Just a Thought on Procrastination

Ah. Another year, another blog post. Now, I think I may have gotten to the bottom of my blogger’s block. Apologies for incoherence, I’m writing this at midnight and I’m tired as heck!

I’m a procrastinator (and not proud of it). The more I think about doing something, the more it gets pushed down my agenda. I tell myself to write another blog post, but… ugh. It’s not like I hate blogging or anything—I love it, but I guess I’m putting some pressure on myself.

It can be said the same thing about reading. I pressure myself to read, but then again, I haven’t been reading as much. It might be because I get distracted by things like Netflix, podcasts, or YouTube… *sigh*. It’s easy to lose track of time by streaming information and I guess it’s easier to listen than to read (because I’m getting lazy—sue me!).

However, I don’t want to put any more pressure on myself. I suppose I’ve gotten a little timid because other bloggers are racking up followers and pushing out as many blog posts as possible, and I feel like I’m being left behind. I don’t want to care about that anymore. I have to remember that this is a hobby and something I want to do during my downtime! I also want to ease myself back to reading, so sometime last year, I splurged my disposable income on some novels I’ve had my eye on for ages. Here’s a happy louse with some of her purchases below:

Oh look, a halo made of books and a doofus-y face to boot!

I decided to do this so I can revive my interest in reading again.

Currently, I’m ready The Haunting of Hill House. Again, I don’t want to pressure myself to read and complete novels in a certain time frame, because that will likely make me procrastinate more (yikes!). Reading is not a race, but rather, something like meditation. Something to do at one’s own pace during their own time.

Anyway, this is just another diary entry to put my thoughts into words… I miss everyone and I miss blogging. Belated Happy New Year and let’s make 2021 a little more productive!

So yeah…

Well peeps, it’s time for another update on TABL! Hey, I know I’ve been away for a long time despite my last post declaring that I’m going to revive this blog, but a lot of things happened in my personal life that made me put my digital baby in the back burner.

Firstly, there’s the issue that is gripping our whole planet right now: COVID19. Since I work in a supermarket, I have been flat out at my job since we’re considered essential workers and all. As you can imagine, it’s been super hectic and I’ve been tired and all my motivation to blog has run out.

Secondly, my father passed away last month. So my family and I had to spend time preparing the final farewell and important stuff that I won’t get into. We’re still sorting these matters out.

Thirdly, I’m writing this on my phone! My computer has officially shit itself and I need to take it to a repair shop, so phone blogging it is for now. I’m bummed that I don’t know how to align my text to Justified on the app (please help a sister out if you do know), but hey, I’m kinda warming up to the block editor though!

So long story short, a fair amount of shizz has been going on in my personal life, hence why I’ve stopped blogging for a while. I want to slowly ease my way back though, because TABL is my baby and I reaaaalllyy don’t want to abandon it, even if it means that I post updates that no one cares about. The world is in a tough place right now, with this pandemic going on and I can imagine that it’s affecting us whether mildly or intensely. I’m just glad that blogging is one way that we can still connect with one another during these dire times.

Anyway, I’m going to keep this entry short and sweet. I’ll try and do something for my blog’s up and coming second birthday. But for now, keep safe and stay healthy, and I’ll see you next time.

I’m Still Here!

Hello everyone!

As you’ve read in the title, this is just a quick post to let you know that I’m still around on WordPress.  TABL has not been abandoned, but as you can see, there hasn’t been a post since March.

Truth be told, in the past several months, there have been a few things that have kept me occupied–family matters that couldn’t be ignored.  Bear in mind, these matters are still ongoing but I’m still (agonisingly slowly) writing up a new post for this blog.  Please expect it in the coming weeks.

So I’m sorry for the pretty long hiatus.  I hope you understand.  I’ll be hanging around like I used to soon!  Miss you all and can’t wait to be properly writing here again and seeing all your content too!

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Looking Back: A Word on My English Degree

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L-R: Sam, Ashleigh, Evan, and your girl.  We were all a little giggly here because prior to this picture being taken, we had a conversation about how the robes made us all look like Voldemort (and Evan was pretending to hide a wand in his cloak).

Hello everyone!  Hope everything’s fine and dandy with you all.

