All sorts of bookish adventures!

Category Archives: Blogging

As many of you know, I took a little break from blogging. Surprisingly, in that time away, I picked up a few new followers. Well, I’m back now, new friends and old, and I’ve changed my look, as you might have noticed. I love it!

Here’s some interesting (at least to me) background info on the look: I was directly inspired by the art print, “Someday, You’re Gonna” by Jordan Crane, which hangs in my kitchen. I wish I could commission Crane to do the artwork for my header, but what can I do? Use silly pictures of myself and the covers of a few of my favorite books, I guess.

Someday, You're Gonna by Jordan Crane

Anyways, back to the topic at hand. Since I have some new followers, and I’m returning after a long absence with a new drive, I thought I’d share some of my favorite posts that best reflect who I am as a blogger, and what you can expect to see here at Adventures in Borkdom. Many thanks to The Broke and the Bookish for providing the inspiration with today’s perfectly timed Top Ten Tuesday prompt!

1. Book Reviews

While I have been slacking in this area, a good chunk of Adventures in Borkdom is devoted to book reviews. When I put in the work, you can expect regular reviews on books of varying genres (I am a mood reader and like to read it all!) and I attempt to make these reviews as unbiased and professional as possible (when I might be biased, I make note of it in the review). I even created a rubric (feel free to use in your own reviews!) to make my methods of judgment transparent. Here are some examples of the positive review: Bleak House and The Waste Lands, the “meh” review: A Discovery of Witches, and the negative review: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.

When I don’t feel like putting in the work, you can expect posts full of mini-reviews: July Mini-Reviews

If you’re looking for more reviews, I post them up in the “Reviews” page at the top of the blog. *Coming Soon: Reviews organized by genre!*

2. Inspired Adventures

This is a new feature I started yesterday. It will appear twice a week (unless life gets in the way), and will center around a book I recently read, and an adventure or activity that I took part in that was directly inspired by the book. For example, after reading Hatchet, I took a hike in the mountains, and considered what aspects of the area would affect my survival if I were stranded there, à la Hatchet. Here is that post: Inspired Adventures: Hatchet and a Hike.

Upcoming Inspired Adventures include: Anne of Green Gables and Raspberry Cordial; The Return of the King and LARPing; and When You Are Engulfed in Flames and Quitting Smoking.

Check back on Thursday for this week’s second Inspired Adventure!

3. Bookish Featurettes

I enjoy writing posts on books that explore the various aspects of novels and reading in general. This is where I can really analyze certain literary/bookish areas without the limitations of a book review.

Some examples include:

4. Classic Authors: They’re Just Like Us!

These posts are biographical and discuss traits of a classic author that are surprisingly similar to either “us”, the everyday reader, or to the traits of modern-day popular authors. These ones are fun to read if you’re interested in a certain author, but don’t feel like getting bogged down by a long biography. I try to just give you the good stuff!

Examples:

Charles Dickens

Ernest Hemingway

J.R.R. Tolkien (posted over at Snobbery)

5. Fun Top Tens

Occasionally, I compile Top Ten lists that are connected to my reading preferences. I try to make these fun and somewhat informative. Typically, these directly derive from topics originating from the good folks at The Broke and the Bookish (like this post!).

A few of my favorites include:

Playing Hooky With Literary Characters

If Classics Were Set to Punk Rock

Oh Boy! It’s My Day to be a Girl! Here Are My Top Ten Book Boyfriends

The rest of my Top Tens can be found at the top of the blog in the page labeled “The Best”

6. Participation in Reading Challenges

This year, I signed up for a bunch of challenges. Not all of them have stuck (or, at least, I’m not attending to them right now), but I have seen a few of them through.

Two of these are

the horror- centric, annual Readers in Peril (RIP) Challenge, hosted by Stainless Steel Droppings

and

Charles Dickens Month, hosted by Fig and Thistle

7. Writings on Current Blogging Issues and/or My Views on Blogging

I don’t often dabble in blogging politics, but on occasion, I’ll come across an issue that I think needs addressing. Here’s a sample of what it looks like when I do:

When Blogging Gets You Down: A Letter to Bloggers (Big and Small)

I have also created a blogging manifesto, which pretty much spells out my views on blogging, and still holds true today: My Blogging Manifesto

8. “Best of” Lists

This shall be an annual event, and since I am only just approaching my one-year anniversary, I only have examples for 2011. Yet, you can expect to see daily posts, during the last week of 2012, that list my favorite books of 2012, broken down into genres. Here are two examples from last year:

Top Ten Books Read in 2011

Top Adult Contemporary and Young Adult Fiction Read in 2011

The rest of my “Best of” lists can be found at the top of my blog in the page labeled “The Best”

9. Readathons

I am a nut for readathons, particularly the big ones. This year, I took part in both of Dewey’s annual 24-hour readathons (held in October and April). I also held personal, impromptu readathons, which I chronicled on the blog.

