My 2014 Reading Biography

AKA the books I read this year.

Honestly, I’m not sure that “reading biography” is a thing that people say, but I saw it on another post and I’m stealing it. How about we make it catch on and then eventually everyone who reads this blog will be able to say they had a hand in a new tag/meme on WordPress. I can see it now.

“Hey guys, this is my reading biography. As started over at Write me a Book, John!”

Maybe? Anyway, this is going to be a much shorter post than I’d have hoped at the start of the year. I’m pretty sure you know by now that my goal each year is to read 50 books. I think it’s a nice round number that’s definitely attainable, considering I read 44 a couple years ago in just seven months. Guess how close I got? Just guess. I’ll wait.

Hurry up.

Okay. Time’s up. I read…seven books! SO close to my goal! Not. It was a terrible reading year. I mean, how can I even say I’m a reader with that kind of number? It’s really disappointing and there’s no explanation. I’m just a loser. Here’s the mediocre list anyway. And I’m even going to post the date I finished each one so you really get an idea how bad it really was.

1. Valediction (Spenser #11) – Robert B. Parker – January 1

2. The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank – March 7

3. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Harry Potter #1) – JK Rowling – March 13

4. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl – March 26

5. London Bridges (Alex Cross #10) – James Patterson – April 12

6. The Fault in our Stars – John Green – June 12

7. The Drop (Harry Bosch #15) – Michael Connelly – June 21

Pages Read: 2193

Reading Time: 36:07

Series Books: 4

Authors: 7

Amazon 100 Books: 4

That’s it. That’s all there is to know from what I read in 2014. This means I’ve read a whopping 22 books since January 1, 2013! What am I doing!? No. 2015 will be better. I know it.

How was your 2014 reading year? It couldn’t have been any worse than mine.

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Where the Magic Happens

I surely hope you weren’t thinking of something else when you read that title. If so, get your mind out of the gutter! Why would I be talking about that? Ha. Just kidding. I actually don’t like this title because I’ve seen it so many times for the exact post I’m writing. But I couldn’t think of anything catchy as I sat in my chair to write. So you’re stuck with it. Just deal.

So if you haven’t figured it out yet, the topic of this post will be to discuss my personal writing space. Get it now, “Where the magic happens?” Yeah. I hope so. Even though there hasn’t been much magic happening lately. I see so many writers on here talking about writing this many words and that many, and I’m just like, “Where’s the TV? I need my shows.” Oh man, that sounds so bad. But it’s so true. Agents of Shield and The Following and Ink Master and Nashville are all so great. Stop it. Don’t look at me like that. I love writing. But I love TV. Let’s call it research. I’m researching the writing of the writers for those shows. YEP!

Okay. Now let’s get serious again.

Image

As you can see, I definitely didn’t try to clean up before snapping the photo. No point in giving you guys a fake-ish picture, right? Right. Before I go into detail as to what exactly we have here, let me first tell you what I mean by magic. This is where I write every chapter of my second book. This is where all current and future editing will be done on said book. This is where every blog post is written. This is also where pointless internet surfing takes place. Eh. I’m not perfect.

So, what do we have here? First, there’s my UHD diploma! Seriously, no matter where I write or live or whatever in the future, I’m quite certain that I’ll always have this bad boy staring me back in the face as I write. I used to have this space in another room and it was hanging up on the wall, but I haven’t gotten around to hanging it up a second time. I kinda like it where it is. Two quick fun facts before I continue: I ran to the door when I knew the postal man was delivering this. He told me congratulations. Second, on my actual graduation day almost a year ago now I didn’t cry until I we were all eating at a restaurant and I started reading all the cards I got. And it was those ugly bawling kinda tears. They were all laughing. And crying. A bunch of people laughing and crying. That sounds odd. Moving on.

Then we have a lamp there. He gives me light. Ha.

