January 30, 2014

"Disaster" Writing Contest Entries: Voting Open Now

Hello everyone! So, as you might know, I am hosting a writing contest with the theme "disaster." That contest is now closed, and it's time to determine the winner!
Originally I said that I would set up a poll for y'all to judge by, but after some consideration, I thought it best that you guys just comment who you think should win. I won't publish your votes so you'll still be anonymous, I just think it's best this way. And don't worry, I'll be honest about it too!
You can view the requirements and prizes for the contest on the bar on top of this post. Just click on "Contests!"

I know you're dying to read the entries and I hope you'll find them all just as enjoyable and thrilling as I did. In no particular order, here are the entries!


By Annanya Priyadarshini at Annanya - meaning unique..

It couldn't be worse than this I thought, I was publicly embarrassed. Well, it was not bothering me as much as the fact that I'd been embarrassed in front of my 'sworn enemy'! " Anya you are a bright student, you can do way better than this.." my history teacher said calmly. As a cherry on top History is my favourite subject, how could I fail? I was a straight A student until 5 minutes ago. Akshita looked at me mockingly with a pretended pitiable expression on her face "Never mind, just work hard next time" she said in her sweet as honey voice, "You little pitiable creature" she whispered. I could rip her apart at that moment, but the words I read yesterday calmed me down " Your enemy will succeed if your temper rises, he/she can show that they are calm and well mannered not you." Akshita, I must pay attention in class and study hard."I said calmly. I loved the expression on her face when she heard this." It's so good Anya you are taking this in positive sense" my history teacher beamed. Akshita must be burnt till the core with jealously. After class ended I grabbed my stuff for painting class, Akshita opened her notebook "muttering to Aanandita about how hypocrite I was, but her voice trailed off as her mouth fell wide open in shock"


By Raven Dewitt at Raven Dewitt

I looked at the clock on the wall of the solitary military base I was locked in. It was October 31, Halloween day. Exactly a week after the end of the world. And I was the only one who could save it.


By Seana Vixen at The Totally Insane Writer

The sound of wind whipping through your hair screams in your ears. The rain pelts your skin as you stare into the distance at the clouds choking out the light of the sun. Something is coming. Your gaze flicks over the rubble of what once was homes of families who thought that they were safe where they were. But no one is safe here. This is the country of danger, of mystery, of hope, but also of disaster. You shove trembling hands into your sweatshirt pockets, fiddling with the paper clip inside out of habit. A storm is raging inside of you, just as a storm brews in the air. Peeking through the hair that covers your face you see rain begin to fall across the horizon. Lightning cracks across the sky, answered by the roar of thunder. You take a step in your worn boots, the seams beginning to fall apart. You step towards the storm that's steadily coming to the place where you stand, daring you to try and stop it. But you are not afraid of disaster. You challenge it. You keep walking.


By Hilda Leticia Dominguez at Hilda

Kevin paced back and forth beside his sister. "Oh no, oh no! This is disastrous!""You have to stop reading that fat nerd book you are reading," said Sally, his sister. "It's making you sound like a nerd."
Kevin stopped pacing and faced her. "First of all, The Lord of the Rings book is a great book. You would know if you had the intellect to read it."

"I'm smart!" exclaimed Sally."Guys!" shouted Ally, hanging from the roof of their house. "Falling to my death here!"
Kevin looked at Sally and pointed up at Ally. "Oh yeah, smart enough to dare our older sister up to touch the satellite dish. Who is the smart one here?"
"Shut it, nerd! I'm trying to think."
"And stop calling me nerd!" cried Kevin. "I'll show you who the smart one is in this family."
Kevin ran inside to get his father and together moved the trampoline near the house. "Don't jump, Ally! It will only make you bounce higher! Just let yourself slip onto the trampoline," cried Kevin.
Ally closed her eyes for a second and slid down the roof and onto the trampoline. She bounced until she was able to stop.