(I want to make an apology to WordPress because all the issues I’ve been having the past few posts had little to do with them and everything to do with me being an ignorant fool.  A bit of googling reveals that all the formatting issues I’ve had involved weirdness that occurs when you cut and paste text into WP’s editor.  So, sorry for all the bashing!  Suppose the only thing to do is to work with this flaw and type my post directly in.)

Anyway, I’d like to share to you that I officially graduated on the 20th of March, and all I can say is that my graduation was probably one of the best days of my life so far.  In honour of studying English at uni, I figured that it was probably time for me to write a sentimental post regarding this rollercoaster ride experience.  So brace yourselves for a fairly long-ish post and let’s get going!

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I’m sorry.

Dear beloved readers,

I know I’ve promised more content, but I have to be honest and tell you all that I’ve got too many commitments going on right now.  I’ve started studying a new online course which is taking up a lot of my time, and I’ve also been in the process of serious job hunting and planning for the future.  Because of this, I haven’t been on here for quite a while, nor have I been reading a lot either (if you don’t count module content).

As for now, I’m going to have to put TABL on another break.  While it’s so much fun being here and writing blog posts, I have no choice but to prioritise my activities, and TABL is further down the list.  For this, I just want to say sorry to you all.

I hope you all understand.  This isn’t goodbye–I want to continue blogging, but you probably won’t see any more content on here until after the new year.

Wishing you all a splendid festive season, wherever you are in the world.  Continue reading and blogging, and I appreciate you all!   See you next year!

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Mojito Mayhem (except it’s not really mayhem, it’s an update)

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Throwback to when I had a social life… and no, I did not drink all three of these mojitos.

Hey everyone!

How’s it going?  Hopefully fine.  Anyway, I’m here with another quick update regarding the blog that I’d rather write about in a separate post than to drone about it in my next review.

I just want to say that TABL has gotten plastic surgery!  I’ve changed the theme yet again to a more minimalist yet fancy design (the last theme I changed it to made this blog look like a homepage for a hipster burger joint), and I’m now using my own custom domain, so sayonara “.wordpress.com” extension!  Personally, using your own domain makes your site look less amateur and more professional.  Even though blogging is a part-time activity for me, I still want my site to appear sleek, prim, and appealing to the eye (and potential employers/business partners).  So now I can say that I’ve got my own lot on this virtual block!  Please visit it when you have time!

Also, I’ve updated the disclaimer page.  It’s now reworded and divided into sections.  So hopefully, Louse here won’t get into any trouble anytime soon.  Please have a squiz at that in your spare time.

Last but not least, I have also added a ‘Buy Me a Mojito’ section to my sidebar.  If you like and support my content, you’re more than welcome to treat me to a ‘mojito’.  Buying a mojito shows your appreciation for this blog and is a means of encouragement.  What I do here is for free and for both our entertainment.  Truthfully, I’d rather do things this way than to plaster ads all over this site (no judgement to other blogs making revenue this way).  Technically, this blog is now a way to earn a little revenue, but payments are voluntary from your end and this is not a way for me to be lazy and rely on it as income; so there’s no need to serve me SpongeBob’s ‘GET A JOB’ soup.

Proceeds go to keeping this blog alive and kicking (and maybe a real mojito once in a while), so if you want TABL to stick around on the internet (and if you’ve got some money to spare), then, by all means, go for it!

That being said, I’ll be back with you soon with The Body review.  Keep on reading, folks!

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The Future

No posts for September and October?  Naughty me!

How’s it going fellow literary nerds?  It sure has been a while.  The reason why I haven’t been posting is due to life in general.  Initially I was busy with a part-time retail job, but the fate of my position at the shop is somewhat dire; this particular shop isn’t exactly busy and therefore it doesn’t seem as though it makes enough profit to support another employee (there are three employees in total, so you can just imagine how small our shop is!)

With the stress of wondering if I still have a job, career hunting and anticipation, I had no choice but to put TABL on a hiatus.

As of late, I’ve been thinking about the future and the direction that I want to take.  As you know, I’ve completed my degree in English, and I’m currently in some post-university limbo, or so that’s how I feel.  I’ve been actively applying for jobs left, right, and centre and these positions aren’t necessarily related to English whatsoever.

