Simone Read What? – March & April ’19

Simone Read What? – March & April ’19

Hoo boy, it’s been a busy two months. I have to apologize for the lack of updates and the fact that I skipped March’s round-up completely, but here it is now in combination with April’s.

I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t manage to read as much as I wanted to, but sometimes other things have to take priority. That said, I did manage to read 3 books in March and 3 books in April, one short each month of my 4-books-a-month goal. Thankfully I had a cushion from reading more in previous months, so I’m not quite behind yet!

If you’d like to see what I read in both March and April, click on! 

Continue reading “Simone Read What? – March & April ’19”

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Dubious Writing Advice with Simone: Writing Every Day

Dubious Writing Advice with Simone: Writing Every Day

Welcome to a new series of posts that I’ve decided to call Dubious Writing Advice with Simone, where I bring you writing tips that may or may not be all that great! After all, everyone’s creative process is different, and what works for me may not work for you.

To kick things off, I want to talk about something I’ve been trying to do since the start of 2019: write every day.

I used to be one of those people who only sat down to write when either 1) the Writing Muse struck, or 2) the guilt I felt for not writing finally forced me to open a new document.

Needless to say, I was writing maybe one or two days a week at best, and once a month at worst.

Back in the day, that was fine. I was writing merely for the love of it and I had no obligations to produce content. I wasn’t making any money from it, didn’t really have to stick to a schedule, and could do things at my own pace (even if it did upset some readers… sorry, y’all)

But now I have deadlines and contracts. I have paying consumers who deserve to have their entertainment delivered on time. I have dreams of writing and querying a new project that I’ve had in mind for years. All of that means I don’t have time to laze around and wait for the Muse to strike.

So let’s talk about writing every single day and why I try my best to do it.

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Simone Read What? – February ’19

Simone Read What? – February ’19

February has been a busy month! Between work, writing, and everyday life, I didn’t have a chance to read as much as I wanted to over the last 28 days. I still managed to read 5 books though, so I’m definitely still ahead of my Goodreads goal for this year!

Here’s what I read during February!

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My Favorite Environmentally Conscious Clothing Stores

My Favorite Environmentally Conscious Clothing Stores

Here are a few things you should know about me: I like shopping for clothes. I like saving money. And I believe in climate change (and I’m trying to do my own personal part in cutting back on my contribution to it)

Those three things are often at odds with each other. If you want to save money when buying clothes, you tend to buy cheaper products, which are often “fast fashion” items. Fashion in general has a massive impact on the planet, as the apparel industry is one of the biggest industrial polluters. Many fast fashion items are made from materials (usually plastics) that can release more pollutants into the water supply with each wash, or they just end up in a landfill when the pieces aren’t purchased or fall apart after a few wears, thanks to lackluster quality.

Since becoming more aware of the impact that the apparel industry has, I’ve tried to implement a few rules into my shopping habits:

1. Buy less
2. Buy better quality pieces that last longer
3. Choose natural fibers with a low eco-impact OR fibers produced sustainably OR fibers than can be recycled
4. Donate/recycle old clothes
5. Buy second-hand

In all, that mainly breaks down in the classic 3 R’s: reduce, reuse, recycle. I apply that to other aspects of my life, so I should apply it to fashion as well.

Of course, I’m not perfect! I sometimes shop at places like Forever 21 or Boohoo, stores that are known for fast fashion. Plus, I don’t make that much money, so I understand not being able to afford more environmentally friendly yet more expensive pieces. However, over the next few years, I really want to start investing in better quality clothing/accessories and reducing the amount that I buy.

Now, I’m a noted online shopper (another bad habit of mine) but I’ve started patronizing more environmentally conscious online-only stores. Sometimes it’s nice to not have to leave your own home to shop, you know? (Of course, the shipping process has its own environmental impact, but that’s a whole ‘nother story…)

If you’d like to know my current top sites & stores for sustainable fashion, read on!

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Simone Bought What? – January ’19

Simone Bought What? – January ’19

Yet another goal of mine for 2019 is to start saving more money. I’m in my 20s, I’m out of school, and I have Adult Responsibilities that must be taken care of, which means having a pretty strict budget.

Usually, I’m pretty good at budgeting my money (that sound you hear is my bank account laughing in the distance) but sometimes when I get paid, all I wanna do is go full Treat Yo’ Self. So I figured, well, if I’m gonna Treat Myself, I also have to hold myself accountable for it.

So, here are the Treat Yo’ Self items that I bought in January.

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I KonMari’d My Stories

I KonMari’d My Stories

I recently removed a four-book series (The Fairytale Series) from my Wattpad profile.

A week prior to that, I announced that I was going to take a break from the site and go on a bit of a hiatus.

A month before that, I started watching Marie Kondo‘s show on Netflix, Tidying Up With Marie Kondo.

Re-discovering the KonMari method, which I’d heard about years before, made me realize something: I was hanging on to things that no longer brought me joy. While some of those things were clothes and knick-knacks, some of them were my own stories.

I thought simply taking a break would be enough to maybe feel that joy again, but I quickly began to realize that it wouldn’t be enough. Those stories had to go. I needed them and (readers’ interaction with them) to stop taking up valuable real estate in my mind.

So I sat down and asked myself a simple question.

“Do these stories spark joy?”

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Simone Read What? – January ’19

Simone Read What? – January ’19

For 2019, I’ve set my Goodreads Reading Challenge to 48 books, up by 12 from last year. I have faith in myself that I can do it, but it still seems like a lot to read—to me at least!

While end of the year round-ups are fun, I figured I’d do monthly ones too. So if you’re interested in seeing what I’ve read this month and what I thought about them, please do read on!

Continue reading “Simone Read What? – January ’19”