Category: Let’s Discuss

Nov 17
Introducing My 2017 NaNoWriMo Novel

Introducing My 2017 NaNoWriMo Novel

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I was really wishy-washy about whether or not I was going to do NaNoWriMo this year. On the one hand, I really need to finish editing my book from last year because I want to start querying agents (I went to a writing conference at the beginning of November and got some really valuable information on what I need to fix). But editing is sort of agonizing work, and I’ve realized that most authors edit and work on a new book at the same time for exactly this reason. You actually sometimes need to take a break from editing to write and vice versa. Of course, I haven’t really managed to do much switching back and forth—I’m basically just hanging on at this point, trying to get my words in for NaNo! I did NaNoWriMo in 2014 and technically “won” (wrote my 50,000 words), but I didn’t come anywhere close… Read more »


Oct 20
My Unpopular Opinion About Banned Books Week: Let’s Discuss!

My Unpopular Opinion About Banned Books Week: Let’s Discuss!

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Okay, first off, let me start off by saying I don’t think that books should be banned—my opinion isn’t that unpopular, and I don’t want you to go into this post thinking I’m a crazy person advocating pulling books off the shelves of libraries or anything. I think that people should have the freedom to choose for themselves what books they want to read and that no one should dictate that choice for others. Still, I noticed something just a teensy bit unsettling to me during Banned Books Week, and it’s an attitude I can’t quite get behind. I feel like there’s almost an insistence that I should rush out and read certain books because someone somewhere has banned them. As if the very fact that they’ve been banned gives them more intrinsic value or literary merit somehow. I can’t tell you the number of posts and newsletters I ran across during Banned Books Week urging… Read more »


Oct 13
Realistic Depiction of Mental Health in YA: Let’s Discuss.

Realistic Depiction of Mental Health in YA: Let’s Discuss.

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Recently, Kelsey Macke contacted me and asked if I’d help her promote the 3rd anniversary of her book, Damsel Distressed. I loved the book, so I jumped right onboard and agreed! But I didn’t want to just post a spotlight that most people would completely overlook (I probably would, if I’m being honest). So, I thought back to the book and wondered why it sticks out in my mind so much. After all, I read it over two years ago. Sometimes I have a hard time remembering a book two months later, much less two years. It didn’t take me long to realize that the reason I loved this book so much was because of how honest it was when it came to the issue of depression. I might not remember every detail of the plot, but I remember how Imogen struggled with deep feelings of depression, even though she… Read more »


Sep 20
A Spoiler-Filled Discussion of One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake

A Spoiler-Filled Discussion of One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake

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NOTE: In case you missed the title of this post, BE WARNED NOW THAT IT WILL CONTAIN SPOILERS! If you want my non-spoilery thoughts on this book, check out my review instead! (It will most likely go up on Friday.) Or, if you’ve only read the first book, then feel free to check out my Spoiler-Filled Discussion of Three Dark Crowns! (And then immediately read One Dark Throne and come back here!) I just finished book two of this series, and it was just as good as I was hoping it would be! We may not have gotten all of our questions answered (of course—there are still two more books!), but we did learn a lot in this installment. And there was a lot of excitement! So, let’s dive right in… I’m going to go through some of the predictions that we all had after reading the first book and see how many of them… Read more »


Sep 16
I Wrote in a Book and I Liked It. Gasp! Let’s Discuss.

I Wrote in a Book and I Liked It. Gasp! Let’s Discuss.

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So, I just reread Three Dark Crowns in preparation for reading One Dark Throne (and I’m SO glad I did—I had no idea how much I’d forgotten!). And I underlined things. Yep, you read that right—I underlined things. Okay, you might not be all that surprised to hear that someone underlined passages in a book, but both my husband and my daughter saw me doing it and they were shocked. Possibly appalled (at least on my behalf). You see, I don’t write in books. I don’t crease their spines. I don’t dog-ear or let my books get wet near the pool. Books are treasured items that must be kept pristine. Perfect. So what made me change? (Well, at least take a little baby step toward change.) I think it started because I did a traveling ARC review for After the Woods way back in February of 2016 where we were… Read more »


Sep 02
What Constitutes a Blogging Slump? Let Discuss.

