31 Oct 2009

The Trauma of TV.

I cried on Wednesday.
I cried on Thusday.
I cried yesterday.
Each time I cried was because of a television programme.  That may be making you shake your heads in disgust at me and 'my generation', but, seriously.  It was sad.  A bit more than sad, actually.

On Wednesday Waterloo Road was back for a new series.  Now, I used to love this programme because Waterloo Road was like a more extreme version of my school.  We even had the gun scare.  Waterloo Road was like AHSTC because all the pupils went around saying it was crap to eachother, but the second someone from another school said it, they were like "hang on a second..."  It was just like that.  And this series, loads of snobby kids have come to the school, and they all look down on the Waterloo Road pupils, and thats how I feel at the Grammar.  So I sat and sobbed about how much I miss my old school.  It was very upsetting. 

On Thursday it was the Sarah Jane Adventures, where I cried merely because I knew that David Tennant's time as The Doctor was coming to an end.  Actually, now I think about it, this one was a bit patheticYou can shake your head if you like.

On Friday it was Part 2 of The Sarah Jane Adventures.  I cried because it was genuinely sad.  Poor Sarah Jane had to tell this man she was in love with that he was actually dead.  It was so sad - and Elizabeth Sladen did a perfect bit of acting.  Then I cried because The Doctor told Sarah Jane not to forget him, and she responded by saying "No-one will forget you."
Me and Mom were in floods.  I don't know what we're going to be like when he actually goes.  I'm not thinking about it - David Tennant's Doctor CAN'T die, he's too amazing.  Seriously, I have never cried as much as I did at the end of Doomsday, where he said goodbye to Rose. Unless it was the end of Series 4, when he was left all alone, in the TARDIS, all rainstreaked. Me and Mom sat on the sofa, weeping helplessly, and my Dad came in and was just like "ugh. You two." For some reason he is surprisingly immune to DT's charm, wit and good looks.

Break my heart why don't you?

27 Oct 2009

Something Wicked This Way Comes...

I love Halloween.
It's my faveourite time of year.
I've always loved witches and magic - even wayyy before Harry Potter, I was mad for Meg&Mog and that one about the witch with the Purple and Black socks. 
Today me and Alice went out job hunting, and ended up in Tesco's with there magic Halloween section, so we bought a magic wand a hat each.
As we walked out we (wearing our finery) were behind a Mother and her little girl.  The Mom turned to her daughter and said:
"I think there are some Witches behind us..."
And the little girl turned round and looked at us in total awe, as if we actually were Witches.
I felt good

23 Oct 2009

And It Was Good.

I have a purpose again.
I'm planning my gap year!  Well, actually, me and my freindling Amelia are planning our gap-year. 
I haven't felt so excited about something since I started at the Grammar school, which is sad.  Sometimes I sit in lessons and I think: "How has no-one noticed how miserable I am?"
We want to do two main trips.
The first one will start in February 2012 (I know, so long away, but the planning needed is incredible).  We are going to fly to Sweeden to see the Northern Lights.  At the moment the plan is to spend one night in The Ice Hotel, although there is talk of igloo's instead.  Then we will fly to Moscow (my darling Russia at last) and get the Trans-Siberia railway through St. Petersburg, across Siberia, through Mongolia and eventually down to Beijing.  We will see and do various exciting things along the way including:
Living with Nomad Horse Back riders in Mongolia,
Seeing the beautiful frozen Lake Baikal,
Getting drunk with the locals on the train (according to Amelia's sister who has done this route)
Dealing with Russian and Chineese border crossings.

That is TRIP ONE, and has a possible visit to Japan at the end if there is some money left.

TRIP TWO is focussed on Nunavut in Arctic Canada.  We want to go and spend a few weeks living with the Inuit people - something inspired by our mutual love of the Michelle Paver books, and looking at whales and sea-kayaking.  If you go there then you need to have shot-gun training, cuz of the polar bears.  Polar Bears are the only animals on earth to actually set out to kill and eat humans.  They can smell blood from 3 miles away.  We want to go there in June, to see the 24 hour daylight of the Arctic Circle - which will be incredibly mystical.   

Lots of money will be needed, but can you imagine how amazing those trips will be.  The life expieriance that I'll get from doing that...
I might even get to sort my life out.

