With July coming to a close, my country is heading into 1.5 years of this Covid-19 pandemic and things are actually getting worse every day. We are seeing a sudden rise in covid cases and death rates; every day there are 10,000+ positive cases and death tolls seem to be constantly over 200. The whole country has been in lockdown for most of the month, but still things haven’t been improving much.
For me personally, this meant yet another Eid without all of my family coming together to celebrate. While I was able to have a low-key reunion with some friends from school, I still miss how things used to be.
As depressing as all this is, there are a few good things that have been happening. We are getting tons of vaccines in donations, and people above 25 years have just been approved for vaccination. Hopefully pretty soon the vaccines will be available for those under 25 too so I can register as well.
That, and the mandatory work from home means I get to spend more time with my family and really focus on myself. It is rather strange, but I always seem to thrive when I am working remotely; I feel productive and energetic as I don’t have to commute all the way to work or sit ducks during Dhaka’s crazy morning rush. And if work gets too overwhelming I always have my mom to pamper me and my cats to make all the stress go away. 😅
Maybe that’s why this month I have been able to be a bit more active on the blogosphere. This month I was happy to see my view count and visitor counts go up! 📈 🥳
Of course I still have a very long way to go before I can get to where I want to be. And while I have long ago stopped obsessing over my blog stats (doing so had always made blogging feel like a chore and put me off it completely); I still want to see some improvements in myself and the things that I put up here every month.
Because when I look back on my own content, I feel this immense happiness in seeing some of my own posts. I can’t quite explain it, but I always feel this sense of fulfillment when I am creating something, regardless of whether it is good or bad. And this feeling is the strongest when I am writing, which may be why I love my career as a content writer so much.
Here are some of the blog posts that I am proud of from July 2021.
This July, I did my very first cover reveal event for I Am Ayah – The Way Home by Donna Hill. I have been reading a lot of romance novels lately and also binging a lot of romantic comedies. So I was really thrilled to be part of this amazing cover reveal event.
Aaaaand I also did my first author interview! It’s a bit silly because I have been book blogging for years now, but I have always felt very nervous at the idea of interviewing an author. I used to hold myself back from requesting ARCs and reaching out to authors by thinking that I wasn’t an important enough voice in the community to qualify for such things. But the older I grow, the braver I seem to be and so I just went for it.
My interview with Uzma Jalaluddin, the author of Hana Khan Carries On will always be one of my favorite blog posts here for this reason. I had so much fun during this interview, and it was amazing to be able to sit down and talk about the representation of Muslims and South Asian women in media with her. 💜
Aside from this, I have been brushing up on my handlettering skills this month and as well trying my hand at some plant drawings. I am a complete noob but it is still so much fun that I can’t help myself!
I also finished the first seasons of Sweet Tooth and Jane The Virgin on Netflix this month and absolutely loved them both!
Sweet Tooth is such an amazing science fiction drama that has all the things I loved in some of my favorite YA science fiction novels. I loved the casting, the cinematography and the terrifying way many of the things shown in the series had actually happened during this global pandemic (albeit in exaggeration of course).
As for Jane The Virgin, it is by far the cutest rom-com show I have ever watched. Jane, with her firm religious beliefs and struggles between pursuing her dream to become a writer or being realistic and becoming a teacher–that’s way too relatable for me. Jane herself is a very relatable character in general, a bit awkward, a bit funny and always getting into the strangest situations.
Ironically, the one thing I haven’t really been doing this July is reading. I finished The Woodcock by Richard Smyth and Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim…and both were a bit disappointing. It kind of put me off of reading anything new for a while, so right I am now re-reading The Fifth Season by N. K Jemisin and falling in love with her story once again.
And that wraps up the month of July for me. Looking back, it’s actually been pretty great all things considered, though I wish things were a bit better in terms of the virus outbreak. Here’s to hoping August will bring good things for my country; for me personally I already know August is going to be crazy busy and hectic (I have two products that will be launched just weeks apart) but I am trying to remain optimistic and rise to the challenge. Come hell, come high water.