the homebrew book club is back! each week i’ll be ready a new book and chatting about here with y’all and on instagram! i’m also working with Raine Publishing to bring you the best of the best in new poetry and short stories! so you’ll get first looks at new projects by up and coming poets! i’m stoked!
this week, we’re reading Maroon Daydreams but Cheyenne Raine herself! i downloaded my copy of this book about a year ago but i never got around to reading it, truth be told. so i’m very excited to start it now and share my thoughts with all of you! make sure you also check out home brew books to stay up to date!
what is UP theydies and gentlethems? i hope you’re all having a lovely week.
usually today i’d do a ~cozy post~ but i’m interrupting our usual programming for an announcement from The Home Brew
SUBMISSIONS FOR ISSUE ONE CLOSE ON SEPTEMBER 22.
(submissions are ABSOLUTELY still welcome but they will be pushed back to the second issue!)
i have received some of the most beautiful pieces of art i have ever seen, i absolutely love this. i am so excited to be able to create a community of rad human artists and creatives and give us a space to GROW as artists and as people! thank you for sharing your soul work with me!
“a monthly literary and art publication coming soon to a browser near you (and maybe even as a physical zine!)
The Home Brew is here to be creative cauldron of ideas. a place where the voices of those in the shadows can come together and meld into something magical.
i’m hoping to discuss topics such as:
mental health awareness
mixed media/digital art
and whatever else we can come up with together”
all mediums are welcome! the submissions info is as follows:
• email me: email@example.com
in the email – use the subject SUBMISSION – and include the following:
• who are you? (name, pronouns, passions, whatever you’d like everyone to know about you)
• what are you submitting? (is it a song? a poetry collection? a website? an entire soundcloud account/album? let me know) describe it!
• what’s your creative process like?
• what would you like to say about what you’re submitting
• links to promote you (blog, twitter handle, insta name, etc)
• something that makes you YOU! what is your passions what is your purpose what pushes you to create!
attach any links or files you’d like to be reviewed and anything else you’d like me to know.
hey theydies and gentlethems this week i wanted to talk about a poetry collection that i had the honor of beta reading and editing! it’s a wonderful collection by Katrina Loos entitled “Lets Talk About It.” you can find her on twitter (@thekatrinaloos) and she’s also a top writer on Medium!
her writing ranges in topics: primarily medical cannabis, mental health, and healing. and this collection of poems truly embodies what i love about our freelovingwitch coven: its open, honest, and real.
it’s brave. truly.
and i can’t wait for you all to read it. you can find it on amazon in a beautifully put together paperback format with cover art designed by Katrina herself.
i’ll be talking a little more in-depth about it in a vlog tomorrow but what i want to hammer home here is how much i APPRECIATE this piece of work.
Let’s Talk About It. is brave and inspiring. it tears down the stigma around mental illness and urges us to open up and discuss topics that aren’t always comfortable.
we push on.
and growing is the hardest part. breaking down is easy — the growth period is what’s hard. we have to confront things we’ve been burying or hiding for so long and actually put in the work to heal them. and if there’s any peace i can give to katrina it’s that healing isn’t linear. and it takes time. but your bravery helps others find comfort in speaking out and your bravery in itself is inspiring.
like katrina writes “this book is for the one/ who yearn to translate/ their anxiety into words/ but don’t know how it’s done”
i truly think it’ll be a revelation for some.
opening up can be the best form of healing. breaking down barriers and stigmas in the mental health community is crucial for growth and writers like katrina are leading the way.
so let’s talk about it:
have you checked out this collection yet? what did you think? what else have you been reading lately? what coping skills do you keep in your tool box for when your anxiety flares up? what helps you heal?
i took a mini hiatus from existing; but i’m back now and feeling better than ever.
or at least getting there.
this week i wanted to do a little book talk about one of my favorite poetesses Kaliane Faye!
she’s a lovely and energetic person who i found through book blogging and bookish social media. Moonrise was her debut (something i missed out on, actually) but the bitter end is her newest release and wow was it a good one!
