MA Publishing Media

In September 2017, I started an MA in Publishing Media at Oxford Brookes and with graduation swiftly approaching, I have decided to reflect back on my experience and share it with you all.

Deciding to do an MA was not an easy one, for an array of different reasons — the worry of more debt, meeting new people, moving to a new city and ultimately taking on another major challenge in my life.

But, and this is a massive BUT…it was the BEST decision I have ever made because I met the loveliest people (some of who are now my best friends), I thoroughly enjoyed the course, loved living in Oxford and well – the debt – shh, we will address that at another time.

Honestly Oxford is one of my favourite places, just look at it!

Top tips:

Do work experience!!!

Be attentive and proactive

Ask questions

Ask for help when you need it

Be organised

Manage your time

Get involved

Here is the core structure to the MA Publishing course at Oxford Brookes:

First Semester:

Design and Production explores the digital aspects of design and production in the publishing process. It looks closely at current working practices in areas such as content design and typography, project management, the evaluation and selection of appropriate media platforms, the buying of raw materials and manufacturing processes, and the use of external resources.

Editorial Management and Content Development explores the strategic role of the editor within the publishing process and the knowledge and skills required for the development of new projects, whether in print or digital form.

Sales, Marketing and Consumer Insight provides a systematic examination of the key concepts and disciplines of marketing and their relationship and relevance to the products of publishing. It includes coverage of the marketing mix, consumer behaviour, segmentation, targeting and positioning, and elements of market research including SEO.

Second Semester:

History and Culture of Publishing examines the culture and ideology of publishing in terms of its development throughout the 20th century, and its contemporary practice. Different theories of print culture and critiques of the role of the publisher in society are reviewed, and there is an examination of ideological challenges to the culture of publishing.

Magazine Publishing provides a comprehensive insight into and understanding of the international magazine industry and its place as both a print and electronic product. It covers a range of contemporary issues and business models, exploring the job roles involved in the production of magazines and addressing the issues of editorial content, marketing, branding, technology, law and design.

Children’s Publishing explores the development of the market sector and the current shape and business practices of publishing for children and young adults. Topics include picture books, co-editions and translatability; the sector’s links to other leisure industries, merchandising and content reuse; editing and censorship; age ranging and gatekeeping; literacy and reading campaigns; and promotion.

Dissertation or Major Project is the defining and essential component for the award of the MA degree. It is a major in-depth investigation of a subject, theme or issue significant to the study of publishing through research and extended written work (15,000 words or equivalent for major projects).

Me visiting Sylvia Plath’s house in London.

I wrote my dissertation on the publication of Sylvia Plath’s work – the title was ‘I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart. I am, I am, I am.’1 The Exploitation of Sylvia Plath’s long- lasting Literary Legacy.’

If you have done the course, I would love to hear which modules you did and why and what you wrote the dissertation on!

Work Experience:

I cannot stress enough how important work experience is! Although you don’t NEED it to get a job in publishing, it looks great on your CV and it makes the experience gives you a lot to talk about in your interview. It is also a good way to see which field you would like to go into once the course it done. For me, I realised I loved the publicity and marketing (more leaning towards publicity) side of publishing because it reminded me of my love for blogging, engaging people passionately about books and showing off the finished product!

During my MA I was constantly applying for internships and work experience opportunities. But always remember that, even if you don’t secure the internship, you have still gained invaluable interview experience – so don’t be so hard on yourself if it takes time. As long as you’re trying, you’re doing great!

Due to my financial situation I had no choice but to work (basically) full time while studying and maintaining good grades BUT I made it work and squeezed in time to do work experience because I knew it was vital to my learning experience and future development. Thank goodness for coffee and all nighters because they helped me a lot with assignments – okay, okay I know I said a top tip was time management and this was not the best use of my time but it was the only way on a few occasions.

