photography

I Write With My Hands About Things I Do With My Hands

Sup, mofos.

Remember my fiance? You know, the one who I think is super fucking stoic and mysterious but is actually just a huge nerd that makes goat noises?

This fuck weasel?


Guess what he did!

No, you have to guess.

He upgraded my camera. He upgraded my little Kodak to a beautiful, sleek Nikon D5600. Not that I didn’t love my sweet Manon but the local community college did not know how to teach me professional photography on a Kodak. So, let me introduce you to Richard Campbell Gansey III aka Daddy Dick.

He’s beautiful, yes?

I’m stoked because I can now invest in some photography classes during the summer. Here’s a comprehensive list of “what this means for everyone in my sphere of existence”:

  • More pictures of tarot readings
  • More pictures of crystals and bones
  • More pictures of books
  • More pictures of coffee
  • Humans being dragged into adventures on a more frequent basis
  • Obnoxiously spontaneous day trips
  • “I need a fucking picture of that”
  • “I need a picture of your fucking face”
  • “Hold fucking still”

 

Here are some (edited) pictures of bookish layouts that I’ve done in the last couple weeks (taken on the Kodak).


Here is an (edited) picture of a shirt that my boss designed for me that I turned into Tumblr trash.


Here’s me with Daddy Dick.

I also decided to get an Apple Watch, because go big or go home, right? I’m very surprised with how much I like it – I went on a hike yesterday and it was really efficient to have the watch on instead of trying to use my phone for everything.

So, I’m going to be working on photography quite a lot in the upcoming months. This Mercury Retrograde is absolutely kicking my ass; I’m normally an extremely restless person who needs to be engaging in some sort of creative outlet to feel sane and I’m usually small and consistently angry, but this is something else entirely. This is some “I’m afraid of my own shadow, I don’t know who I am anymore” My sister and I are going to get crystals to combat some of the disruptive energy buzzing around the atmosphere. I’ve had an insane amount of drive to do tarot readings lately and when I was up on my mountain I had a weird pull a card pull a card pull a card feeling tugging at my gut. I drew a card.

 

 

Queen of Wands, as defined by Maggie Stiefvater in my raven oracle deck, is essentially the “fire breathing over-protective viciously caustic bitch” card. In case you were wondering how that fucking translates into something important – I pulled my personality on a card. I rarely ever draw fire cards. My birth cards are the Moon and Strength and I typically always end up with Death somewhere in my spreads. Honestly, I think it’s the first time I’ve ever paid attention to the Queen of Wands but I am now paying very good attention and listening very well to whatever the world is saying.

The Queen of Wands is the dominant feminine energy of the element of Fire. She is not afraid to demonstrate her power to others nor does she shy away from a challenge. She is therefore a strong leader who is focused on her desires, intending to get what she wants. Thus, the Queen of Wands indicates that you are strong, independent and able to take care of yourself and sustain your own creative vision, even in the face of adversity. You know what you want and how to get it, and you are masterful at engaging with others to achieve your goals.

Called. The. Fuck. Out. It’s always a little bittersweet when the universe is like “Yeah dude, you have the magic but you kind of need a kick in the fucking pants to remember to use it.”

In bookish news, I put aside Me, Earl the Dying Girl favor of Labyrinth of the Lost by Zoraida Cordova. I needed some more magic and less male narrative in my life. Normally, I gear myself more towards male-oriented novels because 97% of the time, I can’t relate to the main character when it’s a girl. Unless she’s like, basically Satan, I cannot handle the tortured, love-sick monolog and the internal struggle to be “just like other girls”. I have never once had a desire to be the same as someone else and I hope that I receive a nice uppercut to the jaw if that ever happens. I digress;  I like Cordova’s novel thus far, I have always had a strong inclination to the study of brujas and Dia De Los Muertos. I hope this book does the culture justice. I just finished Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea and the ending was not bad! I really enjoyed the story and I’m considering getting the second book in the series but I’m so behind on my TBR that I can feel my soul dying a little every day. Just kidding, I don’t have a soul; but my TBR is fucking insane, I wasn’t kidding about that part. I noticed that audio-books have really changed my interaction with reading as a whole. I was driving the other day, running errands as we adults do, and I realized that I’ve started to equate certain parts of town with certain moments in books. Seventh Street now reminds me of when Ronan stole the Pig and raced K. The parking lot of Ulta out on Pyramid Highway will always bear the weight of Kit finding out that Della is pregnant. It’s a strange sort of reality, where words have started to paint themselves into my town.

