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Top 5 Wednesday: Books I Want to Read Before 2018 Ends!

–Halfway through the year, and it’s time to evaluate our reading goals and take a look at our TBRs for the second half of the year!

You mean aside from the *counts* 19 (!!!) books I have in my TBR pile?

I have many. Many many MANY books I want to read before 2018 reaches its end.

1. UNDEAD GIRL GANG

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I pre-ordered this months ago but instead of May, it’s turning up at the first part of July and I AM READY FOR IT!!! Give me the wiccan latinx teen, who raises her mate from the dead and goes to find their killer YES

2. VENGEFUL

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Vicious is one of my favourite books, so of COURSE I want to read the sequel! Victor Vale and Sydney are two of my favourites and I have a feeling I will love some of the women she’s introducing in the next one.

3. DEVIL’S THIEF

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I read The Last Magician earlier this year and my friend got me an ARC from BookCon of this. Soon as I get it, I will devour it!

4. WHAT IF IT’S US

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Adam Silvera and Becky Albertalli are two juggernauts of queer teen fiction and everyone I know is hype af for this. I will buy it as soon as it’s out.

5. THE POPPY WAR

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I recently listened to 88 Cups of Tea interview with RF Kuang and her book sounded so wonderful I want to read it as soon as I can. But I need to get to those 19 books first, so… maybe for my birthday?

PRIORITIES ON THE TBR LIST I WANT TO TACKLE:

Forest of A Thousand Lanterns, Invasion of the Tearling, Coldest Girl In Coldtown.

jadewritesbooks · On Writing

Writing Is Hard And Other Obvious Things

When I first say to people that I want to be a writer, it’s met with one of two reactions –

“Oh, cool!”

or

“Nice, you know my friend/my boyfriend/someone I met randomly on the tube one time wrote a book, it’s 270k words but it keeps getting rejected, publishing doesn’t recognize genius”.

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Granted there’s a few “I couldn’t write a book” responses or “I’ve always wanted to write a book” thrown in there, but it’s more the first two options that I experience.

(FYI If you want to be a nice, supportive person, go with the top option. “Oh, cool!” is a safe response to most writers, but if followed by the scariest question of all time — “What’s your book about?” — be prepared for the author to shrivel up and cry rather than actually be able to tell you cohesively what they are writing about.)

The second option is one that many writers get, and it’s often soul-destroying. It insinuates that writing a book is something many people are doing, and doing well, and clearly because they have not got ahead in publishing us poor souls must be wasting our time.

Second Option Responders rarely recognize the sheer amount of hard work that actually goes into a book. The amount of tweets that are out there with the up and down cycle of falling in and then out of love with what you’re writing multiply by the minute. There are gifs, painfully accurate in their portrayal of a writer’s suffering, because if writing books were easy —

* EVERYONE would write one.
* The market would NOT be as competitive as it is today
* We would have way more whinging observations about how Life Is Hard for straight white males with money
* There would be no need for contests like PitchWars or mentoring systems

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I’ve struggled with writing my 4th MS for the past year. I can’t remember when I first started writing it — probably around the time President Grump was inaugurated – but I’m only just finishing the first draft. During this first draft I was finishing up my 3rd MS, entering PitchWars 2017, being mentored in the contest, doing extensive edits, querying, going at it tooth and nail and forcing all thoughts of 4th Book out of my head until finally, around March of this year, I decided to go for it.

It wasn’t as easy as I’d hoped. Even with an outline I struggled to get past scenes I wasn’t interested in writing, or figuring out why I didn’t like this scene here, or switching chapters, or just making my writing not suck. I read books on craft, I watched YouTube videos, I shoved so many nuggets of information into my head I looked like a 20 box at McDonald’s.

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Life got in the way as life often does, with money issues, illnesses, and the pesky inconvenience of having to keep the house in a functioning condition. Distractions were at every turn, a devil when I was actually 100% committed to my writing hour.

I had writing sprints with my darling CP, I focused on getting a word count goal for the day, and then finally – FINALLY – today I reached my 70k word count. I may not be finished, but it is book-shaped, and it has enough words to be considered a novel.

The finish line is in sight – I can see it – and I’m striving towards it. But next time someone tells you writing isn’t hard, or they want to write a book in their spare time, when you’ve buried the instinct of throwing water in their face please ask them why they haven’t written one.

Their answer may be because they haven’t had an idea, but I bet you it’s because “they haven’t found the time”.

Books aren’t made overnight. Books take care, and time, and graft, and sweat, and their fair share of tears. Writing is not easy.

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Be proud of every word you write, because each one is one more than those who’ve never written that book in their head have managed to do, and it’s a step closer towards your goals ❤

 


 

Have an MS you need editing? I can help! I have spots open all summer for developmental edits, query critiques and proofreading. Email me – jadewritesbooks@gmail.com – or visit Cover to Cover Edits for more information on how to reserve your place!

