November Monthly Chit Chat

November News 2014

This month was a New November for a lot of things:

  • a new home
  • new neighborhood
  • new home life and style
  • new relationships
  • new UIL coach  (read about my kids’ practice event here!)
  • new perspectives

In all, it has been a good month. Quiet and relaxing during the latter half. The only thing I don’t like is that it gets dark at about 6 PM, so I feel like I need to go to bed!

My two brothers at home have shown an increased interest in my life, which is nice to see. The brother in Hawaii is getting homesick, which is really hard on my mom. No one in our family has ever lived more than a few hours’ drive away, so living nearly 4,000 miles away is beginning to take its toll. This, however, was the clincher for my mom to finally give in and get a computer and Internet…Yes, we grew up without the Internet!

In November I put out an ALL CALL for guest posts. I am still in need of guests for December, January, February and March! See more about what’s happening each month in the Months of Review section below.

Most Popular Posts

 Henge review and giveaway

A Year in the Secret Garden review and giveaway

Thoughts on Thursday: Starting Anew

Other Posts of Note

An Ad for my Perfect Co-blogger

My Top Ten Books for 2015

All Call for Guest Posts

Tours & Blasts

Reading Challenges

November was my month to read more diverse books for the Fall Months of Review. Sadly, with all that was going on I slacked off quite a bit and only got to one of my choices for November Novelties. However, it was a very big reading commitment for me, so I am proud and feel accomplished even in reading this one book!

In November I completed my Historical Fiction Challenge, with my November Novelties book as the clincher to meet my medieval goal.

I also made strides on my Bookish Bingo – Holiday Edition card. I am so close to having multiple bingos; I only am a few books away. My teaching partner actually gave me one of her husband’s books to meet the New Orleans setting spot! I have my card displayed in the hallway outside my classroom so my students can see what I am doing and how close I am to some bingos. They have been eyeing my bingo card and reminding me of what I need for a bingo.

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I am still slacking on my NetGalley & Edelweiss Challenge and my Non-Fiction Challenge. When I have some more time to sit and review books in my Kindle, my goal is to really work on my requested books from NetGalley. I am really going to focus on raising my review rate in the new year.

I am also needing to finish up four letters for the Alphabet Soup Challenge. I only need J, U, X, and Z. I had picked out two books for J and U, but they were much more suited to be reviewed in October. I think I will save them for next year, and find reads for those tricky letters sooner in the year!

I surpassed my Goodreads Challenge in July. My goal was to read one book for each week of the year, so 52 books total. I am quickly approaching twice that many books for the year! It is exciting to see this much progress compared to the year before, when I had MUCH more free time. It just goes to show what determination and commitment can do for you!

Months of Reviews by Genre

December is Home for the Holidays!

November was a bit of a dud in terms of the Months of Reviews by Genre, but get ready for a jam-packed December schedule! I am quite excited about what will be happening around the blog during December. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I have in putting it all together. 🙂

I’ve already decided to continue the Fall Months of Review through the beginning of 2015. I like the idea and that I am focusing on one particular genre all month long.

I am hoping to really get some great content planned for the beginning of 2015, and I am still looking for guests to take over the blog during these months! You can be an author, blogger, reader, reviewer, editor or publisher! I don’t care who you are; I just want to share your message with others.

January will be dedicated to reviews and guest posts of historical fiction.

February will feature not only my birthday, but also chick lit.

March will be a melting pot of children’s literature, middle grades and YA.

Reading Updates

Books Read in November 2014:

Blood-Entwines-cover-july-2014-668x1024  Match-Maker-Book-Cover  23151530  23201801

  8125716   18887827   16146480

Upcoming Reads for December 2014: 

17208391 13565300  21918947

Ginnie-West-Adventures-Collage-of-Covers-706x1024

23497477  23560735  19085295  13542677

 

  • Her Christmas Bonus | Rain Danvers
  • Forever Christmas | Joanne Jaytanie, Sharon Kleve, Angela Ford, Elle Rush
  • Christmas at Copper Mountain | Jane Porter
  • What Happens at Christmas | Victoria Alexander

23620356 18281519 18857458 21888214

  • Santa’s Wrong Turn | Cyndie Raye
  • A Kitten for Christmas | Elysa Hendricks
  • Family for Christmas | Mona Ingram
  • The Glassblower | Petra Durst-Benning

October Monthly Chit Chat

October News

My kids are now in the full swing of the school year. These students were in the middle school setting last year, and they are actually in the same hallway and rooms from 5th grade. (This year 5th grade went back down to the elementary level.) For some of them, they are adjusting well to middle school life. For others, it is quite an adjustment. As a middle school teacher, we hope they seek out the hands that are there to help them. Sometimes it’s hard to see them make bad choices while ignoring the aid of others.

