Posted in life, Reading Challenge

Happy (?) June!

It’s going to be a struggle to see June as anything resembling its usual positive self. But alas, the pages in the calendar keep turning and we’re finally into the sixth month of this hell year.

Weather you were here

Here in Scotland we’ve had a scorching weekend and it looks set to continue today. In fact, we’ve had some of the best and most consistent good weather in memory since lockdown began. If you’ve never been to Scotland during our normal three-day summer then I am sorry you are missing this. When the sun is out and everyone’s happy, we could rival anywhere in the Mediterranean. For a change I’m actually getting to enjoy the morning sunshine. Not a clue why I woke up before the ungodly hour of 8am, but I did and I’ve been in my study where the sun bakes the whole room at this time. So far managed to watch several episodes of Un Posto al Sole, did a morning Reiki wake-up meditation and read too.

Currently Reading

The two main books I’m ploughing through just now are Invisible Women by Caroline Criado Perez and Scusa Ma Ti Chiamo Amore by Federico Moccia. I read a lot in the garden the last few days I was out, it’s great just reading for fun; though the Invisible Women book does cause me to shout ‘What the fuck?!’ every five minutes. As with all plans, they are subject to change – for me depending on my mood.

Books I'm reading, Invisible Women by Caroline Criado Perez and Scusa Ma Ti Chiamo Amore by Federico Moccia.
Currently Reading June 2020

I woke with a hankering to read more of Trent’anni e una chiacchierata con papà by Tiziano Ferro. It’s the book of his diaries from before he was famous and throughout his dawning stardom. At times it is quite easy to read when he discusses travelling, living abroad, and having new adventures; at other times he becomes very poetic and wordy, especially during harder times, thus I need to have wordreference at the ready to try and understand. Still amazing though, so pure and human, warts and all – sometimes I feel as though I might have written parts of it, I understand so much of how he feels and has struggled with life.

One of my favourite quotes so far in the book, and a Spanish bus ticket from 5 years ago!

Work in Progress Forever

Now that it is a new month, even if it doesn’t feel it, I am trying to maintain a writing routine. Heck, any routine would be good right now. I’ve been jumping between studying Italian and Dutch, watching my Italian tv show, reading as many books as I can, blogging here and keeping up with my own novel. It’s going slowly but I’ve broken down the story into chapters and attempting to focus on a section at a time instead of worrying how it’s all going to fit together – or if it even will. That’s a job for editor Eliza, at a later point.

I’m off now to enjoy some sunshine and more Italian.

What are you reading? Have you been enjoying the good weather? Any plans for June?

e x

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Posted in The Quarantine Diaries, Writing

Coming Up

I’m in organisation mode right now, at home and online. So while I’m taking a quick break from cleaning my house I wanted to let you all know what I’ve got planned for evallone.com in the coming weeks.

Armchair Traveller

Since quarantine is still ongoing, it doesn’t look like we’re travelling anywhere new anytime soon – the next best option? Memories! I’m trawling through my archives; photos and journals, and I’ll be writing up posts of my favourite places, things to do, and best experiences. I’ll also be giving advice on sites in and around Glasgow like museums and great days out.

52- Week Challenge

The last 30-day blogging challenge was fun but a bit hefty trying to post everyday. I found a good year long weekly challenge that’ll allow me to share a little more stuff with everyone but without being so spammy. Here’s a copy of the challenge if you want to join in.

52-week challenge. Credit: Adventures with Amanda

Diversions

Obviously, I’ve still being crocheting nearly every day. Though I did lose my crojo for a bit, more that I couldn’t get any patterns to work for me. Damn v-shaped scarves! I guess sometimes watching videos instead of reading patterns can cause a little difficulty… and trying to work on multiple projects at the same time isn’t a great idea. One ball at a time!

