Haven Renewed for Supersized Season 5

This is the best news I’ve gotten in weeks, people. I will post more later about how much I love this show, but if you haven’t seen it yet, I encourage you to start. It’s amazing.

TVLine

Haven Renewed Season 5Patience is a virtue, Haven fans.

Some six-and-a-half weeks after Season 4 concluded, Syfy confirms for TVLine that the Trouble’d series has been renewed for a double-sized Season 5.

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All told, viewers have 26 new episodes to look forward to — the first 13 of which will unspool in the fall.

Haven Season 4 had averaged 2.3 million total weekly viewers, up 3 and 11 percent in the 18-49 and 18-34 demos, respectively.

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Series star Emily Rose announced the unexpectedly very good news on Tuesday afternoon, on Twitter:

Is this a more Haven-ly outcome than you possibly could have…

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Daily Prompt: BFFs

What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned from the person you’re the closest to?

I want to preface this by saying that as far as best friends go, I have always lucked out. I’ve had a handful of really close friends in my life because of moving around and changing personalities. As a little kid I had a first best friend, although when I moved we drifted out of touch for a long time and have only just recently reconnected – thank you technology!

In the end though I’ve got one person I would consider my absolute best friend. We met when I first moved to my small town – she introduced herself by offering to shake hands, despite the fact that we were only ten – and we became inseparable almost immediately. Now, almost fifteen years later, she’s still my best friend and I wouldn’t trade her for the world. She’s been there for everything – the ups and downs, all of those pivotal moments of growing up and becoming an adult.

She’s more than just a friend; she’s family.

There are a lot of really great things that I’ve learned from my best friend through the years. There were so many valuable lessons about growing up that I can attribute to her simply because was went through them together. However, if I’m going to limit this to lessons not that we learned together, but that she taught me, it would be the simple lesson of trying

I will freely admit that for a great deal of my life I was a withdrawn, anxious doormat. To an extent, I suppose I still am a little bit. I was always content to simply coast, to deal with the standard, mediocre and basic. I was okay with just getting by and never really putting myself out there. Thinking back on it, I can pinpoint almost every great chance that I took to her encouragement. And every one of those chances that I took led to discovering something great about myself and introduced me to something new that would shape who I have become today.

At her prodding, I auditioned for my first musical and found a brilliant new form of art that I still revere. It was because of her that I took up dance, since she had been a dancer from nearly birth, and I realised a new form of self-expression that helped me get through the stress of high school. And when it comes down to it, I also took up writing because of her – it was a project we picked up together – and we all know how much that’s affected me.

She urged me to try new things and open myself up to my artistic side, something I had been too complacent to bother with much before. It is because of these early instances of trying that I have the courage to take the chances I do today; posting my thoughts to an online audience, seeking publication, and taking spontaneous trips across the world just because I want to.

That day in November of ’99 when she took a chance on the new girl transformed me forever.

 

 

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Paternal Holes

Bastard. Bastard. Bastard.

Although I had only heard the word directed at me twice in my twenty-four years of life, it had followed me long before I even knew what it meant. In my early years I had never suspected that there was anything strange about my family. My mother, my grandmother, and myself lived a comfortable life in a spacious house far more than big enough for the three of us. We had food on the table, I had plenty of clothes and toys, and we were happy.

It wasn’t until I started kindergarten that I first suspected that there was something missing. The other kids in the class would be talking about their parents and I’d tell them about my family. They would always ask me about my father but I always told them I didn’t have one of those.

“But you gotta have a daddy, everyone’s got a daddy.”

“I don’t. I never had one.”

For weeks the other kids’ words haunted me. I had never known a father in my life. Did everyone truly have one? I never even dreamed to think that I had a father somewhere. Finally I made it a point to talk to my grandma about it.

“They told me that everyone has a daddy. I told them that I don’t but they don’t believe me.”

“Well of course you have a daddy.” My grandma’s response shook the foundation of my little child life, tossing everything into a sudden chaos and uncertainty. My young mind had difficulty grasping the concept.

“I do? Then where is he? Why isn’t he here?”

My grandma’s face was suddenly a little sad. My grandma was never sad. “He has some problems, your daddy. He had to go away.”

It would be years before I finally learned the truth of where he went. My father had been an alcoholic and my mom had sent him away because she was afraid he would get drunk and hurt me. He never put up much of a protest and has never again made any attempt to contact me.

“What’s his name?” I managed to ask hopefully.

“Bill.” Bill; a faceless, empty name that is always hovering in the back of my consciousness.

Bill. Bill. Bill.

Bastard. Bastard. Bastard.

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The Long Lost Letter | Daily Prompt: Your Days are Numbered

It’s January 26. Write a post in which the number 26 plays a role.

——————-

Today was Friday, and Jason hated Fridays. They meant there was two days ahead of him with no work and nothing better to entertain himself with. Another weekend of sheer boredom and a complete lack of social life.

