Resolutions, Goals, and Dreaming of 2018

 

The end of 2017 is approaching and now is the time to set resolutions and goals for the upcoming year. Surprisingly, 2017 has been incredible to me. I have written more than ever and I have completely turned my mental and physical health around. I am determined to continue making progress in 2018 and I hope that all of you do the same! I discuss my 2017 more in my post here~

2017

Now that my year in review is out of the way it is now time to plan for 2018. I am an optimist so I can’t help but have a ton of resolutions, goals, and dreams for the upcoming year. Setting resolutions is one thing but keeping up with them is a battle and I determined to actually stick to them while crushing my goals for 2018! I am not to going to lie, picking  resolutions for the next year was actually kind of difficult. I had to sit down and really think about what I planned to accomplish next year and how these resolutions will help me meet my goals and hopefully achieve my dreams.

2018 REsolutions

 

My 2018 Resolutions help make me continue my journey to becoming healthier and also try to keep me from becoming a hermit. I also decided to actually try to go on more adventures and make some amazing memories in 2018. I am positive that I can stick to my resolutions and crush my goals!

 

 

 

2018 Goals

 

 

Goals, goals, goals! I can’t wait to crush my goals and achieve my dreams. I decided to buckle down and work hard to achieve my dreams of publishing, traveling, and living a more creative life.

 

 

2018 Goals-3

 

Dreams are a lot harder to reach but I am determined to achieve at least one of my dreams in 2018!

Publishing a novel has been my dream for as long as I can remember. After crushing my 2017 word count goals, I am more determined than ever to publish one if not both of my novels by the end of 2018. It is quite the mouthful but I can handle it and I can’t wait to finally share my literary worlds with everyone.
Ireland is one of the places that I have always wanted to visit. My family’s ancestors are from there and I am in love with the mythology and fairy tales that are woven into the rich history of the country. I want to visit Ireland so I can appreciate where I came from and also visit one of the towns that I am writing about in my novel.
I have been wanting to see the Grand Canyon and since I live in Texas, the drive would be excruciatingly long. Going on an epic road trip has always been on my bucket list so I want to finally cross it off by going on a journey to the Grand Canyon.

I hope ya’ll enjoyed learning more about me and that you also decide to make 2018 your year. Chase those dreams, make those important lifestyle changes, and crush all of the obstacles that stand in your way. 2018 is the year for the dreamers and I can’t wait to see what the year has in store.

 

Have a wonderfully literary day and I will see all of you in the new year!

~Caitlin~

Holiday Reflection

The holiday season is full of love, celebration, and reflection.  I can’t help but realize just how blessed I am. I am surrounded by friends and family that support my writing career and mental health journey. If someone had told me six months ago that I would be in this amazing place in my life, I would have called them a liar.  I am honestly happy that I have let go of my toxic and negative past and have embraced the bright future in front of me. My best friend from childhood reconnected with me recently as well and for this first time in a long time I am actually happy with how my year has turned out.

So many wonderful things have happened over this past year including:

  1. I graduated college!
  2. I started medication that helped me manage my anxiety!
  3. I have written a good chunk of my pirate novel!
  4. I  started to take better care of myself!

It may not seem like a lot, but I feel like I have conquered so much this past year. If 2018 is anything like 2017 then I can honestly say I am ready for the new year. Sure, there were a lot of times where I honestly doubted myself. It can be hard to fight the feeling of doubt but I did and now I am ending this year on a positive note. When it comes to the holiday season, you can use this time to ignore your doubt and look around. You are surrounded by the people that love and care about you  and that can be the boost you need to break through that wall of doubt. If you are alone this holiday season just know that I am here for you. I am supportive of whatever your dreams and goals are and you are more than welcome to connect through comments below so we can have our own little literary tribe.

My Bookmas Tree

My Bookmas Tree

I am going to wrap this up now so I can get back to my little Christmas celebration! hope ya’ll have the happiest of holidays and keep an eye out for more posts in the future!

Enjoy this picture of my Bookmas Tree~

Have a wonderfully literary day!

~Caitlin

 

 

Curious Reviews: The Shining by Stephen King

Hello World!

Welcome to the first book review to be posted on my lovely blog! I hope you enjoy it and if you want to learn more about the book click here and it will take you to its Goodreads Page!

