Friday, 28 December 2012

Burgundy red and black.

People tell me this is one of the nicest I have made. :) Ohhhh it makes me blush. #^.^#
The young man on the cover reminds me of an elven warrior, so lots of inspiration from that alone. But it gave me a really hard time to find matching paper colours because the central photo is stark black and intense white.

 Inside:




The back:

 Made while watching Neverwhere BBC mini series, based on a fantastic book by the wonderful Mr. Neil Gaiman.

Picture taken as per usual from this site.



Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Xmas in Lala land

Because I could. :)
The front:


The inside:



The pink sheet with the embellishment works like a small curtain. I had plenty of time and madness to decorate the back of the 'curtain' as well.


And of course the back of the fb:


Made while listening to Matenrou Opera: Anomie 

Picture taken from Gentlemen in Black

I am making a second one, will probably post it tomorrow. XD

Monday, 17 December 2012

Dear Santa, can I have him for Christmas?

Or better still, can I have two of them? Identical twins for example?
I stayed up till 04:00 am to finish with this one because I am mentally disturbed and have many issues. I don't act upon those issues when I am busy crafting, so you should all be happy friendship books keep me indoors and relatively harmless. :P



The inside:



The back:







Made while listening to Two steps from Hell: Archangel

Picture taken from Gentlemen in Black


Sunday, 16 December 2012

Yet another boy with long hair...

...because he's ravishing. 'Nuff said. Here is the front, all pink, girly and pretty. Unfortunately my camera does not do justice to the colours.




The inside:



And the back, this time kept simple:






Made while listening to:


Photo once more taken from Facebook page:

Monday, 10 December 2012

Simple but pretty...

...now all that remains is to find the pretty boy this photo depicts... Those slim wrists look delicious!!!

Front:


The inside:



And the back:



For some reason this fb did not want to be photographed. :( Here is another attempt at the front:
(Most photos I took looked either lopsided or colourless...)



Photo taken from the Facebook page Gentlemen in Black

Made while listening to the soundtrack of the movie The Last Samurai

Friday, 9 November 2012

Awfully unusual even for my unusual standards.

And finished yesterday late...ish. Very lateish.

Again Angel_Thanatos, male Russian model from Vampire Freaks, was kind enough to decorate the cover and the back. If you ask me, decorating the back as elaborately as other people decorate some of their covers has become a bad habit. It takes a LOT of time to finish them.

The cover, in which I used windowpane glue (!?!)


The inside:


And the back, finished around 03:00 am last night:


Made while listening to Assassin's Creed Revelations Soundtrack

At least the day before, when I was working on the cover. Yesterday that I finished the back and inside I was so sleepy that I did not listen to anything (save, of course, for annoying cats asking for food)...

More photos of Angel Thanatos here.




Monday, 5 November 2012

The battle against cutesy rages on!

Haha, don't take me seriously, this is just an overly dramatic title as I love cutesy too. If I did not love cutesy I wouldn't have such a huge stationery and sticker collection. I just want to add something different to the friendship book population out there because I don't see enough alternative themes and pictures. So more often than not I am making fbs with goths and fantasy heroes. Let's see what I made yesterday, shall we?
This is an fb that I based on the picture of a model in vampirefreaks.com. The username of the model is Angel_Thanatos in case you want to look him up or anything.

The front of the fb:



The inside:

The back:


And the second fb, picture is Sephiroth from http://mathiaarkoniel.deviantart.com/




The inside:





And the back:


I was listening to:


Mass Effect 2 game soundtrack

Assassin's Creed Brotherhood soundtrack

More pictures of Angel Thanatos here.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Love in Vein





This book, which is a collection of vampire erotica, should have been called "Love in Vain". I have had it on my bookshelf for a few years now, and had only bought it because Poppy Z. Brite was the editor. Big mistake. But let me elaborate while repenting on the error of my ways.

