Weekly Update: I won my first wrestling match, wrote a sonnet, and arted.

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Hi guys! We have officially made it into February!

As you can probably tell from the title of this post, it has been quite the week (and a half) for me! Before I get into that, I’ll give you a quick update on my reading progress.

What I’ve Read/ What I’m reading:

Okay, so some sad news… I haven’t actually finished any books since my last update. Between school work and yearbook work (and Netflix/Hulu), I haven’t had that much time to sit down with a book.

However, here is what I’m in the middle of:

Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas: This book is taking me forever to get through. I think it’s mostly because of how traumatic the ending was for me the first time around, so I’ve kind of been putting it off. That being said, I do what to try to finish it this week and move on to Tower of Dawn.

A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray: I’ve heard a lot of amazing things about this book so I decided to start it. I’m about 10% in right now and it’s pretty interesting so far, so I’m excited to see what happens next!

Run by Kody Keplinger: I haven’t read any of this since the last time I checked in, so I think I might just take it off my “currently reading” list and try to pick it back up later.

I did also post my review for By Your Side by Kasie West (I ended up giving it 2 stars). You can read that here.

Wrestling:

I mentioned briefly last week that I joined my school’s wrestling team this year. It’s been amazing so far (although sadly the season is going to be coming to an end soon), and it’s been one of the best experiences of my life.

Last weekend on Sunday I had the chance to go to a women’s wrestling tournament at another boarding school. In the morning there was a clinic with Leigh Jaynes, who is a bronze medalist at the 2015 World Wrestling Championships(!!!). She taught us some of her favorite take-down techniques before the tournament started.

There were about 50 girls that showed up for the tournament (which was an amazing turnout)(, and we were split up into weight classes. There were two other girls in my weight class. One of them was about 5 pounds lighter than me, and was also a first year wrestler, so we were a pretty good match up. The other girl had a good 20-30 pounds on me and had been wrestling for 6 years, so as you can imagine, that match up was not ideal (for me).

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I almost escaped from her, but she was hanging on my leg and I couldn’t get it free.

I wrestled with the more experienced girl first. I was so nervous! I ended up trying to take her down too fast and didn’t do the move quite right (but remember, this was only my second match ever…). After that I didn’t really stand much of a chance. She crushed the air out of me and I literally couldn’t breathe.

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Incase you can’t tell, in this picture my head is stuffed under my body in an attempt to roll me over.

For a second there I was like “This is it. This is how I die.” She pinned me in just under 1 minute and 30 seconds. But I’m pretty proud of the fight I put up, and my coach was really proud of me too.

My second match went a lot better (for me). I actually worked with that girl during the clinic with Leigh Jaynes, so

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I took this match a lot slower and focused on getting in a good position before trying to take her down.

we were really excited for the chance to wrestle each other. I took this match a lot slower and really focused on my form before I

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I got her in a headlock which led to a pin!

tried to take her down. That strategy (along with both of us being relatively inexperienced) served me well, and I was able to take her down and get the pin! That was my third ever match, and my first win!

It was such an amazing feeling walking off the mat! I couldn’t stop smiling!

After all of the wrestling was done, we had an awards ceremony, where the girls in each of the weight classes were awarded medals. Because I won one of my matches and there were only three of us in my weight class, I walked out with the silver medal!

The day was rounded off with some yummy pizza with Coach, his daughter, and my teammate, and lots of singing along to the radio on the ride back to school.

I wrote a Sonnet!

Disclaimer: I am definitely not a professional poet!

In AP English, my class had a poem project. We got to make our own quills (feather pens?) by carving the tip of a feather with a knife. It took me a few tries to get the tip quite right, and even then it kept bleeding a little bit on the page.

Then, we had to write a sonnet.

A sonnet is 14 lines long, and follows a specific rhyme scheme: ABAB CDCD EFEF GG (There are actually a few different rhyme schemes you can use, but this is the one that my class did) . Each of the lines also has to be 10 syllables long.

To make this project even harder, we had to come up with our own topic. It took me a while, but I decided to go with “College”. Then came the struggle of actually writing the thing. Here is what I came up with:

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College

Everybody wants to go to college
The only way to get ahead in life
Study hard and do your best and pledge
To not end up as a stay-at-home wife.
Sending in applications is a chore
An honest test of character and time
Don’t resent as a show off or a bore
Don’t be too loud or quiet as a mime.
Just be yourself, not like that, be better
Your greatest accomplishments are mundane
You’ve done nothing to deserve a letter
I guess your life has just been far too plain.
Just as you begin to give up hope
News arrives that makes you not want to mope.

Ta-da!

I arted!

I’m not a particularly artsy person.

Don’t get me wrong, I like doing art occasionally… I’m just not really great at it (which I have accepted and am perfectly okay with).

But one day my friend asked me to come keep her company in the art room and paint, so I decided to go ahead and give it a shot.

I went for something abstract (because then if I messed it up I could say it was intentional). Here is my art!

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Pretty snazzy, right? *flips hair artistically*

Talk to me!

What have you been reading lately? Have you done anything exciting or interesting? Is there anything you are looking forward to? Let me know in the comments below!

Thanks for reading!

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Art Print Giveaway!!

