ABOotlander LOVE. Fan Videos w Julia LeBlanc

ABOOTLANDER LOVE is the ABOotlander way of spreading KINDNESS JOY & SUPPORT throughout the OUTLANDER Fandom.

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

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

I discovered todays ABOotlander LOVEs recipient on Twitter @jessicaleblanc1981 as a fellow Canadian in this fandom. 

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the LOVELY Julia

Julia LeBlanc creates fan videos. Many shared by Diana Gabaldon.  Julia’s are heartwarming, funny and all together a great way to quench your thirst caused by Droughtlander.

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GULP GULP *gasp* GULP

Julia’s interest in Outlander started in the same way many others have. “I had heard of it years ago, my sister was a huge fan of the book series, but I hadn’t read it. When she told me they were making a T.V. show I decided to watch it, I was hooked instantly. After the second episode I went online to read stuff about it and find out Claire and Jamie get married! What?! LOL so I immediately went out and bought the whole series. Read all 8 books in 10 weeks. I was sucked in.”

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As many of us Outlander fans, Julia has a life outside of creating videos. She is a stay at home mom with two young kids.  Her background is in education. spending 6 years studying child development and 10 years working in the field. Unfortunately, there aren’t any jobs available in the teaching field,  where she lives so she and her husband decided to start a family. She has been a SAHM ever since. It’s a lot of work, but she has good time management skills, this makes it easier to fit her hobbies in and have “me time” when it is needed.

If you haven’t seen any of Julias videos…you are certainly missing another form of fan art.  I was curious as to what inspired her to create the videos.

“After the 4 episodes or so, I went on YouTube and noticed people making them. I started to think of songs that I thought would be perfect for the series. I would do searches for the songs and couldn’t find anyone that had done them. Songs like “Turing Page”, “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” and “Against All Odds”. So during the fist Droughtlander, I decided to try and make one myself.  I was shocked at how much I loved making them. I like trying different things in my videos, romantic, funny, involving the whole cast…it’s a lot of fun.”

Since this is the whole Outlander environment, being a fan is what we do here.  I am always asking my fellow Outlanderites if they have had any exciting fancounters.  Julia has a BIG ONE!

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“Meeting Sam was a BIG deal for me. He is so charming and sweet. We waited for him for a long time in the cold. When I met him I told him that he had shared a video I made and he got excited. Which of course just made my day.  And then he mentioned meeting me in an interview which was a thrill. He was sweet to all the fans there, he took time with us (as much as he could) and chatted with us. I have mentioned this before, but one thing I found really interesting happened while I was talking to the camera man waiting for Sam. The man told me that they have a lot of celebrities come in, but no one has been as nice and caring as Sam. He said Sam wanted to make sure he got to meet the fans, and was concerned because it was so cold. He said that we are very lucky to have him and he’s right. We are. I got to meet Cait too when she was in Toronto. I made a mad dash into downtown and got a quick meeting with her. There weren’t as many fans there (no one knew she was coming) so it didn’t last as long. She is even more stunning in person.  And very warm. The whole thing happened so fast, she had to quickly go to another location. I met Diana too when she came to the Fergus Festival last summer, which was something I was looking forward to.  She stayed late at the autograph signing for us and we were so grateful. I told her that she shared some of my videos. She told me I do a wonderful job with them. She also has this aura about her, I don’t think she stopped smiling the whole time.  And listening to her speak was a thrill I never thought I would have. She was very funny and took time to answer many fan questions.  I dream of meeting Tobias and I love Richard, Sophie, and Graham too.  Hopefully one day I will meet them. But I’ve been very lucky to have such great experiences with my idols.”

I asked Julia if she had any favourite videos and she gave me links to other creators.  It just goes to show that her love of making the videos isn’t limited to herself.  She promotes and respects others doing that same thing she is. That really is what attracts us ABOotlanders to her.  She is very kind.

