what to expect | updates & features

Hi guys!

I’ve decided to create a few writing-related features because I want to start sharing more writing on this blog. Unfortunately, I’m also getting rid of two features because I don’t want to clutter my blog with things I don’t feel like doing anymore.


writing features

bits and pieces 

Of the two writing link-ups I’m participating in, only one of them involves sharing snippets of my writing so this feature is for sharing bits and pieces of prose from my WIPs. Basically, I will screenshot a couple of paragraphs here and there from chapters I’ve written recently and maybe provide some context.

By WIPs I’m not only referring to novels, but also shortstories I may be working on. This is probably the feature I am most excited for because I know I haven’t shared that much writing on my blog yet.

poetry / prose

Unlike bits and pieces, this feature is going to focused on a single (short) piece that will have been edited. Poetry/prose is going to be dedicated to sharing pieces that (might have been rejected but) were worked on for a few weeks. I hate the thought of my work gathering dust in a folder so I’m going to use my blog to share it with you guys.

features to be archived

Writing this “blog update” post forced me to be realistic and reconsider what features I want to spend my time working on. So  the features below will be archived because I lost interest in them.

Let’s Discuss!

I’ve only done two discussion posts so far and (that was a while ago but) I had big plans to continue with this. I guess somewhere along the way, I forgot about them. Right now, I feel like it’s a bit pointless keeping this feature alive so I’m just going to archive it. (If I do end up writing posts that discuss bookish or writing-related things, I’ll just categorize them as miscellaneous. )

Bookish Links I Love

The first post was received pretty well….but I think this series is just going to result in a bunch of filler posts that I’ll write up when I don’t feel like being creative..And I want to be more creative so a post series like this that basically encourages me to be lazy has to go.  


I’m know I’m very indecisive when it comes to blogging – always trying to change things up (features, themes, even blog names) – but thank you guys so much for sticking with me!

So that is everything I have planned for this blog! Do you guys have anything exciting planned for your blogs? (Are you adding a new feature?) I’d love to hear about it!

Snazzy Snippets | Icecream (sort-of), Pride (not really), and The First Paragraph

snazzy snippets

Snazzy Snippets is any awesome bimonthly link-up for writers. It’s hosted by Emily @ Loony Literate and Alyssa @ The Devil Orders Takeout. It’s a great opportunity to share snippets of your writing (500 words or less).

I was actually organizing all my writing projects last night (in terms of importance and what I want to get done first)…and I was feeling a teeny-tiny bit overwhelmed at the thought of writing every day. I’ve sort-of tried to do that this week but it’s harder than I expected and I feel like I’m running love on creativity (if that makes any sense..)… buuut hopefully this will inspire me to keep plowing on. By the way, all snippets have been taken from TGTBTI, a YA contemporary about suicide and friendship (I might end up changing the plot so I’m trying to stay adaptable.)

A snippet with FOOD in it

Screen Shot 2015-09-12 at 7.52.12 PMI searched long and hard…but with only five chapters finished, I don’t really have a snippet with food so I picked this scene (even though I know the focus isn’t even the icecream) However, I am working on a brand new project – one that I’m even more excited about and it is definitely going to feature food (as evidenced by the pins).

A Snippet You’re Really Proud Of

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To be honest, I’m not really that proud of this scene – I’m pretty sure it needs to be edited but it’s part of the first chapter which I sort-of edited before posting online..So I figured why not! But I don’t think I’ll have any scenes that I’m proud of until I start editing this book.

The First Paragraph From A WIPScreen Shot 2015-09-12 at 8.11.46 PMI would be more nervous about sharing this..but the entire first chapter is already on wattpad and figment. (But I am nervous.. my blog gets way more views than my profiles on those sites probably do!) Also this is more like a couple of paragraphs but since the first scene is less than 500 words, I thought I may as well share the entire scene.


Soo this was fun! Even though I did cringe a bit when I imagined all my blog readers eying my poorly written snippets. (Please keep in mind this is a FIRST DRAFT. I REPEAT: IT IS A FIRST DRAFT.) So what are you guys writing? Have you hit 10K, 20K, or accomplished some of your writing goals?