During the year of my MA I did the following work experience:

  • A Marketing and Publicity internship at Icon Books for two weeks
  • A Marketing and Publicity internship at Biteback Publishing
  • A Publishing internship at Pearson
  • Returned to Pearson for a three month work placement as an Inventory Administrator
  • Returned to Icon Books for a three months work placement as a Marketing and Publicity Assistant

I was really lucky that both Icon Books and Pearson invited me back and gave me another wonderful opportunity but just put yourself out there and try! Email publishing houses with your CV and be PROACTIVE! Don’t forget to proofread and work hard on each and every application.

Put yourself out there!

Blog Tour: Trapped by Nick Louth

Title: Trapped

Author: Nick Louth

Publisher: Canelo

Genre: Thriller

Links to Book:

Amazon (UK)

Kobo (UK)

Google Books (UK)

Apple Books (UK)

Blurb:

Two desperate criminals.

Something she never saw coming. A searing suspense thriller from bestselling author Nick Louth. In Manchester, two hardened gang members on the run take Catherine Blake and her one-year-old son hostage at gunpoint. She is in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Held in a Transit van, Catherine needs a plan fast. But it means diving into her captors’ risk-drenched world, and playing them at their own game.

Catherine has been through cancer, miscarriages and five draining years of IVF in order to have her son Ethan. He is the most precious thing in the world. She may be terrified out of her wits, but she’d do anything to protect him. Anything, no matter the cost… Brace yourself.

A nerve-shredding suspense thriller you won’t believe until you have experienced it yourself, Trapped is perfect for fans of Cara Hunter, JP Delaney and Rachel Abbott.

Review:

Thank you so much to Canelo for sending me a digital version of this book in exchange for a review.

This fast paced narrative captivated my attention straight away and I completely lost myself within Louth’s words.

The tension continues to build and build AND build and narrative is laced with violence and mistrust. So, it is safe to say that this is a STRESSFUL read! But in the best way possible because you (the reader) is completely lured into the narrative.

The multi-narratives provide the reader with mass information as they try and piece together the mystery and figure out who and what is reliable. The twists and turns will grab and maintain your attention while also leaving you longing for more. The characters were also well developed and thought out.

Author:

Nick Louth is a best-selling thriller writer, award-winning financial journalist and an investment commentator. A 1979 graduate of the London School of Economics, he went on to become a Reuters foreign correspondent in 1987. It was an experience at a medical conference in Amsterdam in 1992, while working for Reuters, that gave him the inspiration for Bite, which was self-published in 2007 and went on to become the UK No. 1 Kindle best-seller for several weeks in 2014 before being snapped up by Sphere. It has sold a third of a million copies, and been translated into six languages.

The terrorism thriller Heartbreaker was published in June 2014 and received critical acclaim from Amazon readers, with a 4.6 out of 5 stars on over 100 reviews. Mirror Mirror, subtitled  ‘When evil and beauty collide’ was published in June 2016. The Body in the Marsh, a crime thriller, is being published by Canelo in September 2017.  Freelance since 1998, he has been a regular contributor to the Financial Times, Investors Chronicle and Money Observer, and has published seven other books. Nick Louth is married 

Website: http://www.nicklouth.com

Twitter: @NickLouthAuthor

Remember Me by D.E.White Blog Tour

Book Blurb:

Fifteen years ago Ellen Smith vanished from the woods near her small Welsh village. Never to be seen again.

Eight people were in the woods that night: eight splintered lives, eight people hiding a terrible secret. But who can remember the truth?

Now, Ellen’s best friend, Detective Ava Cole is all grown up back in the village where it all began, and everyone is asking the same question.

What really happened to Ellen?


Filled with shocking discoveries and traumatic memories this fast paced thriller is perfect for fans of Friend Request and Close to Home.

Review:

*HarperCollins HQ sent me this book to review in exchange for an honest review*

As many of you will know, I am a sucker for a psychological thriller and as soon as I saw this thought provoking blurb, I knew I had to read it. I must also say that that cover is just STUNNING, the pop of yellow is really clever and instantly sucked me in.

The captivation didn’t stop at the front cover, the narrative also sucked me in with its unreliability, thrill factor and murder mystery. The main character Ava was very complex and like many psychology thrillers before, an unreliable voice that the reader does not know wether to trust or not.

