Over the past few weeks I’ve found myself tagged for three different tags, so I’m going to do an exciting amalgamation of all the tags I’ve been tagged with. Without further ado, here we go!
Beginning with the Get to Know Me Tag, Writer’s Edition!
- Link back to the person who created the tag (that would be the awesome Savannah)
- Thank the person who tagged you (and that would be lovely Christine )
- Share the tag graphic
- Tag eleven bloggers.
~Vital Stats and Appearance~
(pen)Name: Chelsea R.H.
Nicknames: Chel, Chels, Chelbel, Chello, all the Australian things. Over most of the internet I go by the name of SeekJustice, so I also have shortened version of that, Seek, or Justice, etc.
Birthday: Very soon. In September, but you won’t know the actual date unless you go through my archives in the faint hope that I mentioned it in September last year!
Hair Colour and Length: (Sorry, I had to change the spelling. It just doesn’t sit right with me using American spellings on my blog) Mousy brown/blonde. It used to be very, very long, but last year I cut most of it off to donate to wig making (because I’m nice like that). That was a year and a half ago and its grown back quite a lot and it currently about seven centimetres below my shoulder.
Eye Colour: Blue. I like to tell my brother and sister (who have brown eyes) that me and my other two brothers are mutants because we have blue eyes. Which is true, but blue eyes aren’t usually what people think of when they talk about mutants.
Braces/Piercings/Tattoos: None. I was going to get my ears pierced when I was twelve, but something happened and it just never got done. I’m almost eighteen now.
Righty or lefty: Right handed. However, I occasionally get severe strain in my right wrist, so I do sometimes use my left hand, usually to bad results.
Ethnicity: Australian. Like convict/Anzac ancestors and everything. Also, my dad’s family is English/Scottish, which is probably where my love for Scottish dancing came from.
First Novel Written: Ah, who knows? Depends on what you call a novel? Maybe my technically-a-novella, Otter Storm, that I wrote back in 2012/2013.
First Novel Completed: Again, depends. It could be the aforementioned Otter Storm, or it could be my first actual novel, which is happily titled Hannah, and is about a woman pilot named…Hannah.
Award for Writing: I’ve been highly commended or shortlisted in more awards than I’m sure I can count but I’ve never won a writing competition. I’m also not sure if the first highly commended was for my short story Kameradschaft or for my short story Pink Flowers. Either way, it would have been in 2015/2016. The more I think about it, the more I’m sure it was Pink Flowers¸ so I think that would have been August 2015.
(Guys, in the time between I wrote this and I published it, I got a letter saying that a short story of mine—Origami Cranes—had placed first in a writing competition. Not only did I win first place in my age group, I won the most outstanding author prize as well. People, I’m basically on cloud nine!)
First Publication: This was definitely in 2016. July to be precise and it was in the now-defunct magazine jaBlog! It was the short story version of Comrade, ie Kameradschaft. Then again, before that I used to write for my local newspaper and the first piece I had ever published was an article on the endangered Red-Tailed Black Cockatoo which inspired our local Landcare to get into conserving the particular bird species. That was when I was thirteen and I was completely chuffed about that.
Conference: My locality’s inaugural writing festival in 2016, I think it was. It was very small (much larger this year though), but it was a fun experience for me.
Query/Pitch: I haven’t done either yet, but soon. Maybe.
Novel (that you wrote): What??? I love all my babies equally.
Shush, don’t tell the others, it’s definitely The Stars Fill Infinity.
Genre: Historical. Even when I’m not writing “proper” historical fiction, I’m writing something inspired by history, such as my dystopian trilogy, which is heavily based off the French and Russian Revolutions, the Great Depression and several other historical events.
My secret project that I’ve been hinting at lately is a fantasy, but it’s very heavily inspired by–you probably guessed it–the French Revolution and the colonisation of Australia (by the way, this maaay or may not be the Australian fantasy I spoke of a while back…)
So, yeah, I just love history and can never escape from it.
