Get over your blankpagephobia!

So I’ve been staring at this blinking cursor for about 3 minutes now. How many of us blog owners have come across the same feeling of intimidation and fear of that BLANK PAGE and ever-blinking cursor? It’s like it’s screaming at you “ah-ha! You can’t type anything…you are doomed to stare at this blank page.

Our muses are always around… we just sometimes need to quiet that voice inside our head that is distracting us from writing the words down that are just waiting to be expressed. Sometimes it just takes that initial typing even when you’re not sure of what’s going to come out. Why be afraid? It’s not like you can’t erase it if it’s not “good enough”.

I think too often do we let that ‘voice’ talk us out of writing and the next thing we know it’s been months since our last blog entry. Sometimes we just got to put our foot down and choose to get over our blankpagephobia!

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Reading Books – Is there enough time?

There is always enough time to do the things you love.  For me, I’ve been neglecting my reading hobby.  I am supposed to be read 50 books in 2015.  Perhaps the goal was a little too high? ..or perhaps I just haven’t prioritized it enough. 30 books in 39 days?  Unless I made that the ONLY thing I did in my free time I am not sure if I can make it.  …but hey, I can TRY.

You can check out the books that I read here: https://citadelofthoughts.com/2015/07/29/books-read-in-2015/

What if, I were to read several books at one time?  People do that right?  I wonder if that will help me reach my goal any sooner.  If I can dedicate 1 hours every day to reading… that is 39 hours of reading. How many books can I finish reading in 39 hours?  We shall see!

So just to experiment I will read these 4 books at the same time (well one at a time but I won’t be finishing one book before moving on to the next one)

  • The Happiness Project – Ron Leifer M.D. (288 Pages)
  • Manuscript Found in Accra – Paulo Coelho (190 Pages)
  • Adultery – Paulo Coelho (249 Pages)
  • The Light In The Forest – Conrad Richter (117 Pages)

I have three weeks with these books (I borrowed three of them from the library) but hopefully it will take me less time than that to finish all four.

What are your reading habits like?  How often do you read? Let us know by leaving a comment.

Attention Booklovers! Trade your books in!

Are you like me and have a BUNCH of books that I’ve already read and/or books I never plan on reading?   Check out this AWESOME book trading site which offers its members a place to trade in their books which can be used to request for other books.  So far I’ve got 11 credits saved up (and 11 books less taking up valuable space!)

So when you first sign up you are asked to list 10 books that you are willing to part with and send off when other members request for them.  In return for just inputting a list of 10 books you are given 2 FREE credits.  You can use these credits to request two different books.  Their search engine is very intuitive – you can virtually find ANY title or author.   If you want a book that no one is yet trading you can add it to your Wishlist and you will be notified as soon as someone adds it to the system.

Paperbackswap is the name of this website.  After you use your 2 free credits you can choose to pay $0.50 per trade, $12 for annual membership which gives you 30 free swaps, or the plan that I signed up for because I plan on trading OFTEN is $20 for annual membership which gives you unlimited free swaps.

When you do decide to check it out and add 10 books to the system please note “Shawie” where it says “Referred By” in the registration form and add me as a friend.  Perhaps I have books you are wanting to read, or vice versa – I would love to trade!

Your Passion & Glory – (Poem)

I close my eyes to try and sleep
Breathing slowly, deeply as I find my CALM-
But there is this feeling inside me
Beckoning me, likely there is something wrong.

I lick my lips to feel it’s dry
I NEED water, dehydration is harmful-
Lukewarm gentleness feels good inside
I deserve this and won’t be startled.

There’s a LIE they want to believe
There is not enough riches to go around
But we deserve a witness to see
We can all live in abundance proud.

Not everyone wants the same thing
Although we agree we want to be happy
Some will try to dance, to speak, to sing
Find your love, your passion, YOUR glory.

