Bout of Books 17.0 Wrap Up!

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Bout of Books 17.0 ended last night with nary a bang. I did not end up doing a Day 5 or 6 update because I left Dallas Friday evening after my daylong TA orientation and just did not have time to read much while I’ve been back in Conroe. So I didn’t have any reading progress worth mentioning, and my school week was essentially over.

This weekend was just what I needed after such a long exhausting first week back at school. I was able to relax, eat well, and do some late back-to-school shopping. Saturday afternoon was defined by going to the Willowbrook Mall in Houston, where I bought a couple of light-weight sweaters for the weird Texas autumns we have here. And Sunday was defined by touching up my hair color with a home kit. I also went to Target and Kohl’s for a few more blouses for school. I also bought an awesome new floor lamp that matches my bookshelves beautifully, but is currently sitting beside my bed.

Reading Wrap Up

I had hoped to read four books this read-a-thon, and it is only by rounding up that I’m saying I only finished three! But I’m rather pleased with what I got to and happy that I’m that much closer to being on track with my Goodreads Reading Challenge. In fact, I think if I read two more books this week, I’ll officially be all caught up! So that’s most definitely the plan. Anyway, here’s the list of the books I read for Bout of Books 17.0:

  1. Stars Above by Marissa Meyer.
  2. The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh.
  3. Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys.

Because I’ll be summarizing my thoughts on each of these books in my August wrap up later this week, I’ll not go into them here. If you’ve been reading my daily blogs or are friends with me on Goodreads, you probably already know what I thought anyway! I will say that, overall, these were all pretty pleasant reads and good read-a-thon selections.

For my own ease to look back on this read-a-thon (as well as yours, if it suits your fancy), I’ve provided a list of the blog posts from last week below:

Bout of Books 17.0 Day 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

End Note

Bout of Books 17.0 could not have come at a better time. Last week was so frantic with things I needed to do concerning my TA position and getting into the swing of going to class. The read-a-thon gave my life a semblance of structure and probably helped me keep my head above water, which is weird because I’ve always felt like read-a-thons make my life busier; this time it helped me keep my sanity.

I have a lot of posts in the queue for the next couple of weeks, starting with a new writing post going up this Wednesday! I also will be doing an August wrap up and a read-a-thon announcement this coming weekend, so there’s lots of fun things ahead!

Thank you for reading!
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Bout of Books 17.0 | Day 4

Thursday turned out to be a miserable day for me. I woke up after only about 5 hours of sleep with a head ache, but I had to get going because I’ve just found that it’s easiest to get where I need to go as early as feasible. Knowing I’d be on campus all afternoon, I wanted to gas up my car for the trip back to Conroe on Saturday. It ended up being a horrible mistake, though, as I literally had to drive around campus for over 30 minutes looking for parking, only to find I needed to accept a back lot spot.

And it was a super hot, disgusting day so walking outside made me melt.

I had my final first day of class on Thursday which was Introduction to Film Studies. I was happy to have at least one person I knew it that class, but things quickly took a turn for the worse for me as the teacher was introducing herself and the talking through the syllabus. I honestly felt like I was either going to faint or throw up, and I didn’t want to be rude and walk out on the class. Luckily neither happened, but I regret not being able to fully enjoy learning about what to expect this semester.

Reading Progress

Salt-To-The-SeaI did not manage to get much of any writing done on-campus Thursday, as I had the previous days. I didn’t even begin to read right when I got back to my room. I was only able to read after a much needed three-hour nap. First thing I did was I finish the last hundred or so pages left in The Rose and the Dagger.

Having finally read the whole thing through, I stand by my assertion that this story should have either been one book or a trilogy. This sequel, while enjoyable because Renee Ahdieh is a very good writer, felt very rushed to me. There were new characters introduced (that I talked about yesterday) that ended up playing very little role in the story by the end. And every major plot point in the story felt…anti-climactic. Overall, I think I would still give it 3.5 stars.

Next I picked up Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys. I managed to read 50 pages and they’re been very enjoyable and fast-paced. This book alternates in its characters’ first-person perspectives very rapidly, but it hasn’t been hard to keep them straight as most of these characters are interacting with each other. Because of the short chapters, this format style has not been intimidating. And it’s actually probably helped me to read more than I would have being as I was so tired. I hope this will become a very quick read as soon as I have more time to dive into it.

