Say your goodbyes

Monday my mom is dragging me to a super-cool yet super-low-tech camp for a week to be a "helper". I would be perfectly fine with it, considering I'll be taking a drama class there (I <3 acting!). But sadly, there are no cable, no TV, no computer, and no cell phones allowed. I hate that. I have to go 5 1/2 days without my technology! I will die! I need technology! I need my book from the series All-Action Classics based on the Odyssey which will be arriving UPS on Tuesday! They could at least let me bring a laptop! What is this? The Roman Age? (actually I've always wanted to see what it's like in the Roman Age, but last time I checked, this place doesn't have dinner-recliners, communal toilets, and bathhouses... plus, I'm pretty sure we won't be eating stuffed dormouse for dinner)


At least I'll have enough time to catch the new episode of Unnatural History (yes, I watch that show and I watch that channel. Sometimes, people - and you know this is true - there're just no good "big-kid shows" on TV... <:D)

(gotta love bad grammer)


S'more drawin' and thinkin'

Just did this of me and my dogs, Jack and Max.

Jack is a Cairn Terrier (Toto!) and Max is a West Highland, me laddies. It was hard coloring the dogs because niether of them is one, solid color. Max is "white" which means he has a white back, yellow face and legs, and a brownish mouth. Jack is, um... well, he's kind-of a mixture of every hair color known to man and a few known to Marshians.


Just a'drawin and a'thinkin...

Recently did these. The first is a title I did for One-Thousand and One Nights, a book that I absolutely love. I saw the movie "Arabian Nights" yesterday, which is based on it. Have to say, Arabian Nights is a favorite of mine.

The second picture is one I drew, scanned, edited, and colored, while at the same time watching the movie. It's of Aladdin, and for those of you who don't know, if it wasn't for 1001 Nights he wouldn't have ever come into being. The only thing I hate about the movie Arabian Nights is that it makes all the djinni look self-absorbed and evil. Sure, in the book, some of 'em were, but Aladdin's weren't (yes. weren't. plural. In the book he had two djinni. another thing. it's djinni. not genie.). I really like the way djinni were portrayed in Disney's Aladdin (though I don't like how in Disney's movie they changed a lot about the story) by Robin Williams. He was perfect as the Djinn. Anyway, there you go.


Myth Talk! JP's picks, part 2

So Iason sailed to Kolkhis, where the Golden Fleece was, and after dealing with Kokhis' psycho-king Aietes, he left Kolkhis with not only the Golden Fleece but also a smokin'-hot, sorceress for a wife. The sorceress, Medeia, is madly in love with Iason, and is Aietes' daughter. She has risked her life twice to save Iason, but hey, third time's the charm. Or the fourth. Or fifth. Let's just say she's gonna do anything to protect him. So when the Argonauts get caught in a detour near Krete, she's sadly aware of what happens next. Talos, spotting the ship (his psycho-senses are tingling!), begins hurling boulders at it. (Welcome to Krete. Over there is the fabulous palace of Knossos, and over there is the psychopathic, bronze giant trying to brutally sink your ship. Come back soon... if you're still alive, that is) Medeia hurriedly shouts to Iason, "Quick! We have to get someone on Talos' rock! Talos has only one vein in his body! And his only weak spot is his right heel! We have to stab his heel to kill him!" Amidst the screaming and steering, one man volunteers: the armor-bearer Poias, who is practically a boy. At first the entire crew disagrees, but what's better to speed up a desicion than 10-foot boulders whizzing right past your head? It is agreed, and tiny Poias sneaks off the ship with Herakles' bow and arrows and readies himself behind a tree nearby Talos. The ship is sailed to the other side of Krete and pulls into the shadow of Mt. Ida, so that Talos will not see them. Medeia advances seductively toward our bronze psychopath, who is soon under her distracting charms. Just as Medeia cuddles in close to whisper smeet promises into Talos' Obama-shaming ear, Poias springs upon the giant's unguarded ankle and shoots the arrows through the weak metal. The entire heel bursts open as Talos screams, writhing in agony. Medeia, Poias and the Argonauts watch as golden ichor (god-blood) splashes and froths onto the beach. The metal collapses on itself, and soon a wet scrap heap is all that's left of Talos.
Poias is honored as a hero for the rest of the day, and Medeia might've been mad that she wasn't being given much credit, if it hadn't happened that Iason had been there to comfort her (and, if you wish, you may take that to mean he told her to brighten up before they dumped water on her... 'I'm melting... melting!').

