Author: Libby May

King’s Shadow by Angela Hunt – Bethany House Review

Hello! Is it fair to say I’ve been wildly busy? Yes! My job has been keeping me very busy! I’ve been dedicating almost every free minute to formatting my book and getting ready to order a proof copy, and spending lots of time chatting with my best friend about life.
And this summer has not been good for my reading life at all. It might be because I’ve been so swamped with editing and formatting and re-read my book so much almost every day for the last three months… or maybe I’m just in a reading slump. I don’t know. Either way, that’s why I haven’t gotten to review this book yet. I haven’t finished it even now. But the review is due! So I will write what my impression is and update it when I finish reading XD.

Things I liked.

I liked the era. I enjoyed the way that it felt like a stifling palace and a tense situation with people listening in everywhere.
I liked that the MC, Salome, has a devotion to her brother, and her loyalty and determination.

Things I didn’t like.

The attitude. Salome had a negative attitude about pretty much everything. Her husband Joseph was odd in that I thought it was a completely different character when he came in to play. At the first chapter Salome came across as a whiny twelve-year-old, and when I read that she was married I was certain it was a completely different character we were talking about.

Content List

There’s talk of affairs, and virginity/losing. Salome was assaulted when she was younger but her brother stepped in and saved her (this was really pointless to the plot so far and I feel like it was there to make us pity the character more which didn’t work very well for me) There’s also mention of inviting a man to one’s bedchamber but “the man behaved honorably” and there was simply a conversation.
No language so far, no witchcraft, no violence that I can remember, nothing graphic for sure.

I’m gonna give a star rating when I finish reading the book :[]. If you like Biblical fiction it’s not a bad one to pick up. I’ve enjoyed it for the most part so far and look forward to continuing reading it.

Recomended 15 and up!

Live, laugh, and love, girls! I miss you all.
~Libby

Book Reviews

R2L

So this wasn’t actually a scheduled post but if you girl’s know me, you know I am a beta reader as well as an author and sister etc. etc. Earlier this year I had the chance to beta read two books, Beloved by Kaitlyn Krispense and Freedom by Faith Potts.

Well today is the start of their OFFICIAL THIRTEEN REASONS WHY TO LIVE Blog tour. Even though I couldn’t “officially” join the blog tour since I’m so so so so swamped with editing my own book and preparing for my blog tour, I still wanted to drop in and let you girls know that this tour is not something to miss! I’m honestly SO excited for this tour and I cannot wait to see all the amazing posts and other things to come!

If you want to know why this tour is called the Thirteen Reason’s Why tour, you can go read Faith’s post here, (you really should)

September is suicide awareness month, and even though I have never lost a close loved one to suicide, this issue is suuuuuper close to my heart. I wanted to participate as much as I could and one way is sharing my own R2L! Reason to live.

MY R2L

A JOB TO DO. There is an endless list I could give as reasons to live, and why I live, but I picked this one because it’s powerful. We as Christians have a job to do, and we as breathing, living, humans have a job to do. There is not just a reason to live, but a REASON YOU ARE ALIVE. There is a PURPOSE to your life and no human was ever brought into this world by mistake. You were molded and formed and named in your mother’s womb and whether you know God now or never have yet, He has created you with fingers of love and He knew that the world could not get along without you. So LIVE. Fill your role. Love the people around you, work hard, and never, ever doubt the fact that you are IMPORTANT.

To follow the blog tour and read more R2L you can visit either Faith or Kaitlyn’s blogs. There’s also a giveaway you can enter and try and win your own copy of the books!

That’s all for now, thanks for reading! #R2L

~Libby

Book Reviews Guidelines for Girls Journal Entries Random Facts

DEWDROPS AND BUTTERFLIES COVER REVEAL

Here it is guys, the moment you’ve all been waiting for! Long-anticipated, months of waiting, hyping, signing up, and FINALLY it’s here!

Now I don’t believe in making people wait too long to see whatever exciting news posts have, and in fact, you probably already scrolled down to see it and came back up to see what I had to say, but either way! I believe in giving people thanks when they deserve it. I need to sit down and write my acknowledgment and I’ve realized that, girls, there’s no way I’m going to fit the entirety of what I want to put into my acknowledgment SO my super great friend and alpha reader and his wife (portrayed by Ethan and Tanya in the book and on my blog) suggested creating a web page that could easily be 72 pages long if I needed it to be, without actually having to write an entire second book on the back of mine! So I shall do that, and it will be under my “The Author” thingy on the header (it’s not up yet give me time XD)

But I did want to say a couple of short thank you’s for now.

