Honestly, I have no idea how I should start this post. I’ve been thinking about it for a few days now but I guess I will never come up with that perfect greeting, whatsoever, so here we are! This September is officially my first blog birthday and I couldn’t be more EXCITED! Also, a quick warning! I’m hoping this post will not turn into a messy 1000+ words post, but who knows?! I can’t promise you anything but I can promise you that there will be an international giveaway at the end of this post that you surely don’t want to miss! πŸ’β€β™€οΈ

storytime

This blog is so special to me. Okay. That might be an obvious thing to say, but it really is. I started blogging almost ten years ago, back when I was in middle school. And as embarrassing as it should be, of course, that blog was filled with random junks and has been long gone. And ever since that first blog, I’ve come up with several other ones which don’t last that long either. The one blog that lasts a good one year was the one that I made in college around five years ago. Of course, I was older and had better self-control to not completely humiliate my future self. But then, just like the others, it was gone too.

Afterward, I don’t really blog for quite some times. I focused on college and my interest shifted to other things, like doing digital arts or binge-watching Netflix. During this time, I didn’t read that much. Maybe a few comics and a couple of books in a year, which is sucks, because I used to read all the time when I was younger.

But last year, when I stumbled into the bookish community on Twitter, that’s how I knew that it was the perfect time to started blogging again while also motivate myself to get back into reading. I’m completely amazed by the dedication and passion in this community, and basically, here I am today, one year and 70+ books later, devouring my love for good stories.

highlights

During this past year, so many things happened on this blog. I’m not gonna say that it’s all sunshine and butterflies, because there were times where I feel negative about my posts too. But, here are a few moments that I want to highlight today:
β˜• I published 100+ posts!
This is a huge deal for me because it’s my first time to be so consistent in blogging! When I first started this blog, I didn’t expect many things because I know I’ve been inconsistent in the past, and therefore I didn’t want to pressure myself too much. And throughout these 100 posts, of course there were times where I’m missing and didn’t post anything for two weeks straight. But, I’m slowly learning and picking up my pace! Here’s to hundreds more posts in the future!
β˜• I started a book club which focusing on diverse titles with Lili
Ironically, I used to be not aware about diversity and representation in books. When I started this blog and started reading again, I realized the importance of these matters and I’m trying to pick up more diverse titles. And that’s when I met Lili on Twitter. We decided to run a book club, Diverse Divers, where we’re reading one diverse title each month and have bi-monthly discussions about it. The book club is currently on break (because life happens, sometimes!), but we’ve been talking to re-start it again asap!
β˜• I started Debut District, a feature focusing on debut authors and releases!
A few months after starting this blog, I’ve been noticing a lot of debut authors in the community. That’s when I got the idea to started Debut District, a feature specialized for debut authors and releases. Releasing a debut book is a big deal, and with hundreds of new releases each month, it can be daunting too. My goal here is to support those new authors and assure them that there’s place for everyone and every book in this community. Currently, I’m regularly posting a monthly list which highlight the most anticipated new debut titles along with debut release review and debut author interview. 
β˜• I became one of the contributors on The Nerd Daily!
Becoming a contributor for The Nerd Daily is incredibly exciting for me. I may claimed myself as a blogger, but I’m not a writer. English is my second language and I’m pretty sure there will be too many grammar mistakes in my post if I don’t use Grammarly. Did I just spilled the tea on myself? Yes, I did. I’m also posting the most anticipated new debut titles on this site on monthly basis and occasionally share my book and movie review. 
β˜• I got to work closely with my favorite authors and publishers!
I can’t believe that it’s possible for me and my less than one year old blog to work so closely with such amazing authors and publishers! The possibility of reading an early copy of my most anticipated title is also still freaking me out to this very second! I mean, it’s an equivalent of watching an early movie screening and afterward you’re walking out of the studio while fangirling about it and next thing you know, the director is behind you, patting your shoulder and thanking you for coming to the screening! And while we’re on this topic, I still couldn’t grasp the concept that you can casually talk with your favorite authors or publishers in this community, whether it’s on email or on social media! I be like tweeting, “On pg. 123 of Book X and omg the ship has been sailed!!!” and the author of the said book will reply, “You have no idea what’s about to come. Enjoy the ride while you still can! ;)))”. And there goes my ship and my self-esteem because DID THE AUTHOR JUST REPLY TO MY INCOHERENT TWEET?! 
β˜• Lastly, I got to meet many incredible, kind, and passionate fellow bloggers!
Honestly, all of the previous highlights won’t be possible if it’s not for the amazing and supportive bloggers in this community. I gained many new incredible friends and their passion for book and blogging will forever inspired me. It’s not possible for me to name every single one of them on this post, and I hate to leave names behind, and I’d like to say my eternal gratitude to everyone, but especially I want to thank:

  • CW @ The Quiet Pond β€” For her lovely arts, her magical blog along with its magical creatures (Hi, Xiaolong and friends!) and endless diverse book recs!
  • Karina @ Afire Pages β€” For being a caring soul, the ultimate cats savior, and for sharing well-researched book-related posts (srsly, this should be published on a Q1 journal!).
  • Kat @ Novels and Waffless β€” For her artsiness in everything that she works on and for being an inspiration with her non-stop creativity!
  • Kelly @ Another Book in the Wall β€” For being the kindest and sweetest person that I’ve ever (virtually) met, and for sharing endless fun discussion posts!
  • Rita @ Bookish Rita β€” For being a caring friend, a kind soul, and being extremely patient when I’m rambling non-sense during our buddy read (and still want to buddy read again!).
  • Shealea @ Shut Up, Shealea β€” For her candidness, her massive support to promote diverse books, and being #1 hustler by putting her education before everything else!
  • And to Caitlin, Divine, El, Erin, Hamad, Inah, Kal, Kate, Lili, Lili, Marie, May, MelanieNoΓ©mie, Star, Tiffany, and Xandra, thank you inspiring me with your hard work and passion in this community!
I started this blog because of them, and I will stay because of them too. :’)

This post turns out to be so much longer than I expected! So, if you’re still with me and reading this messy, poorly written blog birthday post…

Image result for the office thank you gif

what’s new?

Okay, 1300+ words and still counting. I’ll just speed myself from this point. 😬 But basically, welcome to the new Artsy Draft! I know that it might not look that different than before, but for these past couple weeks, I’ve been revamping things here and there. Small changes make big changes, am I right? You can check out my new style sheet to get a better look of the new designs!

And with that being said… I’m officially opening my design service, Artsy Design! I know, I know. It’s not the most creative name but in my defense, I’m trying to keep up with  my branding here. πŸ’β€β™€οΈ

An announcement post will be up somewhen this month as I’m still preparing for a few things. But if you’re eager to start revamping your own blog at this very second, I’ve prepare these cute pamphlets for you to get all the information regarding my services along with the base prices! Oh, and make sure you’re stay still until the end of this post because one lucky person will get the opportunity to win the ultimate revamp design package for their blog!

the giveaway!

Now, let’s get into the most anticipated part of this post! To celebrate this exciting moment of my very first blog birthday, and to mark the official opening of my design store, and of course, as my way to express my endless gratitude to you, I decided to host a giveaway! 
β˜• the prizes!
  • One winner will get the opportunity to win $25 worth of value from Book Depository!
  • One other winner will get the opportunity to win the Ultimate Blog Revamp including a blog header, blog button, favicon, post signature, social media buttons, post dividers, ratings, sidebar headers, and post headers worth $125.
β˜• the rules!
  • You must be over 18 years old or have parental permission to join this giveaway.
  • Opens internationally (as long as Book Depository shipped to you!).
  • No giveaway or spam accounts allowed in this giveaway.
  • Ends on October 31, 2019 @ 23:59 GMT+7.
  • If winners not responding within 48 hours, I have the right to pick another winner. 
β˜• enter here!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Check out this tweet for additional entries!

best of luck!

