Knitter Knatter

So its the second Knitter Knatter and this does still feel a bit weird, I don’t normally write about knitting… Not like this anyway. So I put down the spiral knit blanket for a while for a break and have been back at it working on the cable knit jumper from hell! I think I originally found this pattern a few years ago in a library book, god knows which one, so I was cheeky and made a copy of the pattern so I could give it a go… Sure I’ve written on my notes…

It helps to write on notes but to also make yourself a cheat sheet, especially with a cable knit to see how you are doing and where you are in the pattern, especially when parts of it have to match up… I used a cheap red and blue biro to be able to work everything out and be able to spot it easily.

I found a curved cable needle much easier than a regular straight cable needle easier. The cable pattern is done over 25 stitches so it is a bit of a mission to get perfect and its a repeating 14 row pattern at that.

This is the front panel and it has the extended collar pattern which means that stitch holders were my best friends in this instance. But It came out pretty well, though its very “boxy” looking.  Continue reading

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Carpe Noctem

Chapter Two: Petrova

Do you ever look into a mirror and examine yourself? I know who Petrova Blayze is. I know my hair; the loose curls that appear when I let it dry, the dark chestnut hues. I know my brown eyes, where the amber mingles and the way they can look like all the warmth has flooded away and become cold and less inviting. I know the way that my veins show below my pale skin. I know the way my brows furrow in thought. I know who I am and for the longest time, I was unique. Something none of my comrades had the appreciation of. Being entirely alone. Lonely yes, but freeing in a way. I didn’t have someone being an echo of myself or feeling like the echo of someone else. I didn’t cling to fragmenting memories of another part of myself, a sibling that never ascended. I didn’t have that pain, or that kind of sadness. The only one of my friends, comrades, that didn’t have the same uniting suffering, I got some strange twisted exemption. I was their curiosity, the oddity who didn’t share that bond of pain, a shiny toy. What they don’t seem to understand is I hate being on the outside of it all, its lonely out here.

I felt this kind of pang, a strange sensation when I rode the impulse to stop Lei. It was more than looking into a mirror, this was living and breathing and it didn’t fade or disappear when my eyes closed. It was a gut jerking sensation; this should never have been possible. Doppelgangers are meant to replace you in battle if you die, in this life, they are standbys almost, in a twisted way. The thing is, you shouldn’t meet your ganger, and yet there she was. So she wasn’t here to replace me, as far as I can tell. After managing to get into the HR system I found her file, she was one of us, she was simply reassigned it seems. I couldn’t hold that against her. But that flicker of jealousy that someone is so like me, so very much the mirror of me, from the eyes to the hair, to the way her lips crinkled at the corner when she smiled when she introduced herself, the same way my own do. Except she seems to flaunt qualities I wish we shared, her comfortable relaxed demeanour when she spoke to strangers. She does it too though; her first instinct is to introduce herself by her nickname. I prefer her name though… it sounds ridiculous I would feel jealous of that tiny little thing. But I can’t put my finger on why I feel this strange pull to Lei, I suppose it is close as I will get to feeling what my friends did, a long while ago. Continue reading

The 2019 Project

Well so far I am working on 1. write one book already, and part of that means 4. create/keep a writing schedule that works for me is a given. Hopefully this new balance will help with number 5. keep working on arappleby.com to really make this more of what I had thought it could be.

Lets see how next month will go but there are a few goals going at once this month to see what I can start to tick off one by one. fingers crossed.

24/7 Goals:

  1. Write one book
  2. See a west end show
  3. Write a second book
  4. Create/keep a writing schedule that works for me
  5. Keep working on arappleby.com
  6. Work with an agent/publisher
  7. Complete one knitting project
  8. Complete some crafting cross stitch project
  9. Keep doing daily positive aspects
  10. Complete one minor savings goal
  11. Get Christmas wrapped up early (ie. Halloween)
  12. Learn a new song on guitar
  13. Work on the schedule and make it work for this year
  14. Do another “on the fly” project
  15. Draw or sketch something to a point that you are happy with it
  16. Learn how to do winged eyeliner freehand
  17. Win the lottery
  18. Dress up and go out for an evening
  19. Buy a Kat Von D eyeliner
  20. Read five books this year minimum
  21. Get a tattoo (either finish one or get a whole new one)
  22. Create a budget that works really well
  23. Go ice skating at least once
  24. Enjoy 2019 as much as you possibly can!

Carpe Noctem

Chapter Two: Leianna

“Are you certain?” In truth, this is all a wild guess and I am trying to live up to expectations. There is no guarantee, there never is when it comes to eavesdropping, there never is when you are trying to infiltrate an organisation that would happily destroy you if they only know the truth. But there are chances that must be taken.

“Yes” I respond trying to sound as steady, certain and in control as I could be.

