A Thank You. Recommending Bloggers // Blogmas Day 25

Merry Christmas y’all! I know Blogmas technically ended yesterday, but I wanted to add an extra day to thank everyone who has either been very inspirational to me, been a great friend, or just someone I love to read! I am going to be sharing some of my favorite bloggers for you guys to check out because they deserve the world!

Thank you all for everything. I wouldn’t be where I am without all of your love and support. This community means so much to me, and I just want to give back by shouting out some of my faves!

Merry Christmas again, and see you in the new year !

Meltotheany

Kalinasbookblog

Ambsreads

Taytalksbooks

Abookathought

Justanotherbookinthewall

Brilliantlybookish

Sprinklesofdreams

Emmareadstoomuch

Classyxbookreviews

Kerrithebookbelle

Midnightwanderer

Thecursedbooks

Tarynandherbooks

Drizzleandhurricanebooks

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Tag your favorite blogs down below! Let’s spread the joy :)

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more pretty book covers! // Blogmas Day 24

It’s already day 24 of Blogmas! Merry Christmas Eve :)

I just wrote this post recently, but I have so many more book covers that I want to talk about, so here is part two!

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This cover is just so pretty to me because it’s simple and clean, but different. There’s just something about it that always catches my eye, even if I don’t necessarily think I’ll like the book. It was just done really well.

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I think everyone agrees that this is a nice book cover. The gold compliments the flowers so nicely, and makes it pop. I am usually fan of simple covers, but I love how this one looks a lot.

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The reason that I love this one so much is because I didn’t even notice that the “mountain” in the back is a face. It’s just so subtle and nice. I’m obsessed with it.

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This cover. I don’t even know where to begin. It is gorgeous. Jellyfish are my favorite sea creatures, so this definitely caught my eye from the beginning. Also, the background is so nice and I love the font of the title.

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This has been one of my favorite book covers ever for a long time because it’s just so aesthetically pleasing. If I wrote a book, this is the type of cover I would want. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy the book as much. The cover makes up for it a little bit.

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Once again, Merry Christmas Eve! I’ll see you guys for the last day of Blogmas tomorrow! Enjoy the holidays :)

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24 hour read-a-thon recap // Blogmas Day 23

As some of you know, if you read my last TBR post, I just did a 24 hour read-a-thon with two amazing people! It was a lot of fun, and I definitely want to do more in the future :)

Let’s talk about how I did!

The TBR:

What I read:

I had about half of Emergency Contact left (200 pages or so), and I managed to finish it at around 11:30 at night. I kept alternating between listening to The Sun is Also a Star and reading Emergency Contact. Luckily, the The Sun audiobook was short, and since I listen at 2.5 speed, it took me less than 4 hours.

I finished it at about 7:30. It took me a long time to finish both because I took a lot of breaks and went out a couple of times throughout the day, but at least I managed to read 2 of them!

I started Dumplin’, but only got about 3 chapters in!

I’m definitely still counting this as a win because I managed to finish 2 books. I’m definitely happy with that.

I also had so much fun!

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This was a lot of fun, as I’ve mentioned! If you want to see more 24 hour read-a-thon posts, let me know! Or if you want to participate the next time I do one, definitely let me know, and I can make sure I announce it first :)

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favorite books of 2018 // Blogmas Day 22

Yesterday I accidentally titled my blog post Day 22 because I obviously can’t count, but I fixed that, and today is the true Day 22!

Today’s post is an exciting one- I am finally going to be sharing my top 10 favorite books of the year! I read 65 books this year, and I am currently in the middle of 2 others (but I don’t think they will make this list).

Out of those books, I found some of my absolute favorites, and I am so so excited to share them with you all! I put them in an order, but take it with a grain of salt. It was so hard to even narrow down my list, let alone rank these 10. I changed the order so many times because I was indecisive, so just remember that!

 

10. Looking for Alaska by John Green

I know that this is a bit of an unpopular opinion, but I loved this book. It was hard to get into at first, but I was hooked completely by the middle. It just gave me such a nostalgic feeling because this is a book that middle school me would have obsessed over. I can’t even really describe why I loved it so much, I just did.

9. Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

I’m going to be honest, I really didn’t think I would like this one, but I had the audiobook and decided I should just give it a chance. I ended up really liking it. It was such a beautiful, beautiful book. It made me really emotional, and I’m so glad I decided to pick it up.

8. To Make Monsters Out of Girls by Amanda Lovelace

This probably became my favorite poetry collection ever. It was so, so good. Amanda never fails to make me fall in love with her writing, but this one especially just spoke to me so much. I absolutely loved it, and I think everyone should give it a try.