By Trista Vaporblade at A blog of Writing and Music

Broken pieces of pottery lay scattered across the dirt floor; dust
covered everything in hazy white and cobwebs bounced with the gentle
breeze.  Carefully placing his boots in-between the shards of clay,
the raven haired boy wove a path to the opposite side of the cavern.
Fingers looped through his belt, he let his soft, jade eyes drift over
the ruins within. Who had lived here hundreds of years prior to his
discovery of this place? Why had they left? The echo of a small stone
bouncing over hard earth caught his attention; the noise had come from
behind.
        He narrowed his eyes and surveyed the wall of rock that appeared to
be the end of the small room but was obviously not. A thin cleft of
slate had crumbled away over the years, leaving a vertical slash in
the stone and an entry to anyone willing to venture past. He pushed
his body through the crack with some amount of grunting and set foot
into the hidden space beyond. His boots met cold, compact ice and his
feet began to slide. Catching his balance before he fell, the boy
skated downwards with the slope of the floor, unable to see anything
in the pitch darkness.



So these are the five awesome entries! Comment the first name of whoever you believe should win a guest post here on my blog. One vote allowed per person and you can vote for yourself. Participants, feel free to shout this post out on your own blogs (as long as you include a link to this blog, woohoo free advertisement for me!) to gain more votes. 
Give them all a read and feel free to comment encouraging feedback to any of the authors because I'm sure they would appreciate it :) If you are one of the authors and don't want that, let me know and I won't publish comments concerning your piece. Remember to keep your votes and feedback separate
Thanks so much to all who entered and all who are going to vote! Voting closes on February 10, 2014. 
Good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favor! 
July 

January 26, 2014

My Top 8 Jams of 2014

I'd definitely been depending pretty heavily on music while studying for exams, and I made a playlist for myself of all my favorite songs. I want to share my top eight/need to hear songs of many genres of right now!

Click on the title to listen to it. It will either take you to YouTube or Grooveshark and if you don't know how to use Grooveshark, that's ok. It should play automatically, but if it doesn't, all you have to do is click "play song." You shouldn't have to make an account or anything!

Human by Christina Perri

Do not turn this song off right away. I admit it, it's boring and repetitive at the beginning, but YOU HAVE TO WAIT FOR THE CHORUS! As soon as it hits the chorus, my breath is whooshed away and I just still there in a silent stupor until the song is over. Just give it a minute. You'll love it.


Pompeii by Bastille

I would be surprised if you haven't heard this song. I don't really have anything special to say about it, but the song is quality stuff. I think I mostly like it because it doesn't have your typical sound to it and listening to it is a good change from the normal.
The video honestly has nothing that I can see to do with the song, but I have to say, the scenery is gorgeous!



Sampson by Regina Spektor

I don't know about this song or the words. Like seriously though, what in the world does it mean? "Sampson went back to bed, not much hair left on his head, He ate a slice of wonderbread and went right back to bed." Can anyone explain this line to me? And also, "The history books forgot about us and the Bible didn't mention us." Who is the us?
Grr. Frustrating. However, through the frustration, I can't seem to stop listening to it! Her voice is beautiful.


Let Her Go by Passenger

This song is very popular on the radio right now. It's played a lot, but that is not a bad thing because I honestly crank the volume and belt it out every time it comes on in the car. Literally. Ask my mom, she doesn't exactly approve of my loud music, but this song definitely deserves a little extra amplification.
*I didn't watch the whole video, so please let me know if there is anything questionable in it. Thanks :)


Say Something by A Great Big World

This is a beautiful song! Love the piano intro. There are actually two versions of it, one with just the guy (which I have linked), and another featuring Christina Agulara. Alex and Sierra sang it on the xfactor (you can watch their performance at about 4:00, so skip ahead if you don't want to watch the rest) and it is probably the cutest thing I've ever seen. They're both so overjoyed about winning and you can just see their love for each other. I tear up when I watch them and I can only hope to find that kind of love some day ;)


The Heart of Dixie by Danielle Bradberry

I watched Danielle's journey on The Voice and was rooting for her the whole time. She actually ended up winning the competition at only 16 years old, which is amazing. I love her voice and, in my opinion, she is a very humble person about her fame. She just seems so down to earth!