I had my first flat tire (and actually a second one, too!). A nice guy who was picking up someone at my complex helped me change it. After getting it fixed that afternoon, I noticed it was a shiny, brand new screw. I say this because someone peeled out of our complex right when I started backing out of my spot and realized my tire was flat. Suspicious much?

The neighbors’ two dogs have tried to attack Baby and me three times. One looks part Chihuahua and miniature pinscher, and almost bit Baby each time. When it’s pitch black outside and all of a sudden some little squirt is barking and jumping up Baby’s leg with shiny teeth, that’s beyond my limit. All three times the owner didn’t have them on leashes, which is required.

Picture1

We left about 9 P< on the 21st to drive to Ft. Benning, Georgia and came back that Saturday. It was a long trip, but I enjoyed the ride…again…this time from the driver’s seat. 🙂 It was a refreshing and familiar trip, and I loved going back to the National Infantryman Museum.

Right before the trip, D announced that he didn’t love me anymore and left. We are working figuring out how to tie up all the loose ends and pay off our shared debt. We have both moved out and have to pay for the apartment through December (ugh). Despite how much I hate moving, I realized something: it’s different when you know you’re moving and preparing in advance for it compared to suddenly having to move. It didn’t seem as bad this time around, even with the stress and upset. I suppose it’s because there was no time to build up the angst. Baby and I are safely ensconed in our new home, creating a new life and making new memories. It is hard in the moments when I know she is looking for him. I can’t imagine what it would be like if she were our child, and I thank God that this happened now instead of later down the road with a marriage and family to reconcile. I have a new appreciation for divorcees.

It was also hard to find the right response when one of my students asked to see my engagement ring after shaking my hand to come into class one day. This particular student actually started crying, and the entire class started asking questions. I used the work we did in class that day to help in explaining, and I think that helped them make connections and see that the themes we were talking about could be things they face down the road with friends, family and relationships.

Through all of this, I have a new appreciation for my coworkers and my students. They have banded together to give back the love and support I’ve given to them and they are rising me up during this time. Even though I’m resolved in my decisions, my heart still hurts and I still have my moments when it feels like I’m in an alternate reality. Surely it can’t be real, is what I think, but it is and they have been so kind and compassionate.

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I was Robin for Halloween and Baby was a turtle. She didn’t much mind her costume, as long as I left her head alone. She got to have fun running around while I relaxed and handed out candy with friends. There was even one kid who came to the door who took one look at me, pointed and screamed, “My nemesis!” It was Harley Quin, the sibling was the Joker and the mom was Poison Ivy! We had a good laugh.

Tours & Blasts

Challenges

October is a month of so many things happening in the blogosphere.

I took part in the So Behind! Review-a-thon to take care of some housekeeping things for the blog. It’s so easy to keep putting it off. You can see my challenge post here.

I discovered that Bookish Bingo was continuing in the fall with the Holiday Edition. My page can be found here.

In October I completed…

Fall Months of Reviews by Genre

Folks, it’s here!! Yep, we are fast approaching fall, and with that I will be featuring one genre each month. This idea came upon me in the spring as a means to clean out my ever growing TBR pile on my Kindle. September brought sizzling romances and October ushered in the crime and mystery genres.

November will be dedicated to reviews of diverse reads.

December will be dedicated to reviews of all things Christmas and winter.

I am even going to continue through January, February, March and April with featured genres each month. I am hoping to really get some great content planned for the beginning of 2015!

January will be dedicated to reviews and guest posts of historical fiction.

February will feature not only my birthday, but also chick lit.

March and April will be a melting pot of children’s literature, middle grades and YA.