In terms of other creative projects, I am currently teaching myself to embroider so I can give people dish towels that say shit like “go fuck yourself” and “thug ass piece of trash” because you know, I love them. I’d like to be able to embroider patches someday because I fucking love putting patches on shit. I’m trying so hard to put more energy into bullet journaling. That’s right, friends, ya girl is Bullet Journal Trash. Honestly, though, I have tried and tested so many fucking methods of keeping my shit together. I have the attention span of a five-year-old so traditional methods are not good for me. My BuJo (shut the fuck up) is less of a planner and more of a Book of Shadows and memoir cross-over. The most organized aspect of it is my “Important Dates” page where I basically write down any appointments I have that are at high risk to be forgotten aka “any appointment I make, ever.” Here is my cuss-word filled BuJo in all its glory, paired up with my rude-ass pencil bag that has more lipsticks and lighters in it than actual pens. 

My 2017 reading accomplishments page is sad, I know. I got sucked into the Raven Cycle series and it spit me out, completely unmotivated to read anything else, ever again. If you need me, I’ll be continuing my existential crisis over the search for a dead Welsh king and the fact that I have the same soul as a street-racing farmer.

That’s all there is,

Carry on –

The Book Witch

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Sunday Ramblings

So, I’m finally crawling out of the despair pit that was my Post-Raven Cycle Reading Slump. I’m still completely over the moon with that series – it was a life changer but I’m easing my way back into other literature. I read Aristotle and Dante Discover The Secrets of the Universe and was pleasantly surprised with how much I liked it. Then I tried a contemporary romance and that was a mistake, so I gave it to a friend and moved onto Me, Earl & The Dying Girl which gives me a sneaking suspicion that I, too, might die at the end. I’m also listening to Between the Devil and The Deep Blue Sea and also enjoying it quite a bit.

On an unrelated note, I strongly recommend listening to podcasts about subjects that you enjoy if you ever feel lost, they’ll help you rediscover your love for “stuff”

On a semi-unrelated note, here are some updates about my life:

  • I’m coloring my hair to black in a couple weeks. I had a black fo-hawk a couple years ago and I loved the color but the length was a bit much. Trying to keep up with my growth right now is a bitch, so I’m going to nix that problem right in the roots. (That WAS a hair pun, you’re welcome)
  •  I have an appointment to get my thestral tattoo in a couple weeks and I’ll also be adding to my fingers; my tarot symbols didn’t take very well to my skin but my artist is the most amazing human ever and I have no doubt that she’ll be able to fix that.
  • I may be upgrading my camera! Seriously, I’m so excited. I did not expect to love photography this much. I also plan on giving my sister my Kodak, in the event of said upgrade, because she loves taking pictures and it would be nice to have a buddy.
  • I have been agonizing over my Imagine Dragons tattoo. Combining five songs into a single bicep-sized image is basically torture. I was stoked when I finally created this masterpiece on my computer and have thus decided to have thousands of tiny needles engrave it on my skin. imgine dragons
  • Last but not least: I ordered a DNA tracing kit in order to find out more about my personal heritage. That’s what this particular segment of my odd ramblings is going to focus on: family.

You know the word: family. Familia. Teaghlaigh. Семейный

It’s defined as all “descendants of a common ancestor”.

My mom is adopted so I don’t know anything about my ancestors. The fact that she was adopted has no relevance to my life other than that. My Papa and Mimi taught me that we chose our own family, and I’ve stuck to that doctrine throughout my whole life. I am closer to and more loved by people who aren’t even in the same genetic pool as I than some people that I share blood with. But, more on that later. The moral of the story is that my mom was so loved that my grandparents chose her to be their child. I share no blood with those same grandparents and yet, I share their hearts.