There are always going to be those individuals that will take a jab at English degrees (or Arts degrees in general), saying that we’ll end up remaining unemployed or flipping burgers at McDonald’s (as if that’s a bad thing), but they’ve got it entirely wrong.  Sure, it’s not as though you can get a job straight away after you graduate; but you do gain transferable skills while you study!  Such things include time management, teamwork, computer/digital literacy, research skills, editing, and attention to detail.  Sounds like a good package, right?  So the best thing to do is stay optimistic!

How have I been applying for jobs?  I’ve been looking at jobs through LinkedIn.  Personally, I find that the job postings there are more “professional” if you get my drift.  While there are sites such as Indeed and SEEK,  not all companies advertise positions on those sites.  You can also learn a lot about a company via LinkedIn too; it saves you the googling, and you can actually see if a company is legitimate or not.  I’ve heard stories about shonky job positions being placed on SEEK and Gumtree, and there are some job listings with vague details; some don’t even reveal which company you’ll be working for.  The whole thing could turn out to be a bait and switch for all we know.  But, I’m not saying that these sites are horrible, however!  If you’ve been successful getting a job through those services, then that’s great!  Personally, for me, I just want to find employment through a different means.

I’m also seriously looking at moving for employment.  But so far, with the funds I have at the moment, I don’t think it’ll happen just yet.  My prior choice would be Melbourne since the Arts scene is thriving there and a bigger city would likely have bigger opportunities.  Otherwise, there is always Sydney, Brisbane, and other places here and there.  Also, if I move somewhere (cough, cough, Melbourne), I have a feeling that I’ll get my motivation back.  I just feel that my hometown is beginning to feel stale, for lack of better word.  A change in scenery may wake me up a little.  Despite the media’s romanticism revolving around small, pastoral towns, trust me: you don’t want to live in one!

Aside from job seeking, I’m also considering taking up another course to gain more qualifications.  Although English is my passion (and always will be), it’s also best for me to have a “day job”; something for me to get by while I strive towards my dreams.  In the recent few months, I learned that a career in retail isn’t for me; the reason is that I just don’t have the personality for it (I’m not exactly a people person and dealing with entitled customers can be draining at times).  In doing this, I feel that I’m going to keep my head above water.

Additionally, I’m going to announce that I’m open to freelance writing!  As you can see, I’ve revamped my banner (update: the blog’s whole theme!) yet again, as I also want this blog to be something attached to me career-wise, like a portfolio of some sort (but I’m still chewing through one book at a time, don’t you worry).  Perhaps it was about time I rebranded The Avid Book Louse.  While I’m job searching and making plans, I figured that the good ol’ Louse should really put her writing to more use.  Rather than writing only on TABL, I can also write for others.  The things that I can write include:

  • Blog posts
  • Editorials
  • Opinion pieces
  • Essays
  • Reports
  • Creative Fiction
  • Reviews (book, film, etc)

If anyone wants to help out an aspiring writer, please contact me!

So yeah, I’ve been thinking about my future for the past few months.  It’s about time that I plan things through in a serious manner.  Anyway, my lovelies, I’m going work on more reviews after I post this, so stay tuned!

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Gratitude

Hello everyone!

How is everybody?  Good?  Great?  Absolutely shithouse?  Well, wherever you are, I just hope things go well for you in your day.

Anyway, I just want to write this post to say, “HAPPY 1st BIRTHDAY, TABL!”

Just a year ago, I was on the fence as to whether I would start this blog or not.  I was going through a difficult time in my life and wasn’t exactly sure whether this will be a long-lived project or another abandoned one.  But now, I’m just glad to be here, still writing, despite my posts being sparse.  I totally enjoy being on WordPress, blogging and doing what I love the most: writing.

So, thank you, thank you to all the followers of TABL.  Even though we don’t really communicate much, I’m just grateful for your presence.  You’re all a bunch of talented, wonderful writers and I wish you all the best in your blogging endeavours.  I am glad to have encountered you all.

Thank you to all the readers that come and view this blog.  Although this is a small blog with not much activity going on, I’m thankful for whatever hits the blog get regardless.  (Side note: I’m not really someone who is after clout and a bajillion hits/followers, this is a site that is pretty much a literary diary that so happens to be public, so whoever sees it, sees it)

Again, I’m just glad to be here and glad to be doing this.  I’m really appreciating what blogging is and seeing just what is out there in the WordPress world (or should I say, WorldPress?).