  • Thank you to all my alpha readers. Mom, dad, sisters, Ethan and Tanya and my new friend Rebecca.
  • Thank you to Penny for coming along side me and being my cheerleader in the earliest process of the story. If it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t have had this book where it is today. And thank you for always supporting me in my indie publishing dream even though it wasn’t yours. That meant a lot.
  • Thank you to Rebekka and Anna and Kate Willis and so many amazing girls and ladies in my 2018 July Nano Cabin that pushed me to finish this book. Thanks for all the advice you guys gave, and for the tips. Thank you for helping me get to know my characters better, and thank you for the endless sprints and that OC Picnic!
  • Thank you to all the indie authors that I’ve seen work so hard and succeed. Especially Kate Willis, Livy Lynn, Jesseca Wheaton and so many others that I can’t all name.
  • THANK YOU to all you girls, especially Lydia, Mariah, Lexi, Jordan, and my other blog readers that have really given me the push to write for this audience and for girls that need good literature.
  • I know I already pushed this too long but I have to put in one more. Thank you Lilah for being my publishing cheerleader. Where Penny was by my side in the writing process, you are there in the publishing process and God knew exactly what He was doing when He brought you into my life. I love you.

Now, without futher ado! The Official Cover for my debut Novel…

Dewdrops and Butterflies

*cue peanuts cheering gif* (because it doesn’t want to work *frowns*)

There it is! Now that you’ve seen it, a tiny story time.

If you’ve seen the cover on goodreads… This old one…

This was the temporary cover y’all sorry! When my dad first redesigned it, it was a beautiful night sky with the stars behind it and a gorgeous blue butterfly.

And I was like “Dad… I love it.– But it’s blue.” My entire online presence, my blog and my social media and EVERYTHING is purple because of this book. So I took a deep breath and looked at him and said “Can you do exactly the same thing except in purple?” And my dad, being my dad and amazing and superman and able to do the impossible, nodded and came up with this, which I will, of course, post again. Because it’s beautiful enough for that.

Dewdrops and Butterflies

So that’s that. If you haven’t added it to your Goodreads TBR you can do it here and here and here and here. If you don’t have a Goodreads yet, write it down on a sticky note and super glue it to your bathroom mirror… or don’t… but something!

Now I know you all want to know “OK LIBBY when can we actually READ it!?” Well!…. I don’t have an EXACT answer just yet and HOLD ON DON’T BOMBARD ME YET! I have a very legitimate explanation for why.

Here’s why. I’m currently going through my last round of editing. This is where I say yes or no to my beta reader’s grammar suggestions. As soon as I finish that, which I will get done by September 10th, I will format and submit it for approval to my printing source (Amazon, fancy shmancy). I haven’t heard super great things about their processing system and they tend to take a long time blah blah blah. I can tell you this. Once I have the proof copy in my hands, I will set a publishing date. Because I will be able to see #1 how long it takes them to approve my file, #2 How long it takes them to ship it to me, and #3 how much formatting/grammar adjustments I will need to make and how long that will take me. My current goal is the First Week of October, but we all know one of my pastor’s favorite jokes is “If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans.” So I’m going to leave that open for Him to guide (and I am NOT WORRIES ABOUT IT AT ALL because He has been one step ahead of me this entire process and that will take a whole post of it’s own.)

So that’s that! What do you think of the cover? Do you like it? Is it purple enough? Are you excited? Have you added it to your TBR list yet?! Let’s chat in the comments! (Questions are welcome too!)

~Libby

P.S. If you have an instagram account follow me @libbymay117 and there’s a whole cover reveal party and posts and reposts and everything going on over there. You can also follow my other social medias via the side widget!

Fiction by Libby Guidelines for Girls Journal Entries My Writing Random Facts

Liebster Award 3rd Time!

I have down this tag twice before, you can read the first one here, and watch the second one here! Since the questions are always changing and I’ve been tagged again (probably a year ago now) so I’m finally doing it. I just realized this is my third time being tagged and I feel honored.

I appoligize all my creative brain power has been plugged into editing my book and I’m starting my job next week so I’ve been pretty busy! More Squid pictures are coming soon I assure you, just not today.

RULES

  • Acknowledge the blogger who gave it to you and display the award. (Thanks Growing Into Friends!)
  • Answer 11 questions that the blogger gave you.
  • Give 11 random thoughts about yourself.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and notify them of their nominations.
  • Ask your nominees 11 questions.

