A lifestyle blog all about Birmingham, UK.

Thursday, 24 March 2016

The Stories Of My Life....So Far

I was devastated when I heard the news the other week that one of my favourite author's, Louise Rennison, had sadly passed away. I spent my early teen's completely obsessed with the Georgia Nicholson based books which were written amazingly well to display the REAL teenage girls issues which we all face at some point. Not only did I find them all hysterically funny, they helped me realise that I wasn't actually a weirdo, I was just being a normal teenage girl! At school when you're 12, it's easy to think that you're a complete nutter compared to the 'popular girls', but these books made me realise that all the girls around me were fighting in the same battle. 

After hearing about Louise Rennison, it got me thinking about all the books I've read over the years and the ones which have had some sort of affect on me; the ones which I will always treasure, the ones that had an impact on my writing style and the ones that made me look at life in a different way. Being the very nosey person I am, I love hearing about books which people have enjoyed, so I thought I would share with you my favourite ones...

These two books are the ones that have had the biggest affect on my writing style. I read 'Rubbish Boyfriends' written by Jessie Jones when I was 16 and just fell in love with it. In a way, it is written in the same humour as the Georgia Nicholson series, which is probably why I enjoyed it so much. It is a similar story with 'Confessions of a Tinderella' written by the brilliant Rosy Edwards; just wow! Not only was this genuinely hilarious and very, very relatable, it was also really gripping and I struggled to put the book down. I have always enjoyed writing about relationships and I love bringing a sense of humour to the situation when I tell my experiences, a lot like these books. When I think about the books which have had the biggest impact on the way I write, it is definitely these and I would thoroughly recommend them!

There have been a range of memoir's I have enjoyed over the years from some of my favourite women in the entertainment industry, but these are the ones which not only I enjoyed the most, but the ones that made me look at life just a little differently. Sex and the City's Samantha Jones will always be one of my hero's, but 'Being a Girl' written by the actress Kim Cattrall, is simply amazing. I read the book when I was 13 and the advice given in the book has stayed with me since. Although it is written to a teen audience, it is easy to apply the tips given to a woman in any stage of life. Being a Girl was the perfect thing to read when I was an early teen desperate to please friends and school friends and being so very confused about boys! The other books are ones that I have enjoyed in recent years, like 'How to be Lovely' written by Melissa Hellstern. As a huge admirer of Audrey Hepburn, the little tales of the woman herself and how you can apply them to your own life, make it such a lovely little read. Mindy Kaling is one of my favourite women of all time and her book 'Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)' is fantastic! Although it is essentially an autobiography, it is genuinely interesting and gives a huge amount of advice on making it in the entertainment industry. 'Not That Kind Of Girl' by Lena Dunham has come under a huge amount of controversy for certain things, but the book as a whole is a really interesting read and again, gives advice on life, love and friendships which therefore made me think about the way that I approach mine.

I couldn't write about my favourite books and not mention possibly my favourite author of all time, Roald Dahl! There are probably only a small handful of his books and tales that I didn't read when I was younger, but I think the most wonderful thing about his books are that they are really not just for children, I still find myself reading them even now and I can't wait to pass them onto my niece and one day my own children. 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory', 'Matilda' and 'The BFG' are my personal favourites and will treasure for the rest of my days, but I would never pass up the opportunity for another read of 'James and the Giant Peach', 'Fantastic Mr Fox' and of course, 'The Twits’. 

Of course, not every book I have ever read has had some kind of effect on me, but certain story lines and characters will stay with me forever and many books I can easily read again and again, like F. Scott Fitzgerald's heart-breaking romance novel 'The Great Gatsby' and the mind-blowing masterpiece '1984' by George Orwell. I first read Anne Frank's diary when I was 8 or 9, but you can never outgrow a diary which still shocks and breaks my heart every time I read it. In terms of motivational books, which are surprisingly worthwhile (I promise!), I would definitely recommend Jordan Ellenberg's 'How Not To Be Wrong: The Hidden Maths Of Everyday Life' and of course, my current read which helped my land my new job, 'Leave Your Mark' by Aliza Light, a fantastic read for not only people who are after a job in media, events or PR, but also for people who are after a career change and need a kick up the backside!

I think the true beauty of reading a book; whether it be a fiction novel where you can jump into another world, a true story or autobiography, it gives us time away from our every day lives, which we all need sometimes just to keep ourselves normal! Books have given me a huge amount of joy and a book shop or a library are places that you will never find me bored. They have given me inspiration, made me think about myself and those around me and have essentially had a part in the person I am. 

What are your favourite books and what would you recommend to me? I would love to know so get in touch!

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