Poias later married and had a son, Philoktetes (not the satyr from Disney's Hercules!) who fought in the Troian War. He even was said to have fought alongside the great Odysseus, who just happens to be our last character. It was Odysseus who came up with the idea of the Troian Horse, a gigantic wooden horse statue, which was used to trick the people of Troy into practically welcoming the Greek Army into their city. The Greeks defeated the Troians, but upon leaving Troy did not give any sacrifices or thanks to the Gods for helping them. So Zeus and Poseidon struck the Greek ships with a massive hurricane, blowing all of them onto different courses. Odysseus and his ships were blown far out to Lamos, the land of the Laistrygonians, cannibal-giants. These giant destroyed all the ships but one, which was carrying Odysseus, and this ship mades its way through what is now called the Odyssey, or Adventure of Odysseus. Along this odyssey, Odysseus met and battled the one-eyed Cyclops Polyphemos, the generous-yet-superstitious wind-god Aiolos, the seductive witch Circe, the evil-yet-hypnotic Syrens, the monstrous Skylla-and-Kharybdis, and the vengeful Sun-god Helios. When Odysseus' men made a terrible mistake and ate some sacred cattle, Helios had Zeus unleash another hurricane, one that killed the men, but spared the innocent Odysseus. Odysseus washed up on Ogygia, the remote island of the lovesick goddess Kalypso. Kalypso, madly in love with Odysseus, kept him with her for 9 years. Meanwhile, Odysseus' wife, Queen Penelope of Ithaka, pines for him, while suitors trying to convince her Odysseus is dead plague her and Odysseus' son Telemakhos, who vainly tries to find Odysseus. When Hermes has Kalypso release Odysseus and Odysseus this time is washed up on the Island of the Phaiakians, the Phaiakians treat him well and send him home on a real ship.

(featured in the above picture are, counterclockwise from bottom-right, Odysseus, Circe, Syrens, Skylla-and-Kharybdis)

Odysseus reaches Ithaka, and with help from Telemakhos and some loyal subjects, he sneaks into the palace unnoticed. Penelope, trying to calm the suitors, has come up with a plan: the first suitor to string Odysseus' bow and shoot with it through 12 holes in a row, gets to marry her. (It just so happens that the bow is deformed so that the string is too short and thus only someone of incredible strength or brainpower can string the bow. Odysseus has both strength and brainpower.) Odysseus, disguised as a beggar, steps up after watching all the suitors fail at the task. He is able to string the bow and shoot through the holes with more grace and ease than Julie Andrews at a tea party. The suitors are angered, and after revealing who he really is, Odysseus, along with Telemakhos and the faithful subjects, kills all the suitors. Penelope and Odysseus are free to live happily ever after until they die.

Myth Talk! JP's picks, part 1

In case you didn't know, those three things up in the title are in different myths than each other, though all are cross-linked in one way: they all have to do with water-fare.

Recently JP (for more on him you can read the first episode of George O'Connor's segment Fan Art Forum) sent me word about his three favorite myths (among other things having to do with my book LEGENDARY) which happened to be: (in order of mythological timelining) The Second Labour of Herakles, The Adventure of Iason and Talos, and the Odyssey (JP's picture of Odysseus is on the earlier-mentioned episode on George O'Connor's blog).

So to start off this three-in-one segment, I'm going to tell you about the interview I had with the Hydra...

Me: So Mr... Hydra? is it?

Hydra: Rooaarr.

Me: Oh you're a missus... honest mistake... no! Bad Hydra! No eating the camera-man.

Hydra. Roah-Rooaar? Roaarr!

