We're heading closer and closer to the day of our departure, Twisters!
Packing has been happening, and it really is the strangest thing. We've moved a lot before, but this time we will only be able to bring what we can carry in our hands and on our back. No boxes. No bins. No storage (though we have situated a total of three boxes to be stored).
We're traveling with a total of two suitcases, and a personal item, which is our school backpacks. (On a very unrelated note, my backpack is an obnoxiously bright pink and I LOVE it! You'll probably see it when we take photos on our Instagram: @twistedtwoofficial) It isn't a whole lot, but we'll definitely be able to pack the essentials! And a bunch of deodorant. Apparently Japanese deodorant doesn't work with our bodies, since they sweat differently, so we've got to hoard that.
There's not a whole ton else to update you Twisters on. Thank you for coming around to read and watch!
Hope you all stay safe and see you next week!
Catch ya later, Twisters!
We're getting closer to that 1 month count. It'll be interesting when it hits.
Will we feel as if we did everything we could to be prepared at that point?
Will time fly by?
Will we be scrambling to finish our packing? (Probably by 1 month time, yes. But if we get closer at like, 2 weeks, this is a very important question.)
For an update on some Japanese news, the state of emergency in Japan will be extended. The original end date of the state of emergency was February 7th, so the extended one would end March 7th. VERY close to the time we are leaving, yes, but they are trying their best to have the cases decreased and their hospitals not so strained.
Right now, we're okay! We're still all set to go! If any major news is revealed, we'll keep you all updated.
As we said before, we do still have some packing to do and some decluttering to finish, but it will all be 100% completed by the time we need to head out. February will be a complete month of double checking and triple checking!
That's all I've got right now for an update, thanks for being on this journey with us!
Talk to you later, Twisters!
Our first video is up on our new channel!
As previously mentioned, Bianca is the one creating the content there, so there will be less blog updates from her. But in return, you do get to see her face, which, in my opinion, is much better! (And mine, occasionally.)
If there's any specific content you'd like to see, tell us in the comment section! Either the comments here or on the YouTube channel!
Video updates are every Sunday.
Blog updates are every Monday.
Catch ya later, Twisters!
So sorry for disappearing again. I don't really have the best reason to offer you other than that BIANCA was supposed to WRITE SOMETHING! But, we've figured out a new system and she won't be writing anymore blog posts for a while.
She WILL, however, be making our vlogs! Yup, you heard that right! She's going to be covering our daily life in the form of videos on our YouTube channel: Twisted Two. I'm very excited for what she's going to make and how those are going to turn out, and I hope you Twisters are excited as well!
Back to the title at hand, we're so close to going to Japan! We've already been accepted into our school, we've got our tickets, we've reserved our hotel, we've got our suitcases, etc. Definitely we've got more to do, but every step is one step closer!
We're actually headed out of the country on March 13th and we'll arrive in Japan the 14th. After that, we'll do our required quarantine for 14 days, then we'll move into our dorms afterwards. After the move in, we'll start school!
You know when you're achieving something you only had as a dream and it's actually coming to life? Those imaginations sessions are actually physically happening? Well, that's 100% the high that I'm riding right now. It's honestly so electrifying! Once you're successful in one endeavor, you learn the traits, understand the steps and repeat it until you continue this pattern of success.
Japan is literally right around the corner for us and we couldn't be more excited! We'll keep you updated on everything that's happening!
If you want to help us, please consider donating to our GoFundMe!
See you soon, Twisters!
It's Charisma again! And I do have a good reason for disappearing for a while!
Bianca and I have been situating behind the scenes our schooling in Japan! To our success, we've found a school, have sent in our application and now we're looking up places to stay for our 14-day quarantine. Yes, I am excited for the self quarantine, BECAUSE I WILL BE IN JAPAN! I can stay home just fine, that's easy, BUT IN JAPAN? We shall be SENT!
