Weekly Recap| Mar 30 – Apr 5, 2014

Weekly Recap
Weekly Recap

News & Updates at Oh, the Books!

Giveaway Winners

Kelley mailed out the packages for our US giveaway winners!

Our Grand Opening giveaways have finally ended and the winner have been chosen! Congratulations to all of you!

  • Kayla won a copy of The Bone Season & a bunch of swag
  • Carrie won a copy of Vicious
  • Stormy won a copy of Vicious & a bunch of swag
  • Missie won a bunch of swag
  • Helen won a copy of Wonder
  • Lillian won a copy of This Is Not a Test

In Case You Missed It

Here’s all the stuff that we posted this week.

Our Lives This Week

[stextbox id=”asti” caption=”Asti” collapsing=”true”]My week has been a roller coaster! I don’t know how else to describe it.

I’ve had a really shitty experience with the transportation system this week. Not only did it takes me 3 1/2 hours to get to work on Tuesday, and 3 hours to get home (when it usually takes just under 2 hours each way), I had to deal with some really weird people. It really started to get to me, and with the struggles I’ve been having lately with my own negative feelings, I just felt like shutting down.

Surbiton, FogBut then unexpected goodness happened this weekend and just sort of made everything better. While stuck in traffic on my way to my work placement, the lovely people at Random House tweeted asking for help finding me. During one of the train rides home this week I had more than one person offer their seat to me, which is always unexpected. An Instagram photo I took caught the eye of someone from the local paper who asked if they could feature it in an upcoming edition (and I said yes).

Letter, ChiaraI also received the sweetest letter ever from Chiara which made me realize how lucky I am to be involved with the blogosphere. And generally, I’ve just realized how thankful I should be to be surrounded by so many people both inside and outside of the Internet. Numerous people have made me laugh or smile this week. Sometimes it’s just noticing the little things that makes a world of a difference.

So yes, it’s been a crazy ride this past week with my emotions and daily happenings, but it’s over. And as close as it was to being a really bad thing for me, it ended up being just what I needed.


[stextbox id=”leanne2″ caption=”Leanne” collapsing=”true”]

I won’t even comment on craziness because my life has shifted into that as normal mode now. It will probably remain that way until my design degree is finished, so until then just assume every week my life has been at least slightly insane and that I’m behind on everything. ;) And to be completely honest it will probably stay that way afterward too, because as soon as I get free time of course I take on MORE projects (one of which you will hear about in coming months).

So, what’s new with me?

I got a new art journal, because I totally messed up my other one. You’re probably wondering how that’s possible since art journals are basically a place to unleash/store/collect/work through random messy and unpredictable things. Well, it’s pretty hard, but when I (accidentally) gesso the ring binding so much the cover won’t close, and (accidentally) paint all the pages together on one edge so that they start ripping (because the paper was crappy to begin with) when I try to unstick them… it’s definitely possible. The more I worked in it the more unhappy I was with it anyway, and I didn’t want my art living in there. So I got a new home for it. The paper is much nicer, the pages are much bigger, it has a traditional glued binding with sewn-together signatures, and it has one of those elastic closures so that when I make my pages all dreamy and fat with paint and washi tapes and other things adhered in, it will still stay together. So I’ve been playing a little bit in that, and taking it for a test run, and making a (good kind of) mess.

Oh yes, and my birthday is coming up this week (the 11th), and it will probably be the first year I haven’t made myself a birthday cake in as long as I can remember.


[stextbox id=”kelley2″ caption=”Kelley” collapsing=”true”]

Kelley's watercolor & Sharpie creation Highlights of my week:

  • Teeth problems
  • Secret project planning
  • Wine AND tequila (but not at the same time)
  • Arts & crafts with watercolor & Sharpie
  • Cleaning out my closet and finding a bunch of Pokemon cards from like 12 years ago


Elsewhere in the blogosphere

Blogger of the Week

I want to try something a little new here this week and see how it goes. Now, we include a LOT of links to discussions and other interesting tidbits around the web in each of our Weekly Recap posts. But sometimes there’s just one that stands out, and I just can’t help but want to highlight it. ~Kelley

