Music Monday

It’s Monday, which means it can only be time for another Music Monday. In this weekly feature I share what I’ve been listening to recently. Click here to get caught up on previous Music Monday posts!

Music Monday

You Need To Calm Down – Taylor Swift

Imagine me listening to new music! This song has similar vibes to ME! but I actually prefer it out of the songs released so far from Taylor’s next album, Lovers. It’s a sharp contrast to the tone of Reputation, but I like the direction it’s going in. These kinds of songs just instantly put me in a good mood.

Good Luck – Basement Jaxx

I’ve always enjoyed the energy and power of post-breakup type songs, even though I’ve never been through one myself. I used to listen to this when I was younger and completely forgot about it until recently. I love rediscovering old songs I remember from my childhood.

A-Punk – Vampire Weekend

Do you ever hear songs and think, if I was in a teen coming of age type film, this would be on the soundtrack? Well, this is one of the songs I think that about. It has big weekend vibes.


What music have you been listening to recently? Let me know in the comments below!

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Music Monday

I love putting together Music Monday, especially when I discover new music, which I have over the past week! As always, click here to get caught up on previous Music Monday posts.

Music Monday #7

Sister – K.Flay

I love how wholesome this song is and my particularly favourite section is: “tell me that you really need a night out, I’d even put a dress on too. If somebody hurts you, then I’m gonna kill somebody for you“.

Bad Vibes – K.Flay

Not only was I blessed with finding one new K.Flay song this week, but I found two. Give me a more iconic lyric than “you’re the sequel that sucks“. Yeah, I’ll wait.

Ties – Years & Years

It wouldn’t be a Music Monday without a reference to Years & Years. Seriously, I’m in love with this band. It’s rare that I can listen to entire albums on repeat but I can honestly say I love every song they’ve produced. Plus, it’s pride month.

Fast In My Car – Paramore

I’ve never particularly listened to much Paramore, but I seem to have a skill at finding old songs that I love, and this is one of them. It particularly matches the mood I’m going for in one of my creative writing projects.


What have you been listening to this week? Let me know in the comments!

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Book Of The Week – Woken Furies

Welcome to a new weekly feature here: Book Of The Week. This is my way of showcasing a book each week that I’m reading, as the title suggests. This week we start with Woken Furies by Richard K. Morgan.

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What I’m Reading?

Woken Furies by Richard Morgan is the third book in the Takeshi Kovacs series, also known as the Altered Carbon trilogy – the first book of which was adapted by Netflix into a show of the same name.

Why I’m Reading It?

I’m reading it because the Takeshi Kovacs series is what is forming the basis of my dissertation, which is about women and technology in cyberpunk media.

Thoughts So Far?

With the past two books of this series, it took me awhile to get into it. The first book I was constantly comparing to the Netflix adaptation – which I prefer to the book because of how the female characters were evolved, but this is a topic for an entire blog post. The second book I enjoyed the ending of, but it took me over half the book to really get into. With Women Furies? I was immediately absorbed into it, so I think it might already be my favourite of the trilogy. This book is introducing a lot of new world building and really addresses what it would be like to be able to have your consciousness detached from your body, allowing you to easily live for multiple lifetimes.


What have you been reading this week? Let me know in the comments!

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I Turned Twenty

This is my first blog post trialling a new way of writing it. Hopefully it reads more consistently and thought out than previous posts I’ve made. It’s definitely a sit down read rather than a skim-read, so buckle in for a post I can only title I Turned Twenty.

I Turned Twenty

On June 7th, I turned twenty. I’m still coming to terms with being another year old largely because this has been a very challenging year for me. It began when, last June, my grandad passed away after two difficult years of being very sick and in the year that followed, several difficult things happened in my personal life and the lives of people close to me. This has been a year that challenged me in every sense of the word: I felt like I completely lost all sense of who I was and had to completely rebuilt myself. So, somehow, I ended up here. Twenty.

I don’t want to make it sound like only bad things happened this year. I’m really proud of my university grades and I feel like something has finally clicked that has me writing essays I’m proud of, even if they do make me slightly hysterical in the writing process. I’ve solidified friendships with great people at university, too. I went to dissertation meetings with two different supervisors, a process that was terrifying but very rewarding, and… I have a boyfriend now. I know. I’m as amazed as the rest of the world. A sequence of very specific coincidences aligned and as unexpected as it was, I’m definitely not complaining.

This year has been the year I’ve begun to sort of find who I am. I don’t think anyone really knows who they are before their twenties and I’m not saying I have a completely concrete sense of self, but I’ve noticed my confidence and self-esteem have grown immensely – which is a welcome change. I feel like I’m managing the balance between being independent and being social a lot better. In spite of the rough times this year, it has also been a great year.

So, I turned twenty. I don’t know what this year will hold and I don’t want to jinx anything, but recently I’ve been telling myself to feel the fear and do it anyway. As sayings go, it’s been serving me pretty well.


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June Monthly Goals

I can’t quite believe how quickly the past month and a half has progressed. A few days ago I got my results for my second year of university – which I’m pretty proud of and I’m roughly averaging a first so far – and now I’m rapidly approaching my third and final year at university. It’s a terrifying thing to think about.

