Monday, November 11, 2013

Thor: The Dark World Review, Sad News, Sci-Fi Books Trivia Answers, Ninja News, and Some Deep Questions to Ponder…

Movie Review

Thor: The Dark World
An ancient evil race threatens all the nine realms and Thor must find a way to stop the darkness and save Jane.
It was exactly what I expected – a lot of fun! Still not Avengers level, but a worthy sequel. Some twists and turns and an ending that not only sets up the next Thor movie, but it really sets up a big question. (No spoilers, so I can’t reveal it!)
The exchanges between Thor and Loki are hilarious. So are any scenes with Jane’s friend, Darcy.
Saw it in 3D and the special effects were quite impressive.
Little extras: There is an Avengers member cameo and after credit bonuses. Not just one, but two! Stay until the end of the first credits and then stay to the VERY end of all the credits.
If you liked the first Thor, you will enjoy this one. Highly recommended.
Now, someone get me Chris Helmsworth’s personal trainer…

Sad News

We received word this weekend that Nick Wilford’s son Andrew passed away. Nick had put together the anthology, Overcoming Adversity, to benefit Andrew and send him to a college that could meet his need.

IWSG members and writers have pulled together for donation for Nick and his family. Please contact Kyra Lennon for how you can give.

Nick, our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Ninja News

Thanks to everyone who participated in the How I Miss You Blogfest. Special thanks to all of those who mentioned me, either here or in your post. Don’t worry, the Ninja isn’t going anywhere! Just cutting back a bit. I would like to note that the person mentioned most often that would be missed is Father Dragon Al. That’s a hint, Al!

Julie Flanders and Lexa Cain are hosting the Dream Destination blogfest. “If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go? Beaches of Hawaii? Slopes of Vail? Cancun, Paris, or Rome? On Dec 5 or 6, post about your Dream Destination.” There are some amazing prizes, including critiques from an agent!! You don't want to miss this one.

The Realms Faire begins today! Books, ebooks, jewelry, cds, giftcards, and a Kindle. Enter to win by playing games. Visit M. Pax for all the details and fun.

Sorry I will miss this one. I was asked to joust, but had to decline. 

Heather Gardner sent me a link to these cookie cutters available at Target:

Science Fiction Books Trivia Answers

1 – The Martian Chronicles 1950 – Ray Bradbury
2 – Dragonflight 1968 – Anne McCaffrey
3 – Rendezvous with Rama 1972 – Arthur C. Clarke
4 – Out of the Silent Planet 1943 – C.S. Lewis
5 – The Puppet Masters 1951 – Robert A Heinlein

Questions to Ponder

This week I am on vacation and will be hit or miss on the comments. (I will visit everyone who comments here though!) After a huge launch for CassaStorm, and many hours spent doing promotions, my wife deserves my undivided attention for a while.

However, I’d like to toss some questions at you and provide food for thought while I am gone…

Do you think there are too many Memes? Do they start to blur together?

Do ‘buy my book’ tweets really work?

Why do some bloggers never return comments?

Can they crank out a decent Star Wars movie in just two years?

How many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop?

Did anyone else see Thor this weekend? Excited about the Realms Faire this week? Get the trivia right? And what are your answers to those questions…?

Be back Monday with a HUGE announcement! Off to work on my tan. No, not really…


Murees Dupè said...

I am really sad for Nick. That is just the worst experience in the world. Thank you for always keeping us informed.

Kyra Lennon said...

Thanks for directing people to my blog to help with donations for Nick - the support has been outstanding. I am SO proud to be part of this community!

Kyra Lennon said...

Thanks for directing people to my blog to help with donations for Nick - the support has been outstanding. I am SO proud to be part of this community!

Old Kitty said...

Overall tan...?? :-)

On a serious note - I am very sorry to read about of Andrew's passing. Deepest sympathies to his family.

Take care

Tony Laplume said...

My brother actually did the full Tootsie test, sent them his answer, and got a reply! But I don't remember how many licks it took.

Jeremy [Retro] said...

First, I send out prayers and good thoughts to Nick, family and friends...

Second have a great vacation, work on that tan, play some music and kiss your wife.

I am prepping to be gone much of November and will be ghost-posting I will helping my mother prep, organize and move her from one house to another. Adding in a Anime Convention this weekend, it has become my new interest.

Thor, Really? I kid, it was great my wife and I felt it was very close to Avengers status... and wow, just wow to the set up for Phase II and um er... you know that thing. Without spoilers, but just cool.

Peace to those who need it and the ones who don't... big hug!


Brian Miller said...

i am glad that thor was good...heard about the mid credit scene...oy...leading into the next years movie....smiles....sorry for the loss of a son to your friend...sad....

Karen Jones Gowen said...

I can never lick to the center of a tootsie roll pop, I always start biting when it gets close. Yes, I think there are too many memes, I'm bored with them and bored with a lot of the typical routine on writer blogs, like cover reveals. Why do people not comment back? That's a good one, and I guess it's just because they're not as into blogging as others. They put their blog up, post now and then, that's enough for them. Except who really reads it if you don't get out and relate to others through commenting on their blogs? It makes no sense to me.

Enjoy your vacation!

Mark Koopmans said...

I can't *imagine* what Nick and his wife are going through.

To that end, I've posted an "In Memoriam" tribute to Andrew.

Thanks for helping share what Kyra is doing on behalf of our entire community.

Sandra Ulbrich Almazan said...

I'm sorry to hear of Nick's loss.

Sheila Siler said...

I did see Thor, with two of my children (my husband and eldest son watched it just a couple of hours before because my husband had gone up to visit him at college). I agree it was a good sequel - obviously a "middle" episode but very good. Loki - what can you say? And as a mom - I was very impressed with Renee Russo - don't mess with mom!

Natalie Aguirre said...

So very sorry to hear about Nick and his family's loss.

Enjoy your vacation. You and your wife deserve it.

I don't really think the buy my book tweets work. I glaze over those.

Unknown said...

Sad to hear about Nick's son, it is wonderful that IWSG is pulling together for donations.

Have not seen Thor yet, but looking forward to it even more now.

Thanks for all the info Alex, have a great vacation!.....Forgot all about Tootsie Rolls!

