Your favorite blogger is going on vacation!!!
Just kidding. About the favorite blogger part. Not the vacation part.
I know I’ve said next to nothing about this, but today I’m on a flight to Japan, where we’ll stay for five days, and then Thailand after! This will be my last post until I get back on the 23rd. (Fun fact: I thought we were leaving on the 3rd but apparently not.)
But June was SUCH A GOOD MONTH. I was in a depression period for most of it, yeah, but really great books helped me out!! (I’m definitely not slumping anymore which makes me SO happy.) I also did some writing and hung out with little kids so all of that = great for my mental health!
This month, I read 9 books, and that’s the most I’ve read for… a long time I’m REALLY PROUD but also really surprised because I read books from a TBR and I thought monthly TBRs didn’t really help me?? (Cue me questioning everything I know about myself.)
I also was BLESSED to receive 6 physical books/ARCs and I am so so happy and grateful. I’m not able to get any physical books usually but this month is different and I’m extremely thankful!!!
- Summer Bird Blue Akemi Dawn Bowman |♦| gorgeous + cried a lot + heartbreaking + beautiful + a story of grief and healing + non-romantic relationships!! + ADORED it ★★★★☆ [4.5]
- Girls of Paper and Fire Natasha Ngan |♦| THE sapphic Asian book + LOVED THE ROMANCE + beautiful writing + LOVE the Asian culture + ending destroyed me + 2018 fav ★★★★★
- The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo Taylor Jenkins Reid |♦| blew me away + a masterpiece + read it before you die + loved the characters + cried + wow + 2018 fav ★★★★★
- The Abyss Surrounds Us Emily Skrutskie |♦| better than I thought + enemies to lovers f/f pirate romance + SO MORALLY GREY + engayging and fun + love Bao ★★★★☆
- Radio Silence Alice Oseman |♦| amazing + written for and about me + ADORED the characters and writing voice + love the friendships + felt like I was put on Earth to read it + 2018 fav ★★★★★
- They Both Die at the End Adam Silvera |♦| Adam’s best imo + made me SOB + I love the messages + characters are precious + the ending ended ME + so affected by it ★★★★☆
- The Song of Achilles Madeline Miller |♦| lowkey boring + until 90% + teared up a lot + broke down sobbing at the end + stayed up 1 hour crying + really beautiful ★★★★☆
- How to Make a Wish Ashley Herring Blake |♦| just as good as expected + GORGEOUS writing + the girlfriends are so soft and gay + beautiful and important messages ★★★★☆
- soft in the middle Shelby Eileen |♦| sadly my first 2-star in months + great messages + but confusing + all over the place + felt like I’ve read the same exact thing before ★★☆☆☆
Thank you thank you THANK YOU to all the people who got me these books and ARCs, it means everything to me and I’m so grateful!!
City of Ghosts (Scholastic): Schwab is one of my favorite authors and I whisper-screamed when I got this ARC!!! It sounds so dark and lovely and I have a feeling I’m going to LOVE it.
Empress of All Seasons and Grim Lovelies (HMH Teen): Both of these look REALLY good, especially Empress, since it’s an Asian-inspired fantasy! HMH has accepted my requests for the second time now so I love them.
Ash Princess and Steelheart (Delacorte Press): (I won a writing contest last year, and they just sent me an editorial review + books as part of the prize.) I don’t care about Steelheart (hid it from view on my highest shelf) but I’m vaguely interested in Ash Princess, even if I know I won’t love it.
The Brightsiders (Mars @ wildmoonchildz): Mars is doing a great thing (#givearcstoteens) to get ARCs/books to marginalized ownvoices teens, and they were able to get me this book. I’m excited to read this, especially because of the bi hair cover!
Three books are some of my favorites of the year, so I’ll just shout-out ALL of them: Radio Silence, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, and Girls of Paper and Fire! I gushed about RS and Evelyn Hugo in this post and GoPaF in this post, but basically, these are all high quality books that you ALL need to read as soon as possible.
I loved all the books I read except for: soft in the middle. It wasn’t on my original Pride TBR but I thought I’d still give it a try and I… didn’t like it. I’m definitely in the minority here though!
I barely wrote any reviews yet again this month but I did manage to write and post my review of Leah on the Offbeat on Goodreads! I’m proud of it and I think it’s one of my better-written reviews.
- I really thought I was going to comment more on posts but… I don’t know what stopped me???
- I genuinely read pretty much all the posts in my Reader each day. I just don’t comment for whatever reason. I think I don’t feel motivated to comment on posts, which I really really hate and feel so bad about.
- But I posted a lot, and a replied to lots of comments on my blog, and I’m really happy about that!!
- I also got some homomisic comments, and comments from a Christian who kept trying to convert me. At this point I’m more annoyed than hurt because really, why are you taking the time to say these things when you can do something else with your life than harm people???
- If you don’t like that I talk about LGBTQIAP+ things and/or am not a Christian, literally just leave my blog. That’s all you have to do. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
- I also lost 10+ blog followers after posting my Pride recs and TBR and like wow. Thanks for unfollowing and getting off my blog without attacking me, but things like this is just so incredibly discriminatory and hurtful.
top 3 posts?
