4 Apps for Book Lovers

Do you have a desire to access even more books? If your answer is yes, or always (like me) today’s post is for you. Today we’ll be featuring 4 of the best apps for book lovers in 2021. Without further ado, let’s dive into these reviews!

Stay tuned for the special offer for readers of this blog!

Anyplay

Anyplay is a relative newcomer on the block when it comes to audiobook apps. I partnered up with the app in early 2020 and since then they’ve come a long way! The app is perfect for those looking for a quality alternative to Amazon for their audiobooks.

The interface of the app is clean and easy to navigate. Users are able to create ‘playlists’ of books they’d like to listen to. This is one of my favourite features of the app, as it allows me to return to books I’d like to listen to at a later date.

If you’re not sure what to listen to, the app has a range of curated playlists for various genres, topics or authors. I find these helpful to discover new authors!

Other notable features include:

  • Speed listening
  • Sleep timer
  • No ad interruptions
  • Download feature

Range?

Anyplay has an impressive range of books, which is constantly being updated. I’ve been impressed with their commitment to ensuring the app has a range of new releases. Specific title availability may vary, depending on your region.

Pricing?

Unlike other audiobook platforms, Anyplay‘s pricing structure is subscription based. You don’t need to pay per book, but rather you pay a flat monthly fee and can stream as many of the books on the service as you like.

They offer a 7 day free trial. After the trial ends, there’s a range of pricing packages available (check it out here). The app is one of the most affordable audiobook apps out there, and definitely worth checking out! Cancel for free at any time.

Special offer.

Anyplay has offered a special discount to readers of my blog!

If you sign up for Anyplay before Jan 31st using code: FriendsofSteph you can get 1 month free on your Anyplay plan.

The code again for that is: FriendsofSteph

Thanks Anyplay!

Libby, by Overdrive

If you have a library card, Libby is an app that is worth having on your devices. The app connects to your local library and allows you to access your library’s range of ebooks, audiobooks and magazines for free.

The app is free to download and use, but does require you to have an active library membership.

The interface is free and easy to navigate, with an unobtrusive tutorial in app.

Features?

  • Books returned automatically, so no fines!
  • Download titles for offline reading
  • Sleep timer
  • Slow down or speed up audio
  • Bookmarks, notes and highlights

Range?

Range varies depending on availability at your library. There are often only so many digital copies available, so like visiting the actual library, you may have to request to hold items.

Pricing?

Free, with an active library membership. Check with your local library to see whether they use Libby to manage their digital titles.

Goodreads

You’ve likely heard of this one! Goodreads is managed by Amazon, but allows readers to read book synopsis, review books they’ve read and track which books they’ve read.

Goodreads is well known by many book lovers. It can be useful if you’re wanting to keep track of which books you’ve read, or have an online list of those you’d like to read in future.

Reviews are listed on a five star scale for each book, and can be seen beneath each title. This can help to inform readers on their book buying. The app is also able to recommend titles based on what you have previously enjoyed.

Notable features?

  • Review books
  • Discuss books with other readers
  • Book recommendations
  • Reading challenges

Pricing?

Free! This book is a platform about books, but does provide links to where readers can purchase titles. This is predominantly listed as Amazon, who own the app.

Storygraph

Similarly to Goodreads, Storygraph allows readers to track their reader. While not technically an app, it can behave like one (for more details, check here). For readers who enjoy data, this app is worthwhile.

While I’m yet to personally check it out, Storygraph shows a lot of potential. It allows readers to track aspects of their reading journey in greater detail than is able to be done on Goodreads. For example, some readers use it to track how they’re going with reading diversely.

Storygraph also offers book recommendations to readers and the opportunity to partake in reading challenges.

Features?

  • Book recommendations
  • Reading data
  • Reading challenges

Pricing?

At the time of writing, Storygraph is free to use. But from February 2021 they will be offering a premium option for the site which will offer users more features and keep the platform advertisement free. The company statement says that the bulk of their site will always be free to use.

Final Thoughts

If you’re wanting to get some more books in your life, these apps are all great options. I love listening to audiobooks when I’m in the car or doing housework. They’re perfect for when you’re on the go! If you’d like to try them out head to wherever you get apps and search for them.

If you’d like to try Anyplay and get a month free (until Jan 31st, 2021) head here and use code: FriendsofSteph

Thanks Anplay for partnering with me for this post!

*I do not receive a commission if you sign up to Anyplay. Anyplay does provide me with a personal membership in exchange for feedback on their app.

What’s your favourite audiobook? Let me know in the comments on this post!

Haven’t had enough books? Come say hi to me on social media by searching @stephhuddlestonwriting or by clicking the buttons below.

Do Book Subscriptions Make Good Gifts?

So, it’s December! Does anyone else feel as though time this year has moved strangely? The events of 2020 have been pretty wild at times, and so as Christmas draws ever nearer, you may be having mixed emotions. But for me, I’m excited for the season. It’s good to celebrate and remember the good things, especially in what has been a rather tumultous year.

One thing many people have reflected to me is that they got a lot more reading done in 2020! Lockdowns really meant that for many of us, books were a great source of escapism. I’m glad whenever I hear that someone has rediscovered (or discovered for the first time) their love of books.

With this in mind, today’s post is looking at a gift option you might be considering this holiday season.

What Is a Book Subscription?

A book subscription, or ‘book box’ is like many other subscription services! Subscribers have the opportunity to purchase a package with a selected book on a regular basis. Usually a range of subscription options are offered by companies — whether it’s once off, six monthly, or a year. A book will arrive on your doorstep, sometimes accompanied with other products.

What’s Included in a Book Subscription?

It shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise, but it’s standard to receive a book in book subscriptions. There are a range of subscription companies out there that cater to different genres. Whether you (or the person you’re buying for) are fan of romance, classics, horror or YA fantasy — there’s something out there for you.

Often, book subscriptions have the option of including some additional gifts along with the book. These may be related to the genre, self-care in nature or other bookish gifts. Examples could include: candles, bath bombs, bookmarks, artwork and enamel pins. Some book boxes

Why consider a book box as a gift?

Book boxes can be a fantastic gift for readers in your life. Particularly if they enjoy surprises, or picking up books they may not be familiar with. It’s a fun opportunity to encourage diverse reading and discover some new favourite authors!

