Sunday, December 29, 2013

Quote of the Week: December 29, 2013

The best thing you can do for your fellow, next to rousing his conscience, is — not to give him things to think about, but to wake things up that are in him; or say, to make him think things for himself.
George MacDonald

Miss Melody Muffin

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Writing INSANITY Tag

1. Grab the Book and Writing Insanity button above! (Or link to our blog,, somewhere in your post.)
2. Pick a set of questions. We have TWO sets. One for writers. One for readers. (Psst! You can do both if you so wish it.)
3. Copy the 20 questions below. You can use all of them or just pick out a few!
4. Add your link to our marvellous linky widget below. It'll be open all of December.
5. Visit AT LEAST the blog linked up in front of you. (The point of linkups is to meet new bloggy friends and squeak over books/writing together. Plus who doesn't like comments? Share the love!)
6. WE LOVE BOOKS!!! (Okay, that isn't really helpful, but who cares?)

For the Writers – again answer these out of what you’ve written this year:

1. How many books did you write this year? (Estimate your overall wordcount for us too!)
One complete book, started work on one, and worked on two others.  In addition to WAY too many new ideas to count.

As for my word count, I have no idea- not even an estimate, because much of my writing was handwriting in notebooks.  I do know I put in over 83,000 words on Oath of Loyalty.  I think I did somewhere in the vicinity of 20,000 words on Three Kyngdoms, and about the same on The Land Beyond the Sunset.  Plus lots of random snippets for various stories, about 5,000 words on a short story... and I can't remember what else....

2. Which was your favourite to write?
Three Kyngdoms

3. Which was the hardest to write?
Oath of Loyalty.  It kept changing the plot on me and I was rather bewildered a few times.

4. Tell us about you favourite Male Character you wrote this year!
Prince Astrophel from the Three Kyngdoms, or Laddi Alejan- head bodyguard to the Crown Princess of Denzli.

5. And how about your favourite Female Character?
Seren, princess of Corbenic and Cambria

6. Can you introduce us to some awesome sidekick(s)?
I don't know about the awesome part, but I am rather fond of Sir Caie from the Three Kyngdoms:

    “Astro, I’m not talking about the fight now,” Caie pulled his boots on.  “I’m talking about the Lady Seren.”
    “What about her?” Astrophel looked confused, “I thought you were talking about the duel.”
    “She’s a beautiful woman!  Don’t tell me you haven’t noticed.  Even you couldn’t be that dense.”
    “Sorry to disappoint you,” Astrophel adjusted the the insignia on his shoulder that proclaimed him a knight.  “I saw a brilliant fighter, nothing more.”
    “If we didn’t have to go at this exact moment so we won’t be late to the ceremony, I would...”
    “Probably punch me,” Astrophel replied cheerfully, his engaging grin lighting his face.  “I consider myself fortunate that we do have a ceremony to attend,” he slipped out of the door before Caie could reply.
    “I guess you can be that dense,” Caie fumed to the now empty room.

And Duke Luke from Quara:

Inside the ballroom, Madelia's son Duke Luke waited impatiently for the Royal Family.  He fidgeted back and forth on his feet, standing against the wall with another page.  His mother caught his eyes and gave him a look that plainly said, "Stop fidgeting."  Scowling, Luke obeyed.  He liked dancing, especially with his best friend Princess Elsheba, but he hated the fancy tunic and pants he had to wear.  Oh, when would the Royal Family come in?

7. Any romances in your writing? Which couple didn't go together as expected?
Yes.  Three Kyngdoms has several romances, but I can't tell you much about them yet.  :D  There will be two future romances in Quara... but I haven't written much about them, yet.  In Oath of Loyalty there was the beginnings of a love triangle between Alejan, Johari and Lord Lirios. 

As for not going together the way I expected, well Alejan fell for Johari a lot faster than I had expected.

8. What's your favourite Pinterest Board for one of your books? Can we see some pics for the book they inspire?
I love the board for a story I hope to write next year.  It's the first in a series and it's titled To See The Stars.  HERE

9. What challenges did you compete in this year? (NaNos? Personal goals? Challenges run by other blogs?) And how did you go?
I completed NaNo!!!!!  I also wrote a short story earlier this year, for a contest, and took second place in my catagory.

10. Show us the full cast in pictures from one of your books.
Sorry, no can do.  Partly because they aren't all cast, and partly because of copyright issues with the actors' pics.

11. Epic quote(s) you wrote?
How on earth does one go about deciding one's own writing is epic?  I particularly like this quote:

'Diplomats are the Achilles tendon of a nation.'  Oath of Loyalty

12. Last word from your manuscript(s)! Go!
Asleep ~ Oath of Loyalty

13. First sentences from your manuscript(s)!
"Did you hear the news?" Adetia Torrenth called out as Johari Landison entered her group study room at Shatrah College on a warm Tuesday morning in early September.

14. Show us your favourite funny scene!
Hmmm, I don't write a lot of funny scenes....

    "And these are our new shoes," Jani and Jili brought out the high heeled shoes that coordinated with their gowns.
    "Ugh, shoes." Jyder growled.  "I'm through with shoes for a thousand years."
    "You mean shoe shopping, silly?" Jaci rolled her eyes.  "If you are through with shoes, then why are you wearing any right now?"
    "Huh, you know what I meant." Jyder glared at her.
 Oath of Loyalty

15. Show us a snippet of dialogue you're proud of.
Ummmm, I can't really share any of the ones I'm particularly proud of because of spoilers....  :D  So, this one will have to do.  Again, it is from Oath of Loyalty.

    "That was exhausting." Jaris dropped down on a sofa in the living room.  They were back in the Blue Wing and the aircars were being unloaded by guards.
    "You can say that again," Jyder groaned, falling onto a different sofa.
    "Why don't you two change?" Jemi suggested, on her way through the living room to the bedrooms.  "You'll be more comfortable."
    "Good idea," Jaris stood up.  "Come on, Jy."
    "Nah.  I'm too tired to move."
    Jaris reached down and yanked him to his feet, "March."  He pushed him along the hall to the bedroom the four boys were sharing while Jyder grumbled good-naturedly about bossy older brothers.

16. Tell us about some funny typos or writer-bloopers you've had this year!
There weren't any funny ones, really.  Mostly just me typing at insane speeds and then having to heavily edit the typos later.

17. What has writing taught you about yourself this year?
That I'm still very under confident when it comes to my own writing.

18. Best piece of writing advice you learnt this year?
Stop stressing over the first drafts!!!

First drafts are for finding out what your novel or story is about.  Bernard Malamud

First drafts don't have to be perfect.  They just have to be written.  Unknown

19. Anything big on the horizons for next year? Plans to query? Publish? Edit?
Write a lot more!!! 

Finish editing Oath of Loyalty.
Finish writing the first drafts of The Land Beyond the Sunset and the first book in the Three Kyngdoms series. 
Write the first draft of To See The Stars and possibly the first book in my Gemini series. 

I don't think I'll be publishing anything next year- although you never know!

20. Tell us a bit about a book you're super excited to write in 2014!
To See The Stars- I CANNOT WAIT TO WRITE THIS.  I don't have a synopsis for it yet, but it is set in the future, in another galaxy and basically, it is about a bunch of orphans at a college who band together to form a family... and defeat the villains of course!  Shakespeare's Henry V and Julius Caesar are some of the things inspiring me....

Miss Melody Muffin

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

MERRY CHRISTMAS 2013!!!!!!!!!

Wishing all of my wonderful readers a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!

