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November 2023 - ‘Wintering’ by hunkering down for the year
I recently read Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times by Katherine May where the author discusses how she prepares for periods of ‘Wintering’ in her life — that is times where she’s dealing with a down turn in her life.
Now, I’m not dealing with a down turn of any kind, but after reading that book I felt like slowing down might make sense for me. For some reason I always feel like I’m running a gauntlet as soon as September starts which continues to January.
This year is typical, with the added complexity that I’m changing day jobs in November (technically it’s a secondment and is only for a year). The new job is a lateral move which I jumped on because it’ll give me new problems to work on—new things always feel shiny for a while and I need some shiny. Plus it’s an opportunity to learn some new things.
And my mood has been heading in a wintery direction as I‘ve been surfing property listings in the Yukon (I’m not planning on actually moving, plus my fear of bears means a remote cabin in the woods might not be the best fit for me).
My figurative gauntlet doesn’t end for a while yet, but I’m planning on pulling back from a few things. The big thing is I won’t be doing National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) this year. I have ideas worthy of forming in to novels, but there’s no rush. I might dabble in some shorter writing—or I might not. I’m also pulling back from social media (but I’ll be here).
I’ve been scouring my house and dealing with my unfinished projects. Most I can decided just not to do and put away. Others, like the partly done sweater, can be finished off. I won’t start anything new until next year.
One of Katherine May’s solutions in ‘Wintering’ was to take up year round oceans swimming (the author is in the UK). Although, I live near enough to the ocean to do the same, I absolutely will not be doing that—just the idea of it makes me shiver, maybe because I’m an oceanographer by day and know exactly what temperature that water is. But, I might make sure I get out for a few more walks along the beach.
Just in case anyone is needing more shiny in their life, check out this dress. If I wasn’t actively avoiding going to any fancy shindigs, I’d consider wearing one.
We’re deeply into Season 2 of Loki, the story isn’t as compelling as Season 1, but I’m enjoying the aesthetic. Plus they added Ke Huy Quan (who I’ll forever thing of as ‘Short Round’) to the cast and he’s fantastic.
I just finished Axiom’s End by Lindsay Ellis. It’s a first contact novel set in 2007 (so I guess an alternate history, even though that date feels like last week to me). The protagonist had a spunkiness I enjoyed, plus it had an interesting take on communicating with aliens along the same line as the movie Arrival—and there was plenty of action.
Have you been watching or reading anything good lately?
Because I had several requests, I’ve turned on paid subscriptions for this newsletter. My assumption is that some people were looking for a way to support my work beyond reading my books, and thank you for that.
But… all my content here is going to remain free.
Finally an announcement
Subject 34, the conclusion to the Encoded Orbits series is available everywhere now!
Looking to curl up with a good book? Check out these:
And if you aren’t already a subscriber, what’s stopping you (especially if you have read this far)?