The Monthly Recap #4

Monthly Recap

Hey guys!

I feel like August just flew by and I almost forgot to do a recap…But luckily today was a school holiday and I decided to make use of my free time. School started halfway through last month so I apologize for the fact that I published fewer posts toward the second half of the month. I don’t think I’ll be able to blog every other day anymore (especially now that I’m taking AP World History!) but I’m still going to try to blog once or twice every week. I was also nominated for a couple of awards and if you nominated me, I assure you I haven’t forgotten. I just haven’t found the time to put together the blog post.

Blog Posts

BOOK REVIEWS

The Corridor by A.N Willis

The Unbound by Victoria Schwab

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler

Mini-Reviews: Finding Audrey Pointe

Mini-Reviews: Illusions of Fate & Seraphina

OTHER

Book Haul! (4)

Versatile Blogger Award

Infinity Dreams Award

WRITING STUFF

#AmWriting :: Publication News // A WIP // Short Stories

Also, all the comics I’ve been (binge) reading have helped me catch up on my Goodreads reading challenge goal..Now, goodreads tells me I am one book ahead of schedule!

Infinity Dreams Award

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I was nominated for the Infinity Dreams Award by Heather! Thank-you so much for tagging me! You guys should definitely check out her super cool blog! (I’m sorry I haven’t been posting as much lately, school started this week and I’m already drowning in huge piles of homework.)

the rules..

  • Thank and follow the blog that nominated you.
  • Tell us eleven facts about yourself.
  • Answer the questions that were set for you to answer.
  • Nominate 11 bloggers and set questions for them

eleven facts..

  • I am currently reading (and enjoying) The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma.
  • I’ve been trying to write in my journal and sometimes I post photos of my entries on my tumblr blog.
  • My favorite classic is Oliver Twist. For some reason, I don’t really like most classics and I generally avoid them (no offense to anyone who loves classics).. But I ended up reading Oliver Twist  mainly because I found my mom’s old, battered copy of it and I didn’t have anything to read at the time. Curiosity encouraged me to flip through the book and I devoured it in a day. 
  • I’ve trashed 80% of the “stuff” I wrote recently and spent the last hour wondering if I could have rescued some of it. I do that a lot.
  • My hair is usually pretty frizzy and untameable but I usually don’t bother doing anything about it. I like to pretend it matches my personality. 
  • I have been craving physical books (because I’ve been reading on my Kindle so much)….And I’m trying to survive by borrowing library books because of-course I’m on a book buying ban!
  • During the school year, I complain about not having enough free time but whenever summer comes around, I find myself watching TV and sleeping in instead of getting stuff done. I think I need to get more hobbies. (Which is why I, at some point in my short life, tried: sketching sharks, knitting, cross-stitching, origami, making friendship bracelets.. Nothing has stuck with me except for writing, reading and blogging.)
  • Whenever I share I facts about myself, I go through previous tag posts and make sure I’m not repeating myself. (Please tell me I’m not the only one who obsessively checks all of his/her award posts!)
  • I don’t have any pets but I really like cats so now and then I find myself wishing for a furry companion. I think it’s for the best because I’m too busy, now, to look after an animal anyway.. Maybe in the future.
  • I know I should comment on posts more often but these days I rarely do… Usually it’s not because the post isn’t good, heck the post is probably fabulous but I can’t come up with something intelligent to say. (I’m not trying to make excuses for not commenting more on other people’s blogs..This is just how I feel.) 
  • I love reading through the “astrology” related posts on tumblr. (I know they might all be made up..) But for some reason I love scrolling through the post, finding my zodiac sign (libra) and reading what that says about me. Sometimes those posts are kind-of accurate.

heather’s questions & my answers..

How do you feel about soft tacos?

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I mean I don’t eat tacos that often…

Favorite Disney movie?

I don’t really have one because I like most if not all of them!