Reading Updates

Read in October:

11607446   19561924   20586931    Turkey-Cover-1024x1024 Mothers-Love-Can-Conquer-Any-Fear-cover 20702001 20702002

A-Year-in-the-Secret-Garden-cover  Screen-Shot-2014-10-07-at-7.14.18-AM

On My Plate for November:

These are only a few of the titles I will be reading from my Kindle for November.

8125716   11083905   16131634   20744345

September Monthly Chit Chat

September News

September went by in a flash! This is the last week in the first six weeks of the school year, and as the year has gotten underway I have become exhausted.

Daniel got rear-ended this month AND messed up his knee at work. His truck had minimal damage (even though it was $1600!) and was paid by the insurance of the guy who hit the lady who then hit Daniel. I’d hate to see that guy’s insurance costs now! Daniel was cleared to go back to work with no further need for therapy, but I am nervous that he might have another mishap. I know part of it is me just being paranoid, but he works HARD everyday delivering in the downtown Austin area. He goes up and down more stairs now than we did at Texas State going up the stairs in front of the Alkek Library.

fcc1a76b998893b11e5adee850b2e319   Steps1-1

Thoughts on Thursdays ~ Discussion Post

I feel that I stepped up my discussion posts this month. Well, except for my confessions one. Go check out the discussions and chime in!

Tours & Blasts

I really parred down my commitments this month. Here’s a quick recap of September tour reviews, blasts and giveaways:

cbbtourhost

Challenges

Oh, September.

In September I participated in the Tackle Your TBR Challenge. My goal was six books. You can check out my challenge post here, and my wrap up post here.

September 30 also brings the Summer Bookish Bingo to an end. Check out my original post here, and my wrap up post here.

In September I completed…

As you can see, I am getting making a little headway for some of my goals. I really need to work on my NetGalley/Edelweiss Challenge and my Non-Fiction Challenge. I think I have a few books I will review in November that will boost me closer to these two goals.

Next month I am taking part in the So Behind! Review-A-Thon hosted by Krystal at Books Are My Thing. The Review-A-Thon will run from October 10-12.

Fall Months of Reviews by Genre

Folks, it’s here!! Yep, we are fast approaching fall, and with that I will be featuring one genre each month. This idea came upon me in the spring as a means to clean out my ever growing TBR pile on my Kindle. September will be sizzling with romances!

October will be dedicated to reviews of all crimes and mysteries.

November will be dedicated to reviews of diverse reads.

December will be dedicated to reviews of all things Christmas and winter.

Reading Updates

Read in September:

Bluegrass Undercover  Bluegrass State of Mind  Brazilian Job  17255938  Scornfully Yours  396000

On My Plate for October:

19561924 19058665 21863863 11512394 19040024 20586931 21850762

August Monthly Chit Chat

August News

August ushers in the beginning of the new school year, and with it goes my freedom. I returned to the classroom. I was proud that I only spent two days prior to our service and work days setting up my classroom, but I am so thankful I took those two days to do so. Our two half-day workdays? They were filled with meetings, still.

I am hoping my class sizes stay relative to what they are currently. Last year, I had 85 students in on-level classes and 53 Pre-AP students between two classes. I had over 130 students, and my counterpart had barely 105. It seems this year we flip flopped – and I will take it! Here’s to hoping! 😉

I finally got a letter from JB. It’s taking a week for incoming and outgoing mail out of Ft. Benning. I just sent off my second letter last week. Oh, and look what I found!

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The family feud has escalated. My uncle had citations served, and pretty much all of the relevant and important information in the document — that he and my grandfather signed and swore to as true and prepared by his attorney — was wrong. The item has been placed on the court docket. It will be very interesting to see if he throws a fit in the courtroom because he can’t keep his cool when the judge corrects his — and his attorney’s — errors.

My jungle is doing marvelous! My mother is jealous.

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Thoughts on Thursdays ~ Discussion Post

I finally started discussion posts! I know, I know. I am so behind on the times.

Things that piqued my interest in August:

Tours & Blasts

In both my Tour Organization and Minimizing posts, I talked about downsizing my tour and blast efforts. Even though school starting means that I will have less time to read, I want to amp up my reading for the review end of the blog.

