Snapshot 7/31/20 // “The Cicadas Are Singing & So Is Taylor Swift”

Currently listening:Homecoming Queen?” – Kelsea Ballerini & THE ENTIRE ALBUM OF FOLKLORE BY TAYLOR SWIFT (such a mood)
Currently watching: The Bold Type
Currently playing: Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Currently reading: American Gods by Neil Gaimon

Is it weird that I think that the music of cicadas in the summertime is one of the most beautiful sounds to listen to in the world? Because I really do, and honestly it is one of the things keeping me grounded in these high flying times.

Summer is and has always been my safe place. I would much rather be hot than cold. I would much rather have more daylight than more night. I would much rather be licking mint ice cream off my lips than hot cocoa from my chin. That’s not to say I don’t love the cold, or the night or hot cocoa. I do. I really do. But summer has always been special to me. In summer, I have no worries… usually.

This summer is different. It looks like summer, feels hot like summer, and sounds like summer with the cicadas outside but as we all know everything is different. Part of me, which I never thought I would actually feel in my entire life, wants summer to end and the fall to come and by doing that hopefully bring an end to this pandemic. The rest of me though is struggling to stay in the moment and appreciate life for what it is right now. Summer… my favorite season…

So that’s where I’m at.

July Goals:

  1. Continue researching, world building, prewriting, plotting, and outlining my WIP! Check, yes.
  2. Become more interactive on social media! Check. I might have been a little less interactive this month but I was still ON social media so this is a win.
  3. Continue making submissions with my writing! Check! I was actually asked to submit something this month by Radiate Literary, which is a super cool online literary journal promoting young voices. (If you want to check out the poem I wrote here’s the link……. #kthanksbye #awkwardselfpromo).
  4. Continue to do yoga every morning! Checkity-check. Check.

August (the month which might be when my birthday is…) Goals:

  1. Continue researching, world building, prewriting, plotting, and outlining my WIP! I actually started writing the first draft of my WIP of 2020 this month. (I KNOW.) I didn’t even finish world building or outlining or my original intention of planning… BUT the story called to me. So, I started writing.
  2. Become more interactive on social media! My handle is @jaiiiilynn4 for both Insta and Twitter so let’s connect! I’m keeping this goal on here because I definitely need to do better. Even though I still checked them somewhat I have to be more proactive. I’m trying. I promise.
  3. Continue making submissions with my writing! Trying to make this one a habit. I need better time management skills though I feel. This is the goal that honestly falls to the wayside the most.
  4. Be nicer to myself. This one sounds easy but honestly, it might be the hardest goal on this list. I have a tendency to beat myself up pretty badly when I can’t do something I planned to do. I am also the type who constantly assigns blame to myself for things I in no way have any control over. So, this month (my birthday month which is fitting!) I am going to try being kinder to myself and indulge in some self care.

What I Read:

He’s Just Not That Into You: The No-Excuses Truth to Understanding Guys by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo. This was so eye opening to read… and brutally honest. This books is meant to give you a major reality check when it comes to dating and guys, and let me tell you it doesn’t disappoint. You will feel a bit naive and, dare I say, stupid after reading it but!!! Not to say also full of hope. With just as many red flags it points out it also uplifts you equally as much. Every chapter ends on a positive note and tells you just how much you are worth finding a good guy, one who is not afraid to show up and be there for you. You’re fabulous, amazing, smart and funny. WE ARE!!!! And we deserve someone who appreciates all of that and doesn’t take us for granted.

What I’ll Be Writing:

  • Poetry- posted every Wednesday
  • Living Life vignettes- posted first Friday of the month
  • Alternate Reality flash fiction collection- posted the last Tuesday of the month
  • Writing Is Hard|WIP Writing Update- posted in the middle of the month
  • Snapshot! monthly recap- posted the last day of every month
  • Announcements- posted as needed

All of my fiction writings are independent of each other and stand alone so no need to read any of the previous work to understand. If you want more information about any of the above, you can check out the About page on my site or just click here.

(Omg look at this gif! It’s so cute!! {not really relevant but… w/e!})

July Round Up of Posts from Wonderful People:

Each of these posts touched my heart and I just wanted to share them with you all in the chance that they might touch your heart too. Times are tough and life is short. Any bit of happiness helps ❤

My Round Up of July Posts:

Hey, hey, hey… have you guys heard Taylor’s new album? Like for real Folklore is my life right now. And forevermore…. it’s too real and raw and I’m drowning and swimming and, like, hiding in the woods in a witch hut surrounded by magic and mystery and sadness and hope with ladybugs flying all around me all at the same time…

What are you listening to?

Till next time,

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The Awesome Blogger Award!

