The Bell Jar: A Review

 

 

The Bell Jar: A Review

realistic fiction

 

(No spoilers, I promise)

10:08 AM. I feel the pages thinning between my thumb and fingers and as I near the end of The Bell Jar, I feel a sudden surge of dull panic. A novel I had oh so desperately wanted to finish and now that I am almost there, I haven’t found closure. I mean it can’t end this way…

 

But it can.

In fact, I am not dissatisfied by the way that Plath ended the novel. I am completely satisfied, yet there’s certainly a large part of my mind that has been shaken. The part of me that recognises that this is the most ‘real’ and tangible closure I could get from an autobiographical novel.

The book depicts Plath’s protagonist, Esther Greenwood as a successful student and writer. The author portrays Esther’s mind as almost transparent; the description used to display the characters thoughts of people and places are the most enjoyable yet heart-wrenching element of the novel, for me.

I have never been so torn between the feeling of dropping the book and leaving it unfinished and reading on to know how it ends ever before. Knowing that this was a reflection of her life and that the author took her own life (eventually) compelled me to read on, it would be disrespectful of me to stop before the end. 

Midway through the novel, the author does foreshadow the end as the novel follows an almost pessimistic tone from a certain point, which is cut ever so slightly by moments of optimism, but never really dies down.

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‘At first I wondered why the room felt so safe. Then I realised it was because there were no windows’.

 

I guess this is more of me venting my feelings about the story than an actual review, bear with me. The thing is, I know that whether I read this ten years earlier or ten years on down the lie, I would pretty much feel just as I do today. But for me to read it just after I turned twenty, and following the neurosis of Esther, who is a similar age to mine and also turns twenty in some dark page, whose number I do not know – just makes the reading experience a little more truer to reality.

 

Part of the way through the novel, I thought I would like to read some of Plath’s poems as soon as I’d finished reading the book. Now, I’m not quite sure I could handle reading anymore of her work so soon after The Bell Jar.

screenshot_2016-09-27-09-13-36-4.png As for the title, I have never a felt a more befitting one for a novel before. screenshot_2016-09-27-09-13-36-4.png

I’m still at a loss for ways to describe the novel. The best way to summarise it would be to pick a question from the blurb itself: ‘what is reality, and how can it be confronted?’

At this point, all I can say is – read it.

 

On a brighter note, I hope you enjoy my first successfully transported but poorly made gif. 

I don’t think there’s such a thing as light-hearted reading anymore, if you know of any – do suggest some in the comments. Thank you guys.

 

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To contact me regarding a collaboration, or to simply get in touch – drop me an email at: rimsharasul8@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

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An Award… Maybe?

This entire post may be ‘invalid’, as a rule of the award is to post the default picture alongside the questions you answer, but I really (really) feel that the picture doesn’t suit my style.

phew, now that that’s out of the way, here goes.

I was nominated by Maha (funhousevision) – who might I add, is an extremely versatile blogger, for the Entertainer Blogger Award. Thank you Maha!

The rules are as follows

  1. Write a post… *mumbles*  including the award picture
  2. Nominate twelve other bloggers
  3. Nominees should answer the same questions as the ones below
  4. Thank the blogger that nominated you and link their blog

 

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-8.pngWhat do you hope to gain from blogging?

Knowledge and experience as with most things, and an audience of some sort – to read my writing of some sort.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-1.pngWhat genre of film entertains you the most?

Ooo. I’d like to say horror, but cinema has failed to successfully horrify me as of late.

Mystery, a good thriller mystery.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-6.pngDo you consider yourself a writer, and what inspires you to write?

I say this too often, but I’m inspired by the world around me. The components that make up ‘me’ as an individual and other people as unique humans on Earth. Uhh, yes I consider myself a writer.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-4.pngWhy did you choose your particular WordPress username?

I named my blog after my Instagram page.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-3.pngWhat is your favourite book, and why does it speak to you?

It’s too hard to answer that, in this tiny space between two questions. Look out for the blogpost (coming soon…not that soon)

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-5.pngWhat is your favourite song, and why does it speak to you?

I don’t have a favourite song. That’s the short answer. I’ll go with that.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-2.pngWhat is your favourite photograph, and why does it speak to you?

I love this question. I don’t have a favourite, more like a collection of loads of little pictures that ‘speak to me’, but if I tried to share all of them, this blogpost might never end. Here’s a picture that I took on my phone this morning at 7:35 am, as I was headed towards the train station. I’m not sure exactly why I specified the medium that the photo was taken on, all my pictures are taken by me on my phone (psst..I don’t have a camera/dslr just yet).