One cry awakened the world.  One birth changed history.  One life made all the difference.  ~Unknown

Jesus was God's gift to the world, but it wasn't just for Christmas.  It is a gift that has been given every day of every year since that time, and the gift is still freely given.  ~Unknown

And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS, for he shall save his people from their sins.  Matthew 1:21

We saw his star in the East and have come to worship him.  Matthew 2:2

Wise men still seek Him.

May God's blessings rest on you all this holiday season!!

Miss Melody Muffin

Monday, December 23, 2013

Reading INSANITY Tag

Cait and Mime of The Notebook Sisters are hosting a delightful writing and reading linkup and giveaway at their blog The Notebook Sisters.  Go check it out!!!  The linkup is open all month, but I think the giveaway ends in four days.

1. Grab the Book and Writing Insanity button above! (Or link to our blog,, somewhere in your post.)
2. Pick a set of questions. We have TWO sets. One for writers. One for readers. (Psst! You can do both if you so wish it.)
3. Copy the 20 questions below. You can use all of them or just pick out a few!
4. Add your link to our marvellous linky widget below. It'll be open all of December.
5. Visit AT LEAST the blog linked up in front of you. (The point of linkups is to meet new bloggy friends and squeak over books/writing together. Plus who doesn't like comments? Share the love!)
6. WE LOVE BOOKS!!! (Okay, that isn't really helpful, but who cares?)

I'm going to do both tags, because I like reading and writing evenly, but this post will be just the readers tag, and I'll post the writers tag soon.

For Bookworms – answer these questions out of the books you’ve read this year:
1. What was your overall favourite book this year? (Yes. Pick one.)
WHAT?????!!!!!!!  I don't pick just one favorite ever.  Well, hardly ever. I'm incapable of it.  But, I will list just one from my list of favorite books read this year.  The Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer.

2. Favourite debut(s)? (Author must have been first published in 2013.)
I think the only debut I read was Anneliese Blakeney's The Princess and the Sage.  It is side-splittingly funny!!

3. Which books did you reread this year?
Rose in Bloom – Louisa May Alcott
The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien
(I know I re-read others, but I don't remember what they were.)

4. Favourite cover(s) this year!
Captive of Raven Castle

5. Worst cover(s)?
I can't think of one off the top of my head.  Most of what I read this year were ebooks, and I don't really pay attention to ebook covers.  :D

6. What self-published books did you read this year?
Do You Take This Quest – Kendra Ardnek
Captive of Raven Castle – Jessica Greyson
The Ankulen – Kendra Ardnek
The Princess and the Sage – Anneliese Blakeney

7. Which book(s) gave you a massive hangover?
Conqueror: A Novel of William the Conqueror – Georgette Heyer.  The friendship in this book was MAGNIFICENT and I went around for a few days in a fog because of the end of the book.  It was heartbreakingly beautiful.

8. Best standalone you read?
There were a few, but I think I'll pick The Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas.  Talk about superb!!!!

9. Biggest book(s) you've read this year?
David Copperfield – Charles Dickens.  It was long, but worth it.

10. Book(s) you followed the hype for and then loved!
None this year, unless Mirriam Neal's Monster counts, but I beta read that last year before it was published, so I knew there was a blazing good reason for the hype.  (It is an AMAZING book.)

11. Most disappointing book(s) you read this year?
His Holiday Heart – Jillian Hart – a Love Inspired McKaslin Clan book.

12. Favourite leading-female character?
Aaaaaahhhh!!!  I'm awful at picking favorites!!!!!  I had lots of favorite leading ladies... I'll pick one at random....
Echo Sackett from Ride the River by Louis L'Amour.  She was spunky, smart and FUN.

13. Favourite leading-male character?
Again, I'm going to randomly pick from my list of favorites....
Sydney Carton from A Tale of Two Cities.  His glorious act of self sacrifice was WONDERFUL.

14. Best romance(s)?
I don't normally read too much romance, preferring adventure, but I loved the back and forth arguing romance of Simon the Coldheart by Georgette Heyer.  (Not to mention Margaret is fantastic.)  I also enjoyed the romance in Before the Dawn by Joseph Altsheler.  It was very well written.

15. What book(s) hit the DNF list? (Did not finish.)
None.  I have a habit of reading to the end, even if I dislike a book, unless I find strong moral objections such as profanity or anything else inappropriate.

16. What book(s) did you read out of your comfort-zone?
The Love Inspired McKaslin Clan series.  I had read one of the books in the series and didn't mind it too much, though as a rule I don't care for that sort of chick lit.  So, I went ahead and was reading more in the series.  With each one I read I grew more and more annoyed and His Holiday Heart was the final straw.  I swore off such 'Sugar Frosting Books' (as they are known around our house) for good.

17. Which author did you read the most from?
Georgette Heyer.  I read nine of hers, and enjoyed each and every one.  Hers are romance novels I actually like - a lot.

18. Top 5 books you'd recommend from all the books you've read this year?
Only 5??????  I can recommend at least 2 dozen, but I will choose five that aren't very well known, or are new on the scene:
Rupert of Hentzau – Anthony Hope
Captive of Raven Castle – Jessica Greyson
Urchin of the Riding Stars – M. I. McAllister
The Ankulen – Kendra Ardnek
Quentin Durward – Sir Walter Scott

19. How many books did you read this year all up?
70 so far, plus 19 shorter juvenile novels that I was proofreading to make sure they were ok for younger siblings to read.  Not quite as many books as I had hoped to read at the beginning of the year, but still not too bad.

20. What's a book you're hugely excited for coming out in 2014?!
I'm not sure.  I don't really know of any coming out that I'm particularly interested in.  Paper Crowns – if Mirriam Neal publishes it next year.  And My Kingdom for a Quest, if Kendra is planning to publish it next year.

I shall have to do another post detailing more about my favorite books from this year.  :)

Miss Melody Muffin

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Ardnek Books Christmas Present!!!

I've spoken several times of my friend Kendra Ardnek, author of the delightful Bookania Quests and The Ankulen.  Some of you already know Kendra and have read her books.  Others follow her fun BLOG.

Well, Kendra is offering a wonderful Christmas present to her readers.  The Kindle versions of four of her books, one short story and all three of her full-length novels, will be free on Amazon on Christmas day and a few days before and after Christmas!!!!!!!  If you haven't read any of Kendra's books, now is your chance to try them!  I highly recommend them.  My whole family loves the Bookania Quests and I was delighted with The Ankulen.

Here is the schedule for what books will be free when.  Remember, it is the Kindle versions of these books that will be available free on Amazon.  (Clicking each book's title will take you to the Amazon page.)

The Derao – short story – free from December 23-27

Sew, It's a Quest – the first novel in the Bookania Quests – free from December 24-28

Do You Take This Quest? – the second book in The Bookania Quests – free on December 25th

The Ankulen – Kendra's third full-length novel – free December 25th

Many, many thanks to Kendra for this delightful Christmas present!!

Mark your calendars and don't miss this!!!

Miss Melody Muffin

Monday, December 16, 2013



My dear friend Jessica has now published her second book, Captive of Raven Castle.

I was privileged to read this book earlier this year, and let me tell you, YOU DO NOT WANT TO MISS IT.  For those of you who have read Jessica's debut novel, Annabeth's War, I liked Captive even better than Annabeth's War.

HERE is the link to the Create Space page.  HERE is the Amazon link.  Head on over and check them out!!!!