I’m sending much love your way Sophie for nominating me for this award!! If you don’t follow Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner, I urge you to do so RIGHT NOW. She is an amazing writer and a wonderful friend to me here in the blogging community!

Rules

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you
  • Tag this post with #AwesomeBloggerAward
  • Answer all the questions given to you
  • Nominate some people
  • Write 10 questions for them to answer

Sophie’s Questions for Me!

  1. What are your favorite books of 2020 so far?

I’m reading American Gods right now for the first time and I love it so much that I’m savoring it slowly. It’s like a fine wine and it needs to be taken in sips, lol. I also really loved my re-read of The Great Gatsby that was my first read of the year. Those are the two that jump to the front of my mind off the bat.

2. Where do you write your blog?

Well…. everywhere. I write at work if it’s a busy day but usually somewhere in the sanctity of my home. At my desk or in the living room or in the kitchen. When this pandemic is over though I’m definitely going to try swinging by a coffee shop or the library to mix it up a little!

3. Which type of blog post do you like reading the most?

I love reading poetry. Give me poetry any day and every day. It feeds my soul well.

4. Which type of blog post do you like writing the most?

Haha! Well, poetry because it’s short and sweet and/or packs a punch right to your heart.

5. What book format do you like the most? (e.g. physical book, eBook, audiobook?)

PHYSICAL BOOKS ALL THE WAY! My eyes are so sensitive and I already spend so much time at a computer so when I want to relax I need to feel the pages in my hands, breathe in that book scent and give my eyes a well deserved rest.

6. If you could travel to one place in the world, where would you travel to?

I want to go to London. I’ve always wanted to go there and right now it feels so far away and so out of reach. Literally and metaphorically.

7. Favorite dessert?

Ice creammmmmmm.

8. If you are stranded on an island, and you can choose to keep either your cellphone or a lifetime supply of books, which would you choose? ( Clarification: Your phone has internet and cell reception but you cannot use it to get yourself off the island.)

Lifetime supply of books. (But also I wish I could have the phone to to call my family and friends…. this one is hard….)

9. Which book do you remember most vividly?

Clockwork Angel because I have read that book WAY too many times, and it has given me dramatically skewed interpretations of men.

10. Would you rather eat good food or wear fashionable clothing?

Good food all the wayyyyyyy.

My Nominations

Since I’ve been doing a lot of nominations recently I’ll leave this up to anyone who reads this post and wants to participate!

My Questions

  1. If you could time travel what period would you travel to?
  2. What song would you not mind playing on repeat for the rest of your life?
  3. What is your favorite musical?
  4. Have you ever eaten a ghost pepper, and would you want to?
  5. Are there some things in life you want but KNOW for a fact you will never get them?
  6. Do you ever feel like life isn’t real sometimes and that we are all dreaming or trapped in a video game? #Meta
  7. Do you believe in love at first sight?
  8. Which Disney princess do you relate to the most?
  9. What is your favorite thing about summer?
  10. If you could meet any athlete who would you pick?

Thanks for reading everyone! What are your answers to the questions I was asked? Let me know! Now I’m heading outside to go enjoy the summer sun!

Till next time,

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Ideal Inspiration Blogger Award 2020

I’m so grateful and awed that Princess @The Mindful Modus nominated me for the Ideal Inspiration Blogger Award! She is such a sweet, kind person and I look forward to reading all of her posts. They are so creative and give me great ideas for how to live a better life and enjoy my time more! If you’re not following her already GO RIGHT NOW AND FOLLOW HER!

Rules

  1. Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to his/her blog.
  2. Answer their questions.
  3. Nominate up to 9 other bloggers and ask them 5 new questions.
  4. Notify the nominees through their blog by visiting and commenting on their blog.
  5. List the rules and display the “Ideal Inspiration Blogger Award” logo.
  6. Provide the link of the Award creator of ideal inspiration blogger award as Rising Star from https://idealinspiration.blog

Princess’ Questions for Me!

  1. Which of your blog posts is your favorite?

Great question! That’s like asking which post is my favorite child haha! All of them mean something to me but if I had to pick one right now off the top of my head I would say my poem “Sigh” because it’s just so true to how I feel right now.

2. What’s keeping you busy these days?

So much, too much. I’m going to work, then coming home and writing (or falling asleep at an early hour omg, ever since COVID my sleep schedule has been so wonky!). I’ve also been listening to a lot of music these days. I’ve always listened to music but right now I’m living like my ear buds are a part of my body.

3. What’s something that recently made you happy?

I just finished eating dinner and that made me REALLY happy.

4. What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?

The best compliment I have ever received believe it or not is this “You are doing enough.” I have a tendency to push myself to breaking so to hear that phrase is one of the most calming things for me.