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This post has 21 Comments

21
  1. HAPPY BLOGIVERSARY, VINNY!! I love you so much, and I’m so happy to have seen Artsy Draft grow over the past year! You’re such an incredible blogger, and I love reading all your wonderfully thought-out posts, interviews, and reviews! You’re such a bright light in this community, and I hope your blog continues to reach new heights in the upcoming year! All my love! <3

  2. Aaaaah Vinny! Happy Blogiversary and here is to 10 more years πŸ˜€
    I am so happy I was mentioned and you were the reason I have an icon now so thanks a million for all the great things you are doing and keep doing the great job you are already doing!

  3. Vinny!!! Happy happy blog birthday to you and your super cute blog!!! I’ve been MIA in the blogging community for a while but when I visited your blog for the first time in weeks, I legit just scrolled up and down the homepage thinking, “Eh? Something feels new? Ehh? Ehhh???” It was the subtle change in color and then the font and then I saw your new logo πŸ˜„πŸ˜„πŸ’•

    I’m so happy to witness how much your blog has grown quietly in the sidelines this past year and I’m so so excited to see where it’ll go from here 🌻

  4. I love the aesthetics of your blog!!! I miss the book club! I was enjoying it haha getting arcs from authors and publishers is just such such a good experience! I hope you get many more incredible blogging moments!!!

  5. *throws confetti* Happy 1st blog birthday, Vinny! I’m not surprised that you had blogging experience before making this blog, because just a few months ago, I thought you had been blogging for years! Your blog is SO pretty and professional, I could only aspire to make mine as beautiful! I think it’s crazy that we started our blogs within just a few weeks of each other – my 1st blog birthday is on September 24 of this year!

    You’ve also done so much within just one year, that’s so amazing! Congratulations on all of the things you have started so far, and I can’t wait to see what happens in the future! Writing for The Nerd Daily is especially exciting!!

    I’m so excited for your design service, it looks fantastic! Good luck with everything, and happy blogiversary! πŸ˜ŠπŸ’• (And thank you so much for mentioning me!)

  6. OH MY GOODNESS I AM CRYING YOU ARE SO SWEET AND ALSO I’M SO EXCITED AND PROUD AND HAPPY FOR YOU ABOUT YOUR DESIGN SERVICE! Wishing you the best of luck in this endeavor! Also congrats on ONE WHOLE YEAR YAS!!! And for being an awesome writer on Nerd.Daily!

  7. AHHH! Happy blogoversary Vinny! I’m so happy for you and I’m so excited that you’re opening your design services. Your designs are beautiful!
    Megan S.

  8. HAPPY BLOG ANNIVERSARY VINNY β™₯ You have truly achieved so much during this year, it’s impressive! Your hard work is seen and appreciated so much β™₯ And now a new design endeavor? AMAZING. I hope it goes great for you, and that, most of all, you have fun! Thank you so much for mentioning me, that is so sweet and I am so happy we met through blogging!

  9. Happy Blogaversary! that’s a truly impressive set of accomplishments, I think even Mr Darcy at his most obnoxious would have to approve ;P I hope you continue having fun with book blogging and all your endeavours (and thank you so much for the giveaway)

  10. Viiiny, I’m so happy for you. Happy one year to your blog and to your hardwork. Blogging is hardwork, isn’t it? And you passed the one-year mark, you can do another 100 years. hehe. And I don’t know if I already told you this but I really love your blog aesthetic. I mean why do you think I asked you to design mine soon? πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    You’re such a great artist and a great person in general. I’m so glad to have met you. πŸ’–πŸ˜˜

  11. HAPPY HAPPY BLOG BIRTHDAY! This is so exciting and I can’t believe that this blog is only one year old, it seems like it’s been there for ages, it’s just such a stunning place to visit always. Here’s to many, many more years of blogging to come <3 <3 <3

  12. Congratulations! In one year your blog has really grown and is looking amazing. I’ve been doing this for two years and am certainly not as artsy! Here’s to the next year πŸ™ƒ

  13. ahhh CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR FIRST BLOG BIRTHDAY VINNY!! im so glad you found the book community through twitter an decided to blog again bc youre an absolute pro at it and i enjoy your posts so much. πŸ’–

    i absolutely LOVE your graphic redesigns they are too cute for words and your colour palette is so fitting and fhjkldjakf I LOVE IT!!! πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—

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