Friday, February 6, 2015

The Liebster Award: Where I Answer Questions and Nominate Other Lovely New Blogs

Today I logged into Twitter to find that I had been kindly nominated by fellow fantasy novelist Hannah Heath  for the Liebster Award! Like Hannah, I had not heard of such an award before I was nominated for it, until I read the description:

The Liebster Award originated in Germany. The German word Liebster means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome. In short, this award is given to the upcoming promising bloggers who have some worth-reading content and certainly have less than 200 followers as a recognition of their talent and as a way to greet them "welcome". This is a small act of inspiration that might change a blogger's whole point of view, just like it changed mine. The Liebster Award is an award for Recognition. You would not get any money, or cup, or medal, or certificate; just a recognition which will give you a spot-light mark in this crowded blogging-market!

Another thing about this award is that this is a "Pay it forward" award, like a chain-reaction. Once you have accepted the award, you have to search for other bloggers, who are emerging as new buds with some really promising content which you find worth reading. You can accept it, or you can let it go; no harm done....However, if you want to accept The Liebster Award, you have to follow six simple rules which are:

So, without further ado, here are my answers to Hannah's questions:

1. Have you ever been to California?

No, much to the chagrin of my native Californian friends, I'm afraid.

2. If you could get any famous writer/blogger to start following and commenting on your blog, who would it be?

Well, unfortunately most of my favorite authors died before the word blog existed. But I have to say I'd definitely do a Kermit Flail if Shannon Messenger followed my blog. Already I am a part of her meme Marvelous Middle Grade Mondays, and I love her MG fantasy series (can't wait for Neverseen this fall!).

3. What kind of music do you listen to while writing?

It depends on the WIP. My last book I mostly listened to Irish Folk music and Lord of the Rings soundtrack. For this current project I listen to a lot of classical. Some pieces I replay frequently are Danse Macabre by Saint Saens, Glazunov's Mazurka Oberek, the third movement of Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto no. 1, and Beethoven's 7th symphony. My next WIP in line is a dual POV space opera, so we'll see what that entails as far as writing soundtrack!

4. What are your three top goals in life?

Well, I don't know about top goals, but I definitely want to be traditionally published (nothing against self-pubbing and small presses! That's just me). I'd also love to visit Europe, and it'd be pretty awesome to attend the Olympics some day.

5. What do you hope to gain through your blog?

I hope to build is a platform and an audience (traditionally published, again).

6. Ebook, audio book, or just a plain book?

I object to "just a plain book." :) Just kidding. Definitely traditional paper and ink.

7. Is there a particular movie you're looking forward to seeing this year?

Haha. Star Wars Episode Seven. Don't judge.

8. What's a pet hobby of yours (that you don't blog about)?

Historical dance. I love English Country, East Coast Lindy Hop, and Contra.

9. If you had to dress up as any book character, who would it be?

Well, I've been Mary Poppins, Princess Leia (won an award for this one), and Eowyn at different times.  I think I'd like to add Natasha Rostova to that list.

10. What's your favorite social media to use?

For writerly stuff, Twitter.

11. How many more followers will you need to gain in order to feel justified in throwing a huge party?

Well, I know that I have two registered followers (I may have more. Certain reader feeds don't let me track that, such as Bloglovin'). But I like to aim big, so let's say 200. On the flip side, my "huge parties" to celebrate these milestones usually just involve Sonic milkshakes.

Now, since it's step three, here are 11 random things about myself:

1. I'm currently reading/reviewing all of the Newbery Medal winners. So far my some of my favorites include The Grey King, Maniac Magee, and Dead End in Norvelt. I own a signed copy of the last one.

2. I am also a photographer.

3. My favorite historical era is the Napoleonic Era. Hence I love War and Peace. I also like studying the 40s/50s and the time of the Reformation.

4. My favorite movie is Hugo. I also like Sense and Sensibility, The Hundred-Foot Journey, The King's Speech, The Book Thief, Fellowship of the Ring, and Chariots of Fire.

5. I am a big New York Yankees fan. If you follow me on Twitter, you will discover this come April and Opening Day.

6. I draw my own concept art. I might write about this sometime. It's lots of fun.

7. I prefer mountains to beaches.

8. I love cooking/baking.

9. Some fandoms I belong to: Keeper of the Lost Cities (Team Fitz!), Lord of the Rings, Jane Austen, Star Wars.

10. Some fandoms I do not belong to: Hunger Games, Frozen (sorry, I tried).

11. While my current work is a YA historical fantasy, I also have written an urban fantasy trilogy (think more N.D. Wilson than vampires), and have planned two sci-fi works, a historical comedy, and am playing around with a weird western.

There's my answers. And here are my nominees for the Liebster Award!

1. Ness Kingsley
2. Jessica Rubinkowski
3. Brett Jonas  (she may have more than 200 followers, actually. I can't tell. If so, then understandably :) Books and baby goats are the best combination.)
4. Connie Keller 
5. Gloria Chao (her blog is still under construction, but her story sounds amazing from what little I've read!)
6. Emma at Awkwordly Emma  (I love her reviews)
7. Ari Schwieters 
8. Sarah Faulkner (Host of #TBkChat, which you should check out).
9. Joanna Meyer 

I have no 10 and 11, because all of my other blogging friends either have many more than 200 followers, or already have won this award!

Here are my eleven questions for you, nominees. There's no obligation to answer, but if you would like, here they are:

1. What's your favorite way to get rid of writer's block?
2. When did you first start writing seriously?
3. What's your genre of choice to write? To read?
4. Coffee or tea?
5. If you have one, what inspired your current WIP?
6. Rain or sunshine for writing weather?
7. What was the last book you read?
8. What's a random talent you have others may not know about?
9. What's your favorite kind of scene to write?
10. Have you ever won a contest?
11. Would you prefer to tour Ireland, France, or the Netherlands?

There you have it! And here's your badge choices, if you'd like:

If you decide you'd like to participate, I'm looking forward to seeing your answers and your own nominees! My questions were all writerly related, as that's mostly what I and my nominees blog about, but feel free to ask whatever questions you want of your own nominees. And if you've already won this award, then just pass on by. Cheers!


  1. Great post, Rachel! I swear we’re related. I also listen to the LOTR soundtrack when I write, it’s almost indecent how much I’m looking forward to the next Star Wars, I LOVE War and Peace, didn’t like Hunger Games and can’t stand Frozen. Plus, all of your favorite movies are also favorites of mine, except Hugo, which I’ve never seen. It’s almost creepy. =)

    I’m cheering you on in your dream to get traditionally published! All of the genre’s you work in sound really cool. Historical comedy and weird western especially caught my eye, though I’m also a sucker for historical fantasy. Oh, and I’d love to see you post about your concept art. I can’t draw/paint/graphically design anything better than a stick-figure, so it’s always cool for me to see other people who know what they’re doing. =)

    I’m glad you did this post! It’s been fun. =) Happy writing!

  2. Thanks Hannah!! Thanks for nominating me, it was fun to do!! And maybe I'll do that concept art post sooner than later XD

  3. Thanks so much for thinking of me, Rachel! I did win the award back in 2011, so I'll have to bow out this time. I enjoyed reading your answers.

  4. Oh, okay!! Thanks for reading! And you're welcome :D