Here are some of Julia’s personal recommendations:

“I really like Elena Vas videos. She’s so talented and has really inspired me to learn and try new things with my videos. I love this one Never Tear Us Apart: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SuaD_ZHtIxU ,  “Good For You” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFFVrzjYQCE&t=7s , and “Survivor” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJEnfxv_H9E

This is a beautiful one by Silverxvideso who also makes great videos “Already Gone” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nEDUgY_fIgs

Here are some of Julia’s videos that are sure to engage you.

Who Wants To Love Forever: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VPSATBXAUAo&t=212s

Uptown Funk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_QyGgrFFbA

I Put A Spell On You: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWV0ZE1OHho&t=33s

Thinking Out Loud: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzvQqVyq82Q

Better yet. Subscribe to her You Tube channel YouTube https://www.youtube.com/user/nancy777ca/videos

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Each of us have characters and actors we gravitate to more than others and Julia is no different.  She loves the whole cast and crew as she sees them to be inspiring. Everyday, it seems to change which one she is most inspired by. “I think it’s hard to pick one and my answer may change depending on what day you ask me. Today I’d probably pick Sam. He is so sweet and accessible to fans. He interacts with us and seems to genuinely have fun with his fans. It’s not at all to say the others don’t-they do! But His MPC is something that really is helping me and others live healthier, and overcome an obstacle, change something they’ve been wanting to. I can’t wait to get really started on it when the kids go back to school and I can be more organized again.  And Jamie is probably my favourite character in the series”

Many Outlander fans have not had a lot of experiences in fandoms before and it is new territory. Julia talks about her walk in the fandom world.

“I’ve never really been in a fandom before.  I was a bit in the Glee one, but I just followed towards the end-never participated. This is the first one I’ve really been in. It’s a lot of fun. To have people you could share ideas and creations with, so many talented people in the fandom. I love watching everyone’s labour of love. And I get really interested in other’s points of view. I don’t always agree, and sometimes it’s really hard to not get into arguments (I try though). Sometimes it’s hard to stay positive when you see some negativity. But overall, this is a great fandom. The vast majority of this fandom is wonderful, and very accepting, warm and encouraging. To the cast and crew but also to each other.  It’s a community, and in the end, we all want our community to be a fun place.”

I am not a creative kinda person so when I come into contact with them. I want to know how their brains work. Knowing that they must have ideas and notions that spring up, I wanted to know what Julia had up her sleeve for Season 3.

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“A few…last I counted I had over 70.  Yes, I know I’m crazy. I have a few I’m really looking forward to doing. “Don’t Know Much”, “Battlefield (by Lea Michele)” …and I’m really looking forward to doing one for “A Thousand Years”, it will be a recap of their love up to the Print Shop. Every time I hear a song I wanna do it.  And I get a lot of ideas from fellow fans.”

We all have a special dream for what Outlander will look like in the future.  Julia is no different.

“Diana has said there will be 10 books, so I’m envisioning 10 seasons. I’m an optimist. I especially hope we get season 6, because ABOSA is my favourite book in the series-if I had to chose one. I’m envisioning a show with longevity, with a cast and crew that gets accolades not only from fans but from the entertainment industry. They are so deserving of awards and nominations; I know it will come. The books just get better and I know the series will too. I also would like Diana to write more episodes. It was so much fun watching all the little tidbits she shared and insights she gave us into writing an episode. I hope we get that again.

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PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE

Julia has a few words of encouragement to share with the Outlander fan family.

“Make it a fun place! I think everyone should have a place they can be a fan girl or fan boy the way they want to. Fandoms are supposed to bring joy.  There are great people in this fandom. We are very lucky to have such interactive cast/crew and Diana! There are a lot of Twitter/Tumblr accounts and groups on Facebook that are a lot of fun.”

As per each time we interview someone…we ask this ABOotlander deep and meaningful question.  What is your favourite – Moose Droppings,Prairie Oysters, Beaver Tails or Taber Corn?

When you say “moose droppings” you mean the chocolate treat right? LOL. I would choose Taber Corn…because I like corn, and I could say that without making a funny face.

