Reading Challenges

Fall Reading 2017 – Herbstlesen: Day 9

Good morning! I actually was so busy doing nothing yesterday evening that I forgot to post another update (sorry). And when I remembered the wifi was already turned off. (Because of the teenager in the house (and because I don’t have any discipline at all) our wifi turns off at 9 pm sharp so that certain people don’t stay up way too late because of the internet.)

I did end the day watching “Star Trek: The Next Generation”, the first episode ever where we see the Klingon home planet and learn more about Worf’s family, that was very good.


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I still haven’t finished „Murder Over Mochas“* but I guess I will do so today, only one more hour to read. I’m still waiting for something surprising to happen but I guess it will pretty soon. When you only read a minute here or there things always seem to move slowly. But then there are books where it’s completely impossible to only read a minute here and a minute there because they are so captivating. But then that’s not why you read cozy mystery.

So I’ll just read more of what I read yesterday, unless I finish the mystery real quick and start something new. I just realized that I had bought book three of the Bobiverse novels and have never read it. It’s a pity when there are all these great books coming out, and I snap them up the minute I see them, and then I completely forget about them.

If things go according to plan I might also spend some time thinking about the novel-to-be. But I bet I’ll be procrastinating instead. I’m really good at that, even.


Update 12.00:

I spent most of the morning refreshing my blog in the browser because I couldn’t access it. Finally I caved and conteacted support. It seems that the IP-address I was using was denied access by mistake. No fun.

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At least I can participate now.

So far I have talked a lot to my husband, and a little to my son, and have read very little in „Murder over Mochas“. I only have one hour of reading left but if I don’t read I won’t be able to finish.

But first the making of lunch.

Update 5 pm:

Lunch was good but not as good as I had hoped. We had pasta with shrimps. And alcohol-free red wine. Which I don’t like. Alcohol-free beer is okay to drink if you don’t expect it to taste like the real thing but the wine is something I don’t care for at all.

Afterwards I did the dishes, and then I sat down to knit gauge swatches for my next sweater and finally finished reading „Murder over Mochas“. It is a cute book but didn’t really grip me. No idea if I just wasn’t in the mood, or if it’s the book’s fault. I feel like I enjoyed the other books in the series more.

Also I’m not getting anything near gauge for the sweater. So I will need to knit yet another gauge swatch with a still smaller needle. I sould have listened to my intuition. It told me that I should knit this yarn with a 2 mm needle but of course I had to go ahead and try bigger ones first. Knitting gauge swatches always feels like it takes ages. But that must be an illusion because a gauge swatch isn’t that big.

So I went back to „A Shifter’s Fevered Heart“* by Chloe Adler. I’m still at the beginning, and so far it’s going nicely. I’m not sure I’m in the mood for that one, though. This might be one of those days where I skip from book to book, never quite settling down.

I’ve also been doing some vague thinking in circles for the novel but vague thinking won’t get my outlining done. That doesn’t look promising at the moment. But first I’ll make a little music, just a bit of warm-up, and then we’ll see.

I’m guessing dinner will be early today as well because of the clock change.


Update 8.30:

 So we’re almost at the end of this year’s fall reading in October, and since my wifi will turn itself off in a short while this will be my last update.

I did make music for a bit, and had dinner, and then my son and I watched an excellent Star Trek episode, and then another excellent „How I Met Your Mother“-episode while I was knitting the last gauge swatch. At least I hope it will be the last one.

Now I’ll change into pajamas, brush my teeth, and read some more.

It was a nice set of weekends with all the reading and blogging, thank you, Winterkatze, for doing this.

Links marked with an asterisk * are affiliate links. If you buy through them I get a tiny percentage at no additional cost to you, and that helps me keep up this blog.



Reading Challenges

Fall Reading 2017 – Herbstlesen: Day 8

This will be the last weekend of the fall reading event for this year, so I thought I’d participate again even though I’ll be away from home for most of the day. I’m going to a spinning meeting again, leaving the house at 9.30 and back again around 4 or so. But there will be enough time for reading left, I’m sure.

I did read steadily along this week. I finished „A Witch’s Dark Craving“* and started the next in the series right away („A Shifter’s Fevered Heart“*) but then grew a little impatient with all romance all the way, and started reading „Murder Over Mochas“* by Caroline Fardig the minute it was published. I’m enjoying it very much, and am halfways through at the moment. It’s nothing earth-shattering, a cozy mystery, but well written and entertaining. The reason for the amateur sleuth being involved in all these murder investigations is even sound, and she goes from failed musician/restaurant manager to PI in the course of the series. And starts not acting all temperamental all the time. Of course she still ends up entangled in murder investigations, otherwise there wouldn’t be any mystery.