7. The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

After reading Simon, I didn’t have high hopes for this one. I loved the Simon movie, but the book fell flat to me in so many ways. It was just so hyped, so I expected a lot more from it. But this one was amazing. I loved and related to the characters so so much, and I really enjoyed the story. It was definitely a surprise for me.

6. Serious Moonlight by Jenn Bennett

I love Jenn Bennett so so much, and 2018 is actually the year I discovered her books. This is one that doesn’t come out until 2019, but I was lucky enough to get an ARC and I am so grateful. The way she writes romance is unlike anyone else. She makes you fall in love with the characters and I was mesmerized by this one.

5. Radio Silence by Alice Oseman

This book melted my heart. I have been dying to read anything by Alice Oseman for so long, and this did not disappoint. It was so relatable and I love reading about podcasts, so this one was such a hit for me. The story was a bit sad at times, but it made you FEEL something, which I love.

4. The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn

This is the first year that I got into thriller/mysteries. I’ve always read a couple here and there, but I definitely read way more this year. This one was by far my favorite. I listened to the audiobook and it just had me so hooked. I could not get enough of it, and I highly recommend it if you like this genre.

3. The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo

This is a story told through poetry, and I absolutely loved it. It was just such an incredible story, and I love poetry, so the two put together was just so amazing. I also just related to it so much (not as much now, but definitely a few years ago). I just saw myself in the story, and it made me so happy.

2. Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett

Wow, would you look at that? Another Jenn Bennett. At the beginning of 2018, I couldn’t decide if I liked this one more, or Starry Eyes (also by Jenn Bennett). But the more I thought about it, the more this one was on my mind. Alex is my favorite YA love interest ever. He was just so smooth and knows how to make you fall for him. I was obsessed (and still am, let’s be honest). Wow, I just really loved this one.

1. Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman

I don’t even know what else to say about this one. It just spoke to me on so many levels, and I couldn’t get enough. I posted a review on it, so I’ll just direct you there because it sums up my feelings pretty well.

Honorable Mentions:

Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Sea of Strangers by Lang Leav

What Happened by Hillary Clinton

The New Neighbors by Simon Lelic

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If there are any on this list that you haven’t read, I highly recommend picking them up! I love all of these wholeheartedly, and 2018 was an incredible reading year for me. Please check these out :)

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Mental Health Book Bingo TBR // Blogmas Day 21

I have an exciting announcement! This January, I will be a host for the Mental Health Book Bingo with a group of lovely people! I can not wait, and I am so honored to be a part.

If you haven’t heard of it, it’s basically a bingo board that has a prompt on each box, and the goal is to read 5 books during the month of January (to make a line- diagonally, vertically, horizontally, etc). They each feature representation of different mental illnesses, or are related to it.

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Make sure to follow the twitter to keep up with updates and participate in various chats and sprints with us! Also, use the hashtag #mhbb to post your own updates!

The rest of the hosts are:

Wendy // whatthelogsaid

Inge // ingeswonderland

Laura // 

Lili // UtopiaMind

Ayah Assem // 

Sar // 

My TBR

I am going to be a bit of a rebel when it comes to my TBR. I actually won’t be following the typical bingo line because 2019 is a no-buy year for me, so I had to choose books that I own or have accessible to me- this means whatever I can get on the Libby app or from kindle.

Also, I chose more than 5 books because I’m a mood reader, and need some options!

However, I do plan on reading 5-6 books, so I will still be doing my part :)

 

 

My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga (Depression Rep)

Made You Up by Francesca Zappia (YA w/ MI)

When We Collided by Emery Lord (Free space)

Girl In Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow (PTSD rep)

The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan (2018 Release)

Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman* (Anxiety Rep)

Group Read- Not Chosen Yet

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I really encourage all of you to participate, even if you only read one book! It’s so important to read about all types of diversity, and this is a fun way to do it. Also, make sure to stay up to date by following the Twitter, where a lot of fun things will be happening :)

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writer’s block and finding inspiration- a discussion // Blogmas Day 20

Inspiration. This is something I struggle with constantly. Where does it come from and how do I keep it?

I haven’t exactly found the answer to this yet.

Personally, I deal with writer’s block constantly, and I am always looking for new sources of inspiration. As someone who loves to write, I find this to be incredibly frustrating. When looking at writers I look up to, it seems as though they are able to constantly produce content and never burn out.