Here are two posts reflecting my readathon participation:

October Read-a-Thon: And so it begins!

Post-It Readathon

10. The Person away from the Book

Finally, you will get to know the person that is separate from the books I read. Sometimes I write about what’s going on in my life:

She Was a Day Tripper…

Valentine’s Day?

A Slice of Crappy Life

and sometimes I feature the other interests and hobbies in my life:

Gaming:

TV

Movies

Cooking

———***——–

All of this, and writings I can’t foresee, will be featured here at Adventures in Borkdom. Obviously, if you want to know a bit more about me, the writer, check out my “About” page .

Thanks again for reading my blog and taking an interest in what I care about. I hope you enjoy what I put out there.

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Man alive, is writing hard!

I have staged a few comebacks here at Adventures in Borkdom, but none have taken as much effort, nor have been as inspiring, as writing a post for my good friend SJ.

SJ, as you may or may not know, has been hosting the most awesome of awesome readalongs with her Putting the Blog in Balrog (PtBiB). This is one thing that I have been very faithful in doing during the last month–my weekly PtBiB readings of Tolkien. While reading along, I have been trying to engage in the PtBiB conversations over at SJ’s Snobbery, as well as drinking along and tweeting with my fellow PtBiBers during our Friday night viewings of the LOTR films. I’ve wanted to contribute more to the group and our effort in the way of writing, so I got to work on a biography post on Tolkien for SJ’s site.

After reading a biography on Tolkien, written by Humphrey Carpenter, I spent most of Sunday and Monday writing the 3,540 word bio-article. And wow! That was rough!

I had forgotten how hard it is to write! They’re really not joking when they say “writing is a muscle that must be exercised regularly.” No shit! But, the work was done, I submitted it to SJ, and she published the first half of the post yesterday. If you’d like to read it, click here: Classic Authors: They’re Just Like Us! JRR Tolkien part one. The second part will be published tomorrow at Snobbery.

While it was a helluva lot of work to do, seeing my writing published and appreciated made me realize how much I missed serious blogging. Committed blogging. Not just random posts every couple of weeks. I think it’s all or nothing for me: I can’t just dabble in anything.

So, I’m going to propose right now that my goal for August is to get back into blogging full time. For reals this time.

I have a plan.

What I mean to do in August is the following:

– write reviews again, both full and mini-sized

– lifestyle posts (what’s going on in my life besides books)

– memes on occasion (they’re fun and good for ideas)

I’m also planning on (and already working towards) a new weekly feature here at Adventures in Borkdom tentatively called “Inspired Acts”. This would be a weekly post in which I detail some sort of activity I take part in that relates to something I have just read. For example, I just finished Hatchet, and so I will be taking a hike in the mountains in honor of the book, and will share details from the event and connections to the book here on the blog. Look for my first installment sometime later this week (I’ve got to figure out when I can fit in a drive up to the mountains!).

I’m pretty excited about August, and I am thankful to SJ for giving me the opportunity to re-enter blogging via her site. She’s always very supportive of me, and writing for her was an honor.

In the meantime, look out for tomorrow’s post, which will be full of mini-reviews on all of the books I have read since my last review (I’m thinking this will cover about 10 books at least). Also, don’t be surprised if the look of my blog changes–the Vertigo theme has been cool, but I think I’m ready to get more bookish again (might even go back to my old look, not sure).

Oh, one other thing…at some point in late August, it will be my one-year blogging anniversary. Therefore, obviously, this is a month of celebration and writing. I’m not sure what the celebrating will look like (probably some book giveaways or something), but it will happen in some way, shape, or form.

As always, thank you, any, and all, readers still reading. If you stick around, I promise I’ll keep putting out stuff for you to read!

