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This Week

This week I have been stressed.

Honestly that could be the end of that. However I have been up to a few things that might be worth mentioning. My latest cookbook review has been posted on the Huffington Post blog looking at ‘Boutique Baking’ by Peggy Porschen.

I’ve been writing political poetry, I’m not sharing much of it online but I am thinking of combining the found poetry idea with political poems to see what comes next. I’ve also looked at more paint colour combinations than is healthy. I now sit and talk about interior decor. My apologies for becoming so deeply dull.

I have read a huge number of books recently and took loads back to the library so I’ll just name a few. ‘Matched’ and ‘Crossed’ by Ally Condie were great although it took me a while to get into them. ‘The Secret Countess’ by Eva Ibbotson sounded like it would tick lots of boxes for me and I was thrilled when I liked it as much as I thought I would! ‘Miss Wonderful’ by Loretta Chase which was an unusual pick for me but I actually really enjoyed it. A lot of the books I’m reading at the moment are ones that were 9 or 10 rated by The Book Smugglers. I also decided to re-read ‘The Daughter of Time’ by Josephine Tey after reading Nicola Upson’s series about the author. Another recommendation was ‘Hexwood’ by Diana Wynne Jones which Zoë Marriott recommended and I have three more that she suggested for when I am in the middle of moving. I finally read ‘Looking for Alaska’ by John Green (I’ve been spacing them out to save them) which I thought was wonderful but it still only sits at #3 or 4 on my John Green list. I’m glad I didn’t start with it, anyway. ‘The Iron King’ by Julie Kagawa was a surprise and another that took me a while to enjoy but I’ll be getting the rest of the series. I’m now reading ‘Half-Brother’ by Kenneth Oppel which is great so far.

And, if that isn’t enough I have four books to read that I picked up at Edge Lit yesterday. For once all of the books I got at a convention were ones that I wanted to read – no swapping required! It was a brilliant day out where I saw friends that I don’t see often enough, met some people I only knew from the internets and (if I didn’t terrify people too much) made some new friends as well.

Vick.

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This Week

This has been a rather odd week. I had the house to myself, which for a solitary type has been blissful. I am really looking forward to living by myself again. Keeping my fingers crossed for the house I love to work out okay.

This week I have cooked/made: 1.5 litres frozen yoghurt; ten heads of roasted garlic; rye soda bread; ham, bean and tomato soup; cheese and bacon scones; beef and ale stew; vanilla fudge and German pancakes. And many cups of tea.

The main work project at the moment has been working out what the main work project should be. There have been lots of heavy thoughts and planning. I’m working on some changes over on my business site. One of the main things I’ve been getting sorted is a greater synchronicity between the two sites. Links will be shared more and the blogs will level out and probably eventually merge.

This is a sort of shift in focus rather than any huge changes. I was feeling disconnected by having my work and creative sides separate and I’m hoping that these adjustments will make them fit better.

I’ve managed to get a few books read as well. I read ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ by John Green. My goodness that man is an excellent writer, I’ve loved all of his books and this might just be my favourite. My advice: read them all. I also read ‘The Scorpio Races’ by Maggie Stiefvater which I really enjoyed and was much more to my taste than the Wolves of Mercy Falls series which I’d read in the past. Then I read ‘David’ by Mary Hoffman, which I didn’t get along with but was still well written enough to keep me reading. In a break from YA-ish novels I read ‘Resurrectionist’ was the second in James McGee’s series and I think I actually preferred it to the first. I went straight back to YA with ‘Thirteen Reasons Why’ by Jay Asher which was really cracking and a very thoughtful look at personal consequences. I have a couple of books to read next that were recommended to me rather than being just picked up in the library so hopefully it will be another good week for reading.

The other big chunk of my time this week has been working on my photography portfolio. I am an amateur photographer, I have an eye for images rather than a good working knowledge of how photography works and I don’t own a good camera – I borrow one. So this is not a professional portfolio but a collection of the images I have that I like, the ones that I find amusing or keep for inspiration. I am really pleased with 500px so far, it’s got most of the features I like. There are still the same niggles I found early on but it’s a well organised site and I like the community. It also has really good mobile options, which is rare for photography sites.

Hopefully once I have (finally) got all of this website/blog stuff sorted I will be able to get back on track with posting. It feels like I have been doing this for months, actually it really has been months now I think about it. Almost there now!

Vick.

This Week

This week (and a bit) I have been without my computer. Not a lot of fun. Most of the things I need I can access apart from my bookmarks which has been annoying but it could have been much worse.