What Constitutes a Blogging Slump? Let Discuss.

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At the end of July and for the first few weeks of August, I was in a true blogging slump. I barely posted at all—when I did, it was only to post a review for a blog tour (and I usually managed to read the book right before my tour date). And then I went on vacation for two weeks and took a complete blogging break (something I haven’t done before). To top it all off, I barely made it around the blogosphere to comment on other people’s posts and I fell way behind on reading the discussion challenge posts and replying to comments on my blog. (I’m still not quite caught up.) Since I got back from my vacation on August 14th, I’ve been back at it, and I’ve been slowly catching up. I’ve posted regularly again and I’ve managed to find my way to most of my blogger friends. But I still… Read more »


Aug 25
Book Title Tag

Book Title Tag

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I recently found this tag over at Metaphors and Moonlight. and I also saw it at It Starts at Midnight. It looks like this actually originated way back in 2014 on Rachel Reads. (Yep, I actually did a little research here, people! You should be proud.) I thought this was one of the best tags I’ve seen in a long time! Anyway, I’m finally getting back into the swing of things after vacationing, but my brain is still not up to the task of coming up with a real discussion right now, so this is the next best thing. For my list, I used only books that I’ve actually read… just because. (It helped narrow things down a little.) I linked the pictures to my reviews, except in the one case I haven’t written a review yet (Willow Sparks, which I linked to Goodreads). Hope you enjoy! Let’s face it, there… Read more »


Jul 17
Do You Follow Authors You Haven’t Read? Let’s Discuss.

Do You Follow Authors You Haven’t Read? Let’s Discuss.

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I’m wondering if this is a me thing or if others do this as well: There are some authors that I follow closely even though I’ve never read one of their books. I’m not talking about casually following on Twitter because you entered a giveaway somewhere (though maybe that’s where it starts?), but really following them—paying attention to new releases and being excited (or at the very least, intrigued) when they have a new book coming out, interacting with them on Twitter in some way, shape or form, etc. This idea for a discussion post came to me today when I went to a post for a giveaway of Paula Stokes’ latest book. She’s one of these authors for me: I follow her on Twitter (and actually pay attention to her tweets—I’ve even retweeted her a few times), I always pay attention when there’s a tour or a giveaway for one… Read more »


Jul 07
The YA “Perfection” Trope & Today’s Pressures on Teens: Let’s Discuss.

The YA “Perfection” Trope & Today’s Pressures on Teens: Let’s Discuss.

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So, I was driving to pick my kids up from swimming recently at the high school and I drove past some boys’ high school team or other working out—shirtless. And I noticed something. These boys had abs and like seriously muscular physiques. Now before you start to think I was being weirdly creepy or something, I just drove by (with a slight stop at a stop sign—it’s not like I stopped to goggle at them), but it was sort of hard to miss when a whole mob of shirtless boys was standing right next to my car. But it got me thinking: How many times have I sort of chuckled at the YA trope of the high school boy with the perfect body? I mean, these aren’t the boys I remember from when I was in high school. Now, I wasn’t really hanging out with any of the athletes when I was… Read more »


Jun 23
The Disorganized Blogger’s Guide to Book Conferences (AKA an Example You Should NOT Follow)

The Disorganized Blogger’s Guide to Book Conferences (AKA an Example You Should NOT Follow)

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So, I thought I’d whip up a quick post because I’m headed to ALA tomorrow and I’m not going to post this weekend at all. I should be back on Tuesday. Probably. Or I might still be recovering, we shall see. I haven’t posted much this week because I’ve been busily preparing for the conference. Or procrastinating—more procrastinating really (I read a whole book today and just figured out five minutes ago what time I need to leave tomorrow morning. Hint: It’s early.) My preparation has been spotty at best. Still I thought you all might want my expert advice on how to prepare for a big book conference like ALA. Well, here goes. The Disorganized Blogger’s Preparation for a Book Conference: Wait to order your tickets until right before the deadline. Actually, you might as well almost completely forget about this step, since your mom will remind you anyway. She’s good… Read more »