Author: This is impossible to answer without cheating. However, as a writer—J.R.R. Tolkien. As a person (not that I like her writing any less)—Nadine Brandes. She’s awesome.
Writing Music: The Fellowship of the Ring soundtrack. I have a lot of other things to listen to when I write, but this is without a doubt my favourite.
Time to Write: In the very early morning, as I’m doing now. Before all the family is awake. This is usually about six to eight am.
Writing Snack/Drink: No one brings me snacks when I write and usually I’m too engrossed to get anything. However, when I’m stuck I sometimes get a Nice biscuit (that’s niece, not nice, just in case you’re wondering. It’s an Australian biscuit presumably named after a French [?] town) and a cup of hot chocolate.
Movie: Writing movie? Well, Les Miserables is as good an answer as any. Then again, I also love The Lord of the Rings.
Writing Memory: I can just remember how hard my heart was beating that time I opened the email that had the results from the competition I was in…to see that I’d been highly commended. It wasn’t what I’d been hoping for, but I was over the moon.
I also love my memories of NaNo last year, sitting outside in the late spring twilights and writing. It was so beautiful and I fully intend to do it again this year.
Childhood Book: The Eagle of the Ninth. If I answer this confidently, no one will know how divided I am over the answer. There are a hundred other books I could list here.
Reading: The Count of Monte Cristo (which I’ve been wading through for about a month now) and The Wright Brothers by David McCullough (which is a really cool biography about two of my favourite historical figures).
Writing: This post 😛 Other than that, nothing, believe it or not. I’m plotting two novels and I’m agonising over whether I should try editing a novella of mine, but I’m not actually working on anything.
Listening to: Right now? No Honest Way from A Tale of Two Cities.
Watching: I just don’t watch anything at all. The last thing I watched, however, was Black Panther. (actually, technically the last thing I watched was Les Mis but I’m sure you’re tired of hearing about that).
Learning: Perseverance. Perseverance. And a bit more perseverance.
Want to be Published: Definitely!
Indie or Traditional: I would love to be traditionally published, because I actually like the idea of handing my child over to someone else to
raise design covers, format, etc. I just don’t think I could cope with indie publishing 😛
Wildest Goal: Go to Realm Makers! In America! With money! Or, you know, get published by a big company like Thomas Nelson or Zondervan. Maybe become a bestseller on the NYT lists…? I definitely think I’d prefer Realm Makers, actually.
So, there’s that, my friends! One tag down, two to go.
This one is the “My Favourite Things” Tag that Quinn tagged me for.
- Link back to and thank the person who tagged you (thank you, Quinn!)
- Link back to and thank the blogger who began the tag (that would appear to be Beth)
- List and picture seven of your favourite things.
- Tag at least seven people (or as many as you can).
- Use the picture above (at Beth’s request).
- List the seven rules.
My Favourite Things Tag
So, I talk about my five overwhelming passions (that would be God, writing, reading, history and musicals) all the time. In light of that, I’m going to focus this tag on seven thing I like that you might find surprising. Or you might not. I have mentioned a few of these things before.
If you visited my house, you might notice that I like maps. I like looking at them, I like drawing them, I like colouring them in, I like making origami cranes out of them.
I just like maps. I have, in fact, drawn a number of maps for as of yet unwritten fantasy novels, and I have copied maps from published fantasy novels, and yes, I have made a number of origami cranes out of old maps.
This one probably doesn’t come as a surprise given the fact that I’ve been publishing Comrade lately. Ever since I read Michael Morpurgo’s book An Elephant in the Garden years ago, I’ve been fascinated with Germany, German history, culture and the German language. I’ve written a number of short stories set in Germany, or with German characters, and I probably will never stop. I also really, really want to visit Germany one day.
For book research, of course.
