New year, new me?

Before I start: I know. It’s been 873 years since I last did a post (and that is no exaggeration).

I was always thiiis close to writing one, but then life got in the way.

I thought I would give you guys an update of what is going on in my life, and then end this with a list of my resolutions for the new decade.

So, last time I spoke to you I was working as an Editor at this teeny tiny online magazine. I gained so many invaluable skills while working there, but unfortunately, I had to leave when term started to focus on my studies.

Since then, I had been doing various freelance writing jobs in order to fund my way through third year, you can view my articles by clicking here.

I also had my first ever article published in a real printed newspaper! In fact, I had two! They were both about the Hong Kong protests, which I hope to write about in my blog later this month.

I have done a seemingly endless amount of assignments and exams for my degree, and have been on the hunt for a graduate job. I am currently waiting to hear back from a leading national newspaper that I had an interview with, I am hoping to hear back tomorrow.

So, what is the point of this post?

Well, I was thinking so hard about what my comeback post would be, and it felt like the longer I didn’t post, the better my comeback needed to be.

And then I stopped.

And then I thought.

And then I remembered.

This is my blog. I can write about whatever the hell I want to. So I wrote this.

And now I am back and have broken the ice, I am ready to get back into writing regular posts.

With that thought in mind, I want to share with you all my 2020 resolutions.

  1. Be kinder to myself. That means being understanding of myself, patient with myself. I saw a tweet once that essentially said that you should only talk to yourself in the same way you’d talk to a friend. Would you tell a friend that they’re letting people down? Would you tell a friend that they are ___? No, so why tell yourself that?
  2. Get fit, stay sickening. Now, I have never felt the need to be super skinny. But, I found out recently that I have gained a considerable amount of weight in a year, and I am tired of it. My goal is to lose 2 dress sizes by my graduation (in July).
  3. Work even harder. I have always been a grafter, and work hard for what I want. But, if I am being totally honest, I could always have spent just a few extra hours revising or job hunting or working on my essays. If I want a good outcome for my life, I need to be more disciplined and stop glorifying being lazy as ‘self-care’!

That’s all I have so far as I don’t want to set myself too much to work at. You have to be honest, and sometimes part of honesty is admitting when you’re doing things… well… right.

I am feeling so anxious about hearing back from this job interview. I felt like it went well, but my nerves got the best of me and caused me to have a bit of verbal diarrhoea, so I am hoping that my (very lovely) interviewer recognises that it was nerves, rather than me being a loud-mouthed prick.

Do let me know down in the comments below what your new year’s resolutions are as I am always so interested to hear what people are working towards!

4. I promise to do more of what I love (which includes writing to you guys!)

Lots of love, from Evie x

Happy Earth Day!

“God bless Mother Nature” – It’s Raining Men, The Weather Girls

Happy Earth Day! Every year on the 22nd April we celebrate the Earth and take time to consider what more we can do to help the environment.

If you live in London as I do, you will know that the environment has been on people’s minds recently. Not only because of the unusually hot weather we have had (hard to fully enjoy it when you have a voice in the back of your brain screaming “GLOBAL WARMING”) but also because of the protests. Young people have come together to cause chaos in London in order to bring the issue of climate change to the forefront of the public eye. There have been over 1000 arrests due to these protests, and 53 people have been charged as of today. The nation is split over whether the environment is worth getting arrested and possibly locked up for. The protests have been largely peaceful and the goal is only to disrupt Londoners, rather than to hurt them. For example, in the Natural History Museum today, over 100 protestors lay on the floor of the Museum as part of a “die in”, to emphasise the risk of the extinction of the human species. There is further speculation that these protestors will find some way to disrupt the London marathon on Sunday, where I will actually be attending to support my father and grandfather who will be running.

Whether you agree with their methods or not, I personally think it is hard to argue that these protestors have achieved their ambition of bringing more awareness to climate change, and hopefully their actions will pressure the government to do more. They want the government to declare a climate emergency and take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.

We shouldn’t just live for today, we have to think about tomorrow.

If you feel like you would like to do more to help the environment, I have made a little list of very simple and small (but effective) things to do:

  1. Recycle! I know it sounds very basic, but you would be amazed by how much stuff we as a nation throw into the bin when we should really recycle it.
  2. Turn off lights, electric appliances/gadgets, and taps when not in use.
  3. Invest in a hot water bottle instead of putting on radiators all the time! I like to put one in my bed while I get my pyjamas on so it is all toasty when I get in.
  4. Buy yourself a super cute reusable bag! You can keep it in your normal handbag, and it means you don’t have to keep using and wasting plastic bags (plus a super cute tote bag is much more aesthetic than a Tesco plastic bag!) my good friend Sooriya pointed out that in the comments it may not be the best to go about ordering new tote bags, so perhaps using ones you already have (and personalising them) or making some out of cool old T-shirts would be better! Either way, cotton-tote bagging is the future.
  5. Also, get yourself a cute water bottle! It will stop you from buying single-use plastic bottles, and also encourage you to carry it around and drink more water. We love a hydrated queen!

Those are just some really basic tips, but do let me know down below what tips you have to help save the environment! And also let me know what your opinion is of the eco-protests in London (and other cities like Brighton).

Lots of love, Evie x

A New-Found Sense of Empowerment

If you are a regular reader of mine then you will know that I am a MASSIVE fan of Ted Talks. So, when I heard that an evening of Ted Talks were being held at my Uni you know that ya girl was all over it! I bought tickets not even knowing what the theme was- I just wanted to be a part of it.