Sorry, but I’m gonna break a rule and not tag anybody *cries*

QUESTIONS

1.What is the hardest part about writing for you?

The hardest part about writing for me is editing. I love writing. Editing through my work over and over and over again gets so tedious and I’m not a fan of it. If you’re asking about the writing process specifically, I say the fact that I have to sit in a chair to write. It get’s hard on the back and bottom. Otherwise I love writing XD

2. How much sleep do you get on average?

Funny you should ask. Usually I go to bed about 11:30 – 12 and get up at 9 in the morning. That’s my ideal schedule. However! Since I’m getting a job, I’m going to be up at 5am and going to bed… whatever time I can last to until I figure it out XD. Yes it’s gonna be a segnificant change, but I’m gonna work it out. 😀

3. What is your favorite quote? Why?

Oh dear, hard question. Um. It really depends on what we’re talking about. Life in general? I love Bible verses. Some of my absolute favorites are:
1 Cor. 10:13 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man, but God is faithful, and will not suffer ye to be tempted above what you are able but will with the temptation also provide a way to escape, that you might be able to bear it.”
Also 2 Tim 1:7 “For God has not given us the Spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
And Psalm 84:11 “The Lord is a sun and sheild: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly.”

Writing quotes… vary from day to day. You can follow me on pinterest on the sidebar to see my boards.

(skipping 4. for personal reasons)

5. What is something that can make you laugh every time you read it?

Inside jokes. Do NOT get me started XD

6. What is your dream job?

To be a foster mom and published author.

7. What is your sense of humor? (Share with us something you find funny)

My sense of humor ranges from shallow to deeper than most people will even find funny. Idk how to give a proper example. Scroll through my pinterest X”D board.

8. What is something you do that you get annoyed with yourself about?

I’m a very confident and sometimes bossy person, and people don’t always like me for that and it hurts. I’ve learned that I need to please Jesus and not worry about what other people think, and that has helped me to know what is wise to say and what is not, but not everybody likes me still XD.

9. Fight or flight? Why?

Definitely depends on the situation. If I’m with people I love, I will do whatever it is that will keep them safe, if that’s fighting to give them a chance to get away, I will fight. If I have to help them get to safety, then flight.

Alone, I think I would run in a dangerous situation, but when my convictions or beliefs are challenged I won’t shrink from a conversation.

10. Would you rather remain locked in a cozy room with good snacks and a computer for the rest of your life or be at a party with tons of people and loud music and good food and a notebook and pencil for the rest of your life?

Oh definitely number two! I would be so so lonely I would die if I was locked in a room. Give me all da people.

11. What is your greatest fear?

My biggest, greatest, most knee-knocking fear, is not being there when somebody needs me most.

ELEVEN RANDOM FACTS ABOUT ME

  • I still don’t have my drivers permit
  • I’m looking into making my own candles!
  • I’m 19 and a half and I’m gonna be 20 in January (this is the face of disbelief)
  • My favorite color really is red, but because of my book and #publicity my blog and most of my social media is purple right now. 
  • I crochet little squid keychains… yes…. like the ones I took cross country, and they may or may not be for sale in the future…
  • My dog had puppies! They’re super cute and I can post pictures later! (I need to do a MAJOR life update post.)
  • I like to do big puzzles, but they have to be detailed enough, and I HAVE to have the complete image to look at XD
  • I graduated school in April and this is going to be the first school year I can ever remember without doing school. *cues mind blown gif*

via GIPHY

  • This may or may not be my favorite gif on the internet and if you gave me a chance I probably had already shown it to you.
  • My family and I attended a beautiful wedding on Saturday and my sister caught a picture of me that… I’m really really happy with.
  • I’ve learned that being myself is the best thing to be.

Thank you for reading, my beautiful followers. I will see you Sundayyyyy!!!!

Live, Love, and Laugh, girls!
~Libby

Random Facts

Washington D.C. Part 2

Hello everybody I’m back Hello Hello.

I’m giving you part 2 of D.C. part of our cross country road trip (to start from the beginning go here)

But really quick before we get into it here is the OFFICIAL BLURB FOR DEWDROPS AND BUTTERFLIES THAT’S RIGHT FOLKS IT’S ACTUALLY HAPPENING.

