Thursday, 31 October 2013

Trick? What Trick?

Despite all the major things happening for me today (and trust me today is a big day for me) I would be very remiss if I didn't mention the fact that today is of course Halloween. That magical time of the year where women are forced to dress in highly revealing clothes, kids get free candy, and I'd make a paedophile joke here but it probably wouldn't go down well. I've been listening to a lot of dark humour lately.

Anyway, speaking of dark things, Halloween is just...dark I suppose. Or at least I think that's what it's supposed to be. I'm a grumpy old man with no kids who also hates kids so it's not like I know or care what it's really about these days. It seems to me to be one of the few things we borrowed from America. I think my biggest problem with it is a semantics issue. Kind of. "Trick or treat" implies that you can actually opt for a trick and not provide a treat, but that isn't the case. Saying you have no sweets is met with abuse and often vandalism. I can't wait until I'm a cranky old man with a shotgun and a porch. I'll just live it up on there every Halloween. Sat on a rocking chair and stroking a massive gun. Of course to really keep the kids away I'd have to be stroking something else but, again, I don't think that would go down too well.

I'm not really against Halloween or anything by the way. It's a pretty fun time of year where people of all ages can wear whatever the heck they want and not feel like they're being judged. Except me. I did have some plans this year but as I said, today is a big day for me. I have a job induction this afternoon and probably will not in fact be able to do any kind of dressing up. So I guess I'll have to wait until next year to dye my hair pink.

Yes, that really was my plan for this year. I had other plans but the most glaring part was the pink hair. It would have been removable by the way. I'd have gotten the kind that comes out very easily and would be gone after a long bath. This year I had neither the time nor the money to acquire a costume. Next year I hope to do more. For now I can just enjoy all the effort that a friend of mine went too, including buying white angels wings and black cat ears and painting them grey.

She needed them in grey.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Getting Back On The Bike Again

You might remember a few months ago I decided to try and complete my Compulsive Basic Training that would allow me to ride a motorbike legally. You might also remember that I managed to fail something where the only thing I had to do was ride a bike. It turns out that you can forget how to ride a bike. It's also easily remembered too. It's just that when you're trying to ride a motorbike is hardly the best time or place to try and pick that particular skill back up.

What ended up happening instead is that I went on a bike trail with my dad and, eventually, came into possession of a pushbike that seriously ruins my legs because damn, I'm out of shape since not going to the gym much. Something that would be rectified by the possession of a bike. At least, that's what I tell myself. I'm just really, really bad at time management.

Anyway, the main thing to take away from all of that is that I failed to ride a bike, then got a bike, and can now ride a bike again. I just can't sustain it for very long but it's more thanks to my legs giving out and my ass hurting thanks to the seat. These are not problems one acquires on a motorbike however. Well actually I don't know about the seat thing. They certainly look more comfortable at least.

I finally decided to rebook the CBT this past week. Unfortunately the guy said that he was busy and I need to call him back this week. Today to be precise. I just kept putting it off and putting it off. It was also really not a focus for me for the longest time. I just never really thought about it much. With the job coming up though I've decided that I'm going to go for it again. I hoped to get it in before the weather turned bad but so much for that plan.

I've been told my induction at work will be on Halloween of all days, which means that I really need to try and get myself booked in for the CBT tomorrow or Wednesday at the latest. I want to get it done and out of the way before the job starts so that I have a much better chance of being able to get myself too and from work without having to rely on either my dad or public transport. I hate public transport and I also don't like the idea of bothering my dad with taking me to and from work. Plus he still has a job himself.

All in all, I'd say wish me good luck but I really have to go into this thinking "I don't need luck, I'm good."

...well, I can stay on a bike at least. I really hope this goes well. I've recently started to get some confidence and motivation back and don't really want to lose it by failing something for a second time.

