Snapshot 6/30/19 // S-U-M-M-E-R

Currently listening: “Señorita”– Shawn Mendes, Camila Cabello
Currently reading: Descendant of the Crane by Joan He
Currently watching: Neon Genesis Evangelion
Currently playing: Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories

I love summer. I love summer. I love summer. The waves brushing against my feet at the beach, the sweetness of catching mint ice cream before it melts, the hours and hours of endless daylight… and the fireworks lighting up the clearest nights. I know I’m a happier person in the summer but maybe I’m just biased because my birthday is coming up. Did I mention I love summer?

This summer I plan on:

  • Taking advantage of as many swimming opportunities as I can (I don’t have a pool but luckily all my friends do!)
  • Getting to the beach as much as I can (so many things have been happening recently that there hasn’t been enough time or energy to get out to the ocean but I’ll be damned if I don’t get to go this week)
  • Finishing the first draft of my WIP (it takes place in the summer and around the beach so now is the perfect time to get it done!)
  • Having fun and going out of my comfort zone (life’s too short to not enjoy it, so this summer I’m going to try to push myself to try some new things)

I’ve been pretty distracted these past few weeks since my last Snapshot piece, a lot of stuff has been going on… almost like a dark cloud has been over my family but I’m praying (and knowing!) July is going to be so much better than June was. I’m almost finished with Descendent of the Crane. Usually I take my time reading so I can savor the story more although this month I have been all over the place busy but I’m loving this book and NEED TO FINISH IT.

Also my TBR pile is steadily increasing… here’s a taste:

And that isn’t even a dent into THAT stack but these are the books that I’ll most likely pick up soon! I’ve been hearing great things about all of them. 🙂 American Gods I have been dying to read since I started the show and SoC I need to reread so I can be fully prepared for all the badassery that is Crooked Kingdom (FINALLY).

As for the writing schedule I’ll still be posting a little Living Life vignette every week, a Snapshot post every month, any poetry that comes to mind as well as any tag posts or anything else I feel the need to write about!

On a sidenote here are some links to some of my posts since the last Snapshot update if you are in need of reading material:

Also here are some great posts I enjoyed reading this month from some amazing bloggers:

Do you have any goals for this summer? I’d love to talk in the comments!

Till next time,


The Summer Bucket List Book Tag // All the Summer Vibes

Yay!! It’s my first tag ever since I started my website so I’m super excited! Thank you to Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner for thinking of me for this ❤ and also to the original creator Tiffany @ Read By Tiffany for the great idea and tag graphics! Here we go…

First of all, SUMMER IS HERE! It’s my favorite season for so many reasons, almost too many to name. Here’s to endless daylight, ocean waves and ice cream to our heart’s content during these hot days. Not to mention all the fireworks and BBQ’s and just all around good vibes!

The Rules

  • Link back to the original creator in your post
  • Feel free to use any of the tag graphics in your post, or create your own!
  • Tag 5 other people at the end of your post, and let them know you’ve tagged them.

Whenever summer comes rolling in, know the ocean isn’t too far away. Lady Midnight takes place in California where sun, sand and surfers are everywhere you turn. Even though I wasn’t as fond of the rest of the Dark Artifices trilogy, Lady Midnight still holds a special place in my heart. The old school Hollywood, mystery and revenge vibes surf out a great story. Emma, the main character is badass, and I wish I had a best friend just like Julian. It demands to be read with the water in sight.

I will read anything by Sarah J Maas, and ACOMAF is tops when it comes to romance. The way Feyre and Rhys’s relationship changes throughout the whole story can’t help but keep you entranced. There are definite fireworks all over this book.

I took this one a little metaphorically, and picked what I am currently reading now. Little Women isn’t necessarily about a physical road trip but it’s a journey through life and how Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy grow, change and become who they are meant to be. It’s a fantastic read, and I started it because I wanted to read it before the new movie came out. I understand now why it’s a classic!

This book undid me. I loved Madeline Miller’s spin on the Iliad. The retelling was beautiful, and harrowing and there were just too many feelings associated with this book that I can’t even. If you haven’t read it yet, PLEASE PICK IT UP.

This book. This book. This book! So many twists, so many turns and I haven’t even finished it yet but as soon as I finish this post I will be running right back to it. AHHHHH! The world building is fantastic and believable, and the story and characters keep you guessing.

This one is super cute. It takes place in Italy and there’s gelato which is the Italian version of ICE CREAM <3. Not only is the romance spot on and believable but the reader also gets to experience Tuscany through the main character Lina’s eyes as well. It will make you want to just run and jump on the next plane for the perfect summer vacay.