Dewdrops and Butterflies Snippet

“Thirteen year old Rose Wells was determined to make it on her own. Running from authority one last time, the forest became her home, the cafe her source of food, and the fear driven determination keeping her there as long as she could help it.
Not everybody was ok with that. Alex and Jenni Johnson do whatever they can to find their foster daughter and bring her home, giving her the genuine love she’d never know. 
Over the course of a single summer, hearts are broken, scars exposed, friendships blossom, and ultimately a greater truth is learned. 
A greater God is understood.”
(add to your Goodreads TBR from here. The cover reveal is SOOOOONNNNNN)

Back to your regularly scheduled program! If you need a refresh of where we left off you can scroll through this post really quick and follow the link back. 😀

After finishing the National Museum of Natural History we gazed at the Capitol building on one end of the huge field and the Washington Monument on the other end. This place is so HUGE.

After walking a very, very, hot, hot, humid, awful mile across a shaded walkway we made it from the Museum to the edge of the Rainbow Pool WWII memorial and took an unplanned nap to narrowly avoid a breakdown. The boys needed it and I sure needed it too.

After we woke up we explored the memorial and found that dipping feet was allowed in the fountain. We took very much advantage of it to make it through the day. Wadding was NOT allowed, but we drenched out capris and it was much more bearable.

And from the Rainbow pool, we walked to the Lincoln Memorial which was so relaxing. The sun had set by the time we got there and the marble building gave off a cool air. We sat on the large decorative steps and overlooked the entire museum mall and grass and people and took in Washington D.C. as a whole. It had been a hard day and sitting down felt so incredibly good.

After walking around D.C. we got an Uber and crossed the border to West Virginia. At this point of the trip we were so homesick for some good home cooked food, and since we’re Russian, a good russian restaurant was our agend.

We found it and ordered basically the whole menu.

It was the boy’s first experience with professional russian food and they were pretty curious.

We ordered Kvas and Campot. Pictured is the Kvas, which is a sort of carbonated drink made by fermenting bread for a couple of days. It’s yeasty and sweet.

I didn’t take pictures of everything we ordered because that would make a post in itself, but this is called a samsa and is filled with ground beef and lots of seasoning wrapped in a flaky dough.

We also got Pilmeni which is sort of like a dumpling.

We usually don’t get dessert when at a restaurant, but reasoning seems to fly out the window when you’re homesick. We got two different kinds of cakes and both were amazing.

We went back to our hotel and watched some tv and cooled down and slept and got ready to do it all over again the next day.

Well the next day was quite hectic and insane and we saw the White House.

Virgil decided that it was too small. I don’t know what Alan was doing.

Capitol building was way too hard to get into but it was one of the most magnificent buildings we saw (the security people were super rude too). Also the Library of Congress was a pretty building!

The Air and Space museum was our next and last D.C. destination. It was almost closing time by the time we got in and we had dinner there but we did get to see a couple of really cool things. This photo, for example, is the group the boys were named after. If you look closely you can see “From left to right (front row) Walter, Donald, John, Scott. (Back row) Alan, Virgil, and Gordon.”

Squid size module

Gordon and his astronaut.

Virgil and the tragic story of his astronaut.

John and his astronaut.

Some displays of how light works and reflection refraction etc.

Tadaaa. Miniature Hubble Space Telescope.

That was our D.C. trip. By the time we finished with this museum we were so pooped that we didn’t even look for anything else to do. We took another uber back to our hotel even though it was only about 4 during the day.

We needed that time because the next day we were heading to Nashville and on the way we stopped in Philly, Pennsylvania.

Thing is, I took a break from editing this week, but next week I’m gonna be hunched over working through hundreds of beta comments. And I’m going to be working really hard. That being said, I’m simply apologizing in advanced if next week’s post is late. Let me know if these road trip posts are boring now XD. I can cut them back shorter. We’re already on out way back home though.

Live, love, and laugh, girls!
~Libby

Journal Entries Random Facts

Life Update

I’ve been really bad at posting you guys, I’m super sorry. But I do have a good excuse!

July was Camp Nano and my for that month was to get Dewdrops and Butterflies (my debut novel) ready for beta readers. On August 1st I sent out the first 23 chapters of the book to my readers. Since July 1st I’ve basically spent my whole day editing and editing and editing. Any moment I’m not editing I’ve been doing the normal non-editing life stuff like parties, church, chores, reading, etc. I apologize, and I’m not taking any breaks from blogging, but I just wanted to let you all know why I’ve been so inconsistent.

