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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

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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

Music Made the Girl

10 Apr
Music Made the Music

Music is such an every day part of our lives that I think we can sometimes take it for granted. Music isn’t just entertainment, it’s an art form, but also a means of expression that can really mean something to the listener. We can be touched by the lyrics or the melody, or felt understood when a songwriter somehow managed to put into words what you have always felt or thought. Music can mean so much.

When I was a teenager, the British pop punk band Busted meant a huge deal to me. To many, Busted would be considered a guilty pleasure, but I could never feel guilty for loving a band that did so much for me. Continue reading

Blog Reading: Must-Read Writers – Part 1

5 Apr
Blog Readin: Must Read Writers - Part 1

Over the past several months, as I’ve been learning more about blogging and the kind of writer I want to be, I’ve come across a number of blogs and websites that have helped me figure things out. I’ve come to be avid readers and huge fans of these lovely people, and so I thought I would share the love. I’ve started following quite a number of must-read and hugely inspiring writers, so this is likely to be the first in a series of posts.

Must-Read Writers – Part 1

Almost Amazing Grace

This wonderful blog is run by the incredibly inspiring Gracie Latter, who I’m now lucky enough to call a friend. I’ve mentioned Gracie before, but I raved more about her as a person (for good bloody reason) than about her blog. Gracie writes fantastic posts with insights into her life, whether it’s about the books she’s reading, cafes and coffee shops she would recommend, or the health issues that came with having a brain tumour. Gracie also writes really powerful pieces on topics such as mental health and sexuality. As well as writing for her own blog, she also contributes to a number of other sites (The Olive Fox, Zusterschap, and Oh No, Not Another Blogger), and it’s mostly through her that I’ve discovered the other wonderful writers I now follow. Whether she’s writing about the every day or the serious, I find Gracie’s writing compulsive reading, and I find her honesty (I.E. regarding how she feels about the way her brain tumour affected her life) refreshing as well as awe-inspiring. Continue reading

Finding a Safe Space

10 Mar
Finding a Safe Space

I wanted to update you guys with something that has been happening lately. I’ve become a Team Member of Safe Space, a blog for young women talking about the various issues we face, personally and in society. It’s a blog that is very feminist, with focuses on mental health, body image, sex and relationships, and life in general. It’s a place for real honesty, and a place where judgement is not allowed.

Safe Space has been huge for me. There are eight of us on the team who are also book bloggers, and so we all bring our own followers and friends to Safe Space. I reach more people at Safe Space than I do at this blog, and I think the knowledge that people quite a few people will be reading what I write has inspired me to come up with so many ideas of things to write about. I write for Jo’s Scribbles with the idea that it doesn’t matter how few people read, if what I write reaches one person and they find it entertaining or helpful, then that’s good enough. But the larger audience, and having seven other ladies to bounce ideas off of, has led to ideas a-plenty. Continue reading