Friday, 25 October 2013

World Peace Achieved; KThnxBai

Unfortunately world peace has not been achieved but I, your Lord and Master, have come up with a plan to make it an actuality. It's pretty easy really. Much easier than a lot of people think. A few days ago I read that Angela Merkel, chancellor of Germany, plans to change the EU Treaty. This is some agreement that all member nations of the EU sign and one of the clauses in it is, in my own words "Hey, don't attack member nations kay?" and the same clause should be, and hopefully is, in the UN charter or whatever it is UN nations have to sign when they join up.

To be honest I don't think it's that hard to actually get every country in the UN (or the majority of them) and get them to sign an agreement saying that they will never attack another member nation. You can probably even get them to sign an agreement to not even attack non-member nations under the threat of attack by the other member nations. It's essentially a case of "You mess with one of us, you mess with all of us." but I think it would actually work. Mutually Assured Destruction is an incredibly stupid idea. The acronym M.A.D is actually pretty accurate. Mutually assured destruction is when everyone has nukes and if someone fires a nuke at you, you fire one at them before theirs kills you. It's a damn stupid idea.

Let me be clear; I hate war. I hate it. This also leads into another plan I have that my dad actually got too. That would be the concept of War Zones. The biggest problem I have with war is of course civilian casualties. Those are human lives and a lot of them, if not all of them, wanted no part in the war. There's plenty of wide open areas that are uninhabitied, or unhabitable. Such as all the large desert areas we have in this world. If two countries, or more, want to go to war then let them. Just take the fight away from the civilians.

One of the main reasons war used to happen was that people were trying to conquer territories and extend their empire. We've pretty much allocated the world and I don't think people really want to spread their empires that much. Peace is achievable and I'd love to see it happen in my lifetime.

Although to be honest I think that the way world peace will actually be achieved is the next time an idiot sets off a nuke. That's why it went down that way in Immortal Space.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Some More Information

So I went to the prescreening thing on Tuesday and not a whole lot happened if I'm honest, but I do have a little bit of information for you. Plus there was actually one thing that happened. I think I've mentioned about this bunch of people before known as the English Defense League. In an effort to avoid ad homenims and calling them racist I'll just call them a little extreme. They're a group of people who feel that England should only be for the English. They hate foreigners and what have you. Anyway, in the group of people there with me there was this guy of clearly black descent. Sat next to him was a young gentleman in a plain white shirt that had the letters "EDL" written on it bold font. You haven't lived until you've seen a racist sat next to a black guy. Though the black guy ended up complaining about immigants (not a typo, I love that word) so I guess they had more in common than they thought.

As far as new information goes I've found out that the place I'll be working for, Thornton's, actually employs people on a month by month basis. They basically sign you to a contract for a month and every month renew the contract for another month or let you go. They also have different shift patterns, one of which sounds very appealing. They offer a 7am-3pm shift which would actually suit me pretty fine. It would fit pretty well into my current schedule and would affect me a lot less than a 12-12 shift even if it means more days. It will affect my body less and my personal relationships a whole lot less. Yes, even this cold hearted reclusive bastard has friends. Who knew?

So my aim will really be to go for that shift or at the very least hold out for as long as I can. Some guy there, oddly enough the EDL dude who actually had a lot of knowledge, calculated how much pay would be and even accounted for taxes. Seems after just one month I'd actually have all the money I need for something major I'm planning. If I can't get the 7-3 shift then I'll hold out for the first month and try and get it the second.

This is of course assuming that A) get the job, B) survive the first month and C) get considered for staying on.

One thing I'm not looking forward to though is that because they're so big on hygiene I'm not allowed to take ANYTHING with me out on to the work floor. My phone, my MP3 player, everything will be locked in a locker outside that I can only access during breaks. I'm not overstating it when I say that damn, that's going to be incredibly rough for me. Not to be cut off from the internet like that, but the loss of my music more than anything. I could do anything for 12 hours straight with the right playlist probably. Without music I'm going to lose my sanity so much faster. If you hear on the news about a guy who went berserk in a chocolate factory and killed all the employees by encasing them in chocolate...