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I'm definitely looking forward to seeing Thor. As for some of the questions, I personally don't think the tweets work. I am just being this on anecdotal evidence of course. I think old-fashioned word of mouth will always be the best way. And I certainly hope they can make a good Star Wars movie in that amount of time!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Kyra, it was awesome of you to launch the donations.

Tony, you need to find out!

Jeremy, you have a busy month. Yes, the set up for the next Thor was perfect.

Karen, exactly! On all of it.

Mark, that was great of her to do it for Nick.

Sheila, she was tough!

Natalie, as do I.

On vacation now, so will reply to all comments and visit where I can this week...

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Such shocking and sad news. I'm sending my thoughts and prayers over the pond to Nick and his family….

Jay Noel said...

Have a fantastic vacation, and I hope you get much needed R&R.

Prayers to Nick and his family. I learned of their loss over the weekend, and I was just in shock.

And I am going to see if those cookie cutters are available here in St. Louis. I MUST have them.

Sarah Foster said...

So sorry to hear about Nick's loss. I don't know when I'll have time to see Thor, between work and NaNoWriMo, but I'll figure something out.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

So sorry to hear the sad news. That has got to be heartbreaking.

Hope that you have a good break and enjoy spending time with your wife.

I don't think 'buy my book' tweets work, no.

Thor looks like a good movie!

Unknown said...

My thoughts and prayers go out to Nick.

I snuck out and saw Thor,loved it, was there any doubt?

A true Meme is a reflection of culture. I think as long as there is the internet there will be unlimited Memes.

Enjoy the your time with your wife, she needs it I'm sure.

G. B. Miller said...

My sincerest condolences to your friend Nick.

As for your questions number 1 & 3, I would like to take a crack at answering them.

I haven't gotten a blog meme in roughly four years, but I do see a meme on Facebook about thrice a day, so yeah, they have a tendency to blur big time. Personally, I find memes to be a major pain in the butt as a great percentage of them are "Let's see who my real friends are", which I find highly insulting.

As for some bloggers never returning comments, I think its a persona preference. Some like interacting with their readers on a personal level, while some may throw a general comment in the mix if their blog is the kind that generates dozens upon dozens of comments per day.

I do know of one blogger who has changed policy and never comments on the comments left on their blog. They have actually apologized for not responding as they feel that the one to two hours spend responding to individual comments could be better spent elsewhere (they are relatively busy just like you and have to budget their time accordingly).

ediFanoB said...

Last week my wife and I watched Thor: The Dark World in 2D.
My wife enjoyed the first Thor movie which I did not see.

I agree with your review. It was indeed a lot of fun, even in 2D.

I appreciate that you tell people to stay to the very end of all the credits. Fortunately we did so and therefore we did not miss the extras.

Chris Desson said...

My mother said there's nothing worse than the loss of a child. Nothing. So my heart goes out to Nick and his family.

Thor- It was awesome. I didn't stay for the credits. Let's just say involved a child and a tall Ginger Frap. I guess I'll have to wait until it hits BluRay.

Great questions to ponder. I believe you just gave everyone their post ideas for the rest of the month. Thanks, Alex! Enjoy your vacation. =)

StratPlayerCJF said...

First and foremost -- enjoy your vacation! Your wife does indeed deserve some undivided Ninja attention.

And my deepest sympathies and prayers to Nick and his family.

Also thanks for the Thor review. I'll have to check it out -- sounds like a lot of fun.

And I'd pat myself on the back for getting all five trivia authors, but to me it was too easy -- kinda like asking me to name my family members. ;)

And yes -- I think there are entirely too many blogging memes, blogathons, blogging awards, blogging tags, and other gimmicks that try to get brief snippets of a fickle blogging world's attention. I'm a little burned out on them and rarely take part. Although I DID actually join IWSG for the first time this last week. But that's different... (and that's what they all say, right? LOL!)

And the number of licks to the tootsie roll center is directly proportional to the shape of the tongue. A tip-licker will take much longer than a tongue-curving circle-licker. It's simply a matter of tootsie pop surface area removed per lick...

And (finally) -- thanks so much for the kind comments on my posted tunes, Alex -- I really appreciate them!

Have a great vacation!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I am thinking of Nick on this day. I'm going to see Thor in about an hour. I don't eat lollipops so I don't know the answer to that.

Arlee Bird said...

If a lot of Thor action takes place in that other world then no I won't be rushing to see it. I thought that was the weak part of the movie. I want to see Thor as superhero on Earth and not dumb "god" in some kind of realm of gods. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

Do you think there are too many Memes? Do they start to blur together?

I don't recall seeing many lately. Maybe I've just been ignoring them. They make for some good filler posts when I'm lazy or busy with other things. I usually do one around Christmas break.

Do ‘buy my book’ tweets really work?

This is part of what I've been "researching" lately. Look for an idea soon.

Why do some bloggers never return comments?

Either they don't understand blogging or they are so egotistical that they believe they are the only ones with something worthwhile saying. If it's a matter of being too busy then maybe they should rethink their blogging habits.

Have a good vacation.

Tossing It Out

Charles Gramlich said...

I'm sure I'll watch the Dark World at some point. I rather like Loki.

kjmckendry said...

Have a great vacation! I'm looking forward to seeing Thor, it looks great.

So sorry for Nick's loss.

Bevimus said...

My thoughts and prayers are with Nick and his family, and I will be spreading the word about the collection efforts today.

Enjoy your vacation and kudos to you for putting your focus on your wife who deserve it!

Julie Flanders said...

Thanks for sharing our hop, Alex! I'm still so stunned and saddened about Andrew, there are no words really. But it's wonderful that Kyra is giving us a chance to show our support to the family.

Enjoy your vacation, you definitely deserve it. :)

Heather M. Gardner said...

I did hear about the loss of beautiful Andrew. There are no words. I wish them peace and time to heal.

Thor is on the list. Hopefully we will get to see it soon.

Glad you are taking some time for you and your very considerate better half. :) Enjoy every moment.


Christine Rains said...

I really want to see Thor. I heard Loki stole his thunder again! Enjoy your vacation and I can't wait to hear your announcement. :)

Thanks for shouting out about Realms Faire.

Do you think there are too many Memes? Do they start to blur together? Yes, sometimes they do. Though I think the purpose of them is to bring the community together and they do work on that level.