When I got there I found out that the theme was Empowerment. What is Empowerment? How does one find Empowerment? Does Empowerment come from within, or is it something we give to each other? How do we Empower women, minority races, disabled people, etc.? These were the main topics discussed throughout the evening.

A lady called Oloni did a talk about Empowering women, especially in the workplace, and gave a fantastic story about how she got a job at Cosmopolitan despite the odds.

WOW. I walked out of that room a changed woman.

Before then, I had been applying to mediocre summer jobs that I knew I would get. But after the talk, I started applying to places that I never ever thought I would get even an interview for. I thought to myself, ‘What’s the worst that could happen? They say no’.

Anyways, only three days after the Ted Talk, I landed myself a job! I am going to be a PR and Marketing intern!

What is the message of this short post? Simply, do not let your insecurities or doubts get in the way of your dreams. Apply for the job, ask the guy out, do the karaoke. You are the only thing in the way of yourself! Truly, what is the worst that can happen? This is a message I hope to take forward for the rest of my life and apply it to new situations and scenarios, and I hope you guys do too.

What things have you guys achieved recently because you didn’t let your fear stop you? I’d love to hear!

Love from Evie x

‘Them: Adventures With Extremists’ – Book of the Week

By now you should all know what a massive Jon Ronson fan I am. I have already written two reviews of ‘The Psychopath Test‘ and ‘So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed‘, and I adored both of these books. Again, I did really enjoy this book, but I would not say it is as strong as the other two.

Ronson talks to a wide variety of characters to get a total understanding of different kings of extremists. He talks to an Islamic Fundamentalist, various KKK (Ku Klux Klan) branches, and even members of the Bilderberg group. He explores lizards ruling us in the form of Beyonce and Queen Elizabeth II. Gun lobbying white supremacists. Jihadis looking to take down the British government. These earlier topics were so interesting and I thoroughly enjoyed reading and learning about them.

Although I did enjoy the novel, as I stated before I felt that it was not as strong as his other texts. Perhaps this is an unpopular opinion, but I felt some of the chapters were weaker and a bit repetitive. There are a few chapters dedicated to the Bilderberg group, which was relatively interesting but there was not enough substance to justify that much time. I would have liked more chapters on the KKK or Sharia Law advocates as these are the real extremist groups I think people were hoping to read about when they saw this novel. However, what is good about Ronson’s books is that the chapters are all separate stories, and so if one does not take your fancy then you can easily skip ahead to the next chapter.

Ultimately though I do recommend this book as it gives an interesting insight into the lives of these extremists. In true Ronson style, it is approached with a light-heartedness that does not make this a heavy read. He never truly mocks these extremists, rather tries to understand them, all while under the threat of them finding out that he is Jewish. His kind and respectable manner enables the extremists to trust him and we see a side of them that the world does not get to see.

This was only a short review as I think my blog content is a little Ronson heavy! Just wanted to share my opinion with you guys. What did you think of the book? And do you have any recommendations for me? Please let me know in the comments below!

To buy the book on amazon, click the image below:

‘Them: Adventures With Extremists’, £6.48, Amazon

 

Free Audible Download Link:

 

If you are interested then Amazon has given me the opportunity of offering you guys a 30 Day Free Trial with Kindle Unlimited! It’s like Netflix but for eBooks! There are over 1 million ebooks and audiobooks and you get to read an unlimited amount. The first 30 days is absolutely free with the link below, and after that it is only £7.99 a month, however you get to cancel at any time if you are unhappy with the service (which I highly doubt). That’s only £7.99 per month for unlimited books and audiobooks! And the first month is free? Unbelievable. You don’t even need a kindle! You can just download the free app onto your smartphone or tablet. If  you are ready to KindleUnlimited and Chill then just click the link below:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/kindle-dbs/hz/signup?tag=evelynrichard-21

Lots of love, Evie x

‘So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed’ – Book of the Week

 

Anyone who is a regular to this blog knows that I am a massive fan of Jon Ronson. After reading ‘The Psychopath Test’ (the detailed and enthusiastic review for that is here) I went and bought all of his books and downloaded his podcasts. My next book of choice was ‘So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed’. Again, a similar thing  happened when I started reading this book, I realised it sounded familiar. “Oh yes!” I thought, “I have already seen him do a Ted Talk on this topic.” The TedTalk also stuck in my mind, and so I will link to it below:

 

Although he explores many medias, Ronson mainly focuses his attention on online shaming- in particular Twitter. How people can tweet a misworded joke and end up being hated by the entire world. Death threats and rape threats thrown at them, and real-life ramifications such as being fired. Online shaming and exposure is even more relevant now than it was in 2015 when this novel was published as people like beauty-guru Laura Lee, director of Guardians of the Galaxy James Gunn, and more recently even beloved comedy-actor Kevin Hart have been under fire as people have dug up offensive tweets from years ago. It has started a debate around how long can someone have a dodgy tweet held against them? Should someone be fired for saying something offensive years ago, or do we forgive them? Who even deserves forgiveness? Is a racist tweet worse than a homophobic/sexist tweet? Ronson touches on these issues and more in his book. He also looks to empathise with the shamed. He gives context to their misworded tweets and gives advice on how to ride the shaming train and come out unscathed. He looks into the mob-mentality of public shaming and the psychology of being embarrassed. He researches cases where people have felt so ashamed for their acts that they have committed suicide (for example, Ashley-Madison is a site for people looking to start an affair. It was hacked and the names and details of thousands of users were leaked).

I recommend this book to anyone else who is as aware of the rise in online scandals and shaming and wants to explore the debates surrounding it. I would love to hear of your thoughts down below!

Love from, Evie x