The Year I Lost My Words

Who was I without my words?

Word of the Year.

It’s been a tradition of mine the last few years. Choosing a word is a great way to select a focus point for that year. I’ve never liked New Year’s Resolutions, mostly because I just never seemed to be able to stick to them. But to choose a word to be mindful of throughout the year worked really well for me.
Last year I chose Writing as my word for 2020. I felt very motivated and ready for a year of writing, but then I got pregnant and felt so sick all of the time. And on top of that, Corona hit us, and when I thought that all of that would give me lots of time to work creatively and write lots and lots, the complete opposite happened. With the extreme lack of energy, traveling, and creative input of the outside world, I lost my words.
While watching the world getting sick and going mad while going through so many changes, I had a million thoughts going through my mind, but I was utterly unable to get them down on paper or screen. I tried again and again, but the few words I got out wouldn’t form into sentences. I would sit there and try until I got so discouraged that I gave up and went to do something else.
I’ve always known that writing has been a critical factor in my mental health, but I never knew just how much before I couldn’t write at all. It made me feel lost. I was already going through so many changes
that I didn’t quite feel like myself. I got worried, sad, and confused.

Who was I without my words?

I pondered over this while the world moved on. The virus kept spreading, my body kept changing, and the craziness of the world seemed to be escalating, and the words just wouldn’t come.
So, I decided to give my mind a break. I didn’t push the writing. I didn’t journal. I left my words alone and enjoyed other people’s words instead. For months I read and listened more than I usually do. I devoured fiction. Words upon words flowed through me as the world moved forward.

And then came October 24th, and little baby Noelle came into our lives.
The life we knew changed as we fell headfirst in love and into the baby bubble, surrounded by thick postpartum fog. Writing was the last thing on my mind, and I didn’t find much time for reading either.
But then something happened. Little Noelle had a phase where she decided she didn’t want to sleep at night, just take really short naps. And as I sat up at night while the rest of the house was sleeping, I had a lot of thoughts running through my mind. So I found an unused notebook, and on the first page, I wrote: “While You Weren’t Sleeping.”

I filled it with brain dump and poems about all of the thoughts, worries, and frustrations that my tired, sleep-deprived brain and body felt. And through all those nights, and all those tears. I found my love for words coming back. They started coming more quickly and more frequently, and the more I wrote, the more I started feeling like myself once again.

I still struggle a bit with getting started. Just this post had its first sentence written and erased about thirty times before I was able to keep going, but it’s progress!
I was worried that I’d lost my words forever, but they’re still here. I was waiting for them to find their way back to me, but I had to find them instead.
And now I find them everywhere, little by little.

Happy New Year! Happy New Writing!

House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas 📚 BOOK REVIEW

My review of House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas 📚

I read a paperback edition of House of Earth and Blood. This is the first book in the Crescent City series.

Genre: Fantasy, Romance

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

Originally published: March 3rd, 2020

Pages: 816 (paperback)

Synopsis by the publisher:

Bound by blood.
Tempted by desire.
Unleashed by destiny.

Bryce Quinlan had the perfect life—working hard all day and partying all night—until a demon murdered her closest friends, leaving her bereft, wounded, and alone. When the accused is behind bars but the crimes start up again, Bryce finds herself at the heart of the investigation. She’ll do whatever it takes to avenge their deaths.

Hunt Athalar is a notorious Fallen angel, now enslaved to the Archangels he once attempted to overthrow. His brutal skills and incredible strength have been set to one purpose—to assassinate his boss’s enemies, no questions asked. But with a demon wreaking havoc in the city, he’s offered an irresistible deal: help Bryce find the murderer, and his freedom will be within reach.

As Bryce and Hunt dig deep into Crescent City’s underbelly, they discover a dark power that threatens everything and everyone they hold dear, and they find, in each other, a blazing passion—one that could set them both free, if they’d only let it.

