dream (3)

she tasted salted toffee and melting chocolate on her tongue, but when she opened her eyes, she found herself crouched beside her beloved older brother. “the Organization wants us to secure the ubiquitous black suitcase,” he said, as though she hadn’t fallen asleep at all. (maybe she had, maybe she hadn’t, but at the moment it didn’t matter.) instead, she clicked her tongue. “where is it?” she asked, and he nodded towards the oddly shaped building in the center of the city. “right there. it’s close enough to the ocean for us to escape from the rooftop to the shore, then make our way back to the Organization’s HQ.”

“let’s do this. how many are there?”

“at the moment? eighteen.”

“nine each, then.”

“yep.”

she felt the utmost bliss as they scaled the skies, running lightly through the air as though they were out for a typical morning jog among the clouds. they managed to avoid the crows that followed them, detonating bombs made of legos whenever necessary. even when one of the enemy, disguised as a traffic cop, pursued them two hours later, she was buoyed by an insane tranquility. even as he chased them across the rooftops of three different wal-marts, and followed them into the ocean when they swung off that last building, she didn’t panic at all. neither did he, the older one. in fact, he casually turned to her as they landed smoothly into the waves. “perfect,” he declared, smiling radiantly, and her heart swelled at the brilliant light of his confidence. she understood what he meant when they reached the HQ, entered the building, and watched as three gigantic jellyfish tore apart the enemy and consumed him at the door.

“do we have all of them?”

“i have half. Did you drop any, by chance?”

he laughed. “nope.”

she felt such immense happiness that for a moment, she thought she would burst like one of their handmade lego bombs.

if only they could do this forever.

janowrimo update (2) – productivity

i’ve been keeping a journal.

it’s one i started on january first. the gist of it is to write one line every day that summarizes whatever you did that day. these past entries have been rather dull, and are more about school than anything else.

today, however, was quite productive.

i’ve written several pages of my novel, and i like where it’s going so far. i think the eureka! moment was when i finally felt comfortable with a certain writing style (which in this case is first person pov, present tense). rereading some of my writing now, it actually sounds similar to how i write on this blog. i don’t drop all caps while writing by hand, though, because that would probably develop into an awful habit that i wouldn’t be able to break. whenever i read my posts here on citrusy, i always imagine myself whispering the words. that’s not what i’m aiming for in my novel, so sticking to the standard writing style works.

in other news, i also finished the majority of my assignments, worked on some of the pieces i’m going to compete with next week (for piano), and practiced baking lemon bars. my friend’s birthday is this tuesday! and we’re going to celebrate at school. birthdays are always super happy occasions. c:

-ktc

never let me go

earlier this week, i finished kazuo ishiguro’s never let me go.

two years ago, i stumbled upon this quote while browsing the literature posts on tumblr:

“I keep thinking about this river somewhere, with the water moving really fast. And these two people in the water, trying to hold onto each other, holding on as hard as they can, but in the end it’s just too much. The current’s too strong. They’ve got to let go, drift apart. That’s how it is with us. It’s a shame, Kath, because we’ve loved each other all our lives. But in the end, we can’t stay together forever.”

i instantly fell in love with that quote. really, who wouldn’t? it struck a chord within me, and i suddenly wanted to sit down and read the novel it came from. however, it wasn’t that easy; i finally seized the chance to read never let me go in december 2013, and took my time. it isn’t science fiction, in my opinion, but rather surrealistic fiction with some sci-fi elements mixed in. i loved how kath narrated in such a conversational manner, but there were times when i had to go back and reread certain parts in order to understand the chronological flow. there were some plot holes, too, though these were minor and easily overlooked. overall, the story was wonderful. i loved kath, tommy, ruth, and the intricate relationship between them. i also loved the setting; i hope someday to visit norfolk, england, and maybe read a book or take some photos while i’m there.

and that quote is still one of my favorites.

nabari no ou (v.14)

cover!!

today, my copy of nabari no ou (volume 14) came in the mail!!

it’s even better in person – there’s the color art and everything! it’s so lovely, and i cried over the ending again after rereading…

once again, i wholeheartedly recommend this series. please read it when you have the time – it’s worth it!

janowrimo update (1)

i’ve been writing in chunks.

the dream scenes come first. they’re the most important parts of the novel, and i want to practice writing more of these outside of janowrimo (hence the ‘dream (#)’ posts on this blog). the parts that my main character spends awake (ie, when she’s at school) will be written later.

another thing – my main character’s personality and situation.

