Archive for the ‘Guest Posts’ Category

Oftentimes when people see an individual with tattoos, assumptions and stereotypes fly through their brain and sometimes out of their mouths.

“Aren’t you worried what that’s going to look like when you’re old?”

“How do you expect to get a job with those things all over your arm?”

“Did that hurt?”

Let me get one thing off the table right now. Yes, getting a tattoo hurts. Anyone who tells you it didn’t hurt or that they fell asleep while getting tattooed is lying. Having a needle stabbed into your skin thousands of times hurts. Sure, it hurts more in some places than others, but it’s a painful experience no matter what. Getting tattooed sucks, which brings me to another often-heard question:

“Why would you do that to yourself?”

The main reason I get tattoos is because it’s my body, it’s my skin, and it’s my business. Getting tattoos is an art form. It’s an expression of my personality and my interests. Just like I show my interest of writing by, well, writing, I also show it by getting tattoos. I show my love for superheroes, writing, and, yes, even bands.


I also show my love for music. I’ve been a vocalist of the screaming variety in three metal bands, and it’s been a big part of my life. I’ve made some great friends because of my love for music, and I chose to show it by getting a tattoo.


As for when I’m older, well, tattoos have come a long way since sailors were getting pinup girls and anchors on their arms. The ink is better, and there are ways of taking care of tattoos that ensure they stay bright and keep their color for a long time. I have no doubt that when I’m older, whether my tattoos have faded some or are still bright and vibrant, I will still love them the same. They represent the things I care about, and the things that mean a lot to me. They’re a part of who I am, and that’s why I proudly display them on my skin.

Thanks for having me on your blog, Karen!


You’re welcome, Chris! And thanks for joining me here. If you want to know a little bit more about Chris, check out his bio and follow him on his various social media platforms. I’ve also included information about his upcoming book The Rotten Apple, which I read and loved!



Chris Stocking is a writer and author who dabbles in the steampunk, young adult, and various other genres. He grew up in Wayland, New York, is currently attending The College at Brockport—majoring in print journalism—and plans to enter the journalism or public relations field until one day he can live off writing novels.

Stocking’s hobbies include blogging, reading, writing and boxing. He has a ferocious addiction to coffee, has published several novels and a collection of short stories and has several other novels in the pipeline.

Stocking is also a freelance editor, a copy editor for Upstate Metal–an online music magazine–and is publishing editor for Eat Your Serial Press, giving him a wide range of skills sets allowing him to be proficient in various areas.

Stocking has also worked as a public relations intern at Noyes Health where he spearheaded an eight-page magazine project, seeing it through from conception to publication, along with covering events and writing press releases for the hospital.

Most recently, he has taken the position of Director of Web Development and Marketing for Brigantine Press, a new book press soon to be launching its flagship publication, Steam Patriots, an alternate-history steampunk series.

He currently resides in Dansville, New York with his wife, Casey.

Follow Chris: Facebook | Twitter | Blog | Goodreads


The Rotten Apple:


New York City, 1950 – Detective Naomi Blake sits in her office, craving a cigarette. Her phone rings. Mark Falco, owner of Falco Corporation, is in interrogation room one. Falco Corp. trucks have been spotted making late-night deliveries to an out-of-business warehouse, and the NYPD wants answers. Mark lawyers his way out. As always.

A woman comes in to the station. Says her husband is missing, possibly kidnapped. Before she can say by whom, a mysterious man bursts through the doors and sinks three slugs into her head, then vanishes. Even picks up the shell casings. The work of a professional.

Suspicious activity by Falco Corp., a missing husband, and a murdered woman. Three separate events? Or a concoction so vile it could mean the end of peace and justice in New York City?

The Rotten Apple is set to be released Saturday, March 22, 2014 in both print and Kindle formats. Add The Rotten Apple on Goodreads!

Today I’m bringing a very special guest to my blog. Her name is Coriander and she’s just about the grooviest person I know. I met Cori in college. She was a fellow art history student and we had some classes together, and both attended Latin Club (yeah, we were cool like that).

Cori is a self-proclaimed Renaissance woman. She writes, she draws, she acts, and she sings. I’m pretty sure there’s nothing that she can’t do. Wednesdays are dedicated to art and travel, and today we’re letting our artistic side shine. Check out the short Q&A I did with Cori and see her artwork below.

It’s a little longer than most of my blog posts, but I hope you’ll stick through until the end. She’s got some great advice and definitely speaks from experience. Enjoy!