5. If you could teach one subject in school what would it be?

English! Bring on Shakespeare, angsty teenagers and all the great literature I am going to push them into loving!

My Nominations

Since I’ve been doing a lot of nominations recently I’ll leave this up to anyone who reads this post and wants to participate!

My Questions

  1. What animal would you be in another life?
  2. What color do you detest the most?
  3. What is the most ridiculous thing you would do for money?
  4. Have you ever met someone you only knew for a short period of time but they changed you forever?
  5. Are there memories you want to forget?

Thanks for reading everyone! Stay safe out there!

Till next time,

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Inspiring Blogger Award

Honestly, I don’t know where to start. I feel so humbled and honored and just, downright grateful to have been nominated for such a lovely award. AND by such a lovely person to boot. Xandria and I met through blogging this year and I am just so grateful. She is so inspiring to me, and she has such a positive powerful voice in the community. ALL OF YOU READING THIS RIGHT NOW GO FOLLOW HER!! She is going to go so far in her life, I can feel it, and she is just an all around wonderful person. To have been nominated for this award by her just floored me, because she is MY inspiration. ❤

Rules

  • Thank the person who chose you.
  • Include the logo in your post.
  • Answer the questions asked to you.
  • Choose the bloggers who’ve inspired you (maximum 10.)
  • Add a feature of their blog which you admire.
  • Ask them five questions.

Xandria’s Questions for Me!

  1. What surprised you about blogging?

Honestly, how time consuming it was. I devote at least two hours a day to my blog, and even though it takes a while the results and hard work have been worth it!

2. What inspires you the most?

Oh, I’m inspired by everything. Literally everything. From the first bite of watermelon I take once summer begins to the last snowflake stuck to my boots right before winter ends. There is inspiration all over. Just not everyone sees it 😉

3. If you could teach every single person on this earth one thing, what would it be?

Love beats indifference and hate every time. Love is the most powerful force in the world. It is the magic we are all searching for… love, love, just love

4. What is one blogging tip you want to share with your followers?

When you are just starting out it’s okay to not know what you want your blog to be about. It’s okay to post what you like and figure out what works. It’s okay for your follower build to take a long time. Blogging is effort and perseverance and if you love it… you’ll never work a day at it!

5. What are 3 things you do everyday that bring you joy?

Yoga, drinking water, and taking my dog for walk out in the sunshine. Good vibes all around!

My Nominations

  • Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner– Sophie was my first friend when I started blogging just over a year ago. She is so kind, smart and hard working I know she will succeed in anything she chooses to do with her life. Her writing skills are going to take her far and I can’t wait to see one of her books on the shelf in Barnes and Noble for me to buy! Keep going Sophie!!
  • Jenni @ xo, Jenni – Jenni and I met these past few months through blogging and I swear we are like kindred spirits. All good vibes here. I adore her blog and how in depth she gets with each of her posts. Her philosophy is just so heart warming and positive. You can really feel the care she puts in. Anytime she comments on one of my posts too I always walk away with a smile and the feeling like wow, she gets me
  • Mary Drover @ Mary and the Words – I’ve always admired Mary’s blog. She is unafraid to speak her mind and get out there and live her life. I really look up to her and she is one of the hardest working writers I know. Mary, there’s no doubt in my mind one of your books is going to be published one day and thank you for opening my eyes up to yoga. Since I’ve started doing a yoga practice daily all my stress pains have magically gone away… I’m loving it 😀

No pressure to do this by the way, I just wanted to highlight you guys and show my gratitude. A lot of us bloggers don’t get paid for the work we put out but I see you guys working hard and I’m cheering for you all! ❤

My Questions

  1. If you had one day left to live, what is one thing you know you would do?
  2. What is the accomplishment you are most proud of in your life?
  3. If you had to listen to one song on repeat for the rest of your life what would it be?
  4. If you could change just one thing about the world we live in today what would it be?
  5. Do you believe things happen for a reason?

Thanks for reading everyone! Now go out there and live your best life ❤

Till next time,

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The Original Outstanding Blogger Award

When I started blogging I had no idea where I was, what I was doing or where everything was going to go. Now just over a year in I can’t imagine my life without it. It’s become such a daily part of my routine. I feel like I’ve grown as a person and all the writing that I do here in my own little corner of the internet has connected me to more people all over the world than I thought I would meet in a lifetime. That being said, I feel really honored to have been nominated for this award! Thanks so much to S.J. Barnard, a fellow writer who I was lucky enough to meet through blogging. If you haven’t check out their blog yet you simply must! One day all of us aspiring authors are going to have our books out in the world and together I know we can do it!