My thoughts:

I loved The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas and devoured those, and I did enjoy the first book in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series (even though I haven’t gotten around to the next books in the series yet), so when I heard that Maas was writing a series for an adult audience I was very intrigued.
I heard mixed things about the books before going into it, and it seemed like it was either a love or hate relationship for most readers.

House of Earth and Blood is a chunker of a book (it seems like I’m quite into big books these days), coming in at a little over 800 pages.
What I think Maas does so well in previous books is making these really interesting and fantastical worlds come to life with a more subtle way of introducing the world she builds so that it doesn’t become super confusing.
In this one, however, I felt a bit lost for a while at the beginning. There were names and lifeforms thrown left and right, and I found myself feeling a little confused. This also took away my ability to connect with the characters early on in the story. That being said, the world-building that Sarah J. Maas has done in this series (and others before that) is impressive! After a little while, I did feel less confused and managed to just focus on the story and the characters.

When it comes to the characters I like that there are so many different beings and fantastical elements to them. It makes for an interesting cast of characters with endless possibilities. When it came to Bryce and Hunt I struggled to feel a connection with them. I was curious to see where the story would take them and found that part very exciting and interesting, but I did not get fully invested in the characters. It got better along the way though, but I didn’t find myself even close to being as invested in them as I’ve been with her other characters in previous books.

I also had some issues with the sexual tension throughout this book. For those of you who’ve stuck around for a while, you know that I have no problem with some steamy content in literature! But for some reason, it felt like all the sexual tension between Bryce and Hunt (and there’s a lot of it) felt like it was a part of the story just for the sake of having a lot of adult/sexual content. In some ways, it just felt a bit forced at times. I can’t really put my finger on exactly what it was that made it feel that way, but for whatever reason it just didn’t work as well for me as it did for a lot of other readers. I’m not saying that I would’ve wanted zero sexual tension between the characters, that wouldn’t have felt natural either, but I think it was more the amount of it being thrown into the story at all times that just made it less enjoyable for me.

That being said, this is a page-turner of a book! It did not feel like reading an 800+ pages book at all, and I flew through it pretty quickly. Maas writes action and drama so well and that’s one of the many reasons why Maas is on the list as one of my favorite authors. She also writes brilliant female characters that are really strong, but in no way perfect. So, even though she writes stories that are out of this world, a lot of the character, drama, and conflict feels relatable.

So all in all it was a very enjoyable, action-packed and interesting read with a lot of interesting characters, but unfortunately I didn’t manage to get as invested in them as I would have liked to.

If you’re a fan of other books by Maas then I’m pretty sure you’ll like this one as well, but it is going to be a little bit of a different reading experience even though her writing style definitely shines through.

This story has potential to get very interesting, and I will pick up the next book in the series because I’m curious to see what happens next.

💛If you buy via my affiliate links, I get a small commission 💛

The Word of 2020

I’ve chosen my word for 2020!

With the change of the year comes the choosing of the word. I’ve mentioned before that I don’t do New Year’s resolutions, but instead, I choose a word that I want to define the year to come and what I want to focus and work on for the upcoming year. 

Last year’s word was Experiences, and I definitely had a lot of them. My life changed so much in 2019 that I found it a bit hard to choose one word for 2020. There’s so much going on, and so many things I want to do next year, but after having talked it over with my good friend Alex who had some good ideas, I finally landed on a word. 

My word for 2020 is WRITING.

Why? Because I need to really take the leap to get to where I want to be. Because writing is my passion, and I’ve wasted more than enough time on people and things that brought me nowhere close to my dream. Because it’s all I’ve ever wanted to do. Because I’m already a writer, and I need to commit to it!

I’ve been writing stories, essays, poems, pretty much everything, for as long as I can remember. There’s always a notebook in my purse or a writing app (more like 5) on my devices. I used to write scary stories (that wasn’t really all that scary, but did have ghosts in them) as a kid and gift them to my grandparents. And ever since that time, my biggest dream has been to write for a living. 

I’ve started countless stories, finished some, written a whole lot of poetry, sold an erotic short story, wrote post after post, and I’ve been collecting ideas for new stories that I want to write. 