That doesn’t mean I’m doing away with tours and blasts altogether. I don’t think I could ever leave Candace or Renee; they are just too good at what they do! They make my part easy as pie.

Here’s a quick recap of August tour reviews, blasts and giveaways:

Challenges

August also brought along the Beat the Heat read-a-thon. My goal was to read 8 books. Check out the challenge and my goals here.

In August I completed…

  •  70 / 52 books for Goodreads 2014 Reading Challenge
  •  8 / 25 books for NetGalley & Edelweiss Challenge
  • 21 / 26 books for Alphabet Soup Challenge (I only need J, N, U, X and Z!)
  • 53 / 20 books for Women’s Challenge
  • 11 / 15 books for Historical Challenge
  • 2 / 5 books for Non-Fiction Challenge
  • 42  / 50 books for Summer Reading Challenge
  • 20 / 25 books for Bookish Bingo!

As you can see, I am getting close for most of my goals! I have already taken care of two, and I have my Summer Reading and Bookish Bingo all planned out. I also have plans to meet my NetGalley challenge through my Fall Months of Review by Genre…which might also boost up my historical reading for the Historical challenge.

Fall Months of Reviews by Genre

Folks, it’s here!! Yep, we are fast approaching fall, and with that I will be featuring one genre each month. This idea came upon me in the spring as a means to clean out my ever growing TBR pile on my Kindle. September will be sizzling with romances!

September will be dedicated to reviews of romances.

October will be dedicated to reviews of all crimes and mysteries.

November will be dedicated to reviews of diverse reads.

December will be dedicated to reviews of all things Christmas and winter.

Reading Updates

Read in August:

cover1000 22493296 An American Girl in Italy unnamed (4) 22066928 unnamed (5) Print 22081556 15717986 Neurotica 22464926

On My Plate for September:

Tycoon's Vacation Scornfully Yours Fire at Dusk Fire at Dawn Conditional Love Caught Up in Us Brazilian Job Born to Be Wild Bluegrass Undercover Bluegrass State of Mind Billionaire Wins the Game

July Monthly Chit Chat

*Updated*

When I break technology, I break it big. Yesterday I had to meet my mom to do some things for her requiring the internet…and my computer would not let me log on to my account. Thankfully it was a relatively easy (and inexpensive!) fix, but this post did not get updated before it was scheduled to post today.

July News

July has officially ended…but here in Texas, summer is not over! We have had some very humid days, and to my recollections, some of the most humid compared to recent summers. But we haven’t quite hit 100 degree weather…yet.

Girl of 1000 Wonders is still making headway around the blogosphere, and it’s great to see! It’s funny how something so seemingly inconsequential can make you feel so good, and proud!

My middle brother went off to basic training at Ft. Benning. He was stuck in reception for two weeks, and he sent home a few letters (with no return address). It seems that most of the guys with him have no idea what the military is really about. They talk back to their sergeants, goof off in formation, try to destroy the barracks, and most of them are trying to figure out ways to go home. One guy even cut his wrists to get discharged. The hard part hasn’t even started yet! Please keep these young men in your thoughts.

My best friend also celebrated her birthday this month! Her dad is in a few bands, and one of them played in my hometown. There was quite a crowd, and I got to see her, her parents, and her brother, all of whom I have known for over a decade. Growing up, everyone joked that her dad was a look-alike for Tim McGraw, which he is!

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me and Crystal

10372340_10154422127585193_325695028552379003_n
me and D

My brother came to stay with me for a couple of days – to use my Internet and web skills. I swear, that’s all my family wants me for! But while he was staying, he was reading this huge book about refrigeration. I was shocked. This is my brother that doesn’t read…anything, ever. And here he was, reading this huge boring book so he could get a raise at work. See, kids, you do have to read after high school!

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EJ – reading for his job

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PawPaw’s home visit 7/20

There were also some big turns in my grandfather’s recovery this month.You can read about his journey here, here and here. In the photo are three of my grandpa’s children (unfortunately my mom had to work), three of their spouses (including my dad in the back row – can you tell which one is him?), six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He is now eating and ate two entire plates during this home visit. This was his second home visit, and the last for at least 2 months, restricted by yours truly, my “Christian” aunt and uncle who have POA who couldn’t be bothered to show up to celebrate this occasion.

