Thursday, April 9, 2015

Nadaness news, updates & giveaways

I've wanted to do a sort of quarterly report on my reading progress and keep my readers/fans/friends updated on Takhayyal and other ongoing bits on the blog.

This week, I decided to make my Takhayyal prompts once every two weeks instead of weekly to give myself and others time to write.

Takhayyal Week 7 and Week 8 both got more responses when the prompt was extended. (updated note)

I'm feeling optimistic and excited about the prompt for week 8, which was posted last week. So starting that, prompts will be two weeks long.

As for my reading progress, I've crammed myself so much in March to the extent that it was hectic and tiresome for me. But luckily, my reads were amazing and made up for my mistakes.

Although I read or finished around four books in March, Goodreads has me at "One book behind" in my reading challenge for 2014.

I must say, I'm lagging behind on The Sham by Ellen Alan, which is very embarrassing. I signed up for several tours and these are bound by dates, so I had to put Ellen's book aside for a bit till I can meet my deadlines.

I also haven't started on my New Year's Resolution of reading Arabic books – again this because of book tours and review requests, all of which are in English.
Hopefully, I'll have more time to do my Arabic readings in May and June. (I don't think I'll have time in April, which is almost half way through).

I want to thank authors, who accept my delays and postponements in posting reviews. Recently, someone asked for a review and I told them I'm book till June – which is true – and they said they didn't mind. It really made me feel appreciated.

Here is a list of the reviews of books I read in March:

Seasons of Time by Miriam Khan
Bound by Spells by Stormy Smith
Just Pru by Anne Pfeffer
The Outcast Star by I.M. Tu

I recently announced a massive YA giveaway. Yesterday, I won two books from the giveaway! More on my to-read list but I just couldn't miss the opportunity.
I hope others have won what they wanted too.

I compiled a list of ongoing giveaways, while the massive YA one has ended, the others are still in progress, so hurry up and get a chance to win one or more of these amazing books. Check them out here.

Several of these giveaways are via my blog so you have a bigger chance of winning.

Having read 8 out of 36 books in my 2015 reading, I have so far covered 22% of my target, which I was hoping to take up a notch to 40 books – but that's for another time.

This week I started reading Sun Tzu's The Art of War. This is the first paperback I've held – to read - in almost a year (buying from bookshops and the book fair don't count as holding). It feels strange when you want to highlight something and you're afraid you'll spoil the book. I got used to highlighting and writing notes on my Kindle.

My upcoming reviews for April are: (in particular order)

The Sham by Ellen Alan
The Huntress by Nadja Losbohom
Family Secrets by Kat Nicols (less than a week before the giveaway for her book ends, check the above link)

I almost forgot!
In March, I hosted our first Poetry Recital for 2015 at Cairo University.
In April, I'll be moderating a seminar with scholar and translator Samah Selim also at Cairo University on Thursday, 16 April, 2015. The theme of the seminar is "Why We Translate: Some Notes on Love, Loss and Longing".
Wish me luck!
Check out the Facebook event here:

I am also considering revamping the Book Reviews Page. It is currently divided according to the type of book, but I'm thinking of doing it in alphabetical order of book titles (or authors). What do you think?
The thing is, I review novels, novellas, short stories, poetry collections and anthologies, so I wanted to have things separate but I feel that it looks weird.
Feedback would be highly appreciated!

I'm doing another call for artists and photographers who might be interesting in sharing their work on my blog as part of the Takhayyal series. Rules can be found here.

There are several interviews in the pipeline. So stay tuned!

I'm not sure what else I wanted to add in this "quarterly" report. But that's all folks!

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