Me: Okay... so... who were you're parents? Typhon and Ekhidna? And who exactly were they? Oh, okay... so lemme get this straight, your daddy, Typhon, he was 600 km high, breathed lava, had 100 heads, some of which were animal-like, had wings, had six monstrously gigantic snakes for legs and snake heads for fingers, and was able to lift Mt. Aitna in Sicilia without breaking a sweat. Eh, I've seen worse. And then you're mother, Ekhidna, was a beautiful nymph with a snake-tail instead of legs. [the correct name for that is "drakaina" (pronounced dray-keh-na)] Oh really, so you have the ability to grow two heads for every one head that is injured or destroyed. Fascinating.


Me: No, you cannot eat me. Oh no! Not again! (dives behind chair as Hydra breathes acidic gasses)

Now, back to the story. You know Herakles? That ultra-strong guy with a thing for lionskins? Yeah, remember how he was driven insane by his stepmother Hera so that he killed his wife and kids and that when he came to he went to the Oracle of Delphi, correctly reffered to as the Pythia, and asked what he needed to do to gain back the gods' favor but thew Pythia didn't answer so Herakles tried to force her but Apollon appeared and told him what to do in person and Herakles had to go to his evil cousin King Eurystheus of Tiryns to apply for a 10-year job to reconcile but Eurystheus had other plans and made him do 10 (give-or-take a couple) labours, the second of which was to kill the Hydra. Oh, you didn't remember that... Well now you do!

So Herakles gets his nephew Iolaus, and they ride down to Lerna, the swamp-home of the Hydra. Herakles had Iolaus tie a thin sheet of tissue around his nose (the first gas-mask!) in order that Iolaus doesn't die if the aforementioned poison-breath of the Hydra is breathed in. Herakles is strong enough to handle it, though. As Iolaus sets up a campfire, Herakles begins shooting arrows into the swamp to coax out our scaly friend. As the Hydra rises from the swamp, the battle begins. The fighting is hard to do, because of the whole two-heads-grow-back rule, until Iolaus gets an idea. Fetching a torch, he follows Heracles carefully, and every time Herakles bashes a head, Iolaus (get ready for this!) sets the neck aflame so that the growing Hydra heads are charred and killed. This is repeated until an angry Hera sends the Hydra's sidekick into action. Who's the Hydra's sidekick? Oh just you're typical, run-o'-the-mill, 4 FOOT, MAN-EATING CRAB!!! The crab scuttles up to Herakles and in a (one-millesecond-long) bloodthirsty battle to the death!: Herakles steps on the crab and kills it. Yep. Just that easy. He just jumps onto the crab and squishes it like a cockroach. It must be fun being a demigod.
So this whole bash-n-char method keeps going until finally there's only one head left. The middle one. No big deal, right? Wrong. Because the middle head just happens to be IMMORTAL AND INVINCIBLE!! So in another (millesecond-long) bloody battle to the death: Herakles topples a mountain onto the Hydra and burys it, head and all, alive. To this day though, you can apparently still see venomous vapor pour out from under the rock. Herakles dipped his arrows in the Hydra's blood, which just-so-happened to be incredibly poisonous. He went back with Iolaus, and later joined the Argonauts, a band of heroes led by the hero Iason to find the Golden Fleece.
Now Iason had to get the Golden Fleece, but you'll never guess why... No not for his mother's freedom, like Perseus... no, not as punishment, like with Herakles... Give up? Okay: he did it for the heck of it. I know, I know, modern versions say he got for his uncle Pelias because Pelias said he'd make him king of Iolkos if he did, but no... ancient sources do agree that he got it for Pelias, but they mention absolutely NOTHING about Pelias promising to make him king. In fact, all sources agree the real reasons behind Pelias sending him there was because he hoped Iason would die on the way. But ancient sources don't say anything about Pelias coaxing him into it with a false promise. No, sirree. Iason did it for pretty much the heck of it. And no offense but I like that! Most heroes in mythology have a reason to go off and save damsels and slay dragons, like they have to for their parents or they have to as punishment... but not Iason. He became a hero FOR NO REASON WHATSOEVER. I like that.
But back to the whole Talos-story: Talos, just so you know, was a ginormous bronze statue created by the god Hephaistos to guard the island of Krete. Talos stood up on a large rock near Krete, looking out to the horixon like a giant security guard. What was so special about Talos. Oh, just that he was an automaton. As in, he was a bronze statue THAT WAS ALIVE. Now when I say alive bronze statue I don't mean those cheap looking robots you see in movies and one TV that only look similar to a person. Now, I mean a real, living, humanoid, 1000 foot person made of bronze. As in he looked exactly like a normal, everyday, 1000-ft-tall human would, but he was shiny. Oh yes, and did I mention he was psychopathic?

