May was a month of chaos, new experiences, and going out.

Although things have been opening up for the last few months, a major difference was seen last month. It clearly reflected in my day-to-day life in May. My reading changed a bit, my blogging changed, and so did my bucket list.

words on books

I read a whopping NINETEEN books in May. Yes, 18 of them were romance books, but they are as valid as any other book. I was busy enough that I didn't have much time to read and hence gravitated towards romance all the time.

The Charm Offensive by Allison Cochrun has been on my TBR since the time Sai read it. He's been pushing the book for a while and I finally read it. And I loved it. The setting was dramatic and interesting, the characters were messy and endearing, and the romance itself was swoony. If I had to pitch it in one line, I'd say: The Bachelor but, by the end, everyone turns out to be queer.

Binding 13 by Chloe Walsh caught my eye because Sil loved it and I had to find out why. Although the book is very messy and wasn't as good in writing or plot, I was addicted to the story. It reminded me of the old days when I used to devour romance books with triggering topics because they brought out raw feelings in a way no other books did. I loved the story and cast so much that I reread my favourite parts in Keeping 13, the sequel, several times after finishing the duology. This series has a hold on my heart.

The Last Eligible Billionaire by Pippa Grant started out messy and annoying but soon became a book I didn't want to finish reading. It took me a while to get used to the main lead's narration—because she's like sunshine and is so CHATTY—but I soon loved her and her love interest and their romance. I wanted to reread the book as soon as I finished it. It executed the sunshine x grumpy and fake dating tropes so well.

The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare was a random pick because I wanted a book with the marriage-of-convenience trope and I also wanted to try another Tessa Dare book. This book was so fun to read. It made me laugh, snort, swoon, and more. I especially loved the almost-sarcastic commentary about the male lead which pointed out the ridiculousness of the regular male leads in romance books. If you're looking for a historical romance book to read, I highly suggest this!

A while back, my friend gifted me Spoiler Alert by Olivia Dade from my wishlist and it's the only reason I read this book soon-ish. And I am so glad I did. It has been a while since I read a book tackling fatphobia in a good way. Spoiler Alert did it so well and made me love myself more. I will definitely be reading more of the author's books soon.

The only non-romance book I read this month was Mindset by Carol S. Dweck. In my quest to read at least one non-fiction book a month, I also want to try a few different types of non-fiction. This was a new pick that I wasn't fully sure of. Unfortunately, I hated it. The book does have some good points but the author spent over 100 pages saying "oh this concept is ground-breaking! it will change your life!" and sharing examples instead of actually getting to the point. I understand that this happens often in self-help books but over 1/3rd of the book is too much. I ended up skimming the second half of the book too because most of the subheadings were not applicable to me and I frankly wasn't interested in reading more boasting.

For June, my goal is to read at least 2 books out of the romance genre. Even though I love the books, I have too many books waiting to be read outside of the genre and I need to get to them. In the priority list is another non-fiction book and The Jasmine Throne! Although I considered reading only queer books this month, I eventually decided against it because I do read enough queer books over the year. I also don't want to restrict my reading since my random moods rule my reading.

words on the blog

Although I posted thrice in May, I feel like I haven't done enough. My regular is one post a week and May saw me skip one week and delay a post another week. While my reasons for them are valid, I still feel guilty.

When I decided to send newsletters twice a month, I knew that the time for it will have to come from somewhere else. As my life outside the internet has become busier, there is less time for content creation. I'm making the best out of the time I have at home.

Despite posting less, my blog's views went up. May was the best month in views so far with 38.5k views. SEO keeps my blog thriving, haha. I've been receiving more referrals from search engines and Pinterest too.

I'm not being as regular with Pinterest as I used to be but the effort over the last few months have been paying off. Pinterest is also a search engine so once I decided to just do what I can and wait patiently, I could get myself to stick with it without becoming frustrated. In May, I got 419 referrals from Pinterest!

As views from Pinterest have been steadily growing, referrals from Twitter have been reducing. Ever since Twitter's algorithm has changed to push down Tweets with links in them, I haven't seen much point in regularly promoting my posts on Twitter like I used to. I share a "new post" tweet and maybe a Tweet about an old post once a week. That's it.

Honestly, I'm unsure of what I'm doing on Twitter except collect romance book recommendations. I mostly just lurk around in Twitter and post random things. I'm not doing much to "grow" or with any goal in mind. Because of this, I'm enjoying Twitter much more. I post random things, interact with friends, and read more and more books. Twitter has become a place I hang out for fun instead of being a "social media marketing space" that it became for a while.

illustration of a person holding a polaroid which is a picture of scattered foliage

In my last newsletter, I shared some brewing thoughts about the way blogging has changed over the years and how I'm dissatisfied with it. I'm also dissatisfied by the way I'm going about content. While I like SEO and figuring out Pinterest etc., that's not the reason I stick with blogging. I do it to share opinions and discuss with people.

