18 posts tagged Help!
What type of things would you like to see more of on the blog?
Ask away and I’ll answer as best as I can!
Just message me, I would love you forever and ever.
That’s a promise.
I love helping out in whatever way I can when it comes to books and writing, so let me know what topic you would like me to write a list about!
I need ideas and you guys (thanks for following me you awesome people you!) are the audience, so I want to make lists that benefit you as a reader/writer community!
And I’m taking suggestions for anything you think I should add to the usual lineup of the blog!
My usual posts are:
-Book recommendations/books I’ve yet to read
- I will be starting Author Features again once I’m free
- I will start doing videos as well
Am I missing something you’d like to see on here?
What would you like to see?
I need your help though!
What adaptations do you think are the best ones out there and why do you think they should be added to my top ten list?
Simply send me a list of your favourite 5-10 books via my Ask Me box!
Happy reading (and deciding which books are your favourite!)
Here are some suggestions… I’m not a psych major, but I am a book lover and I’m just speaking from experience, hope this helps!
1. Analyze the environment you’ve been reading in… ask yourself if these places were beneficial to your reading experience or not? Sometimes if we’re in a hectic or too tranquil of a place, we lose focus on books and find it harder to read simply because our attention is divided between the book and our surroundings.
2. Do you honestly like this book? I’ve mentioned before that IT IS OKAY TO STOP READING A BOOK IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT. No one will judge you, and if they do, whatever, you’re your own reader. Sometimes society over-hypes a book and we believe that because everyone else likes it we HAVE to like it too… which is complete crap. Be honest with yourself.
3. If you honestly like this book, but are just intimidated, then give yourself some time. Some books can be devoured, others are a full course meal that will take time to savour and digested. There is no shame in taking your time.
4. If you want to finish the book, but need a break, then take one. Maybe you just need a different book to clear your thoughts before continuing. If you genuinely love the big, daunting book that’s haunting you, then you’ll returned fresh-faced and ready to go.
5. Try to schedule your readings. If you think that the book is good, but too intense, then maybe read it in intervals. For example, read the book for an hour every day, except for when it gets exciting. Before you know it, you’ll be finished and it will feel awesome!
Hope this helps you guys out and feel free to ask me anything, anytime!
I recently got a very good question, which is visible below this post, about what to do when we’ve reached a reading strike.
What do I mean by reading strike?
Well, sometimes we encounter a book that either tires us out or turns out to be a much greater disappointment than we expected, and these books can make us weary of future books. Subconsciously, we may be dreading encountering another book like the aforementioned example, so we begin to withdraw from reading. This happens with many other things in life, for example: romance, failed friendships, hobbies, etc. Not only is this something that can affect any reader, like a writer’s block affects a writer, but it is a slightly depressing experience that forces us to miss out on potentially great books.
So, if you’re experiencing this, I hope I can help you out with this list:
1. Try to figure out why you didn’t like that last book. Maybe you need to understand why you didn’t like the book in order to end this strike, or at least to get you on the path to recovery.
2. Remind yourself that you DO love to read, you’re just having a tough time getting back on the wagon.
3. Try to see if there are other stresses in your life. For example: school, love life, family, friends. Maybe you’re so occupied by all that’s going on about you, that you haven’t given yourself time to relax and read.
4. Write a list of your favourite authors. Then write your favourite books by those authors. Is there one that you can consider reading again? Maybe re-reading a book you know is great will aid you in regaining your love of reading.
5. Have you been looking at the same genres during this dry spell? Try looking outside the box, you might be surprised to find other genres you might like.
6. Find authors that are similar to those that you love and check out any books that may be “easy” or “fast” reads that interest you by those authors. Not only would you be stepping out of your comfort zone with this one, but you’re exploring authors outside of the zone that got you on the strike in the first place.
7. Find a book you like. Don’t focus on a book that’s popular just because it is popular. Only read it if you like it.
8. Take your time in reading your first book after a long absence of reading. No one is going to make you read fast. There is no deadline.
9. Find time. Make time, and read somewhere that is quiet and where you will not be disturbed. This will take a lot of concentration and willingness on your part as well.
