The Sunshine Blogger Award

Don't we all need a little bit of sunshine right now? I mean, I know some of you live in places where it's summer right now and therefore you have sunbeams coming out of your ears. But hush. For the rest of us it is dark and dreary and we aren't even getting any snow for our troubles.

It's lucky that the lovely Ely @ Tea and Titles tagged me for the Sunshine Blogger Award, really. As far as I can tell - other than the general theme of sunshine and happiness - there are no rules. Just answer your eleven questions and you have the right to ask eleven of your own to the people you tag. Any theme. Any topic. As weird as you like.

This is going to be fun.

What are the little things that make you happy?
Curling up with a book under clean sheets. Singing without worrying what I sound like. Finally having revised enough that I feel prepared. Having all my friends around me. Opening the first page of a book I've been waiting for forever. Remembering a bookmark - for once. Finding a fellow Harry Potter fan. Good disability representation. My Mum's marzipan crumble and the rush you feel after singing a solo properly.

Christmas. Family. Necklaces. Bookshops. Libraries. Sherlock. YouTube. Caramel. Puzzles. Musicals.

Oh, and sunshine!

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you pick?
Oh, London, without a doubt. I guess I'm lucky that I only live a couple of hours away from it, because ... well, it has the West End. And HUGE BOOKSHOPS.

I think the best thing, though, is the energy. I've never felt anything quite like it, but - the only way I can describe it is that when I'm in London, I know I'm in London.

It sounds totally cheesy, but it's a great feeling.

What's the best book you've read this year?
Really, Ely? WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS TO ME? It's a very tough decision and ... well, you're basically making me choose between my children.

Which I will happily do, of course. (No-one ever let me have kids until I've changed my mind on this, 'kay?) These were particularly brilliant:
FROM TOP LEFT TO BOTTOM RIGHT: The First Third by Will Kostakis, These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly, One by Sarah Crossan, The Butterfly Clues by Kate Ellison, We Were Liars by E. Lockhart, Am I Normal Yet by Holly Bourne, and Jolly Foul Play by Robin Stevens.

What subject do you wish you knew more about?
All kinds of things - I want to know as much as possible about everything partly because I can use that information to help the truth prevail, and partly because the fact that knowledge is power and power corrupts will greatly help me in my quest to become an evil mastermind.

If I had to pick just one, though, it would probably be Maths. GCSEs are hard, okay?

Who is your biggest blogging inspiration?
I would say that it's a what, not a who.

It's the books that I read: the characters I meet and the stories I am party to. The pages that I turn. The emotions I am taken through as they drive me to laughter, tears, and ... well, everything else. There are so many people who work so hard to put a book together and deliver it to me - from the author to the editor to the girl who puts the books on their shelves - and I feel like I owe it to them to tell them I appreciated their work through my blog.

So maybe it is a who, actually. Just hundreds of people instead of one.

Why did you start blogging?

The funny answer is to avoid homework. Because - well, technically I was. My expertise in procrastinating knows no bounds (no wonder I'm so bad at keeping to schedules) but even for me that was a bit ridiculous.

I usually just say that I thought it would be a good publicity platform if I did ever write a book. Which did cross my mind at the time. But now you know the WHOLE TRUTH.

Don't tell anyone, 'kay?

Which character do you wish was your best friend?
Book Ginny.

My case is closed.

Do you have a favourite actor/actress?
Yes. Let me introduce you guys to Ali Stroker, AKA My Favourite Person to Ever Be On Glee.

Okay ... so technically she was only in it for one episode. I don't really care. She was in a full season of The Glee Project before being (I think totally unfairly) pipped to the post in the final. And then she was in the Broadway revival of Spring Awakening, which I never got to see thanks to living thousands of miles away, but was apparently incredible.

I told you I was obsessed with all things musical theatre.

You can only eat one food for the rest of your life, what do you pick?
Hmm. Usually, my favourite food is something like ice cream or that kind of chocolate cake that's gooey in the middle, but I don't think eating just them for THE REST OF MY LIFE would be anywhere near sensible. I'd probably spend most of the time being sick and going to the dentist to fix my sugar-rotted teeth.

Can I cheat and say pancakes, or would I only be allowed one kind of topping? On pancake day, my Mum always makes a full meal where every course is a different flavour of pancake.

I'd eat that all year round, no problem.

What type of weather is your favourite?
That moment just after a summer shower when it stops raining and the sun comes out. It always cheers me up a little just because I was expecting to get drenched and then, suddenly, I wasn't - there's always this freshness in the air, and of course it's always quiet because everyone else is still sheltering inside.

Maybe it's about the metaphor of hope or something else overly imaginative (I mean, I am a writer), or maybe it's just the beauty of the sun breaking through and illuminating the droplets that have settled everywhere. All I know is that it makes me smile.