Lately, it feels like I'm not doing enough of that. My posts are so focused towards being "valuable" that I don't focus on what I want to share anymore. Now that I'm realizing this shift in my content, I want to change it.

I'm not sure how as it has been a long time since I wrote blog posts just for the heck of it (besides these wrap-ups) but I'm going to figure it out.

words by other bloggers

As usual, bloggers have been creating splendid content that I HAVE to share.

words on life and other fun stuff

May was a PACKED month for me. With all the working and reading and content creation, I went on TWO weekend trips. I've never been a traveller simply because my family isn't into it and when I started to earn enough, the pandemic hit so I couldn't then. Now that things are going back to normal, I find myself saying yes to a lot of plans.

Even though I've been on a couple of trips with friends before, I learnt the most in May. Many things went wrong, my patience was tested in both the trips, and I came back home with a list of things I shouldn't do next time.

Throughout the month, I got only ONE day of chill where I did nothing. And even that was filled with guilt because my mind constantly went "you SHOULD be doing this and being more productive." Bleh.

illustration of a typewriter with paper loaded in it.

If you read April's wrap-up and are wondering about my typewriter-inspired keyboard, I have updates!

I did not give it away like I initially thought I would. As I used the keyboard more, I got used to it and even kind of like the sound now. Not always but sometimes. I generally have headphones on with music playing so the sound doesn't bother me when I need to be "in the zone." (I'm writing this post with the keyboard!)

It took me a while to get used to the posture and the sound, but also the keyboard layout. As I currently have Macs for both work and personal use, suddenly using a Windows-layout keyboard was weird. Not to mention, a Windows keyboard linked to a Mac laptop. The controls are not normal. Switching between the Windows keyboard and my laptop's in-built keyboard was a task filled with confusion.

Now, I'm able to easily switch between the two and am used to both layouts so my typing groove is much smoother. Weirdly, the keyboard actually helps me write sometimes when I'm not in the mood to. I'll sit down with the keyboard ready and my brain will go "okay, time to write." That's a surprising development.

I appreciate that getting the keyboard has allowed me to keep my laptop at an elevated level which makes me sit up straight. My back posture is much better now. I have a tiny desktop setup while I use the keyboard now.

Overall, I'm kinda happy with the purchase. I was regretting it a lot when I first used it but it works for me now.

how was your May?

Was it as messy and packed as mine? Was it more chill? Did anything interesting happen? Did you read any good books? Tell me in the comments!

stay wordy, Sumedha
photo of Sumedha

Sumedha spends her days reading books, bingeing Kdramas, drawing illustrations, and blogging while listening to Lo-Fi music. Read more ➔

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  • Clo @ Cuppa Clo says:

    Ah your weekend trips looked so lovely from what I saw on your IG stories! There's a part of me that can't wait to travel and go explore places but then there's this other part of me that is apprehensive about not having total control of everything. So happy that you've gotten more used to your keyboard and that it's working for you! My may was a struggle so I'm just glad it's over at this point and we're in June. Hope you have a lovely June and I can't wait to see the content shift. (I am here for any and all of your content, whether it's 'valuable' or not because at the end of the day I think even the posts that we love creating that are more for us, have value you know.)

    Reply ➔
    • sumedha @ the wordy habitat says:

      Yeah I mostly only shared the good parts on IG, keeping quiet with the bad ?

      Ahhh thank you so much for the reassurance, Clo! I think I really needed that. I've yet not figured out what I want to post and I'm going in a little blind nowadays (esp due to hectic work days) but I hope to figure it out soon.

      Hope you're having a lovely June as well <3

      Reply ➔
  • Cherelle @ A Bolt out of the Book says:

    19 books?! Wow that's a lot, and heartened to hear you loved some of them! Sounds like May was a busy month for you, loved hearing about your keyboard haha. Hope June has been good to you, and all the best with your reading goal!

    Reply ➔
  • Suhani says:

    AHHH WOW 19 BOOKS?? That is SO SO INSANE !! And also I just realised you linked my blog in your footer, and THANK YOU SO SO MUCH!!????? it really made my day ahh!!??? hope you have a spectacular June!!?

    Reply ➔
  • I'm All Booked Up YA says:

    Looks like it was a great reading month!

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  • Books Teacup and Reviews says:

    Looks like you had amazing reading month. My May view also more even though I didn't post or engaged much but it no where near that much.

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  • Your Tita Kate says:

    Thank you so much for linking my post!

    My referrals from Pinterest are steadily declining so if you'd write a post on how you're leveraging on it I'd read the heck out of that ?️

    Reply ➔