January 18, 2013

One Lovely Blog Award

Bronzed award from Cassandra Page's blog
Wow. I'm excited and humbled by Amber A Bardan's nomination for this One Lovely Blog Award. It's especially flattering because it's an award given to writers by other writers (blush). Thank you, Amber!

It's much like a blog hop in that I was tagged, I must tell you seven random things about me, then I'm to tag seven other writers.

Back in March, 2012 I wrote a 5 Random Things About Me blog post. Though it was tempting, I did not duplicate any of those things here.

I am a Night Owl
"Hunting Ground" by violscraper via foter.com
I have tried many times over the course of my adult life to alter myself into a morning lark, but I've recently accepted that it is impossible. I lumber through my days with all the grace and imagination of a bull in a china shop. But as the sun sets and the stars start to sparkle, my mind sharpens and I come alive. Night time is always when I get the best ideas ever. Night time is always when I feel like working out. During the day, it's all I can do to put on a pot of coffee and not drive off the road when I take BoyChild to school.

My first memory of public humiliation was delivered by my P.E. teacher in Grade 9
"6 Qualities of Light Assignment: Low Key" by philografy via foter.com
We were out in the baseball diamond for P.E. and my teacher yelled to my team as we were heading into the field, "If you don't know what to do with the ball, throw it to AJ, she can catch anything that comes within a mile of her and she knows exactly what to do with it." I trembled and blushed to be singled out in such a way. I guess he could tell how flattered I was, because he followed it up with, "AJ, does your face hurt?" I cocked my head in confusion. He responded, "Because it's killing me!" Everyone laughed. I could feel my face swelling with embarrassment.

I have a serious fascination for maps
The Dakina Islands by AJ Bradley
I had a blast making this really cool interactive map of the world in A Bird's Eye View. Check it out HERE, if you're interested. I've always been transfixed by maps. Over Christmas Break in Grade 10, I memorized the countries and capitals of Europe. In 2010, when my Dad retired from the local school board, he hussled me one of those huge roll-down maps of the World with the layers of cellophane showing details like population, topography, and climate. Sometimes, I just stand and stare at it...

The first time I got drunk, I acted like a debutante, and it worked.
Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O'Hara via fanpop.com
It was probably because I'd just finished reading Anne Rice's The Witching Hour, set in New Orleans, and I was desperate to go there. I could hear myself speaking with the slow, lazy drawl of a southern belle, but I couldn't seem to stop myself. Then I saw that my friends were loving it, so I ran with it. Emboldened by the Rockaberry Cooler and my new not-AJ persona, I totally hit on a guy who was three years older than me and he went for it! We kissed on the balcony until my BFF tore me away, wagging her finger at the boy. 

I not-too-long-ago had a dream that involved...gulp...Robert Pattinson (*headdesk*)
"Edward" by i heart him via foter.com  
I think I might be old enough to have given birth to him...

I recently took The Color Quiz personality test
Take the test!
It was fun and brow-knittingly accurate. Here are a few things that they said about me that I liked:

"Creative and emotional,  looking for ways to further expand those qualities. Seeking adventure and new and unusual activities."

"Is resistant to outside pressures and control, or anything that stands in the way of her freedom to make her own decisions and plans."

Here are a few things they said that I didn't like:

"Is bothered when her needs and desires are misunderstood and she feels there is no one to turn to or rely on.  Her self-centered attitude can cause her to be easily offended."

"Insists her hopes and ideas are realistic and achievable, but needs encouragement and support.  Her self-centredness can cause her to take things too personally."

So, apparently, I'm rather touchy... ;)

I once pretended to be gay
JB-27 by Amy T Schubert via foter.com
I was, maybe, nineteen years old. I was at a park with my friend who was introducing me to some boys (I guess, young men) that she'd just met. One of them was a little too forward for my taste, so I leaned into my friend, putting my arm around her, and kissed her neck. He wasn't subtle, or pleased. His brow furrowed, like he was angry, and he said, "There's no way you're a lesbian." I asked him why not, and we had quite the debate. My friend, being the prankster that she was, totally had my back. After about 20 minutes the guy finally accepted that I was gay, saying, "What a waste." To which I replied, "I'm not wasted just because I'm not for a man." 

I'm not sure why this memory stays with me. Perhaps I was proud of my acting (lying my butt off) skills. But I think it's more because I saw a darker side of how (some) men see women. He was angry, as though, as a man, he'd had some right to me, and I was denying him that right. I never saw him again.


Well, there are seven random things about me. The next step is to tag seven other writers/bloggers to receive the award. This is difficult because the content of the Seven Random Things is about YOU, rather than your work. Let me just tag those writers that I find inspiring, generous, interesting, and friendly. I include them here to forward you on to their sites, without any expectations. 

1. Ksenia Anske is one of the most courageous bloggers I've come across. Her posts are inspiring, artful, and soul-baring. Not to mention her amazing storytelling skills...

2. Audrey Havlin and I met over facebook and she is the sweetest, most talented writer. She and I share a lot of the same taste in art/music/books/movies and love of faery lore.

3. Jami Gold: I first heard of Jami through NaNoWriMo and when I visited her blog, I immediately followed it. She is incredibly generous in sharing her experiences in writing and recently set up a Query/Blurb Exchange Club.

4. Michelle Saint-Germain Weidenbenner is half of the team that runs Random Writing Rants and if you haven't visited this blog, you should! She's posted tonnes of great writing tips and inspiring posts to keep you at your craft. She's friendly and encouraging and I'm so glad I stumbled upon her site.

5. Angela Quarles geek girl romance writer. Check her out. She's funny. She's quirky. She's generous with her romance writing advice. I love her Six-Sentence Sundays.

6. Justine Musk because you're a creative badass. If you are ever in need of some in-depth thinking on creativity and the process of finding/freeing/feeding your soul, check out Justine Musk's blog. You may be familiar with her name as I've cited her several times here, she is my go-to when I need a little you-can-do-it.

7. Ava Jae at Writability. Her blog is chock-a-block full of truly awesome writing tips. She blogs as though she's sitting in front of you at the coffee shop and working out all your writing kinks.

So, that's it. Thank you for reading this epic all-about-me post! And thanks again, Amber Bardan for awarding me; this was fun!


  1. LOVE it!!!! I REALLY enjoy reading your blogs. xo Haze

  2. You are so cool! I absolutely love your interactive map!

    1. Lol, wow, Ajfae, thanks! Glad you like the map, it was so fun to make, I keep trying to come up with reasons to make another interactive picture...!

  3. Hi A.J it is so interesting reading these things! I also was introduced to public humiliation by mocking teachers. I love your quirky interactive pictures :)

    1. Sheesh, makes me nervous of when BoyChild goes to high school! Ah well, what doesn't kill us, right? I'm glad you like the pic; I can't wait to make another one! Thanks for awarding me, Amber!


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