At the end of July he was moved to a third facility, and my “Christian” aunt and uncle were seriously contemplating turning him over as a ward of the state, which comes with a an audit of the last 7 years. That had them seriously sweating bullets. I just have to keep thinking Karma…and some other things. 😀 I can’t imagine what their judgement will be when they arrive at the Pearly Gates.

My family has rallied around my grandfather to do what is right for him and protect his interests. Unfortunately, it is about to get very ugly. Given a few other things that have happened this month, I will just say that I am glad that my grandfather purchased his burial plot at the cemetery in our community when my grandmother died 11 years ago because I know my uncle and his wife would bury him somewhere far away.

Weekly Memes

I have created a nice little spot to find all of the weekly memes (Sunday Post, WWW Wednesdays, Feature Follow Fridays) in the top navigation bar. I also consolidated all of the challenges I am participating in onto one page. Before there were so many that it was getting ridiculous to find anything up there!

menuCan’t find any tabs? The navigation menu is under the coral icon at the top.

follow options

Can’t find how to follow me on social media? Social media icons can be found under the heart icon at the top.

Tours & Blasts

I participated in more blog tours and blasts in July than I ever have, which is a great thing, but I think I got a little carried away. Toward the end of the month I started scaling back for future tours and blasts, thanks to Parajunkee’s fantastic blogger organizer. I’ll share more about that in a post in August. Also thanks to this fantastic blogger organizer I am scheduling a discussion post for each week in August. Look for those on Thursdays.

Here’s a quick recap with links to the tours and blasts:

Challenges

In July I completed my 2014 Goodreads Reading Challenge! I set my challenge at 52 books, one book for each week of the year. And I did it in only 7 1/2 months!

2014 Reading Challenge

2014 Reading Challenge
Charlie has
completed her goal of reading 52 books in 2014!
hide

 

I added a few more challenges to the list, including Bookish Bingo for the summer. All of the challenges are listed on the Challenges page. The Beat The Heat read-a-thon also starts soon!

In July I completed…

  • 59 / 52 books for Goodreads 2014 Reading Challenge
  • 8 / 25 books for NetGalley & Edelweiss Challenge
  • 20 / 26 books for Alphabet Soup Challenge (I only need G, J, N, U, X and Z!)
  • 44 / 20 books for Women’s Challenge
  • 11 / 15 books for Historical Challenge
  • 2 / 5 books for Non-Fiction Challenge
  • 31 / 50 books for Summer Reading Challenge
  • 12 / 25 books for Bookish Bingo!

I am working fervently on my Bookish Bingo. I am struggling with finding an LGBTIA MC, pink cover, July/August/September in title, music/dance themed, thriller, and retelling. If you have a recommendation, let me know!

Fall Months of Reviews by Genre

I’ve talked several times about the massive TBR piles that I have on my bookshelf and on my Kindle, and that in the fall I will be devoting each month to one genre to review as many books as I can. Hopefully this will clear out my Kindle! I shared the list in the June Monthly Chit Chat, but I have since made a slight switch for September and October.

September will be dedicated to reviews of romances.

October will be dedicated to reviews of all crimes and mysteries.

November will be dedicated to reviews of diverse reads.

December will be dedicated to reviews of all things Christmas and winter.

I will carry over this idea into 2015, and already have plenty of books lined up for January through March.

Reading Updates

Read in July:

Keeper Omnibus (The Morphid Chronicles, #1-4) 21806663 21806680 Pieces of Love Wild-Iris-Ridge_author-photo-647x1024 21947381 22047257 Life Interrupted 16131115 18519509

On My Plate for August:

cover1000 22493296 An American Girl in Italy unnamed (4) 22066928 unnamed (5)

June Monthly Chit Chat

June SUMMER is here! It is fabulous here in Texas. Here is a lovely photo for your viewing pleasure and accept my gracious apologies for withholding the monthly chit chat for an extra week. 🙂

Over the last month, Girl of 1000 Wonders has exploded in the blogosphere. I am humbled and thankful! If you are still having trouble finding my pages and social media links, they are accessible via the icons in the top right corner of the page. It’s a very sleek and sly design!