[stextbox id=”group3″ caption=”Blogger of the Week: Kelly @ Pretty Little Reader” collapsing=”false” image=”null”]Pretty Little ReaderThis week, I’m taking a cue from Kelly at Pretty Little Reader. Her monthly Keeping Up With the Blogosphere feature is similar to our weekly recaps, but instead of giving you a massive link list, she highlights a handful of bloggers who wrote thought-provoking posts. I’ve been really impressed with her methods here, and as a longtime fan of her blog (as many of you are as well, I’m sure), I wanted to give her a bit of special recognition too.[/stextbox]

Tweets of the Week

On Blogging and Book Reviewing

Blogging Tips and Advice
Other Blogging Thoughts
Reviews and ARCs

On Writing

Things Bookworms Think About

thoughts on Reading
Likes And Dislikes
Books and Movies
Other Bookish Thoughts

Bookish Fun



Videos of the Week

Question of the Week

Results from Last week’s Question

We’ve had a few people tell us that they’d like to see the results from the previous week’s question (hey, looks like we’re not the only ones interested in the feedback!), so we thought it might be a good idea to include it each week. Here’s last week’s question.

Does the length of discussion posts matter to you? Do you prefer long ones? Short ones? Medium-length ones? No preference?

This Week’s Question

Our Weekly Recap posts are pretty full — I think we all know that — but we’re starting to wonder if maybe it’s too much. We love you all and we want to keep you interested, engaged, and coming back to visit us; getting the balance right is important! Please let us know

Are our Weekly Recap posts too full? Should we cut back on some of the content? When you see a post with this much stuff in it, does it turn you away?

So, how was your week?

Asti Kelley Leanne

Read 75 comments

  1. So sad that in that tweet you posted of the pic that Trish and Leanne aren’t there! Hopefully today? If so, def time for another recap! (Though I’m sure I’ll hide as I did previously… :P)

    And oh gosh, that goat game? So ridiculous! I love how you’re stuck trying to figure out how to flip. Go Kelley go! May the goat force be with you.

    Happy Almost Birthday Leanne! My dad’s birthday is the twelfth. So um… yeah. Not sure why I had to throw that out there lol.

    Oooh like the weekly recap question. It changed! Looking forward to seeing the response since I was the paranoid one who brought it up :P

    • I should have known yesterday whether I could make it to book club today, but I’m still not sure! We have Wrestlemania in town right now (lol I know, right) with some/most/all people involved in it staying in the hotel. So I’m unsure how that’s going to affect business, since I wasn’t here for it last year (or we didn’t have it here last year, or something). And it’s just an unusually busy Sunday, from looking at the books yesterday. So I won’t know til I get there a little later this morning! I may make it or may not, but I haven’t finished the book yet either way. >_< Thanks, Asti! :D Happy Almost Birthday to your dad, too!

    • I know! :( I don’t think I have any screencaps where all 6 of us were in it! I will continue trying every time though, lol! The goat game, OMG I LOVE IT, lol. You knwo what’s awesome? Chris decided to play the game, and the first thing he frickin did? A FLIP. Frickin JERK, lol!

      Haha, yeah, I changed the recap question because I thought this was a bit more important than the other one I had put there (but I just moved that one to next week;s post). And don’t worry, I was getting a bit paranoid about it too (you should have seen how many times I pared down the tweets because it was looking ridiculous, lol).

  2. No don’t cut down! I don’t read all the post, but it’s really interesting to see which ones you highlight. And I’m sure the posts I go to read are different to what the next Joe Blogger picks to read. :)) You appeal to a lot of tastes with so much variety! LOVE this blog.

    • The question wasn’t worded right, I think since most people misinterpreted. It meant to be talking about the sections other than the links. Right now it includes personal updates, linkage, and a Q&A. And then this week the results of the Q&A and a Blogger of the Week were added. I personally felt like it was getting to be too much since for me recaps were always about the links and so I think Kelley just wanted to see what others think.

      But am glad you LOVE this blog ;)

  3. Aww, that tweet from Random House for Asti! That’s wonderful =) And that’s brilliant about the photo – and the fact that they asked your permission first. Leanne, I noticed the other day that it’s your birthday soon! I will have to remember to wish you a good one :o And I like secret projects, they are exciting! ;D Kelley – I wish there was a demo of GS, but I kind of guess that would be basically the whole game??

    I like this new blogger of the week feature – definitely going to go and check that blog out =)

    Also, a Google hangout with fellow bloggers would be amazing! :o And kind of scary at first… it took me AGES to get used to ‘hearing’ guild members from my MMO years ago, after knowing them for seven years now.

