September has been a bit of a blur – I’ve felt like I’m running to try and catch an accelerating bus in most aspects of my life, and it’s not my favourite. Add in the endless uncertainty of the world at the moment, and I could really do with some quiet time a long way away from everywhere. But first, October.
stacking the shelves
I started the dog days of August as a grizzly old timer with much growling and then switched track to happy dappy Labrador thanks to a wonderful first Worldcon. My reading has been dented, but my enthusiasm for genre and books is on fire!
July has been wall to wall work, with interludes of Oh My Word It’s Hot, emergency furniture shopping, and a long weekend splashing about with my nieces and nephews out-law. I’m looking forward to my August interlude: my first Worldcon! But first: more work.
Recent months have been dominated by work, and June was sadly no different (so much for this being an ‘easy’ job, what was I thinking?). Blogging has taken a back seat to documentation, with reading a much-needed diversion and a chance to take a break from trying to craft words myself. Before I knew it, I’d had a little unplanned hiatus – and I have no regrets.
The best thing to do when drowning on an intense project with lots of travel is co-host a month-long blogstravaganza celebrating all things fantasy across as many channels as possible. …I’m not actually kidding. Wyrd and Wonder was AMAZING and cheered up what could have been a miserable May.
The new job has remained incredibly intense and has added trips to Denmark every other week to its roster of unexpected demands. Now I’m a bit more settled, I am actually mostly enjoying it (and I love Denmark), but gosh I’m feeling the pressure. Easter was a godsend – four much-needed days off to decompress.
Well March has been a month. With Brexit looming, I knew this month would take quite a toll, but then I started a new job and that has also been rather bruising! Fair to say I have been mostly overwhelmed. This isn’t likely to change next month, so I suspect it will remain quiet around here on the blog until May.
February has been a big book haul month for me, but it’s been a dreadful reading month. I got distracted by some unplanned work re-insulating the house and a sudden flurry of work opportunities. So it’s been dashes to the DIY store and big decisions about my future; punctuated by a much-needed and rather extravagant weekend retreat to Scotland for my birthday.
I’ve had a slow start to 2019 as I’m still sorting out where I’ll be working this year, and UK politics is a shambles so who knows what context I’ll be working in. Instead, I’m having fun in the kitchen and allowing a little Marie Kondo into my life. I’m not watching the show, but I like asking whether things ‘spark joy’, although nowhere near my bookshelf (SO MUCH JOY SPARKING RIGHT THERE, EVERY TIME).
Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish, and is now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. It’s all about books, lists and sharing the love we have of both with our bookish friends. This week we’re looking at what’s leapt on to our TBR recently – I’m going to focus on books I’ve actually acquired, not what has just caught my eye.
I’ve been travelling for most of December, which put a dent in my reading and has resulted in a semi-hiatus as I’ve been short on both quiet minutes and wifi! Expect to be regaled with stories of my adventures in a week or two when I get round to writing them up; in the meantime, a quick recap of my December reads.
November is SciFiMonth and this year has been EPIC. My heartfelt thanks and love to everyone who took part – it’s been an absolute blast from start to finish! I read fewer books than I hoped; I was having too much fun scanning the SciFiMonth feeds – and the life admin I put off last month demanded a fair bit of my attention. I’m still not done. But I’m still alive, so I guess it can take a bit longer? And first I better start drafting the final Mission Status of the year. Sniff.
No, no, nothing has gone wrong – it’s just Hallowe’en! I finished work at the start of the month, so I had a couple of weeks quietly freaking out over all the life admin I haven’t done in two years until I realised: it’s been two years. It can take a bit longer, right? RIGHT. So the past two weeks have been much more fun: a bread-making course, Bristolcon and now I’m on holiday in Italy drinking excellent hot chocolate. Feeling pampered? You bet.
I always suspected September would be a month too far in the tightrope of work vs well-being, and that pretty much panned out as expected. Exhaustion and headaches made for a short temper, a terrible attention span and less blogging than I would have liked, but thankfully didn’t completely curtail my reading. And I now get some time off, HOORAY!
At some point every summer, I hit a reading slump. This year, it was caused by an overseas trip too far (so tired, people. So tired) and an endless cascade of work deadlines (ongoing through the end of September); too much fun (Nine Worlds!) …and too much reading. I couldn’t keep up with my reviews, and that left me reluctant to pick up anything new until I caught up. I allowed myself a time out, so here’s to getting back on top of reviews and reading in the autumn.