Sisters – The ride of my life.

I’m struggling tonight. I’m struggling to get what I want to say on to the page, or really to know what I want to say at all. My sister’s gone home and it’s the first time in three days I’ve had time to just sit with my own thoughts and man they’re loud. It’s weird not to have Sum’s here because it’s just so natural to me to have my little sister around.

Every time I spend time with her now I just marvel at the person she is. I can’t be more proud of the kid, well she’s not a kid any more exactly. She’s smart, funny and just an awesome person that I’m so incredibly blessed to have in my life. I always get a little sad when we’re apart because I had this big thing when I went to uni, I was scared of not being around for her. Basically I didn’t want her to have the same troubles and make the same mistakes I did. She doesn’t and she hasn’t and I’m so grateful. In the hardest of times it was my sister that got me through, I could never have let her down, I don’t know if she knows that. At the same time she NEVER has to be perfect or pretend to be, she’s pretty awesome just the way she is.

She also reminded me that I’m not her age any more. I’m about to go into my third year at uni and that is more than a little bit terrifying. I’m finally going into this big unknown. What am I going to do for a job? Am I going to still want to do my PhD? Will I get the funding I need? Or will I just jump into something completely different? Will the band take off and I finally get to perform for a living?

Her excited voice and endless amounts of energy have shushed the worries for a little while but I know they’re there. I know that I’m heading towards the unknown and old enough to admit that it’s both overwhelmingly terrifying and incredibly exciting. I can plan as much as I like but I have no idea what’s going to happen. All I know is that my sister’s going to be coming along for the ride and she’s an awesome person to take along.

Paper Towns Advanced Screening!

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Tonight Summer and I were lucky enough to go to an advanced screening of Paper Towns at my local cinema. I’m a huge fan of John Green, he’s one of my all time favourite writers and last year’s film The Fault in Our Stars is possibly my all time favourite film as well as a book that left me speechless. To say that I was excited for tonight was an understatement.

I have to say that the film doesn’t disappoint. When I heard that Cara Delevinge was playing Margo I have to admit I was a little sceptical, it was wasn’t how I saw Margo in my head. I was completely wrong because Cara just acts so well as Margo, there are moments here and there where her British accent slips up but I think that’s only because we got to see the Q&A footage before seeing the movie (where she sounds very British). I don’t know, now I’ve seen it she’s won me over and will forever be the most amazing Margo. As for Quentin, or Q, John Green was right when he said that he Nat Wolff was born to play him. He expresses the good guy/ awkward/ hopelessly in love guy that we all know and love from the book.

The film made me and the rest of the audience laugh, a lot. It also had a much more diverse audience than TFIOS did when it came out. There were such a mix of people, I was really surprised! Also, my sister has never read Paper Towns and she didn’t feel like she didn’t understand it or missed anything out, so don’t feel like you need to have read the book to enjoy. Oh and if you did enjoy TFIOS look out for an awesome cameo!

The best thing is that although I knew what was going to happen, I still had shivers up my spine, I still wanted to know about the mystery of Margo. It takes a very special film to make you forget what you’ve already read and get lost all over again. I was disappointed that the Seaworld scene wasn’t in the movie, it was my favourite part of the book so I was a little let down and there was one change towards the end that I wished was the same as the book. It wasn’t bad at all, just different. That said I fully accept that it can’t be exactly the same as the book.

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Summer and I waiting to go in, with giant slushies of course

There’s something about Green’s books when they are turned into films that sparks this feeling inside me. With TFIOS it was the feeling of wanting and needing to love, love no matter what because you never know how long you’re going to get. Paper Towns just reminded me to keep doing what I want to do, not to slip into that life of doing what you’re supposed to do when you’re supposed to do it, to embrace and crave some extraordinary things.