Rules

  1. Provide the link to the creator’s original award post. (very important: see why in step 5)
  2. Answer the questions provided.
  3. Create 7 unique questions.
  4. Nominate 10 bloggers. Ensure that they are aware of their nomination. Neither the award’s creator nor the blogger that nominated you can be nominated.
  5. At the end of 2020, every blog that ping-backs the creator’s original post will be entered to win the 2020 Outstanding Blogger Award!

This award was created by Colton Beckwith.

S.J.’s Questions for Me!

  1. You are invited for a dinner with God. He tells you that you can invite anyone (dead or alive, fictional or nonfictional) to the dinner. Who would you invite, and why?

John Denver, because I find his music so relaxing and I would love to just speak to this man whose songs never fail to calm me down after getting anxious. Sailor Pluto, from Sailor Moon, because she was always my favorite senshi and I just always wanted to get to know her better. She was the most mysterious of them all and she had one of the hardest, loneliest jobs guarding the gate of time. I just want to get into her head a little. The last would probably be Niccolò Paganini because he was one of the greatest violinist to ever live (and I’m curious to know if he actually sold his soul to the devil…)

2. If you were a music period, which one would you be? (Baroque, Classical, Beethoven, Romantic, 20th century, Modern  → Pop culture)

Oh, I love this question! I’m probably Classical. I always stay to true to my roots and dress for comfort other than style. I’m more on the reserved side too, personality wise. Give me a sweater, shorts, a good book and a cup of tea and I’m good all day.

3. Would you rather be named after a university or a city (could be a road, idk)

A city! Someplace filled with winding streets, delicious cafes and interesting aspiring dreamers.

4. Would you rather work in a music studio or in a book store?

Hard one… but I have to go with my life long reading ambition even though music is very important to me too. So I would have to say bookstore but I still love my violin very much.

5. Top three of your greatest authors?

Diana Wynne Jones, Leigh Bardugo and Erin Morgenstern.

6. Do you have a book-character crush? If so, who was your first?

Don’t we all have a crush, haha? Will Herondale is my type of guy. Boys who read are very attractive. Especially if they are witty with blue eyes lol.

7. If you were the book’s antagonist, which type would you be?

  1. the evil villain
  2. the insane villain 
  3. the envious villain 
  4. the ethical villain 

Omg, honestly I would probably be the ethical villain because I’m such a goody two shoes but I don’t know some part of me (maybe my lack of sleep right now lol) is saying I could be the insane villain…. good question!

My Nominations

No pressure to do this by the way, I just wanted to highlight your fantastic blogs! If any of you reading this post haven’t checked them out yet I insist you must!!!

My Questions

  1. What is one specific moment in time that changed your life forever?
  2. What is one dream you had that you know you will never forget?
  3. What is the best part of blogging for you?
  4. Do you think you would survive a zombie apocalypse?
  5. What is your ultimate comfort food?
  6. One song that you need in your life forever?
  7. What is your definition of happiness?

Thanks for reading! Happy summer y’all!

Till next time,

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Snapshot 6/30/20 // “The Month Where I Find I’m Actually Super Busy”

Currently listening:Imagination“- Shawn Mendes
Currently watching: Sense8 / Looking For Alaska
Currently playing: Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Currently reading: American Gods by Neil Gaimon

Finally it’s summer.

I feel like I’ve been waiting a millennium for this season to roll around and now it is actually here. 2020 I thought was going to be a whirlwind and, in a way, it definitely was, I’m just glad that the sun is here now and the heat and all the great feelings that only summer can bring. June was a busy month, so busy in fact I only got around to reading one book which is highly unusual for me. On the bright side though, did I mention it’s SUMMER???

(Me, for the next three months)

June Goals:

  1. Continue researching, world building, prewriting, plotting, and outlining my WIP! Check. World building brick by fucking brick.
  2. Stick with my NEW blog posting schedule!Check.
  3. Become more interactive on social media! Check.
  4. Continue making submissions with my writing! Check.
  5. Continue practicing the piano and my violin! Check.
  6. Do yoga every morning! Check, check, check. CHECK.

July (the month where there’s so many fireworks) Goals:

  1. Continue researching, world building, prewriting, plotting, and outlining my WIP! World building is time consuming it appears. As Kaz put it, “brick by brick” my dears, brick by fucking brick. Look forward to the writing update for this month! I’m sort of in love with doing this post because it is helping me keep more accountable for working on my WIP and that’s what I need!
  2. Become more interactive on social media! I’m using Twitter a lot more this year than I ever had and slowly stepping back into Instagram. Just got to keep building momentum with this and eventually it will become second nature. My handle is @jaiiiilynn4 for both so let’s connect!
  3. Continue making submissions with my writing! Just keep swimming.
  4. Continue to do yoga every morning! I feel good! My body feels so much better after incorporating this into my daily routine. Every morning I just. do. it. Then the stress pains stay away all day. Ha ha! Be gone pain!