10. If you don’t like the book you’ve chosen (though you’ve been instructed otherwise), then you’re allowed to stop midway and start something new. Famous authors probably do it and so do other readers. Remember, you read for you, not for anyone else.
I hope this helps you guys out, let me know if you need any other suggestions.
Let me know by submitting a request here!
Which author do you want to see on this blog as a feature? Which author do you want to learn more about?
Always taking requests and suggestions!
Sometimes I tend to make a comment about how I absolutely love going to thrift stores around my house for their book selections. I am certain I am not the only one, simply because we are all book lovers!
If you’re anything like me, you have the conundrum of spending way above your budget on books at your local bookstores (i.e Indigo/Chapters, Barnes and Noble, Amazon, etc). I will tell you, without a doubt, that thrift stores are some of the best treasure troves full of books. Not only can you get first editions and leather-bound copies, but you can buy books that are sometimes practically new from 50 cents to two bucks! Imagine that! How many books could you buy then and still stay within budget?
So this tutorial will probably be nothing new to the Thrift Store enthusiasts, but to those who have never had the chance or are wary of giving them a shot, the art of shopping for books at a thrift store is quite simple!
What you will need:
- Your credit/debit card or more than 20 bucks, because you might get overly zealous on your first trip
- A bag of your own (preferably a big market environment bag that you can buy at any grocery store.) I’m not sure how it is in the U.S. but here in Canada we usually need these bags to avoid paying the 30 cents per plastic bag.
- Time. Trust me, saying, “I’ve got an errand to run, but I’ll just stop by here,” will not work. At all. Give yourself time, because patience is the perfect key for any book rendezvous in thrift stores.
- Some stores offer free membership stamp cards that can get you some discounts. Check to see if they have them at your location!
- Finally, a student card. A lot of stores give discounts for us being students. And you thought being a student was a nuisance!
The steps for this one are a lot less than my previous post, but keep in mind that they are still very much important towards your goal of a successful shopping spree.
Find a location near you. I know this sounds simple, but trust me, do you really want to walk out of a store with a bag or two full of books and think about the journey back home? Unless you’ve got a car to help you out, please look for the nearest location possible!
If you’re one of those people who feels oddly out of place at a thrift store, stop and ponder for a minute if your embarrassment/awkwardness is worth missing out on super inexpensive books that have character.
I add this as a step because I know a few people who would never walk into a thrift store because they don’t like them. This is where I’d like to remind you that thrift stores don’t just sell used things, but cheaper things that you can make your own. The clothes are retro (and usually in style), you can find designer bags sometimes, and they’ve got pretty cute little trinkets. But, for us, the most important thing to keep in mind is that by allowing your fear to overwhelm you, you’re missing out on a GREAT EXPERIENCE.
Grab a cart. Sounds pretty practical, yes, but when I first started going I did not consider this AT ALL. I would look pretty comical holding arm-loads of books while juggling my bag and still trying to peer at the novels around me.
A cart not only frees your arms, but lets you look with more comfortability and leisure.
Finally you’ve maneuvered yourself around the other customers and find yourself in front of (depending on your store) bookcases among bookcases of books. You may find yourself overwhelmed, but don’t give up. Don’t tire just yet. This takes time, I warned you, just let yourself go. You’re in no rush, so just breathe.
I will separate this step into 2 sub-steps because of the variations you may encounter!
Sub-Step i… for if your store only has a few bookcases:
- Give the shelves available a quick glance over and pick out the immediate titles that appear interesting or familiar to you
- Having done the quick look-over, now return to the first bookshelf and begin examining the books, one by one. You’d be surprised at what you may find. The reason why I suggest this step is because sometimes our eyes search for the recognizable and most appealing texts. I believe that we all inadvertently judge a book by its cover… whether we want to believe it or not. So, by looking more closely at book titles you aren’t missing out on any books you might have not noticed in the quick glance. Plus, this part is actually pretty fun. The books you may find will amaze you!
- Finally, this is an optional point, but I would suggest giving the shelves ONE more looksee, since there might still be something you’ve missed in your excitement. You’ve no idea how many times I find a new book in this final stage!
