Let’s talk about Gerry…

Hey all!

This is going to be a bit of a weird post, so beware. Basically I’m ranting about my laptop. Someone please come fix it. Or just buy me a new one maybe? Because I CAN’T LIVE LIKE THIS ANYMORE. Every day is a struggle. Today I’ll be listing the reasons why.

(Don’t worry, I’m quite a calm blueberry most of the time. But when it comes to my laptop…)

(Also yes, I named my laptop. Gerry. Short for Gerald. Very majestic, don’t you think?)

(the more I look at this heading, the more I hate the fact that I put an emoji in like an annoying 10-year-old girl but oh well, I just wanted to emphasise my anger)

  • His keyboard was definitely treated cruelly in his past life (I’m pretty sure he was new but still) because you literally have to punch the keys for the letters to appear, especially the space bar. I always get annoyed in books when someone ‘punches’ a number into a phone or ‘punches’ the button for the lift, because I just see in my mind the person literally punching the phone, and I’m thinking wow why are they being so aggressive with that delicate piece of technology, but NOW I UNDERSTAND. I have to literally smack my keyboard to get it to form legible words, and you can see why this is frustrating when I’m writing a blog post and I look up and see that allthe wods aremushd togethe rto mak a BLOB. This paragraph alone has taken me 3 hours and 17 minutes to write (I mean I’m not timing myself but that seems like an accurate amount of time) because I keep having to go back and split words up, like guys please stop hugging and start making sense.
  • The mouse is very very overexcited and wants to go everywhere and see everything AT DIFFERENT MAGNIFICATIONS and just no, mouse. I beg of you, please calm down. I’ve had to plug in one of those old PC mice because mine is just so hyper. I mean, when I start it’ll be ok, but after a short time it gets bored and disaster strikes.
  • WiFi? What’s that? Gerry just can’t connect. He doesn’t have the best social skills. I have to have, in addition to my special USB mouse, a lil WiFi adaptor and yes, it’s pretty cute and tiny but also I’d prefer to just take my laptop anywhere in the house without help. Come on, Gerry, you’re approaching your first birthday! It’s time you connected by yourself.
  • I can’t get Microsoft! I know, upsetting. Well, I do have Microsoft – meaning I can see documents I’ve carried over from my old laptop – but I have to pay to actually create/edit stuff. I don’t see why, really. Isn’t free access to Microsoft a basic human right?? So yeah, I mostly use Google Drive these days which is good but you can’t do as much.

  • BUT I still do love and appreciate Gerry. He is my son after all! He’s quite small and light so easily portable (well, not to the point where I could carry him around in a handbag, but you know what I mean) which is always nice.
  • My last laptop had such a problem with our printer that I had to email all my documents to my mum’s laptop to print them on hers, and that is just unnecessary hard work and effort. But now that I have Gerry I can easily print what I like!
  • Unlike my old laptop, he actually works at a normal pace! So thanks Gerry. With my last laptop, it would’ve literally taken me a day to write this post. IMAGINE THE PAIN. I am not a patient person when it comes to technology, as you may have noticed throughout this post.

So I think it’s clear to see where my feelings are for Gerry. Though I still am thankful that I have a machine thing that does work most of the time! I guess I’m just more aware of the bad things. I’ve never lovingly stroked my laptop, but I have punched it and hurt myself more than I’ve hurt him which is even more frustrating. But yeah, thanks for sticking by me Gerry, despite my sometimes slightly aggressive response to your flaws.

Wow, this has been weird. Sorry if reading this was a complete waste of your time! But it’s nice to rant so thanks for being there y’all *sniffs* ♥

Do you have a stressful laptop? Do you face similar struggles to me? How do you cope?

P.S. I got Bloglovin’! You can now follow me on that if ya want to.

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4 bookish worlds all bookworms (well, me anyway) want to live in

Hey peoples!

First off, I’m finally announcing the winner of my August blogging competition thing! Each participant had to write the first sentence (or two) of a book, and I just want to thank everyone who took part! You guys are awesome! And very talented writers! But yeah let me just get on with it and tell you that the winner is… Daniela Ark @ BOOKIVERSE! Here’s her entry:

I didn’t know we could die, until the day we did, one by one.

Well done, Daniela! (Drop me an email at simizat@yahoo.co.uk so we can arrange a prize for you!) I like how a single sentence like this one can tell so much. Already a strange, probably non-human protagonist is introduced that I feel an odd connection with because we’re both curious about what’s going on. I’m hooked! This story, if it ever becomes one (hint hint, Daniela), will definitely be an interesting one that I would love to read.

