Jo’s Scribbles Has Moved!

11 Jul

I’ve been having problems with WordPress for a while now. I can’t afford to self-host, and the free version is very limited.

I’m used to having a lot more control, with Once Upon a Bookcase being on Blogger, and it’s been difficult not being able to do what I want with Jo’s Scribbles. So I have decided to move to Blogger.

Yesterday I spent the whole day transferring all my posts, and can now finally use the domain name I bought a couple of months back. All new posts from now on will be published over at joscribbles.com Continue reading

Becoming by Laura Jane Williams – A Love Letter Shaped Review

19 Jun

I realised writing a review for Becoming by Laura Jane Williams* wasn’t going to be easy very early on when reading it. I have had such an emotional reaction to this book, writing the kind of review you may be used to on my book blog Once Upon a Bookcase just isn’t going to cut it. So, instead, this is part review, part love letter to Williams, and part a post about me and my hurts. (This is pretty long. You have been warned.)

Becoming by Laura Jane Williams

Dear Laura,

It’s difficult for me to find the words to explain how much Becoming meant to me. I’m a huge fan of your blog Superlatively Rude, and admire you so much as a writer, so Becoming was always on my wishlist – to read more of your words, to hear more of your story. But it ended up affecting me on such a deeply emotional level. You’ve changed the way I think, you’ve made me want to be braver, and you’ve made me face and accept parts of myself I had always turned away from and ignored. Continue reading

Review: La Papierre Letter Writing Stationary

17 Jun

As I’ve had new people to write to recently, I quickly ran out of the pretty stationary I had. Fortunately, when looking for penpals and found Penpal of the Week, I also discovered that Julie and Denise, the ladies who run the site, also design and sell their own stationary for letter writers at La Papierre. I snapped up a couple of designs, and I was so happy with what I bought, I thought I would share my thoughts with you.

La Papierre offers a wide range of beautiful stationary, I had a hard time choosing which to buy! But my eye was immediately drawn to A Cup of Galaxy, and I kept coming back to it:

A Cup of Galaxy Letter Writing Stationary from La Papierre

Continue reading

Man Up by Jack Urwin Book Launch

5 Jun
Man Up Launch

Sexism and the idea of gender roles is something I’m really passionate about. I consider myself to be a newbie feminist, and there’s a lot I’m still learning about, but one thing I’ve noticed in my reading is how most books (that I’ve read) tend to touch on how sexism affects men and boys, but they don’t really go into much detail about it. When I heard about Man Up: Surviving Modern Masculinity by Jack Urwin* and the launch for the book, I knew this was the book I had been waiting for, and eagerly booked myself a ticket for the event.

The Man Up launch happened on Friday evening at Waterstones Piccadilly. Jack Urwin was in conversation with Laura Jane Williams, author of Becoming and the lady behind Superlatively Rude (who was also a major draw to this event for me, I just love her!), and Joel Beckman, the General Manager of Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), a charity whose aim is to prevent male suicide. The three discussed the topics covered in the book, and how this idea that men have to be “masculine” is detrimental to their mental health. It was such an incredibly fascinating event, so I thought I’d highlight some of the major points made at the event. Continue reading

Turning Ninety With Dementia

31 May
Me with Grandma

Today is my Grandma’s 90th Birthday – 90th! It’s such an incredible age to reach; there are so many people who don’t get to anywhere near 90, and yet Grandma has.

My uncle threw her a birthday barbecue on Sunday, and there were quite a few family members there. Four sons, two daughters-in-law, and three granddaughters. One uncle brought his two dogs over as Grandma loves them, and another uncle is visiting for the week from Denmark especially for her birthday. It was a lovely, lovely day, and she really enjoyed herself.

Reaching 90, Grandma is bound to have had a wealth of experiences. She has seven children, 13 grandchildren, and three great grandchildren. Because of two of her sons living in various places over the years, she’s visited a number of countries. There are so many things I would love to ask her, but so many things I’ll never know the answer to.