If you girls could pray for me that would be amazing! I need the wisdom to get this book edited and published, and I have a feeling the next three months won’t be any less hectic as I plan to edit after betas as soon as I’m done editing BEFORE betas, and prepare to send my manuscript to KDP and get my proof copy and all that awesome wonderful author stuff. So far I’m on schedule to publish at the end of September, but I think I’m probably going to push to mid October just to give you guys the best possible version of this story in paperback!

Thank you for your patience and your prayers girls! They mean a lot.

Live, Laugh, and Love,
~Libby

Journal Entries Random Facts

Storm Rising by Ronie Kendig – Bethany House Review

Hello girls! This is NOT this weeks post, it’s a book review that I’m doing for Bethany House.

A couple months ago the publishing company was changing out their reviewing system and I did not apply again, because I didn’t know where I was going with it, however I decided to go ahead and apply, and this was my first book since getting back with them!

I will say, this is not a kids book and If you are under 16 I do not reccomend reading this book. I also warn that This is a CONTENT REVIEW meaning the Reasons why I don’t reccomend this for young readers WILL BE written out. That being said, it’s my personal opinion and the choice is yours as there is no MAJOR content. My personal rating is Four Stars because I, as a Christian 19 year old with high reading standards, did enjoyed the book. If you aren’t intrested in reading the review that’s ok too because my regular post will be on Wendsday!

Onto the review!

Ok, where to start. (idk why I said that because I know exactly where to start)
Lilah, aka The Sherlock on goodreads and @sherlockfiles on Instagram and Reviews by Sherlock (If you don’t follow her GO DO IT. She’s such a sweetheart) on the blogsphere. She has showered me with lots and lots of Ronie Kendig fangirling. To be honest, I’m extremely hesitant to buy books by authors I haven’t read before HOWEVER I just HAPPENED to get back on the Bethany House RC list and the first book I got the email for reviewing was this, Storm Rising. I had been getting an earful about it everywhere where books are discussed so of course I wanted to read it.

Now my review:

Well y’all saw that I marked if four stars. I just want to say that this is NOT a children’s/preteen book, and even for early teens, it’s a little pushy. But first, of course,

The things I liked!

Characters:
There were so many names introduced at the beginning and my first thought was to worry I wouldn’t be able to tell who was who but, I worried for no reason! Each part of the team had their job and they did that job well, and personalities stood out from each other and I got it pretty quickly who was who! Kudoos to the author for doing such a good job juggling SO MANY CHARACTERS and not making it hard on the reader in any way.
Going specific, I loved Mercy and her quick smirk and high-intensity brain and awesome hacking abilities (I secretly love characters with skills like hers)
Iskar. Where even to start. She had so much to hide, so little and yet so much to lose. She was such a mystery, such a dark, pained woman just longing for life. And she still held a heart, which would be impossible to believe from the outside I couldn’t help liking her from the very beginning. Her actions and impulses and skills were amazing. And her character development from chapter one to chapter thirty-five never went dry.
Hristoff. Let’s just say he was sick and disgusting and horrid and I may have wanted someone to stuff a knife into his gut a lot earlier than anyone did. Basically a bad person. (wait why is he in the things I liked? Hm) Oh, because he was such a sick villain that he filled his place well. (Dude I hate hating villains. I hate hating)
Leif. How… I guess the best thing I can say is, HE HAS THE GIFT OF MC. The mystery of a character that makes you anxious to keep reading, the beauty of a good brain and good brawn, and the drive to be as loyal to the loyalty and feeling the betrayal and the pain and the confusion and just. Leif was an all-around great character.

The plot.
I really did like Iskar’s part of the plot. Her determination and grit and pain and her skills and the motive behind everything. she. did. was so… Like yeah, she wasn’t doing everything right, but I sympathized with her. She was…. understandable.
Everything that she battled with and everything she had to lose was so deep and so brain jarring and just kind of hurt a little.
Leif’s part of the plot, his mission as a SEAL was really good. The Storm orbs and finding the book and chasing Viorica and struggling with his own missing memories and hiding what he had to hide. It was just so much to take in. (No I was not up until 2 am finishing the book, except for that I was)

The world-building wasn’t that hard to get because it’s not like its a fantasy or a dystopia, and I’m not all that great at actually reading descriptions of places unless ints threaded into the actions themselves. It was good.