The cat and mouse game/hunt between the characters made for an interesting read and kept my attention to the very end.

Considering the plethora of psychological thrillers I have read, I would give this one a 3/5 rating because it is not the worst I have read but it is also not the an ‘OMG I AM COMPLETELY OBSESSED WITH YOU’ kind of read either. Haha you know the one, the kind of book that you cannot stop thinking about.

About the author:

D E White started writing fifteen years ago, scribbling ideas on napkins at work on the night shift. After various jobs, including working as cabin crew, in a hospital, a supermarket, and as a 999 call handler for the ambulance service, she began writing full time in 2018. She is a multi-award winning entrepreneur, and was part of a small business delegation speaking at Number 10, Downing Street in 2015. Having spent a lot of time travelling the world, she now lives with her husband and two sons on the south coast of the UK, with a growing assortment of animals and several stick insects.

Buy Remember Me at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: HQ Digital; Kindle pub date 6 Feb. 2019Paperback pub date April 2019.

Prestige Flowers Review

Thank you to Prestige Flowers for sending me this gorgeous Valentines bouquet! There is something special about receiving flowers, the notion of thought and kindness associated with the gifting warms my heart.

I was lucky enough to be sent this wonderful bouquet from Prestige Flowers in exchange for an honest review. Lets get real now…the packaging is STUNNING, the massive delivery box got me soooo excited! The flowers themselves were absolutely GORGEOUS! My bouquet was made up of red roses and luxurious gold leaves that really made the flowers POP!

The bouquet was accompanied by the CUTEST teddy bear and a box of luxury chocolates!

Do you need Valentine’s or ‘GALENTINE’S’ day inspiration? Look no further, because they have you covered – just click on the link provided above and explore!

Here is a picture of my teddy, I named his Bruce.

I cannot recommend this company enough! The flowers were in incredible condition and the accompanying gifts were the perfect addition and will make any one feel special this Valentine’s Day.


Flowers + Books = PERFECTION

Of course, I had to get books involved! How beautiful is this picture!

Whats your favourite flowers?

I absolutely ADORE sunflowers and daisies!

2018 in reading…

Yay! I read 97 books in 2018!