In the most humble manner possible, I present to you my favourite picture of the day, which just so happens to be taken by me.

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Well it didn’t really say much, except remind me to be grateful for the life I have. There’s just something about leaving the house early on an autumn morning whilst the moon is still out and the sun is yet to rise. All I can say when I am overcome by this feeling is, Thank God.

I Nom-in-ate:

  1. saiz
  2. Ofbrownhuesanddarkeyes
  3. herinkedsoul
  4. aclockworkhafsa
  5. thepakistanigirlsguide
  6. myjuxtaposedthoughts
  7. fromheretothere
  8. tehreemsiteblog
  9. joiedevivre
  10. bhammerblog
  11. monochromemessblog
  12. ramblingsofalazygirl

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To contact me regarding a collaboration, or to simply get in touch – drop me an email at: rimsharasul8@gmail.com

 

The Daily Diaspora 

I talk of colour,

to render all that is misunderstood
Because brown,
Is plaited, scarred, pigmented and hyper,
It is rushing through the subway and laying in fields
To a beat pounded on the dhol
And amplified by bass.

//
It is imbued in the richest coriander
and tumeric pastes,
my lok
my virsa,
skips between
salwars n’ sneakers,
folk and green,

//
drenched in mother-tongues sung in the East
but synched by lips that tilt a little to the west.
It is sand-root kids
on a jean-clad quest.
And mauve lipped girls,
Dreaming in gold.
Brown is.
// The Daily Diaspora

//
*lok/virsa: cultural heritage

This is my somewhat free verse take on the #PoetsOfColorChallenge – which was originally created by @_salvinc on Instagram.

I nominate all poets and writers of colour to participate in the challenge!

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To contact me regarding a collaboration, or to simply get in touch – drop me an email at: rimsharasul8@gmail.com

Today, I guess.

“Monday’s aren’t so bad, I’m into the whole start of a new week productivity kick, but I find listening to a Ted Talk in the morning is really motivating and interesting depending on what you listen to…” – M (answer to last Monday’s question by @fromheretothereblog, who shared her Monday routine, which is strikingly similar to mine!)

This would be my third post since university has started, which from an idealist point of view, is a ‘job well done’ for keeping up with blogging whilst getting into the new academic routine. But let’s be realistic, if I carried on at this rate then within the next two months – my blog would be as dormant as it was before summer.

However, the difference between this September and September 2015, is that I know i’ll continue blogging (regularly) simply because I really, really enjoy it.

Well Hi,

It’s been a week since I have started university as a second year student and I have a couple of things to say. Firstly, what’s with all the maths and computing students. I mean sitting in the library trying to focus on work with a pair of frantically calculating math-ers sat near by sort of just, blows the words right out of me.

Ok that was a slight exaggeration and

Math-ers isn’t a word. My point exactly.

Just seeing the stress suddenly falling on to their face like a ton of acute angled bricks (get it) makes me feel a little well, nauseas. Don’t get me wrong, I admire them for doing what they love.

I do not hate numbers, but I do have a problem with the way mathematics are taught. You might have figured by the nature of this impromptu rant, that me and math don’t really form the most successful marriage. I struggled with math as a child. I still do. I wasn’t the smartest kid in school. However, my ‘above average’ performance in English, meant that I was just ‘expected’ to excel in all other subjects too.

Before I move on, what does ‘average’ even mean. I understand certain levels are set in the education system, in order to recognise those that are struggling and need the extra attention. But how me performing well in one subject meant that I had to automatically do well in maths too, didn’t make much sense to me. 

Recalling my own experience at school has made me think of children at school as young as 6 years old that think they’re not ‘good enough’ because they don’t fit a certain academic criteria. I don’t think that’s the healthiest mind set a child should grow up believing. 

Well that concludes this rather shaky update (literally…im on a train) 

Rimsha 

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To contact me regarding a collaboration or to simply get in touch, drop me an email at: rimsharasul8@gmail.com

 

Papergang: Review

I received my second helping of the stationery subscription box (papergang), yesterday but I had to wait 24 hours until I could tear the box open. I’m sure most of you can understand the level of self-control I had to reach in order to wait.

Again, no – this blogpost is not sponsored by papergang, or anybody actually.

This is simply the Tuesday morning confessions of a stationery lover!

