May is my favourite

April was a month of twos – I read two books by Patricia Highsmith, watched Fast & Furious 7 twice, went to the gym twice for spinning classes, found myself on Jiak Chuan Road twice and had two full working days at Publicitas, a custom publishing company. I also went twice to Shaw Lido’s Cinema 1 (one of the largest cinema theatres I’ve seen) – once for Fast & Furious 7 and the other for Avengers: Age of Ultron. Both were pretty fast-paced films, though I much preferred the latter.

April was a month of writing wins for me. My greatest achievement was completing the first draft of my novel at 60,471 words! This happened in the early hours of 1 May 2015 at 4am, while my bloodstream was oozing with caffeine and the result of many days of topsy turvy sleeping patterns. It was also the month I won a Writing the City competition and was rewarded with a $40 Kinokuniya voucher, and had a short story accepted for the Singapore Writer’s Group’s next anthology.

In April I read a total four books – all of which messed with my mind. They were two by Patricia Highsmith, along with ‘Ngeri’ by Gina Yap Lai Yoong and ‘Kingdom Come’ by JG Ballard. There was a full-day writing session at SOHO Central, learning about writing believable dialogue at April’s Writing the City workshop and a book launch at The Lime House. In April I applied to a total of seven jobs, went for a writing test, had a phone call interview and even turned down an offer.

Clockwise: Patricia Highsmith's collection of short stories photographed at Jewel Cafe; Alfero Gelato's coffee-flavoured ice cream; Monkey Shoulder cocktail tea at Marina Bay Sands; at the book launch of Melissa de Villiers' The Chameleon House
Clockwise: Patricia Highsmith’s collection of short stories photographed at Jewel Cafe; Alfero Gelato’s coffee-flavoured ice cream; Monkey Shoulder cocktail tea at Marina Bay Sands; at the book launch of Melissa de Villiers’ The Chameleon House

Despite my unemployment, there were lots of delicious dinner treats, including Skinny Pizza with an old friend from Manchester, a cafe brunch outing at Kovan, Japanese salmon and rice after a shopping favour, fish soup steamboat before a meeting, homecooked dinner by my flatmate, Ippudo ramen at Mandarin Gallery with relatives, a fellowship dinner at Saizeriya and a Saturday valet parking at Marina Bay Sands with a latte, onde-onde and a Monkey Shoulder cocktail tea treat.

Other than that, there was a 11km Macritchie hike, a 4-hour rock climbing session at Climb Central, a meet-up with high school girl friends at Bencoolen which ended up with more hometown stories than there are fiction books to write, discovering Alfero’s gelato in Orchard Gateway and falling ill for a week. On the last day of April I looked forward to completing my novel, the announcement of a trilogy competition, the end of Singapore Poetry Writing Month and the start of my favourite month – May!

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