Best villain ever?

Probably Voldemort. 

Favorite musical?

I don’t have one yet. 

How much do you hate spoilers?

Not that much. Sometimes I actively seek them out because I just desperately want to know what happens next. 

What’s the best thing about your blog?

(I like to think that) I update it often and I try to keep it interesting by doing more than book reviews. So one day I might post about my “writing life” and another day I might discuss something bookish like reading slumps or book buying bans.  

What are three books that everyone must read before they die, period?

Harry Potter, My Heart and other Black Holes, and Throne of Glass. These are just books I have read and loved.. I don’t really have number one favorite books because I’ve read so many amazing books so I keep changing my answer to questions like this one. 

 Discuss your opinion on corn on the cob.

It’s delicious but I avoid eating it because I hate how it gets stuck in my teeth. 

What do you want to be when you grow up?

A writer… I want to write YA fiction. 

Do you have a favorite punctuation mark?

No.

Describe the best trip you ever took.

(I know I keep talking about this…so I’m sorry, but this is actually my favorite/best trip so far!) This summer I went to Europe. And it was INCREDIBLE. We went to Italy, Germany and Austria. This wasn’t my first time in Europe but I just fell in love with the three countries I visited. Italy is soo beautiful and I still can’t believe that I actually went there. It feels like a dream. 

and I nominate..

Ranu | Morgan | Sania | cw | Naomi | Julia | Lauren | Michelle | Paula | Melanie | Akchita

questions for nominees..

What color are most of the clothes in your closet? | What kind of music do you like to listen to?How many books do you own? | How much do you read (on average) per day/week/month? | What are your thoughts on writing? | What do you hate or love about blogging? | What do you do when your bored? | What color are your curtains? | Do you like chocolate? (Alternatively: Do you like icecream?)

Mini-Reviews: Finding Audrey & Pointe

This (first) round of mini-reviews features the contemporary books: Finding Audrey and PointeThere are some spoilers in my review of Pointe but you can read on to find out what I think of Finding Audrey. 

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I have really mixed thoughts about this book..On one hand, I’m pleased that I read a book featuring a character struggling with and recovering from anxiety..On the other hand, I’m frustrated that her recovery and sometimes other aspects of Audrey’s life aren’t portrayed that realistically. For example, Audrey overcomes SAD surprisingly fast..I mean in the start of the book, she experiences a lot of lows but then she starts hanging out with Linus and it feels like her SAD just disappears during some of those encounters. That just didn’t seem natural to me because her SAD is pretty bad in the beginning of the book. And then her therapist keeps pushing her to do things she’s clearly not ready for. Is this normal? 

Audrey is also really obsessed with Linus. But what bothers me is that she’s experiencing severe anxiety that makes her feel like she’s about to get attacked any minute and all of a sudden, she sees this guy (Linus) and decides she likes him?! It just doesn’t make any sense..I also did not like the way Linus treats her. At first he seemed perfect but he can be a bit of an asshole and even goes as far as to imply that she’s selfish because she wants to do something that could cause her to relapse. I’m not sure if the author wanted to make Linus seem more human by making him flawed but he seemed like a jerk to me. I hated the romance because it was unnecessary and seemed to imply that Audrey wouldn’t have been able to recover if she didn’t meet Linus.

So I had some issues with this book..but I couldn’t help liking the author’s writing style and finding parts of it entertaining. 

Rating: 3.5 stars

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I feel like the cover and the title of the book are a bit misleading because while ballet is incorporated into the book..it’s not what I think of when I remember this book. I think about a thirteen year old girl who’s tricked into “dating” a man who is way older than he claims he is. Quite frankly, I think of rape. And I’m glad that this book is addressing this incredibly important issue of teenagers being taken advantage of.

