damaged book

A Tip for Book Lovers

If you go to libraries and if you shop at Thriftbooks (both of which I recommend) then you may already know this fact. But if you don’t, let me enlighten you;

These places are breeding grounds for BED BUGS.

No this is not me telling you to stop. No this is not me calling that places dirty or gross. This is just the consequence of book sharing. Because these books trade hands and houses in a wonderful and perfect system of intellectual freedom. And I think that’s beautiful. But when a book trades houses that many times it’s prone to pick up something. That something is usually bed bugs.

Due to their natural structuring, books are ideal homes. And once a book returns to the library or the warehouse, these bedbugs wiggle out and find more places to burrow and breed.

And here’s another fun fact. Unlike ants, bed bugs are not social insects. They don’t like each other. So if you think you can just put down a single trap and catch them all, you’re wrong. They don’t work like that. If you poison one, it won’t go home and do a secret handshake with a hundred other of its friends. It’ll just die. If you kill one, you’ve only killed one.

Why am I telling you this? To scare you? To ward you away? Of course not. I’m just here to make sure you’re aware AND to introduce you to something that could save you a shit ton of grief.

The moment you bring the book home or take it out of its packaging, PUT THAT FUCKER INTO THE FREEZER.

NO. THAT’S NOT A JOKE. MOVE THE LEAN CUISINE OUT OF THE WAY AND POP THAT SUCKER INTO THE FREEZER!!!

Extreme cold and extreme heat kills bed bugs. And since we’re not Trump and holding book burnings is generally looked down upon, we do the next best thing. Freeze it. No, it won’t damage the book. A few days in there will only leave it cold and bug free. But if you’re worried, pop it into a large Ziplock before you do.

Read safe and stay bug free, my bookish friends! 📚📚📖

I am so angry that I could THROW this book across the room but I am NOT GOING TO instead I will CAREFULLY PLACE it in its spot on my METICULOUSLY ORGANISED bookshelf

“I miss the girl I used to be; like her eyes that spoke of innocence and her mind that was full of wonder.But of all things , I miss her heart the most. The heart that loved ferociously without a hint of fear.A heart that loved so greatly the universe could burst in tears. How pure and unblemished. For she was a girl who has never been hurt. Carrying a heart that was pure love to the fullest sense. How I wish I could love that way again.”

Worst possible things to hear as a bookworm:

* this series that you have just started and have fallen in love with is not finished, nor will it be finished in the foreseeable future
* this edition that looks absolutely stunning is out of stock or worse, out of print
* shipping fee applies and oh look, it’s bigger than the cost of the book you want to buy
* this book contains a love triangle
* the bookstore you just walked in will close in 10 minutes
* we, your friendly neighbourhood publishers, are changing the cover style mid series
* your preorder has been delayed
* I lost/damaged the book I borrowed from you and vowed to protect with my life

The loneliest people are the kindest. The saddest people smile are the brightest. The most damaged people are the wisest. All because they do not wish to see anyone else suffer the way they do.
—  Anonymous

i just made this announcement over on twitter, but like, let’s be real, i’ve been on this horrible blue hell site since i was 16 - and i’m turning 24 on sunday, so that’s essentially a third of my life, yikes - and you guys are wonderful and i love you and you deserve to hear it here first. so.

as most of you know, i finished my first manuscript earlier this year, and i’ve been reservedly liveblogging the absurdly nerve-wracking process of querying agents and throwing my novel out to the wolves. 

and i’m so happy to finally be able to tell you that i’ve accepted an offer of literary representation from brooks sherman of janklow & nesbit associates.

i first became aware of brooks a couple of years ago when my best friend lena, who was loyally and devotedly beta-reading one of my early drafts, suggested i check out becky albertalli’s “simon vs. the homo sapiens agenda.” she thought simon was an exemplary gay ya romance, exactly the kind of thing i was hoping to do. and she was right: simon instantly became one of my favourite books, and becky became one of my favourite authors. i pledged to myself that when i finally worked up the nerve to start talking to agents, i would talk to the guy who helped make simon happen.

but it took a long time. like, a long time. i started writing “teenage victory song” - the name of my novel, a contemporary gay YA love story, hopefully coming soon to a bookstore near you! - back in 2013. specifically, during an 11:30 PM gchat with grace on wednesday, december 11, 2013, which i have archived for historical preservation. so grace is getting the dedication when this thing goes out, naturally. but, yeah, i started writing it in 2013, and only just finished it this spring, and only with the help of some truly incredible people and loyal friends and family - way too many to name here, but you know who you are, and thank you. i love you. if i hadn’t had your love and your support to battle the little grey cloud of depression and trauma and persistent economic instability that hangs over me 24/7, i’d never have gotten this far. writing this book, and keeping myself mentally healthy and happy enough to finish it, is the hardest thing i’ve ever had to do. 

i also need to thank benjamin alire saenz, andre alexis, dennis bock, anne michaels, and mallory ortberg for reading various permutations of this manuscript and believing in it and giving me their writerly advice on it. i love all y’all. and, of course, major, major thanks to the lambda literary association, who do so much incredible work for so many lgbt authors, and to whom i will be forever in debt.

