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Thursday, 27 February 2014

Kissing stop?


A few photos while I procrastinate. It's my last full day here in Devon and since I've finished the most crucial bits of my writing, I feel laziness lurking around the corner.

I think I showed you some of the best bits of this place when I was blogging in September, but here are a few highlights of my February stay.

My favourite writing spot in my room. 

Plenty of animals, including lambs.

Hilly walks. Having grown up in a place which is completely FLAT, I feel I'm at a disadvantage. 
 Beautiful views. This one of Bovey Tracey. 
 A bus stop in Bovey Tracey. Unfortunately no suitable man to hold hands with. 

I could really do with a house in the countryside, as long as someone else took care of it when I decided to be all metropolitan. Anyone want to pitch in a create a writing colony?


Sunday, 23 February 2014

And here we go!


Just a quick midday check-in before I move on to the next step of editing (and in a bit, lunch). It's very windy here right now, the windows were rattling throughout the night,  so we're doing our best to keep warm. The fire place in the dining/writing room is coming in handy.

The trip yesterday was very painless. The train was on time, we didn't end up stuck in any massive puddle and the replacement bus was waiting for us at the station. Having arrived, we mainly spent the evening getting to know each other (there's six of us at the moment) and I ended the day with a hot bath. Now I can get used to this ...

Okay, back to writing, but see you soon!

Friday, 21 February 2014

Back to Devon


You might remember I visited a writer's retreat in Devon last autumn. Well, tomorrow I'm heading back there to spend a whole week in the rural setting. My goal is to get as much as possible done on the second draft of my full length play. I received feedback on the first draft last month and now I'm eager to get cracking on the edits. Some are fairly easy to sort out, others demand more brain power. Either way, I'm hoping the change of scenery will give me an extra boost.
My bedroom last time, and this time too!
The September view from my bedroom window. 
It probably won't be as pretty and green this time around, but dark skies and rain should suit my writing projects quite well. My only worry are the train tracks. Due to all the flooding in the UK lately, the train lines are struggling and parts of the track to New Abbot have actually been swept away by the sea. So instead I'm getting off in Exeter and taking a replacement bus for the last bit of the journey. Once that's done though, I'm going to turn into a hermit, taking long walks, baths and of course write. (And possibly do some blogging so keep an eye out if you like.) And if you're interested to know more about the retreat, you can also check it out on .

Anywho, back to the packing! So many chargers and adaptors to remember ...


Sunday, 16 February 2014

Career change?

Yesterday we celebrated my flatmate's birthday with a trip to the bowling alley. I hadn't been bowling for years and questioned my skills, but it turned out I'm not half bad. I mentioned to a friend I might change career and become a professional bowler instead, but he just gave me a look and pointed out that being a bowler isn't very lucrative. No? While being a writer is a straight path to wealth and success? According to a visiting lecturer on my MA course, a writer in the UK makes on average 600 pounds a year. Yeah, suck on that ...
Not the prettiest bowling shoes I've ever worn ...
Oh well, I'll stay with the written word for a little bit longer before I start chucking balls for a living. All in all it was a great night out and the DJ at the bowling alley was fab, he played songs I actually knew and could sing a long to. For some reason, my knowledge of popular music dissipates beyond 2003.
keeping an eye on the scores.
Now, enjoy the last hours of Sunday, and have a great week! I've painted my toe nails pink for a job tomorrow, but that's all I can say.


Saturday, 1 February 2014

Tea Men and Resolutions

Dearly beloved,

You thought I'd never come back, right? Or more likely, you never noticed I was gone. Either way, I've  kept a "white month" from blogging to regroup for the new year, and now that February is here and the sun is out, I feel eager to start again.

Any New Year's resolutions? Any you haven't given up on yet? I made one resolution this year: To get less flustered. To stay cool and calm whenever:

  1. Things get a bit hectic or overwhelming (good or bad).
  2. Interacting with people who for different reasons might make me a little nervous (good or bad).
  3. And not always assume I've done something wrong, but maybe wait until they actually arrest me and take me away. 

It's been going okay so far. I have relapses, and need to remind myself of my resolution, but at the end of the day, it's mainly about confidence. Make yourself believe you can handle most situations and that you have just as much right to be where you are and be mind-blowingly brilliant as the rest.

Keep calm in a cup of tea. 
My friend gave me this lovely little tea man for Christmas.  
Please note he is chillaxing, not weeing.

So there, now that the first entry of the year is done, I'm sure there will be more. Do pop in now and then and check if I've kept my cool, or if 2014 is the year I finally flip. 


Friday, 20 December 2013

House Rules and Pestilence

Greetings from the land of Santa,

(If you just thought "she's on the North Pole?!", you're banned from my blog.) I arrived yesterday and now have my own little studio flat at my grandmother's old people's home. A few things to note when you live in an old people's home:

1. Real candles are not allowed. Or fire of any sort. Therefore, LED lights are the shizzle. And so are bearded Santas made by nephews. I met up with said nephew, nephew number 2 and my sister in law for some coffee and had a nice old time. My younger nephew has now decided my name is Vararikken. Why not, I say?

2. Tannoy scare. At 9.15am a chirpy lady wishes you good morning and lists the activities for the day: Chair work out, children's choir, bake sale and movie night at 5pm. I have yet to find the off button ...

3. Shower chair. I already mentioned this on FB, but hey, it's worth repeating. Who doesn't want a fold out chair in the shower for those long karaoke sessions? (Seriously, some hair treatments are supposed to sit in your hair for 5 minutes or more, and then a chair is more than appropriate.)

I'm sure there are more things to note, but I'll save them for later. For those of you who have asked I'll just add no, there's no snow in Helsinki right now. People are talking about a Black Christmas/Svart Jul/Musta Joulu. It sounds like Christmas with a side order of pestilence, but it just means the ground in black, and so is everything else. Quick, more LED lights!

Have a great weekend!

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Vintage Cookies

It's been a hectic few months and when time runs out you just have to cut a few corners, aka use the left over ginger bread cookie dough you made for last Christmas. Don't worry, it's been in the freezer all year so it should be okay ... I think. They went in the oven after all.

Like last year my flatmates helped me decorate the cookies and the designs are if not traditional, at least creative. It's one of the Christmas preparations I really enjoy (and those of you who read this blog know I do like me some Christmas).
A dough gets better with age, right?
No comment ...
My flatmate had been given Hello Kitty cookie cutters ...
It's the shape of Santa, not a parrot!! Why doesn't anyone listen ...
I did warn my flatmates that I take no responsibility for potential festive food poisoning, but so far we're all feeling okay. The decorations however, might offend someone's esthetic eye. I take no responsibility for that either.

And since my blog finally decided to find my web series episode on Youtube (so far, it's been persona non grata) I'm posting that too. Because in the end, it's all the same; awkward, learning while doing, "oh god what have I done?", better luck next time mess. And mess can be a good thing .. (Said the slightly OCD, control freak who runs this blog.)