An Update…Wedding, An International Move, A Longlisting

I don’t even know where to start with this post about recent happenings.  I’ll give you a little summary.  In the last month, I have:
My wedding was a brilliant day.  Doesn’t everyone say that though?  The number of times I got told to ‘enjoy every minute’ made me a little nervous: what if I missed something?  What if I didn’t concentrate hard enough and forgot something?  So much pressure is put on a wedding day, and I was determined not to let it get to me: not to let small, insignificant details ruin the fun!  And it was.  It was so much fun.  I had my emotional moment just before I stepped into the ceremony room, and my husband informs me I was trembling a little during the ceremony itself.  I’m glad I had those feelings: I really felt in the moment and I will always remember it.  After that, I was so relaxed and we could really enjoy spending time with friends and family.
Moved to Jakarta


My husband (eek!) and I spent the week after our wedding in Yorkshire with his family.  It was blissful English summer weather: the kind that is so often in books and films but appears very rarely, so it is so much more appreciated when it does.  Everyone spent the first few weeks of the weather in a good mood, smiling at strangers.  After a few weeks, though, we were used to it enough to start suggesting that perhaps, just perhaps, it was too hot?  I love this about the British: we’re very difficult to satisfy.  After all, without bad weather, what are we going to talk about?
After that, we got on a plane and moved to Jakarta!  It’s been an exciting few weeks, which have involved finding our dream apartment, stealing it from an angry Czech man, then convincing ourselves we had been scammed.  In Indonesia, you pay a whole years rent up front to the owner, and once we had transferred it, our owner promptly went overseas and was out of contact for 4-5 days.  We were pretty scared that she’d run off with the money, but luckily, it’s all turned out fine and we moved in last week.  We’re living in a lovely high rise building about ten steps from a mall which has everything I could ever wish for.  Amazing views, and the whole of Jakarta at our feet.
I love this stage of moving to a new country, when even the small trivialities of life are made exciting.  Going to the supermarket here is FUN: new products, weird music, and if you want to locate something you have to act it out for the shop assistant or use google translator.  You should see my mime for ‘I would like my fish gutted please’. 
I’m also kitting out my new office, or ‘nesting’ as my husband calls it.  I’m making myself a little book nook where I can read with views of Jakarta (more soon), and decorating the room with inspiring things to keep me going.  I want it to be a room I enjoy going into in the morning.  After all, that’s half the battle.
Been long-listed for a prize
I woke up one morning last week to a cryptic email from my agent, with the subject line ‘Dylan Thomas Prize’.  After a frantic google search, I discovered How To Be A Good Wife had been long-listed!  I am so utterly thrilled. 

I wanted to say a huge thank you to all those who have congratulated me, especially the bloggers who have been so supportive since the book came out in January.  I started to list them, but decided it merited its own blog post, which will be coming soon!

What have you been up to over the last few weeks?  More on life in Jakarta soon…

7 Comments on “An Update…Wedding, An International Move, A Longlisting

  1. Argh! I love this update Em. It's so good to hear about what it's been like these last few months. Congratulations on your success with your book. What a triumph for a first novel! The wedding was spectacular but intimate and chilled. Perfect.Thinking of you as you settle down in a new part of Asia. Enjoy the spices and tremendous new food culture!See you soon in Hong Kong i hope. Sophs xxx

  2. What a lovely summary of the past couple of months, Em! It has been a bit special and as your mum, I have so many happy memories to keep me going 'til we see you both again. xx

  3. Wow – what a month! Congrats on all these achievements (esp. getting married). When you've got your got your new writing space all sorted perhaps that's another blog post?? Love seeing what other people do with their special spaces.

  4. Hi Amanda! That's a great idea. I'm just putting the finishing touches to it but will blog next week about it. I love looking at other people's office spaces too: are you on Pinterest? It's so great for searching for ideas. Put in 'book nook' and see what comes up! So fun!Em

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