Thursday, 15 September 2016

I want to share this with you!

I don’t.

I really don’t.

I want to hide away forever and never deal with all these people all up in my business.

HOWEVER.

If I am to reach a point at which you are all glorifying me, like the Goddess I truly am, then… well… I have to at least pretend to like you.

So since it has been EXACATACALY one year since I last posted I thought I’d better do another little (weekly?) update for your faces.

Who are you? What is this? Why am I reading this drivel?

I hear you ask, confusedly. To be honest you should really stop clicking on random internet things like a pigeon that’s been trained to collect pigeon treats (What is a treat for a pigeon? An old bit of crisp?) and start knowing about what you're clicking before you click it… probably.

But for those of you who don’t know or haven’t being paying attention or who have the memory span of a thing that has a one year memory span, then I shall remind you that I was at the prestigious (i.e. expensive) University of Essex doing one of them there masters degrees in that there creative writing. I reckon I is a gud moddell fur how gud they is at that there teachin us how to write and that.

This ‘MA’ has involved reading things, writing things, handing things in before a deadline, getting up and going to things, remembering things, reading more things.

All in all it has been quite dreadful. To prove how dreadful it has been here is a detailed HD photograph of how I looked before the MA started:



And how I look today:



I think I’m going to need a few more weeks to recover.

Friday, 18 September 2015

Essex University: Parking Permit

To Whom it may concern,

I am trying, alas in vain, to register my motorbike for a parking permit.

I cannot submit the form unless I choose a particular 'Make' from your special drop down list.

The make of my bike is not on the drop down list.

It is very commendable of you to try to have an exhaustive list of all the possible makes of cars and bikes that exist and have ever existed and to try to keep up with all the new ones that will exist in the future, but I’m afraid it is, ultimately, a futile endeavour and in the meantime you will have to deal with irritated, bedraggled and confused students. 

I did notice that you have Bentley, Porsche and Lexus on the drop down list, is this just for show? Or do you actually have many Porsche owners amongst the student and staff population?

Don’t feel bad if you can’t give me that information, I understand it is probably confidential, I don’t actually care if anyone owns a Lexus: I’m just trying to make a point.

You see my motorbike is cheap; it is probably the cheapest motorbike you can get. I bought it because it is cheap. I need it to be cheap because I am on a low paid job on a zero hour contract, I can’t get a full time job because I am a student. I am trying to make something of myself, I don’t know if I ever will but I am still trying.

I am also spending most of my pay, actually I think nearly all of my pay, on maximum tuition fees, because Essex feels as though it stands alongside Cambridge and Oxford and UCL as one of the finest academic establishments in England.

It isn’t one of the finest academic establishments in England. But it is nice that it thinks it is one of the finest academic establishments in England. It’s good to have self-confidence; at least I imagine it is.

My motorbike bolstered my self-confidence.

I struggle to change gears and I’m frightened of gravel, roundabouts and cars, but it looks kind of cool. Which made me feel kind of cool.

But it isn’t expensive. It isn’t a Harley-Davison. It isn’t on your special drop down list of pre-approved, maximum-tuition-fee-type motorbikes that are permitted to be seen in your special car park.

It is excluded for being cheap. Like the trainers my mum bought me for P.E. when I was twelve.

I loved those trainers. They were new and blue and they made me feel like I could run and jump and play sport like a real athlete, I felt like I could be anything I wanted to be.

Then the other children saw my cheap trainers and they laughed at them. All I felt after that was shame. I didn’t know how to hide my feet.

So if you could let me know how to get a parking permit for my unlisted embarrassment of a motorcycle I would be very grateful.

I would also humbly request that you add to your drop down list the option ‘Other: Please Specify’ so that no one else has to suffer this indignity.

Yours etc
Holly Powis

Saturday, 18 July 2015

KING OF THE DWARVES!

Everyone (and by everyone I just mean enough people to have pissed me off) are getting all stupid about this Pluto thing.

