Exploring the Dictionary?!

Diacritic

Hello again! Sorry this post isn’t live the same day as the word of the day, things got rather busy yesterday. But you can expect two posts today. This one to catch up, and the other to be caught up.

 

😊

 

So, the word of the day for April 30, 2017 was diacritic.

 

Diacritic

Noun [dahy-uh-krit-ik]

 

A mark, point, or sign added or attached to a letter or a character to distinguish it from another of similar form, to give it a particular phonetic value, to indicate stress, etc., as a cedilla, tilde, circumflex, or macron.

 

The sentence for April 30th 2017 is: “You’re like a diacritic, little girl,” He said. “No one bothers to understand you.”

 

So, in total so far this is what we have:

 

She stood up to him lion-hearted, unable to handle the verbal abuse for another minute.

“You’re like a diacritic, little girl,” He said. “No one bothers to understand you.”

 

~~

So far the vocabulary gods have been kind to me! Let’s hope that my luck continues and this story can actually make sense by the end of this adventure!

❤ Renee Precis

 

 

 

Exploring the Dictionary?!

Lionhearted

Hello everyone! I’m thinking that you’re probably curious about just what I mean by exploring the dictionary. Well, you see, I had this idea, and it sounds really fun!

 

Ok, so some of you probably know that Dictionary.com does a word of the day, right?

Ok, well, I have a fascination with words (guess that’s part of why I’m an English Major!!). Anyway…! So, I look at the word of the day like it’s a religion every day when I get the notification on my phone. And I thought I could make a series of posts here about that word of the day, everyday!

 

Here’s the plan: take the word of the day, define it for those followers who may not follow dictionary.com as hardcore as I do, and write a sentence on that word with every post. Here’s the twist: Each sentence from each post is going to combine to make a story of sorts. Because I can’t predict what the word of the day is, neither of us is going to know where the story is going to go! Sounds interesting right? I think so!

Also, I’m going to confess something to you guys: this is kind of nerve-wrecking! I’m really self-conscious about my writing (like most authors) and I think this can be a good exercise to do to relieve some of my writing anxiety!

 

So, today (April 29, 2017) the word is: lionhearted.

 

Lionhearted

Adjective [lahy-uh n-har-tid]

Exceptionally courageous or brave

 

The sentence for today is: She stood up to him lion-hearted, unable to handle the verbal abuse for another minute.

 

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/lionhearted

 

Let’s see where this goes! Join me on this crazy vocabulary journey, and let’s see what messed up story we have on April 29, 2018! As always, don’t forget to like, share, and subscribe!

❤ Renee Precis

 

 

 

Creative Writing

Break Part 3

Part Three

 

The first day of school was finally here. She rolled over to dismiss the alarm that was blaring at top volume. She mentally cursed herself for having it set so loud. Getting up, she stretched as she got out of bed. She turned on the light and headed towards the kitchen to start the Keurig. She loved coffee, but she had learned to start the cup before her shower so she didn’t burn her tongue. A burnt tongue thoroughly ruined her day, especially eating! Nothing tasted right.

Getting into the bathroom, she turned on the water to what her mother had always referred to as hell water, she waited for it to warm up while she brushed her teeth. After a quick shower, she pulled on her clothes for the day and hurried to grab her coffee. It had had time to cool down to the perfect temperature. Smiling, she headed out to the back porch with her travel mug, her bookbag, and keys. Locking the door, she double checked her watch. She walked to her car, tossed her bookbag in the passenger seat, and got ready to begin her drive.

Driving to her college, she couldn’t help but be excited. She had been dreaming of attending college since she was a freshman in high school.  And today was the day that her dreaming finally came true. She backed down the driveway and onto the highway. Heading towards school, she flipped through the radio stations for something uplifting. However, just as her luck would have it, she couldn’t find anything quite right. Giving up, she turned off her radio and just hummed quietly as she drove. She slowed down as she approached a stop sign at the end of the road just as the pair of wolves from the meadow trotted across the highway, seemingly carefree. She watched quietly, glad for the lack of music for once. She enjoyed nature, she was cautious of it, but she enjoyed it. Once they were off the road and no longer visible, she headed to school.

