2019 TBR- books i want to get to ASAP // Blogmas Day 14

Hello everyone! I missed two days of Blogmas because of school and other reasons, but I’m putting up 3 posts today (so make sure you check out the other 2 which should be up a couple hours after this one) to make it up to y’all!

I know I told you guys that for 2019, I’m not buying any new books- I am solely going to read the books I own but haven’t read yet, and will use the library more often. So, I thought that I would do a post about the books I definitely want to go to in the new year!

This is a long one, so I won’t be giving any explanations, sorry! (also these are not in any order)

Gerald’s Game by Stephen King

The Diviners by Libba Bray

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Afterparty by Ann Stampler

Someday, Someday Maybe by Lauren Graham

Killing Sarai by J.A. Redmerski

You by Caroline Kepnes

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

My Sister’s Grave by Robert Dugoni

My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, Jodi Meadows

A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavalaro

The Way I Used to Be by Amber Smith

The Thing About Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin

The House by Christina Lauren

If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman

An Unkindness of Magicians by Kat Howard

The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter

I Was Born for This by Alice Oseman

The Impossibility of Us by Katy Upperman

Sadie by Courtney Summers

Broken Things by Lauren Oliver

Becoming by Michelle Obama

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I am so so excited about all of these books, and I can’t wait to look back on this list at the end of the year and see how well I did! Leave a comment letting me know which ones I should get to ASAP :)

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2019 Reading Goals // Blogmas Day 12

2018 has been a weird year. It simultaneously felt like the longest and shortest year ever. There were so many ups (I graduated high school, went to prom, my first Bookcon, started college, I moved, etc), but there were also a few downs.

But now we’re moving onto a new year, which always brings hope and promise of better, exciting things.

For today’s post, I wanted to create a list of my reading goals for the upcoming year because I didn’t really follow any this year, and I thought it would be fun! It will also be fun to look back on them at the end of the year and see if I am still following any!

Read more diverse books

This first one is something that I already try to do whenever I can, but it’s definitely something I want to continue to do in 2019 and incorporate more of. I’m hoping that at least 40-50% of the books I read have a diverse aspect to them in 2019, which is definitely doable.

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Read one e-book a month

I recently purchased an Amazon tablet, so I want to make sure I get plenty of use out of it. I have been reading a lot of e-books recently, so this shouldn’t be a problem at all. I definitely have way over 12 e-books currently, and I really want to get the number down.

Don’t buy any books (5 freebies)

I’m trying to go for a ‘no-buy nineteen’ because I own way too many books that haven’t been read yet, and I definitely have enough to get me through the year. To give you an idea, I have over 90 books on my owned TBR, and I usually read about 60 books in a year. That means I have plenty of options for books.

I am going to allow myself 5 freebies though, because I want to be able to read some 2019 releases, and sometimes you just have to have a book, you know? For the most part though, I will only be reading books I already own.

Narrow physical TBR down to < 50 books

This goes along with the last one, but I really want to narrow my TBR down to less than 50 books. I miss the times when I would finish a book and then go to the bookstore to pick out my next one.

Although I’m not allowed to buy any books in 2019, I am still allowed to go to the library or borrow books on the Libby app- which is why this is a separate goal. You’d think that the two would be put together, but it’s possible for me not to buy any books but still not decrease my TBR.

Read one ARC a month

I have a ton of unread ARCs that I thought I would get to ASAP, but somehow they all piled up and now they are overwhelming and stressful. I plan on reading at least one a month (hopefully more), so that I can finish all of them by the end of the year. In fact, I am dedicating February to reading as many ARCs as I can because I really want to finish them all and get rid of the guilt hanging over me.

Read one book a week (52 total books)

I have read over 50 books a year for the past 2 years, so this one shouldn’t be a problem for me. For 2018, I set my reading challenge to 1 so that I would focus on quality over quantity, and I think I did that pretty well.

But, this year I want to set a reasonable goal that I know I can accomplish easily so that it is not stressful and will still allow me to read for quality.