– Mandy


I know I sound like a scratched record here, but I think I’m ready to be back. And the best way for me to re-enter blogging is by paying tribute to my biggest supporter on her birthday. It’s SJ’s birthday–you know SJ, the lovely lady behind the awesome blog Snobbery. She is a little less than a month older than me, so I know how old she is, but I’m not going to announce it on the blogosphere. I’m thinking of her today, and I’ve modified a classic Southern Rock tune in honor of her and her blogging efforts.

After writing this, I’m going to send her a proper birthday card, and then start reading The Hobbit, as I know she’d like me to read on her birthday.

Send her birthday wishes on her blog, and if you haven’t read her blog, check it out. She is an amazing lady with a lot of engaging things to say. Oh, I love that Mrs. Sarajean!

Instructions on Reading My Ode to SJ: First, press play on the video link to “Mississippi Queen”. Next, scroll through my modified lyrics as the song plays out. Feel free to watch the video AFTER you read my ode first! OBVIOUSLY, FEEL FREE TO SING ALONG!

Mrs. Sarajean

(set to the tune of “Mississippi Queen” by Mountain)

Mrs. Sarajean!

SJ, you know what I mean.

Mrs. Sarajean!

She’s taught me many things.

Way out around

The blogosphere,

She’s writing lots of days.

What a crazy lady!

That’s our Mrs. Sarajean.

the hobbitYou know she is a reader

And she likes her glass of wine.

While the rest of us dudes

 Were writin’ reviews

 She was getting crazy with Trashy Tuesday.

Mrs. Sarajean!

SJ, you know what I mean.

Mrs. Sarajean!

She’s taught me many things.

This lady she commented

On my posts ev’ry day.

 You know she’s the best friend

A blogger could ever have.

You’ll find her on Twitter

Sharing stuff that’s fine.

While the rest of us dudes

Were sharing silly news,

 SJ was tweeting something

So refined.

<awesome guitar solo in the key of SJ>

You know she is a reader

 And she likes her glass of wine.

While the rest of us dudes

Were doing memes,

 She was creating Dodisharkicorn!

Ahhhhhhh! Mrs. Sarajean!


Please note: I am inspired by and have taken liberally from the blogging manifesto at The Perpetual Page-Turner. Some of what I am writing here is taken word for word from this post, and I want to say thanks to The Perpetual Page-Turner for the inspiration and content. It was written so well, I couldn’t come up with better words than those written there. Please check out The Perpetual Page-Turner‘s My Blogging Manifesto.

This post is for me and anyone interested in my purpose here at Adventures in Borkdom. I might take snippets from this post and add them to my “About Me” page as this pretty much covers what this blog is all about.

As a few of my readers may know, I have been in sort of a slump for the last couple of days. I haven’t been very happy with myself and have been trying to figure out what is wrong and how to fix it. I have been working on solving problems that have been nagging me (completing tasks that I have been dreading and putting off all year) and I think that I am out of the woods now in terms of my self-loathing mood.

Part of my downer mood stemmed from blogging. Not a lot, but I was considering what my purpose was here. So, I took nearly a week off to really consider what I want to do here at Adventures in Borkdom and why I want to do it. It’s kind of ironic that this was an issue, as my last post was all about advising other bloggers how and why to keep writing what they want. What can I say? I’m a moody person.

On Tuesday, I really enjoyed reading a lot of posts which offered advice to new book bloggers. One post really stood out, written by Jamie at The Broke and the Bookish. In my reflective, “What am I doing? and Why?” state, I was drawn to Jamie’s advice to create a blogging manifesto. I clicked on her link to her own blogging manifesto and decided that this was what I needed to do. I needed to lay down for myself what it is that I want to do and why, and a manifesto was perfect. So here I am.

Why I Started Blogging:

I started blogging because I wanted to write. In the summer of 2011, I set my goal to start writing. So, I pushed myself to write a few pages in a journal daily. After a few weeks of this, I looked into blogging and found that a lot of people were out there simply writing about what they loved. And commiserating with other people about what they loved. This sounded like my kind of bag–I love reading, watching movies, playing video games, listening to music, and many other odd hobbies, and I love discussing them with other people. With blogging, I could do all of this and write regularly.

I want to write fiction. However, I continue to find that my writing strength lies in essay composition. I have a very small background in journalism (I was the editor of a college newspaper at one time) and a large background in essays on literature. I get to use this skill when teaching my students how to write essays, but I miss using this skill for myself. I found that blogging could put this skill to use and I wouldn’t have to regret not finishing grad school (at least, not so much). Now, if only I could find a way to put my gymnastics background to use, I’d feel pretty complete!