The Mister purchased a book subscription to Once Upon a Book Club for me as a birthday gift and it was fantastic. I enjoyed that a thoughtfully selected book was chosen each month for me. It was convenient and fun and some of my favourite reads of the year have come through through the subscription.

Are there any negatives to book subscriptions?

Depending on where you live, book boxes can be expensive. Factor the cost of shipping when choosing a book subscription to give as a gift. Living in Australia, shipping can sometimes be as much as the subscription itself.

Occasionally, you also may receive items along with the book that are not something your recipient is likely to use. Quality can vary sometimes, so it’s a good idea to check out what has been included in the past boxes of a book subscription service you’re considering.

Australian book subscription options?

With the rise in book subscription popularity, there’s been a surge in book box companies around the world. If you live in Australia, like me, below are a few quality boxes that are Australian based. By supporting local businesses you’ll save on shipping (and make a small business owner very happy!)

  • No Shelf Control – Australian based book box. Features a mix of traditional and indie published authors. Perfect for fans of the fantasy genre.
  • One More Chapter – Brand new Australian book box launching 2021. Gifts co-ordinate with page numbers, for readers to open as they read (or when they receive the box!).
  • Rest and Relax – Australian custom blind date with a book. Sustainably sourced quality second hand books. Paired with beautiful self-care packages. Purchase from the clues, or contact the owner, Jet to organise the perfect custom package! (I’ve given these as baby shower, and Mothers Day presents and they’ve been a hit).
  • Relove Print – Eco-focused Relove print is one of the most affordable book subscription services around. While they have had some mixed reviews in recent times, my own experience of their service has been very positive.

How to know if I’m choosing the right book subscription?

Ultimately, book subscriptions are a lot of fun! If you have an avid reader in your life (or you are one) a book box is a worth trying. You may find it useful to think about the genres you enjoy, your budget, and whether you’d like additional gifts and do some research.

Considering purchasing a once off subscription, that way your reader can try it out without the bigger financial investment if it’s not for them.

Final thoughts

Have you tried a book subscription before? Which one? Tell me about your experiences in the comments below! I’d also love to hear how you’re celebrating the holiday season.

If you enjoyed today’s post, consider subscribing to the blog for more bookish content and reviews.

Haven’t had enough books? Come say hi to me on social media by searching @stephhuddlestonwriting or by clicking the buttons below.

What I Learned Reading The Lord Of The Rings in 2020

Today’s book review is a little bit different. As some of you may know, The Lord of The Rings has been one of my bucket-list books. I started it in January of 2020, and little did I know, this would be the year I needed to read this book.

I’m a believer that books can impact us differently depending on the season of life we’re in. This year reinforced that for me. I had no idea when picking up The Lord of the Rings in January, what the rest of this year would hold!

So here’s a few reflections from my reading journey this year.

1. You never know what the journey ahead holds.

Yes, I knew this one in my head. But sometimes, the heart takes a while to catch up.

In January, The Mister and I were headed across to the South Island of New Zealand for a two week adventure. As I was picking my reading material for our trip, I spied my copy of Lord of The Rings on the shelf.

I’d been a fan of the movies, and had a copy of the book for a long time. Unfortunately, when I first picked up the book I was a much younger reader. I started and finished with the introduction, Concerning Hobbits, and other matters.

So it was with mixed feelings that I threw my copy into my carry on. I was travelling to the home of the films, surely there couldn’t be a better time to pick up the source material for the franchise.

I was right. Reading about Frodo setting off into middle earth, when in the midst of New Zealand’s incredible scenery is a delightfully bookish moment I wont soon forget. I finished off The Fellowship of the Rings while we were away, and started Two Towers.

Then I returned home… and the rest of 2020 happened. COVID-19 was just some distant virus that people were starting to chatter about, but it didn’t personally impact me.

I carried on in my 9-5 job, while continuing to freelance write part time.

Then things got worse. Global pandemic worse.

My country went into it’s first lockdown of 2020 (We’ve just cautiously reopened from our second lockdown as I write this) and I ended up working full time from home. I resigned my retail job and was fortunate enough to have a big enough client base to take my writing and editing career full time.

I was both excited and terrified. So around March, when I got around to picking up Two Towers again, I could relate to Frodo more than I could before. The sense of responsibility, of feeling like a situation is more overwhelming than you can handle, was something myself and many others were beginning to experience.

‘I wish it need not have happened in my time,’ said Frodo.

‘So do I,’ said Gandalf, ‘and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.’

The Lord of The Rings p. 50

This wasn’t the year I’d planned to take my writing career full time. It wasn’t the year I thought I’d say goodbye to colleagues, or be restricted from visiting friends and family in person. This year has taken an emotional toll at time, seeing the suffering of those in my local and global community. That’s when I found my second lesson.

2. We all need our Sams.

Samwise Gamgee is the true MVP of The Lord of the Rings. His faithfulness, courage and good heart has cemented him as one of my favourite literary characters.

Frodo couldn’t have gotten far without Sam. Likewise, I couldn’t have gotten far this year without my own personal Samwise Gamgees. I’m fortunate to have more than one.

No, these aren’t people who literally have the name Sam (though they may be for you). This year I’ve felt grateful for the people in my life who have encouraged me. Who have reminded me what’s important, and helped me refocus and continue on – even when it’s hard. I don’t think I would have had the courage to take this writing and editing gig full-time if it weren’t for my wonderful husband (and best friend) and the other friends who’ve cheered me on.

‘Come, Mr. Frodo!’ he cried. ‘I can’t carry it for you, but I can carry you and it as well.’

The Lord of The Rings p.919

This year has been difficult for many. I hope you’ve had some people around you who’ve made carrying your own personal burdens a bit easier.

For me, thank you to my Sam’s who sent me biscuits. Who did zoom board game nights, who sent cards and kind texts. For the Sam’s who watched Netflix parties and made FaceTime calls. You’re all amazing, this year has reminded me just how much.

3. Sometimes it’s not about us.

As I finished The Return of The King in October, my state was still in lockdown. I hadn’t seen friends and family in person for months. But the message of hope and sacrifice at the end of the book (don’t worry I wont spoil) has reminded me that sometimes – we don’t do things for ourselves.

Yes, many of us might be “okay” if we get COVID. But there are those that won’t be. To a certain extent, wearing a mask, social distancing, practicing good hygiene and getting tested are all acts of selflessness. They protect those we know and love, as well as strangers. I’ve been generally encouraged in my immediate community to see people unified to protect the vulnerable.

