Category: memes


Sunday Salon: Reading on Vacation

Posted 4 September, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in memes, Reading

sunday salon books

Good morning, Readers! It’s been a hot minute since I checked in here, but there are things going on and there is reading being done. While on vacation I made it through a fair amount of books. I hit up a wide array of books, making it through all of the current Wicked + Divine graphic novels that are available to date, as well as the first volume of Chew, which was not nearly as gross as I had anticipated. I managed to get through Graham Moore’s novel, The Last Days of Night, Lionel Shriver’s amazing economic dystopia The Mandibles: A Family, 2029 – 2047, and last but definitely not least was Amor Towles’ excellent historical fiction piece A Gentleman in Moscow. What I realized by the copious amount of reading I was able to get through on my vacation is that my main problem with my lack of reading these days is work. C’est la vie.

Now, a week back in the real world, I’ve started Herman Koch’s newest Dear Mr. M, so far its just as twisty as his other two novels, but I’m not sure where it’s going yet. I’m still working on Mischling, though not very studiously – it may be a bit too harrowing for what I need to be reading right now. We’ll see. I’m also thinking of starting The Mothers by Brit Bennett.

Had the pleasure of going to the Decatur Book Festival with Katie yesterday. We agreed that we’re super psyched about books in the moment, listening to the authors on the panels but over dinner got realistic on what we were actually going to read. Garrard Conley gave a pretty brilliant talk on a panel about changing ideas of masculinity that definitely piqued my interest in his memoir Boy Erased, which tells of going through conversion therapy as a boy. Jim Obergefell was there too, and he was incredibly inspiring when talking about why he chose to go forward with what became the landmark Supreme Court case making marriage equality the supreme law of the land. I’m extremely interested in his book, Love Wins.

We went and heard a few more talks which were all interesting in their own rights, but didn’t strike me the way Conley and Obergefell did.

So Reader? What have you been reading? 

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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Sunday Salon: Anxiety

Posted 17 July, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in memes, musings

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Time // 6:41 PM EDT

Feeling // Wicked anxious. For no particular reason. I had a meltdown on Twitter today, at the pool. As I was saying, I’ve finally come to the point in my life, where for the most part, I don’t give a fuck what other people think about me. I’m comfortable with the way that I look, the job  that I do, the friends that I keep. Until I go out in public with The Girl. Then I lose. My. Shit. Is she bugging other people too much? Are they judging me for the way that she’s dressed? Am I paying enough attention to her? Too much attention to her? Helicoptering? Neglecting? On. And. On. And. On. My blood pressure rises, my heart starts hammering, and I usually feel frozen in place. It’s a terrible, awful, no good feeling that I don’t know how to shake. Anyway.

Reading //  I just finished up a book that I loved, except for the ending. I hate when an author takes a perfectly content atheist character and makes him/her find god. It’s so… trite. Also still working on Kathleen Glasgow’s upcoming YA(?) novel Girl in Pieces which is raw and powerful and awful in all the best ways. I’m in a reading slump and need to feel excited about something. Suggestions?

That’s all she wrote, Reader. How are you?

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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Sunday Salon: Hello July

Posted 3 July, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in blogging, memes, musings

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With June gone and July beginning in earnest I’m feeling the pressure of my Goodreads challenge weighing down upon me. I’m fifteen books behind schedule and I’m not sure I’m going to be able to pull out of this nosedive before the end of the year. I guess next year I’ll have to plan for job stress and family things.

I only managed to make it through four books last month and I’m hoping that I’ll do better in July. I’m working on Ben Winters’ Underground Airlines which is a thoughtful speculative fiction title due out on Tuesday. I’m also listening to Cronin’s The City of Mirrors which is the final book in The Passage trilogy.

In meteorological news, it’s so hot. I grew up in the south and have been back in Georgia for about three years now, but I never get over how damn hot it gets. We just got back from the pool. I hate the sun. I hate being tan. I hate burning more than all that. DESPITE all that I’m thinking that this summer I should take up swimming – because it’s aerobic and it keeps me cooler than running does in the 98+ degree heat. Still thinking the thoughts, trying to make a decision.

