New Year, New Reading List, kinda…..

This was the post I wrote about a year ago. Guess what? I’ve read NONE of these books in the last 12 months. How SHIT is that?

I didn’t even finish the one that I was actually reading when I wrote the fucking list. Shameful.

To be fair, I did have surgery in early September, (fear not readers, I am not dying) so the last 4 months of 2014 were a bit shit and I didn’t want to do very much. But what the HELL was I doing for the other 8 months? Seriously?!

So, the list remains. It has now grown somewhat…. Let’s hope nothing else ridiculous happens, eh?



NB: If you have any suggestions, related to titles shown, or just random literature, feel free to post a comment about it. Just so, you know, the list can become impossible 😀 ……


2014 Reading List

 This year I really need to get on with some SERIOUS reading. Since having the children I’ve quite obviously had less time to indulge in this pastime, which I actually hate quite a lot. I used to read ALL the time, no matter where I was or what else was going on, I just had to have a book in my hand. Even now I still feel wrong without a book somewhere within 3 feet of my person.
With this in mind I’ve been through my book shelves and picked out a selection that I MUST  try to read in the next 12 months. I figure if I’m going to try and write a book of my own, the best place to start is by reading some gooooood shit and get a feel for the awesome stuff. I’ll attempt to read swiftly, which is not easy in my house, being a single mother of 3, as they say – 2 actual children, one full grown man. lol
 In no particular order, this is my list for 2014
The Scent of Death – Andrew Taylor (currently reading)
Song of Ice and Fire – George RR Martin 0007447862; 0007466061; 0007466078 (have read as far as A Feast for Crows, need to read the remaining volumes)
Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks (re-read)
God Is A Bullet – Boston Teran (re-read)
From the Corner of his Eye – Dean Koontz 0747266808 (re-read)
Atonement – Ian McEwan
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – Mark Haddon
To Kill A Mockingbird – Harper Lee (we read this in school, but it’s good enough to look at again)
Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
Dark Tower series; The Shining; The Stand – Stephen King
His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman (re-read) 1407106427
Life of Pi – Yann Martel
Wolf Hall; Bring Up The Bodies – Hilary Mantel 0007509775; 0007315093
 1Q84 vol 1, 2, 3 – Haruki Murakami
Neuromancer – William Gibson (re-read)
The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon (re-read)
On The Beach – Nevil Shute (re-read)
I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings – Maya Angelou 0860685111
Grail Quest Trilogy – Bernard Cornwell 0007310302; 0007310319; 0007310326
Tess of the d’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
Cross Stitch – Diana Gabaldon
Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn
Kissing The Hag – Emma Restall Orr
Journey to the Dark Goddess – Jane Meredith
Lamp Of The Goddess – Rae Beth
Invoking the Morrigan – Stephanie Woodfield
Various Tarot titles
The Real Witch’s Year – Kate West
(will upload ISBNs later today and/or link to amazon)
This list is not exhaustive. At over 30 titles I will need to be a super-reader to get this done. Once read, I will attempt a short review of each.
By far the best title I read in the previous year – Jane Eyre: Charlotte Bronte. If you have read this already, you know how good it is, if not then you’re missing out and should get your nose into a copy as soon as you can. Gorgeous story, wonderful writing style, simply exquisite.

So, here we go…..

