Posted in Blog Post

Blog Post #42: Hiatus

Hey readers!

So I spent last night crying over something that I’d forgotten to print off double sided so used twice as much paper as necessary. I’m fine, honestly, I’m just a bit stressed at the moment. For this reason, I’m taking a bit of time off. A “hiatus”, if you will, although I googled the definition of that to make sure I was using it right as it technically means “a pause or break in continuity in a sequence or activity”, and our posting schedule wasn’t exactly continuous to start with, so I don’t know if we can really class this as a hiatus.

Anyway, what I’m trying to say, it that I’m taking a month to two months off from posting, just because I’m very busy and quite stressed at the moment and don’t want to have to worry about getting posts out or spend time writing posts when I have lots of other things to do.

I might still be on Instagram every so often, but basically this is me saying goodbye until mid June-ish. So, until then,

Bye!

~ April

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Posted in Blog Post

Blog Post #41: May 2018 Bullet Journal Setup

Hey readers!

So this week’s blog post is going to be a little different. If you’ve read my post about Bullet Journalling you’ll know 3 things:

a) I have a bullet journal
b) I love my bullet journal
c) I have a bit of an obsession with bullet journal plan with me’s on YouTube

So as it’s coming up to the start of next month, all the Bullet Journal Youtubers are beginning to upload their videos where they set up their journals for the month of May. And I guess I’ve kind of been inspired to do something similar? So today I’m going to share how I’ve set up my journal for May. To be honest, I know probably no-one cares, but I enjoy watching and reading things like this, so here we are.

(Originally I was planning on doing this at the start of April when I set up my new Bullet Journal but then I got excited and starting filling in lots of personal details and so couldn’t share it any more. I decided to share this month in particular because I tried being a little more artistic with it and switching up some new things so thought it might be more interesting than my older setups which were quite boring and basic)


Many people start off their months with a cover page, but I’m not artistic enough for that and don’t really need it, so we’re going to jump straight into the month at a glance.
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So as I said, this month I was trying to be more experimental and artistic, which has resulted in this title, I guess? I know it’s not the best, but compared to last month (which was just the word April written in a 1×5 box) it’s very different. After that, I just did the typical layout, with the days of the month written down the left hand side and space to write events on the right. I was going to write the days of the week beside the numbers (I normally do this) but decided against it as I liked the way it looked without.

 

 

 

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So now onto my  habit tracker. Again, I tried to be slightly more artistic with my title. As well as this, I switched things up with the actual trackers itself this month as well. Firstly, I did it vertically rather than horizontally so that I don’t need to turn the book 90° to fill it in. This was made possible by another change I’d made, which was to draw little symbols at the top to represent the habits. After taking this photo I also went in and put little boxes around certain habIMG_20180429_112815.jpgits on certain days – I don’t track this many on a daily basis, a large chunk of them are only on certain days of the week (for example, make a blog post on a Sunday, so in the blog post column I’d draw a box around each of the Sunday’s this month) I fill the tracker in by colouring in the boxes when I do them (as shown in this picture from last months tracker ————————————————————————->)

That’s all I do for my monthly setup. It used to take me 4 pages to fit all that in, but other the past few months I’ve condensed it into just 2. I prefer this layout because it not only uses up less room (meaning I can keep my journal for longer) but it also looks cleaner and it easier to use. As for weeklies and dailies, I do a kind of hybrid between the two? It looks like this:

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It’s a double page spread with 8 boxes, one for each day of the week and an extra one. I tend to name this extra box either “general” “to-do” “other” or “work”. At the start of each week I write a list of things I need to get done over the 7 days. Then I’ll sit down once a day and schedule things from the work box “(or “trabajo” this week – I’ve been naming everything in Spanish for the last month) into the box for that day. I’ve found this easier than scheduling everything on certain days when I set it up then having to migrate and reschedule stuff because things happen unexpectedly and I don’t account for what I can realistically get done.


Anyway, that’s all I have for todays post. I hope that it was perhaps somewhat interesting? Hopefully next week there’ll be a better post. But for now, thanks for reading, don’t forget you can contact us via Instagram, and

Bye!