At the moment I’m slogging through „The Paleo Thyroid Solution“* which I want to finish before November 8th. It’s not really gripping my attention at the moment but then I’m basically in the „technical info-dump“-part of the book.

I’ve also contined reading „The Story Grid“ but again, not all that gripping. The author has a rather conversational tone with lots of anecdotes and I find myself drifting a lot. In between there are lists that I can never remember (I have started copying some of them out into my notebook because they actual are useful and important.) and graphics that I can’t decipher in my ebook edition. (That’s basically the only thing better in paper books, that it’s easier to read tables and graphs. But then I’m also dreaming of owning a nice big iPad pro for exactly that purpose and for reading magazines on it. Yes, I’m a dork.)

And I’ve pulled out „Take Off Your Pants“ another book about outlining because I wasn’t making progress with „The Story Grid“, and I really need to do some kind of outline for my next novel, and soon. Any method will be good as long as I actually get an outline out of it.

Did I tell you about my NaNoWriMo-project for this year? Not only am I going to write a complete novel in the month of November, I also will be blogging the novel while I write it here on my blog. Daily.

This will either be loads of fun, or a terrible mistake, probably both.

My grand plan is to write most of the novel in the first five days of November because that will be fall break for me, and my son will be away most of the time, and then I’ll write the rest during the second week. I will post a scene a day, roughly 1,500 words, so if I manage to pull ahead in the beginning this should only be reasonably stressful. Right?


Update 5.30:

I wouldn’t have thought that it would be so late until my first update, hm. The spinning meeting was very nice. I will order something different to eat the next time, though, because that breakfast didn’t quite agree with me. Eating out while fructose-intolerant is always, um, interesting. At least it’s not an allergy, I’ll just feel a little under the weather for a day or two.

I also took care of some family stuff after coming back home, and now I guess I’ll just cozy up with my crochet blanket and „Murder over Mochas“. I’m almost 60% through, so there will probably something interesting happening soon.

„The Paleo Thyroid Solution“ is just throwing names of minerals and vitamins at me, not the most captivating topic. But I guess it will get easier to read soon.

I’m sorry, no pictures today.


Links marked with an asterisk * are affiliate links. If you buy through them I get a tiny percentage at no additional cost to you, and that helps me keep up this blog.

Reading Challenges

Fall Reading 2017 – Herbstlesen: Day 7

So I didn’t participate in the Winterkatze’s „Herbstlesen“-event yesterday because I thought I’d be too busy, only to spend the whole afternoon not doing much of anything. I’ll try again today, and hope that I will manage to get a thing or two done as well as a book or two read.

I am currently in the middle of reading Chloe Adler’s „A Witch’s Mortal Desire“*, Sarina Bowen’s „Bountiful“, Estelle Ryan’s „The Braque Connection“*, and Amanda M.Lee’s „Witching on a Star“*, and Shawn Coyne’s „The Story Grid“*. Among other things. The one I really should read is the Story Grid so I can better prepare for novel writing next month but I’ll probably stick with Chloe Adler first because there are only fifty more pages to read in that one.

I am currently at the „maybe things aren’t all that bad after all“-point in the story which means there will be something really bad happening soon. I have to say that that is often the point in a book where I tend to wander off but then I also find that I tend to stop watching TV series at the „all is lost“-point because I lose interest. Comes with being someone who thinks about story in a craft way in addition to being a reader, I guess.

There’s quite a bit more sex in my novels these days than I’m used to. The whole romance genre is something I used to shy away from but then I was pointed to ones that are really good, and so I find myself getting interested. Not something I want to read all the time but it does help taking my mind off things. Sarina Bowen’s books in particular are making me stay up way too long because I don’t want to stop reading which is both a good and a bad thing.

As usual I will post updates here during the day. Happy reading!


Update 3.20 pm:

Had a delicious lunch of rice with veggies and dal, and then I sat and worked on the crochet blanket some more, and finished reading „A Witch’s Mortal Desire“. I really enjoyed it, and started reading the next in the series „A Witch’s Dark Craving“* right away.

I have signed up for Kindle Unlimited again because I thought with all those Amanda M. Lee books that I want to read but don’t feel the need to own (as much as one can own an ebook) it would be worth it for a month or two. And then I found that the first 30 days are free. Which I find rather swell especially since I did try it once before for free.

But now I need to tear myself away from sexy witches battling evil demons or something, and do something else for a bit.

I hope you still enjoy your day of reading, I will update again later.


Update 8 pm:

Here’s a picture of my cozy after-lunch spot that I forgot to post earlier:

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And then I spent a few hours in this spot:

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Recording a couple of songs as a birthday present. Of course I did it at the last minute, and my voice was shot right after track 2 of the first song. I still managed to record them all, and not lose my good mood.

