I haven't been great at writing reviews before I started this blog. Mostly my reviews consisted of "Great book! Loved the writing. Will definitely read the sequel." which is accurate, but not useful in any way. My problem was by the time I had finished reading the book, I didn't have any specific parts to reference. I needed to write notes while I was reading.
While writing notes on loose sheets of paper is doable and works in a pinch, what I really needed was a kit with all of my book review goodies. Here are my reading companion must-haves:
I love notebook shopping. Whenever I go to Target, I sneak down the notebook aisle to check out their new stock. When I came across this beautiful pink Cambridge Edition notebook with it's soft pink color and buttery soft cover, I knew I needed it...for what exactly I didn't know just then. Cue the impulse buy.
I will find any/every excuse to use Post-it flags. I love them. Any contract that we have to sign, any time I want to save a place in a book, any moment I get the opportunity to stick it on my cat's forehead and watch her run backwards away from it, I use Post-it flags. It's ridiculous(ly awesome!). I don't generally have a preference on the colors. I like these ones because they match the color of my pens below.
Here, my friend, is where I gush/obsess/get hysterically excited about my favorite craft supply. I kid you not, I can spend an hour in the pen aisle at Staples (or any office supply place, really) picking out the perfect pens. I once spent $10 on a pen (a Pilot Dr. Grip Retractable Ball Point Pen) when I was making less than $8 per hour. I worked more than an hour for a pen, but that was the best damned pen I owned. I still have it floating around in a junk drawer three jobs and two houses later.
What I'm trying to say is you think I get impulsive with notebooks? It does not compare to how impulsive I get with pens. These Staedtler Neon pens are no exception. The color is bright and they write so very smooth. While I was Zen-Doodling as a hobby, the Staedtler brand was a favorite of mine for the fine lines and solid color. When I found these in Target, there was no hesitation before they found their way into my cart. I swear, they just jumped off the shelf!
Something that I figured out a while later was not only were they neon, but they were REALLY neon, as in, they reacted under blacklight. Yesssss. I found a tutorial online to hack your phone's LED flashlight into a pseudo blacklight using only tape, a blue sharpie, and a purple sharpie. You can see my results below, with my awesome new pens, and find the tutorial here: http://imgur.com/gallery/2cDAg.
So I hope this was enlightening (and not frightening) as a way to inspire you to write better reviews or notes, or at least turn your phone into a blacklight. :) Thanks for reading and stick around for some great (better?) book reviews!
P.S. If you're ever writing a blog and have a lot of text that you miraculously came up with that was awesome, make sure you copy said text to say, a word document, before you press save. Trust me on this. Learn from my mistakes. Please, for the sake of mankind.