There are twenty stories in the book, exploring the vampire myth. I'll begin by saying that this book is NOT erotica. The erotic element is almost absent or dealt with in a passing manner. Most stories are about vampires of one sort or another. Two of the stories (In the Greenhouse, Delicious Antique Whore) could be describing someone's reaction to experimental drugs; that is the only explanation I can find for the fact they are so disjointed, nonsensical and boring. Sorry about that, but honestly, I can’t make sense of them at all.

Another three stories (Queen of the Night, Do Not Hasten to Bid Me Adieu, The Final Fete of Abba Adi) are experiments in writing, as the authors must have aimed at something, but what they have written achieves nothing, not even meaning in some cases. Why choose a narrating style that makes no sense and forces the reader wonder what it is that they are reading, I'll never know. It does not make the author a misunderstood genius, part of a secret ‘elite’. Not concluding the story in an understandable manner doesn't make the story dark and mysterious. It just makes readers scratch their heads with bafflement. Maybe those authors should write only for other like-minded authors, as well as read such literature exclusively. The genre would be called inimeningitis, as those writing it seem to be in the initial stages of meningitis. This would explain the confusion, continual jumps from present to future and past (due to fever), lack of understandable plot and endless ramblings. It would also explain why those reading it feel like they have meningitis at full blast, hence the headache and disorientation.

Stories that never managed to be concluded in an adequate manner or pull all the threads together in a satisfying way:
White Chapel, A Slow Red Whisper of Sand. Good material, not so good storytelling.

Stories that honestly tried to say something original but were condemned by clichés and bad writing and/or plot:
Empty Vessels, The Marriage, In this Soul of a Woman, Love Me Forever, Elixir, From Hunger.

It should also be noted that many of the previous ones aim at shock value, something that undermines them even more.

And now (thank Gods!) some stories of note:

Geraldine is original and adequately written, although near the end is a little unrealistic and a bit too cheesy for my taste. Generally speaking, I enjoyed this one, although I did not feel it broadened my literary horizons. Compared of course with some of the previous, it shines like a masterpiece.

Triptych di Amore is pseudo-historical and also one of the few notable stories that have a beginning, a middle and an end. The ending is left open to possibilities. I wish it was a little shorter though. It tired me at parts.

And the Horses Hiss at Midnight was also interesting although written in an unusual style. Much like a nightly trip under the pale light of the moon. One is not guided by sight as much as touch, and imagination is called upon to fill the gaps vision cannot cover. But its dreamy, vague quality may tire some readers.

The Gift of Neptune is unusual, weird, funny, disgusting and sad at the same time. I really loved it although it appears to be inconclusive. In reality it concludes at its very beginning. Sarcasm, care, apathy and cynicism mix in equal parts in it and the fantasy element just adds to the whole.

The Alchemy of the Throat deals with castrati that I love as a subject. Well written, blasphemous, tender and sad, it speaks about the death of a whole era, and of how this ending sometimes is the only thing that can offer meaning.

Cafe Endless: Spring Rain was my second favourite. I loved how it depicts the differences between the Japanese and the American culture and mentality, as well as the language used. The story happens in Japan and the end does not let down the chosen subject.

My personal favourite was Cherry. It has to do with dreams, obsessions, rebirth and discoveries, and how the saviour we yearn for is sometimes none other than ourselves. It's sharp, smart and modern and reeks of the despair of a whole generation that could neither go back nor move on. Loved this one.

All in all, I was disappointed from this book. They say Love in Vein 2 is much better... But I am not sure if I want to risk and buy it in anything else than a very cheap second hand paperback.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Vacation, therefore CRAFTING!

I made two new fbs yesterday. It took me six hours to finish them. 
The first one has a gorgeous doll on the cover.

And this is the back of the fb:

And the picture of the doll:


Picture taken from Doll-zone.com 
 
Then I decided I needed more to satisfy my restless hands.
What better than goths.

 Unfortunately my camera sucks so here is a second attempt:

 The back of the fb:

And the pictures of the goth (Don Henrie):





More on Don Henrie in his site here.

