Posted in My Favourite Things

MFT: Bullet Journalling

Hey readers!

So, brief note before I officially begin this post: I’ve decided to do this new ‘series’ thing called My Favourite Things (or MFT for short) where I talk about things that I really really love. It’s an idea I’ve had for a little while, I mentioned in my post a few weeks ago that I had “some ideas” but didn’t mention exactly what they were, so this is one of them! Er, I hope that you enjoy this I guess? So, on with the post!


One of my favourite things is something I’ve been doing for 5 months now: Bullet Journalling. It’s an organisational system designed by someone called Ryder Carroll which is really great because not only does it help to organise your life, but it’s also really flexible and can easily be adapted to your personal wants and needs.

At it’s core, Bullet Journalling is a really simple system that’s really easy to start. All you need is a notebook and a pen. Lots of Bullet Journallers go for a dotted notebook because that’s the type of notebook that Ryder Carroll used, but any notebook can be used.

I’m not going to try and explain how Bullet Journalling works because, like I said, it’s a really flexible system so the system I use isn’t exactly the same as the original one so I’ll probably say something wrong, but instead I’ll direct you to the official Bullet Journal YouTube channel, where there is a video made by Ryder clearly explaining everything, and the official Bullet Journal website, where there is a written out version of the video and much, much more. If you want a simple description of it there’s also a really good video by a channel called How to ADHD – this video is mainly dedicated towards how this system is helpful for organising your life if you have ADHD, but also she explains the system very well and in a simple way.

Now as I said a couple of paragraphs ago, the Bullet Journal system is great because at it’s core it’s so simple and easy. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t be developed on, and it certainly has been. On the website linked above there are lots of articles about different methods and add-ons to the system that people have made, but also if you type “Bullet Journals” into any social media or even just google you can find hundreds of different ideas of different things you can add on to this system. The most popular ones I can think of are the habit tracker and a year in pixels (of which there are currently many photos of all over social media, it being close to the start of the year and all). It’s really adaptable and so easy to change to suit your personal needs.

Now if you have happened to search Bullet Journal on social medias or google, then you’ve probably seen some gobsmacking images of beautiful spreads and fantastically decorated journals that can, to be honest, be quite intimidating. However, this is really not necessary! If you do watch Ryders original video (which I highly highly recommend doing if you’re considering starting a Bullet Journal of your own) you can see that he has none of those fancy decorations or watercolours or drawings or whatever. Lots of people make absolutely beautiful spreads and stuff because that’s the system that works for them and inspires them to fill it out every day, but if that’s not necessary for you or you don’t have the time then don’t worry about it. I certainly don’t do that – simply because I’m not good at art to be honest though.

That being said, I do love watching what are called “Plan With Me”‘s on YouTube (my guilty pleasure hehe), and I’d like to recommend to you some of my favourite people to watch. So, here we go.

AmandaRachLee – makes really beautiful spreads ohmigosh they’re so pretty. She keeps her system quite simple in the actual function of it but she does quite a lot of pretty decoration.

Caitlin’s Corner – also makes really pretty spreads, but also really practical and useful stuff. She also does good student bullet journaling spreads if that’s what you’re looking for.

BohoBerry – I’ve only recently got back into watching this channel, but I used to watch her quite a lot back in July/August time. She does lots of stuff all about Bullet Journals, not just plan with me’s, although I’ve not watched them. If you’re interested in starting a Bullet Journal yourself she also has a series called “Bullet Journal 101” which explains a lot of stuff that you might be unsure about.

Sunshine & Stationery – makes lots of stuff to do with all sort of journaling and planning, I’ve only ever watched her bullet journal videos but I’ve had lots of different videos recommended to me, such as junk journaling and about learning different languages. However, I will say her videos are quite long. I tend to watch them at the start of each month while setting up my own Bullet Journal and just have it on in the background.

MyLifeinaBullet – I feel as though I’m just saying the same thing about all of these channels, but again creates really nice-looking spreads and stuff.

Those are the ones I tend to watch, but there are hundreds others out there. I feel as though I need to give ‘honourable mentions’ to the channels  roar, Seventeen and BuzzFeed Nifty, who I watched quite a few videos of each while falling down the YouTube rabbit hole of plan with me’s researching this post. Oops.

So now, I know I have already expressed my opinion that I like this system multiple times all ready,  but I’d like to talk about why I like it. I have always been a fan of organising and lists and trying to obsessively plan everything/my life – lots of people who know me will tell you that – but I’ve never found a system that works for me until now (I’ve managed to keep this up for 5 months now, it’s a new record!). I think what keeps me going with this is that when I want to make a list, I can just make it and it doesn’t have to go in a certain page I can just turn to the next one. That’s always been what’s held me back in the past from systems – wanting to make lists but not knowing what category to put it in and not wanting to mess up. Also what keeps me going with it is the fact that I have to fill it in every day (or every couple of days if I’m being lazy) as I have a habit tracker that I have to fill in or I forget what I did and I didn’t do. I forgot to fill my Bullet Journal in for about two weeks at the end of September (the month that I started) and now there’s an ugly gap in my habit tracker that I dislike SO MUCH so I’m determined that that’s not going to happen again.

