A Little Life Update

Hello everyone, and happy Friday to you all ❤

Today I wanted to share with you a little bit of what happened to me these past couples of weeks and just give you an overall of this month 😀

Mom

The last two weeks, were a bit overwhelming and exhausting as my mom was very ill and we’ve been to three hospitals overall. They have done the Bronchoscopy which was very hard on my mom’s body and she is still feeling the pain from the procedure and the overwhelming fatigue. My mom needs more rest before we are back to doctors and more hospitals. We are all very tired and exhausted, lol, and I can’t keep myself awake for very long in the evenings 😀

Home

My home is in somewhat good shape, even though it was very cluttered recently, I cleaned and organized everything today 🙂
I still need a few days to do our huge 3 bookshelves as they are all a bit dusty, but not this week.

Writing/Editing

In my editing, I can happily say that I’ve made a bit of progress, not as much as I wished to, but some progress is good progress 😀 On the other hand in my writing, I didn’t make much progress, not as much as I wanted at least.

Blog

Wow, here I am happy that this goes smoothly, I am shocked by this. I have a lot of book reviews that suddenly appeared in my life, hehe, so I hope you’ll bear with me with all the book reviews explosions, lol.

Reading and Book Reviews

I got approved for a few books that I didn’t think I will be approved by NetGalley, so I have more books to read than I intended at first. This made me read these books first, so I am late with the reviews from my February TBR. All is okay though, I will just push them to this month 😉

That is all for this (hopefully) short life update, I wish you all a productive and relaxed month 🙂

How was your month and what do you plan for March?

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

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February Goals

It’s Friday! Omg 🎉

Hey everyone, happy Friday to us all and I hope you had a great week so far.

I love the weekend, staying at home with my husband and Menta (Mint in English), our dog and just watch some shows, eat yummy food and game a lot 😀 As much as I love doing all these things every weekend, this weekend is a bit different as it is the first week of the month and I love taking some time to myself and sit down to organize my thoughts, our home, and my goals.

So, here are my goals for the month of February:

Writing (2 Goals)

As I mentioned in my previous post, I am currently rewriting an old novel. So my goal is to write 15K-20K in February.

Keep journaling my random thoughts and dreams daily or at least 5 times a week.

Editing (2 Goals)

Keep editing EllE (working title), I can see the end ❤ My goal here is to edit at least 60 pages.

Reading

I want to finish reading at least 5 books this month 🙂

Home

I want to keep my home tidy and clean daily and weekly so that I will be able to be more free for my writing.

Blogging & Social Media (2 Goals)

My goal here is to blog at least 3 times a week.

Be more active daily on my social media and do more Insta stories 😀

Health (4 Goals)

Drink more water (2L).

Walk or move more – Be active.

Meditate for 10 minutes.

Eat less junk food.

Well, these are my goals for this month. It looks a lot but overall I think they are manageable on a daily basis well, at least I hope so, hehe.

What are your goals for February?

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

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5 Tips On How To Start Over

Hey everyone, hope you are all having a nice Wednesday ❤

Today was a very busy day for both me and my mom, she moved to a new room so we had to clean and organize and declutter her stuff and by the end of the day, I felt exhausted. Yesterday was a nice day at home. I cleaned, wrote about 3.2K (yay me), edited, and read a book I am reviewing next month.

Today I wanted to talk about (or more so to share) about my writing progress. In EllE (working title) I am still editing. My editing is going at a slower pace than I wished it to be, but anything is better than nothing and slow is definitely a progress, so that’s good 😉

I have another project that I am working on. I almost finished writing it a while back (like 2.5 years ago). While I was starting to edit it, I’ve realized that there were too many huge blocks of writing that needed to be changed and rewritten, so I printed it and started working on it.

Writing, Coffee n' Notes

Sometimes in editing, you just need to start over and that’s okay.

Now that I am started over, I felt scared but also very excited, lol. It’s like visiting an old dream that you have forgotten, but suddenly remember bits of it. I was so scared to start over from scratch, but now that I am 35K words in, I realize that I’ve made a good choice. The plot runs smoother, the characters feel real and complicated, and the story itself keeps growing.

I wanted to share with you my 5 best tips on how to start over (if you have to start over), without banging your head on the wall or your table, lol. These 5 tips will make you work faster and better.

