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New Year’s Approach to a Singalong

05 Jan

Being the New Year, it is probably considered good form to talk about what will be aimed at blogwise for this year.  Whilst it appears a lot of bloggers I follow are not doing big reading challenges but rather smaller genre reads and looking to being more varied in their scope – which is already impressive – I will be staying the same as ever;  following whatever fancy takes me and mixing the books genres as much as I can, hopefully with more of a balance between well-known and obscurer titles.

postaltime

Found at Pixabay,com

The main focus will be on more posts this year, somehow ninety-seven is way down on what I was doing three or four years ago.  Having said that the more I read and write, the more there is to read and write, not to complain though having had my best year in terms of views. I know there is better to come from me and more regularly.

On a side note today is my eighth year with WordPress and my sixth with this blog, time flies and I miss some of the bloggers, who haven’t been around, especially the ones I started my WordPress adventure with. To those who remain and all the new ones yet to be discovered, I hope it is a good year for all.  Only one thing can take the mantle of my arch nemesis this year…

…and that is that there nothing worse than distractions when trying to write, the best way to block out such encroachments into one’s writing time is to increasingly retreat into the world of music.

As book reviews are taking longer than ever these days, as my reading grows and my thoughts and ideas become more unwieldy and subsequently end up becoming half posts left to rot/ripen over years.  I am finding it takes between one and a half  to three hours to write a post so I’m listening to lots of music as I do and as ever it is as diverse as reading tastes. Except for my odd fondness for focussing on music I listened to in 1996, when England has a good football team and a decent amount of sun.

From Britpop to Classical music, via rap, metal, punk and blues-infused folk rock and so on, it’s a glorious mishmash of such artists as: NWA, Suede, Rachmaninov, The Two Gallants, Rage Against the MAchine, Sigur Ros, Moby, Julee Cruise, Radiohead, Townes Van Zandt as well as a bunch of soundtracks (games, films and TV) that introduce more music onto the playlist than I would have found with my old ‘set in my ways’ approach to YouTube.  Any recommendations for writing music would go down a treat, unless you have a different method to accompany you writing?

Despite life, this evening I feel alright.

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35 Comments

Posted by on 05/01/2017 in Blogging, Music

 

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35 responses to “New Year’s Approach to a Singalong

  1. Sarah

    05/01/2017 at 17:50

    Wow, reading this made me wonder what I was listening to in 1996 and checking out the NME’s top LPs of the year reminded me of some wonderful stuff I’d completely forgotten about, namely the wonderful ‘Animals that Swim’ who I saw at Sussex Unis East Slope bar. They’re ‘Pink Carnations’ still sounds brilliant (if a little 90s indie).Beth Orten, Sparklehorse and Suede were pretty constant on my playlist back then, too. OK, I’m rambling now, but ta for that, your post just sent me down a very cheering rabbit hole! 🙂

    Like

     
    • Ste J

      05/01/2017 at 18:03

      West Han weren’t doing too badly either. Britpop of that era was so strong, I love all that stuff. I think I will have a few days listening to all the old favourites, Shed Seven, The Seahorses and such.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  2. Jill Weatherholt

    05/01/2017 at 19:00

    Wow! I had no idea you’ve been blogging so long, Ste J. Good for you!

    Like

     
    • Ste J

      06/01/2017 at 17:25

      I had a bit of a gap after I gave up on my first blog and a ninth month gap when I first gave up on this but now i have been blogging continuously since April 2012, I think it is safe to say that I am here to stay.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  3. Amethystmist

    05/01/2017 at 21:33

    Maybe I will finally get a new laptop this year, though not sure how much I’ll be able to use it is another question.
    I’ve been listening to a range of music on YouTube too. I haven’t heard of some of the bands etc you mentioned but I could recommend some clips on there to listen to.
    As for books and new years aims, goodreads encouraged me to set a goal so I just put 33, but like you, I just want to listen to or read what I can and what I enjoy. I already read a wide range of genres. I have seen some challenges on goodreads – perhaps they are similar to ones on here. But they seem a little limiting. I don’t want to read a book because it’s a certain colour or because it’s one I didn’t finish (which probably means I really didn’t enjoy it or found it too hard going). I’ve already ordered 4 books (2 ebooks, 2 hard copies) and got a couple for Xmas.