I, on the other hand, go through periods where I can write for hours everyday, and then I’ll go weeks without writing at all. I hate the inconsistence, but I haven’t been able to commit to a daily schedule. Life and other commitments just get in the way sometimes.

So, how do you handle this?

Remember that it’s ok to take a break

Breaks are necessary. It’s important not to overwork yourself because you’ll end up burned out really quickly. I do not believe that a writer must write everyday. Sure, it definitely helps. But as long as you are practicing your craft often enough, at least 4-5 times a week, then you are fine. I’ve definitely even had extended periods where I didn’t write outside of school because I just couldn’t.

That doesn’t mean I’m not a writer. Exhaustion will not produce your best work. So take a nap, meditate, go for a run, etc. Writing can be done at any time.

…But don’t take too long

Yes, it is important to take a break sometimes, but don’t use it as an excuse for not writing. I am definitely guilty of this. I tell myself that I need a break or I need some time to rest, and then I never end up writing.

Sometimes you just need to force yourself to pick up that pen and paper. You don’t always need INSPIRATION necessarily, you just need MOTIVATION.

Usually the hardest part of doing anything is actually starting. If you have been dealing with “writer’s block” for a while now, then I want you to go and pick up a pen/pencil/marker/crayon/whatever and just w r i t e.

Let out whatever it is you’ve been holding in. Yes, you. Right now.

You might find that once you start, you won’t be able to stop, and you’ll forget why you were struggling so much before.

Remind yourself why you love it

Why are you writing to begin with? Writing is hard, and can be very painful at times. But if you’re doing it because it’s something you love to do, then you can push through the unbearable parts.

Just taking the time to remind yourself of this can be very beneficial. It can be the extra push you need.

Where I get inspiration:

My inspiration comes from a variety of sources, and it usually changes every time I write. But, here is a list of common places I get it from because I feel like it could be very useful

  • past poems/stories i’ve written
  • other poets
  • lines from books
  • song lyrics (this is a big one)
  • conversations i overhear
  • life experiences
  • pictures
  • dictionary- finding synonyms of random words (sounds strange but works)
  • movies
  • going outside for fresh air

I am a firm believer that consuming media allows you to create better. You learn from others, and you also develop your own style. You find what you like, as well as what you don’t, and use that to make your own art.

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Where do you get inspiration? Leave me a comment letting me know down below! I love to hear the process that other writer’s go through :)

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24 hour read-a-thon TBR // Blogmas Day 19

I am doing a 24 hour read-a-thon tomorrow with my friend Amanda, and I am so excited! I plan on doing a few of these while I’m on winter break because I’ll have a lot of time, and it’ll be nice to get more reading in.

I have so many books I want to get to, so this will be helping me out a lot! Let’s just jump into the TBR.

Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi

This is my current read, and I really want to finish it ASAP! It’s not my favorite read right now, but I’m enjoying it enough to keep reading. I’ve had this on my TBR for far too long though, so I really want to finish it.

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

I have the audiobook for this one, and It’s about 8 hours long. Since I listen to them at 2.5 speed, it’ll take less than 4 hours, so I definitely think I can do this! I’ve been meaning to read this for the longest time, too. Everything, Everything was okay, but I’ve heard nothing but amazing things for this one!

Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy

I finally got the e-book on the Libby app, but I only have about 7 days left to read it, so I definitely want to get to it ASAP. The movie just came out on Netflix, and I’ve been using all of my self-control to not watch it yet. It’s been rough, but if I finish it soon, then I can finally watch it!

EXTRA:

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The Foxhole Court by Nora Sakavic

If I manage to finish the other 3 (highly unlikely), then I want to continue this one! I only read about 1 or 2 chapters of it, but I’m really enjoying it so far. I probably won’t get to it, but just in case, it’s on the list!

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If you’ve read any of the books below, leave a comment letting me know what you’re thoughts were! See you tomorrow :)

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top 5 favorite book covers // Blogmas Day 18

Happy Tuesday! I finished my last final today, and I’m finally back at home! I will have so much more time for reading/writing/blogging for the next 5 weeks, and I’m so happy about that.

Today I want to talk about some of my favorite book covers because I am all about aesthetic. I am very particular about book covers, and I definitely have a style that I prefer over others.

Here are some of my five favorites (although there are so many more- i will definitely do a part 2!).

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This first cover is one that I do not own unfortunately, but I am absolutely obsessed with. It’s pretty simple, but the vibe I get from it is so nice. It is so aesthetically pleasing, and I am just obsessed with it, okay?

