June 16, 2017

Hello, blog! I seem to write to you at odd times of night.

What I’m Reading
Most recently, I just finished THE GLASS SPARE. It was my first Bookcon read and it did NOT disappoint. It did the exact opposite of disappoint. I completely adored it from page one. The writing was beautiful, the characters were so fully drawn and interesting, the romance/banter was 100000/10, the world had just enough slight details to make it feel rich and realized. I loved it so, so much. I especially loved the uneven power dynamics between Wil (MC) and Loom (cursed prince a la the blurb) and how that whole thing played out. It was SO good. Exactly what I’ve been looking for: complex, with Wil strong and firm and unwavering. You all must read this book when it’s out in October!

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heart eyes motherfucker

Also, damn, what a cliffhanger!! WHAT SET UP FOR BOOK 2 I AM READY.

In other news, I’m rereading the HARRY POTTER books. It’s magical. The end.

What I’m Doing
I’m actually in class for the summer. For the month of June I’m taking Italian 3 so I can do exit level in the fall and GRADUATE! 😀 I’ll also be taking my final two English classes, and then that’s it. I will be a college graduate. It’s so weird! But for right now I’m in class for three days a week, doing nine hours of conjuntivo and condizitonale and why are there so many freaking verb tenses?

I’ve also been to the theater, recently. I saw Bandstand, with one of my ultimate faves Laura Osnes. It was a really great show–highly underrated in my opinion. Basically, it’s about a bunch of vets after WWII and a military widow forming a band to deal with their trauma. They have hopes of winning a national song competition that’s supposedly all about representing the troops–but is it really?

It’s a great show, full of honesty and emotion. There was an older gentleman sitting in the row in front of me, and I saw him sobbing throughout the second act. I think it does everything right.

I also saw CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY, which is basically the most fun I’ve had at the theater in forever. Also underrated, especially since critics basically bashed it. I have no idea what show they watched.

I also went to the movie theater and watched WONDER WOMAN.

What an amazing movie. I cried so much. Like, just seeing badass women kicking ass together and training hard and pushing each other made me so happy my eyes leaked. And how beautiful a character Diana was, how pure and dedicated and true. She was true to herself no matter what and that was so gratifying and important to see.

And, of course, “I wish we had more time” *slips her the watch* *CUE MORE TEARS*

Oh, so good. I’m hoping I can see it again this weekend with Jess. (side note: Jess is in culinary school now! She’s living the dream!! #BestieIsProud)

As mentioned above, I was also at Bookcon earlier this month. That was an adventure. Here’s a shameless picture of my haul.

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I was up at 5:30 both days and on the train at like 6 so I could be at Javits super early and have a good spot in the queue line. It’s all about getting onto the floor in the morning. What a ride.

Here are some cool people I saw! ❤ ❤

I also spotted Chelsea Clinton signing, and that was REALLY COOL.

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I saw Krysten Ritter too and she’s actually so tall in person??? She just seems really cool.

How many times can I use cool? LET’S SEE.

A movie filmed in my neighborhood recently. Coincidentally, it was called:

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No, actually, they filmed around my corner. So I need to know what exactly this is and when I can watch it because COOL BEANS. Sadly, no hot actors fell madly in love with more, nor did a producer spot me strutting down the street and demand I be an extra in the film.

My friends and I also did an escape room thingy. Guess what–we escaped!! It was HARD, man. I totally felt like the weakest link, but I did discover a secret object and found the secret compartment and was a good secretary taking notes, so I feel like I contributed a little, but those two were completely on top of it and if I hadn’t been with them, I’d still be stuck in that room. Also, look at my cute Victorian prop hat 🙂

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What I’m Thinking About
Getting my Pitch Wars wish list done!!! I’m so excited for all the Pitch Wars stuff to start happening. Speaking of Pitch Wars, I did a query crit earlier, which you can find here. I also might have another one coming up so stay tuned 😉 I also definitely want to do crit giveaways leading up to the sub window, but those will all be done on Twitter.

