Tag Archives: WHEE!

A Random Kate Update: July

Thames River viewUgh. I’ve hit the job anxiety stage, which hopefully won’t last long before it gets to the ok-I’m-doing-good stage, but is not fun while it lasts. I had my 3-month review (3 months?! HOW!) and work are still happy, which is awesome, and I’m still loving it, which is even more awesome, and I’m making friends and plotting world domination and eating cake and reading books.

It rocks!

Apart from the anxiety which is just….my daft brain. My colleague has been absolutely wonderful with it (I may have cried on him a little bit…) and it’s mostly under control, so I’m hoping it lasts!

I’ve been investigating more bits of Oxford; I ended up randomly going out for dinner with a friend earlier this week, went out for cake with some work friends yesterday, am going out again at the end of the week (yeah, this week is taking up all my social spoons!) – it’s really nice to have the energy to explore and see people.

The housing situation (aka. I can’t stay at Jo’s forever, lovely as she is) is hopefully getting sorted *fingers crossed* and I still get to walk down the river every morning for my commute, and I’ve been getting some writing done…

I’d just like the weather to be a little less hot (if only because it makes it hard to sleep, and restless + anxiety brain = nightmares) but hey, I can live with sunshine when Oxford’s a beautiful city to wander around.

So everything is still grand! I have spoons and not too much anxiety and I’m getting to read amazing books as part of my job, and life currently rocks!

Hogwarts Houses and Hexarchate Factions

slytherin badge

I have been taking quizzes! Apparently I’m Shuos and Slytherin…

Although *folds arms* I’m going to disagree. Your personal opinions are allowed to influence your choice of house, and I seriously don’t think I fit “cunning, resourcefulness, and ambitious”. I wouldn’t sell my own grandmother out if it got me something I wanted. I’m not going to screw people over just to get ahead. I’m not entirely sure where that answer came from on the Pottermore quiz, but nope.

And Shuos…I think that one’s slightly more fair, but still not entirely me. I like long-term planning; I’m happy with games. But I’m not exactly a long-term strategist and my point of view isn’t centred on winning (or getting the best of the game), so…

I think, from looking at the options (and changing one answer on the Hexarchate quiz) that I’m actually Hufflepuff and Liozh.

Students belonging to this house are known to be hard-working, friendly, loyal, honest and rather impartial.

hufflepuff badge

Which, y’know, seems a bit more like me than “ambitious”? I may have been quoted as saying, “screw that shit” to the idea of ambition! And a lovely friend (naming no names, Sammy!) was disparaging about Hufflepuff and suggested Ravenclaw, but I don’t really think I’m particularly witty. I do love learning, so I can see where that comes from, but “taking pride in being original in their ideas and methods”….mmm, not really. I’m not that experimental! Maybe I’m just a fairly intelligent Hufflepuff? (Yeah, I know. Buying into the stereotypes already.)

I’m definitely not a Gryffindor, I know that – my quote may have been something along the lines of, “I’m not that f—ing stupid”.  Fully paid up on the Mad Ideas club? Check. Ready to sacrifice themselves for friends? Check. Courageous, loyal, and with absolutely no sense? That’s Gryffindors. Not me.

Liozh faction badge

Anyway, back to the Hexarchate – Liozh. Whisper it! Suppressed centuries ago for the heresy of democracy, the Mirrors were the heptarchate’s governing class. Thoughtful and principled, you question everything and are open to everything, and always try and serve the best interests of the majority – and to leave no-one behind.

It also means I’m a heretic. With a badge. I’m so proud. (It may be stuck to my computer screen at work!)

You can take the Machineries of Empire quiz, and as for Harry Potter….hmm. I dunno. Has anyone got a more reliable quiz than the Pottermore one?

Three Sci-Fi Anthologies

They are here! They’re here! Our three beautiful sci-fi anthologies, Infinite Dysmorphia, Terra Nullis and Holding On By Our Fingertips, are out – and if you’re in Oxford this Friday (the 8th June) do come along to Waterstones for the launch!

