What Motivates Me

What Motivates Me

So, as part of the Liebster Awards, one of the stipulations is writing a short post about what motivates me.

I think it first makes sense to talk about why I started this blog in the first place. I initially got into bookstagram and book reviewing simply because it was a space I really enjoyed. Reviewing books has really helped me with my own writing, because analyzing other writing has helped me see both the flaws and strong points in my own style.

Long term, what motivates me to get up and do things are my strong beliefs, which are grounded in tikkun olam. This basically means “to repair the world.” In Judaism, there’s this idea of having a moral obligation to repair things about the world, by performing acts of kindness, or mitzvahs. My social activism and volunteer work I do isn’t because I think there’s an after-life, necessarily.

Not to get super heavy, I’m just saying it’s because I think the world is harsh and there’s a lot of issues happening, and everyone has a responsibility to try to do something. That could be anything, even something as seemingly minor as starting with helping themselves be the best they can be so they can be a positive influence on their friends and family.

Short term, I’m motivated by my ambitions, to be someone, to make a difference, and to be a unique voice. I don’t know exactly what all that means just yet, but I’m starting to figure it out.

Liebster Award Nomination

Liebster Award Nomination

I was nominated by Naomi, at Naomi’s Reading Corner. Thank you so much, Naomi. Her blog is really great, I love how she incorporates not just reviews, but also elements like posts about Reading Apps, and popular reading memes. She’s a really sweet person and I look forward to her posts and seeing her on my Twitter feed as well.

Rules

1. Thank the person who nominated you, and put a link to their blog on your blog. 

2. Answer the 5 creative and unique questions given to you.

3. Write a small post about what motivates you in life (not just in blogging).

4. Nominate 2 – 6 blogs that you feel would enjoy blogging about this award the award.

5. Create 5 creative and unique questions for your nominees.

6. List these rules in your post.

Post about What Motivates Me

My Answers

Naomi had some interesting questions for me! I hope I did them justice.

  1. You can take one book with you to a Desert Island, which books would you take and why? That is an impossible question, like asking me to pick a favorite dog or cat. I’d have to go with a comfort read. I’m really torn between Inkheart by Cornelia Funke and Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials. I really can’t pick, so it’s a tie.
  2. You can only eat one food for the rest of your life. What food do you pick? If I say pineapple on pizza, I think a lot of you might block me out of spite. Just kidding. Although I do like pineapple on pizza. That’s such a hard question. I’d pick poke. For those who haven’t had it, it’s a Hawaiian dish of diced raw fish that’s served on rice. I like ahi tuna poke best. I might get mercury poisoning if I only ate that for the rest of my life, but we’re not taking that into consideration, right?
  3. You can only keep one item (books are not an option), what one item could you not live without? Something I can use to write and draw with. Being able to write and express myself is something I need, not constantly, but not being able to have it when I need it would be really detrimental to me.
  4. If aliens landed on the planet and you were the first person they met. What advice would you give them? I’d tell them to turn around, because our planet is on fire, we have war, hunger, and all kinds of terrible things–and also, do they have room on their space craft for me and my boyfriend and maybe some other earth people who want to get the heck off this planet?
  5.  When you were little, what was your career choice? This may seem cliched for someone who keeps a blog and talks about writing a novel, but I wanted to be a writer. I wanted to live out Inkheart (where the characters could bring stories to life by reading them aloud). I brought books to dinner, did NaNoWriMo before I got my license, and I went to writing workshop after writing workshop, because I was convinced that I would be the next Great American Author. I was obsessed with writing the Perfect Book, until I realized there was no perfect book, and only good books. Hence, now I’m finally working on a novel I really am proud of and love, and I guess you could say my dream of being a writer is kind of true, although I’m not at the point where it’s a full-time thing.

My Nominations

Please go and visit these awesome blogs!

Melanie and Mireille @ TBR and Beyond

Sarah @ Bookish Rantings

Lana @ Bibliomedico

Lauren @ Northern Plunder

My Questions

  1. If you could be any character, from any book, what character would you be and what parts of the plot in that book would you change?
  2. If you could visit space, but it meant you could never return to Earth, would you do so, and why or why not?
  3. If you could write a letter to anyone in history, who would it be?
  4. What place in the world do you most want to live?
  5. Would you rather live forever, or have any super power of your choosing and live out your normal life span?
My Top Horror Movie Recommendations for Halloween

My Top Horror Movie Recommendations for Halloween

I’ve been dying to write this blog for quite a while. It’s a mix of older and newer movies and my taste is all over the map. I’ve bolded ones I really loved. In no particular order and in loose categories:

Final Girls

  • Ready Or Not (2019)
  • The Final Girls (2015)
  • Crawl (2019)
  • Scream (1996)
  • Tragedy Girls (2017)
  • Cam (2018)

Trapped in the Woods

  • Tucker and Dale vs. Evil (2011)
  • The Ritual (2017)

Truly Scary

  • Us (2019)
  • Hush (2016)

Creepy

  • Birdbox (2018)
  • Annihilation (2018)
End of Week Wrap-Up

End of Week Wrap-Up

So, it’s the end of the week, officially. Day 6 of Blogtober. I wanted to do a quick stats post and give you an idea of what I’ve been up to.

