đź’¬ Visitor Put up: Love Connections in a Pandemic

So, hello there. It’s been some time since I posted something new right here, nearly a 12 months the truth is. And a LOT has modified in my life, and yours, contemplating we’re at present residing in a pandemic. 

Throughout my time away I’d been engaged on a e-book and falling out of a wedding, then falling out of a e-book and attempting to rewrite my life.

It’s been… quite a bit.

However within the meantime I’ve made new associates and solid new paths in writing and in life.  I needed to share one thing a pal of mine wrote about residing by way of a pandemic AND divorce. I’m publishing it anonymously, for causes which can be apparent. There’s nothing shameful or secret right here, however privateness is one thing I respect, and ask that you just do as effectively.

Hope you get pleasure from it as a lot as I did…  

Love Connections in a Pandemic
by Anon

It began because the world was shutting down. Colleges had closed. Non-essential companies have been closing. Grocery retailer cabinets have been barren. The world as we knew it was ending.

Concurrently, my Bumble account was blowing up. The notifications saved coming in, “We all know you’re a catch – and another person does too! Open Bumble to see who desires to fulfill you.” Huh?

Final minute makes an attempt for a hook-up??? Maybe. Lonely, bored singles searching for a connection? Additionally seemingly.

I scrolled by way of my rising hive (or what Bumble refers to because the Beeline) and located some selection matches. The convos began, “Hello Mark, good profile. All stocked up for the pandemic?” In my restricted expertise on Bumble so far, these convo starters, at all times initiated by the girl per Bumble protocol, don’t at all times elicit a response.

Not the case in Coronaville. The convos have been rampant. A lot of backwards and forwards, with many potential suitors. It was laborious maintaining. On any given night time it was simple to seek out myself in 3 or 4 conversations at any given time.

woman long dark hair phone

My married associates have been baffled, my therapist amused. How might this be?! This was a enjoyable and a needed distraction from the crumbling world round us, however now what?

Apparently, it was time to up the ante.

As a newly single mom of many, I’m new to this on-line courting recreation. However, as boredom ensued, the chances began opening up. Attractive pictures have been despatched. A staged photograph shoot in my closet, hidden from view was a should.

There have been some mishaps – don’t overlook to show off the reside digital camera setting – it’s wonderful what may be captured in 1.5 seconds of video. However, it was enjoyable being attractive in what was shortly changing into an in any other case sexless world.

My married associates have been presumably doing it – plenty of jokes circulating a few 2020 Christmas child increase. I needed in on the motion. Time to up the anteonce more. Undecided the way it began, nevertheless it didn’t take lengthy to have interaction in what could have beforehand been perceived as raunchy or daunting.

Who knew simultaneous sexting orgasms weren’t solely doable, but additionally addicting? 2pm in a pandemic world – why not run as much as the bed room for a quickie sext change?! “Hey child, what are you doing proper now trigger I can’t cease fascinated with your…?”

As I dove deeper and deeper into sexting and gained confidence on this new-found expertise, I noticed I wasn’t the one one. Glamour lately posted this beneficial how-to article for newbies, however in case you’d prefer to learn some scorching examples from the professionals, look no additional than Cosmo, after all.

With doubtlessly a number of extra months of quarantine and social distancing on the horizon, don’t let this untapped supply of enjoyable and distraction move by. Take step one, ship that attractive photograph or textual content (with permission after all.)

selfie

You don’t need to be divorced or single to hitch in. Ship a suggestive textual content or pic to your partner or companion. Quarantine doesn’t need to be torture 100% of the time.

My subsequent journey is audio recordings… what’s yours?

Be happy to go away your ideas in feedback beneath. Be respectful and type. If sexting isn’t your cup of pandemic tea, transfer alongside. In any other case chime in!

 

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Sep 13, Grand Remembrances

Today is Grandparents Day in the United States. Being a Grand is a special honor. I feel very blessed that my wife and I have two grandchildren. We were able to visit them today. Yes, we are still being cautious with the coronavirus, but we also find it very difficult to not see them when they live so close. So today we did drop by to visit Jacob (age 10) and Sophia (age 7) along with their parents. We brought donuts and caught up with them. Our grandchildren are still pretty young and this is a precious time in their lives – and ours!

I wish I had known my grandparents better. We never lived in the same place. Dad was a career Air Force pilot, so we moved around a lot. But we did get to see them once in a while when they would visit us, or we them.

A Plague of Giants

There are five known magical ‘kennings’ or types: air, water, fire, earth, and plants. Each nation specializes in of these kennings, and the magic influences the society. There’s a big pitfall with this diversity of ability and locale–not everyone gets along.