People are angry (why the frick now?) about Pluto being ‘demoted’ to a dwarf planet.

Well, for one thing there is NOTHING wrong with being a dwarf! Just ask Thorin Oakenshield or that one from ‘Game of Thrones’ you harp on about unstoppably.

Plus! It’s not a friggen demotion! Pluto doesn’t have a job for Pete’s sake! It’s a reclassification! It’s just humans trying to put things into neat boxes to make the universe seem less chaotic!

‘But why does it matter if there is just one more planet, if it would make Pluto happy?


Well, I hate to break it to you, stupid face, but I really doubt Pluto gives a shit. Also if we do class Pluto as a planet, same as Saturn, Jupiter et al… then surely we have to include Eris as a planet as well.

‘Who, what now?’

Eris, you know that big spherical rock? The other dwarf planet?

'Another Planet! Wow!'

As well as Eris there is Ceres (my personal fave!) and poor little messed up Haumea, and Makemake—

‘Are you bullshitting me?’

I don’t usually tolerate that sort of language on my blog, and no I am not lying these are dwarf planets but if we start classing any old thing that’s round as a planet it might start to get a little confusing out there.

‘Nah, I can remember loads of names of animals and stuff, I’ll be able to remember an extra few planets in the solar system.’

All right, you cocky little shit, fine here are a few other dwarf planets that would have to be reclassified as planets: Orcus, Varuna, Sedna—

‘To make Pluto happy, I would definitely make them all planets!’

Ixion, Huya, Quaoar—

‘How do you say that last one?’

Then of course there are the ones that don’t yet have names: 2005RM43, 2000YW134, 2004XR190, 1999DE9,

‘I’m sure we can think of a few names for a couple more planets in the solar system-’

Fine, be my guest: 2002TC302, 2001UR163, 2003FY128, 2003QX113, 2002WC19, 2002AW197, 2002KW14, 2002CY248, 2003MW12, 2004PR107, 2005FY9, 1998WH24, 2000CN105, 1997CS29, 1999CD158, 2003QW90, 2003EL61, 2003OP32, 1996TO66, 2002TX300, 2002UX25, 2004GV9, 2004SB60, 2002MS4, 1995SM55, 2005RN43, 2003AZ84, 2001QF298, 1999TC36, 2003VS2, 2002XV93, 2002KX14, 2004TY364.

These are just the ones we’ve found, the number will go up to thousands as more areas of the solar system are surveyed.

‘Thousands!?’

Thousands.

‘How do you know this?’

A combination of Wikipedia, Nasa and Caltech. Oh and books.

‘… But what about Pluto… he seems so sad in that video.’

You do know that video is a cartoon and not actual footage, don't you?

'He is so SAD, and he has a heart, A HEART!' 


You know what, just pretend it’s a fucking planet. Dipshit.

‘Yay! Pluto is a planet!’

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Battle with Shelob

*WARNING* CONTAINS GRAPHIC SCENES OF MILD TERROR

It was a dark, dark night. Like most nights, because nights are dark. That’s usually how I know it’s night-time.

I was trying to sleep but was kept awake by the incessant heat of the muggy summer night: too cold to throw off the duvet, too hot to keep the duvet on. It was a waking duvet nightmare!

I tried to reach a miserable clammy compromise. But in vain!

Weakly I arose, thinking perhaps there was something somewhere in the house that could induce the pleasant sleep of happy dreams.

But I couldn’t shake the feeling that there was something wrong… something not quite right…


SHELOB!

The beast of nightmares had sought me out!

I was alone! Unprepared! Unready for battle with such a mighty foe!

But bravely I stood firm.


I would not be trifled with!

I would not allow this fearsome and hairy beast with legs and eyes and eurgh! To take over my house!

I sought that which could defeat SHELOB!

The ancient device, the only thing known to man to conquer his terrible foe without fail! The only thing that can shield humanity from the unthinkable danger posed by this unearthly creature of doom!


I held the mighty weapon aloft!

