GIVEAWAY- Silent Fear by Lance & James Morcan

 

I may not have been active these few months but I have brought for you a great opportunity which I don’t think you would want to miss!

I AM HAVING A GIVEAWAY!

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And the best part? Everyone wins something!

You could either win a paperback of new crime-thriller novel (with shades of horror and sci-fi) Silent Fear OR you could also sign up to review the book and get an ARC!

You just have to give your email id in the comments section and if you’re not comfortable doing so, just email me your email address and tell me if you want to review the ARC version or you want to enter in the giveaway.

Just a simple step and you have a chance to get a brand new unreleased book.

Oh, and it releases on 31st October! On Halloween! Remember the date. Read your book up until then and provide your opinion for the book before the book even hits the bookstores near you. Exciting, isn’t it?

Here’s something about the book:

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SILENT FEAR (A novel inspired by true crimes) is the latest novel by New Zealand father-and-son writing team Lance & James Morcan, authors of seven other published novels including THE NINTH ORPHAN, WHITE SPIRIT and INTO THE AMERICAS.

It’s available now on Amazon’s Kindle Pre-order program at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075HRYTVC/ and will be available to purchasers on October 31. (The paperback is available via Amazon now).

SILENT FEAR Synopsis:

Detective Valerie Crowther is assigned to investigate the murder of a student at a university for the deaf in London. The murder investigation coincides with a deadly flu virus outbreak, resulting in the university being quarantined from the outside world. When more deaf students are murdered, it’s clearly the work of a serial killer. The stakes rise when Valerie becomes the killer’s next target and the deadly virus claims more lives.

As you can see on the book’s Goodreads page, early advance reviews are excellent: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33590532-silent-fear

They have also set up a new discussion group on Goodreads to promote the book at:https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/237556-silent-world-a-discussion-group

And here’s the SILENT FEAR trailer that promotes the book and planned feature film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8bv1vbQxYo

 

So email me on vrushalipathak2107@gmail.com and just sit back to get a chance at winning a new book!

The winner will be announced on 24th October, 2017 IST. 

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True Story of an ex-DUFF


*This is an unedited version I wrote a year ago but couldn’t put myself to publish. Here it is anyway because I shouldn’t be embarrassed of who I was, or who I am. No one should. And neither should you.*


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If you have ever seen the movie “The Duff” you’ll know what it means. But if you haven’t, it is simply an abbreviation for ‘Designated Ugly Fat Friend’. They are the kind of friend that almost every group has; the kind of friend who is the ‘approachable’ one. He/she is the friendliest of all the people in the group among the rest of style divas or rock stars. If you look around you’ll see a DUFF in every group. They may not be ugly or fat but the essence of this is that they are the people who are in front of their friends and guard them from all sorts of people out there.

I was a DUFF and this is my story.

This is about 4 years ago. I had a best friend. She was beautiful, intelligent and kind to me. We met in 8th standard and we were inseparable since. We went everywhere together. We ate our food in the recess together, played games together and talked to each other almost every day. She was the best ‘best friend’ I ever got.

At that time I was more of a shy girl and I didn’t know how to talk to boys and what to talk about. It was then that my best friend came to rescue me. She used to talk flawlessly to them and I decided to learn by observing her. But unfortunately my social skills didn’t permit me to even open my mouth in front of them.

Then came a time when most of the boys came to talk to me. They’d ask random question about my best friend and I’d happily answer thinking I was improving my talking skills. It was practice.

Everything went smoothly until my best friend ended up in a different class than mine because of the subjects she chose. We talked for about a few months but we both knew we were slowly getting apart due to studies and lack of time: she went to study in an academic institute after school so that left us with no good time together. This growing apart costed us and we both lost touch even though we were still in the same school.

Then she got new friends and I got too but I never forgot her. But I guess she did. During my last few months at school she would often pass by and won’t even notice me.

We are no more best friends. I still feel bad for our friendship and her.