Would I recommend seeing Paper Towns?  Yes. It’s not overtaken TFIOS as my favourite movie, but it has made me want to go back and read the novel and in fact appreciate the novel more. It’s so funny and just takes you along for the ride, oh and Radar and Ben are PERFECT. The chemistry between the trio was amazing, sometimes you forgot that you weren’t watching three best friends. As with the relationship between Cara and Natt, it was in a word, perfect. As soon as it hits general release, go and watch, if you’re a John Green fan, you won’t be disappointed. Similarly if you want to have a girl crush over Cara’s eyebrows this is also a film for you!

Guess who’s heeeeeeeeere!!

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Today after frantically cleaning and tidying my flat in the past few days my baby sister arrived to stay with me for a few days. I got the surprise of my little cousin coming to see me when Sum’s was dropped off which just made it even more special. We spent the afternoon after my cousin and Mum left pretty bored. It was too late to go out and do something but too early to just crash for the evening. So we did what any normal pair of sisters do, we bought Pizza, had a play fight and watched Netflix. Sorted.

After a few hours of doing nothing we had to do something before we killed each other (we can’t have that on day one). So we decided to make cakes, but not just any cakes. Hold the freaking press because we made PEPPA PIG CUPCAKES.

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Today might have been slow but from tomorrow morning I’ve got so much for us both to do giving her a look around the music buildings, going into town shopping, grabbing a quick dinner and then off to see Paper Towns tomorrow night! Eeek. Then spend more time laying around and messing around before watching the Bike Race on Sunday (Cyclists. Damn Cyclists.) visiting the comic book shop and seeing what’s up around the town centre, having dinner and then she’ll be heading home…followed by me on Tuesday.

For now we’re sat in matching PJ bottoms, both on our laptops stuffed with pizza and cakes and all that jazz, hopefully we’ll sleep at some point too.

Book Review: The Accident Season – Moïra Fowley-Doyle

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‘It’s the accident season,

the same time every year.

Bones break, skin tears, bruises bloom.’

The Accident Season has been hailed by many, as an incredible book, my local Waterstone’s had a particular fondness for it, so I thought I might as well pick it up. The novel focuses on the ‘Accident Season’ a time of cuts, bruises and at times even deaths. Moïra Fowley-Doyle takes suspicion and fear and sets it right in the middle of modern day Ireland. Our protagonist, 17 year old Cara, is an ok narrator, at times I got frustrated with her simplicity and would much rather have followed her older sister Alice, who seems a lot more interesting to me. Added to this is Cara’s ‘ex stepbrother’ Sam and her best friend the witchy Bea’ The Accident Season is a tale of secrets and makes you, at times, question what is real.

I think my biggest gripe with this is that for about ¾ of the novel it moves very slowly. There are twists in the book but the problem is that some of the biggest ones I managed to work out fairly early on, which was a shame. It sits in this strange thriller, horror world but at the same time tries to follow the normal lives of four teenagers. I really struggled to believe in the season itself and all the terrible things that are meant to have happened. To me it just seemed like they all had a bit of a terrified mother (which later makes much more sense than for most of the book) who wanted to wrap her kids up in cotton wool.

As well as the kids dealing with their mother’s fears, there is also a mystery to be solved, in the form of Cara’s classmate, Elsie. While looking through photos Cara soon realises that Elsie is in each and every one of her photos, even though it’s impossible. While Cara enlists the help of Bea and Sam to work out if Elsie is following her they make a starting discovery, Elsie has disappeared and no one seems to know who she is. I can say with absolute certainty that the Elsie part of the plot is definitely the most interesting and I wish there had been even more of it in the book. At times it feels a little like there are other issues that are just there to pad out the novel rather than to add to it.

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There is a big element of fantasy and folk tales throughout, which is something I really liked. I wish it had been bought into the plot earlier as the first few chapters just seem a bit strange without it, you don’t really understand why a sane person could come up with the idea of an ‘accident season’. There are a lot of accidents, but I think I sided more with Alice’s rational thinking too much to really enjoy the novel. It is not in any way that this novel is badly written, Fowley-Doyle does have a knack for story telling, but I couldn’t help but feel throughout that this would be better suited to a film script. I’m saying it now before it happens, this would make a kick ass film and I expect it to be picked up sooner rather than later.