On the way up to his flat  he stopped at the mailboxes and, after fighting with the stubborn lock on his box, grabbed out the handful of envelopes. He then stormed up to the cramped flat and began flipping through the glossy mail, tossing them into little piles on the kitchen table. Bill, bill, advert, garbage, advert, bill, letter…

Wait, he never got letters, not since Aunt Maggie died two years ago.

Frowning, Jason squinted at the envelope. It was aged and worn, the paper yellowed and one corner torn. The address was written in a cramped script and smudged ink, addressed to Eleanor Matthews. It took him a minute to realise that the number on the address had been smeared; what looked like a three was actually a two.

“Incompetent,” Jason grumbled irritably. For a minute he considered just tossing it in the trash and leaving it, but his hand hesitated above the bin. The letter was clearly very old. It must’ve been lost at the post office a while and just discovered. He felt the envelope – there was a distinct rustle of paper but there was also something else inside the envelope, something small and much thicker.

With an annoyed huff, he threw the rest of the adverts and grocery coupons on the table and let himself out of the flat. It was easier not to wait for the lift so he jogged down the stairs to the second floor and then checked the numbers beside the doors. Twenty-eight, twenty-seven… Ah, twenty-six. Jason tried to wedge the letter beneath the door but it wouldn’t fit through the narrow gap. Resigned, Jason knocked.

It took a minute before the lock on the door clicked and it opened. The woman beyond the door had to have been at least in her seventies, with closely cropped white curls and clusters of wrinkles around her mouth and eyes. She blinked up at him pleasantly with pale blue eyes and adjusted the collar of her floral dress. “Hello, young man, can I help you?”

“Yes, sorry, it’s just the postman gave me a letter and I think it was meant for you,” Jason explained. “You’re Eleanor Matthews?”

She giggled, a sound almost too girly for a woman of her age. “Oh I haven’t been Matthews for a long time,” she said. “That was my maiden name.”

“Well this is for you then,” I said, handing the envelope to her.

Eleanor accepted the envelope, glanced at the return address, and a startled sob escaped her. With a thumb she slit the top open and glanced inside. She immediately put a hand over her heart and Jason was surprised to see that her eyes had welled with tears. “Ma’am, you okay?” Jason asked uncertainly.

“I just – I never expected to get a letter from him again,” she said.

The hand clutching the envelope was shaking and Jason watched her pale face hesitantly. “Ma’am, do you need to sit down?” Jason asked. Eleanor had her free hand pressed against her mouth and she nodded. Jason took her arm and led her into the living room of her flat, easing her down into an armchair. He hovered awkwardly for a moment before sitting down on the sofa opposite her. “Is there anything I can do for you?”

“No, it’s fine. You’re such a dear,” Eleanor said, finally looking up from the envelope to meet his gaze. Her eyes had reddened and there was a tear sneaking down her cheek. “It’s just – this letter came fifty years too late. And still, I’m am so, so glad it arrived.” She reached into the envelope and pulled out the bulkier object; a slim, silver ring with a little square diamond.

“Is that-?” Jason stopped, wondering if he was going too far in asking, but Eleanor smiled at him.

“Would you like to hear a story, young man?” she asked, and when Jason nodded, she began to spin a tale. It was a story of a passionate romance; a young girl, just turned eighteen,  met a brave soldier. They shared a wild summer of love then he got the papers, he’d been called to return to service. He flew to Vietnam at the beginning of the autumn with a promise that he would return home and marry her and give her the perfect life.

“For three months I received letters, and then one day the letters just stopped,” she said. “I waited for months and months but nothing new ever arrived. I thought that he had grown tired of me, the silly little girl that was completely enamoured with him. I thought he must’ve gotten bored with me or found himself someone better.

“I was heartbroken, of course, but with time I got over it. The war ended, I married a carpenter from my hometown, and we had a wonderful life. It wasn’t until I was a grandmother that I finally found out the truth. My Freddie had died after four months in Vietnam, in a firefight in the jungle. That was why he’d never written, why he’d never come home to me.”

She admired the modest ring in her hand, her eyes watering. She slipped it carefully onto her finger above the gold band that already sat there. Then she pulled out the letter and unfolded it, her eyes narrowed as she squinted down at the faded ink. “I can’t read this,” she said, “I need my reading glasses. Or, could you, love?”

“Oh, sure,” Jason said, taking the paper as she offered it out to him. He smoothed out the paper and cleared his throat. “My dearest Ellie. I miss you more than ever and I count down the days until my tour is over and I can come home to you. Until then, I want you to wear this for me. I found it in a shop here in Hanoi. I promised you that one day I would return and marry you and give you the life you deserve. This is my first step in that. Love always, your Freddie.”

