My Summer Reading List For 2021

It’s summer and the air is fair. As part of my ongoing effort for this year, I am trying to finish what I already have. Netflix I have made a list and while the list dwindles slowly, it dwindles. I’ve put a hiatus on buying new video games until I’ve finished the old. And my Audible subscription is cancelled until further notice. Lists are becoming my saving grace this year and now is the time to finish the books I’ve received but haven’t read. So without further ado, here’s what I’m reading this summer:

Moonflower Murders

Everyone loves a good murder mystery and everyone needs a beloved author; this book fills both those role. ‘Moonflower Murders’ is the sequel to Anthony’s Horrowitz’s, ‘Magpie Murders’, a book with a twist and one that I couldn’t put down. Will ‘Moonflower Murders’ offer the same experience? Hard to say but I love Anthony Horrowitz. He wrote the ‘Alex Rider’ series that I read as a teen and the fact that he writes adult novels has been a dream come true. No more sitting on the shelf, I’ll be dusting this book off in the coming months and reading it to my heart’s content.

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

Hunger Games. The series I binge read in college. I started one book and couldn’t put it down until I had read the entire trilogy. I am a sucker for post-apocalyptic novels and this was no exception. At one point, I was able to figure out the location of every district based on details in the books. Now, I only remember a few. Will ‘The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes’ offer as many thrills? It’s an enticing offer, having a story regarding Snow. I know so little about the book that it’ll be a treat all on it’s own, one that I will hopefully get to reading before the summer ends.

The Righteous Mind –

A classic written by Jonathan Haidt. My friend gave it to me as a gift and I’m slowly making my way through it page by page. Little to my knowledge, the author actually came up with the term The Rider and the Elephant to describe intuition and rationality, which I had heard many years ago in my Ethics class! As such, this book is beyond awesome for that reason alone as I started applying that concept to my everyday life. I’m a little over 50 pages in at the moment, so here’s hoping to finishing the book before the Oregon Wildfire season consumes my every waking thought!

The Odyssey –

The original, the classic, THE epic poem. It’s time I become cultured and join the upper epsilons of society. Will this lead to reading ‘Dante’s Inferno’? Who knows. But I do know I actually lost my copy of ‘The Odyssey’ but am so determined to read it that I bought a copy on Audible. I’ve had this copy since before the Pandemic, just to give you an idea of where the backlog of books begins.


And that’s it! Four books for three months! I’ll be taking time off in August so I’m hoping to get a lot of reading done this summer. Ideally I want to read at least ten minutes a day to get back into the groove and really sit down to enjoy a good book. All these books I know so little about, so it should make for an exciting summer.

June 2021 Status Update: A Tinkerer’s Guide

It’s June! As we move into the warmer months, I’ll be talking about Sustainability in July and in August I will be taking a month off to relax. This month will be relatively tame with most likely a poem and will be used to plan out my articles for next month.

Mental Health Awareness Month

This year was a pivot away from some of the darker topics. Instead, I’ve opted for the articles to be more story driven in nature and focused on concepts, reminiscent of my older articles when I discussed business terminology in the context of my life. I’ve written some great articles on my personal life and personal strife but it’s time for a change. I scrapped a couple drafts this month in favor of talking about social media, meditation, and anxiety. Anxiety I enjoyed writing about and I’d like to keep it that way. I’m comfortable talking about my fathers alcoholism but that had a time and place. I was able to make sense of his world and any more on the subject would be to dwell; a road I don’t feel inclined to walk down. I had a draft for an article talking about the passing of my father but ultimately left it unpublished and unfinished. I thought writing about his death might reveal some hidden knowledge much as writing about his alcoholism helped me come to terms with my reality, but it didn’t. The fact of the matter is death is death and I was with him in the end. In the end, I chose love over bitterness. If I do bring it up, it’ll be here or there but I have a strange sense of peace with the whole situation, a peace I didn’t have a year ago. The toughest aspect has been an underlying exhaustion which could be symptomatic of mild depression; understandable given the trauma I’ve endured. I wrote a poem at the end of April and that felt more a fitting send off then the cold calculus of an article.

Special Series and other Joys

I’ll be making a slight adjustment to my series; instead of a post a week, I’ll be doing three for a given month. Four a month was an arbitrary number, based solely on the fact that I thought it’d be cool to write every week of a month. Three a month is more manageable and gives me more time to work should I have to re-edit an entire article (which happens more often then you’d think). I might make other changes as I continue to write special series but for now I’m happy with making this small adjustment. I’ve started initial work on creating a podcast and while nothing may come of it, I’m in the process of drafting the script for my first episode. I have no idea what I’m doing but I want a hobby where I can actively practice public speaking, much as I’ve done with writing.

Goodbye Social Media

As you may have noticed, the Twitter feed is gone from the blog! I’ve had a lot of time to think about the internet during the Pandemic and I have deemed social media unworthy of my time. Since writing my mental health article, I reinstalled and uninstalled various social media apps; I now have none on my phone. If people need to get in touch, texting is the way to go. I want the blog to reflect this choice and not create stress through a constant feed. The blog is healthy as it is with organic traffic and while I might still use social media sites from to time, I long for the day where I can be free, or at least, for social media to be better. I’ll most likely write about social media more as the years progress, however, I’m looking to make improvements from my mental health article. Mostly, I’ll emphasize the positive benefits of quitting rather than focus on the dystopian nightmare social media is.

Outside of the blog

A career is weighing heavily on my mind. I’ve worked a job but not a career. I’m frustrated that when I invest in an action, there is no payoff. What I mean by this is, for example, my brother is an artist. He can go out and take photos because he thinks something is of interest. He can then take those photos and use those as reference for his work. His hobbies lead to his craft and he gets that satisfying burst of fulfillment. I do not have that luxury at the moment. Writing I enjoy but that’s where the buck ends. In the intangible sense, it’s great, I can craft narratives and work on my communication. Conveying voice in writing is not easy and yet, my writing becomes more distinct the more I write. It’s a fun bit of trivia, a quirk to mention in passing. Yet, with Management as my field of study, it can be a difficult sell. I’m not writing articles as a Manager, Sales Rep, or any numerous fields attributed to Management. And thus, a lack of fulfillment ensues. A framework I’m adopting is I have not quite found a job where I can directly apply what I enjoy doing in my free time. Learning to code feels far from home and while the dots might connect to business, they do not connect easily. Hence, a lack of fulfillment and a wave of misery that follows. The dream is to learn web development as a starting point but often it can feel as though I’m throwing effort into the void. Or it could be simply a dark shadow cast by depression, a lack of meaning brought about by tragedy. Who knows!

But…

The blog is healthy and I’m building it around the future work I’ll eventually do. That means a month off in August, three articles instead of four when writing special series, and a steady stream of status updates that are essentially my newsletter. This is my little piece of the internet and I’m going to hold onto it. No update next month but get ready for articles on sustainability! August off should be nice! That’s all I have and feel free to comment below; I am always open to feedback!


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