Film, Reviews

A Review of Netflix’s ‘You’

A Review of Netflix's 'You'

You

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Developed by: Greg Berlanti and Sera Gamble

I think by this point everyone has heard of Netflix’s thriller series ‘You’. It’s all that anyone has been talking about on social media recently, and I was a little put off by that. I’m someone who is skeptical to watch a series that everyone is calling amazing and saying you have to watch it; I go into the show with very high expectations and if it isn’t amazing, I feel a little disappointed, even if it’s still good. Nevertheless, I decided to give the show a go after running out of things to watch and I thoroughly enjoyed.

‘You’ follows the story of Joe Goldberg, a bookstore manager in New York who instantly falls in love when writer Guinevere Beck walks into his shop. However this love rapidly turns into an obsession, resorting to stalking her and controlling every aspect of her life. We see the majority of this through Joe’s own thoughts, as he is the narrator, who justifies his actions and doesn’t believe he is doing anything wrong, just doing it out of his love for Beck. But things turn dark and many secrets are unfolded between Joe, Beck, and her friends as the series goes on.

Having Joe as the narrator was very interesting; though he is a stalker and a criminal, you do find yourself almost sympathising with him as he talks through why he is doing the actions he undertakes. If we weren’t inside his head, his relationship with Beck would seem perfect. At times, you sort of forget what Joe has done, and it is sweet, but these thoughts of his actions crawl back into your head and make their relationship so sinister. He is not your usual creepy guy, sort of like Ted Bundy which I discussed here; he’s attractive and friendly, someone you would never suspect. This is backed up by Joe’s protectiveness of his neighbour Paco, a young boy whose mother is abused by her boyfriend. He’s clumsy with his crimes, not cold and calculated. I found myself wishing he was just the nice guy that he appears to be, but this wasn’t the case.

I also liked Beck’s character, though I’m a little biased being a writer myself! She is not a perfect girl like Joe’s obsessions make her out to be. She sleeps around, she can be lazy with her work, she carries her own secrets. Of course I’m not saying she’s a bad person for any of these, but it gives her a lot more substance instead of being flawless. There were some parts of the series where we were in her head, which was a nice change where we got to explore her character more. However I think it was a good decision for Joe to be the main character, as it’s fascinating to be in that mindset and see his rationality, showing that anyone could be a criminal despite their outward appearance.

I will admit that plot wise, the series starts off a little slow and repetitive. A lot of it involves Joe following Beck from place to place, him almost getting caught, then getting away with it. It happens so many times that it ruins the tension there would be; because he’s the main character, even though he does bad things, you do find yourself tense when he makes a mistake. However because it had already happened multiple times, you know he’s going to escape narrowly. Having said that, the series does get more intense as it goes on and I started enjoying it more as it got darker and plot twists start to develop. I can definitely understand why so many people binge watched it because you just want to find out what happens and many episodes end on cliff hangers!

The cinematography was also very aesthetically pleasing; as it’s set in New York you have great aerial views of Central Park, and their apartments as well as the bookstore always seem to have light streaming through the windows leading to some lovely stills. The acting is no less impressive; Penn Badgley and Elizabeth Lail do an amazing job of Joe and Beck, and the side characters are just as good.

There’s been some controversy over people loving Joe and I see both sides of the argument. You really shouldn’t wish for a relationship like Joe and Beck’s. It is not love but an obsession. She has no idea what he is doing and what he is really like, which isn’t a true relationship. However it is the whole message of the series; you never know what people are really capable of no matter how nice they seem. Joe does pull you in as the narrator and like I’ve said previously, you want him to be that person who brings Beck pancakes and jokes around with her. But anyone can see that a guy like Joe is not what you want, and I don’t think anyone truly (well, I hope not!) wants someone like him, instead just commenting on the nice side of him that they would want in a partner.

Overall, I loved the characters and the series is full of drama. It was definitely worth the watch as it’s different from your usual shows, and I’m glad I ended up watching it despite my hesitations. I’m giving ‘You’ 4/5 stars and I’m curious to see where it goes in the next season!

 

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Short Story Series

Part 2 – Short Story Series

www.writingthebluesaway.wordpress.comWelcome to part 2 of my short story series! If you missed the first post you can check it out here, but basically this series consists of me looking back on some old short stories that I wrote at university. Now, due to it being Valentine’s Day this week I thought I would post a romance short story that I wrote for my genre fiction class. It’s a little bit longer than my first short story so get comfy, I hope you enjoy and I’ll see you on the other side for some analysis! (Also I’m aware the paragraphs should be indented but they seem to revert whenever I preview the post, I will try to work out what’s happening there)

Elliot’s Bench

I tapped my foot in time to the drumming in my ears. Sitting on my usual bench I sipped my morning coffee, watching the same old commuters hurry past with suitcases. The woman who always wore her hair in a slick bun, her glasses slipping down her nose as she ran for the train she was always late for. The man in a navy suit whose tie was slightly askew.

It felt like any other day.

Except a girl was coming towards me. A girl I’d never seen before.

Her choppy brown hair bristled as another train went speeding past and she jumped, clutching her book tighter to her chest with frightened eyes. Hadn’t she been to a train station before? Her face relaxed as the blare of the train disappeared into the distance, eyes crinkling in a smile as if to say ‘Silly me!’

I managed a grimace back; who smiled at eight in the morning? She wore a giant scarf, knitted red wool wrapped twice around her neck, trailing long past her baggy grey sweater.

That’s when she sat next to me. On my bench. No, she definitely hadn’t been to a train station before. No one ever sat on the same bench as anyone else, especially on the morning commute. Everyone claimed their own.

I pushed my earphones harder into my ears, scowling.

A loud roaring from behind my back startled me and I tensed up. Of course, it was just a train. I hoped no one could tell it was my first time at a train station. Before I moved to London, I’d never even needed to get a train anywhere. Twenty-one years old and I hadn’t been on a train in all my life. It was silly really.

I realised the man on the bench was staring at me. I must have looked like an idiot scared of a train when I was about to catch one. Grinning to hide my embarrassment, he gave an awkward smile back as I went to sit down next to him.

He was frowning, the skin pinching between his eyebrows and I wondered if I’d upset him somehow. Oh well, I thought, it’s too late to get up now. He couldn’t have been that much older than me, though the suit and tie did make him look more mature, his dark hair slicked back neatly out of the way. His lanky leg was jerking up and down to the drumbeat leaking from his earphones.

I debated whether to say something to him or just to carry on reading my book when my train came into the station. We stood up at the same time, but he walked briskly over to the first class carriage. Fancy, I thought, joining the bustle of people squeezing into the other carriages.

