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Books I would like to read – JUNE!

Unread books are an epidemic in my house. I would like to maybe get my teeth into them and then I can feels a sense of accomplishment when they are finally finished. Here are some of them:

HEIR OF FIRE –

This is the book that is currently on my bedside table and the book I take everywhere. I am loving the story of Celaena Sardothien and her friends. I was worried at the beginning of this book that I wouldn’t see Chaol Westfall in the rest of the series, but thank god. He has to be my new fictional crush. (Guessing I like the soldier type) Each book just gets better and I am finally staying up later so I can ‘finish one more chapter!’ It’s always just one more chapter.

A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES –

I have become quite addicted with the TV series of Matthew and Diana’s budding relationship. (What can I say, Theresa Palmer and Matthew Goode are amazing) Now, I want to be addicted to the book, however, the chapters area little long for my liking. I will persevere because the story, the plot and the characters are just too brilliant. I want to know more.

NEITHER HERE NOR THERE –

After I went to Europe to travel for a few weeks, I became obsessed with travel books. I wanted to know more of the places that I could add to my bucket list, but I didn’t want to read boring versions of someone else’s travels. I had heard good things about Bill Bryson and I wanted to give him a go. I can’t wait to sink my teeth into this book again. It’s nice to hear about different experiences in the same places that I went to only just a few years ago.

GONE WITH THE WIND –

Now, everyone knows that this is an iconic film, but it is also an iconic book which is a favourite for many. I have always loved strong female characters which is probably why I write female characters more than male, and with the backdrop of the American civil war it’s interesting. I love history, so what a perfect book to read. It is on my bookshelf so it will be read.

Knowing me and my sometimes crazy schedules I most likely will not get through half of these, but we shall see, I may surprise myself.
Do you have any book you want to read for the month of June. Those who read more than four in a month I salute you.

TTFN

M

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Party Ideas Inspired by Books

We all have a favourite book, some of us book dragons like to live the events of that book. One of my friends loves having themed parties, she can’t get enough of them, and for someone who doesn’t like to read a lot, she uses an awful lot of book themes for them. Her last one was a Harry Potter themed party. Now, who can say that that isn’t awesome… honestly.
If you like parties with themes and have a special liking to books, let’s take a look at some books that could be great ideas for those parties you want to be extra special:

ALL AROUND BOOK PARTY
Well, if you don’t like to beat around the bush why not have an all around book themed party, just put all of your favourite books piled up in corners of the room, on tables. Go ahead and cover the TV with books. You could hang bunting with books printed on them all over, accompanied with fairy lights as well of course. Tell your guests to come dressed as their favourite characters. You can even find beautiful cake designs for books lovers on Pinterest (got to love a bit of Pinterest) This would be just a nice all around idea for your party.

HARRY POTTER PARTY
One of my best friends hosted a Harry Potter themed birthday party a couple of years ago and it was incredible. The decorating was so secretive, that no one was allowed to see the flat until it had all been decorated, and anyone who knows my friend, you know she is not a force to be reckoned with. Anyway when we arrived back at the flat, the whole place had been turned upside down and turned into a Harry Potter wonderland. There were envelopes with addresses hanging from the hallway ceiling and hanging in the doorway to the lounge was a sheet with the wall at platform 9 3/4. We had cupcakes that told us what house we would be in. It was an incredible party, most of the ideas were found on Pinterest so if you love Harry Potter, make your next party dedicated to the world of our generations favourite boy wizard.

MURDER MYSTERY
Straight out of an Agatha Christie novel… you can get packs for murder mystery role plays online, but you know what, it’s so exciting to create your own. Your guests will feel like a version of Poirot or Miss Marple – everyone knows that they are legends. Dress up in your best 1920’s dress, suits with the fedoras and those beautiful flapper dresses. This will give that extra bit of class and elegance to your party if that is how you roll. Plant little clues around your flat, house or bedroom and let your guests work out who you have created the killer to be.

