Friday, 24 April 2009

Simple Things

I think I've just seen God. He came in the miraculous form of a stop-motion film that has made me want to give up everything I'm doing and make a film myself.

The video came via the e-mails I get from the lovely people at Innocent Smoothies, and I watched it as a way to procrastinate. It starts a little slow, but then it just has some really great ideas and a funny little story.

I wish I was a musician and I could get this guy to do the video for my next single. I wish I had any way to give this guy a job. He's a genius who just made my day.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009


I believe I'm probably the very last person on earth to hear about this, but I just learned about Librivox.

I'm a bad sleeper and I find that the only way I can drift off is to listen to an audiobook. I choose my book carefully - it has to be something I don't actually want to read (because I want to save those books to hold in my hands and curl up around their lovely printy inkiness) but it has to be something I would consider reading if I were very short of books and had no access to others.

It's a bit of a hassle to go to the library to get these and then again to return them, so I was quite excited at the thought of Librivox.

I'm not entirely sure how I feel about it - downloading the books is quite a slow process and the catalogue isn't that easy to browse. Most significantly though, the voices of the people who record the books are just those of regular folk. The readers change every chapter and they're of variable quality, which I think would annoy me if I were sitting and listening to the whole thing. But it is better than a computer generated voice, and it's very easy to access, and after all, I do just listen to the books in little snippets.

I have a recording of EB White reading his Charlotte's Web, it is one of the most pleasing and comforting sounds I know. So, while I think I'll find Librivox useful when the library is feeling very far away or their selection isn't inspiring me, I think that the power of a good voice reading a book very well will always be an irresistible lure to me.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

I'm back

I've been away for a while - in the woods - living deliberately and sucking some marrow. I've got a good lot of writing done - the opening to the novel I'm working on. I also walked a lot and I can feel the muscles are more pronounced in my legs - it makes me feel a mixture of tired and invincible.

I got back to this new most beautiful of blogs by the most beautiful of people. It's just stuff apparently, but it's the best sort of stuff: THIS is STUFF.

I'm still in need of sleep, cold nights in the caravan left me with a lot of catching up to do. But it's nice to go to sleep in a world with such beautiful stuff in it.

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

On-line magazine

Much as I will champion the cause of the printed magazine, I will admit that on-line stuff is easier to explore. Granted, most of the stuff you find is of questionnable quality, but once in a while you do find something good. The only thing that annoys me is that when I find the good magazine I wish I could have it in front of me - I hate reading on the screen, the computer is the place I come for work and correspondence, not where I come to relax with a good story or article.
There are a number of mags that come in the dowloadable PDF format, but it still somehow doesn't feel as good as a little bound magazine. I don't feel as though shuffling through pieces of paper or scrolling down a screen does justice to the effort that people have put into producing their work.
From the Manchester Lit List I found this great magazine: Incorporating Writing. Now if only I could have this bound up nicely to carry around or share with my friends then everything would be perfect.


I mentioned my Etsy shop below. As an extension of that I've joined an Etsy team, FeltingTeam, and I now contribute to their blog. It's got some really great felting info on there and some of my favourite Etsy shops are part of it. Hopefully the members will help me find a way to increase my profile and get some sales. My absolute favourite member is Arlene Watson, who does some incredible nuno-felting.

Saturday, 4 April 2009


I've been pretty busy recently, as well as making the cupcake purse I mentioned previously, I also had to make a new bag because my old one fell apart.

On top of those personal projects I've been knitting my stip for the ArtYarn project, which is based at the wonderful Craft and Design Centre in Manchester. For the project you need to knit or crochet a strip which is 7cm by 40cm and either take it in to the craft centre office on the first floor of the Craft and Design Centre or you can post it to Manchester Craft and Design Centre, 17 Oak St, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M4 5JD, England, UK.

People from all over the world are taking part in order to 'celebrate the many versatilities and techniques of knitting and crochet from around the world'. I've knitted my piece, and naturally its pink and fluffy - they do say 'the brighter and wackier the better'.