Wednesday, 5 July 2017

TV Shows That Are Taking Over Me + I'M GOING ON HOLIDAYS TOMORROW WHICH MEANS HIATUS TIME


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I'm sure that by now, if you've been reading this blog for a while (and if not, hello!) you've probably guessed that I'm fond of many, many things. For example, I really like mint-flavoured hot chocolate, which my family insists is repugnant. I have a certain amount of affection for anything with an owl on it (because they're my spirit animal with their big eyes, insomnia and easy-to-scare-ness).

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Also, I love television shows. Mostly fantasy ones, although legal dramas are beginning to take up my recommendation list nowadays too. And I've decided that I'm going to throw them all at you wonderful people, because what's the fun in obsessions if you can't share them with others?

How To Get Away With Murder


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I will forever recommend this show to everybody I meet. In a nutshell, a group of smarticle particles and their mildly-terrifying professor get tied up in a twisted murder case, as well as the murder that they themselves have committed, and have to deal with that whilst simultaneously taking cases, doing homework and making stupid decisions regarding their love life (Rebecca Sutter = literal ball of slime).
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This show has got sass, it's got class, it's got fiercely intelligent people accidentally killing other people, and most importantly....it's got Viola Davis. 'Nuff said. (#MakeViolaPresident2k17)

Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency


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This show is so precious and so completely brain-boggling that I couldn't not put it on this list. The story follows Todd, a hotel bell-hop with a life that is slowly being flushed down the toilet, and begins with the day he gets fired from his job and discovers a grisly murder scene.

Shortly after, he meets Dirk Gently, a strange dude with a jacket brighter than my outlook on life and who claims to be a 'holistic detetctive' who deals in fate and coincidences and mysteries of the universe. Dirk enlists Todd as his assistant as they try to solve the murder, but soon it becomes a lot more than that.

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I'm going to be honest with you: this show is the biggest mindf-ck I've ever experienced. The ending is so unpredictable, I CANNOT WAIT FOR SEASON 2, and the way everything connects and resolves is strange and you're going to need to follow closely (and do a bit of thinking) to wrap your head around it. Plus, it ended in a couple of completely mad situations that i'm dying to know the outcome of.

So yeah, please watch so I can share my shock.

Merlin


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Merlin is a precious ball of sass

This is a new one for me. I'm currently half-way through the second season and although some of the CGI is a little cringe-worthy, as a self-confessed mythology geek I fell in love with the characters and the plot. Basically, this show follows the adventures of a teenage Merlin who arrives in Camelot to learn under his mentor, Gaius, about how to control his magical abilities.

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However, in Camelot practicing magic is a crime and Merlin must keep his abilities hidden, whilst simultaneously using them to protect his (eventual) best friend and the prince of Camelot, Arthur, until he can take the throne and bring magic back to Camelot.

I love Arthurian legend, and I really love this show and how they put a unique spin on it. Just don't judge it immediately during the first season, because it was fairly low-budget, but the story is great.

Shadowhunters


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I'll admit; season one of this show was a bit of a disappointment. But they got new showrunners in season two and completely kicked everything up a notch and now? It's honestly one of my favourite shows. I love the characters, the plot, the relationships and the shocking twists and turns of the storylines. The actors are amazing, especially Harry Shum Jr. (aka Magnus Bane) and Will Tudor (aka Sebastian).

I understand a lot of the book fans don't like how the show has changed some things, but I think it was necessary. What's the fun in watching a show if you know everything that's going to happen? Shadowhunters has just gone into Season 2B and so far, I'm loving it and highly recommend it (just, don't judge on the sub-par season 1).


Do you watch any of these shows? Have I convinced you to join the dark side of television? Tell me, and don't be afraid to mention some of your favourite shows too (I'm always looking for new stuff to watch).

Also, I'll be on a two-week hiatus due to my family going on holiday abroad tomorrow. I'm so excited, and see you in two weeks!

- Sunset xx

Monday, 26 June 2017

NEW Character Karaoke Tag + I Have A New Writing Space!


