Do you get annoyed when the Academy Award winners go on and on, well beyond their allotted minutes, and thank their entire family, circle of friends, business associates, fellow actors, pets and maybe even their stamp collection? I know that like all sensible, rational people (i.e. people I call ‘friends’), I do find award ceremonies a bit of a tiresome lovefest… Unless, of course, I happen to be the one nominated, in which case, like all creative, imaginative, brilliant people (whom I also call ‘friends’), I begin to think that awards are a wonderful, meaningful process of appreciating one’s fellow geniuses (genii?).
So, yes, you might have surmised from this that I was jumping up and down in excitement when I came back from holiday and discovered that my dear faithful (by name and by nature) friend Ami Fidèle had nominated me for the Liebster Blog award. It’s my first award and only the second time I have been tagged for something, so bear with me while I do a little dance around my living room.
OK, back now, and ready to fulfill my obligations for the award:
1) Thank the person who nominated you and link back to them. Well, if you haven’t come across the beautifully romantic poetry of Ami Fidèle or Ami de Rêve, a Cyrano de Bergerac who has somehow wandered into the 21st century, then I strongly recommend you go to his blog and enjoy it.
2) Copy and paste the award logo – done!
3) Nominate five other bloggers you would like to pass the award on to.
This was really hard, partly because there are so many wonderful bloggers that I have discovered recently, who have become firm favourites. Also, because quite a few of them have awards already, or have just been nominated by someone else. Or are way too well-known and universally appreciated to worry about this teeny-timid clap on the back from me. Still, I have done my best, they are all blogs I can whole-heartedly recommend (and I only fear that they may be too busy to respond).
Ethan Greenwood - Letters from the Wasteland – for outstanding word-craft
Polly Robinson – for variety, versatility and encouraging activity
Layla from Be Not Afeard – for thoughtful provocation
Already Not Published - for being candid about her writing journey
Eclectic Nomad – because I would like to read more from her
4) Tell your readers ten random facts about you. To alleviate the potential monotony of such a long list, I have tried to associate each random fact with a book title.
Ballet Shoes I always dreamt of becoming a ballet dancer, but, when I was about seven, my mother happened to be in the same ward in hospital as a ballet dancer who had broken her spine after her partner dropped her (and was paralysed for life). So I was never allowed to continue with my dancing. I read all of Noel Streatfield and Lorna Hill instead.
Water for Elephants My second dream job was to work as a keeper in an elephant orphanage somewhere in Africa. I still adore elephants and have a collection of elephant figures (sadly, mostly stored in the attic with all of this moving around). And I would never, ever buy any ivory.
The Sea, the Sea My favourite colours are blue and turquoise. And I love anything to do with the sea.
Starman The first single I ever bought (way before downloads) was David Bowie’s ‘Scary Monsters (Super Creeps)’ and I remain a big fan to this day (prefer the earlier work, though).
James and the Giant Peach I like all fruit and vegetables, except for the notorious durian, which makes me gag.
Chocolat I have a sweet tooth and used to be able to eat up to five desserts a day (instead of proper food). No longer!
Not Waving but Drowning I never learnt to swim properly (although I can float and do breast stroke), and am terrified of drowning.
Bleak House My guilty pleasure is reading home improvement/ interior design magazines. I’ve been known to buy them at airports even if they are in Danish, Swedish and other languages that I do not speak.
Confessions of an (English?) Opium Eater I’m not English. But I write and dream in English and I speak English better than any other language.
There Is No Long Distance Now I started this blog about two months ago as a place to ‘park’ all my work in progress, and as a way to hold myself to account and write something every day, after sooooo many years of putting my creative writing last. I was inspired by the wonderful poet Naomi Shihab Nye, who, with her wonderful eyes, deep voice and luminous presence, told me that even seven minutes a day spent working on a poem counts as writing. Since then, I have never looked back. I never expected anybody to read the blog and was firmly convinced all my first readers were spammers. I have been overwhelmed by the encouragement, support and new friends that I have gained from it. And that I have not been forgotten even during the three weeks I was offline. I am very grateful indeed, thank you all!
So there you are, I still managed to thank everybody for this award. Except for my (imaginary) stamp collection.