Hi there! This is me, just checking in. I took a bit of an extended holiday break, hence the lack of New Release Tuesday posts.
What I’ve Been Reading
I’m still thoroughly on my YA kick. I started off the year by reading both Legendborn and it’s sequel, Bloodmarked, and they are just as good as everyone says — though I won’t go off on that now. Today I opened Gallant by V.E. Schwab again, because although I tried to start it a few weeks ago, I just couldn’t pay attention and then my library loan expired. The second time around is much better, and I’m thoroughly intrigued now. I’m also doing some developmental editing work on the side, which has taken up a little of my reading time.
In terms of new releases, everyone’s excited about Prince Harry’s “memoir” (don’t get me wrong, I’m intrigued, but I cannot contribute to that in good consciousness). Personally, I believe my money will be far better spent on Leigh Bardugo’s Hell Bent, which is the sequel to the glorious Ninth House. It released Tuesday and is my next purchase. I’m also looking forward to the Chain of Thorns release at the end of the month — sue me.
What I’ve Been Doing
I’ve been on some job interviews (searching for something a little more stable than blogging) which has been pretty fun. Besides being nerve-wracking, I enjoy chatting with new people. I have been a little distracted with the blog, however. Sometimes you have to juggle. That being said — if you know of a job for a gal with an English MA and extensive knowledge of blogging and publishing, do drop me a line.
I have also been playing around with a new game idea — very early stages, obviously. If it ever becomes anything remotely playable I’ll let you know, but until then, I’ll be wishing I had more time and fewer hobbies.
What’s Been Happening In the Book World
Oh boy. My most recent vice has been getting back into Twitter. What a terrible idea that has been! If you don’t know (and honestly, I hope you don’t), I started my book-chatting adventures on Twitter over a decade ago. It brought me some wonderful people (I’m still in contact with some of them today!), but I greatly prefer the relative solitude of a blog. Nevertheless, I am not immune to the dark hole that is book drama, and it has been pretty intense in the past few weeks.
The HarperCollins Strike Continues
The biggest thing for me personally has been watching the HC strike continue. I wrote about HarperCollins employees going on strike a bit ago, and yes, it is unfortunately still continuing well into the new year. I could go off about this, because it’s absolutely shameful behaviour (and, I think, enlightening a bunch of young publishing hopefuls on why their dreams aren’t nearly as shiny as everyone wants them to think), but it makes me kinda sad, to be completely honest. There’s also the constant red flag of authors/agents/others actively supporting HarperCollins during this time, which is really wild considering the people making the books have asked them not to engage.
Romance Authors Making Unfortunate Choices
I must confess something: I’ve been somewhat embarrassed by my Very Spoilery Chat of It Ends With Us. I still stand by my view of the book as a whole, but I cannot support Colleen Hoover. She’s always been a little dicey, and since I published that post, I’ve been questioning it more and more. Blatant money grabs by way of romanticising domestic abuse aren’t okay. (Cough, cough, It Ends With Us coloring book! What is that! Who thought that would be good!) Also, the famous screenshot everyone loves to repost of that one particular scene in a Hoover book (you know which one and I’m not sullying my lovely blog by hosting it here) makes me want to cry and vomit all at once. Not a good feeling.
It’s kinda the vibe I got from that TikTok of Tessa Bailey “brainstorming” a gross new book idea that I guess she thought was . . . cute? (In reality, it was quite the problematic take.) Maybe this is a controversial opinion, but I think authors should probably refrain from TikTok. They don’t usually endear me to them — the opposite, actually.
If you don’t know what I’m talking about in the two above references, you should probably count yourself lucky.
This month we’ve also had the Case of the Undead Author, which has been interesting (?), and a new instalment of the classic writer-bullying-reviewer saga. I’ve had my fair share of internet comments (my favorite is when someone called me Elon Musk — I’m still perplexed) but it’s crazy an author would tank their career over a bad review. What possesses some people?
Maybe I should just delete Twitter. (But I won’t.)
My 2023 Goals for 9th Street Books
Oh, yes, I have them. I’m not into “resolutions” but I do love a fresh start and setting waypoints. Besides the usual maintenance of the site and ensuring my view count continues to climb, I’m hoping to start a newsletter. I’m thinking a little industry recap and summary of the book world drama — personally, I have struggled to keep up in the past and know other people probably have that same issue. Also contemplating a semi-roundup of my New Release Tuesday favourites — I already do a pretty thorough list each week, but this would be a little more concise.
So, yeah. That’s my check in for the first couple weeks of the new year. I hope yours has been going the way you want. <3
All the love and none of the resolutions,