But don’t worry y’all, there are still four competitions that you can take part in!

For the current one you just have to take 2 photos of your favourite things because I love The Sound Of Music 🙂 I hope you’ll participate! If you do, email your photos to me at simizat@yahoo.co.uk.

Sooo moving onto today’s post. 4 bookish worlds. Is it just me who sometimes imagines they’re inside a book? Ok yeah, maybe that’s a dumb question. Most books want to make you feel like you’re part of the story, right? But in my head sometimes I’ll make up lil tales of me in a bookish world, because I want to be there so badly. Today, therefore, I have decided to list a few of those worlds (not the lil stories though haha) that I wish I could at least visit.

(Like please if anyone knows how to get there – some spell or wardrobe or TARDIS – then do let me know. For now though, I’ll just list them and hope a fairy somewhere will get the message and take me away from Earth please I beg.)

“A single dream is more powerful than a thousand realities.” -J.R.R. Tolkien

File:Brandy hall.jpg

Middle Earth (well, The Shire or Rivendell) ~ Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit

I mean, the life of a hobbit/elf is just how everyone should want to live. The Shire is a quaint little place, perfect for retirement I’d say. All hobbits do is eat (like 8 meals a day), go to the pub, do some gardening (or leave it to the lovely Samwise) and smoke their pipes. I imagine it’s quite a nice place to wait to die reflect on life, ya know? But maybe while I’m still in my early 2000s I’d like to live in an Elven realm, where I could comb my luscious locks and sing spooky songs and embrace nature… Seems like I’ve pretty much got my whole life mapped out haha.

File:HogwartsDrawing.jpg

Hogwarts ~ Harry Potter

How could I not include Hogwarts?! At age 11 who wasn’t wondering in a tiny corner of their mind what it would be like to get a Hogwarts letter? To eat until they burst in the Great Hall? To FLY ON A BROOMSTICK like how cool is that?? When I was reading the books I was just head over heels in love with every tiny detail: the house-elves in the kitchen, Peeves, the long nights in the Gryffindor Common Room doing homework… Little things not important enough to the main plot to be included in the films. I totally get the whole thing about Hogwarts being home for Harry, and Tom Riddle. It’s home for all of us readers too *sniffs* I should reread this series soon, I miss it!

Camp Half-Blood ~ Percy Jackson and the Olympians

They play capture the flag but in a huge forest and you get to stab people and it’s all for fun. Who wouldn’t want to be a half-blood? First of all, it’s safe from all the monstery types in Percy Jackson’s world which, ya know, is always good. Second, it’s basically a huge adventure camp. There are so many cool things to do that are nowhere near as awesome in the real world, like the lava climbing wall, sword-fighting, slightly stabby capture the flag in the woods…

Also there’s a Roman equivalent (which is almost as amazing) and part of that is this cute little Italian village where demigods can live safely when they’re too old for the camp part and just aww.

Narnia ~ The Chronicles of Narnia

Ahh Narnia. This enchanting world was a big part of my childhood. We would watch the creepy BBC adaptation and the new, significantly less creepy films (although that scene when Tumnus plays his little flute that makes those images appear in the fire… *shudders*) and listen to the audiobooks and then finally I read the books themselves, with the beautiful little illustrations like the one above. Each of these things gave me very different pictures in my mind of what Narnia was like, but collectively is what I know Narnia to be, a mix of my childhood imaginings and the imaginings of directors… There’s so much to discover about this wonderful land, and each book and story shows a different little corner of it. Of all the worlds listed, I feel closest to Narnia ❤

Usually I do 5 thingimys, but this post is getting pretty long and I couldn’t really think of another world worthy enough to be on the same list as the likes of Lord of the Rings so yep. There’s only 4. At some point though I’d love to do a part 2 of this post! Maybe 4 more worlds I’d love to live in or – more likely – 4 worlds that I’d steer clear of because that would be fun.

Would you want to live in these worlds too? Why? Where else would you want to live? And will you enter my competition? Just 2 photos and you could win prizes! Probably an ebook, but we’ll see.

One perfect book

A Thousand Perfect Notes ~ C.G. Drews

Hey guys!

First of all, for those of you who don’t know, I’m doing monthly competitions to celebrate my 5th blogiversary, and today I’m announcing the September competition only ever so slightly late! Keeping with the theme of, um… well numbers (the first challenge was to write the first sentence of a book, and by the way the winner will be announced in my next post!), the second competition is basically to do with the number two.