Yes, this year has shown some terrible examples of separation. Of pain and suffering. But it’s also been a time when neighbours have come together in an era where that’s not always guaranteed. We’ve adapted and gotten creative in how we connect with our community (thanks zoom!).

‘It must often be so…when things are in danger: some one has to give them up, lose them, so that others may keep them.’

The Lord of The Rings – p.1006

The Return of the King wasn’t an easy read. There’s pain and loss and sacrifice. But also hope.

And as 2020 draws to a close over the next two months – I’ve been thinking back to where I was at the start of this year. When I was sitting in a Jucy van, at the foot of fox glacier, my husband and I reading. I couldn’t have predicted what 2020 would mean for us. The challenges it would hold. Nor could Frodo, as he stepped out of the shire.

I’m thankful for the hopeful message of The Lord of The Rings and thankful that this was the year I finally read the book. It a powerful experience, and encouraged me far more than I ever could have foreseen. Tolkien’s faith and storytelling is something I’m grateful to have engaged with this year.

Final Thoughts

Have you read The Lord of The Rings?

What’s something you’ve learnt in 2020?

Let me know in the comments below!

Thanks for reading today’s post. It was a bit of a different review! But in sum, I absolutely recommend The Lord of The Rings.

If you’d like to read more about my travels in New Zealand earlier this year you can check out my post Adventures in Middle Earth.

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Haven’t had enough books? Come say hi to me on social media by searching @stephhuddlestonwriting or by clicking the buttons below.

6 Habits of Successful Writers

In today’s post we’ll be discussing habits that can help support your success in your writing career. Let’s look at successful writers and learn from them.

What Is Success?

But before we delve into the advice giving let’s take a moment to reflect. Why? It’s important to consider what you think it means to be a successful writer.

Does it mean being a New York Times bestseller author? Or having a book published? Does it mean being able to earn an income from your writing? Or does it mean feeling like you’ve improved your writing craft?

Success in writing can mean yes to all of those questions, or none of them. Take a moment to set some goals for what you’d like your writing to mean for you. What would it mean for you to be a successful writer?

Taking a few moments to do this will help you apply the general habits we’ll be discussing in todays post, to your writing.

There’s no ‘one-size-fits-all’ when it comes to writing. But these habits are great places to start and many writers can vouch for their validity.

1. Write Regularly

There’s a reason people say ‘practice makes perfect’. You weren’t surprised to see this one on the list, were you?

There’s no magic button to push that will improve your writing. Though many a writer has wished there were.

Good writing, successful writing (not always the same thing, but often closely related) takes practice. There will be lots of bad drafts, awkward sentences and stray commas ahead of you.

But writing regularly enables you to make steady changes as you see what is most effective in your writing. Have a blog post take off? Attempt to replicate it. Have a character that readers love? What is it about that character that you did well?

Set yourself up well and make a considered effort to write regularly. For most full-time writers (those who make a financial living off writing) this means every day.

No, you don’t have to be writing the next greatest novel – but it’s important to put pen to paper (or fingers to keypad) and practice with words on a daily basis.

Your practice doesn’t have to be public, and the amount of time is up to you. This time is for you and your craft.

Some ways to write regularly?

  • Write in a journal.
  • Write a short story
  • Start a blog
  • Get into letter writing
  • Play with word magnets (here’s some cool ones)
  • Use a writing prompt program (like this one)
  • Work on your novel

For me personally, I’m a big fan of incorporating a few of these into my week (though I don’t yet have word magnets). As a freelance writer and editor – words are my job, and I love it! It means I have hours a day dedicated to writing.

Not everyone is in my position, so find what works for you. There is a big debate around whether you should ‘write everyday’ and there are valid reasons people struggle with that pressure. While I’d encourage you to consider a daily habit, so long as it’s regular that’s great. I like to have weekends away from writing to recharge!

Just don’t leave weeks, or even months between writing anything at all.

A writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word on paper.

E.B White

Famous writers who wrote regularly?

SO many! But here’s a few

  • Anthony Trollope
  • Stephen King
  • Henry Miller

2. Get Critique

Writing, for the most part, is something we do alone. Just us and a page or a blinking curser on the screen.

But it doesn’t have to be like that all the time – and in fact, you may be missing out if it is! You can gain valuable insight into writing by getting critique.

Finding writing buddies or critique partners can also encourage you. No one knows the struggle of killing off a loved character, like another writer. Finding it hard to fit writing into your life? So do many people, so it’s nice to have them to talk to when you need some help.

Looking at our own work and spotting the areas for growth is sometimes hard! That’s why we need another set of eyes. Find someone who can read your writing and discuss how you could improve.

Where do I find writing buddies?

  • Instagram
  • Facebook groups
  • Writing groups (check your local library)
  • People you know
  • Conventions

Some famous writing buddies?

Even those who are considered successful attribute much of their success to their fellow writers. All of these writers have had success both individually, and as a result of their collaboration with others.

  • C.S Lewis & J.R.R Tolkien
  • Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufmann
  • Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman
  • John Green & Maureen Johnson

What about the professionals?

Getting critique from writing buddies prepares us to be for critique from those in the writing industry. Reviewers, editors, publishers and readers will have something to say about your book at some stage. It’s a good idea to have a trusted someone to look over the writing before then.

Paying for a beta-read or edit can be helpful as you grow your writing.

3. Don’t Wait for Inspiration

If only inspiration could be summoned at will. The concept of ‘writers block’ is one most are familiar with.

But if you’ve talked to those who have been successful in their writing, they typically write their way through a problem. Or come up with an alternative solution.

For the ideas to show up, you need to be there. I believe you can train your mind to be receptive and build habits that will help you make the most of inspiration.

Because yes, inspiration can come at strange times – that’s why shower white boards exist! Or in my case, the notes app on my phone… But most of the time, inspiration doesn’t hit us on demand – this can mean you wait around and nothing comes!

Instead, stretch yourself creatively to encourage ideas. Maybe it’s working on a different project for a little while, or writing in another style. Keep your mind engaged in writing while the problem works in the background – you may find it comes quicker to you that way!

I don’t believe in writer’s block. Think about it — when you were blocked in college and had to write a paper, didn’t it always manage to fix itself the night before the paper was due? Writer’s block is having too much time on your hands. If you have a limited amount of time to write, you just sit down and do it. You might not write well every day, but you can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page.

Jodi Picoult

4. Self Care

This point isn’t one that often comes up. But it’s okay to take a break. You need to care for yourself.

