Happy New Year

I hope that you all had a fun and safe New Year’s Eve.

It’s been way too long since I posted here; most of 2017 was spent in recovery. I still have a way to go, but life doesn’t settle so at the moment I’m packing, culling and trying to raise funds to move out of our current residence.

I have a few things in the works and I’ll share that over the coming weeks. For now I just wanted to touch base and let people know that I’m still alive.

Re-evaluating, revamping and rebranding

Salutations,
I’ve spent a lot of the last few months giving my life, my projects, my wants and needs, a long hard look at. Life continues to kick me while I’m down and as always I have to wonder how much that is because of wrong choices, and how much is just a long run of “bad luck”. I have come to this point many times; I’ve made changes (significant and smaller), cut back on things, tried to take us in a whole new direction, but it just ends up being a “Groundhog Day” scenario.

source: http://likegif.com/groundhog-day-quotes-11.html

That’s just not good enough anymore!!! My kids, at least, deserve more from life. Thanks to a smorgasbord of mental health issues, working outside of the house on more than a casual basis, is out of the question (for the near future). And thanks to a number of incidents that all happened around Xmas, I no longer have the casual jobs that just kept us from fully downing last year. So now I determined this time to use my own talents to keep us afloat. This time I can’t be flaky about it. This time I’ll put what I can into it to make it work.

created by me via https://memegenerator.net

This involves looking everything with fresh eyes; being brutally honest with myself, and working around a number of obstacles. So I’m rebranding myself and my projects. A new look, a new mission, and a new plan of action. Blogging will be central to it all; I am, after all, a writer. I’ll be looking at new ways to help other creatives and work-at-home business owners, with promotion and marketing. And more.

created by me via https://memegenerator.net

The Essential Bron Rauk-Mitchell will continue to be the HUB of all of my activities. One central place that sums up the essence of everything that I will be doing, and the other ventures will branch of from there (allowing people to keep up generally with what I am doing , and following specific projects that they have a deeper interest in without too much overlap). With that in mind updates here will be more frequent. But for now I’m rebranding myself across my social media platforms, and redesigning blogs and websites. I hope that you will continue to support me <3 <3 <3

Writing Challenge 2017: An idea a day

Last year I committed to a story per day, but realised that with time and other projects that sometimes all I came up with was a line for a poem, a character, a name, a setting and so on. Each of those was a valuable addition to my writer’s chest, and after time I just went with it. Some days I’d come up with several ideas, other days just the one. After my friend passed away the ideas came more slowly and I stopped the challenge all together.

While I was recording these ideas, I did so in a haphazard way; so this year I am keeping the ideas in a notebook dedicated to the challenge, and I will also update the blog regularly with my ideas. I’m expanding the challenge to include the photographs that I take (those that are reminders of ideas for settings etc). If nothing else, if/when the spark for writing returns I will have a treasure chest of ideas to sort through. And if the spark never returns I’ll have a treasure chest of ideas to share with others in need of inspiration.

I received this pen and notebook for Xmas, so it seems timely to use them for the for the challenge. (photo thanks to my daughter, Scarey). I hope that you will join me in the challenge. There is no prize; just the satisfaction of building up a treasure trove of useable ideas.

Re: The upcoming changes to Facebook Page likers (March 12, 2015).