(Disclaimer: I didn’t feel the need to censor Cori’s in her images or her words. This interview is not vulgar, but there are some swears and naked ladies!)

Me: What made you realize you had a talent for art, and what made you decide to make this into a business?

Cori: I’ve been drawing ever since I was old enough to hold a crayon. I used to consume paper and actually drew on the empty backs of whatever I could get my hands on at the time…and margins of books… I don’t think it was so much of a realization, as just something about me that always was. 🙂

I don’t like to go into a lot of detail about my past, but as it pertains to the question I did spend a lot of my life reacting to situations instead of growing up in a traditional sense. There was a great element of lack of control and attempting to please others, which left me feeling largely vulnerable and helpless – very much a victim mentality. Turning my art into a successful business venture was something that I wanted to do for ME and me alone. I think maybe floating around in my subconscious somewhere it makes me feel proud of myself and makes me feel like I have at least some measure of control as to what happens with my life. It’s not the most popular decision I’ve made to some, but I’ve learned how to handle that. I wouldn’t have been able to do any of this without my Thomas though, as cliché as it sounds, he really is my biggest fan. ❤

Me: It seems as though your main subjects tend to be faeries. What drew you to them and how would you describe your style?

Cori: I love faeries and I have a deep connection to them. To me it feels like something very old and familiar. They’re as intrinsic to my sense of identity as say my eyes…or my hair…you get the idea. I just simply love them, everything about them…even the dark, dangerous aspects of them. It is all so fascinating to me. I will be honest, I obsess over them…which works out for me because I honestly think people with obsessive personalities get the short end of the stick in society sometimes, lol. It’s kind of a mutual thing; I can have a focus for my obsessive personality and they get their sparkly, mythological egos stroked by being drawn incessantly, lol… 😉

How would I describe my style?…….Errr, I suppose the best way to describe it would be “multi-faceted”….yeah, that’s a nice elegant word. That’ll work. 😉

Me: Where do you draw your inspirations from? Which artists influence you the most?

Cori: Definitely from a myriad of places. I would say a good 85% of it comes straight out of my head, but I am also inspired by artwork, pictures, poses, you name it. I’m also incredibly inspired by my dreams. I have a very active “dream life,” lol.

…But as far as specific artists, I would say definitely Luis Royo, Susan Seddon Boulet, Georgia O’Keefe, and the Pre-Raphaelites and Neo-Classicists (John William Waterhouse) that came right after the PR’s. I’m also very inspired by Da Vinci and I try to incorporate chiaroscuro into my pieces as much as I can….key word here is try!

Me: No one is perfect and everyone can improve their craft. What’s one thing you are working on to become better at?

Cori: Oh that’s easy. I’m a notorious perfectionist with a heavy salting of obsessive compulsive. I’m CONSTANTLY on my own case about my problem areas. Right now what I’m really grinding on myself is landscape composition, accurately being able to draw various flora (a good idea as a FAERY artist, lol!), and trying to play around more with dramatic lighting and use less white in my shading. I am a total white-aholic when I shade.

I’m not going to even get into what I’m trying to improve on in regards to my acting, writing or singing. I’d be talking about it for weeks!

Me: If you could pick JUST ONE piece from your artwork that is most representative of you, or one that you are most proud of, what would it be and why?

Cori: Gaia Persephone from the deck I’m currently working on, The Sidhe Queen Oracle. The whole deck is just one of the most intimidating things in the world for me. It’s been a hard journey, both on the inside with my self-confidence issues and on the outside with various opinions that have been made. I kinda came out of left field with this deck, but that’s pretty much the way I do everything, lol. I didn’t and don’t want these pieces to be just pretty pictures that represent the public consensus on what Faery Queens should be. What’s the use of having an artistic voice if you’re only going to use it to reinforce the same old stuff that’s been around for centuries? No judgment to those who decide that that path is right for them, but it’s not right for me. I needed to go my own way with this deck and carve my own path and express my own ideas and thoughts about how things are. Gaia Persephone was the piece that solidified for me that my point-of-view was and is valid. It may never be more than foolish presumptions from a foolish girl to others, but that’s finally OK with me. It did take me a hell of a long time to get to that point though…

Me: Art is art in my book, whether or not you paint pictures with color or with words. What advice would you give to other “starving artists” out there?