i just don’t have words for the fact that brooks read my manuscript and said yes, that he said wow, that he believes in me and in what i’m trying to do with my writing. he represents so many authors whose work i’ve been continually blown away by, and it is patently ridiculous and surreal that i get to stand next to them now? i’ve already mentioned becky albertalli, whose work has done so much to humanize young lgbt people and to normalize gay love for a mainstream audience. or adam silvera, who just put queer boys of colour on the new york times bestsellers list with “they both die at the end,” which i am presently reading and crying over and having my internal organs ripped out by. and last, but definitely not fucking least, angie thomas, who wrote “the hate u give,” very possibly the most important young adult novel of the last twenty years, a heartbreaking and compassionate and warmly funny complete and total masterwork that i inhaled in less than two days. like, i really don’t. have words. these are people who have been heroes of mine for so long. i just started actually crying so i’m going to have to wrap this up lmao.

i grew up in an intensely homophobic and conservative christian household, and when i was probably eleven or twelve i somehow came into possession of a copy of “a great and terrible beauty” by libba bray. i don’t remember anything about it except that it had a subplot involving two girls who kissed each other on the mouth, and when they kissed each other on the mouth, i was so viscerally horrified that i started bawling, and i stood up, walked upstairs to the garbage disposal, and tore the book apart with my bare hands. watched the pages filter down into the garbage. and i don’t, like. i don’t like to damage books. i don’t even fold corners because i don’t like to crease the pages. i still remember it all these years later because my first reaction upon recognizing myself in that kiss was to literally destroy it. and i had to keep that part of myself buried for so many years. reading lgbt ya and fanfiction was some of the only escape i had. i wasn’t able to come out until i was eighteen years old, and when i did, it ultimately meant becoming estranged from my mother forever.

i have so much love and tenderness and compassion for all those previous, wounded versions of me, who went through so much, who hated themselves so much, who spent so much of their teens and early twenties being depressed and closeted and suicidal and dreaming of the day when they might get to be an author. you fucking did it, buddy. i love you so much and i am so proud of everything you did to survive and keep creating.

in conclusion,

2

Got my stuff signed!

Also both Irene and Janet remembered who I was and Janet even remembered my name and said it (Stephanie!)

I died inside.

Also, she gave me a hug too.

This was a great way to end the con.

Jar Alternatives

While many of us have a plethora of jars, not everyone does. I know I couldn’t use jars in spellwork when I was practicing as a minor. Maybe, you’re a student, living with others, or still in the “broom closet”, either way here is a list of alternative ideas to jars.

1. Christmas Ornaments
(The clear Christmas bulbs you can put things inside of are great for fitting in small crystals and herbs!)

2. Boxes
(I’ve used a small gift box before and filled it with herbs and intent, the box could be any size you want [even a ring box])

3. A Casette Case
(These may not be as common anymore [You may still be able to find at a thrift shop. but I personally like the aesthetic. You can take a lighter to seal it shut or add candle wax if you’d like to use in place of a Witch Bottle.)

4. A Juice/Pop Bottle (Personally, I’d choose something like a Snapple bottle if I were to go this route)

5. Shot bottles
(I found some littered about town when I was 18 and actually used one to store sand I ended up using for putting out my sage. If you’re under 18, I don’t suggest upcycling shot bottles found littered about. If you’re of legal age to buy alcohol, this is another way to upcycle.)

6. Gumball machines
(I remember for my birthday one year, my mom had me decorate a mini gumball machine. You could use it magically as well. You can buy things to make them from dollar tree. You’ll need a terra cotta pot and dish as well as a fish bowl. Turn the pot upside down, glue the bowl to it and place the terra cotta dish on top as a lid. Decorate as you will. I think this would be awesome for something to do with promoting happiness,prosperity, and the like.)

7. Sachets

8. Books
( You can get one of those stash boxes that look like books OR if you’re crafty, take a damaged book and cut into and turn into into a stash box.)

9. Stash Cans
(If you need to be discreet, you can purchase a marijuana stash can. They sell ones that look like Arizona Tea cans on Amazon.)

10. Locket
(There isn’t very much space but you can still fill it with a pinch of herbs and intent.)

11.A Coin Purse
(I had one somewhere…possibly stolen or thrown out… That I used for a set of runes I made out of deer antler buttons. They’re perfect for holding small things like crystals too!)

12.
Zip-lock bags
(This isn’t as creative as other items on the list but it gets the job done.)

13. Witch’s Bottle Necklace
(Okay, so this is still using jars technically. However, it’s easy to make it look more like a fashion statement than a spell. )

14. Sea shells
(They come in many shapes and sizes. You may not be able to close unless you have a whole clam, but they do look pretty and many people do collect sea shells.)

15. Tins
(You can re-use an old Altoids tin. You can purchase tins from Mountain Rose Herbs. They’re convenient if you’re on the go. They can be used as travel altars, containers for crystal chips, feathers, odds and ends, herbs, etc. )

I was one of those people that were secretly destroying themselves, i gave up on cutting, i let it bleed inside me, i let it damage myself on the inside instead of on the outside
And now, i don’t know who i was before i let it destroy me
—  Viola CN ‘’Damage’’