From time-to-time Facebook will implement changes to pages, groups or our own timelines. Some small changes may pass through with no fanfare, but other changes are announced and people have some warning to prepare themselves e.g with the implementation of the Timeline for fanpages and personal accounts. Some of these changes are met with applause (increasing the word count space in statuses, editing comments, emoticons in comments and so on), and some are met with great resistance (the introduction of the ticker). 
Before every great Facebook change there is often a great public outcry as someone usually gets the wrong end of the stick and doesn’t understand the change or the new feature; this is followed by many pages owners believing the mis-information and sharing it widely in a panic, which in turn is taken up by other pages owners. Some of us actually take the time to check in with Facebook to understand the changes for ourselves or look to a site suck as snopes.com or hoax-slayer for verification. Many of us try to set the record straight but at times it’s like beating your head up against a really freaking hard wall. 
Right now it’s that time of year where the Facebook rumour mill is working overtime and Facebook page owners are begging likers to interact with their pages, so that they do not lose the likers. What we have here is two separate issues combined into the one. Issue 1: Facebook is implementing changes as of March 12, 2015 (see here for the official info:https://www.facebook.com/business/news/page-likes-update). What this basically means is, to give page owners a more accurate indication of their liker numbers Facebook will no longer included memorial accounts and voluntarily deactivated accounts amongst the liker numbers. So if your number count drops majorally on implementation of this change don’t panic; you haven’t actually LOST any likers. Deactivated accounts and Memorial accounts cannot interact with your page anyway, and I’m surprised it’s taken this long to implement this. To be crass, having these accounts as liker numbers is similar to rigging votes with names from the cemetery ala The Simpsons. Once voluntarily deactivated accounts are reactivated your liker numbers will be adjusted accordingly. So this is not a bad change; it gives a more accurate account of the active accounts that like your page :).
As to the second half of this rumour, where page owners are being people to comment yes on certain posts to be classed as an active liker of the page, this will have no affect on the new change. However, if pages are to remain in a newsfeed the more a liker actively interacts with a page on a regular basis (through posting on the page wall, sharing posts, liking posts and commenting on posts) the more that page will show up in their newsfeed. The less you interact, the more Facebook determines, by it’s algorithms, that you have lost interest in the page. This is not entirely a bad thing either. Unless you only have a few friends and like only a few pages you will never see every thing posted in your newsfeed. The reason being, it would take hours to scroll through everything that has been posted by groups, pages and friends. The reintroduction of the pages feed however made it easier for people to keep up-to-date with posts by their fav pages; one click and you can see page posts all in one place. 
Page owners need their likers to interact regularly to increase the reach of each post. But likers need their pages to post just the right amount of content so that they want to interact with the page, so this is a symbiotic relationship in many ways. But posting yes on a post is not going to be useful in “Protecting” liker numbers from being more accurate. 
So I hope this clears up the latest rumour circulating amongst page owners. Yes I do believe that Facebook has become greedier but also many page owners do not understand how pages work, they do not understand the basic premise of the algorithms and they do not want to put in any effort into running their pages. For many it is easier to follow the pack and spread rumours than it is to put the same effort into running their page effectively.
written by Bron Rauk-Mitchell

Has it been that long?

It’s been over a year since my last confession ….. um er i mean post (yes, that’s what i meant lol). Life continued to be a series of challenges last year and a lot of things suffered. I’m know slowly picking up the pieces, and assessing the damage (and there has been a lot). I’m wary about making too many plans given how chaotic life has been but I have to get things back on track and move forward (especially for my children’s sake).

I have a list of obligations that I MUST fulfill this year (including, but not limited to, prizes, certificates and perks) and I’m making this one of my priorities. Before I begin tackling that list though I do have other obligations to take care of, but I will try to be more on the ball with up-dates. 
thank you for your continued support and patience. xxxxx

Competition: Teapot Tales & superHERo tales

COMPETITION is closed now. Thank you for your participation. I will announce winners next week.

Competition time: Last year I was fortunate enough to have 2 pieces included in 2 anthologies that were released in printed and ebook format (Teapot Tales & superHERo tales).

                                                        www.facebook.com/TeaPotTales

There are 3 giveaways: 1) Teapot Tales (ebook) 2) superHERo takes (ebook). 3)Teapot Tales + superHERo tales (ebook) [If you do not own a Kindle there is an app that you can download from Amazon to read the books on your computer.]