the bitter end is a super quick and easy read and it’s very ~beginner friendly~ when it comes to modern poetry collections. while it may be a light read, it can weigh heavy on the heart.
a story of loose ends and bitter losses – it’s sure to leave an biting aftertaste on the tip of your tongue.
this collection truly encapsulates what’s it’s like to leave a chapter of your story with a bit of cliff hanger. it hits to the core for those of us who have felt a bitter ending relationship or lost a loved one in. situation that proved unfair. Kaliane writes so powerfully, so concisely, on a topic that most of refuse to touch on for fear of re-breaking our own heart.
i highly recommend y’all check this one out. it’s available on amazon and i’d love to discuss it and chat about it with you! let’s have real book talks, soon 🌱
the home brew is launching this coming october! get your submissions in soon!
“How To Hug a Porcupine” was… not for me. not to say the book doesn’t contain any useful information or life tips, but i’d rather cut out a porcupine than hug one.
and yes, i get it, “there’s a little porcupine in all of us” and that’s fine. we can get defensive about ourselves, but there’s no need for extra prickly people in your life.
show those you love that you love and respect them. but don’t let others use you as a punching bag. that’s what this book made me feel. like the speaker had spent way too many years in emotionally draining relationships and is trying to keep their eyes on the bright side.
that’s all fine and dandy
but it’s not for me
we’re reading something different. i’m not in the mood for a self help book so i’m picking up a novel i’ve had on my to be read list for sometime now
“Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist”
it’s one of my lovers favorite read so i’m excited to dive into it
but what do y’all think?
should i cut out porcupine friends a little more slack? do you think i’ll enjoy my next read? let’s discuss!
welcome back HomeBrew Book Club members; how was your week?
personally, mine was hectic as hell and i barely squeezed in any time for reading — i feel so guilty! but i did restart on our book “love, and you” by gretchen gomez and i thought i’d share my “so far” thoughts with you and maybe even try to come up with some discussion prompts so you all can join in on book club!
keep in mind: my book club posts are NOT “reviews” i don’t believe in ~good~ or ~bad~ writing i just have opinions on the things that work for me. so yes, there will be “spoilers” and yes, this will be biased as fuck. but hey, we’re all just supposed to be here to share our experiences and what makes these books so special to us. so let’s go!
i first found gretchen gomez (@/chicnerdreads) through a twitter friend. i was drawn to her bold and empowering personality that she holds on twitter. she’s incredibly intelligent, interesting as fuck, and blunt as hell. no holds barred. and you know i love that shit.
she’s also — an incredible poet. an amazing badass latinx from the bronx speaking her not-always-pretty truth? you know i was invested, personally, from the get go.
but then. i found her debut poetry book “love, and you” and yea i was late to the party but once i joined i felt right at home.
her writing truly embodies what the spirit of true poetry means to me — brutal honesty and openness.
these aren’t “pretty truths”
— and i won’t compare her writing to other, different poets because i think ALL poetry is a good form of expression —
but her words are REAL. and they hit me like a punch in the gut. and THAT is what i love about (what i call) “true poetry/art”.
“but what’s so special about “love, and you” what is this out very FIRST READ for your baby bookclub?”
because it embodies everything i want my bookclub (and all my other projects) to be.
it’s honest. (and you can read my super old poem about THAT here)
one of my favorite snippets from the very first few pages:
FUCK THE IDEA THAT YOU NEED SOMEONE OR SOMETHING ELSE TO BE WHOLE.
to all the younger women and teenagers out there and to 15 year old me: you deserve the world. and sometimes he can’t give it to you. so go out there. get your hands dirty. and get it yourself. own your “flaws”
do they tell you talk too much, or too loudly? speak LOUDER. make yourself heard.
gretchen gomez has this incredible way of taking a story of love and loss and heartbreak and healing and turns it into an empowering tale of GROWTH. it’s truly inspiring.