Cori: I could write a friggin book on this subject. I think first, you need to be honest with yourself from the get go. Following your dreams fucking sucks. It is a painful path, and I hear told it’s rewarding in the end, but I’m honestly still walking it so I can’t tell you anything about that, lol. I can tell you that it’s hard, people will vilify you for things you didn’t think you could be vilified for, there’s a good chance a portion of your family or close friends will vehemently disagree with you, you will struggle financially, you will face almost constant and soul-crushing adversity, you’ll know rejection so well people will think you two have a “sexual past” (yeah…I’m still working on the “comedienne” thing…)…..the list goes on and on. Not trying to scare anyone, but there is nothing about this that is easy. If you happen to be one of the few who never have to go through these things on your path to make your dreams a reality, then you are one very, very, very lucky individual. But for most of us poor suckers, it is one hell of a hike.

Once you’re honest with yourself about what you’re in for and you decide that you still want to go for your dreams, it helps to have a financial plan. I, unfortunately, was not that lucky (or intelligent…depending on who you ask, lol). Ideally, you would put away some money but with this economy, Goddess only knows how that would pan out. However, a financial cushion makes the road less rocky so do whatever you can to cushion yourself without allowing yourself to put your goals to the side. Be very, very strict about your financial expenditures, for example; there is no real need to buy stock in bulk and store it with the hopes of unloading it for a profit at a later date with all the print-on-demand options on the internet that require zero capital start-up. Just remember that Murphy’s law friggin has it out for artists and creatives….if something can go wrong, it usually does and there’s a good chance you’ll end up looking like a leech that’s out of touch with reality. It’s just the unfortunate social stereotype that tends to hang over the heads of struggling, indie creatives and it just makes everything that much more difficult. What you can’t change, you learn to work around….or at least, you learn not to give it a deliberate reason to seek you out.

Which leads me to my next and final point. Make sure you are as self-sufficient as you can possibly be. Back to the Murphy’s law thing – don’t give people an excuse on a silver platter to make your life difficult when you are already treading a path that is not a societally popular one. The way I see it is that there are plenty of opportunities out there for people with money, but if you can’t afford it, then it was probably not the right (or ultimately fruitful) way for you to go to begin with. If you’re creative enough, you can find a way through regardless of whatever lack you may be experiencing in your personal situation. Ingenuity and resourcefulness are very handy personality traits to possess when you’re pursuing your dreams.

Other than that, I’d say never ever ever give up. No matter what happens to you, so long as you keep moving forward (even if you’re crawling), you’re getting that much closer to making your dreams happen….just make sure to take care of your nails if you find yourself crawling for an extended period of time (trust me on that one).

Me: What’s your preferred genre of writing?

Cori: I write Adult Fantasy Fiction. I used to write poetry and lyrics obsessively when I was younger. I may do so again one day when I develop enough self-confidence to record an album.

As far as reading, I am a notorious non-fiction gal. I am addicted to knowledge and learning and I’m especially fascinated by the things that society is scared of or casts off as crazy. I also find mythology very intriguing. Yep, I’m a sponge.

Me: What writing project are you working on now?

I am unwittingly beginning the first book of my massive fantasy fiction series. I say unwittingly because I had originally planned on holding off on writing until I had finished with the deck so as not to overwhelm myself (and because writing scares me). However, inspiration doesn’t bow down to the whims of “mere mortals,” so I’ve found myself starting the first book much, much earlier than I had anticipated.

The series is going to be inspired by and feature the Sidhe Queens from my oracle deck. The series will have 13, maybe 14 books initially, one for each Queen. I will not release the name of the series at this time, but the first book will be entitled, “Rhiannon.” I have released a small snippet from the first draft on my Facebook page. That is the only part of the book the public will see until it is published.

It is my hope to create my own World with this series and use the initial books as the framework for that World under which all of my other novels will piece in somehow…kinda like a cross between Forgotten Realms and how Stephen King interlaced a lot of his books with his Dark Tower world. I’m also quasi-open to the idea of making my World accessible to other authors the way HP Lovecraft did with his Lovecraftian Mythos, but that is something that I am going to extensively think about before I make a final decision.

Me: What other writings do you have planned for the future?

Cori: There are some things that I keep very close to myself and defend viciously. Unfortunately for the transparency of this interview, this is one of those things. I will say that I do have definite and grandiose plans for my future, as I set very high standards for myself and others. Additionally, I will say that by and large, I’ve learned to keep my plans and especially those plans concerning my future very loose and adaptable. Like I said, Murphy’s law has it out for me, man! 😉

Me: What experiences have you had in terms of acting?