Writers are often seen as eccentric, emotionally erratic people sitting in their trackies (sweatpants for non-Aussies) drinking too much coffee and crying over fictional people. But it’s not healthy.

Yes, some people might produce writing in that condition – but at what cost? And is it really worth it?

Writing is a wonderful aspect of life, but to enjoy it to the fullest, you need to care for all other aspects of your life too.

Take the time to give yourself a ‘writers check-up’.

  • How do you feel emotionally?
  • When did you last hang out with friends or family?
  • Are you connected spiritually? (For those who may be religious)
  • How’s your physical health?

Once you’ve done a take of the situation, think about what you can do to improve, or continue to foster healthy a writers life.

Some ideas?

  • Ask yourself when will I exercise today? What will I do to get moving? (Don’t ask will I, that’s too easy to say no to!) Go for a walk around the block or do a Youtube workout.
  • Schedule a ‘wellbeing day’ – Take yourself on a date to do something you enjoy. Go to a gallery, or get a drink in that fancy cafe you’ve been stalking on Instagram. Do something you enjoy, and do it regularly.
  • Catch up with loved ones – movie night anyone?
  • Turn off your screens! It can be freeing.
  • Put on clothes that make you feel good. Put the trackies in the wash.

Famous writers routines?

5. Establish Your Routine

Find what works for you and do it regularly. Incorporate into your routine practices that develop your writing.

Maybe your routine is based on weekly, fortnightly or monthly cycle. Perhaps your day could be structured differently to be more productive.

Productivity in your routine doesn’t have to mean the words are awesome. But they’re there, and each one of them is helping you improve.

I write a lot of material that I know I’ll throw away. It’s just part of the process. I have to write hundreds of pages before I get to page one.

Barbara Kingsolver

6. Read

Reading is a wonderful thing! Reading the words others have written broadens our vocabulary and understanding of different genres.

Spending time to read is invaluable writers.

What should I read?

Whatever you can! But I would say that reading can have different purposes. Reading for enjoyment for example, is quite different to reading for critique.

Both have a role to play in helping your writing improve. Reflect on what you’ve read and discuss with others what makes books great (or not so great).

So whether it’s a book on writing craft, or a cozy mystery, pick up a tome and turn those pages.

Read, read, read. Read everything — trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You’ll absorb it.

Then write. If it’s good, you’ll find out. If it’s not, throw it out of the window

William Faulkner

Happy Writing!

Thanks for reading today’s post! I hope you found it useful. Do you have any writing habits you’ve established? Tell me about your writing habits in the comments on this post!

If you’d like more book, writing and editing content – feel free to subscribe! Or come say hi to me on social media @stephhuddlestonwriting

What to Consider When Worldbuilding

If you’ve attempted to write a fiction novel, you’ll know world building is challenging! Especially when it comes to fiction such as fantasy and sci-fi where reader expectation is high (along with your stress-levels).

Today we’ll be looking at a few elements of worldbuilding to consider as you write or revise your novel.

Before we begin

I’m still learning, aren’t we all?

So why read what I think about worldbuilding? There’s plenty of wonderful resources you can look at for worldbuilding tips (I’ll be linking to these at the end of the post). So why me? I’m in the process of revising my YA fantasy novel so many of the topics I mention in todays’s post are topics I’ve been thinking about in recent times.

I wanted to share what I’ve learnt so far, and use this post as a place for fellow writers to share what they’ve learned!

I hope you find these tips useful, and if you’d like to share your thoughts on worldbuilding, feel free to comment on this post.

Soft vs hard worldbuilding

Hard worldbuilding is what many people think of when it comes to fantasy or sci-fi. It exists when there are rigid rules for how the world functions. the Lord of The Rings is a classic example of this.

Soft worldbuilding, the rules you’ve established may not be specifically outlined to readers, which gives more flexibility in how your world functions.

An example of ‘soft’ worldbuilding can be seen in Harry Potter. Though the wizarding world functions with magic, the novels do not provide a historical accounting for the existence of magical powers themselves. The characters engage with magic, as a fact of their existence without justifying or explaining its intricacies.

Neither soft or hard worldbuilding is better, though arguably hard worldbuilding may be more time consuming.

Why is it useful to consider if you’d like to use soft or hard worldbuilding?

Deciding which approach to take early in development of your book will assist in clarifying your world. Offer consistency to readers by deciding how this world will be presented, and how the characters will engage with it.

What level of explanation will you need for aspects of your world?

Language & Culture

Minor details can add a lot of depth to a world. In fantasy or sci-fi language can be a great way to distinguish the world of your book from worlds the reader may be familiar with.

Questions to consider:

What derogatory terms or cuss words are used in this world?

What is the religion of this world? What language is used to invoke good luck? For example: ‘First to the key, first to the egg’ in Ready Player One or Mortal Engines ‘For Querks sake’.

Challenges & Conflict

What does this world need to survive?

What are the struggles of those living in this world? What do they want as a world, and what needs to happen for that to be acheived.

The answers to these questions provide opportunity to introduce conflict into your world. You may choose to start your book development by creating the world. What conflicts could affect your fictional world may result in your plot development.

Originality

Yes, nothing is new. The terror of creating a world that already exists can be enough to stall writers in their tracks.

Often this problem is made worse by the comparison tendencies when discussing literature. How many books have you come across described as ‘the next Hunger Games‘? I know I’ve seen a few marketing campaigns using this tactic.

Comparing can be helpful, it lets fans of one series know they might like this book too. But too often, it ends up with disappointment and unfair expectations on often what seems to be a debut novel.

Helpful Resources

This blog post has hopefully given you a few questions to consider as you consider worldbuilding in your novel. There’s so much on this topic, that many writers more qualified than I have put together.

If you’re interested, check these out:

The Writers Edit: The Ultimate Guide To World-Building: How To Write Fantasy, Sci-Fi And Real-Life World – The Writers Edit regularly produces excellent content relating to all things writing craft.

Want to learn more about worldbuilding and creating maps of your fictional world? I enjoyed visiting The Worldbuilding School.

Still wondering where to start? I recommend visiting Neil Gaiman’s website. I found this essay particularly useful and entertaining.

Final Thoughts

Good worldbuilding isn’t easy! As I stumble my way through what sometimes feels like endless plot holes, I’m convinced of this. But with each revision, things get a little clearer. A little more exciting.