I had to stand on a chair because I couldn’t reach the ceiling and she kept sort of wriggling away and I was worried that she would be far too big for it and I would break her legs or she would get away and it was all very distressing!

But in she plopped! Just the mighty transparent shield between her and my precious hand!

Delicately I slid a letter between the weapon and the ceiling to stop her leaping forth from the top and landing on my face.

MY FACE!!!!!

How brave I was!

How brave of me to run screaming to the garden and shake her loose of her trappings, locking all the doors and windows lest she crawl in once again, concealing herself, hiding, waiting for her opportunity to pounce.

But due to my excellence and bravery in battle I slept soundly the rest of the night!


Monday, 6 July 2015

THE HAND!

“Where’ve you been?”

I hear you ask.

Well, I have been crippled.

That sounds dramatic but it isn’t. It is really very boring and quite humiliating.

It isn’t even a very exciting story, I fell over.

So for the past week I have been unable to write with both hands, which is really quite annoying, so annoying I have taken to using speech recognition software.

But it really isn’t easy: I keep arguing with the computer because he is an idiot.

For example, it tried to write “he was in he the year to” when I dictated ‘he is an idiot’.
And the damn thing seems to think that whatever it wants to type takes priority over what I want to write.

Plus it takes about 20 minutes to type a sentence because the bloody thing keeps getting things wrong.

Another example would be when, in frustration, I said ‘oh, fuck you!’ the poor, dim witted thing thought I was being lovely, and typed ‘oh, thank you’. The passive aggressive little shit.

As well as that I always feel under pressure when I have to talk I don’t like the phone I don’t like speaking to face to face, mainly because I don’t like faces, in fact I hate having to talk at all.

Pulling the words from my brain and putting them on to paper or in this case computer fake paper on a screen, is so much easier when you skip the whole mouth bit.

I have to articulate clearly, and I have to talk at a snails pace, not that a snail can talk, mind you, and when you have to name all the punctuation you want to use, well it really takes all the life, and love and joy out of writing. It would be like going through life name all the body part you are currently using: ‘My eyes are looking and my brain is processing while my lungs are breathing’ and so on, until your hands decide to clutch your own throat and throttle your own self.

You see the thing about writing is that the voice in my head is quite interesting, witty, pacy, and a quick wit is somewhat drowned by … breaking… a … sentence… down … in…to … individual… words… which… you… have… to … patiently… wait… to… be… put… on… to… the… screen… one… by… See! I’m going out of my mind!

In fact I will confess something to you, I am now writing this with one and a half hands (mostly one) because causing myself physical pain is far easier to bear than the mental anguish caused by this devils creation which I am now pledging myself to destroy!

I think I need to have a little lie down in a darkened room.

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Last Day

Well this is it.

The final day!

Fourteen days, some of which where actually spent writing!

What has it been like? I ask myself… mainly because you’ve lost interest in this whole shambles, but it has been like…. being stuck in a cage, with a drunk but apathetic bear: there is potential for danger but much more chance of sleep.

I have asked myself lots of really introspective questions such as ‘why am I writing a play?’, ‘What the hell am I doing with my life?’ and ‘How long can I go without washing my hair?’

Have I answered any of them?

Yes… potentially I could go forever without washing my hair as long as I never go outside, also the moment I do wash my hair I wash out everything that is stopping me looking
insane, and then spend thousands of pounds on chemical conditioning remedies that replace the natural serums I have removed. But at least I am clean, sort of.

So all in all it has been a very useful exercise.

What’s that little question I hear vaguely in the distance?

“Have you finished your play?”

 Er…. No.

Friday, 19 June 2015

DAY WHATEVER

I’ve lost count, I’m somewhere, not sure where, it’s a day.

Look, I don’t have to answer to you! OK?! OK?!

Don’t look at me like that! My epic fourteen(ish) day challenge thingy to finish my play hit a teeny tiny little hurdle that knocked me off course for half a week.