Image result for dans diss track gif a month without uploading

Aloha, wizards of the Internet! Much like young Daniel in the unfortunate image above, I've gone a long time without uploading and come back with a tag (comment if you're special and get the reference), and there's no other explanation than the following: studying, exams (which have officially ended so expect more regular posting *finally*) and packing for my holiday abroad which I AM BUZZING ABOUT ASDFGHJKL -

But anyways, let's get back to what's really important, shall we? I speak of course about the resurrected Character Karaoke Tag, coming to a computer screen near you! *finger clicks*


First, a little recap: The Character Karaoke Tag focuses on music + writing, and how we use certain songs to apply to certain things within our writing. Also, it is a chance to discover new music and gain a deeper insight into the emotions that go into both the songs we listen to, the scenes/characters we write and our interpretations of them.

But hey, enough rambling. Let's get this party started.

RULES:

  • Link back to the blog of whoever nominates you (because being polite is cool)
  • Answer the questions
  • Nominate some friends to participate!

Now for the questions!


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Aww, how sweet! It's your OTP's wedding day...what song is playing during their first dance?


Arwen's Promise - Eurielle


I LOVE EURIELLE and this song perfectly describes the relationship between Dane and Lex, especially the lyrics I've included below. I think this would definitely be their wedding song, no doubt.

Significant Lyric: Since the first time I saw you, I knew // The shadows in your heart withdrew // Though the world grows darker every day... // Nothing can dim or extinguish this flame // Ignited long ago.


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Do any of your characters play an instrument/have a special relationship with music?


I'm glad you asked (even though you didn't, it was me, I am the ask-er). In These Darkened Hours there is a prince (he's Greek and beautiful and I don't want to harm him but I kinda have to *sobbing noises*) named Dane....he plays the fiddle. Because why the hell not.

No, he actually plays it because he sees music as a slim piece of beauty in a darkened (geddit?) world and it is his chosen form of escapism. He taught himself to play, and I chose this instrument for him because I really like the sound of fiddle music and I have a friend who can play like the fiddle-equivalent of Lindsey Stirling.

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What song(s) best describe your protagonist(s)?


Nessa:  Building A Monster - Skylar Grey


First of all, let's talk about Nessa: she's the younger twin and the definition of 'looks like they could kill you and probably would'. She's spent her life bouncing around group and foster homes with her brother, and something happened in one of them that both twins refer to as The Incident. Because of this, the lyrics 'this angel has lost her wings // I'm building a monster // beneath all the scars that you see' are especially poignant. The entire song just seems made for her, and I love it.

Lex:  Warrior - Aurora


Next up for dissection is Lex: he's the eldest Mac Artian twin and an introvert, with a compassionate heart. Although he is known for being gentle, when it comes to protecting the ones he loves and cares for Lex can be ruthless. That's why this song describes him so well, as the lyrics 'I fall asleep in my own tears // I cry for the world, for everyone' indicate his compassion and empathy for the world around him, and yet the next lyrics 'I stand behind a crowd of people and thoughts // Mind-controlling // And I hold a sword to guide me' also hint at his more ruthless, calculating side. (Also, 'mind-controlling' is one of his powers so...coincidence I think not)

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What's Your Go-To Song For Writing Battle/Romance/Intense Scenes?


Necrosis - Christian Baczyk ft. Laura Auseni // Worlds Collide - League of Legends ft. Nicki Taylor


Okay, I cheated and picked two songs here. For battle scenes, compositions are my go-to for inspiration and I find them really inspiring. I think it's the dramatic-ness (?) of the music, especially Christian Baczyk's pieces. Necrosis is quite heavy and mystical, which is great for magic duels and battles (which are everywhere in my WIP).

The second piece is a song from League of Legends, and I plan my battle scenes to it rather than listen to it as I write. Nevertheless, it's awesome, and the lyrics just add to the awesomeness and are great for writing inspiration.

Significant Lyric: We are the ones to ignite the darkened skies // The champions of a world that we defy // A solemn reign of the few who rise up high // And we all fight // At the last light


Well, that was fun! I forgot how much I enjoyed doing these things: and now, I'm going to force others to do the same because I'm nice like that.

I nominate: Ellie, Abigail Lennah, Jo, Abbiee and Adaline

Have fun!