Miss Melody Muffin

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Snippets of Story: December 2013

Some of you asked for snippets from my freshly finished novel, Oath of Loyalty.  Here you are!!!  I hope you enjoy them.

Snippets of Story is hosted by Katie at her blog Whisperings of the Pen.

    The young man nodded.  "But, after all, they hold your life in theirs as well," Jaris replied thoughtfully.  Then he grinned impishly, "On the whole, I pity them for it.  You'll be very hard to keep up with."

    "Sure." he texted back.  "Let me know when Ablondi needs a distraction.  I've found some awesome things to do."
    “Are they safe?"
    “Why wouldn't they be?"
    “Jaris Landison, the day you think of safety first will be the day the stars fall."
    “So you're saying I’m reckless?”
    “It wouldn't be the first time someone accused you of it.”

    “Wake up, Johari!  You're not just the daughter of the unimportant, youngest princess and her ambassador husband anymore.  You are the Crown Princess of Denzli and you need to start acting like it.”

    "Why are we all so positive that he is the one who did it?" Miridi asked suddenly.  "I mean, what if we are all wrong and there is someone else behind all this."
    There was silence around the table.
    "Then we're all in way over our heads," Johari said finally.

    "It's just… oh, I don't know," Ablondi stared dully at her cup of Pineapple Mentha.
    "It's just that you are so tired of all of it," Johari said.  "you thought you had left all this behind you, and here it has followed you and dragged you back into it.  But, keep your head up!  It will end, or we'll die ending it, and either way it will be over."
    Several Companions choked, caught between horror and laughter.
    "Either way it will be over?" Taruba asked incredulously,  "That is very encouraging, Luno."
    Johari smiled impishly, "Isn't it?"

    She sighed and Alejan leaned forward, "Luno?  You seem very tired."
    Johari smiled and tried to brush off his concern.  "No more so than usual."
    "I beg leave to differ," he said respectfully.
    "This isn't about me," she tried to tell him but he waved his hand.
    "Luno, we're your Companions.  Everything is about you."

    "But, it makes sense, kind of," Johari's voice held supressed wonder and fire blended.  Her Companions looked at her.  Her gaze swung back and forth between Mataro and Alejan.  Thoughts and ideas raced over the three faces as they looked at each other.

    When the doors of her room had swished closed behind her, Johari let her stone mask partly fall.  Her eyes flashed such fire that Traza, on guard in the anteroom, actually quailed.  Silently but coldly, the princess stalked through to her sitting room.

    "Now, your oath is completely fulfilled.  Calunga has passed on, and as Queen of Denzli, with the authority given to me, I release you from your oath.  You are now free and your own to command."

    When Johari entered the room, she was pulled aside by Taruba, who told her Ablondi was just up and would join them shortly.  Alejan waited and when Taruba was done, spoke,
    "Yes, Alejan?"
    "You have a theory about this rebellion, don't you?"
    "Yes.  I personally think it ties in with our discussion from last night."

Miss Melody Muffin

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Abolished Impracticality is OUT!!!!

My dear friend Jack Lewis Baillot published her book Abolished Impracticality today!!!!  Congratulations, Jack!!!!

Today is also the one year anniversary of Haphazardly Implausible, Miss Jack's debut novel and the first book in her steampunk series, of which Abolished Impracticality is the second book.

To celebrate, she is holding a party.  To enter, write a post (or send her an email if you don't have a blog) about your favorite book out of all the books you read this year.

Head over to her BLOG to find out more about the party.  You can buy Abolished Impracticality HERE and Haphazardly Implausible HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Friday, December 13, 2013

Poem of the Week: Shadows of the Past

My goodness, I don't even remember when the last time was I did a Poem of the Week. Ii have missed doing them!

I was reading this poem the other day and it lingered in my brain long after I had finished reading it.

 Shadows of the Past
Abigail Stanley Hanna

Sister, the solemn midnight hour
Is meet, to weave the web of thought,

To trace the shadowy imagery,
From fancy's secret chambers brought.

To enter Memory's hidden cell,
And bid the sentinel appear;

Her strange, mysterious tales to tell,
And wipe the dust from by-gone years.

To wander back down time's dark stream,
And from its margin pluck the flowers,

To twine them with the moon's pale beams,
Then fling them over Memory's bow'rs.

To gather all the fragments up,
The phantoms chase of other years;

Their blighted joys, their withered hopes,
Their clouds, their sunshine, and their tears.

We'll wander forth while others sleep,
Fanned gently by the night wind's sigh

And thus our midnight vigils keep,
While night's fair lamps burn bright on high.

We'll wander in the realms of thought,
That boundless space, who may define?

From which more dazzling gems are brought
Than sparkle in Golconda's mine.

Then, sister, let us linger not,
The conscious moon her lamp holds high,

And with her smiling, placid face,
Beams from the chambers of the sky.

Touched by fancy's magic spell,
We'll conjure up the things of yore;

From their cold chambers bring the dead,
And friends of former years restore.

But oh, the shadows will not stay,--
The dreamy shadows of the past;

Before the sun they'll fade away--
Their mystic visions cannot last.

Then let us leave the world of dreams
Where shapes and shadows melt away;

Bathe in salvation's cooling streams,
And soar to realms of endless day.

Have a good weekend!

Miss Melody Muffin

Sunday, December 8, 2013

A Clap of Joy and a Sigh of Relief...

...Oath of Loyalty is done.


It finished out at a grand total of 83, 373 words.

I had no idea I had managed to put in that many words.  I thought I had 78, 000 at most.  But, that is what the word counters say....

I am on Cloud Nine.  It is the first one of my novels I've actually managed to finish.  Sure, I have dozens started, and some are more than half done, but this is the first one I've actually completed.

It gives me a huge feeling of accomplishment.  Sort of like I imagine mountain climbers feel when they stand on top of the Matterhorn.

Thank you for the encouragement you readers gave me while I was writing it.  It was wonderful to know that you were cheering me on!!!

So, what am I going to do now?

Firstly, I'm going to edit the many typos in the story.  I have a habit of typing at express train speed when I'm writing a story, and I don't often backspace to correct misspelled words.  So now I have to go back and do that.  Then, after a few more edits to fix things that changed as the story went on, I'm putting it aside for a while.  It can sit and jell and I'll go back to it sometime next year and rewrite it.

At the moment, I'm trying to decide what story I'll work on next.  It will be either The Land Beyond the Sunset or the first Three Kyngdoms book.

And hopefully, I'll be around on Blogger more now, and you'll see more of my normal posts on here.

Miss Melody Muffin

Saturday, November 30, 2013

MEC Participants Recap

Here I am with the list of people who joined us during this past month for the 30 Day Middle Earth Challenge.  Again, thank you all for joining in.  I hope you had as much fun as Kiri and I did.

Speaking of Kiri, THANKS SO MUCH, GIRL, FOR THIS AWESOME MONTH!!!!  It has been a wonderful journey.

Kiri's blog

My blog

On Blogger:


The Keller Girls

Jessa Bri. Doofus and Teddy

Tom Wild Rose


Nessima Tavariel

On Pinterest:

Maria Elisabeth

Michaela Martin

These people participated via comments on mine and Kiri's blogs:
ButterflyBailey (my blog)  (she also happens to be my younger sister. :D)

Elizabeth Dannenbrink (Kiri's blog)

Christina L (Kiri's blog)

NOTE: if you participated in this challenge but your name is not on this list, please leave a comment and I will add you to the list.

Clicking on each person's name will you take you to their blog or Pinterest board where you can see their answers to the challenge questions.  Enjoy reading!