Do ‘buy my book’ tweets really work? I don't know. I've cut back on mine, and I haven't noticed any difference in sales.

Why do some bloggers never return comments? Life.

Can they crank out a decent Star Wars movie in just two years? Depends on how many people are working on it.

How many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop? 23.

LD Masterson said...

I'm looking forwarding to seeing Thor.

Saying a prayer for Nick.

Holding my breath for your HUGE announcement.

Don't forget your sunscreen.

Karen Lange said...

So sorry to hear about Nick's son. My thoughts and prayers will be with them.

Thanks so much for sharing all the news. Looking forward to the big announcement.

Carol Kilgore said...

I was so sorry to hear about Nick's son. My prayers are with them.

Enjoy your vacation!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Jay, if you can't find them in the store, they are available online.

David, we both need it. And the memes that deL with pop culture are much more interesting.

GB, it does take time to respond on one's own blog. I was thinking more of those who don't visit the blogs of everyone who leaves a comment.

Edi, since there were two bonus endings, I bet many missed the second one.

Chris, I never thought to factor the shape of the tongue into the Tootsie Pop equation.
And the IWSG is unique in that it's not a weekly repeat and can cover a wide variety of subjects u dee the writing label.

Lee, too busy too comment means too busy to blog.
And that most of the action takes place on Asgard is a strength of the movie. Less emphasis on being a God - they are just a long lived race.

Frankie Miller said...

My prayers are for Nick and his wife (I know what it's like to lose a child).
I don't Tweet (yet), but I'm going to try a few things when my book launch comes along (reviews/radio).
I've got CassaStorm on my kindle and hoping to read it shortly. I'm pleased your wife is getting some attention. Enjoy your break.

Melissa said...

My heart is breaking for Nick and his family. I'm thankful that Kyra is willing to organize donations.

Thor sounds great.

Father Dragon better stay put, or I'll send the whole ninja army out to find him and bring him back. ;)

Have fun on your vacation, Alex. You and your wife deserve a break. :)

Cassie Mae said...

My heart goes out to Nick and his family.

To answer your questions:

When the memes are funny, there are never too many.

Buy my book tweets only work when they aren't the ONLY thing that's tweeted.

Sometimes I don't reply to comments because the email says "no-reply blogger" and I reply via email. Or via my FB page where I linked the post.

I think the question is can they crank out a decent Star Wars movie period?

Depends on the flavor of tootsie pop :)

Yolanda Renée said...

Devastated for Nick and his family. Thank you for informing us.

Pat Hatt said...

1. There are a far amount of memes but you can pick and choose what you want to do anyway, so no big deal
2. haha ummm no, direct messages, another story.
3. self centered, egotistical, lazy, too dumb to figure it out or the blog has stupid captcha or some dumb form of commenting
4. Yep, will it be good though?
5. Ask Dustin Hoffman

Sarah Ahiers said...

So sorry to hear about Nick. I knew something bad had happened, but all the notes on FB were vague so i didn't know what.

As for Thor, it was awesome! Once Loki was in it, it really took off

Lydia Kang said...

So sorry to hear about Nick's son. So sad.

David P. King said...

My heart sank when I heard about Nick's son. Wishing them well at this time.

Maurice Mitchell said...

So sorry for Nick. Losing a child would tear my heart out. In other news, you can never have enough memes.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Fanny, thank you! Hope you enjoy it. And so sorry you've experienced the loss of a child.

Melissa, get him!

Cassie, your last answer was funny. And I'm referring more to visiting the blogs of those who comment.

Pat, you pull no punches with your answers.

Sarah, Loki was awesome.

Leovi said...

Very interesting Thor: The Dark World, good movie!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Thanks Alex for getting the note in for Nick and his family - such a huge shock for them ...

I'll probably see Philomena this week ... but doubt Thor will get my look in!

Too many memes - yes ..
Buy My Book Tweets - irritating and zero effect
Don't know .. lazy, don't understand the etiquette, behave like that in normal life ...?
Star Wars .. dunno - it's being filmed here somewhere isn't it?
46 2/3 ...

Happy time off .. just go and have fun ... as you say it's time - cheers Hilary

Annalisa Crawford said...

I'm so sad for Nick and his family. But I am proud to be part of this community which cares so much.

ilima said...

I've been thinking of Nick and Andrew all weekend. My prayers go out to the family!

And I can't believe there are spoilery twists in Thor. How will I last another 2 1/2 weeks? Aagghh!

Liesel K. Hill said...

I saw Thor this weekend as well and loved it! I'll be reviewing it on my blog later this week. And I hear ya about the personal trainer. Us ladies were very excited to get some shirtless Thor time in this installment. :D Happy Monday!

~Sia McKye~ said...

Oh, how heartbreaking for Nick! I can't even imagine the pain he and his family must be going through.

I haven't yet seen Thor but it's on the top of my list!

Memes I tend to not read. Most don't really interest me. Call me weird but they don't interest me. Tweets by those I know I pay attention to but I'm really not on Twitter that much. I think it only good manners that a blogger at least answer some comments. I do understand that time comes into play and I'm guilty of that too, so I can't throw stones. Much. :-) Tootsie pops? lol! Been many years since we kids tried to count that, lol! I don't even remember other than it was over a hundred. :-)

Enjoy the family time, Alex!

Sia McKye Over Coffee

Carrie-Anne said...

My sympathies to Nick's family.

There are some bloggers whom I've regularly visited and commented on, but they've never to date returned the visits. Maybe they only visit their established online friends, unless there's a bloghop or such going on.

Anonymous said...

Oh goodness poor Nick and Family. That is sad.
I have not seen Thor but expect to sometime as I have been told it is good fun.
You list some great links as always Alex.
Thanks for your best wishes on my blog about my own family crises. Hopefully things are settling down now for us.

D.G. Hudson said...

Very sad to hear about Nick's son. These are the hard knocks that life gives us.

In answer to the mixed questions:

Yes - too many Memes
Tweets - don't know, I don't Tweet

Returning comments? - 'they' say 'they' are too busy; aren't we all?
I say - What is the purpose of gaining followers if you aren't going to reciprocate? Do you blog only to sell books?