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Even though the recording software decided to crash four times. Fortunately most of the recordings are still there and I’m making a backup as I type this.

Now I’ll have a late dinner and sit and read some more, I think I’ve earned it. I guess I won’t read „The Story Grid“ today after all…

It was fun reading with you guys again, and I’m already looking forward to a repeat performance next weekend.


Links marked with an asterisk * are affiliate links. If you buy through them I get a tiny percentage at no additional cost to you, and that helps me keep up this blog.

Reading Challenges

Fall Reading 2017 – Herbstlesen: Day 5

Sorry I was offline most of yesterday. I had planned to write a bit more after coming back from the spinning meeting but I was really tired then, and so I just went to bed early.

This morning I slept in, and had a leisurely breakfast. I read a bit more of „Every Witch Way But Wicked*“ and downloaded samples of „Maim Your Characters“*, „The Paleo Thyroid Solution“* and „A Natural History of Dragons“*. The last one is all Winterkatze’s fault because she was talking about how much she loves the series on her blog.

I have already knitted a bit on the current garter stitch shawl but forgot to take a picture. Maybe later.

I hope you all have a very enjoyable fall reading day, I’ll be back later with updates.

Update 1.30:

Unfortunately the blog seems to have been offline most of the morning for no apparent reason. Which is why I couldn’t approve any comments as well.

In the meantime I talked a lot with my husband, and then we made lunch. Now I’m just about to pull out the crochet blanket again (to ward off the cold), and sit down with a cup of tea and a book. I will go back to fiction after I read through most of the „Paleo Thyroid Solution“ sample. I’m in two minds about the whole paleo thing. Mostly I’m thinking that human beings took a long time to evolve, and that we’re pretty well suited to eating all kinds of things now that didn’t exist 10,000 years ago. On the other hand I’m thinking that if it would really make me feel better not eating bread and pasta might be worth it.

I will probably end up buying the book, and then I can waffle some more. The information about how the thyroid works and such seems solid so far.

Update 8.40:

Spent the whole afternoon working on my crochet blanket and reading the witch book on and off. Still haven’t finished it. I also looked at reading samples of two guitar playing books, and helped my husband find the right screws and nuts for a vintage guitar amp online, as one does.

Then fried potatoes with eggs for dinner, and an episode of „Star Trek TNG“ and one of „How I Met Your Mother“ with my son while knitting.

A rather relaxing day all in all.

Now I’ll sign off and go to bed early to be ready for the next week.

It’s been nice participating again.

Links marked with an asterisk * are affiliate links. If you buy through them I get a tiny percentage at no additional cost to you, and that helps me keep up this blog.

Reading Challenges

Fall Reading 2017 – Herbstlesen: Day 4

So today I won’t be reading much, it will be a pretty full Saturday. But I still want to take part in the Herbstlesen event.

If everything goes as planned I’ll start the day with my first 8K-run, then I’ll take a shower, eat a really early lunch, and then I’ll ride my bike to a new-to-me spinning meeting, and spend most of the day there.

At the moment I’m reading the second book* in the „Wicked Witches of the West“-series of cozy mysteries. I found them through a writing podcast where the host mentioned a writer who puts out something like 29 books a year. Of mostly cozy mysteries with witches. Of course I had to check them out. As you can see I did like the first one enough to get the second one as well.

I woke up too early yet again, so I had some reading time in bed before getting up:

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I’m also still reading „The Braque Connection“*. I really like the series, and this book as well but the witches are fluffier and I have been feeling rather tired and overwhelmed this week so fluffy is very good.

I’m also very slowly making my way through „Why We Sleep“*. I’m just not that interested in where dreams come from and how they work, maybe I should just skip that part. I’m also just about to finish „Stick With It“* which promises a scientifically proven process for changing your life for good.

I’ll probably only update tonight because I won’t be home much but I’ll check in as I can. I’m leaving some cookies for you that I baked last night to take to the spinning meeting:

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Have fun reading!


Update 8.40:

Wifi will be turning itself off in a few minutes, so just a quick update. Running and riding my bike was really great today, the weather was gorgeous. Spinning meeting was very pleasant and nice with a lot of people I already knew, and a lot of people I met for the first time. I’ll definitely be back.

Cookies were well received, I brought a total of three cookies back home with me. I had put some aside for my husband and son before, though.

I haven’t read anything since breakfast which is rather unusual for me but after I came back home I had dinner with my family (no books at the table when eating with my husband – it’s a rule), and then I watched three episodes of „How I Met Your Mother“.

