Over the course of the next month and a bit I have:
- Three weddings
- Two hens nights
- A Thirtieth Birthday and
- Two Book Launches
I’m tempted to add “and a partridge in a pear tree” to the end of that list because by the time all of the above is over it WILL be Christmas time!
I’m super excited about all of the above. I spend most of my life in writerly hermitude. Most of my days are conducted in leggings and hoodies, with little or no makeup and only my own company. For the next month I will be wearing DRESSES (I have bought two and they are super lovely) and being SOCIABLE! This simultaneously thrills and terrifies me.
Maybe I’ve forgotten how to do it?
I mean I do have a social life. I catch up with my writer friends on a regular basis but when we catch up we talk writing stuff. I can do that. And of course I have a husband but when we’re together we spend most of our time talking about any combination of the following:
- My writing. Specifically the battle scenes in my writing because I suck at those and Bear is a great help.
- What combination of skills Bear’s new character should have in Titan Quest.
- Which are the worst kinds of zombies in Left For Dead.
- Funny things Bear finds on Reddit.
- Norwegian black metal.
- Whether Brown Jenkin is in fact the most terrifying HP Lovecraft character and possibly the most terrifying character of all time.
- Whose turn it is to unpack the dishwasher.
- Updating the operating system on my computer.
- Whether the fact that there are witches in Norway is a pro or con for moving there.
- Whether we should be concerned that Mephy is starting to get in fights (HE HAS A CHUNK OF FUR OUT OF HIM ARM!!!).
- What kind of bird it is in our garden.
- Whether it’s only normal bin night or normal bin night AND recycling bin night.
- Our plans for world domination.
I’m willing to put this out for public opinion but I am pretty sure that none of the people at the above events will want to talk about any of the things on my list of conversation topics. That won’t be a problem for Bear who can talk about anything to anybody (he’s a master at smalltalk with strangers). But as for me? I’ve got the pretty dresses organised. I may have a tube of red lipstick hiding somewhere in a drawer. I do own one pair of high heels and my hair is actually not too crazy at the moment but …
People are going to think I am bonkers.
There. I said it.
I’m really, really, really worried about the people at these events thinking I am off my onion. I have even started doing a Bridget Jones and walking around the house thinking of non-crazy conversation topics (“Chechnya. Chechnyaaaaaaa”). But so far all I’ve come up with is “So, who do you think will win The X Factor” and “How about this weather, hey?”
There are two other alternatives, of course:
- I could talk about my writing incessantly. Which will bore people to tears and make them think I am bonkers (I write about shapeshifting Tasmanian devils!!!) or
- I could not talk at all. Which will make people think I am bonkers and rude.
So what IS the solution?
Maybe I can just send Bear as some sort of smalltalking family ambassador?
Or maybe I can just show up, be myself and remember that all the people who invited me to all these events did so because they like me, with all my bonkersness. And I can just enjoy being in the company of the best people on the planet and stop being neurotic about EVERYTHING.
And if all else fails I can just spend the night saying “Isn’t my dress super pretty?”
I’m sure as heck not going to talk about Brown Jenkin.