Saturday, 30 November 2013

Be The Caterpillar

"Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way." - E.L. Doctorow

The key is to keep moving forward. A lot of times in writing we hit a wall; some call it writer's block, I call it fear.

"Will anyone like this?"

"Is it too much like that other book everyone is talking about?"

"I know nothing about this genre, why am I thinking of starting this story?" 

And my personal favorite, "I have no idea what will happen after this scene!" 

Fortunately, there is a cure. Be the caterpillar.

Let me explain...

A caterpillar begins life having no idea that it's going to be a beautiful butterfly one day. It just eats, and eats, and eats until it starts to make a cocoon.

What the heck is going through it's head during this nonstop feast?

Oh my, God! I'm so hungry. Like ALL the the time. What is wrong with me?

Does it worry that it doesn't have time to talk with other caterpillars. And if it did, what would they say to each other?

"I know, me too!" Munch. Munch. "And now I have this intense desire to wrap myself in thread spun from my butt. It's starting to become more important than eating."

It goes through this cycle completely loyal to its needs spurned on by natural instincts.

Until one day...

"I can't believe I slept so long.  What day is it? And now I'm hungry for flower nectar. What is flower nectar? Holy shit! The ground is so far below! How can I move around. Whoa, I have wings. Check me out! I'm beautiful!"

When writers block gets in your way, be like the caterpillar and let instinct take over.

Now go write something without caring why you're doing it, but trust that one day, it will be beautiful.

Saturday, 23 November 2013

The One Thing You Didn't Know About Dr. Who

November 23, 2013 marks the 50th Anniversary of the sci-fi television show, Dr. Who. Today, Whovians will celebrate in a special, three-D broadcast in theatres around the world.

It's the longest-running science-fiction program on television, and pretty much the longest running dramatic show.

It's based on a very simple premise. Every week a spaceship shaped like telephone box lands somewhere, and out pops the doctor. He meets scary monsters and aliens, and defeats them with his cleverness.
Most Whovians consider themselves experts on all things "The Doctor". But here's one tidbit I bet most of you didn't know.

It was created by a Canadian, former CBC producer Sydney Newman.

Mr. Newman crossed to pond to work with the BBC. After creating The Avengers, they asked him to write a weekend show that would fill in the slot between the afternoon soccer matches and the prime time specials. They were looking for a family show that could teach science and history in a dramatic way.

Dr. Who fit the bill nicely.


And that blue police telephone booth that's the spaceship? Mr. Newman chose it because they needed something easy and cheap that they could re-use every week. It was his idea to have the inside much larger than would be physically possible. Brilliant!

Fifty years of shows is a long time. If you want a quick fix of Dr. Who, Graeme Burke and Robert Smith give you a guide to the top 50 episodes of Dr. Who to watch before you die.

Happy Birthday, Dr. Who! 

Which is your favorite episode?

And when will the doctor be a woman?

Monday, 18 November 2013

Once Upon A Time, Season 3, Episode 8 "Think Lovely Thoughts"

Or better title, "Peter Pan's and Mr. Gold's Super Big Secret"

A street busker in rags does a card trick and swindles a privateer out of a few shillings. Things get violent and the privateer beats him up, taking the poor man's earnings. A little vagabond boy is quickly by his side, pleading with the officers to leave his father alone. The officer says he'd be better off an orphan than with a cheat for a father. The man gets up, brushes off his coat, and calls the boy by name—Rumpelstiltskin.

Henry now fully accepts that only his belief in magic can save Wendy and the island. Peter Pan takes Henry to the camp and lets all the Lost Boys know that the magic of the island will awaken and release their destiny.

A lively game of Twister follows as the celebrate the ambiguous announcement.

Regina and Mr. Gold walk through the DARK (why is it always so frickin' dark?!) jungle making a plan to save Henry with Pandora's Box.

Papa drops little Rumpelstiltskin off to stay with two peasant women who happen to be fond of spinning. He begs his father to stay with him, but Papa insists he needs to go and look for a suitable job—apparently his swindling days are over. Before he leaves though, he gives a teary eyed Rumpelstiltskin a corn husk doll. "Make sure to give it a name," he tells him. "Names are powerful. They make things real."

Hmm....Sheriff Graham. Sheriff Graham. Sheriff Graham. *Looks over shoulder* Nope. Nothing.