It was not until I saw the movie few months ago that I came to know what happened with me 4 years ago. I was the DUFF. There are many things that are mentioned in the movie and I don’t want to spoil you so I’ll just tell you the basic things.

The DUFF is the one that more friendly. That was me. The DUFF is also the one who’s more approachable: for their friends. I was that too. Boys came to me to ask about my best friend. The DUFF is often caught either talking to their friends or talking about their friends to other people. That as me too.

And as I saw the movie I realized I was a DUFF (I’m no longer one). To tell you the truth being a DUFF is nothing to be ashamed of. It sure feels like an atomic bomb when people point that out in your high school but it is not bad after all. Actually it’s nothing but a silly abbreviation created to make people feel bad.

Here’s what I think.

A DUFF is a normal person like you and me. A DUFF is only labeled that because of the fact that they hang out with people who are not like them. Like in the movie Bianca, the main lead, has two beautiful best friends and she feels judged when she is with them. She feels that everyone will judge her by comparing her with her best friends. The thing she feared was the people’s thinking about the outer breauty. Sure Bianca was beautiful from inside but are there people who still believe that people are actually beautiful from inside. After hearing that she’s actually a DUFF she breaks her friendship off with her two best friends.

At the end of the movie she comes to know that they were actually her best friends. She felt bad because of the fact that she was the one when guys came to, to talk about her best friends. But then she understood she’s no DUFF, she’s herself. And she’s proud to be someone who’s different from others.

If you’re reading this and you think you’re a DUFF, cheer up. It’s no bad thing. It’s something which will help you to be you. If people say you’re a DUFF, say yes and move forward. Be the bigger person. Dress up like you want. Eat what you want. And be the people you want. Be the approachable one or choose to be different. It’s all your choice.

But just remember: You being the DUFF is something that’s temporary. A few years from now you’ll realize that you are no more the person you were before. You changed, for the better.

 

What Is Love?

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Love. What is love? I guess, I can tell. Love is when your mother tastes the coffee before giving it to your father. Love is when you see a stranger smiling and you smile back. Love is the look on your face when you just opened your birthday gift. Love is dancing in the rain like no one’s watching. Love is the tear in your eyes when your friend forgives you. Love is doing what you love even when people are against you. Love is saying ‘thank you’ even when it’s not Thanksgiving. Love is helping your younger brother with his homework. Love is exchanging friendship bands even when it’s not ‘Friendship Day’.Love is helping your mom without her saying so. Love is spending more time buying a gift for someone else than shop for your own clothes. Love is hoping for the best when everything seems wrong.

Love is making every day count. Love is believing that you ‘can’ when everyone is making you believe you ‘can’t’. Love is thinking about others before thinking about yourself.

Love is love. Love is red. Actually love is every color you can think of. Love is sympathy, kindness, happiness and courage. Love is bravery. To love is to be brave. Sometimes loves makes you stronger and vulnerable at the same time; stronger by making you believe, making you ready for all kinds of people out there. Love makes you vulnerable by making you open your heart to someone who can either care for it or break it. But according to me, love is the most special feeling of all. I guess believing in love is the next thing to believing in magic!

UPDATE: New Blog Theme And Related News

Hey! If you looked at my website before, you would have noticed some changes. Some major changes!

I GOT A NEW HEADER!

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I have been meaning to get a new makeover for my blog but let’s just say I was unsure about many things. (or scared) But after I read Analee’s post which is linked here, I thought about how easy it is to really just change.

And hence, as Analee suggested, I went to Canva’s website  and just made a new header and related images for my blog.

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You noticed my new post topic-changer thing?! Also my new theme is black and white. I wanted red and black but I guess red is too harsh on the eyes and you’d never come back to my website if I did so. So classic black and white it is…

Also I have a new “Let’s Chat” image. I want to interact with you more and thus I decided to have this image at the end of every post.

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What do you think of my new blog theme and design? I wanted it to be slightly formal but slightly informal too. Do you like it? Don’t feel shy. Let’s communicate.