End Note

I’m happy to be finishing this blog post up early Friday morning, as I have another TA orientation today spanning from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. So I doubt I’d be able to finish it during the lunch break as last Friday I ended up talking to people a lot more than I thought I would have to. Not that I minded! Anyway, I’m sorry if it’s a little on the short side. Tomorrow is Saturday and I barely contain my excitement! If you want to catch up on past days of this read-a-thon, I’ve provided a list of the blog posts below.

Bout of Books 17.0 Day 1 | 2 | 3

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Bout of Books 17.0 | Day 3

backpackI apologize for the fact that this post is coming a little later than usual. It’s been a fairly busy week and it’s finally catching up with me! Wednesday was not a great day for reading as I was on-campus most of the day once again and had a bunch of mini-tasks to complete, most of them in the shopping department!

I had to visit Off Campus Books to find some of the books I will be needing sooner rather than later for classes, including The Feminist Reader, All Quiet on the Western Front, and A Nervous Splendor: Vienna 1888–1889.

I also wanted to go to Target again, specifically to buy a new backpack as the one I’ve had for almost two years now has a mesh back and has ruined the backs of numerous articles of clothing. Also it’s a heavy backpack, even when there’s not much in it. Great for heavy duty tasks, but just not what I need right now. I need something light weight and I love what I found.

It’s green with white polka dots and has camel-colored suede flatslining the bottom, which is kind of reminiscent of classic Jansport backpacks which I love. I also ended up buying a pair of black jeggings, because I needed something that wasn’t blue jeans, and a new pair of plum-colored ballet flats to replace my old ones that I’ve had since 2013 and finally decided to donate this summer.

After a short nap, I had to return to campus for my Wednesday night class: Social Science Perspectives of Emerging Media and Communication. This has been the class I’ve been most excited about because I’d get to see all the people I meet last year! And the class did not disappoint. I was able to catch up a little with most of them. I can tell it’s going to be a very relaxing environment in which to learn, and the instructor seems fantastic. I actually met her the Friday before for my first TA orientation so I knew she would be awesome. This could easily be my favorite class this semester.

 Reading Progress

rosedaggerI did actually get a lot more reading done yesterday than I had thought I would and most it is because I read while I was at the library waiting for my class to start. And the story got really good pretty quickly! Shahrzad was reunited with Khalid about a third of the way into the book, and there have been two new characters introduced into the story that I’m really loving so far.

First, there’s Shahrzad’s sister who I didn’t remember from the first book. She is almost nothing like her sister, as she’s very timid and dutiful. In this novel, she’s discovering her first love and coming out of her shell, which is a pleasure to watch. She’s such a fun contrast to Shahrzad, who I also love. Then, there’s the mysterious and unruly Artan whose aunt might be the only one who can help Shahrzad break Khalid’s curse so they can live happily ever after and bring peace to Khorasan.

I don’t want to get into potentially spoiler-y details, so the last thing I will say is that I’m really happy with how the novel’s turned out. I really didn’t like the cliffhanger the first book was left on as it was clearly a set-up for a sequel, which I still think was unnecessary. It could have been one big book, if there was less focus on characters from Shahrzad’s previous life (which is what this book does). I’m now 71% done with the novel and expect to finish it on Thursday.

End Note

It is almost noon on Thursday as I wrap this up and I’m about to try and read a bit more of The Rose and the Dagger before I need to go to the class I will be observing this semester (which runs T/R from 1–2:15 p.m.). Then I will have my final class of the week, Introduction to Film Studies.

I’ve been doing a lot of blog post drafting and have quite a lot planned to go up after Bout of Books 17.0 is over, specifically writing posts! And there’s another read-a-thon happening in September which I fully plan to participate in centered on mystery novels. I hope you’re enjoying these posts! I’m quite enjoying writing them as they’re a nice change of pace for me a blogger. See you tomorrow with another one.

Thank you for reading!
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Bout of Books 17.0 | Day 2

Tuesday was another fairly long day spent primarily on campus until about 3:00 p.m. I’ve been coming to the library to take advantage of the WiFi and to thrive in the productive atmosphere. After spilling some of my lunch on myself an hour before I was to begin my “TA duties”, I had a mad dash to Target to find something else to wear. All I ended up getting was a new cardigan, which I’ve desperately needed anyway.

While I did not have any new classes start yesterday, I did get together with my TA faculty supervisor and have my first TA observation. I’ve learned that while I will not have my own classroom this semester, I am being trained in pedagogical observations that will help prepare me for having my own classroom, perhaps as early as next semester. So I will be observing my supervisor during her 4000-level Networked Identities class, have some outside reading, and observe a few others additionally.