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    • Ste J

      07/01/2017 at 15:32

      Challenges seem good to begin with but I quickly tire of them when whatever book I am reading (or news article and so on) sends me in a new direction. Thirty three is a good number and I find reading the odd children’s book will help keep you going if you do find yourself slowing for whatever reason.

      I hope you manage to get around with your laptop and find yourself some more good tunes and other fascinating stuff.

      Like

       
  4. clarepooley33

    05/01/2017 at 21:56

    I’m glad to see we will have more of the same from you SteJ. I love the variety of books you review.

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    • Ste J

      06/01/2017 at 17:22

      I am on fine form writing wise, finished a review today with another one first drafted…if I can keep this up I will be happy. I may even get to a Virago sometime soon when I sort my shelves out that is.

      Liked by 1 person

       
      • clarepooley33

        06/01/2017 at 23:39

        I think one of my favourite jobs is sorting out bookshelves.

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        • Ste J

          07/01/2017 at 15:24

          For me it can go either way, I love finding those forgotten about gems but then I want to order them and then how do I put them etc, it can be very stress inducing.

          Liked by 1 person

           
          • clarepooley33

            08/01/2017 at 16:55

            I resolved that problem some years ago after having tried a variety of orders. I know that I never have enough shelf space for the amount of books I have which does spoil the effect. I put everything in alphabetical order but keep fiction separate from non-fiction. I have a couple of shelves for the over-size books and the non-fiction is split up and put on different bookcases according to subject. The TBR books are all upstairs along with the vintage crime and thrillers I just can’t part with. I’ll have to stop here before you realise what an OCD nerd I am!!

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            • Ste J

              12/01/2017 at 17:05

              Actually that was mesmerising, you should always bring this up with anybody you meet. Alphabetical order is fine but then there would have to be sub divisions, for history I would have to go by country or at least continent and they would need to be chronological, perhaps separate shelves for World War One and Two as their always seems to be lots of those books in any collection. Although there is a lot to be said for putting books anywhere and finding weird combinations together like Raymond Chandler next to Chaucer, I wonder what the latter would have made of the former…

              Liked by 1 person

               
              • clarepooley33

                12/01/2017 at 23:17

                They would probably have got on fine! I like the strange combinations except when I’m looking for a specific book in a hurry!

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  5. shadowoperator

    05/01/2017 at 22:29

    I was obviously more mainstream than you in the mid-90’s–I listened to Dire Straits, Susanne Vega, Laurie Andersen, etc. Lots of stuff from the 80’s then, too. As to what’s going on on my website, I just posted a brand-new poem (as in, written mostly in a coffee bar, Dunkin’ Donuts, today, while eating things I shouldn’t have and drinking a too-sweet coffee). Perhaps that diet accounts for some of the poem? Who knows how these things work out? I’m just relieved finally to be writing again, even if it’s not the fiction I was planning to work on, or the posts that are overdue, etc. It goes without saying that your august (not your August, since it has to be good for all year, but your august) opinion will be much valued, if you get a chance to look at it.

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    • Ste J

      07/01/2017 at 15:35

      A new post, this is pleasing and a donut inspired one especially, I shall be over to check it out soon. It is a good feeling to get back on with the writing and I look forward to reading it, just finish editing my latest post and I will be right there.

      Like

       
      • shadowoperator

        07/01/2017 at 15:40

        Be looking for more poetry; I have been writing every day (I hope you can stand it, poet to poet!) I’m looking forward to your latest post full, of beans (which in my country means happy and healthy).

        Liked by 1 person

         
        • Ste J

          07/01/2017 at 15:43

          Excellent! I have one paragraph left to edit…funny how it all seems to be written one day and reads terrible the day after. We have that saying too!

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  6. Alastair Savage

    06/01/2017 at 08:01

    I did once try working along to Frank Zappa, which was predictably not much of a success. Some artists demand your attention!