that is both wonderful and awful. my mc is socially awkward and clumsy. not the cute kind of clumsy, but the clunky clumsy that causes secondhand embarrassment. she’s also insecure about her academic future, being a high school student. what does she enjoy doing? what are her interests?  what will she do about her grades, p/sat scores, extracurricular activities? what university will she attend, and what will she major in? then there’s the fact that she’s attending a high school that none of her junior high friends went to; she’s frightened, lonely, and lost. how will she make friends if all she wants to do is stay in bed and sleep?

is this okay?

would people like this character of mine? she’s insecure, clumsy, awkward, and shy. she doesn’t say much in class, and is afraid to talk to her classmates. character development throughout the story will change this, yes, but will people be willing to start out with this main character?

what do you think?

dream (2)

i saw you again tonight.
this time, we sat together on a bus. ryan (was that his name?) and brandon were there too. the four of us laughed like best friends, which was weird because i barely knew any of you.

we all talked a lot about school, and about books, and that one film that recently came out, but none of us had had the chance to go watch it yet. “let’s go watch it together some time,” you suggested, and the rest of us heartily agreed.

and then ryan asked you what university you were going to next year, and you flipped your hair and laughed. “i didn’t apply for early admission; i’ll get responses in march or april.”

he was going to carnegie mellon to major in comp sci, and brandon and i teased him for being mainstream. “why not stay here to study that? the program’s just as good, and you’ll probably have a better chance at getting a job once you graduate.”

i don’t remember the rest of our conversation, but i can still see your face so clearly that this might not have been a dream at all. the sun’s shining through the window, and the bus we ride drives past lush green hills and cloudless blue skies. everything feels warm and citrusy…

…and in real life, i sat behind you in class, wishing that i hadn’t made a bad impression on you the first week we met. i wanted to befriend you, but we lived in two completely different worlds. you were so charismatic and affable, while i was afraid of everything…

why did you leave?

why did you leave school, before we ever talked to each other?

why didn’t you give me a chance?

or rather, why didn’t i have the courage to speak to you?

i pass brandon in the hallways during passing periods, and our eyes always meet. but we’ve never talked to each other before, not even once. and ryan – i don’t even know if his name is actually ryan, or if that was just part of the dream…

our bus was later struck by a train, but you were the only one that died.

<<originally written 1.10.14>>

on nabari no ou

personal accomplishment: i’ve never had a naruto phase.

that being said, nabari no ou is also a manga series about ninjas. it’s one of my all-time favorites. a long time ago back in 2012, a girl named katie was creating character bios for her first nanowrimo. while searching for suitable images on google, she came across this picture. thus began her nabari no ou phase, which continues to this day.

From mangafox:

Set in the modern age, the story is about Miharu Rokujou, who just wants to live a normal life and inherit an Okonomiyaki restaurant. At the moment, his biggest problem is the constant pestering from Kouichi Aizawa and Durandal Thobari Kumohira, who started a Nindō (忍道?, lit. “Way of the Ninja”) Club. Miharu wants nothing to do with “ninjas” and turns them down every time. But soon, he is attacked by an actual group of ninjas and is protected by Kouichi and Kumohira. There, Miharu learns of the hidden ninja world Nabari, the roles of his classmate and teacher in that world, and of the secret art Shinra Banshou (森羅万象 Shinrabanshō?, lit. “all things in nature”) within him. The secret art, containing all the world’s knowledge, is sorely coveted in Nabari. And because of that, Miharu cannot return to his normal life. He must become the “Ruler of Nabari” to survive.

