Versatile blogger blog hop: seven things about me

versatileMany thanks to Debbie Vega, who nominated me for the Versatile Blogger award. I’m physically restraining myself from putting quotation marks around the word award in the previous sentence, though, because I didn’t get a medal to hangon the wall or anything. That being said, I always love a good blog hop. So here are the rules:

Thank the person who gave you this award. — Done!

Include a link to their blog. — Done!

Nominate 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award and include a link to their site. — See below.

Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself. — See below.


Ok, so here are my fifteen nominations. Wait, fifteen?! No, I’m doing seven, because it has a nice parallel with the number of things about me. And because I’m drafting this at night after a long day, and I’m falling asleep! If, however, you read this and think, hey, I’d like to do that blog hop but she didn’t tag me, let me know in the comments and I’ll add you in. Because eight is a good number too. When I was a kid it was my favourite. Now my favourite is thirteen, because I’m contrary.

Ahem. Anyway. I’m nominating these seven because a) I want to know seven things about you, and b) if this were a proper award, with champagne and stuff, you would totally deserve it. If you decide to participate yourselves, please link your blogs back here so I don’t miss the stalking post!

  1. The first is fabulous human bean (I’ve been reading the BFG to my son!), occasional beta reader and wonderful writer, Stacey Nash. Stacey writes speculative fiction. Her stories have a lot of adventure, a good dose of danger, and a smattering of romance (and KISSING!).
  2. As well as also being a fabulous human bean, Lauren McKellar is one of the best editors I know — and given I’m a professional editor by day (and a CRIME FIGHTER by night!) I know quite a few. Lauren describes her first love as writing books that make you feel, by which she means you will need ALL OF THE TISSUES when you read her books. I think she may have shares in Kleenex.
  3. Emily Mead is another Aussie Owned and Read blogger, and is one of the smartest, funniest teenagers I know. She and I disagree on the use of brackets vs en rules for the insertion of paranthetical statements, but don’t bring it up; it’s a touchy subject. Still, watch this girl. She’s going to go far!
  4. Chynna-Blue Scott is hilarious, sarcastic, talented, and looks like she should be an actress in an urban fantasy movie of some kind. Seriously. Also, I suspect she might have a thing for this band called Fall Out Boy? It’s just a vibe I’m getting.
  5. Fellow Whovian Pippa Jay writes scifi. Like Stacey’s books, hers don’t require a degree in astrophysics to follow along (although maybe her experience as a lab chemist helps her write them!), and they also have kissing. It’s all good by me!
  6. The hilarious Julie Hutchings is friendly, open, also sarcastic, and did I already mention hilarious? She understands my coffee addiction, since she has one of her own. This makes us soul mates. Also, she writes about Japanese vampires.
  7. Holly Kench likes to pretend she is the owner of a cat when clearly it’s the other way around. But I suspect that’s true of most cat owners! She believes feminist isn’t a dirty word (she’s right about that, by the way), and her comics make me giggle.

Seven things about me

One. I am supremely clumsy. If all the clumsy people in the world got together on an island, I would be their Supreme Leader (which, by the way, best job title in the world). My crowning glory in winning this achievement is the time that my trip to Italy was cancelled after I fell off a giant hat in Spain. True story. I was going to go to Venice and Pompeii and everything. *sniff*

Gulliver's Hat, from the outside.

Beware of Spaniards bearing giant hats.

Two. The original reason for my clumsiness is that my vision is rubbish — the follow-on reason is that once you twist your ankle a certain number of times, the ligaments and whatnot just give up the ghost. But back to the vision thing: without my glasses I’d bump into walls. Or fall off them. As well as being chronically shortsighted, my vision is uneven too, so my depth perception isn’t great — I have enough that I can drive a car but not enough that I don’t fall off giant hat. Apparently.

Three. I would be a cat person if I could, because cats suit my extreme laziness. They’re easily housebroken and slothful, like me. I even have a cat tattoo. Unfortunately, my immune system treats them as the hostile invaders they are, so I am not a cat person. Instead, I am a dog person. But not a puppy person. I have a puppy at the moment, and although he is growing more tolerable as he gets older, the puppy phase is so trying.

My tattoo may look cute, but I'm pretty sure it's plotting something. Look at those eyes!

My tattoo may look cute, but I’m pretty sure it’s plotting something. Look at those eyes!

Four. I’m an Aries. If you believe these things, that means I’m stubborn, goat-like and enjoy eating grass and headbutting others. Or something. I was also born in the Year of the Dragon, so if I get indigestion, watch out I don’t breathe fire on you. (Since Aries is also a fire sign — goats being known for playing with lighters — that is twice as likely.)