AND ALSO THE KILLERS HAVE NEW MUSIC. THE KILLERS FINALLY HAVE NEW MUSIC I AM SO EXCITED.

What I’m Eating
I present you with:

What I’m Netflixing
I started Girlboss the other day. I only watched episode 1 and some of episode 2, but I like it!! There’s something about Britt Robertson that’s magnetic in this role. I’ve known her work for a long time, since she made the movie Dan in Real Life (so good, do watch if you haven’t!), and good for her making it happen.

I also just constantly watch random Gilmore Girls episodes. Because it makes me happy and it’s light but also balances the feels right and I just want another female driven show like Gilmore Girls. SOMEONE PLEASE MAKE ONE.

Also not what I’m Netflixing, but plain ol’ watching: I got caught up on Jane the Virgin. I love this show. I guess it’s the closest I can get Gilmore Girls. For once it didn’t end on a brutal cliffhanger! I’m excited to see what happens in season 4. Also, Jane and Rafael?? I thought I had given up on that ship happening. Can they stop playing with my feels? Also, to see them work in current social issues and the resistance is so important and legitimizing. I’m so happy we have this show and for all its success.

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(also omg Captain Swan got married and JMo is leaving OUAT and my heart is just full of feelings cause CS were my otp since 2×05 and that was FIVE YEARS AGO. I literally graduated hs and went to college with them and that is so goddamn special to me. This has been such an important time in my life and their story was there to make me happy and make me a better writer and make me feel things and distract me when I needed a distraction and boost me up with set spoilers of kisses and the fandom on tumblr have basically been so joyous and wonderful and I will miss you CS <3)

I also fell in love with the NBC show Timeless, which I watched On Demand. Lucy and Wyatt are my new slow burn ship and I need this to happen. It was quite dramatic when it got canceled and renewed two days later. But I’m so happy it’s sticking around, and seriously LYATT IS LIFE.

Lucy is a cute history nerd and Wyatt is an army vet with serious trauma, but on top of that he’s also a widow and he loves his dead wife so much, but then this amazing lil nerd comes into his life and she’s so bright and strong and he can feel himself wanting to move forward with his life, but he also can’t let go of this past and IT’S SO AMAZING. Also, the show doesn’t sugarcoat our history. It engages with discussions about racism and sexism and is surprisingly diverse. Timeless is just such a good show. It’s feel good, but also has moments that make you think. And the shipping. The shipping is A+.

What I’m Writing
Goddamn, this is a long blog post.

Long story short, I finished drafting and my first revision pass of a new YA contemporary called #ConcertBook (I blogged about it extensively last time). It’s with readers right now, and while I wait for their notes I GOT A YA FANTASY PLOT BUNNY I AM FULLY EXPLORING. I love it. It’s #monsterbook and I will not tell you anything about it except that it has the coolest pitch I can’t take it.

*yawns* Okay, I am sleepy now. It’s like 2am. I need to get into the blogging mood at better times of the day. Well, good night, and keep fighting the good fight, people! It’s more important now than ever.

With love,

Mic ❤

may 17, 2017

Hello.

So a year ago, I wrote a very difficult blog post.

Today, I can say a year and three days ago, my father attempted suicide. After, he was in a psych ward for three weeks. I was in Chicago when it happened.

It rocked my world in ways I couldn’t imagine. I was afraid to leave my father home alone. I couldn’t touch the kitchen knife he used to cut his wrists. I didn’t know how to talk about it, or what the right way to talk about it was. I still don’t, since my dad never brings it up, and I don’t know if I should ever broach the subject with him.

Things are better. They’re not like they were last year, but they’re not perfectly healthy and okay, either.

To be honest, they were never perfectly healthy or okay.

I have a little story about how books helped.