What I Read:

God Is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Run the World — and Why Their Differences Matter by Stephen R. Prothero. I originally picked this book up for research for my WIP but I found I loved it more than I would have thought. This book is so informative and really breaks down the major religions of the world into ways that we all can really understand. I highly recommend it for everyone to read, and really everyone should read this book. Information can only bring us closer to understanding one another whereas ignorance will only bring us apart.

What I’ll Be Writing:

  • Poetry- posted every Wednesday
  • Living Life vignettes- posted first Friday of the month
  • Alternate Reality flash fiction collection- posted the last Tuesday of the month
  • Writing Is Hard|WIP Writing Update- posted in the middle of the month
  • Snapshot! monthly recap- posted the last day of every month
  • Announcements- posted as needed

All of my fiction writings are independent of each other and stand alone so no need to read any of the previous work to understand. If you want more information about any of the above, you can check out the About page on my site or just click here.

June Round Up of Posts from Stellar People:

My Round Up of June Posts:

All in all, I’m glad from the very core of my soul that summer is here. I hope it stays a long time…..

What are y’all doing for summer? Any interesting goals for July?

Till next time,

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Vincent Ehindero Blogger Award

I just want to shout out to Alexis @ A Latta Words for nominating me for this award. It means a lot. ❤ She is a fabulous writer and if you haven’t checked out her blog yet I highly recommend you do and give her a follow!

Also I want to thank Vincent Ehindero for creating this award in the first place! He has such a positive voice in the community and his creation of this award is just helping spread the love in these turbulent times. If you haven’t checked out his blog, please do and give him a follow!

Rules

  • Thank the person who nominated you with a link to their blog.
  • Make a post of the award (with a photo of the logo).
  • Post the rules.
  • Ask 5-10 questions of your choice.
  • Nominate 10-30 other bloggers (or more) and notify them.

Alexis’ Questions for Me!

  1. What began your journey as a blogger?

My journey began a long, long time ago if I really think about it. I guess when I picked up my first book! That’s where my love of reading started, which lead me to wanting to write which lead me to blogging 😀

2. What inspires you?

Oh, everything. The world is such a strange, terrible and beautiful place. There’s inspiration everywhere.

3. Who is your biggest influence and why?

My mother. I love her to bits and pieces. When I said I wanted to be a writer and not an accountant she supported me without question. I owe a lot to my mom, and wouldn’t be who I am today without her.

(me, having a subtle goal of trying to use Tangled gifs through this whole post)

4. What’s your favorite book and why?

I’ve probably said this a lot haha, but it’s The Book Thief. That book changed my life, and was the first novel that ever touched my soul. I remember seeing it on a shelf in my eight grade English class and every opportunity I got I would reach for it on the shelf to skim through. I bought it soon after to read. I guess it called my name before I even read it.

5. What’s your biggest dream?

One day, I hope to publish a book.

6. Where is your dream destination?

I’ve always wanted to go to London! I’ve passed through Heathrow airport twice but never set foot in England proper. It’s always been a dream of mine and one day I plan on getting there!

7. If you had three wishes, what would you wish for? (Not more wishes)

Omg this is a good one! But, honestly, if given that power I wouldn’t use the wishes on myself. I would use them for the world, and my family and friends. I have everything I need, and am grateful everyday for my life.

My Nominations

No pressure to do this by the way, I just wanted to highlight your great blogs! Sorry if my questions are a little offbeat too, lol. I was racking my brain for interesting ones!

My Questions

  1. If you had to give up one thing you loved for the rest of your life, what would you pick?
  2. Is there a book that changed your life? And if so, how?
  3. What is one place you always wanted to go to except you can’t because it doesn’t exist anymore?
  4. What’s one thing you wish you could tell your younger self?
  5. What is one movie you loved growing up that still fills you with nostalgia today?
  6. Have any of your dreams come true?
  7. Do you believe things happen for a reason?

Thanks for reading to the end! Here’s my last Tangled gif to brighten your day!

(me, subtly enjoying my success on the gif goal, wooooo!)

Till next time,

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Snapshot 5/31/20 // “Living Really is a Giant Adventure”

Currently listening:I Wanna Get Better” – Bleachers
Currently watching: Oh My Venus
Currently playing: Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Currently reading: God Is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Run the World — and Why Their Differences Matter by Stephen R. Prothero

May, oh May, oh Mayyyyyyy!!

I enjoyed May immensely. I felt like I was so productive this month so please let me revel in it a bit universe because I am in such a great mood! I did a lot of thinking (all good things, all good things!) and in June I’ll be ready to implement some of my thoughts into my blog and writing! Oh, and I’m so excited about it because I feel like I learned so much. I read so many books, researched so many topics, and let myself have some fun because you know even though we are all trapped in our houses might as well enjoy it, right?

