The Wrist

Nope, hasn’t gone away, hasn’t gotten better. I’m still dealing with pain, though I’m taking Ibuprofen as needed rather than regularly. I don’t like the idea of having that much medication in me all the time.

However, I’ve had some success, or at least, updates.

I got my blood drawn because they wanted to test for thyroid function, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, C-reactive protein, and diabetes. All of that came back normal. I actually didn’t know what the other stuff was and was more worried that I’d find out I was diabetic–and a little offended they asked for that test. Either way, I am relieved to say I’m not diabetic, and that all of the rest of it came back normal. Well, I say relieved, but it means that we’re not closer to knowing what’s wrong with me.

I went yesterday for an ultrasound on my wrist to see if there’s any fluid build-up around my tendons. There’s none. I also had an x-ray done yesterday, which I won’t hear the results of for at least a week (I’m not really sure why, since the ultrasound doctor told me straight away there was nothing).

So far, I’m still in the dark. I have another appointment in a month (amid exams) in the musculoskeletal clinic place. Hopefully I’ll learn something then!

I have these worries that maybe it’s in my head. But then I look at my thumb, and the joint isn’t the same as my other thumb, and it doesn’t rest the same way. It’s somewhat slightly slack, and it feels uncomfortable to try and move it inward. My wrist is sometimes swollen as well. While I will admit that perhaps the thumb joint could be down to wearing the brace at work and while driving and at uni, I don’t think that my wrist would swell if it was in my head. But then I go to the idea of phantom pregnancies where someone shows all the symptoms of being pregnant without actually being pregnant. Could I have fantom messed-up wrist?

I won’t know until I go through all the malarky, I suppose. Cross your fingers for me, anyway!

All Over But Nowhere

A couple of years ago, I changed the name of this blog to ‘Scribing English All Over the Place’ because of a philosophy teacher I had. He said that people would tell him his lectures were all over the place, and that the key part of the comment was ‘the place’. It’s still centered, despite being everywhere.

That’s the way I’ve been feeling while on break. I have opened WordPress and closed the tab so many times, initially with the idea of reading the blogs I follow and writing a bit while I’m at it. But then I thought that I should be making flashcards to study for exams next month (NEXT MONTH!!!!!!), or I should be working on editing my novel–or that oh wait, I have another novel I want to get done that I think I can pump out really fast if only I have a detailed enough outline, but then really I should be acquiring more editing work. Of course, all the while I should be sowing the seeds for our vegetable garden so we can eat next winter, but oh dear, the weather has been conveniently crap–and now the eggs are hatching and really I shouldn’t leave the chicks when they’re this young on their own…..

And so on and so forth.

All over the damn place. But, I’m still in the place. I’m still productive. While I’m working on a hundred things at a time, I’m still focussed on an overarching goal, still being productive, and still keeping things interesting.

So no, I haven’t actually written in my blogs for a while, nor have I been a good reader for the blogs that I follow. But I’ll get back in the swing of things. Recently I’ve just been enjoying the freedom to tool around over here, then over there, and then back over to the north side of the whatever, without demand of a schedule.

I will study.

I will edit my novel.

I will sow my garden (at least I freaking hope I will).

But for now, I’m happy doing a little bit here and there and just getting things nudging along slowly.


Please feel free to visit my website at www.authornjthompson.com and subscribe to my newsletter. I’m also accepting manuscript for proofreading and development editing.

Three Day Three Quote Challenge – Day 1

I think the last time I was nominated for one of these was probably when I first started the blog. I was jobless, waiting for school to start, and so all I had to do was obsessively sift through blogs. It was fun, though not as productive as I had hoped it might be.

However, I do remember these things as being quite fun! So here it goes:

Firstly, I want to thank Robin Leeann for the nomination. Her blog I actually came across as the result of one of the many writing-related Facebook groups I belong to. She is also one of the blogs that I try to make sure I read regularly (Common, we all have our favorites!).

I heartell there are some rules, so I’ll post these puppies:

The Rules:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you
  2. Post a quote for three consecutive Days (one quote each day)
  3. Nominate three bloggers each day

So, I’ve done the first part, now I’ll get on with the quote, shall I?

Quote

“What is an adult? A child blown up by age.”

Simone de Beauvoir

I won’t lie. I didn’t have that one ready at hand, so I don’t have anything to say about it. I just quite like Simone de Beauvoir, and thus thought that I would quote her. I’ll do better tomorrow.

The Nominations

Now for the fun part! I nominate:

  1. Life with Mrs. T.
  2. The Non-Alcoholic Student
  3. The EcoFeminist

Happy Quoting!


