Bad Brain Day

Hello

This blog’s more of a diary entry I guess than my usual rant-about-something type of blog.

I’m having a Bad Brain Day™

If you’ve been following me on Twitter for a while you’ll be familiar with Brian, the name I’ve given to my depression/anxiety. It makes it easier to tell him to fuck off (it’s also what happens if you try to type ‘brain’ whilst mid-panic attack.)

Brian’s been dormant for a good few months now, only popping up every now and then to say my book’s shit or that I look like Shrek (someone once said I look like Shrek and Brian will NOT let it go.) but yesterday he came back.

He’s not the loudest he’s ever been. I still got up, and got dressed, and got to work on time, despite his best efforts. But he’s been hanging around me for the last two days, telling me I’m shit.

He’s mostly reminding me that I’m not trying hard enough in my writing career. That what I’m working on is shit, and that I’m not doing enough freelance work. That even when I am doing freelance work, it’s terrible. I’m shit at my job, I’m shit at life, I’ve peaked. My trajectory has plateaued and now all I do is post Twitter polls and be terrible.

I’m simultaneously panicked into wanting to do loads of work, but too numb to think of anything to write. I don’t have any ideas, I don’t know who to pitch to, I’m just stuck.

Like I’m down a hole, just shallow enough that the top of my head pokes out and I can see how great everyone else is doing. But I don’t have the energy to climb out. I don’t have time to figure out how, because despite being a failure and doing nothing, I’m too busy to breathe, too busy to think, too busy. I don’t know. I’m overwhelmed and lost and feel shitty today.

So if my tweets are weird and existential and sad, that’s why.

I’ll bounce back, I’m sure. But today is a Bad Brain Day™

PS. I used a picture of a puppy because puppies make me happy.

Mountbatten: An Excerpt

Chapter Two

Good lord, Weeks skin is greasy. Is it sweat, or grease? I dont know; it looks like itd be slippery to touch. Doesnt he wash himself? Eugh

“Sir?”

“Weeks,”

“You’ve got two minutes, sir.”

“Yes, right. Good.”

Mountbatten straightened his tie and smiled comfortably into the camera lights. The air was thick with sweat and artificial heat, grumbling with the mumblings of journalists and politicians, the rustling of paper, and the buzz of anticipation.

Carl Weeks, Mountbatten’s right-hand man, had been promised the position of Chancellor of the Exchequer upon the election of Mountbatten as Prime Minister. He was a slight man, with a grey comb over that aged him far past his 42 years.

A sudden thought caught Mountbatten off-guard, and his heart stopped for a second. Patting his chest, he felt for the small egg-shaped lump and found it where he’d left it, in his inside jacket pocket. His pulse slowed back to normal and he stepped forward at Weeks’ nod.

“Good Morning. Thank you all for coming.” Several of the audience blushed at his smile – he was handsome, it was fair to say. A strong jaw and full head of chocolate brown hair, with just a sprinkling of grey on the sides, he could even be forgiven his poor choice in facial hair – a thick, Tom Selleck-esque moustache.

“We’ve had a great campaign so far, and the support that the country has shown us has been tremendous. I, personally, can’t thank you enough for your kind words and solidarity as I pledge to make this country truly great again.” The reporters and the camera operators alike were grinning, some even subconsciously giving a small nod of encouragement.

“I know that, in recent years, smear campaigns have been held against my opponents on both sides, and I believe that this is a testament to the country’s disillusionment with politics. Neither of the main two parties in the outdated two party system were giving the whole country what they wanted, nor what they needed – and the opinion polls show that the Friend of Everyone party is exactly what this country needs.”

Pause for effect are they going to applaud? They should, that was fucking inspiring.

“We believe in the greater good – and the greatest good, is the British public. The British public who present themselves, and carry themselves with the self-respect and dignity that shapes a nation, and who they are as individuals. Until the majority of you as citizens are happy with the way the country is run, the country is being run incorrectly. So when you go in to that voting booth on Thursday – remember FOE. The only party that cares about you, and the only party that cares about the greater good. To the greater good!” Mountbatten flashed another smile as his voice raised an imaginary toast to the public. The reporters roared and a couple of lights shook with the movement of the room.

Fucking nailed it. I am so fucking brilliant. 

Weeks breathed a sigh of relief at the side smirk on his boss’ face, and then started as his charming blue eyes caught his own. Mountbatten raised an eyebrow to which Weeks nodded fervently and held up two fingers – “two minutes” he mouthed.

“We have a couple of minutes, if there are any questions?” One woman squeaked as her hand shot in to the air.

“Yes?”

“Michelle Truman, Daily Mail -“

“Good morning, Michelle, how are you?”

Michelle nearly dropped her pen as she flustered.

“I’m – thankyou, good, I was – I’m just wondering – are you excited about the move to number ten? The figures certainly look in your favour!” she trembled, rustling the pages of her notebook.

Mountbatten laughed a big, booming laugh that echoed from the marble walls.

“Let’s just see what happens on Thursday,” he said, with a wink that almost caused the journalist to stop breathing. She fell back on her seat with a giddy thud.

Mountbatten stood outside the London hotel, waiting for his driver to pull up. Weeks was weighed down with his bags and enormous leather Filofax, standing nearly a foot shorter than the party leader. The car pulled up and, after a few moments of standing still, Mountbatten looked down his nose.

“Weeks?”

“Oh, sir, sorry, sir, yes,” he grabbed the handle and opened the car door, dropping his organiser and all of the papers it contained on the damp pavement. Mountbatten ignored the fuss and slid on to the leather seat.

After Weeks had gathered his belongings and deposited Mountbatten’s bags in the boot of the car, he climbed in the other side, cringing slightly as Mountbatten checked his watch impatiently.

“Back to the office, driver, I have a lot to do.” He clipped.

“Sir? I thought we were done for the day?”

“You’re done for the day; I have to round some things up.” Best compliment the weasel, he looks like hes about to pass out. “Good work today, Weeks. I think we’re well on the way!” he grinned, slipping back into his press conference projection.

“Thank you, sir!” Weeks lit up, reaching for a handshake. He quickly retrieved his digits as Mountbatten recoiled slightly.  “The opinion polls are looking in our favour, sir. Certainly in our favour.”

When he nods, I can see his bare scalp. Its like peeking through a little head curtain. I bet its greasy under there, too. 

“It’s not over until I’m in that building, Weeks. That’s when the fun really begins,” Mountbatten grinned once more, absentmindedly fingering the lump in his jacket pocket. Weeks nodded silently for the rest of the journey.