Miss Melody Muffin

NaNo Week Four: This, My Friends is the End

The end of all the craziness, the fanatic drive to put in enough words each day so add up to the total needed by the end of the month, the end of sitting down to write and having 2000 words completely change the direction of your story each day....

For me, it isn't completely over yet.  I finished 50, 000 words on Sunday, November 24th, but I still have somewhere between 5, 000 and 10, 000 words to put in on Oath of Loyalty.  I hope to finish it by the end of next week, but we'll see.

My stats for this week:
Word Count At The Beginning of This Week:  53, 353
Total Word Count As Of Now: 63, 891
Final Word Count Goal:  54, 796
Daily Word Count Goal:  2,000 words
Average Daily Word Count: 1,969
Words Remaining:  NONE  :D

 My favorite snippets:
    "No!" Kaduna cried.  She stood and now her eyes flashed as she faced her daughter.  "That is manipulation!  It's a back and forth game!  It's playing with fire.  That is no way to run a kingdom."
    "It is a game in which we hold the upper hand," Johari retorted.  "It's no more manipulation than diplomats use all the time.  Isn't it father?" she appealed to Kishi.
    "Diplomats do often employ similar tactics," he said carefully, "But I have never agreed with them and have done my utmost to avoid using them."
    Johari threw up her hands, "What he has done is wrong!  We are simply letting the world know, so that he can be punished!  What is so awful about that?  You say if you give a man enough rope he'll hang himself.  Well, he can't hang himself if you don't even give him the rope!"

    "Threats don't move me, Matera," Johari's emphasis on the last word was bitter but Nathaja did not flinch.
    "Do you think it is just a threat?  Push me.  You'll find out."
    Johari narrowed her eyes, "Need I remind you I am the crown princess?
    "Need I remind you that I am your Matera?  I have certain delegated authority powers by law, and if you force this issue, I will use them.
    "Go ahead," Johari dared.  "I'll speak when I'm ready and to whom I wish."

Miss Melody Muffin

MEC Day Thirty: This is the End, Sam

Galadriel: The power of the Three Rings is ended. The time has come...for the dominion of Men.
Elrond: [in Elvish] The Sea calls us home.
Bilbo Baggins: I think... I'm quite ready for another adventure!
[Bilbo climbs on board with Elrond. Galadriel follows with Celeborn]
Gandalf the White: Farewell, my brave Hobbits. My work is now finished. Here at last, on the shores of the sea... comes the end of our Fellowship. I will not say do not weep, for not all tears are an evil. [heads to the ship, then turns around, waiting] It is time, Frodo.
Samwise Gamgee: What does he mean?
Frodo Baggins: We set out to save the Shire, Sam. And it has been saved... But not for me.
Samwise Gamgee: [crying] You don't mean that. You can't leave.
Frodo Baggins: [hands Sam the Red Book] The last pages are for you, Sam.


Oh. My. Stars.  There is no way I can choose just one or even two for this one.  I'm going to give you half a dozen of my favorites.  :D

This one perfectly sums up my feelings about Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit:

And, just because it is the last day and I'm not quite ready to leave Middle Earth yet, and because The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug comes out in 13 days, here is one of my favorite TV spots for DoS:

ELVEN ARCHERS, people.  Including the one and only Legolas.  LEGOLAS, people!!!!!!!!

And so, my dear readers, this is the end.  The last post of the 30 Day Middle Earth Challenge.

It has been a wonderful journey and I want to personally thank every single one of you who participated.  Without you, this challenge would not have been nearly as much fun.  Because I was also doing NaNo this month, I did not have time to read all of your posts, but I hope to do that next month.

Kiri and I will post a list of all the participants with links to their month's posts soon.

And now, Namarie for this month, my readers!!!!!  May your December be wonderful and merry!!!!

Miss Melody Muffin

Friday, November 29, 2013

MEC Day Twenty Nine: My Collection

Gandalf: Does it not worry you that the last of the Dwarf-rings should simply vanish along with its bearer? Of the Seven Dwarf-rings, four were consumed by dragons, two were taken by Sauron before he fell in Mordor. The fate of the last Dwarf-ring remains unknown. The ring that was borne by Thrain.

Saruman: Without the Ruling Ring of Power, the Seven are no value to the Enemy. To control the other Rings, he needs the One. And that Ring was lost long, long ago. It was swept out to sea by the waters of the Anduin.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (extended edition)


Ummmm, it's pretty small.   At the moment, I have The Hobbit and The Two Towers books and the extended edition of Peter Jackson's The Fellowship of the Ring movie.

And yes, of course, I plan on adding to that woefully small collection in the years to come.  :D

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Thursday, November 28, 2013

MEC Day Twenty Eight: I Will Take It!

Gandalf the White: Frodo has passed beyond my sight. The darkness is deepening.
Aragorn: If Sauron had the Ring, we would know it.
Gandalf the White: It's only a matter of time. He's suffered a defeat, yes, but... behind the walls of Mordor, our enemy is regrouping.
Gimli: Let him stay there. Let him rot! Why should we care?
Gandalf the White: Because ten thousand Orcs now stand between Frodo and Mount Doom. I've sent him to his death.
Aragorn: No. There is still hope for Frodo. He needs time... and safe passage across the plains of Gorgoroth. We can give him that.
Gimli: How?
Aragorn: Draw out Sauron's armies. Empty his lands. Then we gather our full strength and march on the Black Gate.
Éomer: We cannot achieve victory through strength of arms.
Aragorn: Not for ourselves. But we can give Frodo his chance if we keep Sauron's Eye fixed upon us. Keep him blind to all else that moves.
Legolas: A diversion.
Gimli: Certainty of death, small chance of success... What are we waiting for?
Gandalf the White: Sauron will suspect a trap, he will not take the bait.
Aragorn: [smiles] Oh, I think he will.


The moment at the Council of Elrond when Frodo volunteers to take the ring to Mordor.
"I will take it!  I will take the ring to Mordor.. though, I do not know the way."

Here he is, just a hobbit, smallest of all Middle Earth races, already having passed through more trials and pain than he ever even dreamed of in his worst nightmares, ready to just go back to the Shire and resume his peaceful life... and yet he volunteers to take this cause of trouble and contention through worse horrors and pain, to destroy it.  Because he understands that someone has to – for the peace of the Shire and for the good of all of Middle Earth.

And then the way other members of the Council step up and volunteer to go with him, to protect and guide him.  That whole last half of the Council scene is wonderfully inspirational to me every time I watch it.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

MEC Day Twenty Seven: The Wonders of CGI

Bilbo: Excuse me? Sorry, I hate to interrupt, but the thing is I'm not entirely sure you're in the right house. It's not that I don't like visitors. I like visitors as much as the next hobbit, but I do like to know them before they come visiting. The thing is, uh, the thing is I don't know either of you, not in the slightest. I don't mean to be blunt, but I had to speak my mind. I'm sorry.
Balin: Apology accepted.


Hmmmmm. *puts on thinking cap*

I think I would have to say, the Olifaunts.  They were absolutely amazing and to bring those to 'life' required a lot of time and effort.  The result was worth it though because they are just stunning.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

MEC Day Twenty Six: What Did You Call Me?

Sméagol: Oh! We knows! We knows safe paths for hobbitses! Safe paths in the dark-
Gollum: Shut up!
Bilbo: I didn't say anything.
Gollum: Wasn't talking to you!
Sméagol: Well, yes, we was, precious. We was.