~ April

Posted in Short Stories

Back to School (short story)

My favourite time of year has always been the summer holidays. Not because of the weather, because of the time off school. Just under 2 months off with no work, no deadlines, no waking up at 6:30 in the morning to catch the bus – it’s heaven. But now it’s September 1st, and time to go back.

It’s with a heavy heart that I step off the bus and begin to plod towards the ugly grey building where I will be held prisoner for the next 7 hours. My eyes feel heavy too, but I think that’s more to do with the fact that I got 4 hours less sleep last night than I’m accustomed to. The steady stream of students flowing off the bus around me all look as though they feel the same way – dark bags under eyes, stifling yawns, shoulders hunched under the weight of books stuffed into tattered rucksacks.

After what seems like an 8-mile hike from the bus stop to the school gates, I finally enter the dreaded building. I have to take a moment to adjust to the harsh lighting, a stark contrast from the last rays of summer sun trickling through the clouds outside, but once I can see clearly again I, well, I hate what I see. The green lino floors that would have been so beautifully polished over the summer are already covered in hundreds of muddy footprints. Gaggles of students group together by lockers sharing stories of summer and no doubt gossiping already. A herd of raucous boys hurtles down the corridor kicking a football between themselves. Everyone lets them get on with it, knowing the ball will have probably been taken off them by the end of lesson three.

I begin to navigate my way through the swarms of students. The noise levels are overwhelming, as are the smells that hit me like a brick wall. You can almost taste the deodorant and aftershave on the air. I avoid going near the toilets, where there  will be girls fighting over mirror space so they can reapply the layers of makeup that their parents made them take off this morning before they were allowed to leave the house.

I reach my locker just in time, the sharp and sudden shrills screech of the bell ringing out as I pick up my book for the first lessons. I click my padlock shut then allow myself to be carried along by the river of students streaming towards the classrooms, books in hands. Oh, let the fun begin.

– –  –

7 hours later and I’m out of the classroom like a bullet as soon as the bell rings to signal the end of the day. I throw my books haphazardously into my locker, swing my rucksack onto my back and practically run for the doors. All around me, herds of students do the same, eager to get out in the sunshine we’ve been locked away from all day. I push my way past the gossiping girls huddled by their lockers, the band of boys waiting outside the head-teachers office to get their football back and burst out into the fresh air, the weather reflecting my joyous mood at leaving school. I hurry down the street and manage to catch the first bus just before it pulls away, saving me from the mind-numbingly boring wait for the second one. However, as I sit down on the worn-out fabric of the seat and watch the squat concrete building slowly decrease in size and retreat behind me, a horrible realisation dawns upon me. I may have survived today – but I’ll have to do it all again tomorrow.

Posted in Blog Post

Blog Post #40: Motivation

Hey readers!

Sorry our posts have been so sporadic and scarce recently. I’ve been struggling with a lack of motivation – to post, to work, to do anything productive really. I’ve recently begun using Tumblr again and have spent hours just sitting and scrolling, not really enjoying myself but doing it anyway, because I lack the motivation to do anything else.

Lack of motivation is actually proving to be a bit of an issue, as we’ve just entered the part of this year where Alice and myself will be having to do a lot of self-motivated studying. However, I’ve found a couple of ways to help me get motivated, so I thought I’d share them with you today. They’re probably tips you’ve heard before, they’re pretty standard, no real breakthroughs, but I always find that hearing them from someone who’s found they actually work helps to convince me that y’know, maybe they do?

First of all, I’ve found that a good way to motivate yourself is to push through and force yourself to keep going. The best reward for me is being able to tick things off my to-do list at the end of the day and see myself making progress. Once I’ve made progress, I automatically want to make more progress, so I do more work, if that makes sense? I’m not sure if it’s like that for everyone, but that’s what works for me.

Secondly, giving myself rewards is another thing that I do to motivate myself. “Finish reading this chapter of the textbook and you can have a cookie”, “finish making these notes and you can watch YouTube for half an hour.” I’m well aware that I’m in charge of these things, I could just decide to eat the cookie without doing the reading first, but I find it just taste so much better as a reward, don’t you agree? Again, maybe that’s just me, but maybe if you’re struggling to motivate yourself you could try it out and see how it goes.

