ABOotlander LOVE- Episode 2- Connie V does it her way…tickles eh?!

ABOotlander Love is all about spreading KINDNESS JOY & SUPPORT throughout the OUTLANDER Fandom, especially during #Droughtlander. In our last edition we shared Beth Wessons story with our readers.  

The ABOotlander World FB Page is choosing those in the Outlander fandom who have made it their mission to add a touch of positivity & entertainment.

We are highlighting bloggers, artists, podcasters, cast or crew members who simply share parts of themselves that bring happiness to those enjoying the World of Outlander. 

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There is no doubt that Connie Verzak aka ConnieBV aka atom1cflea.tumblr.com is the epitome of this.  Connie’s recaps are inventive, creative & not just funny – they are uproarious.  If you have any bone of funny in your body…it will be tickled.

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We always wonder what makes the fanciful tick, what is it that causes them to see the comical in things that others see as mundane.  

This is what I adore about Connie – I feel a kinship with her…a weird, wild and witty connection.  I was thrilled when she happily agreed to step into the ABOotlander LOVE spotlight. 

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Let’s listen to Connie’s OUTLANDER Journey.

In Connie’s real life she is a translator  (we know she turns the everyday into awesome) and a proofreader. She has had a wide variety or jobs from bridal salon attendant to telemarketer. (I wouldn’t say mean things and hang up on HER!)
All of us have our “Outlander” story, how we got here… Here is Connie’s-
The first book was on display in the library shortly after it came out. I think it was under “New Historical Romance” or something similar. I picked it up, read the first few pages to see if it would be up my alley and was intrigued by the writing, so very painterly… I took it home and read it in two days. I have been waiting for the next book ever since, and the Frasers have been with me through my own ups and downs. It’s such a cliché, but it really is like looking in on old friends. (This is the cliche of our lives)
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We are inspired by many different things and I was curious to know what inspired the crazy lil fleas recaps, aren’t you?
Oh, a combo of boredom and whimsy. I heard the show was coming out and I wanted to talk about my favorite scene, so I did a bit of that and then made the images to accompany it. A few folks on Tumblr knew me and liked them, and by episode 3 I had promised them full recaps, and though I couldn’t do them fast enough to keep up with the show, people seemed to enjoy them and so I kept it up. I didn’t even finish the long S1 recaps till a month or two before S2. The first time Diana shared them I almost had a heart attack. I still get such a thrill that she likes them and am so happy whenever anyone says I made them laugh.
It was so exciting to see Connie’s recap headlined with ScotlandNOW, I really wanted to know how that came about, so, I asked of course.
Well, I heard through a couple of fandom friends that they were looking for someone to recap the show, and that they had forwarded my name. I replied to the editor with a sample of my work (I either sent the “Rent” recap or the Wedding, can’t quite recall) and she had me finish out season 1. They were very short and more like reviews, since I had almost no time to work on them between airtime and deadline. People kept liking them, so we kept on. I love that I can ask her if it’s a good idea to write as a cow and she’s like “Well, let’s see it…” For S2 I have tried writing longer ones with some more analysis. At some point I’ll settle on a format, but they’ll always be humorous. I have to laugh.
Being an Outlander fan is such a kick in the pants, when we get to cross paths with those who started this brilliant world it can be … the best ever! 
Meeting Diana Gabaldon was my biggest fangirl moment.
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Such love..such admiration…so much awesome in one frame. Photo by friend Allison.

I was at a fan gathering in Iowa, and I had brought my camera to have my picture taken because I wanted a good photo, and the girl wasn’t sure how to use it and the photo was blurry, and it was very late and Diana had been signing for quite a while, so she glanced briefly at my printed recap page and then moved things along. I was SO crushed, I didn’t get to talk or anything I was so nervous. My friend Allison who I bless to this day forced me to get back in line, and tell Diana the name of my blog and when she said, “You’re Connie!” I wanted to faint. I got my picture re-taken and she hugged me and told me I was “a  funny lady.” I don’t think she knows how much that means to me, but it’s a warm glow every time I think about it. Especially in winter.
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There is no denying that Connie makes us guffaw, giggle, snort and chortle.  I had to wonder if she ever thought “Man…that was too funny!” 
It’s usually not the funniest ones in any traditional sense. For me at least it’s the ones where I jump out of bed or the shower and make something ludicrous and cackle because I can’t believe I get paid for this (please keep paying me). (In fact, give that woman a raise!) This particular one was free but I laughed myself stupid making it, hearing this cat’s voice in my head. I laughed just now seeing it. Making animals and inanimate objects talk always gets me, because I am a child. Also I love my running gags, of which I have many.

