Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Birthdays, Cakes, and Catacombs

This is just a general, life-y, update-y sort of post. And that picture up there is by Little Brother. *plug plug* Every time I blog he's like, "And link to myyyyy blog, too," so LOOK, EVERYONE, TOMMY'S BLOG, VISIT IT.  xD But it really is a pretty picture. Good job, Little Brother.

Anyway, that was the view from the terrace where we had my birthday last weekend.

I turned twenty.


There was lovely, lovely cake with The Peculiar's cover on it as a surprise.

Cake. Surprised Stefan
The cake was strawberry mousse and sponge. So good. Even the printed fondant stuff tasted scrumptious.

The next day we went on a mountain hike with my Oma and Opa, which is what one calls one's grandparents if one's grandparents are Swiss.


While we were hiking I talked to Oma a bit. Now, let me tell you a tiny bit about my Oma. She's very sharp and funny, which I only realized recently for some reason. She lived in Germany during World War II which kind of blows my mind. She went paragliding for her 70th birthday. She told me a story, and I thought it was kind of hilarious, soooo: telling you now.

Hem-hem: (she told it in English, so this is authentic dialect, mmhm.)

"Have you heard seh story of seh little mouse, seh little mitzeli? I tell you. I tell seh story. Ser vas a little mouse, yes, and she found a round of cheese in seh Vorratskammer, and she ate and ate and ate, and she ate and ate and ate and ate and ate and ate and then seh mouse, she exploded."


That's it. That's literally the whole story. Didn't you find that to be a brilliant examination of societal ills, told through understated characterization with spare precision and subtly mounting tension that builds to a shocking final twist? I know, me too. The moral, I think, is that if you give a mouse a round of cheese it will explode, which is IMPORTANT TO KNOW.

Hike pictures:

We ran into some cows along the way.

Oma and Opa have a mentally challenged dog. Here he is enjoying the view, which for once is a thing he does that makes sense.
About halfway up the mountain are these old bunkers carved into the rock face in case of INVASION, and Little Brother and I wandered in, and it was creepyyyyy. I was instantly inspired for a scene in the book I'm writing now, because it takes place underground, and in the dark, and bla-bitty-bla.

The entrance. You can't tell, but it's drilled into a rock-face along a little mountain path.
Bunker door.

Getting darker.

Ok, this *looks* bright and normal because of the camera flash, but at this point everything was pitch black, and that is me, flailing blindly. SO CREEPY, I TELL YOU.

Ooky walls. Only saw this when I was back at the computer. They were all slimy and knobby, like the inside of a fish or something.
Also, I got Whatnot jacket proofs and they're gawgeous and shiny.

The book inside is not mine. I stole a copy of Valley of Heroes by Jonathon Stroud from my shelf because it was the right length and had deckle edges, and then put it in my jacket. IMPOSTER.

Bye. :)


  1. A belated "happy birthday to you" and now people will not be so amazed that you are so young to be a published author because you're no longer just a teenager. All growed up, that's what.

    1. Thank you!! Yes, this is a good thing. It's very boring when all people care about your writing is that you were young when you did it. So yay! :D

  2. Sounds like an excellent birthday! And I loved your Oma's story. :)

  3. Happy belated birthday (again)! Also, Oma and Opa are what you call your grandparents if they are German or Austrian period. XD I love the photos here and I can't wait to see how you use them for your next book - creepy, indeed! And what a beautiful cover jacket The What Not has.. I love how it is similar to the Peculiar's. :-)

    1. It is, yeah. But MINE are Swiss, you see. Also, thank youuu! I can't wait for you to read it. :D

  4. Happy Birthday, Shteffy!! Welcome to the world of not-a-teenager-can't-use-that-excuse-now-really-an-adult-for-SURESIES-oh-crap-i-want-to-be-a-kid-again.



    1. Hahaha! xD I don't want to enter this world, CLOSE THE DOOR. But thank you, Lyssa. Boing INDEED.

  5. I see a story in the making in which that bunker is the setting. Ooh...creepy.

    1. The story is being maked! Super fun to write. :D

  6. Happy Birthday Stefan! :)
    Hope your day was super scrumdiddlyumptious!! Sorry this is late...but for your birthday since I can't get you a present...go buy yourself some chocolate. ;)
    AHAHAHAHA!!!!! I love your Oma, she is SO FUNNY!
    My grandmother grew up in Germany during the war, which I sometimes find horribly fascinating and terrible at the same time. You aren't alone in that feeling of- Not-sure-what-to-feel.

    AHA, the swan picture is pirated from your brother's blog! NESSIE!!!! ;)

    1. Thanks, Ariana!! It was completely scrumdiddlyumptious. And I copied and pasted that, because your spelling was better than mine would have been. xD

      And re: grandmother, exactly. I'm also very curious about what her life was like during that time.

      And YES. I stole it. But he said I could. :)