In Monthly Wrap Ups

November 2016 | Monthly Wrap Up

November’s actually been great, despite a certain orange-faced American man with rat-like hair. Apart from him, it’s been good.

Favourite part?


Meals/days out for two of my friends’ birthdays were both great. I honestly felt so happy on both of those days. I’ve spent a lot of time with friends this month, I love them all so much, it’s great.


In the evening after the day out, I finished my first novel (the first draft, that is…) and I have honestly never had a feeling like that before. I have now written a novel. A full story. It’s done. I’d been working on it for roughly a year and seven months and I’m currently taking a break away from it for a few weeks before I start to edit.



I also saw Fantastic Beasts!! Harry Potter means so much and I couldn’t control myself when I was in the cinema. I definitely cried a bit too much that is probably seen as normal. Ah well…

I also entered my first poetry competition. Fingers crossed, but I’m not expecting anything.

Best read?


I haven’t read much in November, I’m not going to lie there. Most of this month has been spent either writing my novel or doing college work. However, I have read Carrie Hope Fletcher’s recent novella, Winters’ Snow, which I thought was charming! I have also read most of The Odyssey, for my Classics course, ready for us to start studying it in class in December.

Favourite tunes?


I’ve been listening to loads of Taylor Swift this month! Mostly, Ours, Mean, Story of Us and Back to December. She and Dodie have been on almost constantly. I’m loving the music Dodie is making recently. I have been a fan of hers for ages and it’s amazing seeing her grow and become recognized. Unfortunately, I didn’t get tickets to see her on tour, but I can keep an eye out for more shows!

What did I learn?


That finding the time to write is just about putting pen to paper more than anything else, instead of worrying about when you’re going to write.

What’s happening next month?


The obvious, Christmas. I break up from college quite early, so have most of the month to myself. I’m going to London with my friends to shop and see Wicked, which I’m so excited for! Star Wars: Rogue One is out too – can’t wait!

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What’s been on my mind?


My novel!! I worked so hard on it this month and any time not spent writing, was spent thinking of and missing my characters.

Favourite blogger/vlogger?


I’ve watched lots of writing-related videos this month along with my usual faves of Hazel Hayes, Dodie Clark, the Fletchers and Daniel J Layton.

Favourite post?


Some of my posts have been a bit thin on the ground lately, as I’d scheduled a load that I had written in late September/October and then hit a slump in blog post writing. But I am determined to start posting more regularly now! I’ve really enjoyed writing more feminist posts this month, I really have. I’ve also talked a lot about writing, in the Writing Tag (which my friend Anna did a response to), and Write. | A Poem. I’ll definitely be trying to do more opinion and writing posts in the future.

Biggest inspiration?


While I wasn’t traditionally taking part in NaNoWriMo, it did help boost me along with the project I was already working on.

Any other favourites?


Strictly, as per usual for this time of the year! My family watched the Dad’s Army film for the first time this month and we’ve now watched it about 5 times! It’s hilarious and so nostalgic of the series.



If you liked this post you might like: October 2016 | Monthly Wrap Up

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In goals inspiration

20 Things Before 20

Lately, I’ve seen lots of posts titled X Things to Do Before X Years Old, and I thought that would be a pretty cool post to do. I’m currently 17 and have been so for little over a month. I have roughly 3 years until I’m 20 (that sounds so adult it’s scary), so I think I can get some stuff done by then.


1. Finish writing my novel (I've nearly finished the first draft now, so this won’t take long).
2. Get a literary agent.
3. Visit Chatsworth House.
4. Explore Paris.
5. Visit the Houses of Parliament.
6. Visit Amsterdam.
7. Achieve my target A Level grades.
8. Visit at least 3 historical palaces/houses. E.g. finish going around Hampton Court Palace, Kensington Palace, etc.
9. Pass my driving test.
10. Go back to Nice.
11. See a Shakespeare play performed at the Globe.
12. Go to Hay-on-Wye
13. Go to a Disneyland.
14. Visit Stockholm.
15. Go to a festival.
16. See Harry Potter and the Cursed Child on stage.
17. See McFly live.
18. Go to a blogger event.
19. Visit Kew Gardens and find my great great aunt's memorial bench.
20. Buy my own car.

I hope you enjoyed this post! I do realise that most of this list consists of travelling, but ah well! We can tell what I want to do…




If you liked this post you might like: 5 Things on My Bucket List

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In beauty

5 Reasons Why I Love Makeup

I love makeup. I just really love it.

