Bookish Discussions

2019 Reading Wrap-up:


Let’s take a closer look at my reading year…

Books Read: 91 books
Average Rating: 3.1 stars
My Favourite Genre: Literary Fiction and Victorian Classics
My Favourite Author: Stacey Halls
My Favourite Book of 2019: The Familiars by Stacey Halls
My Favourite Fiction Book of 2019: The Familiars by Stacey Halls, but also The Way of All Flesh by Ambrose Perry & The King’s Witch by Tracy Borman
My Favourite Classic of 2019: Jane Eyre? otherwise New Grub Street by George Gissing
My Favourite Poetry Collection of 2019: Heathcliff Adrift by Benjamin Myers
My Favourite Non-Fiction of 2019: The Boy Who Followed His Father into Auschwitz by Jeremy Dronfield

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Bookish Discussions

Dear 2019…


I’ve just woken up from a nap and I’m feeling slightly reminiscent.

I’ve always been one of those reflective people – looking at what I have achieved and how life has shaped me over the years. 2019 has been tough.

It was the year I really struggled with my pernicious anemia. I was diagnosed with it a few years ago but I never really felt any of the side affects until this year. Exhaustion and fatigue were my biggest enemy, especially during my dissertation research, where I lacked the energy to get out of bed for a week. I literally had to force myself to get up, get dressed and go to work. I didn’t touch my uni work though.

I’ve kinda come to terms with it now; I’ve started napping a lot. I’ll nap even when all I’ve done all day is walk my dog. I also stay in bed a lot of the time. If I’m not in work, you’ll find me under the duvet with a book. I need a good and long night’s sleep to properly function otherwise it’ll affect my energy throughout the week.

I also got out a bad relationship. I was in a relationship with this boy for three years. It wasn’t right, you know? We weren’t good for each other, but we stuck it out because it was familiar to us. I wasn’t the perfect girlfriend, I’ll admit, but all my issues sprung from insecurity and doubt. He wasn’t a very good person – emotionally abusive, a bad temper, irrational and manipulative. He felt attacked if I raised issues. I had to change – not him.

I’m glad I’m went through with it, though, because now I know how to be treated. I know not to settle for less, and I’ll voice concerns if I need to. I’m very lucky I found Carson this year. He listens and respects me. I don’t feel insecure or jealous. We can have time apart, but still want to spend time together. I’m allowed to meet his family and friends, which is something my ex wouldn’t let me do.

I’m happy.

Continue reading “Dear 2019…”

Bookish Discussions

UCLan Publishing | A New Episode in my Publishing Journey:


I’ve struggled to find work experience in the publishing industry for a few years now.

There aren’t many opportunities in the North, with publishing houses being “too small to facilitate any experience” (an actual response I once got), and London being too expensive for someone who spent all their savings on simply surviving at university.

UCLan Publishing was the first publishing house to offer me a productive and universal experience in the world of publishing. I reached out to them one day in summer – just on the off chance they could give me something – and I didn’t hear back for months. But I woke to a random email one day, asking if I wanted to join them the following week, and I was thrilled.

I gained skills in editorial to marketing, sales to publicity.

I spent a lot of time in editorial. The team wanted to encourage my interest in that area; they wanted to push me and help me develop skills. My main responsibilities were reading through manuscripts, writing reader reports, creating blurbs, and looking at sensitivity reports.

I gained an insight into the current market of both middle-grade and young adult fiction, learning what types of stories would be successful in such a competitive industry. My favourite part of the placement was getting to read through all the manuscripts; it’s amazing to see how stories transform from drafts to fully published novels. And how the editor helps to shape the story into what it is. I can’t wait to be that person one day.

Continue reading “UCLan Publishing | A New Episode in my Publishing Journey:”