(after decimating my kingdom)

so, yesterday i went through this blog & locked about a hundred old posts, i.e most of my old spn stuff. i’d been holding off doing it because i’m still proud of the amount of time & effort i used to put into meta essays, even the ones that were completely batshit. but when i looked through them yesterday i didn’t feel like i was reading about a t.v show; i was reading my teenage psyche, as it was at a difficult time of my life. i found them painful to look at. i also found myself cringing at the bossy knowledgeable tone i often took, as well as choice bits of implicit social commentary. i’ve grown more sensitive & well-informed since then, as one would certainly hope would happen between the ages of fifteen & nineteen.

i’m grateful for the audience that writing about supernatural gave me, & i’ve met some lovely people through this blog. i also haven’t actually stopped talking about supernatural on here, but this is not a fandom blog anymore, & if i’d known how far this page would move away from its original purpose after i started writing here again i would probably have let it be & started again somewhere else. frequently terrible writing aside, the main reason i finally took down my old VS posts was because i felt like the ghost of my fifteen-year-old self was still halfway controlling this page, almost drowning me out with that desperately self-serious academic voice of hers, & it was stopping me from writing. this is no longer a blog about only one thing.

i don’t expect anyone to be too upset, although i do expect my stats to halve, as i’m pretty sure those posts still brought in an embarrassing amount of my viewers. i’m not posting this to justify deleting a ton of four-year-old bullshit from my own page. it just made me a little bit sad, because those shitty old posts were a surprisingly clear window onto how my mind used to work, back when writing was my only real crutch, & now i’m doing the thing where you listen to ludovico einaudi & Reflect on the Past whilst ruminatively sipping tea.

also, i may not be the same person who started this blog, but i’m the admin & i can do what i want. sorry, past self, & maybe try starting that novel you’ve been thinking through, eh?

 

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i’m a responsible adult human. yes

when i started writing this post i was sitting in a deli writing a blank verse epyllion whilst drinking a very blue butterfly pea latte, & since you can only say that sort of thing every so often i felt that i should take advantage of the opportunity to sound edgy & productive. however, it is now two weeks later, & i am now very hungover in my dressing-gown, annoying ANT BOILER & LCYRD by playing florence too loudly. endeavour as i may to sound like a glamourous hipster, i can only sustain the illusion for so long; i am merely a scruffy ferret who owes my friend georgia for last night’s taxi.

anyway:

a) excuses time!

the longer i put off writing a post the harder it got, bc over the past few months a LOT of stuff has changed for me. mostly for the good. also, it’s been dramatic as fuck around here lately.

b) so i guess i’ve been up to stuff?

including, but not limited to-

-i life modelled for the first time a few weeks ago! this was one of those ‘made on a whim but possibly shouldn’t have been’ life decisions (see also: chopping all my hair off, my creative writing dissertation, almost all my uni applications. also my trip to loft last night). to contextualise: uea’s life drawing sessions are run by the art society, & last year i went to a lot of the sessions to draw. the models are almost exclusively artsy, languid students with anklets & interesting hair. i was envious of the confidence i assumed it must take to laze around naked in front of a roomful of people for seventy minutes. i would have liked to be someone who could do that but it didn’t seem even remotely possible.

& it didn’t seem any more possible this year, but when an ad for models came up on my facebook i felt successively that i would like to be capable of that, & then annoyed at myself for feeling incapable, & then of course it followed that i had to do it. & once i’d actually signed up i felt pretty okay about it. i made LCYRD come along to the session for moral support, & she was very stoic & this gave me someone to tease & generally rag on to hide my burgeoning nervousness, but to be honest when we actually started the session i was far more physically uncomfortable than mentally. university carpets are fucking scratchy, man.

& i ended up agreeing to do it again (i mean, £20 per session. you can get a lot of peanut butter for £20). so… i guess i’m sort of vaguely a life model now. very weird being on this end of the pencil for a change. it’s funny because i thought that afterwards my confidence would be through the roof, & it isn’t really, but i do feel that i’m capable of bravery now. so that’s something. & while i don’t do morals, i feel that it certainly bears saying: do shit that scares you every so often. (i think my favourite thing about this, the cash aside, was that i now have some very nice pen-&-ink nudes of myself courtesy of LCYRD. artist friends come in handy, lads.)

-i can’t remember whether i’ve mentioned this before (or whether i actually chose to exercise caution on a public blog, amazing) but our housing sitch has kinda fallen the fuck apart. we are now in this absurd situation wherein one friend lives in the room above her ex-boyfriend & passive-aggressive tension is impossibly rife. another housemate has absented himself almost entirely. we haven’t seen him in months (LYCRD, fortunately, remains our rock). & while i love our house in all its long, twisty, melodramatic inconvenience, we have a 1:5 people-to-bathroom ratio. pissing in one’s garden should not be a familiar element of student life, but alas.

anyway, with a view to this i am jumping ship with my faithful LCYRD & ANT BOILER. we’ve found a house on the other side of unthank, & while aesthetically aged enough to satisfy my sensibilities this one actually seems to have functional double-glazing. (also two bathrooms! TWO!) it has a slightly cottagey feel & is much less draughty & melancholic than dear edric.

