The Aesthete Blogger Award! (#1, 2, 3)

Hey everyone! Today, I’m going to be doing the Aesthete Blogger Award. It is about time that I get to this award. I was tagged to do this quite a while ago, but you all know me, it takes me forever to get to any tags! I’m super excited to get to this one today, though!

A little bit about the award: it was created by Ashmita @The Fictional Journal, who also happens to be one of the person who tagged me to do it. Please please please head on over and check out her post because she just writes the most amazing blog posts and she’s totally the sweetest person! (Seriously, go look at the post introducing this award.) I was also tagged by Riddhi @Whispering Stories, twice, so I’m going to be answering a few more questions by her! This tag was created to honor every creative person out there in the blogging community because we all deserve to be honored for our creativity–which I totally agree with! So this is gonna be a totally awesome post!!! (I am using an excess of exclamation marks and I am not sorry at ALL)
Let’s get started!

Rules

  • Use the official logo/graphic of the award and display it on your blog.
  • List the rules.
  • Show some love to the one who nominated you!
  • Mention the creator (Asmita@ the Fictional Journal) and link it back to the original post.
  • Tell me a something about this world that you admire.
  • What is your favourite form of creativity?
  • Nominate 7 lovely people and notify them by commenting on their posts; spread some love!
  • Ask your nominees 4 questions.
  • Share something you created. (can be anything!)
  • And lastly, just so you know: I LOVE YOUR CREATIONS!

Something about this world that I admire

I honestly just think there are a lot of parts of nature that are really cool, and look really pretty. Like, mountains can be stunning, or waterfalls? Trees in the fall when all their leaves turn colors…there’s a lot about nature that is beautiful!

My favorite form of creativity

Writing. I mean I blog (aka write) about books (aka writing). I love the way that words come together to create sentences come together to create paragraphs and so on. And the amount of creativity that goes into coming up with plots and the way that words convey plots and characters and worlds so well in books is awesome!

Ashmita’s Questions

What color is your soul?

I honestly have no idea, like I know that people talk about this sometimes, but I just don’t know, personally. I think I have friends who say that my soul is purple so I guess I’ll go with that? I think I’d go with a deep purple.

Think about your happiest memory. Then tell me the book/song that you are reminded of

Making me remember something on a whim never works. As soon as I am asked to recall something, I immediately forget e v e r y t h i n g. Honestly, I just love being around people, and being near my friends, in which case the book I choose would be Loveless or Raybearer because both have great friend groups…and something else that makes me happy is going to baseball games/playing softball, and in that case I’d probably choose Get a Grip, Vivy Cohen! or Fast Pitch.

Finish the sentence: once upon a time, there lived a turtle in…

A purple jacket, who had many friends and was only afraid of one thing in the entire world: its own shell.
(and can I just say you’re welcome for giving you that lovely sentence? Haha just kidding)

Do you have an aesthetic?/What is your favorite aesthetic?

Hmmm I don’t know if I personally have an aesthetic, I mean probably 90% of the clothes I wear are black, so if that counts…
And I feel like my blog definitely has a bit of an aesthetic I mean definitely a lot of blue and purple.

Riddhi’s Questions

Who do you think is the most creative person you know?

Okay I know way too many creative people so there’s no way I can answer this with one person (there’s actually no such thing as ‘too many creative people’ just saying). I think I’d say my two best friends (they know who they are, I’m not naming them, and the chances of them reading this are like .1%) and my sibling. All three are literally amazing artists and I am blown away by how good they are at drawing because I cannot draw. At all. I have tried, it does not work. (and I know there’s this thing called practice but like…)

If you could get just one tattoo, what would it be?

The first thing I have to say is that I am terrified of needles and have very low pain tolerance and do not want something that permanent on my skin, so I would never ever ever get a tattoo. This being said, if there was a way to get a tattoo that did not involve needles or pain and could be removed easily if I wanted it to be, I mean a tattoo of a phoenix might be pretty cool (very on-brand, I know). But a small one, I don’t want like giant wings stretched across my back or anything. Maybe one on my forearm or something like that.

What is your least favorite thing in the world?