Something good that’s happened in the last week to you, or someone else.I bought Christmas presents for everyone. That's something good happening to my friends really soon.

What? I happen to be the gift master and ... trust me. What I've found is perfect.

Here are the questions for you guys to answer:
(Honestly, I had the most fun of the entire post coming up with these questions. You'd better answer them well, people.)
  • Who's your least favourite character EVER? Describe - in detail - what it is that makes you hate them so much. "They're just the worst" or something similar is not acceptable (What? I thought you guys already knew about my bossiness!)
  • Do you have any yellow/ orange books? What do you want to tell me about them?
  • What does reading smell like to you?
  • How often do you have doubts about being a blogger?
  • Where would a book have to be set for you to pick it up immediately, no questions asked?
  • What's your reading speed? Do you like it that way, or would you rather it was faster / slower?
  • Tell me about a quote you can write down almost word for word without looking it up (almost everyone's got one, I reckon). What does it mean to you? What's made you remember it so clearly?
  • At what time of year are you happiest?
  • What childhood toy do you have the fondest memories of?
  • How do you feel about school? What is/was it like for you? Love it or hate it?
  • If you could change one thing about your blog without having to do it yourself, what would it be?
(You're supposed to tag eleven people, but ... I don't have eleven online friends. These people are enough though because they are awesome)
No pressure, you guys, but if you want to do this I'd really like to hear your answers. And, if anyone else wants to jump in, go for it! Consider yourself tagged!

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  1. This post made me so happy, and now I'm a bit of an emotional wreck because LIFE.

    Thanks for tagging me- I'll definitely be doing this one!

    (Also, here it's dark and dreary AND there's so much snow I can't leave the house without full-blown winter apparel.)

    1. I'm glad I made you happy, but are you okay? YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE AN EMOTIONAL WRECK! It'll be okay! *quiet comforting noises*

      You are totally welcome for the tag.

      (You have snow? Lucky thing! It must be annoying to have to wrap up so warm though.)

  2. I'm SO jealous you live so close to London. I miss living in Cornwall and only being a few hours away :( Also, GOOD DISABILITY REPRESENTATION!!!!!!! YES. YAAASSSS. MORE OF THIS, PLEASE.

    1. It's strange to realise how lucky I am in that respect, actually. Because I've always lived so close to London, I guess I never realised that lots of people don't? And CORNWALL - I definitely have to visit someday. It's so beautiful.

      As for good disability representation - we definitely need it. If only there was some kind of EVENT coming up to TALK ABOUT and RAISE AWARENESS of these things ... ;-)
      (Shameless self-promo link here)

  3. Book Ginny has always been my favourite female Harry Potter character! Don't get me wrong, Hermione and Luna are awesome, but Ginny's just better. ;)

    1. Luna's probably my favourite, to be honest, but I think being her best friend might get a bit wearing after a while. I'm kinda scared of Nargles ...

  4. I absolutely love your answers -- especially the stuff that makes you happy (meeting a Harry Potter fan and Sherlock. YES. JUST A FEW MORE DAYS UNTIL SEASON 4 AAAHHH) and the love for London that we share. I also read Am I Normal Yet? this year and it was fabulous. ♥

    1. SHERLOCK! ARRRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH! I am so, ridiculously, brilliantly, crazily excited. Also - London. I'm so glad I'm not the only one who is quite this obsessed with London.

      (I'm also very happy to hear about how much you liked Am I Normal Yet?. It's an incredible book, and everyone needs to read it quite frankly.

  5. I'm so totally doing this. Your questions look like tons of fun. Thanks for the tag! :)

    Ahhh, your list of little things that make you happy make me happy. It all sounds so cozy.

    I've always loved your story about how you started blogging. Procrastinating for the win. xD

    London sounds pretty awesome to me, so I'd probably live there for a while, too, if I could.

    1. Oh, you're welcome, Kate. I'm really excited to see your answers :) And procrastinating ... yeah. It's kind of my speciality. That and cosiness! Maybe you'll get to live in London one day: knowing you, I reckon you'd love it.

  6. OMG so sorry about being so late! *Ugh* Finals came, and well lol... Either way, thank you so much for tagging me! I can't wait to answer these! Also I really want to read One, I need to get around to it. AND YES GINNY WOULD MAKE A BRILLIANT BESTIE!

    1. Oh, don't you worry about being late. I AM ALWAYS LATE - and I don't even have finals as an excuse. I hope they went okay! *crosses fingers for you*

      You're welcome for the tag, of course, and I really hope you enjoy One when you get round to it. I'll pass you the tissues when you need them. Also - LET'S SPREAD THE GINNY LOVE.


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