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Mid-Year Freak Out Book Tag

Oh sorry, WHAT. How is it that time already? How has it been HALF OF A YEAR already? I honestly have no idea where the time has gone, it feels crazy. I’m technically doing this about a month early as last year I posted this on July 19th instead of June 20th but here we are, I figured this was as good a time as ever.

First off I had a look at last years Mid-Year Freak Out Book Tag and at the time I was 72% through my Goodreads reading challenge so I thought it would be fun to compare that as well. I’m currently at 52% I’m four books ahead at 31 out of 60 which considering the month difference as I’m doing this a little earlier makes sense as that 72% last year was 36 out of 50. I thought I was a little slower this year so that’s interesting.

1. Best book you’ve read so far in 2019

So this is a really tough question and I’ve had to come back to it after answering all the others and having a think about it for a few days and I don’t think I really have a clear answer, I like a few books the best so far for different reasons. I loved the crazy twists and immense tension and storytelling in both A Good Girls Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson as well as Sanctuary by Vic James, I fell in love with the ragtag crews in both Once and Future by Cori McCarthy and Amy Rose Capetta and Aurora Rising by Amie Kauffman and Jay Kristoff and I had my mind absolutely shattered to pieces by The Quiet at the End of the World by Lauren James. Not to mention the Memento Novella (also by Amie Kauffman and Jay Kristoff) I’ve been lucky enough to have read so many great books this year already and I refuse to choose.

2. Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2019

The Wicked King by Holly Black. I know these books are hit and miss for some but I personally love them to bits, especially the second. Jude and Cardan are absolute trash and I love them both.

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3. New release you haven’t read yet but want to

There are honestly so many but I’m really looking forward to reading the Ghosts of the Shadow market bindup. I’ve been watching the Shadowhunters TV show again lately and it’s got me nostalgic for some Nephilim goodness.

4. Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

Starsight by Brandon Sanderson. I adored Skyward and I can’t wait for the sequel!!

5. Biggest disappointment

I think this probably goes to Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young, I had really high hopes for this book but found it fell a little flat for me personally. I’m still excited to read her next book though, The Girl the Water Gave Back.

6. Biggest surprise 

Nexus by Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings was definitely a pleasant surprise, it was really good, especially in comparison to its predecessor Zenith which although I did enjoy overall I feel had a lot of problems that were absolutely rectified in Nexus. I’m actually pretty gutted we’re not getting a third book now.

7. Favourite new author (Debut or new to you)

I LOVED The Devouring Gray by Christine Lynn Herman and I definitely think Christine is one to watch, I’m beyond excited for the sequel and for the new book she just announced coming next year.

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8. Newest fictional crush

I absolutely have a platonic crush on Ed from The Paper and Hearts Society by Lucy Powrie, I love him so much! As for a romantic crush, I think I may have a thing for Cole from The Near Witch by V.E Schwab.

9. Newest favourite character 

Definitely Finn from Aurora Rising, he’s the best bean, I love that he’s sassy and funny and he’s such a sweetheart too I would die for him.

10. Book that made you cry

So I’ve cried at a few books this year with the front runners being Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman, (I think I cried within the first ten pages of that book), Once and Future by Cori McCarthy and Amy Rose Capetta, Aurora Rising by Amie Kauffman and Jay Kristoff and The Boy Made of Blocks by Keith Stuart destroyed me.


11. Book that made you happy

Heartstopper volume one by Alice Oseman filled me with so much joy and love that I can’t even begin to explain. It made me so immensely happy and just reading it feels like wrapping myself up in a nice cosy blanket on a rainy day.  The Paper and Hearts Society was another great feel-good book that made me happy as well.

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12. Favourite book to film adaptation you saw this year 

I think we all know the only answer to this is Good Omens because COME ON of course it is.

13. Favourite review you’ve written this year

I haven’t posted it yet but I’m immensely happy with my review I’ve written for Sanctuary which I’ll be probably be releasing at the beginning of July. This book was INTENSE and I was worried I would have trouble writing the review for it but honestly, it was one of the easiest reviews I’ve ever written and if I may be so bold, one of the most eloquent. You’ll just have to wait and see.

14. Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

The Quiet at the end of the World, beautiful both inside and out. Look at that beautiful cover, it’s absoloutley gorgeous and I love all the little reports inside about the things Shen and Lowrie find, not to mention the story itself is a work of art in it’s own right.

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15. What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff, Gilded Cage by Vic James, Ghosts of the Shadow Market by Cassandra Clare and various authors and Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo.

As usual, I’m not going to tag anyone in particular but if you wanted to have a crack at the Mid-Year Freakout Book Tag for yourselves then consider yourself tagged and have at it!

 

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Why I am Weird Tag

So my original Thursday post I had planned for today is taking a HECK of a lot longer than I thought it would, I was just wondering what I would post instead when one of my favourite bloggers/Twitter friends tagged me in this awesome top ten Thursday tag. You can chceck out Delly’s post here.

“Why I am Weird” Tag rules

  • List ten weird things about yourself, your life or silly habits that you wouldn’t normally share.
  • Tag up to ten people so you can get to know them better.
  • Link back to the person who tagged you & the creator
  • Comment on the posts of people you tagged!

Why I am Weird

  • I LOVE to sing and if I don’t do so on a regular occasion I get super grumpy. I especially love Disney songs, being able to name a huge amount of them within a couple of bars is my special skill.
  • I taught myself to swim like a mermaid when I was little and my nan paid for me to go to swimming lessons to learn to swim properly. I adore swimming and I also don’t have to put in any effort at all to tread water, I just float.
  • There are certain lines from films, tv shows and video games that can reduce me to tears almost instantly. These include (but are not limited to) “Goodnight Raggedy Man” from Doctor Who, “Had to be me, someone else might have gotten it wrong” from Mass Effect 3 and “You were my new dream” from Tangled.
  • I don’t drink tea or coffee and I very very rarely drink hot chocolate, I also really dislike any kind of fizzy drinks. I mostly just drink squash and the occasional glass of milk.
  • I play Dungeons and Dragons. Like…A LOT of Dungeons and Dragons. I love all of my characters with their extensive backstories and have playlists for almost of all of them.
  • I can get a little obsessive with some fictional characters – not in a way I think would be considered creepy or anything but I will quite often fall into the never-ending hole of YouTube edits. My go-to videos at the moment are usually Reylo, Mon El from Supergirl, Garrus from Mass Effect, Merlin (and Arthur if I really want to hurt) almost any Shadowhunters ones and the occasional Killjoys ones. I used to listen to music and imagine what videos I’d make to the songs and I finally got around to making my own one this year which I’m super proud of (It’s a Killjoys one if you wanted to check it out here)
  • I have to have at least a rough plan of what I’m doing for the day or I get stressed out/unmotivated. I love lists and I hate cancelled plans even if I maybe didn’t want to go.

  • I have to do things a certain way or I get stressed out and anxious. For example, I have to turn the lights off in the flat a certain way or I worry they’ll explode and I always brush my teeth the exact same way for the same amount of time. I also got so upset about our airer being wonky that I cried.
  • I used to be absolutely terrified of cows.
  • I have broken every single of one of my toes and fingers at least once as well as both of my arms (almost exactly a year apart).

So there you have it, ten weird facts about me. Feel like sharing ten weird facts about yourself? Then consider yourself tagged! Link back to me and don’t foget to credit Delly for creating the tag if you do so! I can’t wait to learn more about you!

 

 

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I Should Read That – Book Tag

Welcome to the I Should Have Read That Book Tag! I wasn’t tagged to do this but I wanted to do it anyway after seeing it on ConnieReads. Here are the Rules:

  • Thank the person who tagged you and link back to their post – I wasn’t tagged but thanks to Booksnest for creating the tag!
  • Link to the creator’s blog (booksnest.co.uk) in your post.
  • Answer the questions below.
  • Tag 10 others to take part.
  • ENJOY THE TAG!

Okay, let’s get started!