Sunday, 5 August 2012

Urban fantasy/ erotica by Erica Hayes


"Imagine a secret world veiled in fairy glamour and brimming with unearthly delights. A city swarming with half-mad fairies, where thieving spriggans rob you blind, beautiful banshees mesmerize you with their song, and big green trolls bust heads at nightclubs. And once you’re in, there’s no escape…

Enslaved by a demon lord, Jade is forced to spend her nights seducing vampire gangsters and shapeshifting thugs.  After two hundred years as a succubus, she burns for freedom and longs to escape her brutal life as a trophy girl for hell’s minions.  Then she meets Rajah, an incubus who touches her heart and intoxicates her senses. Rajah shares the same bleak fate as she, and yearns just as desperately for freedom.  But the only way for Jade to break her bonds is to betray Rajah—and doom the only man she’s ever loved to a lifetime in hell."

I was given this book as a gift and found it very enjoyable for a variety of reasons. The entire crew, as well as the protagonist, are supernatural creatures. And yes, the world Erica Hayes has created is nothing short of mesmerizing. Filled with lovely visual imagery, the descriptions of the creatures are intoxicating for the senses. There is also lots of sex, every kind of it. There is plenty of detail and the sexual encounters never become boring. This should also serve as a warning: if you're not into erotica that rubs the nasty details on your face, don't buy it. Sure, there's a love story there too, but also hot, sweaty, dirty, sinful sex, that more often than not, when Jade is out hunting, is enforced. Not the romantic kind, where you're suspended by invisible ropes and rose petals land on your body and there's music of the spheres echoing when you cum. The other kind, when you look at yourself next day in the mirror and all you can do is *facepalm.*

I have one objection and one point to make.

One, Jade, the female protagonist is a 200 year old succubus that thinks "she is not good enough", "her hair is mousy", "she does not have enough curves", "nobody would like poor Jade". Save for the lack of plausibility, because let's face it, no-one can spend 200 years as a succubus seducing men and still think they are not good/ sexy/ desirable enough (unless they have serious brain damage and amnesia), it gets a bit tiring after a while. If I wanted to read about a so-called supernatural creature that sounds like the average reader of Cosmopolitan, I'd open the Cosmo advice section. "Please help me Debora, I'm crazy about that seriously hot co-worker of mine but I am afraid to talk to him because I am so ugly." Give it a rest already. She's a succubus, and at least 200 something years old. Don't make her sound like a 20 year old girl with zero self-confidence. It's bad.

Two, the language is unusual. There are adverbs and adjectives, sometimes a few more than needed. But not too much. I wish I could say the same about book number two.

Overall a very interesting  and "filling" read. Do buy it if you're looking for something that combines violence, the supernatural, and the dirty bits of good erotica. Don't buy it if you are looking for something along the lines of Twilight. It will freak you out.

Now, moving on to number two of the series...





"Welcome to secret world hidden behind shadowy fairy glamour, where thieving spriggans rob you blind, beautiful banshees mesmerize you with their song, big green trolls kick heads at nightclubs and vampire Mafiosi rule the streets.  Here a seductive magic mirror lies hidden deep in a demon’s lair, with a simple warning: don’t stare at the glass…

Ice is a light-fingered fairy who can’t resist a look at the powerful mirror.  She and her fairy friends run confidence games, pretending to be fortune tellers and bedazzling customers with their glamour.  But Ice longs for more—she wants a real life, a respectable job and something to strive for.  The mirror offers her a chance to achieve everything she’s ever dreamed of.  But when she pilfers it, she discovers that its power comes with a price: the mirror is a gateway to obsession and madness... and it will take every trick in her arsenal just to survive."

Do you remember Jade from Shadowfae? Well, change her name, make her even more childish and insecure and drug infused and you have Ice. Also, take the adverbs and adjectives and all the extra bits and pieces that did not fit in the language of book one, put them in the cauldron that multiplies everything by ten, and drown the entire book two in descriptions of an acid junkie. If it was a house, I'd say that it would look like someone emptied the contents of three different houses, one museum and one street fair in a single place. To make things even more interesting, add a male protagonist with a split personality so that more often than not, you don't know who is  talking, and then fill the entire book with self-pitying dribble and whole paragraphs that barely make any sense.

