Only 150 days left! Hard to imagine the book signing event is practically around the corner.
To celebrate the event I´ve teamed up with my book babe, Sabrina @Brina and the Books ( who´ll also be my partner in crime at the signing ) for a little milestone countdown. On day 150, 100, 50 and day 0 we´ll be giving you insight on our RARE expectations, our unicorn authors and of course a sneak peek in the life of preparing for a book signing event happening in a different country. To sum it all up – Sabrina and I decided to reveal juicy details on day 0.
Today we´re here to celebrate the 150 days left until RARE ´19 London, Romance Author event. Why not start with our expectations? Our hopes and wishes for the event?
Fortunately for me, this isn´t my first RARE book signing event. I´ve had the pleasure of visiting a few in the past. I wouldn´t necessarily call myself a RARE expert but I do think I have a pretty good idea what to expect.
Authors and books.
That´s what any book signing event is about, right? To go and see authors and have books signed. In a nutshell, yes. But these RARE signings function a little different. This isn´t just a get in – get out affair. RARE signings go a little deeper than that.
It´s all about having a good time.
If there´s one thing I´ve always experienced during my RARE visits, then it was definitely fun. Having a fun time with authors and having a great time mingling with like-minded people. RARE has never been a simple meet & move on. The promise of 150 authors for this year´s event sounds like a sure guarantee that the signing will be explosive! A bomb of a dream for a romance book blogger.
So, what exactly are my hopes for RARE ´19? I don´t have any for the event itself. Aside from meeting my favorite authors and discovering new authors I´m pretty sure there won´t be much new for me to expect ( unless the orga – team offers a Magic Mike show and a triple chocolate welcoming cake. One can always dream ). My hopes are aimed towards having a fantastic time with my friend, Sabrina.
A useless fun fact: Sabrina and I both live in Germany ( and not too far from each other, either ) and we´ll be meeting for the first time in person in London. How sad is that, huh? I can´t seem to get my booty in the car and visit her but here I am booking flights to meet my friend… in a differently country ( the shame is real, y´all ).
Also, while spending time with my favorite fellow book blogger and friend I´ll also be enjoying the event with my bestie Lindsey.
What I also expect is to be financially ruined for a few weeks afterwards. Books aren´t cheap, guys. I see a very dark and penniless future ahead. Not sure how I should feel about that.
Of course, I expect to walk out of the event with a shit load of books and more swag than I can handle. It´ll be a blast! Spending time with my loved ones and lusting over books will be awesome. Because that´s what respectable adult bookworms do.
That´s it for the 150 day mark, my lovely bookish Padawans. I hope you enjoyed.
Be sure to check out what my book babe, Sabrina @Brina and the Books Rare ´19 London expectations are. ♥ This will be Sabrina´s first RARE event and she´s definitely got some exciting things to say.
Before I go I would like to know:
♥ Have you visited a RARE signing? Would you like to visit RARE? Have you been to other book signings? What was your experience? Let´s chat. ♥
With the new year I found some new energy to work Instagram again. Ha! Who would have thought, right? Between the unforgivable algorithm and my lazy self I figured I´d forget all the junk I was fed up about and just start to enjoy Instagram for myself. Partly because everything else would piss me off. * insert huge smile *
With that being said…. I´ve been having fun on the pic platform with doing whatever the flipping foo foo I want. To hell with Instagram goals. It´s time for some awkwardness in form of book love.
Ready to see the features? Sure you are * wink *
I´ve Rekindled With My Kindle
I normally dislike my kindle. Not because it´s shit. No. I hate it because it´s dead most of the time. I belong to the lazy chicks who don´t charge their kindles.
My #1 Book Cover Of The Year
Don´t ask me why but I just love this cover. Would be awesome to have this image printed in poster size.