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I recently developed an obsession with listening to podcasts, so I decided to finally listen to an audiobook and chose to listen to The Shining by Stephen King! It took me a little over fifteen hours to listen to this novel and it was worth every second. I loved Wendy and her resolve as she faced a husband that had a rapidly deteriorating mental state and a son that was being attacked by the undead residents of the Overlook hotel. Jack is such a wonderfully complex character and watching him unravel while learning bits of his background makes you want to listen to the whole novel in one setting. I am not going to lie, my favorite character was Hallorann, the cook that comes to the rescue. His wit and bravery really added an awesome level to this complex novel and helped sprinkle some humor into this thriller.

Stephen King really does have quite the talent for crafting beautifully deep characters that you want to root for. Even though I knew what was going to happen to poor Jack, I couldn’t help but hope that he can overcome the hotel’s hold and escape with his family. Watching Danny face the monsters that lurked the shadows of the Overlook while trying to learn how to control his shine without the help of his companion, Tony, was horrifying and intriguing at the same time. Even the monsters and demons that live in the hotel were all extremely detailed, from the old caretaker to the mobsters that resided in the presidential suite, monsters from different eras were present and ready to tear Danny apart for his gift and it was amazing to see all the work that went into creating this colorful cast of characters.

The plot was full of twists and turns while also not being too complex. The way that King sprinkles in flashbacks really did help paint a beautiful picture while making me want to read on to figure out why the characters were acting a certain way. Overall, this novel is absolutely fantastic and I am going to pick up Doctor Sleep so I can follow Danny on another amazing adventure.

Below I will list my top three favorite things about this novel and three things I thought could be better along with my rating of this novel!

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That is all for my very first book review! I kept it as spoiler free as I could and I hope y’all enjoyed it.

 

I hope y’all have a wonderfully literary day!

~Caitlin

Time to Celebrate!

Hello World!

Today is a day to celebrate! I finally bought my domain name and changed it from My Magical Writing Adventure to The Curious Novelist.  I decided to change my blog’s name because, honestly,  it is a lot shorter than my original name and it flows really well. I also took this opportunity to give my blog a bit of a face lift and I am in love with its new appearance!

Another thing to celebrate is that my dad and I adopted two puppies yesterday from the shelter. The story behind these fur babies is that the local animal shelter found an abandoned box of puppies left in an alley last week. After being held by the shelter for five days and being cleared by a vet, the puppies were available of adoption yesterday.

Rosie and Jolly Mon

Rosie on the left and Jolly Mon on the right

My father adopted the boy and named him after his favorite Jimmy Buffett song, Jolly Mon. I fell in love with a little girl puppy with black markings and named her Rosie. That name is important to me because one of the best characters I have ever created was a pirate named Rose. Rose was a part of this beautiful writing project that I had with another person that had to be cancelled after I cut that person out of my life. All that work and love I put in Rose and her fantastic world had to be thrown away and it honestly broke my heart. In the novel, Rose was a fearless pirate captain that had a sense of adventure and never backed down. When I saw this little brave puppy run around and explore the world I knew that the name Rosie fit her like a glove.

That is all for this little life update! I am off to write now and I hope you enjoyed my little update!

Have a wonderfully literary day!

~Caitlin~

Cuties

Jolly and Rosie are such cuties!

A Few of My Favorite Genres

Hello World! 

Today I am going to be sharing some of my favorite literary genres! The genres that have made my top 3 are all genres that I love to both read and write. I know my intro is a tad short but I am a little too excited to write this post!

Let’s dive in and explore my favorite genres! 

1. Fantasy

This one is my absolute favorite genre because of how flexible it is. Authors can really go wild with their world building and showcase the coolest stuff. Magic, dragons, and badass journeys are just a few of my favorite  things about this genre. Fantasy can also be combined with other genres as well and that is where things can get really interesting~

Favorite things about this genre:

  • Epic world building~
  • Use of magic~
  • Being able to see just how wild an author’s imagination can be~

2. Thriller

I love a good page turner! Books in this category can throw curveballs at you and keep you up at night while you play different scenarios in your head as you try to figure out what’s next. Unreliable narrators rule  this genre and some of these books can  scare the daylights out of you. 