-third year is bearing down upon us, which is absolutely terrifying because second year has winked by. when it comes to university i feel that i am yet but a babe in the woods, when really i’m sort of a veteran; i’ve wandered round the lake at all times of day & night, in all shades & colours of light & mood, i’ve made more enemies than i know what to do with, i’ve survived halloween at the lcr. i’ve turned up to my shakespeare seminars  covered in hickies, performed my lucifer poem at dragon hall, had the full range of ecstatic-terrible waterfront experiences, matched on tinder with half the campus, & am able to passionately take sides in the ‘which senior academic is the hottest’ debates. still haven’t visited the catholic cathedral, tho.

-i’m also in a new relationship, which i find myself hesitant to write about at risk of being unwittingly obnoxious (as opposed to my default setting of semi-ironic conscious obnoxiousness). also at risk of tmi-ing on the internet, obviously. but it just happens to have sliced so that a lot of my funky tales atm are coupley & don’t really lend themselves to blogging. i’ve been trying to feel out how to write about what’s going on in my life without severely oversharing. which is difficult because boundaries are hard n shit.

-in a similar vein, i’m considering making this blog more private. at the moment it’s still connected to my (disused) twitter & my (overused) insta & my full name is on here in a few places. i did that because i wanted to own my crap somewhat, but now i’m missing the freedom of an anonymous space where you can say whatever bullshit you like. i mean, heck, my dad has this blog url. (hi, dad!)

-so, yesterday was pretty much the last day of the semester for me. one final utterly excruciating elizabethan lit seminar for which nobody had done the reading, & then i was very sensible & went home, made pea soup, & settled in for an evening of writing & vanilla chai, briefly dropping into georgia’s pres to have one g&t before coming home, reading sir edmund orme, meditating, writing out my work schedule for today, & going to bed at half-past-ten.

except, dear reader, it was not one g&t, & at four-thirty in the morning i inexplicably found myself bellowing ‘shake it out’ into a kareoke mic on the ground floor of a grimy gay club, clutching a double vodka in one hand & georgia’s ponytail in the other, as we were pretending to be a couple in order to ward off the straight guys who kept closing in like birnam wood marching on dunsinane. georgia & alice & i walked home through the bluing dawn, wincing at the morning chorus, whereupon i devoured several slices of toast & crawled into bed at just-gone six a.m.

i’m going to a house party tonight too. reader, pray for me.

-anyway. i go back to sheffield for easter on monday, so i’m going to head out into the lovely, unseasonably warm sunshine & stock up on vodka (for tonight) & vego (for the suitcase). oh, & i suppose i probably ought to pay my rent, too. whoops.

i will leave you with this photograph of me in steampunk beer goggles.

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smoky days/identity theft/operation jo march

hello & welcome to your latest episode of Isabel Cannot Time-Manage For Shit

here is a picture of me trying to eat my glasses

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my last post was in september. or october? anyway, since then i’ve done a bunch of dumb impulsive shit, most of which won’t make it to a public blog, & we’ve had a good deal of personal drama. also, uni’s been nuts. now i adore 19th-century russian lit, 17thc lit is fascinating, & creative writing is my OXYGEN, but it’s all sorta come down on me like a ton of bricks & i’ve been scrambling to make my deadlines whilst doing things like, you know, sleeping 5+ hours a night & eating things that aren’t hummus on toast. not that there’s anything wrong with that.

it’s a smoky day. it was even before i crawled out of the rolling stack at five p.m to find it was already all dark. there’s a grain to the air like we’re being shot on 35mm, & the trees are all bare & black & wavery, & everything still smells a bit like leaf-mulch & wet earth, & possibly you can tell i really, really love autumn. especially bonfire night. i slay at apple-bobbing, obviously.

i’ve fallen asleep watching fireworks out of my window for a couple nights running now, because our dumb asses kept forgetting to go to an actual bonfire & now none of us can be bothered to get out of bed (we’re coming down from a waffle house trip). there’s something about norwich on days like this- the arabesques & spires & winged gargoyles, the swaying catkins on the fir trees on the uea broad, the still-leafy lamp-orange tunnel of the avenues in the dark, the grim romance of it all- that makes fireworks seem extra-beautiful. like thrown handfuls of vanishing stars, sliding down the cathedral roofs.

anyway, a catch-up.

