Rest In Peace Harper Lee

Harper Lee

“I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what.”

It is a very sad today. Harper Lee has passed away.

I, like many many people, cherished my first reading of To Kill A Mockingbird. It was a turning point in how I saw other people and empathized with them – you’re told these things as a kid but you can’t really know what it means until you experience it. This is a book that I’m happy to see on many required reading lists and it’s a book that I feel many people in seats of authority should read (and re-read). Despite being written in the 60s, this book resonates hard with today’s society. It is still (sadly) relevant with morals that are often forgotten now.

I am sad that Harper Lee has left this world, but she lived a full and good life surrounded by books and a powerful legacy that we should never let fade. In celebration of her life, read your kids her book. Teach them that kindness and fairness are important and that’s it the character of a man that is essential, not what he owns or how much money and status he has or what the color of his skin is. “I think there’s just one kind of folks. Folks.”

I truly hope you rest in peace, Harper Lee, knowing that your positive impact on the world will last for a very long time. Your name and your work will never be forgotten.

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I have lived in Austin, Texas for almost seven years now. Six of those years I have been going to my favorite local convention Staple: The Independent Media Expo. I love is so much that for the third year in a row, I’ll be volunteering at the show. If you haven’t heard of it and you’ll be in town on March 5th and 6th, come join us!

What is STAPLE?

STAPLE! is a quickly growing convention located in Austin, Texas that has been bringing the best of independently produced comics, zines, art, crafts, and games and more to local fans. This year, there will be over 150+ exhibitors of comics, zines, art, crafts, games and more! There are events and workshops and live podcast recordings throughout the day and live screen-printing of the annual STAPLE t-shirt.

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Some of my past highlights: meeting Kevin Eastman, mastermind behind Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and interviewing Sean Wang, the creator of Runners. I’ve also met some other amazing artists like Kate Leth, E.K. Weaver, Jamie Kinosian, and so many more. Last year there was also a really stellar panel about queer diversity in the gaming industry with folks from my favorite Bioware. There is always great things happening at STAPLE! and this year is no different.

Who are the Guests this year?

There are some fantastic and talented creators coming out for this year’s STAPLE! Four time Eisner Award winner Gene Ha is the artist of books like Fables, Justice League, Cyclops & Phoenix, and Oktane. Emily Carroll is probably best known for her short stories collection Through the Woods and her gorgeous illustrations. C. Spike Trotman runs Iron Circus Comics, Chicago’s largest comics publisher, and puts out some pretty awesome Kickstarters. Danielle Corsetto is the creator of Girls With Slingshots and has written three Adventure Time graphic novels. These are just a few of the guests that will be showcasing at STAPLE! You can read up on who else will be there on STAPLE’s Guests page.

There will also be TONS of exhibitors showing off their work. You can find the whole list on STAPLE’s Exhibitors page.

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STAPLE! Details

STAPLE! The Independent Media Expo
When: March 5-6, 2016
Where: Marchesa Hall and Theater, 6226 Middle Fiskville Rd, Austin, TX
Tickets: Sold at the Door

Interested in attending? Great! Here’s the scoop. On Friday (the 4th), there will be a pre-party out at Austin Books and Comics starting at 8pm. On Saturday, the expo officially opens at 11am and there will be workshops, tutorials, panels, interviews and more until they close down at 6pm. On Sunday, the show starts at 12pm and goes to 6 as well. And throughout the whole thing there are two rooms full of vendors for your to peruse to your heart’s content. The complete STAPLE! schedule can be found on their site.

Tickets aren’t sold online, so just head out and purchase them at the door. $10 for a day pass, $15 for both days. On Saturday only there is a Student/Military discount: two-day pass for $10 with valid student or military ID.

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Join Us!

Can’t wait to see you there!

5 Things to Know with Victoria Klein!

Do you know Victoria Klein? If not, you should. This woman is out to change the world. She is a blogger, a book author, a model, and a woman with a message. I was given the opportunity to read her newest book 48 Things to Know About Sustainable Living and ask her a few questions. Come get to know this awesome woman and learn a little more about what inspired her to write such a rockin’ book.

Click here to continue reading this article.

On Being Sick (Ick).