1. Checking yourself out in a car/shop window is great.


Because damn, if I look hella fine I want to appreciate it. Did you see that contour? The sharpness of the eyeliner? Because I sure did!

2. LIPSTICK


I shouldn’t even need to explain this.

3. There’s no greater feeling than when your eyeliner is perfectly even.


I get a spring in my step that makes me feel like I could take on the world.

4. Have you seen just how gorgeous some eyeshadow combinations are?!?!?!


I can’t get over some combinations. They make me want to cry they’re so beautiful!

5. The magic of concealer and foundation is UNREAL


My skin’s not been great lately and to cover up my spots and discoloured skin is such a blessing, I can’t even describe! It makes me feel a lot better and a lot less self-conscious.




If you liked this post you might like: Why do you wear makeup?

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In Poems

Write. | A Poem

Original Picture Credit

What’s the best way to write?
How do you do it?
“Simply put pen to paper,
it’ll all turn out all right.”
Do not worry about each stanza
The proper nouns and the abstract
Each clause or nomenclature,
Instead focus on the feeling your heart
Has, locked inside of it –
The one bursting to get out
Of its boney cage.
The words engraved onto your heart
That remain with you til’ they are
Crumbling in the city earth
And are nibbled by worms

Gnawed to pieces.

The words that linger on in the
Air around you
That you can never seem to get rid of
The flickering fly buzz buzz buzzing
Returning after your every attempt at swatting them
Away.

Write until your heart is broken
And torn to shreds
Your arteries flung at different ends of the room
Until you have bled yourself dry
And your veins have shrivelled up

Write until you can write no more
Til’ it tears you in two
And your halves will no longer attach
To one another;

Until the alveoli in your lungs
Stop bringing in oxygen
And you are left to scrawl
One last word
On the street you lie on
Keep writing
You must
Keep writing.
For if you don’t then
You will
Die.

Keep writing is my advice.

Just
Keep writing.



If you liked this post you might like: Bedtime | A Poem

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In tags writing

The Writing Tag

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What do you write?


Anything and everything I can. I have so many poems, some are published on my blog but the vast majority aren’t. I’m currently writing a novel, The Bookshop, about a girl who grows up in a bookshop (didn’t guess that did you?) and how she affects those around her.

What do you mostly write about?


That’s very dependent on which me you’re on about. When I was younger it was more fairytales and fantasy, but now it’s a proper mixture. I think it’s more real life, perhaps. Now I think it’s more autobiographical now. I can actually write about my own experiences and feelings. 

What’s your favourite thing about writing?


The fact that I can be anybody, anytime in anyplace. I can express myself properly through writing about the inner workings of my soul and heart. I can write better than I can speak, which isn’t very useful in all honesty. Sometimes I wish it was the other way around.

What/Who inspired you to start/keep writing?


My parents always read to me when I was younger and I just fell in love with words and stories. I have to keep writing now because it’s part of who I am; I have to do so to keep living.

Who’s your favourite character you’ve made up?


I don’t know, probably the Bookshop Owner from The Bookshop. I can’t really explain why, but I like them a lot.

When did you start writing?


I’ve been writing as long as I can remember - as long as I’ve been able to read and to put pen to paper. I know how cliché that sounds but it’s true.

The first story you wrote?


I can’t remember exactly. The earliest full story I think I can remember writing is either one about a stone I found on the beach or one entitled Fairy Friends (either that or Fairytale Friends I’m not sure). The first was literally a life story of a rock while the other was a bit more dramatic and ridiculous! I seem to remember one about a mermaid who all the mermen fell in love with who met a merman that all the mermaids fell in love with. Yeah, my little creative head loved that.

Favourite story you’ve written?


Oh god, I don’t know. Does this include the ones from poetry? One of my favourite poems of mine is one called The Girl That Time Forgot and I really love it. It’s quite sad but the character and her story really touches me.

Do you have a writing schedule? Like, do you write every day or just when you feel like it?


I write whenever I can. Sometimes I set myself a word count to do in a day or a week etc, but it’ll mostly be odd moments here and there. It’s mostly at night that I write in all honesty - well, poetry. Blog posts I write in the daytime, whenever I can find the time or have an idea for one.

Do you want to be published?


