Uni week 4: Guess who’s sick!

feather-305273_1280That’s right, it’s me. It’s another cold and the cough has returned. I wasn’t up to going in this morning; my anxiety was playing up as well. I really didn’t want to go to Lincoln for the day but I forced myself to get the bus to Grimsby and then get the train from there. It doubles my transport costs but I wouldn’t have managed the walk to Habrough station without an asthma attack or coughing fit.  Continue reading

Review: ‘The Other Einstein’ by Maria Benedict

Publication date: 18th October 2016

Published by: Sourcebooks Landmarks


A vivid and mesmerizing novel about the extraordinary woman who married and worked with one of the greatest scientists in history.

What secrets may have lurked in the shadows of Albert Einstein’s fame? His first wife, Mileva “Mitza” Marić, was more than the devoted mother of their three children—she was also a brilliant physicist in her own right, and her contributions to the special theory of relativity have been hotly debated for more than a century.

In 1896, the extraordinarily gifted Mileva is the only woman studying physics at an elite school in Zürich. There, she falls for charismatic fellow student Albert Einstein, who promises to treat her as an equal in both love and science. But as Albert’s fame grows, so too does Mileva’s worry that her light will be lost in her husband’s shadow forever.

A literary historical in the tradition of The Paris Wife and Mrs. PoeThe Other Einstein reveals a complicated partnership that is as fascinating as it is troubling.

My review

This was a really good novel, told in first person past tense, and narrated by Mileva Maric as she goes from an incredibly intelligent and optimistic student to a tired housewife with two young children and an absent husband. Obviously it is fiction but the book is well researched and delves in to the private lives of the Einsteins. Mileva Maric was an amazingly talented physicist and mathematician who was forced to give up all her work for her marriage and was probably instrumental in the four 1905 papers that made Albert Einstein’s name.

The writing was really fluid and easy to read. The only problem I had was with the occasional information dumps that didn’t quite fit into the plot.

University update: Week 2

Well, my second day at university has been and gone. It was an interesting day.

 In the morning workshop three people had submitted work for feedback, including me. I was very impressed by the other pieces, though I only got to read one of them. My writing is positively amateurish compared to everyone else. I did get some useful feedback and information about formatting though which I’ve acted on. I’m going to develop the idea further and possibly use it as my assessment piece. I’ve already written another thousand words on it. The only problem with that is, now I’ve been told it’s funny I’m going to have to stop myself from trying to be funny, because experience tells me that that way leads to tortured prose and no being funny.

My afternoon seminar was not too bad. My poem was out of sync with everyone else, who used the opportunity to write about emotional events. Very well, I might add. My choice of poem by someone else was also not in line with the rest. I don’t think I’m going to get good scores for this module. This week’s homework is to write ten lines about shoes. I’ve done that already and it’s sparked an idea for my assessment for this part of the module.

University is having an interesting affect on my mental state. In the morning I’m aware but as the workshop goes on I begin to get more and more impatient with people. By the afternoon seminar I’m mentally exhausted and I can’t give decent feedback. I’m getting overwhelmed by the experiences the others write about, which combined with the exhaustion means my focus goes entirely. It’s taking two days for me to recover mental stability. I really don’t want to be around people and I’m exhausted still on a Friday afternoon. I had to miss sewing and craft club this week because I just wasn’t up to being around people.

Physically, things aren’t much better. Since I had to walk up to the station in record time on Wednesday morning I’ve been hurting just a tad. The train doesn’t help, the seats are too low and close together so I’m squashed, which doesn’t help my hip or back. The chairs in my work shop and seminar are uncomfortable and they have those tables attached on swing arms rather than proper desks. I’m cramped and can’t get myself settled comfortably in them. 

I’m determined to keep going and I refuse to let my messed up brain and my back injury stop me from studying and doing the best I can. I’m in the process of arranging my DSA assessment, I’m just waiting to hear back from the welfare centre at uni for an appointment. I’m also still waiting to hear about my initial assessment for a psychologist’s assessment with the local mental health team. It’ll all get sorted eventually.

Today I plan to do very little other than sort out what stock I’m taking to the craft fair tomorrow and walking the dogs later on. I might work on the novel although I’m fighting the urge to go and reformat the first two novels and start editing.