Emma and the gang travel towards Peter Pan's camp with Tinkerbell in the lead. Emma and Mary Margaret try and come up with an idea so that David can leave the island with them. They stumble upon Regina and Mr. Gold. Neal is upset and lets everyone know about the prophecy which foretells Henry will be Mr. Gold's undoing. They all draw their swords convinced Mr. Gold is going to kill Henry.

It turns out little Rumpelstiltskin has a natural talent for spinning. The peasant women are overjoyed. He's good enough to work for royalty! But Rumpelstiltskin says he will never leave without his father. They share an uncomfortable glance and tell Rumpelstiltskin his father is a liar and a thief and will always be his burden. Then they give him a magic bean saying it's his ticket to any world he wants to escape to.

But more importantly, he will flourish because of his wicked spinning skills. 


Mr. Gold hands over Pandora's Box hoping to convince them he's trying to save Henry as well. Neal takes the box, but in a begrudging manner.

Neal is all about begrudging.

With magic bean in hand, Rumpelstiltskin finds his father doing card tricks in the pub.

Big deal!

This is pretty tame compared to most parents in this show. Remember David's father? The King was ready to kill him if he didn't marry Midas' daughter. Then he poisoned Snow White so she could never have children.

Dr. Hopper's parents turned Pinocchio's parents into wooden dolls! *shivers*

And let's not forget about Cora. She killed Daniel, and poisoned Snow White's mother, and the King...all so that Regina could be Queen.

Papa explains that no one in town will hire him because he has a reputation as a cheat. Rumpelstiltskin smiles and shows him the bean. Good news! They can start over in a new world. Papa talks about how his own father sold him to an unscrupulous blacksmith. It was a hard life, but he survived by 'thinking lovely thoughts.' When he slept at night, he visited a marvelous place called Neverland.

Rumpelstiltskin thinks that sounds super terrific. They hold hands, throw the bean into the cobblestones and jump into green vortex of fun.

Emma drills Captain Sexy Eyes about ways to keep David alive. Mr. Gold overhears them and offers the chance to make David an elixir back in his shop. But only if they let him help with Henry's rescue.

Neal is unimpressed. He says Mr. Gold should help David, not as part of a deal, but because it's the right thing to do.

Neal's all about the right thing to do.

They gather outside the camp. Here's there plan; run in and get Henry.

Iron clad.


Regina magics the Lost Boys to sleep. They tiptoe around the camp fire, but only find Wendy trapped in her bamboo cage. Neal shows up and they have a Baelfire/Neal reunion. Wendy confesses that she came back to Neverland to save him.

Little Rumpelstiltskin and his Papa land on the shores of British Columbia aka Neverland. They soon discover you can wish for anything and it will appear. Papa says, "Neverland is where the impossible is possible, if you believe it."

He tries to show his son how he used to be able to fly, but he ends up face first in the sand. Rumpelstiltskin guesses maybe it's because he's not a boy anymore. But still, Papa wants to fly, and so they go looking for pixie dust.

Wendy denies knowing or hearing about Henry. Mr. Gold knows she's lying. She cracks faster than an egg toss contest and confesses she's doing Peter Pan's will to save her brothers. She tells them Peter Pan is dying—not the island. He needs Henry's heart to stay alive, in return Henry will die.

Peter Pan and Henry row to Skull Rock. Peter Pan puts up a protection spell and takes Henry further into the cave.

Here's the plan! Mary Margaret and David head to Dead Man's Peak for extra magical water that will keep David alive for when Mr. Gold concocts an antidote back in Storybrooke. Tinkerbell and Captain Sexy Eyes stay at the camp ready to question the Lost Boys when they wake up. Emma, Neal, Mr. Gold, and Regina make their way to Skull Rock.

Little Rumpelstiltskin listens as his papa talks about how powerful pixie dust is and how awesome it is to fly. He invites him to climb a huge redwood. The uppermost top branches contain flowers from which pixie dust is gathered.

How does he know all this? Is it something he just created from his dreams?

But Rumpelstiltskin doesn't want to go up the tree, he doesn't want to fly, plus he's scared of falling from the hundred foot tree to his death.


Undaunted, Papa starts to climb, promising he'll show him how wonderful Neverland can be. He reaches the pixie dust flower. He sprinkles it over his head and proclaims "I want to fly." But the freaky shadow thing shows up and plays party pooper. It doesn't matter how much he believes or how much pixie dust he uses, he doesn't belong on Neverland—he's too old.

This also pertains to celebrities who sign up for reality shows.

The protection spell prevents everyone but Mr. Gold from entering the cave. Only he can pass because he has no shadow. He's not surprised. He tells the others Peter Pan rigged it this way, to keep him in and the others out.

