This Video is a Bit of Everything

Hi everyone, I thought I would sit down
today and just have a chat while I’m getting ready.
I normally watch YouTube videos when I’m getting ready so it feels kind of nice
to film whilst I’m getting ready, too. Also it feels like I have been away for ages. I
actually haven’t been for you; I haven’t been away at all, but I was in Sweden on
book tour and then Mr. M and I were in Copenhagen for two days and then Scotland
for a week on holiday, which was really really lovely. I prefilmed stuff
before I went away; a haul went up and also a podcast with Kirsty Logan went up
so there have been no gaps on here but I haven’t filmed for a while and I always
(even though have been doing this for quite a long time) feel a little bit
weird when I’ve been away for a little while — sorry I’m just looking in the
mirror — so I thought just filming a casual chat and… I’m going to say ‘get ready with me…’ though it’s not a get ready with me because this is in no way a tutorial but,
you know, just a chat while I’m getting ready would be a nice thing to do to
ease myself back into making videos, even though it’s only been a couple of weeks.
Anyway, welcome, happy Monday, how are you? Oh and also fitting in with this is that
I often get asked, both on these videos and on Instagram, how I tie my head
scarves, so I can show you that. That doesn’t warrant a whole video of its own
but I can show you that as I’m getting ready and also that fits in quite nicely
because this month, September, is Alopecia Awareness Month so that kind of slots
together very well. Anyway I have made a list of some things
I want to talk about and this video is going to be a bit of everything, there will be some favourites in here, some things I’ve been really enjoying, what
I’ve been up to recently, and just general chatty stuff. I would
love to know how you are in the comments section down below and what you have
been up to, as well. As I mentioned we’ve been away and
it’s the first time that Mr. M (who is my husband if you’re new here) has been
able to come with me on book tour. He’s been to a couple of book events, local
book events in the evenings when a new book has come out but he’s never been able to travel
with me and come to book events because he has to go to work, so this was the
first time he’s been able to do that and that was really, really lovely because whilst
book tour is fun and I love meeting you guys, after the events I get
back to the hotel room and it’s a little bit lonely, so it was really cool that he got
to come along with me especially somewhere like Sweden which is obviously
further from home than many of my other events. I did five events in total,
four for grown-ups and one for kids which was great and then we got to explore
when I wasn’t doing events, which was lovely and yeah it was just really
joyful. Also Jan (the bookshop owner) put us up on a boat when we were in Uppsala and, I don’t know…
I felt like I was in an Agatha Christie novel which isn’t to say that I thought
I was going to get murdered [laughs] I don’t mean that it was scary but… it
was just quite quaint and charming and we had share showers and
bathrooms with everybody else who was on the boat, so it felt as though you were doing a
dance and going down the corridors trying to make sure that you didn’t run
into people when you were wrapped up in a towel. There was just something kind of comedic about it but I very much enjoyed
it and then from there we went to Copenhagen for a couple of days, then we
flew to Edinburgh for two days. We met at Edinburgh University (Mr. M and I), we lived
on the same corridor in halls and that was 14 years ago… in fact 14 years ago to
the day we were actually in Edinburgh and that was really cool, so we got to
wander around our old haunts. If you’re after the best vegetarian curry in
Edinburgh go to the mosque, it’s fantastic, we went to urban angel for
brunch which was delicious, climbed Arthur’s Seat and Calton Hill and went to
the Botanic Gardens; it was just a joyous time and then we went to Arran for a week
which was our proper relaxing hiking… I’m actually not sure how well ‘relaxing’ and ‘hiking’ go together… anyway yes we went hiking for a week
on Arran and it was beautiful. It was tough.
