Katherine Hayton | BLOG

03 Oct / TGIF!

Katherine had to put grumpalumps into the box today. Friday started off really well with an early morning start of 4.30am.


Then I checked the Internet connection and found that both it and the phone weren’t working for the third day in a row.


Then I checked my bank account to see that no royalties had been paid yet again, and then managed to track down a statement that said rather than the EFT that I’d signed up for I would instead be paid via wire transfer. Once my balance managed to hit the minimum threshold.

Needless to say the threshold hadn’t been reached. Still hasn’t. All payments are now forever in limbo.

Yah! There’s nothing like being so poor that people don’t even think it’s worth the trouble to pay you to make you feel like a success. At 6.20am in the morning.

And then there were the constant floods of emails for problems that had started, been discovered, recurred, been rediscovered, thought were fixed but turned out resolution was for a different problem than the one that was actually causing problems – you know, the one I’d been told to fix rather the thing that actually needed fixing.

Yah! 7.30am.

Well at least I could crawl my way through the randomly awful day and then go out to buy a nice lunch. A nice lunch that turned out to cost $4.00 more than the last time I’d been to the restaurant – two weeks ago!? – for a sandwich with a new filling. Not the filling they said it would be filled with, that would be humorous nonsense, but the filling they presumably had on hand.

And lovely french bread. Four inches of lovely crusty french bread. Lovely crusty french bread that had spend at least two hours in a moisture filled refrigerator so it was dense and chewy. Not the dense and chewy of a beautiful, rich, dark, pumperknickel loaf carefully hand-ground, crafted and slow-baked in an artisinal oven. No. The dense and chewy of something that’s meant to be light and crusty but dropped out of school early and started snorting meth.

I pulled the two mouthfuls of oil-covered plain chicken out, that’s PLAIN chicken not the SMOKED chicken that I’d paid for, and then threw the rest away. So I had to buy a second lunch from the downstairs cafe, which was half the price and twice the edibility, but unfortunately was purchased so late in my lunch half-hour that I had to wolf it down (yeah, okay, the gnawing hunger may have contributed somewhat to that scenario.)

My lunchtime ended with a phone-call from a communications engineer who was disgruntled that I had the temerity to be at work during the day when he’d responded to my urgent call for assistance with the complete lack of internet or phone at our home within a mere 72 hours of calling. He was further put out when I timidly suggested that I may be able to get home by five o’clock – because surely all mortals are aware that technicians finish work on the dot of four-thirty.

So with the promise of an hour’s overtime on Monday I skipped away from work early. There was a steady stream of traffic blocking our exit, and then when we finally pulled into the flow of traffic two trains decided to go past on the tracks while we sat staring at them in astonishment. Since when did the South Island have TWO trains?

But we forged ahead, to encounter a slow-mo traffic flow which we eventually crawled far enough along to realise was caused by the road-works (which we knew about) coinciding with a major set of traffic lights not working (which we didn’t.)

Then I arrived home to find that all that was in the mail was a bill, all that was in the cupboard was some sugar-free cookies past their expiration date, and all that was in my heart was despair.

And then the lovely repair technician turned up and got our internet working in about ten minutes, said they’d need to reblow the fibre from the gate but we didn’t need to be home for that and they’d do it early next week, and then my darling said he could put on a full packet of oven-fried chips and I could have half. Which I enjoyed with my favourite protein; tomato sauce and peri-peri mayonnaise. (Wot?)

And tomorrow it’s Saturday. And I don’t care that the weather is crap all weekend because I don’t like to go outside anyway.

Things are definitely improving around here.

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While I was sitting at my computer tonight I received the following email recommendation through from the Amazon marketing department.

Why, yes Amazon. That’s a fabulous suggestion. In fact, I think you should make that suggestion to hundreds of thousands of your other subscribers because I’m sure that they’d like it too.

Oddly enough, I actually already have a copy of this one. And I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Anyone reading this please follow Amazon’s kind suggestion and click on the following link:

Awesome dudes.

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Tomorrow I am going to make my television debut at approximately 4.30pm on Canterbury Live on CTV.