Read at least 3 non-fiction books

I used to love reading memoirs, biographies, and other non-fiction stories. It stemmed from my desire to learn. I miss reading non-fiction, so I want to read some more of it this year. While I hope to read more than 3 NF books, I want to give myself an easy goal that I can easily accomplish.

Unhaul at least 5 books

I have a serious problem with collecting/hoarding books. There are some books that were sent to me by publishers or given to me as gifts that are duplicates of books I already have, and yet I never get rid of them. I feel like each book is a part of my soul, and giving them away is taking a part of me with them.

But, I know that I do not need all of the books I have, especially if I hated them/have multiple copies of them. I will try to donate/give away at least 5 this year (I know that sounds so easy, but it’s hard for me, ok?).

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Let me know what your goals for 2019 are! I’d love to hear :)

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NaNoWriMo tracking & reward system | week 1 update

Hello everyone! Today marks one week of NaNoWriMo! I’m happy to say that I’m actually surviving, and I’m on target with my word count. I didn’t know if I would even make it this far, so I’m extremely proud of myself and all that I’ve accomplished. I’m past 10k words at this point! That is so crazy to me.

I didn’t realize that all I needed to get myself to write was a bit of a push. I wish that I had forced myself to participate in NaNo in the past, like I did this year. Maybe I could have written multiple novels by now.

I think what’s really helping me is my tracking and reward system! If you didn’t see my last post, you can check it out here. I mentioned the Lightspeed Planner, which I have been using since the start of the month. I am absolutely loving it! I would highly recommend checking it out and possible buying one for yourself.

Here is what a blank page looks like:

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How I use it for NaNo:

Each day looks slightly different, but I always write my word count goal in either the “must do” or the “should do” spot because it is a huge priority for me. I don’t plan on ever putting it in the “could do” category unless I absolutely have more important things taking up my time. If it’s in the “should do” category, it’s because I have a big homework assignment that I need to complete before I can write. Otherwise, it always goes in the “must do.”

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As for the notes section, I use that to track my actual progress. I write down how many words I started the day with, then I write how many I ended with. On the right side, I put down the total words written that day. If I am on target for NaNo, I give myself a star sticker for that day. I really want to keep that streak going and have a star every single day, so this is another motivating factor. The planner also has a little pocket in the back, so I can keep all of my stickers with me!

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In the planner, there is also a performance tracker. You can rate yourself on a scale from 10-100% based off of how well you performed in a given day. The way I use it is that every 10%=200 words. Therefore, 100% means I wrote 2000 words! It’s very hard for me to write 2k words in a day, so I haven’t yet reached this. However, it motivates me to push myself so that I can get as high up as possible. My highest was 90% one day, which I am extremely proud of!

Rewards System:

The back of the planner contains some pages for you to set your goals. I’m using this as a rewards system for each milestone I hit in NaNo. Here’s how it looks:

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  • 10k words- Chick-fil-a trip
  • 25k words- clothes shopping
  • 40k words- buy myself a book
  • 50k words- get the new Kindle Paperwhite!!

This has been a great way to push myself to keep going. I want the Kindle Paperwhite so bad, so I’m only letting myself get it once I hit 50k words. Ideally, this would be by November 30th, meaning I won NaNo. However, if I don’t make it, I’m still going to use this to make sure I finish this draft after NaNo is over!

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I really hope you guys enjoyed this post! I am loving my system and how well it’s been working for me so far. Let me know if you have a system of your own and how it works for you, cause I’m always open to new ideas.

Also, check out the lightspeed planner, which you can buy here!

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top 10 books of 2017

2017 was a really amazing reading year for me, and while I am sad for it to be over, I am also really excited to see how well 2018 goes for me! I read so many great books, so narrowing this book down was extremely difficult! But, I have done it, and here are my top 10 books of the year!

10. Never Never

I absolutely love Colleen Hoover, and I have read so many of her books (and I own so many more). I read this e-book towards the beginning of the year, and while it is really short, it was so fascinating. I haven’t gotten to part 2 or 3 yet (I have no excuse), but just the first part was enough to make me fall in love. Hopefully I will get to the other 2 very soon!