My least favorite thing? Yikes. I mean, there are a lot of things I like in the world, but there are also a lot of things that I dislike. I mean, I’d probably say discrimination but there’s no way I’m choosing one kind of discrimination. Just the fact that people will act towards or treat someone so badly at times just because of something that is…who they are is awful. I always just want to get these people to UNDERSTAND like how do you not understand that what you’re doing is not okay? How are you able to hurt another person like that because of something like their skin color, or sexuality or gender or anything else?

What do you admire about a person you are living with currently?

All the people I live with are totally amazing and I admire so many things about them? But I really admire my sibling because of their artistic ability and also just…I don’t know…who they are. They’re an amazing student, too, I mean I’m a good student but this kid is literally magical I do not understand how someone gets the grades that they do.

Do you consider yourself an introvert or an extrovert?

I definitely consider myself an extrovert, I mean I just like…people? Like I like being around people. Big crowds, places like that, love them. But when I first told my friends that I was an extrovert, they were s h o c k e d, like I don’t understand how shocked they were. I think this is because we have this one friend who is basically the definition of an extrovert, like you look up ‘extrovert’ in the dictionary and you’ll find her name. She will literally walk up to strangers and ask them random questions. And since I’m not that kind of extrovert, (I actually do not like to talk to random strangers) my friends just…thought I was an introvert. Plus, most of my friends are introverts so I think they thought I was one of them.

How would your best friend describe you?

I mean, as we learned in the last post, she’d describe me as an introvert? But anyways, when I asked, we got, ‘Nice? Cool? Is smart?’
‘Doesn’t like it when I call her hair blonde’ (supposedly my hair is dirty blonde. I think it’s darker than dirty blonde. But apparently it’s dirty blonde and I just don’t know what color dirty blonde is)(by the way how many of you thought my hair was red because basically everyone I ask thinks that since I go by Phoenix)
‘Thoughtful’
‘Has glasses’
‘Reads a lot of books’
‘Likes purple sweatshirts and baseball’
‘Writing Goddess

So there you are, that’s how my best friend would describe me.

What would you name your boat if you had one?

Okay there are so many good boat names out there. And also, I am TERRIBLE at coming up with names (any kind of name) so I will probably read back on this post in a week and wonder what the heck I was thinking. But at first I was thinking ‘phoenix’ (once again: on brand) but I felt like ‘phoenix’ wasn’t totally right and then I thought of ‘firebird’ and for some reason I thought that fit better. So maybe I’d go with firebird. Or maybe I’d make a baseball pun name because my family has this weird hobby of naming things after baseball players, but with pun names (and these are names I can actually think up off the top of my head; I’ve already thought of two and they are wonderful).

What’s the most useless talent you have?

I have some really weird talents. Most of my talents have something to do with remembering things. Back in 2018, I could tell you the birthdays of every single baseball player on my favorite baseball team. Birthdays. Not anything useful, like batting average, or number, or anything like that. Their birthdays! Also in the 2018-2019 school year, I managed to figure out the school schedules of around 70 different people in my grade. This is more leaning towards creepy, not useless (actually it could be useful at times, like if someone needed to know what class someone else was at a certain time, there was a pretty good chance I knew it). I used to be quite proud of this fact (okay I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t still just a little proud of it still) and would go around telling people, and then I realized that these people would be more freaked out than impressed so I stopped doing it as much. I’m still actually pretty good at figuring out and/or remembering people’s schedules, though I’ve never reached anywhere near 70 since then. But my friends find it very useful because they can ask me what class they have next and I know off the top of my head.

Something I Created

I’ve been in a bit of a creative slump lately (okay, or at least a writing slump, but I’m not very creative other than my writing) and when I say a bit, I mean I haven’t really written something that I’m super excited about since July. I did start writing a retelling (more of a continuation) of another story, and I wrote a bit of banter/an argument between two characters that I kind of enjoyed, so I’ll put it here (points if you can guess what story it’s based off–it’s based off a classic novel. Character names are the same as in the original book so it should be pretty easy).