I like how the author tackles the topic of sexual assault through the perspective of Theo who is a very pragmatic character. Present-day Theo is in no way “innocent” but she still hasn’t realized the truth about her relationship with her ex-boyfriend. In the start of the book, Theo’s ex-boyfriend is just a cherished memory but when she discovers that her ex and Donovan’s kidnapper are the same person, she starts analysing her past. That is when things start getting interesting. We start seeing flashbacks to her time with her ex as she tries to figure out whether to speak up at his trial (and tell the truth about what he did to her).

This is definitely not a light read and it’s fairly intense at some parts but it’s worth trying.

Rating: 5 stars

#AmWriting :: Publication News // A WIP // Short Stories

This week’s #AmWriting post is basically an explosion of all the writing related things I’ve been up to for the last month and week..Which is actually quite a lot because I was on holiday with nothing to do but read, write and blog.

publication news

My poem, you ask” was one of those poems and was recently published by Germ Magazine which is “for girls—high school and beyond—that celebrates beginnings, futures, and all the amazing and agonizing moments in-between.” This poem was kind-of an experiment – I was trying to put myself in the shoes of a character I’d just invented and wrote down thoughts from their perspective. Later, I ended up converting it from prose to poetry. Other poems are forthcoming in Parallel Ink and Scrittura Magazine (I’m excited!).

I’ve been over the moon about the fact that my poetry has been accepted and published by these amazing magazines (that have also happened to feature work from writers that I’ve admired and recently discovered). This was my first time submitting to literary magazines but I’m glad I took the plunge. 

my WIP

Last month I participated in some word sprints here and there (even though I wasn’t doing Camp NaNoWriMo) because these sprints motivated me to write. I’m currently on the fourth chapter of the The Good, The Bad, The Inbetween (and no, I am not any closer to finding a better title!). Self-doubt has always crippled me to the point where I never got past the first couple of chapters of every novel I started. So it’s a weird feeling to be on the fourth chapter of this book and realize that I’m still passionate about this book and I still want to finish it! However, I’m feeling rather passionate about poetry at the moment and want to keep writing poems while I feel inspired.

Short Stories

One of my writing goals for this year was to write more short stories (because practice makes perfect and I really need the practice). And I’ve finally started working toward achieving that goal by writing and posting my work on Figment! My username is Rachana (if you were wondering.. you probably weren’t).

So what are you guys working on at the minute? Do you guys struggle with self doubt when you write? Do you have any writing successes to share?

Do you prefer to read?

Versatile Blogger Award

Thank-you to Blaise @ The Book Boulevard for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award! My blog is only about two to three months old but I really appreciate the fact that you took the time to check out my blog.

the rules…

  • Thank the person who gave you this award — of course.
  • Include a link to their blog. They deserve to have some credits too.
  • Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
  • Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link to this
  • Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

7 facts

Fact #1

I often go months without writing and then suddenly get inspired and start obsessing over story ideas. (Once I was scribbling down an outline during math class..)

Fact #2:

During the summer, I mainly spend my time binge-watching and binge-reading…stuff and sometimes I wander around in a daze of I don’t what to do/I’m SO BORED. I really need to get some more hobbies so that I won’t be wandering the house when I’m experiencing reading slumps.

Fact #3:

I LOVE hot chocolate..and if it were healthy, I would drink it daily. For some reason, I’m not a coffee person (I guess that’s why hot chocolate is my go-to morning drink).

Fact #4:

If I’m tired, I will try to do anything but read because I can’t focus when I’m that exhausted.

Fact #5:

Most of my ships are usually mainstream/popular..And these days, I’m usually reading hyped books that the people I follow are obsessing over on Twitter. I’m not sure why I do this but I haven’t encountered that many two or one star reads so I feel like it’s working. Occasionally I take the risk of borrowing a library book (which I haven’t searched on goodreads).

Fact #6:

My favorite author (apart from J. K Rowling) is Cassandra Clare because I simply love everything she writes (well there was that book…). I’m also obsessed with the Shadowhunter Chronicles because all of the characters are amazing.