Let’s talk about my dad.

Our last name is “Primak”, which is a very Russian rooted word. So, we know that much. I go by “Hayden” because I feel as though an alias is something I was born to have and middle names can totally count for an alias, right?

Fucking right.

My dad…

dado

(The resemblance between us is uncanny, by the way)

My dad was in the middle of building a student union at my University when I was much younger. He was one of the upper dudes who told other dudes how to do math-y shit and how to not be idiots. My dad, for lack of better terms, is not an idiot. I keep thinking about this particular time period because there’s a memory that has lodged itself so far into my brain that I have theorized it would take some serious sort of accident to dislodge it. My dad took me to the University library. It was different than it was now, but I remember two things:

  1. I was scared shitless. These college kids were tall and smart as fuck and I was an awkward Catholic school kid. I imagined every one of them looked at me with disgust and years of wisdom beyond mine. Little did I know that they were all dying internally and had I paid better attention, at least 26% were in pajamas and 38% were hungover.
  2. My dad doesn’t have a lot of words to say. He’s one of those individuals who doesn’t fill your life with meaningless bullshit if he can help it. As a child, I did not understand that. I grew up around Italians and Italians are the loudest breed of human beings who love (I say this with as much endearing fondness as I can) meaningless bullshit. Today, I very much understand that my dad offering me admittance to this library of scholars was his way of saying “I see you reading, and I see your passion for it.” I had been put down for my love of books for so many years that this realization was a bucket of ice water to my brain.

Long story short, he’s someone that I do happen to have a blood relation with, and who I am grateful to have a blood relation with. My dad is the reason I have a caffeine dependence. I look for him tucked in corners of my town, in cafes, on Lander St, in the stars. Jason, bless him, can now take one look at my face, see the tears in my eyes, and know that I am about to say “My dad and I always came here” or “This is something my dad would love”.  I don’t have those moments as often with my Mimi, because she follows me in my grief, in my sorrow. She does not bind herself to places like the living but wraps her absence around my wrist like a leash. I always thought “I am not like the people I come from” and I will be the first to tell you, as an adult, how wrong I was. You believe yourself to be an individual completely separate from your paternal or maternal influences but I am at least 48.5% Lou Primak. My dad is the smell of really fucking good coffee and pine trees. He’s old leather briefcases and the ridges of a baseball glove. He’s learning to ride a bike and the first time I went to Seattle. My dad is a winter child, like me.

I have a few moms at the moment, so let me talk about that really quick. I have my biological mom, Violet. I have my stepmom, Heather. I have my god-mom, Tonya. I have other moms who have picked me up along the way, but these ones are the most prevalent in my everyday understanding of the world. My Mimi was also my mom but she’s gone now and crying was not the point of this post. Obviously, you know I’m blood-related to Violet so let’s discuss Heather and Tonya because they are prime examples of “The blood of the covenant”

Heather is my dad’s wife. They got married when I was, like, nine or ten. They gave me a brother –  Jackson, who looks like me in dude form and has more energy in his pinky finger than I do in my whole body.

Heather is autumn leaves, a river in the distance, a home cooked meal when you’ve been living off of Ramen. Heather is an ocean of creative energy, a new project, a summertime nap. She’s the moment when the season changes to autumn, the brief seconds between “then” and “now”. She is my kindred spirit, the whole reason I got into blogging and cooking and photography and crafting. She’s the driving force behind my ingenuity. She’s my model introvert; she showed me that being comfortable with yourself is what really makes us unique. So many people lack the ability to sit with themselves for an hour before they begin to hate it. I look at kids who have stepparents that they feel bitter towards or dislike and I can’t even begin to tell you how ignorant I am on that topic. I had someone who helped me through so many difficult areas of my life and still put up with my shit, even though she had no obligation to do so.