Star Wars movie - a new one - if they try hard enough, money buys anything in Hollywood
I don't eat Tootsie Pops, I avoid candy.

If you do get Chris' personal trainer, we might want to see the results. . .but we know what the answer would be.

Rusty Carl said...

Loved the movie too. Great fun.

Don't return comments? I don't know if you mean that they don't answer them in the comments of their post, or if they don't visit the person who left the comment's blog.

For me, I typically don't answer in my own comments section because I don't believe anyone is checking back. In the early days I would get so excited that anyone commented that I'd respond to whatever they said with a comment that was longer than my original post. Then it would dawn on me that I was the only person that bothered to read it. So I slowly stopped responding except in rare cases.

Shoot. I'm out of time. Enjoy your vacation.

A Beer for the Shower said...

So sad to hear about Nick's son. Prayers and positive thoughts sent his way.

I hope your tan is coming out better than mine. Also, is this announcement a fourth book? A movie? The revelation that you're actually J.K. Rowling?

Unknown said...

So sorry about Nick's news. What a blow. :(

Thor looks great - I can't wait to see it. Of course Al would be most missed of the bloggers (next to you, Alex!). Thanks so much for mentioning Julie and my Blog-hop! I want ninja-bread men. They look delicious.

I know all the SF authors, but am not sure I've read those specific books. Have a great vacay with the Mrs!

What's the HUGE announcement - how can you make us wait a week??!!

Catherine Stine said...

Alex, how sweet of you to give your wife your undivided attention! Um, and to answer one of your posted questions, I've never counted how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop because I always bite it and crunch it up first!

Patsy said...

Such sad news for Nick. My sympathies to him and his family.

Johanna Garth said...

So sad! My heart is with Andrew's family this morning.

And let's see, I hate buy my book tweets because they're boring. I'm much more likely to hunt down someone's book if we engage in a real way that makes me think they might have interesting things to say in a novel format.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

When a father outlives his son, it is a blow that words simply cannot open a portal to others to understand.

THOR sounds fun. I promised not to see it until I could see it with a friend. Sigh.

Laura S. said...

Hoping Nick finds some peace and comfort from his community at this difficult time. :(

I'm glad the Thor sequel is looking good. I rarely go to the movies so I'll see it when it comes on Netflix.

Happy reading and writing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

S. L. Hennessy said...

Loki and Darcy stole the movie. I laughed like crazy during all their scenes.

And I'm so sorry for her son. That's so sad. I'm happy IWSG is doing something like that. Thanks for letting us know so we can all pitch in.

Michael Offutt, Phantom Reader said...

Oh, so sad hearing about Andrew. :( I've also been watching the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan. It's been kind of an awful weekend. I really liked Thor. I think I may go see it again.

Julie Musil said...

I'm so sad for Nick. Heartbreaking.

Thor…my boys want to see that one, and they're out of school today. MAYBE that will be the pick? Either that or Meatballs 2. Oy.

Glad you are relaxing a bit, Alex. Enjoy!

M Pax said...

I agree with Michael about a lot of bad news this weekend. I hope we can give Nick a teeny tiny bit of comfort through a show of caring.

I think it helps on Twitter if you have a free read to tweet. I see no direct correlation in sales, but if I slack I see a slacking in sales. Shrug. It's an easy way to interact and build relationships tho.

Thanks for the shoutout for RF. Some fun is in order after this weekend's news. said...

Have a wonderful vacation, Alex. Yes, one meme is too many. What does that word mean anyway? And why do so many bloggers never return follows?


Unknown said...

Thor was amazing, and Loki, just Loki.

So sorry to hear about Andrew, but it's nice to hear people are already trying to help his family.

Sarah Allen said...

I really, really loved Thor 2 :) I'm loving Loki's character arc, I think they're doing a great job. Definitely a Marvel girl :)

Sarah Allen
(From Sarah, with Joy)

Anonymous said...

Blame it on the owl. I bite my tootsie roll lollipops too. Enjoy your vacation. Looking forward to your announcement next week.

Empty Nest Insider said...

My heart goes out to Nick and his family. Have a nice vacation Alex.


SC Author said...

No; no; laziness; I hope so!!!; a million!!!! So sorry to hear of Nick's loss, our thoughts are with you Nick. And I really want to see Thor!!

Andrew Leon said...

I'm sorry to hear about Andrew. I can't even imagine the loss of one of my kids; my brain just shuts off.

I don't know about tweeting, but House was listed with Fussy Librarian over the weekend, and it resulted in a total of 0 sales (so I know I won't be opting in for any of their promotions when they start charging for them.

Huntress said...

My prayers to Nick and his family

Sherry Ellis said...

Oh no! I am so sorry to hear about Nick's son! My heart goes out to him!

VikLit said...

I am sorry to hear Nick's sad news. Thank you for directing us to Kyra's site, going there to donate now.

Luna said...

I'm so sorry to hear about Nick's son, Andrew. Sending prayers and healing wishes for Nick and his family.

Bish Denham said...

So sorry to hear about Nick's son. And thanks to Kyra for helping with donations.

I make every effort to not only respond via email to those who comment, but I also make very effort to visit the person's blog and leave a comment. Of course some days are better than others... :)

H. R. Sinclair said...

My prayers go to Nick and his family.

To you, Alex, enjoy your time away.

Michelle Wallace said...

It was unexpected and so sad to hear of Nick's loss... my heart goes out to the family.

I ignore the 'buy my book' tweets.
I've noticed that there are bloggers who never return a visit... not even once... maybe somebody needs to post about basic blogging etiquette... (and I DO understand that people lead busy lives)

Those cookie cutters are cute... so does that mean you or Mrs. C will be in a baking apron, in front of the oven?
Enjoy your time off Alex!

Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

Love the cookie cutters!

Sad to hear about Nick's son.

Have fun getting your tan!

Mary Montague Sikes

Botanist said...

So sorry to hear about Nick's son. Losing a child is a devastating blow.

Hope you enjoy your vacation.

Bloggers and comments? There are probably as many reasons as there are bloggers, but I always feel it's a bad sign if the blogger is not interacting. I'm much less inclined to bother with their blog when I see that.

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

I'm looking forward to seeing Thor. I don't have a lot of time to spare though. Eek! I'm behind on my word count for NaNo. If I can get up to date, then I might treat myself to Thor... the movie, that is ;)

mooderino said...