-so on friday i melodramatically hacked off my hair. £5 scissors from superdrug & jo scuttling around holding up a smeary mirror so i could get the back. i figured i’d probably regret it- my contingency plan for if it looked terrible was to shave it all off- & i thought i’d at least miss my pretty luna lovegood curls. but i don’t regret it at all. i’m too busy raking my hands through it & buying pretentious hair gel. ever since i was eleven or twelve there’s been a part of me that’s wanted to do this, just grab scissors & get hacking, or at least go to a hairdressers’ to get my hair cut short, but- excepting an appalling dorito-esque haircut when i was eleven & wanted to look like leslie from bridge to terabithia (it didn’t work), & an uncharacteristically sleek bob when i was fourteen- i never did. i’d always kinda wanted a really messy androgynous haircut, but when my hair got long & wavy again i worried about regretting it. i thought it would be a waste to get rid of it because it was pretty, & everyone else seemed to agree. anyway, somewhere around thursday midnight i went to the bathroom & out of nowhere got completely sick of my hair, & even sicker of feeling like i had to keep my hair, so the next day i bought the aforesaid scissors, asked several friends whether they thought i should do it (‘um, no’ being the general response) & after fortifying myself by eating quite a lot of pasta went ahead & did it anyway. (people ask why i didn’t go to a hairdresser. the truth is that a) i had a physical urge that had to be excised & b) i had no idea how to express to a hairdresser that i wanted sebastian-flyte-meets-blue-is-the-warmest-colour hair. i may also still be suffering with post-traumatic stress following the whole dorito incident eight years ago.) i have a long coiled-up ponytail in my drawer next to my unopened gianduja bombe truffles. is that weird? i kind of want to do a nick cave & pin it above my bed.

oh, uh, also i love my new hair.

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-the night before halloween, which was freezing, by the way, i caught myself dancing around on my bed to spooky scary skeletons, at which point i decided that this had gone far enough & messaged angus to ask if i could use him to gatecrash the predrinks he was gatecrashing through someone else & bop along to the lcr with him later. an hour later (which was mostly me whining about not knowing which of my six black chokers to wear) we were heading off through a glittering frosty night, marvellously underdressed (angus had rolled up in a green t-shirt & announced he was going as shaggy from scooby-doo; i, velvet-jacketed & demon-winged, was going as myself) to the aforesaid predrinks. about a third of the way into the bottle of shitty white wine i’d brought my memory started going flaky & from then on my recollections devolve into snapshots. angus & i jamming wildly to there she goes, my beautiful world in someone else’s ribbon-strung living room; somehow negotiating myself, through a drunk-typing haze, an lcr ticket from a girl on facebook, which i managed to acquire fifteen minutes before we got there; dancing for hours under a haze of shifting neons, in that kind of nightclub double consciousness where you’re completely beside yourself from the strange lights & the alcohol & time isn’t a thing anymore & yet your blood is pumping & you can feel the music pounding in your sternum & something at the root of your brain feels acutely aware & alive. flailing arms to come on eileen on the steps of the pit, which was a moving sea of sweaty people stained in fake blood & red spangles, & every inch of the floor was crammed with empty vk bottles. scrubbing someone else’s black facepaint off my chin with damp loo roll in the lower bathroom, bullying angus into borrowing my jacket on the walk back when i turned up my street. i was wearing six-inch chunky platform boots & looking up at the stars i felt like they were the only thing rooting me to the ground.

apparently i woke lucy up by clumping in around four a.m, which is actually kind of an early record for me. of course the upshot of this was that i spent oct 31st as grinning, woozy, nauseous trash, swilling ibuprofen with my coffee.

-also, jo & i dressed up as each other for halloween. we bought wigs- the jo wig was called femme fatale on the packaging, the me wig (of course i hadn’t cut my hair then) was gothic temptress, & as jo is really quite terrifying & i’m a massive flirt this was rather uncannily accurate. i wore one of jo’s many floral dresses, plus petticoat, dainty red shoes, pearls (that, incidentally, i gave to her in the summer) & even her little silver watch. she donned my purple trousers, velvet jacket & choker, oscar wilde graphic t-shirt, demon wings, & william blake docs (which gave her ankle scars). the effect was unsettling. we discovered several fundamental truths about ourselves. it’d probably be a great short story idea. i looked sort of like a drag queen, not helped by the fact that i kept manspreading, & jo looked sort of like she’d just stepped out of twin peaks (season two). jo & i occupy very different places on the butch-femme scale. i think we gave several lecturers the heebie-jeebies.

-in re: literary pursuits, i’ve mostly been trying to get my 19th century russian lit module by the throat. at its most intense this involved three sleep-deprived days during which i basically camped out on floor 2 of the library to get through all five hundred-plus pages of dead souls in time to give a presentation on it for my wednesday seminar. there was also the rainy train journey to leicester when i listened to glass animals & read lady macbeth of mtsensk in one sitting. the morning i read the last page of fathers & sons- sitting on a silent study floor of the library- & started uncontrollably weeping, probably confusing/annoying/concerning the people in the booths next to mine. the scribbled, crisscrossed essay i wrote (in a breathless two hours) on pechorin’s androgyny, sitting scrunched up in the russian literature bit of the rolling stack with my boots off. but what, then, is the inapprehensible mysterious force that draws one to thee? why is thy plaintive song heard, why does it resound, unremitting, in the ears, as it carries through all thy length and breadth, from sea to sea? what is in it, this song? what calls, and sobs, and clutches at the heart?