FAIRYTALE 
It’s your birthday… and what better way to celebrate getting older than relieving your childhood. As always, ask your guests to turn up as their favourite Fairytale characters… could be Goldilocks or one of the three bears, even one of the Disney characters (they all came from Fairytales, so why not.) This is a great chance to be super creative you can have little mushrooms and cutouts of woodland creatures everywhere. You could even have a photo booth were your guests stand behind a mirror that says the famous line ‘Mirror Mirror, on the wall, who is the fairest of them all’. It’s scary that all of these ideas that you can come up with are thanks to social media and the internet. GO WILD WITH YOUR IMAGINATION!

 

There’s just a few to get you all started. Let me know if you have thought of your own book themed party. SHARE THE IDEAS!

TTFN

M
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Featured image courtesy of Alex Stuart

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My Fictional Bucket List

Have you ever read a book and thought that it would be fun to do one thing that was the characters hobby. To jump into the book and follow your favourite literary characters around for one day as if they were your best friends. What would you do?
Unfortunately, I have so many, but here are a few to get your bookish minds racing.

  1. An ultimate dream of mine is to go to Middle Earth and hand around in some of the choice places, The Shire and Rivendell being just two of them. I would love to meet some hobbits and elves, how incredible would that be.
  2. The next would probably be to attend a ball with the popular Bennett sisters from Jane Austins novel. They seem to be like women in the know of where the best parties are and who are the most eligible bachelors at all of them.
  3. Recently, I have been reading the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J Maas, and I just love the connection between the protagonist Celeana Sardothien and the Captain of the Guard Chaol Westfall, to join them on one of their training days I think would be fun… (I would be soooo far behind them and dead in the first five minutes.)
  4. When I was 12 I watched as a young girl from my favourite children’s book walked into a wardrobe and my entire childhood came to life. I would love to be able to walk through the wardrobe, through the fur coats and come out in Narnia. What an absolute dream.
  5. I have been called many things in my life… Mad being one of them, and where do the mad people go… Well the Hatters Tea Party that’s where. I have a little secret… I always wanted to stumble on a rabbit and follow him down a hole into Wonderland. Even though, it did get a little weird, I like weird.
  6. What a treat would it be to have a writing session with literature’s favourite authoress, Jo March from Little Women would have a thing or two to say about my writing and I would love to hear every single one.
  7. Having a shopping trip with the fashionista of the modern fiction world. Lou Clarke would help me make my wardrobe go from plain and simple clothes to colourful, budgeted and different pieces of art. That would be quite something.
  8. Any person who grew up reading Harry Potter would most likely have this down on their fictional bucket list. I would love to go to Hogwarts, even for one day and attend classes with the brightest witch of their age… Hermionie Granger.
  9. F. Scott Fitzgerald brought us the colourful and exciting world of J. Gatsby, to be at just one of the extravagant parties that he would throw to catch the eye of the one he loves would just be an experience beyond them all.
  10. My inner child would feel completed if the boy who never grows up turned up at my window… Neverland is my ultimate travel destination. Sadly, Peter Pan would probably think i’m a little old at the moment to share his adventures.
  11. Lastly, (because I could go on forever) I would love to have a different type of magic lesson, this time with the amazing Merlin and his student Wart. To even be included in the legend would be incredible.

11 items on my fictional bucket list, and all of them I would do in a heartbeat if I had the option. I love that books can do this to us, they can take us away from our seemingly mundane life and give us a purpose even if it is only for a couple of hours a day. That’s why I read. To experience the impossible.

What would be on your fictional bucket list?

TTFN

M
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My Favourite Book Covers

We all know the saying… Don’t judge a book by it’s cover! But how can we help it. It’s in our brain pattern to immediately judge something or someone by first glance. So, I embrace it. I do look at the cover, but I also look at the title and then the blurb on the back. They all help me to decide which one I would like to pick up and read next.

There are several things that you should consider when doing this;
– You cannot be too judgmental at all, that is not the right thing at all.
– Always look at the genre as well. It could be an amazing cover, but it could be a horror book, and if you don’t like horror then you’re screwed.
Here are some of my favourite covers:

Elijah’s Mermaid & The Somnambulist – Essie Fox

It wouldn’t be right to judge these covers seperately because they are both incredible. I first heard of Essie Fox in one of my lectures in my MA first year. The speaker was talking to us about online presence, and how important it is for a writer. It is one of the reasons that I wanted to start my blog and write a bit more. The speaker used Essie Fox as an example. You can find her blog HERE. I love these covers which were designed by her very talented daughter. It immediately draws you in and you are intrigued by what it could be about. All I wanted to do for days was to get my hands on just a copy of one of her books. The design just resembles the story so well. I love, I love, I love.