she let’s you know, in the most promising way, that sometimes it’s okay to be broken. it’s okay to need help. it’s okay to ask for help. and you know what else.
it’s okay to walk away when someone doesn’t appreciate you, or downright deserve, the love that you have in your heart for them:
my mind is my worst enemy too, gretchen, and it was healing and cathartic and an absolute blessing to have something so beautiful to empathize with. thank you for reminding me that “my worth is more than the depression that fights to hug me” a reread this line everyday.
so those are my thoughts so far. opinionated, i know.
but i want to hear from YOU! have you picked up this book yet? how did it make you feel? what resonated with you?
something i love about her poetry is how stylized it is. it has a very unique fingerprint and i love reading it – what about you? do you like the way her poetry sounds when spoken aloud? this is one of my favorites to recite from because it’s truly so moving – like casting a spell.
do you feel a connection with the tone and themes? do you like modern poetry or n general? let me know – let’s discuss!
so i KNOW i’ve been slacking on bookclub but i’ve FINALLY made a set schedule and i think it’s going to be amazing!
if you live in the 661 area: we meet every saturday (starting may 11th) in the Beale Library downtown!
and if you don’t happen to live in the 661 area — don’t worry! i’ll be be bringing the discussion here every saturday as well!
so for this next week (may 4-11) we will be reading and discussing “love, and you” by the amazingly talented Gretchen Gomez. if you don’t already have a copy or you haven’t read it yet you can find it here
personally, i’ve already ready it once. but it was so inspiring and empowering that i couldn’t hold it back from bookclub. HomeBrew is supposed to be a book club based on healing, growth, and self love and i think this read will be a perfect fit.
so take some time this week. give it a read! let me know – in the comments, in an email, in my DMs – your thoughts! next saturday i’ll be posting a full review, analysis, and general opinion. and we’ll pick out or next read!
happy friday everyone – i hope your week has been lovely and you have an amazing weekend ahead of you.
for today’s bookclub i want to talk about all our bookish lists. our currently reading lists or our to-be-read lists.
i know not that long ago i said that my currently reading book would be “slaughterhouse five” and i mean it totally still is… i’m about half way through it and really enjoying it and i’m sure i’ll post a review/general thoughts about it in the near(ish) future.
but i’m also reading “wheels of life: a users guide to the chakra system” (again). i read it about five years ago and something in the universe (my tarot cards actually) told me i needed to revisit it; so here we are.
also, what that means is my next cozy blogging post will probably be about cozy witchcraft and magick.
if you’ve heard the words “chakra” or are interested in our chakra system i HIGHLY recommend this books. it’s a nice little road map to our inner energy field. and wow it helps me feel closer to the divine balance of it all.
i’m currently working to balance my chakras – especially by opening my lower three even more (i need a good foundation; i’m getting off balance). and this book is an excellent form of guidance.
some other books i’m either in the middle of or hope to pick up soon (in no particular order):
1. “root” by melissa m. tripp — i’m about halfway through this lovely collection and i can’t wait to talk about it at length in a review! melissa tripp has such an incredible way of crafting emotions. i highly recommend it even if you’ve never been the biggest fan of poetry – it’s refreshing and heartwarming.
2. “the sun and her flowers” by rupi kaur — the follow up book to the instant classic “milk and honey” !!! it’s been sitting on my shelf in a pile of to-be-read books for MONTHS now and i just haven’t gotten around to it but i’m so excited. rupi kaur is incredible and i highly recommend her work! (its amazing to see woc poets talk about their personal experiences!! i feel seen and validated and a little less lonely in the world)
3. “one flew over the cuckoos nest” by ken kesey — i’m literally half way through this book and i started it in february. so um… oops
4. the works of sappho — i’m gay
5. “the chaos of longing” by k.y. robinson — more poetry books by self-published / indie authors??? check them out seriously these individuals are amazing!
6. “welcome to ghost town” by gretchen gomez — another woc poet and, honestly, my personal favorite. her debut “love, and you” won my heart so quickly. i smiled, i cried, i found myself.