Realizing Mr. Gold is their only hope to save Henry, Regina tosses him Pandora's Box. Then, like two seconds later, Emma comes up with the idea that if they block the moon with magic, their shadows disappear.

*rolls eyes*

She and Regina do their jazz hand magic thing and make the air go swirly. Neal stands in the background begrudgingly.


Peter Pan leads Henry to a huge hour glass, marking the passage of how much magic is left—not a lot, folks. Peter Pan seems to grow  paler by the minute.

Fearing something terrible has happened to his father, little Rumpelstiltskin cries while clutching his corn husk doll. Papa shows up and disappointingly tells him that Neverland is just for children and that he doesn't belong. But Rumpelstiltskin isn't upset. As long as they can be together, that's all that matters. Papa hangs his head and says he'll always be a useless father and that Rumpelstiltskin is better off without him.

In order to stay, Papa has to believe he's a child again. He can't very well have a son running around on the island reminding him he's a dad with grown up responsibilities. The creepy shadow arrives and pulls little Rumpelstiltskin away. In doing so, it takes his shadow. The magic created casts a spell.

Papa grown younger and becomes...Peter Pan.

*Jaw drops*

Dear ABC,

You got me. Well done.



PS Please bring Schmexy back.



Peter Pan leaves Henry to face Mr. Gold. He offers a way for both of them to live on the island, but Mr. Gold isn't buying. Peter Pan laughs and comments on how much they're alike; he traded his son for youth and Mr. Gold traded his son for magic.

Mr. Gold says he regretted leaving Neal the second he disappeared, and has spent every day since then looking for him. Finished with the family reunion, he takes out Pandora's Box. But it won't open!

Peter Pan grins maliciously, and holds out the real Pandora's Box. Apparently he only has to think of something and it will appear.

Okay, whatever.

When Peter Pan opens the box Rumpelstiltskin is sucked in speedy quick.

Little Rumpelstiltskin is soothed by the peasant spinners. They try to comfort him and ask about his corn husk doll he loved so much. He says his doll, Peter Pan, is gone forever.

Oh, *light bulb moment* he named the doll Peter Pan.

The freshly created Peter Pan flies all over Neverland enjoying his new place. He goes to Skull Rock, curious that he's never seen it in his dreams. The creepy shadow greats him with the news that Neverland is a place for children to visit in their dreams, but now he's broken the rules and the hour glass will measure how much time he has on the island before he dies.

Henry stands in front of the hour glass. He now realizes that having the heart of the truest believer means doing a transplant. Henry accepts that he will never leave Neverland. He's ready. Peter Pan magics his hand enabling Henry to perform his own heart transplant.

Okay, whatever.

Emma, Neal, and Regina show up in time to tell Henry that he will die if he gives his heart to Peter Pan. Henry is torn, he wants to be the hero, but all the grown ups are saying weird stuff like, "trust us", "we love you", "Hello! This dude kidnapped you."

Henry smiles and says he loves them, but he has to save magic. He thrusts his heart into Peter Pan's chest. A green wave pulsates over Neverland. Henry collapses as Peter Pan glows in a creepy kind of way.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Top Five Things I Hate About The Divergent Movie Poster

So the latest poster for the Divergent movie just came out.

*Deep breaths*

I haven't been this steamed since Amazon dragged the cover of Anne of Green Gables through the post beer garden mud wrestling competition. Readers enamored with the red-headed orphan, cried 'shame' when the saw the buxom blond in the plaid shirt with the 'come hither stare'.


Thankfully, Amazon pulled the 'updated' covers.

But this is the movies, kid. And it's a whole other ballgame.

Dear Hollywood,

This is so, so wrong.


A devoted reader

Here are the top five things I hate strongly dislike about this poster.

1. Tris is the main character, yet Four is center stage. It's HER story. Why is she in the background taking the place of a sidekick?

2. They're on top of a high rise. The dude hates heights.

3. Tris is all curves and clad in tight leather. Her long hair is flowing in the breeze. She's gazing wantonly into the distance. What is this, Beyonce's halftime show at the Super Bowl? Everyone knows Tris is tiny. Yet, despite her size, she proved herself worthy of the toughest crowd in town. I don't get that vibe from this poster.

4. Four is armed with an assault rifle or something equally deadly. Where are Tris's weapons? Oh wait, is she supposed to use her 'wanton stare' to disarm enemies?