These are my beautiful Northern Lights.

20 Oct 2009

I Write Because I Am.

I've just remembered to tell you all about my Cheltenahm Literary Adventures!  Here goes:

Sunday 11th of October 2009, I went to see Michelle Paver (author of the Chronicles Of Ancient Darkness) at the Cheltenham Literary Festival.  By the way - you should ALL read those books.  They make you want to run off to Finland and live in an elk-hide shelter and run around howling with wolves. [actually, I'm doing that.  But more about that later.
She was very, very good. She talked all about writing the books and all the cool travelling things she has done to research the books. Then we got to ask questions and I asked whether she had any advice for aspiring writers. When she answered she seemed very earnest and looked me in the face the whole time.

She told me:
1) To always keep a notebook with me
2) To always eat breakfast
3) To re-write. She showed me one of her manuscripts, and it was covered in adjustments.
4) To write what I like, not neccisarrily what I know.

It's really useful stuff that.  Honestly, it's been very helpful.  I always kept a notebook with me anyway, but the thing about re-writing has made me go bcak on loads of old stuff and be really ruthless. 
And that thing about writing what I like?
It's so true. 
Then, we queued to meet her and me and Amelia waited at the back so she would talk to us for longer. We waited about an hour and a half – because she spent a lot of time with everyone. She seemed so genuinely pleased to have us there. When we got to her, we both had our photo taken and then she said to me
“I’m so glad you waited, I wanted to talk to you a bit more about the writing.” And then she talked to me a little bit about structure, and said that although she thought I would already know it, the main structure of any story is...

A main character wants something, and there are obstacles along the way.

It’s true, you know.
And then she was talking to me a bit more, the she asked my name and I told her it was Charlotte ------. And she said
 "Well, that’s a name I’ll remember; I expect to see you sitting here one day, signing books for people.”
It was sooooo exciting! She seemed so interested in everyone and what they had to say and asking them questions and answering there’s. She also said she liked my nail-varnish, which was my dark-purple winter-time fare.

Then, she wrote in my book:

“For Charlotte,
With very best wishes, and good luck with your writing.
Michelle Paver.”

And then she stamped it with her cool wolf print stamp.
It was a very good day, and it really re-enforced my ambitions. It’s hard work, but I’ll do it.

Thankyou Michelle Paver.

16 Oct 2009

This Fig-Tree

"I saw my life branching out before me like the green fig-tree in the story.

From the tip of every branch, like a fat purple fig, a wonderful future beckoned and winked. One fig was a husband and a happy home and children, and another fig was a famous poet and another fig was a brilliant professor and another fig was Ee Gee, the amazing editor, and another fig was Europe and Africa and South America, and another fig was Constantin and Socrates and Attila and a pack of other lovers with queer names and off-beat professions, and another fig was an Olympic lady crew champion, and beyond and above these figs were many more figs I couldn't quite make out.
I saw myself setting in the crotch of this fig-tree, starving to death, just because I couldn't make up my mind which of the figs I would choose. I wanted each and every one of them, but choosing one meant losing all the rest, and, as I sat there, unable to decide, the figs began to wrinkle and go black, and, one by one, they plopped to the ground at my feet."

- Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar.
Now this is how I feel.  If only I could have found a way to express it so eloquently, maybe people would understand better.  I don't know...

13 Oct 2009

Who Wants A Fairytale Anyway?

I had to write a monolgue of a fairytale character for English Language, and I thought I would show you.  For no other reason than I'm bored and want to post.  It's about Cinderella after the Happy Ever After.  I think it may illustrate my doubt about lasting love and, well, marraige. 

Happily ever after wasn’t supposed to be like this.

Happily ever after is beautiful and sparkling. Happily ever after is... ever after.

It’s not sitting on the floor of the castle you called your home, in the finery you’ve just been told ‘isn’t really yours’, because you never bought it, watching the footmen – the footmen you used to command – carry your trunks out the door. It’s not watching your husband avert his gaze from you as you weep into the sleeve of your dress.

It’s the dress I was wearing when I met him. It’s my fairytale dress. One of the only things I can call my own, because it is my own. I had it when I was still a silly little girl from the sticks, still cleaning and cooking and dreaming of a handsome prince all of my very own. I had it the night my fairy godmother found me and turned me into a girl with glass slippers who felt invincible, who could do anything; even enchant the heir to the kingdom.

