Tuesday, 5 January 2010

A belated welcome to 2010

View from The Trundle in West Sussex
It has been too long since I last posted. I came back to London after my week in Sussex refreshed and ready for the new year so I decided to completely overhaul my flat and sort everything out which turned into a week long endeavour rather than the afternoon that I had anticipated. Two trips to Ikea later and I am now sitting at my brand new desk in my transformed bedroom. At long last I have somewhere proper to write! I have no excuses now (theoretically).

This is the first year that I have no official resolutions. Last week, as I was rummaging through a cupboard wondering how it had got so full of tat, I found a crumpled list. It was my New Year's Resolutions for 2009. Evidently, I am no good at fulfilling resolutions as I had spectacularly failed to fulfill any for 2009. As my mood started to droop I realised that I may not have 'achieved' any on the piece of paper I was holding but I had done plenty of other things in 2009 that could easily constitute a resolution. The most important one is this blog.

I started this blog because I love writing and I love reading and I was losing a connection to both of these things through the monotony of full time work, sleep, domesticity and just life after university. I am still finding my way and my voice but this blog helps me to do that. I have loved dipping my toe in to the blogging world and I am so grateful for all the comments since I started. And I am actually staggered that there have been any at all as I thought my only readers would be my mum and sister. Both of whom should take all the credit for this as without them I doubt I would ever have picked up a book in the first place. My sister has been a reading inspiration since the moment she read Peace at Last to me - with voices. And my mum, a dedicated reader, has the best bookshelves in all of Sussex.

The other major achievement for 2009 was that I gained a City & Guilds qualification in bookbinding. It was a year of hard work but was worth every moment as I met some fantastic people who have become good friends and I learnt a wonderful craft which I hope to take further and turn into a bigger part of my life.

So, no resolutions for 2010. I am going to see where the year takes me and when I am clearing out my cupboards in preparation for 2011 I won't have a stark reminder of what hasn't been done - only a year's worth of memories, all of which will be a bonus.

As for my reading challenge to read 50 books - I read 44, which I intend to beat this year! My reading highlight for 2009 was absolutely Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, followed closely by both The Bookshop by Penelope Fitzgerald and Princes in the Land by Joanna Canaan. I am determined to reach 50 this year - perhaps I have made one resolution after all?


  1. Nothing like a good rummage and sorting out to start the year, well done! Can you tell that I love to organize? Best of luck with your reading goal and the road ahead.

  2. Best wishes for the new year and good luck with reading the 50 books.

  3. First - I have to say i wish i had chosen a different book - poxy peace at last was the bain of my childhood!

    Second - you came TWICE to my nexk of the woods and didnt see me?

    Third - snap with the 44! It is a good number.

    Abs x

  4. Happu new year! Like Darlene I think having a good sort out is a great way to stat the year. I'm thinking about doing some spring cleaning today...

  5. A bookish resolution like that one is a fun one to keep!

    May 2010 bring you similarly successful book choices and productive endeavours.

  6. Happy New Year to you! Good luck with all your resolutions - here's to lots of wonderful writing and great reading! I actually got shivers when I read the part about your mum reading "Peace at last" to you with all hte voices - it was my oldest daughter's favourite when she was a toddler and loved me doing all the voices too. She is in love with literature too, I hope it continues...

  7. Welcome back! I'm glad everyone else took the holidays off too, makes me feel less guilty for my own blogging lapse.
    Those are both fantastic 2009 achievements. Have you posted many bookbinding-related pics?

  8. Happy New Year, it's great that you are enjoying blogging so much!

  9. hi thanks for popping over ... I haven't read much recently naughty me but my darling daughter can not stop. What is unusual about this is that she is 17 ( do teens usually read ? ) and she is dyslexic !!

    I grew up in Sussex.. lovely pic, oh and I have a print of Carnation Lily Lily Rose in my bedroom !

  10. Sometimes it is best to begin a new year without expectations--you never know where it might lead. May 2010 lead you in wonderful directions!

  11. Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a comment which is great because now I have found you!

    Glad to hear that I'm not the only one not to make any resolutions this year

    Interesting to hear how much you enjoyed Wolf Hall - I'm reading it the moment and can't put it down!


  12. Happy new year! I'm looking forward to hearing what you think about those 50 books throughout the year.

  13. Thank you for all your New Year wishes.

    Darlene - it has been a perfect way to start the new year with a rummage and I am pleased to hear you are a fellow organiser!

    Sarah - fingers crossed I make it to 50!

    Verity - I hope your new job and the spring clean went well

    Claire - thanks for the good wishes.

    Kim (ragged roses) - I am so glad that your daughter also loved Peace at Last - I still have my very dog-eared copy.

    Writerspet - here are some pictures of my work http://bloomsburybell.blogspot.com/2009/10/bookbinding-jam-making-apple-harvesting.html - i hope you like them!

    Dot - happy new year to you! Hope you have a great 2010

    Bad Penny - that's great about your daughter -in my experience teens do read, just not what they are meant to!

    DS - yes, I agree! I hope I go on some random journeys this year.

    Jeanne - I loved your blog. I am glad that you are enjoying Wolf Hall - let me know what you think when you have finished!

    Makedoandread - I will keep you posted, fingers crossed I make it this year!