Let It Go by Idina Menzel

What can I say? It's Disney! They've done a great job with the new movie and I can't get the soundtrack out of my head. This song is by far my favorite from Frozen. Enjoy!


Don't Forget Where You Belong by One Direction

I know there are a lot of stereotypes of One Direction, but love or hate them, I think this song deserves a listen. It tells their story of being on the road all the time how hard it is to be away from their families and familiar surroundings. They share how important it is to them not to forget who they are and where they come from. The chorus says,
"Don't forget where you belong, home
Don't forget where you belong, home
If you ever feel alone, don't
You were never on your own
And the proof is in this song."
I just love that. It's almost like their own reminder to themselves that they'll always have each other for support :) Ahh fangirl.

Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this post! Let me know what some of your favorite songs are so I can give them a try. What do you think of mine?
Love,
July

January 21, 2014

Hilda's Fun Questions Tag!

Hello! My sister Hilda over at http://hildald.blogspot.com/ wrote a tag for people! It's kinda fun, so I thought I'd do it while procrastinating starting my homework :) 
Find Hilda's post HERE!

1) When is your birthday? (You don't have to include the year if you don't want to.)
July 29 :)

2) What are 3 of your favorite colors?

Blue
Red
Green

3) What are your 3 favorites quotes?

Ooh, that's a hard one. 
- "Girls are like apples. The best ones are always at the top of the trees. The boys don't want to reach for the good ones because they're afraid of falling and getting hurt. Instead they get the rotten apples that aren't as good, but easy. So the apples at the top think there's something wrong with them when in reality they're amazing. They just have to wait for the right boy to come along. The one who's always brave enough to climb all the way to the top." Pete Wentz
- "A rose can say 'I love you,' orchids can enthrall, but a weed bouquet in a chubby fist, yes, that says it all." Unknown
- "People are prettiest when they talk about something they really love with passion in their eyes." KVH

4) Are you addicted to YouTube?

Maybe....

5) What are 3 of your favorite shows on TV or YouTube or both?

Once Upon a Time
Downton Abbey
The Voice

6) What are 3 qualities you like in a best friend?

Loyalty
Honesty
Kindness to everyone

7) Do you like your name? 

No

8) If you have the choice to pick your own name, what will it be?

Firenze

9) What is your fantasy dream?

To record with One Direction, Ed Sheeran, and Little Mix

10) Do you wear makeup?

Un poco, a little

11) If you could write a book, what would the title be and what would it be about?

I refuse to answer this! Lol. 

12) What makes you cry?

Downton Abbey

13) What makes you angry?

Downton Abbey

14) What makes you happy?

Downton Abbey

15) What is "Fangirling?"

Ahahahhahahaha! I love this. A fangirl is a girl who is so obsessed over a person, band, TV show, etc. that they cannot get them out of their minds. Fangirling is the art of a fangirl. 

16) What are your 3 favorites snacks?

Ice cream
Popcorn
Strawberries/blueberries

17) What are your 3 favorite foods?

Grilled hamburger
Hawaiian pizza
Asian fried rice

18) What are your 3 favorite drinks?

Hot chocolate
Barqs rootbeer
Iced water

19) Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I can! But I'm too lazy right now :)

20) What are 10 random facts about you?

- I'm going to a One Direction concert
- I'm learning to play guitar
- I'm really tired right now
- I have a lot of math homework
- I just finished a book today
- I have a collection of over 70 Disney movies
- My choir at school is singing Handel's "The Messiah" this spring for our oratorio
- Today was the start of our second semester
- Yesterday I got a dress for our Sadie Hawkins dance in February 
- I want to travel to Europe

21) What are your 3 fun things to do?