Fact #7:

I got layers recently and am currently feeling rather pleased with how my hair turned out. Although it looks a bit odd when I put it in a ponytail.

and I nominate…

I’m not sure if I’ve picked blogs/bloggers who haven’t been nominated yet (I was in a hurry..) but if you have already been nominated and done this award – I apologize in advance. Also, if you don’t want to, you don’t have to participate. Whatever floats your boat! 🙂

Book Haul! (4)

Book HaulHey guys!  My book buying ban turned out to be pretty successful so I only have ARCs to share with you this time. I’m super excited to read Torn Sky because I read and loved the previous books in the series. The main reason I requested A History of Glitter and Blood was because of this awesome review I read on Deadly Darlings (hopefully I won’t be disappointed). Like Candy, Concentr8 and The Kiss were all impulsive requests that were based on the blurb or book cover. Unfortunately I’ve already tried and DNF’d Like Candy and The Kiss (oh well..).

ARCs

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Thanks to Bloomsbury Publishing Plc (UK & ANZ), Alloy Entertainment, Chronicle Books, Debra Doxer and Hachette Children’s Books for the review copies of Conctr8, Torn Sky, A History of Glitter and Blood, Like Candy and The Kiss.

The Monthly Recap #3

The Monthly Recap

Hi guys!

For most of this month I was in India, visiting family and relaxing. I ended up doing a lot of reading and writing this month because I didn’t have a lot to do with my time and was feeling a bit bored. I also started getting way more active on my tumblr blog (ihoardwords) where I reblog a lot of literature related things (graphics, poetry, prose).

Below I’ve linked up all the posts I published this month and you can check out any that you missed.

Blog Posts

Book Reviews

Everything Leads To You by Nina LaCour

Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton

The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings

Endgame by C. J. Daugherty

Book Tags

Unpopular Opinion Tag

Mid-Year Book Freakout Tag

I’d Love To Visit Randomocity!

Other

Beautiful Blogger Award

Let’s Discuss: Reading Challenges – Pros vs Cons

Book Haul! (3)

Bookish Links I Love (1)

Writing Stuff

Beautiful People :: July Edition

777 Challenge

Snazzy Snippets

As you can see, I haven’t been done as many book reviews this month and that’s not because I had a reading slump (I’ve been reading tons actually) but because I decided to branch out on my blog. I realised that I wanted to share more writing-related things on this blog so I participated in things like the 777 challenge and writing link-ups. This blog is always going to be more about the books I read than the stuff I’m writing but you can expect to see more writing related posts in the future

On a side note, feel free to let me know which blog features you liked best. I’ve added a few more because I want lots of variety on this blog (although I might end up killing some because I no longer feel passionate about them..who knows.)

So how did your month ago?

Bookish Links I Love (1)

This post is basically a bunch of shout-outs to posts (and usually blogs) I love. Next post will probably be featuring my follower’s blogs (I’m excited!).

Book Reviews

  • Rashika discusses how Court of Fives disappointed her. I was kind of excited for this one but now I’ve taken my expectations down a notch (I can adapt!).
  • Aasma finds To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before to be a light and relatable read.
  • Cait gushes over The Wrath and the Dawn and I agree with everything she says as always.
  • Olivia reviews and recommends Heir of Fire to fans of high fantasy books.
  • Alise confesses that at first she didn’t “get” The Ocean at the End of the Lane.
  • Emily thought Never Alway Sometimes was super cliched even though it tried hard not to be cliche.

Book Hauls/Discussions/Interviews/Tags/Other Awesome Stuff

  • Aimee interviews Sarah Ockler and hosts a giveaway (which is still open!!). The interview itself is pretty awesome especially since I absolutely loved The Summer of Chasing Mermaids. 
  • McKenzie does the Reading Habits Tag (and I approve of her answers).
  • Jess participates in Stacking the Shelves and reminds her readers that she doesn’t read all the books she gets
  • Skylee does the Ultimate Book Tag and, in the process, introduces me to a new word: hiraeth.
  • Blaise participates in #TBRTakedown 2.0
  • Emily discusses reading slumps and blogging breaks

Comment below and share some posts or blogs you love!