My best good friend (who also happens to be my trial assistant) came to the pool today with her boyfriend. I think that we’re about to embark on an evening of board games, booze, and fun. She has a DC Comics Deck Building Game that I suspect will be an excellent time as well as a Japanese board game that I haven’t played yet, but I am looking forward to.

Anyway. That’s my weekend thus far, Readers. What about you? Read anything worth reading? Done anything worth doing? 

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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Sunday Salon: Excuses Edition

Posted 26 June, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in memes, musings

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Forgive me internet, for I have sinned and it has been nineteen days since my last blog post. Well, it’s been nineteen days since my last blog post, anyway. I was going to start writing on the regular and … et cetera et cetera.

Let’s start with something relevant to the blog, like what I’ve been reading. I’m probably 100 pages shy of finishing The Fireman and it has been wholly enjoyable. I’m working my way through Before the Fall by Noah Hawley so I can book-club it with my new local-bookish-BFF who also happens to be dating my General Counsel from work. I also just got a magical care package from Catherine at Gilmore Guide to Books with Sweetbitter and an upcoming Shirley Jackson biography which was the one book I really wanted but wasn’t able to get my hands on at BEA. (I promise Catherine, that Kindle Paperwhite will be in the mail this week…)

So, what’s been going on? Well, last Sunday Salon (three weeks ago?) I told you I was taking a case to trial that I desperately didn’t want to. It was a win… ish. Eight count accusation, seven acquittals and one conviction on the charge the defense attorney went in telling the jury to convict on. Sentencing pretty much went my way though, so… win? Doesn’t matter, it’s over. While that jury was still out deliberating I had to pick another jury and try another case, it was utterly exhausting.

The Friday of the week of all the jury trials I had to leave after work to go to a intensive week long training starting the next day (SATURDAY) in BEAUUUUTIFUL Forsyth, Georgia where I proceeded to work twelve to sixteen hour days for the next six days. That was the same week that the Pulse shooting happened and that the alligator ate the baby at Disney World and I just couldn’t with the internet.

I came home and Mr. SFR was gone and The Girl was with my mother and really all I could do was collapse into my bed and watch trashy television until last Wednesday. At that point I went back to work and had to bury myself in that… so no blogging.

Which brings us to today… I think it’s time to get reading. What’s new with you, Reader?

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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Sunday Salon: ‘Twas the Day Before Jury Trial

Posted 5 June, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in memes, musings

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Time // 8:54 A.M. EDT

Thinking // About how I have to take a case to trial next week that I really don’t want to. I get that the idea of overworked public defenders is a way sexier news story than overworked prosecutors. (Also, malicious/improper prosecution is way sexier than the thousands of prosecutors that do their jobs properly and within the scope of the law every day.) But let me tell you, my office might represent The State, but it’s made up wholly of people – just people – handling enormous case loads. I can assure you that the vast power of the state is not so vast in backwoods Georgia. Anyway. I really don’t want to take this case to trial next week. Such is life.

Reading // Things. Lots of things. About 60% done with The Fireman – it’s got shades of The Stand in it… I’m liking it a lot but unsure if I’m going to topple over into loving it. Finished a weird little book that I picked up at BEA, I plan to write a review on it after this. Also finished re-reading Justin Cronin’s The Passage. Now I need to re-read The Twelve so I can pick up the thrilling conclusion in City of Mirrors.

Beginning // To run again. I got my two runs in last week and am aiming for a Monday, Wednesday, Friday schedule from here forward (last Monday was a federal holiday, can’t run on federal holidays). It’s so dang hot and humid here I’m also considering taking up some type of swimming. The neighborhood pool is only about a half mile from the house and it’s big enough to do laps in – I don’t know, we’ll see if that works out.

So, that’s what I’m looking at, Reader. How’s your week? Anything exciting to look forward to?

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

Posted 30 May, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in memes, musings

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Well, I went to Savannah on Friday with the husband for an impromptu holiday weekend for Memorial Day and some work detox. The problem is that Tropical Storm Bonnie came crashing into the east coast and it was a generally crappy time to be walking around in the outside. I say ‘problem’ but it was really not a problem for me, because it allowed me the weekend in the hotel room with Joe Hill’s newest novel, The Fireman. I finished up In a Dark, Dark Wood and meant to transition into another dead tree novel – but the husband was ready to turn the light off so I picked up my trusty Kindle instead.