Sub-Step ii… For if your store has so many bookshelves that they are categorized by genre:
- Breathe. I know this looks intimidating as hell, but honestly, this is going to be fun. Trust me.
- Figure out which genre is your favourite. If you’ve got multiples, then decide which one trumps the other.
- When you’ve got your genre, then go focus on THAT SET OF BOOKSHELVES. If you try to look at everything at once, you might start feeling a bit overwhelmed. When finding books, you should never feel this way. You should just let the energy and pull of the magnetic world of books draw you in… not anxiety.
- If you think you’re missing out on a shelf while focusing on another, don’t worry,it’ll still be there when you’re done. If someone takes a book while your focus is on a different genre, that’s okay too. You probably will never know which book they took and that may be easier to deal with than if you see them holding your all-time favourite novel by the best author that has ever graced your reading life.
- When you’ve narrowed down your search to the few given bookshelves to the genre you wish to peruse, follow the steps in sub-section i.
- If you’ve got time and patience, I suggest doing the same thing for other genres you enjoy. DON’T WASTE TIME ON GENRES YOU DON’T LIKE. This may frustrate you and might make you give up prematurely. If you still want to take the risk, go ahead. Like I’ve said, you never know what you may find.
Phew. Okay. You’ve got your books. Now what could there possibly be left to do now? Well, personally, the most important part, actually. When I search out novels, I tend to grab whatever looks interesting on first glance and chuck it into my cart. Sometimes, novels that I know I won’t enjoy make it into the cart, and the only way I can know that I won’t like them before spending money on them is if I DOUBLE-CHECK what I’ve chosen.
This is important. Unless you have a fantasy of owning every single novel in existence, I suggest double-checking your loot. If you don’t, you might not only end up buying a book that you won’t like, but someone else might be missing out on it since it isn’t available anymore! You’ve no idea how many I have gotten rid of during these inspections! I know the novels are cheap, but when you’ve got books that you know you won’t enjoy in your cart it adds up to a bad investment. Therefore, this step is CRUCIAL. Do not forget it.
So, you’ve paid and your bookshelves are looking fantastical with the addition of new adventures waiting for you. What’s next? CHOOSING WHAT TO READ!!! :D
And I just wanted to let you guys know about the plans for tomorrow!
Featured author for tomorrow is:
Remember guys, I am accepting submissions and suggestions for your favourite authors or any other author you wish for me to feature! Just go here and submit! :) Don’t be shy, I’m sure that whichever author you’re curious about will be on others’ minds as well!
I just ask these things of you:
- Please no obscure authors, as it is extremely hard to find information about them
- No repeats: I’ve already done John Green, you can find my post about him here
I’ll see you guys tomorrow, have an awesome night on tumblr world!
I’ve just rearranged my bookcases today, in fact.
It was crazy! Let’s just say that a headache quickly formed by the tenth moved book. So what can you do when you’ve reached what may seem like maximum capacity?
You move things around!
I know you’re probably skeptical, but listen, let me explain what I mean.
If you’re anything like me, you’ve got much more books to read than the the ones you have read. I personally have two bookcases (as shown on a previous post on this blog) and I usually come out of second hand stores with more than 20 books and my bookstore adventures usually leave me with 4 or more books per fix. If I do this two to three times a week that leaves me with a hell of a lot of books. So what I do is quite simple: I move the books I’ve read.
What you will need:
- Space between your ceiling and the top of your bookcases.
- Patience. Seriously, this is important.
- The ability to withstand the pain of not seeing ALL of your books in one place
Separate your books, no matter how long it takes, into three piles:
- Not Read
- Started, but not finished
When you’re done separating your books, focus on the started ones. Now separate THOSE books into two piles:
- The ones you will read eventually
- The ones that you know, in your gut, that you won’t finish.
This step is usually hard for us avid readers because we suffer from the extreme delusion that yes, we will read that book one day. But be honest with yourself, do you really think you will finish that horrendous book you’ve been eyeing for the last year?
Now, take those books that you will never read and either:
- Give them away
- Pile them with the already read pile, don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone your secret.
By doing this your getting extra space you hadn’t even considered before. You’ll think, wow, a gap for more books?!