I also have some workshops throughout the semester which I will need attend, but that should be the extent of my workload this semester. Sounds completely manageable.

Reading Progress

rosedaggerMonday night I was not sure what I wanted to read more: The Rose and the Dagger or And Then There Were None. So I opened the question up to Twitter and The Rose and the Dagger won! After my Monday night class, I was too tired to read more than 14 pages though.

Tuesday I had all evening to read, but I only managed to get to page 128! I was having trouble fully submerging into the story. Partially because I could not fully remember the intricacies of why Shahrzad was in her current predicament, and I’m not liking the position she finds herself in anyway. At the end of The Wrath and the Dawn, she is forced to leave Khalid when a major storm decimates the city. So I figure this book is going to be all about her trying to find her way back to him.

I like the direction in which it was going when I finally had to put the book down and submit to my drowsiness. I suspect I will be able to finish the book on Wednesday before my night class, as it will become a quick read as soon as I become invested in the story. Right now, though, I’m just excited to finish it so I can tick another book off my TBR. Also my Goodreads Challenge now tells me I’m only three books behind! So if I can read two more books after this, I’ll be caught up! So that’s the plan!

End Note

It is Wednesday as I write this post and I’m at the library about to start trying to work on my story a little bit. I’ve been posting daily over the past few days as I go through the Bout of Books 17.0 Read-a-Thon, so here’s a list of my most recent posts you might have missed:

Bout of Books 17.0 | Day 1
News After a Long Drought | #AmWriting
Bout of Books 17.0 Read-A-Thon TBR

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Bout of Books 17.0 | Day 1

As I explained in my Bout of Books 17.0 read-a-thon announcement and TBR, I’ve decided to do daily updates on my reading progress as well as some general life highlights from the day as this is my first week of school and quite an exciting time for me as I learn about my new job. I also might have some short writing updates on occasion.

Monday night I had my first class, German Lit & Ideas (1870–1960). As I explained in my post about my class schedule this semester, this is a free elective I chose because of interest in the content and thoughts that the class might prove useful for my writing. After attending my first class meeting last night, I feel like I’ll gain a lot.

It is a small class with between seven to nine students. The instructor is ancient, but I can tell she’s passionate about the readings and the history. She’s also Hungarian and came over to the U.S. probably around the 40s or 50s. She also just seems really sweet, and I don’t think I’ll be nervous asking her for help or speaking up. I can tell she knows she talks a lot and will want us to speak up, so that’s reassuring! ^_^

After introductions, going over the syllabus, and a mini-history lesson relating to artistic/literary movements (romantic, realistic, expressionist, etc.) we watched the first hour of a silent film called Metropolis (1927), which is a critique of the bourgeois class’ exploitation of workers. It’s a very abstract and strange film that I was worried I’d have nightmares over to be honest! (All the actors looked deranged and scary to me!) But I’m hoping to finish the movie soon. Maybe this weekend. (I found it on YouTube, here.) If you’re familiar with it, or would like to watch it & chat about it, please let me know!

Reading Progress

StarsAboveI decided to start reading off my TBR on Sunday after finishing The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie, because I couldn’t see why not! I’ve been so behind on my reading challenge, I wasn’t going to not read because I was waiting for Bout of Books 17.0 to officially start in my time zone. So I started Stars Above Sunday evening and got about half way through before I finally went to sleep.

Most of the stories I read that night introduced no new insights into the characters from the Lunar Chronicles. In fact most of these stories felt like deleted scenes, because their content was explained away much more simply in the books. Nevertheless, I really enjoyed the Lunar Chronicles and did not mind revisiting these characters, even if was just to see them as they were as children.

I don’t know which of these stories were new or what had already been published, but stuff that truly felt new to me came at the end, starting with “The Little Android.” I was confused at first as the protagonist is a new character that meets Cinder as the mechanic, and she’s another android with a personality (like Iko, minus the sass). But it was sweet and reinforced the idea of cyborg-android rights that are such a big problem in this world. I also enjoyed seeing the whole gang back together for a wedding in the final story. It was just a sweet revisiting.

After returning to my place after class Monday night, I tried to read some of The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh, but I was so knackered I decided to call it an early night (it was nearly midnight, but that’s early for me!)

End Note

Just as a reminder, these posts will be going up the morning after the day they record. So as I finish up this post it is Tuesday morning and I have set up camp at the library. In case you missed it, I published a new writing update yesterday as I had a lot to share, too much for this post in fact! So go see, News After Another Long Drought | #AmWriting is you’re feeling so inclined.