- Sunset xx

P.S - I got a new writing space! It's cosy and small and I'd live in it like a hermit if I could.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Introducing My (WIP) Children To The Universe


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For anyone who hasn't read the posts about my current geeky-mythology-loving WIP (which I am really excited to begin), These Darkened Hours is the title I have finally settled on, and it focuses on Irish/a little Greek mythology combining when two twins are dragged kicking and screaming (literally, in one of their cases) into a world of magic and corruption and hidden agendas and BEAUTIFUL GREEK PRINCES OF DARKNESS THAT MAKE ME WANT TO CRY.

And because I've been kind of secretive about it thus far, I have decided to share some of my characters with you beautiful people.

Mostly because I want to get your opinions, and mostly because I'm itching to use Pinterest again.





    Vanessa 'Nessa' Mac Artian




  • Nessa is my fiery little trouble-making redhead.

  • She is also the youngest half of the Mac Artian twins, and cares deeply about her brother (Lex, my bookish little muffin)

  • Has a bit of a problem when it comes to authority (translation: she doesn't like it very much) and has a little bit of a temper.

  • Her abilities are more energy-based than others. She can create forcefields, sense the life-force of nearby organisms and conjure portals to anywhere that she can picture.

QUOTE: "My name and 'nice' are not usually used in the same sentence unless there's a negative in there somewhere"



Alexander 'Lex' Mac Artian



  • My little bookish nerd with white magic abilities (healing, etc). But in TDH, white magic also entails powers of the mind, e.g sensing emotions, infiltrating others subconscious minds, etc.

  • Lex is quite introverted, and a total book fanatic. He is used to hiding behind his sister's loud persona, but throughout the novel realises his own potential and begins to emerge from her shadow (but doesn't go through that annoying 'fix-the-introvert' process that annoys me so much in YA. Like, a protagonist can be an introvert and still be a badass. Grr.)

  • He is very skilled with an archer's bow, and it is his preferred weapon in battle.


QUOTE: "We cannot change what we are, but we do have a say in what we become"


Dane Angelides


                                                          
  • Dane is my aforementioned Greek prince of darkness, (as in, he is Greek and has magical abilities that involve manipulating darkness). He has quite...an eventful life, shall we say. His mother (Carman, the main antagonist of my WIP) has taken over a magical realm where everybody hates him because of his bloodline, his brothers are literally the biggest d-bags to ever walk the face of the realm, and to top it all off? He's cursed. Quite literally, cursed. What fun.

  • He can be quite hostile, at times. The first time he ever meets Lex he holds a knife to his throat. Although the reason behind his hostility towards strangers is later revealed, needless to say it doesn't exactly win him many friends in the playground.

  • Dane is also a highly skilled strategist. When he eventually joins the Tuatha (supernatural rebellion fighting against Carman's reign), he quickly becomes one of their most esteemed strategists due to his quick-thinking and logical, analytical mind.

QUOTE: "I've hurt so many people...but I refuse to be the one who hurts you"



There you have it; the three main characters of TDH. I apologise for the shortness of this post, but I have an ICT test tomorrow and WOWZA is there a lot to learn. And with that, off I pop to flail in the face of the education  system.

Hail and farewell,

- Sunset xx

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Recently + The End (Of Exams) Is Near


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I haven't posted in a century, and I don't want to insult everybody with some long-winded excuse so I'll say this: exams have arrived with a bang, and my studying has taken top priority for me and as a result my blogging has slipped. Slightly. For now.

But as the title of this post suggests, the end of the exam period is near! I have three more exams left to complete (History, Biology and Chemistry) before I get a little break, and then just when I begin to relax...I have internal assessments to complete. Then, at long last, I shall be free from the merciless grasp of examinations.

And so during this study-break (which I am adamant to take. I need to step away for a while before I fry my brain) I have written a list of what's been happening recently, and whether or not you asked for it, here goes nothing:

Bookology


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Currently reading:

Captain Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernières - I'm almost finished and this book is so beautiful. The setting is the island of Cephalonia during the Italian and German occupation of the Second World War. It's awesome, and from the first chapter I was swept away by it as I have personal ties to Greece and the imagery and description of the island brought back gorgeous and fond memories.