Very sad news about Nick's son,wish him and his family all the best.

I think the meme thing can get a bit much at times, but all part of blogging I guess.

Robin said...

I did see Thor in 3D on Friday. I really enjoyed it. And I did stay through the first set of credits to see the first scene, but then left... so now I am DEEPLY CURIOUS about what happened after the last of the credits rolled. Drats.

Jo said...

Nothing worse than losing a child. My sympathies to the family.

I got all the answers right except the last one.

As I don't tweet, I have no idea if they work. However, reading about people's new books on blogs does attract attention.

Have a nice week off. Don't think you can work on your tan at home at the moment so figure you are going further south.

Cate Masters said...

Thoughts and prayers to the Wilford family. So very sad.
I sometimes forget to comment (d'oh!). Sometimes it's difficult to get into your blog, Alex, and after a try or two I forget to return.

Nicki Elson said...

It's so heartbreaking about Andrew. You can just feel how much Nick adored that kid. Heartbreaking. Prayers going out for sure.

As far as memes, I only participate in the ones that genuinely interest me, so I haven't been over-memed yet. BUT just today I was thinking it would be kind of nice to have just one Meme/Hop/Promo-free Month in blogland. Hmm, if we only knew someone who was influential enough in blog circles to pull such a thing off...

Have a super, wonderful, marvelous, AMAZING vacation!!! Slather on the self-tanner & stay in the shade!

farawayeyes said...

So sorry to hear about Nick's son. although I don't know him well and only drop in at his space sporadically, it breaks my heart to hear of someone losing a child. My prayers are with them.

No Thor for me.

Yes, too many memes, but like me, you can always choose not to participate.

Enjoy your vacation.

shelly said...

Prayers for Nick. Oh my goodness... I saw something on Facebook.

Hugs and chocolate,

mshatch said...

My brother wants to see Thor and I suspect I'll enjoy it :)

Buy my book tweets don't work for me and I think most times bloggers who don't comment back are just too busy/overwhelmed. It isn't easy to write, blog, give time to your family, dog, cat, work, etc. I still don't know how you do it!

Crystal Collier said...

Nick and his family have been in my thoughts the last couple days. I hope he feels our love.

Thor was epic, eh? And to make things better, when we walked up to the theater, there is stood. Yes, in the flesh. (Okay fine, it was a look alike, but he look EXACTLY right.)

Helena said...

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Nick and his family.

I might see Thor because it looks like fun. I did see Natalie Portman interviewed and she revealed that she's so much shorter than Thor she had to walk up an (off-camera) ramp whenever she approached and talked to him.

J E Oneil said...

That's so sad to hear. I hope Nick and his family are doing all right.

Tara Tyler said...

so sorry to hear about nicks loss.

thor is a hunk & those cookie cutters are perfect! great idea for julie & lexas bloghop

and u threw out so many great questions!

memes, uh, depends on your blog age, great for newbies
star wars is hard to call, i expect something decent - huge success to live up to & lots of doubt it can leads to lower expectations usually yielding better results =)

happy monday!

Al Penwasser said...

Gonna go see 'Thor.' And I'll even go by myself if I have to.

Anonymous said...

I saw Thor this weekend and loved it. I laughed and cried. It was awesome. I might go see it again. Loved the cameo too.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Hilary, had a good time today!

Liesel, what about the needs of the dudes???

Sia, I don't think you are weird.

Carrie-Anne, that's what I suspect.

Madeline, I hope so!

DG, agree with you about the comments! And if I end up looking like Helmsworth, I will post the results.

Rusty, those who don't visit those who comment.

Brandon and Bryan, it's the revelation that I actually can't tan...

Lexa, you're welcome. And you can wait...

Johanna, that's good to know.

SL, I laughed as well.

Mary, you guys have fun with the joust.

Robyn, good question!

Andrew, that's a bummer.

Bish, you do a great job.

Michelle, maybe we do need to post that. And that would be the wife baking!

Botanist, interacting on their blog or with other bloggers?

Robin, sorry you missed the final scene!

Jo, I wouldn't work on my tan anywhere...

Marcy, today I didn't.

Crystal, we didn't get any characters...

Helena, I saw that as well.

Thanks, guys! First day of vacation was awesome. Will continue to catch up with everyone during the week.

Susan Kane said...

Saw Thor and enjoyed it immensely. Will see it again, in 3D. It was the little touches that make the movie so unique--Thor hanging his hammer on the coat rack, asking how to get to Greenwich, etc.

Lisa Regan said...

I am so saddened to hear about Andrew's passing. How awful. I am sending lots of thoughts and prayers to Nick and his family. So very sad.

To answer some of your questions:

Yes, there are too many memes. LOL.

I really have no idea. I've actually connected to a lot of readers via Twitter but I don't know that they found my book via Twitter. I did buy one book as a result of being bombarded by salacious buy my book tweets. When I ask people how they found my books, the answer is almost always someone recommended it. The other answer is Facebook.

Some bloggers never return comments because the commenters are no-reply!!!!!! Or they return comments in the comments of the post rather than via email or they're just overwhelmed by life, mean to get to it and never do.

They've got a system now?

I'm going with 102. LOL.

Sheena-kay Graham said...

So sorry about Nick's son. I wrote a story in the anthology and bought a copy. Was so excited about all the donations for college. Saw Enders Game this evening and really got into it. Sad I can't see it twice. Thor is another movie I want to see this month. Including Catching Fire and Frozen. M. Pax's event will be explosive. Book promos can blur sometimes but no promotion is promotion. Why did the Tootsie Pop comment sound suggestive here? Yes the wife definitely is the one to give attention to Alex. We're glad you're staying with us and glass Miss You went well.

Sangu Mandanna said...

YES they can crank out a decent Star Wars movie in just two years! (I hope.)

I've been really looking forward to Thor 2, so I'm glad you liked it!

Rhonda Albom said...

Wow, I am late getting here. Haven't seen Thor, but I am sure my teen will as soon as it is out here. I am so sad for Nick. This week I was thinking there are too many memes, but normally I don't. And I am guessing that blogger who don't return comments - no one ever told them they should. If they read this post, they might just start. Have a great holiday.