It’s one of those phenomena where you look at your life under a microscope and can say “Holy shit, thank you”

Tonya is my god-mother which means, if you haven’t a clue about Catholicism, that if everyone died, she would be my new mom. She has actually said at one point “If everyone dies, I get to be your new mom. I mean, I am your mom. But this would be, like legally. It’s on papers at the lawyer’s office”. She’s also said things like “If I ever heard someone talking to you like that, I would spider-monkey over the counter and rip their throat out.”

Tonya was my spirit guide in another life (more on that later) and she probably gave birth to me in another one, too. She’s a fucking badass and I feel quite a bit better when I’m in her presence. She has that calming, “All is well, child. I’ll fuck a bitch up” vibe going for her. Tonya is rose quartz on a living room table. She’s a cone of incense and smudging your home with sage. She’s a wildfire, a hurricane of kindness and honesty. She’s a Pride flag, bright and burning. She’s a tattoo needle, a patch sewn into your heart. She’s a leather jacket and a Johnny Cash shirt. I am not blood-related to Tonya, her dad was a firefighter with my Papa, but I would never be able to put a tangible amount on how much I love her.

In short, I am not doing a DNA test to find my genetic relatives. You know why? Cause fuck that. know who my family is. I refer to myself constantly as a “walking contradiction of impulsivity and contemplation” meaning I’m the type of person who moves on a whim but budgets for it, the type who decides to dye her hair black but waits a month, the kind who suddenly realizes that they need a motorcycle but sets up a piggy bank for it, the kind who thinks “I need a new tattoo” over twenty times a day but spends more time designing them than getting them. The kind who says “Fuck it, I’m doing a DNA test” but holds off for five weeks.

I am a pretty big believer in reincarnation. In fact, I would probably say that it encompasses most of my thoughts on the afterlife.  I don’t actually believe in an afterlife but I think most people are recycled into new things. I do, however, think that some of us don’t get more chances. Like, when Hitler died they were like “Bro, what the fuck? We were gonna make you a sunfish or some dumb shit so you could learn but you just kept going?! We’re gonna have to scrap you, this energy can’t go anywhere else. You piece of shit, what the fuck. We were able to recycle Pontius Pilate for fucks sake”

So, in my search of my DNA, I’m hoping to find pieces of me scattered amongst the globe. I’m hoping to put them together and maybe resurrect the story of my lungs, my hair, my eyes.

That’s all there is,

Carry on,

The Book Witch

 

 

 

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poetry

But you, Oh God

You cannot raise a child with spell-books tucked under her arms or superstition carved into her skull and expect her to not wear her pride on her skin. You cannot show her the wilderness inside her and not want her to grow wings. You watched her, with dirt under her fingernails, blood coating her knuckles, as she found magic; you stoked the love inside her until it burnt her to nothing. Now she is here, a cacophony of the people who rebuilt her, a dragon among the men. She has been to the cathedral and learned the words in Latin. She engraved them on her heart and when they rejected her, she found a different god. She wears a crown of thorns and destroys herself so that her flesh can match her blood. You made her, you made her, she made herself the ravens scream at night. You gave her a name that meant “light bringer, light carrier” and forgot that mythology has bestowed those creatures of death the same burden. You gave her compassion and a need for solitude; you raised a wolf in place of a girl. When she laid her soul bare on her skin, you wept for the innocence lost and she wept because it was finally unerringly visible. She is part of the cycle, the thread that runs through the circle of time. The day she was born was a day that signified the end, the beginning, and all the other pieces thrown haphazardly in the dark. Shards of the people before landed on ribs in a way that turned her into a weapon. You tried to contain her in one universe and found that she cannot be restricted to a single space.

She grew up learning tarot cards as an extension of herself. The moon and the carnivores are her companions. She hurdled over her fear of the dark, embracing it in scarred arms. She became a book witch, a bone witch, a water witch. She changed her hair, her blood, her voice. There’s a rage inside her that you wouldn’t believe, a love inside her like you couldn’t imagine. She learned that she felt everything all at once and that it was her ultimate undoing. She understood that it would destroy her, so she tried to destroy herself, instead. She loved so outstandingly hard, with such violent fervor, that she ripped holes in her chest that had to be sewn back together with ice and fire. The people she loved tried to take her wings and forgot she had claws. There’s a restlessness inside her that sings for home home home but she chose to be an ambassador of change – she has no home except herself. Her soul is a haunted house broken, broken, rebuilt. 