This will be the year where my main creative focus will be to write, and write, and write!

2020, let’s do this! 

What’s your word of the year?

Underneath You – POEM

Looking back on the time we spent together

I remember who you were to me

What you meant to me

The feelings you sparked in me

The touches I felt from you

But who was I underneath you

Other than a place of comfort

A sense of relief from the loneliness

And sparks of desire

Sometimes I still wonder

If I was ever more

Than meat and bones

Served on a convenient

Plate of bedding


©️Christina de Vries

Was it Fruitful?

So I went to London, I ate plenty of good food, drank the whisky and met some wonderful people too.

But Christina, you went to London to write! I didn’t see a lot of Insta stories of you doing that, so how fruitful was the trip really?

It was even more fruitful and creative than I imagined it would be! And the thing is, when I get into the mood of writing, that’s pretty much all I focus on, so that’s why I don’t show that much of it. And I can imagine that me posting a lot of pictures and videos of just me in a bar with my computer would be very repetitive and not really all that interesting to watch in the long run.

But I got down over 10 000 words on my novel! 10 000 words in 5 days!

There’s something magical with the relationship between me and London. My creativity blossoms as soon as I get a little bit of that London feeling.

A nice walk by the Thames, a coconut latte from Pret and then I’m all set. The words just pour out of me, and it feels so good!

And the best part of it all, is that the words have kept coming since I got home. It feels like I took a little bit of that London magic with me home this time around, and I’m so grateful for it!

I will be sharing more about my trip in the next couple of days! Have some wonderful restaurants to recommend to you guys, and maybe also a few personal stories to tell!

But now, I have to get back to my novel!

Hope you are all doing well❤️

Oh, and let me know; Do you have any places you go where you just get instantly more creative, or is that just me? And if you do, where is it?

What the Hell are You Doing?

‘Can I get a double Laphroaig on the rocks please?’

It started there. The bartender looked at me questingly. I’m used to that by now. I guess I just don’t look like the girl who would order a smoky whisky. Apparently he wasn’t that used to selling any kind of whisky apart from Jack or Jameson, because he slowly turned around and his eyes searched the rows and rows of bottles.

‘It’s the green bottle next to the Jameson on your right.’ He smiled, and asked me if it was any good, and we ended up having a brief conversation about whisky and then he went on to serving the bar that was starting to fill up.

I found a small table close to the dance floor. Not because I had a need to be close to all the dancing bodies (Although that is pretty entertaining in itself), but it was one of the smaller ones available.

My whisky and I sat down and was accompanied by my Mac, and then I started punching those keys. I lip synced to the music the DJ was playing, wrote words and words, and enjoyed every sip of my smoky whisky. It didn’t take long before people started looking, and very obviously wondering what the hell I was doing.

There I was, freak of nature, in the middle of a buzzing bar/club, but I was sitting by myself, not trying to make contact, I was writing, and to top it all off, I sat there with a whisky instead of a beer or a drink. There was a mixture of curiosity, confusion and dislike. How dare I behave in such an unnatural manner?

And when one guy (drunk would be an understatement) came over to me and actually asked me;

‘What the hell are you doing sitting here all by yourself? You should be out there dancing!’ You can add the drunken slurring, cause I’m not even going to try to write it in.

I laughed out loud, and told him that I was too busy at the moment making my dreams come true. He gave me a confused and angry look, walked on, and I kept on laughing while I punched the keys. So if people didn’t think me crazy already, they sure as hell probably did now.

But I’ll let you in on a secret; I couldn’t care less!

Let them look! Let them ask questions! Let them wonder, or make up stories, or dislike me for no other reason than doing things differently! Because the truth is that they know nothing about my dreams, and how important they are to me. They know nothing of my passion, and how creating makes me feel alive! And they certainly haven’t tasted a really good smoky whisky😜

But if you ask me nicely, I’ll tell you all about it! I’ll even let you have a sip😉

We are so quick to judge other people as soon as they do things differently, but how about we stop making harsh judgements and ask nice questions instead? Let’s learn from each other instead of making assumptions. Because we’re all just trying to figure stuff out our own way, and that’s the beauty of it❤️

Take inspiration from the ones who dare to be different. Those who dare to try, dare to dream and dare to not care about what everyone else thinks!

