October Goals and TBR

Hello everyone!

There are people who say, “Happy Monday!”

I, on the other hand, am more like this polar bear:


At least we are cute, right? :’)


Gemina (The Illuminae Files #2) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Guys – this might just be my new favourite series. I finished reading Illuminae (Book #1) last night and it is SO, SO amazing. I am really looking forward to reading the second book in the series.

Fun fact: Marie Lu is listed as the illustrator for this book?! I will be listening to the audiobook but this makes me very curious about the print edition.

Aside: For all you audiobook listeners out there, do you make up the spelling of character/place names in your head? I just realized (while reading the Goodreads summary for this post) that “Corynza” is actually spelled Kerenza and “Bay-Tech” is actually BeiTech O_O

The Deal (Off-Campus #1) by Elle Kennedy

This is a recommendation from Lois @ My Midnight Musing, who convinced me to read more sports contemporary fiction. I enjoyed Him by Elle Kennedy, so I am looking forward to more of this author’s writing!

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders

This book caught my eye in the bookstore (isn’t that cover awesome!?) The Goodreads rating is okay (3.58/5 stars), but the description is interesting enough (engineer and magician work together to save the world), so we’ll see how it goes!

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

This is my challenge #1 this month: Read a Classic novel. Even though I tend to enjoy Classics, like Catcher in the Rye and Huckleberry Finn, they intimidate me. I guess I am scared that I won’t understand them, and, therefore, be a Bad Reader. Also, Classics novels tend to have small font, and I can’t stand small font. (Believe it or not, I judge books by their cover and their font size.)

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

I think this has been on my TBR for, like, years (seriously). But I am finally going to do it. Promise.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Chinese) by J.K. Rowling

This is my other challenge for the month. Because I have black hair, yellow skin, and brown eyes, people often assume that I can read and write Chinese…

However, I’ve been in Canada for the past 18 years of my life, and 100% of my friends speak English. So, while this assumption is not entirely wrong, my Chinese… kinda sucks.


I am going to improve my Chinese by reading a Chinese book. It might take an immense amount of effort, I might read 2 pages per hour, and Google translate might get a lot of traffic from me this month, but… BRING IT ON 🙂


And OH, did I mention that I am beta-reading a novel for a fellow author!? (Can you tell that I am excited!?) Her name is AM Leibowitz, and she is a writer of LGBTQIA fiction. Check out her blog here.


Some of my goals this month:

  1. READ six books (as above), and beta-read one novel 🙂
  2. Finish WRITING that novel. Good news? I am at 130,000 words.* Even better news? THERE IS AN END IN SIGHT!
    *No, it’s not an epic fantasy. It’s an……….. epic contemporary novel?
    **No worries, future beta-readers: I’m going to trim it down before I send it out to you guys.
  3. BLOG!
  4. FIND A JOB in the city that I am moving to in 4 months to be with my fiancé. As much as I love my fiancé, I hate job-hunting :’)
  5. SLEEP seven hours a day. Unfortunately, sleep tends to be the last priority these days, but I want to live to a hundred, so that has to change :’)



Do you like Mondays, or are you like me and the polar bear? How do you feel about the Classics? Do you read/speak any other language? Do you care about the font size of a novel? What books are you reading this month?

50 Replies to “October Goals and TBR”

  1. I am more like the polar bear. And I do care about the font size. I also dislike books that are absurdly heavy.
    It depends on which classic your talking about. Sometimes the language is difficult. Sometimes it’s great.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha glad that I’m not the only polar bear here 🙂 Yes, I’m put off by very big books as well! I agree that sometimes there is a language barrier when we read the classics. With Shakespeare, it takes me a while to understand and get used to the words and phrasing.
      Thanks for dropping by 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. 80-10k is good! I read somewhere that that is usually what publishers are looking for when they are eying a new book! (Although I think fantasy can be longer)

      Usually my novels are on the short side, but for some reason, this one ballooned from 70k to 130k between drafts haha :’)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Definitely the bear. Mondays are pants and as autumn goes on I feel a great desire to hibernate until March.
    Ages since I read any of the classics and I feel kind of bad about that. I loved Steinbeck when I was a teenager. I can’t read any other languages properly. I can get by in German but it is a struggle.
    Very best of luck with your writing, job hunting and other goals Sophie and have a lovely october 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad that I’m not the only bear here 🙂
      I read one book by Steinbeck (The Pearl) back in English class in high school. While I liked it, I don’t remember much about it :’)

