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,

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

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,

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

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,

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

Snapshot 4/30/20 // “In Which I Wish I Was Animated”

Currently listening:Yellow” – Coldplay
Currently watching: Hey Arnold!/ Invader Zim/ Yu-Gi-Oh! GX/ School Rumble/ Naruto
Currently playing: Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Currently reading: The Library of Lost Things by Laura Taylor Namey

So March was bad but unfortunately April was worse. Much worse. I don’t even want to discuss it because I think we all know the news is doing enough of that. So, instead, I want to focus on the nicer aspects of April. As we all know, April showers bring May flowers and let me tell you guys, I am so ready for flowers.

(Just like Alice I want to sit and talk to all the flowers for hours…)

April Goals:

  1. Continue researching, world building, prewriting, plotting, and outlining my WIP! Check. Still more work needed to be done but I did do this.
  2. Keep my desk clean! Check. Check. Coming along nicely, and almost done sorting and organizing.
  3. Stick with my blog posting schedule promise! Check. Check. Check! As you can see I HAVE STUCK TO MY SCHEDULE! GO ME!
  4. Become more interactive on Twitter! Check! I’m definitely posting more and reading more on Twitter.
  5. Make submissions again with my writing! CHECK. Now to see what happens lol… but I’m proud of myself for at least submitting again, no matter the results! Failure is just as much a part of writing as success.
  6. Change my profile pic! Check.
  7. Be less stressed out! Okay so. Half a check? I was much more stressed out this month than any other this year but on the bright side I’m coming down off of that mountain and each day getting better at bringing that stress level down.
  8. Practice the piano and my violin again! CHECK, CHECK! Yesss, and I’m loving it ❤
(Me, just bowing down that stress level)

May (the month with just the flowers that will bring the stress mountain alll the wayyyy downnnnn) Goals:

  1. Continue researching, world building, prewriting, plotting, and outlining my WIP! This one is staying on here, and spoiler alert may be on here for a few more months but eventually it will turn into WRITING THAT DANG FIRST DRAFT.
  2. Become EVEN MORE interactive on Twitter! Okay so, as you guys may or may not have noticed I do things slowly but I do DO them. It just takes me some time to build a habit so this goal and a few others are going to be repeats and they may appear for a while but this is just… how I work? (*shrugs*) If you’re on Twitter let’s connect! My handle is @jaiiiilynn4
  3. Continue making submissions! Rejection or acceptance, at least I’m trying right?
  4. Continue practicing the piano and my violin! Nothing brings my stress level down lower than music. This goal is STAYING.
(Not to get philosophical, but does anyone? Really? If so, contact me.)

What I Read:

The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne with decoration by Ernest H. Shepard. I love Winnie-the-Pooh. I really do. My mug I use every day is a Winnie-the-Pooh mug with him, Piglet and Christopher Robin looking over a bridge at the river down below. So what better way to spend time in a crisis then indulging in the sweet, nostalgic tang of honey and wisdom. Everyone should read this. It’s lessons are so simple, so simple, that they are often overlooked a lot by people today. In this busy world we are always trying to move faster, better, stronger. We forget so often to live in the present moment. Pooh doesn’t though. He takes his time, he makes mistakes, and he learns at his own pace. The stories were made for children but adults can appreciate the clever wordplay layered throughout the Hundred Acre Wood. Also, side note, Disney really pepped up Eeyore because in the book he is SO much more depressed. He broke my heart and the ending also broke my heart. It wasn’t necessarily sad because it did leave room for hope but it ends with an experience every child goes through when eventually it’s time to grow up. Some of us though… 😉 can always stay a child at heart no matter how old we get.
King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo. Okay, okay. Where is the second book already??? I NEED it. Leigh Bardugo’s writing never fails to amaze me and on top of that this is a book all about Nikolai, ahem, one of my favorite characters of all time. Yes the book is a little more slow paced which may not be for everyone but I’m here for it. Everything connects and picks up where Ruin and Rising and Crooked Kingdom left off. The story resonance is fantastic. This book even made me fall in love with Zoya. I know. I know. Now she is one of my favorite characters and I have no regrets. The book is great and I don’t want to give any spoilers away but we do see a lot of familiar faces. Most welcome, and some not lol. This book is highly recommended for anyone who needs to return to the Grishaverse or anyone who is as desperately in love with Nikolai Lantsov as I am. Along with Nikolai and Zoya’s storyline, Nina returns and has her own arc running throughout the book as well and let me tell you I am here for it. Her story is continued and so far I agree with how its proceeding.
Neon Genesis Evangelion: 3-in-1 Edition, Vol. 1 by Yoshiyuki Sadamoto. When I am sad I have two ways of coping through reading. This month I went both ways. Eva is dark, and philosophical. It was an anime that I put off for a long time, one that I had even written off years ago. Last year, I gave it a chance and I fell in love. It’s not for everyone, but it has some of the most relatable characters I have ever seen. When times are dark, I sometimes go for that apocalyptic vibe so this year I decided to read the manga and it brought back so many memories. If you are looking for something deep, and dark and so, so human I highly recommend checking it out.
Fruits Basket, Vol. 2-5 by Natsuki Takaya. The other way of coping when I’m sad is to read books with fluffy, contemporary, soft vibes. So after the religion that is Evangelion, I did a 180 and went to Fruits Basket. It’s a manga series I read for the first time in high school, and I hated high school, but Fruits Basket (Furuba, as fans lovingly refer to it) made it better. The romance is gradual, the growth from chapter to chapter is incremental but believable, and the characters just make me want to give each and every one of them a hug, lol. Even Akito and sometimes Shigure… sometimes. It’s a classic, I believe, that a lot of people have heard of but if you haven’t and are in need of a hug from a book I highly recommend, lol. The lessons it teaches are all just so positive and healthy. It gives all the feels.<3

What I’ll Be Writing:

  • Poetry- posted every Wednesday
  • Living Life vignettes- posted every other Friday
  • Alternate Reality flash fiction collection- posted the last Tuesday of the month
  • Snapshot! monthly recap- posted the last day of every month
  • Announcements- posted as needed

All of my 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.

April Round Up of Awesome Posts from Awesome People:

My Round Up of April Posts:

I don’t think I’ve watched as many animated shows at any other time in my life than I’m watching now. Hulu is a God send. I’ve got Hey Arnold!, Invader Zim, Naruto, School Rumble and Yu-Gi-Oh! GX all going at once. #Noregrets. Before you jump to conclusions I’m just going to say yes I do watch all of them at the same time.

… (*cricket chirp*)

Just kidding! But now I do believe I hear them calling my name! Which one shall I pick now…

(Me, every other hour of the day when I crave my animated fix)

What have you guys been watching/reading lately? Do you have any comfort shows/reads you go to when life gets rough? Let me know in the comments below!

Till next time,

The Sunshine Blogger Award

So, we can all agree that it feels like the world is ending. What we have to remember though is that we. will. get. through. this. As long as we all do our part. I know it’s also tough to keep your spirits up, anxiety is making a mess of us all, but that is all the more reason why we need to keep up our positivity. Whatever you need to do to relax (as long as it’s not at the expense of others) I’m giving you all the excuses to go do it, no judgement.

In the meantime, I am going to be over here doing what makes me happy! Nothing is happier to me right now than sunshine. Thanks so much to Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner for this nomination! She is a fantastic blogger, writer and human being overall so I really recommend you check out her blog. Now without further ado…

The Rules

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog.
  2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
  3. Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  4. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post/or on your blog.

If the situation becomes dire and you have to trade away your precious books in exchange for food, and you can only choose 5 books from your TBR to keep, which books would you choose?

Difficult one right off the bat! Probably King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo since I still have my Crooked Kingdom hangover from having finished it in March, then Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson because I still can’t believe I haven’t read that yet, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid for obvious reasons, Call Down the Hawk by Maggie Stiefvater for more obvious reasons and lastly House of Earth and Blood (Crescent City) by Sarah J. Maas.