Things I didn’t like
There weren’t too many things, but most of them are slightly mature content so for the sake of younger readers (and spoilers). To sum it up, even tho there’s nothing detailed or sensual, personally, I wouldn’t recommend it to girls (or boys) under 16.

Here’s the content review.
Language: None. Maybe one or two substitutes of mild words, one “Son of a” (phrase was left unfinished) and another “Holy Mother” (catholic reference)

Violence: There was quite a bit of violence in the book, even though it wasn’t gory or super detailed. One MC being a SEAL and one an assassin has it’s downsides, from bullet wounds to murders and gunfights. Blood is mentioned quite a few times, many different sorts of injuries, multiple deaths (one by drowning, several by shots, etc)

Romance/Sextual content: (SPOILERS ABOUT ISKAR) This was my biggest downturn even though it was part of the plot. Iskar was majorly sexutally abused. None of the scenes are described or detailed, and in fact, most of them happened even before the story (one time is, however, mentioned where Iskar’s POV is written after such an event.)
Iskar was sold by her father to Hristoff at a young age and he raped her many many times. She was also sent to a trainer who tortured her as training to become very good at what she does as a spy and assassin. Even though none of these scenes are specifically described or discussed, it was a major part of the plot and a big part of who Iskar was and why she did what she did.
Iskar was raising a child she had had out of wedlock, Bisera.
There are many mentions of muscle, skin color, and eyes being drawn to a person, tho nothing was particularly sensual or bothered me.
Several mentions desire to spend time with a person.
Two kisses, both minorly detailed/detailed.
Iskar’s shape is “assessed” once or twice.
Mention of ‘buy a girl out’ but it was as a cover to keep Leif from getting killed, not actual prostitution.

Other content: The only thing I have to mention is that the Book of Wars is “supposed” to be out of the Bible, and the Book of Jasher as well as others are mentioned. I wouldn’t give it a second thought except that there were several “excerpts” read aloud, and I personally thought that was pretty close to adding to the Bible, even if it was fiction.

That was a lot of things to mention about content, but I enjoyed the book and didn’t feel uncomfortable with anything really that happened or was written in the book. I recommend trying it out if you’re over 16! Obviously, since this was the first book of a series there were a couple of loose strings that were not tied up (on purpose) so I’m curious to see the next book in April.

Four Stars

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review. A positive review was not required and all opinions are my own.

~Libby

Book Reviews

Museum of Natural History

Hello Everybody! Yes. I was late by a day AGAIN but the post is here now soooo.

Before we get started, I’ll say I have some very very VERY exciting news. Dewdrops and Butterflies first half is READY FOR BETA READERS! The first 22 chapters are going out August 1st and the second half is going out soon after that. If you’re on my Beta list, KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR THE EMAIL! If you’re not, ooo sorry. BUT. I’m still on schedule to publish the end of September SO there’s that. *is definitely not panicking* *Ok just a little*

On to the road trip (if you haven’t read any of it yet, start Here at Part 1). On the first day in Washington D.C., we went to the Museum of Natural History.

We had to go through security and to keep things short, let’s just say we’re not used to that and D.C. ended up being very unpleasant for us in general. The heat and humidity were UNbearable and NOBODY SMILES. *mumbles* *stops grumbling* I’m done whining. Let’s go.

Everything was so huge and awe-inspiring. The exhibits were interesting, and the ocean exhibit had so many dead relatives of the squids, including a GIANT squid (I didn’t get a picture ;()

My point exactly. This is from the third story. Look at that HUGE WHALE.

Lots of different animals.

That squirrel was… cold. Like pull a can of soda from the fridge cold. Gordon was shocked.

Just thought I’d say, if this little guy makes sure his voice is heard, you can too! Sing little hamster, sing!

Scott was looking at the beaver. Look at that jawbone.

There’s a separate gift shop PER exhibit! This was the mammals and other stuff exhibit, but mostly just dinosaur stuff in the shop. Gordon said they were nice to him and said he could move in, but he said it was squishy and he preferred his brothers.

Front of the museum (We came in from the street side of the museum, but the main entrance is from the Mall entrance.)

Next was the gems and minerals exhibit.

There were so many amazing gems and minerals and I got a lot of pictures but I think it would be boring to show here so I won’t bore you with them. Honestly, this was my favorite exhibit of the entire museum. If you ever get a chance, don’t miss this one!

