Top Ten Tuesday: What I’m Grateful For 

1. My new friends, I should really say family.

2. my experience in the fall show I performed in  

3. Art supplies and my ability to come up with amazing ideas.

4. God. 

5. Being able to read back my  positivity lists. 

6. the feeling of creating because it’s beautiful  

7. quiet mornings and quiet moments or just normal moments with people I care about: playing with my friend’s hair while she watches something or works on something and when she looks at me when I’ve done it, quietly not because she’s bothered just to look and make eye contact and everything’s just peaceful and she’s happy. (Black people hair is the best hair, seriously.)

8. Hugs from friends and their smiles. Their smiles make me grin just thinking about it and not seeing it right now. I just love seeing people happy. 

9. The way someone looks at you when they love you and how it feels when someone speaks to you when they love you and you have a moment when you can just feel like everything is okay even in a day or time that is not okay at all. 

10. The voice of Christina. Her voice is so beautiful that it, like, awes my ears and immediately makes me happy and feel better.

Bonus: 11. Nic’s existence. we can’t do without that, now can we. 

how could you have 

you 

go to @getnicced on twitter and instagram to be blessed with intelligence and wit and cute kids and @booklookz on instagram to feel blessed with the most extravagant beauty in this world’s existence 

I’m not even exaggerating but you thought I was didn’t you 

Now you can just go 

I’m grateful for you too 

BEAUTIFUL BOOKS 2016: Let’s talk about NaNo

​I haven’t done a post in a while and I’ve decided I’m going to get my life back on track when it comes to the book world. Let’s go. I’m going to use Cait’s Beautiful Books 2016 for NANO. I’m doing NaNo this year actually but I didn’t have the motivation to work on an actual book as I’m still waiting on feedback regarding my first one. I’m writing poetry because I can do that and I love it and it’s still telling a story. It’s just telling mine. Okay, so the link is here: http://paperfury.com/beautiful-books-2016/
What inspired the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea?
Actually, I’ve been recently into Rupi Kaur. It was an accident, really. I was looking up quotes when deciding what to use for the little gift tag on my friend’s birthday present that I was purchasing in gift wrapping from Amazon. (Highly recommend by the way, the wrapping was beautiful, and it’s totally worth the extra money.) I ended up ordering her poetry collection, Milk and Honey, and read the entire thing in a day and I’ve watched a Ted talk and a bunch of other videos regarding Rupi and I guess that empowered me to feel like I can do my own collection for NaNo although it will never be published and I will never, like ever, submit it for publication. So in summary, since late October and Rupi Kaur. 
Describe what your novel is about!
Okay! So, it’s a poetry collection that’s been taking place over a matter of months now and it’s basically about love and human beings. I know that probably sounds vague to you. I mean that it’s more about specific people that I’ve cared about or that I do care about in a variety of ways as well as how I tend to view humans which is sort of like, I’ll view them as complex universes or art? I do view them as real but in a way that’s less concrete, less set in stone and more vast and beautiful and in a way that makes it easy for me to become enamoured with someone. Art is generally my way of making sense of situations and the world so it only makes sense that that is how I would make sense of people too.

  It’s composed of various letters to people and sort of delving into a friendship I have with someone and us going back to days as children that we’ve never had, being happier, our struggles, exploring the complexities of that person, etc etc. 

 

What is your book’s aesthetic? Use words or photos or whatever you like!
I’ll actually find some pictures for you that aren’t Pinterest but that I actually made or took except the first one. Hold on. 

Introduce us to each of your characters!
Okay. So let’s introduce you to me. 