In addition to this sudden uptake in readership and traffic, I have added WWW Wednesdays and Feature Follow Fridays this past month. Don’t worry – I’m not going all meme-y on you! Three is as far as I’ll go. Did I mention they’re a lot of work? The Sunday Post alone takes me  h o u r s  upon  h o u r s  on end. It’s getting a little out of hand, but I enter all of the giveaways I list, and so far I have one EIGHT giveaways, both books and Amazon gift cards. Plus the book-inspired necklace for the book Orenda.

I have signed up for a relatively good number of tours and blasts. Keep your eyes peeled for what’s coming!

Tours running in June are…

The Dragon’s Egg ~ May 26-June 6

The Almond Tree TOUR ~ May 28-June 6

Along the Watchtower TOUR ~ June 1-30

Paradise Coast BLAST ~ June 2-6

Lost on the Edge of Forever TOUR ~ June 9-20

The Mortis TOUR ~ June 23 – 27

The Confessional TOUR ~ June 23 – 27

Suddenly Last Summer TOUR ~ June 23-July 4

Broken Branch Falls TOUR ~ June 23-July 4

Mysteries of the Canyon BLAST ~ June 26-28

I am proud to say that I am only 10 books away from my Goodreads 2014 Reading Challenge! For those of you who like more definitive numbers, that’s 81%. The indicator says I am 20 books ahead of schedule, but that doesn’t mean I’m taking a break anytime soon. My Summer Reading Program goal is 50 books – that would easily take care the physical books on my bookcase, but this summer my goal is to get that Kindle really cranking!

I have reviews tentatively scheduled through the beginning of August, but due to my sudden (and slightly insane) sign-on for review tours, I have not been reading as many of my review books. Yes, I still have a couple that I had planned to get read in March. -_- I stopped accepting books for review at the end of April so that I could focus on all the books in my physical TBR pile and the thousands of books I’ve downloaded on my Kindle. Plus, I didn’t even think about the many fabulous books I’ve bought for my classroom this past year to bring home to read during the summer. It’s all piling up, to say the least.

Due to my suddenly massive collection of books in various genres, I am outlining a plan to go on binges. Yes, reading binges. This will ensure that I clean out my Kindle systematically. I’ve got to start somewhere, and I have been on a blood-thirst for crime recently, ever since reading P.L. Doss’ Enough Rope.

My summer reading is already booked full, and basically all of August as well with my TBR list. Throughout August I will be reviewing as many books on my Kindle TBR that I can that do not fall into binge categories.

Over the summer and throughout August I will be feasting gluttonously on all books crime. Then, I will move on to all of those lovely straight-up romances I’ve secreted away over the last year and a half. Next, well, next is when I’ll need your help!

September will be dedicated to reviews of crime novels.

October will be dedicated to reviews of all romances.

November will be dedicated to reviews of diverse reads.

December will be dedicated to reviews of all things Christmas and winter.

Readers, this is where you get to help me out! Remember on Monday I posted about needing help finding more diverse books? Well, here’s where you come in. I really need you to help me out here, or this whole “review by genre monthly” will not quite work out. Start sending me those diverse book recommendations! In fact, here is a way to send me those suggestions!

Read This Month:

The Serpent's Ring (Relics of Mysticus, #1) The Trickster's Totem (Relics of Mysticus, #2) The Dragon's Egg (Relics of Mysticus, #3) Along the Watchtower Lost on the Edge of Forever

I Am Currently Reading:

Suddenly Last Summer (O'Neil Brothers, #2)

Reads Next on My Plate: 

Broken Branch Falls Shadows of Asphodel Keeper Omnibus (The Morphid Chronicles, #1-4) The Husband Maker (Husband Maker, #1) Pieces of Love Life Interrupted An American Girl in Italy 19058665 19325382 Alinor's Shard

May Monthly Chit Chat

I shared in last month’s Chit Chat that we are in our new home and the books are on the shelf, but we have just now finally got everything under control and in their new spots. It has been a daunting task – and all because of a missing piece of glass!