Unknown said...

Hey Alex,

Couple of things: First, give the undivided attention to the Missus right now. That's right. Quit reading this right now and go give her a hug and a peck on the cheek, then come back and finish reading. I said, "Do it!" Okay, good.

Second, that is awful news about Andrew. I sent Kyra a donation, and plan to send a red balloon to Andrew.

Third, Thor sounds great (I haven't even seen the first—too cheap! I always wait for dvd release or catch it on HBO or something).

Fourth, Al better not leave. Gotta send a personal email and knock some sense into him.

Fifth, I had to laugh at your labels at the bottom of the post, e.g., "asking the deep questions."

Sixth, the answers to your deep questions:
Yes, too many memes.
Yes, they work, as long as you do it among regular tweets and not be all spammy about it.
I don't know why. I return all comments.
They've gotten so adept at all the FX, I don't see why not.
Three. Three licks.

Thanks for a wonderful post, and enjoy the days off as they come!

M.L. Swift, Writer

Rachel Schieffelbein said...

My heart goes out to Nick and his family. I wish there was more we could do, but I did get in touch with Kyra. I love how this community comes together for each other.
Enjoy your vacation! Your wife definitely deserves you to herself for awhile. :)

Tonja Drecker said...

I HAVE to see Thor. Maybe I can get my little brother to take me next week ;)
My thoughts and prayers are with Nick and his family.
*sigh* As to the Tootsie Roll pop, I tried again and again as a kid to find that out, but the temptation was always to big at the end.

Unknown said...

Forget Chris' trainer - just give me Chris, thank you very much!

Good for you taking some time with the wifey. Wish I could do that with the hubs!! At least we get to watch HIS shows alone together at night - American Pickers & Pawn Stars. *yawn*

Meme's DO blur together for me. I do one myself, but honestly I never visit others. Sad.

Star Wars - can't wait!!!

Tootsie Roll Pop? Licks? Nah. Chomp chomp, says I.

Jen said...

So sad to hear about Nick's son. That's terrible news.

Glad to hear that Thor is exactly what you're expecting: fun! I haven't seen it yet, but as a loyal member of Loki's army, I shall :)

I have those Ninjabread Men cutters! Ha! My sister-in-law gave them to me for my birthday last year. They're fun!

Jackie said...

Deepest sympathies for Nick and his family. How heartbreaking.

I haven't watched Thor: The Dark World, but hopefully soon.

I love seeing all the weekly meme's and think it's a great way to stay in touch and meet new folks. It also helps some to be accountable with their blogging. :D

SpacerGuy said...

My condolences go out to Nick's family. I enjoyed watching Thor, it was was a good action adventure. Anthony Hopkins doesn't disappoint.

Mina Burrows said...

Very sad news about Nick. Thank you for sharing.

Love the Ninja Bread men. LOL!

Author A.O. Peart said...

Nick, I'm so sorry for your loss. I can't even begin to imagine the pain that a loss of child brings. Stay strong and God bless you and your family.

I'm looking forward to watching Thor, especially if I could see it in 3D!

Buy my book tweets? Nah. I never pay attention to those since there are way too many. I prefer recommendations from the actual readers who enjoyed a book well enough to brag about it :)

Author A.O. Peart said...

Oh, and enjoy your vacation, Alex!

Gwen Gardner said...

I can't imagine losing a child. RIP, sweet Andrew. I've been praying for him.

Hope you're having a wonderful vacation with Mrs. C, Alex.

Tina said...

Oh how sad about Nick's son. I remember reading about the anthology (probably here...)
Glad you're enjoying a vacation! Much deserved.
Love the deep questions, so here are my answers:
Do you think there are too many Memes? Do they start to blur together?

I'm kinda on overload with all the hopping...a couple of email subscribers mentioned that they missed just me writing, so I haven't signed up for a lot of special stuff.

Do ‘buy my book’ tweets really work?

I'm not on Twitter much so I'd have to say NO ;-)

Why do some bloggers never return comments?

They don't care about reciprocity or community building. I tend to stop reading them...I'm in it for the friends, and if you won't come to my house to play, I don't have much interest in playing at yours anymore.

Can they crank out a decent Star Wars movie in just two years?

I sure hope so. I have faith in JJ Abrams. LOVE what he did with Star Trek.

How many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop?

Everyone knows that one. Three.

Tina @ Life is Good

Mark said...

Great review on ThorII, I've been hearing good things from friends as well:) But so sad to hear about Nick's son :(

Elizabeth Seckman said...

So sad to hear about Andrew. Sigh.

The heck with Chris' trainer, just get me, not Chris as Chris, he has to stay in Thor character.
I never get tired of memes. It's like reading Sunday funnies. I just like it.
Buy my book tweets don't work for me. Bloggers don't return comments because they probably don't realize they should...or are busy...or think they are too good for it...oops, stay positive Elizabeth.
The tootie roll qusetion for me is zero. I hate tootsie pops. Too a Blow pop...that's a whole nuther story!

Jack said...

Excited to see Thor. Hoping to go this weekend.

I will be keeping Nick in my prayers. That would be hard to go through.

Cherie Reich said...

So, so sad to hear about Nick's son. They're definitely in my thoughts and prayers.

klahanie said...

Hi Alex,

Firstly, the blogging community is most certainly rallying around Nick. Your site and many others, clear demonstration of this.

I know I mentioned in a comment that I think you, despite your altruistic intentions, put up way too many links. When I promote somebody, I usually just have them featured and thus, they don't get lost in the shuffle.

I wish that bloggers would at least do a collective thank you at the end of the comments on their blogs. I'm rather disappointed with some. I guess, however, it's whatever works for that person.

Enjoy your time away, my friend.


Carrie Butler said...

I've been praying for Nick and his family since this weekend. Such sad news. :(

On a happier note, I hope you enjoy your vacation!

Cathy Keaton said...

If Loki is awesome like how he was in The Avengers, then I should love this movie.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Susan, those moments were funny.

Lisa, interesting about the Tweets. And I meant reply to comments as in visit the commenter's blog.

Rhonda, maybe they don't know they should...

Mike, I followed your instructions and was nearly distracted... Al can't leave. And three licks was what I thought...

Terri, those are great shows!!