I could not read this book. Tried to, but kept feeling almost nauseous, like someone was stuffing down my throat a bucketful of candy and ice and dirty laundry. The two other protagonists are about as mature as my seven year old nephew and niece. And it's a pity, because the ideas are good, but the execution is just so bad. I have no idea what the third and fourth books of the series are like but after book number two, I seriously don't want to give money to buy them. I do hope they're better, cause I enjoyed the first one...

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Struggling with deco material


  Die, the guitarist of the J-rock band Dir en Grey was kind enough to decorate the cover of this fb, albeit smiling. Die is well known for usually having all the cuteness and pleasant outlook of a hired assassin that has just discovered his entire family has been murdered.


 You choose flat deco material and the plastic cover fits nicely and looks good. You choose more bulky stuff because it looks more impressive, and you really regret it. :-( This one has flat decoration, to the degree that was possible... I learned my lesson with the previous one...

The back of the fb:


Some people were kind enough to provide me with bits and pieces of the decoration I used. The list includes Virve and Tiina from Finland, Moonlight from UK and Katherine. Thank you girls! :-)

For your information, Die usually looks like this:
(You can use the photo to scare your kids into obedience, or to make them eat all their food. :-D)

Monday, 18 June 2012

I wish I were an insomniac...

... because there would be an excuse for staying up till 04:30 am to finish this... And it's not done yet...


The back of the fb...

 Now I need to tape it... This will be hard to tape as the roses are bulky, but...

Saturday, 16 June 2012

My favourite poem by Charles Baudelaire

I could not find a single translation that I liked and therefore used the best parts of three different translations. Talking about about being picky and hard to please.
 

Conversation (Causerie)


You are a lovely autumn sky, clear and rosy!
But sadness rises in me like the sea,
And as it ebbs, leaves on my sullen lips
The burning memory of its bitter slime.

— Your hand may stroke my breast, but not console.
What it seeks there is but a hole, deep caverned
By women's claws and fangs, and ransacked whole.
Seek not my heart, on which the beasts have ravened.

My heart is a palace polluted by the mob;
They get drunk there, kill, tear each other's hair!
— A perfume swims around your naked breast!...

O Beauty, ruthless scourge of souls, you want it still!*
You with hot eyes that flash in fiery feasts,
Burn up these meagre scraps spared by the beasts!

  *it refers to the heart, that still desires beauty...

Translations I used:

— William Aggeler, The Flowers of Evil (Fresno, CA: Academy Library Guild, 1954)
— Roy Campbell, Poems of Baudelaire (New York: Pantheon Books, 1952)
— James McGowan, The Flowers of Evil (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993)
 
More Baudelaire at fleursdumal.org/



Tuesday, 5 June 2012

I think they prescribe medication...

...for people with as serious a "problem" as mine. XD
 Kamijo HQ fb.


The back of the fb.


Special thanks to Virve, Tiina, Moonlight and Katherine for some of the material I used.

Created while listening to:
In the Woods: Heart of the Ages
Die Verbannten Kinder Evas: In darkness let me dwell.
(Don't try this at home, unless you hate your neighbors.)

Friday, 1 June 2012

My ICR list

PLEASE NOTE THAT I AM TAKING A BREAK FROM SWAPPING DUE TO MOVING, SO I WILL NOT BE ABLE TO HELP YOU WITH FULL ITEMS FOR THE TIME BEING. THANK YOU FOR YOUR UNDERSTANDING. 

PLEASE CONTACT ME IF YOU HAVE ANY FULL ITEMS FOR ME USING ANY OF THE EMAILS AT THE END OF THE LIST. THANK YOU.