D’you know what? I wish I could have a word with Little Miss Fairy Godmother now. She’d have a few things to answer too, I can tell you. The last time I saw her was at the wedding – actually, I was allowed to keep that dress too, as a ‘sign of the Prince’s kindness’ – then she disappeared. What a cow. She was supposed to stick around, so, when things started to go wrong (and they did) she could wave her magic wand and tell me what to do to make it all better.

I mean, isn’t that a Fairy Godmother’s job? To stop me making it all go wrong.

I guess, if I think about it properly, it stopped being happily ever after right after the honeymoon. Yes, we came back all tanned and glossy and relaxed. The Prince had even got dreadlocks. They looked a bit silly, actually, but... well, I didn’t really want to tell him. He was so proud of them. I think he had visions of becoming some sort of new-age hippy prince. Anyway. Once we’d got back, he started working again – and he did have an awful lot to do, ‘cuz, well, he’s a prince – and I had to settle into the life of a princess. The thing is... and I know it’s not what people would expect... but, being a princess is pretty dull. You sit around all day waiting for someone to come and visit, so you can write them a thankyou note after.

I had to practice all that, too. I had to make my handwriting all fancy, and learn to speak like a princess. That meant a man told me I had to start saying Had, instead of ‘ad, and use big words. I can’t stop now. Had. Had. ‘ad. There we go. It’s nice to know I could go back to being how I used too. You know. If I wanted.

I wonder what I’ll do now? Now he’s gone off with his secretary. His secretary! It’s just such an insult, it’s such a cliché! Can you imagine what everyone will say? Bad blood. That’s what everyone will think – that he should never had married me in the first place. A little commoner who turned up to the palace one evening and passed herself off as someone with class.

Well. More fool me. That’s a warning to every girl, I suppose. You shouldn’t try and better yourself, ‘cuz that’s where all your problems’ll start.

I wonder if my Stepmum will ‘ave me back.

11 Oct 2009

Now Mother, what's the Matter?

Isn't it funny how the simple act of my Mother kinda yelling at me 'what have you done with the hairdryer?" can awake such beautiful memories in me.  I also think it's a testament to Shakespeare, David Tennant and my nerdiness that the first thing thst came to mind for me to say was the aforementioned Hamlet quote (see the title.)

I've just ordered my copy of the Hamlet DVD.  This means that I'll have seen David Tenannt in Hamlet 3 times live... and about 3 million times via my DVD player.  And I have the feeling that however many times I watch it, it will always be amazing.  Because his preformance was excellent.  He was funny and engaging and made me cry when he dies.  He made me fall just a little bit in love with Hamlet.  Ohhh....  Seriously, I can't beelive it's almost a year (on October 30th) that I last saw him in real life.  I queued at 7:30 in the freezing cold for two hours just to get that last ticket.  Previously, I'd seen him on my 15th birthday (August 28th) and Sepetember the 15th, with my fellow crazy-lover of him friend.  We met him that night.  He signed out programmes and spoke to us. 


I still get shivers.

On a similar note - today I'm going with the same crazy best friend to see Michelle Paver talk at the Cheltanham Litery Festival.  I'm excited.  She wrote my almost-faveourite books.  I'll update you later.

9 Oct 2009

For In That Sleep Of Death What Dreams May Come?

I'm reading my copy of Hamlet tonight.

I find an inordinate amount of comfort from it.  Because.

Because, despite my own problems, Hamlet's life is worse.

My Uncle hasn't married my Mother.  After killing my Father.

My Two best freinds aren't secretly spying on me.

I haven't got a ghost haunting me.

The mere act of typing this is making me feel better. 

Thankyou, William Shakespeare and your beautiful verse;
                                                        your beatiful prose.

8 Oct 2009

& I Said, What About Breakfast At Tiffany's?


For the first time since starting AGS, I have had some glimmer of why I'm there.  It also coincided with a bit of an epiphany on the Uni front. 
But, first to the day.
I got called back in history, (a subject which I've already been told my Summer Project was the best in the class (God, I'm such a little history nerd)) by Miss E, and she said that she wanted to use my first essay on The Coalition Government as an 'example of excellence' to the class.  Well.  I was pretty chuffed, but also a bit awkward, as no-one wants to be a real goody-goody on the first homework.  But then she asked me to make a bunch of changes for tomorrow so she could do it, and I thought, 'well, it wan't that excellent was it?'