      Thank you Darren! Wishing you a happy October as well 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Another Monday-hater here! In fact if I ever come to power I’ll abolish Mondays.
    Hope you fulfill all your October goals! I haven’t set any (too lazy, right?) but this weekend I’ll be attending the greek fantasy convention in Athens and I’m so excited! Usually I go away with a list of projects for the next months, so who knows?
    Btw, since you mentioned your knoeldege of chinese, don’t assume that because two persons speaking the same language are able to communicate, lol! I find it to be true every day I have to deal with people!
    And I think it’s exciting you beta-read for a fellow author, her blog seems so interesting!
    That’s all for now, my break is over, back to work!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Michael! Glad that I’m not the only Monday hater 🙂 Good news- it’s Tuesday now!

      Hope you enjoy the Greek fantasy convention! Looking forward to hearing about it! It sounds like a lot of fun 🙂

      Yes I agree that speaking the same language does not mean good communication! I wonder if the reverse can be true? One of my family friends (Chinese with a minimal knowledge of English) married a Caucasian man (who has a minimal knowledge of Chinese)- they are pretty happy together :’)

      Hope you have a happy October 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you Sophie! Hopefully it will be a great weekend! And that couple you’ve mentioned, it’s so sweet they overcome language barriers and are happy together. Communication takes many forms indeed!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. OH I’m DEFINITELY the Polar Bear. Most days of the week, hahahaha.
    I can’t wait for you to read Gemina, it is such a great book – it was a bit crazy, I’ll admit it, but I can’t wait to hear how you feel about it all 🙂
    YAY for reading a book in Chinese, I hope this goes well, you can do this! 🙂
    Lovely goals for this month as well – wow, you’re writing a big, BIG novel hahaha, it’s so great that you are so inspired. I can’t wait to read this book someday when it’s published 😉
    Hope you’ll have a lovely October xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad that I’m not the only polar bear here Marie! I already started Gemina and love it so far, though I am a bit sad since I miss Kady and Ezra!
      Lol the novel was supposed to be 70-80k, but it ballooned during this draft! I’m not sure if I’ll try to publish, but we will see 🙂
      Wishing you a lovely October as well ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I get it, I had the same feeling – I loved Kady and Ezra so much, but ended up loving the new characters as well 🙂
        Haha, well, I hope you’ll do something with it though…I don’t know, but with all of your snippets, I REALLY want to read it 😛

        Liked by 1 person

  5. As a German who reads almost exclusively in English, I do read in a different language all the time which has made it more difficult for me to read in my actual first language which is ridiculous if you ask me. xD

    I also still need to read Carry On! I remember really liking those parts in Fangirl and I have no idea why I never actually continued on with Carry On! Now I’d probably have to re-read Fangirl to fully appreciate Carry On.

    The two books that I know for sure I’ll read this month are Wonder Woman: Warbringer and Warcross! I’ve been waiting eagerly for both of them and I can’t wait to finally have something new from Leigh to write! And to see if I still enjoy Marie’s writing as much as I did when I read her Legend trilogy!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s very cool that you are bilingual 🙂 I get it because I read much better in English than my first language as well!

      I also remembered liking Fangirl though I remember nothing else about the book! It didn’t occur to me that I would need to reread fangirl – maybe I should!

      I haven’t read either Wonder Woman or Warcross. Hope you will enjoy these books 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t think you need to read Fangirl to understand Carry On, as the second was ‘just’ the book the character Cath was writing in the story so you might be able to get away with not re-reading Fangirl! But I was wondering if I would enjoy it more this time around since I’ve recently really enjoyed reading contemporary stories!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I see what you mean 🙂 It’s been a loong time since Fangirl so I might be revisiting that book as well!
        Also, if you are planning on reading Carry On any time soon, let me know if you want to buddy read 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I’ll try to remember! But I gotta warn you, I might not be the best buddy reader because I tend to binge read books once I really get into them but I am more than willing to give it a try! Do we follow each other on Goodreads? I feel like that might be a good way to remind me to let you know when I finally get around to Carry On!