I read WHEN WE COLLIDED by Emery Lord shortly after everything happened. It was a shock to find a book that somehow represented everything I was feeling at that exact point in time. There were scenes in a mental hospital–a normal mental hospital without evil doctors and gothic monsters around every corner. There was a boy struggling to be a caregiver to his depressed mother. There was a girl struggling with her medication and a mother trying to do the best she could. It made me feel seen. It made me feel like my mom and I weren’t alone. It was cathartic.

Yesterday, I read Emery Lord’s new book THE NAMES THEY GAVE US. In it, Lucy’s parents keep the fact that her mom’s breast cancer returned from her, partly because it’s her prom night and they want her to have a good time. My mom kept my dad’s attempted suicide from me for several days while I was out of town because she wanted me to have a good trip. I understand why she did it, just like Lucy understands why her parents kept it from her. But it still fucking hurts. And somehow, once again Emery Lord made me feel understood.

Books are some special kind of magic.

My dad grew up in a tiny mountain town in Italy, where mental illness wasn’t spoken of. It’s left his mark on him, how he copes, and how he communicates. He’s 68, so there’s not much we can do about it at this point. But the stigma matters because it has shaped people, entire generations. And the work we’re doing now, the work to undo the stigma is so, so important.

I process depictions of suicide or self-harm in books/movies/TV different now. It hits a different nerve. It came up in a lecture this past semester, in History of US Sexuality, where I thought I was safe. I don’t remember what was said, but I just remember freezing up, my brain replaying everything that had happened to my family. I felt sick and unsteady, and I just sat there for a few moments breathing deeply.

My dad’s been sober since, so that’s a good thing that’s happened.

This blog post doesn’t feel very cohesive, and some of that is because my thoughts are very scattered and disorganized on this topic. On this memory. On this event that happened in my life, in my dad’s life, in my mom’s life. I can’t really believe a year has gone by. When I think about it, it’s like it just happened yesterday. But it also feels like it was decades ago.

I guess a year later I can say, don’t give up. The road is scary and daunting. Everything feels insurmountable when it happens. Those first days he was home from the mental hospital were some of the most anxious, petrified out of my mind, exhausting days of my life. But it can be done.

If you or a loved one are struggling with suicidal thoughts, please get help: National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1800-273-8255. The world needs you, your voice, your light. You are light, even if it feels like you aren’t.

december 9, 2016

Holy! Wow, I’ve been gone for awhile. Blame the semester and NaNoWriMo. But today was technically the last day of class (I say technically cause I actually go to my Narrating Childhood class one more time for peer review next week because the prof messed up her syllabus and is refusing to change it -_-), and I’m back to talk to you all!

What I’m Reading
Today, I just finished THE DARK DAYS PACT by Alison Goodman. Ha, it’s so funny to be writing this, because I remember writing about loooooving THE DARK DAYS CLUB months ago and freaking out here. I definitely loved book one more, but not because of a dip in quality of writing. The ship is still A+ perfect and full of emotions, and I love the core group of characters, our team, but I have mixed feelings about what generally happened in the book and how it played out. I’m excited I got to read it a little early, but now so sad I need to wait until 2018 for the last book! *insert that sobbing emoji here*

A few blogs ago I also said I’d be starting THRONE OF GLASS soon. I can report I am a woman of my word! I’ve read every book except EMPIRE OF STORMS just because I found out it ends on a cliffhanger, so I’m trying to spare myself the agony of waiting. I’m already waiting (im)patiently for A COURT OF WINGS AND RUIN (omg need this book need), and I don’t know if I can handle waiting for two Maas books. QUEEN OF SHADOWS ends at a pretty good place where it leaves me wanting more, but isn’t a brutal cliff I’m hanging off.

So my thoughts on the series? I really, really love from CROWN OF MIDNIGHT on. I went into the series wanting to get to CROWN OF MIDNIGHT, as I was told that’s an amazing book, but there were places in THE ASSASSIN’S BLADE and THRONE OF GLASS I was really hooked and invested. But then CROWN OF MIDNIGHT happened, and I was like “yes, boom, that’s it.”

