Six Months

It’s been six months since I returned to blogging! Well, six months as of April 8, but why not prolong the celebration?

So much has happened in my life in the past six months, and even tiniest growth seems like it’s been an enormous change. And there’s been plenty of enormous changes, too.

I decided to wax sentimental this week and post a quick photo gallery of some of the highlights of keeping up Thoughts of a Word Nerd over the past six months.

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And I wrote more than I ever have before. Thanks for being a part of it.

And for bearing with this weird post. We’ll be back next week with your regularly scheduled programming.

XX. Shelby Jo


Friday Favorites 4/1/16

Friday Favorites 4/1/16

Happy April Fools Day, punks! I hope your friends pulled some hideous prank on you and that you didn’t have to read many obviously fake Facebook posts! (That last bit is a lot to ask, but I’m going for it.)

#1). This week is a little bit of fan art for The Raven Cycle, because it is April and the The Raven King  comes out in T-MINUS 25 DAYS, so I can’t possibly get through a Friday Favorites without mentioning it. This piece is by Mansi from CherryandSisters on Tumblr. I saw a Percy Jackson post she did a while ago, but now I am officially obsessed with her. Her work is amazing!!


#2) Is partially shameless self promotion, but also partially the fact that I am really glad it’s Spring. So look! Book photography! Like that isn’t already all over Tumblr!

Spring (pass)

#3). MORE BOOK PHOTOGRAPY. But this time by someone with actual skills and talent and all that stuff. I adored this Tolkien-themed post by The Bookish Misfit on Tumblr!


Thanks for enduring the book overload, and have a great weekend!

XX. Shelby Jo

Friday Favorites 2/27/16

Happy weekend! This week’s favorites are going to be quick and easy because I’m a busy woman!

  1. This post by arse-in-arsenal on Tumblr. I re-watched Young Justice recently, and I feel this post. The era of Kon and Tim being best friends is definitely my favorite.FF 2.27.16

2. This came up on my calendar, because I never entered the new release date for The Raven King. I shed a single tear, but it also means we’re that much closer to the actual date.


(And, yes, I still use ios 6. Judge away.)



XX. Shelby Jo


Friday Favorites 2/5/16

Ayyyy, it’s Friday, but it’s also midterms, so the days of the week really have no meaning to me! So I certainly hope you have a better weekend than I do, because it won’t take much.

Time for favorites!

  1. I found this on @blxnsey ‘s Tumblr and it cracked me up and broke my heart at the same time. The positive side of the Raven Cycle ending in April (other than the fact that we get another spectacular Maggie Stiefvater novel, obviously) is that there is a ton of Raven Cycle content floating around right now.

2. This gem from Stephen Colbert’s The Late Show. I adore him and this killed me because it had literally never occurred to me before!


3. The soundtrack for The Hunchback of Notre Dame on Broadway finally released last week and it’s absolutely breathtaking. Check out a sneak peek below, and then go listen ot the full version!

Have a good weekend! If you’re swamped with homework like me come find me so neither of us die alone!

XX. Shelby Jo

Review: The Force Awakens

Context: I adore Star Wars. I don’t live it and breathe it, I don’t know all of the extended universe lore or anything particularly fanatic; but I’ve been watching the original trilogy since I was 0 days of age and the prequels since they came out. Han Solo was my first love (which I’m sure many people can say) and Star Wars means a lot to me because of how formative it was in my story-telling method and imaginative process. So, even though I still have my doubts about the sale and the future of the franchise, I WAS INCREDIBLY HYPED TO SEE EPISODE 7, THE FORCE AWAKENS. Especially as trailers were released and more information about the film came out, my excitement continued to grow. Until, finally, I was sitting in the theater last night, and the logo leaped onto the screen and the theme played and I cried like a baby.

the force awakens

Positives The movie fit beautifully into the Star Wars franchise. It utilized similar pacing as well as the same character and acting styles. I adored all of the new characters; I feel like I’ve collected a new throng of precious babies because UGH. They were precious! The movie looked gorgeous. The cinematography and production and costume design all worked together well. I’m not really going to talk about the story because spoilers are the bane of my existence but THE STORY. Also, celebration of BASICALLY NO ROMANTIC SUBPLOT !!!

Negatives: The plot arc (even though I just raved about it a second ago, don’t get your panties in a wad.) was cliche, not necessarily in a bad way, but definitely what you would expect from Star Wars. Very similar to the arcs of the previous films. In general, the entire thing was cliche, but for some reason, especially with Star Wars, that was okay with me. That was good, actually. The only other thing that nagged at me was Carrie Fisher’s performance. In fact, I don’t think I can even narrow it down to Ms. Fisher, but just Leia’s lack of a role or character in general (ahahahaha deal with it). She was simply there, and I wasn’t pleased with that.

Summary: The good news is that, even combining the plot, the return of the old characters, and the numerous references to the old films (most of which I could have gone without) the movie did not feel like a parody, rip-off, or remake. It was nostalgic, but it wasn’t a nostalgia trip. It was a brilliant, new experience. I feel like this sequel trilogy has the ability to stand on its own. I am going to see it a second time tonight. 😉

xx. Shelby Jo

P.S. I was anxiously awaiting an “I love you” “I know” and didn’t get one.

