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Sunday, March 29, 2015

Hi from Arizona

Good day!

So if you read the title, the reason I didn't post last week was because I was out visiting my mom in Arizona. It was incredibly fun: I went on two hikes, went to a Royals Spring Training Game, went shopping, visited the Musical Instrument Museum, saw a Coyote's hockey game, and had a general good time. It was kind of like a mini Spring Break. The only part I didn't like were the two RATTLESNAKES I saw on one of the hikes. Very creepy, somewhat scary (considering one shook his tail at Mom), and something I didn't need to see. :P But all in all, a very good trip.

Work has been going well. I'm still watching over the Music/DVD section a lot, and this week I did a DVD look over for the first time. It's like a CD look through when you're checking for rogue tags, but with the DVDs. And the person working before me had done half of them, so I didn't have to do the whole section. Unfortnately I had to look over the TV DVD section, which is the biggest section of the store with really high walls; there was so much to do it took two shifts to look it over. Please just stick me with the CDs next time, please!

In other work news, I think I got asked the stupidest question by a customer to date. I was working the mall entrance when it happened. You see, across from the B&N mall door is this station of shopping carts for kids; you know, the ones with the little plastic cars built in for the kid to sit while Mommy shops. You basically put quarters in the machine to rent it out, then bring it back when you're done. Well apparently one machine ate the quarters but didn't hand out a cart, so this lady came over and reported it to me. This came completely out of nowhere; I never thought I'd hear anything about this, considering it's SO obvious B&N and the cart dispensers are two separate companies. Of course, I didn't point that out, and simply told her to inform the mall security about it. But that was one thing I never saw myself getting asked because, like I said, it's so completely obvious B&N doesn't control the carts! Use your eyes and observe, people! If I ever get asked/informed about this again, it'll be too soon. 

The internship with The Fashion Foot goes on! Thankfully the writers took note of the boss's email telling them to pay attention to the editor's notes, because their work has been looking better this week. Or course, that's to say they're not perfect; some of their mistakes leave me thinking "How in the world did you forget to do this?", but they're better. And with my advice, they'll get as close to perfect as they can. As it is, there's a line of Sailor Moon-themed bags coming out in Japan, snake skin is in (the irony), and bold, bright stripes are the latest trend. I actually saw some of the bags, and they're pretty cute, but I don't know what to say about the stripes. I'm picky when it comes to patterns, not to mention the whole 'horizontal stripes make you look fat' thing. What do you think of patterns in clothing?

In MOA-27, I've reached what I think to be a real breakthrough in the story. The gang's still in Thayer's hideout, but the breakthrough isn't plot; it's a realization. Basically, with all the trouble of the last mission and losing Len, Ursele has come to see that Moa is a completely different person than who she was before. Aria, Moa's former self, is dead, and Ursele's been holding onto hope that Moa would be just like Aria. But the mission's made her realize differently, and Ursele says as such, apologizing for her behavior and saying how she would like to get to know Moa. It's so deep writing this, thinking about what kind of release and discovery this is; it's sad, but so wonderful to write. Scenes like this are the things stories are made of. The problem now is, does Shawney and Thayer ever come to this realization as well? And do they want to?

Bi-Weekly (Dis)Likes:

Like 1: My trip to Arizona. See above.

Like 2: Running into more old friends! This time my guy friend Chris popped up out of the blue during a break cover shift, and it was really nice to see him. We talked about school and jobs and stuff, and it was really fun catching up. I really should Facebook him!

Dislike 1: Venomous snakes. Constrictors I like, and think are cool, but poisonous snakes like rattlesnakes just creep me out. It's something that can kill you, and you're standing only a yard away from it; who wouldn't feel freaked out about that?

And quote:

"Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else." -Judy Garland


Sunday, March 15, 2015

Not So Surprising Customers

Howdy, y'all!

Work was fine this week. I was actually at the mall cash register most of the time, and we all know what that's like. Though to be fair, I did have a lot of customers on Saturday (because it was Saturday), and two of them were my grandparents! Despite me working at Barnes & Noble for so long, they haven't had the chance to come up and see in my workspace. But they made time this week, and they saw me ringing up and talking to customers and said I did a good job. My grandmother also got her membership renewed by me (which is good, since I could always use more numbers), and it was just a nice little talk out and about the home.

For my internship, I finally broke down and sent a message to my boss explaining my concerns about my notes being ignored by my writers. As it turns out, ignoring editor notes seems to be a trend among all the writers for The Fashion Foot, and she promised to send a letter out to all the writers about it. I think it worked, because the pieces I edited this week were neater than usual. On the other hand, there's this one writer of mine (let's call her C) who actually sent me a note asking how she could be a better writer. Not that that was bad in itself, but it gave me the feeling that she didn't get my boss's note about reading the editor's notes, so I had to basically remind her to look over the stuff I write every week. On top of that, C posts her stuff late and doesn't add enough tags to her work, so I have to wait to get it done. According to her, she has computer difficulties, and maybe she does, but if this continues, I'm going to have another Megan on hand (you remember the one writer who posted stuff late at night?), so I'm thinking of sending another note to the boss and asking her to 'check in' on C and confirm some things for me. Let's get this figured out!

