When asking for reviews for their books from bloggers and other influencers, authors can make a whole host of mistakes. While there’s plenty of ways to go about asking for reviews, authors often don’t realise that it’s not just their chances of a review that’s at stake. The whole way an author acts from asking for the review to receiving it affects how future bloggers/influencers will react to them. So if you’re an author, you’d better beware, and don’t make the mistakes that this author has…Read More »
Description: The Magician’s Glass by award-winning writer Ed Douglas is a collection of eight recent essays on some of the biggest stories and best-known personalities in the world of climbing.
In the title essay, he writes about failure on Annapurna III in 1981, one of the boldest attempts in Himalayan mountaineering on one of the most beautiful lines – a line that remains unclimbed to this day.
Douglas writes about bitter controversies, like that surrounding Ueli Steck’s disputed solo ascent of of the south face of Annapurna, the fate of Toni Egger on Cerro Torre in 1959 – when Cesare Maestri claimed the pair had made the first ascent, and the rise and fall of Slovenian ace Tomaz Humar. There are profiles of two stars of the 1980s: the much-loved German Kurt Albert, the father of the ‘redpoint’, and the enigmatic rock star Patrick Edlinger, a national hero in his native France who lost his way.
In Crazy Wisdom, Douglas offers fresh perspectives on the impact mountaineering has on local communities and the role climbers play in the developing world. The final essay explores the relationship between art and alpinism as a way of understanding why it is that people climb mountains.Read More »
So the first month of January feels as if it has flown by and I’ve been very busy. Not only have I managed to post a lot of stuff on my blog and get back to pre-scheduling most posts, but I’ve also been busy in the offline world. My time with blogging is going to be hampered a little bit though over the next month as I’ll be away for a bit, but I’ll still keep reading (I just can’t help but love reading!) and do my best to not let it look like I’ve disappeared. To those kind friends who worry, don’t worry, I’m not pushing myself or anything, I have a lot of pre-saved posts all ready to go so you might not even notice I’m gone! lol In the online world I also have some more exciting news to share but I want to save that until a little later when I’m sure everything’s going well. So anyway, on to what’s happened in the last month…Read More »
I’ve struggled to get online the past few days, right after blogging about free ARCs my internet’s been sketchy at letting me back online to post more, so apologies for this being late!
Before I begin this post though I’d like to clarify something about my previous post Free Books/ARCs Help the Publishing Industry so Stop Complaining! I explained the value of free books and ARCs to the publishing industry but part of the post was taken up with comments (some great comments by the way) which focused on the negative aspect of free books. This sparked a lot of interesting discussion and thoughts turned not only to the benefits of free books but the negative aspects of piracy among other things. This is something I’d love to write more about soon and I’ll be doing so as soon as I can. Thank you all for your thoughts on this subject, it’s great when a blog post you write gets so much interest and discussion back, and a special thank you to everyone who shared the post and followed my blog too thank you 🙂 ❤
November was a fun/not fun month for me. It was my birthday in the middle of the month (thank you for all the well wishes everyone!) and although this was a happy time, it was spoilt by the fact I developed a horrible virus which left me feeling wiped out physically and very tired, a virus I’m still in the recovery stages of (although don’t worry, it is nothing serious thankfully 🙂 ) So onto November’s highlights:
The second most popular post on this blog was surprisingly a photography on the subject of ‘temporary’featuring berries! If you enjoy looking at photographs or just want to see what all the fuss is about then please do check out this post by clicking to see it 🙂 PhotoChallenge: Fragile Berries
The third most popular post was a book review of a simple yet interestingly surreal picturebook called Piggybook by Anthony Browne and just edged ahead of my only poetry post of the month Distant Sun (pictured) which is a very short poem and not my usual style.
Plans for December…
So onto next month and what is in store for this blog in December? Well I finally feel I’ve gained back my ability to write and with my last post being so well received I plan to write a lot more, it also helps that I’ve cleared a heavy backlog of book reviews by posting them almost every day in November. I still have some reviews to share but there will definitely be a lot more other content too.
I fear my own Goodreads reading challenge to read 60 books in 2017 will be left unfinished I read over 50 books last year but this year I’ve taken a lot more time off reading and read some longer books too which meant I didn’t read as many, plus I’ve had far more freedom to add different content to this blog so I’ve been focusing more on other projects and not just books to read and review. I think I’ll set a new target next year, a little lower, but has anyone else ever failed their reading challenge? Anyone going to accomplish it this year?
Tomorrow’s blog post will be a book review, the book review, of Norse Myths: Tales of Odin, Thor and Loki which got the unpleasant comment and unhelpful vote on amazon (which by the way threw my amazon ranking down about 40 places 😮 😦 ) I would never solicit positive votes from anyone as I value my own integrity as a reviewer but if you ever enjoyed any of my reviews (or that of any other reviewers) and happened to find them on amazon UK or Goodreads you can always let us know by way of clicking ‘helpful’ or ‘like’ 😉
Also, expect lots of Christmassy stuff happening this month and more articles/discussion posts on various subjects, as well as me sorting out my social media which on some channels (Pinterest, StumbleUpon, etc.) has been a little slow and stagnant 🙂
Hope you all had a great November! What are your plans for the coming month? Anyone looking forward to this month?