If you can only choose 5 books to re-read, which books would you choose?

This one is much easier to answer, lol. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare, Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones and The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater.

What food can you never get tired of eating?

Easy. Peanut butter, hands down. Also bananas. Preferably, the two together.

What is your favorite thing to do in the comfort of your home, other than reading or blogging?

I love to play video games and, not going to lie, Animal Crossing: New Horizons is my life right now.

What are your thoughts about exercising inside the house?

As being a serial pacer, I’m all for it. When given the opportunity to go outside though ALWAYS go outside. Fresh air does wonders.

If you wake up tomorrow and realize that your life up until now has been a dream, and that you in fact have been living in a different country or fictional world your entire life, what country/fictional world do you want to wake up in?

Hmm… this one is hard. There are so many to choose from! Probably, Shadowhunters. Secretly, I have always wanted to kick demon ass for a living.

Which pet (real or fictional) would you choose to be your self-isolation companion?

I have always wanted a dragon. So I pick that. Can you imagine just casually owning a dragon? Come on, right or wrong, that would be the coolest thing ever?

Takeout or home cooking?

Home cooking all the way. I rarely eat takeout since I, unfortunately, get indigestion super easily.

Favorite social media platform?

Hmmmmmmmmmmm….. I don’t know. Pinterest probably.

TV shows or movies?

TV shows. I only watch movies every once in a while, whereas I watch way too much TV. Like have y’all seen the Tiger King series on Netflix? Omg, crazy stuff.

Do you binge-read books or read a bit at a time?

I read a bit at a time, and I’m such a strong mood reader. I love to savor books because you only ever get to read them for the first time once.

My Questions

  1. If you had to pick one book to re-read for the rest of your life what would it be?
  2. If you could meet any three authors and sit down to dinner with them who would you pick?
  3. Are you pro or against writing in the margins of your books?
  4. If you had to choose between eating vegetables for the rest of your life or fruits for the rest of your life what would you pick?
  5. If the world was in danger and you were picked as one of the chosen ones destined to save it how would you feel?
  6. If you could read any three fictional characters to life who would you pick?
  7. If you had to would you rather be a pirate or a ninja?
  8. If you could only drink one thing for the rest of your life, what would you pick?
  9. If you could have any magic power what would it be?
  10. If you could only live in one season for the rest of your life which would you pick?
  11. If you had the power to save any one fictional character from dying who would you pick and why? Would it change the course of the story they are in?

Now, I tag each and every one of you who read this to the end!

How would you guys answer some of these questions?

Sending good and healthy vibes to each and every one of you! Stay safe and if you can stay home. Please.

Till next time,

Snapshot 2/29/20 // Leaping and Living Each and Every Day

Currently listening:Careless Whisper” – George Michael
Currently watching: Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir S3
Currently playing: The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask
Currently reading: Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

February is one of those months I always want to like but every year I get disappointed. It was a hard month. Work was extremely busy and life has been hard at home too. Every spare moment between all of that though I have been tending to my goals. I didn’t get everything done that I wanted, but I did do a lot. Road bumps happen, but you just got to make sure to keep driving until you get to your destination.

(FIGHT ON!)

February Goals:

  1. Research, research, research (Round 2)! Half a check to this one… I did do more research just not as much as I would have liked to. This one will carry on into March. As long as I keep going, I’ll finish. No matter how long it takes.
  2. Finish organizing my room/desk/work space! Check. This was where a majority of my time went and man, was this a lot rougher than I expected! I have a few little things left to sort but the hard work on this is done.
  3. Stick to my planned blog posting schedule! Major check. I did this, and I did this well. I even added an extra post for Valentine’s Day!
(The sweet scent of victory!)