Gollum, formerly known as Smeagol

I know there are a lot of people who jut plain can't stand Gollum (like my younger sister Butterfly).  And I understand why and certainly don't blame them.

But, personally, I've always felt sorry for him.  Yes, he does turn completely evil in TheTwo Towers and Return of the King.  He leads them to Shelob, tries to take the ring numerous times and causes no end of trouble.

And, yes, he wasn't the nicest creature before the Ring came to him.  Hello, he was a thief.  He stole and murdered just to get the Ring.

But, after he took the Ring, and became bound to it, his life was pitiful.  He was chased from the only home he'd ever known, he buried himself deep in the Misty Mountains and lived there alone with his growing obsession for 500 years.  When Bilbo took the Ring, his life became even more horrible.  Constantly he was haunted by the power of the Ring, the burning need to have it back.  He finally left his beloved cave and crept far and wide, always searching for the one thing that he could never forget – the Ring.

Then he caught up to Sam and Frodo on their way to Mordor, and Frodo, remembering Gandalf's words about Gollum, took pity on him and took him along as guide.  The kindness Frodo showed him made an impression on Gollum and for a while, he became Smeagol again– just a poor pitiful creature who was destined to travel on and on, until he once more had the Ring in his possession. 

But, eventually the power of the Ring became too strong for him.  He betrayed Frodo and Sam, and then dogged their footsteps all the way through Mordor.

And yet, in the end, it was Gollum who helped Frodo complete the Quest.  When Frodo claimed the Ring for himself in the heart of Mount Doom, Gollum caught up to him and fought him for it, eventually falling to his death, and the Ring's. 

Were it not for Gollum, the Quest would have been for nothing.  As Gandalf told Frodo, "Gollum is bound up with the fate of the Ring. My heart tells me that he has some part to play yet."

I pity him, and his lonely, miserable existence.  His slavery to the Ring, his two-fold nature– sometimes Gollum, sometimes Smeagol. 

It seems somehow fitting that he died with his beloved Precious.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Monday, November 25, 2013


My dear friend Jessica of the amazing Safire Designs has been offering a discount on book cover designs for the month of November.  To find out more, check out THIS POST.

There are still five more days for you to take advantage of this offer!!!

Jessica has a real talent for gorgeous cover designs.  HERE are some of her past designs.

Safire Designs

Miss Melody Muffin

MEC Day Twenty Five: Behind the Scenes

Sam: It’s like in the great stories Mr. Frodo, the ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger they were, and sometimes you didn’t want to know the end because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end it’s only a passing thing, this shadow, even darkness must pass. A new day will come, and when the sun shines it’ll shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you, that meant something even if you were too small to understand why. But I think Mr. Frodo, I do understand, I know now folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going because they were holding on to something…. That there’s some good in the world, Mr. Frodo, and it’s worth fighting for.


There is no star in Lord of the Rings. The Fellowship is a union.
Viggo Mortensen

Other favorites:

"He [Viggo Mortensen] was standing behind the camera throwing the apples … And I’ve never seen him so happy."  Billy Boyd  (second breakfast scene- FOTR)

"Billy Boyd's a unique guy.  I'm so blessed to have met him."   Dominic Monaghan
"Dom's an idiot."  Billy Boyd

"Elves can be very fragile, particularly the Mirkwood strain."  Viggo Mortensen teasing Orlando Bloom

"Sean Bean and I made fun of the elves, and they made fun of us. They said we were dirty and smelly and less intelligent and graceful, all of which is probably true. We commented on their vanity: ‘Well, when you are done with your nails, we are being attacked." Viggo Mortensen

"We actually trained 4 million ants, dressed them all in Uruk Hai uniforms and got them all to march in time.  Billy Boyd (on one of the scenes with the marching Uruks in Mordor)

"She became our princess.  We looked out for her, you know.  It was a boys movie and she came in and sort of gave us that element, that female touch, and it was great to have her around."  Orlando Bloom on Liv Tyler.

The end of the challenge is in sight!!!  Only five more days!

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Sunday, November 24, 2013

I DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I REACHED THE 50, 000 WORD MARK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I just wrote wrote my 50, 755th word.

I have successfully completed the NaNo goal!!!!  I can hardly believe it!!!!!

I am on such a high.  I'll admit, there were a few times I wasn't sure I could do it.  But, TADA!!!!!

Now, I shall take a break, and return to writing tomorrow.  Even though I've reached the goal, the story is not finished.  I don't know if I'll be able to finish it this month or not, but I'll certainly try!

Miss Melody Muffin

MEC Day Twenty Four: One Does Not....

Gandalf: (to Pippin) They guard it because they have hope. Faith and fading hope that one day it will flower. That a king will come and this city will be as it once was before it fell into decay. The old wisdom that was borne out of the West was forsaken. Kings made tombs more splendid than the houses of the living and counted the names of their descent dearer than the names of their sons. Childless lords sat in aged halls musing on heraldry or in high, cold towers asking questions of the stars. And so the people of Gondor fell into ruin. The line of Kings failed, the White Tree withered, and the rule of Gondor was given over to lesser men.


The first time I saw this one, I couldn't stop laughing for five minutes.  Seriously.  And then... I told my family about it – at the table.  Yes.  At. The. Table.  During a meal.  I can't remember if anyone actually choked because of laughing too hard, but yeah.

Don't get me wrong!  Walmart is a most necessary place sometimes.  But, it is also a blamed frustrating place most of the time.  I prefer to regard going to Wal-Mart as a necessary evil.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Saturday, November 23, 2013

NaNo 2013: Week Three

Aaand here we are at the end of Week Three!!!

I had a few big breakthroughs this week, and also had my story take a few twists and turns that I did not expect.  It seems to have forgotten that I had an outline and is going down it's own path.  *sigh*  They always do that, don't they?  So far, although I am feeling ready to be done working on this for a while, I'm not bored with it, or sick and tired of it.  So, here's hoping I'll make the last 1, 000 + words tomorrow!!

Although I'll reach the 50, 000 goal pretty soon, the story itself looks like it will run to at least 65, 000 words, maybe more.

My stats for the week:
Word Count At The Beginning of This Week:  37, 283
Total Word Count As Of Now:  53, 353
Final Word Count Goal:  54, 796
Daily Word Count Goal:  2,000 words
Average Daily Word Count:  2, 111
Words Remaining:  1, 443

My favorite snippets:

    "What are the other results?" Miridi asked.  "What kind of poison was it?"
    "Flaesan." Johari said simply.
    The Companions gasped.
    "Blood flower?" Raydah's face was horror stricken.  "There is no antidote for that...." her voice trailed off.

    "Mataro!!!  What are you doing out of the infirmary?!"
    He grinned, his old shy grin, "I'm feeling very well, Luno."
    "I don't recall being informed that you were well enough to be out of the infirmary," Johari put her hands on her hips.
    "Maybe they neglected to tell you?" Jamsu said innocently, "I know it has been pretty busy over there and the doctor isn't there today.  Some nurse probably forgot to send the release order to you.  Careless of them."

As we head into the final week of NaNo, how are all of you doing?

Miss Melody Muffin

MEC Day Twenty Three: A Promise Lives Within You Now

Aragorn: This day does not belong to one man but to all. Let us together rebuild this world that we may share in the days of peace.


May it Be – Enya

I fell in love with the song the first time I heard it and to this day it remains on my list of top favorite songs ever.