See you tomorrow with another post! Good luck with you’re own reading and writing. <3

Thank you for reading!
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Class Schedule | Fall 2016

class schedule

In case you didn’t know, I am a grad student. I started working on my Master’s in Emerging Media and Communication (EMAC) at the University of Texas at Dallas last year right after completing my B.A. in English. I did not know quite what I was getting myself into, but I’ve been happy with my choice ever since. I’m learning a lot that I think will help me in my professional and personal life.

The EMAC M.A. program is relatively short, with only 33 credits required to graduate. After some deliberation back and forth, I’ve decided to graduate next spring, so this will be my final academic year at UT Dallas.

I’ve taken some really interesting courses so far in my studies, but I think this fall semester might be my most mixed assortment yet as I finish up the last of my required courses. Just so you know what I’ll be studying this fall, I thought I’d blurb the three courses I’ve decided on taking. I’m actually pretty happy with this final selection and think I will be exposed to a lot of different things, which is always exciting.

Social Science Perspectives of Emerging Media & Communication (3 cr.)

This is my last required course specific to my program and I think it will be about research methodologies that I will need know to do well on my Capstone, and my PhD beyond. I wish I had been able to take it last fall, but I think this has turned out for the best as this class is more specifically tailored towards humanities related to media studies than it was last fall when it was too full for me to take. I think it’s worked out for the best for me, all things considered.

Introduction to Film Studies (3 cr.)

I could take this class or two others that are offered more infrequently to meet this specific program requirement, so I’ve decided to just get it out of the way this semester with film studies. I’ve heard this is a relatively easy class, but I don’t know if I trust the guy who told me that (because it sounded like it was “easy” because he was slacking & there’s no way to know what he got at the end). I’m just trying to be optimistic that I will be exposed to some amazing films I’ve never seen before and probably never would see outside this class if I wasn’t forced.

German Literature & Ideas 1870–1960 (3 cr.)

I am allowed one free elective in my program and I’ve decided to use it this penultimate semester on this German literature class. I’ve always been really fascinated by German-Austrian history and culture but never had a chance to read much of the defining literature coming from it. So I think this class will be really interesting, especially as the syllabus shows the instructor will be contextualizing the time in relation the Holocaust. My biggest reason for choosing this class is that it will influence by own writing, as a lot of my stories are set in worlds based on the countries of continental Europe.

End Note

Over the course of the semester, you might here a little about more exciting assignments or projects I have to complete for these classes, but probably not much more than that. I still intend to be reading and writing whenever I can, and blogging about it too!

My classes start August 22nd and pretty much span the entire week. This will also be my first semester as a teaching assistant (TA), so I have no idea what that schedule will be looking like just yet. I begin my first TA orientation (of several apparently) the day this post is scheduled to go live, so I might know sooner rather than later about how much free time I’ll really have!

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Bout of Books 17.0 Read-A-Thon Announcement

Hello, my lovelies.

After watching Little Book Owl‘s Bout of Books 17.0 TBR video, I have also decided to participate in this read-a-thon as my reading has slowed down quite a bit with the turn of this new month and I’m still playing a game of cat-and-mouse with my Goodreads Reading Challenge. Bout of Books 17.0 takes place from August 22–28th, which just so happens to be my first week back to school and first proper week learning about my new job. So it’s going to be craziness! But I’m sure I’ll manage to learn and read a lot of great new stuff and have fun to boot.

Here’s the blurb provided by the ladies hosting the read-a-thon:

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The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 22nd and runs through Sunday, August 28th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 17 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. 

– From the Bout of Books team

Personally I’m just going to try and be reading as much as possible. I’m not really a slow reader, but I do find it necessary to take time in between reading books to digest, particularly if I’ve been really moved by my last read. So if I can read four books, that would be great for me.

Read-A-Thon TBR

I actually do not yet know what I’ll be reading yet! I’m returning to Dallas tomorrow (Thursday, August 18th) so I’ll be reunited with my on-campus library which is decently stocked with new popular releases. So I have a few books in mind that I’m hoping I’ll be able to find, but I can’t set my TBR officially just yet.

Most likely I will pull a selection of books tomorrow that I’m most eager to read and then just see what I get to next week. I think I will do an “official” Bout of Books 17.0 TBR on Sunday most likely, which will essentially double as a library book haul.

Also Next Week

What I would like to do next week (Monday–Friday) is some daily blogging. In addition to my daily progress through this read-a-thon, I imagine there will be some other things going on in my life that I’ll also want to record. So hopefully I’ll come up with a fun format with which to do that so you can easily cherry-pick what you want to read. Also let me know if you have any suggestions or recommendations on how to do that!