Favorite things about this genre:

  • The way authors manipulate the point of view and unreliability of the narrative~ 
  • Twists are hidden throughout the novel~
  • Can easily keep you up at night~

3. Classics

Without  classical novels, epics, and plays the literary world would not be what it is today. I love reading  Austen, Fitzgerald, and Shakespeare. Knowing that storytellers like Homer helped lay the foundation of literature  is fascinating and I absolutely adore this genre~

My favorite things about this genre:

  • The wordplay authors used in order to work in some rather interesting jokes~(Looking at you Shakespeare!)
  • No matter how many times I read them, I am still enchanted~
  • Being able to see how society was back then by studying these works is really cool~

Those are my top 3 favorite literary genres! I hope you guys enjoyed my little post! What are your favorite genres?
Have a wonderfully literary day!

~Caitlin~

A Magical Unboxing~

Hello World!

Today, I received my Wizarding World Crate for July and I thought I would share the epic contents with y’all!

For those of you that don’t know, Loot Crate has a bimonthly box for Harry Potter fans called the Wizarding World Crate. The theme for July was Defense Against the Dark Arts and I am in love with what I received! If you want to learn more about this magical crate click here!

Before I dive into this unboxing I must warn you that there are spoilers beyond this point. If you don’t want to be spoiled then turn back now!

Now, time to dive in to the box!!!

   This month’s theme is : Defense Against the Dark Arts

 

July T-Shirt

The first thing that I want to share is the exclusive t-shirt that was included in this month’s box. The material is extremely soft and I love the design!

 

 

 

 

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They also included a pocket-sized Dumbledore’s Army themed notebook. This little hardcover notebook is wicked and I can’t wait to scribble ideas in it. I also loved the little bonus roster that is on the inside of the front cover.

 

 

 

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I was surprised by the beautiful pen that looks like Snape’s wand. The details on this pen are gorgeous and it writes extremely well!

 

 

 

 

 

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This is my favorite item from this month’s box. I can now have the guardians of Hogwarts guard my bookshelves with these metal bookends. The detailing and quality of these bookends are incredible and I will proudly display these in my growing Harry Potter section of my bookshelves.

 

 

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The pin that was included in this month’s box is one of Voldemort’s horcruxes! It is cool that I now own both the ring and the diary in pin form and I hope they keep up the horcrux theme with the pins.

 

 

 

 

A little bonus that was included in this box is that the box itself folded into a pretty patronus shadow box!

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I hoped y’all enjoyed this magical unboxing! This is probably one of my favorite boxes I have received from the Wizarding World Crate and I can’t wait for September to come around so I can receive my next box.

 

I hope y’all have a wonderfully literary day!

 

~Caitlin~

 

 




 

A Few of My Favorite Fairytale Retellings~

Hello world! 

Today I am going to share a list of some of my favorite fairytale retellings! I noticed while creating this list that I love the darker retellings due to my love for the original fairytales. There is only one book on this list that is not too dark while the other three have a darker theme to them. I hope you enjoy my post! 

Okay (cracks knuckles) let’s kick off this list! If you want to learn more about a particular book, click the book’s photo and it will take you to the book’s Goodreads page!


                   The first book that I will be talking about is Bound by Donna Jo Napoli!

I love Donna Jo Napoli’s retellings so much but Bound is my favorite! She uses Chinese mythology as a tool to reinvent the story of Cinderella. Instead of  a glass or golden slipper there is a silk slipper that only a woman with incredibly small feet can fit into. The history of feet binding and the painful toll it took on women during that time period  plays an important role in this story as well. If you want a new cultural take on this classic then you should pick up this beautiful book
                
    The next book on my little list is Red Riding Hood by Sarah Blakley-Cartwright!

This novel is a reimagined version of the story of little red riding hood and it is incredible while also being  filled to the brim with  twists and turns. This  page turner will keep you guessing the true identity of the menacing wolf until the very last page. The characters and the plot curveballs come together to create a truly spellbinding story~

                  Another one of my favorites is The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor!

This is my absolute favorite retelling of Alice in Wonderland. This is a cool retelling where instead of falling into wonderland, our little hero is the heir to the throne and is having to fight against her evil aunt  to regain power over wonderland. This book is  amazing and the mad hatter is quite the interesting character with his dangerous top hat~

                            And the final book on my list is Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige!