She and Father surveyed each other for several seconds, both of them tense as they waited for the other to speak. An energy crackled between them, and I began to wonder if I knew this woman, just a glimmer of recognition hovering at the edge of my mind.
Finally, Father broke the silence, his voice stiff as he acknowledged her. “Jordan Baker.”
She inclined her head in return, her lips curving upwards in a smile. “Tom Buchanan.” A pause. “You’re looking…as rich as ever.”
“What are you doing here, Jordan?” Father was clearly past greetings.
“I’m paying my respects to my best friend, Tom. I know it’s been a long time, but that’s the girl that I practically grew up with. I’m going to miss her as much as you will.  More than you will. And I’d like to give her this, at the very least.”
“She’s dead now, Jordan. It’s been thirteen years, and you didn’t show up once, but now that she’s about to be six feet into the earth you decide it’s a good time to appear? You being here doesn’t help her any.”
“God, you think I don’t know that, Tom? What was I supposed to do, waltz into your house and expect you to accept me with open arms while Daisy was dying in a dark bedroom? We both know that you would never have let that happen. It was too soon, and neither you nor Daisy wanted to see me, anyways. But I couldn’t let my best friend’s funeral pass by without being here for a part of it. God, I can’t believe she’s dead.” That was the first real emotion I’d seen from anyone here, all afternoon, including from myself and father.
“Daisy’s death did nothing to my opinions about you. I didn’t want to see you when she was alive, and I don’t want to see you now that she’s dead, either. Go away, Jordan. You shouldn’t be here.” There was a fire in my father’s eyes as he spoke, and it was the father that I’d heard about but never seen standing in front of me; the commanding one, who wanted everything to go his way. The rich, entitled father that Sally was always trying so hard to keep me away from, before the Depression began, when Mother’s sickness was only recurring headaches and a weakness that he simply attributed with femininity. 
“I see that nothing’s changed of you since that summer. One would think you might have, with how things have devolved, but I guess you always have been too dense to see farther than your own stack of money. I’m not your wife, Tom, and you don’t get to decide where I should and shouldn’t go, like you did with Daisy. Thirteen years is more than enough time to move on, and I won’t let your thoughts on the past keep me from mourning in the present.”

So…what’d you think?

You all are lucky enough to get ANOTHER creative thing out of me today. The current companion quest in The Quiet Pond’s Pondathon is to design a rose representing my favorite book. Now, I certainly did not draw any roses because I’m terrible at drawing in the first place and I think that drawing a rose of all things would be worse, but here is a description of the rose (or several roses) that I have designed after the book Loveless by Alice Oseman.

There’s this quote in Loveless that’s this really long monologue from Rooney, Georgia’s friend. Basically, Rooney is explaining how she will ALWAYS be Georgia’s friend, and it’s just a long sappy (amazing) monologue. And at one point, Rooney says this: “…We’re gonna knock down the fence between our gardens so we have one big garden, and we can both get a dog and take turns looking after it.”

So because of this, the ‘rose’ that I am designing because of this book is not actually a rose, but actually a rose garden – basically, the garden that Rooney talks about here. It would be a big garden, because you know it’s actually two gardens combined, and I think that it would be really colorful. There would especially be the colors of pride flags, ESPECIALLY the aro and ace flags. Like, Georgia’s side would be a mass of green and purple. I have no idea if that many different colored roses exist, but you know what, it’s my design and I can do what I want. I think that Rooney’s side of the garden would be really disorganized like a whole jumble of different colors all over, and Georgia would take meticulous care of her side, even though Rooney would constantly tell her to let it grow wild, because now their garden doesn’t match but Georgia wouldn’t be a super great gardener anyways so it would end up looking kinda like Rooney’s side.

I tag:

My questions:

  1. What’s the most random, irrational phobia that you have?
  2. If you had to wear only one color for the rest of your life, what color would it be and why?
  3. Tell me the summary of the last book you read, but in the weirdest way possible (and then tell us what book it is – or don’t, and make people guess)
  4. Where would you like to go to write (blog post or something else) most? (eg cafe, library, etc)

Are you an introvert or an extrovert? What tattoo would you like to get? Do you have any useless talents?

Recommend a Blog: Introducing a new page!

It’s been a long time since I added a new page to my blog. Mostly, I’ve just kept with the original format of my blog, written new posts, and barely paid attention to each of the pages. But after wanting to discover new blogs for a while and not having a great way to do this, I’ve decided to finally post another page: Recommend a Blog, where you can recommend someone’s blog to me!

