Thursday, 29 December 2016

Fairy Loot: Unboxing A Book Box Subscription

For my last blog post of 2016, I'd like to share one of my favourite Christmas presents with you -  a book box subscription.

Earlier in the year, I posted about book box subscriptions and how I couldn't find any that appealed to me based in the UK. Postal and import duties costs meant using an American or Canadian provider was a no-no, so you can imagine my joy when I discovered there are now a handful of UK based services. For a really good roundup of these services, visit

I decided to get my first book box from Fairy Loot, my choice heavily influenced by December's theme - Sci-Fi Adventure. I would like to try a box from Illumicrate, My Bookish Crate, and Nerdy Bookworm Box, but at the moment Fairy Loot ticks all the right boxes for me (excuse the pun). I'd like to share my unboxing pictures with you, so you can get an idea of the kinds of things included in a subscription service and why they're such a great gift for readers.

December's box was delivered as below. I was impressed
by the obvious thought that had gone into the packaging.

The inside of the box has writing on it and a fairy 
tale quote on the front.

On the opposite side of the art print seen above is a brief 
description of the contents. The list has a spoiler alert 
at the top, so I chose to read it after unpacking the contents.


The first item I saw was a Pop! Funko Yoda. Very impressed!

The next two items are exclusive to this box and Fairy Loot 
- kryptonite fairy dust from Geeky Clean and galaxy socks.

The Luncar Chronicles art print and Red Rising buttons 
below are also exclusive items.

The Way Down Dark sampler and The Long Way To A 
Small, Angry art print are bonus items. The beautiful 
watercolour bookmark from Amie Kaufman is another 
exclusive item. 

The book itself came in a Fairy Loot book bag, 
which I love.

Unpacking the book bag was the most exciting part, because
I had no idea what book I'd receive. A quick read of the blurb
and I knew this was a one I'd have chosen myself. The book
bag also contained a signed bookplate, letter, and bookmark
from the author. Lastly, an author interview by Fairy Loot.

The boxes impressive contents.

Final thoughts: A book box subscription is a fantastic gift for readers, but at between £28 to £32 it isn't cheap. Having said that, the contents of the box easily add up to what you pay and many of them are exclusive. The price also includes postage. If you can afford to give it a try, do. You won't be disappointed.

That's it for 2016. Have a Happy New Year!

Friday, 23 December 2016

Happy Holidays!

It's time for me to wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Whatever your holiday plans, may they be filled with love, laughter, and peace!

Thursday, 15 December 2016

CassaDawn by Alex J. Cavanaugh

Christmas has come early, my friends. Alex J. Cavanaugh has released a prequel to his superb CassaStar series!

A pilot in training... 

Fighting the odds, Byron is determined to complete Cosbolt training. Poised at the top of his class, only one situation holds him back–his inability to work with anyone in the cockpit. Byron’s excellent piloting skills won’t be enough without a good navigator…

iTunes / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / 
Kobo / Amazon UK / Goodreads

One to add to your eBook reader!

Friday, 9 December 2016

IWSG: Better Late Than Never

My apologies for posting two days late. I actually thought I'd never find the time to write December's Insecure Writer's Support Group post. I was not defeated, though! 

This month's IWSG post is the last of 2016. Hard to believe we've nearly taken another trip around the Sun. Talking of trips, I spent a few days in the Lincolnshire countryside last month. Miles from anywhere, soaking up the stunning sunrises and sunsets, I had plenty of time to reflect on the last few months. One thing I realised was I hadn't talked about my writing insecurities in October's and November's IWSG posts, which is actually the point of the group. Mea culpa. I won't forget today.

As this year ends, and another peeks around the corner at me, I'm left feeling both elated and frustrated. 2016 has been a game changer for me. I started the year living alone and single, and I'm ending it living with my new partner. I couldn't be happier. It's been an amazing year, full of many happy memories, and I'm looking forward to what 2017 will bring.

What's the catch, I hear you say? While I did find some time to blog, write a few thousand words, and read a handful of books, it was a fraction of the time I'd normally spend on those activities. My writing really has been put on hold. As much as I've loved the last few months, the desire to write is still burning within me. I know I need to approach 2017 with a whole new attitude. Of course, I'm full of the usual doubts and insecurities about how I'm going to make it happen. How will I find the time when I sometimes blink and a week has passed without me even turning on my laptop? When I love spending time with my other half? Make time! I hear you say. You're right. My other half has spent enough time telling me the same thing. 

As a first step on the road to making time in 2017, I've bought myself a Self Journal. If you've not heard of this Kickstarter funded, three month journal, visit the Kickstarter page or their website to learn more. I used a Self Journal in early 2016, and it really did make a massive difference in my productivity. It helped me to clarify larger goals, break them down into achievable steps, and prioritize time to work on my goals every day. The twice-daily journal entries kept me on track. For me, it was worth every penny. So, I'm starting 2017 in the same way.

Pebbles has promised to remind me to fill it in every day

Now for December's IWSG question: 

In terms of your writing career, where do you see yourself five years from now, and what's your plan to get there?

I don't have the answers to either of these questions. However, I will by the end of January. One of my first goals for 2017 is to revisit and update my original writing plan. So, if it's okay with you, I'll be answering this question late January. 

How about you? Do you have a writing career plan? What tools do you use to stay on track and boost producitivity?