I WILL UPDATE THIS SPACE AS SOON AS I CAN HELP YOU WITH ICR AGAIN. :)

This is my complete I Can Return list, which means, if you have any full items for any of the people on the list, you can send them all to me and I'll send them home safely. Please consider the possibility of posting several full items for different people from the list to me; this will save you on postage and I will send them to their owners separately.
I'll try to keep this updated as regularly as possible. For any questions, please contact me via either of my emails (at the end of this list).

Elizabeth Vasilaki’s I Can Return list OCTOBER 2014
(Names that appear after the star means I am ICR via someone else)

AUSTRALIA: Fiona Depasquale, Debb Harlen, Davina McCormick, Kate Denton, *Karen Mitchelhill (Cook), Belinda Lim, Lauren Kay (Willow).

AUSTRIA: Petra Ramoser, Nina Horvath, *Michaela (Michi) Achleitner, Kornelia Kastl, Nicole Duda, Kerstin Mayr, Elke Stoker, Claudia Plank.

BELGIUM: Vanessa Nijs, *Ivy Luyten.

BRAZIL: *Patricia Pereira.

CANADA: Elizabeth (Beth) Aping, * Melanie Marissen (Kachuk), Lisa Overduin.

CROATIA: Sandra Podgorsek, * Lidija Stinner.

DENMARK: *Tenna Nielsen (Sorensen), Lisette Marie Jorgensen, Tanja H. Normark.

FRANCE: Ludivine Clement, *Isabelle Debarnot, Marjorie Jovanovic (Louis).

FINLAND: Virve Kaikkonen (only her HQ fbs and decos, the rest return to maker please), Tiina Kaistinen (Tibby Soderlund), Jonna Alatalo, Tuija Thil, *Riita Myntti, Sirja Kaistinen, Riita Rostedt, Harriet Rautapuro, Sari Pulkkinen (Suominen), Teresa (Tero) Leppa, Emmi Harinen, Senni Ontonen, Sini Autio.

GERMANY: Judith Schroer (Beyrow), Bianca (Reissenweber),Silvia Fecher (Dark Witch), Laura Kuppersteg, Martina Gierth,  Silvia Maja Suttner, Αnke Hamm, *Katharina Maier, Corina Schnelle, Ulrike Buchner, Maren Hahs, Andrea Haas, Kirsten Brockhaus, Nadine Noubeg, Aiyana Rehnke, Jean Jahn, Nancy Maria Michelet, Nika Reisacher.

HOLLAND: Carrie Lynn Salikin Polle, * N.Y. (Nga Yee) Tang, Linda Kuipers, Gea Dik, Bea Scheve.

INDONESIA: *Lita Maisari.

IRELAND: *Marielle Finn.

ITALY: Rametta Sam(antha), * Valeria Bottarini, Stefania Pagura, Lucia di Folco, Di Capello Morena, Elisa Zanotto, Maria Centurami. 

JAPAN: Mayumi Asano, Naoko Takamura, * Kaori Yamaguchi, Chikako Kawato, Kumiko Ukai, Takako Shitoda, Miki Takata, Kyoko Fujimoto,Yukimi Sakamoto, Akiko Okura, Licca Ebe, Misaki Aoki.

NORWAY: Ingrid Elise Brattland, Lilith Nagel Skrede, * Susanne Kalbekken, Siv Heidi Roterud.

POLAND: Tahti (Karolina Rutkowa), Miki Mikocka, *Ela, Run, Michelle (Wioleta Urbaniak), Anna Marat, Lidka Radzik, Agnes from Garbledville. 

PORTUGAL: Ana (Nicki) Mendonca.

ROMANIA: Crina Doltu, * Doina Poina.

SCOTLAND: Margaret McQuade. 

SERBIA: *Teodota Popovic.

SLOVENIA: Jasmina Rojko (only full fbs and decos please, the rest to maker).

SOUTH AFRICA: *Belinda Smith, Fa-eeka Fortuin.

SOUTH KOREA: * Kyung-Jin (Jini) Ha.

