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Thriller Recommendations| Halloween Reads

I haven’t been reading at my usual pace due to an influx in creative writing. That’s a good thing, right? Since I haven’t done much bookish posts recently, I thought I’d recommend some thriller reads. Halloween is near and I know everybody’s looking for a little scare. Now, these books are thrillers mostly in the psychological sense or mysteries if you will. They’re not haunting horrors and it won’t scare the skin off your bones but they do have twists and turns and I enjoyed them quite much.

Into the Water by Paula Hawkins

The book starts with the death of Nel Abbott, allegedly drowned. We get the picture that Nel wasn’t liked very much by her community because she was dredging up all sorts of stories from the past, surrounding the deaths of the women who drowned at the drowning pool. It’s soon learned that a few weeks before, Katie Whittaker, a fifteen year old girl who was best friends with Nel’s daughter, Lena, had met a similar fate in the drowning pool.

Detectives Sean Townsend and Erin Morgan try to find out if there was any foul play in the deaths or if it was suicide, like the many who had died there before.

Past events are tied with current events and there’s themes of love, hate, jealously, abuse, all of the above. I finished this book very quickly and would recommend it to anyone who loves a murder mystery.

The Night Bird by Brian Freeman

The Night Bird Starts with a girl Lucy riding in the car with her best friend. As traffic gets stuck on the bridge Lucy is somewhat getting paralyzed by her fear of bridges. Meanwhile her best friend freaks out for no reason and jumps of the bridge.

Once Frost Easton starts putting the pieces together, it’s revealed that Dr. Frankie Stein’s patients are being targeted by someone called the night bird. Dr. Stein is a psychiatrist that alters patients’ painful memories, for instance if they have a fear of something or a bad experience. The Night Bird is out for revenge and send them on a wild chase, with a lot of plot twists and turns.

Before I Go To Sleep by SJ Watson

Christine Lucas awakes every morning without any memory of who she is and who she is married to. Pictures tell her that she is married to a man named Ben. She believes herself to be in her twenties but in reality, she is actually in her forties. With the help of Dr. Nash Christine discovers the truth about herself and the disturbing things that accompany that truth.

Happy Reading!

xo Kat

In This Moment by A.D. McCammon| Book Review

In This Moment by [McCammon, A.D.]Book Title: In This Moment

Author: A.D. McCammon

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Summary:  Elizabeth Shea is a widowed mother of two who’s having a hard time healing from the loss of her husband, Xander. She meets Brendon Scott, a school counselor with a disturbing past of his own. Brendon likes Lizzy(as she’s called throughout the book) from the get go, and although it takes her a while to offer her friendship, she eventually does.

My Review:

In This Moment is a sweet, cozy tale about second chances, healing and love. I’m a very character driven reader and I loved the way Brendon’s carefree attitude balanced Lizzy’s restricted one. The story revolves around their friendship which eventually blossoms into more. The author did a great job assessing the feelings of her characters, something I appreciate in the romance genre. It didn’t feel rushed at all, just progressive. Rated four stars on Goodreads, I think this is a great fast paced read for anyone looking for a fulfilling story about two broken people coming together.

Thanks for reading!

xo Kat

How Important is Momentum| Fiction Writing

I stumbled across a video about the importance of momentum when writing a book and although I know it’s a logical way of thinking, I don’t always apply that with my own projects. I allow many factors to affect me from completing a manuscript.

Basically, having momentum means finishing a book, at least a first draft. This is something I’m always struggling with. When I first started out writing books(not poetry), I had momentum. I wrote for a set four hours a day and in four to five months, I had a first draft and revisions completed. The book was a huge embarrassment to me mainly because I feel cheesy about writing romance and sexy times. Also, the book needs a little work before I republish it. It’s an ebook by the way. But…the accomplished feeling of having finished something that took sweat and tears was a great one.

