May’s Moments of the Month: October // School Stress, Failed TBR, No NaNo Prep, but… Halloween Candy? Book Fest?

Basically, October was a mess.

I had such high expectations for it and for myself, so of course, I didn’t meet them!!

The month as a whole was better than September, but still not great either. I had a lot of breakdowns, read only half my TBR, and didn’t finish prepping for NaNoWriMo. I didn’t publish three posts that I was supposed to, and I hardly commented or replied to comments.

But I guess some good things were Halloween candy and going to a book fest????

(Wow I LOVE coming up with only two good things about October.)

mmm reading

I read 6 books! Out of my TBR of 11 books! (And technically 12 because I didn’t get to finish a book in September like I was supposed to!)

I liked all the books I read, fortunately. None of them were five-star books but I did cry a lot over one of them so…?? Progress at becoming more emotionally fragile than ever???

I also hosted the Fivestarathon during the first week of October. We were supposed to read five books. I read one.

But the best part of my reading month was going to a teen book fest at the beginning of October!! I got to meet five authors (I stood in line for an hour to meet Laini Taylor and the line was cut off literally three people in front of me, but it’s okay because I talked to some cool people and had fun!) and they were literally all so sweet! Julie C Dao told me, “Maybe I’ll see you around in future book fests as well [as an author]!” and Mark Oshiro was the most hilarious ever.

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns (Rise of the Empress, #1)  Final Draft  The Burning Maze (The Trials of Apollo, #3)  Circe  Empress of All Seasons  The Brilliant Death

  • Forest of a Thousand Lanterns Julie C Dao // I LOVE XIFENG SO MUCH + kinda slow at first + the ending wasn’t enough for me + but the moral greyness? moral ambiguity? character arc? amazing ★★★☆☆ [3.5]
  • Final Draft Riley Redgate // cute f/f romance!!!!! + loved the emphasis on writing + school stress representation? so accurate + subtle yet beautiful messages + just… really gorgeously realistic ★★★★☆
  • The Burning Maze Rick Riordan // got spoiled for the ending but still cried + will never be the same + can’t believe this happened + but also I think this is my favorite of the series so far! ★★★★☆
  • Circe Madeline Miller // didn’t click with it as much as I expected to +  I just feel… weird about it + still really liked and enjoyed it + truly subtly BEAUTIFUL ★★★★☆
  • Empress of All Seasons Emiko Jean // I have never felt more emotions over a book than this one + anger? frustration? shock? surprise? satisfaction? contentment? + my opinions changed throughout the book but I liked it mostly ★★★☆☆ [3.5]
  • The Brilliant Death Amy Rose Capetta // MAGICAL GENDERFLUID PEOPLE + great explorations of identity + the concept of “the brilliant death” is SO GOOD + there’s also some moral greyness ?? love ★★★★☆

book haul?

Here are the four books I got this month!

I bought For a Muse of Fire and Black Wings Beating at the book festival I went to, and I preordered What If it’s Us! (Literally the three out of four books I’ve bought this year.) I also got an ARC of The Fever King (MY FIRST 2019 ARC!!!) and I am so genuinely excited to read it.

favorite book?

Hmm, I didn’t really LOVE any book a lot this month? I genuinely can’t choose. Any of my four-star books, honestly.


My biggest disappointment would probably be me!!! Omg just kidding I’m not THAT self-deprecating. Mostly.

I guess I would say Empress of All Seasons, though I really wasn’t that disappointed? I’m just sad that the character I LOVED at the beginning of the book turned out to be a character I HATED by the end.

favorite review?

I really really loved my Girls of Paper and Fire review and I’m extremely proud of it. I didn’t think I’d be able to actually express my love for the book and how beautiful it was but I think I did a pretty decent job!

mmm blogging


  • Okay I was doing good-ish except I missed like three posting days and still am horrible at commenting and replying to comments.
  • But I feel like I did more commenting and replying than I have before? And I actually did some commenting back and it felt so good. Reading and replying to your comments makes me feel on top of the world, actually, even if I’m having so much trouble doing it.
  • This month, I won’t be posting that much (except I’ll actually be posting more than I did in October omg I hate myself). I’m focusing on NaNoWriMo, so you’ll see some updates on that, plus a little series I’ve been planning for some time now! And a special birthday post since it’s my birthday this month!!

top posts?

sjm stans  wip  b99 tag

(No post has gotten as many views as my SJM post in like… forever.)

favorite post?

I actually genuinely loved ALL the posts that I wrote this month, which is sadly not common for me? Usually I like most posts but there are some that I don’t like as much, you know?

Since pretty much all the posts were featured in my top posts, I really adored my Girls of Paper and Fire review and I’m actually pretty proud of it!!

others’ posts I loved!

