Ask Your Reader

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Photo Credit: StandOutBooks

This will be a first for me. But who knows, maybe it could become a more regular thing. Maybe. Oh wait, I haven’t even told you what I’m doing yet. Whoops.

Okay. A Million years ago I took ideas from you all about potentially writing a guest post for me. And the response from you guys wasn’t astronomical, but I ended up with a GREAT post about pantsing vs. plotting. This will not be a call for a guest blogger.

But you still have a say in what I write. See, I’ve maintained for a long time that my favorite part of blogging is interacting with you guys. Yes, some of you avidly disagree with me on just about everything I post to the point that your comments are aimed more toward me than what I wrote, which I’m perfectly fine with. I’m a big boy and I can guarantee that nothing you say on here is going to hurt or negatively affect me. But keep it respectful. If I rant about something and you REALLY don’t like it then go ahead and comment and call me stupid and do whatever you want. I don’t care.

Anyway, I got way off topic with that paragraph. I’ve seen other bloggers ask their readers what they want them to write about. Honestly, I laugh when I see this because they end up with one Like and one comment because they really have no readers. Don’t read that as my thinking I’m better or something, but if you’re a regular reader of my posts then you know that there are several bloggers who come back day after day to read what I’ve written. So I think I’m in a better position than others to ask this question.

What would you like for me to write about? The one thing I would say is that your suggestion in some way pertain to books or writing. That’s all. Since I am posting this on a Sunday I definitely expect the response to be fairly minimal, but feel free to throw some ideas my way if you like and just maybe I’ll write a post and give you a little shoutout.

Comment away.

PS: I have a notepad of ideas right next to me. So don’t go thinking crazy thoughts that I’ve run out of ideas. Nope.

Saturday Selects: Guys

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Photo Credit: UCSC Student Health Center

Saturday Selects is a series of posts I write the first Saturday of every month in which I discuss something unrelated to books. It just gives me the opportunity to discuss something a little different every now and again. And yes, I realize that this is the second Saturday. I was sleepy last week.

The title doesn’t give away much in the way of exactly what I’ll be discussing. Let me just tell you. Guys and what I think of something that happened very recently.

This post is partly inspired by a conversation I had with a co-worker just yesterday. We’re talking about girls with tattoos and I name off a few who we work with who have them or who have told me want to get them. He asks me what I think of girls with tattoos and of course I’m like “Are you kidding? Love them.” But then the conversation turns toward two specific girls we work with. He asks me what I think of them. Yes we were talking about appearance but that wasn’t the only thing I responded to. I told him what I thought of their personalities and that I don’t really talk to either of them outside of work. This is where it gets tricky.

The next thing I said was this, “But you’re engaged.”

His response: “That doesn’t matter. They don’t know that and don’t tell them.”

Before I get into what I think of this I have to be honest here. My reaction to this when it happened was this, “Ahahaha!”

Judge me. Anyway, it made me think about guys and all those stupid things people say. They only want sex. Or they don’t care about feelings. Or whatever. I don’t need to tell you all because you already know. The thing is that I’m no different from the rest of you. We all have those people we know who we don’t hang around because we don’t agree with something they do or how they live. Don’t you dare say you don’t, you liar. And we also have people of the opposite sex who we are or are not attracted to because of certain things. Let me just say that he’s one of those guys who I’d never have thought would be in his current situation. My reasoning for thinking this is my own and I won’t be disclosing.

But let me also tell you all that I know nothing about dating or relationships or any of that stuff. (Kind of like writing) The rare instances in which people ask about my experience I say I’ve had a couple girlfriends but nothing even remotely serious. I think the longest was like 3-4 months? I don’t even remember. So I don’t know how someone is supposed to act in a relationship. At all. I don’t know about who they should be hanging out with. If their boy/girlfriend should always know where they are. Texting. Social media. I literally have no idea how any of these things are affected once someone enters into a relationship. But that isn’t the point of this post.

I do know this. If you’re engaged to be married to someone, then there should be a level of respect between the two of you. Whether you’re the guy or the girl is irrelevant. I mean, if you want to be texting other girls/guys like crazy trying to see what can happen between the two of you, then what’s the point of being engaged or in a relationship at all? I just don’t see it.

So when I heard that these two girls are definitely under the impression that my co-worker is interested in them, well I felt kind of¬† bad for them. Cause I know them both and though I don’t really have any kind of personal relationship with either of them, it just sucks.

Respect the person you’re with, guys and girls, because we both know there’s someone who will if you won’t.

That’s all.

Am I a Book Blogger?

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Photo Credit: Book Bloggers International

What comes to mind when you think book blogger? I think of pretty much book reviews, author interviews, reading lists, and blog tours.

Awkward silence envelopes me.

I do none of those things. Okay. Now let’s see. Maybe I have an author blog? But wait, I don’t talk about my own writing on here anymore. I talk about my writing process. A little. Don’t think so.