Oh yeah, I’m awesome.

I’m also a nervous wreck who is not planning on getting very much sleep tonight. Instead I’m going to try to decide which is worse, making a complete dick of myself and never being invited back, or not making a complete dick of myself and leaving open the chance I might have to go through all of this again.

My stomach is in knots at the moment. I downloaded today’s episode to reassure myself that although it’s television, local TV won’t be nearly as bad as national TV. After all, it’s got that relaxed Canterbury vibe going.

That didn’t work. My adrenalin decided that it may as well start making itself useful as soon as the first guest appeared. I understand the logic. It’s like going out and doing some jogging before heading off to a marathon.

It doesn’t matter that none of the guests died, or that no one looked particularly worried – apart from the moment when a picture frame crashed down behind the presenter. My nervous system (or extremely nervous system) has decided that the worst possible thing I could ever do is get in front of a camera.

Oh, and did I mention it’s live television?

Yep. That’s right. No dress rehearsal, no second chances, no time delay even. Oh God. What if I accidentally swear? What if I’m the reason that CTV gets its license revoked? There I’ll be, chatting away thinking I’m doing fine, and instead everyone’s wild hand movements won’t be because I’m wonderful and they’re impressed – it’ll be BECAUSE I’M SWEARING ON LIVE TV BEFORE THE WATERSHED!

How long now? Nineteen hours and six minutes to go. Not that I’m counting or anything.

Breathe Katherine, breathe. Just think – this time tomorrow it will all be behind you no matter what happens.

That, or you’ll be dead.

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In order to make my first day back at work less grim, I had the forethought to order a nice gift to welcome me back to the office. As an added benefit this morning I was so caught up with unhappiness that my holiday was over, that I forgot completely and therefore it was like a surprise gift.

A surprise gift that had been thoughtfully pre-opened by customs to make sure there weren’t any nasties hiding in it.

I unwrapped and slit open, and pulled out, and slit, pulled, opened, untwisted, pulled, and I had a HAPIfork in my hot little hand.

For those of you who don’t know, a HAPIfork is a wonderful invention that electrocutes you when you eat too fast. Think of me as one of Pavlov’s dogs, and electrocution as a bell, and I’m salivating already!

Here is a picture…

I picked green because… nature?

I’m so looking forward to lunch tomorrow. I couldn’t use it today until I took it home and loaded up stuff on my computer and charged up my fork, but tomorrow…

Bite. Ouch. Bite. OUCH. Bite. OUCH!!!

Oh the fun will be endless.

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My holiday comes to a screeching halt today. I’ve been living a blissful life for the past two weeks. Doing nothing except the stuff that I felt like doing, and only then when I wanted to.

But tonight I’m going to go to bed in holiday-land, and wake up tomorrow in the real world. I’m not looking forward to the transition.

This is all terrible news to me. I’ve been trying to adjust myself, but honestly I’m on holiday so I’m not trying anything very hard. But yesterday I got some bad news. Daylight savings.

You mean I lose a full hour – on the last day of my holiday?

It may make a difference to some people. Maybe someone out there gets some sort of joy out of having an extra hour of daylight at the end of the day, rather than at the beginning. But not me. I appreciate an hour of sunlight before I get to work as much as I like an hour after. Maybe more. My body may get up inconveniently in the middle of the night, but my brain is pretty much non-functional until I put a few rays of sun on it. A back-to-front vampire student.

Now I’m trying to pretend that I’m starting to feel sleepy at a time that last week would’ve been five-thirty. If we were normal people that would be a time we’d start to consider eating tea. As it is we do that closer to three o’clock because we’re old before our time, but still. You want me to go to sleep in half an hour? Good luck with that!

If I were to take the place of Pollyanna right now I could say that since I wouldn’t enjoy today much anyway it’s lucky that this is the day that only lasts 23 hours.

But I’m not and I won’t.

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Nothing has happened, and I’m going to bed.

Since you don’t get a blog today, you can admire my rejigged Kindle cover for Found, Near Water which I’ve reworked with thanks to the good people at Canva.com

Ohhhh, isn’t it pretty?