Anyway, that is all for this post! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it, if you have please let me know because I’d love the feedback and want to know if you’d like this ‘series’ to continue! I have a few more ideas of things that I really love and would like to write about, so if you do want this ‘series’ (I keep saying series but putting it in apostrophes  because I don’t know if it really counts as one but don’t know what else to call it) to continue let me know and it will! You can easily contact me through the comments anywhere on this site or via our Instagram, @writeaweek. Anyway, if you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading,

Bye!

~ April

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Posted in Blog Post

April’s Top 7 Books of 2017

Hey readers!

So at the end of 2016, both Alice and I did “top 10 books of 2016” lists. This year, I decided to do it again, but only pick 5 books. Then of course I couldn’t narrow it down to just 5 books, so here’s my Top 7 Books of 2017!

Please note: these books are not in order of which I liked best, they’re in the order that I read them in over the course of the year.

Also, I’ve tried not to include any spoilers, the only information I’ve included are my personal opinions and as little information as possible about the plot of the book while still providing enough to interest you and persuade you to read them.

The Hate U Give – Angie Thomas

The Hate U Give is a real-life book about a girl named Starr Carter who is the sole witness to the unjust shooting of her best friend Khalil which becomes national news and a highly debated topic. The only person who knows the truth about Khalil’s death is Starr, but what she says could change her community and her life forever. I absolutely loved this book – it was a change from what I normally really, as my preferred genre is fantasy or dystopia, but I still loved it. I read this book a good few months ago so I can’t remember a lot about how I felt while reading it, but I would definitely recommend reading it, even if it isn’t the type of book you normally enjoy.

Perfect – Cecelia Ahern

Now this is a book that – pardon the pun – was absolutely perfect. It’s actually the sequel to Cecelia Ahern’s first teenage book, Flawed, which I read back around November of 2016. After finishing the book, I immediately texted Alice (who had leant me it) asking if I could borrow the second one and she replied with the terrible news that it hadn’t been released yet. Perfect was finally released in march this year and I have to say, I don’t think it could have been written better. I loved the storyline and what happened, and I especially loved that it had a nice, rounded-off ending. Sometimes authors try to drag series on for too long, wanting it to be a trilogy or longer, but I’m glad Cecelia Ahern decided that two books was long enough and provided us readers with a satisfying ending. I’m trying not to say any details about the book as it’s a sequel so it could ruin the first one for anyone planning to read it, but I’ll provide a quick summary of the first one. It’s about a girl called Celestine who lives in a dystopian world where everyone is expected to be perfect and people are punished for their flaws. It’s a great read and I’d definitely suggest it to anyone who enjoys dystopia and fantasy books like me!

Goldfish Boy – Lisa Thompson

Now if you follow us on Instagram (sneaky plug – @writeaweek) the you’ll know that I really love this book. I picked it up cheap at a supermarket one day not realising it was quite a newly released book, then I read it and was hooked. I loved it! I also discovered that the colours of the cover mtched perfectly with some stationary I had, so it provided some nice bookstagram photos, which I posted and then the author commented – making my day to be honest. Anyway, enough about that, let me tell you about the book. It’s abot a boy called Matthew who spnds all his time locked in his bedroom due to his OCD, but one day has to step up and face his fears following the disappearance of one of his neighbours whre he’s the only one who can figure out what happened. While reading the book you really fall in love with Matthew, and when his neighbour disappears it really grabs you and draws you in, wanting to know what happened and find out the truth. Again, this is a real life book, but I’d definitely recommend it to anyone who likes this genre as well as anyone who doesn’t normally read this style of book

Everything, Everything – Nicola Yoon

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon is yet another real-life book (despite saying that dystopia is my favourite genre, I’m noticing a rather large amount of non-dystopian books on this list) about a girl called Madeline who is allergic to the outside world. She’s perfectly content with spending her entire life inside her house until she gets some new neighbours, and she wants to be able to speak to them not just through messages via the internet and paper stuck to the window. This is another book that Alice leant to me having read it a while ago (in our first blog post, there’s actually a quote from it that she put in at the end, that I didn’t get at the time!) and I’m really glad she did. I picked it up one morning to read and didn’t move for the next hour and a half until I had finished it – quite literally, I read it all in one sitting. So if that doesn’t give you an indication as to how good it was, I don’t know what will! The film of it also came out back in May 2017, so if you’re not a big fan of reading books but this has intrigued you, then you could check that out!