-the other thing i’ve been flipping OUT over is thomas browne’s religio medici, which i read last week for 17th century lit. it’s idiosyncratic & personal & there’s the odd moment of sublimity- like a passage where he talks about metempsychosis which gives me the fucking chills- & it also reads in places as a love letter to ambiguity, to paradox, to the dark spaces in faith that let imagination run wild.

-also: it took me two years but i’m finally catching up on spn. i blazed thru s12 & am one episode into s13. i have, hoo, a lot to say.

-oh, yeah, & jo & i watched the grand budapest hotel last night. i loved it i loved it i loved it. i don’t even want to sort thru my feelings about it yet. but it was dreamy & eccentric & silly & lovely- & yet at the end  there’s a moment where a curtain lifts & all this bitterness & compassion comes through- i thought it was wonderful. ‘monsieur gustave was also the most liberally perfumed man i have ever met.’ ENCHANTING.

anyway, this is the part where… i go the fuck to bed.

goodnight.

00:33, nov. 6 2018

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et in arcadia ego

pretentiousness rating: 3 barrels of oak-smoked decade-aged ennui. we’re livin the dream.

*

hello! it’s been a month!

night’s creeping in at the mo; i’m sitting by my window tryin to prop my eyes open long enough to write this.

-somehow it is late september, & late september is a good time to be in norwich. jo & i’s contra mundum month of grilled peaches & rainy days is now behind us; lucy, will & mantas have moved in. NOIRWICH flyers & shouty notices jostle for space on the pinboard, the “meat drawer” is leaking, no snacks are safe, & bathroom access may be determined only through ritual combat. i am sleep-deprived from reading francis bacon til two a.m, & living off oreos & leftover vegan wok takeout, & i have spent a disgusting amount of money in antiquarian bookshops, & i’m happy.

-this month is like one long, languid golden hour. it’s scarf weather but it isn’t coat weather. the chill in the air is nice & friendly & smells like a deep dark dreamy autumn ahead of us. there’s glossy conkers scattered all over the paths of the avenues, & pink leviathans of cloud when the sun sets, & stars scattered recklessly all over the night with no care for good taste.

-our darling spidery victorian house is becoming slowly more ours. i’ve ordered some pre-raphaelite art posters & we’re going to have a louche little housewarming party with our favourites & a gloomy jazz playlist. i just strung fairy lights all over my room; jo keeps moaning about being cold & then nicking my blankets; lucy’s room is a cave of yogurt pots & history books. as for will, i have initiated a prank war by filling the lining of his peacoat with broccoli.

-we also had a rather hairy saturday a fortnight back. the hairiness began at mr postles’ apothecary, which is a gorgeous early-victorian style bar with antique mirrors & swoony jazz music & deeply recessed leather seats, deserted & dimly glamorous when we went in. the nordic giant at the bar put dry ice in a cup with a silent flourish, & plumes & billows of white smoke slid out of it to trail across the polished walnut surface. cocktails were consumed- cocktails ranging from something involving blowtorched cinnamon & apple vodka to the virulently blue screwball i started out with. we got very plastered & staggered off to gonzo’s, identifiable by one battered, chunky neon sign. you went through a long thin corridor to get to it; it was a cosy, battered space w/ sofas & all sorts of random posters & pictures overlapping each other on the walls & glistening hangings on the backs of chairs, cascades of gold sequins. that bit’s all rather a kaleidoscopic blur, but it was followed by a rather lynchian sequence at a blue-lit indian resturant & a disgraced totter back to maison edric (during which i went into the deserted graveyard at st giles & flopped down onto the grass to jo’s long-suffering sigh). i ended up alone at midnight on the black expanse of the uea broad, drunk-texting lucy: i feel somewhat doolally & i’m broke again & have you missed me & BUNNIES! & luuuuuuuuuuuucy i’m bored taaaaalk to me gosh darn it

-lucy is being sensible & saving her money. jo & i? pah! my favourite unnecessary purchase of the past month is a faux leather backpack with black demon wings. also i now own william blake docs, which is really all i ever wanted out of life. i’m waiting on a velvet blazer in the post, alongside a shit-ton of books & a straight-up black lace fan. i also really want some creepers & the entire collection of beauty in decay books, but i’m trying to restrain myself at least til thursday.

-i’m reading a lot of different stuff at the moment- anna karenina, paradise lost, special topics in calamity physics, some pushkin, & i want to write about them all but my brain feels all gummed up. i think that’s mostly a sign that i need more than five hours knockout time tonight. i’m gonna try & be back in a few days with a post in re: the folding star.

