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BookTube News // July 31, 2015

A video that made me cackle this week
Realities of a booktuber by The Reader Rick Pfleeger
Rick highlights the ups-and-downs of being a book tuber and what he’s learned about the process over the past two months.

VidCon
What YouTubers Were Reading at VidCon by Kristina Horner
Kristina asked everyone what they were currently reading

#WomenOnYouTube Tag by Bree Mae
The questions range from an introduction to your channel to future video projects you are excited about.

Top 10 TBR: Australian YA by LittleBookOwl
Catriona talks about all the books she’s reading for #LoveOzYA campaign.

How I Take and Edit My Instagram Photos by Katerina Guadalupe
Katerina goes through her process of taking bookstagram pictures and editing. It’s super quick and easy!

BookTube-a-Thon 2015 is about to go DOWN.
All of the videos can be found on that channel regarding the challenges, discounted books, and hosts!

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The importance of storytelling

My Granny was quite the narrator. She was the best at bedtime stories to the point that she sent us tapes of her reading in her Mississippi accent. I’m sure she wrote a few stories in her time, but I don’t remember them all too well.

The first story I ever wrote was in Mrs Hill’s 2nd grade class. We had to write a story about a potato. I still have it in one of my scrapbooks. I wasn’t very confident in my storytelling abilities, so it’s no wonder that I have yet to publish anything (or finish a manuscript for that matter).

When I was in high school, my storytelling took the form of blogging. Back then, we had Xanga and LiveJournal. I not only had my own blog for daily thoughts and being a little too open about some things. I mean, to the point that one of my “friends” ditched me after making plans and I wrote about it and said how let down I was. She came up to me, mad about it, and explained that she’s a terrible friend to everyone! And how she never calls back her best friends! Side note: There is no excuse for being a terrible friend in that context. Don’t be that person. Ever.

On a similar note, that’s when my friend Becca and I because super-awesome-friends and not only blogged on Xanga, but created a blog in which we’d take turns posting the next part of a story. It was technically based off of two people we knew, but we put them in ridiculous situations and, if I remember correctly, they were in a haunted house and could time travel. I think we were out to make it the most ridiculous story ever. Thankfully, Xanga doesn’t really exist anymore, so that might not ever see the light of day, BUT that memory… Those memories of telling stories sticks with me.

In high school, I also tried to write a novel. It was one of those ideas that stewed in my brain for years, and I tried writing it on multiple occasions. I definitely want to tie some of my favorite parts into future manuscripts, but for now, that story is just in the back of my mind.

That’s all to say that I do want to write stories. I don’t want to say that I’ll stick to one genre, tone, etc… I just want to write. I listen to podcasts that have said this about acting, that you have to love the art of it. I think that definitely rings true for writing as well. You have to love the act of writing. Banging out a story and getting it to the point that you want to share it with the world and also throwing a bit of risk into the wind. You can’t worry about if it will be well-received, how much money it will make, etc. You can definitely worry about some things, but there are always things out of your control.

I told myself when I was about 14 or 15 years old that I wanted to write and publish at least one novel in my lifetime. This year feels like the year (to do the writing part, at least). I have a great group of writer friends, but I know that the most challenging part is to motivate myself to write every day. I said the other day on Twitter that I wanted it to start in August, but I kind of started yesterday because “Why do tomorrow what you can do today” has been kinda my mantra over the past few years.

So, my challenge for you is to go motivate yourself to go do that thing that you’ve been meaning to do for years.

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Shows I’m watching this summer (2015)

ELIZZIEBOOKS WATCHES

If you follow me on Twitter or listen to the podcast I cohost with my Fangirl BFF Alli called All The Flails (you can find it on iTunes and Podbean), you know very well that I am obsessed with TV. Any time I’m in a so-called reading slump, I pick up a new tv show. I know we all look forward to Fall tv premiers, but there are so many amazing tv shows out this summer that I need to tell you about. I mean, before you go out hiking and camping with all those mosquitoes and humidity and OUTDOORS.

Shows that I cannot stop watching even if you bribed me with delicious coffee:

The Whispers (ABC) starring Lily Rabe, Autumn Reeser, Kristen Connolly, and Milo Ventimiglia (and some kids who are really good at being kinda scary?!?! YEP.)
At first, I thought this show was going to be the kind of show that was just going to be like Supernatural, but having one baddie for the whole season. I was gladly surprised when there was more to the story and that it does involve the government and aliens and science and awesome women. I find myself on the edge of my tv-watching-space throughout the episodes. It’s not a show that takes a lot of time to build things up, but it did take me a few episodes to get into it. Overall, amazing show and I can’t wait for more!

Dark Matter (SyFy) starring Melissa O’Neil and Anthony Lemke (and Zoie Palmer as an android)
This is one of those shows that you’ll tell your friends, “It takes a few episodes, and then it gets GOOD.” I definitely saw the potential in the first few episodes and it, thankfully, bumps up the action and storylines from there. I’m sure someone’s already said this, but if you liked Firefly, THIS SHOW IS FOR YOU. It’s not the same premise or anything, but it does involve some badass folk in space. But they’ve lost their memories and that makes it a really neat story.

Killjoys (SyFy) starring Aaron Ashmore and Hannah John-Kamen
BADASS LADY IN SPACE! Okay, yes, another show set in another world. This one involves two bounty hunters called Killjoys. Although I’m not totally caught up to this week’s episode, I have been loving it and seeing Dutch’s past and how that ties into her ongoing story.

