Bookish Things

“There is this idea that you either read to escape or you read to find yourself. I don’t really see the difference.”
― Matt Haig, Reasons to Stay Alive

My most recent read, Reasons to Stay Alive by Matt Haig, was a nice break from the fiction-mountain that I have still to scale. Matt has written an honest recording of his struggles with mental health. But not only is it honestly written, I believe it’s a very important book to have been published. If I had to recommend a book that everyone should read, then this would be the one. Especially recommended if you’ve never experienced a mental health issue and know someone who has.

Comics

While recently selling from my comic collection on Ebay, the pull of subscribing to some new(and not so new) titles pulled on the heart-strings. I am back with half a dozen or so titles but that’s my limit. Thankfully a great find came in the shape of an Age Concern shop that has a comic book section. From here I’ve been able to fill a few gaps in my own collections but also pick some bargains too(that I’m selling on).

Fiction

The mountain that is my unread fiction will certainly get a little taller during June. I may not add any graphic novels but really need to get my teeth into the base of that mountain. Certainly I have the time for a good hour of reading time per day while I’m not employed. Yet that time is contending with Snap Map Doom, Uncharted 4 and co-op The Division. Balance needs to be addressed here, for sure.

Avenues, Doors and Exits

It’s hard to contain the events of April within a single entry here so if what follows is rather convoluted then I apologise for that now.

Free agent

Since finding out that my current role as a Product Specialist was being made redundant, my stable home/work pattern has been shifted and deformed. It has taken some time to fully feel my way into a new pattern – one without a paid salary.

I’ve now seen out my notice period and am considering what to do next. The obvious line of thought is to find some paid work as quickly as possible. Yet, I’ve always had the dream of writing for a living(or at least being paid for output)so this is a time that I can explore those options in greater depth. Sites like Patreon are an interesting avenue that may lead to a possible piece of fiction – not sure if it’d be short story or novel. Actually the short story format may work better within this framework. Something at least to explore in the coming weeks.

My freelance writing dried up back in 2015 but this could be an ideal time to reignite this path even if I can only find further voluntary work. It’s one of my loves and I should allow it to flourish again, at least while I have the hours to put in. Let’s see what I can involve myself in this time.

Agent to Drake

While I have enjoyed my run to the level cap in The Division, am glad I now have the sweet narrative of the last adventure of Nathan Drake to lose myself in. Both games give me something uniquely fulfilling; an ability to role-play and co-op on one hand while being immersed in a truly great piece of writing and character development on the other. Both these games have come just at the right time for me and that’s not just because I have more time to do as I please. I’m in a nicely positive frame of mind now and this escapism helps balance out the time spent on applying for new employment.

Good, good music

There are signs that 2016 will treat me well with regards to some good music. I’ve already being enjoying the latest Deftones album(Gore) which has been a real grower. A real contender for my album of the year which surprises me as I didn’t hold much hope that Gore would be such a great body of music. Yet the Deftones continue to produce and very rarely delivery anything that is half-baked.

With three gigs lined up over the coming couple of months, will mean I’ll be catching up with my London-based friends(who I’ve not seen since last year). Always good to see these friends as they are some of my oldest whose friendships date back to my early school years.