Cori: Most of my experiences with acting have been primarily on stage, though I am concentrating on making a name for myself in film. I have completed undergraduate coursework in theatre that roughly equates to the normal credit range of a Minor. Unfortunately due to university politics that at the time drove the credit requirements for a Theatre Minor to be as high as that of an average Major, I do not have an official Theatre Minor on my transcripts. Regardless of this setback, I’ve studied acting as well as very thorough and extensive coursework into the history of theatre and the Greek plays that started it all. It makes me sound somewhat like a dork when I try to comment on various celebrity-related online venues, but I do believe that it is very, very beneficial knowledge for any thespian, stage or film to possess….that is, if they’re actually interested in developing their craft as opposed to say…flashing their silicone bewbs all over the place. Ask a plastic barbie doll who Orestes or Electra are if you’re in need of a good laugh. 😉

Me: What was your favorite role?

Cori: I played Miss Hannigan in Annie. I accidentally wore black undies under a see-through peach dress for one performance. I was in high school. The whole school saw me. Good times.

At least it made her character more believable, though for a high school production, I’m not too sure they were that concerned with character integrity.

Me: What’s your dream role?

Cori: Agh, I know I’m going to get flack for this lol, but I have no shame. I really would like to portray Anna in 50 Shades of Grey. I know it’s one of those “shoot for the stars, girl’s out of touch with reality” things, but I can’t help it. The heart wants what it wants. It doesn’t concern itself with rational, logical, statistical thinking (perhaps that’s why the heart and mind fight so much?).

I haven’t the faintest idea as to how to go about making this happen but it’s something that I desire very strongly and something that I think I would do an excellent job at. And yes, I have absolutely no issue showing my bewbs and juju to the world if the storyline is in the right place! I’m not too interested in using the naked female body as objectification though. To some there is no difference, but there is a definite distinction between the two in my opinion.

Check out some other pictures Cori has shared with us!

If you like what you see, or just want to learn more about her, you can visit these links:





Link to “Rhiannon” excerpt.

In her own words…

I am a Fantasy Faery Artist, Actress, Writer, Singer, Entrepreneur and Spiritualist. I am a wingless Faery trapped in a human body and I absolutely adore cats, the fluffier the better. I hold a current 4.0 GPA in the University of Crazy Cat Ladies in Training with a specialization in Feline Linguistics (I get lots of practice). I am head-over-heels in love with the sexiest tall, dark, and handsome type that pretends to be a gothic nerd….he’s not. Don’t let him fool you with his shockingly fluent nerdspeak…

Q: What do these three things have in common?

A: They can all be found on Fabio Bueno’s blog!

Today I’m over there giving you some recommendations for YA reading. The first series is the one I’m currently into, the second one is in my top five all time favorite books, and the third one is the epic follow-up that didn’t disappoint even a diehard fan.

If you like reading YA, but hate putting away characters after just one book, check out these series and let me know what you think! I’ll be hanging around the comments section over on Fabio’s blog. See you there!

P.S. Hope everyone in the U.S. has a great Labor Day! As for you suckers in other countries…happy Monday! 😛

Hey everyone! I’m over on Ddog’s blog today talking about the five things I’m MOST looking forward to in The Avengers, which is coming out in ONE WEEK. Go on over there and see what I have to say – and don’t forget to comment! I’d love to know what you’re most looking forward to in this movie.

A few weeks ago Ddog guest posted for me and asked us if the Spider-Man reboot movie was a good idea. If you missed it (or just forgot to comment!) head on over there and show him some love.

I’ll check into ROW on Sunday, and on Monday I’ll have a nice and shiny new post for you. Let’s see if you can figure out what it’ll be. Here are three clues: blue, hair, and travel. (No cheating! Leave your guesses in the comments below.)

Today I’m lucky enough to have my friend Ddog, from Gamerscene, over here at my blog! He’s a fellow movie junkie, and I love reading his movie reviews. But he’s got so much more than that! He also reviews video games and books, has some opinion pieces he calls “rage segments,” and even has polls every once in a while (and who doesn’t love a good poll?). It’s great having you here, Ddog, thanks for guest posting for me!!


Hello everyone! Ddog here from, and it’s an honor to be here at Karen’s blog: The Midnight Novelist!