-jo & i have had an enormous amount of fun with movie nights. we take it in turns; her recent suggestions have included paprika, millennium actress, moonrise kingdom, loving vincent, the grand budapest hotel, & heathers. mine have been crimson peak, jane eyre, only lovers left alive, bright star, & (next up) a girl walks home alone at night. all stuff i want to write about. all stuff i’ve been too busy working, or hanging out with people, or ringing up uea to sort out admin bullshit, to do. hopefully that’ll change now.

-uh, wow, this is pretty much just straight blathering. i should post this bullshit & go read some erasmus or something.

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“brooding on the vast abyss”

so, i just realised i haven’t posted in eleven days, whoops. i do however have an excuse: i seem, somehow, to have acquired a job. for the past five days i have been working as a paid fundraiser for a charity (which shall here go unnamed), which basically means knocking on people’s doors & asking them for money. the experience has been… mixed. it’s a really cool job in some ways- like at least you’re outside & walking around (my GOD are you walking around) & i’ve had some really nice guys in my group. you talk to some lovely people, too. but it’s also kinda mentally & physically exhausting- you have to be mentally ‘on’ all the time, & if you know me you’ll know that i have trouble being mentally ‘on’ for ten bloody minutes. you also tend to walk about fifteen to twenty miles per shift, so i’ve been crashing when i get home every night. snacks are the key. i’ve been surviving on plums & pecan pie nakd bars.

after my first shift, i wrote: it was nerve-wracking & disheartening & difficult, but at least i got to see the pale evening sky, & the gibbous moon bearded w/ mist, & sea-foam roses in someone’s garden, & the stars above a tiny train station in the middle of nowhere. & that’s true: i’d rather do this than some soulless retail job.

yesterday, though. oh, boy. yesterday was a fucking catastrophe. our train was cancelled (due to someone jumping in front of a train somewhere in essex), so we were late to shift (which meant we didn’t have a break, &, listen, when your shift is six hours of walking around as fast as you can you really, really need a break). five hours later, we were exhausted, we hadn’t got any signups, a woman had been a complete bitch to me. then, just as we got our route very tangled up & were wondering whether we’d knocked this street before, a massive storm hit. i had no umbrella & was wearing a little purple hoodie. r.i.p. for the next hour i was knocking doors in the pitch black with water streaming down my face, holding my rain-smeary glasses between fingers that had gone numb fifteen minutes ago, having to get my group to point out which bits of the houses were the doors because i was blind as a bloody bat.

it took me two trains, fifty minutes’ walking, & nearly three hours to get back to edric, after which i had the longest hottest shower of my life & woke jo up so that i could bitch to her. man, it’s a good thing i’m getting paid by the hour.

in other news:

-jo & i made the best cookies of our LIVES last week. i joke not. the millies’ cookies recipe on bbc goodfood, guys: it’s idiot-proof. if you want lil round cookies that are super soft inside & taste like annie lennox’s voice w/ added chocolate chips, i highly recommend. we made bonfire toffee tea & watched princess kaguya & then howl’s moving castle to cheer us up bc we were both crying our eyes out. listen, i want to live in that film. i just really relate to howl, okay. i too live in a cave full of glittering paraphernalia & exude large quantities of slime when i’m frustrated. (jo claims kinship w/ sophie.)

-i’ve started reading paradise lost, which, DAMN, son. i have fallen unabashedly into the lucifer camp. listen, he’s so bizarrely sympathetic! he’s arrogant & self-sacrificing & remorseful & independent & there’s some GORGEOUS lines on his black-winged flights through the gloomy deeps. i’ll do a proper excerpts post later.

-i’m also reading eugene onegin, which is unexpectedly very, very funny, & also rather moving & beautiful & full of flickering movement & life. the stanley mitchell translation is so good!

-also, listen up, fellow spn dudes: the new hillywood parody. oh my GOD. tears of joyous mirth, my brethren.

-anyway, after the shitty day i had yesterday jo & i are engaging in some hardcore r&r, which means we’re debuting the grimy takeaway down the road & watching submarine. there may also be grilled peaches & red wine involved, & writing, & coconut frozen yogurt.

 

greetings from MADGE THE SNOOVER & CAPTAIN OF THE FEMALE DANDIES.

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bright young things @ maison edric

i have moved into edric, & my poor dear squid whisperer & i are experiencing true student poverty for the first time in our lives. i am only allowed to go into one second-hand bookshop per week, & she is allowed to buy only one new variety of tea. we subsist on minestrone soup & make a lot of jokes about milk, peppers & cocaine.

-it is 31 degrees over here & i am currently holding a tub of salted caramel ice-cream to my head to try & cool the fuck down.