Hi guys! Life’s been kind of crazy lately (due to finals coming up), so I haven’t had as much time to read and write as much as I would like to. But my day was made a million times better when I got an art print in the mail from Madame Memento on Etsy!

I’ve teamed up with this shop to do a fun limg_1495ittle giveaway, meaning you have the chance to win your choice of art print from their store! Here is the one they sent me:

Isn’t it gorgeous!

I chose this Alice in Wonderland print because 1) I love Alice in Wonderland, and 2) it’s always good to embrace the crazy side of life (especially when yours is as hectic as mine)!

The print is on a page with French writing, and I am loving how it looks on my wall! Madam Memento has a whole bunch of beautiful prints for the lucky winner to choose from, so no mater what your style, this is not a giveaway you are going to want to miss out on.

To enter the giveaway (which is open worldwide), this is all you have to do:

  1. Visit Keystroke Blog’s Instagram (link here)
  2. Repost the picture of Madame Memento’s print, using the hashtag #madamememento
  3. Follow @Madamememento on Instagram (link here)
  4. Comment on this post when you are done!

Good luck to everyone who enters! The winner will be chosen on March 1, 2017.  And don’t forget to let me know what kinds of giveaway’s you want to see in the future!

 

Artist Spotlights- Bad Carrot Studios and Day Light Full

Along with my undying love for books, I happen to love art. All kinds of art, from acting and dancing to painting and drawing. So I decided to shine whatever spotlight I have on some wonderful artists that combine my love of books to my love of art.

What art form does this? Fan art.

After looking through pages and pages of fan art on Etsy (which is pretty much my favorite online store at this point) I found two incredibly talented artists who agreed to do some art for me! For the purpose of this post, I sent the artists identical descriptions of some of the characters from my current work in progress (Candy Wrappers  ) to see what they came up with.


The first artist is Brittany from Bad Carrot Studios . Here is a little bit about her:

Brittany is an actor with a youthful and energetic voice. She has a background in singing and a Masters in Fine Art from the Savannah College of Art and Design. She majored in Sequential Art, and after graduating in 2008, she became the primary artist for the first eight chapters of the webcomic Snow by Night. Since then, she’s been working as a freelance artist through Etsy as Bad Carrot Studios.

Along with a talent for art, Brittany has had a passion for Acting and Voice Acting since she was young and has been working in the industry since 2012. She completed the full training course from Voice Coaches and continues to further her education at Nick Conti’s Professional Actor’s Studio for acting and with Deborah Richards Studio for voiceover.

Brittany is currently working as an actor in various productions around Atlanta, GA and doing commercial voice overs nationwide.

Brittany did two sketches for me: one of Malia Reed, who is my female main character, and one of Warren “Ren” Hartman, who is my male lead.

Brittany was able to draw the characters with only a brief description of them, and her full blown fandom art is unbelievable.

It was very interesting to watch the sketches go from first draft to finished. Each draft had a little bit more of the characters in them, and she worked tirelessly until they were perfect.

I love Brittany’s style of art because of how well proportioned they are. They look like they could walk right off the computer screen and flop down in the chair next to me.


 

The second artist I worked with is Whitney from DayLightFull. Here is a little on her:

I’m 21 years old and I’ve been drawing since I could hold a crayon. I’ve drawn all my life but only in the last 4-5 years have I been able to draw exactly what I see in my head. I have a tremors in my hands and an very dyslexic which make my two favorite things in life (art and writing) a challenge. The tremors in my hands make it very hard to draw smooth and precise lines but I never let that stop me! Even though the tremors get worse as I get older, I’ve worked hard and long enough to where you can hardly tell I have the disability in my art! So I’m always encouraging people to never give up on their passions because of a diagnosis. Art is my passion and I love making people smile with it!

Whitney’s art style is much different than Brittany’s, but unbelievably beautiful. She drew Malia and Ren, as well as a few other important characters in the plot line. Here is what she came up with:

I love Whitney’s art because of how much I can feel that characters personalities coming off the page. She did a wonderful job of capturing their attitudes and expressions.


I want to say a huge thank you to both of these talented artists for making these beautiful pieces of art for me. I encourage all the readers of this post to go look at their other work; you will be amazed!

Giveaway- Custom Book Cover Canvas Painting

Hey everybody! These past few weeks have been kind of crazy for me! I am visiting my best friend for a month, so we have had a lot of catching up to do (and we also kind of went on an impromptu cross-country road trip…. hehe). But it’s been great so far.

I also have been working behind the scenes for about two months now to line up giveaways for you amazing readers, one of which is going live today!

The wonderful Rachel over at REArtByRachel on Etsy (and Instagram) has teamed up with me to give you guys a chance to win a 16″x20″ canvas painting of your favorite book cover!! (which by the way would normal cost you $65!)

Rachel was nice enough to make me a 9″x12″ painting of one of my favorite book covers (and I say “one of my” because lets be honest here: picking between my favorite books would be like a mother picking her favorite child). Because I had just finished reading The Hundred Lies of Lizzie Lovett (read my review here) I decided to pick that cover.

As you can see, the painting is stunning! It looks just like the cover! I love it so much!

And now you have a chance to win one of your very own! All you have to do is click the rafflecopter link below and follow the giveaway instructions. Good luck!

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e20309ab2/?

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