So keep writing! Ask questions and explore.

If you’re a writer, what do you think about when considering worldbuilding?

If you’re a reader, what makes a great world in a book from your perspective?

If you enjoyed this post consider giving it a share. If you don’t already there’s a button at the bottom of the post where you can subscribe to receive more bookish content! Thanks for reading.

Haven’t had enough books? Come say hi to me on social media by searching @stephhuddlestonwriting or by clicking the buttons below.

5 Tricks For Better Self-editing

If you’re really wanting to grow your writing skill, self-editing is necessary. It helps us learn and develop as a writer.

Self-editing also means that many of the more minor issues with our writing will be caught sooner, rather than later.

Editing your own work is hard. That’s why there are editors (like me) to give you a hand in tightening up what you’ve already worked on.

Today I’ll be sharing a few editing tricks and tips to help you with your writing. These are some of the things I’ve realised over the course of editing manuscripts and other editing projects, many writers (including myself!) struggle with.

You’re not alone!

1. Choose your descriptions carefully

This is particularly important when it comes to having multiple descriptors one after the other. Choose your adjectives wisely.

Don’t tell me that a person is beautiful. Show me, through your descriptions of their appearance and character.

Which would you rather read?

“Sally had stunning red hair.”

or

“Sally’s hair was the colour of autumn leaves dancing through the wind. When the light caught the copper strands, it took my breath away.”

While there’s nothing wrong with the first example, the second is more likely to capture a readers attention.

Likewise, if you have two similar descriptors, opt for one.

For example:

“His eyes widened in fear and terror.”

Fear and terror are very similar emotions. Give clarity and power to your prose by choosing one or the other. Usually it’s most effective to opt for the stronger of the two words – afterall, the first description wasn’t strong enough so you added another.

Glasses on a notebook full of writing
Photo by Dan Dimmock on Unsplash

2. Don’t hedge. Make the statement.

You’re the one telling the story. You can be direct in your prose and the statements you make. It will give the reader greater clarity and your prose better flow if you do.

Avoid using vague language in your prose. It lessens the impact of what you’re saying. In everyday speech, we often use hedging language to avoid commitment or questioning.

“I can probably write a chapter this week, sometime.”

versus

“I’ll write a chapter this week, you’ll have it by Tuesday.”

There is a place for hedging language. In academic writing caution is often needed around the statements being made. However, in most other writing hedging language weakens the prose.

Be a bold writer, not a timid one.

Examples of hedging words?

Perhaps, maybe, so it seems, usually, might, possibly.

When you use these words in your writing, evaluate whether they’re strengthening your prose. Are they needed?

3. Find your crutch words

We all have them. Words or phrases we repeat, without meaning to. Does everyone ‘gasp’ in your book when something occurs. Or does everything happen ‘immediately’?

Look for words or ideas you’re overusing and diversify. Is there another way you could say the same thing?

Writing on a black typewriter
Photo by MILKOVÍ on Unsplash

4. Don’t lean on ‘ly’ words

‘Really’, ‘certainly’, ‘absolutely’.

These words are often unnecessary in prose. Although we use them in everyday speech they can weigh down a book and come across as lazy if overused.

These words add strength to another word, but if you feel the need to add it on, there’s probably a better word out there you could use.

“Really good cheesecake”

Or you could use a stronger word and have a greater impact with your words.

“Delicious cheesecake”.

I’ll take the delicious cheesecake, thanks!

5. Use the programs available

Lots of benefit can be gained from editing software, many of which are free. Though this won’t replace an actual editor (or I’d be doing myself out of a job by telling you) these programs can help you.

Grammarly and Hemingway are two of my favourite programs for self-editing. Both have a free online version which integrates with your software.

Grammarly is great for picking up spelling errors or incorrect grammar. You can use this for everything you write – even emails! Just remember that all programs have limitations and will make mistakes sometimes.

Hemingway online editor allows you to check for readability. Are there sentences that are difficult to understand? Too many adverbs in your prose? This tool will highlight the sections needing your attention. Helpful!

Both Grammarly and Hemingway have premium versions. Personally, I’ve found the free versions are all that’s needed for most projects.

Orange typewriter surrounded by books.

Why self-editing is important

As I mentioned at the start of this post, learning how to edit your own writing is a vital skill to have. Learning how to evaluate and improve your own writing will help you to hone your craft.

If you’d like to learn more about the value of self-editing – here’s a video from author Alexa Donne.

Final thoughts

Thank you for reading today’s post, I hope you found it useful! If you have any self-editing tips that you’d like to share, comment on this post.

If you’d like to discuss getting some help with your editing project, I’d be happy to chat. Contact me or visit my services page to find out more.

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5 Tips For Camp NaNoWriMo

July is here. With it comes camp NaNoWriMo. Get inspired and learn my top 5 tips to get the most out of your camp.

What is camp NaNoWriMo?

Camp NaNoWriMo takes place in April and July, and allows you to set a writing goal for the month.

Unlike NaNoWriMo in November, you’re not locked into writing 50,000 words. Instead, this is a creative opportunity for you to set (and reach) your creative goals.

Camp NaNoWriMo encourages writers to support one another by writing together in the month. Encouragement from your fellow writers is extremely valuable.

Will I be doing camp NaNoWriMo?

I am going to attempt to work on my second novel this month. It’s a YA fantasy, the sequel to my first book completed in NaNoWriMo 2019.

I think if I could knock 10,000 words into this first draft that would be excellent.

While I did do NaNoWriMo in November last year, and achieve 50,000 words in the month, for camp I want to take it a lot slower.

Why? My writing and editing business has really taken off in the last few months. While this is excellent, it’s left me renegotiating my available hours to work on creative projects of my own.

I’m still working on editing my first novel, as I write the sequel. Hence giving myself some space to exert creative energy over that manuscript.

I’m curious to see how things have changed this time around, and to see how my attitude towards achieving my creative goals will impact my writing. Now I know I can finish a book draft, I should be able to do it again, right?

We’ll see how we go! I’ll check back in and let you all know how I’ve gone at the end of the month.

With my preamble over, here’s my tips that I’ll be using this camp NaNoWriMo?

1. Give yourself sign-posts

Sure, you might have a fantastic idea for your story. It all might flow out at first, but in my experience, that initial fizz of excitement fades and you soon find yourself lost in your own plot.

Sustaining a writing habit is hard, especially when you don’t know what’s happening in your book at all.

