Birthdays And Blogiversarys

Today is my 32nd Birthday and 2 years since I officially relaunched An Average Life!

Since life has gotten so busy I’ve taken to mostly posting book reviews in 2020, although I do have a LOT of half written discussion posts saved in various places calling out to be scheduled. One day my pretties. One day.

Right now I should be in Minehead visiting family and checking out the EAT! Food & Drink festival.
I’m willing to bet it’s raining since in my 32 years of August birthdays I have had FIVE sunny ones. FIVE. The rest were either torrential rain and/or thunderstorms.

I am cursed.

I’ve accepted it. If you could do a little sun dance for me today though I would so appreciate it.

So to mark the 32/2 occasion here is a freestyle post I whipped up just for me!

On the subject of BIRTHDAYS; Top 10 novels on my Wishlist

Every birthday I receive book vouchers without fail and I am certainly not complaining. I’ll be agonising later over which to choose from my horrendously long Wishlist including..

Afterland – Lauren Beukes

The Hollow Ones – GDT & Chuck Hogan

Into The Drowning Deep – Mira Grant

Winterwood – Shea Ernshaw

Malorie – Josh Malerman

The Tenth Girl- Sara Faring

Brother- Ania Ahlborn

Piercing- Ryu Murakami

Neverwhere- Neil Gaiman

Dream Fall – Amy Plum

I’m also hoping JB has remembered I desperately wanted one of those wooden trays that sit over the bath so I can finally be trusted to read in there without dropping my tablet! I am THE clumsiest.

———-
On the subject of BLOGIVERSARYS; 10 things I’ve learned about book blogging so far.

Limit your time spent on Netgalley and always check the publication date.
Lord knows you don’t really need more books on an already tight review schedule.

Don’t be afraid to reach out to publishers.
What’s the worst that could happen? Keep trying.

Drama drama drama. Ignore it. Block it. Mute it.
Whatever you need to do to get back to the topic on hand, BOOKS.

Pick a theme and format your review posts in batches before you read the books.
All you have to do is add the review text when ready, I do that in batches too. I schedule several book reviews at a time to keep my engagement steady if I get too busy to post.

Write the review before you start your next read.
It needs to be fresh. Especially if like me you forget every character name the very next day!

Stick your nose in.
Are people tweeting about a book you’re interested in? Jump on into that thread. They can’t see you, they can’t hear you, sure they might ignore you a few times but you won’t know if you never speak up.

Read for yourself and only yourself.
You know what you like, don’t feel pressured to buy the latest releases or read them before anyone else. You’ll only waste your own time and money.

Interact with the newbies.
We’ve all been there, feeling like an outsider, wishing someone would converse with us, busting your ass for minimal views. Lend a helping hand, these are the people who will become loyal followers and bonus- they aren’t yet tainted by the dramarama.

Massive discord/ DM groups are a time suck and a battery drain.

Find your tribe or make your own.
Everyone belongs, you just need to discover where.

Well I hope that was interesting if not entirely useful to you! Thankyou all for reading my rambles. Here’s to the next year of living and blogging.

It’s gotta get better than 2020 right?

 

How To Write a Successful CV

Advice from a trained recruitment manager

During my previous job I spent a lot of time recruiting. On average for our company we would have at least 120 applicants each time we advertised a position, this after they had passed an online test to submit their CV. As you can imagine we had neither the time not the man power to interview every applicant and THIS is why your Curriculum Vitae is the most important part of your arsenal.

I’ve put together a very basic guide on what to/not to include. *Please note, some points may be UK specific. Continue reading “How To Write a Successful CV”

Job Hunting 101

Hate Mondays? You don’t have to settle…

Welcome to 2020! Are you heading back to work today with a solid case of Monday Blues? Underpaid, underappreciated or maybe just bored? Perhaps you are looking for your first employment or getting back on the wagon. Whatever your circumstances it always pays to keep an eye out for employment opportunities- sometimes the grass truly is greener! 

In 2017 I began job hunting for a complete change of career. After a few hours of initial effort the recruiters were coming to me! The world has moved on from the days of scouring a newspaper, by connecting with the right recruitment agencies and using the right apps job hunting can be a breeze . I was in a comfortable position and found myself turning down at least 3 job opportunities per week whilst I waited for the one.