                                                www.facebook.com/FemaleSuperheroTales

To enter:
Giveaway 1 & 2 are fairly easy:
Giveaway 1: To enter please send an email to celestialgrace278@gmail.com with the “Teapot Tales” as the subject. One winner will be randomly chosen by me.
Giveaway 2: To enter please send an email to celestialgrace278@gmail.com with the “superHERo Tales” as the subject. One winner will be randomly chosen by me.
But Giveaway 3 is a little more challenging. You have the opportunity to earn an extra entry for completing any or all of the following: 
* By visiting my Goodread’s Author profile and add either or both books to your want to read list. https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7245104.Bron_Rauk_Mitchell

* By visiting my Amazon Author Profile and like the page: http://www.amazon.com/author/bronraukmitchell

* By commenting on this post.
* By following this blog.
* By liking https://www.facebook.com/essentialbronmitchell
* By sharing this comp on social media (via google+, your facebook page, twitter, pinterest, blog about the comp or the books etc). One extra entry for each place that you share the competition (you do NOT earn extra entries for sharing numerous times on the one site BUT if you run several facebook pages each share on a page counts as an extra entry). When you tweet please make sure to tag me @Bron_Mitchell.

* By following www.facebook.com/FemaleSuperheroTales.

* By following www.facebook.com/TeaPotTales

Please make sure to send a list to celestialgrace278@gmail.com with “Giveaway 3” as the subject, and listing which of the above options for extra entries you have performed πŸ˜€ (I need to be able to verify your entries).
Entries close at 7pm Sunday, February 16th (Sydney time). Entry is open worldwide. No discussion will be entered to; I will pick the winners for Giveaways 1 & 2 as fairly as possible. Winners will be contacted and listed here. Thank you.
This competition was inspired by George Ivanoff (www.georgeivanoff.com.au)

A Letter to Steven Moffat

Some years ago I was fortunate to meet work-at-home dad, Author and
Dr Who freak, George Ivanoff. The meeting was at a small Dr Who
convention (surprise surprise): “Look Who’s Talking”. George was
friendly, knowledgeable and I have to admit it, pretty darned cute.
Since then, I have been an avid stalker, I mean, admirer of George πŸ™‚
and a fan of his work. To date I have only read The Gamers series, but George is a prolific writer and his books are often included in the premier’s reading challenge.

But
there is more to George than his prolific writing and good looks πŸ˜€ lol
He’s a HUUUUUGE fan of DR Who and extremely funny. I urge you all to
check out his video “A Letter to Steven Moffat”…. I almost wet myself with laughter and would have loved to have been there to hear him deliver this in person.

I think we should start a campaign, in all seriousness. George HAS to write at least one episode of Dr Who, and I think a brief appearance in an ep is not to much to ask. So I urge you all to start tweeting, emailing, and phoning “The Moff” and point his attention towards the video. It’s not too much to ask. After all George is a talented writer and fan of this pretty good show πŸ˜‰ and there has already been a precedence set πŸ˜€

Creating a Female Superhero Challenge #CAFSC

I was very excited when Becky Fyfe announced the Creating a Female Superhero Challenge #CAFSC  several weeks ago. As time grew closer to the deadline though I still had nothing. A couple of days ago, I was in an exceptionally dark place and from out of that place my superhero was born. Originally I wanted to call her “The Huntress” but that name has been used for characters before so after brainstorming I chose “Celestial Arrow”.  With the time remaining I have just submitted my flash fiction in it’s first draft and will polish it up if needed. 


I have a great love of superheros and villians and I was very excited to take part in this challenge. I can see this as the beginning of something great for Celestial Arrow (a comic or a graphic novel).


Author: Bron Mitchell


Word Count: 500 words


Anthology: Yes


Charity: Plan International Australia (specifically their Girls Fund)


Name of female superhero: Celestial Arrow


Name of human alter ego, if different: Phoebe Hunt


Superhero Appearance (hair, eyes, body type, etc.): Long white blond hair (shines with the hint of celestial light) worn in a long plait, emerald green eyes, fair skinned, athletic, medium height.


Human alter ego appearance (if she has an alter ego): Phoebe tends to favour buns or wears caps. Her style is eclectic and very much based on her mood. Artistic and creative. Loves to sing. 


