Video Review: Spirits of the Heart by Claire Gem

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How The Dark Tower by Stephen King Inspired My Writing

How The Dark Tower by Stephen King Inspired My Writing

Hello there everyone! I wanted to start writing a series of posts describing how various books, authors, films, television shows, musicians, video games and even internet stars have influenced my writing in general, as well as the way they have influenced specific storylines within my books. The best writers in the world have found inspiration from the world around them, from world events to nature and the works of other authors. Today, I want to discuss one of the biggest influences on me as an author: The Dark Tower by Stephen King.

This series spans eight novels, as well as short stories, interconnected story points in other works by Mr. King, comics, and now a motion picture with plans for a television and film franchise. This is by far the author’s most famous work, and the connectivity of his works to this series has influenced my own storytelling.

The main plot of the story revolves around Roland Deschain, the last of a long line of gunslingers, who travels his broken world in search of the man in black, a sinister wizard he holds responsible for the downfall of his people. In his search, he also searches for The Dark Tower, a vast tower that binds all worlds and realities together. The man in black works for his master, the Crimson King, to destroy the beams that hold the tower in place, in the hopes that it’s destruction will bring chaos and death to all worlds. Roland must go on a quest to stop this mad plan, gather forces of good to help him stop the Crimson King and save the tower once and for all.


It’s a story the blends several genres, from fantasy and horror to westerns and science fiction. This combination of genres is the first inspiration from this series. The way Stephen King is able to expertly craft a story that incorporates these genres without making it chaotic and unbearable to read is a true source of inspiration. It shows that there is a place for all of these genres to co-exist, and that not one genre is necessarily better than the other.


The second inspiration from this series is the way in which Stephen King connects all of his books. Whether it’s characters like Father Callaghan from Salem’s Lot showing up in book five of the series or the man of black becoming the villain of not one, but at least three different books, this series has shown me the power of connectivity, and how it can inspire larger and more powerful story telling. I’ve begun to apply this to my two main series thus far, Nightmare Wars and The Legend of Electric Fusion. I’ve introduced a character named Larry, who brings chaos with him everywhere and travels between worlds and dimensions to mess with people, and in so doing he appears in both series. My hope is to bring characters from both series together in an epic series like The Dark Tower in the future.


These are just a handful of ways this series inspired me. I’ve learned a lot about the show versus tell storytelling device that I’ve mentioned before in my reviews, and am learning to apply it to my own writing. Stephen King uses this device expertly, subtly leaving plot points within the story that readers pick up on with excitement and eagerness. I’ve learned to apply a more “real-world” dialogue to my writing, in which i don’t worry about applying a vast and expansive dialect that makes me sound like a walking thesaurus but rather i write as if i were just dictating the conversations of real people who experience extraordinary circumstances.


Overall, The Dark Tower is my biggest influence as an author. Mr. King has done a masterful job of creating a narrative that brings heart and emotion to an edge-of-your-seat adventure with scares, thrills and heartbreak. It was a fantastic series that will continue to inspire me throughout my career, and with the major motion pictures starring Idris Elba set to premiere soon, i highly recommend you guys reading this series if you need a healthy dose of writing inspiration. Thank you, Mr. King, for creating such an incredible work of art in The Dark Tower. 


What is your current inspiration, whether its for writing or some other project in your life? Are you guys going to see The Dark Tower when it comes out? Leave your answers in the comments below. 

Where We Stand: Avina Vlogs

Hello citizens of Avina Vlogs!

This is your host, author Anthony Avina, and I am writing this post today because recently YouTube relaunched their Creator Hub and along with
that their benefits levels. In essence, this shows us where we as creators stand within the community thus far, and gives us goals for which we
want to achieve. In the past three years, I have gone from this incredibly shy, quiet human being with dreams of being a writer, to now this
moderately shy, somewhat more energetic human with his dreams of being a writer slowly coming together. In those three years we have grown as
a community, and now we sport about 575 subscribers, nearly to the big 600.

According to the new benefits program, we are nestled in the Graphite level, but are nearly to the next level, the Opal level, which we will get
upon hitting our first 1,000 subscribers. My main goals with this YouTube channel has always been to have a living memory of my life preserved
through video to remember, and to entertain and connect with my audience as I grew as an author. In these last three years I have far exceeded
what I expected to do with this channel, having nearly 600 subscribers and having made some great friends here in the community as well. Doing
this channel has given me the confidence to dream big and go for what I want, and I want to immerse myself in the world of YouTube even more.

This year I have started playing around with different video styles, from tags/challenges and podcasts to video reviews of all forms of entertainment
and even some short films and trailers. I also have always enjoyed life casting my daily life, but for now I’m going to be saving those videos
for special or naturally entertaining moments until I get to a place where I can make my daily life interesting. I want to expand my brand and my
outreach on YouTube, and in order to do that I want to cultivate videos you guys love to watch.