Honorable mentions go to The Edge of Night/Pippin's Song, Aniron, Song of the Lonely Mountain, Far Over the Misty Mountains, Blunt the Knives, Into the West, The Green Dragon and Aragorn's song at his coronation.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Friday, November 22, 2013

MEC Day Twenty Two: An Elven Maid There Was of Old

Gandalf: The world is not in your books and maps. It's out there.
Bilbo: I can't just go running off into the blue! I am a Baggins of Bag End!
Gandalf: You are also a Took. Did you know that your great-great-great-great Uncle Bullroarer Took was so large he could ride a real horse?
Bilbo: Yes.
Gandalf: Well he could! At the Battle of Greenfields, he charged the Goblin ranks. He swung his club so hard, it knocked the Goblin King's head clean off and it sailed a hundred yards through the air and went down a rabbit hole. And thus the battle was won, and the game of golf invented at the same time.
Bilbo: I do believe you made that up.
Gandalf: Well, all good stories deserve embellishment. You'll have a tale or two to tell of your own when you come back.
Bilbo: Can you promise that I will come back?
Gandalf: No. And if you do... you will not be the same.


I love the Lament for Boromir that Legolas and Aragorn sing in the beginning of The Two Towers, but today I'm going to choose the Song of Nimrodel.  Legolas sings it to the Fellowship when they are traveling in Lothlorien.  It tells of the tragic deaths of Nimrodel and of Amroth who loved her.

Song of Nimrodel

Lament for Boromir

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Thursday, November 21, 2013

MEC Day Twenty-One: So Much Death....

Gandalf: Sauron's wrath will be terrible, his retribution swift. The battle for Helm's Deep is over. The battle for Middle Earth is about to begin. All our hopes now lie with two little hobbits, somewhere in the wilderness.


Once more it's a tie for me- between Haldir's death in The Two Towers and Boromir's death in The Fellowship of the Ring.

I've already posted about how annoyed I am over Haldir's death and how senseless I consider it to have been.  But, since Haldir does die, I thought it very fitting that he die in Aragorn's arms - his friend and ally.

And Boromir's death... I would have followed you... my brother... my captain... my king.  I personally find it very interesting the order in which he said that.  'My brother' first – acknowledging Aragorn as a fellow man of the same blood as well as a brother in arms and fellowship.  'My Captain' next – he would have followed Aragorn into battle and wherever he lead, though he did argue with him at times.  Then, 'My King' – signifying that he does believe Aragorn is the heir of Isildur and the rightful King of Gondor, thus also Boromir's king and overlord.  That part is especially poignant considering Boromir's words and the Council of Elrond: 'Gondor has no king.  Gondor needs no king.'

And some quotes... just because.  :D

The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater. 
The Fellowship of the Ring (spoken by Haldir in the book and Galadriel in the movie)

Faramir: You are a friend of Boromir?
Frodo Baggins: Yes, for my part.
Faramir: It would grieve you then to learn that he is dead.
Frodo Baggins: [shocked] Dead? How? When?
Faramir: As one of his companions, I had hope you would tell me. He was my brother.
The Two Towers (movie)

Théoden: So much death... what can Men do against such reckless hate?
The Two Towers (movie)

From the Gate of the Kings the North Wind rides, and past the roaring falls,
And clear and cold about the tower its loud horn calls.
‘What news from the North, O mighty wind, do you bring to me today?
What news of Boromir the bold? For he is long away.’
‘Beneath Amon Hen I heard his cry. There many foes he fought,
His cloven shield, his broken sword, they to the water brought.
His head so proud, his face so fair, his limbs they laid to rest,
And Rauros, golden Rauros-falls, bore him upon its breast.
‘O Boromir! The Tower of Guard shall ever northward gaze,
To Rauros, golden Rauros-falls, until the end of days.
Lament for Boromir; The Two Towers (book)

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

MEC Day Twenty: Would It All Be For Nothing?

Samwise Gamgee: Then let us be rid of it! Once and for all! Come on, Mr. Frodo. I can't carry it for you... but I can carry you! Come on!  [Slings Frodo over his shoulders.]


Frodo at the Crack of Doom – when he claimed the Ring for himself.  It is so scary because at that moment in time, in just a few seconds, is the possible overthrow of everything everyone has suffered, fought for and even died for, in the six months leading up to that moment.  In those few seconds, it is all about to come crashing down in the ruin of every hope and every prayer, as Frodo claims the Ring.

Frodo: I'm here, Sam.
Sam: Destroy it!
[Frodo holds the ring on its chain over the edge of the pit]
Sam: Go on! Now! Throw it in the fire!
[Frodo stares at the ring, the ring whispers to him]
Sam: What are you waiting for? Just let it go!
[Frodo turns and looks at Sam]
Frodo: The ring is mine.
[He snaps the chain and approaches the ring to his finger]
Sam: No... no...
[Frodo slips the ring on and vanishes]
Sam: NO!

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

MEC Day Nineteen: Different Kinds of Evil?

Gríma Wormtonge: [finds Éowyn crying over Théodred's body] Oh, he... he must have died sometime in the night. What a tragedy for the king to lose his only son and heir. I understand his passing is hard to accept, especially now that your brother has deserted you.
Éowyn: Leave me alone, snake!
Gríma Wormtonge: Oh, but you are alone! Who knows what you've spoken to the darkness? In bitter watches of the night, when all your life seems to shrink, the walls of your bower closing in about you, like a hutch to trammel some wild thing in! [putting a hand to her cheek] So fair, so cold, like a morning of pale spring still clinging to winter's chill...
Éowyn: Your words are poison! [pulls away and leaves]


Well, of course all of the villains are my least favorite characters.  But, I would say out of all of them, the one I like the least... is Grima Wormtongue.

Why?  He isn't as evil as Saruman or Sauron.  In fact, he is really only a tool of Saruman.  Some of his wickedness is of himself, but much of it is due to Saruman's influence.

I like him the least because he is so much like a snake.  And I. HATE. SNAKES.  But, beyond that, I personally find Saruman and Sauron's blatant, black evil, easier to handle than Grima's creepy, sly, sneaking evil.  I think it is because you know what you're dealing with the the other two.  They are very powerful and they will use everything in their reach to achieve their ends.  With Grima, you never know what he'll do next.  The good thing is that he isn't as powerful as Saruman or Sauron, though, so his creepy evil is limited in what he can accomplish.

And I don't know if that even makes any sense.  *shakes head*  I'm sorry if it doesn't.  I can't seem to put my thoughts into the right words today.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Monday, November 18, 2013

MEC Day Eighteen: Through Fire and Water

Aragorn: You fell.
Gandalf: Through fire and water. From the lowest dungeon to the highest peak, I fought with the Balrog of Morgoth. Until at last, I threw down my enemy and smote his ruin upon the mountainside. Darkness took me. And I strayed out of thought and time. Stars wheeled overhead and everyday was as long as a life-age of the earth. But it was not the end. I felt life in me again. I've been sent back until my task is done.


Keeping to the same way I chose favorites yesterday, here are my favorite female characters from each Middle Earth race:

Eowyn- daughter of Eomund, shieldmaiden of Rohan, later Princess of Ithilien.  Of course.  :)

If I were to choose a second favorite, I'd probably say Lothiriel, the daughter of Prince Imrahil and later the wife of Eomer.  She intrigues me, because we don't know anything about her- except that she was Imrahil's daughter, had four brothers, was cousin to Faramir and Boromir, married Eomer and bore him at least one son.  I wish Tolkien had told us more about her personality- was she spunky or quiet, shy or bold, a model lady or a rebel, or something in-between all of those?