-edric is a beautiful house. he is very tall & thin & rambling- rather dilapidated- wooden floors, light-filled corridors, two squishy old red sofas in the lounge. we’re slowly making him ours: my catcher in the rye poster in the lounge, a bathroom fully weaponised with bath bombs & rubber ducks, books all over the bloody place.

-my room is the crows’ nest, right at the back of the house, a tiny place which is about 90% enormous bed. it’s like a goddamn island. there’s a big window right by it, so i can see the night sky when i lie down. if i hang backwards out of the window at a certain angle i have an excellent view of the stars. i’m going for kind of a tatty black-n-white quasi-retro thing with it; black posters, victorian photographs (alice liddell, oscar wilde), black bedsheets, my books stacked in piles on my desk & chest of drawers. they also fill up the entire bookcase in the lounge, because of course they do.

-jo’s reading ulysses at the moment (she’s on the aeolus chapter, which is the one i find most confusing, but i’m nevertheless very excited for her) & i’m reading the folding star. we are in constant battle against falling-down posters & the very dodgy oven, which operates according to some dark agenda of its own.

-i have been adopted by a goth moth; he is a huge black velvet creature who keeps hanging around my room, probably attracted by all the black. i can hear him crashing repeatedly into the lampshade right now.

(three days later.)

-it’s a grey, rain-silvered day, & i woke up to a view of the garden all dark & lush & secretive. the garden is very green & overgrown, with a tiny tumbledown shed at the end. sort of ramshackle-dreamy, like the rest of the house. beyond the trees i can see the spire of the catholic cathedral.

-it’s so quiet here at nights. in all the places i’ve lived, & there’s been a lot, it’s never been this still before. i’m used to the buzz of main roads, of surrounding flats. but here it’s just the trees & the creak of the boards & the rain.

-also, my room + rain = some cosy y.a novel bullshit.

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-we’re trying to get the neighbours to like us. i’m hoping jo, as the pretty soft-voiced one in pearls & floral sundresses, will be our public face. she’s written a nice note to the teachers who live next door, to which i added a scrawled postscript. i’ve been playing quite a lot of music by the open window, so let’s hope they like antique beat.

-then there’s the little skinny black cat we’ve been trying to lure into being friends with us, who we see prowling round the street; the fairy lights in the trees down the road; the house two doors down, number 67, which i’m pretty sure is haunted, it’s uninhabited, with a pale blue front door & the dead stalks of dandelion clocks overgrowing the garden; the pale stars of water-lilies on the campus lake. i went out for a rain-walk this afternoon in raincoat, doc martens & very little else, & came back with water sluicing off me in streams. it’s easy to feel alive when you’re alone on the norfolk broads getting stormed on.

-there’s also stuff like making blueberry pancakes in the early sun with oil of angels playing in the background, & serious conversations over which bowie posters would look best in the lounge vs my bedroom (verdict: heroes in my room, low & ziggy stardust downstairs), & getting drunk on my bed & wildly bitching about people on our shit list, & talking each other into buying stuffed animals (a blue octopus & a green llama, guess who bought which) in tiger, & me trying to eat a coconut yogurt with a fork when we had brunch in chapelfields. & this morning i nearly knocked myself out with my own hairbrush. i have a goose egg on my temple. it is very painful.

-i have decided that i like it here.

-jo & i have made some crackin banana bread & have plans to watch paprika, so… off i hop.

 

rivers & rain (& rereading harry potter)

it’s been a breathless & accident-prone week. i have spent most of it rampaging around in rivers. the run-down:

-the past few days have been bright & golden-sticky. the other day my pal/mom friend caiti & i waded up a stream in rivelin woods, in a shady mossy spot of river where the leaves cut out funny shadows on the water. i was in flip-flops & she in granny sandals & we slipped & slid around on the underwater rocks, & splashed each other when we thought the other wasn’t looking, & had a shouty conversation about books, & once, up to my knees in water, i grabbed hold of a branch to steady myself & imparted to her my theory that my friends & i are actually characters in some sort of pretentiously quirky coming-of-age novel. i have stuck fast to this theory for five years now. it would explain everything.

we found a rope swing by a pool of bright water, & took turns on it, & when it was her turn i lay on the forest floor & stared at the clouds, one of which looked exactly like a huge hand with talons, or a piece of monster munch. i had rivers & roads stuck in my head. i thought, it can’t get much better than this; i felt that i had grasped the crackling centre of the universe.

-after a late-night harry potter marathon with ibby & eliza, i felt that i must reread the books immediately. i’m fifty pages into chamber of secrets. i’m enjoying them so much. starting to remember what it was like to read them as a kid, how edgy & dark & weird they felt to me. i keep messaging ibby at funny hours with variations on BABE OMG HARRY AT THE BURROW IS MAKING ME SO EMOTIONAL THAT BIT WHERE HE SEES THE WELLIES BY THE DOOR I CAN’T TAKE IT. ibby is an angel & has been very understanding.