Sing
Read
Hang out with friends

January 19, 2014

Just For Fun :)

Hello! I don't have much to say today, so I'll leave you with this picture. I got Pongo! What about you guys? 
Sorry it's a little small, I'm hoping you can zoom in if you can't read it all. 
Mischief Managed,
July


January 14, 2014

Tubesday: Wild Heart

Hey everyone! I've spent the past few days dedicated to studying 24/7 because exams are this week. I had my first one this morning in Spanish, and I basically smashed it! I was a lot more freaked out about it than I needed to be, but I really am glad I did all the studying I did because it would have been a lot harder if I didn't. Tomorrow I have math.... I am nervous, so nervous I can't put into words how nervous I am. So if you remember, say an extra prayer for all the kids taking finals this week!

The deadline for my writing contest is January 16! More details HERE!

Today's Tubesday video is a Wild Heart by The Vamps. I know what you're thinking, "it sounds kinda stupid" because I thought the same thing. When someone told me to look up this song by "The Vamps" I was like ummmm ok... But I did, and I fell in love with the singer's voice. Give it a shot, I think you might enjoy it more than you think :)  I like the song more than the video, and there's one or two parts in the video that I'm just like "eh, really? why?" but through the "eh-ness", I just find them slightly humorous and I hope you'll think the same lol.



Now off to more studying for me!
Mischief Managed,
July

January 12, 2014

Book Review: The Fault in Our Stars

Welcome! 
Before I start my review, I  want to make an announcement. That contest that you've been hearing about? (Click HERE for details or go up to the page called "Contests!" on the bar on top of this post) Well, I finally got enough entries to set a due date! All submissions are due on January 16, 2014. Good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favor. 


This is going to be a very brief review because I really don't have much to say about the book! I wanted to review it because this book was such a hot item off the presses and I wanted to hear your thoughts on it as well! :) 

SPOILER FREE REVIEW! 

Title: The Fault in Our Stars

Author: John Green

Genre: realistic fiction

Synopsis: Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.

Good stuff: I think this book portrayed what it would be like to live with cancer very well. It made me look at my own life and value it more! 
I liked the love story. Throughout the book, I gradually grew to love their relationship more and more. Augustus would do anything for Hazel and it showed. 
Some parts were a little predictable. In a horrible way, I loved the twist at the end because I could never see it coming (that's a lie because someone spoiled it, but if they hadn't...). 
I loved Augustus's analogy where he put a cigarette in his mouth, but never gave it the power to do it's killing. 

Bad stuff: This book had a slight language problem. There was some inappropriate things that could have easily been taken out, but since this is John Green we're talking about, of course they were added. scandalous scene where something scandalous happens. I'll let you guess what. 
As you can tell, I really don't have a positive opinion on John Green. I tried to read another one of his books last year and didn't make it. HERE's the review on that. 
Another thing was, I just didn't connect with the characters! Hazel seemed so shallow and whiney throughout the book, and it didn't seem like she appreciated the life she was living right now. She was always off into the past or future. To me, Hazel always had some negative outlook on things. 
Augustus was kind of creepy at the beginning... Honestly, Hazel just met the guy that day and she's already over at his house sitting next to him on the couch watching movies. She knew nothing about him. 

Rating: 3 out of 5. I wasn't in love with the characters or the plot, but I did like the love story and overall the author had a good intent when he set out to write TFIOS.  

Recommended Readers: High school on. 

Companion Books: None. However they are going to make a movie which I am excited for! 



Comments: Someone thought it would be funny to spoil the ending when they saw me reading it, so I knew what was going to happen. I honestly think that effected my experience negatively while reading the book. I was prepared for what happened, so nothing came as a shock to me. 
I urge you to read it (I think it's worth it), but caution you to be mature and expect this book to a bit racy at times. 




What did you guys think of this book? Comments? Questions it left you with? 

<3 July

January 07, 2014

Tubesday! "The video that states my fate for the next month and a half" otherwise known as FIRST 2014

Good morning everybody! I have a little announcement to make! Can you guess? Well... it just happens to be a special day, that happens to happen on this blog every (well... almost) Tuesday...
IT'S TUBESDAY!!



