Book Blog: NaNoWriMo Chronicles

National Novel Writing Month, known as NaNoWriMo, is an annual writing challenge that takes place in the month of November. The goal is to write 50,000 words over the course of the month, enough to write the average novel. Despite the name, participants can write anything, as long as the total word count goal is 50,000 words. Helena Verdier, a municipal liaison for NaNoWriMo Ottawa, wrote about her experience racing to hit the word count and gave some tips for NaNoWriMo beginners. If you had asked me just over a month ago how I thought National Novel Writing Month would go, I would have been very hesitant to say anything more than “I’m hopeful?” Now that we are a week […]

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Book Blog: Books by celebrities that are actually kind of okay

It’s been about a month since former One Direction member Zayn Malik released Z, a memoir/photo diary about the transition period between his last days as a boy-band member and his solo career. Unfortunately, it’s not well-written or trashy enough to recommend. Fortunately for you, I’ve compiled a list of books, fiction and nonfiction, by other celebrities that are more than worth your time. I’ll Never Write My Memoirs – Grace Jones Grace Jones’ career has been a long and diverse one. She’s been a model, singer, actress, muse, and shows no signs of stopping. Having worked with Keith Harring, Andy Warhol, and Yves Saint Laurent, Jones has had a long and storied career—the kind that’s perfect for a tell-all […]

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Book Blog: Ways of Reading

When people think about John Berger, who passed on Jan. 2, they’re probably thinking about the documentary series Ways of Seeing, in which he discussed the perception of art, touching on subjects like oil painting, the nude, and reinterpreting Walter Benjamin’s The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction for a new generation. However, Berger’s true strength lay in his written works: eight novels and a multitude of nonfiction texts have come to define his legacy as a humanist and sagacious interpreter of art. Here are some of his notable works. G. (1972) Published the same year that Ways of Seeing was originally broadcast, G. was Berger’s first great novel. The story is an update of the Casanova […]

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Book Blog: Webcomics—all the creativity, none of the expenses

Comics are a fantastic type of media, melding beautiful art, compelling stories and characters together. However, if you’re not that familiar with the genre, it can be intimidating to shell out a lot of money for multiple volumes or issues. That’s where webcomics come in. Over the past two decades, the internet has allowed cartoonists, artists, and writers to experiment and create their own stories rather than waiting to be discovered by a big publisher. There’s amazing stories being told in webcomics, both new and longstanding. Here’s some of my favourite webcomic reads that explore speculative fiction, from steampunk to superheroes, from robots to fairytale retellings. Girl Genius by Phil and Kaja Foglio Europa was in chaos after “sparks”, mad […]

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Book Blog: Stories with diversity are important

In a topsy-turvy world where a man who has blacklisted the American Muslim, Latino, and Black communities has become president of the most powerful nation on Earth, it’s a good time to escape into the world of fiction. When we consume stories, we can be transported to different places and cultures, stepping into the shoes of people who have vastly different worldviews and experiences from our own. And in stepping into another person’s shoes, we learn to better understand and empathize with others overall. So in a society that has so much more learning to do than we realized, it’s so important to read and listen to stories from all over the world, from different periods in time, and especially […]

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