My Blogging Manifesto:

• My blog will not define me. It is merely an extension of who I am.

I am not simply a blogger. I am not simply a teacher. I am not just “wife” or “daughter” or “sister” or “friend” or “the girl who reads a lot of books”. I am just Mandy. And I will not be defined in simple terms.

• I will not define my blog.

Adventures in Borkdom is representative of all things that I am interested in–bookish and not. Therefore,

• I will not limit myself in what I write.

Every once in a while, I become less interested in one hobby and more interested in another. Hence, my post on gaming, or posts on music or movies or television. In the summer, for at least a week, if not two, I will be attending and writing about Comic-Con, which might not be very bookish at all! But, this blog is about ME and the adventures that I have as a self-proclaimed book dork.

• I will not limit myself in what I read.

If you read my blog regularly, you’ll have noticed that I read a lot of classics. Yet, I also read a lot of fantasy. If you were reading my blog back in the fall, you would’ve thought that I only read contemporary fiction and horror. I read what I want, when I want, as my mood suits me.

• I will try new things!

The blog title begins with the word “Adventures”, so I really need to have more adventures. I am proclaiming now that I will start taking more risks in what I read, watch, listen to, do, and write. Perhaps that can be a regular feature…an adventure each month?

• I will always try to write something that matters.

Each post will be composed with careful thought and purpose, and I will not post something just for the purpose of posting. Even if it looks and feels light, there will be some reasoning for each and every post I publish.

• When I take part in memes, host giveaways, give blogging awards, or respond to a tag, I will make the post content-heavy, so it isn’t just another fluff piece.

• I will be respectful to other bloggers and my readers.

• On the other hand, I will be respectful to myself and will write what I will and how I will.

If I include expletives in a post or content in a video that is offensive, sorry sensitive reader. This is my happy place, and I’ll do what I want with it.

• I will do my damnedest to keep Adventures in Borkdom my happy place.

I will never allow blogging to become a burden.

• I will step away for a break the moment it becomes a burden.

• I will not obsess over my blog’s growth, followers, stats, and will not compare myself to others in a negative fashion.

• I will continue to find joy and excitement in the gain of followers and stats and will look to other blogs for ideas and inspiration.

• Above all, I will blog because I love to read, watch, listen, and do, and I want to share my love with others.

So, this is what I am doing here at Adventures in Borkdom, and why I’m doing it.

I feel better now, having written this. If you feel like you’re losing your sense of purpose or focus in blogging, I recommend that you follow Jamie’s advice and compose your own blogging manifesto.


Dear Blogging Colleagues,

I am recovering from a bout of rage I suffered last night on behalf of one of my favorite blogs. It seems that another blogger decided to write a snarky post on their own blog which mocked the content of my friends’ blog. Now, I’m fiercely loyal to my friends and family, so I was immediately up in arms. I was so angry! And so frustrated because I felt that there was nothing I could do about it. It was out of my control. My dad always tells me to only worry about the things I can control. Don’t waste time on the things I can’t. It’s great advice, but I couldn’t put it to practice until I was done seething.

This morning I woke up with a lot less rage, and realized that there was one thing that I could control; there’s one thing that we can all control–ourselves.

This letter is an attempt for me to remind myself and you, my fellow bloggers, that we need to worry less about others and more about ourselves.

I’m a relatively new blogger at just over six months, and I don’t have a lot of followers. Many of the ones that I do have are just as new as I am, or even newer at a few months old. As we spend more time blogging, I have no doubt that eventually we’re going to deal with some sort of negative backlash to what we have created, and we will be confused, enraged, frustrated, and unsure about how to react. This seems to be a rite of passage for all who put their opinions and feelings out into the world via their blogs.

In my ripe old age of six months in the blogosphere, I have seen nearly all of my closest buddies hurt or angered by what another blogger or commenter has written about them on another blog or in their own comments section. Each has been criticized for different aspects of their blog, and each has reacted in different ways.

I have seen bloggers criticized for their opinions, their writing style, their reading choices, and now their self-created awards (how lame is that? how can you criticize someone for creating a way to give love back to their readers?).

I have seen bloggers react to backlash in different ways:

• respond in turn to the negative comment on one’s post, and if they’re completely off their rockers, give them a comment award.

• respond to the negative comment on one’s post and write a subsequent post discussing the issue.