March (the month where spring finally arrives!) Goals:

  1. Research, research, research (Round 3)! Slow and steady wins the race. This is the third time I’m posting this goal but every month I get a little more done. Hopefully March will be kinder than February was. (I just want to write the story already! maybe I’ll do a bit of both… hehe!)
  2. Stick to my planned blog posting schedule! I’m determined to make this a habit and the only way to do that is to treat it as such. So I’m keeping this one here so I keep holding myself accountable and get the work done.
  3. Become more interactive on Twitter! I barely use my account but I want to be more active on it! Twitter has a huge writing community and I want to contribute. If any of you have a Twitter account, we should follow each other! My handle is @jaiiiilynn4
(Deadpool clearly approves)

What I Read:

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. This is my second reread of this book, and I loved it as much as the first time I read it (I just had more knowledge of what twists and turns were coming to better prepare myself lol). This is a great book, and I know so many of y’all out there agree. The characters are all so diverse and fantastic and real. I love Leigh Bardugo’s writing, just the right amount of description, action and feeling. I hope one day to write as well as her. ❤ If any of you have not checked out any of her works yet, I highly recommend. She is a Queen for a reason.
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo. This was a divine little read, I really enjoyed it! Since the theme of February was cleaning up my work spaces, this book was very appropriate and informational. I learned a lot. For example, the cleaner your space the better you feel and the less distracted you are. So simple and yet so easily overlooked! It makes sense. If you have less things out grabbing for your attention then your mind in turn will become more clear too! Her voice throughout the book is cute as well, and I felt really relaxed as I learned about tidying which usually causes me stress haha! I also loved the idea of saying thank you to your possessions. You should treat them with respect and I feel like a lot of people overlook this, like when you get home and just unceremoniously dump your stuff down without another thought. You should on an everyday basis take care of the things you own and remember that they are there to make your life easier and in turn look out for you too. It was such a fresh and positive way of looking at things, and of course “sparking joy”. I highly recommend this book to anyone trying to make a change in their life.
Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo. Currently reading this and currently loving every damn second of it. I don’t want it to end, so I’m taking this one slow. You can only read a book for the first time once right? Expect all my thoughts next month on this beauty of a book.

What I’ll Be Writing:

  • Poetry- posted every Wednesday
  • Living Life vignettes- posted every other Friday
  • Alternate Reality flash fiction collection- posted the last Tuesday of the month
  • Snapshot! monthly recap- posted the last day of every month
  • Announcements- posted as needed

All of my 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, lol.

Here’s another gif of Deadpool (because why not?)…. and an accurate representation of my writing in art form, lol. Basically. I love a good fight scene.

February Round Up of Brilliant Posts I Read By Other Bloggers:

My Round Up of February Posts:

If you have read this far then you must have noticed all the Deadpool gifs *wink, wink*. I love him so much and have no regrets. Deadpool is the only thing I’ll watch on Valentine’s Day. Honestly, to me, it is one of the most romantic movies of all time. That aside, let’s go out and enjoy this extra day we get this month! Happy Leap Year!

How were your February’s? Did you meet your goals? What are you looking forward to in March?

Till next time,

I Should Have Read That Book Tag

Good golly gosh… where to begin? Reading is one of the loves of my life, so much so that I take my time to savor the storytelling of each book that I read. It’s because of this habit though that it does take me a bit of time to get through one book, and with a never ending TBR pile well… you can imagine how long my list is of books I still have to read! (AND I AM DETERMINED TO GET TO EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.)

Thanks to the lovely Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner for thinking of me for this tag! Now without further ado lets jump in! 😀

The Rules:

  • Thank the person who tagged you and link back to their post.
  • Link to the creator’s blog in your post
  • Answer the questions below
  • Tag 10 others to take part in the tag
  • Enjoy the tag!

A book that a certain friend is always telling you to read

I own this book. It’s on the bookshelf right in front of my bed so I see it every morning when I wake up. I have also heard so many good things about this series and when I went to Book Con last year I even won an adorable scythe pin. Those are the top reasons, among many others, of why I got to get my butt in gear and finally read this one!

