The Return

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In which I explain why stopped blogging and announce my hesitant return.

Hello, everyone.

I’ve spent the past week plotting my return to blogging here at Betwined Reads. I spent some much need time thinking long and hard about what I want this space to be, what I have to offer, and for whom I am writing this blog. A necessary question I had to ask myself was what has kept me from blogging, and that was the hardest to fully nail down. Especially since it feels sometimes that I have nothing but time.

I used to think that I could not blog if I wasn’t reading or writing, that there’d be nothing of value to talk about. But recently I have been both reading and writing and I have still been hesitant to hit that “Write” button and start new posts.

So what else?

Blogging can be hard work. Dedicating time to sit down and write. Editing your words to make sure they’re as clear and concise as possible. Working on the presentation of the blog post (i.e. featured images, banners). It’s easy to get burned out! Especially if at the end of the day, you are not happy with what you are creating. And I have not been happy with my most recent blog posts.

When I would go back to reread my posts after I published them, I often felt that words rang hollow. It’s not that I have ever lied about my thoughts or opinions in my blog posts, but I have realized that I’ve censored myself.

Censored, how? you might be wondering. Well, I feel like I’ve kept you, my blog readers, at an arm’s distance, if that makes sense. Too a degree I think it’s something we all do, and that’s not the problem in itself. But I feel that what I’d censored has been an important part of what makes me me. And it has made me feel like a phony.

I’ve felt lost ever since graduating college in 2015, and even though I went straight to grad school that fall, I’ve felt like a paper bag floating in the wind. I’ve got no roots anywhere and feel directionless, especially since I still don’t know what I want to do with my life. I feel at such odds with the optimism of the young book bloggers filling this space and the young housewives and mothers who have stability and peace of mind to build and run their book blogs.

This is feeling of inadequacy is what I’ve been hiding. It’s scary. I often vacillate wildly between feelings of confidence/insecurity and optimism/hopelessness. Looking back at the past year’s posts, I don’t recognize myself in that false optimism.

So when I was thinking about how I might get back into blogging, I realized that I needed to abandon these subconscious desires to portray myself as someone who has it all together and figured out. I needed to stop looking at how other book bloggers write and find something that was authentic to me.

I thought about what I personally look for in a blog. In many ways, I realized that there are no bloggers (that I’m aware of) that really fulfilled what I was looking for. So my goal is fill that void with the blog posts I create moving forward.

I’m not faking optimism this time when I say I want to start posting regularly to this blog. I want to write blog posts about the books I’m reading and the things that are making me happy at the moment. I also want to help others who might feel as lost as I do. I’m going to start writing with the target audience of myself in mind.

A heartfelt thank you to everyone who made it through this entire post. And I’m sorry if I’ve in any way let anyone down.

If you are still on the fence about whether you want to be subscribed to this blog, I recommend checking out my recently updated About page that has been renamed The Girl & the Blog. My hope is that it does a good job of explaining what I like and what you can expect from the blog. I have many posts in the pipeline and can’t wait to start making things of which I can be proud.

Thank you for reading!
Follow my blog via Bloglovin’. Also find me on GoodreadsTwitter, and Instagram.


New Year’s Resolutions of 2018

Listening to: Emma Blackery’s 365: January playlist on Spotify
Reading: Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld
Watching: The Good Doctor
Playing: Township
Eating: Homemade veggie pizza
Drinking: Monster (left behind by my brother)

Hi there.

It’s been a while, and I don’t want to dwell on why. I just want to jump back into the blog. I will say that I am looking forward to the future for the first time since September.

This optimism has mostly to do with my decision to leave my soul crushing part-time job. I don’t have another job yet, but I’ve found this move extremely important for my sanity. Maybe I’ll do a blog post on this in the future, because there’s not a lot I want to say on it at the moment. I just want to move past it.

Now that I’m I wanted to share my new year’s resolutions, since I finally have them. I know it’s late, but I didn’t start off the new year in such a happy place after the crazy holiday season working in retail. It was easier to turn my brain off and not think about much beyond the daily grind. So the first week of 2018 was spent…coming back to life in a way.

I know that people have a lot of thoughts on whether new year’s resolutions are worth making when so many fall by the wayside by February, but I’ve always liked setting them. Especially since becoming a blogger, I feel like they help me set the tone for what I want to do this year. They’re rarely achieved, but I still think, personally, that it’s better to set them and not reach them than to have nothing to work towards at all.

Anyway, here they are.

1. Try 20 new food recipes. 

Last June I began my transition towards a plant-based diet (think vegan minus the die-hard ethical side of it). Overall it was not too difficult after I established my go-to meals and learned to say no to all fast and junk food people offer. I’ve had my slip ups and weeks where I wasn’t too strict about looking at food labels for what eggs or dairy, but after everything I’ve realized that this is not just a diet, but a permanent life change.

My body physically hurts when I eat meat or dairy now.

So this year I want to start experimenting with more plant-based recipes. Vegan YouTube is super helpful, but I always find myself tweaking recipes as I go so maybe I’ll share my own spin on ones that end up on my favorites list.