A book that a certain friend is always telling you to read

Steph is always suggesting loads of great books for me to read and I’m terrible and rarely get around to them. I read Sanctuary (review coming next week) recently which she recommended and was blown away so I guess I better get to reading Gilded Cage?

A book that’s been on your TBR forever and you still haven’t picked up

Outside in by Maria Snyder which is crazy because she’s one of my favourite authors but I just keep deciding to read other things, maybe May or June it will finally be time?

A book series you have started, but haven’t gotten round to finishing yet?

So many recently! The Throne of Glass series is a big one I guess. I did start reading Kingdom of Ash but it just wasn’t grabbing me and that huge book gave me wrist ache so maybe I’ll lift some weights and try again later in the year, I mean there’s no rush now as it’s the last one right?

A classic you have always liked the sound of, but never actually read?

I’m not often that interested in a lot of books deemed “classics” but I would love to finally get around to reading To Kill a Mocking Bird I think.

A popular book that it seems everyone but you has read?

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo, I’ve started,  I just keep being distracted by other books.


A book that inspired a film/tv adaption that you really love, but you just haven’t read it yet? 

To all the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han. I brought the book right after I watched the film and I can’t wait to finally read it.

A book you see all over Instagram but haven’t picked up yet?

After scrolling through Instagram for a few minutes I can confirm that my answer is Finale by Stephanie Garber. It just came out recently so it makes sense that it’s everywhere to be fair. I haven’t picked it up yet because I still haven’t read Legendary!

That was a fun little book tag and one that’s kind of inspired me to have a good sort out of my bookshelves and actually get around to some of these books, especially Outside In, it’s been sitting unread for too long!

I won’t tag anyone in particular but if you want to do it consider yourself tagged!

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The Ship Tag

I found this tag via Book Princess Reviews a while back and as I’m well known in my circle of friends for shipping basically everyone and everything so I thought this would be a fun one to try out and what better time to do so then for Valentine’s Day?! (Not going to lie this was just a happy coincidence and I’m rolling with it). I tried to label each answer with any spoilers but there are technically spoilers about who gets with who in a lot of books but thats as far as any spoilers go so although this post is not technically spoiler free they are only mild spoilers.

1) If you could date a fictional character who would it be and why? Can I please date Kady AND Ezra please? I love them both so much and I wouldn’t want to separate them?

2) If you were to go on a date with said fictional character where would you go and what would you do?
I feel like there would be sweet waffles or pancakes and hamburgers? I bet Kady has some weird taste in food like she puts syrup in her burger or gherkins on her pancakes and Ezra and me are just like wha and then we try it too because we’re idiots.

3) A favourite “ship”/ couple you’ve read?
I can’t pick just one and you can’t make me.
Katherine and Matthew from The Next Together series because I love them so much and they are couple goals.
Kady and Ezra from Illuminae, I loved their relationship and dynamic together so much and that it didn’t feel too intrusive or over done.
Yelena and Valek from The Poison Study series, I wasn’t too sure about their relationship originally but it really grew on me, I love their balance of give and take as well as the real trust and teamwork they share too.
Also low key shoutout to Kieran, Mark and Christina, I’ve not finished Queen of Air and Darkness yet but my favourite thing about the entire book so far has been the beautiful relationship between these three and I’m glad to see it done well.

4) A “ship”/couple you hated?
(ToG and ACOTAR couple spoilers)
I’m not a huge fan of any of the couples in the A Court of Thorns and Roses or Throne of Glass books. I’m not sure if its the way Sarah J Maas writes but I absolutely hated Roawn with a a passion and then he’s suddenly her Caranam, which I could just about stand but then he turned out to be her mate? Ew. I enjoy some pretty unhealthy relationships in books (see next question) but for some reason I just can’t look past the way Rowan treated Aelin. I’m a little better with Rhysand and Feyre but it just makes me feel eehhh.
Ooo there is one ship I like in ToG, Dorian and Manon (Pre EoS at least as I’ve not finished that yet!)