A book that has been on your TBR forever and yet you still haven’t read it

I know. The Night Circus is one of my favorite books of all time, so I don’t know why it’s taking me so long to get to The Starless Sea. Probably, it’s because I want to wait till I have more time to truly enjoy this book to the fullest. You can only read a book for the first time once, right?

A book in a series you’ve started, but haven’t gotten around to finishing

I JUST FINISHED MY SECOND REREAD OF THIS. I AM GOING TO FINISH THE DUOLOGY. FINALLY. MY BELOVED CROOKED KINGDOM THE TIME HAS FINALLY COME!

A classic you have always liked the sound of, but have never actually read

This is a book I’ve been meaning to read for years. I think if I remember right I even picked it up and started to read it a few years ago but for some reason or another put it back on the shelf because the timing wasn’t right. Hopefully this year it will be!

A popular book that it seems everyone but you has read

I’m embarrassing myself so bad with this tag. I know. I haven’t read this one either yet. I WANT TO! It’s another that has been staring me down from my bookshelf. I have heard numerous beautiful, heartbreaking things about this book and it is about time I read it!

A book that inspired a film/TV adaptation that you really love, but just haven’t picked up yet

I started reading this series years and years ago when I was like twelve. My twelve year old self just got distracted midway through and hasn’t been back since. I’m determined to read this series all the way eventually! {Then tackle Lord of the Rings, but that’s another story 😉 }

A book you see all over Instagram but haven’t picked up yet

I’ve heard this one is a combo of The Infernal Devices and Howl’s Moving Castle which are tops in my Favorite Books of All Time list. I see you Sorcery of Thorns and I AM COMING FOR YOU. (EVENTUALLY.)

Tags

I tag anyone who wants to participate!

Have any of you read the books I mentioned above? Probably, right? Haha! What books are highlights on your TBR piles?

Till next time,

Snapshot 11/30/19 // Stuffed From Stuffing (& Starving for Gingerbread)

Currently listening: “The Christmas Song“- Nat King Cole
Currently watching: Friends S10
Currently (re) reading: Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare
Currently playing: Sims 4

November, November
you passed so fast
I want to remember
each memory to the last

November always goes by too fast for me. Thanksgiving, the bitter cold days seeping in, and the random warm days that trick you into believing summer will be back soon. Also, NaNoWriMo. This month always reminds me of writing and pumpkin bread and stuffing. Gosh, I love stuffing.

My November goals were:

  1. Write 25,000 words for my WIP. That was a failure, but a failure I am very proud of. By setting my goal to work on the story I found out exactly what was wrong with it and why I was struggling so much with it. It needed to be expanded upon. I need more information and to do more research (which I’m doing now). The original WIP I intended to write for NaNo was just a small cog in the machine of a trilogy that this story is turning into and I am so excited.
  2. Post at least 1 Living Life vignette again this month. I did do this one.
(smirk)

December goals (and candy canes, not coals):

  1. Research, research, research! I’m going to keep digging down deep into the black void of the internet for this new expanded WIP. If I don’t come back you know what happened lol.
  2. Post 2 Living Life vignettes this month. I think I can do this. So I’ll put it on here.
  3. Redesign my website a bit. I’ve been meaning to update somethings and move a few bits around. So, why not now. The present is always the best time to do something. That way it will look better for 2020 too.
  4. Play my violin more. I’ve been neglecting my beloved instrument because of work and laziness which is no excuse. I’m actively going to try to practice more this month.

Also can I just say I love Christmas so much. I’m just gonna throw that out there so be prepared for many holiday themed vignettes and poems. I’m warning you they. are. coming.