Give yourself a few points of your plot, you don’t have to do a detailed plot outline (though if you want to, go ahead!) but at the minimum, a few points of reference is helpful for keeping you on track.

You might end up going completely away from your map, but I find it a helpful point of reference to return to. Especially when beginning.

2. Get connected to other writers

This goes beyond just this month. Grow your craft and be encouraged by sharing the writing journey with other writers.

I have learned lots from other authors, and am constantly encouraged when they share their writing story. The highs and lows will both come. Some times you’ll love your book, other times you might want to close the file and hit delete.

Don’t delete.

Persevere and surround yourself with those who encourage you to continue. Find those in your real life, as well as online life, who can hold you accountable.

Camp NaNoWriMo has great resources for connecting you to other writers.

You can also find and connect with fellow writers on Instagram, Twitter and in Facebook groups. Writing is usually an individual experience, but you don’t have to be isolated.

I’ve recently connected with a a group of writers on Instagram. The encouragement from one another is excellent motivation!

Photo by Nick Morrison

3. Set deadlines you can reach

The freedom of Camp NaNoWriMo means that you can set a goal that you can be confident you can reach.

Take a look at the time you have available to write in, and be realistic. It’s far better to set a slightly lower goal that you reach easily, than one too high.

Why? Achieving small wins is important. It will drive you to want to write more. Be proud of what you manage to accomplish, even if the word count is lower than others.

Photo by Markus Winkler

4. Focus on the habit

NaNoWriMo encourages you to set a word count goal, but doing so can be both a blessing an a curse.

A firm goal is helpful for measuring your progress towards it. At the same time however, know how you work best.

If I focus too much on the words I want to reach, the pressure can be too much.

I personally prefer to focus on building my writing habit in the month. Setting a specific amount of time in the day to sit and write. It doesn’t really matter how much I write, at least not at first…

The process of developing self-discipling and writing when you don’t feel like it is more beneficial to you long term. That was my true success of my NaNoWriMo experience.

Don’t be bound by ‘writers block’ but work through the problem. Don’t wait for motivation to strike.

5. Begin

What do you have to lose? I regularly speak with people who say they’d love to write more. Worries and self-doubt hold them back. They’ve held me back in the past.

But everyone begins somewhere.

You can begin, and improve, today.

Just sit for a period of time and try to write without fear. Don’t look back on the days writing until tomorrow. Or even the end of the month.

The distance and practice is important. We need to allow ourselves to try, rather than let fear of failing hold back our words.

Final thoughts

I hope you find today’s post helpful for camp NaNoWriMo, but also for developing your writing habit.

Will you be writing this month? I always enjoy hearing about what my readers are working on, so let me know by commenting below or contacting me.

Find out more about Camp NaNoWriMo

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Tips To Read More – Why Reading Diversely Matters

One of my most popular posts on my blog has been 5 Tips For How To Read More. Today’s post revisits the ideas from that post and encourages us to not just read more, but to read broadly.

Prompted by the world events in recent times, and the Black Lives Matter movement I took a long look at my shelves and I saw a problem.

I have been reading books by authors from a similar cultural and ethnic background to myself. I had been unintentionally excluding other authors from my shelves. That is a problem.

Why is it a problem? Because books are reflections of ideas, and real world realities.

Yes even fiction.

By reading only authors from one particular background I was missing out on exposing myself to new ideas, experiences and approaches to life. Missing out on experiencing new writing styles and great story-telling

Humanity is richly diverse, and I am a believer in equality. In justice and love. So why haven’t the books on my shelf reflected this?

I had identified an area of my life I hadn’t considered deeply before. My reading habits.

In today’s post I’ll be encouraging you to join with me and look at your reading habits. Let’s think about how we can broaden our literary horizon.

Maybe you’ve done better than me. Maybe your shelf is a nice mix of authors from all backgrounds. If that’s the case, keep up the good work.

I’ll be sharing book recommendations as well as tools you can use to equip yourselves to broaden your book horizons.

This reflection on our reading habits is relevant not just for right now, but always.

An image of 'Opposite of Always' by Justin A Reynolds.

I’ve decided to ensure I am representing all authors with my blog, so you can expect to see a more diverse range of books reviewed at stephhuddleston.com.

Use Social Media

At the moment there is a flood of book recommendations on social media. Take some time to look on your social media for recommendations of books by black or other under represented authors.

Book’s I’ve recently been recommended on Social Media that I can’t wait to check out?

Cinderella Is Dead by Kalynn Bayron. This book is a fresh take on the Cinderella Story. Sounds perfect for fans of Kiera Cass’s The Selection series.

A new release, A Song Of Wraith’s and Ruin by Roseanne A. Brown. Ancient magic, enemies to lovers and an intriguing plot of royal intrigue? Sound great to me.

The Sound of Stars by Alechia Dow. This sci-fi adventure follows a book loving human and an alien breaking all the rules. Intrigued? Me too!

Consider who you’re following on social media. Consider following people who read different genres or authors to those you are familiar with. Follow black authors online to keep up with their latest releases.

Recent times has shone a light on many areas of society that need improvement. One of those is the publishing industry. If you followed the #whattheypaidme hashtag on twitter, it’s clear that black and other minority authors need readers support.

Find some new favourite authors, enjoy their books and support them. This will have a flow on effect with more black authors being brought into white dominated traditional publishing. If you’d like to read more about this, The Guardian has an article you can read here.

Ask For Recommendations

Ask friends, family, those online for recommendations of books they enjoyed written by black authors. Follow reviewers who will suggest books by authors from all backgrounds.

Around the internet it’s easy to find compilation lists recommending books written by black authors.

Here’s a few good ones to check out!

43 of the Best Books by Black Authors You Should Read in Your Lifetime

20 YA Books You Need to Read

25 Books by Contemporary Black Authors

8 books by Indigenous Australian Authors

Be Intentional

Changing habits doesn’t happen quickly. But reading diversely is important, particularly for fiction genres. These authors have so much storytelling talent to offer, but unless they are supported by readers it’s hard to break into publishing.

I’ve decided to read at least one black or minority authored book a month as a starting place. Will you join me in intentionally diversifying your shelves?

Does this mean I’m stopping reading my favourite white authors? No. I will continue to support those authors. However, I want to ensure I am exposed to great stories, from all backgrounds.

This month I’ve picked up Beloved by Toni Morrison and Opposite of Always by Justin A. Reynolds. Both are proving to be harrowing and excellent reads.

