Uncomplicating the complications

This is going to be very interesting. Writing over the weekend was okay; although I was recording for a couple of hours a day it seemed rather easy to find the time to write (it’s taken about an hour each time from start to finish, so far). But I’m concerned about the coming week. I have this book to record on a deadline and it’s a big one (maybe I’ll tell you the title at the end) and I have a lot more in terms of emails and just daily chores I need to get done… not just the “Oh, it’s the weekend, I might, or, I might not do stuff” (with, seriously, that many commas in the thought process). No, there’s some kind of business I run here that also needs attention.

Yesterday I told everyone I was going to start making notes on topics I could cover here… Here’s the photo of the notebook I put aside for the purpose, just before I started typing today 🙂 (Spoiler: It’s blank)

Oh, by the way, thank you to those of you who have sent me supportive emails – especially the correspondent advocating procrastination… But no, no, no… not for me right now – I have loved procrastinating over the years, he and me have had wonderful experiences together, but there’s too much to do, too much to enjoy. I used to think these later years in life (you know, anything after 55) would be my wonderful retirement, twilight years – where I would be able to sit in the garden sipping wine as the sun went down enjoying a little casual reading, maybe weeding a little, perhaps taking up a new, very easy, hobby of some sort (macramĂ©?). But then as I shot past that age (and by shot I mean whooshed, zoomed and accelerated past) I got busier and busier.

[if truth be told, I do find time to sip wine as the sun goes down – but it’s not as guilt-free an experience as I’d like it to be]

Brighton 2006 – Good Times!

I remember having time to play with my kids once. Thank God they grow up and learn to take care of themselves (kind of). I’d have no time now.

Since I don’t have a set topic for today let me drop a couple of different things in here: My wife and I froze our credit reports at all three agencies over the weekend. After due consideration and much thought it seemed the smart thing to do (a freeze, not a lock). After the Equifax debacle I let things sit for a while – but I’ve been reading all the reports and recommendations and the straw that broke our united backs was that John Oliver did a segment on the subject in his HBO series Last Week Tonight a week or so ago. It’ll cost to lift the freeze each time we want to take out a new loan for anything but we don’t do that often and it’ll give us another reason to see if the loan is really necessary – and we look at it as insurance. Overall it’ll be cheaper than fighting with the banks if our financial details fall into the wrong hands. John Oliver currently has the links to each of the credit agencies in his Twitter feed (link here).

The book I’m recording? You may know that the Japanese born, British author Kazuo Ishiguro (author of ‘Remains of the Day’) was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature just recently. Well, it appears one of his longer (and, so it’s reported, more difficult) novels has not yet been turned into an audiobook. My good friends at Tantor Audio (now part of Recorded Books) seem to have secured the rights and asked me last week (yup, it happened that quickly) if I might be able to fit it into my schedule. I had to juggle and squeeze but I wasn’t going to turn a quality piece of writing like this away. And so I am in the middle of recording The Unconsoled by Kazuo Ishiguro – and I’m loving it! Not sure how long it’s going to be before it becomes available – but do keep an eye out if you’re interested.

Here’s a reflection after just three days of writing here: I may find it difficult to do but the reward afterwards is wonderful. Just the act of doing something like this boosts my sense of well-being no end. “Hey! I achieved something!”. I know I achieve something every time I finish recording a book (and sometimes getting up in the morning is no small achievement), but this is different. It’s stretching myself into areas I’m not familiar with on a regular basis, and just doing it really does make a difference internally. You know, with this kind of boost I may actually succeed in completing my challenge of doing this every day for a month.

A new friend in our garden!

Finally: I was listening to a podcast this morning called The Leap – in it the subject of this particular episode (Season 1 Episode 3) said this:

When you’re a kid, the premium is on fitting in. And the thing they don’t tell you, when you become an adult, is the absolute best thing you can do is to stick out.

That struck a chord with me. It may surprise some but sticking out has always rather terrified me – but there’s also a part of me that actually does crave to stand out… Hey, I think I’ve discovered why I often feel conflicted.
Time to uncomplicate things.

Take care
– S.

About Simon

Simon is an actor who found his way into audiobook narrating as a side-gig and seems to have made a success of it. With some training as an actor as a child (just a couple of hours a week, but it stuck) and 15 years working inside the BBC (ending up as one of the presenters/newsreaders on BBC Radio 4 in London) he found the ideal combination for an audiobook narrator. Found his way to California two decades ago and never left.

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2 Responses to Uncomplicating the complications

  1. Vivien Plesmid October 24, 2017 at 3:45 pm #

    Your offerings just keep getting better…please continue, we are all cheering for you, and best wishes with the new book venture. Why is it that when you already are booked solid, a very unique and tempting offer comes up?? Your cup runneth over methinks!!

  2. Jan Johnston October 24, 2017 at 10:21 am #

    You’re a wonderful writer! I’m enjoying reading your posts.

    I also found that sticking out as an adult is beneficial! I … used to be a Catholic nun. Midlife crisis. When I left the convent after being totally disillusioned by the “nuns” (it makes me wince to call them that), I went back to my career of court reporting.

    I can’t tell you how many new client attorneys I gained because they would tell their secretaries, “I want that reporter who used to be a nun.)

    So my motto is BE YOURSELF. If you can’t, then be a VIKING!

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