This one probably doesn’t surprise you either. Comrade is also about aeroplanes. But…just…aeroplanes, guys. They let you fly, like a bird! Who doesn’t want to fly? I’m especially obsessed with old aeroplanes, because that also ties into my love of history. And I’ve spent hours of my life replicating the Wright Brothers Flyer and their gliders. I’ve even designed kites based on their gliders. I have a kite (which I didn’t make) which is a Red Baron Fokker Triplane. I have books, books and more books on aeroplanes. I’m obsessed.
If you’re beta reading The Stars Fill Infinity, or if you read my post on symbolism, this one probably makes sense. I began researching the symbolic language of flowers in order to work it into Sapphire’s character arc and I found myself really interested in it. Flowers have a universal appeal and across dozens of different cultures, they often have the same or similar meanings. Flower symbolism is easily as fascinated as real languages are.
Elephants are my favourite animals. They have been for a long time and its mostly because of their beauty, their strength and their intelligence. When I visited the zoo last year, the elephants were the absolute highlight for me and I was more than happy to stand around in the rain watching them. It also helped me decide that if a career as an author/missionary doesn’t take off, I want to spend the rest of my life with elephants.
Especially baby elephants.
I used to watch a TV documentary show which was about an elephant orphanage in Kenya (I think), where they rescued baby elephants and rehabilitated them into the wild again. And it merely confirmed for me that elephants are the coolest creatures God made and that they’re simply awesome.
Second to elephants, I love otters. They’re not as smart as elephants, but there’s something inexplicable that I love about them. In fact, in my earlier tag, I mentioned my first novel(la) was called Otter Storm. That was, as you’ve probably astutely guessed, about otters. It was kind of a rip off of Redwall, but I managed to banish rats, mice, moles, badgers etc, to the four winds and I only had otters and co (otters are related to ferrets, stoats and weasels) in my novel. Otters are cute, and whiskery, but also kind of fierce, and yet playful too? They’re kind of like me, if we think about this.
This is not just limited to old Bibles actually, but to old books of any sort, just Bibles in particular because Bibles tend to have a story attached to them. There’s so much history held in an old family Bible that has been passed down through generations. I always have a sense of awe when I hold an old Bible, that this Bible has been used and treasured by goodness knows how many people, that God has used this Bible to speak to so many others.
It’s a much cooler feeling than picking a Bible up brand new from a bookstore.
777 Writing Tag
My final tag! Jess tagged me for this one and it looks pretty cool and nice and basic, a good wrap up for this mega post. I’m not sure if it has any special rules other than finding the seventh page of a WIP, finding the seventh line and then pasting the next seven paragraphs. So, here we go (this is from my favourite child, The Stars Fill Infinity)
I told stories and gave out coins. Rain Delaney threw apples. That was exactly how we worked five days out of seven.
When the apples were gone, and Rain, with her wonderfully environmental frame of mind, had let the plastic bag fly away on the wind, she strolled up to me and sat down. She folded her arms behind her head and then glanced up at me. “’Ow’s things?”
“Good,” I replied. “And you? Where did you get those apples from?”
“I bought ‘em,” Rain said, grinning. “At least, I bought some of ‘em, an’ the rest’ll never be missed.”
I rubbed one hand over my eyes. “Really, Rain? Why don’t you just ask me for money, instead of stealing everything?”
Rain laughed. “Yer know I’m too proud to ask for anythin’.”
I fell silent. Who was I too judge Rain for stealing anyway? When I hadn’t been feeding the mudlarkers out of my own money.
Just so you know, Chessy has been snitching from her father, that’s what she’s referring to.
I’m just going to go ahead and tag some people. Feel free to do some of these tags (or even all of them, if you’re crazy like me!). Even if I didn’t tag you, you’re welcome to steal them.
Whew! We’re done 😊 Did you make it to the end of the post? What are your answers to some of these questions? Are you a mutant (do you have blue eyes)? be honest, which of your novels is your favourite?