In this novel/collection type thing, I’m someone telling a story by travelling to different places in time. Some are in the present, that day, some in the past, and some in worlds that aren’t real or in alternate universes. The universes could be that person’s mind or my own. I’ll be a child, I’ll be older at a book signing, I’ll be on tightropes with a person. I’ll be swimming in water that’s not really water but sort of littered in stars and that I can kind of breathe in and the person too. I’ll be looking up at someone suspended into the air. I’m everywhere and I never know where I’ll be next and that’s the beauty of it because isn’t that what real life is?
There’s a boy who doesn’t really believe in himself, we see him travel through pieces and places of time but only at the very beginning because that’s where he’s most relevant. He sort of sifts through a few different attitudes. He’s eventually confident, successful. We aren’t close so there are only about two poems about him but both long ones. He takes me on the tightrope and keeps pushing me off for some reason and bringing me back up again. 
There’s a girl who’s really complex. Beautiful, strong, sweet, masculine to tomboyish style of dress. She really diversifies the whole thing not in terms of what she is or how she identifies but in terms of how she affects things and people around her and her power. She inspired a lot of my work and took me to places I didn’t know I could go in my writing. 
How do you prepare to write? (Outline, research, stocking up on chocolate, howling, etc.?)
Oh, I just write, it’s usually urgent. I write like I’m running out of air and it is my way to oxygen.
What are you most looking forward to about this novel?
It’s a grand exploration of a lot for me, it will be really wonderful to see it complete and be able to pick out my fave parts and do art based on them. 
List 3 things about your novel’s setting.
City. 

Universe. 

Human consciousness based on Rupi Kaur’s exploration of it in her Ted talk. 
What’s your character’s goal and who (or what) stands in the way


I think my character’s goal is honestly to find a way to communicate something to someone who they feel needs to hear it and should feel comforted and less alone and to love the person that takes them to heights within their thoughts and depths they didn’t originally consider and I think my character would be dealing with not really being able to let them know that just due to their own communication barriers because they communicate best through art and the abstract and the unreal and that cannot always work with the person in question.  
How does your protagonist change by the end of the novel?
I have no idea. 
What are your book’s themes?
Love, humanity, vulnerability, adolescence, adulthood, fatherlessness, blackness, queerness, friendship, dealing with when your friend commits suicide, life, and intimacy fundamentally. You can interpret that how you want to interpret that. 
 How do you want readers to feel when the story is over?
If I ever let the person I’m writing about the most read their poems? I guess I would want them to feel beautiful and to feel loved. That’s what I always want for them. To feel their power, feel their beauty, and feel how loved they are. 
Yeah. Thanks for reading. Have a good Monday. 🙂

SST November: Guest Post for Tara Sim’s Timekeeper!

I haven’t been able to do anything with anything in a long time but I finally got this post up so YAY, success. This book is great! check it out. I think I’m probably going to leave this blog until December and then I’ll start making posts consistently again if not before so I’ll have enough quality posts prepared and everything rather than posting to post. Quality rules over quantity, yeah? Yeah. I hope you’re doing well post election if you’re in America. I’m not, obviously, by the state of this blog.  

Timekeeper GR synopsis: Two o’clock was missing. 
In an alternate Victorian world controlled by clock towers, a damaged clock can fracture time—and a destroyed one can stop it completely.
It’s a truth that seventeen-year-old clock mechanic Danny Hart knows all too well; his father has been trapped in a Stopped town east of London for three years. Though Danny is a prodigy who can repair not only clockwork, but the very fabric of time, his fixation with staging a rescue is quickly becoming a concern to his superiors.
And so they assign him to Enfield, a town where the tower seems to be forever plagued with problems. Danny’s new apprentice both annoys and intrigues him, and though the boy is eager to work, he maintains a secretive distance. Danny soon discovers why: he is the tower’s clock spirit, a mythical being that oversees Enfield’s time. Though the boys are drawn together by their loneliness, Danny knows falling in love with a clock spirit is forbidden, and means risking everything he’s fought to achieve.
But when a series of bombings at nearby towers threaten to Stop more cities, Danny must race to prevent Enfield from becoming the next target or he’ll not only lose his father, but the boy he loves, forever.

Tara Sim, person who’s reading this! 

Write the main character’s bucket list and how he would most like to achieve the highest item on said bucket-list.

I asked Danny what his bucket list is, but he’s been grumpily unresponsive, so instead Colton is going to share his bucket list with you (after asking what exactly “bucket list” means). Just bear in mind that Colton…doesn’t get out much:

10. I’d like to paint the clock tower a new color, just for fun. Like purple, or pink.

9. Find more clothes? I think it would be nice to have a wardrobe. Not sure where I’d put it, though. Or what would go in it. Recently I heard someone say she needed more petticoats. Maybe I’ll try to find petticoats.