Okay, so I am guessing you’re now standing in a room surrounded by a large multitude of books put in haphazard stacks. Here’s the tricky part for those who have a hard time parting with their books. Focus on the Read pile and, if space allows it, place them on top of your bookcase. This will not only free up TONS of space in your bookcase, but it will also make you feel super-duper smart seeing all those books you’ve read!
Some of you may feel a bit frustrated however, to find that you’ve got no space in between the top of your bookcase and the ceiling! Don’t fret! There’s always a place for books! If you’re like me and you’re anti-boxing your books, then simply find an available spot beside the bookcases on the floor and start building your tall (but safe) invisible bookcase.
If you don’t mind spending a little cash, you can buy a simple bookcase for less than a hundred bucks in any smaller retail stores like Walmart or Jysk. I’d avoid Ikea and any similar big name places if you’re on a budget.
Now, start packing ‘em in. The yet to read ones and the to-finish reading ones. Put them in in the best possible way so that you can get the most space out of your bookcases. So, for example, place the smaller books like paperbacks in one shelf and then start placing your hardcovers and larger texts in. You’ll be amazed to see the change!
Step 6: (Optional)
If you’re like me, you may have the similar issue of STILL having too many books. This is where it might get a little mess, and I’m sorry, unless you’re willing to pack away your books, or put them somewhere else (like the basement, ick), you only have one of these resorts left.
- If you have still have TONS of books left, I suggest stacking them on top of each other on the shelves in front of the other rows. How is this effective? It takes up less room than placing them upright and they look kind of artistic and pretty.
- Likewise, if you have extras, but not as many as some other bibliophiles, then you can place them upright, at least until you buy more books.
- Surprisingly, there is a third option. If you’d got less than too many extras and you don’t want to block the spines of other books on the shelves (taking into account that you’ve got enough room between the top of the books and the next shelf) you can simply place books, spine facing out, on top of the upright standing novels. It’s simple, and it oddly looks pretty neat.
Note: If you worry about covering up books that you’ve been meaning to read and fear the possibility of forgetting about them over the weeks or months, simply rotate your books every few weeks to give it a fresh and alluring look of options that seem new and exciting!
Of course, at one point, even methods like these will stop assisting you in your novel addiction. But you know, you can always buy a cheap bookcase and start the process all over again!
Hope this was instructional to you and that it helped some of you messy, full bookcase sufferers!
Feel free to submit any pictures of your bookcases so that others can be inspired!
Phew, bought seven this time. Pray for my bank account.
1. Sophomore Switch, Abby McDonald
“Take an administrative snafu, a bad breakup, and what shall heretofore be known as “The Hot-Tub Incident,” and you’ve got two unprepared sophomores on a semester abroad. For American party girl Tasha, an escape to Oxford may be a chance to ditch her fame as a tabloid temptress, but wading Uggs-deep in feminist theory is not her idea of a break. Meanwhile, the British half of the exchange, studious Emily, nurses an aching heart amid the bikinis and beer pong of U.C. Santa Barbara. Soon desperation has the girls texting each other tips — on fitting in, finding love, and figuring out who they really are. With an anthropologist’s eye for detail and a true ear for teen-speak, exciting new novelist Abby McDonald has crafted a funny, fast-paced, poignant look at survival, sisterhood, and the surprising ways we discover our true selves.”
2. Why We Broke Up, Daniel Handler, Maira Kalman
“I’m telling you why we broke up, Ed. I’m writing it in this letter, the whole truth of why it happened. Min Green and Ed Slaterton are breaking up, so Min is writing Ed a letter and giving him a box. Inside the box is why they broke up. Two bottle caps, a movie ticket, a folded note, a box of matches, a protractor, books, a toy truck, a pair of ugly earrings, a comb from a motel room, and every other item collected over the course of a giddy, intimate, heartbreaking relationship. Item after item is illustrated and accounted for, and then the box, like a girlfriend, will be dumped.”