 

She sat by me again the next morning. The girl with the ridiculous scarf. This time she was earlier, not long after I’d got there. She had the same book open on her lap, Pride and Prejudice, but she also held a cup of coffee like mine.

Secretly, I’d always loved the literary classics. Not that I’d ever admit that to any of my friends, I wouldn’t hear the end of it. My eyes dipped down subtly; I found we had the same reading speed. She turned the page exactly as I’d finished reading.

“I’m Grace,” she said suddenly and my head shot up. I realised that she had eyes the colour of bark, with flecks of a darker earthy brown scattered through her iris, and a smattering of tiny freckles across her delicate nose.

“Elliot,” I replied. She gave another of those smiles; the one where her eyes almost disappeared behind her crinkled skin, causing something to stir inside me.

Before I could think of what that something was exactly, our train pulled in and we rose from the bench, parting ways to our separate carriages.

I sat down on the same bench as yesterday, next to the frowning man. However as soon as I opened my book to read he seemed to relax, slouching into the bench. Out of the corner of my eye I could see him reading Pride and Prejudice along with me. It surprised me that he’d even want to read it, but I said nothing. I could tell I was slightly faster than him, so re-read the last sentences a couple of times until I saw his eyes had reached the bottom of the page, then turned to the next.

“I’m Grace,” I said, and he looked up. If we were going to be sitting by each other every morning he may as well know my name, I thought.

“Elliot,” he said. His eyes were a peculiar shade of grey, dark snow clouds but with a slight blue tinge, and his nose was slightly crooked.

I smiled at him but our train came to a stop in front of us before I could say anything else. He went off to his posh carriage and I went to mine.

 

It took a week before I could actually speak to Grace. We sat in silence each morning, reading together, though I didn’t think she knew that yet.

“How come you get this train?” I asked, after taking a deep breath.

“You’re only just asking now?” she teased, raising one full eyebrow. “Well, I’ve only recently moved to London, with no clue what I was going to do. So I got a job at a bookstore and here I am. What about you?”

“Apprenticeship at a law firm.”

“Is that how you can afford first class?”

I reddened, though I knew she was joking; I didn’t want to be seen as the posh, rich boy living off daddy’s money.

“I’m sorry, that was rude, I’ll shut up,” Grace mumbled.

“No, don’t be silly. I’ve just always been very fortunate; Dad’s always pushed me to do well,” I explained. I then tried a smile, which I don’t do often. “You might want to try first class sometimes.”

“Not on my wage, Mr Suit and Tie!”

I smiled again.

A week into getting the same train and Elliot finally spoke to me again. A week of him reading over my shoulder.

He asked why I got the train and I explained about my job at the bookstore. What I didn’t mention is that I’d never been on a train, moving from a tiny village in Cornwall to a massive city which terrified me to say the least. But he didn’t need to know my life story.

Elliot had an apprenticeship; I pictured him in a suave apartment at the top of a towering skyscraper. I made a comment about him being able to afford first class and he blushed, his face falling. Now he hates me, I thought, hanging my head in shame.

But he didn’t mind. He actually smiled for the first time. And what a beautiful, lopsided smile he had.

 

I noticed something new about Grace each day.

She had a big freckle behind her right ear.

I noted new things about Elliot in my head as the days passed.

Elliot had a scar on his neck.

She cracked her knuckles before reading.

He tapped his fingers when nervous.

She wore that damn scarf every day. And it suited her.

He never let any stubble creep onto his face. And I liked that.

Until one morning I was late. Overslept for the first time in months, dreaming of a girl with choppy hair. I thought of her on the bench alone; was she worrying about where I was? Maybe she didn’t even care.

He wasn’t there. He was always there before me. Scenarios flashed through my head and I shuddered. How would I know if something bad had happened to him? Looking down at the new copy of Pride and Prejudice in my hands, wrapped in a bow, I sighed.

I sprinted onto the platform, coming to a halt by the bench where I panted, hands on my knees.

“Sorry, overslept,” I managed to force out between breaths as Grace stared at me.

“That’s good. I thought it would be a shame if you died and I’d bought this book for nothing,” she said, smirking and holding out a shiny copy of Pride and Prejudice carefully tied with a red bow. “Now you can read it by yourself, start from the beginning.”

I grinned sheepishly, taking the book and thanking her. So she did know. Maybe I wasn’t as discrete as I thought.

“Come for a drink with me. Tonight,” I blurted out.

“Sure Mr Suit and Tie. Here’s my number.”

And she left me just like that, smiling that smile I loved before jumping onto her carriage.


 

There we go, that was ‘Elliot’s Bench’! Something we did at university when workshopping someone else’s work was praise it, then note any criticisms, and then give something positive again. I’m going to do that here so I’m not too hard on myself!

Firstly, I loved writing the characters and their personalities, and I hope it came across well to you. Grace is bubbly and charismatic, whereas Elliot is a lot more serious to uphold his lawyer stereotype. I liked being able to see into each of their heads which leads to some humorous moments, like Elliot thinking he’s the same reading pace as Grace and being discrete, when in reality Grace knows exactly what he’s doing and slows down for him to catch up. I gave some hints of backstory suitable enough for a short story, so readers know but aren’t overwhelmed with exposition.

However, I think this short story has a problem with repetition. I know what I was trying to do by having them both experience the same moment, so that you could see what the characters were like. But I think I should have done less of this and maybe instead switch between their voices for different scenes, so it wasn’t as slow. I also found myself using the same words a lot, like ‘smile’, or I’d use similar words in the same sentence like ‘slight’ and ‘slightly’. This is something I concentrate a lot on in my writing now and I always pick it up in other people’s writing too. Of course, you can use the same words within the same story but if they’re too close together it limits your vocabulary a little.

That being said, I liked that I was trying something new because I hadn’t tried ever having two narrators before. I think it’s cute how Elliot starts off mildly annoyed by her to realising how much he likes her, and you can tell I’m a book lover by using a book as their main connection, even if it is a bit cheesy!

What did you think of this story? Let me know down in the comments and I hope you enjoyed reading!

Film

My Top 5 Rom-Com Films

My Top 5 Rom-Com Films

A good rom-com is definitely one of my favourite type of film. Not only do you get the laughs but you also get the fuzzy, warm feeling inside when the couple you’re rooting for finally get together. They are also the perfect film to watch on Valentine’s Day, whether that be cuddled up with your partner or having a girl’s night with plenty of snacks.

That’s why I thought I’d share my top five rom-coms to give you an idea of what to watch this Valentine’s Day!