I’ve been pretty sick the last few days. And when I’m sick, I turn into a horrible, fiery, raging war, demon-monster with hair sticking straight up and eyes beaming out red lasers at anything and anyone that’s in my way. Swear to god. I hate being sick and I hate it even more when people attempt to fuss over me. Which makes me seem like an ungrateful witch, but when I’m sick, I like to pretend that I’m not and that I’m really Super Woman and I can do anything. So when people treat me like I’m sick, my stubborn ass does a 180 and I push myself so hard to be normal, that I make myself even sicker.

Which is why I’m still sick and I’m currently laying in bed trying not to throw up. Still. I wish I could just blame it all on my compromised immune system, but I know that I’m just hurting myself by not just acting like I should and be sick.

Because I was such a wench to her yesterday when she was just trying to take care of me, I promised Ash that I would take it easy and stay in bed today and let her pamper me. So we cuddled in bed and watched Charmed when we woke up and now she’s working on her rates for her pet business. She does pet sitting, training, photography, adoption counseling, and puppy-proofing, and she has her first potential client. I’m so proud of her for getting everything set up. I was helping her research which is why she gave me my computer (I’m trying to stay off of it today since it kind of makes me sicker), but since there isn’t much I can do while she figures it all out, I thought I’d blog.

One thing about being sick is that it’s helping me with one of my New Year’s resolutions: read more books. I’m currently reading A Swiftly Tilting Planet by Madeleine L’Engle, who happens to be one of my all-time favorite authors. Troubling A Star is my favorite of her books, followed closely by my current read, and then Many Waters. Of course, A Wrinkle in Time will always hold a special spot being the first I ever read. But I love her books. They’re just classics. Anyway, yes, I’m reading more and it’s good. I should finish knitting my gloves, but even that makes me tired lately. Why do you always have to be tired when you’re sick?

I hate being sick.

cult of librarians, oh my!

If you keep up with Neil Gaiman’s blog, feel free to pass this by since it comes from this entry.

I pretty much grew up in the Aram Public Library back home. I was on the Teen Advisory Board (TAB) for it for a year and a half before I graduated it (I was there when they first began it), and when I got to college, I worked for another year and a half as a Desk Clerk/All-Around-Errand-Runner-and-Website-Updater at the library on campus. So libraries are pretty important to me overall.

And even though I’ve been around libraries for so long, and have seen a lot of interesting drama happen with them, the letter Neil Gaiman posted still surprised me.

“I walked out of our main branch one day to find several van loads of people carrying picket signs and descending on our building. There were many children with the group and some of them were given picket signs and sent out to rally cars driving by to “Honk if you hate Library Porn” and “Unsafe for Kids”. The other picketing parents sent their kids into our children’s department for us to baby-sit for the next several hours – while they tried to rally community support against us. (The irony was not lost on us.)”

I think some people should be dragged out into the street and beat with a stupidity stick until they realize that libraries are places of higher learning – therefore they should be used to learn when you’re being a complete moron about a subject. I don’t understand how they though that the library was offering porn to children. Ridiculous.

Anyway, there you have it. Stupidity at its finest.

Heat wave in Wisconsin.

Randy and I are two very sad and unfit people. The last two days we’ve walked all over Ashland and today, well, today was just horrible. Both of us took on too much and pretty much died from heat exhaustion trying to get back to campus. I’m so glad I brought a water bottle with, even if it was really hot by the time we started walking back.

I’m in a wicked (hah) mood, so we went to the bookstore and I bought a copy of Wicked by Gregory Maguire, which I’ve been meaning to do for awhile. I love that book, and rivals two books for my favorite book of all time (Peter and Wendy by J.M. Barrie and The Neverending Story by Michael Ende). If you haven’t, read it.

I’ve been listening to a lot of the music from the musical as well. I’ve been feeling wicked.

In other news, I’m knitting and have no clue why. It’s way too hot to be knitting anything. I need to take Emry out, but it’s so hot, I don’t want him to get overheated. He will be coming with me when I go home now, so I’m excited. The plan was for him to stay with Tiff originally, but since I’m staying home longer now, I’m bringing him with.

I cannot Bear this heat. Remind me now to leave food in an open car.