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You can also find Julia on Tumblr

https://www.tumblr.com/blog/moduinne-and-redjamie

Droughtlander is to end soon. Share some love and share the gifts that Julia presents you in the form of her videos.

Sher

AKA SL

AKA #ABOotlanderFounder

ABOotlander on the ground.

 

The Other Outlander “F” word. FRANK.

Yup. In the history of Outlander there has always been discussions about Frank. If we think this is a new topic of conversation because of the way the TV show has presented him.  We are wrong. This is just one discussion that is 6 yrs old . It took place on Karen Henry’s blog, Outlandish Observations, which was started in 2008. See…WAY before the show became a “thing”.

I assure you, these discussions/arguments have been happening since the first book came out. My guess, somewhere in the world on June 2, 1991 the first debate about Frank and his place in Claire’s story took place. Why? Because there is a distinct character there, with a distinct personality. The interesting part is which side people fall on.

Frank is the man who was left behind by Claire’s unintended trip into the past. It’s funny, not “haha” funny but “Hmmmmm, how about that?” funny – that if you love him, you defend him like no one’s business – or you despise him and everything he stands for…oh wait…everything we believe he stands for.

Frankly (heehee), he is one of the most complex characters in the Outlander series. Why in the world would I say that? It’s true. That’s why. In 8 books, we keep getting snippits of his story. We THINK we know it all but that’s not true. Diana still has not fully revealed what unquestionably happened in the 20 yrs Claire spent with Frank.  I don’t think that is because she doesn’t care or it’s not important. I believe it is because there is so much to tell, so much that is laying underneath…Frank is simply one of those Tetris pieces that hasn’t fallen completely into place.  We don’t have to like him to know his importance in the story. Perhaps that is where some of us stumble. “WE” don’t like him so he doesn’t belong.  Seems kinda like my high school years allllll over again. OMG…I’m FRANK!

I hope we can see how short sighted that mindset is in the grand scheme of Diana’s tomes. Everyone, whether we like their character or not, has their place in the story she has written. We might think Mr. Willoughby served no purpose but the truth is, he did. In Diana’s story…and lets be frank (snort), it is HER story.  We digest it the way our brain see’s fit, not necessarily as it was written.  Its like broccoli, some people devour it and love everything about it and some get indigestion and end up super gassy.

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The “F” word has been popping up again because of this picture in this article.

Outlander Season 3

Lots of people took it as a personal nose rubbing because Frank isn’t that big of a deal to them, they don’t personally care for him or they believe he needs to hurry up and die already. Lots of people LOVED the photo, saw it showed what life would be like for Claire & Frank in the future, validated their feelings that Frank’s a good guy. An important good guy.

Neither of these view points are wrong.  Why?  Because people are people and they feel how they feel.  The trouble is when we get to the point where we believe only our view has merit.  Only our view is “right” and our need to express it in ways that are pointless to the grand scheme of things.  Examples of pointless expressions might be : anger, telling people how to do their job, spitefulness or passive aggressiveness. One of my favourite sayings is…You can say what you mean – without being mean.  We can also do that without trying to make others adhere to our beliefs.

Outlander (the show) has a story to tell. The writers, producers and directors want to make the best show possible in their eyes. That is where the crux of it all is. Their eyes.  What is the thing about eyes folks?  They are all unique.  They all see things differently.  Those who want to bask in the things they see…will.  Those who want to contradict the same visions, won’t stop because someone says “You are wrong.”  If it were the “fans” that created the show it would say in the credits SHOWRUNNER – Fans, but it doesn’t. It says Ronald D. Moore.   Whether you believe that’s good or bad, it’s his to run the show.

I have no issues at all with those who use critical thinking to express their thoughts.  I have no issues with rose coloured glasses and those who choose to love everything.  My view is simply to be kind to one another while expressing your differences and maybe, just maybe allow each person their view.