(Me, living my best life surrounded by learning)

May Goals:

  1. Continue researching, world building, prewriting, plotting, and outlining my WIP! Check. I researched, commenced more world building and even did some prewriting so….. GO ME!
  2. Become EVEN MORE interactive on Twitter! Check. I’m checking it daily now, and even interacting more with the writing community! Baby steps but steps in the right direction.
  3. Continue making submissions! Check. Just keep swimming, just keep swimming.
  4. Continue practicing the piano and my violin! Check, check! Now that I’m practicing more consistently I definitely see a difference in my playing!!

June (the month when SUMMER begins) Goals:

  1. Continue researching, world building, prewriting, plotting, and outlining my WIP! Step by step by step by step, and then the first draft…. the bane of my existence (i.e. the road block I must defeat in the perfectionistic tendencies of my mind). Working on my WIP this past May through research and world building has really invigorated me so much that I want to share my writing journey with you all so I’ll be attempting to post at least one writing update this month! This will keep me more accountable for working on it and hopefully keep my mind on track!
  2. Stick with my NEW blog posting schedule! Surprise. Some minor changes are coming this month with my posts but they are all good!! I’ll elaborate more later in the “What I’ll Be Writing” section below!
  3. Become more interactive on social media! Twitter I’m looking at you. Instagram, get ready! I’ve had both for a while (and I just went back to Instagram) but I’m going to try to be active on both this month. My handle is @jaiiiilynn4 for both so let’s connect!
  4. Continue making submissions with my writing! Status quo now. Just got to keep making it a habit, and before long it will be so much a part of my life that I won’t even need to write it as a goal because I’ll just do it!
  5. Continue practicing the piano and my violin! Me, over here, just giving myself an easy goal that makes me happy. #NoShame
  6. Do yoga every morning! This is something new I started this month and I love it. I suffer from a lot of shoulder and neck pain related to stress and since the current world problem that shall not be named because this is a positive post happened I have been in a lot of pain. Then, I started doing yoga every morning and honestly, because it did feel this way, like magic my pain went away.

What I Read:

Cosa Nostra: A History of the Sicilian Mafia by John Dickie. This is a great nonfiction book. The way the author makes the language accessible to the average reader is to its advantage especially when pulling from so many sources into one comprehensive text. Not to mention the content of the book itself. I have always been fascinated by secret organizations and the mafia is one of the most infamous. This book starts at the very beginning in Sicily and links all the way to the early 2000’s, even linking to America and then back to Italy in between. The stories are gruesome, made even more so because they’re true and nothing is held back. It shows great insight into where the Italian government failed and also how something as huge and interlinking as Cosa Nostra went under the radar, despite its bloody history, for so long. There are a lot of names though littered throughout and it can get confusing from time to time just who this one particular person is when they were mentioned long ago in the book but that’s a minor complaint given to the information compacted inside. I highly recommend this read, especially if you are interested in history, secret societies or just Italy in particular.
The Day of the Owl by Leonardo Sciascia. I’ve read this book before in college, and it was a solid read then but not something I would have thought to gravitate back to. Well, it turns out I gravitated back to it and among many other things this reads better with age. The book is a genre I don’t read much of- metaphysical mystery, and in the future I believe that is something I want to try to change. We’ve all read our fair share of crime fiction, detective stories, or thrillers and the metaphysical mystery genre is similar in vein but a different animal on the outside. This genre explores the philosophical side of a mystery. There is a crime, like in detective stories, but in this case there is much less fanfare and more focus on the bones of logic, reason, and underlying study of the reality of what occurs. At least that is how I understood it through this book. It’s a quick read, engaging in its brevity, and takes a hard look at Sicily and its mafia ties. I recommend it if your interested in Sicily, the mafia, or crime fiction in general because it is a fascinating read. (MINOR SPOILER ALERT) Despite the forlorn (and yet realistic outcome of the novella) the ending does offer hope (SPOILER ALERT OVER). My heart goes out to Captain Bellodi, and all the men like him, just trying to serve justice in a sometimes very unjust world.
The Library Of Lost Things by Laura Taylor Namey. This book was exactly what I needed. I’m a strong mood reader and this just really fit my mood. Full of sweet romance, Peter Pan allusions and a voracious reader of a main character I adored this story. I can’t even right now so all of you just need to go read it!
Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. I have always loved Peter Pan, and I will ALWAYS love Peter Pan. No matter how old I get Neverland will always be home to me. This retelling makes a believable prequel to the classic story and I found myself smiling and laughing to myself at all the clever ways the authors told the origin stories for all the beloved characters including Hook, Tink, the Lost Boys and even Neverland itself. It’s a good read for all ages and I know I’ll probably reread it again sometime in the future (for some reason I always need to read something Peter Pan related in May…). Molly was also delightful, I enjoyed her immensely. I highly recommend it if you are in the mood for some good old fashioned magic and adventure.

