Monday, January 20, 2014

The Monday Mix (22)

The Monday Mix basically gives me the opportunity to share with all of you the links I loved online from weeks past. This includes everything from great reviews, articles about writing, inspiring posts and perhaps other things too. I've always valued the opportunity to share the great things I've read or seen, and this is my way to share the love with all the bloggers, authors + pubs out there!

It's been so cold lately, that all I've wanted to do is curl up under my covers, grab a cup of something hot and read the heck out of my books. Still, in spite of that, I've been working on finding a new job (status: interviews + applications), getting that lease on our apartment renewed (status: just the contract left!) and figuring out how to collaborate on bloggy stuff with my sister (status: done!).

On the bookish side of things, it's been a lot of fun in my world lately. I've filmed a couple of vlogs, caught up on all my pending reviews (except for the book I just finished) and organized my spreadsheets with book titles. Plus, the Incarnate Series Read-a-thon has kicked off and been utterly fantastic so far! (Pssst, you can still sign up!)

All in all, I'm in a good place. Things are moving along with everything in my life! Hopefully, I get settled into a proper routine soon enough -- and my pesky cold disappears too.

LINKS TO CHECK OUT

1. Thanks to Jamie and Anna, I discovered this post about the 20 things you need to let go of to be happy. I think there's a lot of truth in what was shared, and it's certainly worth a read.

2. Looking for a wintry read to fit the season we're in? The Epic Reads team has shared 20 winter-themed books for readers to devour. Among the books included, my favorites are: Shiver, Unearthly, Unravel Me and Shadow and Bone. (They also shared some pretty cool New Year's resolutions from awesome authors! I think my favorite resolution comes from Jodi Meadows.)

3. Kat Zhang tells about tackling a first draft. Since my first drafts are pretty similar to hers (messy, disorganized, missing pieces), I might just have to take her advice.

4. It's probably not going to surprise you guys that another one of Margot's fauxtos (this time, The Darkling!) has made it into this post. Margot's extremely talented, and I love the way her photos show us her imaginative take on some of our favorite books.

5. I'm fairly certain I've shared this before, but I most definitely wanted to share it again because it's THAT GOOD. Brittany shares why she reads YA, and she completely hits the nail on the head. If you're going to read any post on this list, READ THIS ONE!

6. New years always mean fresh starts, which always means ORGANIZATION to me. Hannah's tips for getting organized on Goodreads are fantastic! I've bookmarked this post, filing it away for a day that I have enough time to go through all the books I've marked on there.

7. I loved, loved, loved what Jenny had to say about her favorite kind of boys when it comes to romance for her guest post on Melissa's blog. I have to say, she pretty much described Warden (from The Bone Season) to a T.

8. Shae's thoughts on the magic of a first chapter are spot on. I know exactly the feeling she's referring to, and I'm sure many of you do too!

9. I'm sure I've mentioned it once or twice but I like keeping things organized. When Debby shared her spreadsheet methods of organization, I wanted to tackle hug her immediately. These spreadsheets appeal to my incredibly OCD heart! She also did a follow-up post that specifically tackles books, which just made my OCD heart pound even harder.

10. I've always loved Sarah Dessen. She wrote about abandoning a book, and I just loved reading what she had to say. (Thanks Anna for sharing!)

11. I liked Ginger's post about reading YA as an adult. It made me think about what sort of view I have when reading stories about teens (since I'm technically an adult), and I hope it will do the same for you.

12. I love blogs for mostly the same reasons that Ashley loves blogs. Reading blogs and leaving comments takes up a considerable amount of time, and I only do it for those blogs that I really feel are enjoyable, readable and inspiring. Ashley has been hitting it out of the park with posts too, including one about giveaways and a discussion on drafting posts.

13. Meg's wedding was so incredibly beautiful, and I love the bookish and scientific touches! I have to hand it to her since all of the stuff was handmade/DIY, and it turned out so wonderful.

14. What Jess had to say really resonated with me - sometimes getting it right is more important than getting it done.

15. Right now, I'm in the same boat as Jamie - unemployed, and still in the middle of a job hunt. She talks about how unemployment has changed her life as a reader, and I found myself nodding multiple times as I read her post. Having no income has made it essential for me to learn how to stick to a budget, hence my book buying ban!

16. Have you got a case of the FRABS? Susan Dennard talks about fear as an artistic block in this extremely insightful article.

17. Publishing Crawl is one of my favorite writing/reading resources ever. (In fact, I fangirled when I was interviewed by Sarah J. Maas along with Elena for the site last year!) This year, they're adding to their amazing set of contributors -- welcome Janice Hardy, Adam Silvera & EC Meyers!

18. My friend Jen shared some big news this week -- she's self-publishing her novel Threats of Sea & Sky this year! I am super excited about her book (Elementals! royalty! fantasy!) and think that you should add it on Goodreads.

19. Brittany touches on one of the things I often have trouble with when it comes to books: slow starts. She explains why slow starts can turn her off a book, and I must say, I agree with most of what she has to say about them.

20. Debby talks about how she stays unbiased towards books. Though I'm not precisely like her, I do tend to hold back on reading reviews for books that I'll be reading soon, just so that I go into them with a pre-formed set of thoughts about the story, the characters or the writing.

21. Shae talks about relying on other readers to deciding what to read. I honestly think that it's still up to YOU whether you read something in the end, but it's nice to sometimes just have an idea of what you're in for based on someone else's review. Contradictory? Not at all.

22. Here's something you don't want to miss this week -- The BOOK SHIMMY AWARDS are happening this Wednesday, January 22 at 3:45PM!

RECAP OF MY POSTS
Reviews:
  • Why I Read (Wendy Lesser) reads a lot like a thesis, because it's so serious and filled with serious literature.
  • It has been quite some time since I've read a book that moved me as deeply as The Book of Broken Hearts (Sarah Ockler) did.
  • Going Rogue (Robin Benway) is, without a doubt, one of the most fun novels I've had the pleasure of reading.
  • What I enjoyed most about Another Little Piece of My Heart (Tracey Martin) is that it reminded me, in a lot of ways, of the type of fan fiction I used to write when I was in high school.
  • Defy (Sara B. Larson) had the makings of a solid fantasy debut, but it still fell short of my expectations. 
  • Afterparty (Ann Redisch Stampler) will not be a book for everyone.
Features:
Personal Posts:
I hope you enjoy reading these posts as much as I did! Now it's YOUR turn - are there any posts (on your blog or other blogs) from last week that I missed out on? Please feel free to share links in the comments and I'll try to check them out.

4 comments:

  1. An awesome collection of links -- and thanks so much for including my bookish wedding! Can't wait to click through and check 'em all out. It's quiet when you work on a national holiday, haha :)

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  2. *hugs* Thank you so so much for mentioning TOSAS, sweet lady!

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  3. So many awesome links! I can't wait to check some of them out ... especially that Sarah Dessen one. She's one of my favourite authors, so I can't wait to see her thoughts on abandoning a book.

    It's been so crazy nice here that it's weird to hear of winter happening in other parts of the world. If we took the snow out, it could be spring here! (Of course, I'm sure I've just jinxed Canada now. Sorry, Canada.)

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  4. I really love that you do these recap posts! I always find new blogs or notice posts I missed the fist time around. And thanks for including my Goodreads tips on here :)

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Thanks for leaving a comment! I love seeing what you have to say, and will try to reply (here or on Twitter) as soon as I can :)

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