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Everyone has “things”…here are a few of Connie’s…I am disturbed by both marshmallows and licorice. You didn’t happen in nature. Someone made you! (She is so weird…did I mention I adore HER?)

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When you are an entertaining person, you need to be entertained. I inquired as to who amuses Connie.
My husband is the funniest person alive. He’s well-read, quick and has a fine grasp of the ridiculous. I don’t like humor that makes people feel bad, or puts someone down. I like it when you laugh, and you had to think quickly to get that laugh.
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The ABOotlanders must ask question for all spotlight inners.  You come to Alberta Canada and someone offers you —

a) Moose Droppings b) Beaver Tails c) Prairie Oysters d) Taber Corn…which would you choose & why?

I live in the U.S. Midwest now with a proud Midwestern dude, so unless I say corn I might find the door locked when I come home. (Good choice Connie, Taber Corn is delish! Drowned in butter n salt and you have yourself a Friday night!)
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Taber is a town…in Alberta…with the sweetest corn EVER!

The ABOotlanders are so grateful Connie agreed to join the ABOotlander LOVE adventure! We started with Beth Wesson’s thoughtful prose. Followed it up with Connie’s humourous peek on life…stay tuned for our next spotlight…it will be therapeutic folks!
SherryLynn
ABOotlander Founder & funmaker
 
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It’s Fandemonium! #DISTRAUGHTLANDERS

I hope all my Canadian friends had a great Canada Day!

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This wee blog burst we concentrate on you! The FAN!

Which really is FANtastic when you think about it.  How many FANtasies are being FANned each moment of everyday?

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The truth is Outlander is NOT the first fandom. WHAT?! GASP! NAHW! Really???

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It is one of the more…let’s say…Universal fandoms…where you have HUGE GAPS in not only age, socio economics, race, sex, hell…let’s just put it this way…just like the books Diana wrote, are GENRE-BENDING…so is the demographic for the TV show. Simple & easy as that.

This means there are SO many levels of fandoms…by JamieClaire&BlackJackRandall they are ALL RIGHT and deserve to be there!

It is FANatical. It is OUTLANDISH and it WORKS.  We simply need to remember it is UNIVERSAL.  Which means – applicable EVERYWHERE…like…EVERY – WHERE…from every corner of the world. I am pretty sure that means there is more than enough room for all kinds of fans. No matter your views.

Naturally, the ABOotlanders believe there is always one rule that should be followed – that is #AAPI – Always Assume Positive Intent.  That means in reading what I write here, I come from a positive place. One of fun, love & joy.  Yes, I am a smartass at times and sure I can be cheeky however I ALWAYS come from place of POSITIVE INTENT and I will read most things coming from that same place.

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We also have a philosophy of KINDNESS.  It doesn’t hurt. It feels nice & well, we all could do better with a little extra.

This FANdamonium blogburst is ALL ABOUT putting the FUN in our fandom.  We HAVE lots of it & we don’t all have to LOOOOOOOVE one another…that would just be plain silly, but it certainly would be nice if we could respect one another.  You know just like in real life, there are different people, with different personalities, they won’t all get along and love one another. That’s cool. Our fandom is made up of so many different kinds of personalities, it only makes sense they break off into their own happy little groups.  To find like minded people who will lift them up and energize their purpose.

We like to have fun with other fans & have learned since our days in the first #Droughtlander …we can pretty much put Outlander into ANYTHING.   We believe in this fanmily – in all it’s mentally hilarious glory!

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We can put a stamp on each of our  OUTcrops of fans.  They have made themselves very visible. The coolest part is, when new fans find their way to this happy huge family of ours, they can find their niche with their people.

I’m going to start with us.  My kinda fan. The kind that love the books & love the show. That just want everyone to be happy & share the love. We are the “Toutlanders”. There are many of us out there.  A nice place to be.  We generally get a long with all of the groups because of our principle way of thinking is in the #AAPI mindset. 

We have the “Freakoutlanders”. It’s not their fault, it’s just their personality. They get really excited about EVERYTHING! They post the same posts on all the FB pages, they tweet and retweet interviews & new photos of cast members. We LOVE the Freakoutlanders because if we miss something all we have to do is find their feed and BOOM…there it is. Everything. ALL the Outlander things ALL of the time!