  1. An Isolated Incident by Emily Maguire 
  2. Dog Songs by Mary Oliver 
  3. A Mighty Dawn (The Wanderer Chronicles #1) by Theodore Brun 
  4. Letters Home by Sylvia Plath 
  5. Letters of Sylvia Plath, Volume 1: 1940-1956 by Sylvia Plath 
  6. The Sun Is Also a Star Nicola Yoon 
  7. Secrets for the Mad by Dodie Clark 
  8. The Yellow Wall-Paper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
  9. Idiot Verse by Keaton Henson
  10. You Do You: How to Be Who You Are and Use What You’ve Got to Get What You Want by Sarah Knight
  11. Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
  12. My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella 
  13. The Keeper of Lost Things Ruth Hogan 
  14. My Absolute Darling by Gabriel Tallent 
  15. The Tinder Box by Hans Christian Andersen 
  16. Everything Wrong with You is Beautiful by Tina Sederholm 
  17. Night Sky with Exit Wounds by Ocean Vuong 
  18. Burnings by Ocean Vuong 
  19. Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud: The Rise and Reign of the Unruly Woman by Anne Helen Petersen 
  20. The Suffragettes by various
  21. Equal Power: A Handbook for Men and Women by Jo Swinson 
  22. The Beautifull Cassandra by Jane Austen 
  23. To Be Read At Dusk Charles Dickens 
  24. Places I Stopped on the Way Home: A Memoir of Chaos and Grace by Meg Fee 
  25. The Real Peter Pan: The Tragic Life of Michael Llewelyn Davies by Piers Dudgeon 
  26. The Art of Not Falling Apart by Christina Patterson 
  27. Midnight Sun by Trish Cook 
  28. Post-Truth: How Bullshit Conquered the World by James Ball 
  29. This Is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor by Adam Kay 
  30. Only Ever Yours by Lousie O’Neill 
  31. The Child by Fiona Barton
  32. The Memories of Us by Vanessa Carnevale 
  33. Mad Girl’s Love Song: Sylvia Plath and Life Before Ted by Andrew Wilson 
  34. The Death and Life of Sylvia Plath by Ronald Hayman 
  35. Pain, Parties, Work: Sylvia Plath in New York, Summer 1953 by Elizabeth Winder 
  36. The Aladdin Trial: A Burton and Lamb Thriller by Abi Silver 
  37. Mind Platter by Najwa Zebian 
  38. 11 Missed Calls by Elizabeth Carpenter 
  39. She Must Be Mad by Charly Cox 
  40. Letters of Ted Hughes by Ted Hughes
  41. Her Husband: Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath – A Marriage by Diane Wood Middlebrook 
  42. Ted Hughes: Poems Selected by Simon Armitage by Ted Hughes 
  43. Ariel’s Gift: Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath, and the Story of Birthday Letters by Erica Wagner 
  44. Wintering: A Novel of Sylvia Plath by Kate Moses
  45. Rough Magic: A Biography of Sylvia Plath by Paul Alexander 
  46. Sylvia Plath by Peter K. Steinberg 
  47. The Silent Woman: Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes by Janet Malcolm 
  48. Ariel: The Restored Edition by Sylvia Plath 
  49. Sylvia Plath: A Critical Guide by Tim Kendall 
  50. The Cambridge Companion to Sylvia Plath by Jo Gill 
  51. American Isis: The Life and Art of Sylvia Plath by Carl Rollyson 
  52. Crossing the Water by Sylvia Plath 
  53. Sylvia Plath and the Mythology of Women Readers by Janet Badia 
  54. The Unraveling Archive: Essays on Sylvia Plath by Anita Helle 
  55. That Was When People Started to Worry: Windows into Unwell Minds by Nancy Tucker 
  56. I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes with Death by Maggie O’Farrell 
  57. Normal People by Sally Rooney 
  58. Lullaby by Leila Slimani 
  59. The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith 
  60. Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture by Roxane Gay 
  61. My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite 
  62. Fierce Fairytales: Poems and Stories to Stir Your Soul by Nikita Gill 
  63. Me Mam. Me Dad. Me. by Malcolm Duffy 
  64. How to Be Single by Liz Tuccillo 
  65. Asking For It by Louise O’Neill 
  66. This Star Won’t Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl by Esther Earl 
  67. Ted and I: A Brother’s Memoir by Gerald Hughes 
  68. The Letters of Sylvia Plath Vol 2: 1956-1963  by Sylvia Plath 
  69. Almost Adulting: All You Need to Know to Get It Together by Arden Rose
  70. Sunrise by Jessie Cave
  71. Depression & Other Magic Tricks by Sabrina Benaim 
  72. Scrapbook of an Unfound Songstress by Vicky Nolan 
  73. The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris 
  74. Do No Harm: Stories of Life, Death and Brain Surgery by Henry Marsh 
  75. Africa’s Tarnished Name by China Achebe
  76. Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton 
  77. Hopeless Romantic by Dolly Alderton 
  78. The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton 
  79. The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K.Rowling 
  80. The Missing Girl by Shirley Jackson 
  81. The Veiled Woman by Anais Nin 
  82. Lance by Vladimir Nabokov 
  83. P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, #2) by Jenny Han 
  84. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
  85. It’s Not Summer Without You(Summer, #2) Jenny Han 
  86. We’ll Always Have Summer(Summer, #3) by Jenny Han
  87. Birthday Letters by Ted Hughes
  88. Ted Hughes: Poems Selected by Simon Armitage by Ted Hughes
  89. Lucky by Alice Sebold
  90. Vanity Fair: A Novel without a Hero by William Makepeace Thackeray
  91. It’s Not Me, It’s You by Mhairi McFarlane 
  92. Genuine Fraud by E.Lockhart
  93. The Witch Doesn’t Burn In This One by Amanda Lovelace
  94. The Princess Saves Herself in This One by Amanda Lovelace
  95. The Child by Fiona Barton
  96. The Necessary Angel by C.K.Stead
  97. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

How was your 2018 year of reading?