Jen, you need to make some cookies and post your efforts.

Angela, I feel the same.

Tina, they do start to blur for me. And like your house analogy.

Elizabeth, just stay real.

Gary, I try to offer something for everybody. If I just featured one person, then I'd get a fourth of the visits and only ten comments - and that person would miss out on a lot of exposure.

Al Diaz said...

Geez, I missed the second bonus after ALL the credits. Just saw the first one. Ah, well, gives me excuse to go see it again.
I got the hint, actually multiple hints have nearly made me trip in the last days.
Too many memes? Probably.
I don't think "buy my book" tweets help. At least not with me.
And what's wrong with the last two Star Trek movies? Ah, forget it. I am too ignorant to understand why fans say they're bad.
About the Tootsie Roll, twelve-IF you're a dragon with a very large mouth.

Shell Flower said...

So sad about Nick's son. Have a wonderful vacation. You deserve it and so does your wife.

Tammy Theriault said...

Just a sad moment for Nick. Andrew is in our prayers and probably loving heaven.

Ella said...

I really am sorry to hear about Andrew~ I am sad for Nick and his family!

Take Care Captain and thanks for the review~

Donna K. Weaver said...

It was so sad to hear about Andrew. My prayers go out to Nick and his family.

Hubby and I are going to go to a movie again. Honest. lol Once I'm not buried anymore and before he goes to Hawaii for a month to watch the grandkids. I know. Rough life.

Trisha said...

I was one of the last to find out about Nick's son, and it sure was a huge shock - and so terribly sad to learn of. I've been thinking of Nick a lot.

I think it's great that Kyra and co. are taking action.

Liz Blocker said...

Good questions, Alex. I wish I knew the answers! Sometimes 'buy my book' works on me - but only if I'm already interested in the author or the book. And yes, why DO some bloggers never return comments?? It seems so strange to me. If someone doesn't return comments are a few weeks, I have to take them off of my reading list, which stinks. I want to be supportive and read everything, but my time is limited and I just can't!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thor was a bundle of good fun - loved the Loki exchanges, and the bit about the subway . . . still smiling when I think of it. :)

I think your links definitely help, although it all depends on my monthly book budget if I hurry and buy or if I put the books on a wish list.

I'm so glad that everyone is pitching in help for Nick, and I'm so sad for his loss.

Deniz Bevan said...

I missed your blog in the week or so I haven't been catching up, Alex! So many awesome ninja news items!

Bloggers not responding kinda bugs me too. Although if it's a blanket no-response, I can deal. What I mean is, there are a few bloggers I follow who blog regularly, update everyone on their lives, and only reply to maybe 1 out of 30 comments. I've gotten used to it; it's just their style.
Luckily I haven't seen too much of a kind that would be more annoying - bloggers who reply to one or two commenters each time and ignore the rest.
We're a friendlier bunch than that! Love this blogging community :-)

Unknown said...

That is sad news. I had no idea.

Morgan said...

That is SO COOL with Al... and I'm not surprised. He's such a wonderful person. And huge announcement on Monday? Alex, I'm in suspense.

S.A. Larsenッ said...

Oh...So, so sorry for Nick and his family. I can't even imagine....

This seems so lame after thinking about Nick, but I'll comment on the other aspects you've mentioned here. I really, really want to see Thor. I don't know about that Star Wars question. Hmm... It would take something really special, I guess. Tootsie Roll centers...I'll let you know. I still have a ton left over from Halloween.

J.L. Campbell said...

Enjoy your vacay!

Anonymous said...

LOVED the new Thor movie sooo much!! Enjoy your vacay :-)

Unknown said...

Awful, awful news for Nick. As I parent I can't even imagine how he feels. My thoughts are with him and Andrew's family and friends.

Bloggers and commenting? I'm not sure everyone understands the etiquette and it's just a larger version of the me me me we see on Twitter. Personally I love that my blogging time and interaction is a community thing and as such, they allow me to not fully keep up when I'm struggling, but you first need to build up those relationships and I think that's what people don't realise. That it is about relationships and about other people. Not just all about them.

Anyway - I love blogging :)

Unknown said...

Ooh, I forgot to say, enjoy your break!

Rachna Chhabria said...

I will try and catch the movie Thor in the theater.

My prayers for Nick's family. Just read about Andrew on another blog. Feel very sad for Nick's family.

Mason T. Matchak said...

Absolutely LOVED Thor: TDW. I think it was better than the first - since everything was established, they could just dive right in, and it was great to see more of the Nine Realms.

And I don't know about other bloggers, but I always reply to comments. Ones on my own blog, at least. Oi.

Unknown said...

Such sad news about Nick's son :-( But also amazing how so many bloggers have pulled together to support him and his family.

We haven't watched THOR yet, but my husband is very excited to! We're planning to drive to Durban on the weekend and watch it in 3D at the new Imax cinema they've just opened there.

As for your questions to ponder ... Why is it that no matter how many comments I leave on certain blogs, and no matter how many times they reply to me ON THEIR BLOG, they just will not come over and visit my blog and leave a comment?! (Or maybe they did visit and didn't like what they saw, ha ha!)

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry to hear about Nick's son. My heart goes out for him over this loss.

Enjoy your break.

Unknown said...

Thanks for sharing about Nick. I will keep him and his family in my prayers. What a gift Andrew was to him and him to Andrew.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

All, nothing wrong with Star Trek movies? Just Star Wars movies.

Liz, I have the same policy.

Deniz, one out of thirty isn't goo though...

Rebecca, I don't think they realize either.

Rachel, and I don't get why those people won't visit.

Unknown said...

Keeping Nick and his family in my thoughts and prayers.

Anonymous said...

Prayers are going out to Nick's family. I'm so sorry for their loss.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Alex! I hope you will stop by to claim the award I have nominated you for. Have an AWESOME day!

Putting Words Down On Paper

Chemist Ken said...

My family and I will be seeing Thor this weekend. I expect it to be fantastic. My daughter just can't wait to see Loki again.

Cathrina Constantine said...

So sorry for Nick's loss. My heart and prayers are with him and his family at this time.

We were geared up to see Thor on Saturday and then something came up. Hoping to get to it this weekend!

