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katysara


Moderator

Posted Sun Sep 26th, 2010 8:29pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

Here is the requested stickied writers thread. Make good use of it.

KSx

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"Having a great intellect is no path to being happy."
~ Stephen Fry

See my website: www.katysaraculling.com

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Vampyros


Member

Posted Mon Sep 27th, 2010 9:26pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

Thanks KS will do when I get inpired.

Vx

The Katy Sara Culling Tribute is ready in e-Book form http://chipmunkapublishing.co.uk/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=2326 Charity/Bipolar

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UnsettlingLife


Member

Posted Sun Oct 3rd, 2010 4:00pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

Is this where we get to shout very loudly when our books finally become printed matter? If it is, I'm under starters orders...


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katysara


Moderator

Posted Sun Oct 3rd, 2010 4:04pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

I was asked to put up a thread where people were going to give examples of their writing - but feel free to give an example of your writing along with links to the amazon page we can buy your book on!

I am an administrator on this site.

"Having a great intellect is no path to being happy."
~ Stephen Fry

See my website: www.katysaraculling.com

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katysara


Moderator

Posted Sun Oct 3rd, 2010 4:13pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

From my autobiography DARK CLOUDS GATHER:

At 10pm, clad in pyjamas, all the patients slowly gathered to collect their night meds from the clinic room. I joined the line wearing trainers, socks, purple and black cycling shorts, my bright, luminous yellow cycling jacket, cycling gloves, detachable bike lights, keys (hidden in my pocket) and my purple cycling helmet, strapped securely in place on my head. I had a plan: though not such a good one as to think less obvious clothing might have been sensible. I stood tapping my feet impatiently. I said, “Hi,” to Neil, the nurse handing out the meds, quickly downed the concoction, and then walked to the garden door to leave.

One of the night nurses asked me, “Princess, where are you going?” “Just for a quiet fag on the step, I can’t face the smoking room,” I replied, showing her my lighter and menthols. And she let me go… against Dr. Ogilvie’s orders! Jean, another patient came with me to have a cigarette too – which I had not planned.

I immediately started getting onto my bike. I said to Jean, “Look I’m sorry to do this to you, but I didn’t know you’d come outside. Please don’t tell anyone I’m gone, hopefully they won’t notice for ages.” Jean nodded, and (amazingly) kept that promise. And that was how I found myself heading straight for my flat on Iffley Road at about 10.30pm on the 13th November 2002: the night I died.

When I arrived home I knew I had to get on with things immediately because at some point I would be missed. I locked and bolted my door, and was grateful that my home address was probably quite hard to find. I pushed my huge antique dressing table across the door – it was so heavy I could hardly move it. I looked for alcohol, but all I had was the bottle of Gordon’s gin I kept for my sister’s visits. I started to swig it neat from the bottle, expecting to hate it, but not actually tasting anything at all. I knelt in front of my tiny attic window, and began to prepare the entire £20 ball of heroin for injection.

Someone missed me: Tony. He called me on my mobile to ask were I was. I told him I was fine and to go away. He asked me if I was going to “do something stupid.” I replied that I was fine, but that I was busy and couldn’t talk. I hung up and ignored my phone. I filled a 5ml syringe with what I knew was a concentrated and lethal dose many times over, and, without pausing or hesitation, pushed the needle into a vein. There were no thoughts about upsetting people I left behind; I could not connect with the world or those I love. I just wanted all the thoughts in my head to stop. So, after checking I was in a vein, I started to push the murky brown heroin solution into my body. I thought I could hear the sound of horses galloping in the distance, quickly getting closer and closer.

I continued to force the lethal mixture into my vein, all of this taking less than 10 seconds. I felt a calm unlike ever before in my life, and pictured horses galloping in the English countryside through the pouring rain. At first they were far away, but their gambolling hooves became louder and louder. Perfectly serene, I waited for their smack against my skull, spilling my life force from within. Then everything went black…

…And I died.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON MY BOOK SEE
http://www.katysaraculling.com/darkcloudsgather.htm

I am an administrator on this site.

"Having a great intellect is no path to being happy."
~ Stephen Fry

See my website: www.katysaraculling.com

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UnsettlingLife


Member

Posted Sat Oct 16th, 2010 4:16pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

Below is an extract from my book UNSETTLING.
By way of a preamble, each chapter title is the place I moved to, and each chapter ends with the song that was number one at that time. I have just left a job in a hotel in Wales with my girlfriend Sylvie and moved...