An image of the cover of 'Beloved' by author Toni Morrison

Request Books From Your Library

While it’s always great to support authors by purchasing their books, don’t forget about libraries. These book sales are counted by publishing houses too.

Libraries are wonderful resources, and many have been making great efforts to ensure they have a diverse range of books in their collection.

Help them out by requesting particular titles from black authors to be added to the collection.

Final Thoughts

‘I’ve always loved reading. But there aren’t a lot of books about kids like me. And I just think every kid deserves a book that looks like them.’

Opposite of Always – Justin A. Reynolds

The above quote comes from Opposite of Always and is spoken by the main character. The Opposite of Always is a YA Romance featuring time travel. It’s not explicitly about race. But this is just one example of a story that can influence race discussions for the better.

This leads to my final reason reading diversely is important.

Because it reminds me of the privileges I have for no other reason than my skin colour.

I have never felt as though I have been lacking representations of me in books, TV and movies.

I have many characters I can relate to.

Reading Opposite Of Always was a reminder that for many out there, that’s simply not their experience. That is awful.

I want to do my best at supporting authors who are sharing their stories. Those stories are important, whether it’s realized or not. I want to partner with these authors and attempt to make the world of literature a more inclusive and representative space.

Will you partner with me and other allies in reading diversely?

If you have recommendations for fiction books written by black authors, please comment them below. Have you read any of the books on today’s list? Let me know what you thought of them in the comments.

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5 Tips for Creating a Bespoke Biography

Often when we think of biography we think of the rich and famous. But biographies can be a meaningful way for people to leave a lasting legacy for loved ones. If you’ve been thinking of beginning a biography project, here are a few helpful tips for navigating your biography project.

I offer a number of bespoke biography packages to assist individuals and families in recording the moments that matter in life. I’ll be sharing a little more about this throughout this post.

1. Consider The Goals of The Project

The purpose and motivation which inspires us to create a project, ultimately influences the end result.

As you begin a biography project it’s important to assess your own personal goals you may have for this project. If you are related to the person who’s biography you’re writing this is particularly useful.

Next, consult and discuss the goals of the person whose biography you are writing. This is very important. A few questions you might like to ask your subject to aid this discussion are:

  1. Who would you like to read your biography?
  2. Why have you chosen now to begin your biography project?
  3. How do you want to be remembered?

Asking these questions will help you to identify the direction of your project. You may find that the person provides answers you did not anticipate.

Perhaps you want to write a full-length book memoir featuring your subject, whereas your subject would rather have greater emphasis on photography and thanking those who have influenced their life thus far.

Differences in goals, when not properly resolved can result in tension during the project. It’s important that you show respect to your subject by placing their goals for the project above your own. This is after all, their biography.

2. Decide on a budget and timeframe for the project

Determining a budget and timeframe from the get go can be helpful as you begin a biography project. What is the subject, or yourself willing to spend on the project? How long do you have to complete this project within?

The answer to those questions will give you guidance for the style of project you might to begin. Longer book biographies will typically take longer to produce and be more costly in the production stages.

Your budget in particular will help you determine whether you’d like to outsource any elements of the biography project. Bringing on a writer or a cover designer can add professionalism and quality to the project, but does incur a fee.

Timeframe of the project is a particular consideration for subjects with a life-threatening illness, wishing to complete a biography. Discuss with your subject how long they’d like to spend on this project. This can be helpful in determining the number of interview sessions, and cost of the project.

3. What Style of Biography will you create?

When most people hear ‘biography’ they tend to think of a full length book. While this makes up a great number of biographies, there are other styles which may be better suited to your project.

This is why I call my service ‘Bespoke Biography’ no two people are the same, so neither will their biographies be. The style and content of the biography should be tailored to the individual it shares the story of.

I offer a number of biography styles including:

Children’s books – A great option for parents or grandparents wishing to leave a special message for the children they love. Artistically gifted subjects may enjoy considering the illustration components of this project, or it can be outsourced.

Memory Books – Memory books blend photography and storytelling. This can be one of the most accessible styles, as it allows subjects to share memories as prompted by photography from across their life.

Hybrid Book – Thanks to technology we have many more story-telling options. This style blends traditional print biography with audio and visual components, enabling voice or video of subjects to become a part of the biography.

Full length Book – This is the traditional method of biography for a reason. Typically following a chronological account of the subjects life, these can vary in length.

Once a style has been suggested I work with people to offer them a bespoke, unique biography, tailoring the project to their individual needs and goals.

4. Set up Parameters for your sessions

Determine a day, time and duration of interview sessions for your biography project. This will help you stay on task during these sessions, and meet the end goal of a completed project.

Use this time to seek your subjects permission to either take notes during your time together, or record your conversation to take notes later.

You may find it useful to outline with the subject the boundaries of your discussions. In particular, as to your desire to understand them better, but also as it relates to some subject matter.

There may be some topics your subject wishes to discuss with you that make you uncomfortable. Depending on what these are, it is wise to flag them initially with your subject in one of your first sessions.

Decide ahead of time what you will do if a disclosure is made to you that is distressing because it relates to committed crimes or intended harm. Though this circumstance is uncommon, if it does arrive you will be prepared to respond appropriately.

5. Be Sensitive

Recording a life is often a joyful, wonderful thing and a time of healing through sharing. At other times the process is harder.

You must remain aware that the process can be painful for your subject at times and can bring up unpleasant emotions at times.

All lives have their moments of struggle and pain, so remain sensitive and kind at all times. If your subject does not want to discuss a particular topic, do not pressure them to do so.

If they decide to return to the subject at a later date, it may then be appropriate to discuss it then.

On a similar note, apply discretion when writing. If a particularly sensitive topic is shared with you, ask permission before incorporating it into the final project. It may be your subject was caught up in the flow of sharing and does not intend for some topics to be recorded in their lasting biography.

As a biographer, you also need to be sensitive to your own emotions and take care of yourself. Sometimes your subject may share a story which is distressing to you personally (though not always to them). Strategies to cope with this may include, discussing this with the person, distancing yourself from the person (for a time), or possibly even engaging in counselling.

The past pain of those we create a biography for can be easy to take upon ourselves. Try and refrain from doing so by determining strategies, in advance, to look after the needs of yourself and your subject.

Though the biography process is often a therapeutic process, remember your role and skills lie not in counselling (unless you are a trained counsellor). There may be times when it is appropriate and necessary to refer the person onto additional services.