Frank isn’t the bad guy. He isn’t the hero. He’s an intricate part of a story about a woman who is torn between times. The story, whether we believe it needs to be told or not, is the story.  Perhaps sitting back and experiencing the ride is the solution.  Like a roller coaster, some are going to love it…some are gonna wanna puke when it’s over. Either way…it is the experience that creates the outcome.

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Hold on everyone, buckle your seat belts. If I know anything about this fandom, and I think I do…it’s gonna be a helluva ride!

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Side note- I don’t think anyone can deny…Tobias Menzies…is super awesome, pretty good looking and well – brought Frank to life. Whether you like that particular life or not – is up to you.

SherryLynn

Founder of the ABOotlanders

 

The Doctor is IN! Outlander Anatomy gets the LOVE.

We have featured Beth & Connie – we are at it again.

Next up in our #ABOotlanderLOVE spotlight —  You know her…you love her…you feel smarter after you read one of her blog posts, so you make sure to read more of them.  She is as warm as she is intelligent.  That is why we keep going back to OUTLANDER ANATOMY.

It was no surprise when I asked my fellow admins in the ABOotlander group who they wanted to see featured, her name was brought up loud and clear.  Again, when I tweeted to our followers who they thought was a positive influence in the fandom…dozens responded with OutlanderAnatomy.  I am going to call her Dr.Karmen for the remainder of the blog as to protect her brand and to keep my carpel tunnel from kicking in.

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I was so pleased that she accepted our invite to step into the spot light & share with us some behind the blog aspects of what makes her tick.

My introduction to the world of Outlander came via my daughter. She had read all the big books (in less than a summer) and invited me to join the party. I kept saying no, I didn’t have the time and, anyway, I wasn’t interested in time-travel novels. She kept at it for a year… “Mom, you must read these books!” Finally, in early 2014, I yielded. By the time I arrived at Jamie’s dislocated shoulder, I was in – hook, line, and sinker! Since then, I have read the eight big books, at 8-10 times each.  –  And the lesson is, it sure pays off to nag. Well done Rebecca- We salute you!

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Dr.Karmen’s blog is incredibly interesting and so unique – I wanted to know what inspired her to start it.

I began my blog in October 2014, after watching early episodes of Outlander S.1. About that time, my daughter said, “Mom, have you considered writing an anatomy blog that incorporates Outlander?” No, I hadn’t thought of that. So, my daughter is to blame for getting me reading and writing the language of Outlander.  –  This daughter, is a keeper. We owe her a huge debt of gratitude. CHEERS Rebecca!

Fan to fan, we wonder if Dr.Karmen had experienced one of those momentous occasions that makes your heart pound just a little extra- sure enough – she had.

My most memorable fan encounter was meeting Diana Gabaldon in October of 2014, at Fort Vancouver, WA. I was first in line for her autograph, handed her my book, and waited while she searched a bag. I asked her if she needed a pen and offered her mine.  She pulled out a rolled container, opened it, and presented an array of every type of pen needed for autographing different surfaces. Of course, I laughed at myself, Herself would come prepared!

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I find all Outlander Anatomy lessons fascinating.  They teach me things I had no bloody clue about, they give me insight & extra tidbits of info but I don’t feel stupid while I read them. Pretty incredible.  I wondered if Dr. Karmen had any personal favourites in her collection? (I double dog dare ya to guess mine, you cheeky buggers)

Thank you for the lovely compliment about my blog. Oh, dear, this is a hard one because I learn from every lesson. Perhaps my favorite is always the last lesson I write, not only because I must thoroughly review the anatomy but because I strive to present the topic in a way that is accessible to all. Although some of my readers have biology backgrounds, many do not, and I feel compelled to direct my lessons to folks who lack anatomic experience. My latest, is the first of a series about the gastrointestinal system: Anatomy Lesson #44, “Terrific Tunnel – GI System, Part 1.”

My first lesson, Anatomy Lesson #1, “Jamie’s Tush or Bottoms up!”, was posted just after the airing of Starz episode 107, The Wedding. To be perfectly honest, it was Jamie’s beautiful bottom that caused me to consider just how I might teach the anatomical “underpinnings” of such a splendid body part. He is a perfect male anatomical model and I hear he works quite diligently for those bonny buttocks!