Grief and rage carry themselves like matches inside her veins. She turns to words, tries to create poetry, when nothing is left – when everything has been burnt away. She is a piece of stained glass, a religious experience gone wrong.

And when they told her that she would never be able to love someone until she loved herself,

she replied “Bullshit. I have never loved myself. But him, Oh God, I loved him so much I forgot what hating myself felt like”

 

raven tattootarot fingersz 1tarot fingersz 2

 

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We Are Okay Review + Birthday Shenanigans

Sup, mofos.

My 22nd birthday was yesterday so I’ve been super busy in anticipation of that particular event. For those of you wondering, I went to a Death Cab for Cutie concert on Thursday night AND IT WAS MAGICAL AS FUCK. I’ve been to concerts before and I really enjoyed them. I’m a music-oriented person. Nine out of ten times I’m going to remember something in terms of what songs were playing or what songs were popular at that period of my life. So, concerts are a good place for me. Being introverted has its drawbacks in the sense of really, really hating fucking crowds but I’m also a super aggressive and angry introvert and that balances me out a bit. Anyway, it was magical. It was one of those times when you get goosebumps because suddenly everyone is singing along to a song that you used to fall asleep to and the nostalgia is tangible. I was amazed at how alive I felt during the concert and my friend that took me (an early birthday present, bless her) was just as stoked, which was awesome. I hella started tearing up during Soul Meets Body but it’s okay, we don’t have to talk about that. The moral of the story is that I am now a concert junkie – look out world, I just gained another tier of Crazy.

On my actual Womb Evacuation Anniversary, I spent the day getting completely fucking wrecked with my soul sister who happens to also have the same Womb Evacuation Anniversary. Jason has the stomach flu, though, so I had to cut my 10-hour drinking spree short. St. Paddy’s is such a fantastic day to be of legal drinking age and have a birthday because the amount of whiskey that one consumes is completely justifiable by saying “FUCK IT I’M IRISH”. I have definitely decided that I need to permanently ingrain my day of birth into my flesh by getting a Celtic tattoo. Sue me, I like body art.

A lot.

Okay, so here comes the nerdy part. I had a fucking amazing couple of days and then the bookish gifts started flooding in. I got my March package from my pen pal and she picked out some seriously rad looking reads for my library (because she’s a Virgo and I collect Virgos because they understand me). My incredibly sweet Uncle Grapes (it’s a long story, it’s fine. Everything is fine) sent me some money so I went straight to Barnes & Noble. I even got a year membership! No self-control! Also, for someone who has such immense tolerance for physical pain and alcohol, I sure don’t have any tolerance for people or expensive books. My boss (also a Virgo, I was not kidding when I say I collect them) found me amethyst bookends. She remembered that I saw them a few months back and didn’t feel like splurging so she went ahead and did me a solid. Here they are in their glorious and majestic as fuck nature.

book ends

They’re so pretty, I could just die.

So then, my mother-in-law presented me with a personal library kit and a book embosser. That’s right, I have a book embosser now. She got me a copy of The Scorpio Races because one can never have too much Stiefvater in their lives AND I EMBOSSED IT.

embosserlibrary kit

 

She used my fiance’s last name on the embosser and that made my cold, dead heart warm ever-so-slightly. I’m going to emboss everything I own and then if someone tries to run away with one of my precious babies I will hunt them down and emboss them, too.

