Yes, hurrah! Really quite loudly.
This is because yesterday, after a rather long silence that I feared meant the worst, I found out that both requests I made back in December in respect of my job have been approved. I am therefore a proudly promoted person with a nice new job title and a respectable pay rise. Given that this is the first time I’ve ever actually asked for recognition of my talents (rather than simply received incremental grade rises along with everyone else) I’m absolutely thrilled. It’s really heartening – not to mention welcome given the economic situation in general and my dwindling budget in particular – and shows that the amount of hard work I’ve put in and increase in my level of over the last couple of years is now being recognised properly within the company as a whole (given who had sign it all off) and not just within the team.
It has also made me feel that the plan of action I’ve put together and submitted for approval to allow me to complete my exams with the Associate of Corporate Treasurers in the next 12 months (one exam in October, one in April 2016) was the right thing to do. Now I just have to hope they say yes to this too, even though it will mean putting my writing on hold and kissing good bye to pretty much all my free time for the duration. Cross your fingers for me everyone!
Non-work wise, I’ve had a lovely week.
On Friday I mused on the question “What is Travel?” and, in combination with a belated nod to Tolkien Reading Day, wrote a small blog post on the subject.
Saturday was spent in London, having lunch with two fellow Sherlockian and then seeing The Ruling Class at Trafalgar Studios, which was utterly fantastic (James McAvoy riding a unicycle in tighty-whiteys and nothing else being a particular highlight). I did, as is my want, write a review of the play and you can find it here.
Sunday involved writing and then curling up on the sofa and watching Paddington, which was just so heartwarmingly lovely I wanted to watch it straight through again immediately. Seriously, it was pure, joyous escapism and I would recommend it to anyone, especially if you’ve had a bad day and need some cheering up and a virtual hug! The writing involved adding more words to my Holmesfest fic, which whilst nowhere near finished is going in the right direction, and I also finished the March WWI: Fifty two months, fifty two posts post, which I put up yesterday. This one is on the history of the IWM and a little mention of its latest project, Lives of the First World War. The post is here if you’re interested.
Last night I went out for a meal with Cat and Lucy, to celebrate Lucy’s birthday (which is today) and mine (which is on Monday). We had a lovely time consuming pizza and cheesecake whilst setting the world to rights. There was much discussion of fic, theatre, fencing, Sherlock and soldiers. I’m also now the proud owner of “Hark, A Vagrant!” thanks to Lucy and a really lovely handmade 221b wallpaper cushion from Cat along with a gorgeous Sherlock bangle. And yes, technically I should still be unaware of the contents of the presents as I should have waited until Monday but … I am not the most patient person when it comes to gifts and it meant I could say thank you properly in person (many hugs ftw!).
In the realms of the written word, having checked back over a couple of posts, I’ve noticed that I haven’t shared my GYWO word count for quite a while and think I ought to remedy that. I’m at 57,127 for the year up to 31 March, which is 7k over the target for the quarter end. Adding what I’ve written in the past two days, I’ve now hit 61,393 which is awesome! I’m really very pleased with myself and I definitely feel like I’ve hit my stride with when and where I’m writing to get the most out of my time. That said, I’ll obviously be knocked back out of my stride of if I do end up doing my exams and that would certainly mean I’d not hit my year target, but I think I can transfer the “writing stride” to a “studying stride” which would be most beneficial even if my WIPs and plans for short stories have to languish for a year longer. Be that as it may, these three months have shown me that I can keep up a sensible and productive writing habit if nothing too bizarre is going on and I will continue to write every weekday throughout my period of study, even if it’s only a couple of hundred words snatched in my lunch hour!
I’m very much looking forward to the long weekend. I don’t celebrate Easter in a particularly religious manner any more but, since I was born on Easter Sunday, I’ve always had a soft spot for the festival and usually treat it like a second birthday (delusions of grandeur be damned). Since my actually birthday has been kind enough to fall on Easter Monday this year and it’s a relatively significant one, I am appropriating the whole weekend as a four day celebration and Mum and Dad have been plotting and planning. I know Sunday Lunch is taking place at Goldstone Hall but other than that, I’m in the dark. Surprisingly (since I’m not good with surprises) I’m feeling quite sanguine about it all. To be honest, I’m just looking forward to four days of not doing anything work-related and with only a minimal writing scheduled. And hoping for sunshine rather than the scattering of snow my birthday seems to produce every other year!
I’m also now really looking forward to my holiday despite the relatively large number of things I need to finish before I go. I’ll be disappearing completely from the internet on Sunday 12th April and won’t be back until Sunday 26th but, in the interests of productivity, I’ve already started my tumblr hiatus (because that site eats time like nothing else on earth) and I’m going to limit my twitter and LJ time to half an hour a day from tomorrow for the same reasons.
And that’s pretty much it, other than The News From Dog.
Firstly, the obligatory picture of Her Cuteness:
This is her best modelling pose, as she attempts to outshine the glorious cushion Cat made me. I have already had to remind her three times that it was my birthday present, given to me, and therefore not available for her to pick up, lick, take to her basket or wander around the garden with.
Secondly, she wishes me to inform you that, despite the Evil Interloper (who has moved into the house that backs on to her garden), she remains in complete control of the security arrangements of her domain. The border patrols have been increased accordingly, as has the sounding of the Warning Bark SystemTM and she is certain that the stupid fluffy white thing will acknowledge her mastery of the turf, superiority in general, and will slink back off to wherever it came from any day now. Definitely. Any minute. Just you wait and see.
I wish to inform you that the only thing I care about is the pair of them shutting the heck up!