Friday 31 January 2014

Month in review: January

I started 2014 full of ambitious resolutions, but you know how it is with resolutions: you're lucky if they last a week. In short, my main plan was to say yes more, but also to know when it's OK and right to say no. So far, I've managed to stick to a lot of my goals, and get into some good habits. I've started swimming once a week, and already I'm noticing the difference, feeling fitter and achieving more lengths every time. I swam 500 metres this week, which is a personal best for me. Let's see if I can do 550 next week. I'm really enjoying it; it is soothing and relaxing, a good way of winding down after a busy day at work.

Not that it's been that busy at work; after the Christmas madness, we are returning to something vaguely resembling normality, and it's been very quiet. Not that I mind; continual customers are exhausting. I've had my hours cut back down to three days a week, though, a downside of the quiet time of year (at least as far as money is concerned. On the other hand - more reading time!)

Winter post-Christmas is generally quite a gloomy time, and so far this year the weather has been pretty disgusting, with storms and floods galore. Often the winter gets me down, but I've decided to make the most of the long evenings, reading books and catching up on DVD box sets. This winter is the third year in a row I've really got into a Joss Whedon series. 2012 introduced me to Firefly, and last year it was Dollhouse. This year I've gone back to the one that made Mr Whedon's name: Buffy the Vampire Slayer - only 17 years late! I remember watching and enjoying the first couple of episodes when I was 13, but for some reason I never got into watching it regularly. I'm partway through the second season now, and although I have a vague knowledge of some things that are to come, remembering my school friends raving about it when it was new, most of Buffy and her friends' adventures are a complete mystery to me. Charlotte suggested I write update posts as I watch the series (and you can all laugh at my ridiculously wrong predictions and wonder whether I've been living under a rock for the last couple of decades.)

I auditioned for a role in the new Isle of Wight Shakespeare Company's Much Ado About Nothing last Sunday. I haven't heard back from them, and so am assuming I've been unsuccessful, but it was great fun trying out and meeting interesting new people (including one who I've interacted with online but never met in person before.) We started off with some warm-up and workshopping exercises, before auditioning in front of a panel with a prepared piece. I've done auditions before, but usually reading from a piece of paper. This time, I saw the audition piece beforehand, a valuable thing with Shakespeare, as it gives you the chance to learn the lines and, if any of the meaning is unclear, do some research. I may not have got a part, but I didn't disgrace myself and am very pleased with how it went.

I've also got into a regular writing routine, aiming for 500 words per day on a story about two sisters, starting in 1999. It's been very interesting looking back to that time and seeing how much things have changed. The plan is to follow the sisters over a fifteen-year period, but so far I'm not sure how all the pieces fit together. It's still early days yet. I've missed a couple of days' writing, but have managed to write over 12 000 words. Of course, I expect to cut a lot out in the edits.

January's Reading Stats:

8 books read
8 books acquired
3 female authors/5 male authors
5 new reads/3 rereads
5 British authors/2 American/1 Canadian
2 kids' books/ 4 adult fiction/1 non-fiction/1 play
Favourite book: N0S4R2
Least favourite book: Mindstar Rising

1 comment:

  1. Ahhh Buffy! I watched it all when it was out but I also own the complete DVD set and watch again with friends who haven't seen it yet.

    I don't really make resolutions anymore, more that I have an idea where I would like my year to go.


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