Eleanor sniffled, dabbing at her eyes with a tissue she’d pulled from her pocket. “Oh Freddie,” she said. She twisted the ring around her finger and then sat up. Her eyes were still red but she was smiling. “He was such a lovely man.” She tucked her tissue back into the pocket of her dress and then leaned over to pat Jason’s knee. “Would you like some dinner? I have a casserole in the freezer that I was going to warm up.”

“I’d love to,” Jason said with a smile.

And that was how he earned himself a weekly invitation to Eleanor’s flat for dinner, and how Fridays became his favourite day of the week.

——————-

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Romantic Realism

Author: Bagande

I’m not a girly girl and I’m not really much of a romantic. I know that’s probably pretty hard to believe after all my talk of fairy tales and Disney movies, but the truth is that I’m not really into the classic notions of romance. I don’t do roses and fancy dinners and sparkly jewellery, and the idea of a big wedding completely boggles me.

 

And I really, really hate Valentine’s day.

 

The truth of the matter is that while I like big romantic happily ever afters in films and books, in real life it just doesn’t make sense to me. It seems like a whole lot of fuss over nothing important.

 

I’m not saying that I don’t believe in love, or that I think love isn’t worth celebrating. I’m just a bit more practical when it comes to expressing it. I don’t like the grand romantic gestures.

 

I like the little stuff.

 

I like spending a comfortable night in, watching a film or playing video games. I like the simple companionship of just existing together in the same place. I don’t want elaborate displays of affection or expensive gifts. I want someone who will help me fold laundry and buy me that new film I wanted to see.

 

I guess when it comes down to it, I just feel like romance is too overstated. People make such a spectacle of it. Do you really need to spend a year planning and thousands of dollars on a wedding, making it into such a show that the focus is on the material instead of the love that you’re vowing? Can’t we just let love speak for itself?

 

Call me crazy but I don’t want a prince charming who will sweep in and carry me away to live forever in a castle. I don’t want to be waited on or to be showered with affection on that one day a year. If I’m going to spend the rest of my life with someone, I want them to be real. To tease me and fight with me and who enjoys my company. I just want someone who wants to be at my side; an equal and partner.

 

I want a best friend. Or, you know, a best friend with benefits, I suppose.

 

Is it just me or does our modern culture romanticise romance?

 

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Daily Prompt: BYOB(ookworm)

I’ve just finished drafting up the new cover and blurb for my (hopeful) début novel.

Truths&Lies Cover - Full

Blurb:

“Because in real life, there is so much more to a fairy tale ending than imagined.

“Aspiring teen writer Jacob Barnes has always been fascinated by the world of fairy tales. All of his life, his secret ambition was to find a happily ever after of his own. He was already halfway through the mandatory checklist – he was the step-child, with a wicked step-father and two abusive step-brothers; he was the underdog with the big dreams; he even had something of his own personal fairy godmother, although she was in fact his best friend who just happened to be rather clever. The only thing he needed, really, was his princess.

“With high school graduation and the real world looming closer every day, Jacob finally decided to pursue his secret admirer, an anonymous fan of his online blog. Yet as he journeyed deeper into the world of fairy tale romance, those carefully cultivated expectations that a childhood of Disney films had built in his mind began to crumble and Jacob was left to navigate the harsh realities of first love.

“Once upon a time, a boy undertook an epic quest, duelled vicious monsters, and sought the heart of his princess – and redefined “happily ever afters” for the real world.”

 

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Daily Prompt: Nice is as Nice Does

Sometimes the nicest thing you can ever do is to finally step back and be nice to yourself. For the longest time, this was my kryptonite. I couldn’t stand the idea of doing something just for myself; everything I did had to be done to help someone else or to ease someone else’s suffering. The idea of doing something good for myself seemed so selfish. 

So I spent the first twenty years of my life existing primarily to make things easier on other people. I enjoy helping people, it’s a great feeling, but I was taking it way too far. I was helping others at the expense of my own happiness. It left me strung-out, exhausted, and miserable.

Learning to take care of my own happiness first has been a continuous project for the last few years. In many ways, I’m still working on it. It became so engrained in me that I will react instinctively and only realise afterward that I’m doing something that doesn’t provide any benefit for me. I’m still working on it, but I’ve made progress.

I’ve cut people out of my life that were only making me unhappy, people that I had been afraid to cut out before for fear of hurting their feelings.

I’ve stopped saying yes to everything even when it’s something I really don’t want to do.

The truth is there’s a significant difference between being self-centred and being selfish. Self-centred people know to put themselves first when they can and then reach out to others from that point of self-sufficiency. Selfish people start at a point of putting themselves first but then their energy spreads and consumes around them, sucking everything in until it’s all about them and never about others.

It will always be a struggle and a work in progress, but the nicest thing I’ve ever done in my life was to finally stop being so damn nice to everyone and start being kind to myself.

 

 

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