July Wrap-Up!

july wrap up

I can’t believe July is over! Where did it go? I officially have TEN DAYS of summer vacation left. AHHHHH!!! I’m not ready for junior year! (Who is?)

In Life

This month was good. I finished up the ballet class I had been taking at a local community college to get high school PE credit out of the way. I got an A, preserving my GPA and making it so that I never have to take PE at high school again. YAY! I miss all of the awesome people I met, and though it weirds me out to say it, I actually miss getting up at 7 every morning to do 2-3 hours of ballet a day. It was a great way to stay in shape over summer, and I got to learn the basics of ballet from an amazing teacher. I know I won’t have the time or the resources to do both ballet and fencing during the school year, which means that I probably won’t do any ballet for at least a year (if I ever go back to it at all).

In Reading and Reviewing

Remember that long weekend of reading I had last month? Well, this month I finally caught up on writing all of the reviews for those books. I can’t believe I fell so behind. Most of those reviews will be published in August…a full two months after I read the books. Whoops. I’m just glad I took detailed notes after each book so that I knew what to write. (*high fives my June self*)

This month, I didn’t get a lot of reading done. I only read four books, mainly because none of the books I had on my shelf appealed to me. I kept being in the mood for some inexplicable other book that didn’t exist, but I never made it to a bookstore to try to find a book that would grab me.

I did enjoy the books I pushed myself to read. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde (review here) was a powerful and creepy read, but the “classic” writing style made it take me longer to read it. I then read the blood-chilling ARC The Dead House by Dawn. A very conflicted review of it will be coming next month. Needing something that wasn’t horror-filled, I read another ARC, Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho, which I enjoyed. To give myself a break from heavy paranormal and fantasy books, I picked up Aces Up by, which ended up disappointing me, but was fun to read for an afternoon. I’m now rereading Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke, wondering if I will enjoy it as much as I did the first time.

In Blogging

Despite being so behind on reviews, this month was a good month for me in regards to posting regularly. I had 16 posts, which shakes out to one every other day and holds me to my summer goal of posting at least three times a week.

I posted five reviews this month, covering a lot of different genres. In the YA fantasy world, I reviewed Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder, which was fun to read but lacked originality. For contemporary YA stories I reviewed The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler (which I LOVED) and P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han (which was a light summer read, but nothing special). Firefight by Brandon Sanderson took care of the scifi/dystopian genre, and The Picture of Dorian Gray rounded out this month’s reviews as a classic. Though I usually avoid classics, I genuinely enjoyed this one.

As a random addition, I reviewed season eight of Doctor Who, talking about my newfound love of Clara as a companion and the greatness that is Capaldi as Twelve.

I took part in three TTTs: Top Ten Hyped Books I’ve Never Read, Top Ten Books that Celebrate Diversity, and Top Ten Characters Who Are Fellow Book Nerds. In other bookish posts, I took part in the Would You Rather Book Tag and I recounted my amazing time at SDCC in a book haul post. A pleasant surprise, I received the Blogger Recognition Award from Hidden Staircase! (Thanks again!)

In Writing

This was a good month for me in writing (in that I actually worked on my WIP). I added 12,000 words to my novel, bringing the total up to 77,000 words. I can feel myself working up to the ending, and I am ready to finally finish the second draft of this project.

I published two poems: You Never Left and Tomorrow Me. For a Chuck Wendig Challenge, I took a day to talk about what it is that drives me to write. Putting my thoughts down on paper helped motivate me to write, so thanks, Chuck!

I also committed myself to a few personal writing goals. I want to write at least 10,000 words a month, and I want to finish this draft by the end of 2015. I can fail the first goal a few months and still be able to meet the second, as I don’t expect this draft to be longer than 100,000 words. Since I started writing this draft in December of 2014, if I meet those goals, it will have only taken me one year to write. I know that that isn’t exactly the best timetable, but I think it will have been the fastest I ever finish a project. Factoring in all of the time I devote to high school, I will be extremely proud of myself if I can pull this off.

So there was my July! How was your month? What books did you read? What books should I read next? (I’m in a slump, guys! I need recommendations!)


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