Bombs on Aunt Dainty – Judith Kerr

Where to start with this book, where to start. Bombs on Aunt Dainty is the sequel to one of my favourite books of all time – When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit. It’s a partly autobiographical book, as it’s based off the events in Judith Kerr’s own life, but follows the story of a little girl called Anna. She was born in Germany and lived there for quite a lot of her childhood, but her family had to flee from Hitler as her dad was very vocal about his opinion of him – and it wasn’t good. The first book, When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit, follows her childhood moving around Europe and dealing with the struggles life throws at her, but this book picks up in her teenage years and follows her through to the end of the war. Honestly, this was a great read and I’m so glad I found it, and would definitely recommend it to everyone as I think everyone should read it, no matter what you normally like to read.

Generation One – Pittacus Lore

Generation One – the book nobody asked for, but everyone needed. If you’d read the I Am Number Four series then I would definitely recommend reading this. It’s the first in a new series by Pittacus Lore, about what happened after the war, and normal people developing legacies. It took me a while to get into but once I eventually did I raced through it. And the ending, oh, the ending. I’m not going to say anything more other than  I can’t wait for the next one to come out, I might implode from excitement if it’s too long. Aaaaaaaaa.

Turtles All The Way Down – John Green

I was gifted John Green’s latest book this holiday, and after receiving it in the morning, I had finished it by the evening. The book follows the story of a girl called Aza who struggles with some mental health issues and a mysterious disappearance of a billionaire who just so happens to be the father of one of Aza’s childhood friends. I really enjoyed this book, I enjoyed the plot and the themes it explored, and I also really loved the origin of the title (you’ll have to read it to find out!). Again, a real life book (which five out of seven books on this list have been) I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys real life books, any of John Green’s other books, mystery stories and stories about friendship.

Anyway, that’s all for my Top 7 Books of 2017. I hope that you’ve enjoyed reading it, and that maybe you’re going to go and read some (if not all) of the books I’ve recommended. I really enjoyed reading all of them and would suggest you give them all a try as they’re all great books worthy of your time. Don’t forget you can contact us on our Instagram – @writeaweek – where we’re most active if you have any questions or suggestions or want to discuss anything. Again, thanks for reading,

Bye!

~April

 

Posted in Blog Post

Blog Post #36 – New Years Resolutions

Hey readers!

April here, back again after quite a long time off… my last post was just under 3 months ago – oops, sorry about that. But here I am again, with yet another rambly blog post about, well, not much.

Now hopefully this should be the last rambly blog post like this for a while, perhaps even forever if I can be creative enough. That’s because one of my new years resolutions this year is to get better at blogging. That means get better at posting regularly, and get better at actually writing decent posts, rather than mumbo jumbo like this, and so many other blog posts I’ve written.

I’m not normally the type of person to make new years resolutions, simply because I don’t normally have any resolutions to make. That’s not because I’m perfect, not by any means, but because normally if I want to improve something about myself I don’t wait until the new year, I just start trying to improve it right away. There’s no point waiting till new year for self improvement, that’s just procrastinating and putting it off.

But this year, wanting to get better at something has coincided almost exactly with the new year, so I decided I might as well make it a resolution. The day I’m writing this, and the day I’ve decided I want to get better at blogging, is the 30th December, so I’m only 2 days off the 1st January. So this basically counts as a new years resolution, doesn’t it?

So, (hopefully) expect some better, regular content coming to writeaweek soon from me. I’m hoping to start posting on here every Sunday again, like I had been doing for about 2 months back in September and October (before dropping off the face of the planet until now), but I’m not going to set a specific time of day that the post should be out. Just that it’s going to be out on a Sunday.

I’ve also got a few ideas of things I want to do, but I’m not going to say them yet (just in case they don’t happen). I have, however, already written next weeks post so I can tell you what that is. Last year, me and Alice both wrote “Top 10 Books of 2016” lists, and I decided to do something like that again this year. I was just going to pick 5 books this year, but I couldn’t narrow it down to 5, so next weeks post is going to be April’s Top 7 Books of 2017.

If you have any suggestions or requests of things I could write about, please do let me know (as my blog ideas list is currently only 4 items long, and one is going to have to wait a few months before it can be done). You can easily contact me through the comments on this blog post, or any post on our site, or through Instagram – our username is @writeaweek. Speaking of (shameless plug), you should definitely check our Instagram out! We’re more active over there than we are on here (although hopefully activity levels are going to increase soon) and also post some cool stuff sometimes, such as a cool drawing of a book Alice did a couple of days ago.