5) A book that had the classic Hate to Love trope?
(Couple spoilers for The Cruel Prince and The Vampire Diaries)
I feel like I’ve read quite a few of them but honestly most of the time there was never any real hate, occasionally mistrust or just a general dislike, genuine hate is a bit more difficult. I would say Damon and Elena from The Vampire Diaries books? I am also SO here for the hot mess that is Jude and Cardan from The Cruel Prince and The Wicked King. I really enjoy this trope for it’s intensity and the line “Kiss me until I’m sick of it” has become one of my all time favourite quotes.

6) A book that had insta love?
A Pocketful of Crows by Joanne Harris, I love the way the insta love is played out in this little book, from the main character thinking she was too wild and untameable to ever actually love a human boy and then seeing him for the first time and falling head over heels in love with him. It’s described so well as are the consequences later which is nice and refreshing for a book featuring inst

7) A book with a light cutesie relationship?
Maybe Fangirl? That was pretty cute? I don’t read a lot of light cutsie books.

8) A book with a relationship that made you cry?
Lazlo and Sarai from Strange The Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares, they’re so beautifully tragic

9) A book without romance (or with very little)?
Vengeful and I’m so pleased for it, I like a little romance in books but I really don’t think there was room for it in this book and not having any was absolutely the right choice.

10) If you could delete one “ship” from a book who would it be and why?
Simon and Clary from the Shadowhunter books, it was painfully cringey and ironically it felt like she was dating her brother.

11) A new couple you read that you ship?
Matthew and Diana from the All Souls books, I know these aren’t a new couple technically but I only read the first book recently so they’re new to me. I like that although Matthew is partially still a ‘you must do what I tell you’ sterotypical male vampire Diana very much still does her own thing and Matthew learns to trust and value her and her opinion as she does his like a real couple and I’m really enjoying that at the moment.

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Tag Thursday – To Kill A Kingdom Tag

To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo came out in March this year and was one of my very first Net Galley reads (Click here to check out my review). I loved the darker bloodthirsty side to Princess Lira and the fun companionship of the crew as well as it’s nods to The Little Mermaid as well.

The lovely Lydia from Silver Wolf Reads tagged me in her very own original To Kill a Kingdom Book Tag that she worked on with Alexandra Christo herself and remembering how much I loved the book when I originally reviewed it tagged me and I’m so excited to do it so here goes!

You’re going on a vacation on a cruise boat for a week. Which book(s) would you pack to keep you entertained as you explore the seven seas?

I’d bring my kindle for sure so that I have a wide range to choose from and I could maybe start working through my NetGalley back up too! Physical book wise I would bring Illuminae because I always want to reread it and I might end up desperately wanting to do so, I’d maybe bring six of crows and crooked kingdom as I still have to read them and I keep finding excuses not too. Even though I haven’t started it yet though I wouldn’t bring A Kingdom of Ash as I would end up spending too much time reading and a vacation would be pointless. I’d definitely make sure I had some titles ready to go on Audible too!

You’re on the boat, and you start to hear your favourite song being played out from a nearby island. Which song would this be? What book do you associate with this song?

I don’t really have a favourite song because what I’m in the mood for changes quite often and usually, I have a playlist that I become obsessed with instead. If I had to pick one it would probably be Hold me Tight (or don’t) by Fall Out Boy which reminds me of Cardan and Jude from The Cruel Prince.

You go to the side of the boat and notice a mermaid sat on the rocks. She seems pretty bored. And you know of loads of awesome books. Which one book do you always recommend to people without fail?

The Last Namsara. I’m not even sure I can explain why I just wondered what book I would probably enjoy most if I were a mermaid and that’s what came to mind. Maybe I love Asha and how kickass she seems?

The mermaid seems pretty happy with your suggestion, and swims off. You hear the song from a moment ago has stopped. And there doesn’t seem to many people about. Creepy, huh? What book gave you the chills whilst you were reading it?

The Loneliest Girl In The Universe! This book gave me serious chills and that horrible feeling when you feel like someone punched you in the chest when a twist hits you and you realise you’re not actually reading a fluffy space contemporary. I will never get over that damn book.

