employee but still under the rule of management. This position advocates for the common employee, while helping to relate the rules set forth by management to the ground floor people.

It’s been fun, exciting, and a little LOT nervewracking, but I’m still growing on God’s green-and-blue Earth, and I imagine I’ll continue growing until He brings me home.


If you’ve taken the test, feel free to share your results and discuss them in the comments!

This has been,

Fanny T. Crispin

Books and Affiliated, From Writing to Publishing, Writing Prompts

We’re Here!

Villains

I’ve bounced around an idea of starting a series of blogs titled “We’re Here!” – the search for characters and what makes a character-driven story.

Today, I thought we’d focus on villains. What makes a villain and what makes a good villain so bad.

In our very first post for “We’re Here!” we’ll explore villains from multiple angles and discover the antagonists all around us.


PS LOVE the new additions to the WordPress app. 😀


Bad to the Core

There are, of course, people in the world who are simply bad. They seek only to please themselves. They run after pleasures of the flesh and the physical, always chasing that which they believe will make them feel happy and fulfilled.

You can use this in a story. You can have a villain who is simply selfish, and every reader will understand their motive and cringe at the injustice of it all.

There are other levels to selfishness too. Some people have a specific skill set, such as gambling, swindling, lying, stealing, and they take pride in those skills. Give your villain a defining skill, something to make him realistic in your reader’s mind.

Bad by Default

Wouldn’t you agree some people just strike on bad luck? They were born in the wrong place at the wrong time. This can be discouraging for the human soul, which strives to believe everything it does is for good.

Now this villain needs a place to belong. They’ve given up on life and got caught up in whatever racket has been chasing them down. It could be a gang. Maybe they’re a follower for an evil ruler. Maybe they’re simply so hurt, all they care about is hurting others. Hurting people hurt people.

So give your villain a strong emotional connection on the negative side. Make them angry or bitter, resentful, unfulfilled. But try to strike for something specific – their father left them/beat them/etc. Their only friends were the neighborhood gang who treated them terrible but promised them a place to belong. Be creative, but try to stem from real-world examples if you can. Maybe they were kidnapped, human-trafficked, or simply raised by plain old mean people.

Usually these villains can have a great redemption moment. Play with that. Maybe in your story, you want to save people, not simply create an environment for your hero to be heroic. We all love stories of forgiveness.

Bad for the Sake of Good

This is a tough one. There are people in the world who believe what they do is for the good of humanity. Conquers of old were good examples of this. In those days, it was conquer or be conquered. So as ruler, you sent out to battle local countries to display your power. This in turn kept your own people safe, because no one dared challenge you.

This villain believes they are good. They are completely justified in their mind. One could almost write the story from their point of view and make them the hero!

One of the best ways to write this villain is to make them so believable even the hero begins to falter. Make your readers question everything they thought they knew about right and wrong. This is a powerful villain, because if the readers believe for even a second that their hero could fail, you’ve added the perfect element to any story – RISK.


A good way to find villains is to look at people, politicians, religious leaders, and anyone you don’t like. Dig into questions of why you don’t like them. Do they challenge your way of life? Do they cause you personal harm? Are they resisting your cause for good and well-being?

Now hop the fence and study your personal antagonists. Read up about them and their values. Discover why they do what they do. Why they believe what they believe. In doing that, you’ve just researched material for a great villain.

Now go write about them.


This has been,

Fan T. C.

in “We’re Here! – Villains”