Books With Wings has been up and running for a year and several months, by now, but somehow I still follow less than thirty blogs, several of whom are not very active, if active at all, anymore. I’ve tried blog hopping in the past, but I often find it tiring, and it’s difficult for me to figure out if I want to follow any random blog. So I’ve decided to ask you all, my followers, which blogs you enjoy and think that I would like!

On this page in my blog, you can find an entirely anonymous google form that allows you to tell me blog name and link, as well as why you like this blog and why you think I’d enjoy it (though note that only blog name and link are required). I would really really ask that you not self promo your blog if I don’t follow it; while the form is entirely anonymous and I would have no way of knowing, this is a space to share the blogging love of other people’s blogs, not attempt to get more followers on your own.

You can find the link to the Recommend a Blog page here, and you can also get the link directly to the form right here. On the Recommend a Blog page, there’s also a list of blogs I already follow, so that you don’t recommend me a blog that I know and enjoy already, though of course it’s absolutely no problem if you do recommend me the same blog!

To find the page otherwise, you can go to ‘Other Features’ on my blog menu and click on the page in the dropdown!

Thank you all so much for your recommendations and your own lovely blogs! I can’t wait to discover new posts!

It’s my Blogiversary!!!

You all probably read the title, but I’m just going to say it again:
It’s
My
Blogiversary.

One year ago today, I launched my blog. I wrote my first post (which was extremely cringey but isn’t that true for everyone?). I have been writing on this blog for an entire year, posting my thoughts, my favorites, the books I didn’t like so much, discussion posts, so much more! And I am so grateful for it.

Thank-yous

First of all, I wanted to thank some amazing bloggers who have helped introduce me to the blogging community, who are wonderful people and who I’ve gotten to know over the year!

The first person I need to thank is, of course, Katie @Whispering Pages. Katie has helped me so, so much with my blog. A year ago, I was actually pretty unsure about creating a blog because I had formerly had one with two of my friends, but I wanted to make my own. Katie was the person who encouraged me to go out there and start one, so I am forever grateful for her! And, of course, her blogging content is AMAZING so please go check out her blog and give her some serious love! (Also I miss you please post again I miss your posts!)

Next, I’m thanking April @Booked Till Midnight. I’ve gotten to know April super well in the past year and she is just the best person! I love all our conversations, from the ones in the comments to ones over emails, the ones that are absolutely out there and the ones that we intended to be serious blogging-business, but dissolved into just talking about whatever we wanted!

Cherelle @A Bolt Out of the Book is basically the sweetest book blogger around. She’s always eager to give tips to bloggers and help out however she can, and her blog is just fabulous!

Ahaana @Windows to Worlds has amazing posts and her blog is beautiful! She is a wonderful person who is super fun to talk to! It is always a delight to see her comments on my blog because she is always so cheery and excited!

Madeline @The Bookish Mutant. Madeline was one of the first bloggers I found on wordpress and one of the first blogs that I followed and so I really think that her blog, and her following me (she was one of my first followers I believe!) was what really got me into the blogging community!

Now, I’m aware that I only shouted out five people and I’m aware that there are so many more people out there whose blogs I love and who I love talking to! Here are some other people who have helped me so much on my blogging journey, whose posts I’ve loved, whose comments are amazing, and who I am so grateful to have met!

Saniya @Sunnyside Reviews for following my blog pretty early on and commenting on all my posts / Riddhi @Whispering Pages for noticing me when I was just a newbie blogger and you were, like, super versed with the blogging world (okay I don’t know how true this is but it sure seemed that way when I was new) / Rania @Rania’s Rambling Reads for talking on and on and ON about Julie and the Phantoms in the comments of my posts! I’m still here if you ever want to discuss more theories! / Ritz @Living Loving Reading For having amazing posts and awesome comments! / Susana @Susana Loves Books for agreeing with me about She Drives Me Crazy even though everyone else thinks that it’s a great book (haha!) / Ashmita @The Fictional Journal for being just the happiest person with the brightest comments that make my day! / Lilly @Lilly’s Little Library for being my goodreads friend even before my blog existed! / Maria @The Character Study for having super awesome posts! (also you should get a trophy for your posts actually being good when you first started your blog–most everyone’s are really cringey!)/ May @Forever and Everly for just being an inspiration to bloggers everywhere! I’m always so excited when I see your posts in my reader.