I was also intrigued about writing a blog. Up to this point, I had been writing grants and medical and technical papers. As you can see from this first lesson to the most recent, it’s taken time to develop a voice, a format for my lessons, and understand this new medium. I also want to be respectful of the actor’s private lives so I only refer to their character’s names as they graciously provide anatomical examples. I wrote about this POV last year: Education & Privacy.

Diana’s books and the Outlander series are filled with anatomical goodies that demand attention. I also love the pathology (abnormal anatomy) which is abundantly sprinkled throughout the books and episodes: a veritable gold mine for an anatomist!

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Some people may lose their joy after working in a particular field over time.  Reading Dr. Karmen’s blog shows me, this has not happened to her. I was curious how she keeps her love of anatomy thriving. You know, besides Jamie’s cute tushie.

My passion for anatomy stays alive because I harbor a profound awe and respect for the human body, a sublime blend of form and function, which we often take for granted as it ferries us through a rather precarious world. It matters not how much I learn about the human body, there is always more, and the more is endlessly fascinating. Why wouldn’t it be? It is our vehicle, our home, our sanctuary….erm…as you see, I can easily wax poetic about the human body!

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We all have our own vision for what we believe Outlander will look like in the years to come. Dr. Karmen sees things a bit more intimately than others do, haven’t you noticed? I was anxious to hear what her brain thinks the world of Outlander will be like in the years to come.

The future of Outlander world… First, I hope all of Diana’s big books and the Lord John series are filmed. Then, I envision the largest global community of devoted fans, constantly networking to appreciate, support, create, praise, enjoy, and celebrate this amazing, shared adventure. Hurrah for Diana Gabaldon who, one day, decided to write a book for herself. Praises to her CompuServe pals who encouraged her to publish it. Kudos to her family who support her fathomless talents. Thanks to Ron D. Moore, Terry Dresbach, Maril Davis and to all the actors, writers, directors, staff, designers, composers, musicians, builders, trainers, linguists, herbalists, doctors, sempstresses, and detailers. Without them devoted fans would wander lost in a vast desert-scape, otherwise known as, Droughtlander!

I wanted to give all of you a chance to peek into the Outlander Anatomy waiting room.  Sit back a moment & spend some time peeking behind the curtain that is Dr. Karmens life.

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Well, I am now professor emerita (retired female professor) of human anatomy at my medical university. When I was actively teaching, my “waiting room” (dissection lab) was filled with medical students, graduate students, allied health students, surgical residents, surgeons, and donor bodies. I was director of the gross anatomy course for many years, ran the body donation program for my institution, and was demonstrator of anatomy for my state in the US. Over the course of my career, and before birth of the internet, I taught almost 10,000 medical students gross anatomy, histology, embryology, neuroanatomy, and cell biology. And now, that the internet (and Outlander) has such a long reach around the world, I am able to teach many more readers about the amazing human body.

I always am curious what others find most fascinating about Gabaldon‘s world of Outlander. It is one of the topics of conversation I can’t get enough of.

Wow, this is a hard one because I find Diana’s creations endlessly fascinating. If I had to choose one thing it would be her remarkable ability to divine a story from a single line, sometimes books apart. Here’s an example: in Outlander book, Jamie and Claire are eating dinner at Castle Leoch; the table convo centers on Sandringham and his personal preference for young lads. In a line or two, Rupert comments that Jamie should guard his wife because unlike the Duke, his man servant actively pursues women! This really didn’t grab my attention until my last read-through. Then, Bingo! In the next book, Dragonfly in Amber, the Duke’s valet reappears as a member of the foul gang that rapes Mary Hawkins! This type of thing happens many times throughout her books. How does Herself recall such wee things and then revisit them hundreds of thousands of words later?! I actually learned the answer this past week while attending SiWC2016 in Surrey, B.C. Diana said (and I’m paraphrasing), that she writes all sort of things that might be classified as debris, but which provide kernels for later works.  – It’s what I call Gabaldon word Tetris 

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In this photo, taken at 2016 SiWC, she honored me by donning a necklace I made for her: Mr. Willoughby, complete with acupuncture needles inside his hollow body!