Rosie Cotton.  She is spunky and sweet.  I really like her portrayal in the movies.

Arwen Undomiel, the Evenstar   Of course, you knew I would choose her, too.  :D

The only dwarf woman that is ever mentioned by name is Dis, the daughter of Thrain II, sister of Thorin and the mother of Fili and Kili.  She had to have been a pretty good mother to have raised those two rascals, so she's my favorite female dwarf.

There were no female Istari.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Sunday, November 17, 2013

MEC Day Seventeen: Not Even Going To Try

Radagast: I'll draw them off!
Gandalf: These are Gundabad Wargs. They will outrun you.
Radgast: These are Rhosgobel rabbits!  I'd like to see them try!!


I'm not even going to try to choose only one favorite for this day's challenge.  My excuse is that I have a headache and trying to choose only one favorite would worsen the headache.  Actually, do I even need an excuse?  :D

Instead, I shall attempt to choose only one favorite male character from each race.  *rubs forehead*  That will be hard enough.  :)

Aragorn- son of Arathorn, Estel, King Elessar Telcontar, Strider, Longshanks, Thorongil, Wingfoot, the Dunadan, Envinyatar.  And yes, I do believe that is all of his names.  :)

Eomer and Faramir tie for second place.

Frodo Baggins- son of Drogo, the Ringbearer, Elf-friend, adopted heir of Bilbo Baggins.

Sam and Bilbo are my second favorites.

Legolas Thranduilion- also called Greenleaf, Prince of Mirkwood,.

Elrond Halfeleven, Lord of Rivendell, is an extremely close second (the Elrond of the books, not of the movies).

Thorin Oakenshield- son of Thrain- son of Thror.

Gimli- son of Gloin, and Balin are very close seconds.  (This was actually the hardest choice, because I like all three of these almost evenly.)

Istari (Wizards)
Gandalf, most definitely.

Radagast is my second favorite.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Saturday, November 16, 2013

NaNo 2013 Week Two

We are at the end of our second full week in NaNo.  I've heard a lot about the second week doldrums, but happily, they haven't hit me.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they don't turn into third week doldrums and hit me next week.  :)

What were my stats for this week?

Word Count At The Beginning of This Week:  18, 518
Total Word Count As Of Now:  37, 283
Final Word Count Goal:  54, 796
Daily Word Count Goal:  2,000 words
Average Daily Word Count:  2, 030
Words Remaining:  17, 513

 My favorite snippets this week:
"Jarjis Landison here.  We have arrived, your highness.  And your humble servant and brother Jyder craves permission to accompany us.  He has, I believe he called it an 'undying curiosity', to be inducted into the secrets of your meeting room."

Without warning she was suddenly jerked backwards by Jorda and pushed to the ground.  Just before she landed, Jorda and Kalema throwing themselves on top of her, two gunshots rang out and the crowd began screaming.

How is NaNo coming for all of you??

Miss Melody Muffin

MEC Day Sixteen: There is Only One Lord of the Ring

Gimli: Where do you think you're going?
Aragorn: Not this time, Gimli. This time you must stay.
[Legolas walks up to them, leading Arod]
Legolas: Have you learned nothing of the stubbornness of Dwarves?
Gimli: You may as well accept it. We're going with you, laddie. 


Definitely and unquestionably, I consider Sauron to the best antagonist.  He's big and black, he has unlimited power when he puts on his Ring, he has crushed entire peoples and nations, and he has his own special spies whose scream is enough to make the boldest shiver.  *nods*  Pretty impressive, even for a villain, wouldn't you agree?

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Friday, November 15, 2013

MEC Day Fifteen: Run, Shadowfax. Show us the meaning of haste.

Legolas: That is one of the Mearas, unless my eyes are cheated by some spell.
Gandalf: Shadowfax. He is the lord of all horses and has been my friend through many dangers.


I personally think Shadowfax is the best steed in Middle Earth.  He is the chief of the Mearas- a breed of horses who lived as long as Men and who had extraordinary strength and intelligence.  (I think Theoden's horse Snowmane may have been a Meara as well, but I'm not sure.)

My favorite steed in Middle Earth (tying with Shadowfax) is the elven mount Asfaloth.  In the books, he is the horse of the elven warrior Glorfindel.  In the movies, he is Arwen's horse.  In both, he is the horse that carries Frodo to safety across the Ford of Bruinen when he is pursued by the Nazgul.

My second favorite is Brego- a horse that only appears in the movies.  He was Theodred's horse and becomes uncontrollable after his master's death.  Aragorn is able to calm him down, speaing Elvish, and then says, "Turn this fellow loose.  He has seen enough of war."  In gratitude, Brego later rescues Aragorn when he washes ashore after nearly drowning when he fell off a cliff.   He is a gorgeous horse, and Viggo Mortensen formed such a bond with the stallion that played him, that he bought him after the film shoot.  (He also bought the horse that played Asfaloth and gave him to Arwen's stunt double, because she had grown very fond of the horse, but did not have the money to buy him herself.  Is that neat, or what?)

And I simply must mention some of the other awesome horses in The Lord of the Rings: Arod- the horse that was loaned to Legolas by Eomer and upon which he and Gimli rode, Eomer's horse Firefoot, Theoden's Snowmane- Master's Bane, Frodo's pony Strider, and Eowyn's horse Windfola.  Also, Aragorn's Ranger mount Roheryn- who one source says was given to Aragron by Arwen.  And, of course, who could forget Sam's pony Bill? 

Yes, there are others, but I'd better stop there.  :D

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Abolished Impraticality Cover Reveal!!!!

Dear readers,

It's time for another cover reveal!!!

This time it is for my dear friend Miss Jack Lewis Baillot.  She will soon be publishing the sequel to her debut novel Haphazardly Implausible.  The sequel is called Abolished Impracticality.

Here is the synopsis.  (True to my tradition, you have to wait until the end of the post to see the cover.  :D)

Peter Jones has been betrayed by the man he trusted as his own father. Now he is forced to question everything he has ever been told, and learn the truth of his past. Isidore Thaddeus Reichmann has finally found the person he has hunted all over England for. Yet, not all is as it seems and he begins to fear he might be on the wrong side. Singur faces down his worst fear and comes out a victor, but the price of his triumph may put the last member of his family in grave danger.
Choices now stand before all three young men and the paths they take will not only change their lives, but the whole world.

Battles are coming. Enemies are made. Friendships are questioned. When the only world you've ever known is a lie, where do you go?

Doesn't it sound exciting??!!!!!

The author bio:
Jack Lewis Baillot is Spartacus! She also likes to believe she's an author. She likes to write books, while drinking tea, and likes to read while eating cookies, but she doesn't like to do Math, even while drinking tea and eating cookies.
You can find more about Jack and her books on her website.

(I sympathize with you about Math, Jack.  It's awful stuff.)

Aaaaaaaaaaaand now, the cover!!!!!!  *trumpet fanfare*

Be sure to visit Jack's blog to find out more about the book, it's release date and her other books!!

Miss Melody Muffin

MEC Day Fourteen: Sadness

Théoden: Simbelmynë. Ever has it grown on the tombs of my forebears. Now it shall cover the grave of my son. Alas that these evil days should be mine! The young perish, and the old linger. That I should live to see the last days of my house.


From the scene in the book Return of the King, when the Hobbits and Gandalf are on their way home, they have left Rivendell and are heading for the Shire.  Frodo's shoulder wound from the Morgul blade is troubling him.