All you have to do is enter 2 photos, old or new (but no stealing, y’all), of your favourite things! Or favorite things if you’re American 😉 I want to see some creativity and originality! Your photos don’t have to be book-related, but of course they can be if books are one of your favourite things (“when the dogs bite, when the bees sting…”). Please note that you don’t have to be a professional photographer to take part! I don’t know the first thing about photography so… Yeah, just be creative. Email your photos to me at simizat@yahoo.co.uk to enter the competition and maybe win a prize! I was thinking an ebook? But we’ll see.

Anyway, onto today’s review! If you weren’t already aware, Cait from paperfury.com wrote a lil book and today I shall review it, or at least try because anything I say probably won’t give the book justice. BUT I’m sure gonna give it a go because this book needs to be read and I am here to spread that message in the best way possible! READ IT OR I’LL RELEASE MY PET SALAMANDER ON YA. Hahaha don’t worry, she’s friendly.

His whole life Beck has been controlled by his mother, held down by the piano and the pieces he must play to perfection. But what he longs for most, what he won’t dare tell a soul, is to write the songs that are trapped inside of him. That have been since he began to play, since his abusive mother, the Maestro, decided that she wanted him to be just like she had been: a prodigy, praised and respected. When Beck’s mother suffered a stroke all those years ago, she lost her music and now she can only attempt to play it through her son. Then he meets August. Quirky and bright and free – a stark contrast to Beck’s darkness – August gradually pulls the music from within him. But with the Maestro looming over him constantly, can he really ever be set free?

So I’m gonna talk about the happy stuff first! As there really was some despite the possibly misleading summary I wrote up there…

First off, the school-ish parts (mostly at the very start, in the first couple of chapters) were pretty funny and actually relatable so I loved that. There was no delay in introducing August so we got as much of her as Cait could squeeze into 275 pages. Maybe it’s because we’re inside Beck’s brainforest the whole time, or just because August is a feisty yet lovable ray of sunshine, but I found myself missing her and her wit in the chapters that she wasn’t in. She was bursting with surprises and an odd but wonderful taste in cake. Her annoying persistently friendly nature honestly reminded me of myself and how I make friends ahaha… *clears throat awkwardly*

JOEY! Also known as Beck’s lil sis. Also known as my favourite character. Also known as a crazy, chaotic, adorable bundle of sass. So much sass for someone so young. But also she was so fiercely courageous, and it really broke my heart to see how she, and Beck, had to live. I just want to hold them both in my arms for eternity. Now we’re getting onto the sad stuff…

So, I love the piano. For as long as I can remember I’ve wanted to learn it. My sister tried to teach me when I was a lil blueberry, but all I can remember from that experience is that major is happy and minor is sad. Up until a few months ago when I started having proper lessons, I decided to leave the piano playing to my sister. When she did play, sometimes I would dance around the room. Sometimes I’d hum the tune ahead of her playing it and distract her. One time, when she played I Giorni by Einaudi, I cried. (That one’s my favourite.)

What I’m trying to say is, music makes people feel things. Or at least it should. The thing about Beck’s mother in this book is that she didn’t see that, she only saw the need for success and perfection and that’s what I found really sad. She didn’t understand.

Passion is more important than perfection.

Guys you have to understand that the writing in this book was just effortlessly beautiful. I LOVED THE WRITING. It was so alive. I couldn’t get enough of it. My heart was captured. And completely and utterly shattered broken slightly. Towards the end of the book I could feel myself about to cry. I read the last few pages over and over so I didn’t have to read the very last one and finish this book. Once I’d come to the final sentence, I just burst into tears. I think it was a combination of obviously the book being so moving but also I really didn’t want it to end. For a few days, the anticipation of reading this was what got me through school. So ’tis much appreciated, A Thousand Perfect Notes. But also WHY DID YOU END. Ya know what, I’ll just go reread this now so bye.

Also yes, there is cake.

Clover count: ♣♣♣♣♣♣♣♣♣♣ (10/10)

Hello September… wait, what?!

Hey guys! Umm so can someone just explain to me how it’s already September? We’re nine months into the year. This is crazy. So crazy, in fact, that I thought I’d basically do a lil life update (sort of) for today’s post. It feels like I’ve been crazy busy lately, but I think it’s just that my brain is overflowing with Stuff, and so I’m going to spill some of that Stuff into this post! You’re welcome.

