Wrapping Up The Week (29th January – 4th February)

I hope everyone has been having a lovely weekend. Lucky for me that my weekend isn’t over just yet as I have tomorrow off due to it being my boyfriend’s birthday. The past seven days seemed to fly by and overall it has been a great week for reading and blogging in general. I am so close to reaching 200 followers now and I find it amazing how many of you love what I write.

So far February has been treating me well and I also started working out again (even though I’ll probably be very sore tomorrow). This year is all about doing things that make me happy and my stress/anxiety levels are so low they are almost nonexistent. I think a lot of that has to do with finding my love of reading, writing and blogging again. A couple years ago I lost that part of me and I am so glad to have it back.

Anyway, time to talk about books…

Books I read and reviewed…

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In the beginning of the week I finished The Cruel Prince by Holly Black and I loved it! There’s been so much love for this book and I can finally understand why. It was dark, dangerous and everything a book about the Fae should be. If you need another reason to check it out you should head on over and read my review here. While it wasn’t a straight up 5 star read (I gave it four and a half) I still enjoyed this book thoroughly.

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For the first time in a while I managed to read a second book in the week! While I didn’t enjoy The Keeper of the Watch as much (and there are many reasons as to why) I still read it quite quickly and enjoyed the action. It is more of a Sci-Fi book, something I said I would read more of this year, but it wasn’t really my cup of tea. Overall, I gave the book 3 stars and you can check out my review here.

I am currently reading…

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I wasn’t sure if I would be able to read The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert before it’s release date on the 8th, but I was approved on NetGalley at the last minute. So far I have read 30% and I am really enjoying it. There have been a lot of questions raised about the characters backstories. I want to know more and cannot wait to get stuck into it later on. If I could get over halfway by the end of today then that would be great!

Posts from the week…

WWW Wednesday – Different Dimensions

Wrapping Up January ’18 – AKA The Longest Month Ever

January Book Haul (I think I bought too many)

My February TBR Pile

Four blog posts in one week is not bad at all! Unfortunately, I missed the Top Ten Tuesday this week as I wasn’t really feeling the topic, but hopefully next week will be different. I love looking back over the month when writing the monthly wrap ups and seeing how much I read (and spent).

My WIP…

For the first time ever I have succeeded in writing at least 1,000 words everyday for the whole week, including the weekends! Actually, yesterday I wrote 1,400 putting my total at 75,000 words. While I haven’t written anything today (yet) I will be putting fingers to keys straight after this blog post. I am so excited because I am getting close to the point where I can introduce my big plot twist and I cannot wait!

Other Fun Stuff…

Why does my whole life revolve around work, writing, reading and blogging? I can’t even say that watching Riverdale every week is fun because I’m not sure I’m enjoying it anymore. Season 1 was so much better and I swear the characters weren’t as annoying (anyone else unable to stand Veronica and Archie?) I’m just looking forward to The 100 and The Originals coming back in April. If only it wasn’t so far away.

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I am definitely ready to conquer the rest of February and I hope you all are as well! Let me know in the comments how your week went.

Top Ten Tuesday: My Bookish Resolutions For 2018

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Top Ten Tuesday was originally hosted over at The Broke and The Bookish and is now over at Jana’s blog, That Artsy Reader Girl.

This weeks topic is about what our book resolutions and goals for 2018 are. When I saw what the top ten was for this week, I was excited because I have a few resolutions in mind. 2017 was the year that I got back into reading after about 3 years of not reading any books (or at least, a few each year). Life gets in the way and I was so busy travelling and working that I didn’t have the time. Now that my love of reading is back with a vengeance (I need another bookcase), it’s time to write down some resolutions.

1. Read at least one book a week

My goal on Goodreads is to read 50 books in 2018, so I am aiming to read at least one a week. So far I have been successful in doing that, but then again, we are only a couple of weeks into the new year. My plan is to read one hardback/paperback book and one on Kindle every week so that I can get through my TBR pile (ARCs from Netgalley are my main Kindle reads at the moment).

2. Try and stick to my monthly TBR list as much as possible

I already have a lot of books on my shelf that I want to read (some I have owned for a while), but there are always new books coming out. This year I am going to try and set myself a mixture of old and new books to read each month. As long as I read the main ones I have succeeded (any extra books I squeeze in is a bonus).

3. Spend no more than £30 a month on books

This one…I’m not sure if I can stick to this one, but I’m going to try. Money seems to do this thing where it burns a hole in my pocket and I always want to spend it on books. But with £30 I should be able to get at least 5 books if they are all around £6 and with cheap deals on Book Depository and the Kindle store, I’m sure that is more than doable. Plus, I bought way too many books over December and January (already) so I better get reading.

4. Avoid distractions while reading

We probably all spend too much time on our phones (looking at you twitter) and when I think about it, that time could be better spent reading. While it’s nice to keep up with the world, I would rather be immersed in a brand new world. Who agrees? Plus, I’ll be able to get through books a lot quicker.