...that was probably me.

Monday, 21 October 2013

More Than My Job's Worth

Unlike the last time I told you that I pretty much have a job, this time it does seem to be a bit more of a certainty. It's a very different job too. I was at A4E again recently this past Friday and pretty much as soon as I walked in they told me that they had something for me at Thornton's. It's going to be three days a week on a rota and while that doesn't sound too bad, almost sounds part time, the shifts are 12 hours long. It'll be seasonal work too and last for two or three months. It's expected to start in November and end in January or so for the Christmas period.

It's not definitely seasonal though as not long after Christmas you have Valentines Day and not long after that you have Easter. During the first quarter to half of the year a chocolate factory is a very busy and necessary place. Apparently they even have people who are still there when they were sent on the same thing last year.

Before all of that though I have to go into a prescreening process tomorrow to meet the people running the place and such. I also have to go in for an induction to see if I can even manage the work. If I manage to make it through all of that then the job will pretty much be mine.

I was actually pretty happy to hear that I might have a job and a temporary one like this suits me pretty well. I'd say I could do with less hours but if it's compacted into three days then it doesn't really impact my life much and I should still be able to write and everything. Not to mention with decent hours I would still get a pretty nice paycheck. Before I start thanking A4E and talking about how awesome they are though I also have to say that they actually have some kind of working agreement with Thornton's. While it's pretty cool they've set this up, I'm not about to listen to them when they hype it up and everything because I know they do this for pretty much everyone.

Still pretty cool though. Assuming I live through it.

Friday, 18 October 2013

Hmmm

Yesterday (I'm writing this at two in the morning so it counts) I actually totally lost track of time and didn't have anything written. I keep losing track of time a lot lately. I have good excuses though. It's something that's been proven true time and time again though that I really have really bad time management skills.

I have a whole lot I want to get done, and some things that I have to get done that just aren't getting done. It kinda sucks but I suppose if it was that much of an issue to me I'd probably try and organise my time better. I really am just that bad at it I guess. Things get put off and in some cases not done for a long time. Actually one of the reasons I have a poor diet is time management. I never start working on food early enough and as a result I tend to just have something quick like some kind of microwavable meal or sandwich. It's not bad once in a while but it's terrible to do it every meal.

My cat eats pretty well though. Seeing how she drapes herself over my shoulders and across my chest I suppose she sleeps pretty well too. Lucky little bugger. At least I actually don't have to prepare her food for her. I just open a packet and put it in the bowl. Sometimes she gets annoyed and doesn't eat in protest because she actually gets sick of eating the same food all the time. I can relate because the same happens to me (Celestia knows how I can keep eating sandwiches and not get sick of them) but it's not like there's much choice when it comes to cat food really. So she's kinda out of luck.

Speaking of luck, as this thing does seem to be one long segue, I suppose I kinda got lucky that I had several small things to talk about and went on a small mental journey. Now if I could be lucky enough to land a nice job I'm interested in, and get my writing done, which are surprisingly similar goals, then I would be a happy man.

That isn't to say that I'm not happy, for I am reasonably happy right now. It's pretty awesome.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

I Remembered How To Podcast

I got myself a good chunk of alone time this week and, thanks to having something to talk about, was able to finally record a podcast again after quite a long absence. I went to the opticians on Tuesday and he was much nicer than my dentist. Find out all about how the trip went, and about my eyes in general (I have a freaky genetic disorder, go figure! At least, I think it's genetic...it's possibly a birth defect) in the podcast below!


Monday, 14 October 2013

A-Z Book Survey

I didn't really have any ideas but I was reading blogs yesterday when I came across a pretty fun post by Althea over at Blue Sky Gazing. It was an A-Z challenge about reading, as the name implies. So lets go through this together, like the terminal illness that an A-Z challenge is.