Books read in 2015

I had installed a separate textarea/widget and somewhere in the process of changing my layout I lost it and my list of books I’ve read so far this year with it.  Thankfully I found out that the library’s website keeps a log of all the books that I’ve checked out!  I was able to create a whole new list and I decided to go ahead and dedicate a single post to it and use this to keep track of my list. 🙂

My goal is to read 50 books in 2015.  I am kind of slacking off I think. I need to read more if I don’t want to cram last minute just to reach my goal. OK so the list below are the book titles and authors that I’ve read… the ones marked with *** are ones that I would highly recommend/I personally really enjoyed.

Books Read in 2015

1. Ghost Soldiers – Hampton Sides***

2. Just Above Water – Louis Jenkins

3. How It All Began – Penelope Lively

4. The Book of Lost Things – John Connolly***

5. Dragon Champion – E.E. Knight***

6. NOS4A – Joe Hill***

7. Dept. of Speculation – Jenny Offill

8. Divergent – Veronica Roth***

9. Insurgent – Veronica Roth***

10. True Love – Jennifer Lopez

11. Horns – Joe Hill

12. The Cement Garden – Ian McEwan

13. Wintergirls – Laurie Halse Anderson

14. No one cares what you had for lunch: 100 ideas for your blog – Margaret Mason

15. Tales for very picky eaters – Josh Schneider

16. The monk who sold his Ferrari – Robin S. Sharma***

17. A Woman without a country: poems – Eavan Boland

18. Obsidian: a Lux novel – Jennifer L. Armentrout

19. The art of war – Sun Tzu***

20. It starts with food – Dallas & Melissa Hartwig***

21. Adultery – Paulo Coelho

What is your favorite book of all time?  If you had to suggest I read one single book what would you say? Please leave a comment with your suggestions now! 😉

One step closer to organizing my book collection.

IMG_20150713_105109Today I shipped off 6 books I even had a conversation about it with the post office cashier.  She wondered why I was sending all these different books to different address and I told her. Within the next week or so I should have a total of 11 credits for my future book requests on PaperbackSwap. For now I am looking forward to finishing this decluttering of books. I’ve got a total of 4 boxes of books. Two of which I am keeping and another two of ones I am not.
First Box: Books I intend on reading in the next two months.

Second Box: Books I intend to keep because I love them or ones that I intend on reading but know I won’t get to until later
Third and Fourth Box: Books that I am willing to trade away.  If you’re a member as well here is a link to my PaperbackSwap profile: http://shawie.paperbackswap.com/profile/

So the technique I used to organize my books in boxes is I first stacked all of my books (already decided which ones to keep and which ones not to keep) Placed  all of the tallest ones at the bottom and the shortest ones to the top.  I layers the books and they fit like I was playing Tetris or something!  Doing this allowed me to place all of them in boxes and I am able to see in a glance the book titles.

I don’t have a bookshelf.

In the haste of getting rid of as much as I can for this temporary move to California I gave away/sold my bookcases.  Now my books have been sitting neglected in boxes and I feel kind of bad about it.  In a couple of months we’ll be moving back to Texas so I will probably wait until we get back.  What prompted me to write about this tonight is because out of curiosity I was searched for DIY bookshelves and was pretty amazed with some of the bookshelf ideas I found.

One in particular caught my eye where their books were being held by pieces of wood and metal plumbing pipes. It looked so cool! I definitely want to do something like that some day. It may not be wood and pipes but we’ll see.  I should definitely downsize my book collection and just keep the ones I know for sure I would want to read again in the future. It’s just difficult to let go sometimes knowing that the people I could give them to may not appreciate the books like I do! Do you know the feeling?  For now, I am using this website called Paperbacks Swap where people can trade books. This will probably be my task for tomorrow… make a full inventory list of what books I have and figure out which to keep for sure and ones that I can let go. I will probably have them still in my possession even long after I move back to Texas but at least I will have them organized when I’m ready to let go.

How do you organize your books?  Do you sort them by title? I’ve heard that some people go as far as organizing them by genre or alphabetically by author.