Why? Because Grandma has vascular dementia. Continue reading

Request a Letter

22 May
Request a Letter

Earlier this year I wrote about how I wanted to write more letters in 2016. I’ve started off well, as after writing that post, it was read by Caoimhe, saying we should write to each other. Now I have a penpal for the first time in years, and it’s brilliant! I’ve loved getting to know Caoimhe better, and discovering just how much we have in common. I’m really grateful for our friendship!

But I’ve not been writing as many letters this year as I hoped, and I really want to write more. Because of this I thought I would try something. I’ve been inspired by Gemma Stone‘s 10,000 Love Letters Project and a post on Penpal of the Week, where Julie offers to write 36 letters to whoever wants them. So I thought I would do the same.

Would you like me to write you a letter?

Continue reading

On Children & Body Image

11 May
On Children & Body Image

I was at a barbeque at the weekend, and got talking with my cousin. We were talking about various things, and body image came up.

“Look at my fat thumbs!” She said. “My friends are always teasing me about my fat thumbs,” she laughed. There is nothing wrong with her thumbs. Her thumbs are fine.

Later on, she moved on to leg hair grooming. “I used wax strips. You should use an epilator or wax, because shaving makes the hair grow back thicker and longer, like a beard,” she informed me. “I hate my gorilla legs!” she added.

My cousin is 11-years-old. Continue reading

Their Scribbles: Interviewing Gracie Latter of Almost Amazing Grace

6 May
Their Scribbles

At the beginning of April, I created my first Blog Reading post, where I discussed some of my favourite writers. Inspired by that post, I thought it would be fascinating for us all to get to know various writers better, and the idea for the interview series Their Scribbles was born.

First up, I’m really excited to have the wonderful Gracie Latter on the blog today. Gracie – or Gracie Actually as you might know her on social media – writes for her blog, Almost Amazing Grace, and as a regular contributor to The Olive Fox, Zusterschap and Oh No, Not Another Blogger. Gracie is also the Peer Editor at The Mix, and an Events Correspondant for Maximum Pop! Books. Gracie is an incredible writer, an inspiring person, and also a lovely lady, and I’m thrilled Gracie is my first interviewee for Their Scribbles.

Almost Amazing Grace

Gracie LatterWhen did you first start Almost Amazing Grace and why? What can readers expect when visiting your blog?

When I first started a blog, it was Bracelets and Bangles (this URL still exists. When I changed to Almost Amazing Grace and moved everything over, I kept it as I simply couldn’t let it go!). I was sixteen and between lessons at college, desperate to get my thoughts out there and have my voice heard by someone, anyone! Even if at the time all I wanted to write about was the guy I fancied in Drama class, or how hard my homework was getting as I approached AS Level exams…

I like to think that since then I’ve matured massively. These days I still share a lot of personal info, stories and opinions, but also I write about books I’ve been lucky enough to receive from publishers or have stumbled upon in shops. While I was doing my Creative Writing degree I realised that by sharing snippets of my creative assignments on my blog I could get feedback from loads of people, and that was always amazing and so helpful. I’ve continued doing that! Continue reading

My Motivational Playlist

2 May
Motivational Playlist

When it comes to my writing, or any other aspect of my life I enjoy and/or feel is important, I will occassionally have wobbles. It doesn’t matter what feedback I get or the support I have, sometimes self-doubt and fear creeps in and stops me from moving forward. Stops me from writing the post or doing the thing that scares me. It can be difficult to get yourself out of those ruts, but I’ve found a number of songs that will give me a kick up the bum, reignight my passion, and get me moving. I thought I would share some of them with you today. Continue reading

I’m Not Beautiful – & Actually, That’s OK

24 Apr
I'm Not Beautiful

I’m currently reading The List by Siobhan Vivian, a YA novel that focuses on beauty and how we look. At Mount Washington High, every year a list is released, naming the prettiest and ugliest girl in each grade, and we follow the eight girls listed over the course of a week, seeing how they are affected by being given their titles.

It’s a really interesting, subtley feminist novel, and has got me thinking a lot about beauty and what it actually means. I’ve come to the conclusion that beauty doesn’t actually matter. Continue reading