Teen Wolf (MTV) starring Tyler Posey and a bunch of other hot people
I know, you’ve heard ALL about this show, but I almost gave up last season because it was terrible. Okay, yes, we learn a tiny bit about Malia’s mom, but the whole werejaguar and Peter storyline was bad and UGH and Derek went through some weird stuff, am I right?! Anyway, Season 5 has been STELLAR so far and very reminiscent of 3B, but it seems like Lydia is more of the focus and the “baddies” are different and SCARY AS HECK. There is more, but I’m loving this season so far.

And a show that I am watching, but am not totally hooked on…

Sitchers (ABC Family) starring Emma Ishta, Kyle Harris, Allison Scagliotti, Salli Richardson-White
I mean, the acting is A+ and I love the characters, but there’s just something missing. I feel like I’m waiting for something awesome to bust loose, but since it’s an ABC Family show, I feel like we’ll get dragged on and on before certain secrets are revealed. I also need Kirsten’s password to get changed and Linus to stop pining after Camille. And more Kirsten and Camille roommate moments.

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Survive the Night by Danielle Vega Book Review

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Survive the Night by Danielle Vega Book ReviewSurvive the Night by Danielle Vega
AmazonBook DepositoryPublished by Penguin, Razorbill on July 7, 2015
Genres: Thriller
Pages: 272
Format: ARC
Source: the publisher
Goodreads
four-half-stars
We're all gonna die down here. . . .

Julie lies dead and disemboweled in a dank, black subway tunnel, red-eyed rats nibbling at her fingers. Her friends think she’s just off with some guy—no one could hear her getting torn apart over the sound of pulsing music.

In a tunnel nearby, Casey regrets coming to Survive the Night, the all-night underground rave in the New York City subway. Her best friend Shana talked her into it, even though Casey just got out of rehab. Alone and lost in the dark, creepy tunnels, Casey doesn’t think Survive the Night could get any worse . . .

. . . until she comes across Julie’s body, and the party turns deadly.

Desperate for help, Casey and her friends find themselves running through the putrid subway system, searching for a way out. But every manhole is sealed shut, and every noise echoes eerily in the dark, reminding them they’re not alone.

They’re being hunted.

Trapped underground with someone—or something—out to get them, Casey can’t help but listen to her friend’s terrified refrain: “We’re all gonna die down here. . . .” in this bone-chilling sophmore novel by the acclaimed author of The Merciless.

Another absolutely stellar book from Danielle Vega. If you loved Merciless, Survive the Night will not disappoint. That’s not to say that StN tells the same story. Not at all. We meet Casey as she’s recounting her time in rehab after her issues with Oxytocin. When she is going to Madison’s house for a sleepover, I thought that maybe it would be too close to Merciless, but it veers off from there when she ditches to go with Shana, Aya, and Julie to a club in New  York. Which turns into Survive the Night, the all-night rave in the subway tunnels.

It takes about 98 pages to get to the turn where Casey finds a dismembered body and discovers what else lies in this section of the tunnels. It’s really well done in that it doesn’t drag you to this point. Shana lives rather dangerously (read: drug abuse on the regular), so there’s no shortage of crazy times as well as walking through a creepy, abandoned building to find out where the rave is taking place.

Note about the drug use in this novel: I don’t have any experience with abusing drugs, but it seemed weird that Casey sobered up so quickly from what Shana gave her. Did her fear sober her up? These are things they don’t teach you in D.A.R.E., y’all.

On that note, Shana is the worst best friend a girl could ask for. I don’t wait to spoil more than I probably already have, but DANG that girl is MESSED UP in all sorts of ways. There’s wanting to make your life a little more exciting… And then there’s Shana. I mean, she was there for Casey after her injury, but yowzaaaa.

Danielle Vega’s books are a pleasant surprise in a literary landscape that is chock-full of Dystopian human villains. It’s refreshing to be on the edge of your seat, peering down the edge of the cliff, being chased by the unknown, and having a somewhat unreliable narrator. I loved it.

four-half-stars

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Twenty-Seven, Nerdy, and Jobless.

I’m 27 years old.

I’m nerdy.

And I don’t have a full-time job or any consistent income to speak of.

I know what you’re thinking, “But this is a book blog! Why are you posting this here! No whining!”

Okay, no whining. I will not whine about my circumstances because at least two of those things are things I’m fine with. Being basically jobless? Not so much. I’m working on that.

Ever since one of my family friends passed away — about a week ago — I’ve been thinking about how I’ve been living my life. She moved almost all the way across the country to go do something she’s passionate about. She posted on her Facebook months ago that she didn’t want to say she’ll travel when she retires, but instead do all those things now. That’s the thought I’ve been turning over and over in my mind. Yes, I want to travel. I want to get out of my parents’ house. I want to go and do and all that! Okay, maybe that last sentence doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.

What’s my point? I’m tired of being in my current “season”. If you’re a Christian, you know that term well. It’s a section of your life when a certain theme or a … okay, I don’t really know what it encapsulates, BUT I keep feeling like I’m sitting a lot, but not doing much. I feel like I have so much more to do and much more love and life to experience. Not that I’m looking to go get married and become a missionary. I just have never felt the calling of missions work in my life. I still have no idea about marriage because — although I’m happy for all of my happily married friends — it’s not a thing that’s been on my mind lately. Yeah, it’d be nice to have that kind of companionship, but… It’s not happening right now.

I don’t necessarily know what I need to do right now. I mean, other than keep searching for jobs and keep my mind open and keep my heart in a place where God can use me. That last little bit might sound a bit strange in that I don’t talk about my faith that often (uhhh at all?!) on this blog, but I feel like I’ve been slamming the door to a lot of things.

I’ve never been super great at wrapping up blog posts, so if you want to discuss this post, leave it in the comments or talk to me on Twitter!

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