1. About Time

As well as being my favourite rom-com, I think this is genuinely one of my overall favourite films. Tim Lake (Domhnall Gleeson) discovers that he has the ability to travel in time which only the men in his family inherit, including his father (Bill Nighy). Instead of using the ability for negative reasons such as money, he makes the choice to use it for romance, particularly after meeting an American woman (Rachel McAdams) on a blind date where they immediately hit it off.

What I love the most about this film is that it has it all; there’s humour, romance, drama and a little bit of magic. It’s different from your usual rom-com because there is this fantasy element. The actors are amazing; I didn’t expect anything less from Bill Nighy but this was one of the first films I saw Domhnall Gleeson in and he is so good in it. It also makes me cry every single time even though I know what happens! This list isn’t in any particular order but this is definitely number one.

2. The Bridget Jones’ Diary Trilogy

I’m cheating a little putting these together, but I remember watching Bridget Jones for the first time when I was about thirteen and it was probably the first rom-com I’d ever watched. I loved it instantly and I’m sure many of you have already seen these films. But for those who haven’t, Renée Zellweger is Bridget Jones, a single woman in her thirties trying to find the love of her life in London. Colin Firth and Hugh Grant play her love interests, who she can’t quite seem to decide between, before Patrick Dempsey emerges as another in the third film.

There are some hilarious and iconic scenes in the first two, so I was worried when ‘Bridget Jones’ Baby’ came out more recently that it wouldn’t live up to them. However I really enjoyed it and I’ll happily re-watch it. I will admit that the first two are a little outdated (how is Grant calling Zellweger a bitch romantic in any way?) and cheesy, but still fun to watch.

3. One Day

I adore this film so much and it’s another that I’ve re-watched many times. Emma Morley (Anne Hathaway) meets Dexter Mayhew (Jim Sturgess) on their graduation night on the 15th July 1988. The film then follows what happens on that day every year, and what moment they’re at in their life as well as their relationship, which is often rocky.

Though this film obviously has its humorous moments as a rom-com, I feel like they’re a lot more subtle than others. There’s a lot more focus on the romance and drama side I feel, which isn’t in any way a bad thing. However this isn’t a film to watch if you’re looking for lots of comedy. It’s such a beautiful love story though. It really shows the ups and downs of relationships, and how even if you drift apart, there’s a chance you will come back together again.

4. Crazy, Stupid, Love

This is such a good film if you’re looking for a lot of laughs with an all-star cast. Steve Carell is the main character who seeks the help of Ryan Gosling to get back into the dating scene. It’s one of those rom-coms where all the characters are connected in some way, which is quite an overused trope but it works really well for this film. Others actors include Emma Stone, Kevin Bacon and Julianne Moore, so the acting definitely isn’t below par.

There’s one scene in this film which has me crying with laughter every time which is why I just had to include this on my list. Of course, it isn’t without its fair share of drama, but it’s a film that shows how romance is nowhere near straightforward and is something that people of all ages will experience.

5. Bridesmaids

I’ve lost count how many times I’ve watched this, but it is so funny and has me laughing every time. Annie (Kristen Wiig) has been asked by her best friend (Maya Rudolph) to be her maid of honour, alongside other bridesmaids made up of some very colourful characters. The film follows the tensions between their friendship and the obstacles leading up to the wedding, as well as Annie’s love life.

‘Bridesmaids’ is different from the other films I’ve listed because there’s a large focus on female friendships, which makes it the perfect film to watch with your girl friends. I can’t fault a single actress and they’re all equally as hilarious. However this was the first film I’d seen Melissa McCarthy in and I have to say she is one of my favourites out of all the characters.

Those are my top five rom-com films, and I’ll definitely be choosing one to watch this Valentine’s. Let me know in the comments what your favourite rom-coms are or whether you enjoy any of the ones that I’ve mentioned. Have a good Valentine’s Day no matter how you spend it and thank you for reading!

 

Relationships

Budget Valentine’s Day Gifts

Valentine’s Day can sometimes put a lot of pressure on people to buy extravagant gifts for their partners. Social media certainly hasn’t helped this in anyway, as people post pictures of their expensive jewelry, giant teddies and dozens of roses. However, as I discussed in my last post, these things shouldn’t matter and it’s the little things that show your love for one another. That’s why I’ve come up with a list of some budget gift ideas for if you still want to surprise your partner without the huge price tag. If you’re single, these are also great gifts for your friends if you’re celebrating with them instead.

Make a photo collage

A collection of photos is a really great way to reminisce about all the memories you have shared together. However you don’t even have to go to a store or online shop to get one professionally made.

For Jordan and I’s fifth year together, I made him a photo collage from a small canvas I found lying around the house, then printed off some photos at home and got creative. You can get cheap canvases from places like The Works or similar art stores, and if you want better quality photos get them printed at a store. You don’t even have to be that artsy for this, as all it involves is a little arranging, cutting and sticking! It may not look as professional but your partner will really appreciate the effort that’s gone into it.

Design a homemade card

Again, making a homemade card is something you don’t even have to be that artsy to do. I’ve always loved drawing so often make Jordan’s cards, doing little illustrations with pencils and fine liners that I already have in the house. I usually include something he likes or a particular theme, for example I did a Fantastic Beasts one for his birthday. You could even Google Valentine’s pictures if you’re not the best drawer and copy or trace the image. It at least shows you’ve taken the time to create something just for your partner!

But if you really don’t like to draw, you could print off images from online and do a Valentine’s collage, or cut things out of magazines. This way you’re creating something totally unique and not just a store-bought card.

Create a hamper/goodie bag

These are great because you get to decide what goes in and how much you spend. For people in the UK I highly recommend the Sainsbury’s Valentine’s aisle for some great little gifts. It’s been a life saver for me.

This cute plant is what I bought last year (excuse the nerdy shelf!) and it’s still going strong, and I also bought a card game which tested how well we knew each other which was so fun. They’re different than the usual teddy bear holding a heart. Add some chocolate or sweets, maybe a DVD or some socks and you’ve got a lovely selection for under a tenner. You can then include some of the homemade items above if you wanted as well.

Bake them something tasty

Everyone has their favourite sweet treats, so why not bake some for your partner? Baking is so much cheaper than buying ready made cookies or cakes, as the ingredients don’t cost a lot at all and you get a lot out of them for future baking. You can go all out with the Valentine’s theme and buy heart shaped cookie cutters and sprinkles with some pink icing, or just do some traditional cookies or cupcakes. Have fun with the packaging and wrap them up in some coloured cellophane if you want to. No matter what you decide, no one can really complain about a gift you can eat!