Review: Winter by Marissa Meyer

Context: I picked up The Lunar Chronicles right after Scarlet was published. My journal entry for Cinder says “I honestly don’t know what to say here. It was predictable and I didn’t like it, but it was so creative that I want to read the rest of the series just for the world building.” Anddd then I read Scarlet (yes, I really wrote this. I am not proud of it); “so much BETTER THAN CINDER. Cinder was basically just setting up the series, which I disapprove of, but it’s better than all of the books being horrible.” Hear that Ms. Meyer? 15 year old me disapproved of your creative choices. *tsk tsk* Finally Cress came out and apparently I had officially warmed up to the series: “Maintained the characters/voice/pacing of Scarlet. Really well done, I want the next one! Ah!” Mostly I was just in love with Carswell Thorne. Still am.

Winter 3 (2)

Positives I was incredibly hyped to read this book, and it did not let me down. It was well written (as in line by line. We’ll get to the plot in a minute) and entertaining. I struggled through finals week, reading every spare second I could muster. Every time I picked the book up, it was a struggle to put down. (My mom read it in like one sitting, btw. I feel like that’s important 😉 ) The dialogue was witty and completely lived up to the standards I have come to expect from Ms. Meyer.

Negatives: *sigh* I just cannot wrap my head around the plot. Like how many times can everyone almost die but everything end up totally fine??? To begin with, the book was way too long. (I don’t have a problem with long books, but in relation to the rest of the series, that’s a red flag to me), which made the pacing a little tedious. I attribute the length of the book to the number of protagonists and perspectives, but I don’t think that’s an excuse.

For the most part, I really enjoy the characters in this series, but I really do not Thorne and Cress together. I love them both individually and I thought it was so precious when Thorne was all protective of her and she had such a huge crush on him, but for some reason it turned really weird really fast for me. I think it’s because I picture Cress as younger than she actually is (I mean, I don’t think sixteen is old enough anyway, BUT) because she lacks so much worldly experience. And can I just rage for a moment about how every protag. in this series has a love interest FALL IN THEIR LAP?? In my opinion, that is so sexualizing, because it implies that in order for a character’s developmental arc to be complete, they have to have a sexual partner. NO. THAT IS SO MANY COLORS OF NOT OKAY WITH ME.

Summary: *deep breath* It may be kind of hard to believe at this point, but I actually did enjoy this book, and The Lunar Chronicles as a whole. It’s a great pleasure read, it just isn’t particularly stimulating.

In other news, my review of Youth went up today, since the movie was released to theaters, if you want to read something more positive 😉

xx. Shelby Jo


New Friday Posts!

Okay, so I’ve had this idea to do “Friday Favorites” for a while, but that’s not actually what’s going on right now. Bear with me.

Every other Friday will be “Friday Favorites,” with my favorites non-text media I’ve encountered over the past two weeks, and the Fridays in between will contain reviews of movies, TV shows, books, etc. I have yet to come up with a catchy name for those days. Don’t get your hopes up.

But today, the first review, is for the new CBS show Supergirl!


  • Context: Those of you who follow me on Tumblr know that I am a huge Detective Comics fan. I especially love Batman, and all of the characters connected with that title (JASON TODD). I, however, have not been impressed with the other tv titles DC is running right now. I think that both Arrow and Flash are disappointing, and I really did not have high hopes for Supergirl.
  • On the other hand, I was really interested to see it, because Jeremy Jordan is one of my favorite actors, and just people in existence, because I love Newsies (wow, you’re learning so much about me right now). And that excitement for him in the role of Winn Schott really helped me enjoy the show on the whole. So far, in the first two episodes, he’s been great. I’m going to try not to gush over him too much.
  • Positives: All in all, the first two episodes weren’t bad. They were fairly well paced, and interesting, without being over dramatic like Arrow. I’m interested in the way the show plays up Kara being a female superhero, but I also hope they work harder to lessen the obvious gap between female and male superheroes (like, um, not wearing lipstick during life and death situations?). I also really like Alex Danvers as a character, because it’s very clear that you don’t have to have super powers to be a bad ass woman.
  • Negatives: The Kara Danvers of the Supergirl show is not the Supergirl of the comics. And, yes, that’s something to be expected, but I’m personally disappointed in how basically every character change makes Kara more feminine and timid. Those are not bad qualities, but they’re traits typical of leading ladies. They’re safe. Additionally, the dialogue is predictable and boring, thus far, Cat Grant’s character is the most innovative. She’s the one that I look forward to seeing on the screen because she keeps scenes moving with out delivering lines that are clearly intended to KEEP THE SCENE MOVING.
  • Summary: All in all, it’s not a bad show. I wouldn’t choose to watch more if I wasn’t previously invested in DC or Jeremy Jordan, but I’m not dreading the rest, either. Sure, I was hoping for more, but there is still potential as the show moves forward. I hope it is as successful as the other current DC shows.

xx. Shelby Jo