9. Eighteen Years

I just recently finished reading this but it was a great collection of poetry! I wanted to read it for such a long time and then I finally got around to it. It was so emotional and strong.

8. Always and Forever, Lara Jean

This is the finally book in the trilogy, and it was my favorite. It was such a great way to end the story of Lara Jean. I fell in love with the characters even more, and it was so sad to think that it was going to be over. I really enjoyed the book, mostly because the series was really important to me.

7. Caraval

Coming in at number 7 is this widely known book! I absolutely loved reading it and I was so fascinated the entire time. The plot twist was crazy, and the world was so interesting. I am glad I decided to read it, even though it’s not something I would normally pick up.

6. Illuminae

This is another book that I wouldn’t normally gravitate towards but I got it for a really good price online. I was a bit confused by it when I first started it, but soon I was completely hooked. I absolutely need to read the second book, but I haven’t had a chance to pick it up yet. I highly recommend giving it a try because the style was so unique.

5. The Princess Saves Herself in this One

This was the first book I finished in 2017, and it set my year off on a good start. When I think of poetry, this is the book that comes to mind. Since reading it in January, I now own a total of 3 copies (all signed) and I have read it twice. The poetry is amazing, the author (Amanda Lovelace) is so sweet, and the message is empowering. I suggest this book to everyone and I talk about it so often.

4. Talking as Fast as I Can

If you love the show Gilmore Girls (like I do), then you have to read this book! It is written by Lauren Graham (Lorelai) and it is an autobiography. She talks all about the show in a comedic way, as well as different events in her life. It was so interesting to listen to (I got the audiobook) especially in her voice.

3. Everything Leads to You

This book really showed me a different side of the film industry that I hadn’t thought about in the past, so it was so interesting to learn about. The entire story was also really cute. I will probably be re-reading this soon, too.

2. The Hate U Give

I’m sure you have already heard about this book, but if you haven’t, you need to go read it right now. It was so POWERFUL. It really took my breath away. The story is very relevant to the world right now and deals with race issues (black lives matter movement). I think this needs to be read by everyone, and it would be a great book to read at school.

1. Turtles All the Way Down

This is John Green’s latest novel, and it was BEAUTIFUL. It was such a relief to read a book that accurately portrayed OCD and anxiety. People often think I am exaggerating when my compulsions get the best of me, but they are true. I wish I could hand all of my friends this book to read in order to understand me better. I often don’t know how to phrase my own anxieties, but he did it in the perfect way.

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What were some of your favorite books of the year? I would love to know! Leave it down in the comments :)

xo, Jessica

my current thoughts about the book community

When I was in middle school (and even younger than that) I went to the library or bookstore at least weekly, and I picked up tons of books. I chose books simply based on the cover and the synopsis- especially the synopsis. The more involved I become in the book community, the more I find myself doing less of that.

I now tend to pick up books based on what other people think of them without even forming my own opinions or considering if I will like the book or not. I can’t even tell you how many books I bought just because I heard people in the book community like them. I don’t even know what half of the books I buy are about at this point!

I began reading fantasy books more and more often, which I don’t even like. I’m more of a contemporary and mystery/paranormal reader. Sure, there were a few fantasy books I enjoyed reading, but there were so many that I forced myself to read just so I could be part of the loop.

Sometimes I feel like I’m going to be shamed for not reading or not enjoying something that was incredibly hyped by everyone. I also don’t want to attend any book events because I know that there are a TON of books I haven’t read and I don’t want people to think I don’t belong there.

Basically, the point of this post is to say that I want to start reading for myself again. I don’t want to fall out of love with reading because I don’t enjoy what I pick up. I also want to say that this is a criticism of myself, not the book community. There are so many wonderful people and the place is so welcoming. This is just how I am currently feeling!

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Do any of you feel the same way or am I alone in this one? Have you picked up any books solely because of the book community, without even knowing what it’s about?