Thirdly, this month in particular I have found that giving yourself a specific time to do something, and writing it down, helps me to get things done. For example, if I want to do some history work on Wednesday at 3:00pm, then I’ll write down “History, Wed 3pm”. If it’s written down with a space to tick it off I’m more likely to get it done, as it seems more ‘set in stone’, if that makes sense? Another example is Blog Posts. On my habit tracker in my Bullet Journal I like to include making a blog post every Sunday. As it isn’t a daily habit however what I did last month was just draw 4 little boxes, as there were 4 Sundays in March, and I’d colour a box in when I made the post. However, as they didn’t have a specific day, sometimes I’d get lazy. “Oh, I can’t really be bothered to write a post now… I can just do it on Monday, it’ll still count on my tracker”. So what I’ve tried in this month’s tracker is giving myself a specific day. So rather than just having 4 boxes for my blog post habit, I’ve got a box on the 8th, a box on the 15th, a box on the 22nd and a box on the 29th. And lo and behold, here I am today, writing a post.

Anyway, that’s all I have for today. I hope that maybe if you’ve been struggling with getting motivated then this has maybe helped out a bit. If you have any other tips on how to get motivated, I’d love to know them! You can either leave them in the comments on this post or head over to our Instagram or even our Tumblr, @writeaweek and www.write-a-week.tumblr.com

Thanks for reading, bye!

~ April

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Harry Potter Décor Ideas

Hey readers!

So I was recently searching through some old drafts we have on our site of posts and pages that were never finished, or given up on, and I found some from just over a year ago that I thought I would resurrect and finally post. As you can probably guess from the title, it’s Harry Potter inspired room decoration ideas! Okay okay, I know it’s not the more interesting or original thing to write about, but some of the ideas I came up with/found aren’t too bad and someone somewhere might find use for them. I’ve completely rewritten what I originally had as they were written very badly before and I was slightly embarrassed by them, but here they are!


General

Of course, there are Harry Potter Décor Ideas plastered all over the internet, most of them repeats of the same stuff. One of these more popular ideas is Potion Jars. They’re a fairly simple DIY project that doesn’t cost a lot and can add a really nice touch. The first step is to find some glass jars. These can be bought from lots of places, but recycling old jam jars or jars from other foods you might have lying around is a really great idea. Now you have your jar, find something to go in it. To make a potion, some water and food colouring will be effective. Just put them in, screw the lid on tight, give it a shake and ta-da! Instant potion. Of course there are also other things you could put in – glitter as floo powder maybe, or miscellaneous potions ingredients made from pieces of string or buttons. Perhaps you could keep in with recent trends and use some slime. And that’s as complicated as it gets! Find a place to put them, arrange in the most aesthetically pleasing way and bam, instant Harry Potter theme.

Another idea that seems to be everywhere is quotes. They can add a nice touch to the room and could be very subtly Harry Potter, they don’t necessarily have to say “HOGWARTS” in massive writing. Quotes can be displayed in a number of ways – perhaps in a photo frame or hung as a poster. I’ve seen large wall decals of Harry Potter quotes too – try amazon or etsy if you’re looking for one of these. Of course, sticking things on your wall isn’t always the best idea, so definitely check with a parent/guardian/landlord before doing this! Some nice quotes to have around the place could be “Happiness can be found in the darkest of times, if only one remembers to turn on the light”, “It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live” or “For in dreams, we enter a world that is entirely our own” (I though the dream quotes could be suitable for a bedroom?).

An idea I had when writing the original post was to have a map on the wall. An old black and white map – more of a floorplan really – could be a nice piece of artwork to have on your wall and a nod towards the Marauders Map. If you wanted to go all out, you could even draw little footprints around the map, or print of an actual copy of the Marauders Map off the internet. Just google image search it and there’s plenty to chose from.