Author you've read the most books from:
That would probably be Eoin Colfier. As well as reading all of the Artemis Fowl books I've read a few other books he's made, as well as Artemis Fowl spin offs. I can't name all of them though. But it's definitely more than there are Harry Potter books. Not to diss Harry Potter, it's just that that he makes JK who I've read the second most amount of books from.


Best sequel ever:
Lirael by Garth Nix. Sabriel was a pretty great book but I always preferred Lirael's adventures to Sabriel's.


Currently reading:
Unfortunately all my writing leaves little to no time for reading.

Drink of choice whilst reading:
I guess I'd say iced tea. I don't really drink much outside of meals and I rarely read and eat at the same time.


E-reader or physical book:
I did a whole post about this, but to summarise I prefer real books but have no problem with e-readers and would happily enjoy a Kindle.


Fictional character you would probably have dated in high school:
Meh I don't really do that kinda thing, so I don't have an answer because I'm cheap.


Glad you gave this book a chance:
Honestly? I don't think I have an answer for that either. I'm very picky with my books and rarely try anything new unfortunately. There is a story I'm glad I gave a chance though and that is a story called The Snow On Her Cheek. I'd tell you about it but it's fanfiction.


Hidden book gem?
I would say any of the books based on the World Of Warcraft video game. Don't judge them because of their origins, they are amazing fantasy books.

Important moment in your book life:
When I wrote a book of course.

Just finished:
The last book I read was...damn I'm actually not sure. As I said I have very little time for reading these days.

Kind of book you won't read:
I'm not that fussy but I do have vapid and one dimensional characters and stupid love stories that don't make sense. I'm looking at you Twilight.

Longest book you've read:
The unabridged version of The Stand by Stephen King. It came in at over 1000 pages and it's the longest book I remember reading.

Major book hangover because of:
I'd say the way the last Artemis Fowl book ended gave me mixed feelings and made me feel like there should have been more to come.

Number of bookcases you own:
One and there are actually barely any books on it. Support your local library!

One book you've read multiple times:
I'd have to say all the Harry Potter books. I find it impossible to read just one book in a series, which sucks because all the books I really enjoy are series'

Preferred place to read:
Probably my bed or my chair. They're what I do everything on. Well, almost.

Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you've read:
I actually can't think of a specific quote. Just not the type. 

Reading regret:
I was going to say Twilight but I don't regret reading it. You need to read it to understand it. No, my biggest regret is that when I was in school my librarian gave me a whole list of books to read, and I really really enjoyed them, but I never remembered the names. I'll probably never read those amazing books again, and that makes me sad.

Series you started and need to finish:
I finish every series I start. I'm not reading anything that's not finished either right now. Oh wait there are two. The Power of Five series and The Keys To The Kingdom series. Damn I need to find those books.

Three of your all-time favourite books:
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - JK Rowling
Artemis Fowl (the first book is just called Artemis Fowl) - Eoin Colfier
Shade's Children - Garth Nix. It might not be my favourite of his but it's good because it's a standalone one.

Unapologetic fanboy for:
Can't say there is anything. I'm actually not much of a fanboy for anything.

Very excited for this release:
My second book.

Worst bookish habit:
Gonna have to borrow Althea's and say getting distracted, mostly by the internet, and not reading.

X marks the spot - Start at the top left of your bookshelf and pick the 27th book:
My bookshelf has very few books in it, so I couldn't do that. It mostly has video games in it and CDs.

Your latest book purchase:
...The Big Book of Equestria...

Zzz snatcher book (the last book that kept you up waay too late):
I can't really remember the last time that happened to me. Writing has kept me up pretty late sometimes though.

And there you have it. Kinda wish I'd turned it into 26 posts now.






Friday, 11 October 2013

Cold Nights Are Coming

That's right folks. Autumn is settling in as the Summer sun dims. It's pretty much gone now really as the nights are getting colder. We're fast approaching my favourite time of the year as far as weather and atmosphere goes. The sun is nice, sure, but I melt very easily and much prefer the darker and colder nights. The only problem with this is that my bedroom window still isn't attached properly and I get incredibly cold. Especially at night. You know how you see in movies where people get so cold they fall asleep and don't wake up? That actually happens to me. The impulse to fall asleep that is.