Hopefully after this read-a-thon, I’ll begin to do more #AmWriting posts! My mind is still on my story, but I’m still struggling a little bit. I think once I’m settled back in Dallas, I will be able to work more diligently on writing and share once again. Reading is just a little more of a priority for me at the moment! (And I like to think it’s helping me become a better writer anyway.)

Thank you for reading!
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A Blog Re-Introduction + Renovations! | Blog Update

First of all, I would love to thank the ever so lovely Ely from Tea & Titles for her shout out a few days ago! I’d also like to thank all the new subscribers on Bloglovin’ that I’m certain I can attribute entirely to Ely! I’m so happy to have you all here and that you’ve found something you like about my blog.

In celebration of my new (& existing) blog readers, I wanted to finally do something that I’ve been meaning to do all summer, which is work on my blog identity a little bit. I like to think of Ink Keys & Other Things as a little more than just your run-of-the-mill book blog, but I think it can be confusing for some who stumble across my blog for the first time. So I thought I’d re-introduce the blog and announce some big blog renovations you might have noticed around here over the last couple of days!

What is Ink Keys & Other Things?

Ink Keys & Other Things is the book blog of a grad student studying Emerging Media & Communication at the University of Texas at Dallas. I blog primarily about the books I read and my adventures in writing my first book, a YA fantasy novel I’m hoping will be the first in prosperous series. My dream of being a published writer corresponds with my ultimate dream of working in publishing within new media and marketing. Sometimes I blog about my studies and other creative projects related to combining my love of books and writing with new media studies.

Blog Renovations

The most noticeable blog renovation you might have discovered before this post is my new blog headers and blog button set to this new seafoam green watercolor theme. I’ve also appropriated some watercolor images (the birds, typewriter, and cityscape) I found via basic Duck Duck Go (think Google, minus the data mining) searches and combined them using Fotor.com to create these new blog designs. Because I cannot personally claim these individual elements of the design, I do want to show my appreciation by crediting the sources which you can find soon on my About page!

blogbutton

My next updates relate to my bringing back old pages I’ve wanted to re-do since I downloaded this new blog template in June/July. The old pages were not showing my updated sidebar, instead showing the old one from my gold template I had for the first half of 2016. So I decided to make them full-length pages. You can now see my About and Portfolio pages linked in the main navigation bar, along with the Life & Mind and Bookshelves categories that link to specialized blog posts (although most correspond these days).

I’ll be continuing to update these pages over the next few weeks as I get back into the swing of school and decide what I’d like to include.

End Note

Thank you to everyone who has followed my blog and supported me this year as I’ve transitioned from my old blog Books o’ the Wisp. It’s taken eight months, but I’m finally feeling like I’ve gotten the swing of things again. I’m hoping to start doing more to get my blog out there more in the future, including some celebratory and book release-themed giveaways once I hit more Bloglovin’ milestones.

Right now I’m really trying to get more writing work done, as well as read as much as I can in my last week at my parents’ house. But hopefully you can expect another blog post in the very near future, as soon as tomorrow!

Thank you for reading!
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Writing in August ’16

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I lost my writing mojo a little bit at the beginning of the month. But I’m slowly getting it back as I read more books that inspire what kind of story I want to write. Two major things are happening this month that I anticipate will be affecting how much work I’m able to do on my story this month and the ones following.

  1. I’m starting my second, and final, year of grad school (counting towards my MA, at least).
  2. I’m starting my new job as a TA!

So needless to say, I will be losing a large chunk of my free time. Luckily, I love my program of study! Especially as I will also need to begin developing my Capstone project this semester, which is the large, cumulative project that EMAC MA students need to complete in order to graduate.

But I still intend to be reading and writing, which is why I intend to look ahead at the beginning of each month and decide what I need to accomplish toward my goal of writing my first novel this year. This month I have only two goals, but I expect they will challenge me nevertheless.

Goals

Settle on plot. This is the first thing I know I must do before I start writing. I’m really close to deciding exactly what I’d like to happen. I just want to be sure I like it enough to stick with it so I don’t have to scrap completely everything in revision. I feel like I need a definitive plan to guide me through the writing, or else I’ll lose motivation or heart in what I’m doing.

Write 15,000 words. I think this is achievable, but still will put a little pressure on me to complete. I’m hoping to be well on my way to completing this goal before I return to Dallas.