    And I love long discussion posts (as long as the content is relevant and actually encourages discussion of course). And as for Weekly Recaps, I think they’re great at this length; I love having a wide variety of links to browse through,

    • Oh so the internet is being sneaky and telling people it’s my birthday soon, huh? Shame on it, giving away my secrets.

      Glad you like the blogger of the week feature! I thought it was nice to have one stand-out featured sometimes (maybe not every single week), but like Asti was sort of wondering if this post is getting too crowded. I mean, we do have massive link lists every week, but we all like *so* many things and there are three of us. It’s nearly impossible to keep this post short. I bookmark our own Recaps every week just so I can go through them later!

      Lol about hearing your MMO buddies. Do you use Vent, TeamSpeak, or something else? After having had a vent server with whomever I was raiding with at any particular time (sometimes more than one group of people), I got used to it being a normal part of my gaming. Now if I play an MMO without it I feel weird! It’s funny how there’s a mix of people that get called by their real names vs their character names, too, I guess depending on how well people are known.

      Speaking of MMOs I’ve been itching to play Elder Scrolls Online SO BAD. My last WoW guild is on there, at least some of them, and I miss those guys. But I just don’t have the time to commit at the level I would need to. Boo. >_< Did you ever try out the beta weekends for it?

      • It was Goodreads ;D

        Nah, I like lots of links because I don’t click on every one, but having lots means I still end up with plenty of posts to read and comment on.

        We used TeamSpeak. We don’t play MMOs together any more, mostly because ours shut down in 2009 (it was called DOMO, or Dream of Mirror Online) but we’re still in touch. I play games on Steam with some of them regularly (that’s how I first found Borderlands, they made me get it and then bought me all the DLC <3) and we tend to use Skype for that. They're the ones I'm meeting in Belgium in October =D Then I played Lord Of The Rings Online for two years or so and had a guild (or kin) of totally different people on there, and we used Teamspeak for raids. I always get called Rinn or Rinny by my guildmates (from the previous MMO), even though we all have each other on FB and know each others real names. However, on LOTRO I got called Izzy or Iz, which is my real name. Not because they knew that, but because my hobbit was called Isolde and that's what they shortened it to. Which was weird =P

        Yes, I played some of the ESO weekends – again with old guild mates, haha! It was quite fun, although we did our usual thing and pretty much just messed around instead of playing properly. Also it was really glitching on the Sunday, and friends lists and the party option disappeared so it was really hard to find each other in game due to layers o.o But it was pretty much what you'd expect from an Elder Scrolls game – gorgeous and packed full of lore.

    • Yeah, just wait till GS goes on sale. I only pre-ordered it and paid the $10 because I’m kind of crazy-obsessed with goats, lol. It really would be hard to make a demo for it.

      So glad you like the new blogger of the week feature! You should definitely check out Pretty Little Reader! I’ve enjoyed Kelly’s blogging ever since she was on her previous blog, Radiant Shadows!

      The Google Hangout was a lot of fun, but it is a little awkward at first! I did get used to talking with guildies on Ventrilo and TeamSpeak and stuff when I played WoW all the time, but being on video is a while new level of awkward, lol!

  4. I love these posts as they are! I love the different sections & how you include such a variety of links. And I think you do a good a job making these post easy to skim so if there’s a section someone isn’t interested in, it’s pretty easy to find the information they are interested in.

  5. I’m not turned off by such a huge list… I just click the links that interest me, skip the ones that don’t, and even if I never make it through the whole thing, well, I’m still visiting blogs I wouldn’t have visited on my own. Of course, if it’s too much work on your end, then maybe think about cutting back… but I wouldn’t do it for the sake of us readers.

    A quick bit of constructive criticism… that graph is really hard to read, at least on my screen. I had to go into the spreadsheet (which is SO cool, by the way) to see what corresponded with what. I think if it weren’t for short posts getting 0%, it would be easier because then I could just follow around the circle lightest to darkest, but in this case I didn’t know which side that 0% was on. A rainbow-colored pie might not look as nice, but it would be much clearer in getting the information across.

    (Also, the first link in the “reviews and arcs” subsection goes to a different site than indicated.)