Anyway, that’s all for todays post. I was going to entitle this “Rambly Rambles” but rather usually it’s actually had a topic, so instead I think I’m going to name it something to do with New Years Resolutions. Maybe this is the start of becoming a better blogger? If you’ve managed to read until here, thanks for reading and

Bye!

~ April

Posted in Blog Post

Tips for being more positive

Hello, Alice here. I have simultaneously a lot to say and nothing at all, so here goes.

Neither of us have posted in about two months; sorry. I don’t have an excuse, other than mountains of work and stress, but I’m going to skip the apologies and carry on as normal.

It has been scientifically proven that a good routine has a positive mental effect, so I have decided that I am going to do a post at least once a week on here, and have a set time for me, everyday (I downloaded the app ‘headspace’ and believe it or not, after one use this morning of the most basic, free package, I felt more positive). As you’ll know if you have read some of my last few blogs, I haven’t been doing so great, and I want to change that, so hopefully this will help.. I’ll keep you updated.

I think (hope) that the cause of at least some of my stress and stuff has been from school pressure. This year is the first properly important stage, and there is a lot of work and exams to get through. We have the first lot coming up in the next few weeks, and stupidly, to try to avoid the panic and stress, I have hardly done any work (with ten days to go until my first exam, there are eight subjects for which I have done nothing at all, and two others, one of which I have completed notes, and the other, I have done about half of). Not good. Alice of the present moment is pretty annoyed with Alice of the past few weeks. Anyway, there’s not a lot I can do about hat now, other than work really hard for the remaining days.

On a slightly more serious note, there is actually some stuff that has been helping with my general mental stability that could maybe help someone, if they happen to read this and take my advice:

• Bach (original flower remedies) rescue pastilles – I don’t know, they taste nice and are satisfying to chew, plus the fact that they help me relax and stop stressing, even if it is just for a while.

• Water – as stupid as it sounds, Water Is Really Really Important. Not only is water good for your skin and your body, it makes you more focused, and puts you in a better mindset. I nearly never drink enough water, but can really tell the difference when I do.

• Time for you – take some time, everyday, even if it is just for a couple of minutes, to sit and reflect. Concentrate on the things you never pay attention to: your breathing, how the ground beneath you feels etc. It might sound pointless, but really, a few minutes for you to relax and concentrate on you and you alone will have a positive impact, especially if you do it regularly.

• ‘Scentered’ aromatherapy balm – there are quite a few different scents that do different things. I have only used mine a couple of times, but putting a little onto your wrists and temples and then taking a few deep breaths is great to achieve the desired effect of whichever scent you have. Also, the size is really useful as it will easily fit in a pocket or bag. Examples of what they do are: be happy, de-stress, sleep well and focus, though there are more, also available in different forms to the balm.

• A tidy and well-organised environment – again, another seemingly obvious one, but if you’re looking for a sign to have a sort out, here it is. A tidy space really does equal a tidy mind, or at least offers a welcoming place where you can work or relax. De-cluttering your work environment allows you to focus better on the task in hand, and can lead to a better quality of writing, or more accurate answers.

• Animals – this one is only really for people with their own pets, or access to somewhere you can spend time with animals. Science has told us that the simple act of stroking a dog releases a number of hormones, including serotonin, prolactin and oxytocin, which are all ‘happy’ hormones. This is a great way to be more positive, as your brain is literally releasing the hormones which will help to make you feel good.

• Trusting relationships – perhaps this is another obvious one, though I feel it is somewhat underrated. Having somebody to talk to, whether it be a friend, a family member, a therapist, or even a tiny blog on the internet (though you should always be careful with what you share), is such an important thing. Somewhere or someone who you can confide in, talk things through with, and just have be there for you when you’re in a tough spot is maybe the most important thing to help you change things for the better.

• Be open to change – one of the most common human traits is opposition to change. Nothing would ever happen if nothing ever changed, so trying to embrace new things, rather than pushing them away is crucial. If things aren’t going well, the only way to make them better is to make changes. They don’t have to be huge differences; even drinking enough water has a positive impact, as I explained earlier. This one is difficult, and is something I know I need to work on, but I’m sure that if I stick at it, get into a positive routine and make sure I take care of myself, things will look up.

I set out for this to be a random, apologetic blog post where I perhaps talked about Christmas and holidays, but this post is something I feel strangely proud of, and I am going to try my hardest to improve my outlook, so hopefully my mishmash of tips will help somebody else to become more positive too. Let me know if it does, as it would mean the world.

Thanks for reading; I’d better do some studying

~ Alice

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Worldbuilding Prompts

Hey readers! So I’ve not posted in a while (don’t worry, Alice has published some great posts in the meantime which you should check out!) but I’ve spent some time coming up with some ideas for posts I want to write. So here’s the first! I personally have always found using prompts very helpful sometimes when you’re stuck on what to write or have no inspiration. I’ve never been the best at writing them, however, but recently I came up with these 3 worldbuilding prompts which aren’t the worst (I don’t think?) Please do let me know what you think of them!