What was your favourite book?

Can you recommend any for me?

Scrapbook of an Unfound Songstress review…

Author: Vicky Nolan 

Blurb: 

You’re a 15-year-old schoolgirl who has big dreams of becoming a pop star, and then one day you get your lucky break. Polydor records sends you to Copenhagen to make pop music – to make you a recording artist. You get back home and your future is looking brighter than ever – until the High Court writ hits the door mat – you’ve fallen out with your management and they have decided to sue. No, this isn’t a dream, this is now Vicky Nolan’s reality and fast becoming a nightmare, and all while still at school at the sweet age of sixteen.

Read about the trial, the family, Hollywood, London town, the glamour, the dog (eh?) and most importantly, the music. Curiouser and curiouser?

We always talk about ‘making it’ and fulfilling your dreams. The question is, what if you don’t? What happens next? Ultimately, this book speaks about life and family; its hopes and disappointments, Its ups and downs. Scrapbook of an Unfound Songstress is in some way a story that speaks to us all, because in the end, the best stories are always true.

“I’m living my life as consequence of yesterday.
And all of my choices compliment my life today.
There may have been times I could have gone and lost my way,
I could have, I would have, I should have, I don’t care – I’m here now.”

@Captivated_by_Fantasy

Review:

Firstly thank you so much to Vicky for sending me this gem of a book. 

This book is written in a scrapbook/diary-esque format which makes it appear deeply personal and filled with even more passion. The description is soo powerful because of its authenticity and ability to suck you in. 

It is safe to say, I am fully invested in her dreams. I feel like I know her and that is one powerful quality of a book. To connect so deeply with a character’s qualities is amazing but even more amazing when that person is real. 

The reader is right by her side through all the ups and downs making her words fuelled with inspiration and passion. Ahhh the passion in this book makes me so so so happy and eager to take on new challenges and not give up on my dreams.

I just love how clearly developed and coherent her ideas are and the relationship she establishes with the reader with her openness. 

Overall, I would give this book  5 stars because of its authenticity. She pours her heart and soul into this book and you can tell – it is just wonderful.  

And, oh my god can Vicky S-I-N-G.  

She is beautiful inside and out and you must go and buy her book and support her because she deserves it so much!  

About the author:

Professional female vocalist Vicky Nolan performs impressive vocals to your favourite songs in her own unique, classic style. From Motown to RnB, Classical to Contemporary Pop and everything else that’s in-between. 

http://www.vickysingsforyou.co.uk

@unfoundsongstress

Me Mam.Me Dad. Me. Blog Tour…

Title: Me Mam. Me Dad. Me. By Malcom Duffy. 

Publisher: Head of Zeus. 

Blurb: 

Humorous and heartbreaking debut novel with the fresh, funny, honest voice of a 14-year-old Geordie lad recounting the trials and tribulations of family life and finding first love. Nominated for the 2019 Carnegie Medal. 

Danny’s mam has a new boyfriend. Initially, all is good – Callum seems nice enough, and Danny can’t deny he’s got a cool set up; big house, fast car, massive TV, and Mam seems to really like him. 

But cracks begin to show, and they’re not the sort that can be easily repaired. As Danny witnesses Mam suffer and Callum spiral out of control he goes in search of his dad. The Dad he’s never met. 

Set in Newcastle and Edinburgh, this supremely readable coming-of-age drama tackles domestic violence head on, but finds humour and hope in the most unlikely of­ places.

Review:

When the publishing sent me this book to review I did not know what to expect. My attention was instantly grabbed by the wonderful and bright cover and I just could not wait to devour it! It was also clear by the cover, the dialect was going to be northern, an accent that I welcome in my life as someone that is very much southern.  