Okay. Maybe I have a writing blog? But I don’t offer any writing tips like EVERYONE else seems to because I’m not an expert like everyone else. (don’t miss the sarcasm)

Hm. Well let’s see what I do blog about. I write posts about writing. I write about reading. I write about book news. I write about publishing and buying books. I write about authors. I write about Katniss and Harry Potter. I write about…what else do I freaking write about?! Uh uh…I rant on and on about how stupid some things are. Um. I don’t know!

Oh well. I guess I’m not your typical book blogger. But you know what? I AM a book blogger and all of you who do just stick to listing all the books you read during the last month and reviews and the occasional author interview…well you’re boring anyway and you probably have 37 followers to my 1800. Whaaa?! I did not just go there.

I make book blogging fun and controversial all at once. Now THAT is something I rather enjoy.

Why I Think NaNo Anything is Dumb

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Photo Credit: NaNoWriMo No Mo (read this article!)

I think there are going to be a lot of people yelling at me after they start reading this. But that’s okay. Bring on the yelling, well, after you read this. Don’t just go make a dumb comment without reading.

So, this month is Camp NaNoWriMo, right? Which means that instead of the 50,000 word goal that arrives every November, this month is your own goal. Let’s hope this doesn’t turn into a rant.

Okay. So besides these two months of the year that are basically meant to force you to sit down and get some writing done, I believe there is also a month for poetry and also one for short stories. I think. I’m definitely not taking the time to Google any of these things. So we have four months out of the year that are dedicated to getting writers of all things creative to sit their butt in a chair and write. Sounds great on the surface, right? Not really.

During National Poetry Month I read a rant of a poem by one of the well known poets on WordPress. I don’t read her poems anymore because they simply lost their zing, but she was basically calling out every person who was participating in the poem a day challenge. It was her opinion that you shouldn’t need some specified month to get you writing poetry. Now I’m not going to focus specifically on poetry, but our thoughts are essentially the same.

You’re supposed to be a writer, right? Then why the heck do you need some specific month to get writing? I know plenty of people work with word count goals and others just try to get something written out each day and yet others have specified times during the day in which they write. Okay to all of that, but the calendar is moving along just as it does each and every year and suddenly during July and November you decide to get focused? I know you must be seeing how stupid this whole thing sounds. Cause this is basically what you’re telling me, yourself, and everyone else who knows you’re participating in Camp NaNo or NaNoWriMo: “I’m a writer. I work on different writing projects throughout the year, but I get most of my writing done during July and November.” My response to you would be this, “How come you get most of your writing done during those two months?” You’d look at me awkwardly and then say NaNoWriMo. Then I’d proceed to laugh and walk away because I’d like for you to think about your favorite author. Or maybe a few of them. Then find their website and see if they do most of their writing during the months of July and November. I think we both know you wouldn’t find any such information. Cause it’s flat out ridiculous. Period.

One more thing before I just punch someone in the face. You all likely know by now that I started my blog in June of last year so that I could talk about writing my first book (written between June & August) for all of you wondering and no, I had no idea what Camp NaNo was. But last November was the first I’d heard of NaNoWriMo. So I’m like, “Hey I just finished my first book. Maybe I can get started writing my second in this novel writing month thing. I went on to the website and realized what a joke the whole thing is. 50,000 words in 30 days. Why? Because that’s what they say. Even though any serious writer knows 50,000 words is hardly a novel. But that’s besides the point.

Then I took a look at what I think were the past year’s “winners.” They’d written the 50,000 words during the month. And what do you know, almost every single one of the books listed was self-published. I’m not avidly against self-publishing, I’ve done it, but is this really your ultimate goal as a writer? To write a ton during a single month or two only to realize that your writing was shit. The whole “Oh I can edit it later” mindset is about as ridiculous as writing a book in a month for no reason whatsoever. There’s a reason these books are very rarely picked up by traditional publishers. And you and I both know that it has a little something to do with the quality of the writing. They should change the name to National CreateSpace Novel Writing Month because that’s where most of the titles written are headed.

And cue your outrage.

Blogging Isn’t Writing

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Photo Credit: Calico

I’d be willing to bet that I read more blog posts each day or week or month than you do. I know I have no life. It’s okay. But one of the things I see way too much of is that some bloggers seem to think that writing blog posts is the same as creatively writing anything. Uhh no.

Let me just tell you about myself. I can usually write a new chapter in a little less than three hours. We’ll make it easy and say it’s 3,250 words. That’s usually divided into two writing sessions. Now why am I telling you this? Because that is creative writing. A poem or short story is creative writing. So much more goes into any one of them than just the words on the page. But writing a blog post is not in the same category. And if you’re a writer I’d hope you know this.