  1. Ever since you were a young child, you Grandma has told you an old folks story about a child who fell through their mirror into the dark and twisted version of their world on the other side. You always thought it was make believe, until one day you trip and fall through the mirror yourself, the glass doing nothing to stop you. However, it’s not long until you realise that the dark and twisted world is actually the one you’ve been living in all along.
  2. A nasty blow to the head and the next thing you know you’re waking up in a hospital with a bad case of amnesia. You don’t know who you are, where you are, or who anyone else is. However, when a group of people turn up claiming to be your family, you’re less willing yo accept this than you have been to accept everything else. There’s something that just doesn’t feel quite right…
  3. One late night party, an early morning spaceflight lesson the next morning, and an instructor who’s almost as tired as you are have all led to a messy crashland on the surface of an unknown planet. Thankfully, the damage to the spaceship isn’t too bad, but there are some key pieces damaged that will need to be replaced. Your only option of both staying alive and finding the parts you need is to try and blend in with the nearby alien civilisation.

Anyway, not the best prompts, but they’re the best I can do and cover a fairly wide span of genres. They’re all meant to be worldbuilding prompts (a the title suggests), meaning they prompt you to write about  a new world/place in detail, as it’s all new to the characters (and in two of them, to the readers too) (yes I did just use three variations of the word “to” in one sentence). If you do decide to use any of them, please do let me know and/or send me what you’ve written! I’d love to see what might possibly come of them.

Anyway, that’s all for today’s post! Thanks for reading, I hope you liked it, and don’t forget you can easily contact us in a variety of different ways (the most likely to get a quick reply being Instagram – @writeaweek)

Bye!

~ April

Posted in Blog Post

What I think

Hey Readers, it’s Alice here for another blog.

So, if you’ve read my last post you’ll know I’ve been feeling quite down, especially recently. Anyway, that isn’t what this post is about, it’s about ‘what I think’, and if you like it, maybe I’ll make it into a little series??

On with the blog:

My thoughts and moods recently have led to me being withdrawn, quiet and less sociable than usual (which, let’s be real, isn’t very sociable anyway). This has meant I’ve spent a lot of time in my head, almost unable to get away from my thoughts.

And yeah, some of the thoughts haven’t been so great, but like I said, that’s not what this is about. Those thoughts have made me realise some things, and that is good.

Pretty soon, April and I have some big decisions to make, that will potentially determine what we end up doing for the rest of our lives (logical, to make teenagers decide these things, I know). People have tried to help, and they’ve said how the choices really aren’t super important and I should choose what I enjoy, that I don’t need to worry about the future for now. I believe them, and understand the points they are making, but it’s still a hugely important decision for here and now, and it will influence what I do for the foreseeable future.

I don’t know what I’m going to choose (these are subject choices by the way for exams that will determine careers / university) and that terrifies me, as I have around a month, maybe even less, to make up my mind. And, on top of that stress, this year is also an important exam year, so there’s more pressure from that too.

Anyway, there’s the context, and here’s what I think:

All the time I’ve spent getting stressed and emotional and withdrawn and the like, has made me realise that I cannot do something just for the sake of it. The next years of my education will be for the most part, self driven and self motivated, so it’s important that I do things I want to do, and things I’ll enjoy. I’ve had no time to do the things I enjoy, and hardly done anything other than work. This is not good, and it is not healthy.

Sometimes, you have to know when to stop, and you have to leave things for the night, because if you just keep pushing and pushing, eventually you’ll fall over the edge and make things so, so much worse for yourself.

It might seem impossible, but if you’re anything like me and literally drowning in the sheer amount of stuff you have to do, too awkward, stressed and scared to miss a deadline or ask for help, please do. Just talk to someone, a teacher, a friend, a parent. If you can’t do the work, for goodness sake, ask for help instead of sitting at your desk and crying.

Yes, this first half term back at school has been as emotional, stressful, tiring and trying as it possibly could have been, and I didn’t deal with it in the right way at all, but I still got through. You need to make time for yourself, give yourself time to relax and actually enjoy your childhood (teenhood?) for once. This constant standing on the edge of disaster is not who I am, it’s not who I want to be, plus I can’t imagine it’s who you would want to be either.

So, what I think is that you shouldn’t let stress define you. You shouldn’t let work take over, and you should do things that you enjoy! I still have no idea who I am, who I want to be, or what decisions I will make when the time comes, but I know that I can’t keep going on the way I am without everything giving way beneath me. I’m going to make changes; I need to make changes. Yes, this time of my life is important for school, but it’s also important for spending time with friends and family and making memories. I don’t want to look back on my life and see myself as someone who never stepped out of their comfort zone, always put work ahead of happiness and only focused on school. No. I want to look back on this time as amazing. I am a teenager, and there is so much out there that I have yet to experience, and I’m not going to let my thoughts get in the way of that.