With MOA-27, we're just about in the latest hideout, a building under the Underground. From there out lovely heroes need to work out a new plan, but given their surroundings and how everything's gone for them so far, they're a little desperate. Maybe the head of evil cyborg M.O.A-35 will provide some clues, but how. More importantly, is Moa wanting to know the complete truth? It's getting to the point where she knows she can't turn away since she's in too deep, but she's also getting hesitant about going any farther because she's actually starting to worry about what she may find. What will she find? Only I know! But seriously, it's fun envisioning Moa's transformation and getting it all down in words. I really like this manuscript, and I'm so happy I thought it up.

Weekly (Dis)Likes:

Like 1: Grandparents popping in at work to say hello. See above for more details.

Like 2: Book club. The parents have been asking me to do something fun, so I've joined a book club. It's actually hosted at Mysteryscape (the bookstore where I had my Swamp Angel signing) and it's a sci-fi/fantasy club, so I'm looking forward to it. We're reading The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy for April, and I can't wait to read it.

Like 3: I got my hair cut this week over at the salon my grandma frequents. It's a good place full of experienced hair dressers; my hair's never looked better. Of course, it doesn't hurt that they tell my grandmother how much they love and want my hair. :)

Dislike 1: ... (I actually can't think of anything bad that happened this week. There was nothing terribly exciting, but nothing bad either. ^_^)

And quote!

"Your only obligation in any lifetime is to be true to yourself." -Richard Bach (the quote I chose for my senior high school yearbook)

See ya next week,

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Little Visits

Salutations, my lovelies!

Just like last week, this week of work was quite slow. I was placed in the music/DVD department for all of my shifts, and when I wasn't helping customers or watching whatever was showing at the moment (there's currently a choice between The Boxtrolls, The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, or Arthur's Fountain Abbey), I got to stroll around and look at interesting movies and CD's. It's actually the most peaceful part of the store, even more so the mall cash register (ironic given it's the section where all the noisemakers are), but you still have to keep an eye on customers so they don't walk out of the section with an unpaid disk of some sort (because we prefer people paying for music/movies in the music/movies sections). Probably the most exciting thing that happened at work was getting a call in order to put a record on hold (we do sell records and record players). I was able to find it, and the whole process went smoothly which made me happy that I was able to help someone. But this week, turtle fast as it was, still wasn't without its frustrations, and that was the fact two customers hung up on me when I (politely) told them we didn't have the item they were looking for in stock. One guy at least actually said, "Thank you" before hanging up, but the other customer was all, "Oh, I see," before dropping the call. They could have at least held on for me to offer to order whatever they needed. I mean, it's not like these two people were the worst customers ever, or that their behavior ruined my day, but should they have been so abrupt about it? I don't know, but what's done is done. Carry on, Colleen!

I got a break with my internship this week. For reasons unknown two of my writers were temporarily switched with two others, and I only had to edit five pieces this week! Of course, I still did a fabulous job cleaning them up, and in turn learned abut Fashion Week in Milan (pastels and roses are in), and saw Kate Middleton in her swanky maternity wear (when I have kids, I hope I can look that good). And there's some new hair product out by the Kardashians (not a fan of them, but at least they're no Jersey Shore. Yuck!) that I may want to try on my hair. Apparently their Smooth Styler Blow Dry Cream is a miracle worker for frizzy hair, which sounds like exactly what I need, because as much as I love my curly hair, I end up wearing it in a ponytail about 75% of the time because of how messy it can regardless of what I put in it. Maybe this will help (or maybe I just need to learn what I actually need to do to keep it under control).

To my latest about my book, let's get to the main antagonist now that all our heroes have been covered. Out bad guy is Dr. Kendarius Bentwood, who's the CEO of New Horizons Labs, the number one science organization in Renatola, and the Chairman of Science Studies on the Illusions King's council (the Illusion King is king of all Renatola, and like with our own government, certain officials are selected to the king's council to watch over certain parts of the government; ie, Bentwood modulates all technological/scientific study to make sure it's beneficial and doesn't break any rules). He's a really important figure in Renatola life, but as the readers, we know better! After all, he's broken the 'no cyborg' rules by creating Moa and her fellow M.O.A's for a purpose only he knows of, and he has everyone fooled into thinking Moa's some some runaway robot meant for police use that's been programed wrong. He's paternal in the sense he knows more than what he lets on, he's always exceedingly calm to the point where he doesn't show any negative emotion, and he keeps his card close to his chest; despite Moa and her friend's best efforts, they have discovered little of what Bentwood's planning on. And if he does his best, it'll stay that way.