Don’t we all?! I want to get published as soon as possible but I’m not sure how that’s going to go. A girl can dream. 

-----------------------------

I'm only going to tag Anna from A Fabulous Feminist to do this tag, but anyone else reading this feel free to do it yourself! I didn't create this tag but I can't remember the blog that I first found it on, so sorry about that!

Jemima x




If you liked this post you might like: The Tea Tag

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In 5 Fridays feminism

5 Reasons Why We Still Need Feminism

I often get asked (or hear/see other people getting asked) why feminism is relevant - or, at least, that’s implied. Here are 5 reasons why we need feminism. Believe me, there are many more.

1. The toys are split into two types: girls’ and boys’


Barbie dolls are targeted at girls while the boys are given cars. The girls get mini makeup sets and the boys get science sets. Boys get books on sports while girls are told how to look their best and what hairstyles they should be trying out.

2. In some countries, young girls become child brides


These girls marry men who are often three times their own age. They become mothers and seriously harm their bodies, which are not yet fully prepared for childbirth. Let them have freedom. Let them have a childhood.

3. We see blood, guts and gore in films but period blood is disgusting


Which is more commonly experienced: period blood or Brad Pitt being covered in blood in some blockbuster action movie? It’s literally no different (well, apart from some normal discharge and tissue), so why do we make such a fuss? Blood is blood. It’s a part of all of us so stop whining. 

4.  I don’t think there’s one girl I know who hasn’t been catcalled


(I mentioned this in my post Seeing Sexism.) 

I’m 17. Most of my friends are either 16 or 17. We’ve been catcalled when we’ve been a lot younger than we are now. It’s mostly by men who are older than us. It doesn’t feel great when walking down a road in your village, walking to a bus stop or to a music lesson being beeped\wolf-whistled/yelled at by men in random passing cars. It’s not a compliment. It’s objectifying and downright rude. 


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5. We teach women how to prevent themselves getting raped, but don’t teach men not to rape women


If you don’t get raped, somebody else will. We shouldn’t have to have all the safety precautions that we all live by. Prevention isn’t a cure. We need to teach rapists not to rape, rather than women how not to get raped.

There are so many more reasons that I could have put on this list. Other reasons that regard to race, LGBT+ and everyone else on this planet who faces issues that are caused by a gender imbalance in the way we live.


If you liked this post you might like: Seeing Sexism

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In inspiration interview

Interview with A Fabulous Feminist

Anna, who blogs on A Fabulous Feminist, is one of my friends in real life and, I know I’m probably just a little biased, but I think she’s great. She’s one of my fellow Through Our Eyes bloggers, has guest posted on this blog before (check out her post here) and is vocal about bringing a stop to taboo subjects and spreading awareness for those issues. The main 2 issues she advocates is feminism (you should have guessed that from the title of her blog) and alopecia awareness, a condition she is personally affected by.

It just so happens that today is also Anna’s 17th birthday! Happy birthday Anna! I hope you have a great day.



1. For those who don’t know what it is, could you explain what alopecia is?


Alopecia is an autoimmune condition, which causes hair follicles to fall out for no reason. There are many different types, which are diagnosed depending on the amount of hair loss, and where. There is no known cause, and although it can be triggered by things like stress, that is not the root (unintentional pun!) cause.

2. In three words, sum up how it has affected your life.


Dramatically, emotionally & (at first) negatively.

3. What advice would you give to someone who also has alopecia but may not have told many people about it?


I would like to tell them that their alopecia does not define them. It can be tiring to hide and deal with, and scary, but there are so many other things about them which are more important. Don’t let alopecia take any more from you.

4. What are your ways of dealing with confidence issues?


I try to remember that it could always be worse, in a way which does not discredit my problem, but rather gives me an understanding that I am fortunate in some ways. Wigs help a lot, as it means I can vary my hair day to day, and put a positive spin on something that has caused me a lot of emotional pain.

5. If you could only achieve one thing from blogging, what would it be?


It would be to share my writing with an interested audience. I put my thoughts out there to connect with others, and if only one thing could be achieved, it would be that others read what I have written, and engage with it.

6. What are your tips for any aspiring poets?


Write. Forget about everyone else and write. Write for yourself. Don’t write worrying about how others would perceive it. Write your feelings, write your thoughts. Find that burning desire inside of you that yearns to write and feed it with your words. 

