5 GIFS That Perfectly Show A Fiction Lover’s Reaction to Non-fiction

If the title didn’t give you a hint, I love reading fiction. There are so many fun options and genres to choose from! I could jump into the world of historical fiction, or go on a quest with Harry to find the horcruxes. I could help Holmes and Watson solve a mystery, and even journey on a flying steamship to London. The prospect of visiting all these worlds makes my fingers itch to open another book. If you put a non-fiction book in front of me, the reaction is not the same. In fact, I often have the exact opposite feelings. I found five gifs that perfectly describe my experience reading non-fiction. They might line up with your experience as well!

  1.  After you read a stereotypical non-fiction book. 

Image from GIPHY

  1. When someone tells you they found a non-fiction book that even fiction lovers would like. 

Image from GIPHY

  1. Me trying to read a non-fiction book once a year as someone out of school. 

Image from GIPHY

  1. When I found a non-fiction book that I thought I’d like but I ended up hating it. 

 Image from GIPHY

  1. When I finally find a non-fiction book with an interesting topic and writing style 

Image from GIPHY

Are you a fiction lover? What’s your experience when reading non-fiction? Have you found any non-fiction books that are perfect for fiction lovers? Let me know in the comments below! If you’re a non-fiction lover, do you have any recommendations? I’d love to give non-fiction novels another shot. Especially historical non-fiction! Thanks so much for checking out my post and happy reading!

Rejuvenating with Writing

 It wouldn’t be an understatement to say that things have been a bit rough for a lot of people recently.  We’re all grasping at straws to find some hint of what used to be normal, while trying to grow and change at the same time. On the whole, it can get a bit exhausting. Sometimes you have to take a break from the glaring reality flashing in your face. Whether it’s gardening, Zoom calling your friends, or reading a book, you need something to rejuvenate your spirit. To keep you on the path towards a brighter future.

For the longest time, the only thing that fell into this category for me was reading. Then music joined the mix, but it’s a bit difficult to quietly practice a clarinet in an apartment complex. Especially when everyone is at home to hear your cringey attempts at relearning scales. Reading has been a comfort to me, but I’ve also found that writing has joined the ranks as well. When I write, that is. Writing can ebb and flow in my life to extreme degrees. So, when it is in my grasp, I snatch it up like a child catching a lightning bug. Cupped firmly-but delicately- in two hands, to see the glow of inspiration between fingers. 

Writing this blog has been a mixed bag for me right now. Some days, I can feel the ideas for future content flowing from me. But only when I’m in a location where writing said ideas down is an impossibility. Most days it feels like a chore, but one that I enjoy doing once I’m in the middle of it. I’m sure you have something in your life like that right now. 

But the nice thing about writing right now, despite my lack of inspiration, is time. Time to focus on research rabbit holes about 1920s archaeologists, or invent an underground network of spies. If you feel stuck in the rejuvenating hobby, try a new strategy. For me, this new strategy is research or character sheets. I can pull myself into parts of writing that normally won’t cross my mind until I’m in the thick of a writing session. Researching might not add words to the page, but it can add ideas to my mind that I can pluck out later when I’m stuck. Designing a new character might put their words on the page in a new way. It’s also a great way to learn about how your characters will interact differently with each of the characters in your novel.  

If you’re like me, staring at your lack of life progress in frustration, take time to rejuvenate. If you feel stuck, try that new strategy. Take a new look at another piece of it that will help the big picture. Rabbit holes of researching or learning about writing are some ways that I’ve kept my big picture. How will you help yours? What are you doing, or are wishing that you could do, to reignite your spirit? Let me know in the comments below. Stay safe out there everyone, and happy writing. 