5. Her butt is literally the middle of the poster. I've seen more panache from a Calvin Klein billboard.

If this was the original cover for the novel I would have NEVER picked it up.

There, rant over.

Please click on a share button below and spread the outrage.

Tris deserves a better poster.

Monday, 11 November 2013

Once Upon A Time, Season 3, Episode 7, "Dark Hollow"

Or better title "Where's the Headless Horseman?"

We finally get the answer to the question that's been burning in our hearts since last season's dismal finale...

What's Belle been up to in Storybrooke?

After Mr. Gold handed her a vial filled with a protective spell, he sealed his tearful goodbye with a cringe-worthy kiss. Then he boarded the Jolly Roger knowing he'd never see Belle again. With the scratch of his grey stubble still fresh on her rosy cheeks, she explains to Grumpy, the Blue Fairy, and Dr. Hopper about how she now has a cloaking spell to keep Storybrooke safe from other magic haters—like Greg and what's her name.

It's a confusing moment; they're excited because the town didn't blow up, but now they're worried because other magic haters are coming to destroy them...again.

Just like last season.

The dwarfs lead Belle to their mine. They feverishly chip away at a huge diamond with their special axes. Once a crack has been made, Belle tips the vial, pouring the spell into the center of the diamond. A flame shoots up, high into the sky, creating a dome over the town—but not before a red convertible sneaks over the town border with two guys who look like they stepped out of Downton Abbey.

*Googles fairy tale characters from the 1920's*

Back on the beach of Neverland, Mr. Gold gives Ariel directions to Storybrooke. He tosses her an enchanted sand dollar that only Belle will know what to do with. Regina reminds Ariel that the magical bracelet will only give her legs for twenty four hours.

Why the time frame? I mean she is going on an errand to retrieve the only weapon that can defeat Peter Pan. Why make it harder for her?

Peter Pan knows Ariel has left the island, but he's not worried because he has spies in Storybrooke.

Spies with nerdy haircuts and tie clips.

Neal comes up with the plan to capture Peter Pan's shadow. If they have his shadow they can get off the island.


The dwarfs picnic on the beach and are the first to see Ariel walk out of the water, bursting out of her bikini top and brand new legs. Looking through binoculars, our loafer loving dudes watch the scene unimpressed. They knew a mermaid was coming and they're going to make sure she never leaves.

Really? How? By boring her to death at the flower show? Oh, scary!

Belle sulks at Granny's diner/pub/laundromat, convinced Mr. Gold doesn't think she has the guts or brains to help save Henry. That must be the reason he left her behind!

Um...or maybe he knows he's going to die and he wants her to stay safe? Just a thought. *Rolls eyes* This is what happens when chicks date old guys who used to be super evil.

Before Belle can update her facebook status with a sad face emoticon, Grumpy arrives with Ariel and news that Mr. Gold is alive and needs her help to defeat Peter Pan.

Hooray! Belle has a purpose!


She takes Ariel to Mr. Gold's shop and lends her a mini shirt and pair of heels. They talk about the mysterious sand dollar and how Belle is the only one who can unlock the message.

But how? She has no idea how to use magic.

Hold on! Belle picks up a magnifying glass and suddenly a hologram of Mr. Gold pops up from the shell. He tells Belle that if she's smart enough and loves him enough, she can find the 'magic thing' he needs to defeat Peter Pan. Belle is excited because now she's cool enough to be loved by an old guy who used to be super evil.

Peter Pan and Henry have a heart to heart, but Henry is unwilling to yield to his request to save the island with his belief in all things magical.

Captain Sexy Eyes (CSE), Neal and Emma create an awkward love triangle while they hang out in his cave. Neal lets them know his coconut shell isn't a star map. It's a Shadow Catcher. And everyone knows all the shadows hang out in the spookiest part of the island called Dark Hollow.

Better than Sleepy Hollow, I guess. Actually that would be awesome. A headless horseman would shake things up.

Belle and Ariel search Mr. Gold's shop. Ariel finds a brass button from the jacket Prince Eric was wearing the night she saved him from drowning. She gets all misty eyed and lets Belle know he's her true love and all that.

Belle nods, but stays quiet because this scavenger hunt is NOT about Ariel. It's about Belle being a hero and saving not only everyone in Storybrooke, but everyone trapped in Neverland. All she needs to find is the thing that holds the strength of her love for Rumpelstiltskin.

I'm stumped. I usually have to hold my hand over my mouth when they kiss, but I don't think that's it.