Yeah, it gets pretty damn cold.

This time though me and my dad are hoping to do something about it. Last year we tried sealing it up with...well, sealant, but it didn't go too well. This time my dad decided to buy some things that he can just attach to the frame that cover up gaps. I've forgotten what they're called but they also look pretty nice. They're made of pine. There's just one problem and that is that neither of us can put them up. Though part of that is a lack of tools. We're hoping that we can get someone to do it, or just get it done ourselves. I think we'd have a lot more luck if we had a saw.

For now though I'm going to chill my way through the winter, almost quite literally. I'm aiming to survive though don't you worry. I'll be here all this time still with nothing to write about because of course I have no ideas. Never have, and never will.

Well I suppose it's not true I've never had ideas. I did use to have ideas. Then I started having more sleeping problems than ever. At least my kitty is willing to share her body heat with me. She's totally adorable.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Still No Podcast

Yep. Still no podcast. I'm doing better as far as health goes but I still have a pretty bad throat and it's still not fun to talk. I'll see if I can get one recorded maybe even for tomorrow or something. Or just record one way in advance for next week.

Anyway, something not so great happened to me recently. Jessica, my best friend of the past 13 or so years, has moved to a whole other country. She's living in Spain now and to be honest I'm not too sure when I'll talk to her again. She said it could be a few months until she gets the internet set up and she'll actually be living in a hotel for a while. If we're lucky she'll be in a hotel with wifi. She did send me a random text though too.

She moved in with her new girlfriend a few months back and I hadn't seen her since then actually. Thankfully I got to meet up with her one last time before she moved away that time. It just feels a lot worse because she's a whole other country away now. It's hardly the last time I'm going to see her though. Flights to Spain, form England at least, are pretty dirt cheap. For the price it's going to cost me to go to America I can take about 20 trips to Spain. Though I'd have no spending money. If anything I now actually have a holiday home in Spain. That's how she really wants me to see it anyway. I still ended up crying like a little bitch on Tuesday though. I really don't cry much at all.

Still, as I said, it's hardly the last time I'll see her. I know that she got to Spain safely and she's just waiting for me to come visit. I think I'll have to wait until next summer but it's something. I have a passport which is pretty much everything I need.

This ain't no end, it's a new beginning for her.

Slight edit: I can now confirm that she does have a new place to stay and should be moving in very soon. No idea on when she'll be getting the internet there though.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Some Interesting Math

I recently came across an image which is sadly far too large to be sticking on here, but it told me that the Harry Potter series contained 1,090,739 words. I really hope that JK told someone how many words each book has and it wasn't just that some poor schmuck had to actually count each individual word. Why is this interesting you ask? Well I haven't done any math yet. There are seven Harry Potter books in all, and when you divide 1,090,739 by 7 you get 155,819 (not a precise number, there's a decimal point too). This means that on average a Harry Potter book is 155,819 words long. This is kinda disproportionate though because the first and second ones aren't too long and they didn't get long until about the fourth one.

The story I'm currently writing is, at the time of writing, 149,532. By the time you're reading this it will likely have surpassed the 156k mark. That's where this becomes interesting. I published the first chapter of that story on 28th April, of this year. That was about four months ago. In the space of about four months I have written a full length novel that continues to grow. I would not be too surprised if by the time this story had finished it was up to 200k words long. In fact if it wasn't for me choosing to split it into two separate stories for the sake of my own sanity and to keep a pure ending, then it would easily surpass that point.

I wrote a novel...in four months. I would actually be a little sad about this if it wasn't for the fact that the story is so popular and I've had so much fun with it. The reason I would be sad by the way is that it's a piece of fanfiction. It's not something I am ever likely going to be able to release or ever make a penny from. But, as I said, I am enjoying this story. If it wasn't as popular as it is it actually would not be this long at all.