The Fireman is a 768 page post apocalyptic chunkster. Naturally this means, I am loving it. I’m about halfway through and finding everything about it amazing.

Like I said, the weather in Savannah was crappy, but it didn’t stop me from eating all the things. I’m debating on whether or not to write a post about that. I need to write a review for In a Dark, Dark Wood – it’s the first BEA book that I’ve read that has been released – so that’s something to do.

I was thinking about joining Bryan in the 99 Days of Summer Blogging – but just in the next few weeks I have some pretty significant time commitments at work through trial week and being sent to GPSTC for training for another week, I’m just not sure that I can write anything worth reading every day for 99 days. I have a desire to revive the blog, but not to just hit the publish button just to publish. If I can get back to three times a week, I’ll feel okay.

So, it’s Monday! What are you reading? Turned into a little Sunday Salon as well. Let’s call it the best of both worlds. What are you reading, Reader?

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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Sunday Salon: Local Election

Posted 22 May, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in blogging, memes, musings

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Time // 12:26 P.M. EDT

Feeling //  Exhausted. So exhausted. The local Judge’s election is on Tuesday and the mudslinging has been epic. All of my non-work friends (and my husband) are exceedingly bored with me because at this point the election is all consuming and leading me to be extra snippy and just generally boring. Just keep swimming, April.

just keep swimming

Reading //  Just finished the upcoming Blake Crouch novel. Review forthcoming. Also working on the new George Saunders Lincoln in the Bardo, it’s very Faulkner-eqsue. Read: Fabulous. There are so many books from BEA waiting for me, this keeps me excited. I’m hoping to get some regular reviews going here again.

Living //  With the windows open! I feel like I need to start running again – partially because the stress of this election has me off the charts. I know that the endorphins from running would definitely help me more than stalking election sites on Facebook, but… effort.

Blogging // Yes, I saw all the BEA brou-ha-ha on Twitter this past week. I agree with most bloggers that it’s rather dated and boring. Let me be clear on my position. The sentiment that I largely agree with is this:

Publishers owe me nothing. In return, I owe publishers nothing. I have no problem with book bloggers that are able to monetize their blogs, as long as they are upfront about the monetization. That doesn’t necessarily make their opinions on books more or less valid than mine. Please stop telling me that I don’t know my worth. I know my worth. The thing is that the worth of me writing book reviews (or writing in general) is less than what I’m willing to accept to give this up as a hobby. Taking money for my blog turns this into a job. I have a job that I love, I don’t need another one – therefore – it’s not worth it to me to seek out paying opportunities to review. If this means that publishers don’t send me ARCs or I can’t attend BEA because I’m not actually a part of the industry – that’s okay. I guess what I’m trying to say to authors, bloggers, and Twitterers who try to say that if I’m not charging for my reviews I’m just another cog in the machine, is this:

election

There’s so much more going on in my head, Reader but, you guessed it! It’s mostly regarding this local election that bores everyone but those involved. Someone send me an easy way to Zen.

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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Sunday Salon: Recovering from BEA

Posted 15 May, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in blogging, memes, musings

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So I got home from BEA yesterday night. It was a whirlwind good time and I’m really pleased with how it went. I got to hang out with some amazing women (at the very least I must mention Catherine from Gilmore Guide to Books, Shannon from River City Reading, and Marisa from The Daily Dosage – though there were many, many more).  Additionally, I picked up a ridiculous amount of books and now shouldn’t have a shortage for reading or reviewing for quite a time. I’m hoping to start writing reviews again or at least some discussion posts. Let’s see if we can’t get this blog rolling again, shall we?

I was really impressed with many of the publishers at BEA and how polite and helpful most of the publicists were despite what had to be long days on their feet. Hachette had an exceptionally organized booth and it was amazingly easy to access the ARCs that I was interested in.

Chicago is such an excellent city, I definitely ate all the things, though oddly that did not include Chicago style pizza, which I do love.

