February is the month of romance, and to get in the mood, I’ve been thinking about things I love.
1. Having Dinner Made for Me
I’m the cook in the household (and by that I mean I do the cooking, not that I’m the one with the talent for it) and the Boyfriend rarely dabbles in making things to eat. Which is a shame because he’s very good at it. The problem he has (which is also why he’s good at it) is that he takes forever to make anything, has to measure everything out very particularly, uses every single utensil and pot in the kitchen and won’t deviate at all from the recipe. What would take me half an hour to make to a reasonable quality, it takes him four hours to make perfectly.
But every so often, for whatever reason, he picks up a wooden spoon and makes something. I particularly love it when he sorts out dinner. It’s like having a chore taken off you, only you get a present at the end as well. I don’t have to cook, and I get to eat something delicious!
2. Having Time
There’s never enough of the stuff, but I’ve got so much more lately. I don’t always fill it with constructive activities, but I do try to broaden my horizons a little bit. I would never have had the energy to learn to swim if I’d still been working in my old job, so having these opportunities is something I really appreciate, even if getting more time to yourself means instantly filling it and feeling like you have none again!
3. Discovering a New Author
I read a lot. I read a lot of crap. I’m not the sort of person who lightly gives up on a book, especially if I’ve been sent it to review. Which means reading is more like a job for me sometimes than it is a pleasure. But every so often I get the chance to pick up something that I want to read for my sake, not anyone else’s. And when that happens and the author is great, it’s the ultimate pleasure. Of course, I sometimes discover fantastic authors through my reviewing – it’s why I do it. It takes me outside of my comfort zone and forces me to read more broadly – but there’s nothing better than buying a book because you really want to read it, investing the money as well as the time, then having the pleasure of finding it a fantastic read.
4. Eddie Redmayne
Most people I speak to do not understand this, but I’m utterly in love with Eddie Redmayne. He was the only thing that made Les Miserables passingly tolerable. He was brilliant in Birdsong and I REALLY want to see The Theory of Everything. He perfectly fulfils my ‘weird looking but attractive’ taste in actors and is an incredible talent to boot.
5. The Thrill of Inventing New Characters or Solving Plot Holes
I’ve been trying to form habits with my writing, which as previously discussed, has been difficult throughout January. I’m persevering though, and my word count is improving week on week. I do my best word counts when the story is new and fresh – when you’re discovering characters and worlds. It’s my favourite part of the writing. But I’ve been discovering new joy in unsnarling plot tangles, perfecting scenes and rewriting. I hope this means that I’m getting closer to the rounded set of skills needed by a writer who’s going to publish their work.