June Monthly Goals

Reading Goals…
  • I’m working my way through my dissertation reading and I need to buy a few more books for the creative writing side of things. I’m finding my dissertation books a lot more enjoyable to read because they’re in a genre I’m already so engaged in compared to previous years, which is an unexpected bonus!
  • My dissertation also involves films and television series, so I’m going to go through the Netflix adaptation of Altered Carbon and make notes on an episode by episode basis. It will take awhile but I’m genuinely in love with the series so I don’t think it will be too much of a problem.
Blogging Goals…
  • I’m currently planning out some more dissertation diaries posts once I’ve figured out a structure for each. I think I’m also going to change up how I blog because recently I’ve been struggling with getting my thoughts together enough to put a post together – all I’m thinking about is how many posts I need to get written, but when it comes to actually writing them, I start to panic. No more! I’m going to try typing my blog posts into word documents and pre-formatting posts so that I’m not worrying about content and design elements at the same time.
  • After publishing this post I’m going to look at how I can redesign my blog in terms of appearance. I also want to make a list of all the pages I need to rewrite and sort out. They’re both things I’ve been putting off for awhile and it is making me feel overwhelmed. So, one step at a time!
Writing Goals…
  • I’ve set myself the goal of finishing at least a first draft of both my creative writing advanced module piece of coursework and my coursework piece for my major project in creative writing. I’m pretty sure I’ll get both of these done, which will put me ahead for my university work and it being third year, I’ll definitely need it. I’m dedicating most of my time to creative writing right now, which is weird because it’s been years since I’ve had the time to really invest in my writing… but it’s also the reason I haven’t been blogging too much recently. I’m still trying to get back to finding my balance between my university committments and my blogging commitments. I’ll get there eventually.

What have you been reading and listening to recently? Drop your thoughts in the comments below!

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May Monthly Wrap Up

It’s already June and aside from it meaning we’re now officially within a week of my 20th birthday, it is also time for a wrap up post! Usually this is where I talk about my reading, writing and blogging – but I’ve decided to migrate all my writing-related content to Dissertation Diaries and The Writing Quest because, uh, there’s a lot of stuff to talk about right now, and I want to have some posts just dedicated to the reading side of things.

May Monthly Wrap Up

Reading

I’ve been reading a lot of non-fiction to do with creative writing and my dissertation this month! I read 8 books in total, which seems like a lot, but about half of these were more textbook style that I used specific chapters from.

  1. Reading Like A Writer by Francine Prose
  2. How Fiction Works by James Wood
  3. Write Away by Elizabeth George
  4. Key Concepts in Creative Writing by Matt Morrison
  5. Why I Write by Will Blythe
  6. Teach Yourself Creative Writing by Stephen May
  7. Myth and Creative Writing by Adrian May
  8. Broken Angels by Richard K. Morgan

Blogging

I’ve not been on top of the blogging at all this month. I was expecting to be back at home by now, but for several reasons ended up staying in Oxford. It’s been a great couple of weeks having a social life and still being able to use the library to start working on both my dissertations, but it hasn’t left me much time for blogging. This post is the start of getting back to semi-regularly scheduled content! Some of my favourite posts this month have been…


What have you been reading and blogging about this month? Let me know in the comments!

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This Or That Book Tag

I saw this post over at EmmieBooks and thought it was an interesting book tag, so I decided to do it too! Without further ado, here’s the This Or That Book Tag. Click here to take a look at some of the previous book tags I’ve taken part in.

This Or That

Series or Standalone.

Don’t get me wrong, I do like standalone books (especially when they have a strong concept) but so much more character development is possible across a series.

Magic Earned or Magic Born.

I like the idea of magic born, but there’s something super interesting about magic earned. I enjoy the concept of magic being innate, but I think it is sometimes more empowering for it to be something that doesn’t come naturally to the main characters – something they have to really work towards.

Enemies–To–Lovers or Friends–To–Lovers.

I think I prefer enemies to lovers, but I appreciate them both depending upon the characters and their personalities.

Hilarious Banter or Emotional Ruin.

Hilarious banter is generally what I prefer, but again it depends on the characters and the general vibe of the book. A mix of the both is probably my ultimate favourite.

Love Triangle or Insta Love.

Neither. I’m sick of them both! Writing can be so much more entertaining without either of these things. Find new ways to create conflict rather than love triangles, and give your romance more depth than insta love!

Keyboard Smash Fantasy Names or All Names Start With The Same Letter.

Keyboard smash fantasy names, so long as they’re readable, because if the names are too complicated I won’t remember them. The same goes for names starting with the same letter – it can be done well, but if I can’t distinguish characters from one another I quickly lose interest.

Mean Parents or Dead Parents.

Neither, to be honest.

Supermodel Looks or Constantly Saying How Plain They Look.

Again, neither. I don’t much care whether characters are attractive or not – unless their beauty or lack thereof is a huge part of the plot, I think authors would do better to just describe their characters features (like hair colour, eye colour and general build) without commenting on whether that makes them pretty or not. Beauty is so subjective and trying to make your character sound as attractive as possible just comes across as incredibly fake, to me.

Face On Cover or Typography Cover.

I like both, it depends upon the aesthetic the book is going for, but I guess I generally prefer typography covers purely because of how frequently used face on cover designs are used. That being said, neither option would make me not read a book, because I don’t feel hugely passionate either way.

Villain Turning A Little Good or Hero Turning A Little Bad

Definitely both. I love the idea that characters are not black and white, and that all characters are capable of good and bad. That being said, perhaps villain turning a little good is my favourite, because I tend to prefer villains or characters who aren’t traditionally heroic.


If you like the look of this tag, consider yourself tagged in it! What did you think about my preferences? Are yours different? Let me know in the comments below!

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