    • That silly graph is my fault! I was playing around with it in Excel because we weren’t sure about even including it at first, and I didn’t realize how late in the week it was when I put it in there to test it out. Kelley actually has a plugin for our blog that would make *much* easier-to-read graphs and charts (see the Bookish Games one!), but I’d just forgotten to update it before this went live. I’m always doing these things last minute. ;) Thanks for the feedback on it though, Charleen! I was unsure how clear that graph really was (which usually means it isn’t clear enough) so it’s good to see some input on it. Next time around it’ll be much better, as that plugin has better color options and I’ll be gathering info for it not-at-the-last-minute. Also if I had known the spreadsheet could have been clicked on I would have tidied it up a bit more, haha! :D

      I see which link you’re talking about in the “Reviews and ARCs” section, and will get one of the other ladies to fix that up. I’m not sure where it’s supposed to point, myself. :)

  6. I would definitely not cut it down, I look forward to coming here every Sunday and finding out whats been going on elsewhere in the week. Sometimes there’s a lot, an sometimes there isn’t, and I don’t check everything out, just what appeals to me, but I wouldn’t say ditch anything.

  7. Asti, I’d known about your commute troubles, but DAMN that day must have been awful! I think it’s so cool that the local paper saw your photo and asked if they could use it! (And the fact that they asked you is awesome, instead of just using it without your permission / crediting you, like so many people seem to do these days). I still can’t believe that creepy guy picking his nose! GROSS!

    Leanne, I can’t wait to see pictures from your new art journal! What did you do with your old one? I hope you’ll be able to re-purpose some of that stuff?

  8. Thanks for the link out! And the Magic card look-alikes was awesome. The last card, haha.

    Definitely don’t cut back, I just spent an insane amount of time checking out the links on this post! You guys sure have good taste for content. :)

  9. I feel like my weekly wrap-up might get on the long side too, so I feel your fears. I don’t always read it all, but I’m not bothered by the length! I think it’s a nice chance to talk about all things relevant to the week including the question and results. So I’m having trouble distinguishing between all the blues, so is the majority “No Preference”?

  10. Happy Almost Birthday, Leanne! Since you’re not baking your cake I hope you are still acquiring one from somewhere!

    I love the links just as they are! They way they are sectioned off really helps!

    Maybe one day all of us will actually make it to our book club chat!

    • I agree! I think dividing the links into different categories makes it all much more manageable. Otherwise it’s just a bit too much, in my opinion.

      And haha yes, it would be nice if all of us could make it to a book club. We almost could have this last time, if it weren’t for the stupid time change. Hopefully we’ll sort it out for the next one :)

  11. I really love this weekly recap post just the way it is and wouldn’t change a thing about it if I could. I think its great to include all three of you ladies preferences in the links. It’s a dash of everything that we can only get in one place, here. :)

  12. I don’t think they’re too long at all! I’m horrible at remembering or even finding posts to read sometimes, and I end up missing a lot. It’s a great way to catch up with everything :) Plus, I like seeing what’s been going on in everyone’s lives. So yes it’s long, but a good kind of long ;)

    And thank you so much for the giveaway!

  13. Thanks so much for including my post in here, Asti, Kelley and Leanne! :D There are so many interesting posts as well, I’ve bookmarked this page so that I can keep up ^^ And I think the Blogger Of The Week is a sweet new edition! :D

    • Oh wait! And for this week’s question… I think it’s nice to have so many links in one post, and I’m happy with that, but sometimes it seems there’s so much to look through! xD But I’m glad you categorize them so it’s easy for us to choose which links we want to visit (for me, it’s ALL!) so I think it’s completely fine for you to continue this way :)

      • Haha yes, it does seem like a lot but I think the categorization helps. You can always just pick and choose whatever you’re in the mood for.

        And you’re welcome for including your post! Thanks for writing it. It was definitely thought-provoking! :)

  14. a) So sorry this is so late – I’ve been sucking at blogging HARD CORE this past week or so.
    b) AHHHH!! Thank you so much for picking me for your first blogger of the week! I feel like I need to add this as an accolade somewhere on my blog :D So so so happy and appreciative and you guys ROCK!

  15. I love everything about your recap posts, and I don’t think they’re too long. I think I just spent the past hour and a half going through the three most recent ones (I’m a little behind in my feed reader), and I enjoyed every minute of it.

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