Don’t forget to visit my website and subscribe to my newsletter at www.AuthorNJThompson.com where you’ll find book reviews, updates, and flash fiction. You can also contact me there about my editorial services for your manuscript.

Term 2 Done!

General

Right, well, I’m not quite done with my second term. Technically I still have a day left, and two essays to turn in. But the good news is that I’m completely finished with all of my five essays that were due in the space of two weeks. The more impressive part is that I finished them all early.

Well, Actually, two of them I pulled all-nighters to finish–but the other three I had done by yesterday morning and two of them are due today while one is due tomorrow. But I’m going to be that student and turn them in early. Ha!

Actually, as much as I hate to admit it because of the money spent on tuition, the strike has been really helpful. It’s allowed me time to work on my school work without having to stop to drive an hour to uni, go to lectures/tutorials, drive back while stopping at the grocery store on the way and to get gas, etc. So Instead of losing five hours for a lecture or a tutorial, I could just use that time to focus on my work.

The Strike

That being said, I did speak a little more with my academic advisor who was kind enough to give me a telephone meeting due to the strikes. He’s very involved in them, and was giving me a bit more information about it. I really do support the strikes, and I think that it’s important that educators are acknowledged and compensated for the insanely important job they have.

I’ve been trying to find out who to email and demand a tuition reimbursement from (as an act of solidarity with the teachers, which has also been encouraged), though I’m not quite sure where to go for that.

Planning

Any way, regarding my academic plan, he says I’m on the right track.

I emailed the language department about getting into French, took the placement test and they agreed that the most appropriate placement for me would be Level 2 French next year – which I am thrilled about.

Disability; RE: wrist

Ah yes, you might have forgotten about this, or thought it had all cleared up. It has not. Last summer I developed repetative strain working long hours in an ice cream shop six days a week. Since I adopted the ‘play through the pain’ mentality, thinking it was just developing muscle essentially, I screwed up my wrist even more. While I was still in Wales I saw a specialist who said I needed to get more tests done. However, this was literally the week that I moved to Yorkshire.

finally have been to the doctor to do something about it, though mostly for academic reasons. I still work with a wrist brace on, and regularly need my brace on for support while I’m driving. I no longer sleep with the brace, but sometimes need to wear it generally about my day. I can write with my hand, though not for long. I can’t take notes in class by hand, and I”ve been really struggling with trying to create flash cards for exams in May with my hand as it is.

It’s exams that have me going to the doctor finally. I needed a note to say that I wouldn’t be able to take the exams without the aid of a computer. There is no way in hell that I can sit there for 2-3 hours (depending on the class) and pump out 2-3 essays during that time by hand for the exams – and then repeat it five more times for each class.

I got my note, went to the disabilities office, which I was instructed to do. I was told that because I hadn’t had the injury for more than a year there wasn’t anything they could actually do about it, but rather that they could send a recommendation to the department head, and that I needed to contact them as well.

I emailed the English department and Philosophy department to ask if I needed to make an appointment with someone or if I could just come on in. The philosophy department told me I just needed to talk to the english department, and the English department told me I had to get ahold of my student support officer at my college. That to me makes no sense because my college has little to do with my degree or my exams.

Any way, I’m going around in this loop for the time being.

However, medically, regarding my wrist, I’ve had to have blood tests which I’m waiting for the results for, and have just had a referral to go in to get an ultrasound on my wrist. I’ll keep you all updated on that one, as I know you’re on the edge of your seats with anticipation.

Level Two Modules

I’m not going to give too much detail as to how this works just yet. Only when I’ve successfully registered for all my second-year classes (the link goes to the course outline, year by year) will I try and lay out how it all works in a more comprehensive way (because the Durham English department were not helpful on this one).

Any way, I know you’re on the edge of your seats about this, but I think, I think, I’ve got all my second-year classes picked out and am registered for the English half at least.

Mandatory Modules

This year I didn’t have any control over my modules. Every single one of my six modules (that’s classes, for you American folk) was a mandatory module, and I didn’t get to choose any of them. However, next year, I only have two mandatory ones:

I’m interested in both of these, which is nice. This year has been a bit of a nightmare as I really don’t have any interest in poetry, and I was required to take Intro to Poetry, and I have about as much, or less, interest in Drama, and I had to take Intro to Drama as well. However, just about anything with the term ‘theory’ in it regarding literature, I’m going to be pretty excited about. Also, my favorite class overall this year has been Ethics and Values, so Moral Theory has a double-wammy of ‘stoked-for’ from me.