This isn't gonna be a typical Tubesday. This is going to be epic (for me at least because I'm guessing you guys won't appreciate it like I do). I spent this past Saturday from 8:15 'til dark over at a conference where the the 2014 FIRST game was going to announced. You see, I decided to join my school's robotics team this year as my brother is also on it and he actually wanted me to join! Plus I went to competitions last year and it was actually super fun. You honestly wouldn't understand if you have never been there! 

Every year they introduce a different game and we have to build a robot to perform the tasks. Last year it was Ultimate Ascent where the robot had to shoot frisbees into goals. I made a very unpopular post on my experience off the team last year right HERE

1O7k, I get it. This sounds like the nerdiest thing ever and why should you care? Well it's honestly the coolest thing ever. If you can get to a FIRST competition, do what ever you have to do to be there. Especially if it's in Michigan. Michigan's a party. You'll find out.

Anyway, we got to the conference and it was absolutely packed. Everyone's guess was that the game would either be hockey or a water type thing because neither of those had been done before and they sort of matched up with the clue teams were given. I realllllly wanted it to be hockey because if you don't know me, I LOVE hockey.

Finally after all the speakers, the game was about to be announced....
This was basically me: "Hockey... hockey... hockey..."


It was all introduced in a video. "This year's game is called Aerial Assist!"

I was like:

This does not sound like hockey. 

Here (below) is the actual Tubesday portion of this post! Sorry for all the other rubble you had to dig through for this, ahaha. This is the task and a shortened part of the video we saw. 



The whole time while watching the video for the first time, I was just thinking, "Oh my word, this is so much more complicated than last year. We are never gonna pull this off... oh my word, I can't even function right now."


I was so overwhelmed. Thankfully we got to go into a breakout room for the rest of the day and plan our robot/analyze the video so I understood it and it even makes sense to me now! Well, we have six weeks to build our robot and that is not a lot. I will be completely throwing myself into this and learning as much as I can because I want to be someone active on the team, so that'll make me slightly busy. Wish us luck! And let me know if you have any other questions because I would love to answer them. And be warned, I might write a rant post later about robotics stereotypes ;)

Mischief managed!
July

January 06, 2014

Forgotten Writing Contest!

Hello! We have a snow day today! Well, it's actually a "cold" day it's absolutely freezing! in this fine state of Michigan. 2 degrees Fahrenheit with a negative windchill. Brrr. 

Anyway, a long, long time ago in a far away land, a girl named July announced a contest. It happened to be a writing contest. Time passed and she didn't get many entries so she and everyone else in the kingdom completely forgot about it. Until now.
Morel of the story: ENTER THIS CONTEST! 
This is what I posted a while ago (below), and I'm still looking for more of you lovely people to enter. 
You can also find this information on the bar above this post. Keep looking there for details on future contests! Possibly a giveaway later on? :)

"Hey guys! I think I shall be holding a writing contest!
So basically if you choose to enter you will be writing the best beginning of a story that you can. I will be giving you the topic, and your goal will be to write a quick snippet (200 words or less) that will leave the readers wanting more!
The topic for this one is "disastrous" so whatever that word makes you think of, write about! And be creative!

NOT MY PICTURE
Ok now the rules:
- It must be under 200 words
- One entry only please
- Must be about whatever you think of when you think "disastrous"
- Must be edited to your ability (please don't leave your writing trashy with no corrections at all, but don't worry, I don't expect it to be perfect! haha)
- Please keep it age appropriate and clean! No language will be tolerated!
- Send your entry to julya.emmance@gmail.com

*Note* If I feel that your entry isn't appropriate for this contest, I will not except it, sorry!

