Phew! Talk about a wonderful break! I can’t believe how much better I feel for taking a month off. It’s been a long month, to be sure, but I’m glad I took it. The restraint I had to employ to talk myself out of coming back just to do a quickie (post), was more than I knew I had.
So what’s going on? Lots! ^_^
I won’t bore you with all of the details, but I can give you the highlights.
Good Things Jar 2013 (May & June)
I’m finding it harder than ever to find suitable colours to go in my jar. Plenty of good things have happened to me, to be sure, including getting back onto the Wii Fit for the first time in over 18 months, the boys finally going to sleep with us having to be in the room and meeting old friends in unexpected places. I’ve also been paid (!!!) for the very first time, for my writing. More of that in the next section. The Jar has six layers in it now, all of them representative of important/exciting/interesting/pleasing events in my life. I’m really looking forward to going through all those slips of paper at the end of the year.
Freelancing and The Write Feeling
Having launched The Write Feeling with help from the New Enterprise scheme, I’ve been forced to visit the Job Centre every six weeks to report in. While they say it’s to check whether or not I need any assistance, I say it’s for them to see that I am actually trading and not just taking the weekly allowance and spending it on booze. o.O Fair enough I suppose. In my last meeting I was advised that I ran the risk of removal from the scheme if I couldn’t show some income in the next three weeks. Humph! Even though my signed off business plan included the fact that I’d be unlikely to see any business during the first two months of trading. Ho hum.
I’m pleased to say that not only have I served my first two paying clients under The Write Feeling (one job is ongoing and the invoice is yet to be finalised), but I’ve been writing non fiction too. And getting paid for it! I joined a content mill (as they’re often called) and while that wouldn’t be my first choice, I can’t deny that getting paid for working in snippets words very well for me. If I can do an hour or two a day and get paid €24 (yes, it’s in Euros, never mind), then I can’t really complain. Particularly because that is all the time I can spare from my own writing and from The Write Feeling. Win all round if you ask me.
I also pitched several articles to mother and baby style magazines and another one, subscription only, called We Are Family. This is a new magazine aimed at an LGBT audience and the pitch for that piece was my very first. Not only have they picked me up on it, but I’m to be paid a fair amount too, which is fantastic. I was beaming for days after that string of emails. I’ll let you all know when it prints, but unless you subscribe to the magazine (or buy a one off issue) I doubt you’ll see the piece.
I should also mention that as well as the letter I had published in Writer’s Forum, I’ve had another one printed in Writing Magazine! Small victories, but victories none the less and they’ve gone a long way towards keeping me motivated. I’ve discovered that I really (REALLY) like seeing my name in print. :p
I wish I could pin point exactly when I first mentioned my ‘new secret project.’ It may have been this time last year, it may have been late October. Whenever it was, it has taken me this long to finally get the damn thing written and even then, I only managed it by taking a month off. I’m pleased to say that July is the month is the time I can finally let go of what I’ve been hinting at for the better part of a year. But not today! Sorry. I know, I’m a (cock) tease, but you’ve waited this long, please indulge me a little longer. Presenting the project is taking some work as I’ve decided to do it in a manner utterly different to anything else I’ve ever done before. Dave is having to help me; that’s how different it is. But, believe me, it will be worth the wait. Promise.
Sensible Eating Regime
Who am I kidding, it is a diet really, even if I consider those four letters to form a despicable swear word. You may or may not have heard of the Fast Diet. If you have, great, if not, I’m afraid I’m not going to talk about it for ages. I’ll say simply that it’s a regime of sensible eating throughout the week, with two non consecutive days of fasting. If you want more detail than that, the Internet is a vast and informative place.
I’m including this, because before getting pregnant, I was actively trying to lower my weight to one more suited to my height and body type for health reasons. Pregnancy and subsequent breastfeeding put a stop to that, but not that I’m no longer breastfeeding (well, once day, in the mornings, but that doesn’t count), I figured it was safe to start messing with my food again. And in two months I have lost a stone.
I’m thrilled because the loss is tangible and most of all, sustainable. I’m not injuring myself, or yo-yoing, or starving myself in a stupid way. I’m simply managing what I eat in a way that has lead to a consistent 1kg of weight loss every fortnight. My body shape is changing pretty drastically too; I’ve tonnes of clothes I can no longer wear.
My favourite topic of conversation. Of course! They’ve grown so much in the last month and developed in such amazing ways that I can hardly believe it’s the same two boys. Michael is so cheeky and vocal and Leon has the most bizarre body language and facial expressions. Just yesterday I think he tried to copy the palm tree pose from my yoga workouts. He put his arms right back and tipped his head up in a way that looked absolutely comical but was certainly something he had seen somewhere.
They’ve experienced BBQs, sand pits, horses, wheat fields, loud festivals and dancing in the rain over the last month. It seems their musical ear is also developing nicely, as they
singscream along to Dave’s guitar or the TV. They seemed to particularly enjoy Kenny Rogers’s Glastonbury piece.
Out And About (As A Writer)
There’s a musical festival in July called Simon Says. It seems to be taking the place of the usual Summer Sundae, but the difference is that there are plans for a spoken word tent. A part of the event that I’m hoping to get myself into. I’ve no concrete updates in that regard yet, but I’ve had several kicks up the backside insisting that I try to perform something. Fingers crossed on that score.
I’ve also finally managed to visit Piiing…. K! A poetry night I’d been invited to over and over. Now, I don’t often write poetry, but I have an idea for a couple of monologues that would do well there.
These are all things that I should be able to record and post here for you, all being. A portfolio of spoken word is certainly not a bad way to showcase my work.
And there it is! My month’s highlights.
I’d also like to say thank your all for your patience, support and kind words while I’ve been away. It’s lovely to know I’ve not been forgotten. What’s also lovely is the number of new followers I’ve picked up while not saying a word. To those of you new to the party, hello (!) and thanks for joining us. Grab a drink, pull up a chair and enjoy the show.