Why I Decided to Not do VidCon This Year

When I heard that the 2019 VidCon Europe would be in London instead of Amsterdam (like last year) I got super excited!

It’s no secret that I was extremely disappointed by last year’s event. The tickets were expensive, they changed the venue to a smaller one, the food options were bad (and not included in the price), and it just felt like they themselves weren’t taking it seriously. It felt like a joke, a waste of money and a waste of time, unfortunately.

But when VidCon London was announced, it really did seem like they had decided to really go out all. They had booked a lot more YouTubers, and the ones that are scheduled to be there are more known than most of those from last year. The venue is huge, and the overall impression of the 2019 event is a heck of a lot better than what I expected.

I decided that I would go. I booked my flight, a bed at a hostel, but then I was kind of hesitant about booking the actual ticket. Like I mentioned, it is quite expensive, and for some reason I had a gut feeling that told me to wait a little longer. The backside to waiting is that the price for the ticket goes up.

Then came the time when I sat down to actually book my creator pass. I sat there, staring at the pay now button, and I thought about how interesting it was going to be to hear creators like Rhett & Link, and Patricia Bright share some of their secrets, but then I thought about last year. I went for a walk, and had a long inner conversation with myself about what it was that I felt like I needed in my life, where I was at creatively and what I really wanted to do.

I love making videos, and I want to get even better at it. I love expressing myself on the YouTube platform, and the BookTube and travel community there is awesome! I have big plans for my channel and for future content, but I also need to finish my novel.

I’ve been writing for such a long time, going back and forth with projects, started over, started new stories, gone back to the old ones, and round and round and round it goes. Now though, I am finally in a place where I don’t struggle with my writing routine. I ind words upon words, and I can see that my two novels are going somewhere. They are growing into something that I’ve been dreaming about since I was a little girl, and I love that!

Then I thought about the 36 hours writing trip I took to London two years ago, and not just how much I loved it, but also how much work I got done.

And that’s when I decided that VidCon could wait another year. I would still go to London, because I had my flight and hostel booked, and made plans to see some friends as well. But I would go there to work creatively for me. To write, film and take pictures. A four day writing trip.

That would also give me time to find out if the changes that they’ve made to VidCon Europe really make it worth the money, and then I can go next year instead.

I got home, closed the VidCon page, and I felt incredibly happy about my choice. It felt right!

So here I am now, at Oslo Airport Gardermoen, waiting to board my flight and to get back to city that I love.

London, I hear you calling, and I will be there soon❤️

Why I Journal?

I would probably go batshit crazy if I didn’t!

I found outlets for my thoughts and my frustrations in a lot of ways, but mostly through my creativity. And as you guys know, writing and pictures/videos are the ways I express myself creatively the most.

But no matter how much I write and share, my journaling is something that I do just for me. It’s raw, unfiltered, and the best way for me to get my thoughts in order. Very often, I find that writing down the things that make me frustrated or emotional is the best way of getting it all into perspective. By getting it all down my hands, through the pen and out on paper, it gives me just the right kind of distance to be able to more sanely look at it all.


I started writing my first diary when I was 11 years old after I had read The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank, and I was just so fascinated by the fact that I was able to get an inside look into someone else’s personal struggles and thoughts. So I found myself curious as to how my thoughts and feelings would look on paper.

And here we are, 20 years later, a lot of journals filled out, and I’m so grateful that I started.

Journaling has changed a lot over time, and I would probably cringe CRINGE cringe if I started reading my teenage ones, so they’re stored away in a safe place. And one thing I do know for sure is that I will keep on journaling till the day my hands are no longer able to put words down on paper.

It has saved me from my chaotic mind so many times. As I said in the beginning; I would probably go batshit crazy if I didn’t!

Do you journal?

IMG_0709 2