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    • Ste J

      06/01/2017 at 17:33

      Always the problem when such an artist pops up. I’m the same with M.C. Hammer.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  7. Andrea Stephenson

    08/01/2017 at 21:14

    You’ve spent an impressive amount of time blogging Ste and I think 97 is a pretty impressive number of posts in a year!

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    • Ste J

      12/01/2017 at 15:17

      It does seem to take longer each year, although oddly my latest was written in under an hour. I hope to do more this year purely because I have to think I am better at it this year, as if quantity matters. Perhaps I will get out more instead!

      Liked by 1 person

       
  8. Liz Dexter

    11/01/2017 at 09:58

    I got stuck in 1992 ish with my music tastes. I can’t read or write to music, though – anything with lyrics gets into what I’m doing and anything without, I try to type along to the rhythm!

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    • Ste J

      12/01/2017 at 15:27

      To the rhythm eh, from that I imagine you listening to happy ‘hardcore’, whatever that is. Haha.

      Like

       
      • Liz Dexter

        16/01/2017 at 09:24

        Ha – I meant classical or chillout music there. And I don’t really do it anyway because who wants to type along with the Four Seasons!?

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  9. Resa

    12/01/2017 at 17:40

    Stay with the flow of your fancy!
    I suppose I say that, as that’s what I do. However, that infernal world of work keeps getting in the way of my fancies.
    This January is filled with work.Usually I have the entire month to myself.
    I’m not sure if I could listen to music when I write. I’ll give it a try.

    Like

     
    • Ste J

      12/01/2017 at 18:13

      It depends on the music, something relaxing could help, or raucous classical, sometimes a movie soundtrack, one of the ones not populated by bands that is. Work does ruin everything, I have decided.

      Like

       
  10. Maniparna Sengupta Majumder

    13/01/2017 at 23:04

    You have been blogging for 8 years! That’s an achievement. I envy your consistency.
    Hope to read many more reviews on your blog this year. I’ve learnt about so many new writers and books from you…thanks for that 🙂

    I was in the college in 1996 and used to listen to light, contemporary numbers along with film songs. Our Bollywood films always have a great stress on songs, till date.

    Liked by 1 person

     
    • Ste J

      15/01/2017 at 18:01

      Bollywood is something I haven’t made the time to get into yet, which is criminal I know but I will get there one day.

      There are lots of books coming up this year my friend, I have a massive pile of recently read books and plenty more that need coming off the shelves. It’s always an exciting time when I pick a new book and think about how I will write about it.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  11. anna amundsen

    17/01/2017 at 15:34

    For some reason, Wishbone Ash came to my mind. Their ‘Argus’, to be precise…
    While I was a student I used to listen to music whenever I could. Jazz, blues, rock, metal… Now – nothing. Or, almost nothing… Sometimes a song presents itself in my head and I respond by playing it on YouTube.

    Wish you all the best for the next seven years on WordPress! May your blog grow and develop in many good ways!

    Like

     
    • Ste J

      17/01/2017 at 16:10

      Thank you my friend, I am thinking of a few ways to improve it and change it up.

      I have been blasting the classical music out recently whilst writing and horror of horrors reading from my Kindle app on the laptop…everything goes well until the 1812 Overture kicks in and then everything seems more dramatic.

      Like

       
  12. LuAnn

    22/01/2017 at 20:32

    Hey you, I am back, well, sort of as I now get caught up on what everyone else has been doing. Congrats on eight years…wow! I look forward to following you, learning from you, and now checking into some of these musical artists you listen to.

    Like

     
    • Ste J

      23/01/2017 at 12:50

      It is a long time and especially on this blog, when I made a real go of it and have had wonderful opportunities and met some fantastic people, both in person and online. Who knows what the next eight years will hold but I look forward to experiencing them with you my friend.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  13. Asha Seth

    25/01/2017 at 07:36

    I have valued every day of this journey with you as you may have valued some others who you miss not having around anymore. It’s been 4 for me and the double for you. It’s a long time and a good one at that. Wishing you luck, not that you need it!

    Like

     
    • Ste J

      26/01/2017 at 15:42

      It’s great to have you as a continuing companion my friend and long may we continue together down this blogging road!

      Liked by 1 person

       

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