3. The Unwanteds, Lisa McMann
“Every year in Quill, thirteen-year-olds are sorted into categories: the strong, intelligent Wanteds go to university, and the artistic Unwanteds are sent to their deaths. Thirteen-year-old Alex tries his hardest to be stoic when his fate is announced as Unwanted, even while leaving behind his twin, Aaron, a Wanted. Upon arrival at the destination where he expected to be eliminated, however, Alex discovers a stunning secret—behind the mirage of the “death farm” there is instead a place called Artime. In Artime, each child is taught to cultivate their creative abilities and learn how to use them magically, weaving spells through paintbrushes and musical instruments. Everything Alex has ever known changes before his eyes, and it’s a wondrous transformation. But it’s a rare, unique occurence for twins to be separated between Wanted and Unwanted, and as Alex and Aaron’s bond stretches across their separation, a threat arises for the survival of Artime that will pit brother against brother in an ultimate, magical battle.”
4. Girl V. Boy, Yvonne Collins, Sandy Rideout
“All’s not fair in love, war, and high school journalism. Sixteen-year-old Luisa Perez is not looking to win any awards for school spirit. In fact, she and her friends make it a point to avoid all activities considered “extra-curricular.” So when her English teacher volunteers her to be an anonymous columnist for the school paper, Luisa’s first impulse is to run. But, unlike her high-school dropout sister, Luisa does want to go to college—it may be her only ticket out of a life spent working at the cowboy-themed diner where she waitresses part time—and it would be nice to have something on her applications. Her first assignment is to cover her high school’s latest fundraiser, which pits the girls against the boys. Luisa will cover the events from the female POV, while another anonymous writer provides the male perspective—or, at least, that’s how it begins. The two columnists soon find themselves engaged in an epic battle of the sexes—a battle that Luisa is determined to win. Just who does this guy think he is, encouraging his peers to act like Neanderthals with their girlfriends? And why can’t Luisa shake the very sinking feeling that her new unidentified nemesis might also be her new boyfriend?”
5. Switched, Amanda Hocking
“When Wendy Everly was six-years-old, her mother was convinced she was a monster and tried to kill her. It isn’t until eleven years later that Wendy discovers her mother might have been right. With the help of Finn Holmes, Wendy finds herself in a world she never knew existed - a world both beautiful and frightening, and Wendy’s not sure she wants to be a part of it.”
6. Worldshaker, Richard Harland
“Col is a wealthy child of privilege. Raised to succeed his grandfather as the Supreme Commander of the juggernaut Worldshaker, he has lived a pampered life on the Upper Decks. He has never questioned his place in the world or his bright and illustrious future. But when a Filthy girl stows away in his cabin, suddenly nothing is clear anymore. Quick and clever, Riff is nothing like the Filthies that Col always learned about—the dumb, slow, less-than-human folk who toil away Below, keeping Worldshaker moving. Filthies are supposed to be animal-like, without the power of speech or the ability to think for themselves—but Riff is clever and quick and outspoken, and Col is drawn to her despite himself. As Col begins to secretly spend more time with Riff, he begins to question everything he was raised to believe was true, and realizes that if Riff is right, then everything he was raised to believe is a lie. And Col himself may be the only person in a position to do something about it—even if it means risking his future.”
7. Archon: The Books of Raziel, Sabrina Benulis
“Angela Mathers is plagued by visions of angels, supernatural creatures who haunt her thoughts by day and seduce her dreams by night. Newly released from a mental institution where she was locked away for two years, she hopes that her time at the Vatican’s university, the West Wood Academy, will give her a chance at a normal life. Unlike ordinary humans, Angela is a blood head — a freak, a monster, the possible fulfillment of a terrifying prophecy of overwhelming death and destruction. Only in Luz, the Vatican’s wondrous enclave, are blood heads accepted and encouraged to discover what kind of powers or special abilities they might possess. But within West Wood, a secret coven plots, and demons and angels roam the streets searching for the key to open Raziel’s book — a secret tome from a lost archangel. Some are determined to destroy Raziel, while others, like the beautiful Supernal Israfel, one of the highest of the high, wish to free him. And when the Archon — the human chosen to possess the spirit of a dead angel — rises as foretold, they will control the supernatural universe. Torn between mortal love and angelic obsession, Angela holds the key to Heaven and Hell — and both will stop at nothing to possess her.”
I think I should be kept from bookstores for the next two months… oh boy…