Papergang is (according to their Instagram page) a monthly subscription box by Ohh Deer, for paper lovers. I subscribed to their monthly box some time in August, before the August box was issued and what I will be reviewing today is the September box. Before even getting into the review, I must say what I love most about this subscription box is that it comes in a slim box that the post man can just slip through your post-box and the packaging is always extremely eye-catching, papergang post sure does brighten up my day.

The Contents:

wp-1474964387835.jpegscreenshot_2016-09-27-09-13-36-2.pngGiftwrap: animals in party hats. In other words, the coolest giftwrap you can find

screenshot_2016-09-27-09-13-36-5-1.pngPlanner: blue ombre weekly planner ‘my week’.

screenshot_2016-09-27-09-13-36-6.pngPrinted Calendar: for the month of October

screenshot_2016-09-27-09-13-36-4.pngGreeting Card: a card which reads ‘Its your birthday’ with cute birdies all over.

screenshot_2016-09-27-09-13-36-3.pngGreeting Card: which reads ‘Hedge Hugging’, I adore this as it gives you the option of giving this to a friend for any occasion.

screenshot_2016-09-27-09-13-36-1.pngSticky Notes Pad: it reads, ‘lets get this shit done’.

A little more about the hands behind the box. The accessories are designed and illustrated by independent UK artists with the funkiest designs I have seen on stationery, which I think gives the box a unique touch.

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‘artwork by Lizzy Doyle’

 

Despite claiming to love stationery, I have actually never bought a planner before because, well I guess I’d never found one which suited me. The planner in this month’s box is a whole other story.

Firstly the turquoise ombre cover is gorgeous but other than that, I was sold by the plastic cover around the planner – which has a zip at the back.

It is basically a planner with a built-in pencil case *inserts heart eyes emoji*. Of course I had to show you the stationery inception in action.

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The box also includes greeting cards that tie-in with the animal theme of the box.

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The review would be almost incomplete if I didn’t introduce you to Drew. When I received by first box last month – this was the first thing that popped out –

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Drew is an iron on patch, and leader of the papergang. If you’ve figured out anything about me by now, then you’ll know just how adorable I think this idea is. A cute iron-on patch to initiate membership for me, gives the entire connection a personal touch.

I thoroughly love all the items in this months box and I would definitely recommend you to subscribe to the box to. The contents card totals the contents of the box to just over £20, the box is sold for £9.95.

They do ship to most countries, if where you live is not on their list, you can also request for them to add it on.

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There you have it, my Tuesday blue’s.

See how I customised a plain old notebook using last months papergang packaging and washi tape here.

I hope you have a wonderful week ahead,

Rimsha

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To contact me regarding a collaboration or to simply get in touch, drop me an email at: rimsharasul8@gmail.com

What’s In My Bag

I can’t think of a more fitting introduction to this post, than to tell you that I officially go ‘back to school’ tomorrow! Which means the official end of summer and the official kick start to getting things organised.

I was inspired quite a few months ago to do a ‘what’s in my bag’ when I saw aclockworkhafsa‘s version on her (ever so wonderful) blog. This may not be half as interesting as I thought it would be initially, but to my trusted readers that stay tuned till the end – answer this weeks question in the comments (the quirkiest answer will have their blog/site/Instagram page shouted out at the start of my next post or the next respective Monday.)

So, the bag.

I’m quite a fashion wimp when it comes to bag type accessories, as I tend to go for the most comfortable for university (because I commute, hence – walk around..a lot). I cant bring myself to purchase any colour other than black for my rucksack/backpack. I fear an alternative colour would get a little too mucky for everyday use in the winter.

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The bag is of a velvet feel, with gold zips and (faux) leather straps – I bought this from New Look not too long ago.

The basics I need in my bag (minus my books and crumpled assignments) are,

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screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-4.png A lip balm, because I’m not a fan of chapped lips. Ok that was too scripted a reason, the truth is, I just love the smell of it. I mean its blackcurrant flavoured, do you blame me?

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-3.pngA mirror

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-5.png A roll-on, ehem. I am human and therefore I sweat. That sounds like a philosophical quote (it flows with the rhythm of – I think, therefore I am). I prefer roll-ons over spray deodorants, as certain fragrances can sort of make me travel sick. Or at least, add to it.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-2.pngA travel cup/mug, some mornings – I prefer my tea on the go.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-7.png A notebook/journal, because a girl needs a little paper in her bag!