I’m trying to slowly bring this back as I start commenting more on others’ blog posts!

mmm writing

  • My goal was to finish outlining! By the end of October! In order to start writing for NaNoWriMo! Guess who did not do that!
  • I mean literally at this point WHY am I even trying anymore.
  • NaNoWriMo has STARTED and I am very excited, even though I’m having to do some plotting and writing at the same time. Luckily I was able to finalize names (literally had no name for my main character until the middle of October) and some plot points but… that’s about it.
  • I haven’t been writing much poetry either because I haven’t been freewriting in my English class as much! We just started up again, though, so hopefully I’ll write more in November?

mmm life

  • Mental health-wise, October was better! Not GREAT, but good enough. I had a lot of breakdowns, and near the end of the month I shut down and shut myself out from social media and blogging because I was so overwhelmed from school work, which was the most extreme effect I’ve faced from school stress (besides breakdowns). It was actually kind of scary, really, because my mind could not stop panicking even though I kept trying to reason with myself??
  • But that rough shut-myself-out episode is over now, and I think that November will be a more relaxed month! Because 1) it’s my birthday month and it better be good and 2) THANKSGIVING BREAK.
  • I listened to a lot of Brockhampton! I think I literally listen to a separate artist each month for some reason?? Like at one point earlier this year it was Hayley Kiyoko, and then Troye Sivan in August, Marina and the Diamonds in September, and now Brockhampton in October…
  • But honestly, the band is SOOOO not my style (like I’m cool with hip hop and rap but I don’t really choose to listen to it, per se?), but I ,, love their songs?? Some of them are Really intensely rap and I DON’T like them, but others? Bops.
  • I also saw The Hate U Give in theatres and it was absolutely amazing. I really want to go again (even though I KNOW I’ll cry harder lmao) and I think it’s a movie everyone needs to watch. It’s not my story to tell, but I will always boost it and all black voices that need to be heard. Please, please watch it.

mmm old goals

wow!!! I wonder why I failed ALL my goals this month!!! when I was so stressed out from school that not even a week off from it could save anything!!!!!!

  • read 11 12 books ㄨㄨㄨ (the most pathetic and hilarious thing I’ve done all year is read literally 6/12 books on my TBR)
  • write & upload 10 reviews  (I wrote one review, but… I uploaded some others??)
  • outline my WIP & prep for NaNo  (I… lowkey prepped for NaNo??)
  • write more poetry  (I wrote ONE poem)
  • I N T E R A C T ㄨ (“I think I can really do it this month!” is what I said)
  • reply to at least 3 month’s worth of comments!!!  (“I BELIEVE IN MYSELF” is what I said)
  • sleep at least 7.5 hours during the school week  (yeah so more like 6-7)
  • drink at least 1 water bottle a day  (no)

mmm new goals

  • read 12 books (I mean… it’s Not going to happen but I need to read 12 in November and 13 in December to read 100 books this year sooooo)
  • read the 3 overdue ARCs (one is from August and two are from last month cry)
  • write & upload 5 reviews (wow look at me actually expecting to be productive)
  • write 50k for NaNo!! or at least 30k!! (I have no idea if I want to shoot for 30k or the full 50k but right now I’m going for 50k??)
  • reply to November and October’s comments! (this seems really doable for me, considering I’ll be reading and writing a lot!)
  • sleep at least 7 hours* during the school week (I love how this slowly decreases)
  • drink at least 1 water bottle a day! (REALLY important now that it’s getting closer to dry winter)

*I accidentally typed 7 years and honestly give me the magic to sleep 7 years a night.

mmm looking ahead

MY BIRTHDAY. (Obviously this comes first, because it’s about me.) My birthday is coming up on the 17th and I’m… excited! I don’t know really how to feel about it? My parents show me baby photos and videos of me all the time and I feel so old now. But I’m excited to see where this year goes!

NaNoWriMo!!! I am REALLY excited to be writing this WIP, even though I have no idea what the middle will consist of. I think it’s going to be a trashy first draft (lack of plot is my favorite), but I think I’m also going to have a lot of fun with it! Plus, I feel like this year I’ve gotten a lot better at writing and finding my style which I love for me!!

Another break from school (thank god). I have no idea how I’m going to last next semester when there’s only spring break as a week-long break. Like it’s either I take a break from school or I have breakDOWNS because of school. (But my birthday being on the first day of break? Iconic!)

shall we chat

how was your October?? are you doing NaNoWriMo? (tell me what your WIP is about!) did you know it’s my BIRTH MONTH? and are you taking care of yourselves?? <33

blog signoff

51 thoughts on “May’s Moments of the Month: October // School Stress, Failed TBR, No NaNo Prep, but… Halloween Candy? Book Fest?

