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Live Events, Giveaways, and Anime Fest 2017

One of my all-time fav conventions is nearly here! Anime Fest (August 17th – 20th) has hands-down been one of my favorites since I started attending them some years ago. I am extremely biased when it comes to these sort of events, however, because I’ve always preferred smaller crowds. Granted, the fact that AnimeFest is now being hosted near my home in the Sheraton Hotel certainly means they’ve grown exponentially.

And have you SEEN the guest line up for this year? If you haven’t, seriously go look it up.

Unfortunately, for our team at Dusk Publishing, we weren’t able to snag a table this year at the event─ But, we are doing panels. And a panel I have planned oh hohoho~~

If you aren’t currently watching my Live Events, or are just kind of tuning in, I do live writing panels and stories for DuskLive on FB from 2p.m. – 2:30 p.m. These usually don’t go for more than a couple of minutes, but I like to stay on the safe side, just in case we have people asking questions! Once these live events are finished, I post them on all of my social media pages. So if you can’t attend, no worries─ they are always posted afterward. (like the one this past Sunday about a scary experience I had while I was in Japan doing research for the Hell’s Gate book series.)

For the AnimeFest panel, you can expect to have all my usual bizarre Japanese culture and Urban Legends content that you can find on Soundcloud (now slowly being added to my YouTube channel) and on my Livestream events.  This year, I’ll be covering modern Japanese urban legends and where they come from and also talking about some ancient Japanese urban legends. We’ll all sit and reminisce as I talk about my experiences from Japan (interesting, bizarre─ and the everyday life as a ‘normal’ Japanese citizen)

The panel will be held on Thursday, August 17th from 5 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. in Panel 4. 

For this panel, I’ll have copies of Hell’s Gate readily available, or you can bring your own for signing!

If you aren’t aware, you can actually enter to win a free copy of Hell’s Gate in our contest. (Hurry, it’s only running until 7/27/17!)

This next Sunday, (July 30th) I’ll be covering ways to combat writer’s block and techniques that I use to help. See you guys there!

 

xoxo

C.A. ❤

 

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Yesterday’s Live Event Journey, and What to Expect for this Thursday’s Japanese Folklore and Urban Legends Live Event.

If you were watching the live event taking place yesterday on Dusk Publishing  or on my page you were probably wondering why on earth some drunken crazy lady was posting live. Well, it was a live storytelling event designed to be told in a unique way.

I wanted to portray the character as poorly as possible. My art direction was to frame the character in as many bad situations as possible, including unflattering angles, clothing, and makeup to make it all seem ‘real’. I took great joy in making this character unfold and I wanted the progression to go from comical to very dark. The character focus was a type of sociopath that drove while drunk, could only see the shit side of life, and really had nothing go wrong but was bored and didn’t want to be here.

The series of lives are wake-ups after her blackouts from alcohol and after she ends up back to where she started (mentally and physically) decides to end it all. They are all still up on the pages (both my FB and Dusk’s) and you can check them out or comment at your leisure.

That being said─ what’s in store?

So, it’s that time of year that I both dread and freaking adore─ The Con season. I will be attending quite a few this year, but in the forefront of all of that is Akon28 and Afest ─both of which I have attended for several years and are my personal favorites.

For Akon, I wanted to do a series of live events building up until June 8th covering a few of my specialty topics and also some original content. You can hear my audiostories and podcasts here

For this coming Thursday, the 25th, I will talk to all of you live about Japanese urban legends, and folklore. I’ll also be answering any questions you have over the live events, and any Japanese folklore, culture, and urban myths questions you would like answered. (Please try and save the questions for the Hell’s Gate book release until June 7th, as we will be holding the AMA over that live on Wednesday before the book debut on the 8th!)

This one will be open for discussion and fully interactive, so feel free to ask questions as they come to you and I will get to them as quickly as I can.

This live event will be appropriate for all ages, so feel free to bring the whole family.

But there’s also─ a surprise in store!

For those that participate on Thursday the 25th’s live event, we will enter you into a drawing to win a free copy of Hell’s Gate book 1, and a sneak peek of the Hell’s Gate graphic novel releasing next year!
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There will be surprises in store for Akon, and it will be announced on the live event planned for June 7th as well, so you won’t want to miss it. 😉

 

Stay creepy kiddos─

❤ C.A.

 

 

 

Kimi no wa Movie Review – A Stunning Visual Masterpiece

Kimi no wa releases in the US this April 7th and it is every bit as amazing as everyone has lead on.