Also I had a great dream where I got to co-write a book with Maggie Stiefvater. I wish that would really happen omg. Just throwing that out there universe, if you are listening. I also got the opportunity to see Frozen 2 on its opening night. Let me just tell you guys I loved this movie so much. If you loved the first one you definitely need to see the second. It doesn’t try to upstage the first movie at all but continue it on, if that makes sense, and the music and growth of all the characters is just fantastic. (SPOILERS AHEAD) I loved the scene of Elsa fighting the Nokk and the song, Show Yourself, is also BEAUTIFUL. Elsa shows that she only needs herself to be complete and that is the absolute truth. Romance and partnership is perpetuated in society as something that we all need to feel “complete” and “loved” but all you really need to feel those things is to be yourself and love yourself. Just like Elsa, who knew she was different and fought it until she decided to accept herself and her powers and ultimately find the greatest happiness within herself. Olaf was also hilarious AF and who doesn’t love Anna and Kristof 😀 It is said so much but it really is true, just BE YOU. Unapologetically, wholly, wonderfully, unforgivably YOU. That is the way to achieve the greatest sense of peace. THANK YOU DISNEY<3

What I Read:

Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo. I… I loved this book. It was real, it was raw. I got SO attached to Alex and TOO attached to Darlington. Man. And Dawes, Dawes, Dawes and college me live on the same plane of existence. The magic was so real to me. The history and references in all of the tombs of the Ancient Eight, the privilege problem. My goodness this book. 100% worth the read and I can’t wait till the next. It’s not for everyone definitely (lots of heavy and traumatic topics are explored) but to me this book was excellent in how in handled everything. The right amount of dark side without becoming depressing and all this magic so grounded in reality. I- dang. Five stars, hands down.
All the Crooked Saints by Maggie Stiefvater. I really enjoyed this book and all the magical realismness (is that a word?) with the personifications of the character’s darknesses, and how they overcame them. It’s an atmospheric, simple story with a very important lesson. When the characters’ darknesses manifest that is the first miracle, and the second miracle will occur when the character knows how to overcome their darknesses. The magical realism in this book is very well done. Maggie always does a great job in all her books of making magic seem touchable. Daniel was my favorite character but all of the cast was real and alive. I recommend reading it!
Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare. This is my favorite series of books of all time. This is my sixth read through of Clockwork Princess and it won’t be the last. We all have those books that we will never, ever grow tired of. No matter how many times we read them. The Infernal Devices are my books. What does Tessa say? “‘Words have the power to change us.‘” Yes, yes they do.

What I’ll Be Writing:

  1. Living Life vignettes
  2. Holiday poetry (joy to the world, you lucky lot lol)
  3. WIP snippets
  4. Monthly Snapshot! post

As promised last month here is a snippet from my WIP:

Rue scowled. “I don’t like you.”
“The feeling is mutual.” Evans replied.

Haha, yes short and sweet but I kept my promise 😉

Some posts I enjoyed this month:

My round up of November posts:

Bring on the holiday cheer December, you are the only think that is going to keep me going till summer is here again. I wish you all lots of hot chocolate, thoughtful presents, great company and happy holidays to come!!

How were all your Novembers? (Do they go by as fast as mine?) What are the books that you will never tire of (that are part of your soul)? I’d love to hear about them!

Till next time,

Snapshot 10/31/19 // Something Spooky This Way Came

Currently listening: “This Is Halloween” – The Nightmare Before Christmas
Currently (re) watching: Over The Garden Wall
Currently reading: Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

Boo. (Sorry I couldn’t resist!) Happy Halloween! Thank goodness for October. After the harshness of September, October never fails to cheer me up. Pumpkin spice lattes, apple picking, orange leaves and sweater weather. Also, (*cough*) CANDY (*cough*).

Me, tonight.

My October goals were (*drumroll, please*):

  1. Rework my WIP, which is a check. I definitely changed things around a bit and now have an idea for how I’m going to handle NaNo!
  2. Post 1 Living Life vignette, HAHA CHECK! I posted two.
  3. Go pumpkin and apple picking, check check! This one was easy since I go every year.

Heading into (NANOWRIMO) November this is the plan:

  1. Write 25,000 words for my WIP. I’m a slow writer I’ve learned, so I set a more realistic goal for myself this NaNoWriMo.
  2. Post at least 1 Living Life vignette again this month. Honestly with NaNo I’ll be lucky if I have time for just one. But I’m going to try!
Me, this entire month. Probably.