The First Useful Christmas Gift From My Brother
Usual gifts I received from my younger brother:
Laced table cloths ( don´t ask ), colored pictures of dragons ( the pictures turned into wolves as he got older ), a selfie of himself in a picture frame ( because he once felt left out ), A CD with the music he likes ( because apparently, I have no taste in music )… It took the boy 20+ years to come up with the perfect Christmas gift. ❤
My Lack Of Creativity Knows No Bounds
Just slap the book on the Lazy Susan, add some confetti, throw 10 filters over your pic and POOF!
Decent Results Also Show By Spending Even Less Energy
Ditch the Lazy Susan but add new filters. * face palm * I´m surprised I found the energy to get up from the sofa the day I took this shot. 2019 is supposed to be a lazy year.
So that´s it. A little bit of 2018 and a little bit of 2019 and you can already tell where my bright Insta future is headed. Be prepared for sofa pics very soon!
Also, not to forget- If you´re on Instagram be sure to hit me up and give me a nudge to follow you back.
The 13th Day Of Bookmas and I´m going to do some major personal note revealing. This is probably going to be the most intimate post you´ll ever get to see from me. Why?
Because you´ll get to see:
my * cough cough * shitty handwriting
my questionable ideas
the weird blog stuff I plan
And of course, I´ll take it all a step further and reveal a side project I´ve been working on with my oldest daughter ( Don´t worry, it´s book related ).
Take a seat, bookish Padawans. It´s going to get juicy. Fingers crossed that you won´t fall off your chairs out of sheer boredom.
PLEASE NOTE that this post is 100% personal. Meaning this isn´t educational or even meant to be helpful ( although I wouldn´t mind if you do seem to feel moved to use whatever tricks / ideas / tips I reveal. Y´all have my blessings)
But before I grace you with my weird shit creativity… I´d like to say that none of what´s revealed is in any way a guide or a template for proper book blogging. We all know there´s no right or wrong way to go about this business / hobby of ours. What works for me might not work for others and all that shibaz.
As a seasoned book blogger I´ve learned that keeping a schedule is key to a less chaotic blogger life. With all the books us book bloggers purchase, read and review – We can easily get lost in the paper jungle and end up not being able to tell the difference between up and down. In the beginning of my blogger career I started out with Google calendar. But I ended up hating it so I began going the traditional, old school route by using pen and paper to make notes or keep up with new releases and all that.
I´m a pen to paper type of woman and prefer journals over making notes on my phone, etc.. I cannot begin to tell you how many journals I have ( basically because I like to ignore the journal mountain I have growing in my trusty pseudo office ). I use journals to write down all kinds of book blog – ish stuff. Whether it´s for scribbling down new releases, author names, my own ideas… I always reach for a journal.
As of now, I´m constantly using these babies.
My Trusty Blogger Journals
Work That Shit journal: This is where I write down the authors I want to look up and where I try to shift and mold the post ideas I come up with during the day. Let´s take the Bookmas theme I´ve got going at the moment. It´s in this journal… everything all mapped out.
Blogs To Follow journal: This might be strange to some but I do make notes of book blogs I want to not only follow but also keep track of. Here´s some ugly facts: I don´t scroll through the WordPress Reader. Not because I´m not interested… It´s more because I hardly have time between work, the kids and maintaining a household. By the time I go online I´ve missed too much and really don´t want to spend 4 hours scrolling the Reader. I know- It´s an ass move towards the blogs who follow me but I really can´t invest more time than I already am investing. NOTE: This is for WordPress blogs only.
Create A Dreamjournal: Or in other words: My junk journal. This is where I keep literally all kinds of shit. Instagram ideas, blog post ideas, hashtags, book event layouts, spy dates, Skype sessions with authors, bloggers and close friends who so happen to be involved in the book world… It´s all in here and it´s ONE HUGE UNORGANIZED MESS.
Yes. Believe it or not- I have 2 1/2 pages full of hashtags. This started during the time when I thought I could beat the algorithm on Instagram by using the right hashtags. I gave up shortly after because this became exhausting as hell. I also have a page dedicated to Twitter hashtags and Fb hashtags ( because my old ass had to learn the hard way that a hashtag isn´t always the right hashtag )
I also used to keep track of various social media book blog groups / book pages / Streetteams, etc. by writing down the groups I followed ( to save time ). Now I don´t work bookish stuff on FB anymore.