Somewhere along the lines, I lost sight of the fact that I was writing for myself. I wasn’t writing for money, an audience or competition. In my head, I just wanted to write what I wanted to read. I wanted to bring the characters that I had invested so much time into to life. So I wrote, and wrote until I completed my story. Beginning, plot, climax. It was all there.

My insecurities started to appear after publishing my second book which I removed due to it needing a little more work. What made me feel incompetent as a writer wasn’t my newness to the field, it was all of the other things that comes with writing that I didn’t have before. It’s been hard for me during this journey to share my work as it’s always been something very private, something therapeutic in my life. Sharing my work made me feel exposed in a way. Now I’m not that writer that dislikes criticism because I believe our readers are where we grow and learn from. You learn what you’re doing wrong, what you’re doing right and what you need to improve on.

I haven’t been able to finish one manuscript this year despite that fact I wrote over 50,000 words(different projects). Some of these projects began all the way back in 2016. It’s a failure, and I hate it, and I try so hard to work on it.

Coming back to the video about momentum. We have all read books that we didn’t like and books that we loved and adored but they all had something in common. They were completed. My take as a writer is not everyone’s going to love your work and you won’t be an established author until you write and write and learn from it but the importance of finishing, getting to the last page is very high. This is something a writer just needs to do no matter what.

Stressing over an audience and what you think they want to read is one of the most detrimental things you can do to yourself as a writer. You have a voice, you have a story and it’s your right to tell it the way you see fit. And I will touch on the subject in another post of do’s and don’t’s in writing and why I think it’s wrong to give people such a stenciled idea of a creative field.

Writing fiction isn’t like copywriting and I’m very much in my comfort zone with researching and writing articles but when it comes to creativity I let fear overtake the pen. I joke about it as writer’s block but it isn’t so funny when you feel like you wasted an entire year not doing what you love to do. So my takeaway from this video that I looked at is to have momentum. Just write. Just finish. Editing, formatting, promotions, all of that comes after. It really shouldn’t be our focal point when there is a story to be told.

As always, thanks for reading. Drop me a line in the comments and let me know your thoughts.

xo Kat

 

Should Writers Only Write What They Know? | Writing Fiction

What really started me out writing stories and poetry was “Composition Class” in primary school. As early as the age of six, I had to write essays (called compositions sometimes) based on pictures or a topic. It would start with a first line sometimes, and sometimes it would be titled something like “A Day at The Beach” or “The Dog.” This required critical and creative thinking from very early on for me, and often I would slip into daydreams about different things…writing in my head so to speak. During my last year of primary school, I really had to perfect my essays as it was a core part of our exams for high school entry. I even had extra after school lessons to broaden my knowledge and understanding of how 2-3 page stories work. Introduction, body, climax, etc.

One piece of advice I got from a teacher around that time(age 10) was to write what I know. I believed that, and I applied that but I also believed that it wasn’t meant to be taken so literally. Most of my essays were based on fantasy ideas, rings with superpowers, kids with superhuman strengths. I had neither of those, so where did that come from? Which brings me to my next question…”Should writers only write what they know?”

My simple answer, pertaining to my own experiences as a content creator is no. But there’s more to it than just no. It’s understanding how to utilize what you know and add to it.

I’m inserting a disclaimer here as usual that I am no scholar or established author, just a person who writes with a take on writing what you know.

If we were to confine everything that we know only into our stories, it probably wouldn’t work out too well. As writers, we do have an audience to write for and we shouldn’t treat them poorly. Readers need to feel, and most writers can provide that but can we really provide a dynamic visual for our readers if we don’t tap into our creativity? To me, writing is an art, similar to painting, although painting is very complex to a person like me. But the creative similarities are there.

For instance, many authors create epic works of fiction. To name a few, J.K. Rowling, Stephen King, George R.R. Martin, Rick Riordan and many more. Their works are related to the fantasy or adventure genre. What this means is that these writers really tapped into a special place of creativity. Rowling didn’t attend a wizardry school and neither did Tolkien meet elves or dwarfs to get familiar enough to write about them.

Do I write what I know? Yes, my past experiences has taught me a lot about emotions, feelings. And whatever genre or story you tell, the portraying of an emotion is there, jealously, anger, love, lust, happiness, pain, rejection. These are things we know and write about better as time goes by. There are still emotions that I can’t perfectly pen out on paper and it’s because I’ve never had that particular situation to deal with so I don’t write it. But when it comes to imagination, world building, character profiling….let your creative juices flow. Just let go.

As a writer, I don’t know everything. I don’t know most of my characters when I get an idea for a book or where the story is going. Recently I had a little struggle with writing about a cold climate place that I have never been to. Is it doable? Sure it is. The research & plotting part of your novel or story is very critical and should be given adequate time to brainstorm and develop before even beginning to write chapter one.

Do you have any struggles in your writing process? Tell me all about it in the comments!

Thanks for stopping by!

xo Kat

How Not to Write: The Anti-Writing Writing Method

Drew Chial

So your writing is flowing too fast. The spark of inspiration has set your mind ablaze and your fingers hurt from typing. Stephen King says you should write 3,000 words a day and you’re lapping him: 6,000 words a day, 9,000 words a day. You’re so prolific your beta readers feel like you’re swamping them with homework and your inbox is teeming with acceptance letters. Even your coffee table is overflowing with magazines and collections you’ve been featured in. Everybody is buying what you’re selling. Hollywood has optioned so many of your stories that all your liquid assets are tied up in forthcoming films.

Your writer’s workshop has added nights to discuss your work. You to try pump the breaks, to give the other writers around you a chance to catch up, but you finish stories in line at Chipotle. You’re frequently asked; “Are you typing right now?” while you’re…

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New Blog Look!

If you’ve been reading my blog previously, you’re wondering who is Bookish Kat. I changed my blog name from Coffee Doll Chronicles to Bookish Kat. I wanted something simplistic that also incorporates my name so after much thought and consideration, I think it’s safe to say I’m sticking with Bookish Kat. I’ll still be writing about personal growth and covering topics on parenting and inspiration; it won’t all be about books and writing. As you’ll see, I also changed my tagline to “the pen is mightier than the sword.” Visit my previous post where I discuss my reasons for doing so.

I also made some minute changes to my blog such as adding goodreads & instagram widgets so you can follow and chat with me on there as well. As always, thanks for reading.

xo Kat

The Pen is Mightier Than The Sword

“The pen is mightier than the sword” is an expression coined by English author, Edward Bulwer-Lytton. It’s main idea is the indication that communication is better than violence.

This is a sentence or phrase that resonates deep with me, in my own personal way. I’m not a violent person who turned writer overnight (haha). Writing has helped me overcome many fears and insecurities. It opened up doors of happiness that I didn’t know existed. Writing served as a form of therapy even when I weren’t old enough to understand all of the pain, rejection and loneliness that came with being a young adult. I wrote books of poetry during that period and I’ve since learned that writing is the only way I can truly communicate my emotions as well as put everything into perspective.

Before deciding to take on being an author, I wrote pages and pages of deep feelings completely unaware of what my ability to write was doing for me in a positive way. And, for that, one of the truest statements is that the pen really is mightier than the sword. I could’ve handled things differently in my life but I always turned to my pen. Now I’m thirty years old and holding a pen is my strength.

xo Kat

Thank You for 100+ readers!

I hit the 100 subscriber mark sometime last month and I’m yet to mention my thank yous for following my blog that’s all over the place. It’s been incredibly insane these last few months as I had some visitors but I’m here now. Back on the grind, slipping into my normal routine.

I actually should be blogging more than I really do, and put more effort into the the content I post on here. I’d love to use the excuses of kids, life and work which involves a lot of writing as it is but blogging is something I love to do and I should just do it.

I’d like to do a giveaway on here or maybe my instagram but I have no idea how to go about doing these things or what to even give away. Should I do a book or bookmarks?