Then we have two notebooks. The one on the left actually has all my blog post ideas. I just did a quick count. There are 29 of them on there now. I’ve written 17 already.  So if you ever think I don’t take my blogging seriously, think again. The other notebook on the right is my tally from my shelfie post from a week ago. It took so long to figure out all the series and authors and standalones I had. I went from memory even though some of the books on the shelf have been there since as early as 2008. That’s a lifetime ago. I was a sophomore in high school!

You see that little black box just to the right of the laptop? That would be my college class ring. I love that thing. It’s actually the most expensive purchase I’ve ever made myself. It’s 10k gold, if you’re wondering. And it’s so shiny. And HUGE. Seriously, I hate wearing watches or rings or anything, but this thing is giant. I don’t even wear it. I don’t wear it to work because my hands get dirty while I’m there and obviously I don’t need it at the gym. So it just sits here. It’s okay.

Then we have three books on the desk. London Bridges by James Patterson, which you’ll recall was my most recent read. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. I need to read this. And then that red one would be my own. That was the copy I read when I was preparing my manuscript for the ABNA competition. I think it’s a little dusty.

Finally, we have my laptop. I keep telling myself that I’m going to buy a new one, but obviously I haven’t. I bought this when I was a junior in high school. This guy is really bulky and runs on Windows Vista, I think. I’ve never had a major issue with it and it’ll always be my baby because I wrote my first book on it! Whenever I do get a new one I’ll probably keep this one and store it forever. I’m a little sentimental.

So there you have it. My writing space. No fancy writing setups. No picturesque window to look out. Not much of anything except for what I need. So tell me about yours! If you’re describing it you better be vivid. Cause you’re supposed to be a writer, right? Or, if you want to be even more awesome than everyone else, tweet me a picture! I don’t think you can put pictures in comments on here. I don’t think. Click here to go to my Twitter profile. Hey, while you’re at it you can go ahead and follow your favorite blogger on that Twitter thing.

Listen While you…Write?

Photo Credit: Fuel Your Writing

I remember thinking of writing this post sometime ago. But then it got lost in the shuffle of other blog posts that I thought were more relevant. But now I’ve gone ahead and changed my mind. I’ve even given it the coveted Monday spot! Supposedly Mondays are the most active days on blogging sites, though my top five days in terms of views have all come on days that are not Monday. Eh. Doesn’t matter.

Anyway, you’re likely still scratching your head trying to figure out what exactly I intend to discuss in this post. The title doesn’t really tell you all you need to know. Fear not, the topic to be discussed is what you listen to as you write. I was reminded of this question when it was asked of me by another blogger who nominated me for a Liebster Award. My initial response and longest post ever can be found here.

Okay. Time for the good stuff. My answer is actually a two-part answer. First, I don’t listen to anything while I’m working on my second novel. The sounds of my house are annoying enough that I have no intention of adding to the mix with sounds of ANYTHING. Second, I always listen to music as I write my blog posts. I typically write them the night before they’re set to go online. For instance, this is Monday’s post being written at 12:45 Sunday night. What music you ask? Well if you’ve glanced at my About Me page then you know that I LOVE country music. Seriously. I don’t care that people say all they sing about are back roads, blue jeans, beer, and trucks. It’s about a thousand times better than pop music. Probably more, actually. I’m always downloading new songs. I listen to my most recent country downloads as I work on my blog posts. It’s currently 11 songs. Rascal Flatts, Brad Paisley, Keith Urban, Thomas Rhett, and Brett Eldredge are all represented in this batch. I honestly don’t know why there’s a difference between writing a blog post and writing a new chapter. But there is.

So there you have it, I’m either listening to the click-clacking of my fingers on the keys of my laptop while writing a new chapter or I’m jamming to some country music while writing a blog post. I want to know what YOU listen to as you write. Let’s compare, shall we?

Also, I’m going to start keeping you guys apprised of my progress to read 50 books in a single calendar year. I just finished my fifth book of the year. London Bridges (Alex Cross #10) by James Patterson.