Btw, these tips work great with every new project as well, the only thing you’ll need to change is brainstorm ideas and then outline.

Coffee n' Notes

Print. Read. Highlight. Outline.

I printed my old novel (75K) and read it very slowly. I highlighted the parts that I thought were important and saved those parts in a new document, in a new order I thought they need to go.

Brainstorming, Coffee n' Notes

Outline or Re-Outline the novel, only this time add every little detail you can think of and put all those highlighted parts in the outline. My new outline is now about 45 pages, lol (while the old one was 5). It’s like a big summery of your novel 😀

Start writing. Work in bursts.

What helped me the most is to make the outline in a new document and start my writing on that, lol. This way, I am not working with a blank page (so no fear of writing or writer’s block) and I will always have a good idea where my characters and plot needs to go, so writing came easier.

Writing, Coffee n' Notes

Writing in small bursts helped me a lot so far. I worked in 20-30 minutes of writing sessions (a few times a day) and it didn’t make me feel overwhelmed or overworked.

After each writing session, take a break with some yummy coffee or tea and some fruit. Enjoy the feeling that you were writing 🙂 After the break, get back to your writing session.

Edit as you go

Don’t wait after you finish writing it all, to edit. Try editing while your mind is still fresh and full of details about the world, characters, and the plot. If you finished writing for that day, take the next day to edit what you wrote so far. Remember this is a simple edit. You will not go into the nitty-gritty of things. Look at the plot and characters, and see if they make sense to you.

Try working in bursts in your editing sessions, it will keep things light and you won’t feel overwhelmed by the entire process.

Write the ending

This is very important, even if it sounds weird. Take a few moments before starting your first writing session and just after you finished with your new and shiny outline. Start thinking about how your story will end and write the end scene of your novel or your last few pages.

This will not only help you see your entire novel in a big picture kinda way, but it will also help you see all the details of the plot and characters. Writing the end truly helped me see my novel and what details I needed to add in the middle (as that is the hardest part for me, lol).

After writing the end, I knew what will come before that and so on… It’s writing your novel from end to start 😉 But it works!

Breath

Last but not least, breath! Take your time and rest in between your writing sessions. Try to find something that inspires you, like a great book or even just enjoying a hot cup of tea (or coffee in my case).

The End, Coffee n' Notes

I really hope these tips will help you with your new or old project, as much as they helped me and if you have your own special tip that you wish to share, feel free to writing down in the comments so will all can learn 😀

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Tumblr

Book Review: Turtles All The Way Down By John Green

Author: John Green
Pages: 286 Pages
Genre: Contemporary, YA Fiction
Publication Date: October 10th 2017
Publisher: Dutton Books

John Green, Turtles All The Way Down

Blurb

Sixteen-year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.

Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts.

In his long-awaited return, John Green, the acclaimed, award-winning author of Looking for Alaska and The Fault in Our Stars, shares Aza’s story with shattering, unflinching clarity in this brilliant novel of love, resilience, and the power of lifelong friendship.

Review
5 Stars (and beyond)

I absolutely loved and enjoyed every second of reading this book. From the simple but gorgeous cover to the wonderful and powerful words of John Green, everything in this book made me read it more than just once, but 4 times already, hehe.

I knew John Green’s writing from before so I knew this will not be just another mystery story and I was so happy to find out that it is much more than that.

If you ever had trouble with OCD, anxiety this book will resonate with you more. I used to suffer from OCD and I still have major anxieties and that is what love about this book. It shows you yourself through mystery and friends.

For me, Aza is a very relatable character, as I could easily understand her struggles and thoughts. This entire book focus on her inner demons and her mental health. Her struggles made me feel so much, from anger and joy to just crying uncontrollably. Aza reminded me how much I have overcome in my life and how much I still have to overcome. Through her friends Daisy and Davis, Aza gets the support she needs, and I loved how Daisy and Davis played a huge role here.

John Green’s writing is always enjoyable and easy to read, but here you get the more intellectual side of him, mixed with his own struggles with mental health, which made the book even more phenomenal to read. The ending was perfect and made the story even better and more powerful.

Finally, I truly enjoyed reading turtles all the way down and about these characters and this book meant a lot to me, so much that I’ve read it over and over again 🙂 I highly recommend this book to anyone. However if you do suffer from any mental illness know that it might trigger, but for me, this was an amazing self-reflect and getting to know more about how others feel about anxiety. Even if you don’t suffer from any mental health, this is still a fun and intellectual book to read.

