Summer break is basically over for me…
…and I am so tired of time passing so quickly this year!! Every month seems to pass by even faster than the last, and I wish everything would just slow down, especially now that I have to go back to school. Despite that, July was a pretty decent month for me, since I was able to read some good books and I also got to generate a lot of new writing for the first time in a while. It was filled with a lot of dread over summer ending though, which I feel very intensely now that I have less than a week before my school year starts again!
I read 9 books! I had a decent reading month quality-wise, though nothing really stood out. I somehow managed to read 5 books in the first 10 days of the month, and then the rest of July I struggled to read and took like a week to read one book. But I think this month was another successful month for switching up my reading choices (nonfic, anthology, comic, poetry, and not just reading YA)!
I really wanted to catch up on writing my overdue ARC reviews before I went back to school this month, but unfortunately… that did not happen. I’ve started many reviews but have little motivation to actually finish them, so I’m going to follow my own advice and just write the length I want!
- Sister Outsider Audre Lorde // really great read about feminism and what being a Black lesbian means! I particularly loved the discussion of motherhood [no rating]
- The Tower of Nero Rick Riordan // I’m so sad that the CHB world is done with this book (supposedly)… but I thought this was a great conclusion to the series! ★★★★☆
- How to Pronounce Knife Souvankham Thammavongsa // solid collection of stories and I enjoyed most of them and their themes, but I just wish they were longer ★★★☆☆
- Jade Fire Gold June CL Tan // so disappointing!!! so many things were rushed, the writing lacked emotion, and the romance was not at all slowburn like promised ★★☆☆☆
- Monstress Vol 4 Marjorie Liu & Sana Takeda // as always, I love Kippa!!!! but I really liked learning more of Maika’s backstory in this one ★★★★☆
- Iron Widow Xiran Jay Zhao // this was so thrilling to read, the commentary on the patriarchy was fantastic and Xiran is one of my favorite fictional characters now ★★★★☆
- Dial A for Aunties Jesse Q Sutanto // was this objectively a bit of a mess, not as funny as everyone said it was, and completely unrealistic? yes. BUT it was so much fun!!!! ★★★★☆
- Mirage Somaiya Daud // adored the portrayal of colonialism and some character work, but I felt little investment beyond that and the romance was boring. I’ll read the sequel though! ★★★☆☆
- The Tradition Jericho Brown // didn’t care for the writing style and there were some poems I felt indifferent about, but overall liked the exploration of Blackness, queerness, and trauma [no rating]
I honestly had a pretty good month with blogging! I produced content I was pretty happy with, and I actually am excited to write posts again. But of course this had to happen right before I go back to school… the universe is so cruel…
THIS MONTH’S POSTS
FAVORITE POSTS FROM OTHERS
- Jayati @ It’s Just a Coffee Addicted Bibliophile talks about blogging burnout (amongst other types of burnout), and it resonated so so much with me.
- I love reading Mid-Year Book Freakout Tags just as much as I love writing them, and some of the ones I enjoyed the most were Melanie @ Mel to the Any’s, Rain @ Bookdragonism’s, and Dezzy @ The Thoughtful Voice’s.
- Marie @ Drizzle and Hurricane Books discusses 7 ways her blogging has changed, and I related to so many of them!
- Charlotte @ Reads Rainbow puts together a fantastic list of all the sapphic book releases for the last half of 2021.
I attended my writing program for a week, and I really enjoyed it! I think it would’ve been a lot better in person than online, but I still managed to have a good time. It was honestly so wonderful to just dedicate time to writing and not put any pressure on myself except to just create. It definitely was a good push to get myself out of my writing funk I’ve been in (though I didn’t do any more writing after the program ended…). I also got to share some of my work and was really encouraged by the responses people had to it!
I’m so glad that the program forced me to write, because I’ve been really wanting to but had low motivation/inspiration, but I’m also glad that it forced me to experiment. There were some prompts or exercises the instructors had us do that at first had me side-eying them, but I ended up writing things that actually went somewhere cool! So moral of the week was that trying new things with writing works can give you a better result than expected (and that I need to stop being, uh, judgmental).
- I got a new laptop!! I’ve been dealing with a broken one for about 3 years now, and since I’m heading back to school soon and my old laptop would have literally been unusable (it died like 5 seconds after I unplugged it from the charger), it was really about time. It’s my first time not having a PC, so there’s definitely a lot to get used to. But I’m just so relieved that it simply works… bare minimum I know…
- I’ve also been using my phone a lot less! Some of it is because I’m on my laptop instead… but we’re going to pretend I am being extremely good at staying off All my electronic devices. I haven’t been doomscrolling as much though, which is my main goal with trying to lower my screen time!
- I also got a job! I honestly almost forgot to mention it because it isn’t very big or difficult, but I’m glad that I have a way to earn a little bit of money on my own.
- I slacked off on learning Thai, which was one of my biggest goals for the summer while I was free from schoolwork, but I did start learning the tone rules at the beginning of the month! They actually are not as bad as I thought they would be, though it’ll take a long time for me to memorize/become familiar with them.
- I’m driving so much more than I usually do and it’s actually not as scary as I thought it would be to be driving on actual roads and whatnot!! I still have lots of things to learn and practice, but I’m glad that it’s not as anxiety-inducing as expected. I can now claim that I am not a stereotypical Asian who can’t drive!
- I impulsively watched the anime Erased, and wow it was so good!! It was so thrilling and well-plotted, and I had a lot of fun watching it with my sister.
I’m going back to school… I have honestly never dreaded a school year as much as this one, and I am never excited to return to school. On top of that, I have to go in person, and the laws of my beautiful, ever so lovely government of Texas don’t allow my school to make any mask mandates despite my area being in stage 5, and the existence of a rapidly spreading variant of COVID. So like not only am I dreading school, but also a whole virus!!!!
Also, I’ve decided to take out my goals section and instead list my goals here! I know I won’t have as much time with school, but I’m hoping to read at least 6 books (The Ghost Bride, The Girl and the Ghost, Misfit in Love, It All Comes Back from You, I’ll Be the One, and Gods of Jade and Shadow). I also just want to make sure I don’t stress out too much, get enough sleep, and balance my time wisely when I go back to school!