Never mind. It's the chipped teacup.

Now what? How will she figure out what to do with it? I mean, she has no idea how to use magic?

Belle places the cup back on the saucer in the cupboard. A glowing trail leads from the cup to a trap door in the floor. Belle retrieves a small box and shivers when she recognizes what it is. Before you can say 'Pandora's Box', the two mysterious nerds show up with guns.


They tie up the girls and take Pandora's Box. Belle manages to get the guys monologuing, which is the best way to distract a villain. I turns out they're not magic hating party poopers, but spies for Peter Pan, and it's his order to destroy the box.

Plus, they have English accents. Although Belle has an Australian accent, so...yeah.

After Henry's fight with Peter Pan, he overhears mention of a prisoner that needs checking up on. He manages to escape from camp and follows one of the Lost Boys.

Why didn't he do this earlier? Also, wouldn't that be great if it was Schmexy?

David and Mary Margaret argue about him keeping his imminent death a secret, thereby creating tension in their idyllic relationship. However, since no one cares about these two, it's totally moot.


Emma makes sure that CSE knows their kiss STILL doesn't mean anything. He tells her he will win her heart and it won't be because he's a tricky pirate but because he's way hotter than Neal.

Sorry, that part came out of my head. But we're all thinking it, right?

Emma stammers and says she's only concerned about saving her son, and maybe kissing CSE again so she can make sure she REALLY doesn't like him.

At least that would be my plan.


Ariel and Belle manage to untie themselves. Belle reasons the only thing strong enough to destroy Pandora's Box is a dwarf's axe. She and Ariel run down Main Street toward the mine in their heels and mini skirts like an episode of Charlie's Angels.

Mary Margaret and David finally have a big fight. There are a couple quotes about love and then blah, blah, blah. She ends up in his arms saying, “You needed to believe in us.”

Gentle Joe Jeezer! Hasn't he done enough?

Neal explains all they need to do is light the candle in the coconut trap and the flame will absorb the shadow. The dudes argue about who is manly enough to use the lighter. The dementors—oh sorry, I mean the shadows arrive and quickly trap Neal and CSE. Emma cradles the shell in one hand and brandishes her sword with the other. The guys scream for her to leave, instead she uses her magic and lights the candle.


Oh, yeah. She's magic! But only at the most awkward and desperate times or when the script calls for an easy out.

The shadows get sucked into the shell and all is well.

Henry continues to follow the Lost Boy like a ninja.

Who is in the cage? Please be the Sheriff! *closes eyes and prays*

Belle and Ariel arrive just as the skinny dude with the glasses raises the axe over Pandora's Box. Belle ignores their English accents and activates a mine cart. It knocks the villains off their penny loafers. The spies whimper on the dirt floor, they've reached their limit. They confess their sister has been Peter Pan's prisoner for a thousand years. They wanted to use the box to save her.

*Waves to John and Michael*

Peter Pan approaches the bamboo cage. He leans in and lets Wendy Darling out of her prison.

Weird. I hate this.

Ariel puts Pandora's Box in her waterproof bag and swims back to Neverland.

Henry continues to follow the Lost Boy and instead of a prisoner he finds Wendy Darling convalescing in a tree house. She explains her illness is connected to the island. The magic is dying and so is she. Henry promises to help her. But it's a set up, of course.

Ariel finds Mr. Gold and Regina waiting for her on Neverland's beach. She hands over Pandora's Box. Impressed with her speedy assistance, Regina enchants the bracelet so that she can have legs whenever she wants.

Emma can't take the guys bickering over her. She tells them the only one she loves is Henry.

Mary Margaret and David arrive at Tinkerbell's house with the good news about their plan to capture Peter Pan's shadow. She thinks they're bluffing until Emma shows up with her lover boys and a coconut shell full of shadows.


Henry confronts Peter Pan about Wendy. Peter Pan presses again that Henry is the only one who can save the island because he is the truest believer. Henry says he is ready to help. Peter Pan smiles and shows him where he has to restore the magic, Skull Island—the darkest place in Neverland.

Which is like the Dark Hollows, but worse...I guess.

How many more ways can this show rip off Harry Potter?

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Hot Tips for Promoting Your Book on Pinterest

Pinterest is basically a virtual pin board of images that help organize and share things you find on the web. And it is the fastest growing media site for consumers and sellers. 

Did you know Pinterest drives more referral traffic to websites than Google+, LinkedIn and YouTube combined?

That's huge!