Ideasjournal: This is a place to think. Write down what works for my blog and what hasn´t worked and what I think could work but still have to think through. This is also the a journal I use to keep track of book costs. I, unfortunately, don´t have money growing in my garden so I like to make lists of the books I buy and keep a tight lid on booksih shopping lists. I also use this journal for my mother – daughter book projects.
Aah, yes. The mother – daughter project I mentioned earlier. In the pic above you can ( barely ) see pricings from various online print services. Eve and I have a side project called The Book Owls where we do book charity. That´s right. I don´t just book blog.
The Book Owls is an organization that helps less fortunate children havebetter access to books.
The idea for this happened when I was with the girls book shopping. Eve caught wind of a mother explaining to her kid that she didn´t have money to buy her kid a book. To my utter shock, my kid walked to the kid and told him “Don´t worry. My mommy can buy you the book.” And that´s what I ended up doing. I also gave my daughter a gentle speech on how she can´t do that without consulting me first. If she had asked I would´ve said no. But she unintentionally put me on the spot. After that I thought long and hard about how to give kids easy access to books.
Trust me- This wasn´t easy and it took me quite a few journals to come up with a solid plan on how to approach this idea. Fast forward a year….
Eve and I are organizing book flea markets for children´s books ( ages 0 – 12 ) where children can sell their own used books for no more than 2 euros per book. The pic above shows the prices for swag we give the young sellers at the end of the book flea market ( including promo posters, etc ). This is a great way to spread the book love with the younger folk. And of course, all this is non-profit.
We also collect used, in good condition, children´s books in the village we live in and bring these to orphanages, hospitals, and to other children organizations.
Right now, the babe and I are working on a book treasure hunt for our young village members. We bought 2 books ( for each gender ), wrapped them in red and blue gift wrap and will announce in the village FB group that we´ll be hiding these books on one of 3 playgrounds. The first children who find the books can keep them. All they have to do is create a post in the village FB group to let us know that they´ve been found.
If you don´t see a blog post from me from time to time for a few days then I´m actually working on our mother – daughter charity project.
Phew! That was personal. But hey- I promised insight. Now you know I´m desperately trying to buy my way into heaven.
Just kidding. There is no heaven. Let´s take a step away from the charity stuff and move back to the book blog reveals. I have more pics of notes in my trusty journals.
You may have fun now.
And then there is this gem. Yes. I´m a crazy organized bitch who likes to neatly put anything bookish in a folder. I have 9 years worth of book paper shit.
This folder holds book signing tickets ( or anything book signing related ), author letters and cards ( yes, I get the occasional thank you and Christmas card ) and of course, my favorite swag. Behold!
In the last picture on the left side you can even see a postcard from my first blog, The Divas Book Blog. This I used to send out to authors, signing events and other blogs as a means of self promotion. BTW- That system works wonders.
So there ya have it. I´m stripped bare. You know my organized / half organized – half messy / less organized notes. You now know how I actually work my blog. Wait. That´s not true. You haven´t seen my Google Drive yet. Blog notes are worse there.
Will any of this help you? I doubt it. That doesn´t mean I wouldn´t find it cool if someone were able to take something valuable away from this post. Even if it´s to NEVER copy my approach to book blogging…. ❤
Now that you know me I think we can get married now. Who´s first? Lol
As always… I´m looking forward to reading your thoughts in the comment box below. Feel free to ask questions if you have any. Are you shocked? Stunned beyond words? Or do you keep notes as well? How do you stay organized? Let´s chat. ❤ ❤
Thank you so much for finding interest in this post. Feel hugged if you enjoyed reading about my book blogger notes.
It´s time for the unthinkable – Time to clean out the bookshelves!