SWEDEN: Sabina Sandberg, *Suzanna Manu, Victoria Claesson, Maria Ahlberg, Jenny Axelsson, Katarina Langdahl.

SWITZERLAND: *Yvonne Schoch/Connely.

TAIWAN: Joyce Liao

UNITED KINGDOM: Rachael Gilliver/Moonlight, Danie Jones, Jackie Hoyle, *Kerrie Foulsham, Hez, Helen Elliot, Gill Farmer, Polly McJannett, Jemma Hodson, Becky in Monmouthshire, Nicola Welton, Zoe Hackleton.

USA: Tammy McNeal Riley, Katie Wagner (Wood), Joy Rodrigues, Elizabeth Schultz (Keil), Jonna Statt, *Carolyn Holoway Smith, JJ Kun, Beth Barnhill Goodin, Yvette Bare, Sharon Haas, Rachel Gearhart, Cindi Moss, Mary Shirley

My email for ICR questions:
endymionwillawake@yahoo.com
elizabeth.vasilaki@gmail.com

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Disappointed.





When I am having a bad day (or week, in some cases) I resort to reading. So I got this one last night in the hope I'll escape for a few hours. Haitian painter Angelina returns home in Brooklyn after three months in Africa, only to discover that her house has been used in a Voodoo ritual. Well, I said to myself, there you are. The reviews on the back were good, but that actually means nothing. I've read award-winning books with superb reviews and have been disappointed, so I guess reviews and awards are just some kind of elaborate ritual to pay back favours and promote.

This is such a bad book.
First of all, the female protagonist is living in some kind of depressive mental haze. Page after page I kept reading how depressed she was, how lost, how nothing made sense. Too much of the same thing is not wonderful, especially when the character traits in the beginning do not justify her actions later on or at the ending of the book. It felt like the author added actions randomly, according to what he needed to advance the plot, but that merely creates a bad book with schizophrenic characters and nothing more.

Secondly, the plot was another confusing mixture of unrelated themes. Marrying the occult with political intrigue and conspiracies and dictatorship and mystical passages and assassinations and the angst of being coloured and Jewish... please NO. You have to decide early on if this book is an (auto)biography, fiction, an adventure focusing on the occult, or political conspiracies, or the existence of dictatorship in some parts of the world. Not all of them together. It's like a salad with tuna, strawberries, chilli, cream, melon and sardines. That's what if felt like. From a point onwards I was no longer reading, just flipping pages to see where it headed, because it did not make much sense anymore. Characters appeared just to highlight an opinion the writer had on something, characters changed or continued towards a direction that did not agree with their principles or make sense just so that the plot could advance. And the end effectively demonized the female protagonist but nowhere throughout the book did I see any hints or clues towards that direction, which merely suggested it was a sudden choice to give an impressive ending.

It is a pity, because there was such promise in the beginning, and the writing style is good. The visual part is alive, the atmosphere of horror at the start very convincing. I just wish the author would continue towards the voodoo story and leave political intrigue out. Or involve it less. That would have made a much better and consistent book. Or that's how I felt. Oh well, there are always more books to read...

Monday, 30 April 2012

Too sleepy... but happy.

Nodding off... But I have just finished a HQ fb and want to share!
The stunning redhead I used as cover picture is a model. His name is Bartek Borowiec and he is Pole. He has the kind of hair that makes any woman GREEN with envy. Including myself. And the kind of face that makes a very impressive number of women hot and bothered. Again including myself.
Thankfully I have started making the fbs smaller in size...
And now I am off to bed and will finish this (inside, back, add plastic cover) tomorrow.
 And this is the back of the fb.

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Goths in HQ fbs

I went and did it again. :-) This is the latest one. The cover is Chai Deveraux from Jesus on Extasy. I love goth boys. I can't help it... Blame my aesthetic criteria.


That's the inside of the fb. I used a piece of fabric to cover the sheets and decorated that, too.


And that's the back of the fb. :-)

I probably need a straightjacket, but I enjoyed myself a lot. This one took me about three hours. More on the way. :-)