A perhaps less-subtle thing is hanging winged keys from your ceiling. Just draw some wings on white paper, cut them out, stick them onto some keys (you can order cheap fake ones of amazon or etsy) and tie some string to them, then hang them from the ceiling! It’s quite simple but also can look really nice. If you’re reluctant or unable to hang them from the ceiling itself, you could perhaps do some DIY and build a sort of baby-mobile thing to hang them from.

A smaller cute thing would be to write “Lumos” and “Nox” onto the light switch. It’s only a little thing, but it can help to add that little touch of magic to the room. A non-permanent way to do this would be to use letter stickers that could be peeled off at a later date when not wanted.

Gryffindor

The best thing about being a Gryffindor here is all the house merchandise available. Almost everything Harry Potter related comes in red and gold. Take advantage of this and display some around your room to show off your house pride! If looking for some heap and affordable merch, try amazon and etsy, although primark do some good Harry Potter stuff too! DIY-ing it would be great too. Hang up a red scarf to make a Gryffindor banner, or hand-draw a poster to hang on the wall. As far as house pride goes, the possibilities are almost endless.

Of course, a bold way to say “I am a Gryffindor” would be a red theme. Perhaps you’d enjoy having a room painted entirely in bright red, but if that’s not your style then there are plenty of other options too. If red’s not your thing, try pink or orange, or even yellow to represent the gold. Or if you’d prefer a more simplistic and less in-your-face look, you could perhaps go for white with red accents. This could be provided through red curtains, a red rug or even a red plant pot.

Slytherin

So just like Gryffindor, I feel as though a Slytherin is stereotypically very proud of their house (and let’s be real for a moment, if you’re decorating your room with a Harry Potter theme, I’m guessing you are too), so the same goes for Slytherin in terms of displaying your house. Although there’s not as much Slytherin merch as there is Gryffindor, there’s still a large abundance of it out there, and it doesn’t have to be strictly Harry Potter, anything green will too. Perhaps some green bunting could add a nice touch. Bunting is quite easy to make too, all you need is some paper and a length of string, and some pens or other decorating materials as you see fit. First, cut the paper into triangles, and decorate as you wish. If you have 9 flags, you could put one letter from the word Slytherin on each and have them spell it out! Once decorate, take the wider end of the triangle and fold it over. How much you fold depends on how big the flags are, but about a centimetre (or half an inch) would be a good amount. Then hook these over the string and voila, you’re done! If you want to make it more secure then you could use sticky-tape to secure the fold on the back.

Also as with Gryffindor, if you can incorporate some green into your room that’d be great. Painting all the walls in dark green might not be the nicest-looking decision (although to each their own), but perhaps a lighter-green feature wall, or green accents here and there would be nice. I also feel as though a good theme for Slytherin would be dark wood. Maybe it’s just me? But I just feel as though dark wood gives off a very dungeon/Slytherin common room-esque vibe.

I personally also feel as though a Slytherin-themed room wouldn’t have lots of irrelevant clutter. Maybe you like to have lots of things on display, but you could try narrowing it down to only the important things that you’re most proud of being on display, and the rest of the clutter tidily packed away somewhere.

Ravenclaw

Okay, so you can probably guess what the first thing on this list is going to be. Yup, you got it: books. Listen, it’s not my decision, but the stereotype of a Ravenclaw is that they like reading, so if you fit into that then embrace it! Display your books proudly around your room. In my personal opinion, you can never have too many bookshelves, but perhaps that’s just me.

Following on from bookshelves, just shelves in general are good. Have some empty space? Why not fill it up with some small miscellaneous items, perhaps a favourite mug or a photo frame? I always imagine a Ravenclaw’s room to be packed with stuff, not necessarily relevant or useful, but perhaps just pretty and nice to look at.

My next idea is to do with skills. Do you have a particular skill or hobby, something you enjoy doing? If yes, then why not dedicate a corner of your room to it? If you play a musical instrument, you could put your music stand in the corner and pile up your music around it. If you’re into astronomy, you could put a telescope near your window and hang up some astronomical charts on the wall around it. If you’re a particularly skilled knitter, you could put a comfy chair surrounded by balls of wool in the corner and stick up some knitting patterns on the wall around it. Whatever it is you’re good at or enjoy doing, embrace it and proudly display it in the room!