8.  Get more cats. One time an orange cat wandered into the tower and just stayed here. I found food for her and pet her and it was lovely. Then one day she gave birth—I thought she was just fat—and there were suddenly a lot of cats. So the tower was full of them for a while, and it was very nice.

7. Read an entire book on my own. I know how to read now! But reading entirely on my own is still hard.

6. Cook something. I’m so fascinated with watching people in Enfield cook. I don’t even understand it. They cut up some food, add other bits of food, and then it becomes some other sort of food? How does that even happen? Is there a secret I need to know? How does this work?

5. Make Danny laugh more. He is too serious.

4. Play a musical instrument. Sometimes people play on the village green, and it sounds so lovely that I want to try it too. The closest I can come is ringing the bells, I suppose. I tried doing that once when a band was playing and everyone got scared for some reason.

3. I’d like to join the townspeople when they celebrate festivals. I love watching them from the tower, but sometimes I want to go down and dance and drink and laugh with them. I know I can’t, though.

2. Kiss someone.

1. Travel! I want to explore the world, especially after hearing about all of the amazing things that are out there, waiting. It’s hard, sometimes, being stuck in one place. Maybe one day I’ll discover a way to go to them. Or make them come to me. (Danny tells me that is impossible. I told him he is impossible, and he made a face).

SST October: Fear The Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh 

​It’s SST time again. Whoooo. It’s been a while. I know. That was not my intent. I actually wrote posts, never typed them up, you know how that goes. Excuses, excuses. 
Today. I’m going to share a few of my favourite quotes from an ARC of Fear The Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh, a book that came out this month and if you’re into horrifying historical fiction and romance, this is the book for you!!! 
1. “Who enjoyed the things others seemed grotesque or unworthy?”
2. “The cool shade of the trees enveloped me. I’m in the woods. The sigh of the wind was louder than the breath of the sea.”
3. “I lingered at the edge of the market, wanting to explain why I couldn’t join him, yet I couldn’t put it into words. Something was pulling me toward home, reeling me in like a fish or one of Da’s hooks.”
Here’s to hoping for a productive November! 

Ten Books That Changed My Life Through Word Of Mouth

​Happy Tuesday! Lots of lovely books are coming out today and I hope that you are able to grab even one of them. I rec Still Life With Tornado by A.S. King and Fear The Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh. Both women are lovely, intelligent, and wonderful writers and I’m sure you won’t regret your purchase. 
My life has been changed by the recommendations of the book community as a whole from bloggers to writers to authors to readers to agents to editors to booksellers to marketers. All have come together to put out lists of books that people can use to find themselves and better understand the people in the world around them. 
I think when we talk about word of mouth we sometimes miss describing the beauty of it when we describe its value. Word of mouth is magical to me. Think about how wonderful it is that you and I can become connected across oceans by ink droplets on starched paper. That you and I can open a book being one way and then close it being another. That you and I can simply type a title and then someone else can get that title and pass it on and on and on and touch something deep and difficult to articulate within multitudes of people. That’s beautiful to me. I don’t know, maybe it’s just me.
Three books I’ve read and been changed by because of Nic Stone

1. The First Time She Drowned by Kerry Kletter: a raw read that made me feel like I was being physically torn apart. 

2. Everything That Leads To You by Nina LaCour: a read that fulled me with joy and laughter and made me realise the importance of happy stories and write over 20K in four days of the base of a happy story. 

3. Highly Illogical Behaviour by John Corey Whaley: She talked about him so often I had to make him a priority and when I did, oh when I did, I got a read that made me think, made me feel, made me live and that’s a goal I pursue daily. 

She really is so great at recommendations. The black Dahlia. Speaking of Dahlia…

Three books I’ve read that changed me because  an author, a reader, and a freelance writer in that order gave them to me: 

4. How To Repair A Mechanical Heart by J.C. Lillis: a read about religion and relationships that was funny and painfully true. Given by the wonderful Dahlia Adler. (Click to see diverse books you should be looking out for!)