• respond to the negative blog post by writing a responsive post on one’s own blog that provides a link to the critic’s negative post (the downside is that the offender get hits on their own blog).

• respond with a polite comment on the negative blog post which the critic may or may not approve.

All of these are perfectly good responses to the negativity. You could, of course, simply ignore it as well, but responding provides a release for your own frustration, and could possibly end up changing the negative commenter’s mind. Sometimes it was all a big misunderstanding that gets worked out via conversation. Also, all of the above responses result in a learning experience for your other readers and provide ample material for conversation amongst all.

What is NOT a good response to negativity is stopping what you’re doing! Do not stop writing, do not change what you’re writing, KEEP GOING!

You must keep in mind that for every person who doesn’t like what you’re saying or doing, there are five (or many, many more, as is the case with a few of my blogging buddies) who love it, and depend upon you to do what you do. It’s an age-old problem in teaching–the squeaky wheel gets the oil. The good kids are ignored for the one bad kid’s behavior. DON’T FORGET US, YOUR FAITHFUL READERS!

More importantly, don’t forget about you! It’s really easy to get caught up in the stats game, analyzing what readers like and don’t like, and writing more of what is popular with your readers. That’s great that you care about your readers. But, if you’re like me, you got into blogging for yourself. You started your blog because you wanted to write about what you cared about and finally got the guts to share it with the world. In the end, we (your readers) are just lucky that we get to read what you’re writing. You could just squirrel it away in a journal like most people do.

Your blog is yours. Do what you want with it. If it’s authentic, honest, and true, people will read it. Some people won’t like it, either because they disagree with you, or because they’re just rotten and need something or someone to pick on. In the end, you gotta blow it off because it’s not about them. It’s about you, and, in what should be a smaller sense, your faithful readers.

If anything, just realize that I’m writing this letter because I care that you keep doing what you love. I’m rather vanilla here on the blog, so I haven’t dealt with any haters yet (at least, none that I know about). And I know, judging by the other comments I see on your blogs and on Twitter, that I’m not the only one who feels this way about your blogs. If writing makes you feel good, and you have reached even just one person with what you have created, you should be thrilled. As they say, haters are gonna hate. Just keep on doing what you do!

Sincerely,

Mandy


In case you didn’t know, it is Awards Season here at Adventures in Borkdom (and seemingly all over the internet). Three blogging awards will be given to up to nine different blogs, all beautiful, all versatile, and all deserving. I, myself, have received two of these awards, and I am very humble and thankful for them. Thank you Snobbery and Somersaulting through Life for considering Adventures in Borkdom both beautiful and versatile!

Best Commenter Award

The first award is the newest award, created by Snobbery. It is the Best Commenter Award! This award goes to the five people who have commented the most here at Adventures in Borkdom!

First, I’d like to say a big thank you to these five people, and all of you who do comment here at Adventures in Borkdom. The greatest joy of blogging is engaging in conversation, and you all are the ones who make this possible. So, thank you so much for your comments!

So, as the rules go, I, the awarder, am to provide answers to the following nine questions that go along with the award. Here are the questions:

The Questions

  1. What is your third favourite colour?
  2. Would you rather be:  a Jedi, a Pokemon Master or a Wizard/Witch?  Choose ONE.
  3. Who is your favourite Doctor?
  4. Can you whistle?
  5. Would you name your child Sirius Albus?
  6. What is the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything?
  7. Do you own a lawnmower?
  8. Do you think Legolas is a (very pretty) pansy?
  9. What’s the trashiest thing you’ve read in the last year?  Should we [Snobbery] cover it for Trashy Tuesday?

David Tennant Doctor Who1. My third favorite color is green.

2. I would most want to be a witch–I would kill at herbology and potions!

3. My favorite Doctor is David Tennant…with those wild, wonderful eyes!

4. No, I cannot whistle. This is my shame.

5. No, I’d name my kid Hermione Luna or Draco Neville!

6. I’ll take my answer from one of my favorite movies from high school–Reality Bites…PIZZA!

7. No, I do not have a lawn mower, and I’ve been very remiss in keeping up my “lawn”. Here’s what it looks like in my “back yard”:

My "backyard"

8. Legolas is very pretty–but no, I don’t think he’s a pansy. Now, Gimli…there’s a pansy!

9. Ugh…you had to bring it up! Fifty Shades of Grey, and you better be doing a TT on it!

Now the moment you’ve all been waiting for…the awards for Best Commenter at Adventures in Borkdom goes to…

SJ of Snobbery (she wins her own award!)