A Very Small Witch

I really should have done this some time ago now, but then you always say that, don’t you? ‘Oooh, let’s write a blog! It’ll be awesome! I’ll do it every day and then the whole world can know what’s going on in my life, coz I’m so FUCKING interesting!’
Yeah, OK. EGO!!!
Already I’m finding this hard, I mean, what do I write? Seriously. I’m trying to get myself into the habit of writing every day. This needs to happen for me. I can’t keep all the words inside me any longer. I have wanted to write for at least 15 years now, maybe even longer. I’ve always loved words. Reading has always been one of my fave things to do and it’s now a bit of a shame that I don’t get to do much of it any more. Kids will do that you know. Steal your time away, slowly but surely. They also take your brain.
Anyway, yes, reading and WORDS. I don’t know why I’ve always loved them, seems a bit of a weird thing to love. Why should a series of lines on a page hold such sway over my life. If you think about it, they don’t really amount to much. Who was it that decided a certain formation of lines made a certain letter. Who decided what that letter should sound like? Who decided it should go with some other letters and make up this thing called a ‘word’?
But there’s something about them, isn’t there. So many of us are drawn to the beauty of these lines and marks on the page in front of us. You’re reading my words now and I’m just making shit up!
What shall I talk about today?
I get angry –  A LOT. This might need to be a place where I vent. I hope you don’t mind. Need somewhere to deposit all the shit that builds up in my head. And I want to write a book, if I’m honest. So if I start rambling on about some make-believe idiots in medieval Poland you’ll know why that is.
You don’t need to know all the details of my life. But basically a lot of shit has happened to me, as it has to so many of us. As Brendan Benson says: ‘My life in the D is a tragicomedy or poetic verse’. Alright, i don’t live in the D (Detroit, by the way), but you get the picture. I think probably everyone’s life is a tragicomedy, not always poetic though. After all the crap I’ve endured I’ve finally found happiness.
Might get a bit vomit inducingly soppy now, soz…
Today I am thankful for the following:
My gorgeous babies who are my world
My amazing partner who puts up with all my emotional freak-ness
For my being a freak, because being ‘normal’ is boring
For true friends, of whom I only have 2, but that’s enough
For a home, food, warmth and clothes, safety – because so many people in the world don’t have that luxury
Let’s face it, that last one is a luxury. Please, Universe, redress this balance. ‘Come on people now, smile on your brother, everybody get together, try to love one another right now.’ That’s Shannon Hoon of Blind Melon (RIP).
This year I really need to get myself together. Over the past 12 months I’ve done a LOT of soul searching and found some things about myself. Like I have been a slave to so much utter shit in my life. It’s time to let it all go. Only yesterday I had a convo with my man about this, I can’t live life in the past any more. I think and dither and weigh up possibilities in my head until all joy is sucked from my soul. There are people who have contributed to this. Some of them think they are helping me when all they’re really doing is stifling me and not allowing me to listen to my intuition, my very soul. Well, frankly, I kind of let them do this. I ask for people’s approval quite a bit when I really don’t need to. I’m in my 30s now, why the hell do I need anyone’s permission to be myself!?
Uh Oh! There it is, that’s my main topic today!
I am NOT anybody’s bitch! I am a woman, dammit, who has her own life and her own mind. I have kids who love me and need to respect me. Right now, I don’t respect myself, this has to change. I need to learn to trust myself. Lisa Lister, you would so love this
This is a big part of my problem, I think. I don’t trust myself. Recently I’ve been thinking about this a great deal. I don’t trust myself. I need to learn this skill. As a child, growing up in a very traditional Christian household, I was taught to trust God in all things. No matter what happened to you, God was the one to trust. Something went tits up and you didn’t understand why – trust God. Someone was mean to you, hurt you – turn the other cheek and trust God. etc etc. ‘Intuition’ is not a word used in churchy circles. You are taught to listen to God, not yourself. Emotion and self-awareness like this is seen as (can’t think of the right word so I’ll just put) bad thing. If your gut tells you to do one thing, but it goes against the teaching of the Bible, you should not do it. And trust God. WTF?
I don’t even know why I’m using a capital G when I write the word god. As he’s no longer the real deal for me. He gave me jack shit (if I look at it from as spiritual point of view). Or rather, he gave me stuff, then took it away again. And I’m still meant to trust that fucker?!
No thanks.
I’ve learned, at least, to see that this doesn’t have to be my belief system. My parents’ views are not my views. Church views are not my views.
Revelation! Eureka! etc. I am not a slave to this any more. I release myself. And breathe…..
As I said, I’ve been thinking about this a lot recently and have found that Paganism is WAY more my thing. It truly is like coming home. This is where I should have been all along. I know this because, when I was 14 or 15 I remember wanting it. I don’t know how (given my upbringing) but I found out about Tarot cards. Instantly I was fascinated and I tried to find out more. There was no way my parents would let me have any, so I secretly made my own deck. They were black. Or rather, I coloured them in black. Yes, I really did take it that far – I drew them all, I coloured them all, the whole works. Again, I don’t remember exactly, but they were taken from me, or I ‘lost’ them, basically they were gone and I don’t know how that happened. But you see, this is so many years ago and I knew then that this was something I could trust. Same with astrology.
Now, at 31, after all the crap I’ve endured, either in the name of my (then) faith, or just life generally, I have the thing I wanted most of all. Since I was a little girl I dreamed of finding the perfect man – I now have him. I dreamed of children – I have a boy and a girl, both perfect. I dreamed of a spirituality that I could trust and would let me be myself (Christianity is so stifling, how did I put up with it for 20 odd years) – I have found that.
So it is time for me to follow my heart. Finally, I can follow it. Finally, I can begin to leave all that past hurt behind. (Well, technically continue to leave it, but you get the gist). Finally, I can be the woman I was born to be.
What a fucking relief!