Final Thoughts

The process of creating a biography is a unique journey for each individual person. The finished biography is a reflection of the life of a person, so no two will ever be the same.

I hope as you have found this post helpful, whether you’re a biographer yourself or considering having someone document your own story.

Life is filled with moments that matter. I feel honoured to hear these stories and work alongside people to help craft their biography.

If you’d like to learn more about my biography packages or book a free consultation to discuss your project, contact me using the button below.

Photo by Danielle MacInnes on Unsplash

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Should You Get Rid Of Your Books?

Stuck in lockdown and thinking of clearing things out? Bookcases groaning under the weight of tomes both loved and…not? It may be time to look at weeding your books. Today’s post offers some top tips from the experts when it comes to moving on books.

But first…

What is book weeding?

Book weeding refers to the systematic removal of titles from a collection based on those titles meeting specific criteria. Getting rid of books. This is what we’ll be talking about today.

But why?! You cry. Weeding is a necessary and common practice in libraries across the world. Shelves only have so much space and there are many books in the world. Unfortunately, this means from time to time, a clear out is necessary.

Book Weeding was an unfamiliar concept to me until I listened to episode 354 of the 99 Percent Invisible podcast titled Weeding Is Fundamental. (If you haven’t listened to any of the 99PI podcast, I highly recommend you do).

I was intrigued by the whole idea, having struggled with parting with books in the past (though at times it is necessary) so I decided to look into the idea further. I wanted to see what different systems are around that may help us part with titles.

Why get rid of books?

This can be a touchy topic for many readers, and I am by no means suggesting you clear out all your books. BUT! There’s some good reasons for why you may need to clear out books…

  1. You’ve run out of room! – Libraries, including our own personal collection of books only have so much space. If we keep bringing in titles we may eventually have no where to store them well.
  2. You own more unread books than you can ever read. The book buying ban isn’t going so well and the pressure is causing you stress!

These are the two main reasons that most people find themselves needing to clear out some books. How do we do that? Let’s look at tips from the expert.

Photo by Patrick Tomasso

The Marie Kondo Method

How could I address this topic without raising the queen of tidying herself?

Marie Kondo has faced a lot of backlash from the reading community because of her stance that the maximum number of books a person should own is thirty.

Kondo suggests clearing out titles that you don’t like, won’t be rereading and don’t spark joy in you.

Whilst I appreciate the minimalistic approach that this method suggests, I can see why it simply won’t work well for many book lovers.

I’m unsure if this approach takes into consideration book series, some of which can be quite lengthy.

If you’re a fan of the fantasy genre you’re in trouble… Harry Potter and the Game of Thrones series alone will take out over half of your allocated amount.

M.U.S.T.Y

This set of guidelines is used by libraries around the world to guide them in their book weeding. I think some of the principles can apply well to our own personal collection.

M – Misleading. Books, in particular non-fiction that are inaccurate in the information they are providing isn’t particularly useful.

U – Ugly. Books that are damaged or tatty beyond repair.

S – Superseded by a new edition or a better book. Libraries tend to give priority to titles that are the most up-to date…there’s a reason your library probably doesn’t have the 1995 Microsoft Windows manual on hand.

T – Trivial.

Y – Your-Collection-Has-No-Need-For-This-Book.

The difficulty of these considerations, is that they rely on the subjective opinion of the weeder. What one reader finds trivial another may find extremely valuable and entertaining.

Photo by Emil Widlund 

Other helpful methods used by Librarians

I’m fortunate enough to have a few librarian friends, who I was able to chat about book weeding with. They gave a few extra considerations beyond M.U.S.T.Y for us to think about.

  1. When was the book last checked out? If it was more than two years ago, it suggests that perhaps the book no longer holds interest for readers and it’s time to retire it.

My librarian friends also gave examples of factors that may save a book, even if it meets one of the other criteria for getting rid of it.

  1. The book is rare or significant in heritage.
  2. The book tells an important story for a specific group of people (LGBTQI+, first Australians etc.)
  3. A replacement copy of the book cannot be easily sourced.

What happens to the books that get weeded?

Whilst some books are disposed of, many you’ll be pleased to hear go on to new homes.

Quite often libraries set books out on a table for visitors to take home, or purchase and add to their home collection.

My suggestions for weeding your personal collection

While some of the weeding principles libraries use are appropriate for clearing space on our own shelves, some are not.

You may have a worn and tattered book from childhood that has sentimental value to you. You don’t need to part with it if you don’t want to.

Therefore, here’s a few suggestions I have if you’ve decided it’s time to clear some space on your shelves.

  1. Did you enjoy the book when you read it? If not, and you’re like me you’re probably not likely to reread it. If you enjoyed the book, you may like to hang onto it in case of a reread in years to come.
  2. How long have you owned the book? This pairs with the suggestion above. If you read the book less than a year ago and didn’t like it, you might decide to hang on to it bit longer. Sometimes opinions on books can change in time. If you disliked the book so much that you haven’t touched it in the last three years…it’s time to say goodbye.
  3. Does the book have sentimental value? Some books were gifted to us by relatives, or have special inscriptions inside that make them dear to us. They belong on your shelf.
  4. Do you have multiple copies of the same book? While I know some book lovers enjoy collecting cover variations of their favourite books, this refers more to books that are identical. The exception to this may be if you have a favourite book where you’ve purchased another copy to be your ‘lendy’ to hand out to friends.
Photo by Annie Spratt

What should I do with the books I’m getting rid of?

Take a leaf out of your local library and see if any friends or family want them. My mother collects cook books and regularly clears them out to the benefit of those in her family.

Donate your books to a charity, or second hand book subscription service like Relove Print. (Unless your books are damaged to the point where charities will be unable to sell them).

Make a craft! Pinterest has some wonderful book upcycling projects. If you have an upcoming event you could use some of the pages of books to make buntings.

Final Thoughts.

Books are special and wonderful things. Life is short, so try not to bind yourself up feeling guilty that you have too many books, or that you’re getting rid of books.

Practically, clearing out some books gives you literal room in your life for the new titles you’re going to discover. How exciting!

Special thanks for todays post goes to the wonderful people at 99PI podcast and to my librarian friends, Katie and Helen.

If you enjoyed this insight into library life, check out my post Interview With A Librarian.

Thank you for reading today’s post! Do you use any of these tips to clear out books? Let me know in the comments.

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