P.S. Look down. Yeah, that’s my new ‘sign off’ kind of thing.

P.P.S. Also I’ll be editing and deleting all the posts. Major changes on the way!

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Get to Know the Blogger: 100 Questions No One Ever Asks Tag (Part 2)

 

If you read the first part to this two-part series, you’ll know I took more time than intended to write the rest of the answers. Here’s the link to the first part, if you’re interested.

So let’s get started…

 

Q51: Last time you got a portrait taken by a photographer?

A51: I think many, many years back. I’m immortal and so I don’t really remember it that well.

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Q52: Do you think musicals are cheesy?

A52: I don’t really have an opinion on this. I saw a few musicals and they seemed okay.

 

Q53: Is Christmas stressful?

A53: We don’t celebrate it. I don’t hate Santa Claus. I’m an Indian. That’s why.

 

Q54: Ever eat a pierogi?

A54: I don’t even know what that is.

 

Q55: Favourite type of fruit pie?

A55: Never had one.

 

Q56: Occupations you wanted to be when you were a kid?

A56: Teacher.

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Q57: Do you believe in ghosts?

A58: Yes.

 

Q58: Ever have a Deja-vu feeling?

A58: Yes.

 

Q59: Take a vitamin daily?

A59: Nope.

 

Q60: Wear slippers?

A60: No, I like to be barefoot.

 

Q61: Wear a bath robe?

A61: No.

 

Q62: What do you wear to bed?

A62: Whatever clothes I wore that day

 

Q63: First concert?

A63: Never went to one. Somehow I don’t like the idea of squishing yourself by a truck load of humans to listen to music. You can do that with an iPod.

 

Q64: Wal-Mart, Target or Kmart?

A64: Never been into any of these.

 

Q65: Nike or Adidas?

A65: Adidas

 

Q66: Cheetos Or Fritos?

A66: No one. I like Lays.

 

Q67: Peanuts or Sunflower seeds?

A67: Sunflower seeds.

 

Q68: Ever heard of the group Tres Bien?

A68: No. But I know Tres Bien means ‘very good’ in French!

 

Q69: Ever took dance lessons?

A69: Yes. I used to go to dance classes when I was in 7th grade. Major hobby at that time;

 

Q70: Is there a profession you picture your future spouse doing?

A70: Nothing particular. But it would be GREAT if he’s a bookseller!

 

Q71: Can you curl your tongue?

A71: No.

 

Q72: Ever won a spelling bee?

A72: Yes I remember once I participated when I was very very small. It was school level spelling bee. And I was one of the two finalists. And the final spelling was “symbol” and I knew the correct spelling, I swear. But I don’t know what came over me and I wrote “S-I-M-B-O-L” Epic face palm moment.

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Q73: Have you ever cried because you were so happy?

A73: Yes. Many times.

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Q74: Own any record albums?

A74: No.

 

Q75: Own a record player?

A75: No.

 

Q76: Regularly burn incense?

A76: My mother does.

 

Q77: Ever been in love?

A77: I don’t know, so probably no.

 

Q78: Who would you like to see in concert?

A78: One Direction? Just had them at the top of my head.

 

Q79: What was the last concert you saw?

A79: Never went to any.

 

Q80: Hot tea or cold tea?

A80: No tea. I don’t drink tea.

 

Q81: Tea or coffee?

A81: Coffee!!

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Q82: Sugar or snickerdoodles?

A82: What are snickerdoodles?

 

Q83: Can you swim well?

A83: Nope. Swimming isn’t for me and I’m not for swimming. I went a swimming class for a month and learnt nothing except for how to hold my breath and how to dive awkwardly in a pool.

 

Q84: Can you hold your breath without holding your nose?

A84: Yes.

 

Q85: Are you patient?

A85: No.

 

Q86: DJ or band, at a wedding?

A86: I’d prefer DJ.

 

Q87: Ever won a contest?

A87: Yes.

 

Q88: Ever had plastic surgery?