...to a lodging house in Anfield

At least that’s where I ended up. Sylvie had had enough. She told me we were finished and went back to her mother. Who can blame her? I was unbalanced but couldn’t see it. No relationship could survive that sort of behaviour. The problem was I never saw it that way. I was completely unaware of how others saw it. I didn’t consider how unsettling it was for other people. I thought it was all perfectly normal. That’s what I told myself. I actually believed it was everyone else that was at fault. How the fuck can it be me that’s wrong? I’m never wrong.

The lodging house I ended up in was around the corner from Liverpool football ground. I liked it. There were five or six beds to a room which didn’t trouble me, my meals were cooked and my bed was made. After dinner and before Gin Rummy, I enjoyed the household ritual of watching Fred Quimby cartoons. It was the same every night and I liked the routine. Is this not a form of institutionalisation? I was comfortable there. I feel myself slipping back into it. Is this a sign of things to come? I had also signed on the dole, as had many of the other lads. For a while I’m content not to do anything. I’ve become very calm and quiet, almost subdued. There is a general unwritten understanding between us that nobody shouts and I like it, I like it a lot. What I don’t like is covering my head with the blankets in a vain attempt to hide from the sound of the giant Irish navvy physically and sexually abusing his retarded teenage co-worker every night. I wasn’t alone in saying and doing nothing. Not once did anyone mention it. The violator was very big, very strong, a drunk and a cunt. Nobody else in the house was remotely capable of taking him on and nobody but nobody, talked to policemen. Besides, in those days nobody in authority gave a toss about such matters. It was considered normal behaviour and therefore easy to ignore. I’m writing this book in 2010, look at the news headlines of today and you will find them overflowing with stories of the past coming back to haunt many of the guilty. When you see how many of them were Catholic (not only them I’m sure) priests, nuns and teachers, is it any wonder there are so many fucked up individuals around today? Having said that, it doesn’t alter the fact that not for the first time I knew someone needed help but I was either unwilling or unable to offer it.

During the more pleasant parts of the day in this semi-cosy surrounding, I have time to gather my thoughts. Apart from the navvy, they’re a good group of people here. They don’t know me from a bar of soap but I’m welcomed from day one. Some are going through divorce, others recovering from illness, others, like me, are just a bit mentally or emotionally lost. At least that’s what I tell myself, that I’m just a bit lost. The truth is a little different. By this time I am starting to experience more frequent bouts of this new and unpleasant thing. It’s happened before but I have no understanding of what it is. It is only now, in this place, that I begin to realise it is not normal. I try to ignore it, telling myself it’s just that I’m being affected by all that has happened recently? But that doesn’t wash. Because why had all that stuff happened in the first place? No. I’m not altogether sane. I’m not mad but I’m definitely not sane. For the first time I go to a doctor and try to explain myself. I try but I don’t have the proper words. He says it is obvious I need help and makes an appointment for me with a psychiatrist. It takes me about five minutes to see this is never going to work. After I’d said a few things and he’d taken a few notes he announces that my problem was lack of accountability. The session ends with me having no fucking clue as to what he was talking about so I never went back.

Not having a job is a nightmare. I don’t know what to do with myself during the day. I watch the clock hands slowly drag themselves toward 5pm and dinner, cartoons and cards. Each morning I trawl the papers first, then walk the streets looking for work but don’t know what work to look for. I’m not interested in catering anymore and I have no other skills or qualifications. I think about Spanner and the other lads that did apprenticeships and begin to understand why they did them. They wouldn’t be crawling around begging for work. Each turn of the newspaper page is the same. All I can search for is that same old word, Trainee. There is nothing.

My routine at the lodging house continued for a few weeks and my moods became less pleasant with each passing day. The dole was paying my rent and I hadn’t touched a drink since I was in Wales. As a result, I’d even managed to save a little money from my weekly dole cheque. One afternoon I bought myself a bag of chips. It was too cold to stay outside so I went back to the digs and sat in the lounge to eat them. After just a few minutes, the fat, black cleaner stormed into the room and sprayed air freshener directly onto the food. She complained that I was stinking the place out. What the fuck is this all about? People often talk about how they ‘saw red’ when trying to explain their actions. After this day I knew what it meant. I exploded! In a split second I had the fucking bitch by the throat and rammed the now inedible chips into her face. She screamed and the more she did the harder I pressed. I wanted to kill her. I should have killed her. I still want to kill what she represents. But I didn’t and I won’t. Instead, with Barry White promising every woman ‘You’re The First, The Last, My Everything’, I moved...

...to a patch of ground in St John’s Gardens

St John’s is a park in the centre of Liverpool. I had nowhere else to go and not enough money to pay a week’s rent at another digs. I could go to my mum’s house and for certain she would take me in but then I would have lost. No. I’m not doing that. I find a spot on the grass, put on several layers of clothing, use my suitcase as a bed, my stereo system as a pillow and settle down for an extremely cold night. The following day I drag myself and my bits to the Social Security office, wait in line and tell them my plight. If you have no address, you get no dole money. But, they will consider me for emergency payment and I have to come back tomorrow to learn my fate.