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I thought this cover was absolutely gorgeous the day I got it, and I am still obsessed with it! In person it is really shiny and reflective, which adds even more to it! The U.K. cover is also so amazing, and so are the other books in the trilogy. The little details all come together so nicely, and the font of the title fits so well.

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THIS BOOK IS SO GORGEOUS!!! In person, the entire thing is glittery and so pretty! I am so in love with it. It’s literally the tiniest book ever but just so so stunning. Unfortunately, this was not a favorite of mine writing wise, but the cover makes up for that a little bit.

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Okay, can we talk about this cover? How beautiful is this?? This is definitely one of my favorite books of the year, and I think the cover definitely added so much to this story. It fits so, so well with the book. I think it captures the beautiful writing of this story so well.

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This cover was just revealed today and I’m already in love with it! The design is so sleek yet I feel like it captures the books essence perfectly (even though I have not read it yet). It just seems really fitting, and I am in love with it! I am going to buy a copy ASAP, and you all should, too :)

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What are some of your favorite book covers? Be sure to let me know in the comments :)

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A look back on my first semester of college // Blogmas Day 17

Tomorrow is my last final for my first semester of college, and then I will be going home for the winter season! I can not wait for a break, finals KILLED ME.

But, today I want to reflect on how my first semester went, and how I feel about where I am right now :)

So, the first week was sort of rough for me. I actually wrote a post about my first week and how unhappy I was. I think the change was just bigger than I expected it to be, combined with the heat and not having air conditioning, and getting a little sick towards the end made me feel really cranky and out of place. I missed home and the familiarity of seeing my friends everyday. I didn’t feel like I belonged anywhere, and I just wanted to move onto the part where I have close friends.

Luckily, things have definitely looked up for me! I joined a few clubs on campus, got to know some amazing people, and I enjoyed all of my classes.

I definitely learned so much this semester- not just school wise, but also about myself.

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Some highs from the past few months:

  • Living on my own and having independence
  • Read my poetry out loud for an audience for the first time ever
  • Got straight As on my midterms!
  • (I think) I got straight As on my finals (grade aren’t out yet)
  • Made a ton of new friends
  • Had enough time to participate in NaNo this year (unsuccessfully, but still)
  • Went to a book signing
  • Made so many new online connections

The last two weeks have been finals, so I’ve been working really hard, and it’s been stressful.

But, I am super pleased with how my first semester of college went, and I can’t wait to see where it takes me in the future :)

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2019 Life Goals // Blogmas Day 16

I recently did a post where I talked about my reading goals for the year, but I wanted to include some of my “life-related” goals, too!

I am a super goal-oriented person, so setting to-do lists and making bucket lists is my absolute favorite thing ever. So, here are the things I hope I accomplish this year :)

Save $1k

I am the absolute worst at saving money. I made myself the goal of saving 1k in my bank account between September and December, but that just didn’t happen. I work a job at school which means I get paid minimum wage, and I can only work a certain number of hours a week. But, I plan on getting a job over summer break outside of school again so that I can save more money, and I’m just going to be more conscious about it in general.

Finish my poetry manuscript

I’ve had a name and theme idea for a poetry collection for months, and I eventually want to publish it. So, this year I want to work on drafting together all of the poems, organizing, editing, and then finalizing the details of it so that I can eventually send them off to a publisher or self-publish it!

Finish the first draft of my novel

I don’t plan on publishing an actual novel for a while, I want my debut as a novelist to be something I truly love. However, I want to finish the first draft of my current WIP, even though I know it will never be published. It’s great practice though, and would make me so happy!

End my second semester with straight As

I have been working really hard this year so far so earn the grades I have, and I want to keep this streak up next semester! School is my number one priority right now, and I want to do well.

Get a summer job/internship

Like I said earlier, I want to get a job over the summer to save up some extra $$. It really doesn’t matter where it is at this point, I just want to find something!

Hit 1k followers on here

I am so proud of this little blog I started when I was a little sophomore. It’s been through a lot of ups, downs, and changes, but I love where I am today. Numbers are not something I focus on heavily, but it would be nice to reach this number!

Hit 500 followers on my poetry instagram

Alongside the last goal, I also want to hit 500 followers on my poetry account because poetry is something I want to take more seriously this year. The reason for setting this number is just because it will hold me more accountable when it comes to posting. I want to make sure I consistently post on the account.

Go on a road trip with friends

I’ve always wanted to go on a road trip with my friends, but we’ve never been able to actually do it. It would be so much fun, and hopefully I get to do it in the future!

Let me know what your goals are in the comments below :) See you tomorrow!