The song picks up again. But this time, it doesn’t sound like the normal version you’re used to. It sounds eery, and you can feel yourself walking towards the sound. You’re in a trance. Which book hooked you in from the very first page?

I was going to say The Last Namsara again because “Asha lured the Dragon with a story” is a great first line but honestly I think it has to be The Hobbit which totally captivated me as a child. “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.

You’re climbing over the rails of the ocean, moving towards the sound of the singing. You jump into the ocean and a rush of cold hits you. What book has the biggest plot twist that you weren’t expecting?

Did I mention The Loneliest Girl In The Universe yet? Of course I did.
As I have I’ll say Undead Girl Gang for this one if you’ve read it I’ll just say mushrooms and I’m pretty sure you’ll get it.

You begin swimming on instinct, nothing has come to get you yet. You feel like you’ve been swimming for hours. What’s the biggest book you’ve ever read? (Or the one that’s taken you the longest time to read).

I’m pretty sure strange The Dreamer is the biggest book I’ve read and honestly, I listened to most of it in the end because it was so hard to carry around in my bag!

Something grabs your leg. You start kicking. Which book deals with heavy/under-discussed that always makes you want to put up a fight for righteousness?

The Exact Opposite of Okay, it really changed the way I understood occurrences in my day to day life, how I felt about myself and the people I spend my time with.

They’re pulling you under the water. Which book had you on the edge of your seat, unable to breathe as you turned to the next page?

Illuminae. I remember turning the pages so damn fast and my face being practically in the book trying to read the words faster, it was crazy and I ended up with a saw jaw from clenching it so hard and for so long.

You notice a glimpse of red. You notice a fish-like tail. It’s a siren. Which book would you recommend for people who love the ocean’s mythical creatures?

Funnily enough probably To Kill A Kingdom, I love the distinction between sirens and mermaids as well as the culture surrounding the sirens themselves and how it came to be.

There is an enormous screeching sound. The siren lets go. You float to the top of the ocean surface, gasping for air. You’re alive. You get onboard the boat, dry off and clutch your books to your chest.

Which bookish-friends would you call to share your experience with? Who would you believe you? Who should do this tag?

Damn, I was hoping a Siren would fall in love with me? There’s still time right?

I’m terrible at picking people to tag so I’ll say that if you see this and want to take part consider yourself tagged by me! Let me know if you take part and link me so I can check your answers!

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Tag Thursday -The Fall Tag

I know it’s a little strange to follow on from my Christmas at the Beach Hut blog tour review post with a tag all about Autumn but it is still technically Fall and as excited as I am for Christmas and winter, in general, I thought I’d say a proper goodbye to the Autumn with this Fall tag! I spotted this tag on the Frasers Fun House blog and couldn’t resist giving it a go.

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1. What is one candle you MUST light every fall?

Ooh, this is a tough one as I like a lot of different candles! Right now I’m burning My precious Pumpkin Spice and LOVING it which is a nice change as I’m not usually a fan of pumpkin or cinnamon at all. This candle smells like a lovely autumnal desert though, it’s gorgeous!

2. When you think of fall, what does it remind you of?

Crunchy leaves, wet grass and cardigans. I walk pretty much everywhere and I love the smell of the damp grass and leaves, my little boy also loves jumping around in all the crunchy leaves. As for cardigans I absolutely love them, they’re my favourite piece of clothing and I get too warm too easily to wear them most of the year but as soon as Autumn comes around I rock all the cardigans I can!

3. What is your all-time favourite fall/Halloween movie?

I was about to say this is a tough one as I don’t watch many movies because of the seasons they’re related to and then realised it’s all a lie because of HOCUS POCUS.

4. What Halloween costume do you have in mind?

I’ve never been trick or treating and only been to a handful of Halloween parties so I don’t tend to get dressed up for it that often, hopefully taking Nate this year though as Steve from Minecraft as I’m already pretty sure he has convinced himself he lives in a Minecraft world at the moment as he takes his sword or pickaxe everywhere (much to my dismay!).