-i have also acquired a job as a Spider Bailiff. what this means is that i go round the houses of the affluent upper-middle-class with my auntie & her magnificent array of cleaning equipment, evicting arachnids from corners & obliterating their homes with variegated feathery things on poles. there’s also a lot of hoovering & loo-cleaning & wiping down irritatingly shiny expensive-looking surfaces & also rich people seem to have serious issues with stacking dishwashers. i spent about half an hour cleaning suspiciously short, curly hairs off a toilet bowl on friday. i’ve been rattling through abbatoir blues on my headphones & trying to think about it as little as possible.

-i also dropped my auntie’s high-end hoover down a flight of stairs the other day. send thoughts & prayers. that hoover is worth more than my monthly rent.

-this ties into the part where i dropped my phone in a river on tuesday, & walked into a lamp-post on wednesday, & showed up to a party barefoot, grinning & soaked to the skin by a thunderstorm on saturday. spending weeks in Writing Mode does terrible things to my depth perception & motor control. there was this one time in year twelve when i got on the school bus with a cornflake stuck to my glasses lens because i was so busy working out a plot point.

(i put my phone in a bowl of couscous overnight, there being no rice in the house. i now keep finding couscous in my bed. this is deeply disturbing given that i didn’t even take the couscous into my room. does this equate to a recurring scene in my novel, wherein my protagonist wakes up from a visionary nightmare with grave-dirt scattered between his sheets? will i meet my final resting place in a coffin full of couscous? can nobody tell me what this means?)

-there’s also the part where i swallowed a fly whilst out running on thursday evening, & coughed it up two hours later. which… isn’t the grossest thing ever to ever happen to me, but it’s a strong contender.

-in more heartening news, ibby, eliza, rachel, robyn & i went to pride yesterday! we smuggled in peach schnapps in a fanta bottle, spread out a blanket, ibby planted her rainbow flag, & spent an hour scrunching up our faces at the waily awful singing of a drag queen who looked a bit like wuthering heights era kate bush, but kept on noisily mangling madonna songs. eventually even the heavens protested in the form of a colossal thunderstorm, & after ten minutes of valiantly huddling under a spindly umbrella we evacuated with a certain amount of relief & went back to ibby & eliza’s, where we marathoned merlin til three a.m & i nearly bust an artery laughing at the two-parter with uther & the troll. gay culture?

-i also spent about forty-five minutes trying to get my bisexual eyeshadow right, so you guys can appreciate it, goddammit:

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-speaking of the godawful music (much more upsetting than the evangelist nutter at the gate holding a giant cross with red crayon scribbles all over it & telling us we were hopping the fast train to the inferno), i seem to be some sort of Music Magnet. in second semester, i began to hear opera-singing outside my window (in particular, a rich & delightful tenor trolololing it out) almost every night. i wondered briefly if i was having auditory hallucinations of some sort, since lucy couldn’t hear a thing, but then again she was on the other side of the corridor. when i moved back here, the pub across the road decided what it needed more than anything else in the world was atrocious karaoke every night of the week. mostly this means some very loose johnny cash interpretations & abba renditions that make me sweat. yet in the past week or so i begin to hear- yes- the opera singers have followed me, clearly, & they won’t give up. that tenor is back. sometimes the singing worms its way into my nightmares. god only knows what’ll happen at warwick st. especially since i’m considering saving up for a record player (to enable my hipster soul to take wing as it’s always wanted).

-in light of the fact that a certain ANT BOILER & RECKLESS FOOL will be moving in together soon (saturday! saturday!) i have been gathering Things to Hang on Edric, our house. so far the collection consists of

  • a very cool retro-ish mulholland drive print of diane with a disembodied hand over her eyes
  • some black-&-white postcards i found at a rambling antiques centre, including one of a creepy old monument somewhere, & one of a gargoyle in leicester cathedral (caption: THE GRINNING IMP)
  • fairy lights! they’re all warm & twinkly! like little melty snow jewels!
  • a lewis carroll photograph of alice liddell
  • my melting clock
  • a careful selection of my favourite spn & crimson peak posters; i’m thinking we get a bowie one for the kitchen (jo? i know you read this blog, you gay piece of shit, thoughts?)
  • i may or may not also have started a tacky fridge magnet collection for when we get there but we don’t need to talk about that

god, it’s going to be good to have our own space. our own space where we can sprawl. it’s going to be full of books & music & silly lit students crashing about & watching david lynch movies & fighting it out for bathroom access & honestly just thinking about it sorta warms the cockles of my cold-ass heart.

-i woke up yesterday to the rush & scent of it bucketing it down. the rain fell so hard that droplets shattered on my windowsill & sprayed creamy seashells stacked on the sill, the notebook pile by my bed, my glasses. i moved my books out of the way & let it hit. inhaled. petrichor so strong it was dizzying, & god, i love that word.

