The Liebster Award

Have you ever heard of the Liebster Award?  Yeah, I hadn’t either, but my friend Laura nominated me for it through her blog Isolated Thunder.  After doing some quick research, I’ve found that it’s less of an award and more of a platonic Valentine between bloggers – a bloggentine, if you will.

I think it’s ultimately meant to let people know about some of the worthwhile blogs out there, and to give readers a chance to get to know the bloggers they follow.  The Liebster Award is given to bloggers with less than or equal to 200 followers, and there are rules attached to it, a sacred code passed down through the centuries.
The Ancient Code of Liebster (The Rules):
  1. If you are nominated, you have to post eleven facts about yourself.
  2. Whomever nominates you does so with eleven questions for your to answer, and, in turn, you come up with eleven questions to be answered by the bloggers you’ve nominated.
  3. Nominate eleven bloggers you think deserve it.  Tell them that you’ve done so, give them a chance to participate in this, but you can’t re-nominate the person who nominated you.  The people you nominate must have no more than 200 followers.
Blogs and Bloggers I’ve Nominated (Not eleven, but I tried):
Facts about Mario Piumetti:
1…I have a terrible fear of heights.  I mean, a real fear.  I sometimes have trouble using a ladder.
2…If I had a theme song, it would be Night Prowler by AC/DC.  It’s kind of slutty and classy at the same time.

3…I love to cook, especially with eggs, mustard, and barbeque sauce.  A couple of times, I’ve actually thought about writing a cookbook.

4…In spite of my cynicism, I believe in love.  It’s rarely the stuff of fairy tales, but when you find it, it must taste like that perfect glass of whiskey.

5…Chameleons are my favorite animals.  They’re so bizarre and freaky-looking, and yet every part of them makes sense.

6…For the first year or so of grad school, I barely talked to anyone.  In fact, I was so isolated, I was nearly expelled.

7…As much as I love science fiction, I’ve never been to a sci-fi convention.  In fact, I don’t think I’ve been to a convention of any kind.

8…I suffer from insomnia a lot.  You might think being awake for hours on end leads to time to be productive, but it’s mostly time staring at my ceiling.  The only good thing about it is that I get to see sunrises.

9…I miss college not because there were missed opportunities – well, yes, there’s that – but what I really miss is spending time with my friends.  I don’t see them as much as I’d like to.

10…Chevy Chase annoys me.  In grad school, I stayed at a hotel where he was filming something as Clark Griswold, which was a major inconvenience to the hotel guests.  Finally, I asked, “Can’t he film his death scene already?”

11…When I was a kid, I was not a very big reader, which is something you don’t hear a lot from a writer.  I was very much hooked on TV, and I don’t think I really got into books until late in high school.
Laura’s Questions:
1…What motivates you?
Reading someone else’s work.  When I finish a really good book, I want to know how that writer felt seeing it put to print.  Reading bad writers also helps because if you’ve got more skill than them and they got into print, then you’ve got some chance of success.
2…What are you proud of?
I think getting my master’s is what I’m most proud of, even though they say an MFA is useless in today’s world.  It takes a few moments for me to process it when people say how happy they are for me.  For example, every fall I go back to my alma mater for a reunion with the English Department, and a lot of my professors tell me how proud they are of me.  I’d ask them, “Why?  You guys are PhD’s, and I’m an unheard-of nobody.”  The response would always be along the lines of, “Yeah, but you stuck it out to the end.”  They’re right.  Getting an MFA isn’t easy.  For two and a half years, I thought about quitting at least once a week, right up until the final days.
3…What is your current work-in-progress about?
Right now, I’m working on a novel about soldiers in the future born only to fight humanity’s wars.  No, wait.  I’m writing about a zombie plague.  No, no.  I mean, a robot rebellion.  Fuck.  I really have no idea what I’m doing.
4…Do you have anything in particular that you do, music that you listen to, incense burning, or any other thing that is part of your writing mode?
Sometimes I’ll listen to music when I write.  When I do, I can only listen to ten bands: AC/DC, Aerosmith, Alice in Chains, Eagles of Death Metal, Led Zeppelin, Metallica, Motley Crue, Nirvana, The Offspring, and The White Stripes.
5…What writer has had the most influence on your own work?
If I had to pick one writer, it’d be Robert Buettner.  He’s a fairly recent author whose first book Orphanage came out in 2004.  Reading it was like having my heart struck by lightning.  I’ve read great books over the years, but Orphanageconvinced me to take my own writing seriously.
6…What do you like most about yourself?
My dick.  Now, that sounds crude at first, but I’m referring to my figurative one.  I like how there are times when I can say what’s on my mind without hindrance.
7…Is there anything you’d like to learn at some point, like a hobby?
I’d love to learn how to fly a jet airplane.  Going faster than sound must be a thrill, but not everyone has a jet.  More mundanely, I’d probably want to learn how to play the electric guitar, or any guitar.
8…How old were you when you started writing?
The first time I did any creative writing was in seventh grade, so I must have been thirteen or fourteen at the time.
9…Are you happy with where you are in life now?
Actually, I’ve very unhappy with my life right now.  I thought it would have been completely different than what it is now.  Maybe it’ll get better.  Maybe I’ll wake up and it was all a bad dream.
10…If your house was on fire and you only had a second to grab a couple of things, what would they be?
My laptop and my flash drive.  All my writing is on those two, and losing that would be like losing myself.
11…Is there a story you have been hesitant to tell, and will you ever tell it?
There are a few.  I might tell them.  I might not.  If I do, they’ll come out through my writing.  Writing is like therapy for me.
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Mario’s Questions for Nominees:
1…What do you imagine your older self, ten years from now, saying to you?
2…What would you do if you woke up tomorrow illiterate?
3…If your favorite author asked you for advice, what would you say?
4…Has your creativity ever hit a wall?
5…If you had to lead people in group therapy, would you fear for them?
6…Do you feel that your writing is a choice or a compulsion?
7…Who do you think really shot first, Han or Greedo?
8…Has someone ever said or implied to you that being a writer was a waste of your life?
9…If you see a light at the end of a tunnel, do you think it’s Heaven, Hell, or a train?
10…What do you hope to leave behind in the world?
11…You’re writing your autobiography and have to pick a song for the title.  What song would it be?

2 thoughts on “The Liebster Award

  1. In response to #10: two words, Mario: Online backup. But I'm not one to talk. My mom keeps telling me I need to get Carbonite, which is only $5/month (and very cost effective, considering what the cost of losing all your work would be), but I have yet to do it.

    Oh, and I'm also afraid of heights. And I also isolated myself a lot in grad school. When I was isolating myself, I was pretending.


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