It wasn’t until after her first class that she began questioning why she had seen them twice now. Weren’t wolves more cautious? She wasn’t sure, she was far from an animal expert. She sat on the bench outside the library building, silently contemplating whether or not she should do something to ensure her own protection when her phone rang. She quickly dug through her bag.

“Detective Anderson! How are you?” She said quickly into her phone, gathering her things to head to her car.

“I’m good, thank you. How’re you holding up?” He responded, sounding distracted.

“I’m managing as best as can be expected, I guess. Any news?”

“Actually, yes. Have you already left for college?”

“Yes, I had my first class today. Is there a problem?”

“No, I just would like to sit and discuss a few details with you again. Clarify some information and such. I could drive up there this weekend if you’re free.”

She thought for a moment and nodded, “Sure.”

Confirming the details, she disconnected the call and sat back against the seat. She was suddenly nervous. What could make him want to clarify details? Had something been found? A new clue? Maybe a witness? What seemed like thousands of questions flooded through her thoughts. Why must I get this god damn call on the first day of classes. She sighed in frustration and checked her watch. She still had about forty-five minutes until her next class. She decided to head to the library and look up wolf habits and see if she needed to worry about seeing them so close to home.

By the end of the day Alana was tired, and just wanted to go home, not grocery shopping. With a heavy sigh, she got into her car and headed to the local grocery store. She wasn’t sure what she should get so she decided on just sandwich meat, a few bags of trail mix, a few cases of soda, and some packages of instant noodles. She giggled to herself at her typical college student grocery trip as she loaded her things into the trunk.

Back home she unloaded her things and pulled out all her files on her parent’s case. Sitting at the table, she dug through each file, hoping to find something maybe she had missed before. Maybe she could find what the detective needed clarification on. Grabbing her instant noodles, she put them in the microwave, reviewing her files as she stood by the microwave.

She was reviewing the pictures she had been given of her parent’s car when there was a knock at the door, startling her half to death. She about knocked over everything on the table. She glared back at the door for a moment, wishing for whoever was there to bite their tongue, and checked her watch. Who the hell is knocking on my door at nine o’clock at night? Angrily, she grabbed her flashlight and headed towards the door.

“Who’s there?” She asked through the door.

“Just a neighbor coming to say hello and welcome you here! Sorry it’s so late! I’m Carley!” A woman’s voice answered.

Neighbor? I thought the realtor said no one else lived up here. “H-Hold on, sorry!” She unlocked the door.

On her front porch stood a girl about her height and age with long auburn hair. Her smile was contagious. In her hands was a box of store bought oatmeal cookies. “Hi!” She smiled, holding the cookies out.

“Hi?” Alana said curiously, taking the cookies.

“Sorry they’re store bought, I’m no good at cooking.” Carley smiled.

“That’s ok! I appreciate it! Want to come in?”

“Sure, thanks! I promise not to bother you too long! It’s been a few years since anyone rented this place! I was super happy when I found out! It gets lonely way back here.”

 

Creative Writing

Break Part 2

Part Two

 

That night she tossed and turned; unable to sleep no matter how hard she tried. Finally giving in, she turned on the lamp beside the couch and sat up. She pulled a box from under the couch and pulled out her journal. Writing things down was supposed to help, right? So, she began pouring her thoughts onto the paper in hopes of finding some relief.

 

She closed her journal three pages later, and reached for her phone. She unlocked it and scrolled through, hoping for updates from the detective working on her parents’ case. Sinking a little when she saw nothing, she leaned back against the couch and began to twirl her hair around her finger. Her mind was racing.

 

Only weeks ago, she had gotten a phone call from her uncle. Her parents had never showed up at his house. She had begun her search that day, driving all possible routes from her home to her uncle’s home. Three hours into her search, she went to the local police department to file a missing person’s report. However, as sympathetic as the officer had been, she was unable to file the report until the next day.