  • Over 90 minutes read (via the Bookly app)
  • Still reading A Library of Lost Things (So far, 4/5 stars, but I’m refraining from commenting further as I’m only 38% done).
  • 6 days straight of Inktober
  • 6 Blogtober Posts
  • 2400~ words into my novel (started around 1500 in September).
  • A personal goal for me is to write or edit every day, and I’ve met that.
  • Hit over 70 likes on here (Thank you so much!!)
  • 3 Instagram posts
  • Received: 1 Book Mail/Stationary Item (bunny sticker!)

Stacking the Shelves, or, What Was I Thinking, A Slow-Building Realization.

Stacking the Shelves, or, What Was I Thinking, A Slow-Building Realization.

This could also be titled, “I need two more people to read this many books.”

I went ahead and just did NetGalley and Edelweiss, but I’ve also won books that I haven’t received yet, and I’ve bought books and gotten a few books from the library. We’re not gonna discuss those. Because I’m overwhelmed enough. Thanks for your understanding. This post was inspired by this post but it’s a weekly meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews and Reading Reality.

NetGalley eARCs: Currently Reading

Not pictured: Gone Is Gone.

NetGalley eARCs

Book not pictured: Study with Me: Effective Bullet Journaling Techniques, Habits, and Hacks To Be Successful, Productive, and Organized-With Special Strategies for Mathematics, Science, History, Languages, and More by Jasmine Shao and Alyssa Jaga

Yes, I was That Person in high school and college. We don’t need to talk about it. We don’t need to talk about why I requested this as a 24-year-old who isn’t in college and has graduated grad school.

Also not pictured: The Opposite of Falling Apart by Micah Good and What Kind of Girl by Alyssa Sheinmel.

Edelweiss+ eARCs

Autumn Bucket List (Book-ish Edition)

Autumn Bucket List (Book-ish Edition)

This is a really popular post that I’m not even going to attempt to say I was the first one to think of, but it’s Autumn, let’s do some fun bookish and not bookish things!

1. Go to a Haunted House.

This is a cliche for a reason. It’s so fun, I love haunted houses. Also haunted hospitals, haunted hayrides, anything similar. If you don’t like scary things, it’s okay. Just go with your kid, or if you babysit or have a kid you’re related to or a friend with kids, go with them to a non-scary, family friendly attraction. It’ll still be fun! And if you scream, blame it on the nearest child. No one will know.

2. Brew up some holiday drinks inspired by your favorite book.

Now, I’m going to do a whole post on this, regarding food and drinks related to books, but I have personally made butter beer from scratch, and I think it’s the only thing to like about the series. But I have a lot of personal qualms (antisemitism, transphobia, homophobia, racism, etc.) with J.K. Rowling that I don’t want to go into, and also, if you like Harry Potter, go ahead and like Harry Potter, just maybe be critical about your media consumption. Anyway, if you like Harry Potter and/or butter beer, you will enjoy that post, promise. There’s nothing like sipping on your favorite character’s drink of choice and reading a book about them doing the same, that’s some meta stuff right there. I think I used the word meta correctly. I’ve gotta stop writing these posts after 10pm.

3. Pick up some book inspired autumn merch, or better yet, look out for sales on summer items. Go forth and shop wisely.

4. Take a road trip inspired by a book. Do you live near one of your favorite book settings? Just because there isn’t a museum for the book doesn’t mean you can’t go and take some pictures there. Cosplay as your favorite character. Live your book nerd fantasies.

5. Spend time in your local library. Now is the best time. If you live in a place with seasons (I’m sorry if you live in the US and in the South, wear a scarf inside and pretend, it’s what happens) you can gaze out blissfully and think, oh, this is how the great writers spent their time. Or something. The weather’s gorgeous, and you can admire it from the warmth of the indoors. Support your local libraries, they’re great!

6. Participate in a Halloween challenge, book style. Read books that are set during Halloween, or only spooky books, or read books that just have an autumn vibe. (I’ll do a longer in-depth post about this soon).

7. Buy a fake pumpkin and some Halloween props a day or so after Halloween, they make great bookstagram props.

Top Ten Fall Releases I’m Most Excited About

Top Ten Fall Releases I’m Most Excited About

Read about (most of) the releases here.

This is a bit of a shorter blog post, because it’s been a long day and I’m exhausted.

Post apocalypse? Sign me the heck up.

The title alone grabbed me but the author is amazing and the hype? Let’s just say I can’t wait.