I would love to reach 1,000 subscribers in the next few months. You guys seem to love the video reviews and I would love to know more about what
you like to see on this channel. The biggest help you current Avina Vlogs family members could be is to share the videos you watch, leave some
comments or questions so we can get some awesome Q&A videos going, and then leave some suggestions for future videos. Maybe I can review or share
gaming news/theories/previews, or talk about my love and fan theories for Game of Thrones and other pop culture shows. Or maybe you guys would like
to see more serious subject videos, much in the same vein as one of my favorite YouTubers, Jaclyn Glenn. I have a great new video series idea I
briefly mentioned in my last vlog, where I want to make writing challenge videos, in which I post a challenge to you guys each week, (write a
poem, essay, short story, first chapter of a novel, etc), and not only would I share my work for the week or month or whatever we decide, but I
would pick a couple of you guys to shout out your channels or social media feeds, then read what you submitted. You can submit the actual work
in the comments or you can publish your work to Wattpad or your website/blog and send me the link to share.

I love YouTube and writing, and want to combine the two to build an incredible community here on the internet. I am becoming so passionate about
the channel, and I want to grow it into the community I know it can be. So I’m reaching out to you, my incredible friends and community, to help
me make that a reality. The first stop is the Opal level, but I know that together we can grow this channel into something truly amazing. I hope
you’ll join me in doing so. Thanks everyone, and I hope to hear from you guys in the comment section or on social media!

@youtube @youtubeconnect

http://www.youtube.com/c/AvinaVlogs

YouTube Goals:

Hey everyone. This is your friendly neighborhood author Anthony Avina here, and I wanted to write this more personal blog post regarding what it is exactly I envision for my YouTube channel. When I first began the channel, I was about 10X more shy than I am now. I did it to connect with an audience regarding my books and to get over my awkward shyness. However, the channel quickly grew into a place where I can share my daily life with you guys, and a place to not only record my memories, but to share my creative passions with you all. I daily vlog on the channel, so that is where the name Avina Vlogs came into play. However, I do so much more there. I do a weekly podcast called The Writers Corner, which has grown into a full blown audio podcast that is also on iTunes and Soundcloud. I also have weekly random videos such as challenges, tags, short films, or whatever else I fancy, to bring out the creative side and more outgoing side of my personality to share with you all. I’ve also recently added review videos to my channel, in which I will review movies, television, music, books, video games, conventions, products and so much more.

Now because my channel has grown so much more than I imagined, I have begin to see the channel as an equal partnership with my writing career. I want to be a full time author and writer, and in that same thought, I want to have a YouTube career. I want to share my daily life, travel around the world sharing my adventures with you guys, and I want to constantly entertain with my videos. I have already grown to nearly 520 subscribers, and would love to hit 1,000 in a few months. This thought got me thinking about the possibility of hitting some milestones here on YouTube, and so I made a list of things I could do for you guys once I hit these milestones. I want to give back to those who join my community and subscribe, so here are some incentives for joining the Avina Vlogs Family.

Things to Do When Reaching YouTube Milestones:

Subscribers:

1,000: Give Away two Free Copies of a Paperback Book

5,000: Dye Hair/Get a different color streak in hair

10,000: Give Away 5 Free Copies of a Book

50,000: Give Away 4 Free Copies of a Book and Do a Challenge of Viewer Choice

100,000: Get First Tattoo

250,000: Live Meetup in Los Angeles

500,000: Live Show Broadcast, 4 Free Copies of a Book Giveaway and 2 $25 Amazon Gift cards Giveaway

750,000: Get Second Tattoo; Dye Hair; Announce Secret Project

1,000,000: Give Away 20 Copies of Books, Five $25 Amazon Gift Cards, Live Show, Announce Book Launch in LA, Collaborate with YouTubers,

Views on Video:

100: Shout-out to Four Subscribers with Best Comments

500: Twitter Follow Spree

1,000: Q&A Video to Comments in Video

10,000: Sneak Preview of Latest Story

50,000: Twitter Follow Spree

100,000: Collaboration with YouTuber

500,000: Send Out 10 Personalized, Signed Postcards to 10 Viewers

1,000,000: Give Away 20 Copies of eBook

Now don’t let this be the only reason you subscribe to my channel. I want you guys to be here not just for this, but because you genuinely care about the channel, are entertained by my videos, and want to continue on this journey with me. These are just some things I want to do for you guys for your support. Now on top of this, I want to add that these are all flexible, and can be changed based on your suggestions or can have things added onto the list based on your comments/suggestions as well.

Thanks for reading this guys. I hope you’ll help me grow this community into the amazing place I know it is. I am always striving to improve and make the channel as great as it can be. I hope you’ll stop by, give the channel a chance and subscribe while you are there. If you are a YouTuber who wants to collab at all, feel free to leave me a comment down below, and if you guys have any questions, comments or topics you want me to talk about in a Q&A video, leave them down below, on my YouTube channel or on any of my social media sites, and I’ll be happy to answer them. Use the hashtag #AvinaVlogs or #AskAvinaVlogs in your posts. Thanks guys, and I’ll see you on the channel. Long Days and Pleasant Nights My Friends!

Avina Vlogs

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