5. What is your favourite fall trend?

Did I mention I love cardigans? Yes? Well then let me talk to you about SCARVES! I love all scarves but in Autumn it’s just slightly on the cooler side enough to wear thin, pretty, gauzy scarves and let me tell you they’re almost as awesome as cardigans.

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6. When you think of fall what drink comes to mind?

I imagine most people would say pumpkin spice lattes etc but I’ve never been much of a fan of them so I would just say MORE HOT CHOCOLATE PLEASE. And marshmallows.

7. What is your go-to fall beauty product? A must-have staple!

Hand cream and lip balm are so essential this time of year as I find everything dries out pretty quick and I hate getting chapped lips!

8. Do you prefer apple pie or pumpkin pie?

Apple pie and custard all the way! All even better would be apple crumble. Yum.

9. Do you have any fall traditions? If so tell us all about it!

Usually going out and collecting, conkers, leaves and pinecones! Now Nate is older we picked our own pumpkins and carved/painted them which is new for us!

10. The moment of truth, is fall your favourite season?

I do love the in-between of Autumn where it’s chilly but not proper cold like winter just yet so it’s a tough call as I love spring, Autumn and Winter pretty evenly, I just hate summer.

There we go! I hope you enjoyed a fun little different non-bookish tag for a change, I had fun answering it and I’m probably about to go watch Hocus Pocus now I think! I won’t tag anyone directly but if you see this tag and you liked it and want to take part go for it! Let me know in the comments below and link me to yours so I can check it out! Happy Autumn/Fall Y’all!

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NaNoWriMo Tag

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NaNoWriMo Tag

This tag was created by Kristina Horner on YouTube and you can check out the original video here.

1. How many times have you done NaNoWriMo?

This is my second year. I signed up in 2016 but never got around to writing. Last year I went all out and hit my 50k despite some hiccups. I’ve done a couple of  Camp NaNoWriMo’s since then just to get me to dedicate time to writing every day which is what I struggle with the most and often projects fizzle out because I keep putting off finishing them.

2. How did you first find out about NaNoWriMo?

I think Twitter possibly, it’s everywhere now of course but I think I probably saw it mentioned there first and then looked into it after having not written anything for a few years.

3. What was the name of the first novel you attempted with NaNo?

I called it “Paralysed” after a song that really inspired me (this is a common occurrence) and I’m still technically writing it this year but starting afresh (as I have five times now) as the story keeps changing and evolving over time.

4. Give us a 1 sentence summary of what you’re writing this year.

People with superpowers save the world from an A.I who is trying to protect them

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5. What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever been given?

A bad draft is better than no draft, get it written and edit later.

6. Did you ever take a year off from NaNo? Why?

Not unless you count the first attempt that I didn’t actually do >.<

7. What’s your biggest inspiration when figuring out what to write?

Music and daydreaming most of the time. I have a playlist that I almost always listen to when I’m writing.

8. Read us the first sentence from one of your novels.

The first paragraph from “The Last of the Real Ones” which is my NaNo novel for this year

“You’re in the wrong place” A voice whispers in the dark.

Tobias peers into the black, his eyes straining as they try to detect any hint of shapes or movement beyond the thick sheet of glass before him. There is no light inside the room and no windows, just a wave of darkness covering everything. He waits for a moment, the Warden had mentioned the girl was a little unhinged after spending so long alone down here in the dark so he stays still and just listens while doing his best to project an aura of calm he hoped she might pick up on and decide he was worth talking to. He does his best not to cry out in surprise as the sound of disturbed water echoes through the speakers on his side of the glass.

9. Why do you love writing?

I love to experience the story as I write in much the same way as reading. I’ve always loved to write out my dreams in full detail and over time I would do the same with daydreams which eventually became mini-stories or scenes I just liked to write. There’s just something so satisfying about it for me.

If you’re also doing NaNoWriMo this year I’d love to read your answers to these questions! Let me know what you’re writing this year!

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