End Note

I had meant for this post to come out sooner, but I never quite finished it! So I apologize to anyone who may have read the unfinished version as I do have a reoccurring problem with posts being scheduled, me forgetting about them, and then the posts going up incomplete! It’s a source of perpetual embarrassment.

One of the most important things I’ve learned about myself this year is I gain so much inspiration to write from reading books that I aspire for my own books to one day sit amongst in bookstores. Sometimes, though, reading has the effect of me not writing at all if I can’t put the book down long enough to work on my own stories. So another unofficial goal of mine is find a balance between reading and writing.

I’m currently reading The Golem’s Eye by Jonathan Stroud, book two in The Bartimaeus Trilogy. I’m truly interested, what books are do currently reading as you write?

Thank you for reading!
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August ’16 TBR (Summer’s End is Near…)

aug16tbr

Once again, I feel a tad blindsided by the beginning of a new month. How can it already be August? And how can the shops already putting up Halloween decorations?! Fall is my favorite time of the year, but it feels a little premature! All I can say is I hope I’m up north by this time next year, because fall in Texas never feels truly fall-like anyway.

I do not always do monthly TBRs, but this month I do have a list of books I’d like to get to before I return to school at Dallas. I do not intend to take even the fraction of bookshelves I took last year because I know I won’t have much time to read and the UT Dallas library is sufficient at providing new releases. I will only be taking my absolute favorites, particularly the ones which have sequels coming out this season. So I want to read all the books I don’t want to regret not taking with me this month!

August TBR

augusttbr

How to Do Media and Cultural Studies by Jane Stokes | I started this book in May (or June) and I’ve only managed about a chapter per month! As such, I’m hoping to make this book one of the first finish this month. This book is important for information on how to do good research, and I’ll be doing that this semester for sure.

Consent of the Networked by Rebecca MacKinnon | This is one of the books I had to buy last fall and never quite finished. So I’m hoping to read it before the beginning of this fall’s classes, especially as I get back into the swing of reading academic literature in my field of study.

Status Update by Alice E. Marwick | I only had to read a few chapters of this book for the class for which I bought it, but I was really captivated by those chapters and have since referenced this book twice in my academic writing. So I want to finish this book!

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken | I bought this book in February as a random birthday present to myself. The cover was gorgeous as the summary just sounded like something I would love (if properly executed) so I splurged and got it! My blogger pal Ely just recently read it and liked it, which makes me hopeful because she has such an exquisite taste in what she reads and recommends. ^_^

The Golem’s Eye by Jonathan Stroud | I reread The Amulet of Samarkand earlier this year and have wanted to finally finish this series that so inspired my own writing throughout the years. I don’t know really what to expect, but hopefully since this is a middle grade book and I’ve been on a such a good reading streak I will be able to finish this book quickly. If I like it enough, I might even start the next, and final, book in this series, Ptolemy’s Gate which I also own.

Eldest by Christopher Paolini | I only recently bought the final book in this series and would like to be able to marathon this series this month, but I’m realistic enough to realize it probably won’t happen with so many other, and more important, books I must read. I might save this book for the end of the month, once I have more of these books out of the way so that I may move on to the next book, Brisingr if I really feel like I neeeeeeed to.

Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling | It’s less important that I finish this book this month, but since it’s so short and it’s non-fiction, I figure it’d be great to squeeze it in if I’m feeling a lull in my reading spree.

Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes | This is the final fantasy book I hope to try this month before I return to Dallas because I’ve now owned it for a whole year and there are so many other installments to the series that would be great to bundle into my pre-order purchases to get free shipping! (Silly rationale, I realize!) I really don’t know what much to expect, but I’m really hopeful I’ll love these because I have so few new series at my disposal that I can jump into with abandon.

End Note

I’m hoping to read at least 10 books total by the end of the month, which is a tall order I admit! I’m not someone who can easily read one book after another. I need time to digest and think about what I’ve just read, particularly if I love it. Luckily I’ve been on such a good reading streak, even preferring to pick up a book as opposed to starting a new Netflix series (of which there are several on my list). I’m hoping since I have such a mixed bag, it won’t be so difficult to read through everything on this list.

I do also hope to do a substantial amount of writing this month as well, so I will be pretty busy. But I like excitement. I’ll probably be assigning myself deadlines in order to help keep me on task and remembering what I need to do. And I’m hoping to prioritize blogging as well. There was a lot more I hoped to do on this blog before school starts up, so we’ll see what happens in the next couple of weeks! See you soon!

Thank you for reading!
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