  1. October started out pretty okay to me, but the second half was a mess. I’m still reeling from all the workload that will continue until November *cries* I’m planning a mini hiatus because I just can’t and I feel a mini break down is coming…. I hope November will be a better month for you May! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi May! ❤ I'm sorry that October was a bit messy, I hope that November will be better ❤
    I'm glad to hear you liked all of the books you've read this month, yay! I also really liked Forest of A Thousand Lanterns and Final Draft, I found it so good and realistic, too! ❤
    Thank you so, so much for sharing my post and for being a part of the Shattering Stigmas event, this means a lot ❤ ❤ ❤
    Best of luck for NaNoWriMo! I can't wait to hear more about your writing and I hope you'll have fun working on your story ❤ And yay for November being your birthday month, that's so exciting! ❤
    I hope you'll have a lovely November, sending you all the love xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww, thank you so much Marie!! November is truly treating me a lot better!! ❤

      And aahh, yes, I'm so glad I liked Final Draft, knowing how much you loved it! And omggg I'm so excited to find out about YOUR NaNo WIP (I stalked you on the website and you're writing so many words and I am so proud!!)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m so happy to hear it!! ❤
        You’re too sweet ahhhh, I’m just glad I’m doing something haha, gotta make something good out of this very very shitting couple of months hahaha ❤ you’re the sweetest – and, well, let me know if you’d be interested in eventually reading my WIP when I’m looking for beta readers…. ? ❤❤

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m glad that things are getting better for you!! and i hope that you continue to feel better!!
    6 books is still good,, i read 0 ahaha!!!! GOOD LUCK FOR NaNoWriMo, i can’t wait to hear more about your wip?????????????? (pls I’m a hoe for your ideas)
    Hope that you have a great november!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You read SIX books, thats AWESOME. It may not feel ‘enough’ for you but it’s definitely MORE THAN GOOD that you read at all. Kudos for that!! Also, I loved your WIP post and am super interested in your updates for that!! Super good luck with NaNoWriMo and fingers crossed that you have a better month this time around. Very glad that you liked FINAL DRAFT because it’s about writing and stress and perfectionism and that makes me super interested in reading it in the future. Sending good vibes! :))

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my god, thank you so so much, for this! It’s exactly what I needed to hear, especially since this month I’ve only managed to finish one book. So thank you thank you thank you ❤ And aahh it makes me so happy to hear that you got excited about my WIP!! ☺ And I hope you love Final Draft, it really was an amazing book!! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  5. girlll ❤ i'm sorry your october wasn't perfect but it showed marked improvement over your september and that is huge! look at you, going to book fests and making friends and reading and posting. that's a lot, especially on top of school and everything.

    i am wishing you the bestttt of luck with nano and also HAPPY EARLY BIRTHDAY FAVE!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. MAY! 6 books is awesome! Sending so much love your way 💜
    Also, TELL ME WHEN YOU READ WHAT IF ITS US BECAUSE ITS AWESOME (it already came out in Australia!)
    About the character aesthetics, if you have time, just contact me through my contact page. It’s easier.
    Rhi xxx

    Liked by 1 person

      1. may, you are a splendiferous cinnamon roll who deserves all the books and love in the world. 💜💜💜 don’t ever believe that more than one book a month is terrible. OK?!
        ok good. cause i realllllllyyyyy want to know what you thought. your blog is where i get all my book recommendations 😂 xxxx

        Liked by 1 person

  7. ahhh omg thank you for linking up my post, May!! BIG MOOD with the not prepping for nano thing–i’m pantsing the whole thing send support

    crossing my fingers November is a great reading month AND a great writing month for you. also, SO COOL you got to meet some authors!!! I love!!!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. YES! mental health first! my reading is definitely a lot slower from this month, but I kind of like the idea of having some months as reading months, some as writing months, ALL as mental health months. it helps me focus better haha

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Ahhh I hope you’ll have a better month in November, May!! 💓 Especially since it’s your birth month (and mine too, as you know, hehe. my birthday’s actually tomorrow omg and i honestly can’t believe it 😱) I’m glad you still enjoyed most of the books you read in October, and it’s still an accomplishment that you read 6 books! (I only read one whoops, and it was a novella…school & college apps are actually killing me ugh 😩)

    Omg I wish I could sleep 7 years a night too :’) Ever since starting the school year, the amount of sleep I’m getting per night has steadily decreased…I’m sleeping 6-7 hours a night now, too, and IT’S NOT ENOUGH (rip). I need to stop procrastinating so much, haha. Anyway, I’ll end this long comment by saying good luck with NaNoWriMo, May!! I believe in you ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww, Dezzy, thank you so much!! November is definitely treating me a lot better and I’m so grateful ❤ (AND I KNOW I ALREADY SAID IT BUT HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY, TWIN!!) And aahh, I feel you! School has definitely eaten my reading time up and I hate it :/

      I've actually gotten better at getting more sleep in November during the week?? I'm surprised (but I still don't get as much as I want to 😭) And aahh Dezzy!! You are so so kind to me and I don't deserve it 💖

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Lovely wrap up, May! 6 books is still really good, and I’m glad you liked most of your reads! That’s so cool that you got to meet a few authors! I’ve only met an author once (Marissa Meyer), but I definitely want to go to more signings and such in the future!