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-8.png Speaking of paper. My wallet. I keep everything in here. Up until last year, I was in denial about large mum-ish wallets – it wasn’t until I got one that I realised just how much easier it makes life. I keep everything in here. You can even find my keys stuffed in one of the pockets.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-1.png An umbrella. British weather is as unpredictable as my mind on a Thursday morning. It tends to rain almost everyday in autumn. All day. Did I mention everyday? eh, I’m not complaining.

screenshot_2016-09-19-12-23-35-6.png Lipstick/lip crayons, you know as well as I do that uni days can drag. I hate the look of a long day on my face, especially when I still have a lecture to go. For times like that, I need an emergency ‘pick me up’ to feel fresher and more motivated to continue. I find, pops of colours are like Paracetamol for my drained mind.

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Now I do have a tiny confession to make. I never use the mirrors I keep in my bag, I just buy them because I cant resist the pocket-sized cuteness. Who can?

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Being a student is synonymous to balancing larger than life text-books without toppling over. I don’t like to fill my bag with text-books, firstly; I doubt they would even fit in and secondly; I may not be strong enough to carry 8 + giant books on my back. Which is why I carry this …

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A pouch that contains a plastic/waterproof reusable bag. It may not be the most glamorous thing to carry books in, but it does the job!

and that is all that’s in my backpack. I have this very grey feeling that I have missed something crucial, but if it wasn’t in my bag and it was that important – I’ll realise when I’m frantically looking for it at the train station tomorrow morning.

Now tomorrow is Tuesday and the first day back to university for me – but I LOVE Mondays. I know I know, I’m probably one of a rare few. Share the Monday love with me by answering in the comments –

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE MONDAY QUOTE/SONG, ROUTINE OR SNACK THAT KEEPS YOUR MONDAY MOTIVATION AT ITS PEAK?

I hope you enjoyed this somewhat overly-descriptive log of whats in my bag,

Thank you for reading.

Rimsha

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To contact me regarding a collaboration or to simply get in touch, drop me an email at – rimsharasul8@gmail.com

Stationery + Notebook Cover; DIY

Last month, I purchased my first ever subscription box. The first thing that caught my attention was the funky marble cardboard packaging! In fact, I thought it was soo beautiful that I should cut it up and make good use of it. I’ve never done a DIY on my blog before, but there’s a first for everything right. Since ‘back to school’ season has commenced, this DIY is for those of you that like to add a personal touch to your stationery.

Today, I will be showing you how to customise a plain notebook and pencils using printed paper/card (which happens to be recycled packaging in my case) and the washi tape that I received in my paper gang subscription box.

No, this blogpost is not sponsored by papergang.

Of course, you can substitute the print and washi tape I use for colours/designs that you prefer.

D.I.Y Notebook Cover

  1. a plain notebook (or cover a notebook with black card)
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  2. pens/pencils/stationery of your choice
  3. a glass jar/glass mug (these are available at most kitchen/homeware stores and are very affordable)wp-1473936927040.jpeg

4. Basic equipment to cut and stick (scissors, glue, a ruler and pencil)

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To begin, you need to faintly line a large section of the card using a pencil and ruler (to ensure a straight edge) and cut the card along the pencil line.

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I cannot cut a straight line to save my life, but that can be fixed once you know how much card you need.

 

Next, measure the length and width of the space you would like to cover.

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Cut your desired shape (I kept mine as a long rectangle) and stick the card on to the notebook, like so –

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You may choose to finish here and leave your notebook like this,

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(or)

Roll out the washi tape and pull the tape along the length of the spiral/wire.

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cut the tape and neatly fold the excess over the edge of the cover and stick down.

 

Once I completed the notebook cover, I was obsessed with how the copper foil effect came out and proceeded to add washi tape to the ends of my favourite black pen, pencil – and also along the length of my ruler.

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TIP: Stick a small piece of card (left over from the material used to cover the notepad) at the end of your washi tape. This way, you wont ruin your tape whilst looking for the end the next time you use it.

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Finally, I filled my gold – rimmed glass jar with pens.

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the final look!

 

I think the matching notebook and stationery are great accessories to go in your school bag, or to use as display on your desk.

If you liked my first minimal DIY and would like me to share more, let me know in the comments and if you try this yourself – I would love to see how yours turns out!

Support my little blog by sharing this post with friends.

Love, Rimsha.

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To contact me regarding a collaboration or simply to get in touch, drop me an email at: rimsharasul8@gmail.com