Guest Post | 6 Top Tips for Breaking the Rules of Writing and Living to Tell the Tale (by Charles Harris)

This post was originally set out to be published during IndieAthon last month, but due to circumstances you’ll be able to read it now! Charles Harris is best-selling author and award-winning writer-director for cinema, BBC and Channel 4. His debut satirical thriller novel The Breaking of Liam Glass has been an genre best-seller and finalist for a Wishing Shelf Book Award for fiction. It also breaks many of the rules.

Whatever you set out to do in indie publishing or self-publishing, there’ll be people who are only too keen to tell you the rules. Yet, history is full of people who’ve broken the rules and succeeded brilliantly. Who wore the wrong clothes so well that they became the right clothes. Or served strange-tasting food and won Michelin stars for it. How do they get away with it?

Write On

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Review | Not Your Sidekick : An Incredibly Fun Cute Book about Superheroes and Girls Kissing

Not Your Sidekick by C.B. Lee is one of those books that you just fly through (unintentional pun) because it’s so much fun!dividersynopsis

81vl4z7n7ilWelcome to Andover… where superpowers are common, but internships are complicated. Just ask high school nobody, Jessica Tran. Despite her heroic lineage, Jess is resigned to a life without superpowers and is merely looking to beef-up her college applications when she stumbles upon the perfect (paid!) internship—only it turns out to be for the town’s most heinous supervillain. On the upside, she gets to work with her longtime secret crush, Abby, who Jess thinks may have a secret of her own. Then there’s the budding attraction to her fellow intern, the mysterious “M,” who never seems to be in the same place as Abby. But what starts as a fun way to spite her superhero parents takes a sudden and dangerous turn when she uncovers a plot larger than heroes and villains altogether.

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You Made Me Read This #1 | The Try A Chapter Tag with A Twist

A couple of weeks ago I did the Try A Chapter Tag and I loved doing that so I thought, why not let people decide which books I try next? So I asked you for some suggestions and ended up with a big filled with pieces of paper with a lot of books, some of which I have been wanting to read, others I have never heard of. I want to make this a regular feature on my blog and I’ll call it You Made Me Read This because that sounds fun (right?), and I’ve been wanting to try new genres and books so this is the perfect way to do that!

This time the papers I have randomly picked from my cup are: Hidden Dawn by Elke Silverain (suggested by Kate @allthetrinkets), 10 Things I can See From Here by Carrie Mac (suggested by Sakhile @sakhilewhispers) and Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde (suggested by Caro @bookcheshirecat).

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Hidden Dawn by Elke Silvarain

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Expectations: This will be quite interesting because I have never heard of this book before. But I do trust Kate’s book choices, so I think I will like it. Though as I’m writing this I have as of yet no idea what genre this book even is so this will be fun.

Experience: [on page 1] I’m literally in the middle of the first page but why is the main character called Sky?? Seriously? That’s such a cliche 2012 dystopia/paranormal character name. (No offense if you’re called Sky. Though I gotta ask, have you discovered your paranormal gifts yet? If not, you should probably talk to that weird old lady or fall in love with that dark and broody guy that’s actually a creep.)

[on page 3] okay so I think she doesn’t feel anything. Or doesn’t want to feel anything. And she’s going on a trip with an airplane.

[on page 5] oh goodness she also has unusually colored eyes, is this really not a book from 2012?? She has strange facial features and a mysterious past too! Is she some kind of shape-shifter animal because her eyes allegedly reflect light and ONLY ANIMAL EYES DO THAT? Also, is this some kind of secret that I shouldn’t have figured out on page 5? Yes, probaby. (I am very aware of the fact that I am talking to myself)

Verdict: wow okay, that was different. I’m part confused and part very convinced I figured out this entire book’s plot twist only 5 pages in (sorry if I ruined it for anyone). I don’t hate it, but it really has that “I’m a bit weird and then it turns out I got some kind of magical powers” vibe and it’s not my thing anymore. 14-year-old me would have devoured this book.

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10 Things I Can See From Here by Carrie Mac

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Expectations: 10 Things I Can See From here is a book I’ve heard about and I think it’s one of those emotional YA contemporaries, but don’t take my word on it. I do remember liking the cover but that’s basically all I know.

Experience: [on chapter 1*] So it’s about Maeve (which I’m assuming is a girl’s name) who doesn’t want to take the train and so takes the bus. And that’s basically all that happened in the first (very short) chapter. Maeve seems to have anxiety and is anxious about a lot of things and she leaves her parents for some as of yet unknown reason.

[on chapter 2] I think… the chapters in this book are just a list of things Maeve gets anxious about. Because after suicides on trains (chapter 1), she’s now anxious about being decapitated on the bus she’s on. She gets to her destination, which is a big city and leaves the bus and is now anxious about getting murdered on the street. Ohh wait she’s actually going to her dad. I think.

*these chapters are very short and I would guess about 2-3 pages but it’s an ebook sample so I can’t check the pages.