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Falling Leaves –  Stefan Mohammed

Stefans fourth novel Falling Leaves has a beautiful cover. It is so different from is other novels. The beautiful watercolour style background of the sky gives me all of the arty vibes, you also notice the hoard of birds flying away, genuinely reminds me of a Hitchcock film, just the right amount of suspense. I love Stefan’s writing and the cover just adds the colour to my Kindle.

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Throne of Glass – Sarah J Maas

I must say I am loving this cover of the first in the series of Adarlin’s Assassin. As with the others in the set we can see the protagonist on the cover in a badass pose, but if you flip the book over you can see the same pose but when she is in finer clothing. I love what it says about the character straight away before you even open the book. No matter how she dresses she will always be the same person. Of course I could have interpreted it differently as to what the publisher and cover artist intended, but wow I just love how awesome it makes the character look.

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Penguin Classics – Cloth-bound Collection

Many of you, i’m sure will have  seen the leather and cloth-bound classic collection that brightens up the shelves of Waterstones. I adore them, they make me feel as if I am in the classic novel with them, with the old hardback covers and the thin tissue like paper pages. However, these pages are nice and thick, so, not even I (a very clumsy person) can’t rip or damage. You can find on instagram some photos of all of the cloth-bound classics all together. It really is a thing of beauty.
The books are beautiful gifts for any book lover, a keepsake of their favourite classic novel. It’s also a perfect cover to allow readers not to judge by the usual inviting and colourful pictures, these books don’t have that and I just want them all.

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Why my Bullet Journal is SO important to me!

Every writer is sure to have a Notebook… or many if you are a stationary hoarder like myself. A notebook to take with us everywhere, so you are able to write down everything that comes into our head that would be good in a book, or a short story, or for some writers, poems (I am beyond useless at poetry.)

Just over a year ago, one of my best friends Holly introduced me to Bullet Journals. Now for those who don’t know what that is, it is basically a notebook, that becomes EVERYTHING! You can do anything with it and make it personal to just yourself. A blank page can be many things and you can create it. This is great for creative and non creative people, as it is a way to let your mind run wild. It can completely reflect your personality and that is why I love it.
It is essentially, a place for you to keep absolutely everything in your life in one place. It is a diary, a health tracker, a work tracker, a target tracker. Anything you can think of.

For me, it is The Notebook. The place I can keep all of my ideas, brainstorms, character profiles all of it, all in a small compact manner, that I can take with me anywhere and everywhere. It’s not something I update very often, most of the pages are in pencil rather than beautiful colours bursting from the pages like some that I see on Instagram or Pinterest. The most important thing though, is that it suits me.

So, in my Bullet Journal, I have pages dedicated to things such as; words I hear while out and about, quotes from favourite authors, (there are a lot of Lord of the Rings quotes) books and films that I have read and want to read, and descriptions of characters and scenes that I wish to involve in my stories. It is the best way for me to arrange everything and to organise myself, in a way that benefits me and that can help me focus properly. I never seem to be able to when I have diaries that I forget I have. Organiser’s in themselves are quite expensive for printed pieces of paper that reflect someone who you want to be. Whereas, a Bullet Journal reflects who you are right now. I love it.

Some of the pages that you can include in your own Writers Bullet Journal are:

  • Books that you want to read.
  • Names for your characters.
  • Words to express different emotions.
  • Synonyms.
  • Interesting words that you don’t usually use.
  • How to write a review (I have this one to help me remember)
  • Important grammar points to remember.
  • Character profiles.
  • Places that you could use for scenes.
  • Chapter Tracker (How many chapters are in your novel and how many have you finished)
  • Brainstorms.
  • Basically anything that you find in books to help you write.

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There are many other pages that you can add to your journal, some that I have just haven’t created. It is important that you don’t feel bad for not writing in it everyday or keeping up with the filling it out in detail. As long as everything is all together you can’t go wrong.

Thank you Holly for introducing me to this godsend.
Do you have a Bullet Journal… or a very special Writers Notebook? What do you include in it?

TTFN

M
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