I also wonder about book tweets. Just in case --I tweet about my book once in a while. I can't tell if it helps one bit though.

Ella said...

Mini Alex would love some Ninjabread Men! You must get them-

Brandon Ax said...

I always kind of hate talking about Thor now because it makes me sound like I didn't like the movie. I just feel spoiled after seeing MoS to see what I have read in the comics the power and speed. Thor is so strong but treated like he needs his hammer to do anything.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Susanne, I will within the next few days!

Cathrina, some say yes, some say definitely no.

Ella, I will!

Unknown said...

Oh, I am so sad to hear about Nick's son. My prayers are with his family. Bless their hearts. I ache for them.

Thanks for letting us know, so we can show our support.

Anonymous said...

Hope you are enjoying a nice vacay, Alex!

I love Heather's cookie cutters!!

Elise Fallson said...

I know I read this post but can't find my comment?! Anyway, it's been a sad week, a lot of people are in pain and I hope they find love and healing soon. Enjoy your time with your wife, sounds like you both need a break and some quality time.

River Fairchild said...

Oops. Been busy with the Realms Faire this week and thought I'd drop by on Friday...but this is Monday's post. ;)
My heart breaks for Nick and his family. The IWSG group and others on FaceBook have been wonderful with their support.
I think the owl was right about the licks. 3
Why do some bloggers never comment? They don't want interaction. I call that pontificating if it's the norm and not just an occasional life-happens-and-got-too-busy-to-answer.
Happy vacationing!

nutschell said...

Oh i'm so sad to hear about Nick's son. My fervent prayers go out to him and his family.
Haven't watched Thor yet--actually haven't watched any films in the cinema for months.
Looking forward to your big announcement on Monday!
Have a great weekend!

Talli Roland said...

My thoughts are with Nick and his family. Such sad news.

Intangible Hearts said...

Have a fun vacation and I'm guilty of not being able to comment on every blog too. I hate that. Cheers.

Intangible Hearts said...

Have a fun vacation and I'm guilty of not being able to comment on every blog too. I hate that. Cheers.

Stephen Tremp said...

Gotta see Thor in 3D in all its glory. There's no other way to watch shows like this!

Everyone needs a vacation so enjoy yours!

John Wiswell said...

I'll just field two of your questions, as they're fertile!

There are too many memes for me to care about them. Clearly the meme-generator types enjoy them in lump sums, though, so may they enjoy them.

I think there are several scripts for a good Star Wars 7 floating around the planet right now. People have had ideas for decades. You could easily spend three months finalizing a good script, a month casting, a year shooting, and have plenty of time left over to color everything in Photoshop.

Didn't see another blog update from you this week. I hope you're okay, Alex!

Rebecca Green Gasper said...

Hope your having a great vacation with your wife! :) Enjoy every minute of it. I have not seen Thor yet. I'll probably miss it in the theaters...have to catch on dvd instead. So sorry to hear the news about Andrew. My thoughts are with Nick. Love your questions...don't have any answers. I ask many of them myself. :)

Kimberly said...

I hope you're having fun on your vacation.

I didn't get to see Thor yet like I hoped, so still looking forward to it. :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

River, the week slipped by, didn't it?

Stephen, a must in 3D!

John, been on vacation this week!

Thanks everyone - it's been a great week!

Danette said...

I didn't see Thor and probably won't. I am sooooo not the "latest movie goer" type. In fact I haven't been to a movie ages. :(

Sorry to hear about Nick.

I think people don't get what blogging is about and they start thinking it's about them. I always try to comment back because it is a community thing- but I will stop commenting if I feel that someone commented once in order to get me to come by and then won't come by again. I mean that's not a community is it?

Li said...

Those ninja cookie cutters are awesome! My students would love them.

Occasionally I check out a book tweet when an author uses an intriguing description, or an excerpt. I generally ignore the ones which outright beg for reviews or "likes". And I'm not easily annoyed, but when I follow someone and they immediately DM me or tweet "Hi, buy my book" - that's a guaranteed unfollow. Geez, at least introduce yourself or wish me a nice day first!

I fall down on the commenting sometimes, usually when I'm overwhelmed at work. It could be a few days, but I do try and get around eventually. I also follow 2 bloggers who NEVER respond to comments or visit in return. However, I'm interested in the content so I really don't mind.

Glad to know you're taking a vacation. Hope you both have a great time!

Nigel G Mitchell said...

Sorry to hear about Nick's son.

I'm one of those selfish, egotistical bloggers who doesn't return comments, I guess. It's not about being selfish or egotistical. I really just don't know what to say. I don't comment that much on my own blogs.

Sean McLachlan said...

Sad news. My sympathies for Nick.

Anonymous said...

Definitely keeping Nick in prayer. I've heard good things about Thor 2 -- hope they keep the campy humor from the first one: "I require a horse!" Don't know why some folks don't return comments; that's the only commenting I do now. Writing is on center stage.

Shah Wharton said...

It does really upset me when I spend hours visiting and commenting only to get a third who return those visits/comments. I honestly don't know why, but try to accept it as some have a lot less time to dedicate to blogging than me. If I think too much I'll get paranoid and start thinking 'everybody hates me!' and that is not pretty! :)

Memes? Yes that can get too much and blur, but they're also a lot of fun.

I CANNOT WAIT for THOR! I must sort out seeing that some time soon.

I've heard about Nicks loss around the blogs and it's just awful. My sincere go out to him and his family. XX

Leovi said...

Arthur C. undoubtedly Clarke is one of the great masters, since childhood I began to read it!

T.F. Walsh said...

I'm so sad for Nick's loss, and my thoughts go this family.

Pat Tillett said...

I haven't seen Thor yet, but I plan to! The questions:

I don't think there are too many Memes, because people can pick and choose which ones they participate in.

I have no idea why some folks never return comments. If they want people to comment on their blog, it doesn't make a lot of sense not to reciprocate. I don't have much time, so I'm always playing catch-up with the blogs I follow. Commenting and responding to comments is a major part of blogging. To me it's fun and interesting. I'm not sure what is worse, somebody who never comments back, or somebody who leaves a totally empty comment that makes it clear they really didn't read the post.

DMS said...

My heart goes out to Nick.

Thor looks like an exciting movie!

I think there are 151 licks to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop. :)