Last night I saw Motionless in White at Biebob in Belgium. It was my first time seeing them live and also my first time in this particular venue.
It was amazing!
I didn’t quite know what to expect from the venue, but when we got there I instantly felt comfortable. There was such a friendly and outgoing vibe. People from all ages were hanging out, chatting, and moshing to support act Cane Hill (who were also incredibly good by the way – I hadn’t heard of them before but I’m definitely going to check out their music). A guy fell down while moshing and immediately got picked up by strangers, and back into the pit they went. It makes me happy to see that kind of kindness in this community.
Then Motionless in White came on. Even though the stage was fairly small compared to what I’ve seen them play in live videos, they did give it some unique touches to make it their own. The mic stand was decorated with a bouquet of upside down roses and there were massive lights on the back of the stage making the bandmembers appear as beautiful, smokey silhouettes.
The setlist was well divided between their 2017 album Graveyard Shift and their previous albums. I think there was something in it for everyone. They played most of my favourite songs, anyway!
For Abigail they invited Spencer from Ice Nine Kills (unfortunately we didn’t get to see them) on stage to sing with them.
The cover of the night was SOAD’s Chop Suey which, for me, was an awesome surprise. Ricky (guitar) and Devin (bass) switched instruments for this one.
I loved that it was so up close and personal. Chris (vocals) made an effort to touch every hand that reached out to him (and hug every stage diver during the encore). He divided his attention equally between left, center and right, and made eye contact with the crowd whenever possible. It was easy to see he was excited to be there. They came across as very friendly, humble and professional.
“No barricades”, as Chris made the audience chant.
The show was pretty much flawless. I had an awesome night! I’m so glad I finally got to see these guys live. Can’t wait until they come back!
If you mean it, you’ll make it.
I’ve been working on a new manuscript for a couple of weeks now. In between work and school (and playing videogames) it’s what I spend most of my time doing. I love to write. I’d love to be an author someday. Over the years I’ve collected quite a few tips and ideas that help me go about it. So I thought I’d make this a new topic, share my findings and musings on all things writing-related.
Let’s start at the beginning.
How to start writing a book?
“Just start!” is the answer you’ll often get if you ask this question. But it’s not that easy. It wasn’t for me, anyway. I’ve been writing ever since I could. I’ve always had plenty of ideas and I’ve started writing a book (and quit) more than a few times. It would be great at first. Starting with a new idea, new character. I could write all day long. But then at some point I would get stuck. I’d worry it would never be good enough, find plot holes or weird story arcs I couldn’t fix, lose interest, or in general just make it too difficult for myself to continue.
So. This time around I’ve decided to do things a little differently. I had a great idea for a story and I wanted to start writing again. First things first, I did some research. What kind of book do I want to write? What (sub)genre do I want? Am I going to write in first or third person? Past or present? What is the recommended length of the genre/age I want to write for? After that I spent some time thinking about the world I wanted to build and the characters in it.
Begin with the end in mind.
Then I started thinking about the story. It doens’t just need a beginning. It needs a middle and an end too. I wrote a big summary about my main character and the important things that I wanted to happen. I decided how many chapters I would need and wrote a few sentences per chapter of what it would include.
Write, write, write!
After this I felt the time was right to actually start writing my first draft. I had a clear view of where I was supposed to go and now I just had to go there.
A first draft doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be written – I read that somewhere online once and it stuck with me. Write that first draft, you can change and edit it later. Get those words out, even if they’re not the perfect ones. If you never put pen to paper (or finger to keyboard) your book is never going to get written. That feeling of finishing your first draft – it’s going to be worth it!
Headphones, check. Outfit, check. Whiskers, check!
I’ve been playing a lot of Overwatch lately, and so I decided to dress up as my favourite character. D.Va!
I don’t know why exactly, but she’s been my favourite from the start. Maybe it’s because I identify with her the most, or because she’s a good choice for pretty much every map. Either way, playing Overwatch in my D.Va outfit definitely made it even more fun.
Now I just need to find my mech…
Last weekend was my first time seeing Sum 41 live. Even though I’ve been a fan since my age was still a single digit, the stars somehow never alligned for me to see them. But on Friday night they did.
The place was packed, sold out in no time, with mostly 20-something-year-olds like myself. People were excitedly singing along to The Ramones, Papa Roach, and the like before the show. It’s not every day a band like Sum 41 comes all the way to our rainy little country. The moment the white curtain fell and the first chords were played I experienced a rollercoaster of emotions. I felt such pride and happiness that after everything this band has been through they are still standing up there. And after everything I’m still standing here too. And now we finally got to share this amazing night filled with good music, celebration, and positivity.
The setlist ranged from old songs to new songs to guitar solos and a cover of Queen’s We Will Rock You. There were balloons, confetti, and a massive skeleton. It was pretty much everything you could possibly want from a Sum 41 show.
My favourite moment? When Deryck climbed onto the sound booth in the audience and sang the gorgeous With Me.
It was amazing to finally hear all those familiar songs live. I’m so grateful I got to experience it. Sum 41 has got the stage performance of an experienced band, they’re comfortable and know what works and what doesn’t. But they never lost their humility, their excitement, their Sumness. It makes them a great live band, because there’s nothing more fun than watching the people you came to see have the best time.
It’s been a long time since I moshed to No Reason in my old bedroom and cried along to Pieces in moments of teenage angst. It’s been an even longer time since I jumped up and down on my parents’ furniture, playing air guitar to Fat Lip and In Too Deep. Shouting about not wanting to become another casualty of society. Now I relate perfectly to Breaking the Chain and War. Sum 41 is one of the bands I grew up with. For me, they were there as soon as I started to develop my own taste in music. We’re all grown up now, but we didn’t grow old. At the end of the day we still want to have a good time and mess around. And we’re still those kids trying to find our own little dysfunctional place in the world. Just slightly older and wiser. Slightly :).