Sunday, 15 February 2015


There’s no shying away from the fact that I am a bit of a geek. I love nothing more than to snuggle down with a good book and pass the time following the adventures, troubles and celebrations of so many characters; it gives me such a buzz. However, I can’t help but feel closed minded and boring when I’m always skipping from one novel to another without even considering the many other forms of writing. It’s just a phase that I’m going through as I used to love the reading and writing of poetry and the dramatic intensity of a play but I’ve got boring and that needs to change! Soooo…I’ve thought of a few ways to get my brain feeling excited again and to keep my eyes open to all the other things that I’m missing out on. I’ve written a list of challenges and goals that I want to stick with for the year … and here it is.

1.       Read one poem from ‘The Oxford Book of English Verse’ a day. This seems like an easy one, but I don’t mean just READ one, I mean UNDERSTAND one a day- because being honest half of the poems in that book will take a lot more work for me to even remotely know what they’re saying. I picked this anthology in particular because I’m using it as one of my texts at university and it has such a vast array of poems from all styles and time periods. 

2.      Read ‘The Guardian’ everyday- it doesn’t have to be the news section…It can be arts, culture- whatever I fancy. I used to do this most days- I loved The Guardian’s website and I used to love mooching through the articles all the time… They always had something interesting to read.

3.     When I read anything- be it a novel, poem or article… If I don’t know a word…research it and learn the meaning of it. This is a great technique to broaden your vocab- there’s so many times that we read something and guess the meaning of a word based on its context in the sentence. Just imagine how many more words you’d be able to use and know if you learn two or even just one word a day.

4.   Don't be afraid of older classics!... I've always loved the idea of reading all the classics and quoting Jane Austen with ease but I've never given it a chance and instead ran in the other direction when seriously thinking about tackling a classic. I am however determined to change this and give it my best in finishing a long, complicated classic; because I honestly believe they hold some amazing stories once you get past the gap in language and style. 

All of these goals or challenges are simple, but I really felt they’d develop me academically- and what’s wrong with a bit of extra brain power right?!
Let me know if you have any routines or achievements like this!

Here’s to trying to be smarter.



  1. I love this book. I'm really obsessed with trying to be smarter this year too. I've been branching out with the sorts of books I read and I've been trying to read stories from the New Yorker but I kind of suck at it. I hope you're doing better than I am!

    x Ely

    1. It's so hard to motivate yourself to learn new stuff it you're not studying it a uni etc. So I wanted to try and make some easy, but useful pointers that I could stick to and just be a bit more 'in the know'. I've not been too good at sticking to it myself, but anythings better than nothing right?! x