Anyway, I would have celebrated TABL’s first birthday with a beer, but it’s currently winter here in Australia and the region that I live in can get fairly cold, so a hot chocolate will be the celebratory drink of choice tonight.

An enormous thank you to everyone who viewed/read/followed TABL.  Thank you for being on this journey with me.  I definitely enjoyed my year of blogging, and hope for many more years to come!

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A Forecast

Hey hey, everyone!  I thought I’d just give you a bit of a forecast on what’s to come on TABL.  University started up again, so therefore I’ll be doing a fair amount of study, but that doesn’t mean I’ll be abandoning this blog, but posts (as always) will be at irregular intervals.  Currently, this is my last semester and very final subject (woohoo!) and I might be talking a bit about this subject, Children’s Literature, in some posts.  Secondly, here are some upcoming posts to look out for:

  • Reviews for Apt Pupil and The Body.  Finished both novellas and felt a major literary whiplash from transitioning from the former to the latter!  I’m keen to write these up.
  • T.S. 1888: I’m thinking of doing Ash Wednesday for the second installment of the series.  This isn’t locked in though, so don’t be surprised if another poem is no. 2.
  • A belated love poem I was supposed to publish on V-day, but I forgot.
  • The reason why I’m on the fence with The Catcher in the Rye.  A good book, but why has the Louse changed her views about it?

Ooh! On a side note, if you’ve visited TABL a few times, you may have noticed that I gave it a bit of a face lift.  I’ve edited my About page, and made things less bold.  Hooray for the new banner and blog font!  Also, I’ll admit to being a dummy for roughly seven months– it wasn’t until recently I discovered how to align my texts justified (I’ve gone back and re-edited all my previous posts to align them this way), so expect my posts to be neater!

Since I’m a little bit behind with study, I’m going to be catching up with that.  Despite this, and if I’m in the mood to procrastinate or if I’m at the level of study where can afford to take a little break, I’ll make a start on the Apt Pupil review because MY SWEET LORDE, THIS STORY GOT ME EFFED UP.  So expect me to be verbal about this story when I publish my review on it.  Please stay tuned and if you use the Law of Attraction and envision it, this review will manifest in the coming weeks.  (I’m kidding, this review will be published regardless)

Until we blog-meet again, I shall see you in the next post.  Ciao!

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Ramble, ramble, ramble

This post is just me putting my thoughts into words.  I’ll be talking about a few things here.  Firstly, I’ll have a few updates regarding what I want to do with TABL, and I also want to share my thoughts about the ethics regarding bookseller lists and publishing due to an incident that happened a few months ago.

Continuing on with the ‘texts I’ve actually read’ reviews, I’m planning to review T.S. Eliot’s individual poems in a series I’ll dub T.S. 1888.  You’ll know it’s an Eliot review because I’ll preface each one with a bad photoshop parody of Taylor Swift’s album (please don’t sue me, Taylor).  Also, I want to write and collect my poems and self-publish my collection.  I’ll probably start off with a small selection and make it a free e-book, and then later I’ll sell the revised edition (including new poems) at maybe 99c.

Now, I know I’m way late to board this train, but I want to talk about Lani Sarem and how she peaked at #1 on the New York Times Bestseller List.  Later on, it was revealed (after clever internet sleuthing) that she bought her way to the top.  Typically, Sarem denied this allegation and maintains her innocence.  There are already reviews for her book Handbook for Mortals, and from excerpts that I’ve read, I’m not going to say that Sarem’s writing sucks.  “It needs improvement” is a more encouraging criticism.

However, this is me being a nitpicker and I am slightly bothered that the protagonist is a too-obvious author avatar, as the description of the protagonist matches Sarem to a T, and don’t forget the annoying and all too prevalent i’m-plain-in-appearance-but-for-some-reason-everyone-thinks-i’m-hot trope.

It also came to everyone’s attention that the author aims to have Handbook for Mortals made into a film, wherein Sarem herself intends to portray her protagonist.  Since

  1.  considering that the protagonist (with the exotic name Zade) is an all-too-apparent author stand-in and
  2. there seems to be a plan already in execution to make this movie adaption happen, with Sarem starring as Zade (it has its own IMDB page)

I can’t help but think that the author wants to live out some sort of fantasy or is it just me?

Hmm….

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