 

It had taken three days for the department to locate the empty car behind an old gas station on the county line. The car was out of gas, and the keys had been left in it. Both of their cell phones had been left in the car. The only spot of blood was on the handle glove box and DNA testing had confirmed it was her mother’s. The pistol usually kept in the glove box was missing.

 

This small piece of the puzzle had kept Alana up almost every night thinking, constantly under attack by all the possibilities of what could have happened to them. She awoke from nightmares of these possibilities drenched in sweat and shaking. Anxiety attacks nearly consumed her during these episodes.

 

Putting her phone and journal on the end table, she headed towards the kitchen for a glass of water.

 

As she leaned against the counter holding her glass she stared out at the sky, trying to enjoy the color changes as the sun rose. It wasn’t enough to fully distract her, but she was determined to try to go forward with her life. It was what her parents had, no did, want for her.

 

With a shake of her head, she finished her glass and began to wash it.

Exercise, she realized, that could help! Smiling, she headed to her bedroom. She dug through the boxes for something to wear and began to wish that she had started with her bedroom, not the living room, kitchen, and bathroom. Making a mental note to have her bedroom at least done before the day was over, she got dressed. Locking the door, she headed down the steps.  She pulled her MP3 player from her pocket, put in her headphones, and selected shuffle. Pushing the device back into her pocket, she headed down the driveway towards the main road.

 

Staying on the grass, she walked for a while to warm up, letting the vocals of her music drown out the thoughts in her head. After approximately twenty minutes, she began jogging. Now, more than ever, she was thankful she had chosen the house on the edge of town. She had yet to see a car, and being surrounded by nothing but trees as far as she could see was calming. It was almost like having a small piece of heaven on earth all to herself. Picking up her pace again, she began a slow run.

 

She wasn’t sure of how far she ran, but it couldn’t have been far. She wasn’t very good at judging distance by eyesight alone. But as she came to a curve in the road, she saw an overlook that surveyed the mountain range she called home. She jogged over to look and noticed a trail that appeared to be well maintained. She had the time, why not explore a bit, right? Jogging down the trail she thought she noticed a difference in the smell of the world around her. More clean and open, is how she would describe the not so subtle difference.

Smiling, she paused long enough to turn off her MP3 player and shove it and her headphones into her pocket. She almost tripped over a root that stuck out of the ground when she continued and decided it would be best to walk this path. Falling and breaking a leg out here would not be the best outcome for her day.

 

About an hour later she came to what appeared to be the ending of the trail. She could just see the tree line begin again ahead of her, but not a clear definition of where the trail resumed. She stood at the edge of the trees and was about to head back home when she noticed movement in the field. Watching closely, she noticed it was a pair of wolves playing together.

 

As if on cue to give her presence away, the wind began to blow from behind her. The wolves stopped, sniffed the air, and stared at her silently. She was unsure of what to do. They didn’t seem to be aggressive, but she wasn’t very knowledgeable in wildlife behavior.  The larger of the pair nudge its friend and with a final glance in her direction, they ran off towards the cover of the trees on the far side of the clearing.

 

Thinking she should leave before they decided to make a meal out of her, she headed back up the trail to head home.

Creative Writing

Break Part 1

Part One

 

The view from her cabin was monumentally better than the pictures. This was the best place she could have picked. Alana leaned against the railing on the porch and stared down the mountain side, still in awe at the pennies she had spent for this place compared to the other options. With a final glance toward the darkening sky, she decided it was time to go inside.

 

Inside was more anxiety-inducing. Boxes and furniture were stacked in what felt like every inch of her new home. This aspect of moving was, without a doubt, absolutely horrid. With a heavy sigh, she pulled her auburn hair back and headed to the kitchen.

 

Standing between the kitchen and dining room, she debated on what her first task should be. Moving to her table leaned against the wall, she began to pull it out to reassemble.

 

Before she knew it, the sun had set and she had gotten three rooms done. Proud of herself, she grabbed her laptop and moved to the kitchen.

