Morning. I can’t remember the last time I blogged this early, but I can barely remember the last time I blogged, so.
I can’t believe that February has been such a short month on paper, yet 2019 already feels as long as 2018 did. Then again, in the last month I’ve moved house, edited dragonnovel to Seriously, This Looks Like a Book levels of completeness, run a little marketing workshop (yeah, me talking to a room of strangers!) and wrestled the Mini to the side of the road after it broke down going round a roundabout. Shout out to Paul the RAC guy for towing me 3 miles in fog to the garage. Bad vibes to the lady in the Range Rover who watched the tow van pull out of a junction and tried to fit between the van and the broken-down car the van was pulling. Also, your lights were off.
Anyway, there is a point to my 8am drop-in. Well, other than my inherent need to post here at least once in every calendar month in case I look like a flake. I’m putting together something very, very cool and dragonnovel-shaped for patrons, which I hope will be ready to go in March. It’s not quite done cooking yet, but I’m more excited about it than I have been about anything I’ve made for a while so this is basically me warning you that in a few weeks’ time, you’re going to see quite a lot of overexcited Tweets and probably a fair bit of blogging. IT’S GOING TO BE COOL. You’re also going to see a lot of caps-lock. Not sorry.
I need to have a shower/wrestle my hair into a ponytail/drive my newly-fixed Mini to work so byeeeee. Wait. Who’s been watching The Umbrella Academy? I got a 30-day Netflix trial out of curiosity and couldn’t believe a) how fun and weird the entire universe is and b) how much I had forgotten how fun and weird the entire universe is. I mean, I probably won’t renew Netflix until the second series airs, but still.
So I’ve had a long day and I promised myself I was winding up the work, because the only thing more depressing than being at home on a Friday evening in your pyjamas is being at home on a Friday evening in your pyjamas, writing. But I actually have the Freedom app installed so my Internet cuts off at 11pm so I had a mooch around the stats pages of my websites and it turns out this post on marriage proposal ideas from 2011 is my most visited ever. It doesn’t even make sense. The post, I mean, not the fact a lot of clearly desperate people are continuing all the way to the third page of Google to get advice on how to propose. Ironically, my parents are now separated although I still do not know how they got engaged.
Anyway. I’m writing this at 10:40pm because the stats page seems to think the better-performing blogs are the ones from 7 years ago that I put zero thought into and contain so many in-jokes I can’t actually remember what my original point was. Ugh, youth.
I lied about the writing. It’s not depressing, it’s really good. I’m tentatively hopeful I might finish it before I hit my mid-twenties. I kind of want to go back to writing it right now but my eyes are fuzzy. Ugh, human restrictions. Happy weekend!
I’ve been having really odd reactions to the Olympics so please help me out and tell me if you’ve experienced anything similar (no, I’m not talking about checking out the Team GB diving team, although I do encourage you to do that). When I’m watching TV, usually with a plate of food or a cup of tea, I either think:
This is so incredibly inspiring. Look at that perfectly regular human being who has worked their bones into dust for four-plus years to become one of the best sportspeople in the world. They are so deserving of our attention even if they don’t win anything because they are a testament to the human spirit and work ethic. I think I will put down my food and do my physio and go for a run tomorrow.
That person is my age. That person is five years younger than me. What was I doing five years ago? I was blogging about MCR, which has clearly propelled me into a fascinating, rewarding and financially secure life. That person has more visible muscles on their stomach than I do in all my limbs. I’ve been curled on Instagram checking out Team GB’s diving team for approximately four hours and haven’t done physio for days. But I’m actually just going to eat some carbohydrates and compare myself to a world class gymnast, and feel bitter that my PE teachers were nearly all so shit that I’ll never know if I could have been able to do a somersault.
Sometimes I veer from one reaction to another in the time it takes an athlete to fall off a pommel horse. Sometimes I eat carbs then do physio then eat more carbs. Is anyone else experiencing this? Is there a cure?
One thing I do like about the Olympics is the idea of working in four year cycles towards a goal. Athletes aiming for the Olympics have a clear deadline and an ambition that will get them out of bed when they would rather be anywhere but where they are, and I could do with that – or anything that would help me focus on something that isn’t my growing resentment toward everything I’ve ever done to ensure I’m a money-strapped freelancer with a broken desk chair and a complicated CV.
This isn’t me drowning in self pity; four years ago I had just finished my GCSEs and was in the middle of learning that supermarket bread wanted to kill me, and now I’m a healthier-ish indie writer who was self employed at 18 with zero debts and a burgeoning business. Not many 20 year olds can say that they decided what they wanted to and immediately did it. My life is not terrible.
I read the other day that the average deposit for a home in the UK is currently £80,000 and as my reactions were limited to either throwing myself into work or jumping off the QEII bridge, I’ve been writing a lot. I don’t want to show it to any of you yet (for a staunch non-spiritualist I am ridiculously superstitious about sharing work before it’s done) but I’m quite quietly pleased with myself for having picked up a pen.
It got me thinking about that other great writer great pieces of literature, and I wondered if any of you have been watching Upstart Crow? It’s on BBC2 on Monday nights should probably be required viewing for every student studying Shakespeare. It was written by the same guy who co-wrote Blackadder, so maybe we should just appoint him head of schools and be done with it.
It’s been about a thousand years since I did a music post and this week I bought two new records so let’s, like, music video and chill.
Awesome Mix Vol. 1 by assorted people who existed circa 1970
The other day Mum and I saw that X Men/Sky advert and said ‘that tune is in Guardians of the Galaxy. Let’s watch Guardians of the Galaxy.’ Then we said ‘these tunes are the best tunes. Let’s find the soundtrack.’ For the record (ha) I will personally not rest as a screenwriter until I can write anything as good as this:
Neither of us have seen the new X Men yet, but we definitely won’t get Sky.
Blue Neighbourhood by someone who definitely did not exist in the 1970s
The other day I was in New Look and thought ‘this song about youth and partying sounds like it could be by this Troye Sivan guy I’ve heard about.’ Then I spent several days suffering through YouTube ads before cornering a guy in HMV to find Troye’s record. Lil tip: check you can spell an artist’s name before requesting the staff search them. Also, there’s a chance you couldn’t find the CD yourself because you were too short to reach the shelf and didn’t want to upset your takeaway coffee by tiptoeing.
Someone pointed out that this video is basically what Tumblr looks like:
and they ain’t wrong. My favourite songs on Blue Neighbourhood don’t have videos, but they are the same colour as my soul in the same way My Chemical Romance is the same colour as my soul. I’d forgotten what it was like to hear that sort of music for the first time so to celebrate I dyed my hair again and nearly committed to adding more metal to my head. I’m reliving my teenage years.Oh and you should watch these.
Okay I’m gonna go make my pets dinner and dance to thePiña Colada Song. 10 points to the first person to state the six degrees.
Who else inhaled audibly on Sunday night when Peter Kosminsky mentioned John Whittingdale? Who else wants to see his full speech plus a lil interview with some awkward filmmakers?
I am one hundred percent done with any and all British and/or world politics at the moment but the BAFTAs made me sit up a little straighter, pick up a pen and write some things because who the fuck is a one term government to dictate what viewers can and can’t see? I’m not a fan of everything the BBC makes (like what the hell was the actual point of The Voice except to see Tom Jones be lovely?) but British television collectively is the best in the world, goddamnit, and I want to work in it someday and even if I didn’t I would defend public broadcasting to the death because commercials are the bane of my life and if the only shows available were TOWIE and that talent one, I would move to Australia.
Dear god they have the talent one in Australia.
That’s my ranting done for the week; I’m off to make something that might annoy 50 year old Tory secretaries of state…
Good news: I’ve worked out how to live with a fucked keyboard. Bad news: I haven’t gotten off my arse to buy a new one. I did get off my arse when I got a text last weekend that my copy of The Raven King was in Waterstones – literally as I walked through the door after a day of working opposite my local Waterstones, half an hour before it closed. I haven’t physically run that much since year nine cross country, holy shit. Cue an evening of ignoring the universe and wondering who I can sell my soul to in order to write that well.
In short, I’m book hungover. I also missed this:
But I think Shakespeare would have approved of my forsaking him for a story, so thank u Internet for letting me see this later.
Could I buy all the Raven Cycle merchandise I can find and call it a business expense? Insofar as I have remembered how much I love books and how much I want to make books all the time. Maybe I could enter it under Misc: inspiration. If David Cameron can stash his cash in South America, surely I can buy a couple several t-shirts, some stickers and a handful of posters with my HMRC-approved cash?
Or maybe I will just go and reread the series and plot ways to absorb Stiefvater’s evil genius. The temptation to make a sacrifice joke here is potent.