For me, this book was powerful and honest, it’s a must-read for us all ❤

You can find the book over at

Goodreads / Amazon

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Tumblr

Book Review: Philippines’ Resistance: The Last Allied Stronghold in the Pacific by Stacey Anne Baterina Salinas, Klytie Xu

Author: Stacey Anne Baterina Salinas
Pages: 85
Genre: Educational
Publication Date: 2017
Publisher: Pacific Atrocities Education

Books, Coffee n' Notes

Blurb

The people of the Philippine Islands during the early half of the twentieth century experienced various waves of Western Imperialism, two wars of attempted secession from western powers, and two world wars. And yet, the Philippine Islands and its people have received only small subheadings in many American textbooks and histories. The wartime experiences from the perspectives of the Philippine people have gone unnoticed and have become overshadowed by the socio-political dominating legacy of American figures like General MacArthur, leader and historical symbol of the Pacific Theater during World War II. MacArthur’s famous phrase “I came through and shall return” are etched into every facet of World War II historical narratives, textbooks, and monuments that pay tribute to the Allied forces in the retaking of the Pacific from the Japanese. But It is the lesser known people and leaders of the Philippine resistance against the Axis powers whose efforts and contributions allowed for the effective and speedy return of MacArthur’s military forces…

Review
4 Stars

Philippines’ Resistance was a very illuminating and educational book to read. It shows about the true heroes of the WWII in the Philippines, and just by looking at the gorgeous cover, you see the power and the will of the people.

This book showed how these heroes fought for survival and freedom and fought for others in those horrible times. It’s a short but well-written book, full of captivating images that helped a lot to connect to the history and to the people in the book.

The book showed the history through the locals eyes and those who fought for the land, and how they had to survive and what they needed to do, in order to overcome the horrors of the war.

It was a powerful book to read and very knowledgeable, I was really loving the information on a place I know very little of, and gave me the chance to learn more about this beautiful land and about the power of the people.

You can find the book over at

Goodreads / Amazon

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Tumblr

Author Interview: Emily Stroia

Welcome to Coffee n’ Notes. Today, I’d like to welcome Emily Stroia, author of Into The Light, for an author Interview.

About the author

Emily is an intuitive teacher, spiritual leader, author and artist. Emily first discovered her gifts of intuition and creativity as a child and was placed in a highly gifted program for children. She often explored her gifts through writing, art, and experienced frequent visions and dreams that would turn out to be accurate. Not understanding fully why or how she was able to do this, she decided to study.
She has always felt a strong attraction to the metaphysical and spiritual aspects of life and continues to delve deeper into each. Believing strongly in her intuitive gifts, as well as wanting to express her deep desire to help people, Emily decided to utilize her abilities to turn her passion into a profession. 
Her mission is to inspire people to find the gifts in their stories and live powerful transformed lives with ease and peace. Her life is a breathing expression of intuition, passion, spirituality and creativity.

Most days you can find her coaching clients, writing, practicing yoga and playing with her dog in Los Angeles.

Contact Details:

Website: www.emilystroia.com

Twitter: Emily Stroia

On Amazon: Emily Stroia

Hello, Emily. Thank you for being here today at Coffee n’ Notes 

 

Please tell us a little bit about yourself.

I am an intuitive, spiritual teacher and author of several books including my latest book, Into the Light. I have an online metaphysical school where I mentor students on how to unlock their gifts, connect to their intuition and live a transformed fulfilled life.

Can you Tell us about your book?

The book shares parts of my life from a transformative perspective of being in a deep state of darkness to finding hope, miracles, and light. In the final part, there are notes to the reader and finding one’s inner peace after adversity.

This book explores trauma, abuse, sexual abuse, mental illness, loss, healing, spirituality, meditation, inspiration, and empowerment.

What’s your writing process like?

It is very intuitive actually. Some days I write in the evenings and some days I like to write in the morning/afternoon. It may start with a word and then expand into a poetry piece or a chapter on healing and transformation. I usually start with music and creating a quiet space to reflect and see where I want to go with the writing process.

What are your favorite tools when writing?

Music, yoga, meditation, and nature. I love switching up an environment so I can experience something new in my book.

Which writers inspire you the most?