2. Watch 20 documentaries.

I can watch The Office and Parks & Recreation all year long. It’s a problem. These shows are just my go-to’s when I have a little time to kill or am eating alone and there’s nothing new on YouTube. Netflix has a wonderful selection of documentaries of which I want to take better advantage, so that I can expand my mind and be inspired by new things.

3. Watch 20 new shows.

Going along with the previous goal, I want to expand my horizons and see more of what’s out there. At the end of 2017, I finally saw Mr. Robot, which has been on my radar for a long time and I really loved. I’m always annoyed with myself when I take too long to finally experience some things, so I want to force myself to branch out this year and experience more new good T.V.

I recently saw The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, which was everything and then some. Next up will likely be some more things off Amazon Prime, as I lose my Prime membership in February because it’s too expensive for me right now. Thankfully, there will always be Netflix (as I’m on my parents’ account there!).

4. Read 20 books I owned before 2018.

I’ve hit a bit of a slump recently with my reading and I realized it hit one evening when I was looking at my bookshelves and realized nothing that was too new was calling to me. I panicked and have not tried to read much since then, although I have recently picked up Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld, a book I bought when I was first getting into book blogging in 2015.

It feels nice to be reading something that a past me bought, so I want to do more of that and remember why I bought certain books and see if I can get myself back into those mindsets and reclaim a bit of the past that’s been lost since I graduated.


These are the goals that I will be tracking on the blog this year. I’ve made a page called Resolutions of 2018 under my About Me heading so that I can keep a list with links to any posts in which I may reference the items that fit under any of the four goal categories.

I have some additional goals I’d like to accomplish this year (i.e., finish my book, start my BookTube channel), but I’ll share those later on as they become more defined. They’ll be harder to track throughout the year than the goals I list in this post, so I’ll likely dedicate separate posts to them when the time seems more right.

End Note

The focus of this blog will still primarily be books and writing, but I see it becoming a bookish lifestyle blog in the future rather than just a place where I talk books and writing as a separate life. I’ve become a bit disenchanted by the direction the most popular book blogs have gone recently and don’t feel like I want to add to the noise of that niche. I want to make this space a bit more personal to me and the people who choose to follow my reading and writing journey. Hopefully the sound of this still interests you!

Not sure what you can expect next, but I’ll be working on it.

Thank you for reading!
Follow my blog via Bloglovin’. Also find me on GoodreadsTwitter, and Instagram.

Summer Goals ˁ̡̡̡∗★ ̫★ˀ̡̡̡


I didn’t mean to go another whole week without posting again, but it’s taken me a while to decide what I wanted to post next. I decided the most logical place to start is with a summer goals for myself and this blog. But before I get into it, I want to first thank you all for your best wishes on my job search. My interview this week went great, and I got some good feedback. Unfortunately I think the job went to someone who they knew.

I wasn’t 100% sure I wanted to set summer goals for myself, but I feel like without a steady structure I won’t get as much done as I’d like. When I first started this post, I only envisioned stating my summer goals, but by the end I realized it might be a good time to think about what I want to accomplish long-term as well. So I’ve listed some of my wildest goals to achieve by the end of the year as well.

➴ Summer Goals


This summer I want to read at least 20 books in order to be all caught up with my Goodreads Reading Challenge by September. On Thursday I’ll be posting my TBR and participation in the 20 Books of Summer challenge so stay tuned for that (& see the blog post from Rattle the Stars that inspired me ^_^)! My own post is already written, I just need to put on some finishing touches.


This may be ambitious, but I’m feeling really tempted to jump back into blogging in a major way by committing to posting at least every other day without fail as long as I have ideas. Right now I feel like I have a lot of ideas for things I’d both like to share and also think others would really benefit from. Some weeks I may be really busy or feel like I got nothing. I’m hoping to get through those weeks by planning ahead and actively updating a Google doc of ideas so I don’t forget them.


I recently said that I’ve not been in the best of writing moods lately and while I still don’t want to commit to writing a novel this summer, I’m thinking about setting myself a more modest goal of writing an interactive short story. I have some past drafts of ideas that I may be interested in developing further, or I may start completely from scratch. We’ll see how that goes! I think it will also be fun to update you all on this process!

➴ Year End Goals

  1. Have a job I really like
  2. Have successfully completed NaNoWriMo for the first time since November 2014
  3. Have a modestly successful Etsy shop
  4. Have 500 blog followers between WordPress and Bloglovin’

End Note

I think it’s great to have goals for yourself throughout your life in order to continue to grow, even if you’re done with school and happy with your life. I encourage you to think of some seasonal goals and long-term goals in order to access how you might best go about achieving them. At the end of the summer/year I want to evaluate how successful I was at attaining these goals and decide what my next moves will be.

Do you enjoy setting goals? Why or why not?

What are your wildest of creative goals? How are you working on achieving them? 

Thank you for reading!
Follow my blog via Bloglovin’. Also find me on GoodreadsTwitter, and Instagram.