Close to the edit

I did another treadmill run this morning, which means I’m getting through my recorded TV programmes at a good pace!

I also got a couple of editing jobs done for clients – as I said yesterday, it’s nice to have ‘day job’ work again after a quiet month – and then got on with my own editing. I was nervous about hacking down my novel wordcount as I wasn’t sure there would be much I could cut without losing story content, but I’m actually finding it a lot easier and more satisfying than expected. I should have a pitchable manuscript by the end of the month at this rate.

I also tried out the slow cooker that Geth and I won in the raffle at Slimming World last week. I made curry, and it was delicious. I’m going to leave it for an extra hour or so next time, though, as the potatoes weren’t quite as done as I would have liked.

More editing work to do tomorrow – both for clients and for myself.

OOTD 12th February 2019
OOTD: it’s my comfiest dress again. Dress Triumph (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2018), belt H&M (2017), tights Primark (2017), boots Moda In Pelle (2018).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Yazoo – Only You
Tears For Fears – Shout
Duran Duran – Save A Prayer
Ariana Grande – 7 Rings
David Bowie – Fashion
Pet Shop Boys – What Are We Going To Do About The Rich?

A quiet Monday

A fairly relaxed start to the working week. I did some admin for a client I’m editing for tomorrow (I’m quite glad to have editing work again as the last month has been pretty dead!) and then got on with my writing for the rest of the day.

Geth is out boardgaming tonight, so I’m going to take the opportunity to get on with my ukulele practice, which I’ve been neglecting a bit this week.

OOTD 11th February 2019
OOTD: day in the house. Jumper Jac (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2018), jeans H&M (thifted from Steff 2016), boots Moda In Pelle (2018).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Jess Glynne – Thursday
Pet Shop Boys – On Social Media
Lewis Capaldi – Someone You Loved
KT Tunstall – Suddenly I See
Heaven 17 – Let Me Go

Tap tap tap tap

Another good productive writing day! I got some more work done on my submission package for my first 2019 novel pitch, drafted some treatments for stuff I will be submitting to competitions, got a lot of poetry written, and got some more editing done on another novel.

I also got some advice in response to the draft submission materials I’d sent to the Jericho Writers service, and it’s given me a good few things to think about – some of it confirmed what I’d thought myself (need to cut down the novel wordcount a bit, need to focus on the premise rather than the characters as the selling point), but there were a couple of extra things I’d not considered. As such, I’m going to spend another fortnight or so editing the manuscript further before I start sending it out. I’m sort of dreading it, because I am honestly so sick of this MS after nearly eight years, but I know I need to do the work to give it more of a chance of getting picked up.

I’ve not really done anything other than writing today (which is the best kind of day!), but I do want to note my happiness that the Specials got to number one in the album charts with Encore. Quality still rules (sometimes) in the album chart, even if I despair at the state of the singles chart most of the time!

OOTD 8th February 2019
OOTD: summer dress with winter accessories to keep warm! Hoodie Sonar (2006), dress Primark (2018), tights Primark (2017), boots Moda In Pelle (2018).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Duran Duran – Hold Back The Rain
Arcadia – Say The Word
Duran Duran – A View To A Kill
The Bangles – Hazy Shade Of Winter
Sigala, Ella Eyre, Meghan Trainor and French Montana – Just Got Paid
The Bangles – Walk Like An Egyptian
The Specials – A Message To You Rudy
Busted – Year 3000
Lewis Capaldi – Someone You Loved

Still chipping away

It’s been a pretty good day, but also quite tiring! I had a first go on our new treadmill this morning and immediately remembered why I find treadmill running quite hard. You have to go at the exact pace you’ve set, rather than intuitively speeding up and slowing down like you do on the road. However, the documentary I’d put on helped to distract me, so once I got the speed right it actually went okay.

I lost two and a half pounds at Slimming World, so cutting out the second Healthy Extra A choice is clearly working! A couple more good weeks and hopefully I’ll be back into my target range.

