How Is It October 15?!

OMG. Today is October 15. The Ides of October. I just got over that it was October 1 and now here it is mid-month already.

Seriously, I’m about 7 weeks behind. I couldn’t believe when the calendar flipped over to October. At the beginning of the month, I started writing a completely different post. I set that post aside for, I swear, a day or two. Now here it is mid-month and that post is out of date.

So here I am writing a it’s-mid-month-where-has-this-month-gone post instead of the previously started it’s-October-and-I-have-so-many-things-to-get-done.

Seriously. But it is October.

October is one of my favorite months. Not only does the weather become perfect with crips mornings and warm afternoons, October means Halloween and Samhain, apple picking and pumpkin spice, fall colors and beautiful leaves, crackling bonfires, sweaters and cozy socks and fleece blankets, and all sorts of other good things.

Hello fall.

Of course, now that I live on a sub-tropical island, fall weather means I don’t immediately sweat when I walk outdoors and I can leave my balcony door open, but I still wear shorts and flip-flops. No flannel or fleece for me this year!

October also has so many activities.

I don’t understand people who complain about being bored. Boredom never enters my vocabulary. If anything, I may have probably have certainly have too many interests. And this month, I may have definitely over-committed.

First, October officially begins NaNoWriMo prep season. When I wrote that previous post, I had started jotting down ideas for a story. But then, a completely different story has been nagging at me. And between reading Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic and A.J. Hackwith’s The Library of the Unwritten, I’m convinced that stories do have a life of their own.

No story, written or unwritten, is static. Left abandoned too long and given the right stimulation, a book goes wrong in the head. It is a story’s natural ambition to wake up and start telling itself to the world.

The Library of the Unwritten, A.J. Hackwith

Because this new story was tapping my shoulder, I had intended to break my normal pantser approach to NaNoWriMo and actually do some sort of planning. Not full-out planning, but at least some. More than I normally have done in the past.

Whelp, here it is mid-month and I’ve done nada to prep for NaNoWriMo except jot down the idea for the aforementioned new story. Nothing. Zilch. Diddly squat.

But between Litsy and Instagram, I did sign up for 10 reading challenges this month.

Out of the 10, five involve reading books that fit prompts (e.g., read a book that has a black cat on the cover). My goal? To try to get all the prompts by the end of the month of course. Two of the five are set up like bingo boards. And of course, my goal is not only get a bingo, but try to blackout the board.

Two are simply to read as many books as I can that fit a theme (e.g., witches or Halloween). One is another bingo board, but instead of prompts, I picked 20 to 25 books from my IRL TBR (i.e., actual books I own but haven’t yet read). The challenge host then drew numbers and placed the numbers on a bingo board. Each number is associated with a book I picked and as I read the books, I mark them off the bingo board.

Then there are the readathons where I try to either read for a certain amount of hours in a designated time period or read a certain amount of books or pages in a designated time period. I’ve finished 3 and am in the midst of a fourth readathon.

Yep, that’s right. October has become the month-o-bookish fun. So far I’ve finished 19 books this month (about 2/3 of those were audiobooks). Needless to say, I met my annual Goodreads reading goal of 182 books. (And the 182 goal was after I increased the goal twice! I’m on track to top 200 books this year.)

It will say "Own your magic" with a black cat & black moon.

Next up are crafts. I love crafts and my work office is full of crafty people. So I’m encouraged to craft and then bring in the crafts into the office to share.

I also found a local arts and crafts store (conveniently located 3 blocks away from my apartment). I purchased new acrylic paints, some new brushes, and these fun wooden blocks. I have been playing with faux-staining the wood to make signs.

I also started a new cross-stitch (a Christmas themed one that I *might* just finish before Christmas). And I finally got the Halloween-themed one I ordered ages ago. I completed it this past weekend. (It was a gift, so check on Instagram at the end of the month to see it.)

And because I love all things miniature, I got this miniature library kit and when it’s finish, it will look like a mini library with 30 mini books.

Last but not least, I always have puzzles to work. I finished the Crepes & Cie 1000-piece puzzle by MB puzzles this weekend and started Poisons & Potions, 2000-piece Halloween-themed one by Ravensburger. And I *might* have also ordered a few more, including Gibsons’ Christmas Around the World puzzle advent calendar, because one can never have too many books or puzzles.

On top of all that, I found out I may be going to mainland Japan for work during the last week of the month. That’s definitely going to add an extra challenge to trying to accomplish everything I want to do this month.

So that’s what has been keeping me busy and why October is flying by for me. It’s October 15—only 16 days left until November 1! Will I be ready for NaNoWriMo? Will I finish this 2000-piece puzzle? Will I complete any of the 9 reading challenges? Who knows! As fast as the first 15 days have gone, the odds are not in my favor. HA! But make sure to check back to find out.

What have you been doing this October? Share your October fun in the comments below.

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