“You are ready? This is the one shot, one chance, no do overs. One trip and they won’t tell the difference or care.” I know what I am risking, my life. But reminding me doesn’t help the suffocating pressure or wanting to snap back. But a risky shot means risky company. Instead I take a deep breath and a half smile I let the false face of relaxation fall to reveal a confident expression of warning and control.

“I know what I’m doing.” I feel the corner of my mouth twitch, no doubt right now, I won’t let it sink in. This is the moment I have waited for, the cold sweats in the night are coming to fruition.

“I hope you realise, this may be the beginning of your undoing, asking me to unleash them.” I see it now, his pallor under his tan, he doesn’t fear for me. Perhaps if this were a normal friendship. No, he fears them, letting them loose could be linked back to him, but that is only if the touched decide to find a cause, and if he gives me up… Well that won’t be pretty, there is too much at stake. An almost lifelong friendship won’t change what I have to do. Failure is not an option.

“I need you to trust me. Can you do that Henry?” I ask trying to soften my features enough to look concerned. I know he will trust me.

“Lei, have I ever failed you?” He tries to act nonchalant stirring the sauce into his milkshake.

“No… but that doesn’t mean you can start now.” I smile finally enjoying the cold sweetness of the blue ice cream. I don’t doubt that my lips have turned colour from the ice cream.

A few minutes of quiet passes by. “So once they are summoned you have a small head start before they start coming after you and them. You have to move quick and make sure you are in the right place.”

“How many?”

“For what you want, to make it look genuine, to make running the only option? You won’t like it, but it is better you don’t know.” I feel the dread rise, I hate these creatures at the best of times, but timing has to be perfect. We go through the plans another couple of times before we leave the café, I hop into Henry’s car he drops me a few feet from where I need to be. I make my way towards the graveyard and wait in a dingy little pub nearby. The angel statues feel as though they watch me at the further edges of the hallowed ground, cold stone eyes. I watch Trova, a mirror of myself in what appears to be every way stride inside the gates. I slip out of the back and into the carpark. A couple of minutes to walk around the block. I didn’t need the buzzing in my pocket to warn me, I could feel it, the cold, the sound of wet flesh and the smell of damp. The shadows are alive, right now, so am I. I remember what I have to do, I run to the corner of the road. I count it in my breath, five, four, three, two, one and their alarm would have gone off, we are close enough now, heading towards the grave yard. I hate running, I hate the way my body feels when I run, like I can feel my muscles jerk and bounce, and the weight I can’t seem to loose reminding me I should exercise more and eat less crap. But it doesn’t matter right now. Just keep moving. Continue reading

Author Update (January 2019)

HAPPY NEW YEAR

I hope the first month of 2019 has treated you all really well.

As you can see there has been a little change to the content of arappleby.com after a lot of consideration I decided to make this site much more me. If that makes sense, so to me that meant including some of my other passions, namely knitting at the moment. It’s something I do to relax but it’s also something I am proud of even if I am still learning after nearly 20 years on and off, new patterns, stitches and difficulties. I am still passionate about writing, without a doubt.

The new feature,  Carpe Noctem has been exciting to write and I am still going with it, I really enjoy the new way of testing out the waters on new techniques and ideas that I am working on. Speaking of writing… I am trying a new schedule, or at least I am hoping to come up with making this a much more manageable year for writing. I think last year I set lots of expectations for myself that I couldn’t meet because I made the goals too hard to achieve realistically. That of course had a knock on how much time I would spend doing something that was meant to be fun that ended up stressing me out. So this year, my two set writing days I am going to split a bit more evenly between my projects. Today is obviously website day!

Well I had the start of January off of work, the first week at least. I spent it relaxing, I didn’t write once, but I did have some quality time with my other half which was great. We managed to spend time cooking together and getting to relax, it was also his birthday! Which was lots of fun, he had a good day which was all I wanted for him. He got a bit spoiled but isn’t that what birthdays are for.

Back to work blues hit in pretty hard. I’ll be honest, I want to spend more time writing, but I need to afford to live a life. It was ok a few years ago when I didn’t have these same goals and things I needed to save for, I could make the sacrifices that I now can’t afford to. But also at the same time writing was largely a form of therapy and I desperately needed that time. This year is going to be all about finding my balance. Writing and work.

I’ve done a little bit of writing this month which compared to the past few months with all the Christmas hubbub has been a good change, not at the writing rate I want to be this year but I am making progress onto the amount of time and quality I am aiming for. A regular set day or two for writing a week is a good thing.

This month has really triggered a “no more spending” ruling after looking at the things we are doing this year… lets see how that lasts… Time to start saving up again.

Nothing changes here in terms of throwing plugs in for my amazon books on my author page… I haven’t lost my hope just yet.

May luck and adventure be on your side!

ARA

xxx