A88: Yes. And now my own parents don’t recognize me. (No, of course not! Don’t believe everything I say)

 

Q89: Which are better black or green olives?

A89: None.

 

Q90: Can you knit or crochet?

A90: I learnt to crochet six months back. And I made a phone case for my phone. It’s too embarrassing to post a picture of it. It’s ragged and somewhere the design changed completely. Just a novice’s work.

 

Q91: Best room for a fireplace?

A91: Living room.

 

Q92: Do you want to get married?

A92: I don’t know.

 

Q93: If married, how long have you been married?

A93: Not married.

 

Q94: Who was your High School crush?

A94: I won’t put his name, but a guy who I spoke to but then I stopped speaking to him. Still in love with him to this day.

 

Q95: Do you cry and throw a fit until you get your own way?

A95: Yes. Sometimes.

 

Q96: Do you have kids?

A96: No. I am basically a kid.

 

Q97: Do you want kids?

A97: Undecided.

 

Q98: Whats your favorite color?

A98: Red!

 

Q99: Do you miss anyone right now?

A99: Yes, too many people.

 

Q100: What ware you dressing up this Halloween?

A100: I don’t celebrate Halloween. Though I would’ve dressed up as a zombie. Or Captain America.

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That’s all for this tag.

I’ll meet ya tomorrow with an update! (Shh..it’s a secret!)

 

Friday Art #16- I made a journal from an old book

I hated a book. I’m not going to take names here so don’t ask. I dislike other books but I hated this one. And I am too connected to books (both as a book with a story written in them and also books as in a collection of page binded together.) And so I couldn’t let the book go. I couldn’t sell it for money which was so much less than it’s actual worth. The time and effort the author took to write it.

And so I decided to just use it. Creatively.

And I decided to make a journal out of it. It is an advantage that I can paint and journal in a bounded book. No need of buying another expensive journal.

So here’s the first thing I painted after I got this idea. Wish me luck!😉

You can track my progress with this journal on my Instagram account: @vrushalipathak

Get to Know the Blogger: 100 Questions No One Ever Asks Tag

And here I am in the brand new year telling you about myself- a) even when you never asked for it in the first place and b) I love some self-promotion. I saw this tag on Chocolatesnwafflesblog and here’s a link to it. 

So let’s get started!