I think Scottish mountains are much harder,
generally speaking, than like say the mountains in the Lake District, they’re
much more exposed, there’s a lot more scrambling, in fact there was one day
when we climbed Goat Fell, which is the largest mountain on Arran, and we went up
a different route. There’s an easier route, which is the most popular one, but
we decided to go up a different one because the book had said that it was… it
didn’t say it was arduous scrambling, it said there was some exposed scrambling
and not to do it in wet weather and it was a dry day and we went but still it was
quite terrifying, so we decided not to trust the book entirely for the rest of
the trip and made sure we cross-referenced all of the walks with online reviews that people had written which just made us feel a bit
safer. It’s really difficult to do your
eyebrows and talk at the same time but I’m gonna try… while we were away… no, it’s
impossible [laughs], I’ll come back to you…again There we go. While we were away we
watched two things that I would like to recommend, in fact we only watched these
two things and both of them were brilliant, though not exactly uplifting,
but I don’t think you’re expecting that, necessarily, from my
book and TV recommendations; you know that I like the darker stuff. We
watched Chernobyl, long after everybody else. I can’t remember what it was was on when
it aired in the UK, I think maybe it was on Now or something, and we don’t have
that so we had to wait until it was available on iTunes, so that we could buy
it. It stars Emily Watson and Jared Harris who I adore. He was the person I
really wanted to play young Dumbledore in Fantastic Beasts because he’s Richard
Harris’s son and also because he’s an amazing actor; he also played King George
in The Crown, he’s great. So we watched Chernobyl, which is
a… what do you even call these… do you call them docu-series? Anyway it’s a television series but it’s obviously based on all
of the things that happened in Chernobyl and I thought it was — like everybody
thought it was — brilliantly done, it’s it’s amazing and harrowing and important
and all of all of those adjectives and I found it it made me quite angry watching
it. I have quite a strange relationship with Chernobyl and this is probably
going to sound really odd but basically Chernobyl happened exactly
nine months before I was born, pretty much to the day, and after Chernobyl a
lot of radiation came across to Western Europe and then rained down in the UK
and in the north of England in particular there was a lot of rain that included radiation and there was a 30% increase
the next year in babies that were born with genetic
differences, especially cleft palate syndromes, and I was born nine months
after Chernobyl with a cleft palate syndrome which is EEC Syndrome. I’ve spoken about that before; if you’re new, I’ll link my videos about disfigurement below So it was
strange to watch Chernobyl. Obviously genetic blips, if we’re going to call them that, are caused
by a variety of different things and you can never know exactly why one has
occurred; no one else in my family has EEC no one else has anything remotely like
EEC, so it was a new genetic mutation and it could have been caused by any number of things but as I said there was a 30%
increase in genetic mutations in the north of England when I was born which
were caused by Chernobyl, so it’s weird watching it thinking that might be why I
was born that way, this thing that happened so far away that has nothing to
do with me at all, it’s so odd. Aside from that, the show itself is
phenomenal and the other thing that we watched was Unbelievable. It’s about
two female cops trying to catch a serial rapist. This show, because of the
subject matter, is difficult to watch in places but if you can watch it
I so recommend watching it because it’s a show that is based on a real
case; it’s based on a real person and in no way glorifies the person who was
doing these attacks; it doesn’t give him screen time for his excuses; it focuses on
the effects that it had on the women who he attacked and it focuses on the two
female cops who worked so hard to catch this guy. I have never watched a show like that where it’s so respectful and that shouldn’t be new but I
really felt it was new, and I just thought it was incredible. Let me put
some lipstick on. I definitely can’t talk while I’m doing this so… one second.
I meant to mention this at the beginning of the video and forgot, I’m doing an
event this week; if you’re in Nottingham I would love to see you there,
I will be there on Thursday the 26th of September in the evening at Five Leaves
Bookshop talking about short stories and poetry and fairy tales.
I’ll leave details in the description box down below, ok, let me look at my
list what else did I have to tell you about..
Oh actually wanted to mention this, the book that the lists are written in. I
picked up some new stationery. I’ve got two new notebooks and let me move this
makeup out of the way… and a new diary because I needed a new diary and so I
picked up these two notebooks in Tiger, love of my life, which look like this and
they’ve got flamingos on the front and I think they’re adorable. I think they were
only £2 each and they have quite thin lines inside which is my favorite
and then I also got this diary which I love from Papier. I’ve never had one of
their diaries before; I’ve been gifted their notebooks before because you can
personalize them but I needed a new diary and this one ran from the summer
so it worked out for me and it looks like this inside. So it’s slightly different to the
moleskine one that I was using before but I really am enjoying using that one.
I have made a video before where I talk about how I organize my time and
I’ve talked about the stationery that I use in order to organize my life, so if
you’re interested in that I will link that down below. What else was on my list?
Franklin 3 came out last week. I was away when he came out, which felt very strange
and but we’ve got the launch for it next week, so this is Franklin and Luna and
the Book of Fairy Tales; I’ll insert a picture here, it’s the third book in the
Franklin and Luna series which is written by me and illustrated by Katie Harnett. We say these are suitable for children aged 3 to 8 but also for anybody who loves
books and dragons so if you’re interested in checking that out I’ll
also link it down below, you can find it in all good bookshops here and in the
States, it’s coming out in a few different languages.
