Sunday Diary: 7/1/18

The first days of January always seems so stretched out. Every day is filled with so much expectation and promise as the new year spirit drags on, the hours seem longer. You try to fill the even longer nights with as much as you can bear (cook a nice meal, stream a TV series, paint your toenails), despite the urge to instantly go to sleep as soon as you get home.

During any other time of the year, there is usually less counting. The first week of January can feel like you’re tallying off the days, counting how many days you’ve ticked off in the fresh year until you stop bothering any longer. “I can’t believe we’re five days into the new year already!”

It’s also a time of rebuilding yourself, when you shake off the events of the year gone by and the hangovers of Christmas, and work on building up a better life for yourself that will get you through the winter.


I am going to Paris this week. As a side note, I am currently using a website to help me write every day called (see italicised stuff below), a site I first used in 2012 to write a terrible short story about Paris (it archives all the old stuff you write).

It was about a 17-year-old British girl who, for some reason, lived in Paris after she left home at 16 because her parents ‘totally didn’t get her’. She was a waitress (yawn), a functioning alcoholic (lol), and fell in love with an artist from Montmartre (obviously). It was almost 100% definitely 90% based on a YA book I read several times, Nobody’s Girl by Sarra Manning. So re-reading that got me thinking again about Paris, and how much I absolutely love Paris despite the numerous things that are wrong with it. Paris is difficult and never at all what you’d expect it to be but somehow that makes it better.


I have been listening to this Scallops Hotel record on Bandcamp this week, sovereign nose of (y)our arrogant face, a side project by Milo (one of the greatest rappers around right now). He uses his Scallops Hotel name to get all of his ‘creative shit out’, according to my boyfriend. After listening, check out some of Milo’s Milo stuff.


Let me talk about walking to work in the morning. Walking to work in the morning is one of my favourite things to do, because of its ordinariness, and necessity, as a means of transportation. My 45-minute walk is long enough to be able to immerse myself into the world (and lots of different worlds) all before I sit down at my laptop for the day. DID YOU KNOW? Tolstoy was also a dude who liked to take a walk in the morning.


Going to the gym is the easiest thing in the world, really, it’s just the idea of going to the gym that’s the real struggle. And there’s all the admin around it: packing a bag and taking it to work in the morning, eating the right things throughout the day. Then I don’t get home until 6:30pm-ish, and the hunger, and then the warm, warm bed, and the Netflix, and the hot showers. And. Oh yeah. It’s the first week in January, obviously I don’t want to be at the gym. And it’ll probably be extremely busy, full of #newyearnewme-ers, so I’m going to stay at home. Maybe I’ll put on one of those Yoga with Adriene things. Maybe I’ll smoke cigarettes and watch Action Bronson: How To Make The Best Waffle videos.


I am working at speeds that can only come after a week’s break, ie, remarkably fast and productively, but knowing that this zeal for doing stuff is going to quickly run out. I think the key to working – as in being a working person with a career and shit – is knowing that it takes years to find your own practices and ways of doing things. I’m actually quite impressed with what I’ve done over the past few years, some of the little techniques and good habits I’ve learned from others or developed myself through mistake-making. There is no doubt about the fact that you learn so much from your mentors – it started with one of my first colleagues persuading me to buy a Filofax, which transformed my world, to a more latter co-worker teaching me that emails don’t have to be drafted and re-drafted: make sure you’ve got the message across, check you’re not being rude, double-check you’re sending to the right recipient, and you’re good.


I fell asleep last night in my clothes with the lights and radio on and a book on my face. When I woke up, I was half-smiling at how silly I’d been to fall asleep in such a way that was bad for the environment, but smugly pleased that it was probably only 1 or 2am and I’d get to put my pyjamas on again. I found my watch – it was 6am. Yep I’d slept for six hours like that, totally unphased by anything. Sleep is good. Sleep is great. I wish I was sleeping right now.


Check out this week’s Girl Chat podcast, about New Year’s Resolutions, here.


*I am aiming to write 750 words each day, Monday to Friday, and spend one day at the weekend looking back on what I’ve written, pulling out the best stuff to turn into some other thing (a blog post, an idea for a play, an idea for a short story). The above post is a kind-of result of that. I hope to write a piece each week to bring into permanence the thoughts I have day-to-day. 

Here is something I wrote about 750words on Wednesday, as part of my 750-word challenge.

It’s nuts how you think you have so much to write and then you get to it and you’ve surpassed 750 words. It’s almost like you worry so much about hitting a word count that you can’t do it, but once you stop worrying about it, it’s much easier. And enjoyable, too.

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