This book will forever have a special place in my heart. I’ve read it a few times which is a big deal for me because most books I only read once. I don’t know what it is exactly but the whole vibe of the story with the race, the water horses, the threat of danger in such a believable realistic way… and not to mention the November cakes is special. Rereading it recently this past autumn I discovered some things I had missed before. Thisby was a breath of fresh air in my lungs.

This book is not for everyone. It faces the very heavy topic of suicide. Murakami’s writing has a very mellow way of going about it. The story really makes you understand what Toru is experiencing around him after losing one of his closest friends and what happens after. It is a coming of age story with Japan as its backdrop.

I have yet to read this one yet but it’s on my TBR pile and I am very excited!! Food, food, food!! I have some dietary restrictions so I’m looking forward to getting my fill of delicious food through this book!

What book is more inspiring for a writer? I’m savoring this book slowly and taking in all of the experiences that Stephan King shares and knows that each and every writer has had or will have. Rejection, acceptance, thinking is this all going to work out?, safety nets, no safety nets, bad times, good times, and eventually success. 🙂 Which to say, it’s very relatable.

Tags

I tag anyone of you who wants to try it!

Have any of you read the books on my list? What are some books you are looking forward to reading this summer?

Love,

Living Life #8 (a collection of vignettes)

“Starved”

Don’t go shopping when you’re hungry. If your slumped shoulders are falling to the ground, if your empty head is spinning in aching circles, if your heavy heart is painting the world in black and white that means you have already waited too long.

If only I had a will to take my own advice!

Walking through those double wide doors, my senses exploded. Everywhere in sight was the nourishment that my body was so desperately craving. Out front were the staples, basic necessities to every health conscious person. My feet flew to them as if wearing winged sandals, not my ratty black sneakers with the frayed laces, and picked up the first to touch my hand. Of course, immediately going for heavy stuff.

Hardy and filled to the brim with adventure, The Odyssey I quickly tucked to my chest. Whenever my shoulders slumped too far I could heft it up to remember that a long and difficult journey is made with the ending in mind. It would be the perfect breakfast to get me through the rest of the day.

From there it wasn’t hard to spot lunch. Moving further into the stomach of the store I found just the right thing to feed my head with twists and turns, and break it out of its mindless rut. I plucked Descendant of the Crane between my fingers. That would distract me to help keep down all the bad thoughts and still the hunger pains.

Now the last. Dinner would be the most challenging meal. It would have to be nutritious and well balanced, something with good flavor and peppered with light to get me through the night. I wandered, I searched and so many things looked quite good but not quite right.

Until… with a off handed glance what did catch my eye was Howl’s Moving Castle and I picked it up with a cry. Finally, finally one to turn all those blacks and whites to green and blue and a red so bright. Something to give the world color again and help my heart sleep through the night!

I took my food to the counter and as the cashier rung up my order I realized with a start, I only had $2 on me and no debit card. In my haste to feel better I overlooked that important thing. Learn from my mistake, so you don’t stray from your diet. You have to be well fed to keep your spirit up, your head clear and your heart shining bright. Otherwise you’ll overlook things then need to run home burning more calories in two trips instead of one. Ugh.

BookCon 2019 Happened

So… I went to BookCon. This was my second time going. My first time was back in 2017 and let’s just say I was not ready for it two years ago.

This time, I WAS READY.

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It was crowded, which I expected from reading about others’ experiences from previous years and from my own experience in 2017. We didn’t arrive crazy early, getting on line at about 8:45 AM (when the doors open 10 AM), but there was already a pretty hefty line ahead of us. And of course when the gates finally opened, there was a mad dash.

I only had two tentative goals going into BookCon and if I didn’t get either of them I wasn’t going to be crushed. I was really looking forward to the experience, being around all my fellow book lovers and basically just breathing the same air as some of my all time favorite authors/heroes. I did not get a ticket to see Erin Morgenstern and get an ARC of The Starless Sea but I DID get a ticket to see Joan He and get her autograph for Descendant of the Crane!!!!!!!!! I was very lucky. I’m still reeling from the experience hours later and probably still will be reeling for the rest of the week (or maybe my life). ❤ ❤

She was so sweet and just gave off all the good person vibes. When I went up to see her she said “Sorry, I’m so flustered!” and me being the hot mess that I am was wildly fluttering my hands and saying “No, I’m the one that’s flustered!” I told her that I’m an aspiring author and also got to take a picture with her. Also side note, she has the most beautiful signature ever!!!!

I attended Cassandra Clare’s panel too with David Canfield as the moderator. That was another amazing experience. My favorite trilogy of all time is The Infernal Devices. I must have read that series six times, and that is A LOT for me. Usually, I don’t read a book more than once unless its one of my favorites. A reader asked her which of her characters she relates to the most and her answer was Simon and Tessa. What I took away from her panel especially was her advice to aspiring authors. There were two very specific things. 1) Read everything. 2) Write every day. Even if it’s only a sentence.