This is a very important book, everyone needs to read it! Although themes such as domestic violence are sometimes difficult to read, this book approaches it in a really balanced and reassuring way. The information is easy to digest but it still kicks you in the teeth and makes you want to jump into the book and demand justice for the wronged.   

The protagonist, Danny, a fourteen year old boy was all I could wish for in this narrative and more. His fondness for his mother purely touched my heart and made me fall completely in love with his character.             As mentioned above, this book is easily accessible because of the way it presents the events in Danny’s life. Harrowing yet hilarious! He is broken yet full of banter.

This book does cater for an array of ages, it is suitable for young adult and I honestly do think it will help children like Danny in similar situations to process their thoughts and feelings and it is accessible to older people. I am 22 now and this book had me laughing and crying all at the same time. I just wanted to hug Danny at times and tell him every thing would be okay. 

‘Harrowing yet hilarious’

and….oh boy…that ending! Wow.  Message me to discuss because I need to talk but I do not want to ruin it!

About the author:

Malcolm Duffy is a Geordie, born and bred. His first novel, Me Mam. Me Dad. Me., nominated for the 2019 Carnegie Medal, was inspired by his time at Comic Relief, visiting projects that support women and children who have suffered as a result of domestic abuse.

malcolmduffy.com

@malcolmduffyUK

More About Malcolm Duffy

10 ways to overcome a book slump…

Recently I have been in a bit of a bookish slump, I  keep picking up books – reading a bit and then putting it down. Urg, I hate myself for doing this…come on Shannon – just read the darn book.

So, to motivate myself and you – I am going to reveal my top tips for getting out of a book slump.

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1. Stop reading the book you are currently reading:

This might sound like a strange thing to say but sometimes the book is just not right for you at this time in your life. It is stopping your progression, slowing you down and hindering your ability to move on – so put it down and pick another book.

2. Start a smaller book:

Size does matter! If you’re feeling the dread of a big book, do not rush your reading experience and force yourself to read it quickly. We all know there is no better feeling than finishing a book, so go and pick up a smaller book or an easy read because you will feel fab-u-lous once your read that last page. You will feel like your reading mo-jo is back, embrace it and let it motivate you.  Even if you just read one of the £1 penguin modern classics – reading is reading.

3. Switch genre:

You might not be feeling the genre anymore, so mix it up and try something else. This is also a good time to explore a completely new genre that is outside your comfort zone. Go for it!

4. Pick up an old friend:

This is where I would be whacking out one of the Harry Potter books for comfort (probably Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban) or The Bell Jar. Sometimes you just have to return to an old favourite and remind yourself why you love reading so much. For me, in my hectic life – I just need to zone out sometimes and lose myself within books.

5. Start or join a bookclub:

I have failed at this more times than I should admit – I have the best intention of going and then I don’t or me and my friends organise our own , read the book and then never discuss it. But I will join a bookclub soon, I will!

6. Set your own goals:

If you are an introvert like me and not fond of the bookclub idea, set your own goals to motivate yourself. Easy or hard goals will act as a reminder to you – this is why I love the Goodreads Reading Challenge because I can track what I have read and achieved so far and how far I have to go.

7. Reorganise your bookshelf:

If you’re anything like me, this tip will help you live your most organised life while also familiarising yourself with books you have forgotten about. We have all been there haven’t we? Moved a book and discovered a forgotten hidden gem.

8. Go book shopping:

I love a good bookshop! They are cozy, warm, full of wonderful people and of course, books! What more could you want? Go and motivate yourself with some new reads and grab a cup of tea if they have a coffee shop.

9. Watch a book to film adaptation:

Sometimes you just want/need a break from reading…do not judge yourself too harshly and just relax with a good movie.

10. Listen to a bookish podcast or audiobook:

This may be a podcast by your favourite author or a podcast about books! Like tip number 9, be kind to yourself and seek comfort in other forms. Some people do not view audiobooks as reading but it is – do not be ashamed of listening.

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  • What are you book slump tips?
  • Do you agree with any of mine?