But! As school goes, it's not the cheapest thing in the world. Especially in another country. We will have definitely saved up some money, but it still won't be enough. As a result, we've opened up a GoFundMe page!
Bianca and Charisma's GoFundMe
Anything helps, so if you can manage donating, thank you so much! If you can't, please help spread the word!
We'll be updating a lot of social medias with Japanese study and such, so be on the look out for those!
Thanks for reading this and being on this journey with us! See you soon, Twisters!
Bianca's Insta: @lookthrough_themadness
Charisma's Insta: @creativesakuranature
Bianca's Twitter: @LegacyGuardians
Charisma's Twitter: @Creative_BOI
It is I, Charisma, that is the one doing a week late blog post! But never fear, my fellows, for I bring news of great joy!
Bianca and I have decided to reopen Movie and Show Reviews!
I had actually come up with the idea last Friday? Who remembers dates anymore, but that's not the point. Bianca and I SPAM movies when we're not doing anything - Bianca can inhale three in a hour, I don't know how she does it - and we actually have a note on my phone with movies and the star rating we would give it.
Currently there are thirty two movies that we need to give a full, fleshed out review to. And trust me, we have a lot to talk about for these movies. We've started being more critical to what we watch, because after watching kid shows and movies, you kind of figure out what kind of execution is necessary and best for a kid.
Anyways, it's going to be a fun time and I hope you join us for the ride! Movie and show reviews are going to update every Friday! See you there!
Hope you're all safe out there! Talk to ya later, Twisters!
It's Bianca here.
Today's topic that I want to talk about is losing motivation.
I love projects. Big. Small. All of them. However, I tend to create an invisible wall of fear or uncertainty whenever there is a task or step in the project that I believe will be difficult to accomplish.
This is a mindset that I subconsciously created when I was back in school and it takes a lot of effort to move past it. It's especially awful though whenever there are multiple projects that I have to do. Then it's almost like art or writers block. It is literally a mental wall that I built steadily myself.
However, I just recently figured out how to overcome it.
Proving someone wrong.
Okay, this may not make a lot of sense, but here me out. When someone challenges me and says to me that I cannot complete something (for this example, let's say doing laundry) and it is not on my to do list of things I need to do, then I get this fire inside me where I am going to prove them wrong. But not just with laundry, oh no, I need to prove to them that I am far superior than they thought. I am going to exercise, clean my room, clean the kitchen, do the laundry, write my stories, and make dinner.
See, if I'm going to watch my mental wall crumble, I better be watching the crumbs drown in lava.
And it works! For me that is. So that's how I've gotten out of my slump these past few days. What about you though? How do you gain the motivation to work?
Stay Safe, Stay Home and Until Next Time My Friends... Adieu
I was doing who knows what and, since I wanted something to do, I decided to go onto Google Play Games and play some solitaire. It had been a while since I played the game, but I remembered it was fun, so I was quite excited to start.
I'm not sure how to describe the game, so here's the best I can think of for a description: Solitaire is a card game where your goal is to try and stack all of the same color and symbol cards together, from ace to king. In order to do that from a shuffled deck, however, you have to lay opposing colors (red over black, black over red) to find the colors and numbers you need.
I think it's a really fun game once you get the hang of it. Bianca, on the other hand, thinks it's stressful.
Back to the story! I picked it back up and I was having a really fun time! Or as I would like to think of it, too much of a fun time. At any given moment of free time, I would go onto Google Play Games and just zone out.
And then I got addicted.
So to fuel my addiction I remembered the cute solitaire game that I had wanted a while back. It was created by Devsisters, the lovely South Korean game developers who made Cookie Run (another game I'm obsessed with)! It starts off as the traditional solitaire game, but then, as you continue playing, you collect coins. Those coins can be used to open crates to get themes! And, as someone who loves any and all kinds of customization, I was in love with this.