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Diana Gabaldon with Dr. Karmen & DG wearing the super cool Mr. Willoughby necklace

This an ABOotlander must ask. We ask for shiggles – If you were to come to Alberta Canada and someone offered you a) Moose Droppings b) Beaver Tails c) Prairie Oysters d) Taber Corn…which would you choose & why?

My first choice would be Taber corn.  I have never tasted this variety but it sounds delish and I love corn and corn-grinding! <G> Second choice would be beaver tails, that is, if you mean the fried pastries –  they look yummy!  But, if I am wrong and you mean the rear appendage from a large, big-toothed rodent, then I will pass. I will also pass on the prairie oysters as I am not fond of raw eggs. Finally, I refuse to dine on moose poop because I am a picky eater (although, I suspect these are chocolate covered candies). Great question!  – I must say I am impressed, though not surprised at Dr.Karmen’s thorough answers. What an absolute delight she has been!

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Please feel free to share your comments with us about #ABOotlanderLOVE below. It takes no time to #BeKind & spread the LOVE.

 

Sher

ABOotlander Founder & Friend of the Fandom

 

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. 

ablove

 

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
 

ABOotlanders R Us…and now YOU too!

Yes we know…us ABOotlanders are an Alberta Canada based fan group.  We have regularly made “honourary Canadians”  a part of our ABOotlander bubble on twitter & with our blog.

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Those would be fellow Outlander fans  who have a desire to make their bubbles better.  You know the people. The ones who choose to assume positive intent. Those who want to lead with kindness.  Those who let go of the nasty negative.

Us ABOotlanders are passionate, fun, slightly inappropriate and have hearts of lollipops n rainbows so it’s natural that some people gravitate to that.  It’s also natural some people hate our ever lovin guts…that’s cool too.  We however, do not share our sandbox with those folks and we don’t engage with them either. Our energy is better spent being goofballs…happy goofballs.

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We have the blog, which has peeps from all over the world reading it…We are pretty active on twitter and lots of friends from all over playing with us there…you know…playing.

It all started on our Facebook group which is exclusive to our Alberta Members…and being Canadian we feel so bad every time we turn one of our international folks away. We are sorry. Really sorry.

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The only solution was to  open up an ABOotlanders Around the World FB page.  Please Like it here…and invite your friends to like it too.  We will post content and fun daily.  We will ask you to share with us and we will be doing contests & draws periodically.

2003

See you there!

 

SherryLynn

@ABOotlander Founder

The Effects of DroughtLander

Did I even know what that simple wee phrase “Droughtlander” would grow into the first time I used it in this meme all those years ago? That’s a hard no…droughtlander

I didn’t have a clue that everyone and their dog would be using it to describe the time between seasons of our favourite show Outlander.  I can thank Diana Gabaldon for posting that particular blog on her facebook page and sending it into Outlander history.  That link has since died because our group found our own identity as the ABOotlanders so you can read it HERE at its relocated addy.

The interesting thing about a drought is the impact it has on the environment around it. In the case of #Droughtlander…the impact largely falls on the fandom.

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Us ABOotlanders are a hearty bunch.  During Droughtlander we get by on help from our neighbours. We share our resources.  This includes talking about the days of all the Outlander, reading about the Outlander and how plentiful and fantastic the Outlander days were. Yes…and how we know that one day the Outlander will return.  We find it immensely therapeutic.

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Alas, there are the people who are crawling across the droughtlander fields gasping for breath, ridden with anxiety & depression because the Outlander hasn’t touched their lips for too long.  They can’t see the Outlander in the forecast & will do anything to make the oasis a reality in their everyday…except instead of embracing the good they are allowing the drought to blur their vision of the good it started as. Instead of remembering the things they love they are focusing on things like the bad taste the lack of Outlander has left in their mouth.