I’ve been playing around with all of the photographs that I took on my trip to Wales recently but I hadn’t realised just how long it takes to sort through them all! Will be a while before they are all finished and organised.

Over here in England we’ve had a sudden upswing in temperatures. Now, for most people this is great news. Me – not so much. Warm weather makes me feel sick, lose my appetite and have an almost constant headache. I have the summer version of SAD! So I’ve been grumpy, complaining and hankering for frozen yoghurt almost constantly. I have developed a new way of looking at this though; many of my friends love the heat and are very happy so I’m trying to see it as something that makes them feel better than something that makes me feel worse!

I’ve been focusing on my new line of custom poetry on Etsy as well so a lot of other things have been put to one side for the week. I’m hoping to be able to get through a lot of work this weekend and make sure things start leveling out next week.

One of my biggest projects at the moment is working out how to merge my Jackdaw 19 business with my V.C. Linde business. One of the things that I have done is to start merging my boards on Pinterest. I’ve joined up my business and Etsy ones but for the moment I am leaving my art ones alone. Eventually I’ll also try and link blogs through to Pinterest as well but that will take a little longer and I don’t want to try and do it all at once.

I’ve been reading ‘City of Lost Souls’ by Cassandra Clare. Finally. I love her books, all of them and I made myself wait until I had finished launching my poetry until I bought the new one. I have to admit to savoring it a little as well because I could easily have read it in a day. The other main bulk of my reading is poetry, I’m working really hard on developing my style and keeping on top of practicing and re-defining my own poetry and reading as much as possible is key to that. I’m switching between some great anthologies and some individual collections. The anthologies I usually read are chronologically organised so I can see how periods of history affected the writers.

Today I am working on my poetry, finding new areas to promote and seeing who might be interested in it all. That and reading through some more cookbooks!

Vick.

This Week

This week has been a complete mess! Not all in a bad way but very little has been happening online for a few main reasons.

The bad reason first. I had a fault with the fan in my laptop, that was fixed but two days later when I came to turn it on it was sluggish and when I restarted my hard disk finally gave up the ghost. Now, this couldn’t really have happened at a better or a worse time. For all that I work with computers all day, every day I am terrible at remembering to back-up. Luckily it was all done because of the fan issues. On the downside I really need my computer right now.

On Monday I am launching my new line on Etsy of custom written poetry and I am spending the weekend doing some final tweaks and making sure that I have all of the listings ready to go. To make the shop cleaner I have taken out all of my art and now I’m just listing my cards. Because the poetry can be used in so many situations it will be listed across several different categories. I’m going to be selling (English style) haikus and longer form poetry as well. I’ll be doing a full announcement with details on Monday and there will be lots of promotion because I’m so excited about it all!

The stranger my work portfolio becomes the more I realise how glad I am that I don’t have a regular sort of a job. It just doesn’t work for me.

The other big reason that I’ve not been doing much online is because I was in Wales for three days. I have thousands of photographs that I am gradually working through (including the top image here which is the sunset from Capel Garmon). I had a great time and will be posting more about the trip once the poetry is up. I’ve pretty tired despite the holiday because of doing a combination of sunrise and sunset pictures so not a huge amount of sleep!

Hope y’all are having a good weekend.
Vick.

This Week

This week I’ve been trying to get back to a more regular schedule. I’ve finally started reading again with ‘Half Blood Blues’ by Esi Edugyan which I’m really enjoying so far. I’ve been thinking about my perfect dinner guests and have far too many so need to cut it down a little to fit around one table.

At the same time I have been working on a new line on Etsy based around my poetry. I’ll be putting the updates for that up on my Etsy FB page so that’s the one to keep an eye on if you’re interested in new poetry. I’ve posted about my entry to the New York Times’ competition on Found Poetry that I wrote about the death of Walt Whitman. I spent a good portion of Saturday going through all of the poetry that I have written and sorting out which I want to work on, which I am happy with and which are too bad to save!

I’ve reviewed the wonderful ‘Mugaritz: A Natural Science of Cooking’ by Andoni Luis Aduriz over on the Huffington Post UK Blog. I’ve got some other cookbook reviews up my sleeve as well, there are lots of great new books out at the moment and I’m working through several of them this weekend.

I’m going on holiday for a couple of days next week and am keeping my fingers crossed for good weather so I can take some photographs as well. If you want some beautiful art to look at I have posted a series of art links over on my business site.

Hope everyone is having a happy, sunny weekend.
Vick.