• Ankit of Ankit the Reviewer

• Kyle of A Reader’s Pensieve

• Jessica of Shhh…Mommy’s Blogging

• Jillian of A Room of One’s Own

So, here are the rules of the award, if you choose to accept it:

  • Accept Dodisharkicorn award and display it proudly in your widget sidebar.
  • Find your Top Five Commenters on your Stats page and present them with the award.  If they really comment that frequently, you shouldn’t need to tag them because they’ll see it anyway.  It’s just polite to link to their blog, though.  Dur.  We are ALL ABOUT politeness.
  • Answer the following questions and pass them on to your Top Five Commenters.

And, because I think these five bloggers deserve further recognition, and because I’d like to know more about them myself, I am rewarding all five of these bloggers with the next two awards as well (except for SJ, whose blog has already won them)! 

Beautiful Blogger Award

The next two awards are The Beautiful Blogger Award and The Versatile Blogger Award!

Snobbery was kind enough to bestow The Beautiful Blogger Award upon Adventures in Borkdom, and Somersaulting Through Life gave me the Versatile Blogger Award. Thanks ladies! I am very appreciative!

Because I think all of the following blogs are very deserving, I am awarding each with BOTH awards. Congratulations friends!

• Ankit the Reviewer

Ankit is a very kind and enthusiastic book blogger from India! In addition to his numerous reviews, he provides features on his favorite authors, reflections on his reading, and his own poetry. So, give it up to Ankit!

• A Reader’s Pensieve

This is not the first time I have given Kyle an award, and it won’t be the last! Kyle provides a plethora of book reviews, usually on the hottest titles in YA. She is a teacher and future librarian, so she really knows her stuff!

• Shhhh…Mommy’s Blogging

Jessica is also a repeat offender in awards given by Adventures in Borkdom. I love her blog, and I love her book recommendations! Along with book reviews, she provides reflections on her reading, herself, and life as a mom! Check her blog out!

• A Room of One’s Own

If you’re interested in Classics, then I’m SURE you’ve heard of Jillian. A Room of One’s Own is my absolute favorite Classics blog. Jillian is taking a journey in reading the classics, and at her blog she reflects upon her various readings, the state of literature today, and the question of what is canonical itself. Reading her blog is like sitting in on a really engaging seminar class in grad. school. I appreciate all that Jillian writes and I’m thankful that I found her blog. Please keep up the good work Jillian!

• Somersaulting Through Life

This lovely blog is BRAND NEW!! And I’m relatively brand new, so that’s saying a lot! From what I’ve seen so far, though, Somersaulting Through Life looks like it will be one we’ll all want to be reading–it covers books, television, and life in general. Here’s one post that I particularly enjoyed on recent advertisements in the UK–“Awesome Adverts in the UK“. Love that Ron Weasely! Let’s all support this new blog and the lovely lady behind it!

Cummings and Goings

I’ve gotta give more love to my buddy, the imminent world traveler Pat Cummings! Along with being an excellent storyteller, Pat is also rather quirky, and his blog reflects this via his split personality posts (the three bloggers are Patrick Robert Cummings (Big Swiss), Robert Patrick Cummings, and the ghost in the machine, madmin…all with distinct different voices and purposes). If you want to see the world in a science fiction style (and consider what makes Sandra Bullock’s ’90s flick The Net so great), check out Cummings and Goings!

• Tabula Rasa

I have been a big fan of Priya’s blog since my first days in blogging! She loves Harry Potter, she loves Neil Gaiman, she loves Stephen King. Plus, she’s not afraid to try new things as made evident through her German literature stint. Her reviews are all very well-written and thoughtful, and I always value her opinion on books. If you haven’t read her blog yet, I highly recommend it!

• Enchanted By Books

Another relatively new blog that we need to know more about! Enchanted by Books is written by Danielle, another booklover. She’s been blogging since October and is taking part in quite a few reading challenges this year, a few in which I too am participating. I would like to get to know Danielle better, and am eager to see her seven random facts (if she accepts the Versatile Blogger Award).

So, here are the nitty-gritties on accepting the two awards:

The Beautiful Blogger Award:

  • Thank the person who gave you the award  Check mark symbol
  • Paste the award on your blog  Check mark symbol
  • Link the person who nominated you for the award  Check mark symbol
  • Nominate 7 bloggers or less  Check mark symbol
  • Post links to the 7 blogs you nominated  Check mark symbol

The Versatile Blogger Award:

Thank the person who gave you this award. That’s common courtesy.