5. Juliet Takes A Breath by Gabby Rivera: a read about being brown and loving yourself the way you are as well as politics and problematic elements in books and human beings. Given by Carolyn. (Click to follow Carolyn on Twitter!)

 

6. Zami: A New Spelling of My Name by Audre Lorde: a book about love and pain and blackness that is beautiful. More beautiful than the sweetest music that could touch an ear. Given by Michael Waters.  (Click to get to his website where you can find his social media links and all his posts and the blog series, YA Open Mic. Think of all that useful information, all those interesting posts you can use to procrastinate instead of doing your work, just at the click of his name! And it’s his birthday. Yes, you’re welcome!) 

 A series I’ve read because of the book community (7-9): Legend by Marie Lu.

 I recommended this to one of my guy friends and he devoured the entire series. 

A book that I loved so much it led to so much more than I could imagine: Simon Vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. You should also pre-order the second novel, The Upside Of Unrequited ASAP, so you can flip all the way to the back and see my lovely name. I’m kidding, obviously so you can read a raw, heartwrenching read that means loads to me and comes out in April. 

How are you doing? OMG, drop all the blog links. I want to catch up on EVERYTHING. 

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Fall TBR Or Nah? 

​Here’s the quick run down of my Fall TBR because quickly scheduling this last one so the month is prepped and honestly don’t have much to say for this one. Give me your thoughts? 

AND OMGGGGGG HTGAWM started and I’m BLOWN AWAY. 

(Already calling it.) 
1. Finish TROUJLH. 

2. Grasshopper Jungle. 

3. Stand Off. 

4. Please Ignore Vera Dietz. 

5. The Five Stages Of Andrew Brawley. 

6. Fear The Drowning Deep. 

7. If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo. 

8. Still Life With Tornado by A.S. King. 

9. 27 Hours.  

10. Reread FANS. 
And watching Escape From Alcatraz and Mommie Dearest. And keeping up with HTGAWM. 
What’s your fall TBR? Or things YOU want to watch? 

The Saturday Oreo: If I Were A Backlist Reader, Which Authors Would Be On My TBR? 

Hi! This is another idea that I thought could be an original post and that is from my positivity notebook. My positivity notebook has a ten positive things list for each day and sometimes people, situations, and places. There’s some travel journal entries to use for my stories set in Jamaica in there, and every day since I watched a New Age Creators video in July about writing happy things from the day and how that made the person happier and I decided to try it out as a self care technique and it’s been really helpful. 

Example: 10 Positive Things About 24 September is probably going to be written in my notebook tonight and then the ten positive things about today or it was done yesterday, 23 September. I force ten because I think it makes me search for the positive things and see them easier moving forward. Sometimes I’ll do a bonus and add extra if I can come up with any and it makes me happy. 

Anyway!

  1. John Corey Whaley—Highly Illogical Behavior was powerful, beautiful, and funny! My next would be Noggin. 
  2. Andrew Smith—Grasshopper Jungle and Stand-Off would be next. 
  3. Shaun David Hutchinson—seems to write about the intersection of mental illness and queerness a lot and just a bit overdue. I’d read his two books that are out that everyone has raved about. 
  4. A. S. King. I actually started reading backlist for this author. I have gotten through Glory, I Crawl Through It, and Ask The Passengers. All are excellent but I need Please Ignor Vera Dietz before Still Life with Tornado (11 October 16) comes out of that were possible.
  5. All the Morris debut award winners that are #ownvoices.  Can’t be that many of those. 
  6. Dahlia Adler because she’s so funny. The one I’d read is Just Visiting. 
  7. Nina LaCour because you know how positively ELTY affected me. The next one would be You Know Me Well. 
  8. David Levithan because I’ve liked what I’ve read. Next: Hold Me Closer and Boy Meets Boy. 
  9. Victoria Schwab: not really backlist but AGOS. 
  10. Patrick Ness: He’s very talented as a writer and his work is original and beautiful. He definitely sets a standard for good reading. I’d read the Chaos Walking trilogy. 

All right, that’s enough for today. Whose back list would you devour??? Hope you’re having a lovely Saturday!