a lot of people dislike nabari no ou after reading the first volume, mainly because of the rough, ‘weird’ art and miharu’s apathetic nature. please read the entire series before jumping to any conclusions or dropping the series!
(the anime’s first half is good, but it then spirals downward into ridiculous cheesiness because the manga was still ongoing at the time. so skip the anime and read the manga. or, if you must, watch the anime first, then read the manga. the latter does a much better job with fleshing out characters, tying up loose ends, etc. or, read the manga while listening to the anime’s soundtracks.
but anyway.)
the story follows miharu rokujou, who seems to be the typical indifferent junior high school student. but then there’s a plethora of other characters too, who’re all tied to the shirabanshou. the beginning is humorous, filled with the antics of miharu and his interactions with tobari-sensei, his english teacher, and kouichi aizawa, a fellow classmate. everything feels all light and slice-of-life ish. raimei shimizu only adds to this new camaraderie that’s soon tested by hostility surrounding the shirabanshou. miharu is blackmailed into using the shirabanshou by the enemy clan’s main weapon – the kira user ninja, yoite. the story soon branches out and plunges downward, throwing off all its readers. what happened to the school life fluffiness? (refer to anime’s opening theme, ‘crawl.’) the manga goes from carefree to frighteningly dark and twisted. there’s a huge cast of characters that range from ninjas to samurai to a blind mastermind to an intersexed character and more. everyone in the story is important in some way, even side characters  there is no black-and-white sense of good versus evil, which is another part of this story that i love. miharu no longer knows who to trust. who is the enemy? who is the ally? who really accepts him for who he is? who befriends him for the shirabanshou? and talk about CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT. and REALLY AMAZING ART. as the chapters progress, yuhki kamatani’s art style slowly changes and morphs into the style she’s known for today. it’s really beautiful. everything about this manga is beautiful.
my favorite characters are yoite and miharu. at first, there’s a lot of tension between them. yoite is the angel of death, after all. he forces miharu to use the shirabanshou for his one and only wish, and the two work together to collect the forbidden arts of nabari to unlock the shirabanshou inside him. throughout the story, however, yoite and miharu gradually grow close, and we see that yoite isn’t an angel of death at all, though he firmly believes that. miharu begins to leave his shell of indifference and trust others again, too…
i ship them. i most definitely ship yoite and miharu. ;-;
and talk about that art. afdkhqgdwl;afgjwakj ((here are just a few examples of the loveliness to come))
~score: 5/5 stars. so many feels.~

omoide no marnie (2014)

oh, and did you know?

STUDIO GHIBLI’S COMING OUT WITH A NEW FILM NEXT YEAR.

omoide no marnie (summer 2014), directed by hiromasa yonebayashi, is based on joan g. robinson’s when marnie was there

i’m so excited!!

janowrimo

november is my favorite month of the year. can you guess why?

yep.

nanowrimo. it is the only month that i’m motivated enough to rush-write a novel (and spend the other eleven months editing it).

i recently fell into a writing slump (because of life problems and all that), which is the main reason why i started this blog…so i apologize for the low quality posts i’ve written so far. i just feel so tired; i wish i could just lay on the floor and sleep for three years, you know? though that’s impossible right now…

ANYWAY. i’ve decided to do nanowrimo this month, and hopefully climb out of this hole i’m in. six days late (and counting) – hurrah!

the rest of this month’s posts will consist of updates regarding janowrimo. i spent quite a bit of time this winter break outlining this project of mine, and i’ve decided to move to the next step. why wait till november?

is anyone else doing this? if so, message me. we can talk! about! writing! 😀 and maybe boost morale.

oh, and here’s some music. just, if you’re in the mood for piano. yeah.

-ktc

dream (1)

lately, i haven’t been able to sleep very much.

at first, it took me until two in the morning to finally drift off, only to wake up at six. two became three, then four, and i gradually began to spend nights completely awake, with no chance of ever falling asleep.
sometimes i manage to nap for an hour or two in the afternoon, but i can’t keep doing that; school starts in less than a week…

“hey, wake up.”

huh?

“this is where you get off, right?”

I open my eyes and glance out the window, startled by the familiar scenery. “t-thanks,” i mutter, sliding out of my seat. she follows me off the bus.

“it’s cool. i didn’t want you to miss your stop, ya know? that would suck. well, i guess you need that sleep, being an insomniac and all.”

“yeah…”

her lips turn nearly white as they stretch into a smile. “aren’t we in the same grade?”

“yeah, i thi-”

wait, what?

hold on, something’s not right…

i stop walking.

“who are you?”

her smile morphs into a puzzled frown. “you don’t know me? i’m in your sixth period biology class, remember?”

i stare at her.

“I’ve never seen you before.”

“really?” she sounds hurt.

“who are you?” I repeat, feeling queasy. “how did you know that i’m an insomniac? and why are we here? school hasn’t started yet -”

oh.

she grins again, this time displaying blood red gums and white, jagged teeth.

“took you long enough.”


beep. beep. beep.

i slam my hand on top of my alarm clock.
my first dream for a long time had been a nightmare. wonderful.

my mother pokes her head into my room.
“you’re going to be late for school, dear.”

i begin to climb out of bed, but she doesn’t leave. instead, she steps into the room.

“mom?”

it’s hard to see her face in the dark…

my alarm clock won’t stop beeping. hadn’t i already turned it off?

“good morning,” my mother says, with an eerily familiar grin.