But as for the beginning books, I totally shipped Celaena/Chaol, but I knew that ship was doomed from Twitter and my buddy Brittany. It helped to know that, or else I would have been so sad. I can’t imagine how all you Celaena/Chaol shippers from the beginning felt. Their dance in CROWN OF MIDNIGHT was so beautiful– “for the first time in ten years, Celeana was home.”

For the latter books, omg Lysandra! LYSANDRA. Queen. Love. Her. Manon and her witchy tribe and her Toothless-esque wyvren thing. I love the epic ladies in these books.

What I’m Doing
I think this is the next section? It’s been so long since I wrote a blog I don’t remember my own format, haha. Besides papers and work and trying to crack 200 books for 2016 (I’m at like 183! I CAN DO IT.), I’m totally living on the egde…

… totally.

I was lucky enough to see some of the cast from the Broadway production of ANASTASIA perform recently. I love this movie so, so much, and can’t wait to see it on Broadway. The cast sound beautiful and Journey to the Past totally got me all choked up!

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My lovely friend Brittany made me a pie and we watched ZOOTOPIA, because it is the best movie ever. Fight me.

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I took MetroNorth upstate-ish to walk over the Hudson River!

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I saw the talented and lovely Marissa Meyer on her HEARTLESS tour. (I’m so excited for THE LUNAR CHRONICLES coloring book, too!) I love going to Marissa events, because they’re so different from other book events. And the fantastic Rebecca Soler who narrates the audiobook has been at the last few NYC tour stops, so it’s always spectacular to get to listen to her read. She’s like a walking movie. Here I am amazing them with my wit, ha:

I’m about to start coloring the THRONE OF GLASS series coloring book! In my Pusheen pj pants. Because obviously. The wonderful Kristen sent it to me, because she is, again, wonderful. AND, you should all get excited for her YA fantasy trilogy about dragons and epic ladies.

What I’m Thinking About
When my December Owlcrate Box is going to ship! haha I wants it!

gg blair happy

What I’m Writing
princesspilotbook aka sci-fi WIP aka the book of my dreams!!! So excited to one day be able to share this book with you–hopefully 🙂

What I’m Watching
THE ROYALS ARE BACK! Season 3! I love this show, and my ship Jaspenor. I’m so happy they’re back in my life.

I also managed to stay caught up with Jane the Virgin. I also love this show lots, and can’t wait for it to come back.

I need to finish season 2 of Outlander. It’s one of my plans for winter break.

also omg Teen Wolf 😦 #SaveStiles #StydiaForever “Remember I love you.”

parks dying dead

I also spent Thanksgiving Break watching Gilmore Girls with my Oy With the Poodles Already shirt. I have no regrets, but lots of opinions.

What I’m Listening To
~can you save my, can you save my heavy dirty soul~

Twenty-One Pilots, yessss.

That’s all from me! Hopefully it won’t be so long until I blog again, lovelies! ❤

Be kind to each other,

Mic ❤

september 10, 2016

Hello!!!

What I’m Reading
Wow, I’m actually going to use this section properly and tell you what I’m reading right now.

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i don’t think this is working??

So, yes, I’m reading FURTHERMORE, as you can probably tell. I’m super loving it. It feels so whimsical and new (even though it’s an Alice in Wonderland retelling! which I did not know, ha). I want to read it slowly and savor every bit of it.

Also, the people who designed this book deserve all the awards. It’s gorgeous. Not just the cover, which you can see clearly, but the interior of the book and its illustrations and “chapter” headings are all astounding. I love it SO much.

I’m not much of a middle grade reader, but I picked this up in Target last weekend and was curious since I did read the first book in Mafi’s SHATTER ME series, so I knew I liked her writing. I couldn’t put it down, compelled to keep reading. And here we are now.

What I’m Doing
Guys, I’ve not stopped since my last blog post. I went back to class and it’s just been madness since. I was still adjusting to my new work schedule and still hadn’t quite gotten the balance down between that and social things, but now it’s even more Things That Need To Get Done constantly.