(I took this photo and I think I should call myself an artist now, despite the photo’s beauty being all down to the sun and not me)
  • As you might be aware (I only mention it, like, once a post…), I’m celebrating my 5th blogiversary by hosting monthly competitions here on Booked to Perfection! Buuuuut not a lot of people have shown much interest so far. If you might like to get involved, then please do! There’s still time to enter the August competition, for which you have to make up just the first sentence of a book. You can enter by simply commenting your sentence on my blog! Or, if you prefer, you can email it to me at simizat@yahoo.co.uk. The second competition will be revealed in my next post…
  • Like most younglings I just went back to school, and it’s my last year of secondary school and I’m not really freaking out but alsoooo my school is making such a big deal out of it so every little thing we do now seems really important and I might be freaking out a teeny tiny bit. I don’t want to leave school feeling disappointed because I didn’t actually try, so I’m doing my best to start the year well and all that.
  • This summer I actually read quite a lot! I love going away in the summer because, without all of the distractions of home life, I just read and read and read, which is exactly what I did on holiday this year. All I can say is expect many reviews very soon! (One of the books I read was To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, which I wanted to read before watching the Netflix film, and aww it was so cute and colourful.)
  • Just before I broke up from school I went to London for a week of work experience at a children’s magazine, and before I left they gave me loads of free books that they’d received from publishers, including Cait’s A Thousand Perfect Notes! Now I have two copies mwhahaha. Keep your eyes peeled for a review of it some time soon!
  • The other day I randomly decided to stop procrastinating, and to just sit down and write properly. Not aimlessly planning and thinking up middle names for all my characters. What I really want to do is write, but I think all this time I’ve been telling myself that I haven’t read enough books or I don’t have enough time or I haven’t planned the story enough… And then I stopped thinking that for almost a whole minute, and in that almost minute I started to write a book. Yes, I’ve only written one chapter so far but you know what? I’m only writing this for me so that I can get better as a writer and because I like to write (“I’m a writer, and I will write what I want to write” -J.K. Rowling) so I’ll write at my own pace. Until maybe NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) in November. Who knows where that one chapter will take me when I have a deadline?

Just a lil update on things. I’ve got loads of blog posts that are half-written and yet I started this whole new one right here. I guess I just wanted to share some blabberings 🙂

How are things with y’all? Do you want to enter my competition? Just comment down below a (made-up) first sentence of a book/story! In my next post I’ll announce this month’s competition, which will be to do with either poetry or photography. Look at me building suspense hehe.

Once upon a time… (my blogging story)

Hey guys!

So, as some of you might know, it was my blogiversary last week! My child turned 5! To celebrate, I’m hosting monthly competitions until December because competitions are always fun. *mumbles* well, sometimes they can be a bit disastrous and end in tears or fits of rage…

Moving on! I thought I’d extend the deadline of the August competition to Friday, September 14th, because I’m a bit late in posting this and I only gave y’all just over a week originally so now you’ve got some more time. Then on the same Friday I’ll announce the challenge for this month, so keep your eyes peeled for that!

Anywayyy I’m still kind of buzzing about my blogiversary (if you couldn’t already tell) so I’ve decided to tell y’all my blogging story because, well… I found it ever so slightly interesting so I thought I’d share it with you today.

Once upon a time a lil blueberry was living her lil blueberry life, when her father approached her and suggested she start a blog about books.

“A blog?” The lil blueberry replied. “What’s that?” In her mind the blueberry was thinking I’m not that into books… or at least I don’t read as many as my blueberry sister.

Her father told her about a little Scottish girl called Martha who had started a blog about her school dinners, and thought it would be a fun hobby for the lil blueberry to have a go at.

He showed her how to make a blog and helped her design everything. She even got her very own email address! Her first post (appropriately titled ‘My first post!’) was a review of The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket. I hope this blog won’t be a bad beginning the lil blueberry thought to herself.

And well, the lil blueberry began to enjoy blogging, and she read more and more. She made friends across the globe who shared her interests, even found a pen pal (shout out to Maddy!).

One day, around 2 years into blogging, the lil blueberry found a blog about school dinners written by a little Scottish girl. As she read the girl’s posts, it dawned on her that this girl, Martha (VEG on her blog), was the very reason she started blogging. So the lil blueberry decided to contact Martha and thank her. She opened up her email and wrote:

Hi VEG,
I’m a blogger too and (surprisingly) I have only just found your blog. My dad told me about your blog a few years ago and I decided to create my own. I think that what you have done is amazing and has changed the world and how we think about school meals today. I was slightly disappointed to see that your last post was over a year ago because I think your blog is really good and you should keep going!
Thanks and please reply!
Simizat

(Yes, I really wrote this email! I can’t believe I managed to find it – I sent it in 2015)

The lil blueberry never received a reply to her email, and Martha didn’t post again on her blog.