I can’t play favourites as the editor, but I can’t anyway – I love all the stories that made it into the anthologies (and most of the ones that didn’t! It was so hard to pick!) You can go from nano-bots to a saltwater moon, exoskeletons to aliens, from ghosts to fauns and faeries, clones to  vampires and back to AI.

There’s stories about gardens in the ruins of a changing earth and in the depths of a factory, terraformed alien worlds with short-lived lifeforms or un-breathable air. There’s tales of survival in the wastelands and the city estates, in the depths of space and at the end of civilisations. There’s explorers of alien shores, finders of secrets, eaters of sins and builders of new worlds. There’s love and hope and despair, the end of humanity and the birth of new worlds, loss and mystery and exploration and above all, there’s amazing stories about the end of the world, about exploring the universe, and about the sheer variety of possibilities for humanity.

I am so ridiculously proud of all of the stories and authors that we selected, and really pleased to be able to share them with you! I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I did.

Infinite dysmorphia, holding on by our fingertips, terra nullius covers

Ps. I’ll make a little bet with you. I think you’ll cry at the last story of Holding On By Our Fingertips; every editor did!

Book to Read: Anachronism

Anachronism front cover

I am so glad that Anachronism by Jennifer Lee Rossman is now out, because now I can squeak about it!

It’s the same old story: Time traveler meets girl, time traveler tells girl she’s the future president, time traveler and girl go on a road trip to prevent a war…

Petra Vincent is at the end of her rope – or rather, the edge of a bridge. Her world is falling apart around her and she sees no way out of the meaningless existence the future has in store. But when stranded time traveler Moses Morgan tells her that she will one day
lead the country out of the rubble of a nuclear civil war as President of the United States, she’s intrigued – and when another time traveler starts trying to pre-emptively assassinate her, she realizes Moses might be telling the truth…

Anachronism is a time-traveling, adventure-filled novella with a whole bagful of danger, twists, and snarky banter.

I think my favourite line is, “mad as a bag of snakes and half as likely to accomplish anything,” closely followed by “having a house full of ferrets was perhaps the only thing worse than having a house full of cats,” and a close-runner up with, “I order you to leave me the hell alone, or I swear to God, I will veto your brain from your skull.”

I may have slush-read it and formatted it, but it doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it every time – I may have been quoting bits and giggling to myself every time I read it (and I think I’m on about seven reads now…) and the twist at the end is so good – but then the whole thing is excellent!

In short, I adore it; and you should buy it, read it and enjoy it with me!

5 Happy Things: May 2018

*happy Groot dance*

Things wot are making me happy this month?

  1. My Dresden Files writing – I’m finally getting onto some of the longer stories! I admittedly love the shorter ones (Winter + Troll vs Dini is possibly my favourite Dini-solution to a problem) but the one I’m currently putting up, and one of the later ones in, ooh, about three stories’ time, are both contenders for my favourite longer one.

2. Bento boxes! I now have a cute stacking bear one and a tropical one made of bamboo (which, incidentally, feels lovely – almost slightly rough, and a nice weight!) I’m looking forward to being able to take a random assortment of stuff for lunches.

3. My job is still making me happy 😀 I’ve just been in London for an InDesign course which was pretty good (I learned a lot of new shortcuts, as well as confirming that what I taught myself is correct). I’ve also been moving heaps of stuff (technical term, honestly), reading awesome books, chatting to people who know so much random stuff….I’ve now been there a month, and it definitely doesn’t feel like it!

4. The seaside – and, actually, being on my own. I’m down in Lymington for a few days’ holiday and it’s lovely: I don’t have to worry about anyone else! I’ve seen some of my family which has been grand, but mostly I’m just enjoying the solitude. It’s not always good for me and does depend on my brain-mood, but at the moment, I’m definitely adapting well to doing my own thing.

5. Guardians of the Galaxy – I have finally seen all the way through and really want to see the next one now! I haven’t dared try Infinity War yet (I’m still very behind on most of the rest of that canon) but I’ve decided I’m going to start watching more films that I want to see. Guardians of the Galaxy 2 is first on that list!