What I Read:

Books Read:
The Secret History by Donna Tartt. I don’t think I can do this book justice. It just needs to be read to be understood. Wow. It’s dark… but the characters are alive. They breathe just like you and me. So many connections to the classics. CHARLES, OH BABY . And Henry, I don’t even. Honestly, (*beware, spoilers coming*) I expected more people to die at the end the way this story was going and Francis even comments on it somewhere at the end that Henry should have just killed them all. Enthralling story that no matter how dark it gets you just need to see it to the end. Very dark… can put you in a black cloud/ endless dark tunnel mood. SO WELL THOUGHT OUT AND WRITTEN. Julian, and the depiction of evil in him (as something that seems good on the surface). I need a mental break.
Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury. I was meaning to read this for a while and then someone mentioned it at work and I took it as a sign to just BUY IT. This book is a TRIP. Whoa baby. In the best possible way. An October book, true and true. I’m going to read this again next October and maybe the October after that. It’s a great book, not necessarily one of my all time favorites but it’s a GREAT book. It’s simple (the moral) but haunting and well played. Out there prose that paints a definite picture. The story will stay with you long after you finish it.
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson- The story ends the same way it begins and I got chills after reading the last paragraph. I see where all the inspiration for the show came from. Good bones. Chilling and atmospheric. The show goes a lot more in depth, and that is what I knew first so my impression may be a little skewed. But I enjoyed reading the book. Nell, poor baby, and the house is quite the character itself. Madness. Loneliness. Theo was my favorite and Luke grew on me. But Nell, Nell, Nell still lingers in my mind. The foreshadowing all along makes it so clear from the beginning of the story to the end.
Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo. I’m only three chapters in but I can tell that this book is amazing. I’m sold. Next Snapshot! I’ll go into more detail but right now I’m LOVING it.

What I’ll Be Writing:

This month, no lie, my WIP and NaNoWriMo is my main priority so my posting will be sporadic at best. I’m going to try to post 1 Living Life vignette, and of course any poetry or tags that cross my way but not much more than that. I’m still debating on whether or not to post weekly NaNo updates… would you guys be interested in hearing about that?
And of course at the end of the month you can expect my ever consistent Snapshot! post.

Some posts I enjoyed this month! :

-Kal @ Reader Voracious “Bookish Banter I Have the Memory of a Goldfish, So I Annotate
– Sophie Li @ Sophie’s Corner “My Editing Process Part 2 (+ more templates!)

My Round Up of October Posts: (LOOK HOW PRODUCTIVE I WAS)

I watch Over The Garden Wall every Halloween, and right after I post this I’m going to go grab a Twix and head into the Unknown. October was fun and I’m hoping to have just as much fun in November. That pesky WIP of mine that has been haunting my mind for years is going to get written!

Are any of you doing NaNoWriMo this year? What are your stories about? I’d love to hear about them!

Till next time,

Snapshot 9/30/19 // Waking Up Because September Is Ending

Currently listening:Wake Me Up When September Ends” – Green Day
Currently reading: The Secret History by Donna Tartt
Currently watching: Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir S3

I am going to be real with you guys right now. I sort of… faded in September. Nothing bad happened really, the weather wasn’t terrible and my friends and family were all doing great which at the end of it all made everything worth it. I, unfortunately though, sort of lost the swing of writing. I had to cover a lot of shifts at work, felt very uninspired with anything I attempted to write, and descended into a morose mood at the heart of which had me missing summer terribly.

(Me, beating myself up all month )

My goals for September were simple:

  • Keep working on my WIP which I technically did do, in dribs and drabs. I got nowhere near as far as I wanted to because my head was just not into it. It was a chore to write and think about, and that is not how this is supposed work. The reason I wanted to write it in the first place was because it was supposed to be something that I wanted, needed to get out and do. It’s supposed to feel like if I don’t keep pounding away at that keyboard I will never feel settled. It’s supposed to make the world around me fade and make me fall into the story. And I had none of those feelings. So for October I’m doing a reset. Reworking the plot and replanning the characters, that way I’ll be geared up for NaNoWriMo in November.
  • Focus back on my Living Life vignettes. I wanted to at least post two this month and trust me I wrote two but neither were nowhere near posting material. So for October, while I’m getting my head back on straight, I am going to try and focus on getting out at least one.

