Tag Archives: WHEE!

5 Happy Things – October 2019

No post on Monday because this weekend completely wiped me out; I didn’t make BristolCon and barely made it off the sofa on Sunday!

But, happy things for October?

1.I feel like an editor!

“Hi, [Agent]. If you’re after David, he’s probably covered in paint while entertaining a small child. It’s half term.”

“Actually, I wanted to tell you I’ve got the latest by [novellist] ready, but I need a million pounds.”

“Uhh… nope. I can draw you a treasure map, how’s that?”

“Oh, that would be a wonderful diversion. So no million pounds?”

“No million pounds. How about a hat?”

“A fabulous hat?”

We did actually get onto discussing another book – and it felt like everything was there. I could chat, knew what I wanted to ask, knew when to check with my colleagues… you know when you feel like something just clicks? It doesn’t happen often but it was really good – I felt like I knew my stuff!

2.Happy pills – literally!

I’ve been on anti-depressants for a month now; they are doing some good (I have been baking, although no small birds have been helping me yet) but I’m still feeling a bit grey. I had a discussion with my doctor about upping the dose, so I’m just going to keep trundling along for a bit and see how I do.

I can feel things slowly breaking up, though – I get flashes of what feels almost like spotlights. The sunlight through the trees, an offhand comment that sparks a moment of story or character, a brief moment of hope for the future – and then it goes again, but it gives me hope that it will lift eventually.

It is very weird feeling again when you haven’t been able to for a while, though. I’m expecting it to be a bit rocky when everything does hit in again!

3.BOOOOOOOOKS

Erin Lindsey’s A Golden Grave turned up in the post; I’ve finally got Kindle editions of  Three-Body Problem, Witchsign and Embers of War; I’ve started reading The House of Shattered Wings (I adore Aliette’s short stories and I’m enjoying the novel so far!); and I’ve had some wonderfully fun books at work.

Add to that my haul from FantasyCon and it’s been a good month for reading!

I need to do some reviews…

4.Cake

We’ve been given a bagful of pears, so I previously did a pear & almond & dark chocolate cake, and this weekend tried a pear & pecan cake – both from the BBC Good Food Cakes & Bakes book, which is one of my favourites. It’s got flour stains, folded corners, post-it notes, butter splashes and sugar in the spine. It’s well-loved, basically.

I also made sweetcorn muffins from Jack Monroe’s cookbook – I’m making more things from that, which has been fun!

5.Friends

It was really good to see people at FantasyCon, and it’s been lovely connecting with people on social media recently – I actually feel like I can cope with the world! (Ish). Everyone is absolutely lovely and supportive too, and it keeps making me cry (in a good way).

I’m also planning birthday and Christmas presents for various people, and that’s lots of fun! I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed it!

Also, I’m really looking forward to Christmas!

Random thoughts from a week on anti-depressants

Very random thought: do I want to do NaNoWriMo? Have I even got anything to write? (Currently, no. but I’m not ruling it out.)

Books books books BOOKS books. (I may be reading Gideon The Ninth. EEEEEEEEEEEEH.)

Side-effects of anti-depressants so far:

  • Additional happiness. I’m boppy. Happy. Dancing. W.T.F.
  • Talking at triple speed, complete with lots of hand waving
  • Dizziness
  • Extra-hard crashes when I run out of food energy
  • Slight muscle aches – sort of like general tiredness, but like gravity’s extra heavy
  • Green poop (ok, that one might have been blue food colouring. Do you know it turns your poop green?)
  • BAKING. ALL OF THE BAKING. (My colleagues are very happy.)

Random thoughts on side effects:

So far, the worst side effect has actually been the fuzziness; I feel like I’m wrapped in cotton wool and having to wade through it to do anything, including think. My words are usually slightly absent (if you didn’t know, which I didn’t until a year ago, memory loss is a side effect of long-term depression – and it explains a lot about the way I can’t always think of words and don’t have a lot of long-term memories!) but they’ve been more absent than usual at the moment. No eloquent soliloquies for me! BAH.

The most painful side effect has been the crashes. I’m used to a fairly slow (a couple of hours) onset of “need to eat”, and at the moment it’s down to about an hour;  I can be fine, push through, and then WHOMP I’m into shaky territory, and it takes about an hour to pull myself back up even after I have eaten. It’s annoying, and I keep forgetting about it! DOUBLE BAH. Luckily I do always keep snacks around but it’s just frustrating (and painful.)

However – AUTUMN! Autumn is here! It’s been lovely to have golden sunshine and I adore chilly mornings; there’s something about breathing cold air when the sky’s bright blue and the sun’s shining through the trees that is lovely. Even the rain is good; I like hearing it splotting down. (Good word, splotting.) And we’ve put the extra thick duvet on the bed and it’s like sleeping under a pillow. It’s amazing.

Also: three o’clock is seriously the worst time of the day. It goes so slowly!

NAPS ROCK.

That is all.

5 Happy Things: September 2019

We’ve somehow got to the end of September? ARGH! But – happy things!

1.New socks

Do I need to say anything more?

2.New books

A.K. Larkwood, oh my…

Also, an adorable (free!) short story from Jennifer Lee Rossman, who also did Anachronism, which still rates very highly on my “amazing one-liners” meter.

And one from one of my favourite authors that I can’t talk about but eeeeeeeeeeeh I ADORE IT. (The problem with submissions piles!)

ALSO! If you have already read This Is How You Lose The Time War, then Scott Lynch did the most adorable fanfic! But only if you’ve read the book – so if you haven’t read it, go read it. Bring sniper rifles and neurotoxins.

3.Presents

I LOVE planning Christmas presents, and I’m already having ridiculous amounts of fun planning things for my partner. I want to do an advent calendar of sorts, so 24 presents – it sounds like lots but actually they mount up fast, and I’ve had an idea that will do most of them! It’s something that’s making me very happy.

It’s also their birthday in December so I’ve been plotting for that… mwahaha. So far, they’ve been very confused by my instructions. It’s great 😀

4.Family events

My partner sitting in a sunny garden

One wedding and one engagement this month! I find weddings a bit stressful (partly because they’re bittersweet and partly because OH MY GOD ALL OF THE PEOPLE and they take ALL of my spoons) but there is CAKE and that solves everything.

Also I got to catch up with my close family on a beautifully sunny morning, meet a new puppy and fuss old puppies (one of whom is 9 and should know better, the loon!) and play board games and then sit up the garden with a book – or a sketchpad in one case – which was lovely. It felt really good to enjoy the last splash of unexpected summer sunshine.

 

5.Nesting & Organising

Having moved, and trying to find places to put things, and needing extra things… it’s getting little bits (a huge stockpot! Kallax shelves that fit PERFECTLY! Spice racks!) and being able to use things I already have (wrapping paper in a basket! Cushions spawning endlessly on the sofa! Crafty things away in a box!) and fitting things into the space (hidden shelf under the oven for trays!) and it makes me so happy.

A place for everything, and everything in its place.

Plus, I’m a librarian at heart. My partner’s lucky I’m not adding a classification system for everything!

A September 2019 Update

I’m an editor! I was previously a Junior Editor, and my boss has agreed that I have now learned enough to be allowed to advance to editor. It doesn’t absolve me of the responsibility of tempering the Commissioning Editors’ wild flights of fancy, though – usually involving dinosaurs, Romans or pirates… so if you see a theme in the next couple of years, you know what happened! I still feel pretty weird about it (imposter syndrome mixed with “I don’t deserve this” mixed with “I’m not doing well enough”) but… I’ll get used to it, I guess.

DIY! We built a shed and a garden picnic table cat seat, and put up shelves/more shelves/hanging rails/a mirror/different shelves, and put a whole bunch of stuff away… and I’m officially moved in with my partner now, as all my stuff* is over in another house! Still working on it feeling like my place, though. I think that’ll come with more time.**

Cats sitting on a picnic table

I’ve been challenged to step up my editorial game. It’s always a bit nerve-wracking when someone says “how can I improve?” and I have to find the answer, but this is improving on something that’s already good. So that’s going to be hard work, and tough because there’s no definite way to improve your editing game, but I want to do it.

I’m still feeling a bit grey, but doing better than I was. As my colleague put it, “you’ve got a bit more light in your eyes.” Plus I can pick stuff up (I get very tired when I’m not feeling well) and get out of bed, eat without feeling sick and actually feel again, so it’s still in that strange “wait, I have emotions?! And I can ENJOY food?” period. Hopefully I’ll carry on up for a bit.

On a cooking note, I made soup (I know, I know… but SOUP) and so it’s officially Autumn. It was some weird squash soup too, but it worked. (Butter. That’s the key.)

And something I’ve been listening to:

*books

** And books.

Random Norwegian Thoughts

Bein is “bone” and “leg”. How do you know what you broke?!

“Ikke” being added to make anything a negative. It’s such a fun word.

I love that “bart” is moustache, because I think of it as the French transport network. Not what you want on your face.

If “jern” is an iron, how is “rivjern” a grater…?

Fours. It’s the bloody fours that keep getting me!

“Jeg legger meg” – it’s translating it as “I go to bed” but I’m much preferring “I lay me down to sleep” because it’s a sorely under-used phrase.

The multitude of English words, pronounced in a uniquely Norwegian way: blind-date is probably my favourite so far!

The app was very insistent that I know how to say “hospital”, “sorry”, “soup”, “I am allergic to peanuts” and “umbrella”. I don’t really understand what it’s using for those choices, but I hope it thinks I’m ok…

I’m enjoying the imagery I’m using to remember some of the words: “korke trekker” is definitely someone climbing a wine bottle.

And for some WHAT THE HELL, NORWEGIAN? “Appelsinjuice.” It’s fucking orange juice. They even have a word for orange (“oransje”)!! And apparently that doesn’t apply to juice?

On the plus side: I’ve managed ten minutes (and often more) for the past month! I’m slowly getting there; I’m starting to learn phrases and be able to put more sentences together, and one of my aims for the next month is to start using more Norwegian in everyday life – which also has the bonus of making my partner speak it more, too.

Now: jeg lager og drikker kaffe, because I think I need it after so many words!

(Ps. I’m using an app called Drops, which has been great so far!)