April Is As April Does

April Is As April Does

Been a while, but I’m about to start up keeping people updated here. I have books, I am trying to put myself out there, it’s a big deal.

But I don’t want to talk about that right now. I want to talk about the 2020 OWLs Readathon. A themed readathon on its third year. It’s my first time, but after The Bookie Trials I joined just last weekend, I want more involved readathons. It is a lot more fun like this, plus it helps me find more books.

First things first, choosing the career. Depending on the career are the OWLs or NEWTs you need to take, which all have their own prompts. This is hard for me, because I like a lot of these career paths. One might think I’d go for Journalist/Writer, but considering that this CampNaNoWriMo I’m doing some worldbuilding, I’ve decided upon Alchemist. (Also, because it requires me to do all twelve OWLs and I’m just like this).

Ancient Runes

a book with a heart or heart rune on the cover or title

I have this on audio, so I figured I might as well. I was trying to do as many indie authors as possible, but I didn’t have any immediately which filled in this prompt. Plus, my Lyri is reading this too, so that’s double the reason for me! “How far would you go for revenge if someone killed your father?” (418 pages)

Arithmancy

a book with the Number Two, balances/opposites, or outside favourite genre

I had no idea what this book is about, but you can just see by the title that it is about duality. Then I read the blurb and I’m hooked. “It doesn’t matter how many shades of gray might exist, some people see only in black and white.” (1231 pages)

Astronomy

read this book mainly when it’s dark outside

Considering I read whenever, I picked out a short one to make sure I read mainly when it’s dark outside. It was on my list and there are a lot of authors in this flash fiction project! “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.” (47 pages)

Care of Magical Creatures

creature with a beak on the cover

I picked this one up the last time I was at Powell’s (shortly before they fired everyone and closed during this pandemic, I want to scream). Anyone who knows me knows I am a crow in my Paper Wings group, so the cover called to me. Then I looked what it was about and it seems right up my alley. “A Crow alone is no Crow.” (442 pages)

Charms and Herbology

book with a white cover and a book that starts with M

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/533016.Naoki_Urasawa_s_Monster_Volume_1

My sibling has been on me to start reading Naoki Urasawa’s Monster, so here it is! I could not for the life of me find the English translation on Amazon, and the original Japanese price is wild, so that’s why you get a goodreads link instead. I assure you, no one in this house paid 800$ for a single manga volume. “Who could have known that Tenma would create a monster!” (volume 1: 216 pages, volume 2: 212 pages)

Defense Against the Dark Arts

a book set at the sea or the coast

I didn’t have to check at all to see how much this book was set at sea. “Mermaid” sort of implies it, yes? Plus, it is a cozy mystery and I want to read a mermaid cozy mystery. Who doesn’t? If it’s really good, I have an #otspsecretsister to recommend it to! “Welcome to Sirenia, the mermaid colony in unchartered waters!” (110 pages)

Divination

assign numbers to TBR and use RNG to pick

Picked this one up when asking the Writing Community on Twitter to recommend me their books. I’m wanting more short stories, so I’m glad that my RNG gave me this one! “The world of imagination is a magical place filled with fantastical stories.” (164 pages)

History of Magic

a book about witches and/or wizards

It’s not that I don’t have a million books to read about witches or wizards, but this one is about sisters and I love me sibling interactions! “My name is Clementine and my magic is making me lose sleep.” (236 pages)

Muggle Studies

a contemporary novel

https://www.amazon.com/Break-Shot-First-Years-Taylor/dp/B081D93GP6

Contemporary for me usually goes to urban fantasy, but I assume the “perspective of a muggle” might say no to that. So I’m taking a shot at this memoir, because I like reading about musicians.  “I’m James Taylor and I’m a professional autobiographer.” (1h 33m)

Potions

a book under 150 pages

Because I need poetry in my life, here is about 100 pages of it. And no one can tell me that people aren’t picking up poetry books, because here I am, enjoying poetry. “This is a book about angels and fairies, love and hope, pain and loss, but most of all friendship.” (106 pages)

Transfiguration

includes shapeshifting in the story

A friend of mine told me how Academy was big. I believed her even before looking into it, but I can’t say I’ve read much myself outside of Harry Potter and a few lesser known ones. So it’s time for me to read a recent Academy, which includes a Shifter. Obviously. “Bloodwood Academy for the Supernatural has only one rule: Don’t mingle with students outside your race.” (291 pages)

(Extra) Dragon Tamer Training

DRAGONS

DRAGONS. (360 pages)

 

In Regards to Reading

I started a book club last month. To be honest, while I am in charge of it, I didn’t start it. A writing friend of mine did because she wanted some people to yell at her in October if she wasn’t reading the books she wanted to read then.