Heading into October then this is the plan:

  1. Rework my WIP
  2. Post 1 Living Life vignette
  3. Go pumpkin and apple picking, because honestly this is fun and puts me and Autumn on better terms lol. (I don’t hate you Autumn, I don’t I promise. Summer is just like the peanut butter to my jelly, or like the Cat Noir to my Ladybug.)

What I Read:


Gift From the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. I started this book last year and vowed to only read one chapter for every time I went to the beach. I finished it this summer, one year later. It was written in 1955 but even though that seems so far away, the lessons it teaches are still relevant today. The book has a magic to it in two ways, or at least it did for me. 1) It will keep you calm, I promise, the prose is very mellow and thoughtful. Then, 2) It demands to be read by the sea. I took away a great deal from it and its simple, but often overlooked in today’s world, lessons gave me clarity to reflect on my own life and give me the mental capability to relax. So if you need a major mental chill, or a 1950’s revamp to simplifying your hectic life I highly recommend.
Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson. This is my second reread of the book. The first time I read it was a few years ago and this time around it was still a good read but I liked it less then second go round. Still glad I read it though! I really liked Peter’s message at the end, “all things end happy”, because it gave me hope, even if the ending overall was bittersweet. I also loved that it was narrated by Tink. On the other hand, I didn’t really connect with how the author handled some things so skip to the next bullet point if you want to avoid some spoilers. I really hated how the author handled Wendy and how everything went down with her. That plot point seemed weak and she was written with the intention for the reader (at least in my mind) to hate her. This portrayal of Peter I also didn’t want to grow up. It didn’t seem to fit his character for me so when he left to go to England with Wendy and grow up, IDK , it just really rubbed me the wrong way. He was depicted as wild and untamable in the book and it didn’t connect for me that Peter would want to leave Neverland. The bittersweet ending though made sense to me in that Tiger Lily and Peter shouldn’t have ended up together but they were still soulmates and each served their purpose in the other’s life to help them grow and change. Not all soulmates have a happily ever after but their impact on the other’s life still remains in how they both grew from the beginning to the end of the book.
The Secret History by Donna Tartt is what I am currently reading and let me tell you this book is good. It’s very dark academia aesthetic and I only have maybe a third left of the book to go. Next month I’ll talk more about it but damn. I highly recommend this book. It was the perfect pick to distract me through my September blues.

What I’ll Be Writing (hopefully, fingers crossed):

If the fates and my will power allow be on the lookout for at least one Living Life vignette this month, maybe a poem (I was dabbling with two this past September but neither is finished yet…), any book tags that hit me like a car crash, and then at the end of the month my strong and steady Snapshot! update post. At least I can do these on time lol. Small victories!

Here are some links to posts I enjoyed this month:

– Siobhan @ Novelties “Beyond the Blurb | Bloggers, Embrace Hiatuses, Don’t Run From Them
– C.G. @ Paper Fury “Pantser Vs Plotter | Which Is The Best Way To Write Your Book?!
– Caro @ bookcheshirecat “Getting Back To Writing #2: Into The Editing Cave
– Sophie Li @ Sophie’s Corner “My Editing Process Part 1 (template included!)

Wow, it felt really good to actually sit down and write this. It has been a long blah month. Watching Miraculous (it is so CUTE and I am both equally in love with Cat Noir and Luka ❤ ) got me through the doldrums but moving forward October is going to be a lot better. I’ll make it better, and get back into the swing of things (or the spook of things because it’s almost HALLOWEEN!). Now it’s time to turn off the repeat of Wake Me Up When September Ends.

How did yall’s September’s go? Hopefully a lot better than mine. What sort of things do you do to get through the blah days when all you want to do is sleep?

Till next time,