Site Launch – www.thereaderwriter.com

The Reader Writer  – Has officially launched! My blog will be moving here, please come take a look and get in touch via the new site if you have any guest blogging opportunities for me.

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Website Launch and Guest Blogging

So, I know I have been rather quiet lately, and that is because I am preparing to launch my freelance writing and editing business! I am currently putting the finishing touches to the website, but you can follow on facebook for updates – FB The Reader Writer

 

Website Print

Here is a sneak peak of the site which will be launching soon!

Most of my content will be moving over to the new site, so if you have enjoyed reading I’d love for you to follow along on my adventures.

 

I am still building a portfolio and would love to get a few guest blogging opportunities, I am seeking some out but if you’d like me to write for you please get in touch, here or view thereaderwriter@outlook.com. It does not need to be about books or writing, I have many interests from music, film, and food to beauty and fashion! Please get in touch!

Literary Love…

In honour of Valentine’s Day lets take a look at some literary lovers. Love, as a mysterious thing, so hard to describe is widely pondered throughout literature. There is a wealth of it to be found in, unrequited love, tragic love, young love, perfect love, confusing love, indescribable love. So here is a look at some romantic couplings, some obvious but hey…all you need is love!

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1. Romeo and Juliet

A classic to begin, what is left to be said about Shakespeare’s ultimate star crossed lovers? Households at war, naive love, tragedy, and loss. Still as beautiful and tragic as it was when it was written, there is a reason they are still held up as the pinnacle of romantic love. Even if their being teenagers makes it a bit creepy to the modern mind!

Best moment –  A long one!
Juliet. Wilt thou be gone? it is not yet near day:
It was the nightingale, and not the lark,
That pierced the fearful hollow of thine ear;
Nightly she sings on yon pomegranate-tree:
Believe me, love, it was the nightingale.
Romeo. It was the lark, the herald of the morn,
No nightingale: look, love, what envious streaks
Do lace the severing clouds in yonder east:
Night’s candles are burnt out, and jocund day
Stands tiptoe on the misty mountain tops.
I must be gone and live, or stay and die.
Juliet. Yon light is not day-light, I know it, I:
It is some meteor that the sun exhales,
To be to thee this night a torch-bearer,
And light thee on thy way to Mantua:
Therefore stay yet; thou need’st not to be gone.
Romeo. Let me be ta’en, let me be put to death;
I am content, so thou wilt have it so.
I’ll say yon grey is not the morning’s eye,
‘Tis but the pale reflex of Cynthia’s brow;
Nor that is not the lark, whose notes do beat
The vaulty heaven so high above our heads:
I have more care to stay than will to go:
Come, death, and welcome! Juliet wills it so.
How is’t, my soul? let’s talk; it is not day.

2. Catherine Barkley and Lieutenant Frederic Henry

Ernest Hemingway might not be the obvious choice when it comes to love, but Frederic and Catherine’s war torn romance, another tragedy (what does this say about me that so far all my choices are tragedies?!) is so beautifully sad and desperate. The need to cling to something, anything, just to make it through the utter annihilation of WWI is utterly heartbreaking. And try getting to the ending and not sobbing your eyes out.

Best moment – a moment which epitomizes the clinging desperation of their love

“Will you be away a long time?” Catherine asked. She looked lovely in bed. “Would you hand me the brush?”

I watched her brushing her hair, holding her head so the weight of her hair all came on one side. It was dark outside and the light over the head of the bed shone on her hair and her neck and her shoulders. I went over and kissed her and held her hand with the brush and her head fell back on the pillow. I kissed her neck and shoulders. I felt faint with loving her so much.

“I don’t want to go away.”

“I don’t want you to go away.”

“I won’t go then.”

“Yes. Go. It’s only for a little while and then you’ll come back.”

“We’ll have dinner up here.”

“Hurry and come back.”

3. Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy

Another classic but Austen’s literary lovers in Pride and Prejudice and their journey to love is wonderful. The errors, the pride, the prejudice, and of course, the happy ending.

Best moment – Darcy declares his love (doesn’t hurt to picture Colin Firth saying it either!)

“In vain have I struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”

Elizabeth’s astonishment was beyond expression. She stared, coloured, doubted, and was silent. This he considered sufficient encouragement; and the avowal of all that he felt, and had long felt for her, immediately followed. He spoke well; but there were feelings besides those of the heart to be detailed, and he was not more eloquent on the subject of tenderness than of pride. His sense of her inferiority — of its being a degradation — of the family obstacles which judgement had always opposed to inclination, were dwelt on with a warmth which seemed due to the consequence he was wounding, but was very unlikely to recommend his suit.

4. Jane Eyre and Mr. Rochester

I know, I know, another classic, I am obviously a complete sap for the classics, sigh! Jane overcomes so much, and despite her utter heartbreak at the hand of Rochester, eventually returns to him, blinded in the rotting corpse of what once was Thornfield Hall. But she returns to him and they live happily ever after…well it is Bronte after all, it isn’t going to be all sunshine and roses!

Best moment 

“I have for the first time found what I can truly love–I have found you. You are my sympathy–my better self–my good angel. I am bound to you with a strong attachment. I think you good, gifted, lovely: a fervent, a solemn passion is conceived in my heart; it leans to you, draws you to my centre and spring of life, wrap my existence about you, and, kindling in pure, powerful flame, fuses you and me in one.”

5. Wesley and Buttercup 

Fairytale romance, utterly hilarious, and a cast of fantastic characters rounding out the wonderful The Princess Bride.

Best moment – there really can be only one, Wesley’s coded declaration of love

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“As you wish.”