Hufflepuff

Of course, the first thing that springs to mind is yellow. Perhaps all-yellow walls might be a bit in-your-face, but it’s easy enough to add yellow accents here and there. A yellow cushion cover or some yellow curtains could add some nice bright touches to the room.

Speaking of bright, that’s what I personally think a Hufflepuff room would be. If your room is a bit dark, find a lamp somewhere or use a new lightbulb to brighten it up. A cute way to bring some more light in could be fairy-lights. Hung on the walls, draped along shelves or wrapped around the end of a bed could look really nice. Although, of course, be careful with where you’re putting them and how you’re twisting them as it’s all very well them looking nice but if they’re not safe then they’re not good.

A stereotype of Hufflepuffs is that they love Herbology and plants, so if you have green fingers and don’t kill every plant you own (unlike me) then why not have some plants in there? Cacti especially are very cute (and currently quite fashionable) but there are all sorts of cool plants you could display if you’re wanting something interesting and different. Some of my personal favourites are snake plants (sansevieria trifasciata), bonsai trees (pinus thunbergii) and peace lilies (spathiphyllum).

What always springs to mind when I think of a Hufflepuff-themed room is cosiness. If you can, why not get lots of snuggly cushions and warm blankets? They can look nice as well as being really practical when you need warmth, and are just really nice to have in general.

Pictures of family and friends to remind you of your favourite people and favourite memories are also a good thing to display. Stereotypically, Hufflepuffs are very family- and friend-orientated people so perhaps display little things that remind you of them, such as photos, drawings, or other little trinkets that have fond memories attached to them.

Finally, scented candles can also add a nice touch. Nowadays, you can get candles that smell of anything (I feel like I’m saying this a lot, but just check amazon or etsy!). They can add a really nice touch to the room as well as making it smell wonderful. As with the fairy-lights though, be careful where you’re putting them and what you’re doing with them. If in any doubt then avoid lighting any – it’s better to be safe than sorry.


Of course, the list could go on. I could write paragraphs and paragraphs about Hedwig and Dobby teddies, or Hogwarts acceptance letters pinned to noticeboards, but I think I’m going to have to finish this blog post here as it’s almost the same length as an essay I wrote at school the other day worth 25% of my grade. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it, and maybe even found some inspiration for some of your own decoration. If there’s anything not mentioned here that you think is a great idea, why not head over to Instagram and comment it on this post? We’d love to hear your suggestions and ideas. Speaking of Instagram, if you have any questions or suggestions, or just want to talk, our DM’s are always open and we’re quite active over there!

Thanks again for reading, and bye!

~ April

Posted in Blog Post

Blog Post #39: Disappointment, Optimism, and Perseverance

Hey readers!

Apologies for this post being late, but a lack of inspiration, motivation and time meant nothing went up yesterday, and I thought better late than never, right? Besides, I had nothing to talk about yesterday, and a couple of things have inspired me now to write this post. Those things? A bad test and an English text about optimism.

I went into my lesson this morning not looking forward to getting the results back of the test we’d done last lesson, but I wasn’t dreading it either. I knew I hadn’t done too well as not much of the stuff that I’d studied was on there, but I didn’t think I’d done too badly. And too be fair to me, I didn’t actually do that badly, but unluckily for me I got the exact mark needed to have to retake the test. Yay.

Now, I am generally a good student. Being told I had to retake the test made me think, and I don’t believe I’ve ever had to retake a test before. The problem is that recently I’ve been slacking a bit in this particular subject, evidenced by the fact that I’ve not done too well in the past couple of tests. My teacher is the kind of teacher that sets a lot of tests, we tend to have a small test every week. And what I’ve been doing is just not thinking about them then only picking up my book to check I know what I need to know the night before, usually quite late at night as well. It’s not the best method, I know that, but it’s just what I’d gotten into the habit of doing.