Buy them flowers or a plant

Now, a lot of people don’t like flowers; why spend lots of money on something that’s going to die in a couple of days? But you don’t have to spend heaps on dozens of roses, which some people don’t actually like, to please your partner. If you know their favourite flower, try and find them as it’s more meaningful. Even a cheap bunch of flowers is enough to brighten up their day and will look lovely in their home. If they don’t like flowers, any plant is a great gift to get like the one I showed previously. Go to a garden center or home ware shop and see what you can find. I’d recommend a cactus, because who doesn’t like cacti, and they’ll last a lot longer than a bunch of flowers.

Make a painting

Sorry again if you’re not a creative person, but I thought that I’d add a painting to the list! This is something I’ve done in the past for Jordan even though I’m not that skilled with using paints. He really appreciated the effort I put in. You could try doing a portrait of your partner, a set up of items you have that are important to the both of you, a landscape painting or even something from your imagination. To make it look more professional you can buy a basic frame which doesn’t cost a lot, so your partner can then display it proudly!

Knit or sew them something

I don’t know how to knit or sew myself, but if you have that skill it’s the perfect opportunity to put it to use. February is still a cold month so a scarf, gloves, or a hat is an ideal gift, or if you’re very experienced, a jumper. I once bought knitting needles and some wool at a market, though I never ended up using them, but they only cost me a couple of pounds. This is so much cheaper than buying the items of clothing from a shop. If sewing is more your thing, why not cross stitch them something Valentine’s themed? This is then something they can hang on the wall and keep for years to come.

These are just some of the things you can do if you’re looking to celebrate Valentine’s Day without the worry of buying things you can’t afford. As well as cheap, they’re something personal that will be much more appreciated because you’ve put the time in to create something. I hope this is helpful, leave any more ideas you can think of in the comments. Have a lovely Valentine’s Day!

 

Relationships

5 Things I’ve Learned About Being in a Long-Term Relationship

Being in a long-term relationship is not something you really plan. You never know how any relationship is going to go, no matter how love struck you are at the beginning. If my future self visited 14 year old me and said “Hey, you know that boy Jordan you’re going out with right now? Yeah, you’re just about to celebrate your eighth Valentine’s together”, I would be shocked. Of course there are stories of childhood sweethearts staying together, but it’s not often that it happens, at least not with anyone I know.

So, nearly eight years with the same person has meant that I’ve learned a lot about a serious, long-term relationship. I thought I’d share five things for Valentine’s, but this is just my experience; I’m not claiming to be an expert or that all long-term relationships are successful/happy.

1. It’s unlikely that everything is going to be the same as the start of the relationship, but that’s okay.

The start of Jordan and I’s relationship was like any teenagers. We non-stop messaged, proclaimed how in love we were, even wrote the most embarrassing things for EVERYONE to see on each other’s Facebook walls. They come up in our memories every now and again, which we always show each other and cringe over. We were so smitten, especially after I’d been treated pretty badly by a boy before Jordan.

However as time passes, you don’t really do things like that any more. You become comfortable. We don’t buy each other extravagant things any more, or need constant assuring that we love each other. Obviously we matured a lot going from young teens to adults, but I think often in any relationship you start off doing anything you can to show your love.

But that doesn’t mean the spark is gone or that things aren’t the same. It just means you’ve reached a stage where you’re happy and comfortable, and the little things that you barely register are how you show your love, which leads me to my next point.

2. It’s the little things you do that truly express your love for each other.

Love isn’t about expensive gifts and telling the whole world about your relationship, though it can be a part of it. For me, the longer I’ve been in a relationship, the more I notice small things we do for each other that mean so much more. Your partner may not even notice, but you don’t do it for praise or recognition.

For example, as much as I love good food, I always give Jordan the biggest out of whatever we’re eating, which I don’t think he has even realised! We always make sure to say goodbye before we go anywhere even if we’re in an argument. Jordan doesn’t use the microwave in the morning before work so he doesn’t wake me up.

There are so many things but the point I’m making is that although you may not be as lovey dovey the longer the relationship goes on for, little actions still show how much you care for each other.

3. You’re going to see each other at your absolute worst and still love each other.

Jordan has seen me throwing up from sun stroke on our holiday, crying at the same time because I hate being sick. In return, I’ve seen Jordan completely drunk, vomiting at a party and crying over how happy he was to get into his top university. I’ve had complete breakdowns in front of him, and my crying face is nowhere near pretty (picture bloodshot eyes, a bright red face and snot…). Yet we still find each other attractive and cared for each other in those moments.

I think this is one of the best things about becoming comfortable with a partner. I’m someone who is very closed and keeps everything to themselves. But the longer you’re in a relationship with someone, the more time there is to go through obstacles and see each other face difficulties. That means I’ve become very open with Jordan, to the point that nothing is embarrassing, because I know at the end of the day he cares about me and won’t judge me for it.

4. There will be arguments but that doesn’t mean it should destroy your relationship.

Of course, this all depends on the situation. If all you’re doing is arguing and there’s nothing positive, that isn’t healthy. However, I think some people expect a perfect relationship to have no arguments, but this isn’t realistic. Jordan and I have had our fair share of serious arguments, but we’ve always worked through them. We sit down and talk about how we can make it better, or we take the night off from each other to cool down. It’s hard to speak rationally when you’re both angry.

We’ve also then had stupid arguments about things like the washing up or cooking. Arguments doesn’t mean your relationship is doomed. You have to accept things aren’t always going to be rosy. We’ve always come out stronger from fights, or if they were really silly and we wondered why we even argued about it in the first place, we forget about it and don’t let it eat away at us. Like I’ve said, it does depend on the circumstances, but it would be a shame to let a petty argument cause a break up. Speaking about it when you’re in a better state of mind is always best.

5. There’s a possibility you will have to go long-distance, and it sucks.

Now this depends how old you are or what stages you’re at in your lives, but for Jordan and I it was when we both went to different universities. I’ll always remember the day we had to say goodbye to each other. Jordan was starting uni two weeks earlier than me, but the day before he was going I was coming back from a holiday. I came back that morning and went straight to his house, spending the night there. The next day I was distraught and couldn’t stop crying. I had to go to get a jab at the doctor’s after saying goodbye, and cried in the waiting room…I’m an emotional person, okay?

We went from seeing each other every day at school and often on weekends, to seeing each other once a month for three years, alternating visits. We also got to see each other at home for Christmas and Easter. It was such a huge change and it was so difficult, especially as university wasn’t the greatest time for me and Jordan was having the time of his life. We had to schedule around exams and deadlines. At the end of third year we actually spent almost two months apart!