That was all he ever answered. “As you wish.” Fetch that, Farm Boy. “As you wish.” Dry this, Farm Boy. “As you wish.”

6. Jack Twist and Ennis Del Mar

A forbidden love set among the vast sweeping landscapes of Wyoming’s Brokeback Mountain. Tragic, raw, and beautiful, another one to read if you don’t mind shedding a tear or a thousand. A moment has never broken my heart like this one can…a final act of love, when it is already too late.

Best moment

The shirt seemed heavy until he saw there was another shirt inside it, the sleeve’s carefully worked down into Jack’s sleeves. It was his own plaid shirt, lost, he’d thought, long ago in some damn laundry, his dirty shirt, the pocket ripped, buttons missing, stolen by Jack and hidden here inside Jack’s own, two skins, one inside the other, the pair like two in one. He pressed his face into the fabric and breathed in slowly through his mouth and nose, hoping for the faintest smoke and mountain sage and salty sweet stink of Jack but there was no real scent, only the memory of it, the imagined power of Brokeback Mountain of which nothing was left but what he held in his hands.

 

Broken Promises.

Look I know we’ve been here before, I won’t deny it, we’ve all made mistakes, words were forgotten and promises broken.  But I swear this time things will be different…I promise?!


 

So I know, I know, I know I said this time would be different, I’d keep on top of posting and for a little while there it really looked like I was going to.  But who knew completing my MA, moving across the globe, and starting a new career would be so tiring! I started writing and editing for Life in the Bay a great expat blog which I am hugely enjoying, as well as starting a new job which actually involves writing and editorial work! It has been a good and busy few months.

But this has all meant of course, less reading, and less writing. I have a million and one half written posts, and even more ideas. So now that I am settling into more of a rhythm in my new life I am going to try to get back to it.


Currently reading: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

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This has been an interesting experience. I read these first time round, and only time so far, as they came out. So there is a strange bittersweet nostalgia to re-reading them. It’s not that they have lost any of their magic, but I remember the total love and astonishment and amazement I felt first time around. And whilst I still love them, knowing what is coming, and all the hype which surrounds the now far too vast franchise does take something away from them. I remember enjoying the later entries in the series more anyway, so perhaps when I get there I will find some more of that magic and sparkle.

Don’t get me wrong, I am really enjoying finally giving it a second go, I just guess I wish it was all still new to me.

 

100 Followers!

Today I reached the milestone of 100 followers! Thank you all so much for following, I really appreciate it and I love all the interactions and comments from you guys, makes me feel really good to hear your thoughts and know that you are enjoying the things I post!

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Photo via Visual Hunt

 

Books, words, and reading are such huge passions of mine and I am so happy to be able to share that with so many people who have the same love for literature and language.

Keep reading, keep commenting, let me know what you like or don’t like, want to see more of or less of.

Freedom! Dystopia. &  Normal Service Resumes

So, Sunday was thesis deadline day, I managed to hand it in on Friday and took a few days off to recover! Now I am back and will be updating a bit more regularly. Here is a bit on my thesis and the writing of it:

Thesis 1

The final week = edit, edit, editing!


Writing the thesis was a pretty interesting process, I have never written such a long piece of non-fiction before. My subject was freedom in dystopian literature – specifically Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell and The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. The basic premise being that though dystopian literature by definition is a reaction to the contemporaneous world of the author, it retains relevance and understanding through the ever present themes of freedom, free will and liberty.

Of course I have written a lot of papers over my studies but I think the reason I enjoyed the process as much as I did is because I love the books so much. The first part of the process, as with any paper I write (after reading the novels, of course) is research, research and more research. This is normally the most tiresome part, though I love the literature and getting a more in depth perspective on it some of the writing on it can be shall we say…pretty dry! But with these novels I thoroughly enjoyed this, being able to really pick apart the books and get down to such a detailed level, and having such a large word count to meet, meant no constraints on my research. So often I have to curtail my research and narrow my focus so much more as the paper required is so short, here I didn’t need to do that and I was in my element…!

For a lot of people these books are so bleak and dark that they cannot understand my passion for them, firstly, Nineteen Eighty-Four The Handmaid’s Tale particularly are just so well written that even with such depressing subject matter they are worth reading. And secondly for me, it is this presence of hope which makes the books worthwhile.

Thesis 2

Submission Time!

If the books were truly so dark, why would freedom, and the pursuit of freedom always be so present as a theme? Yes, these attempts to gain freedom, more often than not, fail. But someone tried, someone hoped enough, even in such bleak prospects, that freedom could be gained. The authors write these books as a prophetic warning, a warning which would not be worth giving if there was no hope of freedom from the chosen constraints was possible.


Nineteen Eighty-Four is probably my all time favourite book, with one of the best opening lines, and most heart wrenching endings in literature. If you haven’t read it, what have you been doing? Prepare yourself for that ending though…every time I get there it is like a knife through the heart.


“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen…” – George Orwell

Update: Thesis. Stress. Panic!

Hi all!

War is Peace

 

Sorry things have been a bit quiet, I have so many posts at the half way point but I am absolutely snowed with thesis work. In case you don’t know (I’ve been so quiet about it!) I am writing about dystopian literature, specifically Brave New World, Nineteen Eighty-Four, and The Handmaid’s Tale. 

My project is due exactly a week today so I am in the midst of collating sources, writing my bibliography and edit, edit, edit, editing! As such my brain has been everywhere and I have not been concentrating very well on my posts.

I am attempting to complete one of my posts this evening but I am not sure I will get there. So, if things remain quiet, look out for me next week when I will be free! Free to…panic about where life goes next, oh dear!?!