So I have to admit, I was feeling a bit down when I walked into the lesson after, which just so happened to be English. We did a quick starter activity, then were given a text and had to answer a question on it. The text was an article, from a newspaper I think, about optimism, and optimism lessons. Naturally, my initial response was “What a load for rubbish”. I personally think that optimism lessons sound like a bit of a waste of time, but that’s not what hit me. No, what I really took note of what some facts and figures that the article included about optimists vs pessimists. According to scientific research, optimists are less likely to have to take days off sick, less likely to quit a job, and more likely to live a healthier lifestyle.

So what I learnt when reading this articles was that it’s all about attitude.

Yes, I am aware that this is the kind of thing where adults say all the time, and kids pretend they’re paying attention but are really just thinking about how untrue it is and that adults don’t understand, and it turns out that the adults are right and the kids are just stubborn. So yes, I have been told this a billion times before. But reading this article after being disappointed about my test, that’s when the truth of it really hit me. I guess sometimes we just need to learn something ourselves rather than just be told it to truly understand.

Anyway, that’s the backstory for this revelation I’ve had, and now I’m sat at home having finished studying for my retest and feeling really optimistic about the next test I have later in the week, and thinking about the fact that I’m actually going to work for it. I’ve got it planned into my week so I’m going to look at the work two or three times before the test, rather than just glancing at it the night before. It’s strange, but I’m actually weirdly excited to start studying. How about that then?

I’m struggling to put the message of this post into words, but I guess what I’m trying to say is something along the lines of this: keep going. Work hard at things, even if maybe you’re not enjoying them, because you’ll get rewards for the work you do, and who knows, maybe you’ll even start enjoying it soon. And try and be optimistic about things. Instead of thinking, “Oh, I have a test on Thursday, how annoying”, flip it on its head and think “Oh, if I work hard I can do well in my test on Thursday and feel really good about myself!” That probably doesn’t make much sense, but if you can understand what I’m trying to say then try it out, see how it goes! What’s the worst that can happen?

Normally when I get this sudden optimist drive of academic excitement it wears off after a day or so and I go back to studying things late the night before the test, but this time I’m determined. I’ve had a realisation, and I am not going to waste it. And perhaps this drive is not actually me being optimistic, it’s just me wanting to make up for my bad test, but either way, does it matter? No, all that matters is that I’m determined to be optimistic and persevere.

If you’ve read this far, congrats! I probably wouldn’t have aha. Don’t forget you can contact us through the comments on this site or our Instagram (@writeaweek) if you have any questions, suggestions for posts, or just want to talk. We’re always happy to hear from you. And until next time,

Bye!

~ April

Posted in My Favourite Things

MFT: We Bought A Zoo

(warning: this post starts of half decent then just descends into madness and me fangirling, read at your own risk)

We Bought A Zoo is my favourite film. Ever.

I’d never actually heard of this film until a relative bought me the DVD as a birthday gift a good many years ago, and I have loved it ever since. I watch it every year around my birthday, my family are starting to refuse to watch it because we’ve seen it so much, and I can pretty much chant the lines along with it. That context might help you understand how much I love it.

Here is my blurby type description of it:

“In a heart-warming tale of a family pulling through against the odds, a struggling single dad decides that he and his two kids need a fresh start so decides to move house – to a zoo. Faced with a whole heap of problems, he, head zookeeper Kelly and her team have to band together to try and pull it together to pass the inspection and have their grand opening.”

I tried my best, but that description doesn’t do it justice. It honestly is onewe bought a zoo of the best films ever though!! Aaaa I just love it so much.

A few details not about the plot: it’s almost exactly 2 hours long (118 minutes). It stars Matt Damon and Scarlett Johansson (full cast here). It’s rated at a PG (mild language). It’s based of a true story.

This post is a bit of a mess, apologies, but I just don’t know how to convey to you how much I love this film. It has a great plot, great characters (I especially love Rosie, she’s so cute) and a great ending.

Just aaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

So yes, that’s my attempt at convincing you to watch We Bought A Zoo. So yes, pleeeeeeeeeeeeease go watch it.

Why not?