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automatic read authors

I saw this topic on numerous Youtube videos, and I thought it was incredibly interesting. I am not one to read every single book by one author, but recently there have been many I tend to pick up more.

  1. Colleen Hoover- She is the first adult fiction author I read and enjoyed a couple of years back. Since the first two books I read, Maybe Someday and Ugly Love, I have fallen in love. I read two more of her books after, and I own a ton more that I have yet to read.
  2. Nina LaCour- I LOVED Everything Leads To You by Nina so I had to check out We Are Okay a few months later. While I didn’t like it as much as the Everything, it was still amazing. I know I will read the rest of her books soon.
  3. Stephanie Garber- She only has one book out (Caraval), but I really really liked it and I can not wait for the second book to come out. I know I will pick it up.
  4. John Green- Everyone knows who he is, and chances are you have read one of his books. I haven’t read all, but I enjoy his writing, and I can’t wait to read his new book.
  5. Tamara Ireland Stone- Again, I have only read one of her books, but Every Last Word spoke to me on such a deep level, and I really want to get my hands on more of Tamara’s books.
  6. Amanda Lovelace- Of course she has to be included in this list. She is a poet who wrote The Princess Saves Herself In This One. I own both her self-published book, and the one published by Andrews McMeel. If you haven’t read Princess, give it a shot before her next book comes out (which I will be reading the day it comes out!).

Thanks for reading! Let me know who some of your favorite authors are in the comments.

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24 hour read-a-thon

12:02 am
i decided to try the 24 hours of reading trend that I first saw done by Zoe! She recently hosted a second read-a-thon but I wasn’t able to do it that day! So here I am doing my own.

It’s currently midnight, meaning the start of the 24 hours. I’m a huge morning person so I don’t stay up late at night. I am struggling to stay up even now. So, I’ll just start with telling you all my TBR for today!

Then I plan on waking up around 7 to begin reading!

So here’s the TBR-
– Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins- I’m currently on page 108
– History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera
I will see you in the morning when I begin reading!

8:28 am
I woke up later than I had hoped to (7:50), so by the time I ate breakfast and got ready for the day, I am just now starting to read.

I am starting with Anna and the French Kiss! I’m going to try to read 100 pages in one sitting. I have some tea in hand, so I should be good.

9:42 am
I read up to page 177 in Anna. I decided to take a little break to watch some youtube videos.

I’m planning on reading more of Anna in an hour or so when I go to barnes and noble. I’ll keep you updated!

11:38 am
i’ve been at barnes and noble for about an hour now but I didn’t do much reading. I had to study for the SAT and do some writing. I only got to page 202 of Anna so far.

When I get home I plan on starting History to change things up a bit.

2:08 pm
I am finally at page 307 of Anna, which means I have less than 100 to go!

Im going to start History now, and take a little food break!

6:49 pm
The last time I updated this, I said I would start History. I did, but only 17 pages.

I couldn’t stop thinking about Anna, so I decided to finish that book instead. Which was amazing, by the way. I ended up giving it a 4/5 stars. I am extremely happy with how it ended because I didn’t love it in the beginning.

I am now going to continue reading History until I need to pick up my sister. Then I will run a bath (and read in there for a bit) before getting ready for bed. I am going to stay up as long as it takes to finish History. It shouldn’t be long though, as the book is under 300 pages.

11:03pm
I only read 61 pages of History and now it’s time for bed! I was going to stay up late until I found out I was working early tomorrow morning.

I wish I had read more but I decided to watch a movie with my mom instead.

As a whole, this read-a-thon was less successful than I had hoped. However, I did read more than I usually do in a day.

I read a total of 325 pages. Not impressive but at least I finished a book. I did end up getting busier as the day went on, so I’m not going to be too hard on myself.

I really enjoyed this experience though, and I think next time I will stay up all 24 hours to get the most reading done.

Anyways, let me know if you enjoyed this post and if you would like to join me next time so I’m not doing this alone (and so that I’ll be more motivated)!

See you soon,

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