Best of all? It's also an offline game! So I can continue these fun times on the road, in a random location with no internet, literally anywhere I want. The game has no ads, even when you're on internet.
Anyways, that's what's been going on over here on my end. I might go back to social media because I miss my friends and I have some work to do over there. It's been very refreshing to just take a step back and breathe, but I've got to get back into the swing of things!
Hope you're all safe, Twisters, and catch ya later!
Today I wanted to talk about my book. This should probably go in 'The Smol Scribble' (my writing section of the blog) but I think what I have to say will interest and benefit everyone.
First, this process has been extremely challenging. The first draft of my book was a short story for school. It was meant for a fun, light read for kids. It was short, simple, and educational. But I recognized that I wanted to traditionally publish it (as that was my dream) and that started a battle. So many battles.
Battle 1 - Lengthening The Book
My book at the beginning was around 3K words, I think. But I hadn't touched it since 9th grade (it might have been 10th grade, I need to double check), so it needed some major editing, fine-tuning, and developmental edits.
It was difficult conveying to my family that I needed to do this step and why I couldn't do a regular edit (proofread = regular edit). It needed much more. The story was off, I discussed with some of the kids that I worked with what they wanted to see in book 2 and 3 and so I needed to add some foreshadowing and plot to help span into the next two books. And a simple edit just wasn't going to do that.
But how was I going to edit it? I strongly disliked the editing phase because 1) I didn't know what I was doing, 2) so many people were sharing with me their opinions that I couldn't hear my own, 3) I had an expectation to fulfill and that already creates an unhealthy mindset when you begin a project for fun, and 4) everyone's advice on children books (as my story is for elementary and middle schoolers) are so conflicting.
Battle 1 - Solution
So what could I do to fix this mess I put on myself?
I had already messed up but completed somehow a couple of drafts that I was semi-proud of but all of them felt lacking. I was trying to work on a version of the story that would be around 30K words, so a traditional publisher would even take a look at it (30K words is the industry standard for middle grade books).
I learned that, as an author, I can't have two audiences, its either elementary schoolers (ages seven to ten) with the word count being either 10K to 12K or middle schoolers (ages twelve and up), with the word count being over 30K to 50K. There was no home for my 3K little book that both elementary and middle schoolers loved.
Then my mother said something that made sense, "Why not work on a version of the book for young kids and then later on make one for the older kids?"
That struck a chord with me. It was a great idea. But I took it a step further. Why not just combine the appeal to both? I know it sounds like the same idea before, but what if I make a story that is short that resonates with the younger kids, but is long enough and cool enough for the older kids.
I still kept the premise of the appeal the same, I just changed my mindset. And after I created the mindset to run, I closed everyone out and I wrote. Because I could not afford to look or think about other things that would get me distracted. I needed to work.
In short, I changed my mindset and I stayed focused.
How To Apply The Solution
But everything is easier said than done. So what if you find yourself in the situation, what should you do?
Changing your mindset is hard. I tried to work on it for a month and a half (that's how long I was stuck on the 30K draft before scraping it altogether) and it was agonizing. I didn't like working on it, it was actual work, and it wasn't fun anymore.
So I walked away from it. Not forever, no, that's no what you do. I walked away with it in mind. Since I couldn't see clearly where I needed to go, I decided to change the view.
Ask people you trust about the situation. But don't blatantly ask them, "I'm stuck at this one part of my story and I don't know where to move, what do I do?" Depending on who you ask, you will get the help/answer you need or you won't. And sometimes, you don't want someone's opinion on your story (especially if you are still editing it, you want people's opinions after you edit), rather you want to know what they would do in your situation. (Or, at least, that's what I wanted to know.)
So what I did was create a scenario for them with something they can understand and relate to. That way they could give me a response on what they would do and how they would do it.
For me, the hard part came with their response and my response to theirs. What was I hiding from? What are you hiding from? Are you hiding behind favoritism and fear? (I was.) Are you telling people no to their ideas because it didn't fit in your own? (I did.) Are you stopping people in the middle of their sentences stating why that wouldn't work? (I did that too.)