Now I am already pretty tired so I’ll read a bit more in the witch book before going to bed.

See you tomorrow!


Links marked with an asterisk * are affiliate links. If you buy through them I get a tiny percentage at no additional cost to you, and that helps me keep up this blog.

Reading Challenges

Fall Reading 2017 – Herbstlesen: Day 3

Day 3 of our cozy reading thing in October. (In case you’re wondering it will go on every weekend until the end of October as far as I know.)

I’m planning to maybe get a thing or two done today, and still have time to sit down and finish reading „The Delirium Brief“*. I also picked up „Why We Sleep“* again but I’m not quite in the mood for non-fiction.

Today I even managed to remember to take a picture of my breakfast (food pictures are a thing for this event) though I’m afraid it’s not looking much.

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Imagine yummy blueberries, banana, amd muesli under the heap of yogurt, and honey would have been more photogenic than rice sirup but rice sirup has less fructose which is a good thing if you’re fructose-intolerant.

So I’ll update this post periodically. Only 40 more pages until the end of the novel I’m reading, it’s getting pretty tense.


Update 4 pm:

Well, actually the only thing I have done so far was reading, playing games on my iPad, refreshing instagram, and finish reading „The Delirium Brief“. Oh my, this one is so good! And now I’ll have to wait for the next in the series to find our what happens next which is really unbearable.

I also helped make lunch. We had chili for the second time this week because there were ripe avocados in need of being eaten. Also an excellent pinot that was already open:

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Seems I need to work on my picture-taking skills. One of these days they’ll turn out less blurry.

I also worked a little more on the crochet blanket I showed you last week, and ran out of yarn knitting my Easy sahwl by Martina Behm. This is the second time this has happened. Each time I’m knitting along, hoping to be able to finish the shawl, only to run out of yarn shortly before the end. The first time I had thought I had a 150 gram skein when in fact it’s only 100 grams, and this time I had weighed everything really carefully, and ran out six rows before the end.

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There might have been a way to fudge it but I didn’t want to so I ripped half of it back (and a bit more so that I won’t run out of yarn the next time, and started knitting i for the third time.

I am getting a little sick of the project but I have to say I’m getting good knitting mileage out of this yarn.

I’m not quite sure what novel to start reading next so I went back to „The Freelancer’s Survival Guide“* by Kristine Kathryn Rusch. I started this back in August and have found it really good and fascinating. Also somewhat tough but that’s a good thing.

For fiction I’m waflling between J. F. Penn’s „Gates of Hell“*Estelle Ryan’s „The Braque Connection“, and reading samples that I have downloaded. Discarding some of those from my ereader would be a good thing but usually I just end up putting most of them into the „to be bought later“-folder which doesn’t really solve anything.


Update 7.45 pm:

I never really gave up hope to do something productive today but the only thing I did get done was making a list of things to talk about on my knitting podcast for the next episode. I do an English episode every ten episodes where I talk about everything I talked about before which is rather epic. I also want to mention that due to the layout of this blog links are really hard to read because hypothetically they are gray and the regular text is black but – because I turned the background color to a pale yellow – they actually look the exact same. Sorry. So if you have an inkling that something might be a link just let your mouse hover over it to see if it actually is a link.

There was a point where I thought I’d keep my writing stuff and the rest of my life separate but that’s not really me. So if you’re interested in knitting and maybe also understand German follow the link above to my knitting podcast.

The one thing I did get done as well – apart from watching an episode of „How I Met Your Mother“ while eating dinner (and again – no picture) was to watch the second one of Nick Stephenson’s free videos about marketing. While crocheting a bit more on my blanket. I really hate video because you have to sit down and listen and watch but it’s bearable while doing something else.

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Sorry, the crochet is really dark. We have this awesome energy-saving lightbulbs everywhere in the house that make taking pictures really hard when it’s dark. Anyways, he got me all riled up about marketing and being a professional author (which I’m not quite yet), and so I just went and bought the Susanne Winter domain name, and some web hosting. So if everything goes right (which it should) I’ll write from the new and shiny next week. (Unfortunately it isn’t live yet. Bummer.)

I still haven’t worked on the novel today, and judging by the time and my Oktoberfest-beer-level nothing in that realm will happen today. But still. Progress. In a way. At least I have a round crocheted on this blanket, and I finished reading a novel. And started reading „Reader Magnets“ by – you guess it – Nick Stephenson.

I’m really looking forward to next weekend’s „Herbstlesen“ and to see you guys again. For now I’m out, I need to get up early again tomorrow because my son needs to go to school, and I like making him breakfast.


* Affiliate-Link. If you buy through this link it doesn’t add any cost for you but gives me a small percentage. Thanks.