If I forgot to mention you, that is absolutely my fault and I am so sorry–I’m terrible at remembering things like this! Know that you mean just as much as everyone else listed here to me.

Blog Statistics:

I am going to include my blog statistics here for my own knowledge, so I can track how my blog grows over the years. This is not in any way me bragging, it is for myself!

Follows: 273 (258 wordpress, 15 email followers)
Posts: 63
Views: 6,976
Visitors: 2,399
Likes: 1,654
Comments: 1,376

Some of my favorite posts:

Over my first year of blogging, I wrote 63 posts. Some of them were terrible (aka, the first few months and all my book reviews until about 3 months ago). Some of them, I loved. Let’s look at a few of my favorite posts.

Please note: I selected these posts that I enjoyed based on content only. Some of the posts, from closer to the beginning of blogging, have some weird font colors or different graphics than I now use.

  • The Future was Now, By JR Harber (Book Rant). This review remains the only book rant I have written on my blog to this day. I wrote it a while ago, as you can probably tell by the difference of the featured image, but I still really enjoyed reading most of it when I went back to look for my favorite posts, and think it really shows my dislike of the book. It was super fun to write, when I just filtered all my annoyance from this book into a review.
  • The 2020 Book Tag (Original Tag). This is the first and only tag I have ever created, but let me tell you, I’m very proud of it. The prompts follow some of the events of 2020, which we all know was an absolutely bonkers year, and overall it was just a very fun tag. Contrary to what it seems like most people believed, this tag is not one that you have to do within the end of 2020–the prompts just follow 2020! So, despite the fact that it’s nearly September of 2021, you can absolutely still do this tag (if you aren’t terrified of looking back at 2020).
  • Thoughts on Teens in YA (discussion). This was my second discussion post, I believe (and the first was amazing, too! It was a collab between myself and April @Booked Till Midnight on Retellings!) and it was a very interesting one, in my opinion. I looked at what makes a good teenage protagonist and what some YA writers don’t do well when writing their protagonists. Being a teen is a very interesting part of life and some (adult) authors who write YA don’t always portray teens as the age they actually are!
  • Why Aro/Ace spec characters are so important in books (discussion). This is probably my top favorite post. I wrote this one back in June, for pride month, and it is such an important post, for me. It discusses why characters who are on the aromantic and asexual spectrum are so important to include in books, as well as providing definitions for a few (of many) sexualities that are on the aromantic and asexual spectrum. Please please please check it out if you haven’t already! (I swear this is the only post of mine that I will literally beg you to check out, but this one was very personal to me and I think it will be very educational to a lot of other people, so it would mean so much for you to read it!)
  • People you See at Bookstores (I have no idea what category this goes in). This one was 100% the most fun post that I have written on my blog! I studied the many different types of bookstore-goers there are–that is, how different people have different ways of studying bookstores. It’s a totally light and fun post that I hope you get a LOT of enjoyment out of, because I sure did when writing it!
  • Sports in Books (discussion). This was the first post in a collection of two of them, and the other one was also fun, but this one was definitely my favorite (find the other post, a list of books with sports, here)! I discussed why sports aren’t in books as often as it seems like they should be, given the impact in sports around the world, and why it’s important for sports books to be diverse.

It seems like a lot of people have a feedback form in their blogiversaries, but I’ve decided not to do that because I’m lazy and I’m rushing to write this. However, I’d absolutely love to hear what you think of my blog, the good, the bad, etc. in the comments section! I am aware that this does not give an option to answer anonymously (unless you make another wordpress account and respond in the comments with that one–but that seems like a lot of work. If you really want to, though!) and I may in future posts put a feedback form up for this purpose. Thank you for all your feedback if you participated!

I just realized how short this post was! I’m planning on doing another post about what blogging taught me in a week or so (depending on when I can write it) so hopefully that’s a bit of a blogiversary-celebration. Until then, this is going to be all!

When’s your blogiversary? Do you have any feedback for me? And what do you think of my favorite posts? Thank you all so much for following me, and being with me on this journey and supporting me through it all! I literally couldn’t have done it without you and I love you all so much!