I’m taking four classes this semester.

On Monday and Wednesday I’m in Feminism and American Poetry. I wasn’t sure what to expect with this class at all. I like feminism, but I don’t really know anything about poetry besides the little I did my senior year of high school (and I didn’t like it much). I like watching some Slam Poetry on Youtube, but that’s not the same as reading and analyzing poetry from years ago. But so far the professor is interesting and the great thing I learned is that feminist poetry was meant to be accessible so women of all socioeconomic statuses could join in and write about their own experiences. Which is perfect for me! I’m excited to see what the rest of this class brings.

Tuesdays are a crazy day since I have three classes. One of them is a block class, so I only have it on Tuesdays. That class is Narrating Childhood, technically a comparative literature seminar. We’re going to be reading Proust. And Joyce. And Freud (which I’ve read in too many classes at this point, really).

But also Fun Home, the most modern book on the syllabus (and also a great Broadway show ;)).

Selfie game was really hard that day
I think this was Mother’s Day last year? And I think we got upgraded to the second row?

Tuesday (and Friday) I’m also taking Chaucer. Oh my GOSH. Apparently, by the end of it I’ll be able to read and speak Middle English pretty well. I feel like I have a decent enough grasp of it so far. It’s interesting, and I really like the professor, so we’ll see how it goes! My other class that day is US Immigration and Ethnicity, partly done for a pluralism requirement, and also for my history minor. I’m not overjoyed with it, but I gotta get it done.

Then when I’m not in class or doing stuff for class, I’m usually at work at the library. I’m so boring, ha.

What I’m Thinking About
How I’ve become a shell of a person.

Also what I’m going to have for dinner because I am starving and I need to finish typing this so I can eat.

What I’m Writing
Okay, I have like 0 time, but I DO HAVE THIS IDEA.

I desperately want to sit with this idea for an entire day and just go wild. I do jot some stuff down when I have the time, but it’s just not enough. Hopefully as I adjust to the work load of both class and my actual work ha, I’ll be able to better figure this out.

What I’m Watching Listening To
The new Bastille album came out yesterday and wheeeyyyy I’m stoked!!

despicable me i'm so happy feels

It’s been so long! I feel like I’ve completely exhausted their last one. I still remember seeing them in November 2014.

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omg my SHORT HAIR of 2014

It was such a great show. Bastille is one of my favorite bands–both for their writing and sound. Getting to see them live was a highlight of the year, and also just like, my concert going life in general.

I’ve been looking forward to their second record for so long, but was also nervous they’d disappoint me. It’s so sad when you completely love a first album, and then the band or artist changes their sound or you just don’t like their subsequent work as much.

But ahhhhhhh!!! ❤ ❤ ❤ (commence fangirling) I’m so happy with this album! I feel like there’s so much of it I don’t even understand yet. There are certain songs with an intro/narration before it, and I’m trying to piece together the narrative of the whole album.

I hope all you fellow Bastille fans love the second album, and if you haven’t listened to them yet, here’s your official kick in the butt 😉

That’s all from me for now. Be kind to each other,
Mic ❤

august 30, 2016

Wow! It’s been awhile.

*emerges* *waves*

Well, like anyone that read A COURT OF MIST AND FURY, I kind of fell into a slump last month. I did eventually get over that reading slump, but that’s not the only reason I stayed off the blog. My summer’s been a mix of LotsOfThingsHappeningAtOnce and then NothingHappening.

I’m going to attempt to talk about some of them here.

What I’m Reading
-Right now, I’m reading THE ROSE SOCIETY by Marie Lu. I tore through THE YOUNG ELITES yesterday, and I’m so happy I didn’t have to wait a year between books. I don’t often get to binge a series anymore, or at least start one so close to the release of the final book. If you haven’t read these books yet, I recommend them.