That’s all, nothing major, it’s all cool, I don’t mind, I don’t give one jot that I was POISONED!

POISON!

‘By who?’ I hear you ask (should it be ‘whom’? When does one ‘whom’? How does one know whom to ‘whom’?)

By what? Should be your question!

For ‘twas not a hoomun what did it for me, but a thing. At least I think ‘tis was a thing (Tiswas!?), for I have not left this house, this cave of mine in which I dwell to carve these words upon this mighty—

Ok, I am sick of that prose, I don’t know why I go all pseudo Shakespeare every time I get poisoned… it must be a reaction.

I ate something, or drank something, at some point in the last week (perhaps the last two) that contained something, or was contaminated by something that my food intolerances will not allow me to consume.

I KNOW NOT WHAT!

I was all happy, happy… well, I was my usual self; a sort of slowly boiling over rage toward the world, when my brain starts to get a little foggy.

I begin to have unwarranted ‘senior moments’ (I’m barely a smidgen more than twenty six!) … I start to run a bath then promptly forget about it, put bread (sans gluten) under the grill and forget about it, put my freshly made coffee in the cupboard, then take the jar of granules to my desk and stare at it for half an hour thinking ‘now I know something ain’t right’.

This is, of course, the first symptom of my downfall, if this was the last symptom, then I may be able to use my wits and genius to work out what is happening, to stop it in its tracks, to prevent sinking further into the pit of despair.

But then, the sun gets brighter. Brighter and brighter, getting all up in my business. I have to close the curtains, shut out this devastating light, put on sunglasses and crawl into the darkest corner of the house, and then forget why I’m there.

And then, my favourite bit, oh yes. The darkest bit of all. The bit that sits there waiting. It waits for me to first lose my genius, my wit, my mind.

It waits for the point when I can no longer remember how complicated things such as ‘words’ work and I dimly ask for ‘hot potato’ instead of ‘a hot water bottle’, like some slack-jawed, monkey-brained, fool of a twit.

But still it waits, it waits for me to become physically frail; pale, drawn, dark circles around my eyes, swollen glands and swollen stomach, a heavy fatigue enveloping my body like a wet, doggy-smelly, blanket.

At this point, I am now capable of nothing more that shuffling around the house; a dim-witted, slothful, peddler of idiocy.

When I am thusly incapacitated, slow of action and mind; I am struck by the last and heaviest symptom of my POISON!

Wiffling and burbling, like the Jabberwock through the tulgy wood, it creeps upon me. I am too slow to move out of its way, too stupid to know which way ‘it’s way’ is any way and alas it is already too late. I am caught in its damp and squishy pincers without even knowing my enemy is upon me.

I think the dark thoughts it whispers in my ear are my own.

For two days I have been caught in its grasp.

All this because of frikken food intolerance! THE BASTARD!

There was something, hidden somewhere! What was it?!
Was it maltodextrose? Ambrose Nectrose? Whogivesafecktrose?!

Now I am even more terrified of food than I was before! Checking everything! Everything!

“OI! What’s in this chicken!?”

“… chicken.”

“AND WHAT ELSE? POISONER! POISONER!”

“… just chicken.”

“Ok, Mum… I believe you…”

I’ll let it slide this time, POISONER! But don’t think I’m not watching you!

Monday, 15 June 2015

DAY EIGHT

Well I was so knackered after actually doing some work on DAY SIX that I had to spend all of DAY SEVEN on the couch half asleep.

I could have watched ‘Orange is the New Black’ – which is what every other bugger in the world seems to have done.
 
BUT I WILL NOT BE DICTATED TO!

I will binge watch that particular series when I am damn-well, good and ready to binge watch that particular series! DAMN YOU!

Isn’t that the whole point? Isn’t it?

ON DEMAND!? It is for when I demand it!

Not for one great gluttonous soup of pyjamas and crisps on the first bloody weekend it comes out!