As a writer with a debut novel due next fall, I'm concentrating on broadening my author brand on Pinterest by engaging and hopefully reaching more followers. As a result, this should increase traffic to my website and boost future book sales.

What are the best ways to use Pinterest?

Here's a quick guide to help you get started.

1. Brand thyself. Create a business profile with a professional picture (not the one of you in a marshmallow eating contest). Make sure to include links to your other social media sites in your bio.

2. Add the "Pin It" button to your social sharing plugins on your blog. This makes it easier for followers to pin your posts to their boards. Visit the Pinterest Goodies Page for instructions.

3. Create inspiration boards for your novels. My board for NIGHT SHIFT has images of characters, favorite quotes, outfits, pictorial settings, and YouTube videos from the NIGHT SHIFT playlist and the book trailer.

4. Find your audience. It's not all about self promotion. Since you're trying to attract book buyers, create boards that would appeal to readers, such as; awesome book covers, pictures of libraries, or famous author quotes. Your audience will also appreciate a whimsy of your personality, whether it's pictures of your imaginary beach house, silly cat photos or your favorite cupcake recipes.

5. Add the "Follow" icon to your website. I have one under my twitter button just to the right of this awesome post. Click on it. I dare you!

6. Follow other authors, especially those in your genre. Re-pin and comment on their pins. It's always great to see authors supporting each other and sharing ideas. In fact, if you haven't clicked on my "Follow Me" button yet, you should. I'll follow you back, and hilarious good times will be had.

7. Always describe a pin on your story's board. Give a voice to your character's image with a favorite quote. If it's one of my Wattpad stories, I include the link with every picture, making it easier for the pinner to find my story.

8. Pinterest is a great place to announce a contest or book launch! And when your book is available to order on-line make sure to include the link.

9. MAKE IT FUN! I just started a board titled "Swoon." And yes, you should check it out. You can also share images on Pinterest with your other media sites like facebook and tumblr.

Do you have any tips for Pinterest?

Monday, 4 November 2013

Once Upon A Time, Season 3, Episode 6 "Ariel"

Or better title, "Spill the Beans!"

Snow White is chased by two of the Queen's guards, and ends up jumping off a cliff high above the water. She's rescued by a mermaid named Ariel—hence the clever title.

Back on Neverland, Regina is trying to train Emma to channel her anger to make magic. Mary Margaret mumbles something about the dark arts. Captain Sexy Eyes (CSE) whispers to David that Neal is alive and on the island. David thinks they should keep this a secret from Emma because Peter Pan might be lying, and they don't want to raise her hopes.

Mary Margaret argues back, “Secrets keep us from the people we care about.”

David rebuts, “But secrets also protect the ones we love.”

And Secret antiperspirant is made for a woman.


Ariel and Snow White talk about true love while sunbathing on the rocks. Ariel gushes about Prince Eric and how she fell in love when she rescued him from a ship wreck a year ago. She empties her sea shell purse and shows Snow White an invitation she found. Prince Eric is having a ball that very night.

Squeals and jumping claps all around.

Ariel plans on meeting him there on two legs. She explains to Snow White that every year at the highest tide, the Sea Queen, Ursula grants mer-folk the ability to walk on dry land until the next high tide...twelve hours. She then asks Snow White to keep her fishtail a secret until Prince Eric has totally fallen for her.

Snow White says her secret is safe.

Yup. She's a great secret keeper. Remember Daniel? The stable boy?

Emma asks what David, CSE and Mary Margaret are up to. Faster than you can say, 'stable boy', Mary Margaret blurts out that Neal is alive and on the island.

Peter Pan spies on Mr. Gold as he tries some hocus pocus in the heart of the jungle.

Let me say it again, the dark scenes are killing me.

Peter Pan says it's impossible to see the future in a place where time stands still. Mr. Gold declares he doesn't need magic to make the future happen. Peter Pan goads over the fact that Mr. Gold has lost his son...twice and now Henry is unattainable. But the only way Peter Pan can die is if Mr. Gold dies. While Mr. Gold cringes under his failures, Peter Pan offers him a way off the island and back to Belle and Storybrooke, but only if he leaves speedy quick.

Regina thinks looking for Neal is a waste of time. With only tracks that show a struggle has happened, Mary Margaret and Emma are ready to follow the dirt trail. Regina mentions that it makes more sense to save Henry first, then get the grown up dude. Mary Margaret uses bizarre logic that Emma owes it to Henry to find his father.

Can't they do that after they save Henry?

Snow White and Ariel arrive in beautiful gowns for the ball.

