One goal has been hogging my attention for a few weeks now, and that is writing my dissertation.
I’m actually quite enjoying it. I know that sounds a bit bizarre, especially to my ears when I think about how much I’ve hated research in the past, but I’ve read nearly every single book in the university library about marketing, branding and publishing and I’m loving it. My topic concerns author branding, which is a relatively fun topic, so at least I have (finally) chosen well.
When I say I’ve nearly exhausted the library, I mean it. Books vaguely related to the topic, books related to research methods, new books, old books. Many are so dated that they’re now funny. One book stressed how ‘competitive’ publishing was becoming because ‘over the past few years’ all of two books on marketing had been written. (Marketing in Publishing, 1997, Patrick Forsyth.) There was a great one implying how obvious it was that Pringles failed because they are just not very good crisps. I wonder if the guys even remember writing that (26 years later). (I’m looking at you, Mr Blackett and Mr Denton from Branding: A Key Marketing Tool.)
As regards my other goals, I have started reading Perfect by Rachel Joyce, having loved The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry. I’ll also be posting a review of The Universe Versus Alex Woods soon.
I thought I would also practise for my dinner party and take myself out of my comfort zone at the same time by making fajitas. Generally speaking, I don’t like spicy food, but I thought I’d try them again because the BBQ powder smells amazing.
It didn’t go entirely to plan. The chicken I bought had gone bad before its use-by date. (Shame on you, Asda! I’m a student – chicken at £3 was the most expensive item in my basket!) Clare went to get more. By this point, the Working Woman had already cut up the peppers, so I hadn’t done anything except wash the dishes that the off chicken had touched.
Eventually we got everything cooked, even if I didn’t end up having exactly the same. Clare and the Working Woman added onions to theirs. (Onions, along with raisins, are one of the most disgusting foods to disgrace the planet.) I also wanted less BBQ powder, as there was no sense in making it so spicy I wouldn’t eat it.
It was nice to find something we could eat together and I’m going to count that as taking myself out of my comfort zone for July. As if you needed further proof that I am trying new things, I just had brie ‘with 30% less fat’ and ‘yoghurt cultures’. (FYI, totally not worth it.)
Anyway, that’s enough for me for now. Better get back to branding!