Cambridge Science Festival is over and done (it went well, and I was particularly pleased with my delivery during my solo show) and I’ve finished the course that’s been taking up several evenings a week (in a successful manner), so I’ve had a bit of a break before I start focusing on my next creative project. As usual, this meant that I became confused at not having anything that needed doing Right Now, but I did manage some relaxing walking and got to watch some Rugby (League, of course). As the solo show went so well I was on a little bit of a high that night, but apart from a little dip the day after I managed to avoid the usual post-project downer but I’ve not quite managed to spin up again for the next project yet – which really is continuing on with script writing. How do you find ending creative projects?
In any case, it seems like a fitting time for me to share some things I’ve been enjoying recently (in the gaps between busyness) and ask for suggestions for unusual things that I’m likely to have missed; I’m sure a huge amount of good stuff remains mostly unnoticed and I’d like to be pointed at some of it – please leave your suggestions in the comments.
In the meantime, here are some things I like with comments to help you decide if you like them or not.
ALL ABOUT BETTER WONDERLAND (MASHUP by NilsOfficial) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8i-tonOhzSg – I like mashups in generally, and this one is particularly fun to dance to
Songs of Separation – http://www.songsofseparation.co.uk/
Spotify Link : https://play.spotify.com/album/5W3VOxhnu3ujI9u5t9PKOZ – a folk album themed around the idea of “separation” but somehow uplifting. 10 really talented musicians and a nice mix of songs make this an album I’ve been enjoying.
Only Connect – http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b074cc5x/only-connect-series-11-sport-relief-royal-iii-v-bbc
Sadly I’ve still not managed to get onto this difficult quiz show about making connections, and we’re in the gap between series, but I really enjoyed watching the last series and there’s a Sport Relief special available on iPlayer now. Although the celebrity specials tend to have easier questions, I thought this one was mostly still quite tough – which is probably a good thing, as this is very much the type of show where if you manage to get even one question right you can feel proud of yourself. And if this special has whet your appetite for more, you can try to defeat the nefarious connecting wall here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/2Z79DzzJY8w2R58bpftq14k/quiz
The Bands of Mourning – Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson – http://brandonsanderson.com/books/mistborn/- I feel this one needs a bit of background, and I’d generally like to recommend the entire series, but I’d like to focus on this book (so far). Anyway, there was a fantasy trilogy with a really nice magic system and lots of bad things happening to people (Mistborn/The Final Empire, The Well of Ascension, The Hero of Ages) and then there was a timeskip and now the world is “on the edge of modernity” which seems to be loosely based on the West around the 19th to early 20th century, so there are frontier towns and railways, but cars and electricity are new inventions (I am not a historian, and there are legitimate plot-based reasons for why the development of various technologies doesn’t match up with the real world).
I’m still in the middle of this book (so no spoilers please), but I’ve been really enjoying getting to know the characters in this time period. In particular, Steris, who in the first book after the time-skip (The Alloy of Law) seemed like a rather distant noblewoman, has got a lot more development and is now one of my favourite characters. There’s also been more of a look at the backgrounds of the characters and how that continues to affect their current attitudes and actions.
A note of warning though – if you don’t like characters being put through the wringer, don’t read these books, particularly the first trilogy. Things Get Worse. On the other hand, if you enjoy that sort of thing, do come along for the interesting magic systems and people being forced to reconsider their morality in extreme situations.
That’s all for now. What have you been enjoying?