I’m giving The Accident Season three stars ***, like I said before it wasn’t badly written, I just lost the excitement at quite a few points throughout. I need a book that is impossible to put down and for most of The Accident Season, it was easy to walk away from. That said I think if you are into a bit of mystery and horror this is worth a read.

Review by Chloe Metzger

My Big Mouth: The Beautiful Game’s Fight with the Ugly Face of Sexism

Tonight I’ve broken away from my blogging to write about something I didn’t even realise I was passionate about until a few months ago. Womens Football. I was scrolling through facebook tonight and a post came up about the Chelsea Ladies team going to the finals at Wembley. I’m a Chelsea supporter so obviously I was proud and left my own comment with happiness. That happiness quickly disappeared when I started scrolling through the comments. These were some of the delightful gems I came across… Screen Shot 2015-07-29 at 20.35.48 Screen Shot 2015-07-29 at 20.35.05

I knew there would be some ‘chelsea is shit’ posts, there always are (haters gonna hate). I didn’t think there would be such sexist comments, it made me feel a little sick. The men in the comments section range from ‘get your tits out’ mentality to why is this here, women’s football will never be as big. I don’t know if they noticed but 50 percent of the world are female. Shock horror. The fact that there was so much open sexism made me feel a little sick and I think it was the last straw for me.

I remember wanting to go and watch the women’s world cup in the pub, it wasn’t on. While it wasn’t on expensive channels, no pubs had advertised it nor had they put it on. I don’t have a TV so the pub is where I go to watch sport, a few years ago every pub was rammed for the mens world cup, but women didn’t even get a mention. There are tops in supermarkets and the whole country gets involved for the mens world cup, but not the women. Oh no, no our greatest female footballers came home to this tweet (which was quickly taken down):

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It was as if what they achieved was a cute little hobby and not, you know representing the country. I, like many others, was quick to point out that they had done better than our men’s team and at least deserved the same, if not more respect. Not because they’re women, but because they made the country proud.

When I was a little girl, I watched the football with my Dad, I named my hamster after Frank Lampard (he was called Lampie for short) and always had the latest football shirt. I remember asking my Dad after looking through Chelsea Magazine why we didn’t watch the women’s football on TV, just the mens. My Dad said he didn’t know, it just wasn’t as big as men’s football as far as he knew. I didn’t understand but I asked a few more questions, before letting it go. Now I’m 20 years old and I am still asking the same question I was at least a decade ago.

I liked playing football at school when I could do PE, tag rugby was fun (apart from when they made us stand outside and freeze) and I was one of only two girls in my class to get on to the highest level of trampets. I was never in the sporty crowd but sometimes I enjoyed it. I’m not going to lie and say I religiously watch any kind of football, I don’t really. What I am saying is that I 100% believe that if women’s football got as much exposure as men’s it would we’d inspire a new generation of girls that it’s not just the boys who can take the lead in sport.

We will beat the misogynists in football because there are strong women who are there to be role models for our little girls and women like me who don’t eat, sleep,breath sport but can appreciate it. I hope that in the next 10 years when I have children of my own, maybe even girls of my own, I can simply turn on the TV and there will be a women’s match on TV. That if I end up with a daughter who takes after My Dad, Gramps, Grandad, my cousins and have that passion for football and want to play, then hell they can go and do it with no prejudice.

Piss off sexism, there’s no room for you here.

Let me know what you think girls and guys? Do you think we’ll get equality in sport?