You may have noticed I made a few big changes to Girl of 1000 Wonders about mid-April. I chose a brighter theme and added a page for reviews and my reading challenge by year. Since then I’ve also added the BBC challenge and interviews and guest posts by year. All of these pages can be found in the top right corner under the orangey-red circle. That’s where the pages are hiding. 🙂

I chose not to participate in BCP’s Reading Group for April. Kate sent out four books by the same author well into the month and I could not drop my blog tour books and wreak havoc on my reading schedule, so there was not a Reading Group book for April. Sorry Kate!

Shaking out the DeadIn April I was contacted and asked to participate in the Spread the Word Initiative from The Story Plant, an independent fiction publisher. All I have to do is talk about the books! How easy is that? One day I got a package from an unknown sender – the head of the the company, turns out – and it was my first Spread the Word Initiative title. The book that Lou sent me is Shaking Out Dead by K.M. Cholewa.

I am proud to say that I am 31 (of 52) books deep, or 60%, into my Goodreads 2014 Reading Challenge. The indicator says I am 14 books ahead of schedule! Given where I was in September, I am pretty proud of this feat!

I have signed up for a relatively good number of tours and blasts. Keep your eyes peeled for what’s coming!

Tours running in May are…

Venice in the Moonlight ~ April 21-May 2

Prejudice Meets Pride BLAST ~ April 28-May 2

Prejudice Meets Pride TOUR ~ May 5-23

Broken Arrow ~ May 5-16

The Legionnaire’s Prize ~ May 12-16

As Is BLITZ ~ May 13

Black Orchid COVER REVEAL ~ May 13

The Almond Tree BLAST ~ May 14-20

The Dragon’s Egg ~ May 26-June 6

The Almond Tree TOUR ~ May 28-June 6

I have reviews tentatively scheduled through the beginning of August. I will be supplementing what I already have scheduled, since I read books in advance and schedule posts typically a month in advance, with my summer reads as I read them.

Currently I am 30 books deep in my review queue. This does not include the Reading Group book from BCP or any books I requested from NetGalley. I stopped accepting books for review at the end of April so that I could focus on all the books in my physical TBR pile and the thousands of books I’ve downloaded on my Kindle. As you can see, it’s difficult for me to get in those reads with a steady 20-30 book review queue each month.

I Am Currently Reading:

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Reads Next on My Plate: 

 

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The Serpent's Ring (Relics of Mysticus, #1)

The Trickster's Totem (Relics of Mysticus, #2)

The Dragon's Egg (Relics of Mysticus, #3)

April Monthly Chit Chat

We are finally settled into our new home! And my books are now back in their places on the bookshelf, instead of packed away in boxes! Yes, this is something to get excited for and celebrate! 🙂

I am proud to say that I am 26 books deep into my Goodreads 2014 Reading Challenge. That’s 50%, another thing for me to celebrate!

I have reviews tentatively scheduled through the end of July.

Last month, I participated in the COYER Challenge and the TBR Challenge. Here is my original post about these challenges, with my goals and book list. I also followed up the challenge post with my March Monthly Chit Chat session. Out of the 14 books I was shooting to clear out for these challenges, I read 6 in the March time frame. I did not reach the Deep Clean status I was aiming for (10-14) books due to the move and my grandfather breaking his femur, but I did score the Spring Clean status (5-9 books). Since March has ended, I already finished two of the other books on the list! I schedule reviews ahead, so most will actually be posting in April…and I’m a little lazy and forgetful and didn’t actually follow-up in the challenges, so I didn’t get to reap the benefits of the challenges. I did read one other book that was not on my challenge list. 

I have signed up for several more tours and blasts than I usually do, with many running concurrently or consecutively, to help me get further ahead in scheduling posts to maintain G1000W’s post regularity and reading books that were recently published.

Tours running in April are…

The Colors of Blue ~ March 29 – April 10

This Crumbling Pageant ~ April 1-May 10

Girls Love Travis Walker ~ April 7-18

Stealing Light ~ April 7-25

Venice in the Moonlight ~ April 21-May 2

Prejudice Meets Pride ~ April 28-May 2

Currently I have 27 books in my review queue requested directly from authors or publishers, including the Reading Group book from BCP. I have also downloaded several books from NetGalley that I will be reviewing closer to summer. And I already have ideas in the work for December. 😉

I still have been putting off personal reads – I have physical copies piling up and I am in desperate need of clearing out my Kindle. It’s starting to act funny – I think it’s overloaded! Due to this, starting at the end of the month I will not be accepting books for review. I will stop accepting reviews through the summer in order to clean up my TBR lists (both physical and digital). It is truly becoming an overwhelming mess, and I have found that as I become older I am getting OCD about organization. 