"Alas!  There are some wounds that cannot be wholly cured," said Gandalf.

"I fear it may be so with mine," said Frodo.  "There is no real going back.  Though I may come to the Shire it will not seem the same; for I shall not be the same.  I am wounded with knife, sting, and tooth, and a long burden.  Where shall I find rest?"

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

MEC Day Thirteen: A Hard Day's Work?

Bilbo: I don't know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve!
The Fellowship of the Ring (movie)


Oh, goodness, the funniest quote?  One of the best things about Middle Earth is that Tolkien flavored these grand, epic stories with just the right amount of humor.  There are many funny moments in the books and movies.

Here is one of my favorite funny scenes.  The quote at the top of the page is another of my favorites.

Pippin: I feel like I'm back at the Green Dragon.
Merry: [through a mouthful of food] Mm. Green Dragon.
Pippin: A mug of ale in my hand, putting my feet up on a settle after a hard day's work.
Merry: Only, you've never done a hard day's work, Pip.
[They laugh; Gandalf, Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli ride up. Merry stands and gives an exaggerated bow]
Merry: Welcome, my lords, to Isengard!
Gimli: You young rascals! A merry hunt you've led us on, and now we find you... feasting and... and smoking!
Pippin: We are sitting on a field of victory enjoying a few well-earned comforts.
[Merry blows a smoke ring]
Pippin: The salted pork is particularly good.
Gimli: [eagerly] Salted pork?
Gandalf: [exasperated] Hobbits.
The Two Towers (movie)

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

MEC Day Twelve: Waterfalls and Elves

Gandalf: The Valley of Imladris.  In the Common Tongue, it's known by another name.
Bilbo: Rivendell
Gandalf: Here lies the Last Homely House east of the Sea.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey


Ooooh, let me see....  I love Gondor- it is so majestic; Rohan is fantastic because it is the land of the Horse Lords (I LOVE horses).  Lothlorien is gorgeous and I've always wanted to live in trees, the Lonely Mountain and the Mines of Moria are astounding in their sheer grandeur, Hobbiton is fun and cheerful... but I think my top favorite location in Middle Earth is Rivendell, also known as Imladris.

It is the home of Lord Elrond and his family, including his daughter Arwen, sons Elladan and Elrohir, elven warrior Glorfindel and Councilor Erestor.  Aragorn was raised there and it had a special place in his heart. 

It has an 'old' feel- as though it is full of history, but it also has an uplifting atmosphere- when you enter the Valley your cares seem less and your heart lighter.  And it has waterfalls!!!

Of all the places in Middle Earth, it would be my first choice of place to live.

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin

Monday, November 11, 2013

MEC Day Eleven: The Clash of Swords and the Ring of Armor

Gimli: Oh come on, we can take 'em.
Aragorn: It's a long way.
Gimli: Toss me.
Aragorn: What?
Gimli: I cannot jump the distance, you'll have to toss me.
[pauses, looks up at Aragorn]
Gimli: Don't tell the elf.
Aragorn: Not a word.


As with all of the other challenge questions, this was HARD to answer.  I have two top favorite battles.  The Battle of Helm's Deep, and the Battle of the Pelennor Fields.

*thinks for a long time*  *deep sigh*  I just can't choose between the two!!!  So, I shall have to declare a tie.  Again.  :D

My favorite moments of the two battles:

Helm's Deep:
The scene with Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli preparing for the battle.  And Legolas- "That is no orc horn."

Haldir bringing his army of elves 'to fight alongside men once more'.  Yes, I know it isn't in the books.  But, it is so epic and wonderful that I don't mind the deviation.  What I do mind is Haldir's death later on.  Don't even get me started on how senseless that was.  Or how ridiculous it is that none of the elves- who are the most skilled warriors in Middle Earth- survived the battle.  Anyway, I don't think I can describe the thrill that goes through my blood when I hear the elven horn and see the army of elves marching up the ramp to the gate.  It just... *chills- the good kind*.

Aragorn moving along the wall and speaking orders to the elves- in Elvish.  It always reminds me that he grew up in Rivendell and would have spoken Elvish as his main language for years.

Aragorn's leading of the elves, period.

The, "Would you like me to find you a box?" scene.

Aragorn drawing Anduril, particularly the look on his face.

The EPIC music.

The fluid motion of the elves firing arrows.

"Did they hit anything?"  These are elven archers... does the sun rise in the east, Gimli?  :)

Legolas and Gimli's famous orc slaying contest.  :D

Theoden yelling, "Brace the gates!"

Aragorn and Gimli saving each other.

Legolas sliding down the stairs on the shield.  :)

Legolas unsheathing his knives.

Legolas and an elf dragging Gimli back to the keep.  :D

Aragorn screaming Haldir's name as he rushes to his aid.

Random insertion: I know I've said it before- but I HATE Haldir's death.  It is tragic, senseless, stupid,  and yes- very sad and beautiful that it is Aragorn who holds him as he breathes his last- but... It. Should. Not. Have. Happened.  Period.  :D

Aragorn riding the ladder down.

Thoeden- "To the gate.   Draw your swords."

Aragorn and Gimli's assault on the ramp (see the quote at the top of the page).  Hilarious and fantastic.

Legolas hauling Aragorn and Gimli up after the assault on the ramp.

Aragorn taking charge of the last defenders and ordering the women and children to safety.

"Ride out with me.  Ride out and meet them head on.  For Rohan.  For your people."

"The Horn of Helm Hammerhand shall sound in the Deep, one last time."  And Gimli's face, "YES."

The charge down the ramp.  (Thrilling and inspiring.)

Shadowfax rearing on the hilltop... and then Eomer and his Rohirrim appearing. 

Theoden's look when he sees Eomer. 

"Rohirrim.  For the King!"  And the magnificent charge down the hill.

And yes, I do realize I practically just described the entire battle.  I suppose it would have been better to simply say I love every single moment of the battle (except for Haldir's death), right?  *sigh*  See why I'm having such a hard time choosing favorites??

Pelennor Fields:
The arrival of the Rohirrim, Theoden giving the battle plan and then the cheer the Riders give. 

The look on Merry's face as the Riders charge.

The EPIC music.  :)

The look on Gothmog's face when he realizes he will probably be trampled.  Heehee!!!

Eomer's battle yell.

The appearance of the Olifaunts through the smoke.

Theoden- "Reform the lines!  Sound the charge!"

The epic scale of these comparatively small horses charging the giant Olifaunts.

Eomer taking down two Olifaunts with one spear blow.

Eowyn and Merry waving in and out, hamstringing an Olifaunt- killing it.

Random thought: I think it is funny how Legolas' Olifaunt killing scene receives so much attention but not many people even realizee that Eowyn and Merry kill at least one Olifaunt, and Eomer kills two- with one spear!  Don't get me wrong, I love Legolas' scene too, but I think Eomer, Eowyn and Merry deserve more attention for their parts in the Olifaunt battle.

The entire scene with Eowyn, Merry and the Witch King.  Especially the moment when she removes her helmet, "I am no man."

Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas leaping from the Black Ships.  (This one is another one that thrills me beyond my power to tell.)  Especially Aragorn's face- a king returning to his kingdom.  And Gimli's, "There's plenty for the both of us!  May the best dwarf win!"

Legolas and Gimli counting their kills.

Legolas' famous orc killing scene.

"I hold your oaths fulfilled.  Go.  Be at peace."

What are your favorite moments from these battles?

For more information about the Middle Earth Challenge, including how to join in, go HERE.

Miss Melody Muffin