Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Coffee & Blogs No. 26

Hey pretties. How have you been? I am living the high life on April Vacation, which means reading in play cafes and parks and working on my summer outfit (I shared the details on Facebook, but spoiler: running shorts or yoga pants, cool tshirt, unwashed hair). This is my practice run for summer in general. I'm hoping to get our family on a good schedule, and I'm planning to hire a sitter at least once a week so I can get some writing done. This prospect exhilarates me.

I have 1000 links to share with you, which is due to a slight tweak in my blog consumption. I realized recently that my reader (I use Feedly) was pared down to really specific interests: I was following a bunch of book blogs, one or two astrology blogs, and a few social justice sites. My tumblr was similarly stacked, and my Twitter feed was causing me a huge level of anxiety, as I was pretty much ONLY following a large number of activists.  All these things are important, and I'm learning a ton by really monitoring what media I expose myself to, and seeking out voices that I wouldn't normally hear. That being said, I was kind of depressed. I needed to add in a little filler, for my own mental health. There is nothing wrong with reading about the lack of representation for people of color in young adult literature, and there is nothing wrong with reading an image heavy post about how someone is painting their sunroom aqua and sourcing vintage fabrics for couch cushions. Without further ado:

Making friendships online is something I've been really fascinated with over the past few months. I've been meeting new people through Instagram, Camp NaNoWriMo, and other contributors to Book Riot, and some of my best friends on the internet are people I've met through blogging (Hi, Molly!). At first I thought it was a recent thing, but thanks to fanfiction and Livejournal, I had friends all over the world in the early 00's. This article about embracing online friendships is what brought me back to following A Beautiful Mess, one of my first blog follows way back when.

This. The Caucasian's Guide to Talking About Race. Needs no further elaboration, because honestly, as a mostly straight white person, my biggest job right now is to listen (and read, and share.)

Rookie was the smartest add to my blog reader- they post A TON of articles, but I've found mostly gems in the tide. Even though April is half over, these horoscopes are still worth sharing.

Aerie screwed up with this April Fools' Joke mocking body positivity for men. It should not be surprising that I have a crush on the first and last guy pictured.

Calm, rational advice for handling the panic-inducing experience of seeing someone else crying in public. I'm constantly trying to to cultivate life skills that make me nicer and less awkward in the wild, and this is perfect.

This article about early internet faves TOOK ME BACK. The comments are even better (The Toast is easily my favorite place to read comments) and below is my favorite.
When I was maybe fourteen I used to frequent a forum for teen parents, in the guise of Dan and Lissy, two teen parents. I posted about their pregnancy and eventually their son Henry.

"I kept track of Lissy's pregnancy with weekly email newsletters, found them an apartment from a newspaper classified ad, made them a budget and even somehow signed them up for coupons. For years afterward, my parents received mail for Dan and Lissy, such as information on joining the Army and free samples of formula."

I spent a period of time last month obsessed with articles about time management. This is one of my favorite ways to avoid actually managing my time. Ask MetaFilter is one of my favorite places for advice. Procrastinate by reading about productivity here, here, and here.
On writing as a hobby, your novel as a "side thing," and the embarrassment of calling yourself a writer when you feel like no one is ever going to read your book. This is something I've been feeling viscerally lately, especially as I've started following lots of indie authors and agents/publishers on Twitter and seeing people celebrate their "book birthdays." I hear a loud clear voice say "How conceited that you would think that would ever be you." I'm scared to try for it because failure is a very real possibility and I hate doing anything hard/risky. But that's kind of pathetic, so I'm working on it.  Nova Ren Suma wrote this beautiful essay about her "prepublished" life, and this interview with Rainbow Rowell was very encouraging to me. The below quote especially hit me in the heartsores.

"And also – this is absolute truth I’m about to drop, and not a joke – if you want to write books, and you’re not rich, something else has to give. For me, it was cleaning. I had two kids and a more-than-full-time job when I wrote my first three books. I never, ever, ever would have finished if I didn’t let the house go. We didn’t live in our own filth – we still did dishes and laundry — and my husband (who also worked) took on most of it.

I just decided that I would look back and regret not being present in my kids’ lives. And I would regret never trying to write a novel. But I wouldn’t regret living out of laundry baskets."

Inexpensive (or free!) ways to treat yourself via Yes and Yes: here and here.

I finished Gilmore Girls. It is the first show I have watched completely from episode 1 to the finale. Ever. I am now SUPER curious/excited for the revival. I also started Supernatural, and so far it reminds me of a sexy Xfiles that makes me scared to sleep on the couch unless Ben is out here, too.

Currently reading: THE GIRL FROM EVERYWHERE by Heidi Heiling, MORE HAPPY THAN NOT by Adam Silvera, and about to start REBEL OF THE SANDS by Alwyn Hamilton. I also have a towering stack of YA with make out scenes to scan for my next article. Fav makeout scene you'd like to share?!

I am having the hardest time finishing Notorious RBG, our March #beyourownbookclub pick. I definitely think it's the format- this is a highly visual book, and the Kindle is not it's best venue. It's not almost the end of April, so I'm obviously way behind on our picks, but I'm hoping to start fresh in May. Suggestions are welcome!

That's all for now, friends! Keep up the good work.

(image credits 1, 2, 3)

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At April 20, 2016 at 11:21 AM , Blogger Molly said...

You're my favorite, Ashlie! :) Can't wait for #beyourownbookclub in May! XOXO

At May 1, 2016 at 6:31 AM , Blogger ashlie said...

You sweetie! I was thinking of you while picking out our next book!


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