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou - A remarkable book written by a remarkable woman. Read it, I implore you.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater - I DIDN'T WANT TO MISS OUT BECAUSE EVERYBODY'S SHOUTING ABOUT THIS BOOK. Also, I was quite wary of reading it because my expectations were so high after all the hype....I was not disappointed. I'm nearly finished, and these boys (and Blue, my sensible little muffin) already have taken their rightful places in my heart. And ripped it to pieces.

Netflix + TV Shows


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Shadowhunters - MY CHILDREN ARE RETURNING JUNE 6th AND MY POOR HEART CANNOT TAKE THE WAIT. So much has gone down, and I honestly think that season 2b will be even better than 2a. They've improved so much since season 1 (which I'll admit was kind of disappointing). I'm begging you, if you gave up on season 1, give season 2 a try. I fell back in love with the show, just as I did with the books, and June cannot arrive fast enough.

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How To Get Away With Murder - A new favourite, and I can't get enough of it. Seriously, my sleeping schedule was severely disrupted for a while when I first started watching, but I've since gained some self control because....you know...exams and stuff. Connor is my favourite morally-grey character in the world, VIOLA DAVIS IS A GIFT TO HUMANITY SOMEONE MAKE THIS LADY PRESIDENT, and to top it all off? Wes Gibbens. If anybody hurts him I will literally dissolve in a pool of my own tears.

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The 100 - This season has not disappointed me thus far. So much has gone down, so many twists and turns, I don't even know if half of my children are going to survive and I NEED TO KNOW. Also, I really need Bellarke to happen this season. I just do. And I need Octavia to survive and Monty and JUST STOP KILLING MY KIDS.

Purchases


Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare - ASDFGHJKL I love the Shadowhunter Chronicles so very much, and this latest instalment is going to be a great read. I already know. But I've heard something devastating happens at the end....and I don't want to be shattered like I was with book one...*gulp*

The Assassin's Creed Trilogy - I picked this up on a whim because the games are just so damn good and I hope these books will be too...the covers are pretty anyway so fingers crossed!


I have a history exam tomorrow, so away I go to study now. Wish me luck, and I'll see you on the other side (of exam season).

- Sunset xx

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Mystery Blogger Award + Random Facts About Me You Didn't Need To Know




Mystery Blogger Award


The amazing Adaline tagged me for this award, and I'm so excited to be doing it so a huge thank-you for nominating me!


The Rules
 

  • Put the award logo/image on your blog
  • List the rules
  • Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well
  • Tell your readers 3 things about yourself
  • You nominate 10 – 20 people
  • Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog
  • Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify) (gonna cheat here and just re-use Adaline's because laziness)
  • Share a link to your best post(s)

“Mystery Blogger Award” is an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging; and they do it with so much love and passion. Award was created by Okoto Enigma @ Okoto Enigma. You should check the blog out!

Who is your all-time favourite book character? (and yes, i know it's torture, but you have to try to narrow it down to at least a few ;) )


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WHY MUST YOU DO THIS TO ME??!?

Okay, after much thought and deliberation, I have decided upon Magnus Bane from the Shadowhunter universe, mostly because he's awesomeness embodied and is a grade-A badass but also because he's unapologetically himself, and is so accepting of other people and proud of who is that I can't help but love him.


what writing style aggravates you the most? (ex: books heavy on the description, flowery prose, etc.)


I like to think I'm pretty open-minded when it comes to different writing styles, but books that use cliché descriptions just kind of aggravate me because it becomes so repetitive. Like no thanks, just keep your 'surfer-blonde hair' and about a million other clichés offered to us on a daily basis and shove them-

favourite book cover?


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I'm going to cheat here...I love the cover of all Infernal Devices books, and they're all totally mesmerising. I mean, look at Jem; that 'don't-touch-me' expression and the badass jade cane...I recommend this series to everybody who asks (and most of the time, people don't but hush)

thoughts on the trend of pages being made super thin in order to make long books look smaller?


Sneaky, sneaky.

what book do you hate that you can't understand why everyone else loves?


