Monday, January 22, 2007

Oranges and poetry

Well, the combination just has to be good for you. And today oranges are the only fruit. Or at least they are in the Lord H/Brooke household, where the supply of apples and bananas has reached the vanishing point. And no chance of me getting to the shops before Wednesday. Ah well. I do have a small supply of dried apricots, so should still be able to keep scurvy at bay.

The usual Monday morning drag today. It was an effort being awake, let alone attempting to look like a competent administrator. I think it’s the same for everyone though, as we were all heads down and no talking. Or perhaps we were all actually asleep and the typing noise was simply everyone’s noses rebounding off the keyboard. Wouldn’t surprise me, but I couldn't be arsed to turn round and check.

Took the minutes for the Wellbeing Group at lunchtime. It was a bit fluid, but we do have some ideas - hurrah! One of which is the Students' Union coming up with the goods once more. They're organising a "Know Yourself" month during February and March, with a focus on mental wellbeing and self-awareness. Sounds great to me - luckily staff are included, so we won't have to chain ourselves to the door and beg to be let in to the fun stuff again. That'll make a change.

This afternoon, I found myself sinking into a slough of despond again, and only managed to drag two pages of the minutes out of my notes and up onto the screen - when really I could easily have got the whole lot done. Got quite tearful a couple of times, but I don't think my immediate colleagues noticed. Thank God. I do hate explanations which involve weeping. Mine, that is. Though Sally from Student Advice did pop in and had a lovely chat with me - I can always talk to her (thank you, Sally!) - and we've arranged to go for coffee when we're both free in a couple of weeks' time, so that will be nice. Apparently, this may not - for once! - be all my own fault though, as today is supposed to be the most depressed day of the year. Bloody hell - I didn't know there was a rule. Think we should have been warned! Still, at least Lord H sent virtual hugs through the email, which are always appreciated, as in: (((Anne))). He's a genius with the keyboard ...

Oh, and I made two important decisions last night – mainly for my own mental wellbeing, let alone anyone else’s. I’ve decided to stop putting “Maloney’s Law” in the marketplace and have offered it to the Goldenford ( Gang. One reply is keen so far (thanks, Irene!), but no response from the others yet. But don’t get too excited if the answer is yes, as it’ll take its place in the queue along with everything else, so I imagine the back end of 2008, at the very earliest. But there's lots of other good Goldenford stuff coming before then, so don’t forget to save up for the best books in the south!

And I’ve decided to self-publish another poetry collection – my last one was in 2004, so it’s about time for another, I think. I’m not going to wait for any more small publishers not to respond (there’s really no point trying the main poetry publishers – unless you’re related to Hughes or Plath, they don’t even bother replying …), so I’ve sent an email to Poetry Monthly Press ( to see if they’re interested in printing it. They run a small self-publishing facility for poets, and it would be nice to get something out there this year that I can at least control. And it’ll have some award-winning and magazine-published pieces in, so probably worth a couple of quid or so. And hey stop press on this - Martin Holroyd from PMP has asked me to send him a floppy disc of the collection, which I'm calling "A Stranger's Table" after one of the poems in it. So I've spent tonight getting it organised and copied to disc. It's now wrapped in an envelope within an envelope ready for posting tomorrow. I hope he agrees to let it go through his system, as I know he doesn't take everything.

Ooh, and the lovely Sue Haywood has decided to opt for playtime advertising of "Pink Champagne and Apple Juice", a picture of which you can see here: - under her blog of today's date. Great picture, Sue! Thank you very much! Not sure what Health & Safety would say though ...

And Lord H (bless him!) has bought apples and bananas, to add to our orange supply - so they're not the only fruit after all ...

Today’s nice things:

1. Making two publication decisions
2. Getting through Monday - thank God!
3. Seeing the picture on Sue's site.

Anne Brooke

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