I fully realize that some bloggers only write on their blogs and that others post their own work, this doesn’t apply to them, but it certainly does apply to all those aspiring authors who have maybe written a book or are currently in the process of doing so. Blogging doesn’t help me write. It doesn’t make me a better writer. And it certainly doesn’t keep in the groove, whatever that is. My writing and my blogging are two separate entities and you would do well to make sure yours are too.

So stop writing all these “Oh I’ve had writer’s block because I haven’t blogged in a month” posts. You’re just busy or lazy or some combination of both. Has nothing to do with your inability to write creatively.

Keeping a Journal

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Photo Credit: The Recruiting Manifesto

You always see in movies or read in books about how this person or that wrote religiously in his her journal about the happenings of everyday life. Which I think is something that many of us have done at some point in the past.

Journals serve as an outlet for EVERYTHING going on in one’s life. I mean, yes there are probably several pages dedicated to that boy or girl you have a crush on but can’t seem to figure out if it’s mutual. But there are also pages upon pages of things that you’d never tell another person. Not your mom or your best friend or anyone. Why? Because no one else will ever understand.

Some might think that it’s only necessary to keep a journal when something is going wrong. Well let me quickly dispute that idea. You see, I’ve never written in a journal before, but a few short years ago I went through something that overwhelmed me for a long time. I needed some kind of avenue to express myself. I turned to letters. I wrote hundreds of letters that were never meant to be read by any other person, unless I decided to give them all to the person I was writing to. Which I never did. So now they serve as a reminder of what I was doing over the course of a three year span of my life while I was trying to figure everything out.

The initial reasoning for writing the letters had long passed but still I kept writing them. About school. Or writing. Or anything at all. My journal wasn’t a journal, it was a series of letters that I’ll never allow another person to read. Cause they just wouldn’t understand.

But that’s just me, have you ever kept a journal? If yes, what did you use it for? Maybe to write about your daily life. Or about a particular event. Or as an outlet to express yourself when no one around you knew what was going on. Or maybe you use it for story ideas. I’d love to know!

Side note: this is my 200th post! Thanks for sticking with me. It’s been great so far.

A Recommendation!

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Did you happen to catch on to the fact that I actually MISSED a post last week? I didn’t post Friday and then I missed my Saturday post the day after. Why? Because whenever it comes time for me to sit down and write one of these wonderful things for you all I will always and forever prefer to sleep instead. Y’all have no idea how much I need my sleep. Anyway, who cares about any of that stuff.

Today’s post will be a recommendation! I can see the wheels in your head turning. You’re thinking of my post from a very short while ago in which I was very specific in saying that I hate and never give out book recommendations. That remains true, BUT this won’t be a book recommendation.

Let me tell you how I just so happened to stumble across this outrageously funny girl I’m going to be suggesting to you all in a short bit. I’m scrolling down my Facebook News Feed. I hate the social network itself and talk to none of the people I’m friends with on there, but I still scroll through my News Feed several times a day. Mostly for funny Vines or memes. So I’m sitting there scrolling along and I catch the title of a Huffington Post article about some rap duo who capture the ridiculousness of Generation Y. I’m like…”Oh.” Honestly, some really trashy articles pop up on Facebook but I click ahead anyway. You can read the article¬†here and you most definitely should! It’s short!

Then I watched the music video, it’s an actual song and a REALLY catchy one! But that’s only how I came to discover Superwoman. Who is Superwoman you ask? She’s who I’m recommending to you guys! Her name is really Lilly Singh.

She has a GREAT YouTube channel that I’ve been binge watching all day. It’s mostly comedic stuff, but in the process of my watching I found a “Draw My Life” video. If you don’t know what these are just think of a person narrating in the background as they draw what they’re saying on a dry erase board. These are always great to watch. So I watched hers thinking that it would be a little about her and a lot about how she managed to gain over 3 million subscribers to her channel. 3 million! And here I thought 1300 blog followers was something special. Anyway, the point that I’m making is that this video was not comedic. It wasn’t at all what I expected. If I had to put a label on it I would call it a video of hope and strength. And holy crap it’s seriously fantastic. And you learn about the girl whose videos are watched by millions.

I know this isn’t my regular bookish post, but you guys should really give this girl a look. At least watch the Draw My Life video because I guarantee you’ll love it. And then watch the music video for #Leh because you WILL be singing it the rest of the day and a purchase will be made.

Read the Huffington Post article and watch the music video for the song #Leh here.

Watch her Draw My Life video here.

Access her YouTube channel here.

Follow her on Twitter here.

Download the song #Leh from Amazon here. (Couldn’t figure out the iTunes link)

PLEEEEEEEEASE don’t just read this and skip all the links. This girl is beyond hilarious and I know you’ll find her entertaining. Regular bookish post coming tomorrow!

I decided to go ahead and include her Draw My Life video because I know you guys are lazy and won’t click. Now watch!