Now I’m completely invested.

I didn’t understand book clubs before, but mainly because I’ve always read what I want when I wanted. However at this point in my life, I have so many books to read. Having some people to keep me accountable with them is actually all I have ever needed.

August’s book was “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”.

Continue reading “In Regards to Reading”

Another August

Full disclosure: I have no idea what happened to most of July.

More disclosure: I suffer from a chronic fatigue that my doctor has yet to be able to help me figure out. Tests and other things have been done, but I feel like I’m getting more and more exhausted.

Because of this, Camp was really hard this month. I barely made it. (Actually, I’m writing this on the last day of the month and I need about three thousand more words, so maybe I make it, maybe I don’t.) Yet what I accomplished I am very happy with. And that is what matters.

On the other hand, because of that and doing this at the last possible moment, I’m not sure what else to talk about this month. Writing about real things has always been difficult for me. If I can’t make something up, I have to think a bit more. Not to say I don’t think about my stories, because I do a lot. Yet it is much easier when I can make it up, because then I already know all aspects of it – I made it up. When I’m forced into our shared reality, I realize how little I know about everything and I hesitate.

Because I could literally research forever. That is easy. I like doing it. But even when I don’t, even when I figure out how to cut myself off from the never ending cycle and just research enough… I forget.

I have looked up the difference between sweet potatoes and yams a score of times. I can remember that in the USA they use the word interchangeably, despite it all being sweet potatoes. I have that in my brain now. But it took me so many times of looking it up to get there. I even had to look it up while writing this, to make sure I was right and I hadn’t mixed them up again.

Why is this? Maybe because I’m tired. Concentration down the tubes, all of that. I think I used to be better at remembering things.

People say that is a part of getting older, but I’m not really that old yet. I know I have a different perspective than most about what constitutes as “old”, but even for the majority of people I wouldn’t be called old.

I love learning, so maybe I can see it as always learning new things, because I have forgotten them. But it also means I learn less things in total, which upsets me greatly, because guess what? I LOVE LEARNING NEW THINGS.

Was there a point to this post? Probably, but I’ve forgotten it. In any case, it is an update and I have accomplished things. Perhaps I could be more efficient. We all could be. I’m working on that. I’ll let you know how it goes.

On the Importance of Reviews

When I was younger, I wouldn’t review things. Not that I wasn’t critical. In fact, I believe I was much more critical when in school than I am now. School taught me to judge things harshly. I have learnt since then that it really isn’t worth that much energy unless you truly want to or have an interest in learning something from it.

There were all of those assignments though. Review this book. Critically. And I hated most of those books too. I’m not sure whether I hated them because I was being forced to read them in this light or not. But it was beyond frustrating.

So flash forward. Time for the internet. It took me a long time to put myself forward on this platform, though I spent a good deal of time haunting certain grounds. And because I didn’t want to put myself out there, I didn’t review anything.

This is very important when it comes to books. Even more so when it comes to self-published authors. The reviews, or even just the rating, is the only thing that will draw people in. You can have the best selling point in the world, but when people come up and look and see that it looks like no one has picked it up at all, they hesitate.

This isn’t just books. This is all products. If there isn’t a rating, forget about the review, people are less inclined to pick things up.

A few years ago I realized this was the case. Because it took me that long to shop online, first thing. Harder to do that in a store (as most people forget to do the survey, and even that is about the store and staff – not about the products you buy). After that, it’s when I started thinking for the first time since childhood that I could become a writer. It’s what everyone was talking about.

I have nothing new to add on the subject. This isn’t just something I bring up for me. If you buy any book from anything online and you can rate and review it? Do it. Even if it’s just the rating. It can be hard sometimes to write out exactly what it was about the book that you liked, hated, or whatever. It takes time. Time you could be spending picking up another book.

Take it from me, someone who rates all my books now, for the sake of others. People need to hear whether you like things or not. Maybe you aren’t the audience, but other people deserve to know too.

And an author can’t get a bad critique. (I think I already espoused the difference of critiques and just shit-talking something, so I won’t get into that.)

Is May Looking Like Flowers?

Another month has passed. I did my Camp NaNoWriMo. No, I did not get the two hours every day like I wanted, but I definitely did more than 60 hours of work. So I’ve given myself that one. I did my best and I accomplished a lot.

Including this!

Both in paperback and as an ebook, I hope people will pick this one up. This story is a triumph of my improvements as an author, as a storyteller, as a person… a Writer. I actually feel it this time. It’s nice not to try to sell a book while being apologetic. I think my last book was good too, but this one gives me confidence.

Back to the Writing! I once again have too many ideas, so I should get to putting them down before I forget!