~ Alice

(thank you so much for reading, literally each and every view on here makes my day a little brighter. i’m always here to talk, as a friend or whatever, just send a dm to writeaweek on Instagram and one of us will reply as soon as we see the message (address it to one of us in particular if you want) hope you’re all doing okay and feeling good, bye!)

Posted in Blog Post

Blog from Alice

Hello Readers, Alice here

Sorry it’s been a little while since I’ve published something on here (thank you to April for being a reliable poster).

So, what’s new with me? Not a lot really; I do almost exactly the same thing every day: wake up, go to school, come home, do work, sit with my family for a little while, then sleep and repeat. I’m a person who likes routine, believe me when I tell you that, but recently, I’ve been getting really bogged down in everything – little things and big things. I can’t even think of an example as I’m writing this, which is annoying, but hopefully you will get what I mean.

Anyway, I’ve been feeling really strange. I can’t exactly put it into words, however it’s almost like I’m seperate from everything I’m doing. That doesn’t really properly explain it, but maybe my meaning will still come through. I don’t know. I kind of feel distanced from everything that’s happening and am either super emotional, or just completely devoid of any care. I’m probably just tired, and am incredibly ready for the coming up break from school (only a week to go!).

This year is an important time at school for April and I, and so the workload is just getting more and more, which is probably one of the reasons I’ve been feeling the way I have. I just feel completely exhausted, but when it’s time to sleep, there are always a million things I’d rather do instead? I don’t understand it, so I doubt anybody reading this will either 😂

Okay, sorry about that, I just had to try and put my thoughts into words in an attempt to get them out of my head..

I’ll write something more positive now..

I have lots of books I can’t wait to start reading (when I get time, hopefully over the school break) such as ‘The Cuckoo’s Calling’ by Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling), ‘Indigo Donut’ by Patrick Lawrence (he wrote ‘Orangeboy’ which is also an amazing book), and ‘One Of Us Is Lying’ by Karen M McManus, which was featured in a picture I posted on Instagram earlier today (our username is writeaweek if you want to check it out).

I am happy with the wattpad story I’ve been writing (when I’ve had time and motivation), which I posted the first part of on here a couple of weeks ago, and if you’re interested, you can continue reading that on my wattpad account (its-only-me).

So, in summary, hopefully after the break I’ll be feeling better [sidenote: I got my very own kitten (partially to help deal with stressfulness) and she is curled up asleep now as I am writing this] and will get to spend some quality time with my kitten! Hope you’re all feeling good and are not too tired or stressed,

thank you for reading; bye.

~ Alice

Posted in Blog Post

Blog Post #35 – Update

Hey readers!

So it’s been a little under a month since my last blog post, so I thought today I’d write this quick update post letting you know what’s been going on.

My last blog post was Blog Post #34 – Life is short and hard sometimes, in which I complained about being busier and going back to school. Since then, life has got even busier, so that’s great. Hooray for tests, amirite?

Anyway, even though it’s been a month since my last blog, it’s not like nothing has been happening. We’ve finally been managing to stick to our name and actually post something weekly. There’s been a post entitled “Doumo Arigatou” dedicated to someone important to me, a joint post about two awesome YouTubers, Dan and Phil, and then a collection of Bookstagram Photos which were never posted on Instagram because we moved onto a new theme. If any of them take your fancy, please do check them out! There’s not been much proper writing recently, but before my last blog post Alice posted the first part of a new story on here (the rest of which can be found on wattpad). The last piece of writing before that was a gothic horror short posted a looooong time ago. (oops)

And now for the rambly book update part of the blog post (I’ll try to keep it short). This week, I’ve been reading two books. The first is Generation One by Pittacus Lore, and the second is The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson. Generation One is a recent instalment in the Lorien Legacies series & collection of books that go along with them. Without giving too much away, it’s about what happens after the war. So far I’m enjoying it, however I’ve been reading it quite slowly, which is normally a sign that I don’t like the book. I guess I’m just finding it a bit hard to get into. I’ll keep reading and let you know my final judgment! The Sky is Everywhere is about a girl called Lennie who likes to play the clarinet and whose sister recently passed away. I picked this book up because the author also wrote one of my absolute favourite books of all time – I’ll Give You The Sun. So far I’m also enjoying this book, and I’m finding this one easier to get into too, although I will say between all those poems littered everywhere Lennie isn’t exactly helping to save the environment!