For the Lady with the hot pink VW Bug...

You left your lights on.

Man in Crowd: Hey! I'm not a lady!

Oooooooh-kaaaaaaaayy theen. (For those of you who are slow to understanding, the pun to that is that a full-grown man owns a hot pink VW bug... HELLO!) (I'm talking to you, dad.)

I'm hosting an art contest.

The rules: You create a poster for your favorite myth/classical novel (Herakles, Dracula, Odyssey, Arabian Nights, etc.)
You send it to me.
After careful judging by me, my mom, and Will, the best will be the winner, and will be posted on my blog with the others on New Years.

Conditions: Any one can enter. You can use anything from markers to pencil to pastels, etc.

You must have this form with your piece when you send it:

Winner gets a 10-chapter peview of LEGENDARY (that's about a quarter of it, guys. don't even THINK of robbing me of it. plus, I'm only going to give it AFTER the book is published, but before it comes out in stores).

Also include your e-mail address. (For those of you with a brain, you should find irony in that)


New blog!

My mom just created her own blog on Blogger (and by that I mean I designed and decided everything except her posts). Go check it out:

(Notice I'm not putting it on my Cool Cytes list... >:D)


My desktop

My desktop, feauturing art by George O'Connor.

I don't care what you think! I am NOT obsessed! Now shut it while I wait for him to upload more art!

P.S. I'm still waiting for you guys to comment and suggest urban legends and Greek myths for MYTH TALK.     >:-D   (eMoticons! gotta <3 'm)

Some more junk about classical novels

Here's some pics I'm using for a project.
Dracula's upper body

Another version of Dracula's upper body, except with torch and his castle in the background.

The Kalydonian Boar from Greek mythology

Zeus as a swan with Leda's eggs (again: mythology)

Herakles ascending to Olympos to be greeted by Zeus, Hera, and all the other gods who helped him in his journeys (left to right: Hermes, Apollon, Hera, Zeus, Athene, and Hephaistos with his androids)


Legendary Book I

You know that book I mentioned before? Legenday, Book I: Quest For The Golden Fleece. Yep, it's growing. Basic plot: Sierra, a Floridian tomboy, has lived a very unusual life. Aside from having been orphaned in an incredibly mysterious fire and adopted by a family with a reclusive son, Max, she could come out to seem normal. Then the Smiths, her adoptive parents whom she grew up with, disappear, and her adoptive brother Max reveals a startling secret. Now Sierra finds herself plunged into a world of modern Greek myth, and is on a quest to find her "parents" and save them. In a whole new world that is part of our own, she must face petrifying creatures, electrifying sea-serpents, and a horrible dragon, in order to claim the Golden Fleece and find her "parents", on the way discovering twists and traps, and even finding out what really happened to her biological parents.
Again, patents. sue. get it.

Hera! duh-duh-duh-DUH...

All hail the Queen of the gods!


True, False, or Legend?

Calling all Classical Club readers! For a secret project (I'm a multitasker, don't judge me) I'd like all of you to tell me about your favorite urban legend [n. a story passed down for years reported to be true which takes place in modern setting and is usually said to have happened to an FOAF (friend of a friend: My grandmother's third cousin's bingo-partner's daughter's niece's cousin's BFF's aunt)] in the Comments below! Do it! Do it! (if you wanna see it on the big screen) Remember: some urban legends are true, and you can use them!


The Bathhouse

Here's a one-panel comic I recently did that I like to call "The Bathhouse":

Again: patents! >:)