7. “the subtle art of not giving a fuck” by mark manson — just something i need to work on
8. “the happiness project” by gretchen rubin — i like self-help books what can i say?
9. “turtles all the way down” by john green — i’ve been a fan of john green since “looking for alaska” (my all time favorite book btw) i haven’t had a chance to pick this one up yet but i’ve heard some excellent recommendations for it!
10. “dropkick romance” but cyrus parker — another poetry book! (i have a type) i’m actually really excited to read this; i’ve read snippets that he posts on his twitter and instagram and i’m already so invested in his story.
i know, a lot of poetry and self-help. i’m going through it right now.
and i know, i didn’t list any amanda lovelace – only because “mermaid” hasn’t come out yet and i’ve already read “witch”
11. “to make monsters out of girls” by amanda lovelace — i forgot this book already debuted!!!! it’s been sitting in my goodreads list for ages and i completely forgot! that’s definitely one of my next purchases!!! i always recommend her books!
so there you go theydies and gentlethems.
what are you reading?
what are some of your faves that YOU highly recommend?
drop some ideas in the comments for me – i love adding things to my book lists!
so it took me an obscenely long time to read this due to school work, regular work, and other life nonsense but here we are, i’ve finally finished it –
say goodbye to survive mode: 9 simple ways to stress less, sleep more, and restore your passion for life
for a work-from-home-mom-blog-self-help book it was actually quite satisfying to read.
i was skeptical, honestly, but i found the strategies in the book to be incredibly reaffirming and it brought me a greater sense of empowerment.
i found myself taking notes in my journal about the tactics she was using
yes, that says “how to be a boundary-setting-ass bitch [exclamation point]”
and i think it worked? in a way? i mean, obviously now comes the hard part – now I have to put in the actual work everyday instead of just flipping through chapters, taking notes, and pinning ideas on my web boards – i have to focus on the strategies, tactics, and coping mechanisms listed here (and learned elsewhere) to better myself
overall: i’d probably recommend this book to someone who has found themselves in the traps of pyramid schemes. like honestly please stop asking me to simultaneously buy some company x lipstick but also sell company x lipstick for you i just… please
some of my favorite ideas:
“Create a personal priorities list and use it as a spring-board for culling your commitments and to-do list.”
“Living with intention means saying no to the things that aren’t important to us so we can say yes to what matters most.”
“Living with purpose means wisely choosing and committing to a few of the best things for the season of life you’re in.”
“If You Aim at Nothing, You’ll Hit It Every Time”
so go forth. maybe pick up this book if you have $7 to spare on your kindle
it won’t take nearly as long to read as it took me and i think there are some nice tidbits in there.
set some goals, make a “best stuff” list, and live your life purposefully.
i haven’t decided which book i should read next for home brew book club – any suggestions?
so far i’m debating between
• the sun and her flowers – kaur
• slaughterhouse-five – vonnegut
• one flew over the cuckoos nest – kesey
• root. – tripp
and i’d love to get some extra suggestions for the to-be-read book jar!!
if you’re following me on twitter you might have already seen my post about it but i wanted to share here too: i’m started an online/twitter/wordpress based book club!
this idea only came to me after joining a book club on twitter come to find that everyone else lived in the same state and was doing regular meets. i felt like i was missing out! so i wanted to start one of my own!
Home Brew Books
(named after a life goal of mine)
if you want to join a group chat on twitter let me know!
(if you have a suggestion for a group chat on a more accessible platform let me know!)
we’ll pick a couple books each month and read them together, gush over our favorites characters, and discuss and analyze them. i’d like to read a range of books from autobiographies and self-help to poetry and fan fiction series.
i’m going to start with Say Goodbye to Survival Mode by Crystal Pain
(because i jus now bought this and want to read it lol)
but i also just finished reading the alice books by lewis carroll and would LOVE to have others to discuss them with.
i think after each book i’ll post a review/general thoughts here on my blog!
so if you’d like to join me let me know either here or on twitter (@freelovingwitch)!