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Outlander HERE! Outlander THIS! Outlander THAT!

There are the “Shoutlanders”. They are…ummmm….passionate.  Yeah, that’s the word I was looking for. They’re the loud, proud & defenders of the fandom, the show, the books, the cast. When an article has been written, an interview done – anything-  that maybe has a questionable comment, in accurate information or dissed ANYTHING Outlander.  They go – vocal. They often go full on MamaBear.  They rally the troops and get shit done so to speak. They “shout” all over the twitterverse all over facebookdome…wherever they can be heard. They rally. Sometimes, the virtual pitchforks come out – they mean well…I am sure they do. Some get a trifle excited.   There are some smaller shoutlanders who come out for the polls – all of the polls.  They band together and get super vocal & it sure works!  If there is a cast member up to win a poll…we usually take it home because of these dedicated individuals.

The “Missoutlanders” can’t ever catch a break.  They always seem to post or RT things days later thinking they were the first to do it.  They are well intended. They just don’t spend as much time on line as, let’s say, the “Hangoutlanders”, who have their mobile device attached to them because they have it there for work or something else…company.  The hangoutlanders know everything right away and pipe it out to us all as soon as they can. We love them because the freakoutlanders follow them closely. They make a great team!

It's all about TEAMWORK!

It’s all about TEAMWORK!

This fandom also has people watching your back for you.   They are like the neighbourhood watch. The “Lookoutlanders”.  They make sure people aren’t stealing pictures, gifs, artwork, fanart or memes.  Rest assured, you are being watched, if you use someone’s photographs to make a meme or to create fanart – you will be called out or maybe even fan-shamed. Be prepared. Rethink your actions.

Outlander police services...WOOWOO

Outlander police services…WOOWOO

I think the “Spoutlanders” & “Uncouthlanders” might fall into the same category here.  Though we always do try to #AAPI  – we may have to question the motives of some who try and delve into the darker side of the fandom. Which is try and make the personal lives of cast & crew their business.  In turn divulge information from their personal lives…this then creates drama. It also starts gossip amongst the fans themselves about other fans…blah blah blah.  There is no positive that can come from that kind of juvenile behaviour.   So it is spouty in the way that when we talk more about others – we aren’t focusing enough on our own stuff…and it’s uncouth because well, that’s obvious.

Tsk Tsk. Be kind. Gossip & being mean...Not so kind.

Tsk Tsk. Be kind. Gossip & being mean…Not so kind.

I have encountered some “Dropoutlanders” and that’s ok too.  Fans of the TV show at the start or they are book fans and will always be book fans but they just could not bring themselves to get past the changes made to the show.  I don’t personally agree with them but it is not up to me to force them to watch or tell them their opinion is wrong for them. That’s silly.

We do have those who still watch even though they can’t stand the changes being made & they will defend their right to hate it & keep watching, I call them “Slipoutlanders“. They slip in and out of loving and disagreement. The “Getoutlanders” want them to just go away. “Stop watching if you don’t like it” is a favourite saying. However,the “slipoutlanders” maintain they like it, they just don’t like or agree with everything they have done & know where it could have been done better. They often make their opinions known, in various ways.

There could be some really intelligent discussions if all of us folks could check into the #AAPI frame of mind. However, sometimes we are too concerned with being right instead of being.

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Be the Beaver…United

I like the “Hideoutlanders“,  they are there, they are watching, seeing & playing a long.  They interact when they want to, play, poll, RT & share. Waves? Nah…not their thing.  Peaceful. Sweet. Jumping into “toutlander” mode when they see fit. They will “Tryoutlander” fan fun when they like and leave what they don’t.

Last but not least…our “Thoughtlanders”…these are our creative souls.  They range from those who put paint to canvas, charcoal to paper, create fan vids and yes – memes and blogs.  Not everyone agrees with me, that they are fanartish… however I believe that if you put your heart, mind & some love into something with some creativity then…it’s art too. It’s different.  Everyone sees the world through different eyes & we can appreciate different views.

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Think Think THOUGHT

The FANdom is a family, yes, some say, FANmily.  All families don’t love every member, but the truth is they should try and get along. Try and be kind and if they can’t do that…they should go to their separate corners & love who they are with.  Do the best with what you have.  The truth of the matter is we want Outlander to LAST.  It’s been around over 20 years – it’s grown organically & beautifully.  It will continue to do so, in its own way…that’s pretty cool.

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SL…ABOoterific