Speeding through the whole thing in a desperate attempt to ingest a cultural phenomenon before it slides out of popular interest; so that you have something in your sad empty life to talk about come Monday morning.

Not even Monday morning!

By Monday morning everyone is talking about something else (I have no idea what, because I am not everyone) because they will all be on the twittersphere watching what everyone else is talking about and joining in quickly before everyone goes away and talks about something else!

But its ok because if you get lost and don’t know what everyone is talking about, you can look at the little list of what’s ‘Trending’, then join in that ‘conversation’ and become ‘trendy’, TRENDY!? Then simply start shouting whatever nonsense comes into your head, shouting and shouting into a void of a million voices that no one hears!

A great echo chamber of jibber jabber with everyone hoping that their little shout or picture or video leaps out of the pinball machine (I’ve changed metaphors now, do keep up) with an electric cheer and shoots off into the outerworld of blogs and buzzfeeds morphing into a ‘meme’ or a ‘viral’ alongside a million other virals and memes in a world of grumpy cats and rainbow cats and cats in shark suits riding robot vacuum cleaners.

What have we become!?

What have I become? 

...a bit bored, tbh.

Saturday, 13 June 2015

DAY SIX

This is only a real day, a real part of this EPIC journey to finish a draft of my play, because it’s a bit rainy and I’m bored.

So I wrote Act III.

I know! It was rather unexpected, but that’s what happens when you run out of chocolate cake and someone else is doing the cleaning.

So now I feel all smug and satisfied!

Act III is very exciting!

‘Keith’ uses a naughty word! So it must be getting out of control!

At this speedy rate I’ll have finished the rest of the play in twenty minutes so I must dash!

Friday, 12 June 2015

DAY FIVE

Am I at the halfway point?

I can’t decide.

If I was all like really dedicated to playwriting I would be doing the full fourteen days of exile I promised myself… throwing myself against the computer each day like a proverbial miller against a proverbial grindstone getting proverbially smashed in the face.

But it’s quite nice to have a bit of a weekend and that… so I might have a little break from my very dedicated and hard work, as I have done SUCH A LOT this week, and maybe go out the sun… have a barbeque, learn to drive the motorbike I brought a few weeks – months ago and has now become a sort of garden feature.

‘How much have you written?’
‘How much have you got left?’

Why do people keep asking these things?

What is ‘much’? Hmmm? Hmmm? What is ‘much’? MUCH! MUCH! MUCH!

I done much. I got much left.

Thousands of words, all of which will be cut and re-written later.

This amounts to thousands of hours.

This is it! This is my life now! Writing and rewriting and writing and rewriting the same play over and over and over and over…

An eternity of muchness.

So stop bloody askin’!

Thursday, 11 June 2015

DAY FOUR

Me, falling through time. Obvs.
HOW HAS THIS HAPPENED!?

How the FRIPPLE FRAPPLE has it got to day freaking bleeping FOUR!

This is YOUR fault!

Constantly demanding my attention like… like an incontinent dog!

This is FOUR DAYS WASTED!

Four days of my quest to complete my play! GONE!

I’ve done NOTHING, nothing to further my cause!

My pages lie just as scattered, just as useless and incoherent and I am no closer to finishing, four days closer to the end of my exile. Four days closer to my own bitter death, sunken and alone, a failure, a WORM!

CURSE YOU!

CURSE YOU ALL!

Bugger.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

DAY THREE

So far today I have:

- wondered around the house aimlessly, ignoring the piles of laundry and dirty dishes because ‘I’m writing’!

- started cataloguing the food in the house before getting bored.

- looked out the window. A LOT.

- had about eighteen cups of coffee and had a nap.

- gone through my diary making a note of times I could use for writing.
 
- chased a cat.

- made a ‘to do’ list.

- made a backdated ‘done’ list of all the things I have already done then ticked everything off.

- listened to a painfully awful radio 4 ‘comedy’ play and thought ‘I could do better than that’

- stared at my painfully blank computer screen.

All in all, the playwriting is going rather well.