    I hope you have an amazing November and that NaNo goes well! (And happy early bday! Haha ❤️)


  10. I’m sorry October wasn’t amazing for you May, but it was better than September so that’s kind of a plus right?! Well, I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed November and December are incredible months so you can end 2018 on a high note! 😀
    I didn’t get through all my NaNo prep in October either, but I’ve started writing and I’m trying to plan the back end of my WIP while writing the front end (and also planning a new WIP that I can’t get out of my mind until I get it down on paper). I’m probably stretching myself a little too thin this month but oh well.
    You got through some great books, and it seems like they were mostly positive ratings too. I’m glad you enjoyed Circe, though that’s a shame about Empress of All Seasons (which was the character you ended up hating? I actually have that book next on my TBR list so I’ll likely be starting it tomorrow.)
    Good luck for your goals in November, good luck for NaNo as well. I hope you have an amazing November and great recap post as well. 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aw, thank you so much, Beth! And I feel like the last months of 2018 are really improving for me, and I’m so grateful ❤

      And aahh, I'm definitely stretching myself thin writing-wise this month, but hopefully I'll survive? But so far I'm doing okay without having prepped, thankfully (though I'm still writing the scenes I've plotted out haha).

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Yeah, October was a bad month for me to. I barely got any reading done. Also, because I’m homeschool my schedule is constantly flexing so I have been so busy and literally haven’t posted anything in weeks. In better news, I am loving horse riding. It’s so relaxing and fun. If you can afford it, I highly recommend it. Also, good luck for NanoWrimo! 💙

    Liked by 1 person

  12. 6 BOOKS IS STILL REALLY FRICKEN GOOD YOU ARE SLAYING i cant believe you liked forest of a thousand whatevers, it literally put me to sleep im sorry the cover deserves better

    also ew why would you remind me of my nano fails. here’s to hoping for a great nov. you rat ❤❤❤❤❤❤

    Liked by 1 person

  13. October started nice for me! Got to read a lot, but it ended with me a lot sore for pushing myself too hard with exercise D: No fun. But it’s been good!

    And omg! It’s so great you went to the book fest and met some authors! And to get some encouragement in your writing? That is so amazing! I feel like you’re so organized with your writing, and I really admire that you set and keep track of your goals! But it can get stressful too so, specially with blogging, don’t feel too pressured with this stuff!

    I’m doing Nano too! I’ve been working on this for almost 3 years now, and with college getting in the way, I haven’t been able to even complete a first draft, so NOW’S THE TIME. My WIP is about a pair of friends in a world where most forms of creativity, including writing and telling stories is forbidden. My sister says I shouldn’t include dragons but omg I’m so tempted. We’ll see XD

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aw, I’m sorry to hear that, Pamela! Pushing yourself too hard with exercise is definitely painful :/

      And aahh, yes, it was so amazing to go to that book fest! And omggg no I am not organized with my writing at ALL! I have goals set but half the time I don’t even achieve them 😂 But aahh thank you so much! I actually really needed to hear that so your words are extremely appreciated right now ❤

      Aah, I hope NaNo is going well for you!! School always seems to get in the way of things like reading and writing, but I'm sure you can finish your first draft this month! ❤ And aahh I love that WIP idea! Wishing you the best of luck with it ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Sorry your October wasn’t perfect, but I’m hoping your November is better?? I’m also glad you enjoyed the Hate U Give, I have been planning to watch it myself but I have to read the book first so I’m glad that you enjoyed it!! Happy November!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. ahh happy bIRTH MONTH. You get the whole month for cake clearly. But I do hope November treats you better and your wip behaves for NaNo! (I also had a sucky mental health time in october so clearly we’ll blame the month. This is logical.) And I also can write whole outlines without naming my characters.🙈Why are names so hard omg.

    Also I’m SO excited for A Brilliant Death and also Final Draft!! And afjkdsla not forgiving The Burning Maze ever. I was nOT there to be attacked like that. I literally read Riordan to have a good and safe time and then???? that???????
    😭😭😭i’m broken

    Liked by 1 person

    1. THANK YOU SO MUCH CAIT!!! And aww, you’re so kind 💗 And I’m so sorry to hear you had a sucky mental health month for October too 😭 And omg I’m writing my WIP right now and have resorted to just writing [sister’s name] and [boss name] because I CAN’T.

      The Brilliant Death was so good, and I think you’ll really love it! And oh god I saw your updates for The Burning Maze and felt your pain so bad… can’t believe Riordan actually permanently destroyed me 😭


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