5. Try reading genres that I normally don’t go near

This year is a year for trying out new things and I’ve noticed there are definitely some genres that I don’t give attention to. At the moment I am loving Young Adult Fantasy and Adult Fantasy (mainly because I, myself, am writing a Fantasy novel) and I want to branch out. Sci-fi is one that I don’t read often so I am going to give that one a go, as well as the horror and thriller genre.

6. Make sure I read all my NetGalley approvals first

NetGalley is incredible. You get the opportunity to read books from new (sometimes established) authors before everyone else does (as long as you’re approved). Lately, every book I have requested has been approved and it is amazing. I just have to make sure that I read them first before anything else. This is where it comes in handy that I am reading two at the same time. Fingers crossed I can keep this one going all year long!

7. Buy a new bookcase

So, this one kind of counts as a resolution. My current bookcase is looking a little worn out (the back is coming apart) so first of all I need to replace it…and then I need to buy another because it is literally full to the brim. I used to have 3 bookcases when I was younger and while it may take me a while to get there again, I can guarantee that it will happen.

8. Carry on writing 1,000 words a day

The last few on this list will be for my own book as that is just as important as reading. I have set myself the goal of writing at least 1,000 words a day and for the last two weeks I have successfully stuck to it. And if there were ever any days where I didn’t write (like this weekend that just went) I made up for it on the next day. So far it is working really well and I have surpassed the 60,000 words mark.

9. Finish writing the first draft of my novel by the end of April

Ideally I would love to have finished it before my birthday, which is the 24th of March, but I don’t think that it will happen. I mean, it could try, but it’s very unlikely at the moment. There is still so much that I want to write and I am one of these people that writes a rough synopsis, but then trails away from it and then I have to just wing it. I love that though because then my story surprises me as well. I just want to get to my plot twist because it’s so good!

10. Never give up on my dreams

It’s tough not to doubt yourself, your abilities and the story you want to tell. Especially when there are so many incredible books out there in the world. I feel it sometimes. I read something that is mindbogglingly good and I get a little sad thinking that I will never write like that. But of course I won’t. Because I have my own voice and I can’t be afraid of going for my dream. I have spent the last few years of my life writing content for various media companies, why can’t I write novels for a living too?

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I hope you enjoyed reading my top ten (and all the gifs too). What goals or resolutions are you wanting to set yourself this year when it comes to reading and writing?

Wrapping Up December & Setting Goals For 2018

December was a strange month. Not only did it fly by with Christmas looming in the distance, the first couple of weeks were stressful due to my boyfriend’s operation. The Christmas break allowed me time to relax, de-stress from the last few weeks and spend some quality time with the ones I love (although I wish I hadn’t been ill for most of it).

Today I just got home from my holiday in Ireland with my dad and family (btw, flying in the wind is not fun) and I am ready for the New Year, heading back to work and setting myself some goals to achieve in 2018. When I was thinking about what I wanted to achieve, I decided to make them as realistic as possible. Here are just a few:

  • Finish writing my novel (I’m 50,000 words in and hope to finish it and have it edited by the end of 2018).
  • Read 50 books (seems do-able with one a week).
  • Work on my health and fitness (this is one I know will take time, but I am more than willing to commit).
  • Post more regularly on my blog (If I can do at least 3 a week, I’ll be happy).
  • Save money (this will be the most difficult for me, I like to buy things).
  • Always look at the positives in every situation (if the last few months have taught me anything, it’s that things aren’t always as bad as they seem).

Fingers crossed, that at the end of 2018 I can look back on these and say that I completed them. Now to go onto the important things, the books I read. While it may not seem a lot, I have to remind myself that it was a busy month and I can work on it in the New Year.

Books I Read…

Everless By Sara Holland

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I feel that Everless was one of my favourite reads of 2017, if not my favourite one! It was incredible, original and fast paced. Everless was everything I love in a book and I cannot wait for the sequel. I was easily able to give it five stars and you can check out my review here.

Angelfall by Susan Ee

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Finally I got around to reading Angelfall after hearing so much about the series and I have to say that I enjoyed it. While it isn’t what I am used to reading now (I prefer Fantasy books and novels with a more grown up POV), it was a great change of pace and was worthy of the 4 stars. You can read my review here.

Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

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All I can say is, Holy crap…this book was incredible and that ending was amazing. I loved Crown of Midnight even more than Throne of Glass (if that is even possible) and I have a feeling this series is going to get better and better with each one. Easily a five star read and you can check out my thoughts here.

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I guess 3 books isn’t too bad considering all that happened in the space of a month. I am aiming to read at least 4 every month if I can and maybe sometimes I will read even more.

Hopefully you managed to read some incredible books in the last month of 2017 and here’s to many more in 2018!