I hated being apart, but it made me treasure the times when we did see each other and appreciate being able to live with him now much more. Going long-distance is always going to be a possibility whether it be for education or for work. Not everyone can get through it which is understandable; you may grow apart or meet someone new. But it is possible and totally do-able if you put in the effort.

 

There we have it, that’s five things I’ve learned about being in a long-term relationship! Once again I am no expert, I just wanted to share some positivity for Valentine’s about my experience as I’m in a very happy relationship. Can you relate to the things I’ve spoken about or do you have some other things to add to the list? Let me know in the comments and thank you for reading!

 

Reviews

A Review of The Ted Bundy Tapes

Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes

Genre: Docu-series

Director: Joe Berlinger

When I first heard about this series coming to Netflix, I was immediately intrigued. I had never heard of Ted Bundy, but I’ve enjoyed a lot of the true crime documentaries on Netflix, so I was excited to watch another one. I thought I’d seen the worst there was for crimes, but I really wasn’t prepared. This will contain some spoilers just so I can explain my thoughts about the series, so come back and read after you’ve watched it if you don’t want it to be spoiled!

If any of you haven’t got round to watching it yet and know nothing about Ted Bundy, he killed what is believed to be over thirty women in numerous states between 1974 and 1978, as well as being a rapist and a necrophile. He would often manipulate women using his charm and good looks, appearing as a friendly individual, asking for help in public before luring them away to a place where he would kill them.

Over the first three episodes, Bundy denies ever killing anyone as he speaks into a tape recorder in prison. It was amazing to me how he could continuously deny his involvement despite the evidence; there was a clear pattern of killings of women from one state to the next, a bite mark on one of the women which matched Bundy’s teeth, a female witness who survived a kidnapping by him being able to identify him, the list goes on. The fact that he could so confidently sit there, even testify as his own defense in court, was shocking. He’d even escaped from prison a few times, yet still had this strange confidence to go back to prison claiming he didn’t do anything, despite escaping making him look even more guilty.

It was fascinating to be inside the mind of a serial killer, but of course sickening, particularly in Bundy’s case. He is so unlike any other criminal I’ve seen, which the Netflix series really shows. He truly had no guilt of killing and raping all of those women. He only confessed to thirty murders, but there are thought to be more that he didn’t mention. It was also crazy how charismatic of a man he was, and I can definitely understand why people who knew him didn’t think he would ever do anything like this. Even in court he was always cracking jokes and winking at the camera. He wasn’t the creepy looking, ‘loner’ type murderer that we so often see. That’s why I think this series is so important because it shows we truly don’t know who could be a killer among us, which is absolutely terrifying. I probably won’t be able to walk alone at night any time soon!

Towards the end of the series, Bundy is sentenced with the death penalty and executed in the electric chair in January 1989. It was what many people including the police department had been fighting for. He truly was a sick and heartless individual. However, what I found equally as disgusting was the people that crowded the outside of the prison cheering for his death. Drunken teenagers, grown adults, holding signs and even selling t-shirts celebrating his execution. Now without getting too political, I’m against the death penalty. The fact that someone would take pleasure in taking someone else’s life is foul to me, no matter what they’ve done. Yes, Ted Bundy was vile who took the lives of so many women. But I think it’s just as bad to want to kill someone in retaliation to that. These people were almost having a party, using it to sell merchandise, which I think is twisted.

What I liked most about this series was that it was the perfect length. If you’ve watched The Staircase, towards the end it drags on a little and doesn’t give us any new information. The Ted Bundy Tapes however sits nicely at four episodes and is concise in what it covers. We chronologically see the series of crimes that Bundy commits through news and camera footage as well as Bundy’s voice, yet we also get to see interviews from the present day of people in the police department and lawyers. We get an all rounded view because even people on Bundy’s defense team noted what a horrible person he was. There was no doubt that he had committed the crimes, so it’s incredible how Bundy could deny for more than a decade.

My only issue with the series, rather something that comes to mind, is that this is exactly what Ted Bundy would have wanted. He relished in attention, keeping up to date with news articles and segments about him. After a quick Google search I saw that he’s had multiple TV shows, books and films about him, not to mention the upcoming Zac Efron film. Though of course he is dead and can’t witness it, it is a little frustrating knowing that he would love being the center of attention. Nevertheless, I think it is good to have this series and others to remind us of his victims and how much of a monster he was.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this to anyone who loves docu-series and true crime stories. It is an excellent example of a documentary done well, which is why I’m giving it 5/5 stars.

Books

10 Books I Want to Read

Reading is something that I’m ashamed to say I’ve been slacking a little lately. However, when I find the time I really do enjoy being curled up with a book and being whisked away to another world. I’m currently reading Good Omens at the moment, which I will probably do a review of when I’m finished!

I thought I’d do a wish list of the books I want to read, to hopefully motivate me into reading more. I literally have no room for any more books which is why I haven’t really bought any recently, but I’m sure I could find somewhere for a few more…

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1. The rest of the Chaos Walking Trilogy by Patrick Ness

I’ll count this as one book, but I read the Knife of Never Letting Go after hearing so much about it, and after enjoying Patrick Ness’ others books like The Rest of Us Just Live Here. I absolutely loved the writing style and the concept. I also heard that the film was in production so I just had to read it beforehand (though I’m not sure about the casting choice). I’d love to read the rest of the series because there was so much left unanswered at the end of the first.

2. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

Both my younger cousin and my nan have read this recently and it sounds so intriguing. From the blurb it seems like it will be quite uplifting and my nan was actually laughing aloud at one point! It also won and was nominated for multiple awards so it has to be good.

3. King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

I’ve heard a lot about this in the book blogging community and I’m always looking for fantasy books to read. Though I am writing a fantasy novel, I haven’t read any fantasy books in a while, particularly YA fantasy which is the target audience of my novel. It would be great to get me in the mindset and also give me some good inspiration for my novel.

4. Feminists Don’t Wear Pink (and other lies) by Scarlett Curtis

I’d love to start reading more feminist literature and this seems like a good place to start. I find it so inspiring to read about other women’s stories alongside the problems they have faced and subsequently overcome in life.  To me, it just gives a great sense of community and makes me feel like I’m not alone.

5. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

I hate to admit it but I’m a sucker for romance in YA novels; there’s something so heart-warming and bitter sweet about teens falling in love. This book sounds perfect for me, and I’d love to read it before I see the film.

6. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

I saw the film ages ago and I really should have read the book by now. Death being the narrator is such an interesting concept and the story is just heartbreaking. I’m not usually one for historical fiction, but I think I’d enjoy this and it would be good to expand my reading.

7. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

I’ve seen so much praise for this book that I’m curious to read it myself. Looking at the synopsis, it sounds like a brilliant story of love and friendship. I really don’t see any reason why I wouldn’t like it, so I definitely want to give it a go!

8. The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson

I don’t think I’ve read any books on the topic of gender identity so it would be good to read something different. I love books that explore friendships too and after it being a bestselling novel in 2015 I think it’s about time I read it.

9. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

I really want to read this before I see the film; though I love fantasy and dystopian books, I want to read more books that are set in the real world, as you can see from this wish list, and that cover very real issues. This book is said to cover the Black Lives Matter movement exceptionally well, so it seems like something I need to read.

10. One of Us Is Lying by Karen McManus

I absolutely love crime documentaries and thriller TV shows, so I think it’s about time I read a murder mystery novel! I’m really intrigued by the high school setting and the multiple narrators. I’m a weird person though and hate guessing ‘who dun it’ so as not to spoil it for myself; I like to just go along with it and don’t let my mind wander so I’m surprised when there’s a big reveal.

 

There we have it, those are the ten books that I want to read and are on my wish list! Of course there are way more books that I’d like to read so let me know in the comments if you have any recommendations, or if you’ve read any of the ones on my list. Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed!

Short Story Series

Part 1 of my Short Story Series

Hello and welcome to a brand new series on my blog! I’m going to be sharing with you some of the short stories I wrote at university; over the course of three years I had to write so many stories, usually with a particular focus in mind, whether that be the genre or something else. The first story I’m going to be sharing with you had to be filled with metaphors and this is from my second year at university (2016-2017). I will then give you my honest thoughts looking back at my old work, because this is something a lot of writers struggle to do; we usually never want it to see the light of day! Hopefully this series will help me see how far I’ve come while also showing you my style of writing across different assignments! So enough explaining, this is a short story called ‘Payback’.

 

“Oh God, hide.”

“Too late.”

Rosie was hammering on the window that looked into the living room. I was pleased to see that the heat had reduced her blonde hair to Medusa snakes and her face was scrunched up like an angry bull.

“Can you just not answer the door?” Jamie said, hiding his face behind one of my cream pillows, the ginger hair that stuck up above standing out like a traffic cone. It was unmistakeably Jamie.

“Like I said, too late,” I said, walking to the front door and thrusting it open. Rosie pushed past me as if she were a rugby player.

“I heard you were here, with this loser,” Rosie said, thrusting a glare at me. “Probably hooked up behind my back when we were together.”

“You’re the one who cheated on him!” I couldn’t keep the exasperation off my face. A whole year of her sneaking off to her boss’ house and she says that. Rosie raised one of her over plucked eyebrows as if this was irrelevant and her gaze drifted back to Jamie again.

“I want you to give it back.”

Jamie had lowered the pillow from his face, a child who’d just been caught drawing on the walls.

“I don’t know what you mean,” he said, but his nervous glance to me said otherwise.

“The leather jacket Jamie. It cost, like, a thousand pounds, you think I’m going to let you keep it?”

“Oh, that,” Jamie said, Rosie too ignorant to hear the tone of relief leaking through each syllable. “You gave it to me?”

“That was before…the break up. Now.” She held out her hand, wagging her index finger, the smooth red nail like a delicate petal.

Jamie walked over to the coat rack, tugging the leather jacket off and passing it to her. Rosie tore it from his hand and left without another word, the door slamming behind her.

“Fuck, I loved that jacket,” Jamie said, furrowing his caterpillar eyebrows and sitting back down on the sofa.

“Come on, spill it,” I said, crossing my arms against my chest and giving him my best stern teacher look.

“What?”

“You took something that wasn’t the jacket didn’t you?”

Jamie sighed and pulled me down beside him, the muddy puddles of his eyes reflecting the confusion on my own face. Since the break up, Jamie had been living with me, seeing as he had no family to go to. For the first week we watched sad films and ate ice cream like rejected actors for the role of Bridget Jones, Jamie mourning his two year relationship. Now that we saw each other every day, when had he left the house to steal from Rosie?

“I made sure I took it before I left,” Jamie said. He reached into his jean pocket, flipping open his wallet and pulling out a shiny credit card. My eyes bulged like the throat of a bullfrog. His lips were clenched together in excitement as if it was a golden ticket, waiting for my response. “Thought I’d get a little revenge.”

“But won’t she realise?”

“I doubt it. This is our joint account, one of the many that she has filled with…well, thousands.”

“I don’t know…I don’t want to get into trouble.”

“Come on, Alicia. Look at what she did to me.”

I remembered what Jamie was like before it all happened. He was my sun, and not just because of the ginger hair. He lit up the room like Christmas tree lights, his goofy laugh as infectious as a yawn. I could always rely on him to cheer me up. That was until Rosie cheated on him, and his fire extinguished. He sulked on the sofa like a miserable cat, picking at leftover takeaways, and it was my turn to make him happy. And now when he held that golden ticket in his hand, I could see the spark again.

“Fine, but what do you want to buy with it?”

“Well, I may have already bought us two tickets to the Caribbean.”

“What?!”

“Leaving tomorrow.”

My mouth opened and closed like I was eating an invisible sandwich, but no words would come out.

“I haven’t even packed!” I managed to say at last, though many thoughts were whizzing around my head, toy cars on a race track.

“Well you better hurry up then.”

I began to pack immediately, searching through the material forest in my wardrobe to find any form of holiday clothes when Jamie dumped about ten bags on my bed. They were filled with shorts, bikinis, dresses, like he was a summer time Father Christmas. I didn’t have to ask how he got them.

The next day when we sat on our suitcases outside the front door waiting for the taxi, Jamie took my hand, engulfing it in a slightly sweaty blanket.

“I really need this, you know. A break from everything.”

“I know.”

The taxi arrived and with our suitcases safely in the boot, we pulled away from the house. A faint screaming like the buzzing of a fly caused me to turn around to look out the back window. Rosie was charging down the street as if she was Terminator with red lipstick, surprisingly fast in her wedged sandals.

“You bastard!” she yelled, flailing her arms like she was doing a Mexican wave, trying to stop the taxi and incredibly gaining on us.

The taxi driver turned round to us, raising a questioning eyebrow.

“I don’t know either, mate,” Jamie said. “Just drive.”

I gave a little wave to Rosie as we picked up speed, her figure disappearing into a distant mountain on the horizon.

 

I remember having a lot of fun writing this and coming up with all the different metaphors! However it was difficult, and I can tell I was running out of ideas when I read “slightly sweaty blanket”…yikes. Obviously when you’re usually writing you wouldn’t have this many metaphors (or I’ve never read anything this jam-packed at least), it was just an exercise to get us thinking outside of the box and into the habit of finding different ways to describe things.