  • Include a link to their blog. That’s also common courtesy — if you can figure out how to do it.
  • Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly. ( I would add, pick blogs or bloggers that are excellent!)
  • Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link to this site.
  • Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

-So, I guess I broke the rules by only awarding the Versatile Blogger Award to eight people. Oh well.

-I provided nine things about myself at the beginning of the post. If you want more, friends, please ask away! I’m a very honest person.

As noted above, I can’t provide Snobbery with either of these awards, as it has already won them. Sorry Snobbery, you can’t be like Meryl Streep and continuously win the same award. BUT….. 

Hey friends! Let’s all cast our votes for Snobbery to win the Independent Book Blogger Award for Adult Fiction over at Goodreads! We have until April 23! Snobbery reads trash so we don’t need to with Trashy Tuesday, provides us with delightful haikus based off of our blogging community’s worst (best?) search engine terms, and Meg’s illustrations are always awesome! SO LET’S VOTE SNOBBERY!

Snobbery Grave Mercy Illustration

One of my favorite illustrations from Meg...

 Vote Snobbery here: Independent Book Blogger Awards


At this time of year, I am always reminded of my childhood in Oklahoma. I grew up as an Air Force brat, and my family lived in Moore, Oklahoma (just outside Oklahoma City) from the time I was six until I was eleven. Those were good times to live out there–I played archaeologist in the red clay, discovering cow skulls in the fields behind our house; took part in staged “land runs” in commemmoration of the Sooners; and just really enjoyed being a kid in the country. Some of the greatest impressions of Oklahoma left with me are the tornado watches and warnings. We always knew when one was coming our way…the skies would turn a greenish hue, the air was still and strange, and the clouds would gather in the distance. April and May are tornado season in the central states, and, like always, I will be thinking about my experiences hiding out in the closet with my family around me as the sirens went off.

So, what does this have to do with books and reading? Nothing really…it’s just where my brain is today, the first day of April.

Being the first day of April, I’d like to share a recap of what happened in March. So little, and yet so much!

March

Books Read: 3.75

The History of English Literature (audiobook) by Perry Keenlyside

The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss

– The Waste Lands by Stephen King (review coming tomorrow!)

– Almost Finished: A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway (will be completed today!)

Pages Read: 1722 + 5.3 hours listened

On the Blog:

Celebrated my six month anniversary!

– Won two awards from Snobbery (2nd one will be discussed this week)!

 – Dealt with blogger’s block

– Vented about this year’s lay-off notice

– Signed up for The Classics Club, The Sarah Addison Allan Challenge, Bloggiesta, and Once Upon a Time VI

And, what’s coming up this month…

April

This week: I will be posting a couple of posts relating to my reading of Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast, as well as two book reviews (The Waste Lands and A Moveable Feast).

Reading Plans for April:

The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer (Back to the Classics Challenge, A Classics Challenge, and The End of the World Challenge)

Wizard and Glass by Stephen King; The Dark Tower

Wizard and Glass by Stephen King (The Dark Tower Challenge, The Stephen King Project)

The Dark Tower graphic novels (The Dark Tower Challenge)

Dark Tower 4.5; The Wind through the Keyhole by Stephen King

The Wind through the Keyhole by Stephen King (The Dark Tower Challenge, The Stephen King Project, and The End of the World Challenge)

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allan (The Sarah Addison Allan Challenge)

The Girl who chased the moon cover by Sarah Addison Allan

The Girl Who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allan (The Sarah Addison Allan Challenge)

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon (The Award-Winning Challenge and The End of the World Challenge)

In April, I’ve also decided to add to my reading list by choosing one favorite novel from five of my blogging buddies who are on Goodreads. All of these books received 5-star ratings from the recommending blogger(except LHITBW, but Kyle loves the Little House books, so I’m sure she’d want me to start at the beginning) and I have never read them (or, in the case of THGG, I never really read it, just played the video game). These five books are as follows:

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams (SJ of Snobbery)

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (Amy of Lucy’s Football and Insatiable Booksluts)

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff by Christopher Moore

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore (Suzy of Insatiable Booksluts)

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett (Jillian of A Room of One’s Own)

Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder

The Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder (Kyle of A Reader’s Pensieve)

Have you read any of these books? What are your reading plans for April?