At the end of the day I can say to myself that I wrote an entire freakin novel in four months. I'm a writing machine. If anything I can even take it as hope for down the line, and once this is over and I'm back on Immortal Space it's something I can take away. I have a seemingly incredibly high writing output. 6k words a week doesn't seem like much, neither does working on a story for four months, but when you take a step back and look at it like I have, then it's a pretty sweet thing I've gone and done.

Friday, 4 October 2013

Back In The Gym


As I said in yesterday's post I started writing a short piece about how I went to the gym on Monday. Yeah it was Monday. The dentist was Tuesday. I also wrote so much it was beginning to look like an actual post and so I decided that I would try and make it one. It's gone from being made of wood to becoming a real boy...post...thing.

I had less time than I wanted to have so was pretty limited, but the gym looks pretty awesome now. The new machines are...well, new, and they've rearranged the floor space to make everything just look better. The downside is that the lockers no longer accept trolley tokens. For those who don't know, the lockers require you to insert a pound coin, and so do some supermarket trolleys/carts. Some clever genius created something known as a trolley token. It's pretty much a pound coin but with no monetary value and it attaches to your keyring. The trick is that you have a pound coin you can never spend, and so will always have one. Until you lose one. Which did happen to me. The old lockers accepted them just fine, but the new ones didn't. Which really sucks because I bought a new one just to use with the lockers. It was also all I bought the old one for. I rarely have cash on me, or at least change, and got tired of asking my dad for a pound for the locker every time I went.

Anyway, I spent about 45 minutes or so overall exercising. I went on the bike, the treadmill, and did a few strength things before ultimately having to call it quits to make it home on time. As I said I had less time than I wanted, and did actually plan on being there a full 90 minutes. What matters most though is that I went, and had a badass shower afterwards. It was surprisingly grueling but not too surprising given the state my legs have been in since I went on my actual bike. If I had to guess as to what happened, I would say it is muscle deterioration. I may have gone into the gym with badass leg muscles but I was also walking six miles a week or more, which probably helped build those up, and my legs were probably like this before I started walking.

I fell off my horse, but I'm getting back on it and riding off into the sunset.

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Seems Almost Biweekly Now

The podcast that is. Lately it really seems like it's been a biweekly thing. Part of that is down to how much time I'm spending on not making podcasts. Or generally living a life actually so that way I would have something to talk about. There are a few things I could mention, sure, but it wouldn't take long at all to talk about them properly, whereas I can make my writing look longer than it actually is. Speaking one extra sentence adds maybe a few seconds but writing one adds a whole other layer to the post and makes it seem more impressive. Overcompensating much? Perhaps.

Well as I said there are a few things I can mention that I would get maybe about a minute of talking out of. First of all, I went to the dentist a few days ago. They still don't like me because I still don't brush my teeth. Although she softened up a bit when I told her the main reason I didn't was because I slip in and out of depressive cycles and when you're depressed hygiene is one of the first things out the window. I don't mean to keep growing a beard. Still, I got six months to try and sort my mouth out with the power and magic of proper brushing. They sure do an excellent job at making you feel like crap. You'd be surprised at how totally NOT motivating that is!

I was going to also mention going back to the gym but after I wrote it out it turned into something resembling an actual post of it's own. I can fluff it up a bit and make it an actual post. Yay for taking what ideas I can get and doing what I can with them. Seriously if I ever doubt my creativity all I really need to do is just load up a random blog post and look at how well I managed to keep things going despite not having much, and how I managed to extend sentences past the point of human understanding and recognition.

Seeing how my stories are actually more popular than me (seriously, I have 60 followers but my story has over 170 favourites...the buck?) I'm not going to focus on that. I should instead be focusing on my attempts to join the prostitution industry*.

I should really do posts like this more often.

*please note I'm not actually trying to become a prostitute.

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