But anyway, happiness there.  And then me and Wally were late for tutor 'cuz we'd been eating fairycakes at my house, and so when we went to apologise to our tutor, she told me that she'd read a peice of work I'd done for Language, that Mrs BS had given her, and that it was really good.  She called me a clever girl, (which was, actually, a little bit patronising.)  But still.  I finally feel like I'm making some kind of progress.

And then last night, there was a University Discovery.  I have no-go areas for uni:
I don't want to go to the North of England.
I don't want to go to Oxford or Cambridge (even if I did have a hope in hell of getting even close to the grades)
I don't want to go to London.
I don't want to go to Wales - cuz I don't really like the accent (sorrrryyyy)
I don't want to go to Scotland APART from Edinborough, which is second on my choices.
I don't want to stay close to home.

So really, it's not going to be very easy.  But, one place I've always wanted to go to is Exeter.  For one main reason:
JK Rowling went there.  For me, as you can see from above, that is a good enough reason to want to go, because I'm going to try and emulate her if I can.  Butttt, last night, my Dad discovered two more reasons that I should go:
1) They are 5th in The Sunday Times uni guide for English Lit (the course I want to do)
2) If you study Lit there, you spend the second year at an American or Canadian uni. 

Now, I LOVE America.  I want to live there when I grow up.  I've travelled around 46 states, and I'm doing the rest at Easter.  This would be a dream come true.  So, my Dad booked us a tour around the campus on Wednesday 28th October, so I can get a feel for it, cuz it won't be long till I start having to make big decisions.

As everyone keeps telling me.


This is a long post, and I will sign off now, as I have to go and interveiw my Grandad for my Language Coursework.  I'll let you know how it goes.

7 Oct 2009

We are not our Sorrows.

So says Nerina Pallot on her song "Human", from her new album "The Graduate."

God.  I knew it would be beautiful, after all, someone who wrote "Idaho", a song that made me sob because, when I first listened to it, it seemed to be me, in song form.  But, it really is very, very good. 

It's a bit more poppy than 'Fires', but I like pop, and it's meaningful pop - if you see what I mean.  I think my faveourite song is "Human", because I was in a really bad place yesterday, and I heard that song and it made me stop in my tracks, and lie on my bed and want to cry because it had made me feel so much more uplifted.  Seriously, the lines:

"We are not our sorrows,
We are not our scars,
No, we are only human,
This is what we are."

really, really struck a chord with me.  It helps that she also has a voice like no-one else's (in a good way.)

Another song I LOVED, was "When Did I Become Such A Bitch?"  It was amusing, and catchy, and I sang it all day.  At one point, my best friend turned to me in RE and said: 'You've always been a bitch, now shut up!" 
Ah, that's why I love her.

What I'm trying to say is, go out and BUY IT. 
Please.  I can promise you won't regret it.  And I did it legally, with a real-life CD again. 

2 Oct 2009

I feel all flustered...

And it's probably not just because of my stinking cold.

1 Oct 2009


I wrote to him, months ago, at christmas, telling him how much I loved his books (especially The Book Thief) and then never heard anything back.  Now, my email was long and adoring, as he is my ultimate writing inspiration of the modern age.  Seriously, if you've never read The Book Thief, buy it.  Infact, I'll buy it for you.  It will have you weeping so hard at the end.  God, it's truly spectatcular.

So, I didn't hear anything back, and then I forgot.  But THEN...

I logged onto my email this morning, and LOOK WHAT I FOUND:

Dear Charlotte,

I know this comes so so late, but...


I've been a bit of a recluse this year, writing and failing, failing more and writing more to get a new book done. And your email has really made my day. I'm so honoured that you would let me know what my writing means to you, and that you like the images especially. That's what I love most about reading and writing - seeing visions of things that give us the world in a new way.

All my very best and thanks for taking the time to let me know all those months agao.

I'm sorry.  Call me a wimp, but I burst into tears.  I mean, he's an incredible writer, and he said that I made his day.  And he's honoured I wrote to him.