Let me know in the comments what kind of giveaways you do on your blog.

xo Kat

Blog Name Changes

This is something I’ve been struggling with all of my blogging life. I’ve always jumped around and changed the name of my blog depending on the content or stage in life. I wouldn’t dare use one of those insane screen names I used as an adolescent. I even changed platforms in the last year. Previously I used Blogger but there’s only so much you can do with that after a while.

I’ve been brainstorming some new and old names for a domain name and I can’t seem to find something that sticks, something that I’m in love with. I highly doubt I’ll be using coffeedollchronicles as a permanent domain name. So, this is my cry for help fellow bloggers and readers. I’ll explain my situation and leave some suggestions for you to help me with.

When I first started blogging, my initial idea was to share my more painful experiences to help other people. Gradually, I started writing about parenting and books. Books has grown to be a wider topic on my blog in the past year and although I do identify as a book blogger, I don’t want to take away the inspiration and personal growth aspect from my blog. So there’s my dilemma. Do I add a bookish title to my blog? How to incorporate everything? I’d prefer using my name in the domain I’m about to purchase. Here are my suggestions so far. Let me know how it sounds to you as a reader and if you have any name suggestions. Thank you 🙂

*My full name is Katrina in case you don’t know because I always  sign off with Kat.

http://www.thekatchronicles.com

http://www.bookishkat.com

http://www.bookjunkiekat.com

Those are the only three I have so far. I appreciate all the help I can get with this.

Thanks for stopping by. XO Kat

Hovering Irritates the Daylights Out of Me

I’ve never really been conscious of this until recently and I think it stems from something in my childhood. I really hate people standing too close behind me or hovering if you will. I’m sure it happens to a lot of other people, just none that I know of personally. It may seem like such a trivial matter so I don’t always talk about it but lately, it’s been getting out of hand. And it’s not just strangers either, it’s anyone, family members etc. I don’t have this issue with my kids standing behind me, however.

Due to it’s mass effect of my life as a writer, because I sit at my computer a lot, I’ve been wanting to write about it and carefully explore why I feel this way. More than just irritating, it’s borderline aggravating and gives me anxiety. My hands start shaking and I feel this intense need to lash out, almost like I’m defending myself from something or someone. I try so hard not be this way, but I can literally tell someone to “fuck off” from just standing behind me.

I’ve been thinking about it recently and I brushed it off as maybe PMS or just lack of sleep, you know general moodiness. But there’s nothing moody about the way hovering triggers something so profound inside of me that I can’t completely comprehend or explain. I dug a little deeper into my past and my reasons for getting anxiety by a person just walking or standing behind me has become so much more clearer, although I’m no expert and maybe I’m wrong. But I think I can pinpoint a few scenarios that gave me anxiety during childhood that may have a connection.

Number one. During tests or exams, we’d have these instructors walking up and down the classroom, HOVERING over students’ shoulders, reading what they were writing. I mean come on, most of us think we’re writing crap and wouldn’t even read over our work before handing it in. Having someone hovering over your shoulder, judging and making faces while you’re writing a test that may affect your entire academic future is nerve wrecking. I think this is one of the instances where innocently, a teacher hovering put some sort of fear into me, and perhaps that’s why I’m always so embarrassed to let people read my fiction writing.

Exposure. Having someone looking over my shoulder makes me feel exposed, it really does. People are entering my personal space and from behind me where I can’t see their reactions in real time, leaves me with a feeling of vulnerability and mistrust. Perhaps, my experiences in life makes me mistrusting as well as the lack of privacy I had during childhood and teenage years. I know what you’re thinking, children don’t need privacy. Oh but they do in way. Thoughts and feelings should be private and not scrutinized. Children shouldn’t be dictated not to feel or think a certain way. I had very little control of these kind of things and for a long time I had to suppress who I really am.

It’s a far connection to feeling traumatized by someone hovering behind me but trust me, it’s there. And I’m not sure it’ll ever be different.

Leave me a line in the comments…what absolutely triggers you off?

xo Kat