What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop created by Jaime Morrow and Erin L. Funk as a way for writers and readers to stay in touch!
What I'm Reading
Last week I was away for my graduation for three days, and before then I was on a roll. During those three days I couldn't find any spare time to do any reading and now I can feel myself heading towards an end of year slump - which I don't want!
So I'm continuing on with some festive/seasonal reads, and right now I'm in the middle of The Christmas Surprise by Jenny Colgan and Burial Rites by Hannah Kent. I'm also still reading The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater, which is intriguing but hasn't quite hooked me yet, but I have only read the first four chapters so far.
What I'm Writing
Right now I'm working on my PhD proposal. I'm hoping to return to university in a year or so to pursue a PhD in Creative Writing. My MA went well so I have my results to back me up, but I want to make sure my proposal's great, too. Over the past couple of years I've become fascinated with the representation of minorities in historical fiction (women; people of colour; the LGBT community etc.) and how, in some ways, historical fiction can be more useful to us than historical fact because it's often better at inducing empathy.
I've had an idea burning away in the back of my head for a few months now that I'd love to work on for my PhD, which is a lesbian retelling of Beauty and the Beast set in 17th century Virginia, featuring a Native American protagonist who is raised by a Puritan preacher with a white savior complex. It's basically a mixture of a lot of things I enjoy writing and talking about, from sexuality to race to identity, and I can hear my protagonist's voice so clearly in my head (meaning I've already written a few sentences here and there!)
What Works For Me
My journey to and from work. I don't/can't drive. I had driving lessons during my teens, failed my first, and so far only, driving test (even though I think I should have passed, my examiner was a grump) and then I started university before I could take another. Since then I haven't drove because I don't enjoy it; in fact being behind the wheel of a car both unnerves and terrifies me. I wish it didn't, but I just hate driving. Obviously since I've started working full time I need to get to and from work during the week, but luckily for me there's a regularly running bus service that only takes 20 minutes to get into town (and I can use this bit of time to read if I feel like it).
Anyway, this is all a very long-winded way of me saying that I enjoy my journey to and from work because it gives me time to think, and when I'm walking/going on the bus somewhere on my own I do tend to slip into brainstorming mode. I've come up with some of my best/most useful ideas while journeying. Plus this journey gives me some of that time alone that I mentioned needing last week.
What Else Is New
Honestly not a lot! I had a wonderful time at graduation - thank you to everyone who congratulated me last week, it was really lovely and appreciated! - and caught up with some of my friends, and then I visited my sister and her family. My youngest niece, born in October, has started smiling. She's gorgeous.
Other than that I've just been getting used to working full time, but it's not something I resent at all - I'm really enjoying my job!
Next week is Christmas Eve so there is no WUW. With that in mind I wish all of you a very, very Merry Christmas! I hope Santa brings you everything you want, and if you don't celebrate Christmas I hope you have a lovely week all the same!