How? Where did these dressed come from?

Snow White shows Ariel that the little tridents are actually forks. Ariel is amazed and pockets it in her sea shell purse.

I'm only mentioning this because the fork may become an important weapon later on.


Anyway, Prince Eric comes down the stairs, looking fresh faced and ready for love. He smiles at Ariel. She smiles at him. She crosses the floor, and of course she trips. But he takes her in his arms and they start to dance. He thinks she looks familiar. He confesses she is the girl whose face he dreams of every night. After his shipwreck Ursula saved him and showed him a vision of his future, and it was Ariel's face!

Ariel denies this and says Ursula is just a myth.

Isn't this happening way too easy? Especially the dancing. She can't walk across the floor but she does the rumba effortlessly?

He says he is leaving the next day to explore distant lands, and he invites her to accompany him. She's confused because of the whole fish thing. He vows to wait on his balcony for her the next morning—you know, high tide.

The Evil Queen watches the ball through her magic mirror, miffed that Snow White didn't drown, and is in a party dress no less! But that Evil Queen is so smart and so slick, she thought up a diabolic plan and she thought it up quick.

Mr. Gold consults the Belle hologram. She urges him to return to Storybrooke so they can start a family. “Come home to me,” she begs. Regina arrives and starts to magically choke Belle. Mr. Gold tries to fight her off, but Regina's spell reveals that Mr. Gold has been confiding to the dark shadow thing all along.

Emma confesses to Mary Margaret that she and CSE touched tongues. Mary Margaret assures her that Neal will understand. She tells her to hope that Neal is alive because she deserves a happy ending and all happy endings begin with hope.

Do you know who else deserves a happy ending. That's right, Schmexy.

Ariel is struggling with Prince Eric's proposal to travel with his caravan. Snow White urges her to tell him the truth and let him decide. Ariel only has three hours left. She stands at the waters edge and calls out to Ursula for guidance. Out of the water on eight tentacles, rises the Evil Queen (except she's wearing a blond wig and answers to the name Ursula).

Regina suggests that she and Mr. Gold team up to fight Peter Pan and save Henry since the Charmings are useless. Mr. Gold reminds her that his death is the only thing that will defeat Peter Pan. Regina says there must be something they can do, maybe something worse than death? Mr. Gold perks up at this and mentions an artifact in his shop.

Darn! If there was only a way to get back to Storybrooke.

The fake Ursula convinces Ariel that Eric will never want a mermaid as a girlfriend. Then she propositions a way for Ariel to keep her legs and keep her man. Ariel rushes back to Eric's castle. The sun is rising, it's almost high tide! Snow White is waiting for her on the wharf.

It's so convenient the castle edges the ocean.


Anyway, Ariel excitedly tells Snow White she can escape the Evil Queen. She places a cuff bracelet on Snow White. In a plume of green smoke, Snow White's legs have turned into a mermaid tail. Ariel gushes about this latest plot twist. “Isn't it great!” she says. “I keep my legs and you get my tail. Now you can travel to my world and be safe forever.”

The tracks in the dirt lead Emma and the gang to a cave. CSE recognizes it as the Echo Cave, a prison without walls. The only way out is give over your deepest, darkest secret. The cave demands you reveal a truth about yourself, a truth you'd never tell anyone. CSE is convinced Peter Pan put Neal in the cave so that they would all have to dish their dirty laundry in order to save him.

The Evil Queen shows up on Prince Eric's wharf. Snow White struggles to remove the bracelet, but it's permanent. Ariel realizes she was duped. Snow White insists Ariel run to Prince Eric—at least she can have a chance at a happy ending. The Evil Queen starts the choking spell on Snow White. Suddenly, Ariel jumps behind her and thrusts the fork (I knew it!) into her neck.

The distraction works. Ariel quickly removes the cuff from Snow White's wrist, making her legs reappear. Now as a mermaid, Ariel grabs Snow White and dives into the ocean. The Evil Queen stomps her foot on the wharf.

Because what else can she do? There's nothing magical she can do to stop them? Really? Nothing? Fire ball? Shark frenzy? Ice burg?

Emma and the gang enter the Cave of Echoes and peer across a dark, bottomless chasm. Perched on a lone rocky plateau, in his bamboo cage, is Neal. He calls to Emma. Knowing there is no way across, but to tell their secrets, CSE ends the awkward silence by saying his kissed Emma.

Since this is only a secret to David, it's not that ground breaking. However, CSE then tells us that he never thought he'd love again after his Mila died.