Sadly that’s all I have for this post today, as I have to go and write yet another essay then revise for yet another test, but there’ll be a new post coming next week and until then, you can always check our Instagram (where we’re most active). Recently we’ve begun using the polls feature on our story to ask what you guys want to see on our site and in or posts so we’re getting more feedback and (hopefully) adapting what we post to your wants! Our username is @writeaweek if you want to look us up 🙂 Thanks for reading

Bye!

~ April

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Bookstagram Photos

Hey readers!

So a little while ago, I decided I wanted to take some pretty photos to go on our Instagram page, so I gathered up all my blue books (we had a blue theme at the time) and a various assortment of blue items that could be in the photos and set to work.

I took over 100 photos so was rather pleased with myself, however, I could have probably done with taking these photos a bit earlier, as when I did take them we were only 3 photos away from moving on to a different theme. So what I’ve decided to do is put a few of my favourite ones into a blog post so people can still see them.

Also, because I’m a bit strange and like to explain my thought process behind literally anything I do or any decision I make, there is some writing explaining everything beneath the photos. Don’t worry – I won’t be offended if you ignore it. I probably would if I were you.

 

 

First of all, I laid out all the books in a flat grid and took some photos from different angles. I think my favourite of these (of which there are more than three, but I only included what I judged to be the better ones) was the photo from directly above the books. Although it wasn’t my intention to be highlighting any of the books when I first started taking the photos, this one ended up highlighting two in particular: The Fault In Our Stars by John Green, and The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke (which, by the way, are both very good books that I would recommend reading – there are also films of both of them which are worth a watch)

 

 

The next thing I did was pile all my books up into a big block, with a couple going in different directions to the others. I took quite a lot of photos of this set-up, but most of them didn’t turn out very well, hence the fact there are only two in this post. I tried taking all the photos from different angles to get some variety, but despite this they also all came out looking quite similar. So this probably wasn’t the best option for taking photos, but I had fun building it and actually taking the photos (trying to balance the stack so it didn’t fall over and/or collapse was a bit of a challenge!)

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This next one came to life because I noticed a few of the things I had contained both blue and red, so I thought I’d try and put them together and see what came out of it. The above photo is perhaps the only decent one – if you could call it that – out of many. The lighting was uneven/off, and the reflection off the CD case was being strange and awkward, so basically it just wasn’t working very well. Looking back on it, it also wasn’t a very good layout of the books and items. I was trying to do a grid photo where everything was neat and in place and followed the lines, but it just wasn’t working. However, I still thought I’d include it in this post, as it shows a couple of my favourite books, The Thief Lord (which I’ve already mentioned) and Blood Ties by Sophie McKenzie.

 

 

These three photos are probably the ones I was most proud of out of this whole “photoshoot”. I actually posted one of them on Instagram, and the author of the book featured (Goldfish Boy, by Lisa Thompson) not only liked and commented but reposted as well! Honestly, that made my day. The reason why I took these photos was because I noticed the blue, orange and white on the cover of the book matched perfectly with my pins and paperclips – in exactly the same colours. After noticing that, I couldn’t resist! Before ending up with these photos I tried a few different variations of the setup, such as one which had an ink pen on the notebook and another which replaced the pencils in the bottom right corner with a pair of glasses, but neither of them seemed right, so I tried out this one and it turned out okay!

 

 

These last two I liked, but decided against using them anywhere for a number of different reasons. Firstly, the pencils in the first one are not lined up straight and I felt as though that ruined it slightly. Secondly, they didn’t really fit in with the blue theme of the account. And I know, I could post them when we have a different theme, but then comes the third, and biggest, reason, which is that they were almost directly copied from a blog post I was reading about how to style good flat lay photographs and I would feel bad about it! That post is linked a bit further down if you’re interested in seeing it – it’s a very good/helpful one too. But anyway, reasons for not posting them and credit aside, I do actually like these photos quite a bit. Like I said, the first one isn’t all that great because the pencils aren’t all lined up, but I like the second one (on the diagonal) especially. I also spent a very long time deciding which order the pencils were going to go in so the colours were in the most aesthetically pleasing order they could be in haha.

Anyway, that’s all the photos that I’m going to share with you today! There were a bunch more I took, both variations of these ones and different layouts too, but they were very bad and I’m slightly embarrassed by them too so they’ve not been included in here. If you enjoyed this post then do let me know, and in the future I might do some more “photoshoots” for our Instagram and put the un-posted ones here!

Like I mentioned above, I was reading and referring to a very helpful blog post on how to style a flat lay photo all the time while taking these photos, and I feel it’s only fair to give credit to that post, so here is a link to it! It’s a good post and very useful, so if you’re wanting to try out taking some photos for yourself I would definitely recommend reading it!