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-LONG MAY SHE REIGN. This is a 2017 release I was super looking forward to, and I nearly died when I got approved on Edelweiss. Ummm, who gave this book permission to be SO good? I can’t wait till you all can read it. It’s got everything: a great main character in Freya and her arc, her love of science, and she has a cat! Her relationship with her best friend is super important, and her romance with Fitzroy is subtle and lovely and doesn’t overwhelm the story. The way she deals with becoming queen after a mass murder is handled really well, especially a small detail like the throne being made for a king and not the large garments of the queen. This is definitely a book to be excited about, and I can’t wait to talk about it more as we get closer to its release. p.s. look at that cover!!

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-I’ve also fallen in love with Kasie West’s YA contemporaries! I read THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US first, and holy crap that voice! It was so funny and addicting. Xander is swoony as hell + setting the book in a doll shop was so inventive. Next I read her latest release P.S. I LIKE YOU, and it was definitely adorable (a bunny! a cute big family! letter writing!), but I just didn’t love it as much. But never fear, THE FILL IN BOYFRIEND hit all the notes it needed to. I have ON THE FENCE from work/the library, and can’t wait to get to it. I’ve read all her books in a day because I just can’t put them down. I wish there were an infinite supply of Kasie West books, but luckily there are 2 more next year!

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-THIS ADVENTURE ENDS. This book! I’ve been looking forward to it since the deal announcement. I love Elmify; I’ve watched her videos for years. Her first book FIRST & THEN was pretty good. I loved the voice even though it didn’t astound me. This book, though. This book is everything. There’s a cute romance, but the heart of the book is really friendship, sprinkled in with Sloane’s father’s new obsession with a fictional show reminiscent of Teen Wolf. And a kickass little sister.

-MEANT TO BE. This was a result of my newfound love for Kasie West. I put out a Twitter call for some more YA contemporaries in the vein of West and Perkins. I’m so glad I read this. It was adorable. There’s an adorable Waking Up Together scene that’s actually one-sided but perfect, a first kiss in the rain, and a plot twist I did not see coming!

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-JUST LISTEN. An oldie, but a goodie. I haven’t read too many Sarah Dessen novels, but this was my fifth. It’s just an inch behind THE TRUTH ABOUT FOREVER as my favorite.

Okay, and I think we’ve hit on all the books I’ve loved more than I thought I could since the last time we spoke 🙂

What I’m Doing
So, I go back to class tomorrow, and I’m very sad about that. I also started back at work recently. The library finally reopened after being closed for like 18 months while it was being renovated. But let me tell you some of things I’ve done since we last spoke.

-I was at two midnight release parties for HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD.

We found Hagrid and Professor McGonagall…

There were owls everywhere…

And then finally!! …

Also, my face ended up in the New York Times…

-I also got to hang out with my CP and friend Michelle when she came to visit. It was so great to finally meet her and get to spend time together. I even had my first drink with her on a swanky rooftop bar that was too cool for me.

We also met up with another #pitchwars writer Kat and had a lovely afternoon/evening together chatting books and writing, while also seeing Beth Revis and Lindsay Ribar at their book event.

-Following this trend of meeting up with writer friends, Alwyn came to town!

We had a lovely breakfast, and talking to her really helped me get my butt in gear to write something new. More on that below. Also look at this mountain of French toast with caramelized bananas.

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-As one last hurrah for the summer, Jess and I hit the beach last week.

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What I’m Thinking About
I’m SO excited for the Crooked Kingdom launch! It’s sooooo soooooon!

What I’m Writing
Oh man. I feel like I’m all or nothing for this section. My last few posts have been like, “I have this idea!” and now I’m gonna drop a bomb. I have a first draft!! Yup, I wrote another YA contemporary that I’m so excited about.

Let me take you through a little bit of the process (aka my favorite tweets from a frenzied drafting period):

And the grand finale!!

What I’m Watching
I miss gymnastics! 😦

That’s all from me for now. Be kind to each other,
Mic ❤