I Designed My Dream Apartment in The Sims 4

Because what else would you do with a life simulator?

In all honesty though, I’ve wanted to do this since I designed my dream office a few months ago. Like with the office, it’s fun to think about your ideal living space. Maybe a little motivating, too!

In case you didn’t know, The Sims 4 is the fourth instalment in a series of life simulation games where you control the lives of the comical and slightly inept Sims. And you control everything – how they spend their day, what they eat, where they work, who they fall in love with. You design their house, pick their clothes, and choose their personality and their aspirations in life.

Once upon a time, these games were just an opportunity to live out my dream life. I would design my ideal self, give her the house I always wanted, and the successful career I dreamed about. It has this addicting wish fulfillment aspect to it. But the older I get, the more I enjoy playing Sims as a way of creating characters and telling new stories. I don’t want to control everything so much as I want to gently nudge to see how things play out.

Still, who doesn’t like to indulge every now and again? I love designing houses, especially interiors, so I always have a lot of fun doing things like this. It’s also interesting to think about what you actually would want and use – what would you keep inside the house or apartment of your dreams?

Read more

Blogging on a Budget: 42 Free and Inexpensive Resources to Get You Blogging in 2020

It’s January – the year is still fresh and people are still setting goals and making up resolutions. And one of those resolutions might be to start a blog in 2020. And why not? It’s a lot of fun, and you can start blogging about pretty much anything.

But can you start a blog for free?

Let’s face it, it can get expensive, and there are a lot of glamourous websites out there that will tell you to spend a lot of money. But not all of us have that sort of money to burn when we’re just starting out or doing this as a hobby. It’s easy to see the value when blogging is your job, but if you’re just beginning? You’re going to make missteps and mistakes and it is just too easy to burn your money on things that don’t work for you.

I’ve been blogging for a while now, so I thought I’d help out those newbie bloggers (or the more experienced bloggers who are looking to up their game) by compiling a list of resources to get them started.

Read more

Five Tips for Writing a Mystery

5 tips for writing a mystery novel

Writing a mystery is very different from other kinds of fiction.

I’ve been writing for a long time. Since I was a kid I’ve been telling stories. Maybe that’s why I take it for granted sometimes. It feels very natural to step into a story and have a ‘feel’ for what needs to happen and when. I’ve spent years writing fantasy (with a bit of sci-fi on the side), so I guess starting this project had me underestimating just how different the genre of mystery was.

For a little context, after I announced last year that I would be self-publishing my first book in 2020, I began work on a near-future science fiction mystery novella that I still haven’t decided on a title for. Geek that I am, the science fiction part of it came rather naturally, but what I found to be a real challenge was the mystery.

I love a good mystery. It’s my favourite genre after fantasy and sci-fi, and I’ve been reading it since I was little. You would think that would make you well equipped to write it, but as it turns out, writing a good mystery is actually very difficult.

Read more

4 Lessons Learned After One Year of Blogging

While Alyssa Lost in Space might only be a year old, the truth is that I’ve been blogging for a long time. I mentioned this when I discussed my reason for starting a blog, but I’ve been blogging on and off since 2010. That’s a loose decade of experience right there.

And yet I don’t think I learned as much in those first nine years as I did last year. I thought, as my blog’s first birthday has just passed, that it would be a good time to reflect on this past year and to consider what I’ve done, what I’ve learned, and how that might help me going forward

Read more

My 2020 Bullet Journal Spreads

Even though I don’t keep the most traditional bullet journal, I do draw a lot of inspiration from the bujo community and I like to use spreads to track things and keep myself organized. There’s always a handful I like to include in my notebook, and since I recently moved into my new Moleskine, I had a chance to re-evaluate those bullet journal spreads and choose what I wanted to use going into 2020!

That being said, I’m always looking for new bullet journal ideas to add to my system, so I’m not starting the year with too many but I’ll certainly adapt and add to what I have as the year goes on.

I like to keep my bullet journal spreads simple and minimal. I love the beautiful, artsy bujos you see on Instagram, but I just don’t have the patience for that. And I tend to like a clean and uncluttered look. I’ve tried to do the fancy stuff, but I always go back to a more minimal bullet journal style. So that’s how I’ve set up my notebook for 2020. Check out my bullet journal setup below!

Read more

One Year, Twelve Books

No, that doesn’t mean I’ll be writing twelve stories over the next twelve months though that is definitely an interesting idea. I’ll save that for another time.

I’m on a mission this year, to knock off some of the books on my TBR that I’ve wanted to read for ages and have just never ‘found the time’ or had the courage to dive into.

I have a terrible habit of taking out books from the library and neglecting the stuff I actually own. So I figured I’d assign a book to each month, and divide it evenly between my science fiction and fantasy.

Read more