Thanks for reading this terrible post, I hope you enjoyed it, I hope you enjoy the film, bye

Posted in Uncategorized

What I do to help with stress and sadness (quick fixes)

Hi guys, Alice here.

So, I haven’t blogged in a while. I’m not going to apologise, but I do feel bad. April knows I’m glad she is good at uploading regularly, but here’s another thank you to her – thank you.

I had a plan for this post; I’ve written a short story and was going to type it up and publish it (I wrote it on paper), but I started this morning and just couldn’t make myself do it. Don’t get me wrong, I love this little niche of the internet April and I have created, but it just wasn’t happening, so you’re getting this ‘something’ instead *insert awkward laughing emoji*.

Recently I’ve been thinking a lot about the future. It’s a scary thing, but needs to be done every so often. I want to do something unconventional with my life, something that I enjoy and something which has some kind of positive impact. The problem with that is it’s difficult to explain that to people, or find a suitable work experience placement :/ – if you know of anything, please let me know!

I know that the next five months are going to be incredibly stressful, so looking to the future should be an exciting thing, so the fact that it is scary and unknown to me at the moment is making the stressful stuff even more stressful and significant. Yay. My point is, sometimes it isn’t easy or pleasant to look at the bigger picture, or even to focus on the smaller things of the present, so you need to find something which makes you happy in the moment and stops the stresses and problems you may be facing, even if it is temporarily. It’s not a long term fix, but for me at least, it is better than wallowing in a near permenant state of sad existentialism.

Here are a few of the things that keep me ticking (or at least the ones I can think of right now):

• the internet –

– Dan and Phil (look them up on YouTube if you don’t know who they are – you won’t regret it, seriously) April and I actually did a whole post about them if you want to read more about how they have influenced the two of us

– this blog I guess, because even if I only rarely use it, it’s a good way to reflect and order my thoughts

– The Try Guys – started watching their videos recently and have been enjoying them (they work for buzzfeed and you can find their videos on YouTube)

– aimless scrolling on various social media – sometimes seems like a waste of time but is good for taking your mind off things (don’t scroll through sad posts!) – cheeky plug:  our Instagram

– general spirals of YouTube, including TED talks and animal videos

– fun apps: I currently play ‘Twisty Road’, ‘Magic Piano’, ‘Splix.io’ and ‘Block! Hexa’

– netflix – 3 recommendations: ‘Sherlock’, ‘the end of the f**king world’ and ‘Happy Valley’ (also if you want something kind of eye opening / educational definitely watch ‘What the Health’)

• books – I like to read and write – haven’t done very much of either recently because I’ve been so busy with school, but missing it a lot

• creativity – I enjoy doodling, sketching, painting, crafts (don’t cry, craft! (I actually cringed writing that hElp)), photography, film making, baking, cooking and pretty much all creative stuff – at the moment I’ve kind of gone off art but that’s because of the huge amounts of coursework I’m procrastinating doing…

• friends – having a set of people who you trust, or just enjoy spending time with is so, so important. I’ve discovered that in the past year or so, after getting out of a really horrid, negative ‘friendship’. April is amazing, and I feel so lucky to have a friend like her (thanks, April).

• family – I’m lucky enough to have a (for the most part) very supportive family, and obviously it isn’t always perfect, but sometimes spending quality time with them is exactly what I need.

There are lots of things you can do to improve the way you feel, including excersise, the list above, and I’m sure you have / can find your own things too. I made a post a little while ago called ‘Tips for being more positive’ , so have a read of that if you need some help with positivity (and let me know if it works).

Sorry this was a bit rambly and random, but I promise there’ll be some good content soon and I’ll finish typing that short story up at some point if you want to read that.

Alice

Posted in Blog Post

Blog Post #38: Rereading

Hey readers!

This week I’d like to talk about rereading. I’ve just reread one of my favourite books of all time, Blood Ties by Sophie McKenzie. I can’t remember exactly how many times I’ve read it now, but I can telly you it’s a fair few. I don’t know what it is about this book in particular, but I just love it so much and would definitely recommend reading it if you’re into young adult/teenage fiction and adventure and thriller stories.

