Thursday, July 7, 2016

The Go Nowhere Seats of Life... By C. L. Lewis,

Stepping out, often creates jealousy and judgement. And while you’re pursuing and accomplishing your dreams, the haters and naysayers will be sitting in the stands of life doing what they do best… Booing… Hissing… Nothing but gossiping, judging, and finding fault, never having done anything of importance themselves, but to look down their noses at others to make up for their own shortcomings. Don’t you worry! Pursue your dreams with all of your heart! Go after your passion and don’t look back! There’s no need to. Because if you do, those haters will be sitting right where you left them – in the go nowhere seats, letting life pass them by, having made laziness and excuses a part of their pastimes, and never having the courage to participate in something outside of their comfort zones.


Thursday, April 28, 2016

If you want to feel like a kid again, you need to visit Universal Studios Hollywood's Harry Potter World! by C. L. Lewis

If you want to feel like a kid again you need to visit Universal Studios Hollywood's Harry Potter World! 

Yes, even authors need a break sometimes. They need to be inspired too. Recently, I took a flash vacation to Universal Studios Hollywood! I haven’t been to a theme park for quite some time, and thought why not? My thoughts ahead of time were along the lines of hour waits in the hot sun, expensive food, and periodic bouts of boredom. Rinse/Repeat. However, in this case after spending a total of 11 hours at this place, I can honestly say, “WOW! (I haven’t spent 11 hours anywhere unless I was incarcerated…. Just a mild joke to see if you were paying attention) 

Honeydukes and Zoncos Joke Shop in the Back. 

What I’m trying to say is Universal Studios Hollywood is well worth your time and money!!” It’s totally awesome! From shows to rides, you won’t be bored. There’s something for everyone to do, or re-do. It made me feel like a kid again! And I know for a fact, it wasn’t just me judging by the people singing “Shout” on the escalator going in the opposite direction. This mood filtered over to our side of the escalator and everyone there joined in as well. Yes, even me:) (which explains the two year old behind me plugging her ears) The weather was perfect, the wait in lines minimal, the shows were excellent, the rides spectacular, and the food prices… Well, you can’t have everything…

My suggestions for anyone visiting this park would be: sunblock, good walking shoes, a locker rental, good camera, plan the shows you want to see around the rides, and lots and lots of water:)

 Inside Olivanders

First stop? Harry Potter Hogsmeade of course. It didn’t disappoint! Adults and children alike were outfitted in their favorite house attire to include robes and ties. Others were literally walking around the snow laden village dressed as wizards or witches. This really added to the ambiance of the place. When I spotted Honeydukes, it took everything in me not to fling open the door and roll around in the thousands of chocolate frogs – but I controlled the urge for confectionary delights and limited myself to a few tasty treats such as the peppermint toads and fever fudge! We also visited Zonko’s Joke Shop, and Olivanders just to mention a few places. Each store was filled with tasty souvenirs or rare memorabilia from the movies. My family ate at the three broomsticks and had frozen butterbeer! Yummy! *I also highly recommend their sticky toffee pudding! “Yikes! I’ll be on the treadmill for a week! 

Inside Hogwarts, Dumbledore's Office


The two rides in Harry Potter World are The Flight of theHippogriff and Harry Potters Forbidden Journey! Both were absolutely amazing! Approaching the Flight of the Hippogriff, riders are treated to a life-size version of Hagrid’s hut accompanied by none other than a hippogriff. In order to get to the Forbidden Journey, riders are taken through the dark winding halls of Hogwarts furnished with moving pictures and other recognizable scenery. Among many things, I was able to see Dumbledore’s office and the Gryffindor common room. The Forbidden Journey ride is 3D and you literally feel like you are flying through Hogwarts following Harry on his broomstick! 


 Inside Hogwarts

I hope you enjoyed a sneak peek into Harry Potter World, Universal Studios California. I'll be posting more about this trip later:) 


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Saturday, March 12, 2016

English Flashbacks, Brain Matter, & Writing Ideas by C. L. Lewis

It never fails. Whether at a book signing, speaking to a creative writing class, or talking with a fellow author, I’m always asked, “How do I decide what to write about?” When given the opportunity for freestyle writing, I think a lot of people accidentally flash back to their English teacher at the front of the class saying, “You have 30 minutes to write about the importance of the African Tsetse fly. Go!” 

Stunned, you were left thinking, ‘Gee lady! You must’ve had an unhappy childhood, and now you’re trying to drag me into it!’ Tick tock, Tick tock… Meanwhile, ten minutes later, that blank piece of paper on your desk is staring back at you burning a hole in your retina… Adding insult to injury, you wound up with a C- on the thing, leaving your parents to believe that you were illiterate – destined for their support well into your 60's.  

All joking aside, I have to admit, writing about something that doesn’t interest you, in and of itself is a form of assessing your understanding of the principles and structure of writing. But basically, timed writing, revolving around boring subjects is just another form of torture! Yes, you read that correctly. In other words, it ain’t no picnic! Right? Regardless, the entire experience can leave a traumatic stain on your brain, something you’d rather not be reminded of. No one likes being put in this position. 

However, creative writing is something quite different! I’m speaking about the type of writing that is neither graded nor timed. It is something we crazy people do for fun alongside cliff diving, and Wingsuit flying. Nevertheless, the entire world is at your fingertips, limited only by your imagination! It’s quite a freeing pastime! Therefore, I’m compelled to remind people that ask me, when choosing what they want to write about, the sky is the limit! However, I always follow up with a few tidbits I’ve learned after many years of facing off with my keyboard/computer, or pen and paper.

First of all, I tell people of all ages, “You need to write about something that interests you, something you enjoy or know about.” If you don’t know about the subject, and don’t mind doing a bit of research – then more power to you:) However, I’d stick to something you have a bit of knowledge on. Secondly, keep in mind that when you write a larger novel, multiple characters usually mean, multiple core messages. Meaning, your story can have a number of morals/fundamental principles depending on what character’s point of view the reader may be looking from. 

After writing my first young adult fiction book, The Road to Dendura, people would ask me, “What is your story about?” I feel that my response was sort of like a deer in the headlights, because actually there were multiple story lines woven throughout it. As an author, you know your story better than anyone. You are the god of that story. You know every detail and nuance. Therefore, when asked such a simple question, you sometimes wonder how a simple reply can encompass each and every characters' core message. But we'll save that blog for another time!

For now, I hope I've helped a few fellow writers out there! If anyone else has helpful comments about choosing a writing topic, please feel free to comment.


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