Cheryl Strayed, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sabrina Ward Harrison, Brene Brown, Rupi Kaur, Rebecca Campbell.

What motivates you to keep writing when life gets in the way?

The response from readers and that it is imperative for my mental, spiritual and emotional health.

What are your 3 favorite books?

Wild by Cheryl Strayed, Milk & Honey by Rupi Kaur, Light is the New Black by Rebecca Campbell.

When did you decide to be a writer?

Since I was a little girl I can remember having a fascination with reading, books, the smell of pages. I think I was always a writer and always an artist. It’s been a part of my journey ever since I can remember.

What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

Be open to whatever comes up without judgment. Let the words guide you. They are the muse and you are the creator. Have a plan but don’t be attached to it. It is simply an outline for something magical to unfold.

What’s next for you?

I am working on two books, one is a poetry collection exploring healing, transformation, love, and self-love. The second book is a how-to book on healing and connecting to one’s spirituality and purpose.

Is there anything else you would like to share?

In my journey, I have discovered that I am a great free spirit. Before I used to think that meant going with the flow and living rebelliously. Yogananda said that being a free spirit requires great discipline. As I enter a new stage in my life I see that I can have my freedom while also having great discipline to share my light and work with the world. Be free and be disciplined beauties.

Thank you Emily, for visiting Coffee n’ Note  🙂

About The Book

Into The Light, Coffee n' Botes

Into the Light is a memoir-inspired poetry collection in seven parts. The book shares the author’s life from a transformative perspective of experiencing trauma & darkness to finding hope, miracles, and light.

In the final part, there are notes to the reader and finding
one’s inner peace after adversity and healing through brokenness.
This book explores trauma, abuse, sexual abuse, mental illness, loss, healing, spirituality, meditation, inspiration, and empowerment.

This book is for anyone who has ever experienced loss, grief, brokenness, depression, abuse, trauma and heartbreak.

Book Links:

Amazon: Into The Light

Author’s Site: Into The Light

Goodreads: Into The Light

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Tumblr

Happy New Year To You All

Hello, everyone and happy 2018

I wish you lots of joy, good health, and love and may all your goals and dreams will come true this year.

Go and celebrate the new year and the new opportunities, leave the bad things in 2017 and know that this is a new start and you can do this. You can accomplish everything 😀

Don’t forget… The Rule of 3.

Plan your year, months and days well.

Work hard on your goals and dreams, because without hard work your dreams won’t work.

Be kind to yourself and to others.

Happy New Year 2018

 As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

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Last Minute Prep

Hello everyone, I hope you are having a good day. For me, it’s morning right now as I write to you and my day is already planned to be a very busy day of last minute prep for NaNo and some house chores, hehe. I hope your day is looking better and more relaxed 🙂 Btw, if you want a writing buddy, I would be happy to be yours – Add me if you want here

Let’s take this second to breathe in, lol… NaNo is only 1 day away 😀

Going Crazy

I really wanted to write a last-minute prep and some tips to help you get started and overcome the blank page and start the first day of Nano with good energy and feeling of being prepared as possible. If you are trying NaNoWriMo for the first time or you do it for years, sometimes we get overwhelmed really fast… So we all can use a little help and I am here to try and make things a bit easier 😉

Organize your thoughts

Take a look at your outline and try to finish it, or add more details before NaNo starts. If you don’t like writing an outline, write some notes on how your novel will start and end and more importantly, what do you think might happen in the middle of the story. This way you won’t get stuck and you always have something to go back to and that will help you going through that middle burned out.

Writing

Sleep

Try to go to sleep early today and don’t go for that midnight writing. You will be exhausted the next day and you already be behind on your word count. Take this night to sleep well and relax as much as you can, so when you wake up the next day, you will be ready to conquer the day and write all those words.

Make a last-minute commitment

Say to yourself and to everyone around you that the upcoming month you won’t be able to be as social as before. Make a commitment that you are doing your best to finish your novel and win Nanowrimo. Also, go the NaNoWriMo site and make your announcement there as well 🙂

Plan your writing but also plan your breaks

This one is the most simple but still so hard to be committed to, lol. But in order to really finish that Nano project, you must schedule your writing in blocks of time, every day both for your writing and for your breaks.