Spiderman…a name that brings mixed emotions. I grew up watching the first one, fascinated by the costume and the sinister Green Goblin. Didn’t we all enjoy the first? It’s a classic. But then the second and the third Spiderman movies came out, and they visibly declined in quality each time. But I’m not here to talk about how terrible Spiderman 3 was. I’m here to do a bit of an analysis, answering the following questions: Why did this movie get made? Is this the correct time to release this movie? Will it be successful? These are questions that I’m sure everyone is scratching their heads to.

Why is a Spiderman reboot being made? Well, Spiderman 4 was supposed to be created, until the Spidey himself said no to another installment. But why? The Spiderman movies were always the top at the box office! Tobey Maguire would rack up a ton of cash, so why would he deny another opportunity? Well, the script of Spiderman 4 sent Peter Parker back to high school, and Tobey didn’t want that. He refused to join in, being 34. The director of the first three films dropped out of the franchise with him.

Word was always going around that the cast of the original three dreaded the work, too. They supposedly hated working on the movies. Why? That’s been kept under wraps, but everyone knows that when people don’t enjoy their work, they don’t perform their best. Maybe it was a good thing that Tobey bailed. I never liked the guy anyways.

Let’s take a quick break. Do you remember how Peter Parker beat up the goons chasing Mary Jane? And after that, he kissed her upside down in the pouring rain? Well, that scene was extremely difficult to film. Tobey Maguire kept getting water in his nose. On the topic of Spiderman, I have to bring that up.

BUT…back on topic. Is this the correct time to reboot the Spiderman franchise? It’s been ten years. We have to introduce the youngsters to the friendly neighborhood Spider Man, right? Unfortunately, the youngsters aren’t the ones who purchase movie tickets and popcorn. The adults have to flock to the film, but will they?  At the moment, there’s a grand coffee stain on the jeans of Spiderman. Not even Oxi-Clean can remove it. That stain is the Spiderman Broadway show, Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark.


This production has been a train-wreck since it premiered. Concussions and injuries and technical issues are crumbling its reputation. It has been postponed and delayed as well. But who cares about Broadway productions? What does that have to do with the movie? Well, it could have some effect. I highly doubt that those who saw the musical are extremely eager to see the film. But that’s just a small population of people. Will it have a huge impact on the film? We can’t know until the movie is released, but there are other factors that lure (and repel) people to the theaters.

The actors. Let’s talk about the faces in this flick. There’s no Leonardo DiCaprio or Tom Hanks, but a more youthful, fresher cast. First, let’s start with the new Spidey himself, Andrew Garfield. What’s he from? He’s worked on some TV shows and movies, but his biggest film is The Social Network, the movie telling the story of Facebook. I greatly enjoyed his performance, and I feel confident that he could pull of emotional scenes in this movie. Spiderman is an emotional superhero, after all.

Emma Stone. I will be honest, I know her film history, but I haven’t seen many of her big movies. I cannot make an opinion fairly, so I will leave that for you to think on…I liked her in Zombieland, however. Moving on. Martin Sheen is highly prestigious. Other than those three names, no other star caught my eye. This can be an issue. People don’t know who Andrew Garfield is. He is the leading man, after all. Luckily, the name “Spiderman” is known to us all, so the cast may not be a big factor to reel people in.

Now, let’s look at the timing of this release. July 3rd of 2012. That’s two months after The Avengers is released. I have a strong feeling that the success of The Amazing Spiderman financially relies on the success of the Avengers. But why? Spiderman isn’t in it. But there is speculation that he could be. Here is a post I recently typed up on Peter Parker possibly being spotted in the Avengers trailer, which is right here. But anyways, The Avengers will leave a taste in the viewer’s mouth concerning superheroes…either a good taste, of being satisfied and entertained, or a bad one, showing the atrocity of superheroes. If this movie is bad, I don’t think that people will be so eager to dive into another superhero franchise. After all, it’s been years of cinema leading up to The Avengers. People have high expectations. The Amazing Spiderman seems so tiny in comparison to The Avengers. One hero opposed to six…two months after the huge project.

This, of course, is just speculation. Who knows? There’s always a dark horse every year at the box office, and 2012 has yet to see one. Who would have guessed that Avatar, a movie with a plot as generic as it gets, would make as much money as it did? Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely loved that movie, but who honestly expected the lines that suddenly sprouted infront of theaters and the hype that emerged after opening night?