So, if you want me to review your book – get it in by Friday, April 25. After April 25, I will not be accepting review requests to schedule anytime soon. I will keep requests and come back to them after I’ve done some cleaning on my Kindle and bookshelves.

I am dedicating time to truly clearing out my Kindle and the piles of books taking over my side of the bed. It has morphed beyond simply taking over my nightstand. If you’ve got a book coming out after this deadline, don’t worry – I’m not shutting out review requests indefinitely – just temporarily until further notice.

This Month I’ve Already Read: 

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I Am Currently Reading:

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Reads Next on My Plate: 

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March Monthly Chit Chat

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UPDATED: I was at two hospitals all day on Saturday, March 8 and did not have the opportunity to update this pre-scheduled post.

In December and January I got caught up quite a bit on my backlogged reading list, and even got a nice little jump start on my 2014 Goodreads Reading Challenge. By the end of January, I had posts ready to roll until the end of February (minus one).

I thought getting that far ahead would make it easier to maintain my regular posting schedule…but then, life happened again. I returned to school and got several additional duties pilfered off onto my plate. I have not been reading nearly as much as I was, for two reasons:

  1. Most nights by the time I crawl in bed, I am exhausted and fall asleep within 5 minutes.
  2. My relationship with my fiance started suffering drastically. With the overwhelming stress from work and stress at home, I reverted back to my childhood strategy and lost myself in books. I pretty much shut everything and everyone out. We did separate for a while and went through some harsh and ugly self-reflection, and I am proud to say that we have come out stronger.

This leaves me kind of where I was in September when I went on hiatus. except that I have a few reviews prepped to post, and I am still slowly reading.

Last month, I got through all of my “Next on My Plate” reads except for The Island. No, I didn’t quite meet my goal, but I was very successful in my reading crusade! I also finished a book that was not on the list from last month. which puts posts almost all the way through March. I have a few I will need to work on. 🙂

I also joined a reading group last month and signed up to be a regular tour host, so I am getting at minimum one additional book each month to review, plus anything tour-related.

When I opened The Island book on my Kindle, I looked to see what the estimated time frame for reading the book would take (love that handy little tool!) and it relayed almost 18 hours! I think this is going to be a book I have to read on the side, even slower than my usual reads. Roberta, it will get reviewed! It may just be summer before I get it finished. 🙂 

Currently, I have over 30 books in my review que and my monthly Reading Group book from BCP…plus all of my personal reads. In addition, I’ve already signed on to five blog tours/blast so far. There is a lot going on at G1000W!

The good news is that my fiance and I will be moving mid-March, and with the move I will have some more time to dedicate to reading since I will be closer to my job, and will not have other familial responsibilities as I do now.

Although I have already submitted books on  my TBR list in the COYER & TBR Challenge post, here is what I am working on now.

For all of the rules, and extra mini-challenges for more prizes, visit Because Reading is Better than Real Life for the COYER Challenge.

For all the rules, and extra mini-challenges for more prizes, visit Caffeinated Book Reviewer for the Take Control TBR Challenge.

What I’ve Already Read This Month: 

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Currently Reading:

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What’s Next on My Plate:

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Dogs with Bagels
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Whatcha Reading?

Based on yesterday’s post, I have a LOT on my reading plate right now. I had a review request (from an agent) recently. The next day the agent wanted to know when the review would post. I hadn’t even checked my email yet!

It was kind of annoying, especially since I have my Reading List up,  and it’s constantly updated.

In case anyone is delusional, I have sixteen books in my que to review, and over 500 books I’ve downloaded free from Amazon that I would like to read, plus five stacks of books under my night stand. I am not sitting around waiting for a book request to come in.

With all of that said, I thought I’d periodically update with a monthly post of what I’m currently reading, and what else is on my plate for the remainder of the month. It will be good motivation to see how close I come to meeting my monthly reading goal. 🙂

What I’m Currently Reading: 

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What’s Next on My Plate: 

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