The infamous Hope Diamond (also this is not me at the top. I’m taking the video). I got to see it and it was one of the reasons we actually went to the mineral exhibit (longs story, we weren’t gonna go, left the museum, I found out the Hope Diamond was at this museum and me and my sister and mom went back through security to go see that diamond and the diamond wasn’t all that grand but the exhibit was worth it [and also the AC])

Also the best gift shop in the museum.

John thinks rocks are better than strangers.

Alan gave me a minor heart attack at one point, but Scott’s brother instincts led him to the giant crystal cave (coffee table decor) and that’s where this child was hiding.

Did we get anything you ask? Yes. We adopted a tiny little Bismuth crystal. These are all bigger pieces, but when we FIRST went to the gift shop (before we left the museum the first time) I found my favorite one and loved it and left it and regretted leaving it, even tho it was a smaller one. So when we went back inside to see the Hope Diamond I went right to where the little boy was sitting snugly and he was still there and I took him in my hand and cuddled him and brought him home. (He will be getting a name soon via Instagram)

That’s all for the Museum of Natural History! The next post will finish day one of DC and go through day two! And then we’re on the way home! (I’m secretly looking forward to some non-road trip themed posts, but at the same time I’ve really enjoyed sharing this all with you guys and getting a little mental break.)

Live, Laugh, and love, girls!
~Libby

Journal Entries Random Facts

Alone in Black – A Flash Fiction

Hello! Is there more to the road trip? Of course. Did I say I’d post more? Also yes. Did I fail? Yes.

I’ve been doing Camp Nano editing Dewdrops and Butterflies for my betas soooooo most of my time on the computer has been used for that. However, I did write a short story a couple of days ago. It’s sort of a sad dystopian themed kind of story.

It was a photo prompted story that I wrote for a friend, and although she thought it was very sad, I really enjoyed just spilling words onto a page for once, especially since I’ve been doing. so. much. editing.

Prompt

~~~

He lived in a slit in the rocks. Black rocks. Not in a cave, though it was a narrow slit. There was no landscaping outside. Sparse weeds. Black cliffs, stone ground, nothing else.

It was a house. Stark white, sleek, with sharp edges. Too many corners, everything square, everything symmetrical. When I say everything I mean everything.

Windows, doors, walls. The few quadrilaterals decorations on the walls always cam in twos, exactly identical to their counterparts. 

And everything was white. Almost painfully so. Every floor, every wall, every piece of furniture was kept spotless. Little but shadows varied from the empty whiteness.

If you asked him, he would not say he lived alone. He had 22 assistants. 11 on each half of the house .4 androids, 4 security bots, 2 chiefs, 2 mopping, and dusting bots, two water reusing, natural energy powered washing bots that did everything from clothes to couches. He had two mechanical cats and two dogs. Two AIs that communicated with each other but never crossed the black line.

None of the bots crossed the black line from their side to the other.

And he had two projects he was working on. One he called his child, the other, his friend. These two were not symmetrical.

He was a middle-aged man, slightly on the younger side. Full black curls framed his face and a bit of a beard came through when he didn’t shave. His nose was unique but not pointed. His jaw was sharp, chin prominent, and eyes the deepest darkest black. His lips were kind and soft, and his hands strong and firm, but gentle enough to work with the most delicate of technology. 

He wore a black suit and tie when he could. When he came up to see his house, to see the whiteness, the tidiness that was kept to his satisfaction by machines, brilliant works of his own hand.

But that was rare.

He lived in his lab in the basement. He breathed and ate and slept there. But most of all he worked there.

He worked tirelessly on his projects. His non-symmetrical masterpieces. His only hope and only reason for anything at all. Was it not for the fact that his early androids, prototypes of the products he would have changed the world with had there been a world to change, responded to oral commands and engaged in conversation, he would never have spoken a word again. 

Not after what happened.

Not after everything was lost.

Everything.

But they asked him questions, made him talk. To keep the house running, to keep himself alive, he spoke.

And he worked. He tweaked and adjusted and sighed and washed his hands and welded and shaped and carefully, with all the love that was left in his heart, formed two new androids. But he did not call them that. Nobody called them that. Not that there was anyone left to.

If there had been anybody left he would not need to immerse himself so fully, so devotedly, into creating something that would mimic humanity as closely as his genius mind could put together.

The computers hummed, bots came and went, up and downstairs. Androids occasionally required conversation and his basic needs as a human continued to be met.

Years. Years he spent this way.

But if you had appeared. If you had somehow lived, survived what cost everybody else, and you came to his home in the slit in the rocks, you would not find him that way. You would find him neat, tidy, waiting. 

He would greet you kindly, an impossible excitement hidden deep inside, but too disbelieving not to show in his black eyes. He would speak to you in his deep voice, in that systematic enchanting way of his. He would smile, clean and well dressed, and offer you a meal and a place to stay for this night and the next and the next. He would make sure you were safe and offer you everything in his home.

And finally, when the day came that you met his eyes with eyes that could never be created artificially, he would realize the impossibility of it. He would battle himself, the hours of sweat and tears that went into them. And then he would set his masterpieces carefully into their holding tanks, turn the lights off and shut the door, locking the key to the basement inside. He knew if he ever needed to go back, he would have to prove it.

Then he would remove the black like that split the house, that split the place you lived from where he lived. And every android and every bot and… you would live out the rest of your days together, as they were meant to. 

But you cannot. You did not survive. He was the only one.

So he labors day and night in the fiercely lit basement lab, alone. Living forever alone. The End.