But that isn't going to help you at all. I hid behind fear and favoritism for my book because I loved how my book was already, even though I knew it wasn't perfect and ready for publication. However, since I loved it too much, I wasn't willing to hear anyone's critiques on how it could be improved.
Other people's ideas are exactly what you want to hear when you're in a rut. You can't tell people 'no that's not going to work' because you don't like the idea. Half of all my good ideas comes from when me and another person expand of those ideas that presumably 'weren't going to work'.
And since I felt I knew the industry and my book inside out, I refused to listen to anyone who even shared their opinion about it. Because I believed, that since I spent several hours every day for the past year looking at information, that I knew more than them and that I knew everything that I could know about the industry.
In reality, I don't know enough about the industry and I was so scared of people telling me that I was doing it wrong that I became so focused on telling people they were wrong instead of listening to them.
What I'm trying to say is, know who you are, where you want to go with your book, and recognize and listen to people. But only for a moment. You need to know and figure out when someone is helping and when someone is hurting you. I'm afraid I'm still working on that part.
To Be Continued... Battle 2 - The Industry
Since this post is already so very, very long. I'm going to be splitting this series into sections. Battle 2 is going to be about the industry (and why I dislike it so much), Battle 3 is all about self-publishing (which I may or may not split into two parts), and Battle 4 is about Kickstarter.
Looking back on all of this, I recognize how far I am in the process, because right now, I'm on battle 4. There will always be an easy way to do things, but trust me, not all easy ways are the right way.
Listen to your heart and if you don't like your options, make a new one.
Stay Safe, Stay Home and Until Next Time My Friends... Adieu
I'm sorry this blog post is out a day late, but it's for good reason. I wanted to be able to accurately articulate and express this topic as best as I could.
There's a lot to unpack on this situation, so let's begin!
To start, what happened to George Floyd is absolutely sickening. When this had all started, all I knew was that he had died of police brutality. Still bad, but what really happened was worse than I could ever imagine. Bianca told me what actually happened and I was in shock. To be pinned down and kneed in the neck to the point of suffocation is absolutely appalling.
I saw one of the pictures or a snip of the video, I don't quite remember, but I had had enough. To know that this kind of treatment to black people is terrifying, but to see it happen. To see it happen to your own people is one of the scariest things that you have to face.
As an optimist, I had thought that we were finished with all this major racism and discrimination. Sure, I knew there were momentary flare ups where people would think that racism didn't exist or where someone was blatantly discriminating another, but I truly had thought that we had passed the need to go out and protest. Protest for our rights. Protest for our worthiness to live.
It frustrates me that something this basic is apparently so hard for others to grasp and wrap their heads around. It's not some complex, Aristotle idea. It's not some new thing.
Because of these protests and movements, we are recognizing the need to do these things. The need to have our voices heard and our rights protected. I hate that all of these people had to die gruesome, brutal deaths. I hate that this is even a problem to begin with.
But the thing I glad about? I'm glad that we're turning this horrific thing as an opportunity to be united for a cause. A cause that will better not only us, but those around us. We are speaking up and speaking out to let change happen. Let's continue to do this peacefully. Let's continue to stand together.
Bianca and I will mostly be off of social media, because as much as staying updated is very informative, it's greatly affecting our mental health.
For everyone, please stay safe and please be peaceful! Actions speak louder than words, and what gets ricocheted even louder than harmful actions is peaceful ones.
Catch ya later, Twisters.
Who We Are
We are twin sisters who like to do almost anything! Inspiring people to get out their creativity is our forte and we strive to travel on magnificent journey through words on a page. Exploration is the doorway to opportunity and the endless possibilities of helping and reaching out to others is something that we endeavor to create. This crazy blog of ours is one of the many ways we hope to achieve that goal.