Costume: After her “birth” Celestial Arrow pleases herself when it comes to clothing. At times she adopts the hunting garb of her mentor Artemis, at other times a military based style of combat boots, tee and cargo pants. There are days when she wishes to blend in and days when she wishes to stand out. She wears and eye mask (usually black but often coloured to match her outfits). She carries a silver bow and arrows.

Celestial Arrow dresses to please herself, and is not constrained by ideals of what a superhero should wear. She has become comfortable with her body,  her appearance and her sexuality  and dresses for herself. Her clothing does not hide or exaggerate her sexuality and her assets.


Personality: She is a loner, cynical, kind but a little impatient. Hard but with a caring heart. Intelligent. She does not trust easily. Prone to jokes, one liners and innuendos.


Brief description of how the superheroine gets her powers (i.e. born with them, radioactive accident, mad scientist experiments on her, etc.): One fateful night our heroine is attacked by a gang of thugs, beaten, raped and murdered. Artemis hears her desperate cries and gives her spirit the choice, to pass on or to return. She choices to return and is reborn. Artemis nurses her back to health, trains her and bestows powers similar to her own on to her protege. 


Powers: A crackshot with the bow and arrow (she never misses), the power to call upon animals, to shapeshift (or to adopt their traits) , the ability to transform others into animals, superspeed and the ability to heal herself and others (animals included). 


Anything else important: Celestial Arrow will protect all that need her, especially women, children and animals. She will take matters into her own hands, and at times Artemis will punish the guilty. She is dark, and at times is just a few steps on the right side of the law. Over time she will lose a little of the chip on her shoulder. After her rebirth she takes a vow of temporary chastity. Her rate of aging has slowed down.



Celestial Arrow.




I died that night.




I took my last, tortured breath in a damp, dank alley, lying amongst the filthy discarded refuse of a city that had long ago stopped caring. The broken shards of glass bottles, biting mercilessly into my naked, torn skin, had become the mattress of my death bed. My 
screams of pain and anguish had long ago turned into the tortured whimpers of a trapped and dying animal. The smell of blood, urine, sweat and semen mixed with the salty smell of my tears, assaulting my senses and  triggering waves of nausea and a bout of dry retching; my belly had long ago evacuated it’s contents all over the feet of one of my attackers.  


I could feel the life slowly ebbing from my bruised and broken body, my spirit clinging on to hope, even after my body had given up the strength to fight off my attackers. Blood, 
sweat and tears filled my eyes blinding me. My screams and prayers, had gone unnoticed and unanswered, yet in my mind I continued to call upon anyone that could hear my and end my suffering. 




I died that night.




As that last breath grudginly escaped I caught a last glimpse of the sky. The clouds parted and the rays of the full moon burst through my blindness, and lit up the alley like a spotlight. A warm, beam of light bathing me in love. My spirit left my body and turned toward the light, towards the gentle voice calling my name. All fear had left me, and all I felt was unconditional love. I had no sense of time, seconds and millenia passed and then I reached the source of  the light. 


“Do not be afraid my child. I am Artemis, Goddess of the light. I have heard your cries and
I have felt your pain. I am here to give you a choice. You have died, and you may now pass on to the next realm, to begin the next stage of your journey. Or you may choose to return to Earth, to begin a new life as a defender and guardian of those in need of help. But once your decision has been made there will ne no changing your mind. And a decsion must be made now.” Artmeis embraced me and I was filled with her light and her love. 


“What about vengeance on those that have robbed me of life?” I asked


Artemis smiled a chilling smile. “Do not worry yourself about the scum that took your life. They have been dealt with in a manner fitting their crimes. Do not worry yourself about the details. Now, what is your decision?” She asked with a hint of impatience.


“I will return”. Artemis’s smile was bright and warm.


“I was certain that you would.” She embraced me one last time. “I will see you again after you awaken”, and with those words my spirit returned to my body once more.



I was born that night.