Well, that was kind of dark. Let's lighten things up with some Weekly (Dis)Likes:

Like 1: I got to see my sister and dad this weekend! They came flying in thanks to some short school/work breaks, and it was great to see them since I've missed them so much. We got to spend Saturday together, and it was a good day: Dad and I had ate out, then we drove up to UMKC to see what the campus is like (it's enormous compared to Knox, but thankfully it's all in one place AND it's only a few blocks away from the fabulous Kansas City Plaza). Once that was done, we met up with Maggie, and we ended up going to the Prairiefire Museum and saw their free dinosaur displays before having dinner with the grandparents. It was all good fun, and it's always great to see family even for a little while. Love you guys!

Like 2: My official acceptance letter for UMKC came in the mail! Little beats the pride of seeing an acceptance letter when you've worked really hard on earning it. A bunch of paperwork came with it telling me what I need to do next (much less fun filling that stuff out), but I've gotten some of it done, and there's no immediate rush on anything. I'm just still so happy I got in.

Like 3: Dad fixed my car. Remember when I said the front dome light wasn't turning off so I had to remove the light bulbs? I'm kinda embarressed to admit it, but it turns out there's these two hidden buttons on the dome that can turn one light on and off, so I guess I somehow clicked one button, turned it on, and thought the bulb or the wiring was to blame. Oops. :P But everything's back together, and I don't have to spend money of getting it looked over. Car problems solved!

Dislike 1: Customers who just hang up on the phone. See above.

And quote!

"The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step." -Lao Tzu

Love you all,

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Slip N' Slide

Hello, my lovely readers!

So work was very quiet this week, with two night shifts in the music/DVD department and another being a cover for everyone's fifteen minute break. Not too much to report, but during one shift when it was really slow, my boss brought out some construction paper, markers, and stickers to make a 'scrapbook' with the tally sheets we've been keeping. Remember those? The new policy where cashiers mark down how many emails, memberships, etc. we get? Well me and some of my coworkers got to to go through through them all, pull out the best, then tape them onto the construction paper that everyone had decorated. I'm quite proud to say that many of my own tally sheets were picked out and posted, and I can't wait to see the results when I go in for my next shift. Hopefully this will give everyone the drive to do their best and work harder!

My internship is going smoothly as can be. Not much is happening here either, but I'm still enjoying it. It's hard not to when I get to learn about all sorts of interesting fashion stuff. Like, do you know there's a perfume out there that costs $1,150 because of the jasmine ingredients and crystal bottle!? And on there's this campaign for making a line of gender-neutral shoes. I've actually looked over the webpage, and the ankle boots are pretty cute. Again, I'm no shopaholic, but I like good clothes and looking good, so it's nice getting all sorts of tips from editing these articles. It also helps that I get exposure to some nice merchandise I'd like to buy myself. For instance, this week there was an article about tank tops from, and I fell in love with this one:

I'd like to think this suits me. Another something for my mental wishlist (to be used for birthdays and Christmas only!).

I haven't heard anything on the book front, but speaking of books, let's pick up on where I left off last week talking about M.O.A-27. Now if you recall, I was talking about the Underground and the role it plays both in the story and with one of our main characters Thayer Hooliban, since you can't understand the man Thayer is without knowing about where he came from. But now we can talk about him, so here it goes. Thayer Hooliban is a friend of Shawney's, though it hasn't been revealed yet how they met. He (Thayer) is a full ungudie, born and raised in the Underground, where he lives and workers as a professional fighter in the Underground fighting ring known as the Tar Pits (because that's where you got to get the tar beaten out of you). He's one of the best, and how he fights is a good reflection of what he's like as a person; vicious, lethal, quick, and crude, but still realizes the value of life, which is why he doesn't follow the 'kill the loser' policy of the Tar Pit. He visits his Renatolian friends frequently, being one of the handful that go up on a frequent basis, and takes exceptinal pleasure in poking, prodding, and generally annoying the hell out of Ursele (like a little preschool boy with his first crush? That just may be). But for all his swearing, scruffy appearance, and lack of manners, he's a loyal and decent person who likes his friends and is more than willing to help Moa figure out the mystery she's in the middle of.

Now, to our regularly scheduled Weekly (Dis)Likes:

Like 1: Face Off. For those who don't know what that is, it's an epically awesome contest show of the Sci-Fi channel based around movie makeup and effects. Each week the contestants have to make some type of creature based off a prompt with molding latex and rubber into these awesome costumes. It's just amazing to see the creative process at work with the sketching and the creating and the final results. Not to mention I love creating creatures as well (though getting them to look like what I imagined on a piece of paper is a whole other story). I've known the show existed for a while, and I even saw a few episodes before, but this week I had the chance to catch up and watch this season up to its most current episode, so there are definite plans to continue watching.

Dislike 1: Ice on the road. We got a lot of snow here, which has led me to the discovery that I HATE driving on icy roads. Coming home from work last night was horrible; I went under the speed limit, and I still felt the tires sliding around underneath me at times. I got home safe and sound with no damage to my car, but I can't wait for the roads to clear up.

And quote!

"Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn't be done." -Amelia Earhart 
See you later,