7. You’ve mentioned before that you’re an aspiring actress, what would be your dream role?


My dream role would be to play a character who is independent and badass. I want to play women who are sassy, and feisty, and feminist and proud of that. My dream role would be someone who is empathetic and an inspiration to everyone who sees her. I’m thinking a woman like Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games, and other strong protagonists.

8. Who are your top 3 role models and why?


My top three role models are Emma Watson, Angelina Jolie and my mum, Claire. Emma Watson is an incredible actress, as is Angelina Jolie, and also Emma’s work as the UN Goodwill Ambassador with HeForShe is amazing. She inspires me so much and was the one who first taught me about feminism. Angelina’s humanitarian work is so incredible and inspiring too. And of course, my mum, because she is always supporting and loving me. She recently had her head shaved in order to raise awareness and funds for Alopecia UK, a charity that has had such a positive impact on my life, and for that, I am so so grateful.

        ------------------------------------


If you want to know more about Anna, check out her blog here, I’m sure you’ll love it! To find out more about alopecia visit the Alopecia UK website where there is lots of information and news.




If you liked this post you might like: Why Am I A Feminist? | A Fabulous Feminist

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In Poems

There's a girl | A Poem

Original Picture Credit

There’s a girl who is a much better person than me
Who walks far away from the paths I tread.
She has beach wave curls and jumps in leaves
Left crisp on the dusty city pavements
That lead her to where she needs to go.

She wears day-old mascara
And flowing skirts that graze her ankles.
She snuggles up in thick cardigans and baggy jumpers
But freezes herself for fashion.
She dons pretty dresses and dark lipstick
High-heeled boots and pigtails
Flannels and family-necklaces.

She writes poetry much better than mine
And even finishes her novels.
I say novels, as there are many –
Tens she has put into her own fumbled inky words,
Thousands upon thousands that are still
Clogged up inside of her.

She is active and outspoken
Loudly understated.
She lives the life she dreamed of
As a five-year-old girl reading books of fantasy and daring.

Her hair is cut at her collarbone
And is choppy at the ends.
She’s an expert at French plaits
And half-up-dos.

She sings and dances
To the audience of toy bears,
Empty shower gel bottles
And kitchen pans.

She is far away from me
But if I follow her on the
Leaf strewn paths she walks
I’ll go where I need to go.


If you liked this post you might like: Bedtime | A Poem

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In feminism

Seeing Sexism

I’ve heard many people (mainly men) saying that “sexism doesn’t exist anymore.” Um…WHAT?! Hopefully, I’m going to explain coherently that sexism does still exist but why some particular people don’t see it. If I don't achieve that then I'm sure you can find someone on the Internet who can talk about this better than I can.

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Let’s first clarify that sexism still exists in every single culture in the world currently. I’m pretty sure that all of my friends have been catcalled at least once in their life – most of them many times. I’m 17. Most of my friends are either 16 or 17. I know that to some of them it seems to happen weekly, sometimes daily.

We are constantly being bombarded by news headlines that focus more on a woman’s sexuality or body rather than the actual news story she has been involved in; you just need to take a look at some of the recent articles relating to Kim Kardashian to see that in action.

There is still a gender pay gap in many countries all over the world.

In many countries, children are still being married to men much older than them and are becoming mothers at an age that their body can’t handle.

Basic sanitary products aren’t supplied to those who need it most and can’t afford to pay for the amount they need.

FGM is still a thing.

Women are told by society to hide their bodies but not be a ‘prude’, whilst also showing some skin but not being a ‘slut.’ We are told to shave our legs and that we wear makeup to appeal to men. I just love eyeliner okay!

Do you know why men don’t notice any of this? Because it doesn’t happen to them. They don’t experience it first hand and it doesn’t affect them in the same sort of way so they don’t take any particular notice of it. They don’t see it. It’s the same sort of thing with racism. As a white person, I won’t be aware of some of the racism that goes on around me as it doesn’t affect me. Whereas someone who is near me and a POC may be very aware of something racist that has happened to them. In no way am  I excusing ignorance of any kind – I want to become more aware of the racism around me so that I can become a more helpful ally and help put a stop to it, the same way men should want to become more aware of the inherent sexism that goes on around them.

What do you think? Can you see the sexism and racism that happens around you? Or are you one of those people who insists that sexism has been eradicated?



If you liked this post you might like: Tampon Tax.

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