In the afternoon I submitted one of my novels to the Northern Writers’ Awards – always worth a try – and got a bit more writing done before I had to head off to Pilates class.

Just a few more writing jobs to do and then hopefully I can relax for an hour before bed! It’ll be nice to have a full day with my sofa and laptop tomorrow as well.

OOTD 7th February 2019
OOTD: couldn’t get a picture where the wind wasn’t playing some kind of havoc with my hair! Jumper Carlo Colucci (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017), leggings Primark (2018), boots Clarks (2009).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Kraftwerk – The Model
Yazoo – Only You
Duran Duran – Rio
Gene Kelly – Singin’ In The Rain
Pet Shop Boys – Heart
Jess Glynne – Thursday
Hue & Cry – Labour Of Love
Tears For Fears – Head Over Heels

Paring down

It’s been a bit of a long day today. The tree doctors were round in the morning to remove two trees in the front garden and cut back all the others, so both the front and back garden look a lot neater now. I spent the day working on my pitch package for sending out later this week, and then the treadmill arrived late afternoon, so I set that up before I had to head out. I’ll be doing my first treadmill run in the morning! I’ll also be watching some recorded TV while I’m on it, which will kill two birds with one stone.

In the evening, I went to ukulele class, and learnt a new song and a new chord. Lots to practise this week.

Despite the fact that tomorrow’s Thursday, I think it might actually turn out to be a more relaxed day than today!

OOTD 6th February 2019
OOTD: didn’t have time to take a picture until the evening! Glasses Emporio Armani (2017), jumper Ellend (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2019).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Jax Jones and Years & Years – Play
Jax Jones and Ina Wroldsen – Breathe
Arcadia – The Promise
The Power Station – Some Like It Hot
Wham! – Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go
Duran Duran – Is There Something I Should Know?
George Michael – A Different Corner
Assemblage 23 – Let Me Be Your Armour

Into the trees

I did my last enforced outside run today. The treadmill arrives tomorrow so I will always have the option of running indoors in future! I’m looking forward to trying that out on Thursday morning. Today’s run was stupidly slow because of the ice, but as Tuesdays are recovery run days, it didn’t matter so much. Thursdays, on the other hand, are speed run days, so the treadmill will be better for that while the mornings are still so frosty.

Another thing that happened today (at an alarmingly fast pace) was that Geth decided to have a look at all the flyers that the local tree surgeon people keep putting through our door. He then gave them a ring to see if he could get a quote. They sent a guy round an hour later to look at the trees in our front and back gardens, and they’re going to do the job at nine o’clock tomorrow morning. That escalated quickly! Happily, we will be keeping both of my favourite trees – the weeping willow in the back garden, and the pretty one in the front garden that blossoms in the spring – but we’ll be getting rid of the two evergreen trees that have become ridiculously entangled in the front garden. Apparently the company have done the same job for every house in the street. I’m guessing they must have been part of the original garden design, but that is one period ’80s feature I really don’t want to keep.

Other than that, I’ve just been getting on with writing as usual, and doing prep work for sending out the first of the year’s pitches later this week.

OOTD 5th February 2019
OOTD: those trees might look a bit prettier tomorrow! Blouse KDS Collection (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017), belt H&M (2017), skirt H&M (thifted from Steff 2016), tights Primark (2017), boots Moda In Pelle (2018).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Duran Duran – New Moon On Monday
Tears For Fears – Head Over Heels
FR David – Words
Howard Jones – New Song
Bruno Mars – Just The Way You Are
Pet Shop Boys – Heart
Curiosity Killed The Cat – Name And Number
Halsey – Without Me

And a bonus track that Geth was humming earlier:

Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci – Patio Song

Seasonal dissonance

Well, all the snow melted overnight and the temperature suddenly jumped from ‘depths of winter’ to ‘more like spring’, so after getting all my writing done for the day, I ventured out to go get my hearing aid admin done at the hospital. This, as I should have expected with hearing-related medical stuff, was not as straightforward as it should have been.