  1. Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed? I am not someone with OCD but really who sleeps with their closet doors open? I will never do that. And also after watching Conjuring, I bet anyone would do that.
  2. Do you take the shampoo or conditioner bottles from hotels? Yes! Shamelessly yes! Because they are too good to let go and when we pay for the room we pay for them, right? (I’m probably trying to convince you that I am NOT A STEALER and this is not a sin in case you wanted to try it out!)
  3. Do you sleep with your sheets tucked in? I sleep without tucking them in because I feel trapped and not at all comfortable. And I need to keep my one foot out of the sheets (weird habit).
  4. Have you ever stolen a street sign before? Not really interested in stealing street signs.
  5. Do you like to use post-it notes? I do like them but I don’t use them. That often.
  6. Do you cut out coupons but never use them? No.
  7. Would you rather be attacked by a bear or bees? Attacked by a bear. I think I may have a little chance to outrun the bear but the bees, oh no no, THEY ARE DEADLY!bear-attack
  8. Do you have freckles? No
  9. Do you always smile for pictures?  Well most of the time. I don’t want to look back at my pictures with me not smiling and just sulking around. I did that a lot when I was little. Sometimes I wouldn’t even remember I had to smile when someone takes a picture and then I look like someone scolded me just a second before running and taking my picture.. And I quote “Sometimes, it depends on who is behind the camera. Smile or not, I always look bad on pictures, so I avoid them as much as possible.” So true.                                                                             fake-smile
  10. What is your biggest pet peeve?  That I dislike people who are rude. There is enough unhappiness in this world and I don’t want anyone to be more unhappy than that. Also I don’t really like people who seem disinterested in a conversation. Like if you aren’t interested just sit in a room and lock yourself instead of listening to someone you aren’t even listening in the first place!? *rant over*angry-for-rude-people
  11. Do you ever count your steps when you walk? No I don’t. But it happens sometimes that unconsciously I count them.
  12. Have you ever peed in the woods?  Actually I have.
  13. What about pooped in the woods?   I don’t think so.
  14. Do you ever dance when there is no music playing?  Yeah sometimes (when no one’s watching) I usually know the song in my head and when I feel too bored to plug in the earphones, I dance without it. And I read a quote somewhere that goes something like this “And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who couldn’t hear the music.”                                  giphy
  15. Do you chew your pens and pencils?  Unconsciously yes, sometimes. But I stop when someone scolds me for it.
  16. How many people have you slept with? Just myself.
  17. What size is your bed? Medium, I think. I don’t know the bed sizes but I seem to fit so it’s good.
  18. What is your song of the week? If ain’t love by Jason Durulo.
  19. Is it okay for guys to wear pink? Yeah, it’s okay. I won’t ever judge a guy based on the COLOR he wears. I could judge him by his clothes no the exact color. 
  20. Do you still watch cartoons? YEAH! Cartoons are fun and cool and I will never be ashamed of watching cartoons!
  21. What’s your least favorite movie? I really have to think about it. And after thinking I’d say Girl Next Door. I tried watching it several times but the whole concept is too weird for me and the actors also seem like they don’t know how to act properly. (No offence!)
  22. Where would you bury hidden treasure if you had any? I’d spend a little and bury the rest in a SECRET SPOT. You thought I was going to tell you?
  23. What do you drink with dinner? And sometimes cold drink, when my family’s mood is good.
  24. What do you dip a chicken nugget in? Tomato sauce!
  25. What is your favorite food?  PIZZA!!!                      pizza
  26. What movies could you watch over and over again and still love?  There is probably a whole list containing a hundred movies and some of them are – any Marvel movie, Made of Honor, Eat Pray Love, Jurassic World, any Chris Evans’, Chris Pratt’s, or Chris Pines’s movie
  27. Last person you kissed/kissed you? I haven’t kissed anyone from months! I have been staying home or studying to see any cute babies!
  28. Were you ever a boy/girl scout?  Not that I wasn’t interested, but the boy/girl scout thing isn’t very popular here. (here = India)
  29. Would you ever strip or pose naked in a magazine? No way! They want to showcase my talent? Fine! I’d never do anything that doesn’t feel good to me.
  30. When was the last time you wrote a letter on paper? In March 2016, I decided to write a handwritten letter to the people that were very close to me in school and give them that as a token of my love and remembrance. So yeah that’s the thing. And another letter I wrote to myself so that I would open it and read it again after 1 year. A letter to my future self.
  31. Can you change the oil on a car? I really don’t go near a car because I always feel I’ll have an accident when I’ll try to drive it and probably damage the car. It is just stuck in my head. I mean I go near a car when I have to sit in it but I don’t drive and so that is a thing I don’t know.
  32. Ever got a speeding ticket? Not even when I drive a two-wheeler.
  33. Ever ran out of gas? Not out of gas but once I was on my two-wheeler and I was supposed to reach somewhere and I knew I was 5 minutes late and then suddenly I felt the accelerator loosen in my grip and the vehicle stopped working. And it was the first time that something like this happened to me and I was in the middle of the road, probably on the verge of crying but then I walked to the place I wanted to go and then came back later for my two-wheeler.
  34. Favorite kind of sandwich?  CHEESE SANDWICH! Anything with cheese in it. cheese
  35. Best thing to eat for breakfast? Bread and omelette. I was not a big fan of it some time back but then one day I was eating it with some cheese and tomato sauce and I saw this brilliant white light from above and I have loved it ever since. Well, it may or may not have happened that dramatically.
  36. What is your usual bedtime?  I usually got to sleep at 11 pm, and sleep comes to me at 12. And I try to wake up before 8am.
  37. Are you lazy? I AM! And often I procrastinate so much that I don’t get any work done till the last day!
  38. When you were a kid, what did you dress up as for Halloween?  We don’t really celebrate Halloween here.
  39. What is your Chinese astrological sign? I just checked. Mine is an OX. Not very pleasing. But it means I am – Loyal, reliable, thorough, strong, reasonable, steady, determined.
  40. How many languages can you speak? My first language is Marathi (a language spoken in Inida), Hindi (another language spoken here), English, a little bit of French I learnt in school.
  41. Do you have any magazine subscriptions? Unfortunately no. I can read all the magazines for free on my mobile.
  42. Which are better, LEGOs or Lincoln logs? I don’t know what Lincoln Logs are. So LEGO…
  43. Are you stubborn? Yes I am. In matters where I think I am right and I don’t hurt anyone.
  44. Which is better Leno or Letterman? I don’t know what they are.
  45. Ever watch soap operas? My mother watches and so I have to.
  46. Are you afraid of heights? No
  47. Do you sing in the car? I sing when there is no one to hear me because I’m a terrible singer to the point where you might faint hearing me singing. Don’t say I never warned you!
  48. Do you sing in the shower? Sometimes.
  49. Do you ever dance in the car? I dance and sing together.dance
  50. Ever used a gun? Fake gun? Yeah. Real gun? Are you kidding? Also if you’d like to read the remaining 50 questions, you’ll have to wait.