Remember her, right? Rumpelstiltskin's wife.

Anyway, CSE's confession of love or 'something kind of like it' for Emma, magically extends a rock bridge a quarter of the way toward Neal.

*cough* love triangle *cough*

Mary Margaret is up next. She says she feels cheated that they missed Emma's childhood. And she wants to have another baby as soon as they get back to Storybrooke.

I'll point out that she didn't mention David necessarily had to be the father.

The rock bridge grows closer to Neal. David goes all gushy, but then he drops the bombshell that since he took the cure for dream shade, he'll die if he ever leaves Neverland. Bridge extends the entire way.

Everyone looks to Emma. She races toward Neal's cage. She tries to smash it open with her sword, but the only way to free Neal is for her to confess her deepest, darkest secret. When she found out he might still be alive she was terrified. As soon as she saw him again in New York, she knew she had never stopped loving him. But loving him and losing him is too painful. She was hoping he was actually dead so she could finally get over him.

The cage opens and they embrace. Now that Neal is free, the plan is to get the co-ordinates off his ceiling star map, get Tinkerbell, rescue Henry, and then get off the island. Except for David, because of the death thing. Emma takes Neal aside and tells him she's still wary of them becoming 'Nemma' again. He totally understands but he's still going to try and win her back. CSE watches from behind the ferns.

Which is easy to do because it's so frickin' dark. All the time. In every scene.

Mary Margaret gives David the cold shoulder since he kept his poisoning from her. She doesn't understand the concept of secret keeping.

*cough* stable boy *cough*

Ariel safely delivers Snow White to a nearby beach in British Columbia, Canada! She encourages her seek out Prince Eric and tell him the truth. Because the truth can set you free.

It can also set up a life long vendetta. See stable boy note above.

However, Ariel takes her advice and rushes back to the Prince's balcony, conveniently overlooking the water. He waits, hoping she'll appear soon. She calls out from the water, but there is silence. She has lost her voice!

The Evil Queen laughs from the wharf, perched on a wooden keg. She took the mermaid's voice on purpose. The only thing worse than telling the Prince and being rejected is never having the chance to find out the truth; never having a chance at a happy ending. Ariel cries...silently and does a full body breech. When the Evil Queen returns triumphantly to her castle, the real Ursula appears and threatens her to never impersonate her again.

Regina and Mr. Gold go to the Neverland beach. She takes the conch shell and sounds the horn across the ocean. Ariel arrives looking really pissed. Since mermaids can travel between realms, she can go to Storybrooke to get the 'special death device' from Mr. Gold's shop. Regina gives her back her voice and tosses her a magical cuff, promising that this time she can have legs and control over them. When Ariel still refuses to help, Regain plays her trump card—just like all the other fairy tale characters, Prince Eric was whisked away to Storybrooke as well.

Giddy up!

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Top Five Worst Fictional Boyfriends

There's nothing better than discovering a new book with a wonderful character to swoon over. I even made a list of fictional boys I wished were real. However, some fellas are best left on the page.

Here are my picks for the top five worst fictional boyfriends.

#1. Edward Cullen

Your date will consist of him piggy backing you through the forest while he constantly reminds you that he's fighting the urge to eat your intestines. Sure, he's refined, well read, and likes classical music, but seriously... he's in love with your blood type, not you.

#2. Holden Caulfield

Poor Holden. Growing up is tough, but dating a guy who is fighting puberty will make for poor conversation and awkward flirting at Starbucks.

#3. Draco Malfoy

I get the bad boy attraction and the whole badass "my dad's a Death Eater" thing, but the dude can't even perform a simple spell to help you fight the baddies. And let's be clear, if you hang out with Draco you'll need to have gotten OWL's on your defence against the dark arts.

#4. Christian Grey

Call me old fashioned, but ropes and chains are meant for winter driving emergencies—not first dates. Sorry, I don't get the attraction... like at all.

#5. George Wickham

An English accent and a regimental uniform can make a girl's knees turn to water. However, beware because this officer is NOT a gentleman. He'll be selfish and aloof with your feelings. Plus he's so cheap, he'll lie about forgetting his wallet, and make you pay for the date.

BONUS!!!  Heathcliff

Yes, just Heathcliff. A guy with only one name should be warning enough. You'll hope that his cruelty is the manifestation of his frustrated love for you, and that his brutish behavior is a guise, hiding the hero underneath. He's just mean.

Can you think of anymore bad boys?

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