What I’ll Be Writing (MINOR SCHEDULE UPDATE):

  • Poetry- posted every Wednesday
  • Living Life vignettes- posted first Friday of the month
  • Alternate Reality flash fiction collection- posted the last Tuesday of the month
  • Writing Is Hard|WIP Writing Update- posted in the middle of the month
  • Snapshot! monthly recap- posted the last day of every month
  • Announcements- posted as needed

All of my fiction writings are independent of each other and stand alone so no need to read any of the previous work to understand. If you want more information about any of the above, you can check out the About page on my site or just click here.

So, here’s what’s up! I’m changing my posting of the Living Life vignettes from every other Friday to just the first Friday of the month. That way I can give myself more time to focus on my WIP and my new writing updates to share with you all! Truth- I am a slow writer. Also truth- I tend to let my anxiety get the better of me when it comes to working on my WIP. SOOOOOOOOO, in order for me to combat this I am going to hold myself accountable to post an update every month. This way I can share all my writing fails (lol) with you guys and in turn hopefully get some sound advice on how to do things better through the comments you guys leave. It also, hopefully, will help me understand my writing process a little bit better. Which will, hopefully hopefully, lead me to fufilling my dream of publishing a book one day!

(Me, hoping & praying & dreaming [& solving murders in my spare time])

May Round Up of Magnificent Posts from Magnificent People:

My Round Up of May Posts:

It was definitely a good month. I feel like I was much more present in everything I was doing which was probably a major contribution. When you really focus on a task, especially if it’s something you love (*cough* like writing *cough*) you get a lot more out of the experience. Yoga definitely played a part in me being more mindful, and I hope I can stick with it going into June.

How has May been for you? Are there any exercise routines/ sports you love to do? Let me know in the comments below!

(ALSO, SUMMER IS COMING AND I AM READY! BRING ON THE HEAT!!)

Till next time,

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10 of My Favorite Feelings Tag

Life moves at the blink of an eye.

Now more than ever, with the world the way that it is right now, it’s important to slow down and remember what really matters in life. I’m sure all of us have had to take more than a few deep breaths these past few months, but in those breaths it’s the perfect moment to slow down and reflect on everything we do have that’s right in our worlds despite all the rest that isn’t.

I want to thank Xandria so much for creating this tag! If you haven’t checked out her blog yet, I highly recommend you do! She is such a ray of sunshine and positivity! 😀 Writing this post really relaxed me and brought a smile to my face as I thought of all my favorite feelings. It made me feel much more mindful about living my life in the moment, right here and now.

  1. Petrichor

I love going outside right after it rains. That first deep breath of fresh air is unlike any other smell in the world.

2. The Twilight Hours

I love that slip of time between dawn and sunrise or sunset and dusk. It’s such a strange, magical time of the day where it feels like anything can happen. It’s ephemeralness also makes it all the more special because you can only experience it for so long.

3. Surprise Laughter

Everyone knows this feeling. When all of a sudden something happens, and you totally caught off guard, just burst out laughing. Laughter is one of the most healing, stress relieving feelings in the world.

4. Mood Reading

A lot of us read but we don’t always read for enjoyment. Some things we are required to read but I love when I’m in a particular mood and I find the perfect book that embodies that particular mood. When the book I’m reading matches my feelings I feel like the world has come full circle.

5. The Ocean

I love looking at the ocean. I could go to the beach, stand and just look at the ocean for hours. It’s always changing, always rolling, always leaving but it also is never failing to come back.

6. Going to the Movies

I love going to the movies with my friends, but I haven’t been able to do this in forever because of current world problems. But, that feeling when the lights dim and the previews are over and the intro music starts playing…. I’m all there for that.

7. New York City

I love going to New York City. Whenever I’m there I’m surrounded by tall people, tall buildings and tall aspirations. It feels like an adventure every time I’m there, like wow this city can make all my dreams come true kinda feeling. I don’t think that’s universal for everyone who goes there but the City has always had a special place in my heart. You never know what’s going to happen, who you are going to see or what delicious food you are going to get to eat!!

8. High Intensity Exercise

This one is a double edged sword. To get to that adrenaline rush, I have to push myself to get into the zone of working out but once I’m there I feel so strong. Like I could fight a monster with my bare hands.