Thanks for reading!  But it’s not about me, it’s about you. What do you think of this reboot? Is it a good idea to launch the Spidey franchise once again for round two?  Let me know in the comments and check out my blog for reviews, rage segments, and polls. Thanks for having me, Karen!

I have a super special guest for you guys today! Debra Kristi is here to visit and share one of her fabulous experiences. This is all about fashion and the art of display pieces. Take is away, Debra!


Thank you for having me, Karen. *waves* When Karen first asked me if I would guest blog about art, I wondered what I could possibly say that would be of any interest. She’s had so many interesting posts on some pretty amazing talent, how could I possibly fit? But Karen knows that I come from a family of talent and she seemed determined to squeeze something out of me. Little did she know I’m the less talented of the bunch! *laughs*

Growing up I was surrounded by my mother and grandmother’s rich oil paintings. My mother even went on to teach classes in her soft Impressionist style. I, on the other hand, always preferred to work with pencil or ink, sticking primarily to the black and white hues.

Painting never became my thing, but working with tangible elements that I could move and arrange – that was something I got into. I learned a lot about art over the years. It has a lot to do with placement – where you want the eye to be drawn. Upper right corner is the usual, natural location. I almost always recommend up. And, of course, color palette – will you be using similar colors, complimentary, or strikingly different? The combinations are endless.

A few years after graduating from college with a degree in business (Operations Management), I ventured back into the artistic world, attending the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. It was one of those crazy expensive decisions we sometimes make in life, looking for validation of what we think we know, but are yet unsure. It is a project from this period in my life I thought I’d share today. It’s definitely different from anything Karen has shared with you so far.

Think about walking down 5th Avenue in New York City and taking in all the fabulous window displays. For someone like me, that’s like a six-year-old stepping foot onto Disneyland’s Main Street filled with Disney characters. I bubble over with excitement. Those windows are what visual designers aspire to. Of course, I’m not going to tell you I was the superb designer on any of those beauties. I’ve never even been to New York. But I have created artistic displays in a similar fashion.

My personal taste has always been “less is more.” I don’t like clutter. It confuses the eye, leaving you with no idea where to focus. If your display is a mannequin, be it just one or several, include minimal props. Smaller windows use the same concept, using only a few supporting elements to make the focal items look more attractive.

In 1996 my visual design partner and I got the opportunity to create a window display featuring two 1960’s vintage dresses. We didn’t have much to work with, but I did say less is more. What we had were a couple of blank mannequins. Painted in an old flat white paint, they did little to highlight the dresses and make them pop. Yes, I know. White is good, even great, when you want the focus to be on other things. Yet there are times when you can do better. Our dresses demanded a little more drama and pizzazz. A simple change to flat black alone made a huge difference. The fun little go-go dresses suddenly found new life.

There may have been life, but was it enough? Turning to the dresses for further inspiration, from each of them we pulled out a pattern to wrap around their respective mannequin, pulling color from the dresses in a thin, less conspicuous line. After that, only one more element was needed to give the window a complete look. Oversized chains were added, dropping them down in a clean straight line from the ceiling.

POW! We had the look we were striving for. A simple white backdrop, two nondescript flat black mannequins, a couple of amazing vintage dresses, some foam core, metal hoops, paint and brushes and voila – an eye catching design.

Not many stores take the time to do more than slip an outfit on a mannequin these days. Unless, of course, you’ve made your way to 5th Avenue in New York or some other trendy fashion district. Do you notice when a store designer takes the extra time on a display, be it in the window or on a vignette inside the store? Is it something you’ve ever done or had the desire to try your hand at?


Debra Kristi lives with her husband, two active children, and one White’s Tree Frog. She is currently working on her first Young Adult Fantasy novel, but has many more stories to share. She holds a degree in Operations Management and a Professional Designation in Visual Display and Spatial Design. She graduated from FIDM as Valedictorian, receiving the Niedermaier Merit Award and the special honor of creating the California Student Aid display for the State Capital. When not writing, she is usually building puzzles or Legos with her kids in her free time.

Hey, guys! I’m over at Jessica O’Neal’s blog today telling you who my favorite female artists are. Head on over there to check it out! I’ll be hanging around and answering questions in the evening, so don’t be afraid to ask ‘em!

Hope you enjoy it, and a HUGE thanks to Jessica for inviting me to post for her.

We have the immense pleasure of welcoming Jessica O’Neal into our midst today! On Wednesday I told you who my top five favorite villainesses are. Jess is here to tell us her favorite heroines. Let’s see how they match up.


