Sunday, May 15, 2016

Procrastinating, Reading, and Mail Art

After 5 or 6 weeks of lack of interest in much of anything, I'm finally feeling energetic and involved again.  This has been a longer run of dullness than usual, and I never know just what causes these episodes.  My brain goes from enthusiastic, brimming with things I want to do -- to lazy and impassive and procrastinating -- then back again.  It isn't the same as with those fallow periods of creative ideas when I put my energy elsewhere, more like blah to everything.  

When that happens, I read.  A lot.  Sometimes a book a day or more.  And goodness, I'll never manage to catch up with all my reviews on my book blog.  Some books were excellent, most were OK, and some were just pretty bad.   My husband calls it an addiction.  It is, but one that I usually manage better!  :)

Because Carl's Once Upon a Time challenge has been in progress, 
I've read a lot of fantasy.
One right after another.  
And plenty of mystery and even some nonfiction.   

 The Golden Age of Murder is a nonfiction book about the age of detective fiction between the two world wars.  The three most well known writers from this period are Agatha Christie, Margery Allingham, and Dorothy L. Sayers, but there were dozens of others.  They formed The Detection Club and had a great deal of fun with annual dinners and more frequent casual meetings.  The book focuses mainly on the above three dames and their work, but the information about the individual members and the time period is simply fascinating!  

The Wicked Boy is a detailed account of a murder committed by a thirteen-year-old boy in 1895.  It covers the murder and the aftermath, but what is most interesting is the engrossing account of the justice system, the press, the school system, and the mental health system of the times.  I'm about 2/3 into it now.  At first, I wasn't sure what I thought--but the information about how the legal system and school system worked really engaged me.  I've just finished the portion about asylums.  Much of the information is surprising.  What the Victorians did poorly and unfairly and the efforts to improve by a few individuals (especially in the Broadmoor Asylum).  I will review the two together on my book blog when I finish The Wicked Boy.  

I have been keeping up with my correspondence, though.  Writing letters, sending postcards.  Here are some more examples of incoming and outgoing correspondence.

from Melody (bookish friend)--
we've been exchanging information about our
very different parts of the world  :)

from Mrs. Duffy,
of the lovely handwriting.

 from Connie an envelope that just
made the mailbox glow!

 from Wendy (another bookish friend) a wonderful bookmark.
AND her daughter Mouse made me a bookmark,
and I've shown both back and front
I LOVE it so much.

wonderful postcard from Suzie and Jazz Fest

Letter from Melody.
Because mail to and from Singapore takes so long,
we've been sending postcards in between.

New mail art pal, Emilie!

From Penne M.,
my friend for more years than I care to admit.
Love that birdie!


To the talented Mrs. Duffy,
whose handwriting I envy.
When I put this one in the mail, I failed to remove the washi tape
covering her address--and it came right back to me.
It is once again in the mail.

To Wendy 

To Melody

Hope everyone has had a good weekend!


  1. I must put The Wicked Boy on my reading list! There was so much cruelness back in the day under the guise of "helping". So much wonderful mail! I love the Jazz Fest postcard. Your outgoing is terrific. I had to laugh about the Washi tape. How lazy to not just see if it would come off easily. But what a great idea for protecting the innocent. I'll be borrowing that idea. I'm surprised that you don't worry for your own privacy. It's such a scary world these days.

    1. I'd seen several reviews of Kate Summerscale's The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher (about another Victorian crime), and Martin Edwards discussed the case in The Golden Age of Murder because several Golden Age writers used elements of the case in their novels. It seemed like serendipity that NetGalley offered The Wicked Boy just as I finished Edwards book!

  2. What a wonderfully colourful mailbox you must have!

    1. It has been lately--colorful and cheerful!

  3. I haven't been reading much. I remember when I would find quiet time to read. Now it seams there is no quiet time..and when there is I fill it with other things. Perhaps if I take a book by one of my favorite authors off the shelf it will nudge me on. Oh, you say DO IT!! Ok, I just did. Jeffery Archer...A Twist In The Tale. It's a collection of short stories that I have not yet read. I'll let you know!!
    xx, Carol

    1. :) I go through spells with everything! Gardening, sewing, embroidering, reading.... Now, I'm wanting a couple of birdhouses and feeders. Not that I would expect to have anything like your bird sanctuary, Carol!

  4. How I wish our mail deliveries will be faster! :-) Still, the anticipation just makes everything sweeter, isn't it? :-)

    Just to let you know I've sent out a postcard today. Can't wait to receive your letter, as always!

    1. I didn't take a pic of the postcard that went out before the letter, but hopefully, you will get one or the other before too long! And yes, anticipation is definitely part of the process. :)

  5. A pause for reading never hurt anyone. It can take you out of yourself, to new worlds and adventures. It can sooth and excite. My library is probably my very best friend *smile*

    1. I always read, but lately, it has been obsessive. I think it is because I haven't been making anything!

  6. I'm glad I'm not the only one who gets those periods of "blah to everything," but they do say it's the pause that refreshes us so taking time to do something else can't be a bad thing. Just like you I read when I get like this. I think it's probably the body's way of saying it has to rest the mind for the next onslaught of ideas. I have lists, notebooks and hundreds of scraps of paper with ideas, so I can see why there needs to be a rest, I just don't like the period of uncreativity if that is a word.

    1. :) I like that idea of resting the mind for "the next onslaught of ideas!" And I've lists, notebooks, and scraps of paper, too, Anna. It is funny to look at them after weeks or months and wonder exactly what I was thinking or where I got the idea and why I thought it work!


Good to hear from you!