I don’t often reread books. Aside from Blood Ties, the only books I can think of that I’ve read more than once (not including baby books, my family not-so-fondly recall how many times I insisted on reading the Little Yellow Digger book as a small child)  are a younger kids book called the Witch Trade by Michael Molloy, and the Harry Potter series. I’m sure there might be a couple more, but not many. I tend to prefer to read new things, it has more excitement about it I feel.

I’m sure many of you may have seen those posts on Instagram and other social medias where you get to pick between different scenarios, eg visit the past or visit the future, or pick where you’d rather visit: Hogwarts, Narnia, the Tardis or Middle Earth. (if you don’t know what I’m talking about, click here to see an example) Alice once sent me one and the answer I chose was to be able to reread a series again without knowing anything, as though you were reading it again for the first time. Her reply was ‘why?’ I suppose there’s something just exciting about reading a book for the first time, anticipating what’s to come and not knowing what’s going to happen, and sometimes I really wish I could have that again, so I could reread some of my favourite books experience the magic again.

However, I’ve recently found myself wanting to reread more books. I’d quite like to reread The Maze Runner series by James Dashner and the Matched Series by Ally Condie among others. Perhaps over the coming summer I’ll try to reread some of the books I’ve enjoyed the most over my life, it could be a fun learning experience and brain refresher of the plots if nothing else. 

Anyway, that’s all for this post. If you have any comment/opinions on it, or just want to contact us in general, you can let us know through the comments on our site or via Instagram (@writeaweek). If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading, and

Bye!

~ April

Posted in Blog Post

Blog Post #37: 15 minutes

Hey readers!

So today I’m afraid this is just going to be a little blog post about nothing really. I have a few more interesting blog posts planned but I’m in a little rush to write this so I don’t have time for any of them, so here we are.

So because I’m in a bit of a rush (busy day today, haven’t already written a post for this week, promised myself at start of year I would become better at posting weekly but have already missed one post and it’s only week 4) I’ve decided to make this post into a little challenge of sorts. Starting from when I wrote the title I’m giving myself 15 minutes to write this post. I’m also giving myself 5 minutes to check for spelling errors after that 15 minutes is up too, but that’s just because whenever I type anything it’s always full of all sorts of selling mistakes and probably really difficult to read if you don’t know what I’m trying to say.

Uh, so, what to say. I’ve actually had quite a bad week in terms of reading: I’ve not read anything (other than school textbooks and other work related stuff) all week. Oops. I think it’s because I’m currently halfway through an audiobook so don’t want to start another book while doing that, but I’m kind of struggling to get through said audiobook? It’s because when I sit down in a chair or on my bed at the end of the day wanting to read a book, I’d prefer to actually read something rather than listen to it if that makes sense? I never really know what to do with myself while listening to it because I don’t have anything to look at so I find myself getting distracted by things in the room then missing whole chunks of the book because I zoned out. So I might save the rest of the book for a long car journey I’ve got coming up soon (as I can’t read in moving vehicles).

Speaking of, can any of you read in moving vehicles? when I was younger I used to be able to, but since I’ve got older I can’t do it any more. I can read for a little bit but as soon as a begin to feel a bit queasy I then feel like that for the rest of the journey, so I tend to just not read. it’s the same with looking at a screen or a map – I think it’s just the looking down and trying to read or focus on something bit that makes me feel not so great.

The book I read the week before this one was Tales of the Peculiar by Ransom Riggs, which I got as a present. It’s technically the prequel to the Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children series, which I haven’t read, but you didn’t need to know the story of them to understand it and I still really enjoyed it. I quite enjoyed the fact that it was a collection of multiple short stories rather than one big one too, as I don’t get to read many books like that.

Anyway, I’m getting really close tot he end of the 15 minutes so I’m going to have to finish here. I hope you enjoyed reading it, sorry it’s a bit boring and uninspiring, but hopefully next week I’ll have something better. Don’t forget you can always contact us through the comments on this site or our Instagram, @writeaweek, and we’re always willing to answer an questions or accept any suggestions you may have. Thanks for reading,

Bye!

~ April