English Lit

I’ve just registered for these classes, well, I say classes. One is a module (class) while the other is actually a seminar. I have no idea if I’ve done this right. The first one is a module, the second one is a seminar, and under that are my second and third choices for seminars in case I don’t get my first choice.

I know, I just said I didn’t want to do any more poetry. But the other classes were a hodgepodge of poetry, prose and drama all mixed together. At least with poetry I know what I’m getting. Plus it’s all 20th century.

Initially German Myth and Legend was my first pick, but in terms of where I want my career to go, I thought it better to study these writers rather than a seminar for funsies.

Philosophy

Like I said, I haven’t signed up for these yet. I’m still waiting to hear how I’m supposed to go about it. However, I think they should be pretty good.

Honestly, both of those modules just reek of my interests. Plus the latter is basically my dream medium – philosophical literature. So much so, that I’m trying to design a full project around it…

Additional

I know that I’ve already got my six modules/seminars. However, I couldn’t resist when I saw there was an option of an additional foreign language I could be taking. I’ve actually been saying all year that I regretted not trying to get into English Lit with French, or French and Philosophy. I love, lovelove French. I miss learning it. And I saw that in the second year you have the option of tacking a language on. So as soon as I find out how, that is exactly what I’m doing.

Update: Snow and Writing

My last post was a bit of a winge. I will give you that. So I thought I would update and iterate that it wasn’t as bad as it felt at the timeand update in general.

Snow

The snow is finally easing off. Most of yesterday was above freezing, and I could even see some green patches of grass around the caravan where it was just finally pissing off, as requested. We still don’t have any water, since our pipes are still frozen. But I’m off to work in an hour and I suspect that the frozen pipe issue will have remedied by the time I get home. As I am writing this I can hear the water trying so hard to come back on! There are drips!! This is very exciting as we’ve been without for four (this is our fifth) days!

I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited to do dishes in my life.

Honestly, while I was frustrated, it wasn’t as bad as I made it seem. We had electric the whole time, which was fine. Our gas worked the majority of the time, which meant we could cook. We were able to go to one of the farm houses and use their water for a shower and to fill up water bottles to bring here so we could drink (coffee), wash the minimum amount of dishes, keep the dogs hydrated and cook.

None of the dogs died from being too cold. Our chicken didn’t die (Did I mention we have a chicken and hatching eggs???) and the birds outside this morning are sounding pretty pleased with themselves.

Also, the week from school (yeah, week from school because between strikes and snow days, I haven’t been to one lecture or tutorial in a week)

Writing

My Project

As I wrote about a few days ago – and have had some pretty positive response to – I am trying to get a publishing project off the ground at the university. I’ll tell you, it’s slow going. While I know the project has been dispersed via a few news letters, I’ve so far only had one student response, who seems quite keen. I won’t lie, I don’t know what to do now. I’ve asked for some background information, and he sounds like a good option, but I don’t know if I should just say ‘great, you’re in!’ without actually meeting him first. However, because I’m impatient, I’m thinking I’m going to just tell him ‘welcome aboard’ and go from there.

But I don’t actually know where to go from there. I mean, it seems logical to meet up with him any way, and we can start discussing the details of everything – how to set up the web page, what our first theme will be and so on. But I’m thinking that I should give it a little bit more time to try and acquire a fuller team before I start moving ahead. After all, I think it’s only been a week or so that the word went out.

The problem I’m facing regarding this is that I’m hoping to get the website and call for submissions out by the end of May with a deadline of August and a selection by September. This would allow the first issue to be out by November. Which sounds like a good plan, except we have to consider that I’m planning on working with just students. In two weeks, March 16th, we all go on break until April 15th (or thereabouts), so a lot of students will be going home. After that, it’s only two weeks until exams, which will be going all month long. My first exam, I think, is on May 4th (maybe 9th?), and the last one is on the 26h. After that I’m done with uni for the summer.

Because of this schedule, I don’t know how many people are going to be able to devote any time at all toward this project and getting it set up. I don’t know how many will have time to respond now. THe only thing I can think to do is get the guy who’s responded, work with him to try and get things done as much as we can between us, and hopefully people will respond to the submission call, and we can try and recruit more people over the summer for aspects like graphic design.

So while I’m impatient, I”m impatient for a seemingly legit reason.

Non-Uni Projects

I’m working on a short story at the moment for a competition. Among all the other things I’m doing, I’m trying to turn out short stories on the regular to submit to paying competitions in an effort to get some more cash flow. This week off has been pretty helpful with both essays and creative writing, but it’s also been pretty influential on my laziness,

Carpe Nocturne

While I had mentioned that there was a bit of a delay with the last Carpe Nocturne issue coming out, there is still that issue. I’ve been in contact with one of the section editors who has been in contact with the producer of the magazine, though he hasn’t heard anything new yet. While I had hoped that this issue would be out by the end of February, it’s still not out.