I know, right? It hurts to think about permanently removing books from a bookshelf. I don´t like it either, to be honest. It pains me just as much as it would hurt any other book lover / hoarder /collector/ ( or whatever we like to call ourselves ). It´s also November. A bridge month between Halloween and Christmas. I have nothing else to do besides spring clean, or should I say… autumn clean?
But, if we´re all honest with ourselves… not every book on our bookshelves is worth the spot it´s occupying. And I´ve had it up to here * holding hand up and leveling it with my cheekbone * looking at the books I didn´t like or haven´t read. Why should I keep what I thought wasn´t out of this world great?
So I have a plan. One that might work in my favor. Trust me, I´ve thought about this for a long time ( exactly 20 minutes ) and am totally okay with this master plan of mine. This might sound a little savage to you lovely bookworms out there… but I assure you, no harm has been done to books nor do I intend to harm any books mentioned in this post.
The TBR pile. That blasted, grief giving pile needs a clean out.
From a logical point of view – There shouldn´t even be a to – be – read list. Read what you want and move on to the next book, right? If one would actually do this then there wouldn´t be such a flipping list. We´re not looking at this from a logical point of view, though. Readers / book bloggers keep piling book after book on each other, feeding the ever starving TBR list. Why do we do this? Because we like to read. It´s an endless cycle I´m about to break for myself.
The problem with my TBR pile / list is: I have books on that list that I´ve bought 5 years ago. And once a week I remove the dust off those TBR books and watch them collect a new layer of dust all over again.
My master plan: SORT THEM OUT! That´s right. You read correct. I AM FED UP! * waves arms dramatically in the air * I will no longer put up with the misery that´s attached to a TBR list. So, I began. And guess what? I got rid of nearly half of my physical TBR books.
How did I do that, you ask? I´m glad you asked. I figured… since my tastes have changed over the years.. my taste for certain books might have changed as well. I was right!
We all need to sit down and ask ourselves WHY certain books land on a TBR list. My reasons are:
The book sounded interesting, but not interesting enough to make me want to drop everything and read immediately
The book looked good
The book was recommended by a friend
I have a very peculiar taste when it comes to books. I read romances but not all types of romances. I read paranormal and fantasy but not all types. I´m super picky when it comes to sub genres and often, when I get a book, I find out much later that it has certain elements included that I don´t really fancy. So, those books land on my TBR list because I can read it in the far future,.. possibly when I have nothing to read.
* insert hysterical laugh *
Another thing I´d like to say about the nerve wrecking TBR list. Once a book lands there, there´s no telling when or if I´ll ever read it.
I bid all my former TBR books farewell. It was nice dusting you off.
Now, let´s get to the nitty gritty of my bookshelf clean out.
This won´t come to a huge surprise to you all but… I have a shit load of books. So many that one might think I have a problem. The main spot for my books: My livingroom. Then bedroom, bathroom, basement, kitchen, car…. I have books everywhere around the house. This means I actually had no flipping clue how many books I actually have.
The results, after collecting all the books and placing them in my livingroom, were shocking.
There is a positive side to this, though. If I read a book and wander around with it then it´s actually a good sign. It means I couldn´t put the book down! But, by God… so many books scattered around the house.
Unfortunately, these books are also on the clean – out list. Books from series I´ve started and never really felt the need to continue, book series I totally forgot about, etc. The list is ENDLESS!
I´m not the only one to blame here. It´s not entirely my fault that I´ve lost interest in most series. I put half the blame on authors who don´t think it´s revelant to publish within a year´s time span ( I predict a dark future for the next Game of Thrones book).
So, my new goal will be to organize EVERY book I have and categorize them in different sections. Beware though. I´m a complete beast when it comes to organizing shit. I´m one of those super anal organizers who buy a pack of multi – colored rhinestones and sort them out by color in one night. Organizing books will be a piece of cake!
As much as I love to organize by color, I´m going to do the following:
Organize books by;
Series / Standalones
Then I will take stock of what I have, who´s apparently my favorite author and begin to sift out what´s hot and what´s not.