30 questions tag

well, i modified it a little, so it’s actually 28. ibby tagged me on tumblr & i’m crazy busy at the moment, so this is the quickest & dirtiest post ever.

Nickname(s): will calls me a tube of fucking custard about twice a day if that counts

Sign: in jo’s words, i’m a leo-cusp cancer with a very flamboyant mercury, & oh, it shows

Height: 5″5

Time: 09:05

Fave band(s): neutral milk hotel, the real tuesday weld, nick cave & the bad seeds

Fave solo artist(s): emily jane white, regina spektor, david bowie

Song stuck in my head: evanescence/lindsay stirling’s ‘hi-lo’ (it’s really good!)

Last movie I saw: the lost boys

Last show I watched: the x-files

When did I create my blog: in 2015, mostly to contain the overflow of my towering supernatural obsession

What do I post: now, book stuff, blathering about films/tv, personal crap, & i’m trying to post some original fiction too!

Last thing I googled: ‘american cereal brands’. underneath that, ‘how long to burn a human body’.

Do I have any other blogs: an old spn tumblr that i haven’t looked at since 2016, another tumblr i quit a year or two ago that was mostly aesthetics.

Why did I choose my url: when i started this blog, i was writing a novel whose working title was ‘the cobweb queen’. it’s not, like, my weird kingpin name or whatever.

Following: about 400?

Followed by: 255!

Average hours of sleep: at the moment, six, because i keep getting woken up by the fucking dawn chorus

Lucky number: 22

Instruments: clarinet & piano

What I’m wearing: spn/starry night t-shirt, black shorts, ankh necklace, velvet choker, lace gloves

Dream job: Actual Published Author

Dream trip: just drifting around europe- i want to see venice & rome in particular, & i want to go back to the south of france. or that american road trip i’ve been dreaming about for years. i nearly applied for a semester abroad in new orleans, actually, but it’d’ve messed up our plans for domestic bliss at house edric.

Fave food: peanut butter!

Nationality: british

Fave song: two-headed boy pt. 1

Last book I read: a truman capote short story collection

Top 3 fictional universes I’d join: the gormenghast trilogy, neverwhere, the ghibli howl’s moving castle

tagging: i’m going to be lazy & say anyone who wants to

anyway, i need to go make myself presentable for a family lunch outing, so i’ll be back with more nerd crap & irrelevant moaning soon!

writing hell redux

so naturally as soon as something actually clicks in re: A Certain Project my laptop starts being A GIGANTIC PIECE OF ASS

& okay that is partially my fault for knocking a moses sea of water on the keypad yesterday but you know what isn’t my fault? the fact that last night it spontaneously decided to go into flashing purple lockdown mode to install one hundred & sixty-nine system updates! which have as of this moment taken sixteen! goddamned! hours!

hence why i’m posting this from my mother’s mac (I haven’t actually figured out how to scroll down yet, yes, hello, i am a cretin). i have no access to my project notes (yes, a cretin who forgets to back up) so i can’t even write the damn thing in a notebook unless i take the heathen road & skip ahead to write whatever random scene & that’s not really how i operate

just. technology oh my GOD how am i such a dinosaur i’m supposed to be gen z or something

in other news, it turns out that in first semester i made a spotify account whilst drunk. i’m guessing this is why my username is ‘green olive muncher’.

‘can you tell me whether my name at least shows up or whether i am just green olive muncher,’ i pleaded with jo.

‘you are just green olive muncher,’ jo said.

‘oh dear.’

so, yeah, i’m the last person in the western world to discover spotify. i’ve been listening to a lot of regina spektor & nick cave & the bad seeds. mostly writing to bohren’s midnight radio,which is perfect for the grimy nocturnal world of my current thing. i’m also obsessively in love with this beautiful fucking cover of i follow rivers:

i’m meant to be at ibby & eliza’s for a write-a-thon in, whoops, about seven minutes, so i may use the whole laptop debacle as an excuse to get on with that short (?) story idea. if i do i might excerpt it here. i’d like to get some prose out.

writing hell update

so, for whatever reason, A Certain Project is DOING MY HEAD IN

i am hopelessly behind on my wordcount, i can’t seem to find my way out of a Maze of Plot, & i keep breaking off to mope over southern gothic inspo tags & listen to doom jazz

(on the other hand the sun is shining & ibby & i are having a sci-fi marathon on tuesday & i have a short story idea involving old bookshops/stigmata/scary flat-eyed men that i am ITCHING to write IF A CERTAIN PROJECT WOULD LET ME)

(yes of course i could take a break & write the other thing but honestly i need to listen to my Vague Feelings of Obligation in re: writing things because otherwise i would never get anything writ)

anyway that’s my entire life at the moment i have thrown everything else out of the window for THIS GODDAMN PROJECT

hURGH

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pictured: the evolution of a killer