The last thing I’d like to put in this (already rather long) blog post is a list of the books that I used for these photos. I already mentioned a couple of them while talking about particular photos, but I thought a list of them all might be a good idea, especially as they’re all good books that I’d recommend reading! So, without further ado:

  • Paper Towns – John Green
  • The Fault In Our Stars – John Green
  • Blood Ties – Sophie McKenzie
  • The Thief Lord – Cornelia Funke
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – JK Rowling
  • The White Giraffe – Lauren St John
  • Year of the Rat – Clare Furniss
  • Unhooking the Moon – Gregory Hughes
  • iBoy – Kevin Brooks
  • Everything, Everything – Nicola Yoon
  • Goldfish Boy – Lisa Thompson
  • Unwind – Neal Shusterman
  • Lord of Shadows – Cassandra Clare
  • Series of Unfortunate Events – Lemony Snicket

Anyway, that’s all for today, so thanks for reading! Don’t forget you can check out all our social medias if you want to, and if you liked this post you can look at our Instagram for more bookstagram photos.

Bye!

~ April

Posted in Uncategorized

Dan and Phil

(This is a joint blog written by both of us, but it’s going to be in  slightly different format to our older collaborative posts. Also, just a quick note, it may be filled with a load of references you might not understand if you’re not a member of the phandom)

Hi. So, our names are [Alice] and [April]. Nice to meet you.

Hehe, we thought that was a fun little introduction, to start off with, which is also quite topical, as is brings us nicely onto the subject of this post: Dan and Phil.

It’s probably hard to be on the internet without even having heard of Daniel Howell and Phillip Lester, otherwise known as Dan and Phil, or danisnotonfire (rip)/Dani Snot On Fire and amazingphil.  They’re two highly influential YouTubers, currently with over 17.2M combined subscribers who have written two books and performed a world-wide stage tour (The Amazing Tour Is Not On Fire, or TATINOF). We sound like we’re introducing them on stage before we welcome them on for an interview (honestly, we wish we were), but really, we’re just letting you know how big these two people are, and giving you some context so you’re not completely baffled as we now talk about how they’ve affected so many people across the globe – and why.

The first of their videos that Alice stumbled across was the ‘punk edits in real life video’, but she didn’t really think it was her thing, so moved on without watching anything else. Earlier this year (can’t quite believe it’s only been that long!), April asked Alice what she thought of them (having spotted things about them on the internet here and there – after all, who hasn’t?)  so she said as much, letting April know that only seen one video (unbeknownst to Alice, April then went home and binge-watched the entirety of the Sims Series, then continued regularly watching their videos from there). She’s not really sure why, but one day Alice sat down and watched the first episode of their Sims 4 series. And then the next and the next and the next. Now, we both eagerly await every new instalment of Dil Howlter’s life and everything else that involves Dan and Phil.

Now, we would both consider ourselves members of the phandom (shoutout to the og trash team!) – we watch every video, watch the livestreams, like the tweets (well, Alice does, April doesn’t have twitter. But she’s there in spirit – Alice sends her screenshots of the best ones). It’s strange what finding a YouTuber you really enjoy watching can do to you, and how big an impact they can have on your life.  

This next part is written by Alice, April editing into third person found it too hard so gave up: Daniel Howell and Phil Lester are unlike any other youtubers I have ever watched. I don’t quite know how to explain it, but the pair of them make me almost ridiculously happy. Watching their videos has stopped me crying and made me laugh so hard that I temporarily forget what was upsetting me. Take it from me, Dan and Phil are two extraordinary people and we should consider ourselves lucky to be able to share their journey with them.

If you haven’t heard of Dan and Phil as youtubers (do you even internet?) you might know them from the BBC Radio one show that they collaborated on, and the others they were involved in, starting in 2013 and ending just last year (in 2016). It’s a shame we missed it, as we both would have liked to have watched it (on the live video streams that went along with them), but hopefully with some hard-core internet scouring we’ll be able to find them uploaded somewhere. (Sidenote from Alice: I think I have!)

Currently, the two of us are playing a kind of game (kind of, not really) where we try and spot the Dan and Phil merch when we are together (the reason why it isn’t really a game is because the grand total is one, as it currently stands…)

We were going to try and end this post in a similar way to the end of Hello Internet (like the start of it was), but unfortunately it involves much flashy music and camera effects which we sadly can’t include, so see if you can get where this ending is from instead:

Oh, we’ve been talking for ages! We don’t really have anything else to say anyway, but have a good day if we don’t talk to you again, even though you’re not really talking to us… never mind; see you later!

~ Alice & April

(Quick update, this is Alice and I’m typing this just before I publish this post; I’ve literally finished watching TATINOF online right now and am just asdfghjkl-ing right now. Just thought I’d let you know that 🙂 okay, bye)