 

10 Harry Potter Quotes That are Super Relatable

Since its publication, Harry Potter has been a touchstone of popular culture. Like many iconic stories, the quotes of Harry Potter are everywhere. From words of encouragement during dark times to sassy one-liners, this series has it all. These quotes are somehow extremely relatable in the real world despite a disappointing lack of magic. Here are five situations where the sentiment of these quotes ring true:

  1. When you decide to question instructions from your boss or teacher.
  1. When you don’t want to do the thing and your friends try to help you get out of it.
  1. Any introvert who just wants to chill out and read their book for the 10th time.
  1. That feeling when you’re so tired that a burn just kind of slips out. Goodbye filter, hello sass master.
  1. When it’s hour six of studying for finals with your friends and you’re beyond done.
  1. When someone’s being super unclear for the 90th time and you’re done.
  1. When someone’s trying to convince you to do something stupid and you can see the “bad idea” sign flashing over their head.
  1. When you’re procrastinating but know your adult responsibilities are lurking.
  1. When you accidentally let a secret slip to a gossipmonger.
  1. When someone’s acting like a jerk and you’re the only one who seems to care.

What is your favorite Harry Potter quote?  Let me know in the comments below! There are so many gems that it was difficult to narrow it down to this list. With a sassy character like Harry as the main character, the relatable quotes are endless. When was the last time you read these books? It might be time to crack open the series again to re-experience these awesome characters. Happy reading!

A Love Letter to the Kindle

The times of hectic holiday travel and leaving at least one thing at the hotel are among us. With all those stressful but fun scenarios to work through, a book lover is left scrambling to keep up with their books.  Being a book fanatic for as long as I can remember, I have struggled with holding onto all of my books during the holiday season. My mom often found books all over the house, in the car, and of course on the floor of the hotel room seconds before we checked out. Cramming the car with fifteen books was not something my parents wanted to continue in the future. So, when the Kindle hit the market, two were beautifully wrapped under our tree on Christmas morning.

Though it has been out for a while and we’ve seen many different iterations, I’m still amazed by how many books I can cram onto that device. I still love reading physical books as much as the next reader, but my Kindle has been a lifesaver more than once. Firstly, I can fit it in my purse and magically still have room for my plethora of odds-and-ends. Since I don’t have Hermione’s bottomless purse or Mary Poppin’s carpet bag, fitting one hundred and thirty books into my purse would be impossible without it. Sure, I don’t need to read all of them at once but having the option to reread any book I choose whenever I want is awesome! Also, I live in a tiny apartment where bookshelf space is scarce and carefully curated. Buying only physical books would result in my apartment turning into a swimming pool made of novels.

I’ve been very lucky in life and have been able to travel to some amazing places. On those seven-hour drives to the beach or flights abroad, my Kindle has been a wonderful companion. Stuck in the airport after already finishing your book because you read way too fast? Congrats, you’ve got a gazillion other options to choose from! As long as you have access to wifi and an Amazon password, the possibilities are endless. Also, some Kindle books can be cheaper than the books they sell in the airport, so it’s more efficient to hop onto Amazon for a new book and download it onto your device. I remember being stuck on an eight-hour flight with no urge to watch movies and a fully charged Kindle at the ready. I blazed through Harry Potter and Sorcerer’s Stone and hopped over to reread a specific scene from another novel. I tend to get an intense urge to read certain scenes in books after I’ve read them the first few times, so being able to go straight to the chapter without having to thumb through pages is great.

Finally, one of my favorite things about the magical world of Kindle’s and similar devices are samples. Emily, you may be saying, out of all the possibilities you choose samples? Why? Well, think back to a time when you picked up a new book in a store. You read the back, it seemed interesting, but you didn’t have time to peek inside to see if you liked the writing style before you shelled over $25. Then, you get back to the comfort of your coziest chair, crack open the book, and two chapters in you put it down. Two years later, it’s still sitting on your bookshelf, gathering dust and taking up a space that could be filled with one of the new book in a series you’ve been eyeing for weeks. With the sample option on Kindle, you can read the first few chapters before spending money on a book you might not like. I’ve read so many samples that never get to the full book stage on my Kindle because the first few chapters sent boredom alarm bells through my mind. It’s also a great way to keep track of what books you want to buy in the future, be them traditional books or in the Kindle book format.