Last but not least… Stay calm, embrace the madness and have fun ❤

Writing

Hope this last minute prep helped in any way…. What are you doing on your last day before Nano starts?

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Tumblr / Me On NaNoWriMo

Happy 3 Years Blogiversary (WOW)

I received a notification that I’ve been blogging for 3 years… WOW ❤

How amazing is that?

It’s my third blogiversary – omg I am so shocked and overwhelmed – wow 😀 I am so happy to see how much I’ve changed and how much my writing have changed because of starting this blog and meeting all of you ❤

Wow… I can’t stop saying wow, lol.

I know that I took a long break due to my mom’s health issues, but I am still so happy and so amazed that it has been 3 years. That three years ago, I decided to open a window into my life and into my writing and even though it scared the hell out me (still do, lol), I am so happy that I took this step and even more so… I am extremely happy to know you all and have you here in our small corner of bloggers community.

I really want to know you and your blog better ❤

So here is what we gonna do… If you are reading this, go to your blog and paste the link, of your last post or even your favorite post ❤ I will visit you all and I can’t wait to see what amazing things you’ve made and written 😀

Thank you so much for being here and reading all my ramblings, you are amazing and I am so thankful to each and every one of you, you gave me the courage to grow and share, something that I always feared of due to some anxiety issues, hehe ❤

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Tumblr / Me On NaNoWriMo

7 Tip To Survive and Win NaNoWriMo

So… We are a week away from the start of NaNoWriMo and I thought this will be the best time to share with you some of the tips and tricks that really keep me motivated and win (Well… Most of the time anyway, lol, sometimes life must be first and last).

Btw, If you want you a writing buddy, you can add me here and feel free to add me on Twitter as well, and we can do some word sprints 😉 Remember that this is not how you normally go about writing a book, but NaNoWriMo is about the community, quality and fun, and this change of pace helps a lot sometimes… Just remember to have fun ❤

Okay, let’s start with some tips and tricks I’ve learned over the years of doing NaNoWriMo 🙂

Plan your time

A planner is your friend here, on those busy days plan some 5 – 15 min of writing. Now on those days that you have a bit more time on your hands, try to plan more writing time an hour or two and you will see that even though you are a bit behind one day, the next day you can be in the lead 😀

You have 50K words to write a month and even though the estimate word count per day is 1667 word, this is not the law – You can write 500 a day and the next day you can write 4K. What matters is the finish line.

Word sprints

These really help to get your brain fluids run smoothly, hehe and twitter NaNo Sprints is a really good place to find many people doing sprints of 5 – 20 minutes of fast writing. It makes you write fast and not think of what are you writing and if it’s the right thing to write or not… You just write.

Writing, NanoWrimo

Planner or Pantser

I am a strong believer in an outline, and I really think that a well-developed outline can keep the darkness of a writer’s block away. So take this week and write your idea – outline it as much as you can and write a sentence or two about your project.

Food and Drinks

Yummy food both healthy and not so healthy is always have been a great part of NaNoWrimos and a great part of my writing process, lol. Pick a few of your favorite food items, but try to put some healthy choices in there as well.

Junk food, NanoWrimo

Books, Movies, and Tv

I really recommend reading a book, see a Tv show or a movie that really inspires you to write and gives you a nudge to go back to your project ❤ I recently saw the great movie Stranger Than Fiction and it was so much fun to watch it, perfect movie to see before NaNo 😉

Kill the inner editor – Kill it!

Never edit as you go. This is not a regular writing session, where you can edit – Editing will only slow you down and even make you doubt yourself. So leave all the errors, red lines and other things that your brain will try to convince you they must be addressed – Don’t listen and keep writing.

Be kind to yourself

If by any chance you are getting behind and starting to feel frustrated, don’t beat yourself up for that. Take a deep breath, go for a walk or do your chores and when you come back, and keep writing. I know the goal is to win but it’s also to have fun with your writing and getting used to writing. So don’t be harsh on yourself – You can always write more words in those other days when you have more time.

That is all for today, I hope you found a tip or more to help you win Nanowrimo. Do you have any writing tips to share with us, that might help everyone be more prepared for Nano?

Embrace the madness that is NaNoWriMo and have fun ❤

Can’t wait for November to start 😀

Fun, Excited, NanoWrimo

As always, thank you so much for reading ❤

GalitLet’s chat on:

Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Tumblr / Me On NaNoWriMo