WAHM Bags Giftaway

Close to 27 months ago I came up with the idea of WAHM Bags (although that name was yet to come). A “No strings attached” gift bag for celebs. There have always been plans for cheer bags and show bags as well, when the time is right. To celebrate 2 years since the first delivery and to say thank you for your support, I am hosting a Giftaway. The prize is this limited edition Bag, created & co-donated by Monique of Tactile Threads  (containing some wonderful goodies). There will also be a small runner up prize of  a pamper pack. Outback Pampering have also contributed some of the prize goodies.
New likers are welcome to enter but as this is a competition to say thank you for your support, they may be at a disadvantage with entering.  Enter the comp here
Thank you for being a supporter.

WINNERS Announced for TEBM Cosplay Comp.

I  had planned on writing one or two blog posts about the competition to keep everyone in the loop but as with all best laid plans, something got in the way.

Firstly, Thank you to everyone that entered. There was an amazing response, especially towards the closing date. 66 pics in total. I was very impressed with the quality of the pics and I am glad that I wasn’t judging.

Secondly, a big thank you to all the judges. They were marvellous. Some categories were harder to judge than others and a lot of thought went into picking the winners and honourable mentions.

Thirdly, a big thank you to EVERYONE that shared the competition. It was a phenominal effort and I’m sure the next photo comp will be even more successful.

There were nine judges and each judge had one category to judge. Judges could consult with other judges but no-one else knew who the winners were once each judge had made their choice. The 10th category was judged by all and was extremely close. If I had been a judge too we would have had two winners for that category.

The judging criteria was simple. Firstly no names were submitted with the pics to be judged. Secondly, if by chance a judge did know one of the entrants in their category they were to remain impartial. If they couldn’t I would reassign categories. Thirdly, even if a judge was not familiar with a character they still had to judge fairly. Just because a judge doesn’t know a series doesn’t mean they couldn’t appreciate the costume.

Costumes that were NOT original or were NOT made or commissioned were NOT to be discriminated against. A judge’s personal taste weighed into their choice to a small degree but again it was NOT to be their only criteria to select a winner.

I wish I had more prizes available and could have had 2nd and 3rd place winners as well, but everyone will receive a participation certificate. To me this is not TRITE; it is a small gesture of appreciation for entering my competition.

And now on to the winners:

Female child (under 18 years):

                                                               WINNER: Baby Leia

Honourable Mention: Princess Pirate Sarah








Male child (under 18 years):

                                                              WINNER: Elwood Blues
Honourable Mention: The Flash
Adult Female (18 years and over): 
                                             Lulu Series: Final Fantasy X 
Honourable Mention: Ritsuka Aoyagi (Artbook cover), from
LovelessDown.



Adult Male (18 years and over): 
                                                  Winner: Scarecrow


Honourable Mention: Beast


Honourable Mention: Spock



Group Cosplay (more than one person in the pic): 
WINNER: Characters (L-R): Angelina Durless. Grell Suttcliff, Sebastian and Grel suttclifflle (with a chainsaw)

Honourable Mention: The Flash, The Flash and Brainiac







Original Costume: 
                                                           
                                                            WINNER: Steam Punk Fairy

Honourable Mention: Medieval Princess (Own Character)

Honourable Mention: Vortex. An aquisitional program for a search engine.




Predominately Made Costumes (85% made and can include commissioned pieces): 
                                                    WINNER: Lulu costume from Final Fantasy X

Honourable Mention: Lilith from Borderlands 2


Photography: 
                                     WINNER: Mr Mistoffelees (black and white) from musical Cats

Honourable Mention: Aya from Mad Father



Photography – creative editing: 
                                                   WINNER: Hatake Kakashi from Naruto

Honourable Mention: Holographic representation of β€˜Slave Leia’


Cosplayers posing with WAHM Bags: 
                                                                WINNER: Stormtrooper

Honourable Mention: Ghostbusters.









Prizes will be mailed out within 4 weeks and participation certificates will also be emailed or mailed out within 4 weeks.