I was chuffed to be invited to read from a short story at the launch of the new digital journal 50GS (give it a read here – it’s a thing of beauty). It was utterly surreal to be reading a story at my alma mater. Halfway through the extract (from “Sugar Cake Trail”) I realised …
Just over two years ago, I started running. I Googled “how to start running” and followed a plan that had me walk for 7 minutes and run for one minute, with three repetitions, a few times a week. The next week, I walked for 6 minutes, ran for 2, and so on. Running for my first continuous 20 minutes felt amazing, and I’ve been running on and off ever since.
Then I moved from Austria to Scotland, and my flatmates and I decided to participate in a 10k race in November 2013. After that, I sort of… stopped running. (Too cold. Too windy. Too snowy. Too Christmas. Too hot.)
Sometime in autumn 2014 my boyfriend decided to run the Edinburgh Marathon the following year, and his sister suggested we enter to run the Half Marathon at the same time. I chose to enter as an independent runner (rather than be sponsored by a charity) because they had a bottom limit on how much money you had to raise for them: £250 seemed like a lot, and I wasn’t sure how many people I’d convince to donate. So instead, I paid to run the half marathon, and chose to raise £200 for Breast Cancer Care in memory of my Mum, who passed away on New Year’s Eve 2012. You can read the full story of why I chose that charity here (the page is still open for donations!)
Just over a week ago, I got a chance to tell a story out loud to an audience at this event as part of the Scottish International Storytelling Festival 2014. Not a made-up story, a real story.
I rarely write down what happens to me. Well, that’s a lie, I’ve kept a journal for over ten years, on and off, but I’ve never written down my own experiences for others to look at.
Sometimes I find myself saying things like, “you know, it’s just a very physical process” or “my characters spoke to me”. Then I usually apologise to whoever I’m talking to. But in this case, it’s true.
I’ve always secretly thought I’d make a good pop star. I toyed with making my name sound cool by chopping off the last vowel (“And now, the new single by CHRISTIN’!”), but it never really worked out. Not until I started singing other people’s songs and making music with my friends.