Enter the Hathrim giants, or ‘lavaborn’ whose kenning is fire. Where they live the trees that fuel their fire are long gone, but the giants are definitely not welcome anywhere else. They’re big, they’re violent, and they’re ruthless. When a volcano erupts and they are forced to evacuate, they take the opportunity to relocate. They don’t care that it’s in a place where they aren’t wanted.

I first read Kevin Hearne’s Iron Druid books and loved them (also the quirky The Tales of Pell), so was curious about this new venture, starting with A PLAGUE OF GIANTS. Think Avatar: The Last Airbender meets Jim Butcher’s Codex Alera series. Elemental magic, a variety of races, different lands. And it’s all thrown at you from page one.

But this story is told a little differently. It starts at the end of the war, after a difficult victory, and a bard with earth kenning uses his magic to re-tell the story of the war to a city of refugees. And it’s this movement back and forth in time and between key players in this war that we get a singularly grand view of the war as a whole. Hearne uses this method to great effect.

There are so many interesting characters in this book that I can’t cover them all here. Often in books like this such a large cast of ‘main’ character can make the storytelling suffer, especially since they don’t have a lot of interaction with each other for the first 3/4 of the book–but it doesn’t suffer, thankfully. And the characterization is good enough, despite these short bursts, that by the end we understand these people and care about what happens to them.

If there were a main character it would be Dervan, a historian who is assigned to record (also spy on?) the bard’s stories. He finds himself caught up in machinations he feels unfit to survive. Fintan is the bard from another country, who at first is rather mysterious and his true personality is hidden by the stories he tells; it takes a while to understand him. Gorin Mogen is the leader of the Hathrim giants who decide to find a new land to settle. He’s hard to like, but as far as villains go, you understand his motivations and he can be even a little convincing. There’s Abhi, the son of hunters, who decides hunting isn’t the life for him–and unexpectedly finds himself on a quest for the sixth kenning. And Gondel Vedd, a scholar of linguistics who finds himself tasked with finding a way to communicate with a race of giants never seen before (definitely not Hathrim) and stumbles onto a mystery no one could have guessed: there may be a seventh kenning.

There are other characters, but what makes them all interesting is that they’re regular people (well, maybe not Gorin Mogen or the viceroy–he’s a piece of work) who become heroes in their own little ways, whether it’s the teenage girl who isn’t afraid to share vital information, to the scholars who suddenly find how crucial their minds are to the survival of a nation, to the humble public servants who find bravery when they need it most. This is a story of loss, love, redemption, courage, unity, and overcoming despair to not give up. All very human experiences by simple people who do extraordinary things.

Hearne’s worldbuilding is engaging. He doesn’t bottle feed you, at first it feels like drinking from a hydrant, but then you settle in and pick up things along the way. Then he shows you stuff with a punch to the gut. This is no fluffy world with simple magic without price. All the magic has a price, and more often than not it leads you straight to death’s door. For most people just the seeking of the magic will kill you. I particularly enjoyed the scenes with Ahbi and his discovery of the sixth kenning and everything associated with it. But giants? I mean, really? It isn’t bad enough fighting people who can control fire that you have to add that they’re twice the size of normal people? For Hearne if it’s war, the stakes are pretty high, and it gets ugly.

The benefit of the storytelling style is that the book, despite its length, moves along steadily (Hearne is no novice, here). The bits of story lead you along without annoying cliffhangers (mostly), and I never got bored with the switch between characters. It was easy to move between them, and they were recognizable enough that I got lost or confused. The end of the novel felt a little abrupt, but I guess that has more to do with I was ready for the story to continue, despite the exiting climax.

If you’re looking for epic fantasy with fun storytelling and clever worldbuilding, check out A PLAGUE OF GIANTS.

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The Artwork Of Gary Choo

Gary Choo is a concept artist/illustrator based in Singapore. I’ve know Gary for a good many years ( 17, actually ), working together in animation studios in Singapore like Silicon Illusions and Lucasfilm. Gary currently runs an art team at Mighty Bear Games, but when time allows he also draws covers for Marvel comics, and they’re amazing –

The Art Of Gary Choo
The Art Of Gary Choo
The Art Of Gary Choo
The Art Of Gary Choo
The Art Of Gary Choo

To see more of Gary’s work or to engage him for freelance work, head down to his ArtStation.

The post The Art Of Gary Choo appeared first on Halcyon Realms – Art Book Reviews – Anime, Manga, Film, Photography.

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