Top 5 Wednesday

Top 5 Wednesday – LGBTQ+ Books That Don’t Feature Cis M/M Relationships

– This may seem oddly specific, but in honor of Pride being this month, I wanted to have a topic to celebrate LGBTQ+ books. But, the book community tends to, when given the chance, lift up cis m/m pairings the most. And while those books are still important and valued (we’ve even had topics covering m/m relationships earlier this year, which featured many cis m/m pairings), I wanted to shine the spotlight on some of those lesser known, recognized, and celebrated books.

I had to seriously rack my brain to figure out which books I’d read that featured non Cis M/M relationships, and there were pitifully few. So I’ll remedy that later this year. If you have recs, let me know! But here is my top 4.

Queens of Geek

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One of the MC’s is bi and falls for another girl, cuteness ensues.

Continue reading “Top 5 Wednesday – LGBTQ+ Books That Don’t Feature Cis M/M Relationships”

Top 5 Wednesday

June 13th: Favorite Fathers/Father Figures

June 13th: Favorite Fathers/Father Figures
— In honor of Father’s Day (in America at least), discuss some of your favorite fictional dads.

MAVERICK CARTER in The Hate U Give

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This guy was such a great father, clearly in love with his wife, and wanting to protect his whole family. I really enjoyed reading him. I know it’s ‘trendy’ in YA to have shitty parents but this guy was just 100% love.

Continue reading “June 13th: Favorite Fathers/Father Figures”

Top 5 Wednesday

Top 5 Wednesday June 6th: Summer Reads

June 6th: Summer Reads
–With summer finally kicking off, now is the time to recommend your favorite summer reads, whatever that means to you!

 

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SENSE AND SENSIBILITY

I read this when I was on holiday in Ibiza, soaking up the rays — the book also has great summery moments and it was perfect whimsy to spend days on the beach.

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ALL THE CROOKED SAINTS

This is set in the desert, and it’s a lazy heat sort of feel to it, so I reckon this would match summer.

GEEKERELLA

This is a really fast-paced read set at a convention during summer – light, breezy and one of my favourites.

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THE FEVER KING

Ok so I’m cheating. A friend wrote this book, and it isn’t even out yet (publication is March 2019)  but I’ve read it and it’s amazing and it’s perfect for a summer read. BUY IT WHEN IT COMES OUT!

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AND I DARKEN

Set in a heavy summer with lots of heat, this is a slow read and was disappointing for me, but it’s the only one I’ve read recently that was set in summer. *blink*

Reviews

REVIEW- Final Draft by Riley Redgate

As you may know from the previous post, I’ve been in a bit of a reading slump lately. But before I hit that reading slump, I read Final Draft via eARC from NetGalley, courtesy of ABRAMS Kids.

Pub Date 12 Jun 2018

Thank you!

In the end I gave this book 3.5* out of 5.

I enjoyed a lot about this book, but after my original review, of which I will post below, I was kinda left thinking… what was the point of the book? It was a bit of a filler, to me.

Original review:

I can see that this book might get comparisons to Fangirl, but it seems much more grounded to me. It’s such a refreshing read and I related SO MUCH to the struggles Laila went through. I enjoyed the nuances throughout, the diversity, the humour. Sometimes the backstory was a little full on with descriptions but otherwise – a joy to read.

I stand by that, too. But at the same time I wasn’t really sure what feeling I should have been left with, or whether this was open-ended to go into something else, or… whether it was a happy ending, whether our main character had actually learned something from the teacher who came in, why the death was actually there.

The first parts of the book were 100% relatable, with the sci fi nerding and the keen sense of writing. But after a while I didn’t really understand it. The representation of depression was, to me, something that hit home but nothing ever seemed finished off in the story itself.

I did enjoy the romance, but even that felt like an add-on to me. I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to take from it, like it was a snapshot of her life. Nothing mentioned ever seemed to come to fruition, things that seemed like they were going to be a big deal ended up being… left unanswered or never mentioned again.

It was well-written and I really think it has potential to affect many teenage readers in the right way, but it wasn’t 100% for me.

3.5*

 

editing · Personal · Random Musings

It’s been a while!

Wow. Well.

It’s been a while since I blogged here, but I have an excuse! Several, in fact.

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The main thing is that I have been Adulting, which means trying to organise bills, get money to pay bills, and generally working hard. I’ve been working on my WIP, handling my new diet (I turned Vegan and oh my god I didn’t realise how lactose intolerant I was before this) and health regime.

It’s been a struggle over the last two months, but generally I feel a lot more positive and stronger because of the hard amount of work I’ve done. I’ve had good news, some bad news, but overall it’s been worth it.

The bad news is mostly my reading slump – starting new books only to get brain-drained and end up wanting to do nothing but sleep before bed, rather than read. But since re-reading Vicious (on the last 30%!) I’m hopeful my slump will recover and I can review more books.

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I recently finished Final Draft, of which I should review for you all. And I’m still going strong on my editing services! I now provide proofreading, so if anyone would like proofreading or developmental edits let me know.

The website where most of the information is at is here – https://jadewritesbooks.wixsite.com/mysite-1

Doesn’t it look pretty?! I love the background.

Thanks for bearing with me, all, and I look forward to discussing books and writing with you all again!