The first Franklin book is now available in about 13 languages and
there will be a delay in translations coming out because translations normally
get bought after a book has come out but hopefully those will filter through as
well and I also sell signed copies from my website as well, so details are down
below. I also, before I went away, slightly nerve-rackingly sent off my new book to publishers. The novel that I have been
working on and I have meetings that coming up soon which is exciting slash
terrifying and I will talk to you more about those when I can. I’m going to
put on a headscarf now because I said I was going to do that let me show you what I
have. You may think that it’s excessive it’s one of those things where it’s only
when you show people that you realize how maybe over-the-top it is…
because it’s just normal for you, anyway… I’m going to show it, so I have this basket,
it’s a very small basket, I’m trying to balance everything… is that rain? No I think
it’s just a very loud car. Okay so I have this basket here of beanies. I wear a
beanie underneath the head scarf, it’s taken me a while to kind of work out
what style works for me and I have made previous videos talking about alopecia
if you want to learn more about that I’ll link it down below, so I wear one
beanie and then I wear a head scarf over the top. This is my
excessive head scarf collection and these make me feel more confident. I have picked them up at second-hand markets, at vintage markets and some of
them I’ve also picked up online so I’ll link down below to ones that I have
picked up online and I find tying them along these hangers works really well.
Because the majority of them are silk I don’t wear them on their own
because I find them really slippy and I can’t really pin them into my hair
because I find that quite painful, so that’s
why I wear the beanie underneath and then the headscarf on top. What colour
shall I wear today? I’m quite monochrome so maybe I’ll just
wear this one. I’ll wear the one that’s on top which is this brown patterened beanie. Anything I can link I will link down below but I have made a video before
where I was talking about alopecia whilst wearing these beanies,
when I was just thinking about wearing head wear if you’re confused, the alopecia I have is at the back of my head which is why you can’t see it
when I’m looking at the camera, but you can see other videos if you’re
interested. So I wear these and then I wear a head scarf over the top. I
think I’m going to wear this one today so what I do, because as I said they’re
quite silky, is I tend to wear them not inside-out but the wrong way around.
The other side is less silky, so I fold it in half this way to create a triangle
and then I roll it from the pointed end inwards so that I get this shape
which I will show you in a second. So I roll it until it looks like
this and then I just put it round the back of my head, make sure that this end
is slightly longer, bring it round the front and then tie it like this so it’s
just a simple knot and then I double knot it as well. So it looks like this and then I
just tuck in the ends, so it’s really really simple.
I think that once it’s on the overall effect looks more complicated than it
actually is. I tuck this underneath this one and all the way along so that it’s
not all bunched up in one place. So yeah that is what it looks like. I hope you
can see it. I know it’s not the world’s best tutorials but it’s also not
that complicated, I think it just looks more complicated than it is, honestly
it’s the easiest thing and I really enjoy styling these and I’ve had a lot
of fun with it. It makes having alopecia feel…well, it just makes it easier for me
because I feel like it’s …not that alopecia is part of my style… but this is
now part of my style and I think it works quite well with my dungarees. I
feel like this is now my uniform as it were, which is quite nice. Did I
have anything on the list that I needed to tell you? Yes, I did! I had a question
that I wanted to ask you. I have been on this channel now for nearly five years, I
think it’s five years in October and I have nearly reached on here… we have
nearly reached 50,000 subscribers, which is really really cool.
I don’t normally do videos regarding subscriber count or anything like that
but I think 50,000 subscribers in five years sounds like a fun time to take a
moment and celebrate, so I would like to make a video or more than one video that
will perhaps take longer than a normal video on this channel
and I would like you to tell me if there’s anything that you would love me
to do, because obviously I want to make content that you want to see. I have seen
people doing the “books control what I eat for 24 hours or for a weekend” video
which is really quite fun. So you open a book and then it tells you what
you have to eat, not a cookbook, just a novel and you have to find what
characters are eating and given that many of you like it when I do cooking
related stuff on this channel too I thought that might be quite a good thing
to do, but if you have other requests I would love to hear them.
Maybe I could do more than one thing just let me know in a comment down below
because I would love to know. I hope you guys are having a great start to the week
and I will speak to you very soon. Lots of bookish love, bye! x

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