Tomorrow, I must return to work. It’s a probation day no less, which is usually the most unpleasant of court days. The local judge’s election that is giving me so much heartburn will be over in nine days which is not nearly soon enough.

Hm, I thought I had more to say on this, Reader. C’est la vie. How was your week?

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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Sunday Salon: Easter Edition

Posted 27 March, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in memes, musings

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Time // 12:04 EDT.

Watching // DVRed episodes of The Walking Dead. Trying to catch up so me and Mr. SFR can watch the final episodes of this season together. Is there weird sexual tension between Rick and Michonne or is it me? Edit: Just finished the episode.. oh shit!

Also, Better Call Saul might be the most underrated show on television. I love it.

Joined // Snapchat. All the kids are doing it, you can find me there as steadfastreader. I’ve also been using a new app to track my water intake called Plant Nanny. It’s adorable and pretty effective. Apparently, your water intake should be based on your weight and activity level. Right now I’m supposed to be drinking 102 oz a day.

Plant Nanny

Plant Nanny

Playing //  Games with co-workers last night! We played Zombicide which is a totally bitchin’ cooperative game where you get to kill massive amounts of zombies. It was all fun and games until I was sacrificed to save the rest of the group. Easter appropriate.

Also started playing the computer game Factorio. It’s fun, but likely to be a giant time suck.

Reading // A bunch of stuff. Zadie Smith’s White Teeth, which I’m enjoying. A People’s History of the United States is hard listening, but I think absolutely necessary. Also still wending my way through Gaiman’s The Sandman.

Hmmm… I feel like there’s more, Reader but I guess I’ll have to edit the post as it come to me later. How’s your Easter Sunday going?

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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Sunday Salon: Justice Scalia Edition

Posted 14 February, 2016 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in memes, musings

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Time // 8:11 A.M. EDT

News // In U.S. politics, of course Justice Scalia is dead. It’s too soon for the Dick Cheney jokes, but there you have it. This is a huge game changer both with the court and with the upcoming presidential elections. President Obama, for his part, has vowed to have a replacement appointed before he leaves office — but whether he can do that remains to be seen. Vox published an interesting article on who he might nominate and who has the best chances of getting confirmed, assuming the Senate Republicans aren’t just blocking nominations to be politically difficult.

But can they really do that? The Washington Post seems to think they might and SCOTUSblog talks about the possibility of a recess appointment if that happens. I can’t find the article that I read last night discussing the idea that in the event of a Hillary or Bernie victory that President Obama gets appointed. It’s not unprecedented, William Taft was appointed as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in 1921, after his presidency. I’m not going to lie, Michelle, also a lawyer, would make a pretty badass appointee as well. (That is unprecedented.)

political scalia

Look, I make it a practice of never being happy when an individual dies, no matter how repugnant I may find them. I wish those close to him my most sincere condolences, but I think the court is in a position to be better for the American people. We shall see. In the meantime NPR has five opinions from Justice Scalia that you really should read. If nothing else, the man could write a mean dissent.

Anything Else? // I’ll admit that Scalia dominated dinner conversation between me and Mr. SFR last night and it’s still occupying my thoughts today. But I have also been doing some decent reading this week. Finished up at least one more book slated for the Tournament of Books. Started Oreo which is also on the Tournament of Books short list, but I’m finding myself exhausted by racial discourse recently. I’m aware that from the position of privilege from which I sit that’s not really a fair thing to say, but my frustration lies with people of my own privilege and station refusing to recognize it.

Simply by the virtue of the fact that I am white means I am privileged.

The fact that I am white and well educated makes me very privileged.

The fact that I am white, well educated, and socio-economically can be considered (at least) middle class makes me extremely privileged.

Why is that so hard for white people to say/recognize?

Lent // Of course I’m not Catholic, but I do like the practice of Lent and my goal is to get 7,000 steps in a day. I’ll tell you, a proactive goal is much harder than a goal of giving something up for me. Though in the reverse you could say that I’m giving up sitting on my ass. 🙂

Okay Reader, I’ve been a political minefield this morning. How’s your week been? Feelings on Justice Scalia? White privilege? Been reading any books?

April @ The Steadfast Reader

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