By the way, anyone notice the snow on my blog? Like it or does it slow down the loading of the blog? Please let me know 🙂 You can also follow me in these places:
After a pretty rough week health wise I decided to log into my Amazon UK account where I’ve been leaving reviews for books and other items for several years now. Unlike most days which are uneventful on the site though, yesterday I was met with a harsh ‘unhelpful’ vote on one of my most recent reviews along with a comment which stated:
“Your review would have carried more weight if you had put your hand in your pocket and actually bought a copy yourself!”Read More »
For most of yesterday I’ve been feeling like the cat in the picture. I’ve had a splitting headache, found it hard to function and am struggling hard to shut out thoughts of guilt and sadness which have plagued me since I started coming down with something a few days ago.
I don’t like to admit I’m not feeling good, but the truth is that although the last few days of last week I’d been feeling positive, I started to come down with something and it seems relentless in wanting to put me on bed rest. I feel like I’ve got a sleeping sickness, I’m just so tired all the time and when I sleep, which has been for most of the last two days, I don’t feel refreshed at all 😦Read More »
October was a mixture of good and bad. Though mostly good I did suffer a rather horrible bout of migraines which left me unable to use anything with screens, like my laptop, phone and e-reader as looking at screens just made the headaches worse. I think my attempt at reading one of my backlog of NetGalley books (‘Unstoppable: My Life So Far’ by Maria Sharapova) probably made the bout all the worse as I tried to push through and finish reading it so I could review, rather than put it down and listen to my body. The book is an interesting read for anyone interested in Maria Sharapova or women’s tennis and please take a look at it if you want to by clicking on the link above or any other links in this post (all links open in new tabs).
Despite the bad I’ve had a lot of good happen this month, with a wide mixture of posts and I tried to do two new things on the blog! :) Firstly the most popular post of the month was a short discussion post which led to a lot of conversations. What is Your Trademark? got some great shares online and it was a fun post to discuss what makes our blogs unique.
My second most popular post was a simple photograph. It was also my first attempt at joining in the weekly photo challenge on wordpress. It was a lot of fun and I hope you like both this post called Pedestrian Pigeons as well as another photo I’m proud of called Boat vs Swan – just try to find the swan 😉
Two light-hearted poems made it as the 3rd and 4th most popular posts, I don’t think I wrote a dark poem this month. Elastic Skin was a fun poem I really enjoyed writing and I even used my own photo I’d taken at a Pet Show of this interesting gentleman. The other popular post was a motivational one called Be Grateful which I hope everyone will enjoy taking the time to read as it holds a good message (which I need to remind myself of sometimes!)
My book reviews only netted an average view this month, the only stand out review that got more hits than any others was The Great Catsby, an interesting cat version of the classic book. It’s worth a look at as it’s also a picture book and the images alone are really fun to look at!
This month I gave another book the special ‘Phoenix the Peacock’s Favourite’s Stamp’! This favourites award only goes to what I consider to be the very best ever books:There are so many amazing books but I’m very picky about who gets the stamp and so far only two books have received it (this one included). The amazing book I deemed worthy is The Dollmaker of Kraków an amazing historical fiction novel with a touch of magical fantasy which makes for heart-warming and heart-wrenching reading. Although it’s aimed at children, being a middle grade (older children’s) book, it’s very much a book that could be read by any age and isn’t afraid of tackling a difficult subject in Europe’s history: The Holocaust. It’s a book I’d recommend every single person read, and with Christmas being part of the plot it would make a good Christmas present – the ending being ultimately a positive one. I’ve now added pictures to the post so if you didn’t see them the first time please take a quick look as the illustrations in side are just beautiful!
I was brave enough to try my hand at flash fiction this month and more importantly had the courage (or craziness) to publish it here! Her Presence is only around 300 words long and is a special story for Halloween. It’s not so much spooky as strange or maybe even silly but I hope you enjoy it. This was my first ever attempt at such a short story as I’m more used to writing much longer and more descriptive text (as if that wasn’t obvious from the length of my blog posts!) Let me know what you think 🙂
So what’s in store for November? Well it’s my birthday right in the middle, on the 13th. I expect lots of well wishes and cake 😉 I am hoping to do something on this blog for my birthday but I’m not sure if I’ll get anything done.
My tbr pile is very, very long at the moment. I’ve got a backlog of a lot of books and I’m determined to review as many of these as I can by the end of the year (or by Christmas). I was considering doing a reading challenge (I’ve given up on reaching my Goodreads goal of 60 books) to push myself but I checked out a couple of them and didn’t like the options. I then considered creating my own challenge! Madness or genius? I can’t yet decide but what do you think? Do any of you do any reading challenges?
I’m also planning to write some more articles and discussion posts. Now I know I say that every month but I really have a drive to write about something specific, and you’ll find out what that is this month.
So that’s my October and plans for November? What are yours?
How was your October? Did you celebrate Halloween? Did you read all the books you wanted? What do you plan to do or read in November? Let’s chat, I’d love to hear from you 🙂 You can also find me in these places: