I am nervous about even writing this post. The year has been huge for me in every arena of my life: personal, professional, creative, academic… I don’t know where to begin.
I know that at the beginning of the year I made some plans which I slightly revised halfway through. I haven’t re-read either of those blog posts yet, because I’m afraid to. What if I have accomplished nothing at all? (This is a ridiculous fear, I know, and yet the gremlin who lives in my mind is whispering it to the insides of my ears: What if I’ve been kidding myself all this time? What if nothing has been achieved?)
But of course, I know the gremlin is talking bullshit. That’s what gremlins do. Read more
I read more non-fiction than fiction this year, I think, and a lot of the non-fiction I read was excellent. It’s been difficult to pare it down to a few that I liked the most, but here they are. Read more
This month I am very much aware that I am doing a lot of things. I am running a company and doing a Master’s and writing two books, which when I write it down in black and white does look like a lot.
Not only that, but the company is currently growing (goo… good?) and I’ve been elected student rep for the MA (when I say “been elected” I mean “enthusiastically volunteered for” because I am a big fat nerd) and I am already three chapters behind with one of the books, which I originally planned to finish in 2016. However, the other book is (so far) on schedule, so that’s something, right? RIGHT? Read more
August has been a month of stress from beginning to end. Some stress good – the race to finish the novel – some stress bad (work isn’t going so well right now). It’s the kind of month where I’ve needed a lot of time to sit back and think about things, but that hasn’t been possible, so instead I’ve made some fairly large decisions despite not really having the headspace to do so, and I hope they turn out to be the right ones. Read more
Yeah, this one’s been a good one. Some good news; some good progress. Some imperfections, as always. Here’s a round-up.
Highlights of the Month
- Getting onto the MA Psychotherapy & Counselling at Regent’s University, starting this September. I am extremely happy about this. Being a therapist was my dream job from the moment I learned it was a thing, but when I hit adulthood life went a different way for a while. That was no bad thing, actually, since it gave me a whole lot more experience, but now it feels good to be pursuing a dream again.
Happy March! Normally I do a ceremonial ‘opening of the windows’ ritual at the end of March when spring is beginning, but we’ve had such mild weather here in London recently that I’ve already got them all open despite it only being the end of February. Actually, scrap ‘mild’, it’s been downright warm. It hit 20 degrees the other day. I feel like I’ve been cheated out of winter, but I suppose I can be happy for all the people who like the warmer weather.
Following on from my January round-up, here’s a quick overview of how things have gone in February. Read more
the sounds of 2018
operatic voices rising, my own included, then falling away
the whirr and grind of the sanding machine
the builder rolling paint onto the walls: up, down, up, down while I worked in the other room
the purr of an engine as I turned on the car and started to drive
screech and yank and bang of furniture moving and plumbing
floorboards giving a sharp loud smack as I pulled them up
beeping hospital machines (I thought I was done with those)
the murmur of danish tv shows
the blissful sound of silence
a finally tuned piano
my first strum of a guitar
and, towards the end, the new cat miaowing and galloping around. Read more
The difficulty with writing this post is that almost all the non-fiction books I read this year were excellent, but I suppose that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t get a shout-out here as well.
So here are my favourite non-fiction books from this year. (Note that not all of these were published this year, that’s just when I read them.) Read more
Every year I say I’m going to keep track of all the books I’ve read, and every year I fail. I think I might finally have stumbled across a reliable way of doing it, but I only worked it out at the beginning of December so that’s not very helpful. However, here is a list of the books I’ve read this year and recorded somewhere; it’s probably missing 20-50 more which I read but didn’t review / make notes about / remember.
Where there are reviews, I’ve linked to these in the titles; and I’ve added notes to some of them too.
Here are my favourite fiction books from this year. (Note that not all of these were published this year, that’s just when I read them.)
The following are abridged reviews; where there’s a longer version on the blog, I’ve linked to it. Blurbs are either from the back of the book, or from Amazon. Read more