Hello everyone! I am so thrilled to be hanging out with you here at Karen’s fabulous blog. When she came to me and asked if I would be interested in writing a piece on kick ass fictional women as a companion to her female villainesses I jumped at the opportunity. After much thought and deliberation I have finally come up with a list that I think is pretty rad. I certainly wouldn’t want to be found standing on the opposite side of any of these women.

5. Lisbeth Salander from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is one tough cookie. Whether you read the books or only saw the movie, you got to see Lisbeth in action. She faces some of the worst torments and abuses that I have ever encountered in a work of fiction, yet she never plays the victim. She takes charge and, literally, knocks those who try to take advantage of her on their asses. She may appear weak and frail, but she is perfectly capable of taking care of herself. And she does.

Best Line: [tattooing Bjurman] “Lie still. I’ve never done this before…and there will be blood.”

4. The Harry Potter series is full of strong female characters and, being a huge fan of the series, I knew I had to include one of them. When I was thinking about who it should be my first thought was Hermione, but then my husband suggested Professor McGonagall and I knew he was right. Minerva McGonagall is one of the most powerful witches in the wizarding world. She is paramount in arranging the defense of Hogwarts when it is under attack and is seen dueling the biggest badies of the series, including He Who Must Not Be Named. Not only is she powerful, she is also a no nonsense woman who does not tolerate insolence. One of my favorite scenes with her is in Order of the Phoenix when she goes toe to toe with the horrendous toad, Umbridge. Minerva McGonagall knows what is right and is confident enough to stand up for it no matter who she has to face.

Best Line: “That doesn’t mean we can’t delay him. And his name is Voldemort, so you might as well use it, he’s going to try and kill you either way.”

3. I think it is pretty safe to say that Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games deserves to be on this list. At the age of sixteen she has to enter an arena where she has to either kill or be killed. Thanks to years of illicit hunting to ensure her family didn’t starve to death she is able to shoot a bow with deadly accuracy. What really makes Katniss an impressive character, though, is that, even though she is able and willing to do what must be done, she still holds on to her humanity and her sense of justice.

Best Line: “And if we burn, you burn with us!

2. This list would not be complete without Buffy Summers. I mean, come on, she is the Vampire Slayer. Vampires, demons, creepy praying mantis teachers – no matter what crazy monster is thrown her way she is able to face it head on and slay it (yeah, I went there). And, what’s more, she does all of this while still maintaining her sense of fashion. That is a true talent that only a woman could possess.

Best Line: “If the apocalypse comes, beep me.”

1. Beatrix Kiddo, also known as The Bride, is hands down the most bad ass female I have ever encountered in fiction. She spends the better part of both Kill Bill movies fighting and brutally killing…everyone. And it’s not like she was fighting one poor fighter at a time; she was going up against groups of highly trained fighters all at once. Even in the moments where she was just waking up from a four year coma she was able to recognize that she was being taken advantage of and kill those who were responsible. Yet, in the midst of her extreme bloodlust she still holds on to her moral center, however skewed it may be, and seeks to protect innocents from the carnage surrounding her.

Best Line: “I’ve killed a hell of a lot of people to get to this point, but I have only one more. The last one. The one I’m driving to right now. The only one left. And when I arrive at my destination, I am gonna kill Bill.”

Well, there you have it. That is my list of 5 kick ass women in fiction. There were so many women that could have been on this list and a variety of reasons for why I left them off, but in the end I am happy with the five I landed on.

What about you? Who would be included on your list? Let us know in the comments.


Thank you again, Jess! I love how we happened to pull from some of the same movies. 😉

So, what do you guys think? She’s got a tough list here, but how do these women stack up against my picks? We already know how some of these turns out, but what about some of the stranger combinations? Regardless of the outcome, I know I wouldn’t want to face off with any of them!

Quick! Which movie is this from? "It looks better that way. No, it really does."

Hey, guys! Today you’ll have to travel a little bit to get a post from me. I have the enormous honor of guest posting on Debra Kristi’s blog for her Immortal Monday series. Today I’m talking about Aphrodite (how appropriate right before Valentine’s Day!) and how her character has changed over time. Be sure to check out the post here. And make sure you check out the rest of Debra’s Immortal Monday posts, plus the rest of her blog! You won’t regret it.

Thanks again for having me, Debra! I am still SO excited that I’ve had the pleasure of participating in your series.