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Cute-patoot contemporaries aren't really my thing, but this book in particular I just....couldn't get into. I didn't really care for the main character, and it's a shame because I'd heard good things and thought if I dipped my toe into the murky waters that are contemporaries I might....not regret it....

Oh, how naïve I once was.

Random factoids about me:



1. I am terrified of aeroplanes, bees and customer service.

2. I once got myself locked inside a bathroom and my uncle had to remove the door handle to free the imprisoned me.

3. I've recently dyed my hair again, this time a lighter shade of brown with blonde through it. I have to say, I'm quite a fan of it.

Okay, so I nominate....

YOU!


Hail and farewell,

- Sunset xx


Monday, 15 May 2017

May Writing Playlist + Exams Hath Returned To Antagonise Me


I've been trying to put together a writing playlist for These Darkened Hours, and needless to say it's been...difficult. I mean, why are there no songs that completely and utterly relate to every single scene that pops into my sleep-deprived head? (pfft, it's a conspiracy)

I usually have this problem with writing playlists when I'm writing a high fantasy novel: it is simply very hard to find songs that apply to my WIP. Maybe my standards are too high. Maybe I'm just too picky.

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But so far, I've found some pretty good songs! I mean, I'd like to get more, and maybe broaden my horizons in terms of genre, etc. but the search continues, and in the meantime I've fallen in love with so many different artists and songs.

So below I have compiled a list of these songs along with a brief description of why I have picked them/ for what purpose.

1. "Carry Me" by Eurielle

While you sleep, dream of me // I’ll be keeping our memories // Living in my heart and soul // Waiting for the day // When we will be together again

This song is so pure, so beautifully written and performed that I had to include it in this list. I've chosen it in relation to not just a specific scene, but to a specific plotline *hint hint* and story within my WIP. It relates to it so much, and honestly is the perfect song for it. The lyrics describe it perfectly, I almost want to cry. Plus, Eurielle is amazing.

2. "Assassin's Creed III" by Lindsey Stirling

Whilst the video game is awesome, this song is (dare I say it?) just as good. Despite there being no words, just Lindsey with her good ol' violin, it's awesome for some of my magic-fight scenes and great to plot/write to, as is many of Lindsey Stirling's work. She's great, you should definitely check her out.

3. "City of the Dead" by Eurielle

I'm scared of what is in my head // What's inside my soul // I feel like I'm running, but getting nowhere // Fear is suffocating me // I can't breathe // I feel like I'm drowning, I'm sinking deeper

Yep, she's back. I think the chorus of this song is in Latin, which only makes it sound even better, and it's so dramatic and great for writing epic battle scenes, particularly those involving (you guessed it) magic.


Feels like I'm falling, // Into a world // I can't control // I hear it calling, // Down in my soul. // Gripping my bones, // It won't let go.

Ruelle has always been a long-time favourite of mine, and this song in particular is very good for describing my protagonists and helping me get into their mind-sets to write about them.

5. "Homeostasis" by Nostalghia

I'm changing // I'm spinning // I'm morphogenic // ...I'm tired // I'm wasting // I'm morphogenic

I'll admit, when I first heard this song, I found it a little...strange. But then I realised it was a really cool kind of strange, and I've honestly never heard a song performed like this. It's unique, definitely, and I'd encourage you to form your own opinion about it. For me, this song helps me with regards to my main antagonist, Carman, as it helps me get into her head and get the feel of her, you know? Give it a shot. You might be surprised.

Talk to me! What's some of your favourite songs? I would LOVE to hear your recommendations, I'm in desperate need of new material. Do you have a writing playlist?

Hail and farewell, until next time,

- Sunset xx

PS - Posting may be kind of erratic due to exams, which I've got for a couple weeks and are really important at the moment. Will try my best to keep posting, though, so stay tuned!

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Beautiful People - How To Parent Twins Whilst Being Trapped In Another Dimension


PAPERFURY

Beautiful People is a blog writing meme hosted by Sky @ Further Up and Further and Cait @ Paper Fury, and if you've been reading this blog for a while then you'll know that I try my very best to participate in this whenever I can, mostly because I want to throw my WIP in the air and dance and sing about it but also because it's awesome and you should check out both girls' blogs!