Five. I am a single mother. I didn’t start out that way, but life twisted and turned like a twisty turny thing, and here I am. My son has just turned five, and he’s the most adorable, precocious, hilarious, frustrating little human in the world. I love him to bits, naturally.

My boy

I think he wants a tattoo too. Eek!

Six. Since I probably won’t have any more children, I shall instead have book babies (a phrase that if you think about it too hard is actually a bit gross). The process of producing a book from conception to final realisation — when you get to hold the book and pat its cover and change its nappy — takes a hell of a lot longer than having a regular kind of baby. But my books don’t backchat. Much.

Seven. My first ever band crush was when I was in my early teens. It was New Kids on the Block. Because at the time I was deaf to the offensiveness of 90s synth music, and mullets were cool. Now my favourite instrument is the violin or the human voice. Several of them, in harmony — instruments optional. Aww, yeah.

So today is my hativersary

Yes, you read that right. Hativersary. It’s the anniversary of my traumatic encounter with a hat.

Duns Castle. My future home. <3

Duns Castle. My future home. ❤

Last year my boyfriend took me and my son (who was then two-and-a-half) on our very first overseas trip. The itinerary was Scotland, then Spain, then Italy. In Scotland we stayed at Duns Castle in the border region, an extravagance to celebrate the BF’s significant birthday. It was amazing. The atmosphere of the place was something I will never forget. Our room was one of the corner suites, in what used to be the guard tower, and even though I got the inevitable cold, I still really loved the place.

The other memories of Scotland that stay with me are the pubs—you don’t get pubs like that in Australia—and Edinburgh’s skyline at sunset. Oh, and the day we went to a falconry! I got to fly, and pat, a boobook owl, a species from Australia. He was a long way from home too.

My only regret was that we missed the snow by a day!

Then, after some frustrations including lost luggage for a party of five adults and two children, we got to Spain.

Gulliver's Hat, from the outside.

Gulliver’s Hat, from the outside.

In Valencia they have this awesome park based around Gulliver. You know, the fellow who got captured by the Lilliputians? Well, he’s a giant fiberglass man, reclining in the gravel, covered in slides and climbing frames and all sorts of other coolness. The BF and I were talking about how awesome it’d be to have something like that in Canberra, while we took photos of us standing inside his shoe, or of my son eyeing off a sword that was almost as wide across the pommel as he was tall.

Then we discovered why it’d never be feasible in Australia. They’d never get the public liability insurance.

See, Gulliver has a giant hat, and inside the giant hat is a little model of the entire park, like a 3D map. While the BF and my son were exploring another slide, I climbed onto the hat (the brim was a foot or so from the ground) to take a photo. After I was done, I distinctly remember looking down at the ground from the edge and thinking, “Nah, if I slip I’ll hurt myself; I’ll go use the stairs.”

And then, right beside the stairs, my foot slid off the edge and I fell.

Inside Gulliver's Hat. Acquiring this photo cost me a trip to Italy, so I hope you like it. :p

Inside Gulliver’s Hat. Acquiring this photo cost me a trip to Italy, so I hope you like it. :p

It twisted under me and rolled at an entirely unnatural angle. I’ve sprained my ankle before, but I’d felt nothing like this. By the time the BF ran over it had swollen up like I had a tennis ball instead of an ankle. He took off to get the first aid attendant—in hindsight, the fact they had a first aid office on site was a good warning sign—while I gave my son a cuddle, because he got quite hysterical to see me crying from pain. (And I suspect because all of a sudden the sliding had stopped. Hey, he was two!)

So that day I got to experience a few other new things I hadn’t before. I got to ride in a Spanish ambulance, and experience a crowded ED waiting room where no one (and I mean NO ONE) spoke English. I’ve never felt so helpless in my life. Fortunately after I got wheeled off on a stretcher, the BF got hold of the Australian consulate, and they were able to talk to the hospital staff and organise everything. They were, to hear him tell it, pretty amazing.

Your tax dollars at work.

Unfortunately I did enough damage to my ankle that I ended up in a cast and on crutches. Which meant that Italy was cancelled (yes, the whole country!) and we all came home, because there was no way my BF could manage me, a two-year-old, three suitcases and various carryon luggage on his own. After we got home I had to get physiotherapy for my ankle.

I am still sad that I missed seeing Rome and Pompeii, in particular, but hey. I’m the only person I know that ruined an overseas holiday by falling off a hat, and that’s worth something … right?

Right? *whimper*