An excellent birthday present (and whatnot)

I’m not reading much at the moment; I was already feeling the onset of Reader’s Block and then I got a cold. It is one of life’s infuriating truths that time lying in bed comes accompanied with an inability to read. Chuh. But it does remind me that I have yet to share one of the best birthday presents I got last November (when it was, it will come as no surprise, my birthday). This came from my housemate Kirsty, and it’s rather special:

EMD letter


It’s not a good photo of it, because it’s dark, but… it’s a letter by E.M. Delafield! Very exciting to have on my shelf. The message ‘I have pleasure in acceding your request’ is equally intriguing…

In other news, I am giving up buying books for Lent. What am I thinking? I hope I will be able to redirect those energies to prayer etc., but I also feel like the last moments of pre-Lent should be spent in choosing books to buy. But, you know what, I can’t even think of any that I want right now.

…though I have preordered one that comes out in early March, which I’d done before I decided this Lenten fast.

Fingers crossed the Reader’s Block passes with the cold. Still, plenty of books to review left on my shelves, so perhaps I’ll redirect my reading time to reviewing time? Or even writing time, since my New Year’s Resolution was to write a letter a week, and I’ve also been getting on with a novel in a little writing club with some friends from work. More on that one day, perhaps, but not right now – except to say that I’m about 20,000 words in and not unpleased with what I’ve written. More progress than I ever got through self-discipline alone!

16 thoughts on “An excellent birthday present (and whatnot)

  • February 10, 2016 at 4:03 am

    Good about the writing. Hang in there and continue.

    • February 11, 2016 at 11:20 am

      Thanks Mystica! :)

  • February 10, 2016 at 9:19 am

    What a fabulous gift Simon – I bet you were really chuffed! Hope the cold and the reader’s block improve soon!

    • February 11, 2016 at 11:21 am

      I was so delighted!
      Reader’s Block seems to be fading, thankfully; finished a book last night.

  • February 10, 2016 at 1:22 pm

    What a fab gift! I can read when abed with a cold, but only easy books, which is a bit annoying when I’ve always got lots of exciting but more complex ones to go. Then it empties the shelf of all easy books and makes the shelf a bit alarming. Good luck with Lent, eeps!

    • February 11, 2016 at 11:21 am

      I worry the same thing about reading all the short books on my shelf, and leaving nothing but chunksters!

  • February 10, 2016 at 2:17 pm

    Hope you feel better soon and get back to reading your TBR piles!

    • February 11, 2016 at 11:23 am

      Thanks Laurie!

  • February 10, 2016 at 6:28 pm

    Oh poor baby…
    ” It is one of life’s infuriating truths that time lying in bed comes accompanied with an inability to read. Chuh.”
    I cannot imagine anything more frustrating. Sick time should mean all out permission to read all kinds of stuff, and I usually can.
    I do recall one time, though, where I couldn’t seem to read either (pneumonia) so I lay on the couch and when not sleeping, watched many old videos, include 3 versions of Little Women. Until I realised you can watch Beth die only so many times.

    • February 11, 2016 at 11:24 am

      Aw, thanks Susan! It is SO irritating. But at least I catch up on a lot of TV, I guess…
      And the Beth issue is where US and UK versions of Little Women differ – I spent the whole book waiting for her to die, and it never happened…

      • February 13, 2016 at 7:10 pm

        Beth does not escape death. In the original “Little Women” as it was first published, Beth survives her first bout of scarlet fever. :^)) It was then followed by “Good Wives” and Beth succumbs in the second book. :^((

        Most editions of “Little Women” have, for many years, combined both books into one title (parts 1 and 2). Were you reading an old version containing only the first book?

        Can you bear reading the second volume?

        • February 14, 2016 at 1:42 am

          I discovered this from some Wikipedia reading at the time, I think!

          UK editions still separate them into two books, I think – certainly the edition I read did. Not braved the second volume yet… and it’s been about 12 years now, so I think I’d have to re-read the first!

  • February 10, 2016 at 7:47 pm

    Kirsty is such a lovely friend, and seeing that letter was a bright spot for me. I’m wondering which book it is that’s coming out in March….go on and keep us in suspense then. Hope you feel better soon, Simon!

    • February 11, 2016 at 11:25 am

      It is so exciting! I need to find a frame for it, cos at the moment I’ve just put it in front of my best friend’s wedding pic :/

  • February 11, 2016 at 1:58 am

    That’s a good thing to give up for Lent! I’m not giving up anything this year — I started calorie-counting in January, and I’m going to keep doing that, and that can be my Lenten resolution for the year. SORRY GOD. :p

    • February 11, 2016 at 11:26 am

      Ha! I feel like God will forgive you for this one – although you should totally give up calorie counting instead.

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