Today I’m going to take you through a few basics of job hunting- but please note; some points made in this post will be UK specific and assume you are not in major financial difficulty. Continue reading “Job Hunting 101”

Book Review; Coral – Sara Ella

There is more than one way to drown…

Page Count 384

 Publication date November 2019/ Publisher Thomas Nelson

GoodReads link

coral

 

Synopsis

Coral has always been different, standing out from her mermaid sisters in a society where blending in is key. Worse yet, she fears she has been afflicted with the dreaded Disease, said to be carried by humans—emotions. Can she face the darkness long enough to surface in the light?

Above the sea, Brooke has nothing left to give. Depression and anxiety have left her feeling isolated. Forgotten. The only thing she can rely on is the numbness she finds within the cool and comforting ocean waves. If only she weren’t stuck at Fathoms—a new group therapy home that promises a second chance at life. But what’s the point of living if her soul is destined to bleed?

Merrick may be San Francisco’s golden boy, but he wants nothing more than to escape his controlling father. When his younger sister’s suicide attempt sends Merrick to his breaking point, escape becomes the only option. If he can find their mom, everything will be made right again—right?

When their worlds collide, all three will do whatever it takes to survive, and Coral might even catch a prince in the process. But what—and who—must they leave behind for life to finally begin? Continue reading “Book Review; Coral – Sara Ella”

Accepting My Diagnosis pt2

Today I am bed bound. My hands and feet feel prickly and ice cold, my arms and legs are just useless sacks of wet heavy sand. As a child did you ever playfully punch eachother in the fleshy part of your triceps or thighs and shout DEAD LEG? Imagine this was done to every muscle in your body. That’s what M.E CFS is to me.

Myalgic Encephalomyelitis also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome effects 250,000 people in the UK alone. Two thirds of which are women aged between 20-40 years old. Just. Like. Me.

I was diagnosed after all other tests came back negative. My regular GP was unavailable and I’d been to see an alternative. After reviewing my medical history, discussing all the symptoms I’d had recurring for the past 2 years and looking at yet another set of inconclusive blood tests he insisted this was infact ME CFS.

I was relieved, angry and scared.
Relieved to finally have an answer.
Angry in my refusal to accept a new weakness.
Scared of the reality that this might not go away.

There is no ‘cure’ or medication that will help me. There is no proof of my condition to wave in the face of the eye-rollers and non-believers. Even those I love who I know love me in return can’t always hide their expressions well enough. I can see when they’re frustrated with me. I can see when they think I’m being dramatic. I can see when they wonder if I’m just a hypochondriac.

There is a long list of symptoms relevant to ME CFS, including the 75% below which apply to me

-Persistent fatigue
-Aching muscles and joints
-Pins and needles
-Poor circulation
-Muscle cramps and twitching
-Headaches
– Poor temperature control
– IBS
– Bloating
– Hypersomnia
– Memory problems
– Word finding difficulty
– Loss of balance
– Sensitivity to sound

and my personal worst… PAYBACK.
Also known as post exertional malaise.

It’s payback that has me lying here in bed this morning. Though this time I’m not sure what exactly I’m being paid back for.
Usually all my symptoms attack at once if I’ve been active. Maybe I went out for the day, did some shopping, socialised with friends, walked too much or drove too far. Never anything major- just normal day to day life, except for me these kind of activities are punishable now.
Today I’m not even strong enough to raise my arms and brush my own hair. I have to rest and recharge my body’s dodgy battery.

What’s worst about this is the way MEcfs combines so easily with my anxiety. Every second I rest my brain is shouting at me for wasting precious time. Since I’m not at work I should be cleaning, learning, creating.. DOING something. But this isn’t physically possible so I’ll beat myself mentally instead; why can’t I just THINK my way out of this? FORCE myself out of bed and be productive?

I’ve learned now that to ignore my limitations will only increase the suffering they call ‘payback’, I have no choice but to rest when these moments come. And you know what else? It doesn’t matter if other people don’t understand it, or don’t believe me, I know how I feel and I know what I need.
The next battle is with my brain, all that remains is to silence my irrational guilt and self disgust.