My Year So Far

This post was a blank screen for quite a while.

I haven’t finished the show I planned to review and didn’t know what to post.

This might end up the most rambling post I’ve done, but oh well!


Then I did copywriting training at work and was completely inspired. I’ve worked hard on the blog this year and had the page views to prove it has paid off. I didn’t want to skip a post just because I was behind on reviews.

As I’ve been getting a few more views in 2018 than previously, I thought I’d take a look at what posts have been performing well and which have been my favourite so far this year (I know it’s only March so how can I really judge? But let’s just roll with it!)

Top post of the year

Friend Request 1Friend Request by Laura Marshall. To be fair, this is the top post of my blog by a long shot. I don’t know what I got right with this review, but it’s been getting hits steadily since I posted it. It’s outstripped any other post by literally a couple of hundred views.

For some, these figures may be a bad day. But for me, this post is insane!

Top post published in 2018

Eden Paradox 1The Eden Paradox by Barry Kirwan. I’m really pleased about this. I reviewed this book for a tour hosted by the wonderful Neverland and got completely drawn into the world and characters.

This is the first time a blog tour has encouraged me to read the rest of the series and I regret nothing so far!

Favourite post of the year

The Year of Saying Yes 1The Year of Saying Yes by Hannah Doyle. This book really got me thinking about my own life. Even now, two months after reading it, I’m texting my sister, claiming I want to do something the character does.

Talk about impact! A book has never had this effect on me before. Sure, I’ve loved books and been inspired by them, but not to the point of making life changes!

Looking at my stats made me realise that book posts do far better than television/film ones. I enjoy writing them more as well. Maybe that is what comes across?

I was stressing about not having my review done for this morning, but now I’ve let it go.

In fact, I think there might be a few less television/film reviews. I will still be writing them (I still enjoy examining how I feel). But now my schedule has changed, I just can’t get through the amount I need: one series can easily be 23 episodes long, so trying to get one done for each week? Not possible for me at the moment.

I also wasn’t letting myself watch shows that I genuinely wanted to, just because they weren’t on my review schedule. As soon as I realised that, I knew something had to change.


I hope this wasn’t too rambly for you! What’s been your favourite book this year?


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Up and Coming: March

It’s crazy how much things have changed since I wrote my last Up and Coming post.

Then, I was freaking out about getting books read and my focus was on job hunting.

This time, I’m almost a month into my new job, and am catching up on some books quite nicely thanks to the commute.

Luckily, compared to previously, it’s a relatively straightforward and easy commute. I’m really enjoying the job, which means I’m motivated and inspired when it comes to the blog at the moment.

I’ve needed to have a bit of a catch-up. I’ve not been great lately at keeping on top of post promotions and actually getting everything written on time. I’m hoping, however, this month will be my turning point. I don’t have anything else stealing my attention and I have a guaranteed hour, minimum, of reading time a day.

I’m trying to utilise my evenings at the moment. I don’t want to just sit and watch television every night, even if there are some shows that I want to review. But I’m trying to do an odd job each evening, whether that is sorting out some blog posts, doing something creative or making it to the gym before crashing out. Once I’ve got that sorted, everything will be much easier to keep on top of.

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Novel Progress: February

It’s always the way that just when you start getting into a routine, your situation changes and you need to figure out a new one.

That’s my novel progress at the moment. I was finally getting into the habit of working on it every day. Then I went from working part-time locally to full-time with a commute, and suddenly those novel sessions aren’t as easy to fit in.

When you’re loving working on something though, fitting the time in won’t be too challenging. Maybe this will be my weekend plans?

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Book Soundtracks (#2)

Book Soundtracks

I did a post like this a couple of years ago: you can read it here. But in that time, I’ve listened to more music and read some different books. I thought, given my love for both, that it is time I gave it another go.

Music can often be my inspiration. If I’m struggling with a certain scene, or trying to get into a character’s mind-set when something big is occurring, the right song/playlist can often be my key. I wonder if the authors mentioned or, indeed, any published author has their own playlist when they write. Do any of you writers out there have set songs that just scream inspiration to you?

I know, personally, the Spirit soundtrack does it for me every time. But here are some of the songs that I think sum up a few books perfectly:

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Up and Coming: February

It is Monday, isn’t it?

Yes. Yes, it is.

But this isn’t a book review?

No. No, it isn’t.

There’s a simple explanation: I’m part of a blog tour this week for the amazing Paris Adrift by E.J Swift and my review is scheduled to go live on Wednesday. A quick post-swap later and I can get everything done without having to find additional content. See? Simple!

This is my second attempt of writing this post. I got half way through and deleted it. Why? I was moaning. I’m supposed to be focusing on positive thinking and my achievements in the last month, not whining about ambitions and targets.

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Dear Diary: Positive Thinking and Achievements


Last week, I mentioned some of the positive things I achieved last year and some goals that I plan to set for this year. I’ve had enough of putting myself down and want to think positively – although I know it’s easier said than done. But writing this post has made me realise that, regardless of how I felt at any given time, 2017 was a positive year for me.

I touched upon some achievements in regards to what I had managed to get read and reviewed last year. I had to have a couple of breaks from blogging because other commitments were making it impossible to commit the time that I wanted. But stepping back reminded me how much I loved it and how much I was missing it. It gave me the drive to push myself in regards to content, hence doing the Twelve Days of Christmas.

But when I think back to last year, I managed to accomplish so much more than just being pleased with how the blog was going.

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Happy New Year: Looking Back at 2017/Resolutions

Up and Coming

2017 has ended on a positive note for me. I’ve actually learnt to look back at what I’ve achieved and feel proud. For one thing: I now have a Masters!

How about resolutions for this year? Getting in shape and finding a job in my dream industry are two of them. They’re not the type that I feel I can blog about, however. I don’t want to spend my time writing about how I’m sending off applications, for starters!

My main aim, however, is blog related. I want to keep more up to date with reviews this year. My first target is to get to that golden 80% ratio on Netgalley (you may have noticed some extra reviews flying out over the last few weeks).

But I also want to get more books reviewed on time. I request them, then get caught up with blog tours and older books and miss the magic three-month time period where book publicity has the biggest impact. I review, not only because I love it, but because I want to help out the authors any way I can. A review is better than no review, but actually getting it out on time would be even better.

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