I am SO HAPPY that my Pride posts got so much love!!! After people trying to discourage me from talking about queer things, seeing you all excited for the books I talked about and supporting posts about queer books… it’s really amazing.
favorite post of the month?
I really loved writing this post!!! (I wrote it all in one day and I’m way too proud of that.) I ALWAYS enjoy these types of “bookish wrap-ups”, or any kind of wrap-up, really, and it was super fun to look back over the year and lowkey analyze my reading!
- I went to a writing workshop for two weeks and it was really nice!! I wrote a poem that I’m actually lowkey proud of and got validated by a bunch of the other people at the workshop and of course I love, seek, and crave validation.
- Unfortunately I got chosen to maybe read my poem at a ceremony, like I have for the PAST TWO TIMES that I’ve done this workshop. I protested but no one listened to me.
- (Honored they thought of me but also extremely anxious about reading.)
- I also… completely bailed on the writing contest I planned on entering!
- The WIP I was working with was trash and there was no way I could fix it in 15 days, and I realized that 1) I didn’t want to get feedback on work that was not good* and 2) I’ve won for the past two years and though that DEFINITELY doesn’t mean I would’ve won this year, I want others to win!!!! It’s one less competitor for them. :))
- And it was also giving me stress so I decided to not do it anymore because I’m weak.
- This month I also received editorial feedback as a prize from winning last year’s contest. The piece I submitted was… bad, and I know how to improve it now, so some of the feedback I subconsciously knew already. But it’s very much appreciated!! (And I definitely got some great suggestions for improvement!)
*This sounds elitist, for me PERSONALLY I think I should ask for feedback on work I consider the best it can be, because it’s like asking how you can improve a half-built house. Build the house completely, first, and then make it EVEN BETTER with feedback.
- Besides the writing workshop, going out to a little “daycare” place to help take care of little kids, and taking two dance classes a week, I didn’t really do much??
- Mostly I stayed home, read books, and watched TV. My sister’s been watching Friends episodes so I decided to join in, and then World Cup started and I’ve also been watching that.
- Some nice moments: A friend slept over and we also went and saw Incredibles 2 and it was… how do you say… pretty incredible. The Incredibles is one of my [childhood] favorite movies and while the sequel wasn’t as good as the first, it was still really entertaining and I liked it.
- I also got my hair cut!! Six inches were cut off, and I’m REALLY REALLY happy. My hair was super long, had way too many split ends, and got tangled really easily. Now it’s medium length (wanted it to be shorter but I still need enough to put it into high dance buns), not tangled, with no split ends!!!!
- That’s pretty much it honestly. Why do I have no life.
I am proud to say that in June I achieved more than one goal (unlike May)
- read at least 8 books ✓ (NINE!!!)
- write & upload at least 5 reviews ㄨ (I uploaded only one but I got started on a lot of others!)
- request more ARCs ✓ (requested + received!)
- not get anxious over writing workshop ✓ (it mostly worked out in my favor)
- re-plot and revise my old WIP ㄨ (HAHHAHA NOPE)
- and also… get back into poetry?? ㄨ (I think I wrote one (1) poem)
- post at least 7 times! ✓ (I posted 8 times and… this makes me so happy)
- reply to recent comments & comment back!! ✓ㄨ (I failed at commenting on blogs for like the third month in a row but I REPLIED TO A LOT OF COMMENTS!!)
- comment on at least 4 posts a day ㄨ (no)
- drink 1 water bottle each day ✓ㄨ (kiiiiind of)
- stretch! ✓ (still have my splits)
- get 8 hours of sleep at least three times a week ✓ (idk why this is hard in the summer but it is)
- read at least 7 books (vacation = relaxing but also = flights = reading time)
- write & upload at least 1 review (this should be my goal every month)
- read ARCs (I have like 3 I need to read this month,,, oops)
- write 1 poem (I love being successful)
- TAKE A BREAK (this will be easy!)
- if I have internet connection, try to comment on some posts? (not an official goal but would be nice)
- drink 1 water bottle each day (it’s going to be REALLY HOT)
- stretch! (I refuse to lose my splits over the summer)
- have fun and relax!!! (I’m really excited for this vacation!!!)
I’m going on vacation!! I am SO. EXCITED. for this trip. I’m going to Japan for 5 days, then Thailand for 2 weeks. I’m seeing some people I haven’t seen for four years, and we’re going to go to Tokyo, various places near Tokyo Bangkok, and Hoa Hin (the BEEEACH).
This means that I’m going on a three-week hiatus! From the 2nd to the 23rd, I won’t be active online. I may have WiFi at certain points, but that’s it. And I still won’t post until a little after the 23rd because of the next thing:
DANCE. This month I have to dance from 9 to 4—seven hours of dancing—and I have to do that for THREE DAYS right after I get back from Thailand (12 hour time difference). Don’t know how I’m gonna make it but wish me luck!!!
how was your june? are you on summer vacation or nah? going anywhere cool? what books did you read?? if you celebrated pride (or ramadan/eid!), how was it? watching the world cup? are you doing camp nano? HOW ARE YOU??