Okay, so this edition is based around parents/parental figures....which is going to be strange for me, because the parents I'm focusing on happen to be two absent parent-gods (Becuille, who dies in chapter one, and Dagda, who is sort-of trapped in another realm) and their twins Nessa and Lex.



Overall, how good is their relationship with their parents?

Nessa and Lex never met their mother, as she died after giving birth to them. Their father, Dagda, became consumed by grief (after being trapped in another realm) and torn apart from Becuille and his children by a law which forbids gods from having children together, as their offspring become immensely powerful and could rival heaven itself.

So neither Lex nor Nessa have met their biological parents in person (at least, not yet...), but they were raised in our world by a hotshot lawyer named Monica and her husband Bryan. They were pretty nice people, and their relationship was good, if a little distant. Until they die too, via evil Queen Carman's minions. (I'm so nice to my characters)


Do they know both their biological parents? If not, how do they cope with this loss/absence and how has it affected their life?

(See above)

Um, with regards to how the absence of their biological parents has affected them, needless to say it's had a significant impact upon their lives. Because they have no other family except for each other, Nessa and Lex have become extremely close and intensely protective of each other; so much so that when Lex is abducted, his sister doesn't have to think twice about going after him, regardless of the perils she may encounter.


How did their parents meet?
Becuille and Dagda, who are Nessa and Lex's biological parents, were once gods who resided in the holy realm from which the rest of the gods looked over Eirean and the respective powers they were in charge of: Becuille was the goddess of white magic, and Dagda was the most revered and respected god of all as the god of creation, the one who had brought magic itself to Eirean and was considered amongst mortals to be the King of the Godly Realm (like Zeus, etc.). They spent a lifetime being close with one another, before gradually falling in love and long story short, Becuille became pregnant with twins.

This was a problem, as there is a law that forbids gods from producing children together as their offspring, known as a 'bloodchild', are born immensely powerful with abilities to rival heaven itself. When Becuille's pregnancy was discovered, the gods decreed she be stripped of her powers and cast to Earth in disgrace. Knowing that the procedure to rip away her magic ran the (very high) risk of killing her unborn twins, Dagda and Becuille sneaked away and he created a portal for her to escape the godly realm from, taking their twins with her.

Then she died. The kids ended up in the modern world, and Dagda was left to pick up the broken pieces.

(Did I just ramble about their backstory yes I did and I regret nothing)

How would they feel if they were told “you’re turning out like your parent(s)”?

After learning more about their parents, Nessa and Lex would be proud to be compared to them. They were valiant, fair gods and loved by heaven and earth alike. They would be chuffed.

What were your character’s parents doing when they were your character’s age?

*sweats nervously* Godly-things?

Is there something they adamantly disagree on?

Becuille had a much more ruthless attitude than Dagda, and so they frequently argued over politics, etc. Becuille believed in the all-guns-blazing approach whilst Dagda believes in a peaceful solution at all costs.

What did the parent(s) find hardest about raising your character?

Well, their biological parents didn't raise them, so I'll talk about their adoptive carer: Monica, a hot-shot lawyer who maybe didn't always have time for them, but did her best and left them wanting for nothing. (So naturally, I killed her)

What’s their most vivid memory with their parental figure(s)?

I'm going to go with Monica again. For Nessa, it would be all of the times Monica has been there whenever she sneaked out and left her purse at home so she couldn't pay for a taxi and had to call Monica to take her home. For Lex, it would be Monica paying all of the late fees on his books and being supportive of him.


What was your character like as a baby/toddler?

Nessa was a temperamental baby. Even when she was a baby, she'd roar and scream the house down and refused to be parted from her brother. Lex, on the other hand, was quite reserved and usually hid behind his sister's loud tantrums and extroversion.

Why and how did the parents choose your character’s name?

The people at the hospital in Dublin (where they were taken as newborns when discovered) named them after the toys they both naturally grew attached to: Nessa (whose full name is Vanessa) clung on tightly to a teddy bear named, you guessed it, Vanessa whilst Lex chewed the side of a book entitled "Alexander the Ant".

Let's talk, people! What are you writing at the moment? What are the names of your protagonists? Are any of you participating in Beautiful People?

Until next time,

- Sunset xx