I’ve just heard so much about it. And it’s a lesbian romance. What else is there to say?

I need this like, yesterday. Everything about it lines up with my aesthetic.

A rogue female spy? Just my type.

It just has such an interesting description, and I love a good ghostly story.

WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday

Surprise, I decided to do a different post than planned! One of my friends, Naomi’s Reading Corner, did this prompt, and I thought it sounded fun, so I decided to tackle it as well!

If you’re not familiar, it’s: What are you currently reading? What have you finished reading? What will you read next?

What are you currently reading?

I am currently reading Library of Lost Things by Laura Taylor Namey (and a few others things from September, but I want to focus on my shiny new book that I’m loving). I received my copy as an ARC from NetGalley, so any quotes I’m using are from that, which means they could be slightly different in the finished copy. Additionally, although I’m not paid to write any of this, I do get these copies for free in exchange for an honest review, so I just want to make that clear for readers from the start (and that goes for all the books I mention in this blog post, which are all from NetGalley).

It’s a really good book so far! It takes a few pages to really get absorbed in the story, at least it did for me, but here’s a sampling of a quote that I just loved right off the bat:

Three benches curved like melon slices around a pedestal base. We hogged them all, scattering our lives across the chipped mosaic tile top.

What have you finished reading?

The last book I finished was Jack Kerouac Is Dead to Me by Gae Polisner, which I’ve raved about excessively. I’m linking my review to both my WordPress review and my Goodreads review (so you can pick which format you prefer) and I advise everyone to pre-order it like, yesterday. Also if you’re not following the author, you should be, she’s amazing and super sweet (I’m not just saying that because she said she was “obsessed” with my review but that doesn’t hurt).

Blog Review | Goodreads Review

I’m also still slogging through a middle-grade (I think that’s the category for it) book called Gone Is Gone, and I’m not enjoying that one at all, but I’m about 50% done and at this point I need to just suck it up and finish it to be honest.

What will you read next?

The million dollar question! I hate answering this because I’ve developed into such a mood reader! I’ll put books down if I get disinterested, and then pick them up again weeks/days later. But I’m pretty sure I’m going to read Scared Little Rabbits by A.V. Geiger next. Like, 80% sure. Because it’s Halloween, and this looks like a Halloween type of book.

I hope you enjoyed this blog post! If you did, consider checking out my Patreon or my Ko-Fi, both linked on my side-bar. Also, I hit 200 followers on my Instagram today, so that’s amazing and I’m super excited about that, you all are amazing. And my Twitter has been growing rapidly as well, I’m at over 100 followers, so I’m so thankful for anyone following me on multiple platforms, you’re the MVP!

Happy Halloween season, and Day Two of Blogtober!

October To Be Read List

October To Be Read List

Day one of #Blogtober!

I am nervous that I might not finish, but also really excited. I want to get better at producing content for all of you lovely fans out there (I say that like I’m speaking to a stadium full of people, but it’s not that many people–yet). I’ve discovered the only way to do that is to just practice. Seems stupidly obvious, right? But failure is scary. I want to make things perfect.

But this is kind of like National Novel Writing Month, and I’m not focusing on perfect. I’m going to focus on making enjoyable content, and that may mean later I cringe at a few posts or phrases here or there. So be it. It’s part of the process.

Onto what you came here for (what you voted for, in fact, I did a Twitter poll and you all wanted this apparently, so here goes!):

  1. The Library of Lost Things by Laura Taylor Namey (ARC from NetGalley)
  2. Scared Little Rabbits by A.V. Geiger (NetGalley)
  3. Study with Me by Jasmine Shao and Alyssa Jagan (ARC from NetGalley)
  4. Immoral Code by Lillian Clark (library book)
  5. Her Royal Highness by Rachel Hawkins (library book)
  6. These Witches Don’t Burn by Isabel Sterling (library book)
  7. The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson (September OwlCrate book)
  8. The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones (September OwlCrate book)
  9. House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A. Craig (August OwlCrate book)
  10. Ink In the Blood by Kim Smejkal (ARC from NetGalley)
  11. The All-American Muslim Girl by Nadine Jolie Courtney (ARC from NetGalley)
  12. Reverie by Ryan La Sala (ARC from NetGalley)
  13. Bentwhistle The Dragon in Earth’s Custodians by Paul Cude (request from author)

These are in a kind of order, but I’m a mood reader, sometimes, so whether I stick to it–that’s really questionable. We’ll see.

I also have a few gifted books I’m waiting eagerly on (Gideon the Ninth, for one!!!) that I don’t know when they will arrive, so I don’t want to include those in case they don’t get here on time. I’m also not counting books I started prior to October, like Gone Is Gone, which I’m planning to finish this month as well.

Have you read any of these books? What’s your TBR list for October? Drop me some links! I really want to know! I’m so excited to have some spooky books on my list (and I’ll probably add more if time allows…).

Signing off for today!