~~~

So! What did you think? Was it too sad for you? Did you like it? I thought it was a lot of fun to write. Let me know in the comments! The next part of our road trip will be Next week. I was super busy this week so couldn’t put it together.

Live Laugh and Love girls!
~Libby

Fiction by Libby My Writing

Road Trip Part 4!

Yes, there’s a part 4. And more. If you haven’t read the previous three parts, you can find Part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 3 here.

I’m sorry if I’m boring you all. All the commenters said they’ve enjoyed the posts, so I’m just gonna keep going!

Day 2 of New York started at a fun Bagel Buffet which wasn’t a buffet and sold a lot more than Bagels.

Took an Uber Downtown

Walked to the Empire State Building (Guys its so tall but SO TINY INSIDE)

Then of course we went to Time Square (When in New York….. go to Time Square? Also much smaller than I thought.)

Grand Central Station. Small, but there’s where the giraffes head goes.

Trump Tower with this crazy three (or four?) story waterfall going down the wall. Security everywhere, everything was gold colored. Crazy.

Central Park. We didn’t get good photos at Central Park. Moods were down because we were very hungry, hot, and our feet were dead. We walked for another hour in search of someplace to eat and finally found a Dunken Donuts. It was food, and we ate it. And then we got back and back and back and got caught in New York rain and I so wish I had gotten a picture of the boys huddling together under my sweater, but I was too busy trying not to get my phone wet XD.

The next morning we had chocolate chip muffins again and then drove to South Beach.

The beautiful Atlantic Ocean. Always I’ve been told that the Atlantic is freezing, windy and unfriendly. The beach I met was not any of those things. Having been to the Pacific Ocean several times myself, since it’s the place the boys are from and the ocean nearest me, I expected the Atlantic colder and less friendly.

It was amazing. The water was warm, waves were calm and serene and the sand was soft, hot in the sun, cool at the waters edge, and littered with tiny shells and smooth beach glass.

Gordon was especially proud to have touched two oceans. It was gorgeous. We spent an hour just walking up and down the beach collecting green and white beach glass and pretty shells and walking in the sunshine and soaking up the few hours we had on the other side of the continent.

We got on the road and drove to Philadelphia,

We stopped at Independence Hall. The place was amazing to see. This was where the Declaration of Independence was signed. Such a huge part of our nation’s history took place.

We had to stand in a long line to get inside, and because of big families slyly cutting in line, we got left outside the group (the groups are let in by number of people) to wait twice as long as we should have BUT not complaining. We got to sit. And…

It was so worth it. Amazing. To stand in the courtroom of that era and to listen to the guide set the stage. It was unreal. But no, this wasn’t the room the Declaration was signed in…

This was. the huge green room full of chairs, and full of history. We stood in the same room as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin franklin, as well as so many other monumental people. It was so crazy.

The chair (Which in this picture is conveniently right behind Virgil’s ear) was the original from when the Declaration was signed. The original that George Washington sat in and I might be getting a little carried away but UGH it was amazing!

We stood in the exact place where Abraham Lincoln stood, and not far away John F. Kennedy too.

Then we crossed the street and got to see the Liberty Bell. Philadelphia was crazy cool to visit.

Visitors center with plenty of souvenirs.

Signing our own Declaration. Then we got back on the road and drove loooong hours to get to… Washington D. C!

I’ll probably post more this week, because these are getting long, so keep an eye out for our D.C. trip soon!

(GO here for Natural History Museum post!)

~Libby

Journal Entries Random Facts