Do you have a Kindle or Nook? What do you like about using them? Or, if you don’t have one, why? Let me know in the comments below! If you want to recommend some Kindle books that you’ve enjoyed this year, you can submit them here.

Four Books to Get You Into the Christmas Spirit

It’s that time of year again! Michael Bublé is crooning Silver Bells in the coffee shop, and Christmas trees are sparkling in households across the world. While some people may bah-humbug at the thought of Christmas and the holiday season, I morph into my final form during this season. Emily the Elf is even more obnoxiously excited and––true to elf form––even more of a cookie fanatic. One of my favorite ways to get into the holiday spirit (other than baking and music of course) is diving into my Christmas book collection. Every reader has a few books that they set aside to read every year with a cup of their favorite festive beverage. Here are four books that I love reading during the Christmas season.

Via Goodreads

1.      The Snow Queen by Hans Christian Andersen 

The Snow Queen is a holiday classic that I’ve loved since I first read it in middle school. This book is also what loosely inspired Frozen! Emphasis on loosely. This story follows a little boy and girl, named Kay and Gerda. When Kay is cursed to only see the bad in the world, he is taken by the Snow Queen to live in her palace of ice. It’s up to Gerda to save her best friend and travel through the realms of the seasons to get to the Snow Queen’s palace. This story is a lovely fairytale that reminds me of the stories I heard as a kid. It can be read at any age and has a fun host of side characters that both help, and hinder, Gerda on her quest.

Via Goodreads

2. Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares is one of those YA Christmas novels that’s perfect to read while curled up on the couch! The story is a fun combination of crazy adventures, scavenger hunts, as well as a cute romance. It all kicks off when Lily leaves a red notebook in her favorite bookstore with a list of dares. Dash comes across it, and soon they are on a scavenger hunt of festive tasks. Anyone who loves Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist will consider this one a holiday staple!

Via Goodreads

3.   Let it Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle

Let it Snow is a fun group of short stories that take place during a snow storm. The first tale, by Maureen Johnson, follows Jubilee, a high school girl who finds herself on a train to Florida on Christmas Eve after her parents get arrested. Why? Waiting for a new limited edition piece of their Christmas village decor got heated! The train gets stranded in a tiny town, where she meets a new friend, and the other stars of the stories. The second short story, by John Green, follows three friends as they travel through the perilous roads to get to a Waffle House for hash browns, and the stranded cheerleaders on Jubilee’s train. It’s a fun adventure that reminds you of your friends, and makes you crave delicious hash browns. The third story, by Lauren Myracle, wraps up the tales with a story of a barista who is going through a hard time. The lovesick barista is tasked with protecting her bff’s teacup pig, but everything goes awry. The three tales are unique, but all share the same humor and charm that will warm you up on a cold winter day!

Via Goodreads

4. I’m Half-Sick of Shadows by Alan Bradley

The fourth and final book on my recommendation list is a bit different. I’m Half-Sick of Shadows is the fourth mystery in the series by Alan Bradley. It follows the eleven-year-old British sleuth and scientist Flavia de Luce as she goes on a quest to trap Father Christmas. Everything’s going to plan, when a film crew arrives at her family’s estate to shoot a movie with a standout star. During a blizzard, the members of Flavia’s town of Bishop’s Lacy gather at the de Luce estate to watch the star perform. It’s all Christmas cheer and excitement, until she’s found murdered! It’s up to Flavia to use her wit and solve another murder, and hopefully catch Father Christmas along the way. Fans of Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie will be charmed by this witty girl. You can read this book mid-series, but if you enjoy it, why not check out the others? Flavia’s charming stories are also wonderful on Audible, where the talented Jayne Entwistle brings her to life.

I hope you enjoy these Christmas-themed books, and that they get you into the holiday spirit! What are some books that you like to read during the holidays? Comments below to let me know! Also, if you have any book recommendations for me, you can send them by filling out the survey found here. Happy Holidays everyone!