Wonderbox Publishing

The Anthology still isn’t out. I haven’t heard anything more about it either. The last I had heard, the digital copy was going to be released and there was going to be a Kickstarter (or some equivalent) to get a print version on the go. I thought that in order to make that happen, it would have started ages ago. However, again, I haven’t heard anything.

Ugh. Writers.

Blogs

And, just as a general self-promotion, I thought I would share my recent blog posts from other blogs. Actually, I”ve only written in one blog other than this one, so I’ll essentially just list and link the blog entries (nice and simple, yes?)

 

Beast from the East Can Piss Off Already

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The little dragon there is perched on my deck. It’s snowed another four or five inches since. At this point it was about five inches already. THIS IS ENGLAND! IT’S NOT SUPPOSED TO SNOW THIS MUCH!

I know, I know, everyone is talking about the snow in the UK, and rightfully snow because this is some Midwest snow right here. There’s a reason I never traveled east when I lived in the states during the winter.

Life In the Caravan

img_4597-1The photos I’m sharing right now are pretty and nice and rather pleasant. But these were from two days ago, when the snow was pretty and nice and rather pleasant. Now it’s swirling around in a bitter wind, finding ways into the caravan so it is actually snowing in our kitchen, and freezing our pipes.

Yeah, we have had no water for two days because our pipes are frozen. That means no brushing teeth, no showers, no doing dishes, boiling water (you know, no coffee), and no flushing the toilet. Though, in remedy of the latter, I had the brilliant idea last night to put some of the snow in the toilet system so that it would melt.

It is so cold in this caravan that it did not melt. We have a heater in our bedroom and so that is where we stay.

My partner went out to go do farm stuff (feeding animals and the like), and his boots which came inside with him yesterday still had snow on them, and had frozen to the carpet. He went outside, came back in and said that the snow was up to his knees.

And it is still bloody snowing

One of the dogs just vanished in the snow, only his little nose poking up. Scruff, who’s a long-haired lurcher is light enough she doesn’t sink as bad. But when she came in I heard her little teeth chattering.

Our oven is all gass. I tried to melt some snow to turn to water for the dogs. Because the gas is condensed due to the low temperatures, it too fifteen minutes to melt snow in a pan over fire. I was hoping I could melt more snow to put in the back of the toilet so we could at least flush it. No such luck. Or rather, no such patience.

And, insult to injury, as I was dishing up the last of our chili last night, I leaned over, reaching for something, and my hair, a good two inches of it, went right into my chili. There is no water for me to wash my tomato-soaked locks.

Driving

And to top it all off, I don’t think I can drive my car out in this. Which means that I can’t go to the grocery store. I have to get to work tonight, somehow (My bosses are just on the other side of the field and have a 4×4, so I think I can blag them into picking me up).

My partner was able to get it up the lane from ours, which left some lovely pretty patterns in the snow, but even where it’s parked now at the ‘top of the farm’, I don’t think I could get my car driving. I’ve been keenly watching traffic reports and it seems like only the A roads are getting seen to and city roads. Which means not our road with it’s 3 mile drive to any sort of ‘proper’ road. I hear one of the land rovers’ wheels were spinning trying to get down the drive yesterday. Today is worse.

Though I suppose my transportation situation isn’t all bad. I have a couple essays I should be writing (if anyone wants to help me out with rhyming theory in poetry, that would be swell), a project I’m getting going (I’ve had a student respond and express interest, so yay! That’s one person!), and a couple short stories I’m writing for some contests so I can maybe get some extra cash.

Durham University

Whatsmore, most of the University seems to be mostly closed in Durham as well. I’ve already had my entire schedule today cancelled due to the snow.

I’m pretty concerned regarding uni though. Last week’s strike days were Thursday and Friday, this week’s were Monday-Wednesday. Today and tomorrow aren’t meant to be striked days, but I already missed out on classes last week because of it. Now I’m missing out on lectures because of the snow.

The best I can do is just use this time to stop blogging (ha!) and focus on studying for exams in May.

Though it is looking like this won’t be the last of the snow.

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P.S.

Please don’t think I’m unhappy. I’m annoyed, of course, as anyone would be. But I actually love my living situation, and while this experience is obnoxious, it’s a good experience that I can call on at a later time for writing, to laugh about, or whatever. I’m actually extremely grateful for my living situation and everything that’s going on.

I just don’t do snow.