What I'm Doing

A /now page.

Good News!

I got confirmation that the heart surgery I had last year has gone Just Fine™. I no longer need to be restarted with disturbing regularity.

Stressing

As everycunt won’t stop fucking mentioning, there’s a pandemic going on. Video calls remain stressful given the amount of focus they require at the best of times; I’m avoiding them as much as possible. I’m trying to see people, but the current restrictions aren’t going far enough; while the Scottish government is trying it is shackled in key ways (including financially) to the morons down South.

In a move to avoid doomscrolling1, I’m spending more and more time away from Twitter. My Facebook is already a heavily-curated echo chamber, and anyone who thinks I’m somehow wrong for that can fuck themselves with a rusty fence-post.

Writing

Will resume when I have mental capacity. I dug out a bunch of short stories and made a wee anthology as a way of teaching myself Affinity Publisher, but I haven’t come up with anything new in far too long. Right now I do not have the processing power available to create anything new.

I’ve always said my writing is strictly muse-dependent. Right now she’s busy drinking herself into late-stage cirrhosis at the state of the world. I think I may join her.

Freelance

Given the above, I’m not currently accepting freelance work. I have no confidence in my ability to hit deadlines right now.

Performing

Festivals and Events

  • Fuck-all. Pandemic, innit.

Drumming

I’m part of three crews, which will hopefully all resume once things ease off:

  • Unsæli (drums, fire, and folklore)
  • The Noise Committee (an Edinburgh-based community drum crew)
  • Big Drums (a small performance/teaching crew)

One of the most notable physiological and psychological effects of drumming is its ability to relieve stress and impose order on chaotic thinking; it’s one of the few things that leaves me feeling better about the world. Well, that and gin.

None of us are practicing or performing right now, of course. This is having exactly the negative effect on my mental health that you might assume.

Media

I can’t keep this shit current. I don’t have the attention span.

My ability to focus is generally shot. Normally I’d binge-watch something in the evenings over the course of a couple of weeks for company, while reading or writing or playing games or whatever, but I’m having a hell of a time paying attention to what I’m doing right now that any alternate input is messing with the streams.

That is not how my brain typically works. I’m best when I have multiple sources to jump between, I have no idea how to deal with this sudden major change in the availability of cognitive focus. See? I’m using sesquipedalian loquaciousness to distract myself. Help.

Television

  • What We Do in the Shadows is a lot of fun (especially Matt Berry swearing up a storm) but it gets cringe if I watch too much at once.
  • The Expanse is beautiful, but I can’t keep the context of more than one episode at a time. Star Trek Discovery is in a similar boat (or starship), but the weekly release schedule is actually helping with that.
  • Current watching that requires minimal engagement is a bunch of superhero TVUmbrella Academy, Titans, and the like. I’m tempted to start on the whole Arrowverse thing to have something to fill time.

Music

My listening hasn’t changed much since about 2008, which was a good year for angry bands with northern accents and guitars. But I haven’t listened to much in a while because that would require listening in a way that I can’t currently (see lack of focus, above).

  • Longwave is a chill-out mix of Radio 4 classics. It is quite relaxing.
  • Other’n that, it’s comedy on Radio 4. Newsjack and The News Quiz are how I get my news these days.

Books

Marvel Unlimited continues to give me way too much access to comics for my own good.

  • Current highlights include Immortal Hulk and what Jonathan Hickman’s doing with the X Men. And Empyre, which is doing a decent (if not spectacular) crossover. Damn sight better than things like Civil War 2 and Secret Empire, at least.
  • Current lowlights include anything Donny Cates is writing (seriously, nobody gives a shit about emo twat Knull, give it a rest). At least Dan Slott’s Iron Man is over.
  • Sex Criminals ended, and I cried.
  • DIE is fantastic. And the related RPG is really good as well.

Nothing’s really grabbing me like Hickman’s grand arc from Ultimates to Secret Wars, or Fraction’s Iron Man. And holy hell do I miss James Roberts’ MTMTE/Lost Light. Though I wonder how much on that front is down to the aforementioned problems with attention. If I have to focus on a single thing, I want it to be long and I want it to be good.

Games

  • Unavowed is pretty much exactly what I want from an urban fantasy point & click adventure game.
  • Even better, Disco Elysium is the Platonic form of adventure game. Grind it up and jam it into my veins.
  • Current immersive time-waster is Assassins Creed: Origins. There’s something about wandering Egypt that’s quite soothing in its own way.

What is This?

This page is a brief guide to what’s going on in my life right now. It exists to give a similar answer to if we met in a pub and you asked So, what’re you up to these days?”

That last sentence is horrible. I’ve had better days.


  1. Obsessively reading social media posts about how utterly fucked we are