9. Wandering

I love to walk around. Especially places I’ve never been before. I want to see things I’ve never seen before and I want to people-watch and I want to see how this place in front of me is different from anything I’ve seen before. I’m always game for exploring and getting lost in the world around me.

10. Writing

This is my favorite feeling of all my favorite feelings. When everything melts away, your fingers flying, and it’s just you and the story playing in your mind. When you hit this level of emotion in writing it’s like the world you’ve created has come alive around you. Yes. This is my favorite favorite feeling. When I make imagination into reality.


Tags:
Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner
Sidharth @ Writing Rhymes
Olivia @ Purely Olivia
Helen Qin @ Confessions of a Doctor to be
The Orangutan Librarian

No pressure to do this!! Just if you want a fun tag to do 😀

What are some of your favorite feelings? Do the tag!! I’ll open it to everyone. Just don’t forget to tag Xandria in your post, and send me the link in the comments! I want to read about all your favorite feelings too!!

Till next time,

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Liebster Award #2

Hey guys!

Wow, I feel so honored to have been nominated again for the Liebster Award by my lovely friend Sidharth @Writing Rhymes. He is truly an amazing writer whose prose really hits deep. If you haven’t checked out his blog yet I recommend giving it a gander!

Rules

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you, and provide a link to their blog.
  • Answer the 11 questions given to you.
  • Share 11 facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 5-11 other bloggers.
  • Ask your nominees 11 questions.
  • Notify your nominees once you have uploaded your post.

Sidharth’s Questions for Me!

  1. What’s the one word that describes you best?

Hmm… I would have to say dedicated. If I love something I stick with it through and through even when things get rough.

2. Who are some of your most favorite writers?

Where to start? Maggie Stiefvater, Leigh Bardugo, Diana Wynne Jones and Erin Morgenstern to name a few!

3. Tell me about one of the most memorable moments of your life.

I remember my college graduation very clearly. That was a big day for me, and I had all my loved ones in one place there with me to celebrate.

4. What’s your outlook/motto in life?

My favorite motto is the Nike slogan. 😀 Just do it. I tell it to myself at least once a day.

5. A thing that you aim to convey through your blog?

Good question! Through my writing I hope to convey that life is worth living even when it gets tough (and it will always get tough). There is magic everywhere, the fact that we are alive breathing human beings is amazing in itself. Magic is everywhere. You just need to choose to see it.

6. What makes you truly happy in life?

My family and friends make me happy beyond all measure. I’m very lucky to have them.

7. What all are you doing in this lockdown phase to keep up the positive vibes?

Reading!! I read everyday. Also, cartoons. I watch too many cartoons.

8. Name one of your all-time favorite movies & why do you enjoy it so much?

I love Spirited Away. I can watch it over and over because everything about it (the music, characters, story) just relaxes me so much.

9. One aspect of your life that you intend to improve upon?

Writing! I want to keep writing and writing and writing so that one day I can hopefully publish a book.

10. If you could have a superpower then what would it be & why?

I want super strength. I’m on the smaller side so I would love to surprise everyone and be able to lift a truck over my head. #goals

11. What do you like the most about my blog/writings & any suggestions for me to improve as a blogger?

I love that your writings are very thought provoking and evoke strong feelings. Keep writing!

11 Facts About Me

  1. I used to hate pancakes (but now I love them).
  2. I like country music.
  3. My Hogwarts house is Slytherin.
  4. I’m addicted to Animal Crossing: New Horizons right now.
  5. I love the ocean so much but I am terrified of it.
  6. I dislike Italian ice. I prefer ice cream all the way.
  7. I tend to take on too much at once and burn myself out.
  8. I’ve started doing yoga in the morning this past month (and I love it)!
  9. I love hot coffee and hate iced coffee.
  10. My first car was older than me.
  11. I have siblings!

My Nominations

Since this is my second nomination I’ll just leave this up to anyone who reads this post and wants to answer my weird questions, haha!

My 11 Questions for You

  1. If you could pick one element to control what would it be?
  2. What song never fails to bring tears to your eyes?
  3. Swimming or biking?
  4. Do you remember your dreams?
  5. If you could eat dinner with three fictional characters who would they be and why?
  6. Would you rather be able to fly a plane, drive a car, or navigate a boat?
  7. If given the opportunity would you ever want to travel to outer space?
  8. Do you believe in ghosts?
  9. What’s something you are obsessed with right now?
  10. Favorite fairytale?
  11. If given the choice (and you could only pick one) would you save your best friend or save the world?

Now I must retreat back to my cave to work on world building for my WIP. I’m debating on whether or not I should do a separate writing update post and not just a quick blurb in my monthly recap Snapshot but I haven’t decided yet. What do you guys think? Would you be interested in hearing about my writing process?

Till next time,

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