But the blueberry continued to read and blog, knowing that some words rattled out of a keyboard can really make a difference, just like Martha did.

There’s my story guys! I don’t even like blueberries that much, but I wear blue all the time so maybe it’s fitting that, for the purposes of this story, I am a blueberry.

Go visit Martha’s blog here! Her story is truly remarkable and you can read it in her book.

What’s your blogging story? Tell me below, or even post it on your blog and leave a link!

And don’t forget to enter my competition for August while you still can! All you gotta do is make up the first sentence (or two, nothing over 60 words) of a book, any genre. Go crazy! Post it in the comments or email it to me at simizat@yahoo.co.uk.

My revolting rhyme

So hey y’all! I thought, because I’ve already posted this week about my blogiversary, today I’d just do a lil post.

A few years ago – I think when I was 11 or 12 – we were looking at Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes (this one is my favourite) in English and had to use them as inspiration to write our own. Tangled is, and has been since I was around 9, my favourite Disney film, and I believe was my favourite film ever at the time, so I twisted the traditional story of Rapunzel to make my revolting rhyme. A couple months ago I found my old English book and this odd little poem and thought it would be fun to put this on my blog someday… and now here we are! Hope you like the poem!

Also please note: I don’t think this has been edited or anything since I wrote it soooo yeah. And um my young self had a dark mind.

In a tower there lived a girl,

Who went by the name Rapunzel. (Yes, this is meant to rhyme with girl so just say Rapunz-irl in your head? Thanks 😆 )

So sad she was, high in the air

That her only friend was her hair.

To save her came a handsome prince

(While she gave her long hair a rinse).

She stuck her head out the window;

Her hair was out with one big throw.

Up and up the prince climbed until

A scream came from the windowsill!

The prince looked up to the tower top

And heard Rapunzel cry “stop! stop!”

And then there was a mighty RIP

Her hair was gone! Yes, all of it!

Her hair was ripped right off her head

And now the handsome prince is dead.


Hey, this is an ad! Not the usual hair product or anything like that. This ad is better. This ad is for my monthly competitions I’m holding to celebrate 5 years of blogging! From August to December there’ll be lil challenges for you to participate in, (and possibly win prizes for) from reviewing books to writing poetry to taking photos. I hope you’ll join in the fuuuuun. More info for this month’s challenge/competition here 🙂

5th Blogiversary (wow my blog is wrinkly) and competitions!

Ahhhh it’s my blogiversary! Excitement!! Take a cookie and pass it on! My child is ¼ way to 20! That’s kind of crazy. What’s Simi reading? / Booked to Perfection has come so far in the last 5 years and I couldn’t be prouder. It’s been nice to see this lil site grow and change, and have such lovely visitors. Y’all are the best of the best. Of all the websites you could be reading right now you’re reading mine and that’s pretty cool.

So of course it wouldn’t be my blogiversary if I didn’t thank the fabulous Alyssa who is, and has been for the last 4 years I believe, my top commenter with 151 comments! Who knows where Booked to Perfection would be without you, Alyssa.

83 followers, 144 posts… and the most popular viewing day for my blog is Friday! Which is the day I usually am meant to post so that all fits nicely.

If you’ve been around here for some time then you’ll know that each year I do a competition in honour of my blogiversary, usually over the month of August. Last year I was all over the place so said that I’d do a competition near Christmas but alas I never really got round to doing that. To make up for it, and because my blog is ¼ way to 20 woooo, I thought I’d run lil monthly competitions from August to December which would make 5 lil competitions in honour of my blog being 5 years old and honestly I’m loving this idea. At the start of each month I’ll announce the lil competition for that month and announce the winner at the end of the month! You can take part at any time – don’t feel pressured to participate every month – and at Christmas I might be sending out some prizes for the 5 winners of each month!

Guys, I’m excited for this. I hope a lot of you will be able to participate!

For the August competition, seeing as there’s only around 10 more days of the month, I’m going to do something small. I was thinking this month could kind of be to celebrate my first year of blogging, so for the competition you’ll have to write the first sentence (or few, but nothing over 60 words!) of a book. It can be about anything you like, any style/genre, but obviously please don’t pinch it from an actual book because that’s called plagiarism and it’s rude. The winner will be the person who has intrigued me the most and made me want to read on!

To enter, send your name and entry (either as part of the email or as an attachment, I don’t mind) to simizat@yahoo.co.uk by August 30th, and come back on Friday, August 31st to find out who the winner is. Good luck y’all!