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I tend to be a binge reader too, so this might work out! My goodreads name is Sophia Li (Sophia is my real name haha 🙂 ). How do I find you? I am still a Goodreads newbie XD

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Mission complete. I am so happy that you’ve decided to pick up The Deal. Trust me, Garrett Graham will sweep you off your feet and Hannah is a darling as well, definitely someone I’d like as a friend. I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did. I can’t wait to hear what you think. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh that polar bear gif is so adorable! ❤
    I hope you really enjoy Gemina Sophie. I cannot wait to see your review for it (and Illuminae) but given you loved the first book in the series I'm sure you'll love the second as well. I really hope you enjoy Carry On as well. That's a favourite of mine and one I re-read a fair bit as well because it was a cute story full of adorable characters. 🙂
    Good luck with all your goals for this month too. Wow 130K words is incredible, how long did it take you to write all that?
    Great post, and I hope you have a great October as well. 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Beth ❤ I am liking Gemina so far!
      I’ve been working on this draft for the past 3 months. After I finish, I’m hoping to trim it down to a manageable size (less than 100k is the goal!) Hope writing is going well for you 🙂
      Wishing you a happy October!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s all right, and that’s great to hear! 😀 ❤
        Oh wow that's not long to have written 130K words (then again I'm attempting 50K this November). Still I guess editing's going to be the hard part right?
        Thanks so much Sophie. 🙂 ❤

        Liked by 1 person

      2. This is my 4th draft but there will definitely be a 5th! Sometimes I feel like it will never end :’) Maybe I will be satisfied with the 96th draft haha!

        All the best with Nano! Do you have an idea in mind? 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Haha yes 🙂 I would be happy to be one of those authors who write one great novel in a lifetime.
        That’s awesome that you have an idea for Nanowrimo! It sounds like it’ll be a challenging and fun month, best of luck! I really really wish I could do nano this year but I will be visiting China at that time

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Yes, an idea is a great start! Especially when you will be doing some plantsing! 🙂 Yes, I am looking forward to the next time I will do nanowrimo, even if it will be a while away!

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I hate mondays terribly. I just can’t get myself to wake up for an early morning class. I’ve got a number of books this month so I’m probably going to read something from that this month, you can check out my post!! 🙌🏼 But I’m so confused ugh. Also also, I read The Deal two nights ago, I just felt like it was a very steamy romantic read with like no extraordinary story. But well, everybody’s opinion differs 🙂
    Also, I can’t wait for your boook!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello! Haha yes another Monday hater :’) Good news that it is Wednesday now!
      It seems like you didn’t like The Deal too much. I will still read the book, but it’s good to have a balancing opinion so I won’t be expecting too much 🙂
      Haha thank you! But I am not sure if my book will ever be published :’)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You know, you don’t have to worry about your book being published or not. What matters is, that you started it, got attached to it and finished it. Not everyone can do that.
        All the best!!!

        Liked by 1 person

  9. You’re going to read Harry Potter in Chinese? 😱 That is so impressive! *round of applause* 👏👏😆

    Being able to read a novel in another language has always been one of my biggest goals, and I think I’m finally getting good enough at my Cantonese and Mandarin to start with some children’s chapter books 😊 Do you have any good recommendations for books in Chinese that aren’t too difficult to read? Good luck on reading Harry Potter!! (And lol yes. Google Translate is our best friend. 😂)

    I hope you get around to reading To Kill a Mockingbird! ❤️ I read it a few years back but the story is still so vivid in my mind. I would recommend to not rush through it — pausing to think about the meaning of some of the themes and scenes in the book definitely will make you fall in love with the story. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Zoie! 你好!

      That’s so awesome that you are learning Chinese! It is an amazing language, frankly I think it is difficult to learn even for me, so that is great that you are picking it up! I don’t read much Chinese books at all, but I think a good way to learn the written language is to watch Chinese Tv shows with Chinese subtitles, especially if you can listen/understand better than read! I think reading children’s books is a good start but frankly I don’t read enough Chinese books to be able to make specific recommendations. Maybe look for Chinese translations of English books that you’ve read and loved? That way it will be okay if you don’t understand bits here and there since you already know the story! (It’s why I chose Harry Potter for myself actually haha 🙂 )

      I will keep that in mind when I read To Kill A Mockingbird. Some books are definitely better when we take the time to digest 🙂 I watched the play a while back and really loved it, so I think I will like the book as well!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you so much for the advice! 😊 I’ve been searching for random children’s books to read, but I think reading a book I’ve already read but is translated to Chinese would be more helpful. My listening skills aren’t near as good as my reading skills, though, so watching Chinese TV shows would be really helpful as well. I can’t wait to get started on my first Chinese chapter book! 謝謝 again for the recommendations! 😋😄

        Liked by 1 person

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