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Makoto Shinkai has yet again created a beautiful visual masterpiece. If his name sounds familiar, you may know him as the creator of Voices of a Distant Star or She and Her Cat or more recently in 2011 Children Who Chase Lost Voices

 

 

It is my firm belief that anyone can relate to and enjoy this movie, no matter if you are an anime or film fan. I was lucky enough to get a pre-screening and decided to share my experience with all of you.

The story follows the life two young people living in Japan:

Mitsuha from the fictional Japanese countryside town of Itomori.

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And Taki from the large city of Tokyo.

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It begins somewhat confusing as you slowly become aware that Mitsuha and Taki have switched lives. The interesting part of the story, was that it didn’t happen every day─ but rather, every so many days. You get to ride along with each individual as they experience the delicate intricacies of each other’s life.

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At first, they both lay out certain (and most definitely hilarious) rules for each other.

(I don’t care who you are, you will lose your shit at these scenes.)

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What starts as both people feeling a sort of general annoyance at this life change, gradually turns into an appreciation for each other, and respect for one another’s lives

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Until one day, Taki stops receiving messages from Mitsuha and begins to only wake to his normal, every day life.

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Time passes and Taki decides to take a train to the town to discover why Mitsuha has stopped being such an important element in his life.

What he finds, will simply floor you.

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Enter the life of Mitsuha and everything that happened within the lost time.

 

Eventually the two find one another again,  working together to prevent one of the biggest tragedies Japan has seen in a long time.

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It is as eloquent as it is brilliant─ written to pull the heart strings as much as provide you with a hearty laugh. It is one of those films that literally takes you on an emotional roller coaster.

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It’s a story of tolerance, acceptance, and walking in someone else’s shoes. It will sweep you into its magic and make you really feel as if you are part of something larger than yourself.

It’s a story of fate.

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Do yourself a favor─ Grab a box of tissues, go with your dearest pals or family and experience this amazing film together. I promise you will love it.

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I give it a huge 5 out of 5 possible stars.

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Here are the official trailers, please enjoy!

Official Trailer

English Version Trailer

What’s next?

2/12 Valentine’s Day Japanese Cake Recipe Blog – How to make one for your sweetie in the US. If you don’t understand the difference in Valentine’s Day in Japan and White Day, here’s a little info over both.

Info here:  Valentine’s Day and White Day in Japan – The difference

2/14 Come visit my podcast/audio book page here: https://arisevalhalla.org/podcasts/ for thrills and chills this Valentine’s Day as I talk about internet urban legends Kisaragi Station, Slenderman, and The NoEnd House.

 

 

Otaru Snow Light Path Festival/Sapporo Snow Festival

This awesome winter festival or , ‘小樽雪あかりの路, Otaru Yuki Akari no Michi’, is a romantic winter destination held every February in Otaru. This lighted path festival lasts 10 days so that it coincides with the Sapporo Snow Festival. This makes it easier for travelers in Hokkaido to visit both festivals on the same trip.

The wintry handmade beauties make you feel as if you are in a dream.

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The fallen snow of the town combined with the hand-made snow lights make it a highly sought after destination. With over 500,000 visitors annually, it’s no joke! The spectacular lighted path festival has been around since 1999.  To help contribute to the merriment, many locals display lanterns in front of their shops and homes, adding to the festival spirit.

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The creators’ idea for this festival is this: They want the people visiting to feel calm and easy, to focus on the leisurely nature of the area, the glow of the candlelight, and have time to reflect on themselves. The goal is to make you forget about life, and focus on yourself and the pleasant feelings you get rather than our more hectic day-to-day life. The hope, is that this festival will continue to be a spiritual event rather than a commercially oriented festival.

 

However, I’ll just let the pictures speak for themselves.

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And with the two main areas located within a fifteen minute walk of the train station, travelers can easily take their time and enjoy the town’s atmosphere on foot.

The “Unga Kaijo,” area which is located along 300 meters of the town’s famous canal, is lined with restored warehouses and gas lamps. The canal is covered with small buoys that hold candles. Lining the path beside the water is a row of small snow statues that hold candles. The canal is barely a ten minute walk from Otaru Station along the main road leading from the station.

And if you didn’t love it enough, here’s more of the view.

 

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Between the canal and the train station is the Temiyasen Kaijo area, which stretches for about half a kilometer along the tracks of the abolished Temiyasen railway line.

Otaru is a one day trip from Sapporo, which is  located in Hokkaido. It is 30 minutes from Sapporo. If you are traveling from Tokyo, take the plane to Sapporo and then the train to Otaru. The total trip time takes around 3 – 5 hours.

Access:

Location: Otaru City, Hokkaido Prefecture
When: February 3-14, 2017
Time: The sites are lit daily from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Cost: FREE
Official Website:
http://yukiakarinomichi.org/