Welcome to justthoughtsnstuff

I started posting to jtns on 20 February 2010 with just one word, 'Mosaic'. This seemed an appropriate introduction to a blog that would juxtapose fragments of memoir and life-writing. Since 1996, I'd been coming to terms with the consequences of emotional and economic abuse that had begun in childhood, and which, amongst other things, had sought to stifle self-expression. While I'd explored some aspects of my life through fiction and, to a lesser extent, journalism, it was only in 2010 that I felt confident enough to write openly about myself. I believed this was an important part of the healing process. Yet within weeks, the final scenes of my family's fifty-year nightmare started to play themselves out and the purpose of the blog became one of survival through writing. Although some posts are about my family's suffering - most explicitly, Life-Writing Talk, with Reference to Trust: A family story - the majority are about happier subjects (including, Bampton in rural west Oxfordshire, where I live, Oxford, where I work, the seasons and the countryside, walking and cycling) and I hope that these, together with their accompanying photos, are enjoyable and positive. Note: In February 2020, on jtns' tenth birthday, I stopped posting to this blog. It is now a contained work of life-writing about ten years of my life. Frank, 21 February 2020.

New blog: morethoughtsnstuff.com.

Saturday 4 April 2015

holiday time, pond clearing, tadpoles, conted award ceremony, brian nisbet's now you know, catherine chanter's the well, white violets, ant and pearly raindrops

Taking some time off next week. Wonderful to be on holiday after a particularly hectic start to the year. Looking forward to doing some gardening.

Got going with the pond this afternoon - removing blanket weed and duckweed before the tadpoles hatch. Well, that was the theory but I was only just in time. A lot are already out and about - though fortunately keeping to their nursery area which is like a shallow bowl in the middle of the clumps of spawn that were laid amongst the yellow flag.

As tweeted earlier in the week, I loved attending the Award Ceremony for ContEd courses at the Sheldonian. Students from the Certificate of Higher Education and the Diploma in Creative Writing were graduating. Great to catch up with the students afterwards too.

Looking forward to Brian Nisbet's book launch next Thursday for Now You Know. See 21st March post (which was also the one in which I mentioned seeing the first clumps of frog spawn in the pond).

Meanwhile, very pleased that another former student, Catherine Chanter, is doing so well with her novel The Well, published by Canongate.

Terrific that the white violets are out along Calcroft Lane. The one above is being visited by an ant. Surrounded by pearly raindrops.

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