Three Tips To Ace Your Exams

There are many tips that can make you a better student and this post is no different. But the way I see it studying becomes really simple if you know these three simple tricks.

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But I’m no expert in these matters but these tricks helped me a lot and I hope that they help you too to become an expert in studies.

 

  • The first thing that you should remember is: Please don’t try to study on the bed. I was very guilty of this habit and I’m glad to say that I changed it and since then I’ve experienced a massive increase of interest in my study habits. It’s best to have a desk or table that you can use every time you do homework. If you associate that environment with work, you can actually start to focus faster; that’s why doing homework in bed isn’t such a great idea. You associate that environment with sleeping, not studying. Keep your work area well stocked with pens, pencils, notebook, and textbooks — anything you’ll need to do your assignments.

 

  • The next thing is developing your studying timetable. Don’t give yourself too much stress by studying for 2-3 hours straight. Allow yourself some time off; you’re only human. You can follow the “40 minute study rule”. The “40 minute study rule” tells that you should study for 40 minutes straight and then take a 5 minute minutes break. You can increase it to 10 minutes too. But don’t do any distracting activity during this break like watching TV or going online. They are activities that distract you from studying and it would be very difficult to recover after the break to study again. Do something light like talking a brisk walk or stretching.

 

  • And the last thing to remember is study regularly. That’s it. Even if you have a year or even half a year to prepare for your exams, study regularly. Make your timetable and allot some hours on each day. The hours you have to decide can me totally up to your needs, total syllabus or your capacity to study. Then study regularly. It is the simplest method to score good consistently. Because of the regular studies you’ll not even feel the pressure of the syllabus swallowing you during the examinations.

And if you tried these, tell me in the comments below if they worked!

 

Weekly Recollections #6

Hey everybody!

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I hope you’re having a great Sunday!

And so am I. I just ordered three books!!! And imagine my happiness when all of them came at really, really low prices!

If you read my post yesterday you’ll know that I’m beginning to be open about my life and what happened. Sometimes I think I think too much but then doesn’t everyone!?

I am currently reading Broken Jars, a fistful of dreams written by 5 different authors together. And I’ve made a schedule for studying but I’m finding it a little difficult to really follow it. I’m trying my best to follow it but I’m not just feeling like studying. And it’s bugging me because I’m a nerd and studying means a lot to me. I hope this coming week just increases my productivity and I’ll be able to study more.

I wrote these three posts this week. Do check them out if you haven’t.

How is you weekend? Any plans for the coming week?