25 Things I Like About Me

Idea ruthlessly stolen from Carole Finds Her Wings, who stole it from someone else, I believe.

1. I have generally good skin. I say generally, because we all have those moments when we revert back to teenaged, but as a rule my skin is pretty clear, meaning I don’t have to wear makeup, meaning I can stay in bed an extra ten minutes in the morning. Win.

2. I can play the piano. Which is great for relaxing, de-stressing and just for general amusement. Plus, I love music, so being able to play my favourite tunes adds another layer of enjoyment.

3. I’m not afraid of numbers. I wouldn’t call myself a mathematician, but I do like numbers and enjoyed Maths up to GCSE level. After doing a Post-Grad course which involved a little maths, I was amazed how many of my fellow English graduates were reduced to tears at the thought of taking a simple maths test.

4. I have an overactive imagination. Not always the greatest thing – it keeps me up at night sometimes – but I’d rather suffer the minor inconveniences than live with the alternative.

5. I’m competent at fixing things. Once when I was fifteen I took our home computer apart and put it back together again. I had no idea what the bits did, but I knew enough to get it working again. That’s my general skill level with most electronic things, which means I can usually have a good stab at mending stuff, unlike the Boyfriend who panics when the TV is on the wrong output…

6. I have a brilliant memory for random rubbish. I can’t remember what day of the week it is, but I can tell you all sorts of really random rubbish that isn’t helpful to anyone except a quiz show contestant and a writer. It’s extremely helpful for the writing. Now if I could only remember where I put my notebook…

7. I am a competent speller. She says, having just typed competent wrong. I never used to be, but my mother essentially bullied me until the spelling rules started to stick. I’m so glad she did. Having read a number of University level pieces that used the wrong ‘there’, I know that good grammar and spelling is going to give me an advantage when it comes to my writing aspirations.

8. I’m honest. With other people and myself. Sometimes too much so – I have been known to upset people in the past – but I think it’s better to be too honest than to lie. Karma bites.

9. I’m a stronger person than I was five years ago. My teen years were rather make or break for me and it could have all gone so horribly wrong. But I came out the other side and I’m better for it.

10. I write songs. Wrote a couple recently, and I’m very pleased with the result. I don’t know if they will ever be worth anything, but it’s nice to create something just for the sake of creating it. And it always gives me a buzz to see people listening to our tunes when we do the busking.

11. I taught myself to use photoshop. I’m not afraid to have a go at using things, and generally can teach myself to a certain level of competence. Photoshop was one of my more successful endeavours and I got pretty good at it. Helpful for the story writing, as I can create accurate pictures of my characters for profile purposes.

12. I’m clever. Which sounds really big headed, but it is true. I can learn things fairly easily and enjoy learning. There are plenty of things I don’t pick up easily – such as sport and art and cooking and social skills – but academia was always one of my strong points, and that is something I like about myself.

13. I’m braver than I thought I was. I thought I was a complete wuss, and after watching a stupid ghost mocumentary last night I’m inclined to think I am still a total wuss, but I did do the Aerial Adventure challenge, which took me right outside my comfort zone. And I didn’t cry or anything, which was a plus.

14. I don’t really have issues with the way I look. Most of the time. I’ll talk about how I want to lose a bit of weight, but that’s more for the convenience of getting in clothes easily than anything. I’m not one of those girls who wants different hair, bigger boobs and smaller backside. I know I’m just average, really, in the looks department, but unless I’m feeling particularly vulnerable or fragile, I’m happy with the way I look.

15. I’m a nerd. And despite all the trappings of unpopularity that came with that in school, there was never any way I would rather have been. Geek chic for the win.

16. I enjoy reading. The Boyfriend can’t finish books easily. He was enjoying Private Peaceful until he hid his copy in a bag and couldn’t find it again. I bought him a new one, but if he doesn’t read every day he loses the thread and forgets what happens. I can put a book down for months and pick it up again, and I often have more than one on the go at once. I love that I can do this and that I enjoy it so much.

17. I can type really fast. Not the most useful skill ever, but it does mean my fingers can generally keep up with the speed of my thoughts when I’m writing. It’s great for impressing small children too.

18. I fall in love with characters, not good looks. Okay, I like to look as much as the next person, but just good looks doesn’t do it for me. I totally fell in love with Adrian Brody in the Pianist, and he has the biggest nose in the world, as everyone likes to point out when I mention this. I’m all about the character and the personality, and as much as good looks help, if you haven’t got the character I like, then it just doesn’t do it for me. I like to think this means I’m not shallow, but apart from anything, it makes discussions about favourite characters in films and TV shows much more interesting, because I never go for the typical hottie. Or if I do, the reason is never because they’re hot.

19. I’ve learned to laugh at myself. I never used to be able to. It used to make me very cross if ever anyone laughed at something I did that wasn’t intended to be funny. But somehow during my teenage years I grew up a bit and learned that it’s actually a good thing to laugh at your mistakes, and allow other people to have a laugh at them too.

20. I’m a University Graduate. I always said, ever since I was tiny, that I wanted to go to University. I thought I was going to do Maths for a while, and Archaeology, and various other things, usually influenced by the last film I watched. I did Creative Writing in the end, which I think surprised everyone, but it was never about what I did, it was about going. And I’m so glad I stuck to that dream, even though it was really really hard leaving the Boyfriend at home 200 miles away.

21. I did what I wanted, not what everyone else wanted. Linking to the previous point – a lot of people thought they knew what I was going to do, but I decided to do what I wanted, what made me happy. It was an out of the blue choice, and a lot of people, my teachers and peers, thought it was an odd choice and a waste of my academic side. But I knew I had to do something I was passionate about, and I didn’t back down because of other people’s reactions. I’m so glad about that.

22. I love my family. I’m not the easiest person to get on with, and I do clash with my family now and then, but I love them all fiercely. Even that pain in the backside Ivy… 😀 But as much as I occasionally fight with them, I’ll always fight for them, even when it puts me in a difficult place.

23. I’m not a quitter. Which surprises me, because I kind of always thought I was. I may have abandoned more novel projects than I care to go into, but when the going really gets tough I’ve always somehow pulled through. I got my job, even though I was so stressed about it I was ready to pull out my own hair, I never gave up on my relationship despite three years of doing the long distance thing, and I really like that I can hold on to things and keep going even when it feels like the hardest thing in the world.

24. I don’t drink too much. A colleague at work once asked me what the worst thing I’d done whilst drunk was, and I was pleased that my story about drinking too much at a Christmas Party one time when I was about 19 – which ended only in going home and being sick, not in outrageous drunken debauchery – was boring compared to the hospitalisation escapades of my workmates. I like to go out and have a good time. I like to drink. But I’m pleased the ‘pleasantly drunk’ line is one I’ve only gone beyond once in my life, and don’t intend to again.

25. I made it to twenty-five! I was doubting I would make ten, so I’m feeling quite good right now.

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