This book is AMAZING and I can’t believe the journey that I just went on when I picked up this Wizard of Oz  retelling. This book follows a young girl as she is brought to Oz so that she can kill Dorothy, who has been ruling ruthlessly in her sparkling red shoes. You also encounter a mad scientist Scarecrow, a Tin Man that is a slave to his heart, and a Cowardly Lion that feeds on fear. This is one tale that you need to read now!

Okay, that is my list of my favorite retellings! These are all books that I love and I hope that y’all enjoy them as much as I do!
Happy Reading,

~Caitlin

Fairy loot: Warriors and Legends Unboxing

Hello World!

Now that all the post-graduation chaos has finally settled I can dedicate more time to my lovely blog! I want to share more of my bookish love on here so expect to see a ridiculous amount of book mail being unboxed on here along with tbr lists, wrap ups, and other cool book posts! My first bookish related post is the unboxing of my Fairyloot that arrived Friday. For those of you that don’t know, Fairyloot is a monthly book subscription box that ships from the U.K. and focuses on the fantasy side of the Y.A. Genre.  The theme for May was Warriors and Legends and I am excited to show y’all what came in it!

Note: I tried to provide links to as many of the businesses as I could so if you want to learn more about them, you can click and go to their website. The books are linked to their Goodreads pages so all you have to do is click the links to find out more about the books! The only Goodreads page I could not find was for the mythology book~

                            SPOILER ALERT: IF YOU ARE A FAIRYLOOT SUBSCRIBER AND DON’T WANT TO BE SPOILED THEN TURN BACK NOW.

Now that I got that out of the way, lets dive in!

 

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~The first thing you see when opening this box is a little newsletter along with a pretty print that fits the theme of the month. I love their purple packing confetti so much that I keep a box full of it for when I want to use it for photos~

 

 

 

 

~This beautiful edition of World Mythology In Bite Sized Chunks by Mark Daniels is so freaking beautiful! Little snippets  from various mythologies are showcased in this book! It is only 200 pages so it is a quick read and I can’t wait to display this beauty along with my other mythology books~

 

 

~This lovely fake feather pen, made by Flora’s Wonder Emporium, is a very interesting shade of orange. It writes really well, the only problem is that it is stiff and sharp~

 

 

 

 

 

~I also received  a cool tea blend created by The Tea Leaf Co that was created just for the  Warriors and Legends box! I haven’t tried it yet but it smells amazing. In The Wick of Time also created an exclusive candle that smells like orange blossom and it is divine~

 

 

 

~ I was beyond excited when I saw the Celtic socks that were created just for the box. My current writing project involves a bit of Celtic mythology so these socks made me giggle a bit too hard.

 

 

 

 

~I have been been wanting an Ink and Wonder bookmark so I was extremely happy to see that the one I received in this box  was Lord of The Rings themed! They also included an excerpt from a very interesting novel that is out now called, Naondel, by Maria Turtschaninoff!

 

 

 

 

And finally we have reached the book that was chosen for this month!

Drumroll Please!

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The book chosen for Fairyloot’s Warriors and Legends box is  Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh! I have been anxiously awaiting this beauty to come out and I can’t wait to read it! They also sent a letter written by her, a signed nameplate, and a cute little bookmark.

 

 

Here is a picture of the inside of the jacket for you if you are intrigued:

Overall I really enjoyed this box! They have never sent me a box that I did not enjoy and I love subscribing to their box.

If any of y’all are interested in learning more about this lovely subscription box then click here!

I hope y’all enjoyed this little unboxing post and  I hope y’all have an amazing day!

Until next time

~Caitlin

Jumping Into the Unknown

Hello World!

I graduated from Texas A&M Commerce last Saturday (the 13th) and I just wanted share what I was feeling with y’all. I transferred there three years ago and  the Hall of Languages quickly became a second home to me. Dr. Adkins, Dr. Jacobs, and Dr. Roggenkamp helped me improve my writing while also causing my love of literature to evolve. It was a magical and important time in my life and I am sad that it is now over, but now it is time for me to make them proud. I am taking this year to finish my book and return  the Fall of 2018 for the Graduate Program. If I am ever feeling  lost while taking this daring adventure, I know that I can visit Texas A&M Commerce  and know that my old professors will gladly welcome me home.

 

I also need to give a shout out to my mentor from Eastfield, Professor Buck! Without her guidance, I wouldn’t have built up the courage to really chase my love of literature~

 

I can’t wait to share  the world I created with everyone and I am excited to post on here again!

~Caitlin