10 Things not to say to a writer

This has been trending on Twitter today and I can’t help but laugh and agree with most of the tweets that are going out. I love writing, I honestly do but sometimes people think being a writer is a free pass to treat you like an idiot and ask stupid questions. So I may have gotten just a tiny bit sarcastic with these. So here are my 10 things not to say to a writer…

1. Being able to write all day must be SO relaxing 

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Ummmm yeah staying up all night trying to meet deadlines is like bathing in Lavender…

2. What is going to be/ is your real job though? 

*sigh*

3. Oh, writing, but what are you going to do with that?

I’m going to do whatever the hell I like.

4. Have you read 50 Shades of Grey? Don’t you think Mr Grey is a great character? 

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If you mean the real Mr Gray, as in DORIAN FREAKING GRAY, yes I think he’s genius. If you mean that drivel that sexually frustrated housewives mean, please leave.

5. Anyone could write! 

Hahahaha. Okay, off you go then come back to me in a week and tell me how you’re getting on.

6. You better not be writing about me. 

Well, I wasn’t but now you never know…

7. Oh, that’s depressing 

When  used to tell people about the novel I was writing I got this a lot. People just run with the basic idea, not with what you’re trying to do with it. Infuriated me to no end.

8. I don’t read.

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Shut up. Just shut up.

9. When are you going to do something with your writing?

I don’t know what it is with people but they think that you magically produce a book in a matter of weeks. Writing is hard work. When you’re struggling with writers block this is the last thing you want to hear.

10. But what do you really know about that? 

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Here’s the magic of writing, you can imagine whole different lives without actually living them. There’s a difference between research (which does happen) and living the lives of every single one of your characters. My favourite authors have come up with different worlds they can’t have possibly lived but they’ve made it real to the reader. Now that’s magic.

What are your 10 things not to say to a writer?

How blogging has changed my life

I wanted to start this blog saying thank you to Jenny in Neverland and her blog which inspired me to write this.

My Career ideas 

I’d never really thought about blogging in this way but as soon as I sat down I realised that it’s one of the biggest parts of my life and it really has changed me and my opportunities. Before I started the blog I had absolutely no idea of what I could do as a job. I definitely still want to do the whole lecture thing and that’s the main aim but it’s five years away and even if I get the grants and financial help I know that I can’t just do nothing in the time that I’m studying. My blog started my spark for social media and marketing so professionally, it really kick started an idea for a possible career if I decide not to do my PhD.

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My Confidence 

It’s no secret that through school I had a massive confidence drop, I didn’t feel confident with myself, I wasn’t sure who I was or what I wanted to do. So when I started to get likes, people reading what I’d written and being told that they enjoy it. I might not be getting 10,000 views but the views I do get make me feel good about myself and that I’m doing something worth doing. If I’m having a bad day, one of your comments can make all the difference.

Connecting with people 

Like I just said, talking to people online can really change my day. I’ve ‘met’ some great people through blogging, people who understand some of the things I struggle with. I’ve spoken to some amazing authors too, I’ve received notes, preview books and other things from truly nice people.

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I got to talk to Katie Piper  on Twitter, one of my absolute idols

Trying to make a difference and sharing my experience

I write about mental health because I want people to understand and be educated. I know that education is power and the only way that we can possibly end the stigma that people who have a mental health condition face. If I can help one person or educate another then I’ve achieved something that I’m proud of.

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Something to get out of bed for and a positive way to let everything out 

Depression doesn’t choose the days you have nothing to do to hit you with it’s worst, it’s fun like that. Some days the whole struggling to get out of bed thing rears it’s ugly head and I just don’t see the point. I do struggle like loads of other people in the world but the blog gives me a way to express myself in a positive way. It lets me talk to other people and I get encouragement too. I can use it to look at how far I’ve come too, one of my favourite things to do on New Years Eve.

I have a way of looking back at my uni days, I won’t forget

And if that’s not a good enough reason I don’t know what is. 1907515_10206793085448473_2364060322551983456_n

I’d love to hear your responses so make sure to tag me if you want to write about how blogging has changed YOUR life. Also give Jenny a follow too, because her blog is awesome!