Giant round granny blanket

I finished watching all 12 seasons of Bones a few weeks ago! It was epic and sad, I won’t spoil it but the ending was not what I expected, but for once a show had a decent ending! Naturally that spawned a ‘watching’ slump, I have Ally McBeal for my lawyer show, Grey’s Anatomy and New Amsterdam for medical shows, The Walking Dead for zombies, Winona Earp, Vanessa Van Helsing and Grimm for weirdo shows… so I had no normal crime shows. I dabbled a bit in NCIS a few times and it’s good but I’m not hooked yet… I am however addicted now to Criminal Minds, criminally so. Sorry. I’m nearly on season 3, in a matter of days… How have I never seen this show before? Led by the delightful Mandy Patinkin (also known as Saul in Homeland – I’m also catching up with that) the team is the BAU, Behavioural Analysis Unit within the FBI who profile and catch killers. It’s not Bones but the story lines are compelling and the dialogue is quick-fire and witty.

Books

I just finished reading Lonely Planet’s How to be a Travel Writer by Don George and Janine Eberle, while detailed and insightful, it was also dreadfully negative and off-putting. Perhaps some would say it’s realist but after reaching the last page, I feel far less-inclined now to pursue any kind of travel writing. The suggestions seem to be that if you’re lucky enough to already be loaded then go fly off somewhere and experience the life and culture then come home and write a bunch of articles with different slants and send them off to magazines and newspapers and hope you make a few hundred quid off them. Otherwise, the game is already over for you. Maybe I’m more of a dreamer, I’d like to believe that sometimes things can just work out. In the mean time, I’ll be writing all my travel stuff on here and attempt some other publications soon.

I’ve also ended my Kindle Unlimited subscription because I already have a ton of books in the house and purchased on my kindle (and audible) that I need to get through. Plus I realised that I’ve had most of the same books in my KU library for years so I’m paying £7.99 a month for nothing. I’ve put Audible on pause for a few months, I have a decent stack of books to get through and some are lectures so are 20+ hours and I have IT by Stephen King which clocks in close to 50 hours.

And I’m working on my novel, I promise. I’m feeling very inspired right now, especially since the new Dresden Files book, Peace Talks, is launching in July (likely the only good thing to happen in 2020) so I want to plough through as much of mine as I can before then.

Anyone started a new show? Or enjoying a new book? Let me know!

e x

Posted in Health, life, Writing

Just Keep Swimming

I’m still not better. Last night I slept for ten hours, got up and went for a blood test, struggled to eat a single bagel then two hours after getting up I fell back asleep for four and a half hours! Plus I was shivering – even under two heavy quilts and three blankets. Gah!

I’m worried that the days are melting together. I’m caught between the, ‘I need to rest’ and ‘I need to write my fucking dissertation‘ emotions. In case you haven’t heard, I’m writing 15000 words of a novel that I’ve been working on ahem well, started it when I was 15 and currently trying to write the best draft of it yet. But I’m doubting myself and had been all summer and now I’m ill and rapidly running out of time.

I am well aware that I’m not getting a distinction nor a merit for this degree, nothing I’ve submitted over the last two years came close to getting a thumbs up from my tutor. Even the stuff I worked ridiculously hard on still got worse marks than the stuff I ran out of time for. I get it, like any creative medium it’s subjective, the same happened when I took Photography and heck, even my HNC in Professional Writing. At least my work was always remembered for being weird. I’m good with that.

Anyway, the pain in my glands and ears and throat still feels like someone tried to shred my neck so I’ve been very quiet the last few days especially. Eating has been a chore and coffee hasn’t been very present (very odd for me). I’m trying. I know potentially I could get in touch with my tutor or student support and ask about extending the deadline due to extremely bad circumstances but honestly, I don’t want to postpone, defer, or delay this degree any longer – I just want it over with so I can go back to enjoying writing for myself again!

The novel is polyphonic where each chapter is in the 1st person POV of the main character of that scene. I have several main characters but two absolute main characters and all the chapters follow in a cycle. The chapter I’m working on just now is a journey with one of the absolute MCs and I’ve been writing it in a notebook gifted to me by a good friend for my birthday last year. I wanted to go back to handwriting things because as quick as writing on a computer can be, it’s often not as fulfilling as handwriting where you can see the strokes and scribbles of your own hand building something in front of your eyes. Plus, cute notebooks and pens. Alas, the chapter is getting quite long but will be split into several chapters to be spread between the happenings of the other characters. As much as I want to continue writing by hand, I’ve three weeks to the day to get it all done… plus I’ll be returning to work next week and won’t have nearly as much time to ponder. Though hopefully I will be on the road to recovery… eventually.

e x