Verdict: This book is a little weird, but I’m kinda into it? I love the short chapters and Maeve is definitely an intriguing character. I think I’m going to put this on my TBR! I’m also loving figuring out what’s going on as I had no clue what I was getting into with the last two books.

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Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

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Expectations: Queens of Geek has been on my TBR for a long time actually! I have been wanting to read it because it’s diverse and about cons and it just sounds like a very fun book though I haven’t gotten around to actually getting myself a copy.

Experience: This is again an ebook so no page markers so I’m just going to ramble here a bit.

SupaCon actually sounds very silly to be honest. Like someone who wanted to make “super” cooler and decided that “supa” was the way to go. Anyway, three girls(?), Charlie, Jamie and Taylor, arrive at this “SupaCon”. One of these, Charlie, meets their new manager. Who are they that they have a manager?? Charlie gets a VIP pass but the others don’t and Taylor gets a bit anxious about having to stand in line all weekend (I think she has anxiety).

JAMIE IS A BOY?? Oh whoops. Now they’re talking about some fictional character Taylor is cosplaying. Oh, Charlie is a girl, at least I got something right. And she’s some famous youtuber.

They talk some more with the manager and then they enter the con. They promise each other they’re going to have fun and not worry about anything. And then it ends with a blog post by Taylor.

Verdict: I like it! I’m really intrigued by the famous youtuber thing and the con seems like fun. I don’t know much about the characters yet but they do seem interesting and I’m sure I can enjoy this book.

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I hope you had as much fun reading this as I had writing it. I will definitely be continuing this series on hopefully a fortnightly basis because it takes quite a bit of time to read all the chapters and write the blog post.

Have you read any of these books? Or are they still on your TBR? Do you think I judge too harshly?

The Second Annual Book Blogger Awards | My nominations + me flailing about my favourites

So last year, Joce from Write Through The Night hosted the first ever Book Blogger Awards and they’re back! I’m so happy because this gives me an excuse to shout about all my favourite book bloggers! Last year I was voted Best Friend Ever together with Savannah and Debbie and that just fills my heart with joy.

I have to be honest with you, I’ve struggled a little with blog hopping lately, but I’m trying to do better and visit more blogs I follow and do not follow! So anyway, I have thought long and hard on who to nominate and here are my nomiations!

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Review | Bubblegum : Badass Queer Women Fighting Crime

Bubblegum by Sari Taurez is a self-published book with a lot of LGBT characters and a quite unlikeable but badass female lead set in a near-future dystopian society.dividersynopsis

35615310Tiana is your typical pampered young blonde with a love for expensive shoes, hot guys, and murder.

After Tiana is cut off from her family’s riches, she takes advantage of her talents and becomes a killer for hire. It’s a lucrative business in her country, where a call to the police can amount to a lifetime of debt.

Her first client: Julia, a lower-class IT genius, lesbian, and devout Catholic. When the orphanage Julia volunteers at is targeted by the infamous brothel-owner Bobby Nails, Tiana is excited to take the job. But when she discovers Bobby Nails has a full army of mercenaries at his disposal, Tiana wonders if she may be in over her head.

Tiana and Julia face an unexpected adventure as they seek vengeance against the elusive Nails. Along the way they are joined by Ruby, a pyromaniac ex-prostitute who catches Julia’s eye, and William, a mysterious acrobatic fugitive searching for his daughter.

In the end, will they be enough to stop Nails and the chaos he has created?

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The Try A Chapter Tag | The Audiobook Edition + Pick Which Books I Try Next?

We probably all have heard of the Try A Chapter Challenge or Tag before but in case you didn’t, it’s basically that you pick a couple of books (usually 5) and you read the first chapter and see what you think and whether you would like to continue it. I have decided to do a little twist on this tag by listening to audiobooks! I’ve recently gotten really into audiobooks and I have quite a list of books that I’ve been thinking about reading but am unsure of. So that’s why I’ve decided to listen to some audiobooks and see what I think!

The books I’ve picked are:

 

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The Rising Author Tag | Let’s talk Camp NaNoWriMo and my latest writing project

As you might have noticed, Camp NaNoWriMo has started! If you don’t know what that is, it is basically a smaller version of NaNoWriMo in which you can set your own goals AND if you don’t know what that is: NaNoWriMo is a month long writing challenge in which people try to write a full novel (or at least 50k words of it) which takes place in November.

Anyway, I am taking part in Camp NaNoWriMo because… why not? I love writing and taking part has always inspired me to write much more than I normally would. Now, this month I must say, the dedication is not that strong, in fact, I haven’t written anything in over a week, so that’s going well oops.

May – whose blog posts I am very sad to have been neglecting this past month (I AM SO SORRY) but whose blog I absolutely adore – tagged me in the Rising Author Tag! Thank you May! And I thought that would be a perfect introduction to my Camp NaNoWriMo project! You might have heard of it before because I once talked about it months ago, but it has changed dramatically from then!

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