Also, I definitely prefer novel writing just because you have thousands of words to play with. With short stories, there is a limit to the plot you can fit in, especially at university where we had to write under 1,500 words or sometimes under 1,000. I was definitely struggling to fit the story in and had to jump from Jamie telling Alicia about the holiday to the next morning. To me it feels so rushed, but I tried my best to get across the characters’ personalities and what had happened beforehand in their lives.

I do like some of the metaphors I used too, I couldn’t believe when I saw “eyes bulged like the throat of a bullfrog” because I’ve actually used this in my current novel without even realising I’d used it before!

Overall, this wasn’t as cringe-inducing as I thought. There are definitely many changes I’d make to it now, but it was a great exercise to make me think about the way I describe things in my writing. Let me know what you think in the comments (constructive criticism welcome!) and thank you for reading.

Fashion

My Latest Clothing Buys

This is a bit different from what I’d usually post, but one of my loves besides books, games and music is clothes. I absolutely love the feeling of putting on a new skirt or top for the first time, or going shopping for your birthday and coming home with bags full of clothes. Now, I’m not the most fashionable person in the world. Though I do like some of the latest trends, I mainly buy the clothes that I like and would feel comfortable in rather than worrying about whether they’re trendy.

Some of these items I got for Christmas, so as I never did a ‘what I got for Christmas’ post, I thought I’d make a clothing post to include them as well as some other items I’ve picked up. I hope this will help you get a sense of my style and what clothes I like best! I’d love to do more of these posts but at the moment I don’t have the money to spend on a shopping spree, but there may be similar posts in the future. Also, a little disclaimer that none of this is sponsored, I just wanted to share my clothing finds!

Borg Jacket – New Look

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I know that everyone and their gran has one of these but I honestly couldn’t resist asking for one of these for Christmas. When I was searching for one online I saw that New Look had loads of different colours. I settled for the cream one (thought I would call it more of a light brown) in the end because I thought it would work with most of my clothes. For example, the light blue one was beautiful but it wouldn’t match with a lot of things in my wardrobe and I wouldn’t wear it as much.

With this colour, I wear it literally whenever I can. It’s incredibly cozy so it’s a perfect addition to your winter wardrobe. It’s not great for when it’s raining, which it usually is in Wales, but it’s amazing for cold weather. I usually wear this with my black or denim jeans. I’ll be sad not to be able to wear this when the weather gets warmer!

Jumper – Topshop

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I was out shopping with my boyfriend when I saw this jumper in Topshop. I’m someone who loves black clothing, and the pop of colour looked so good that I was tempted to buy it. However, it was about £40 and I couldn’t afford to splash out on something that I didn’t really need. Then, a couple of weeks later I went shopping with my mum and saw it in the sale for £18! I couldn’t resist buying it for that price even though I do have a lot of jumpers and probably should have saved my money (oops!). It goes with pretty much everything so I wear it quite often. It’s not the thickest of jumpers so I sometimes wear a vest top underneath if it’s a bit chillier.

Zip Up Sweatshirt and Dress – New Look

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I’ve put these two together as there’s actually a story behind them. For Christmas my mum bought me a pair of pyjamas that were too big (another story in itself), so asked me to choose some pyjamas from the New Look site. I chose some cute woodland fleece ones, but your order had to be over £20 for it to be eligible for free pick up from in store. As one of the sweatshirts I wanted for Christmas was sold out, we bought this green one to add the order up to £20. However when my mum went to pick them up, she discovered that it was actually just the pyjama bottoms and the top was sold separately. This meant I then had to go through the exact process when I went back to Swansea after Christmas, and found this dress for £6 to add onto my order when buying the top.

I really love this sweatshirt; I’ve never really worn green but it’s starting to grow on me as a lot of people say that it suits redheads. I also have green/brown eyes so it brings out the green in them a bit more. I wear a long-sleeved top underneath because of how cold it has been recently.

I was worried the dress wouldn’t fit and I’d have to send it back, but it actually fits perfectly. It’s exactly the kind of dress I’d wear; I love the skater style skirt and the off the shoulder look. The floral pattern makes it great for a party in the summer, but I would probably wear it to any special occasion.

Adidas Hoodie – Topshop

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I think you’re starting to see a trend in my favourite shops, but this was a gift from my nan for Christmas. I’m a huge hoodie lover, but I usually go for quite plain ones, grey hoodies being my favourite especially. However when I saw this I fell in love instantly with the mint green. I don’t own any other item of clothing this colour so it was different for me, but after trying it on I thought it suited me quite well and it’s really comfy! I would never usually go for a brand hoodie because of the price, but I was lucky to get it as a present. The only problem is that the colour is so light that I’m terrified of getting food on it or getting it dirty, so I’m always really careful when I choose to wear it!

Ripped Denim Jeans – New Look

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I’ve been looking for a pair of ripped denim jeans for ages and I had a New Look voucher to spend, so I thought I’d try on these. Buying jeans is very difficult for me; I’m petite, so it’s hard to find skinny jeans that are actually skinny for me and don’t go baggy around the ankles. I also have really short lower legs but my thighs are relatively normal. But thankfully I really liked the fit of these jeans. They’re not as tight around the ankle as I would have hoped but they fit so well everywhere else that I had to get them. They’re really comfortable too which is a bonus. They’re slowly becoming my favourite pair of jeans to overtake my black skinny jeans!

Burgundy Denim Skirt – Topshop

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I immediately fell in love with this when I saw it in the shop and added it to my Christmas list, so my aunty got it for me. I have a hard time finding denim skirts that fit well and don’t make your bum look completely flat, but I’ve found that skirts from Topshop actually fit pretty well. I did actually buy a black bodysuit from Primark to go with this but I don’t have it with me (I left it in the wash at home over Christmas!), though it goes with any black top or jumper. My go to outfit always involves jeans because of the weather, but I really need to start wearing skirts more often.

You’ll see that what’s missing from this list is shoes and I would have included my Adidas Gazelles that I got for Christmas, but unfortunately they were faulty! I put them on for the first time and boom, all the leather around the heel and on the stripes cracked. I was really gutted because I needed some lighter coloured trainers (they were light grey) but we had to send them back and get a refund. I haven’t been able to find them anywhere in stock since so for now I’ll have to keep on searching </3

I hope you enjoyed reading this post though it was a little different! I’ll definitely do more stuff like this again, even if it’s just some mini hauls, as I really enjoy writing them. What are your favourite shops to buy from or something you love that you’ve bought recently? Let me know in the comments and thanks for reading!