Judging Info:
I will not be judging this contest! Your piece will be posted on this blog with credit to you and I will set up a poll for people to vote for their favorite :)
I will collect the entries and as soon as I get four submissions, I will post a due date for all other entries.
The reason I am doing it that was is because I don't want to set a due date right away and get only one or two entries. Please enter! It would make my day :)

Prizes!:
Don't get too excited here..... Buckle your seat belts ladies and gentlemen.....
The person with the most votes wins a guest post on my blog and a lifetime supply of air! There could possibly be something else too but I can't think of another reward right now. Any suggestions?

PLEASE ENTER MY CONTEST I'M BEGGING YOU ALL! And if you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask!
Mischief Managed,
July"

January 03, 2014

Out with the old, in with the new

Hello 2014! I know this is super late, but Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and all that jazz. How were your holidays? Mine where good, but I got miserably sick (with a cold) the Friday after Christmas, so my New Years could have been better and even now I've still got a little bit of something, but it's definitely tapering off.
So I wanted to make this post before, but I've been dreadfully busy this Christmas break. This particular post is mostly going to be about my 2013 literature, so brace yourselves everybody and get ready for take off!

Book reviews of 2013:


  • Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan

I sound so disgusting in this (ha, embarrassing), but this was the first and only video review so let me know if you want more! We had quite a good discussion on it. If you want to join in, click HERE for the original post!


  • T4 by Ann Clare LeZotte

This review wasn't as popular, but I do think the book is worth a read. I actually learned quite a bit from it! Click HERE for the original post!


  • Beastly by Alex Flinn

This was the first book I read of 2013 and I enjoyed it! I forgot about all those book suggestions people gave me and I'll try to remember that this year when I run out of things :) Check it out HERE!


  • The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

I loved and hated this book. Read the review to find out why. Personally, I was excited about the book, but I didn't get a discussion as I wanted. Click HERE to see what it's all about.


Notable books I'd read in 2013: 

1.) Beastly by Alex Flinn, 3.5 magical roses out of 5 (review)

2.) Cloaked by Alex Flinn, 4 high-heeled shoes out of 5

3.) My Brother Sam Is Dead by Collier and Collier, 2 minute-men out of 5

4.) T4 by Ann Clare LeZotte, 4.6 hearing-aids out of 5 (review)

5.) Dare To Dream by One Direction, 4.9 microphones out of 5

6.) Holes by Louis Sachar, 4 golden lipstick-tubes out of 5

7.) Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green/David Levithan, 0 clubs out of 5 (review)

8.) The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith, 3.9 African lions out of 5

9.) Grace, Gold & Glory by Gabrielle Douglas, 5 balance beams out of 5

10.) The Alchemyst by Michael Scott, 4.5 silver auras out of 5

11.) The Magician by Michael Scott, 4.5 golden auras out of 5

12.) The Legend of Sleepy Hallow by Washington Irving, 3 pumpkins out of 5 (HERE)

13.) The Sorceress by Michael Scott, 4.5 crow goddesses out of 5

14.) The Necromancer by Michael Scott, 4.5 archons out of 5

15.) The Book of One Hundred Truths by Julie Schumacher, 3 secrets out of 5

16.) Nightjohn by Gary Paulson, 4 slave plantations out of 5 (very educational)

17.) The Pearl by John Steinbeck, 4 greedy humans out of 5 (boring book, great lesson)

18.) The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne, 4.5 concentration camps out of 5

19.) The Warlock by Michael Scott, 4.3 great aunts out of 5

20.) Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler, 1 movie ticket out of 5

21.) The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson, 3.5 clarinets out of 5 (review)

22.) The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness, 4 talking dogs out of 5

23.) Tadpole by Ruth White, 2.5 guitar strings out of 5

24.) The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, 4 mockingjay pins out of 5

25.) Reality Check by Peter Abrahams, 4 "missing person" posters out of 5

26.) The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness, 3.999999 new best friends out of 5

27.) Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness, 3.5 Spackle out of 5

28.) The Fault in our Stars by John Green, 3.5 cancerous tumors our of 5


Well, that's all I got right now. Enjoy, and please check out my 2014 book in the same place where 2013's was :) I've already gotten a book knocked down!

Mischief Managed,
July