Shattering Stigmas: On Perfectionism as a Debut Author by Zack Smedley

Welcome to the ninth day of Shattering Stigmas! From now until October 22 I’ll be highlighting voices from the book community on mental health. I’m co-hosting this event with Taylor from Stay on the Page, Shannon from It Starts at Midnight, and Amber from YA Indulgences so make sure to check their blogs out each day to see different content.


In September 2013, filmmaker Damien Chazelle—best known for the acclaimed films La La Land and Whiplash—was in a roadway accident that totaled his car. Despite being hospitalized, Chazelle returned to work the next day to resume filming Whiplash, which had a shooting schedule comprised of 18-hour workdays. The film went on to rack up 114 award nominations, win 49 of them, and is considered by many—myself included—to be one of the greatest films of its time.

When I read about this, I smirked and thought, “now there’s a guy who’s serious about the things he creates.” It reminded of the stories I’d heard of Aaron Sorkin, who would regularly turn in scripts late for The West Wing because he wasn’t happy with them yet. Or pop star MARINA, who rejected offers from 14 record labels because she wasn’t satisfied with their level of creative control.

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Review and Official Playlist: Deposing Nathan by Zack Smedley

Welcome to my stop on the Deposing Nathan blog tour! I am so excited to be sharing this book with all of you today because oh my goodness it’s incredible. Keep reading to see my review and the official playlist put together by the author!

Title: Deposing Nathan
Author: Zack Smedley
Release Date: May 7, 2019
Publisher: Page Street Publishing
Pages: 400
Buy it!

Content Warnings: extreme profanity/offensive language, child abuse, underage drinking, infrequent mentions of marijuana use, physical violence, depiction of suicidal thoughts, sexual content, mentions and depictions of anxiety attacks

This post does contain affiliate links. I will receive a small amount from any purchases made through Book Depository at no extra cost to you.

For sixteen years, Nate was the perfect son—the product of a no-nonsense upbringing and deep spiritual faith. Then he met Cam, who pushed him to break rules, dream, and accept himself. Conflicted, Nate began to push back. With each push, the boys became more entangled in each others’ worlds…but they also spiraled closer to their breaking points. And now all of it has fallen apart after a fistfight-turned-near-fatal-incident—one that’s left Nate with a stab wound and Cam in jail.

Now Nate is being ordered to give a statement, under oath, that will send his best friend to prison. The problem is, the real story of what happened between them isn’t as simple as anyone thinks. With all eyes on him, Nate must make his confessions about what led up to that night with Cam…and in doing so, risk tearing both of their lives apart.

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Author Guest Post: Zack Smedley On the Use of Profanity in YA Books (Including My Own)

One afternoon towards the end of my eighth grade year, I was standing in the hallway of my Catholic K-8 school chatting with a classmate. He mentioned having to babysit that night or something, and I told him, “That sucks.”

“Hey!” This came from a teacher walking by us. “Watch your language!”

She didn’t even say it sharply, but it was a warning—a shot across the bow. I spent the next few minutes keeping my fingers crossed that I wouldn’t get written up.

Growing up, this is what life looked like for me most of the time. Eventually I graduated from K-8 to a public high school, where I was exhilarated to learn we could now say things like “hell” and “sucks” and even “damn it.” Make no mistake: none of this reshaped my opinion on cursing. But it did profoundly instill the sincere belief that adults—“proper” adults, at least—hardly ever used R-rated language except for the occasional lapse, like the dad fixing that furnace in A Christmas Story.

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Sunday Stacks Week Two

I’ve decided to turn Sunday Stacks into a weeklyish post! I may skip a week every now and then, but I really enjoyed sharing my TBR with y’all last week, so I want to continue doing it! First I’ll recap the previous week’s TBR, let you know which books I finished, and then I’ll share with you the upcoming list!

The first book I read from my TBR last week was The Past and Other Things That Should Stay Buried. I can tell why a lot of people love this one, but it really just wasn’t for me. It was an incredibly fast read, but the entire book is basically Dino and July arguing. Confrontation and arguments like that give me a lot of anxiety, so I wasn’t a huge fan.

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Want to Read That Roundup

Confession time – I have 759 books marked as want to read on Goodreads. It’s a little daunting to think of all the books out there that I really really want to read and haven’t gotten around to yet, but I love discovering new novels and I definitely don’t want authors to stop putting out amazing new works. Inspired by Emily at Midwestern Book Nerd, I’ve decided to share with you the 10 most recent books that have made it onto my want to read shelf!

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