Anyway, here’s a little snippet of my thoughts regarding We Are Okay (by Nina Lacour)

  • I read Hold Still a few years ago and really, really liked it so I expected the same kind of enjoyment from We Are Okay 
  • LBGT characters? Yes! Sign me THE FUCK UP. Gimme all the representation, all of it. 
  • It was a little tricky to get into, the story starts off pretty timid and vague but once I was in, oh boy, was I in.
  • Marin is extremely relatable; her grief is so realistic there were times that I thought I could hold it…if I was careful
  • The character development is astouding  – for real, some of the best CD I’ve ever read. You go from being like “Okay, what’s going on, send help” to being like “Something very profound just happened and I think I missed it because I was too busy watching these people unfold”
  • THE PLOT TWIST IS THE WORST THING EVER. Like okay, Nina. We get it, you like crushing people like ants under your feet but this is cool, too. There will be no spoilers ahead but I can tell you that the thing was revealed and I had to reread it because it was so unexpected.
  • It had a lovely nostalgic feel to it. There was such delicious descriptive language. It felt like road trips and Christmas and beach trips all rolled into a delightful little package of soul-crushing sadness.

 

I give it a solid 8/10 and highly recommend it for fans of contemporary fiction or who need to feel understood.

I also finished Anna Kendrick’s autobiography. It was good, I’m not a huge fan of biographies but I powered through it because I have a huge crush on her. It’s okay, I read her book. We’re friends now. You can definitely tell where she starts to get more confident in her story because she switches from objective storytelling to snarky asshole over the span of a couple pages. I’m just glad I finished it, to be honest. Her humor was so on point but I truly hate stories of Hollywood and fame. I detest them.

I am now looking for a new audiobook and trying to get through Truthwitch which is becoming better, the further I get into it.

I’ll talk to you guys when I’m done with my vacation so I hope you have a lovely week.

That’s all there is,

The Book Witch

 

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Young Wives’ Club Review & Tattoo Updates

Hello, loves.

Part of my crumbled, decaying soul settled yesterday. I got my Raven Cycle tattoo and it was a really amazing experience. I love, adore, and appreciate my artist. If you’re in the Reno area, I would strongly recommend going to Nichole at South Town Tattoo Collective. She’s amazing; I love how she talked to me the entire session. I could’ve told her anything about my life and felt like the information would’ve been safe and wrapped away for later. She said “I’m in love with this tattoo” and a part of my heart filled with joy. It was such a  strange cacophony of emotions; I was sad that I could never experience the magic of the Raven Cycle for myself, I was proud because she had told me that she loved doing my tattoos.  The universe created a strange synchronization where it played Blink-182 over the loud speaker and I’d like to think it was because I was wearing my favorite shirt. So maybe I did actually experience a bit of Cabeswater in that small corner of sketched goddesses and blood. I told her about my next idea and then asked if she was down to tattoo my knuckles. We plotted the designs together and I mentioned that my family wasn’t stoked about me covering my skin. I told her “You can’t raise someone to practice witchcraft and then  expect them to live a mundane existence”

She asked me about the Raven Cycle and what it was about and I panicked. “Uhhh, it’s about this girl who can’t kiss this guy but she sees him on this Corpse Road, which is on the ley lines and the guy is searching for a dead Welsh king. You might wonder ‘Why is he searching for a dead Welsh king? That’s extremely specific.’ Well, the answer is also extremely specific. Ronan Lynch is there and I care so much about Ronan that it fucking scares me. I also care a lot about Joseph Kavinsky and I don’t give a fuck what Gansey says, Joseph Kavinsky matters to me. Ronan is in love with Adam, who made a deal with a forest called Cabeswater. Joseph Kavinksy is in love with Ronan but he dies because, like me, he makes very poor decisions. Good old, Joey K. They’re all a little bit in love with each other, actually. Oh, and Ronan can pull shit from his dreams and he has a pet raven. There’s a houseful of psychics and their roommate is dead, man. This series changed me from a moderate car crash to absolute fucking train wreck. You need to read it.” We talked about cars and wedding plans and conventions because I can’t actually summarize books without having a meltdown, apparently.

Anyway, here’s a picture of my tattoo.

raven tattoo

My sister also got me a signed copy of The Raven King for my upcoming birthday because she’s an enabler. Just kidding, my sister is fucking rad. I wrote a sappy post about it and then I re-read the last chapters of TRK, cried, had a drink, and went to bed holding the aforementioned copy of TRK. Here we are, being nerds. Her with her normal person hair and my purple bob.

sister.jpg

My “Joseph Kavinsky Matters” bag arrived aaaaaannnnd I ordered more stickers. Don’t judge me. I love my sisters. Look, my laptop has its own JKM sticker, too!

kavinskykavinsky.jpg2

Fuck off, I don’t have a problem.

