5 Books On My To-Read List

I’m an avid reader on a shoe-string budget at the moment (moving is expensive!) so I’ve been methodically researching my books to devour for the next few weeks.

My current read. I think I might be the last person in the world to read this!

My current book. I think I might be the last person in the world to read this.

Sure, I could and probably should go to my local library but I haven’t really found it yet and I do love to have my own version that I can mark-up, dog-ear and write the date I read it in. I’m a little odd like that. I have to also admit I’m not very good at returning books to the library either. Late fees end up being the book’s cost anyway.

I try to buy at local bookshops or independent online sellers as much as I can. If  I can, I also look at Ebay and sellers on Amazon. Just make sure you look at the seller’s rating and their shipping times. I’ve accidentally bought from people who take 4 to 7 weeks to ship when I wanted the book ASAP!

I am of the school of thought that believes writers should not only write all the time but should read as much as possible. Read constantly. Read anything. Just READ. I read celebrity gossip, New Yorker essays, Twitter feeds, scripts of movies I have and haven’t seen, YA novels, rando textbooks I’ve found in my house, newspapers, literary novels, travel guides, coffee table books, etc. The list could go on and on. And, don’t get me started on people who “don’t like to read”. You just haven’t worked on your reading muscle. Reading is an activity that needs to be practiced to become fluent in just like any other activity. You won’t paint the Mona Lisa on one try and you most likely won’t enjoy War and Peace the first time you read a book either.

1. Sweetness #9 by Stephen Eirik Clark

2. Ten Thousand Saints by Eleanor Henderson

3. Bad Feminist by Roxanne Gay

4. The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith aka JK Rowling –

As a massive Harry Potter fangirl, I want to give Rowling’s other writing a try. I should probably also read The Casual Vacancy as well.

5. Gulp by Mary Roach

I cannot believe I haven’t read anything by Mary Roach. Nearly every single English professor, grad student, book-lover, etc. has recommended her to me.

EDIT: I finished A Fault in Our Stars today… I’m in love. Off to buy more of John Green’s novels.

Monday’s Link Love: August 18th, 2014

Here’s what I’ve been reading online lately:

  1. The Gloss’ “The 15 Best Hacks For Organizing Your College Dorm Room” which you definitely don’t need to be in college to enjoy. I wish I could go back in time and implement the class bin suggestion!
  2. Feel like a jackass when talking about your awesome skills, successes, or goals? Read Lifehacker’s “5 Things I Learned About Self-Promotion (Without Being a Spambot)”.
  3. Another Lifehacker post! I’m notorious for messed up sleep habits. Here’s The Best Time to Work When You’re Sleep Deprived.
  4. As a writer, I especially enjoyed Flavorwire’s 10 Stunning Writing Studios but I highly doubt you need to be one to enjoy the eye-catching designs of these spaces.
  5. I couldn’t be more jealous of Rosie the Londoner’s Parisian vacation.
  6. Last but not least, Caroline Hirons went to the LUSH FACTORY!

Am I homesick?

Haphazard Notions

Californiaaa, Californiaaaaa, Here We Coooooooooome

I’m finding it extremely hard to articulate how I feel about moving 1000 miles from home. This experience has been exhilarating at times, extremely boring at others (especially sitting in traffic or waiting in line for internet), incredibly relaxing (THE OCEAN), and, in all honesty, a bit depressing. Everything is just so new, so different.

Most of the time it is “fun new” where I want to explore and see/do/buy/eat and just have a good time. Other times, it is overwhelmingly new. I don’t know what this street’s ridiculous parking signs all mean (seriously so many parking signs in California seem to contradict each other), where to eat when I just want some good food without looking at a thousand Yelp reviews, what supermarket will have my favorite moisturizer, what movie theater isn’t grungy, or what park I’ll feel safest at. I just don’t know the area I live in anymore.

Everyone seems to have a different opinion about Southern California, If you ask 10 people about the same neighborhood you’ll hear 10 way different responses– “Oh, it’s too ghetto there” (a term thrown around too loosely) , or “It’s full of trust fund hipsters”, “That area is unsafe”, “I would love to be afford a place there”, “The gentrification is ruining it”, “I can’t wait for Target to be built there!”, “It’s the best area for young people”, “A drive-by happened there last week!” etc. etc. All of this about the same 9 or 10 block radius. I’ve decided I have just got to learn for myself.

As much as that difference in opinion scares me sometimes, I can see how it makes all these towns and neighborhoods so unique. They’re dynamic and lively, diverse and growing. There’s something to do, see, buy, eat, drink on almost every street. I see rich people, poor people, white people, black people, Hispanic and Asian people. I see couples pushing kids in strollers, bums begging on street corners, 20 and 30-somethings laughing and drinking the evening away. The choices are endless and confusing for someone not used to more than 3 or 4 options on any given night.




I still feel like a tourist…

California Ocean - Haphazard Notions

Only jumping dolphins would make this picture better

When you aren’t originally from California being here can make you feel like you’re on perpetual vacation. I keep forgetting that I’m here to live not to vacation. Everyday has been “Oh, let’s go to the beach!” instead of “Oh, I need to go to the DMV or I should get my brakes looked at like I’ve been meaning to for weeks”. How can anyone get anything done when they catch a glimpse of the glittering ocean or get a whiff of the sweet, salty ocean air?

It’s been incredibly de-stressing and stressful all at once. I’ve never been the kind to go with the wind and forget all I need to do. I’m a list-maker, an activity planner, a worrier, and a do-er but during these last few days I’ve done nothing but breathe in the air, wiggle my toes in the golden sand, and let the waves wash over me.

Simon the Seagull

My new friend, Simon the Seagull