Everything with a 4 star and above stays
Everything with a 3 star gets a reread
Everything with a 2 star and beneath needs to go
It´s that simple.
This will not only help create more space on my bookshelves, it will also keep me more focused on keeping my TBR list to a minimum and being more conscious about buying my next read.
With that being said- I feel absolutely great about this whole bookshelf clean – out. It´s cleansing in the best way possible!
NOTE: All sorted out books will not land in a book graveyard. They´ll be kept in a box until they find good, loving and caring homes.
ON ANOTHER NOTE: Personalized signed books will land in my ever trusting IKEA storage box, where I keep all my other golden book babies.
Tell me: What do you do with your TBR list? Do you clean out your bookshelves once in a while or does your collection just keep growing? I´d love to read your thoughts!
Have a wonderful day and don´t forget to share the book love!
A beautiful face that hides a dark secret and an ugly past.
Sealed lips which hide wicked words and dangerous thoughts.
She would kill for him to love her.
He just wants to kill.
Maybe, if Emma Hartley prays hard enough, Church Logan can make both their wishes come true.
Fuse, meet match.
This is a psychological thriller. If you have triggers – This story will touch on a lot of them.
The language in my review will be very colorful.
I don´t remember when I first saw this book. I can´t even recall who recommended this read. All I know is that I was ready and prepared to read some weird, screwed up romance- Something I really REALLY wanted because I´ve been so fed up with the same ´ol, same ´ol, goody goody romance novels. It was time for me to read something with grip.
I did NOT expect `Church.`( Church. #1 ) by author Stylo Fantome ( and I´ve read some really crazy shit in my lifetime ). And I SO WANTED TO LOVE THIS BOOK! I SO SO SO SO….
Let me start out by saying the writing wasn´t my cup of tea. I appreciate all narrative point of views but I´m not necessarily a fan of narrative hopping. While the majority of the story is told in third person narrative the author slips a few chapters, first person main character POVs, into the mix.
This can be great for a story but I felt it didn´t work well for this type of read. A thriller needs to be thrilling. A thriller can hardly create a thrill when a reader is in on all the clues. Which brings me to my next issue-
The story was slightly predictable. That´s another thing I don´t appreciate and I fully blame this on the multiple narrative POVs.
As for the characters….
To be perfectly honest, I find it a shame that I disliked both characters so much because Emma is a great character on her own and Church is fantastic in his own right. But as a couple? Down right hideous. Young adults acting like little turds who don´t have a life.
The genius sociopath and the damaged for life, obsessive beauty. Their thoughts were disturbing. Their time spent together was disturbing. Their plans, how they treated other people and each other… It felt like a bomb exploded in the Church. universe and I was the one who tried to make sense of everything.
“Tell me why you´re the way you are.”
“Hmm, I´ve been abused beyond anyone´s wildest dreams.”
“Wow. That´s fascinating. Now my turn! I´ve been abused, too!”
“Jee wizz! Let´s go and make some random person miserable.. just for the heck of it!”
( Note: The above was not taken from the book. It is not the dialogue.)
To make this rant short: I didn´t like `Church.` Dear sweet baby Jesus… I almost hate the story because of the hatred it carried. Hell, there was so much hatred to pass around and make a reader´s life misrable. Then that ending…. I better not get into that because I´m afraid I might choke on my cornflakes
Bah. I´m going to let my inner 85 year old out and say: My life is too short to waste it on reading about characters who´re bored little shits.
Would I recommend this read? The 85 yr old in me says: “Not in this lifetime.”. 36 yr old me says… “Nope.”.
Would I reread this book? Definitely not. I´ve also decided I won´t be reading the second installment.
The Cover – 3 stars ( Not the style I prefer to see on a book cover )
The Story – 1 star ( I´m actually surprised I didn´t DNF this book.)
The Characters – 2 stars ( Lots and lots of potential for both MCs. But somehow they turne out horrible and… bla.)
My emotional state after finishing this read – Utterly pissed off.