In other less-obsessive news, I finished The Young Wives Club. 

Honestly, it was pretty disappointing. I would give it 2/10 stars and here’s why:

I definitely need to stick with creepy / darker books if I want to enjoy my experiences. I would recommend it to someone who wants something mindless and fluffy. The people in the story are not very smart and I wasn’t attached to them at all. Even during a death scene, not a major character, I was like meh, deserved it. I could predict everything they did and that’s not a good indicator of writing since I am slower than a sloth when it comes to plot twists. I was really excited for this book and I’m disappointed with how much I loathed the characters and the story. The ending was the only redeeming point – it was very Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants-esque and it almost (I say “almost” in the loosest way possible) seemed like some of them had learned their lessons. Very bland characters, very generic plot. Again, I would say that if you know you like literature with bite, just stick to it.

I have another book review coming to you this week! I’m looking for something amazing to read. I have some in my queue that I’m so excited to start. I tried to get into the Truthwitch but its falling short after reading Throne of Glass. I’m also attempting to finish Anna Kendrick’s memoir, Scrappy Little Nobody. It’s very lighthearted and sweet but I have a huge crush on her, so I’m enjoying it.

I will talk to you all later.

That’s all there is,

The Book Witch

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A Narrative; A Character Study

I picked my sister up in the Camry after work. I’ve preferred the Camry as of late because I have more control and more control equates to going faster. It’s not like driving the Explorer, which is all weight and no fluidity. There’s nothing gratuitous about driving a tank. We drove on auto-pilot to our restaurant, to our table – my camera loaded in the back, the weight of feeling everything at once on my shoulders. I had a beer with my lunch while we discussed Camaros and court cases. I had every intention of only going so far out of town that the fresh air would loosen the grip on my lungs. Breathing has been a labor of love the last couple of weeks; staying conscious has been accompanied by nausea and rage. The universe had other plans and I found myself bringing the accelerator to ninety as we careened around the snow-heavy mountainsides. Sometimes you go on a spontaneous adventure – sometimes you lie out of a ticket. Sometimes you talk about books and husbands but the words you need find themselves stuck between your teeth.

I wouldn’t tell her that the only religious experiences that I’ve had revolved around muscle cars, tattoos, and nicotine. The phrase “he was baptized under a stream of self-sacrifice and bare tree limbs but I see a sinner in the mirror when I tie up my hair” would not form itself without leaving the shadow of bitterness behind. I so desperately wanted to tell her that he had learned to love a god that had dragged me through embers and the only worship that I understand is self-destruction. I still have the hole in my palm where I had discovered how to turn their addictions into barbed wire while he brushed them away like sand. I wanted to tell her that he was the color of pine – a source of comfort and solidity – whose branches I could cling onto when the world tipped on its axis. I didn’t tell her that I was the color of a bruise blooming under tired skin, a storm of salt water and shards of stained glass. I would never vocalize that I felt as if smoke and ink replaced vital parts in me, my bones and blood had been insubstantial for longer than I could remember. The world was quieter when I was far away, under the tattoo needle, going too fast. I need substances to stay awake, substances to fall asleep… my own haunted house. I am a fragment of a constellation; the aftershock of a thunderstorm. I am petrified of heights but graveyards make me feel whole. I have bloodied my knuckles intentionally more times than I can count and he has always brought peace to any environment. He is the saved turned savior and I wear a crown of thorns to all my affairs. 

My sister knows about anger. She knows the walk that I make from driver seat to front porch is stained with grief. She knows that when I hear the sound of gravel under my boots that the years are soaking through to my skin and I’m imagining the slick crunching noises are actually femurs and scapulae. She knows of the night terrors that follow me around and the stories I read to make them subside. She knows that I wear oceans inside my veins and frost bite under my nails. 

I do not have to say it but 

she knows.

She always 

knows. 