In short: I need new earmoulds for my aids as my existing ones are starting to crack, but the technician said that before they can take impressions for the new moulds, I need to go to the GP to get my ears syringed, and then go back to the hospital. I’ve got the feeling that this is going to turn into one of those medical sagas that takes up a lot of time.

Time to get on with some ukulele practice, then back to writing for the evening, with some nice BBC4 music documentaries in the background.

OOTD 4th February 2019
OOTD: all of this was covered in snow yesterday! Jumper unknown brand (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017), leggings Primark (2018), boots Carefree (2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Bananarama – Shy Boy
Haircut 100 – Love Plus One
Wilson Phillips – Hold On
Post Malone – Wow
Jax Jones and Years & Years – Play
Post Malone and Swae Lee – Sunflower
Tears For Fears – Head Over Heels

Still hibernating

The parkrun cancellation this morning meant that I was able to have a lie-in today for the first time in ages. It’s not looking particularly hopeful for a run tomorrow either, but I should at least be able to get up and get some exercise done in the house.

I’ve had quite a relaxed Saturday, though I did do some sort-of-writing-work in that I read a lot of stuff in preparation for sorting out my first pitch of the year this next week.

OOTD 2nd February 2019
OOTD: still not going out in that snow! Jumper unknown brand (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Deep Blue Something – Breakfast At Tiffany’s
Gene Kelly – Singin’ In The Rain
Simply Red – Night Nurse
Chuck Berry – You Never Can Tell
One Direction – One Thing
Fifth Harmony and Ty Dolla Sign – Work From Home

Snow day!

It snowed overnight, which cemented my decision not to leave the house today (I need to go to the hospital for some hearing aid admin, but that can definitely wait till next week). Having looked at the weather forecast, Geth and I decided this morning that parkrun will also be a no-go for us tomorrow (and in fact it’s just been announced that Newcastle parkrun won’t even be on), which means two glorious days of hermit living in a row!

This meant I got lots of editing done today, as well as a good chunk of ukulele practice. Our latest song from class is a bit of a step up technique-wise, so I need to have a good few goes at it this week.

More quality time with my sofa tomorrow.

OOTD 1st February 2019
OOTD: just a selfie today ’cause I’m not going out in that snow! T-shirt Gildan for Infest (2015), mohair blanket unknown brand (gift from Dad 2002).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Haircut 100 – Love Plus One
Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan – Especially For You
Duran Duran – Hungry Like The Wolf
Mark Ronson and Miley Cyrus – Nothing Breaks Like A Heart
Dire Straits – Romeo And Juliet

And a bonus track that Geth was humming earlier:

Pinkfong – Baby Shark

Finalising things

I got my tax return done this morning. I’d left it a bit close to the deadline to submit the actual return, but I’d done all the accounting legwork earlier in the month so it was fairly straightforward. Another January job off the list.

I spent the afternoon doing final edits to a novel I’ve been working on for nearly eight years now, which is the first of the ten projects I’m pitching to agents this year. I still feel the opening few chapters could be improved – they’ve remained fairly unchanged from the 2011 first draft, and I think I’ve become even more pernickety with my writing since then – but it really is one of those cases where I have to stop rereading and tweaking it and start getting it out there.

I then went to my ukulele class, which I’m still really enjoying. We learnt a few more chords and songs, so there’s lots to practise over the next week.

OOTD 30th January 2019
OOTD: it’s still cold, and this is the warmest of my hoodies. Hoodie unknown brand (2009), t-shirt Punk Masters (2018), jeans Zara (2018), boots Carefree (2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Wham! – Bad Boys
Pepsi & Shirlie – Heartache
Tears For Fears – Head Over Heels
Alison Moyet – Is This Love?
Wham! – Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go
Erasure – Ship Of Fools
Heaven 17 – Crushed By The Wheels Of Industry
Chuck Berry – You Never Can Tell
Gene Kelly – Singin’ In The Rain
Dire Straits – Romeo And Juliet