Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Hello There!

Hey everyone! 

Once again, it's been forever since you all have last seen a post from me. (I do have a big announcement to make in regards to that though, so stay tuned!) Anyways, for those of you who have been keeping tabs on my personal life, I've been working on finishing up the last semester of my MA in Literature while teaching composition. If you checked in last semester or are friends with me on Facebook, you know that I've spent an inordinate amount of time working on my Ph.D. applications over the last few months. The first part of my big news relates to that: I currently have two offers (at least--still waiting on a few schools) on the table for Ph.D. programs!!! Both programs are fully funded teaching assistantships with stipends, so I am beyond completely excited and stoked to have been selected from such a large pool of hardworking, highly qualified applicants. Getting into a Ph.D. program is hard. Getting into one with funding is even worse. For a long time, I didn't think I even had a shot at it (though from what I hear, most students feel similarly). It's such an honor and an absolute joy to have been given this opportunity. 

The second part of my big news deals with Mindful Musings. Because of graduate school and my teaching responsibilites, I haven't been able to be as active as I would have liked to be over the last few years, and I hate to just let my blog "sit" here with no new content and no new readers. So I'm happy to say that Mindful Musings is adding a new contributor! Amber, the gal joining us, is an old friend from high school, and I think you all are going to love her. With Amber joining me, I'll be able to open up book review requests and blog tours again, and I know she'll provide you all with some awesome content! And, of course, you'll still be seeing posts from me sprinkled in here and there as I find the time. 

I'm really excited about this new turn for the blog, and I hope you guys will give Amber as awesome of an experience as I've had! So, without further ado, here's Amber to briefly introduce herself! 


Just a quick intro: my name is Amber Sumner. I graduated from William Jewell College with BAs in English and Education. For the last year and a half, I have been teaching 8th grade English Language Arts. I just recently got married to the love of my life, and Natalie was one of my bridesmaids. Natalie and I have been good friends since we were in high school, sitting in the back of Mrs. Allen's AP Lit and Comp class discussing the finer points of Smallville - namely crazy plots twists, Lana's insane number of concussions, and Tom Welling's abs. It had been a little while since either of us had had any time to chat, so while catching up on life we got talking about her book blog and how much she had missed posting since being in grad school. And I thought to myself: Gee! That sounds like fun! So I casually mentioned that I would LOVE to help her review books, and sure enough, during Spring Break she trucked a massive box of books over to Panera and taught me how to go about blogging. 

I have always loved reading and writing, and Natalie has been gracious enough to grant me an avenue to explore that love through book blogging (thanks so much, friend!). My favorite genres are fantasy, sci-fi,  and mystery, but I also like a wide array of YA lit. 

I am currently reading The House of Hades by Rick Riordan and wondering what others are thinking of the series thus far, especially compared to his Percy Jackson and the Olympians series… Thoughts?

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