2001

Droughts cause migration…migration of people to other things.  This is normal…when the Outlander comes back – so will the people and so will more.  Some people might not come back and that’s o.k.  Making their life with another fascination or love.  That has nothing to do with the drought itself but the way they chose to deal with it,their choice isn’t wrong. It is what is best for them.

You know droughts also cause wildfires? All you have to do is take a peek behind the curtain of this fandom to see that.  The small flames of discontent are there but unless individuals fan those flames they will never catch & become a disaster. When a spark comes your way, put it out.  How do you do that? Don’t respond.  Don’t blow on it, don’t give it the air it needs to grow. Yes, it is that simple.

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Most droughts don’t have that surety of ending, ours does. Droughtlander never lasts forever but the things we say & do during the drought does.  If we seek out the cracks, we will fall through them.  If we seek out the light, we will feel the warmth.

Let’s do our very best to keep our faces to the sun. That means our heads are tipped back enjoying a bevvy. The true remedy for #Droughtlander.

amen

SherryLynn

ABOotlander Founder & Lover of all things happy!

 

 

Sex & Intimacy. My version of O-Lander

Let me start with saying everyone is entitled to their opinion. I believe our opinions are just that. Our perceptions. We all have them and they will all be different. I do not expect nor want everyone to agree with me, however, respect my right to say what I perceive…as I respect all of yours. 

One of the biggest discussions in the world of Outlander this season was the sex…or there lack of.  Many say “We didn’t see the love.”  “We were robbed of what makes Jamie & Claire…Jamie & Claire.”  “The love would never last 20 yrs if they don’t connect!”

Believe it or not, I have made a living talking about sex & intimacy in life & relationships. That is what I want to do now.  Class is in session.

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Listen up!

Romantic relationships need TWO things to survive. Intimacy & Communication.  I didn’t say sex because sex is a product of these 2 categories.  Without intimacy, there likely will be no sex. Without communication, we likely won’t choose to have sex.

Let’s first keep in mind that Outlander the TV Show is that. The TV show, not a play by play of the book.  Conveying intimacy is something they can do in the show and it will turn out to have more meaning. The depth of talent that Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe have, means they are able to delve into that. Deeply.  Skin & sweating does not equal love & commitment. No matter how much we want to “see” it.

To reference being robbed, denied or missing something. These were never there in the first place.  What I mean by that is Outlander the TV Show has never existed before it did. 

But we read the books! Yes, I know, so did I…repeatedly.  This does not mean the TV show has been ‘built’.

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These are both dogs. Definitely NOT the same thing.  Outlander, the show & the books. Like these two puppies right here.

If the argument is “They gave us all the sex in season one and took it away in season two.” I do see your point. I would like to reference that season 2 was a different relationship, a different set of circumstances and frankly, a different show with the same title. It wasn’t a bait & switch, it was an evolution. The evolution of a marriage. Those of us blessed  enough to have found a deep love have likely experienced something similar ourselves. Change happens & it’s not always comfortable.

Season 1 was an exploration of a building romantic relationship, which is undeniable more passionate. That, for visual purposes, should be seen to some degree.  Each sex scene in Season 1 had a purpose. The wedding. Each scene was given in stages.  First newness/awkwardness, passion/exploration & then falling in love.  The scene in which they were having sex away from the group, distraction. The scene in which they have sex after the spanking scene, is not only forgiveness but also ferocity. 

Season 2 was a marriage. The people in the marriage had been through a huge trauma. Jamie’s rape along with the fight to keep him alive was one that could have easily broken a marriage apart. In the start of the season we saw that.  Sure, it might have been nice to see a little skin here and there, however, it wouldn’t have made a lot of sense.