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books

How We Find Ourselves In Books

For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why I was so drawn to the characters in the Raven Cycle series, especially Ronan or Kavinsky. They’re so contradictory and prickly, what could I possibly see in them, especially Ronan? 

Well, my friends, the mystery is solved: it’s because I, small and hateful angry bean, AM RONAN LYNCH. 

For the love of fuck, look at this shit!

ronan

I dress like that on accident, man! That is an actual face that I make at other human beings. (I’m the one on the left, by the way. I know some of you probably didn’t know that)

How many times have we fallen in love with a book or a series because we resonate so closely with the characters? I’ve been devoured by these books, turned completely inside out, chewed up, and spit back out. It’s like looking into a mirror and seeing yourself in typewriter font.

For example, here is the List of Things That I Have In Common With Ronan Lynch Because I Need More Reasons To Stay Awake At Night 

  • trust fund babies
  • literally, we’re just privileged assholes with no verbal filters
  • my birthday falls on St. Patricks’ Day aka the Irish Day; Ronan is Irish af
  • taste in music that everyone fucking hates
  • don’t talk to us when we have headphones on, don’t touch our tattoos
  • give us a something fast and we’re happy
  • or, give us music and alcohol and we’ll be restless but better
  • we both lost parents and turned into bitter douche canoes
  • we will both end your life if you fuck with our baby brothers
  • or our friends
  • fucking with my friends is a sure-fire way to get your life ended
  • wear black and keep our resting bitch faces on point but are really full of feelings
  • a LOT of feelings
  • both think our boyfriends are some sort of godlike angel when in reality we are dating huge nerds
  • super sensitive to all things. don’t deny that Ronan Lynch is a sensitive mofo, he literally won’t let Gansey boy make other friends
  • both of us have had Kavinskys in our lives; we ended up not being with them because they were toxic af and would’ve ruined our shit
  • love our dads very much
  • treat our pets like children
  • NIGHT TERRROOORS
  • like no friends but really fond of the ones we have
  • beings of rage and love
  • raised on a farm
  • raised Catholic AF
  • hates most things, including ourselves
  • is either dropping the F-bomb, flipping you off or being sarcastic
  • actual trophy wives
  • would rather die than hurt someone we love
  • PTSD, depression, and anxiety up the wazooo

There’s more, a lot more, but that’s the general gist of my argument. We fall so hard for these characters because we see ourselves in them. We love them when we cannot love our own souls. They are catalysts to the breaking of our hearts and the slow, aching awareness that brings us back to wholeness. The characters we love are constellations in the galaxies that reside in our bones.

I am so elated to be made up of these beings, these people that I will never meet. Their presence forces me to stop and remember my gushing affection or them and that reminds me to love myself, as well. The cycle is continuous and beautiful and my gratitude for the writers who penned the puzzle pieces of who I am is infinite.

I did actually pick up reading again – my book hangover has subsided a bit. I’m currently listening to We Are Okay by Nina LaCour and reading The Young Wives Club by Julie Pennel. I heard that you kind of need to force yourself to read again and that it really helps to pick something in a completely different genre. So, I guess I’ll read other books until my Dream Theif trilogy arrives. I GUESS.

In the meantime, I have my gorgeous new tarot cards, drawn by my Scorpio soulmate Maggie Stiefvater herself to work with. My favorite part of these cards is the accompanying book that comes with them – the translations are witty as hell. Its hard to find cards with translations that you actually resonate with! I swear this is a problem in the cartomancy community!

tarot.jpg

I actually had dreams about ghosts and my cousin last night but the best part was that she greeted me with a Jersey accent, mimicking my problematic son Joseph Kavinsky, and said “DICK GANNNSSSSAAAAAY THE THIRD!!”. It was such a calming sensation, hearing a 17-year-old drug  Bulgarian  drug addict mobster’s voice come out of my 21-year-old, and very female, cousin’s voice box. I’m not kidding, I woke up and I was like “So this is how the pieces fall together”

I hope everyone has a book character that they love so much it causes them physical pain. I know that I have several, because life is a fucking nightmare. 

That’s all there is,

Carry on

The Book Witch

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