There was a lot of interesting booths at BookCon. Books everywhere so therefore I was in HEAVEN. I scored a lot of swag. Bookmarks, pins, stickers and I even got an envelope from one of the Scythes! I also bought myself a GoT Arya tee because I couldn’t resist. Not today. 🙂 My friend was even lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time and got the last ticket for Crush by Svetlana Chmakova at the Yen Press booth.

Wandering around there were plenty of authors to see even if I couldn’t meet them. I saw Erin Morgenstern signing ARCs of The Starless Sea, Renée Ahdieh taking pics with fans, Stephanie Garber eating breakfast and Victoria Aveyard’s back. So, winning.

But believe it or not my most favorite part was right before we were about to leave. I knew there was going to be a meet up with Susan Dennard at one of the Starbucks but was a little pressed for time because I had to catch a bus. At first I didn’t see her because like I said earlier it was HELLA CROWDED but I didn’t give up and spotted her!!! There were only a few people left on the line to get their books signed so I got to see her real quick before I had to go!!!! GAHHH IT WAS AMAAAAAAZING!!! I said “Sorry, I have to run and catch a bus!” and she was so kind and said “Sorry you had to wait!” Then I said “No, I’m just so glad I got to see you!!!!!” I also thanked her for writing her newsletter. It has been one of the most helpful insights for me on this journey of mine to be a writer. I said, “Thank you for being so open and so honest.”

To which she replied, “Are you a writer?” And I nodded. Then, she added “Writing is hard.” I agreed. But then she said something I’ll never forget, “Write on.” She even wrote it near her signature in my copy of Truthwitch which I was able to bring with me. MY EMOTIONS WERE PEAKED!! I WAS SO HAPPY!!

BUT THEN IT GOT BETTER.

I’m not sure if I asked for one or she offered but I got to hug her! And then she asked if I wanted a pic and I was like “I get two hugs??!!” like a happy little girl lol. My inner child was out. So I got to hug her again for the second time before the pic was taken and then a third when the picture was actually taken!!!! It was funny and one of the best experiences ever. She is so great and sweet and all the feels. Good person vibes all over the place!!

So needless to say this year’s BookCon rocked!!!!! I WAS SO READY.

Now, to go back to business and write on.

P.S. Have any of you ever been to BookCon or any other convention or author signing? I’d love to hear about your experiences in the comments!

Snapshot 4/10/19

Currently listening: “The Last of the Real Ones”– Fall Out Boy
Currently (finished) reading: We Rule the Night by Claire Eliza Bartlett Currently (re)reading: Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
Currently watching: Friends (Season 3)
Currently playing: Devil May Cry 5

Music is good. Books are good. Friends is surprisingly good. Why didn’t I start this show sooner? (Because you take your sweet time savoring everythinggggggg). I get it all done. Eventually.

If you are looking for a book that is packed to the sheets (are we making up expressions now, really?) with strong female characters who are not afraid to REALLY get things done but who also have the relatability of normal human beings We Rule the Night may be the right call. At times the story did slow and the ending was a bit abrupt (leaving an opening for a sequel?) but the strong feminism ties that are the framework of the book really do make you feel empowered and ready to take on the world. Which is always a nice feeling. Especially since the book is based off the real story of the Night Witches of WW2. So, if you have a need to be in that very specific niche of a mood… I recommend.

I also am re-reading the Grisha trilogy because let’s be real, Leigh Bardugo is writing goals and I just preordered Joan He’s Descendant of the Crane the other day because all I have been hearing is good things. I’m really setting my reading goals high this year. Last year I read 25 books and this year I’m hoping to set a personal best (at the very least 26, SMALL STEPS JAI).

I do have a habit of trying to do to much at once. Though, to my credit, I always follow through (just my sleeping patterns tend to suffer). The thing about habits is that if they are good they are GREAT, and if they are not good then they are most definitely not great. Are you picking up what I’m putting down?

In other news I find I am enjoying blogging. It’s kind of relaxing! Which is good news for any of you who enjoy reading my dribble. Writing the Living Life vignettes helps me too. When I write it just feels like all my feelings have a place to go. Before I just kept them to myself, and that was fine but when you share the stories and you share your experiences I don’t know it really does just make your world feel a bit better. It’s like when a painter paints or an architect builds. The world gives us all these feelings and we need to get them out. And if we show others these feelings and they get it, it makes you feel more understood in return. Do you know what I mean? And you get one heck of a picture or building. Or story. 🙂

Why didn’t I start doing this sooner? (Oh yeah, because I take my sweet time to savor everything. Duh.)