 

Sitting down at the table she put together a quick playlist of Beethoven and Mozart. Moving to the fridge she began to pull out lunch meat.

 

Sitting her sandwiches on the table, she pulled up a few documents on her computer. Twenty days left until her first class began. She was suddenly thankful she had chosen to enroll in hybrid classes so she only had to attend class on campus once a week. She would need the extra time to finish unpacking and getting settled in.

 

Looking out the sliding glass door, she stared up at the night sky.

 

—-

 

“Alana, what on earth are you going to do going to a college out in the middle of nowhere?” Her mother sighed in exasperation, “It’s more reasonable to go to a university here.”

 

“Mom, I don’t see why you’re so against me going out of state for school,” Alana complained. She had lost count of how many complaints her mother had made about her choice today.

 

Alana smiled and tried to distract her mother, “Where’s Daddy?”

 

Her mother pointed towards the back yard, “In the shed working on finishing your desk. He’s been rather adamant about getting it done this week.”

 

“I told him there wasn’t a need to rush. I can always come back for it.”

 

“You know how he is,” her mother chuckled, taking a sip of her tea.

 

Alana smiled, she was going to miss them when she left for college.

 

Later that afternoon, as she walked her parents to the door, she had to promise her mother repeatedly that she would be leaving soon to join them at her uncle’s house. “It looks like it’s going to rain,” her father said, “So be careful.”

 

“I will, Daddy, don’t worry so much. I only want to drive myself so I can make a quick stop at the library to return some books I checked out,” she reasoned.

 

“Well try not to be too long,” her mother said, “We’ll see you there.”

 

With a smile she waved them goodbye from the porch and watched them back out of the driveway before heading back inside. Going up to her room, she changed clothes quickly and double checked her bag to make sure she had all the books.

 

It was when she pulled out of the library to head to her uncle’s house that she got the one phone call she never wanted to get.

 

—-

 

Pulling herself out of her head, she closed her laptop and decided it was time to go to bed. Replaying memories wasn’t what she needed to focus on, and it was definitely not what her parents would have wanted her to dwell on.

Book Review

The Infamous 50 Shades of Grey

50ShadesofGreyCoverArt

The Infamous 50 Shades of Grey: More Than What I Thought!

 

 

Let me start by saying that this book was not what I expected. I have seen this book everywhere. And now there’s a movie for it. I was skeptical about reading this book to begin with, but let me tell you: this book is about more than just sex. This book is about the beautiful, and very realistic, growth of a phenomenal relationship between a man and a woman. This book touched very real situations, and is absolutely not dedicated to strictly sex (although there are a lot of very detailed, and quite frankly very realistic sex scenes.)

This book starts with a very embarrassing encounter between Anastasia and Christian. I personally adored this approach (there’s just something about people falling on their face that makes me smile).

The main character, Anastasia, is almost like your typical girl. She’s not happy with how she looks, and she has an internal struggle between herself and her thoughts. Sounds crazy, but tell me what person doesn’t mentally argue with themselves over something at one point or another in their life.

Christian both did and did not grow up in money. He has his own dark secrets about his childhood, and how it has made him into the man he is. And the way the author describes these problems is just magnificent. I personally don’t know much about psychology, but the way that the author wrote (or described maybe?) the psychological effects was very realistic to me. It definitely brought me closer to the characters.

The way that the author pulled the characters together was quick, but that is not a bad thing in my opinion. The internal monologue with the main character was worth a million pages of event and build up descriptions! To me this book broke down the reality of what happens when two people connect before they even know they have.

My opinion of this book has definitely changed. I went into this book worried I would not see why so many people love it. Now that I have read it, I can see the appeal of it! It is so much more that simply sex on every page. It is romance, and thrill, and excitement. It is real. I definitely recommend that you add this book to your personal collection! I know I will be!  As matter of fact, below I am posting a link where you can go read a sample of the book for free through Amazon. It is my understanding that you do not need the Kindle app to read the sample, however I could be wrong. If there are any issues, please leave me a comment and let me know so I can fix it immediately!