Sometime in the next 24-72+ hours it should also go live on Amazon, although it is already available in the download and look inside versions. If you don’t believe me you can buy a copy, download it, and see!


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Since signing up with Facebook in 2010 I have not utilised this website much. I “friended” someone once to look at her wedding photos, and I “friended” someone else last year to follow their travels around the world because they’re terrible at emails (at remembering to send them not the content.)

That was the full extent of my escapades. I heard people talking about it, but whatever. I don’t have friends so I don’t need to keep in touch. Facebook was for other people.

And then I became a self-published author and discovered that apparently Facebook was meant for me.

I dipped my toe in. I created a “Page” (which is somehow separate from yet part of my overall account?) and I added a few bits and bobs to it. Then it all looked too hard so I deleted it again a half-hour later. It was so confusing that when Facebook asked me if I was sure I wanted to delete the page I didn’t know. I had to try it twice before I clicked Confirm.

So I went about my daily life thinking, everyone else has a Facebook page, I don’t want a Facebook page, I should have a Facebook page, I don’t understand a Facebook page.

It’s nice to have a personal chant going on back there. Soothing.

But when I went on holiday I thought, now’s the time. I should try again. I’m not the kind of girl to let technology beat me. I bought and sold my (first) Google Glass before most of New Zealand even figured out how to buy them.

Of course the real issue isn’t that Facebook is technology – that’s just part of its disguise. The real problem is the social in social media. That’s like people. And as mentioned above I don’t have any friends. Something genetic to do with lacking any empathy or interest in other humans. I have my darling at home and my work-wife in the office, and a bunch of people that I trade sarcasm with (at least I think I’m trading – I’ve never stuck round long enough after my comments to find out for sure) and that’s enough for me.

First I filled out a bunch of information. Tick, tick, tick. No I’m not putting my address details in! Are you crazy? I don’t know who all is on the Internet but judging from forums at least half of them are Hitler.

Then I had to design my page. I had to POST something. It was like a postcard but you had to design the picture and not get too specific ’cause it’s not going to someone you know.

And then… relax. Just sit back because now people are going to visit your page and Like you. Just to get them started Facebook prompted me to Like my own page.

I felt a bit like Carrie voting for herself at the Prom, but I followed orders because if I didn’t maybe something social would break.

It only took a week for a random to like me – thus doubling the popularity of my Author Page.

Looking at the results from this I determined that social media wasn’t going to do me any good at all at this rate. Surely the point was to inform people about myself and my work. Informing two people – one of them myself – about these things seemed like a slight waste of time. Delete page?

Nope – I went for Door Number Two. Advertise. On Facebook. Yeah baby, I’m in the big leagues now.

This has opened up a whole new world to me. Now, instead of writing or reading or thinking of random places to take photographs of my book or drawing (book covers okay, not just for enjoyment because I’m not into that any longer) I can instead sit in front of my computer clicking refresh. Occasionally I redesign the ad by changing a word or two, or uploading a new picture, or selecting a different age range and country of people to display my ad to.

Yip. It’s a sweet life. If you’d like to contribute to the cause please feel free to click the Like button below. After all, I like you.

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While I was on holiday this year (oh, were you on holiday kathay? Why yes, thanks for asking, I was) I attempted a new take on dieting. Previously my motto has been to restrict myself for a few days until my willpower goes, and then binge. Instead, I thought this time I’d stick mainly to a liquid diet in order to keep myself nice and trim.

The liquid I chose (not the demon drink – I’m in recovery you know) was ice-cream.

I’m aware that this seems to be solid in appearance but since it melts as soon as it hits the warmth of your mouth-cave I thought it definitely qualified. Besides, it may be made of fat and sugar, but how heavy is the average ice-cream? You’ll actually have to insert the weight here because I’ve never held one in my hand without being eaten for long enough to weigh. But you get my point, right? They’re not heavy.

Unlike me.

I thought that my consumption during the long hot holiday was looking something like this…

Turns out it looks more like this…

And with the amount of insect bites I have on my lower legs I’m left wondering this…

And you know what I’m going to be like on Monday?

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