Review of Not That Bad:Dispatches from Rape Culture edited by Roxane Gay.

*Thank you so much to Atlantic Books for sending me this book!*

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Blurb:

In this valuable and timely anthology, cultural critic and bestselling author Roxane Gay has collected original and previously published pieces that address what it means to live in a world where women have to measure the harassment, violence, and aggression they face, and where they are “routinely second-guessed, blown off, discredited, denigrated, besmirched, belittled, patronised, mocked, shamed, gaslit, insulted, and bullied” for speaking out.

Highlighting the stories of well-known actors, writers, and experts, as well as new voices being published for the first time, Not That Bad covers a wide range of topics and experiences, from an exploration of the rape epidemic embedded in the refugee crisis to first-person accounts of child molestation and street harassment.

Often deeply personal and always unflinchingly honest, this provocative collection both reflects the world we live in and offers a call to arms insisting that “not that bad” must no longer be good enough.

Review:

Oh boy! This book…urrgg…I just have so much admiration for the bravery of the people that decided to speak out. I wish I could hug every single author of the entries and tell them how amazing they are! This book could not have come at a better time, 2018 has seen the rise in the #MeToo movement and a lot of brave souls have spoken out for the first time!

The essays featured within the anthology made me cry and NEED change! It is an enlightening read full of raw and personal encounters with rape and I did have to put it down a few times to breathe and take it all in.

I was shocked by how sexual assault is still a prominent downfall of the twenty-first century and how often it happens. I truly hope this book shocks people into change because HOW is this still happening, no one deserves to have their bodies violated and it MUST stop. As I put the book down I found myself actively searching my brain on how I can contribute to the understanding of rape culture and how everyone needs to be aware of it – I started by recommending this book and giving it to a friend to read.

This eye-opening encounter and insight into something that not everyone can understand is vital in everyone’s life. It is not an easy read, but it is sooo worth it!

Every essay presents the reader with a different encounter of sexual assault which makes the anthology truly special as it gives people agency to express themselves in a culture where they are often silenced.

One aspect that I really admired was the voice given to male victims, often society associates rape victims with being a woman but that is so far from the truth. A victim is a victim no matter their gender, race, class or the culture they grew up in.

About the Editor: 

Roxane Gay is the author of the essay collection Bad Feminist, which was a New York Times bestseller; the novel An Untamed State, a finalist for the Dayton Peace Prize; and the short story collections Difficult Women and Ayiti. A contributing opinion writer to the New York Times, she has also written for Time, McSweeney’s, the Virginia Quarterly Review, the Los Angeles Times, The Nation, The Rumpus, Bookforum, and Salon. Her fiction has also been selected for The Best American Short Stories 2012, The Best American Mystery Stories 2014, and other anthologies. She is the author of World of Wakanda for Marvel. She lives in Lafayette, Indiana, and sometimes Los Angeles.

Rating: 

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May Wrap-Up

Hello everyone, I knows it been ages since frequent blog posts but hopefully I am back now!! Yaaaaaaayyy. I have recently finished the teaching side to my MA in Publishing Media at Oxford Brookes and I am coming to the end of my one month stint in London working at publishing houses. I am so grateful to Biteback Publishing and Icon Books for taking me in and teaching me so much. If you have any questions about publishing/an MA in publishing or internships – drop me a message in the comments.

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Due to my daily commute into London for the last month I have had a lot of reading time.  Check out the books I have read in May below –

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  1. The Child by Fiona Barton
  2. The Read Peter by Peter Dudgeon
  3. Equal Power by Jo Swinson 
  4. Places I Stopped on the Way Home by Meg Fee
  5. The Art of Not Falling Apart by Christina Patterson
  6. This Is Going To Hurt by Adam Kay
  7. Only Ever Yours by Louise O’Neill
  8. Post-Truth by James Ball
  9. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
  10. Midnight Sun by Trish Cook
  11. (and I am currently reading) Anatomy of a Scandal by Sarah Vaughan

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What have you been reading this month?