 

 

 

Book Review

Season of the Harvest

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Season of the Harvest Cover

Season of the Harvest (Harvest Trilogy Book 1)

By Michael R. Hicks

 

Review by Renée Précis

 

Hello again! This post is about a new series I discovered a few years ago but never got around to reading until just recently. It’s called “Season of the Harvest” by Michael R. Hicks. This book is in both subgenres Technothrillers and Conspiracies. On Amazon, this book has a 4.2 out of 5 stars. This is also the first of the Harvest Trilogy. It is also currently free on Amazon Kindle (although I do not know when that will end). After reading this review, there is a direct link to this book on Amazon’s website if you want to check it out!

Let me start by saying, it is obvious how much time was put into research for Hicks to develop this book. From the very beginning of the prologue readers are sucked in. We’re left asking questions immediately. Why? Because this man knows how to use details to his advantage. Details about the setting, about the characters thought process. It was almost as if I was reading the book from a first person narrative view, and I was really reading third person narratives.

But, before we dig into the book itself, let’s discuss the author first. All of the information I am about to relay I got from his personal website (http://authormichaelhicks.com/about/). The thing I want to point out the most is this: he published his very first book through Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing platform. (I point this out specifically, because this is how I plan to publish my book.) This process if completely free for anyone to use! He turned to this in 2008 to publish his first book, and got one heck of a surprise! (He must be very modest.)

Season of the Harvest pulled me in quick. This book had me wondering how events happened, and why they were happening. Jack Dawson, the main character, is your typical “I work alone” kind of guy. He is ex-military who has seen his fair share of pain both in the field and in his personal life. This guy should be in a mental institution after everything he has gone through! But he has persevered and taken what life has given him, turned that into his purpose, and charged forward. This character is incredibly strong. I’m talking morally and emotionally. Not physically.

“…wasn’t what was pulling him toward the Bureau: it was the thought that he might be able to help prevent what had happened to her from happening to others,” This quote is, to me, the most powerful indicator as to who Jack Dawson is.

When Crane, Dawson’s best friend is murdered he’s told to stay out of the case. Well, he doesn’t. When Dawson begins digging into the case, he stumbles across things he never thought existed, and learns he has to help stop them. Sounds cliché, right? In some ways maybe it is. But the approach of Hicks is definitely unique.

Hicks unfolds the plot curiously, making the reader want to devour it on the spot. There are still things I don’t fully understand about the book.

Weapon caliber, for example. I am not all-knowing when it comes to weapons. I’m not saying more detail need to be given in the books about these weapons, I just think I need to reevaluate my weapon knowledge and expand it. “Barret Model 82A1 with a Unertl telescopic sight” (from approximately page 208, assuming the kindle cloud reader for browsers has accurate page numbers) is a good example of some of the weapon terminology that leaves me confused. And then there’s the brief details of aircrafts. Need to learn more about those too. “Norwegian C-130” (again, approximately on page 209) is another term I am unfamiliar with.

Another thing I want to mention briefly is the way Hicks brings animals into the story, and gives them a rather important role. Cats. Cats have a very important role in this book. Although it is not as important as Dawson’s role, it ends up helping Dawson at one point. Who else can say they have a book where a simple domesticated feline ends up being one of the biggest helping forces in a book about corruption and deceit? None that I’ve seen! If you know one leave a comment and let me know!

 

I honestly did not think I liked this genre until this book. But this book pulled me in from page one. This is a book I would highly suggest you read. Even if you do think conspiracies are just plan irrational. This man took a conspiracy and turned it into an epic novel about fighting to save the entire world from aliens. And I for one cannot wait to read the rest of the trilogy. I would personally give this book a 5 on a scale of 0-5.

 

https://read.amazon.com/kp/embed?asin=B004MME1RU&preview=newtab&linkCode=kpe&ref_=cm_sw_r_kb_dp_duJHybRR23G90&tag=renesread-20

 

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