 

Music

My Most Memorable Concert Experiences

If you’re anything like me, there’s no better feeling than when the lights go down in an arena and the entire place starts cheering, making your heart start pumping faster. Then, your favourite band walks on, reminding you that they’re real people, not just voices and sounds heard through your headphones!

I’ve already discussed my love for music in this post, so I thought the next step was to share with you some of the concerts I’ve been to. I’m lucky enough that my dad has taken me to many throughout my life, but this also means it’s going to be very hard to pick! I’m going to try and choose five so that this post doesn’t go on forever.

Foo Fighters

51023188_245064659707948_8342195213304856576_nI did discuss the first time I went to see them in my last post, so I won’t talk about that again, but I went to see them last year and it was just as amazing.

I’d waited a long seven years just to see them again, after their Wembley show was cancelled in 2015 due to Dave falling off stage and breaking his leg, and then I was on holiday for the new date (I was distraught). This concert took place in the London Stadium, which is about a four hour journey from where I live. My dad had found a coach company which does trips especially for concerts, which sounded so much easier than paying money for petrol and parking. It was meant to leave early so we would be in time for the support acts. In theory, it seemed perfect for us.

In reality, the coach was nearly an hour late to pick us up because the driver didn’t know his way around. This meant that every pick up point was then late, and because coach drivers aren’t allowed to be driving for over a certain amount of time we stopped at the services only an hour or so into our journey! Of course we then got stuck in London traffic, meaning we missed all three support acts. This all took place on a boiling hot day too and my anxiety was sky high thinking we were going to miss the concert.

However we made it just in time and I’m so glad we did. A Foo Fighters concert is honestly like no other and I’m not just saying that because they’re my favourite band. Dave Grohl has such a way with the audience and the whole band are so talented. The London Stadium holds around 60,000 people, so imagine that many people singing your favourite songs alongside you, as well as hearing them played live. As it was summer it was light for ages and we got to see a lovely sunset before a clear night sky was above us. At one point we lit up the stadiums with just the light from our phones, it was amazing. I had goosebumps the whole time and shed a tear at the end as they finished with Everlong.

If you ever get the chance to see them, please go and you won’t regret it!

Queens of the Stone Age

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This took place the week after Foo Fighters and in the London area, so how did we book our travel there? You guessed it, with the exact same coach company! My dad and I were so nervous because of how bad they had been the week before, but everything actually went smoothly and we arrived on time before any acts had started. This was a day festival, so we left at 6am and didn’t get back until 4am the next day so needless to say I was shattered!

As this was day festival, there were many acts throughout the day on both stages, such as The Hives and Iggy Pop. We chose a spot fairly close to the stage behind a barrier; because I’m so short there’s no point in me being in anything other then the very front row if I want to be close, so I always choose somewhere where I can see over people’s heads that isn’t too far away. Being in the same spot all day in the sun was tough and I wouldn’t have survived without my hat, but it was fun to see so many new bands and was worth the wait for Queens of the Stone Age themselves.

I had seen Queens of the Stone Age in 2013, but I preferred this concert because I was closer and the outdoor setting was nicer, as well as the fact that I’d gotten to know their songs better since then and their latest album is incredible. I was worried because some people have said that Josh Homme doesn’t always perform as well some nights, but there was not a single flaw in his performance. Their music is unlike any other band and listening to it live was such a treat. They also got to experience a proper British crowd who would randomly start chants or sing ‘football’s coming home’ for no reason whatsoever!

Biffy Clyro

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This was another band who I’d seen twice before, once supporting Foo Fighters and once in the Cardiff Motorpoint Arena. This concert in 2016 (I nearly put 2017 then realised I was a year out, wow, time goes fast) took place there too, and it’s one of my favourite venues. It holds 5,000 so it isn’t as overwhelming as other arenas, and it’s close to home so that means no fussing with travel. Well, it would have been if I hadn’t have been studying in Bath! I remember having a lecture that finished around 6 or 7 which was quite important, so I asked to leave early and my poor dad had to drive all the way there, then back the way he came to Cardiff. We had to grab a Burger King which took forever and hurry to the venue, but we were luckily there in time.

I chose this time that I saw them because my boyfriend had really gotten into them since the last time we saw them, when he barely knew their songs, so he could sing along this time. My family also came too so it was great to be with the people I love most seeing one of my favourite bands.

We were fairly close to the stage and a little to the left so that I had a great view, which I didn’t have the last time I saw them where I was lucky to catch a glimpse of the band’s heads every now and then. Biffy Clyro are amazing live, going from heavier songs to beautiful acoustic songs that really show off Simon’s voice. Their latest album is also amazing so hearing that live was a dream. I came away wishing that I could relive it all over again and I’m always keeping an eye out for news of tour dates.

Royal Blood

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I also saw Royal Blood at the Motorpoint Arena in 2017 after having seen them before. I bought tickets for my boyfriend’s birthday for us to go, but my family came too because they also love the band! It was great to gift something that we could both enjoy and that would be a memory for years to come.

I was still studying in Bath at this point so I had to get the train to Cardiff, stay the night at home and then get an early train back before my lecture the next day. This stressed me out but I was willing to do anything to see Royal Blood.

Royal Blood are such a unique band that I was in awe watching them live; Mike is the vocalist and plays bass guitar, and Ben is the drummer. Mike somehow plays a bass guitar like a normal one, producing sounds I never thought were possible, and Ben is so loud on the drums that it’s almost impossible to believe only two people can make that much noise. The stage lighting was amazing too. The only letdown was the idiots who kept fighting for no reason which was hard to ignore; just watch the band you paid to see!

Wolf Alice

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Wolf Alice are a band I didn’t expect to like so much, but I’ve seen them twice now and their music is beautiful. The second time I saw them was at an intimate show, which I’ve never been to before. I actually saw the band walk down the street as my dad and I drove on our way to the venue, then they were hanging out by the side doors before the show started.

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It was so strange to see a band up close as I also got in the second row. I’ve never bothered trying to get front rows at concerts because usually you have to be there in the early hours of the morning so it was nice to get that experience. Wolf Alice have both slow songs and heavier songs, and both are a joy to listen to live. Though I enjoyed the previous concert of theirs I’d seen I preferred this one because of the intimacy and they also gave us a preview of their new album!

 

 

So there we have it, five of my most memorable concert experiences. I also need to give a mention to other bands I’ve seen like the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Muse and Alter Bridge. I’ve never had a bad concert experience so it was really difficult to pick my favourite! What is your most memorable concert? Let me know in the comments below and thanks for reading!