Those who are dealing with a physical trauma such as the one portrayed in the show, more often than not, lack the desire a) to perform b) have someone THAT close. No matter how much you love & trust them.  It isn’t about the partner, it is about the victim and their ability to process.  When a sexual assault happens, very often the victim is loathe to put themselves back in that vulnerable position … especially when they are still emotionally coping with the trauma.

The beautiful thing we love about the visual exploration of these books should be the writers ability to see that the human experience will need to over rule the labido.  

What we saw a GREAT deal of in season two was intimacy.  I am not referring to the fade to black or the scene in the blue room. I am referring to the looks, touches and conversations/arguments that took place.  It is in these moments that our characters become the lovers that can not bare to lose one another.

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The ability to fight.  Jamie & Claire did that. Expressing anger can be quite a passionate act between partners.  It encourages us to say what is on our mind, it encourages us to not only say but show with emotion what our true feelings are.  An example is when Jamie was upset with Claire for working at L’Hôpital des Anges.  The argument was a conduit for deeper understanding which creates intimacy, which creates a deeper bond. Even when our partners say & do irrational things it causes us to think of the deeper issues. Disagreements tend to open lines of communication which in turn leads us to healthier relationships.

Another tragedy befalls Claire & Jamie.  It is the loss of a child.  Hurt, anger, pain -both physical & emotional will cause a rift in any relationship. What truly matters is the bridge back to one another and crossing it together. For when they do…it cements the relationship into something more permanent. Something that could span lifetimes.

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Loss + Forgiveness + Love = Solid Love Lessons

There was a WHOLE LOTTA story to tell in 13 episodes.  We need to speak of the actors commitment to their characters.  Caitriona Balfe & Sam Heughan have said they will not do gratuitous love scenes for the sake of them.  They understand they are telling a story and that the scenes, whether sexual or violent in nature will not be over done.  That is something I am personally grateful for.   It is when shows start throwing in ass shots for the sake of ass shots that they lose credibility.  Honestly, we know that Claire & Jamie are having sex.  Like any other married/loving couple…but we don’t have to see them do it to know they are. It’s like bathing…we really don’t have to see the act, the flies aren’t gathering so we get it.

Conveying the depth of their relationship is more important to the story than sexytime.  

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I would encourage folks to examine logistics of the end of the season as well.  Cold, hungry, weary and focused on changing the future.  Having sex for the sake of having sex isn’t exactly what any sane couple would do under the circumstances.  There is no doubt in my mind that they were, as their intimacy & connection showed greatly in those episodes, however, it was probably pretty un-sexy & the telling of that story was far more important.

The sex at the stones was much like the sex in the book. Fast…intense…and final. That kind of sex is never like a movie, its more like a punch in the stomach. Which I believe they captured perfectly.

I would love to end my view on the sexual world of Outlander. O-Lander if you please. Some of the most intense and intimate moments in books…don’t involve “sex” at all.   *cough* Get ready for the print shop folks. *cough* 

Too skip even further ahead to what I believe to be one of the most intimate scenes in all of Diana’s books…the final passage of  The Fiery Cross.

**Book Spoiler—if you haven’t read to this point in TFC, it is up to you to continue**

FYI-   Fun/Heartwarming Trivia —Diana Gabaldons husband is the one who uttered the final line of this particular passage. It is a testament of a well balanced marriage.  Translated to Claire & Jamie, we have watched the start of it & will continue to enjoy it.

“I sat down beside him, close, my hand on his leg, and his hand on mine. We sat thus for a bit, side by side, watching the rain clouds roll in over the river, like a threat of distant war.  And I thought that whether it was choice or no choice, it might be that it came to the same thing in the end.

   Jamie’s hand lay still on mine.  It tightened a little, and I glances at him, but his eyes were still fixed somewhere past the dooryard; past the mountains, and the distant clouds.  His grip tightened further, and I felt the edges of my ring press into my flesh.

   “When the day shall come, that we do part,” he said softly, and turned to look at me, “if my last words are not ‘I love you’–ye’ll ken it was because I dinna have time.”

2006

SherryLynn

@ABOotlanders Founder