I spent last weekend in Boston. Originally, I was supposed to fly out Thursday, but my airline preemptively cancelled flights for Thursday on Wednesday afternoon, and I didn't leave until Friday night.
This was my first time flying since I had open heart surgery. I felt sorry for the person who sat next to me because I chew gum (so my ears will pop) and I'm pretty sure I was more cow with cud than human with chewing gum.
I spend a lot of time alone, whether it's at the apartment or in the car driving. As a result, I listen to a lot of music, both on the radio and on my own playlists. I also listen to music when I write.
I recently finished a very long (very difficult, most difficult writing thing I've done since I finished my first novel years ago) rewrite shortly after Christmas, and thought I'd share some of the songs I listened to while I was knee-deep in edits and implementing new plot points.
Welcome to 2017! I hope everybody had a safe, happy, and fun New Year's Eve celebration! I spent mine watching Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince while putting together a 750 piece puzzle with my mom. (You can see a picture of it here, on my Instagram.)
I seem to have brought back the super-bug that went through the house, so while I can only breathe through one nostril, I still have a slice of cheesecake from New Year's, and I have as much rooibos tea as I can possibly drink.
But what I really wanted to talk about are some goals I have for 2017
1) Be More Organized
I have a very pretty planner (which has flowers on the cover, which is kind of unusual for me) and I need to start using it more. Like, on a weekly basis. And I need to not forget that I have it.
2) Journal More
I always seem to have a lot rattling around in my head. Some of it is, of course, book and writing related, but a lot of it isn't. A lot of it is just for and about me. And while I like to share things not related to writing here, journaling is a little too personal.
It would also, probably, be cathartic.
3) Be As Brave as The Dunkin Donuts Incident
Long story short, the Dunkin Donuts Incident involved me being exceptionally braver than I usually am and giving my name and phone number to a very cute guy. It didn't pan out - which is okay - but the point is that I did something I would have only thought about doing, but would have never actually done before. So I want to be as brave as I was that morning more often. Even if I might fail.
4) Live Life Wide Open
It's a big, wide world out there and I'm going to see, experience, and live in it as much as I possibly can. There's a reason my life motto is carpe this diem and I intend to keep on doing just that.
It's not a long list, but I think it's a good one. And it should definitely be an adventure.
Hope & Kindness,
It's that time of year again! I have, for maybe the first time in my adult life, all of my Christmas shopping done before the actual holiday. This never happens. It's usually the day before and I'm still scrambling.
Because it's also the end of the year, I wanted to make a list of books I read this year that I would highly recommend. (I didn't read as much as I wanted to this year, unfortunately, but what I did read I typically really enjoyed.)
And, if you're like me (and how I usually am this time of year and don't have all my shopping done in advance) and still need a holiday gift, you can't go wrong with a book or two.
Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch
I think I read all five books in this series in about four weeks. If you like mystery and you like magic, then this is the series for you.
Temporarily Significant (Author's Website)
Enter Title Here by Rahul Kanakia
I'm only eight years out of high school, but I remember some of the stress of apply for colleges, hoping to get in, and taking an absurd amount of classes senior year in order to make the top ten in my class (I was tenth out of ninety-six). This takes all of my senior year stress and multiplies it by a factor of fifty. There were times I wanted to throw this across the room - mostly because Reshma does not do what you expect her to do - and it's great. The whole novel is brilliant, and I highly recommend it.
Blotter Paper (Author's Website)
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
I basically inhaled the first two books in this series. It's magic, it's mayhem, it's a little dark (sometimes I like my magic a little dark). And it's a very, very good read. There were times I wanted to, again, throw the book across the room, but that also usually means I'm thoroughly enjoying it.
Victoria (V.E.) Schwab
Whatever.: or how junior year became totally f$@ked by S.J. Goslee
Half the time I didn't know whether to thump Mike upside the head or give him a hug. I laughed, I wanted to cry, I cried, and then I laughed some more. And it was another book that didn't go where I expected it to.
This Is the Part Where You Laugh by Peter Brown Hoffmeister
This is one of those books where, when you finish it, you'll shut it softly, put it down gently, and take a deep, deep breath.
Peter Brown Hoffmeister
Life Before by Michele Bacon
I read it start to finish in five hours. I was incapable of putting it down. I had to know what happened next, and if a book does that to you, you know it's a good one.
Those were my top six reads (in no particular order) of 2016. I recommend them all, especially the ones that made me cry or I couldn't put down. I don't think you'll go wrong with any of them.
For anyone who's curious, my To Be Read Pile going into 2017 is Six of Crows, Little Black Dresses, Little White Lies, Dessert First, To All the Boys I've Loved Before, and Memory & Dream. And that's just the start.
From my family to yours, may you have a joyful holiday season filled with love, hope, and kindness.
The ever-fabulous - and fellow Sommie - Sharon M. Johnston is celebrating the release of her New Adult novel SHATTERED this week! SHATTERED is the second book in Sharon's Open Heart series.
Mishca needs to save her sisters, but only Ryder can save her.
The truth about Mishca’s past shattered her heart. She deals with the pain by focusing on a new mission: saving her newfound family from their creator. With her sisters scheduled for termination, Mishca and her friends set out on a journey up the North Queensland Coast to save them before someone else dies.
Ryder understands the need driving Mischa. It’s in her DNA. But he’s not giving up on the chance they can still be together. She’s the only one to have seen him levitate. The only one to watch the sparks dance across his skin. The only one he trusts enough to know what is in his heart. And now, he might be the only one who can stop Mishca from losing her humanity.
Driven apart by secrets, will they come together in time?
My hands grip the steering wheel so tight my knuckles resemble mini snow capped mountains. I could drive under the truck 200 metres ahead in the opposite lane and end it all. It would be so easily. Accelerate; yank the wheel, and then nothingness. The scenario plays through my mind so vividly I actual wince.
Thanks for stopping by. Browse. Smile. Giggle. And maybe say hi.