I have enough money for more chips and take them back to the park where I sit and ponder all day. Too much time to think. I need a job but I can’t go for one looking as I do. I have to find a flat. No flat. No job. Find a flat. Find a flat. The second is a colder night than the first and is made all the worse by being hungry. I go back to the Social. They haven’t done any deliberating. I have to come back tomorrow. Yesterday is repeated but this time with considerably more anxiety. Back to my mum’s in Kirkby or die here? It seems like an overly dramatic thought as I write but at the time, not at all farfetched. For the third time I go back to the Social. Not for the first time I’m saved. It was only a few pounds but it was enough. The Social pointed me toward a sympathetic landlord who was only too glad to take their money. With Barry White still groaning ‘You’re the First, the Last, My Everything’, I moved...

Extracted from Unsettling by David Thomas. Available from Amazon http://tinyurl.com/38spgj6


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UnsettlingLife


Member

Posted Sun Oct 17th, 2010 12:13pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

The lengths some people will go to in order to promote a book!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bgEfj5kBLSY


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Vampyros


Member

Posted Mon Oct 18th, 2010 3:21pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

The introduction to my book - "Lithium Fry, A Superhero for the Future" - as yet unfinished and unpublished (Editor is our very own KS).

Let me start by saying that this is not a self help book; I must make that point very clear. It will not solve all of your problems completely but it will help. It has taken me over 30 years just to get to this point and I am by no means fully cured.

Life Begins at 40 or at least I hope so. At this point in time I am two weeks away from the big four 0 and since many people think that this is a significant milestone, I decided it was a good time to finally sit down and put fingers to keyboard.

The book concentrates on the period of my life from eighteen to the present day, focusing on my bipolar disorder and cervical cancer treatments so I will take this opportunity to formerly introduce myself. As the cover states my name is Amanda Groves but I was born Amanda Hoad on 30th May 1970 in London, the United Kingdom.

Life in London was very traumatic, I won’t go into detail here as that’s another story and maybe another book but my mother and father divorced and then my mother remarried. Mum and her new husband had a son, my beloved brother, Mark. His father adored him but hated and resented me so I was sent to live with my Grandparents in Morpeth, Northumberland. At this point I was about 3 years old.

My early life in Morpeth was very loving and safe but that was not to last. I was always a “moody” child; now of course, I realise the cause. My cousins used to say “Grandma, Amanda’s in one of her humps again”. Humps came to mean something completely different in later years and I have plenty of those too.

I started Stobhill Nursery school at age five; I was a very lonely withdrawn child. I didn’t make friends easily although I was lucky enough to have a best friend, Fiona.

It was at school, interacting with children my own age that my bad temper and anger issues began to rear their ugly heads. Because I was too shy to stand up for myself I was always at the back of the queue, last to receive the milk ration and last in the reading room so I had to sit on the floor, as did many others but I was jealous. I didn’t understand what was wrong with me and why nobody liked me (this was probably not true but it was how I felt). The other children teased me because my ears stuck out, they called me “Dumbo”, they also said my parents didn’t want me and that’s why my Grandparents had to take care of me. All of this leads to me “nipping” and “pulling hair”. I didn’t get into serious trouble. Presumably the teachers were “making allowances”.

During this time I had my first suicide attempt, between age five and six on the way to school I decided it was true nobody wanted me and decided to walk in front of a car. An adult saw it happen and ran to stop me, I was then warned of the dangers of traffic and taught how to cross the road safely – I of course already knew this. A few weeks after this I made my first cut, I took a pair of scissors out of the kitchen draw, and they were the large utility type. I made a very tentative cut, nobody knew, nobody noticed.

Time passed and eventually I moved to Chantry Middle School at age nine. This time my time there passed fairly uneventfully, my temper subsided although I continued to be moody and alone. I could frequently be found sulking in a corner somewhere.

It was at high school that my story really starts to unfold. I started King Edward VI at age thirteen. I was terrified; it was so big and didn’t even know how I would get from one room to another and all those people hating me. I mean they could never like me, no one else ever did.

My friend, Fiona that I had from Nursery school was with me at King Ed’s which helped a lot. Things actually seemed better than I than I thought they would be. The subject matter of the classes was more challenging, I actually felt like I could belong somewhere, how wrong I was, nothing was going to change here.

King Edwards was very sport orientated. If you could not win them trophies then you didn’t exist. I had two left feet and the strength of a dying sparrow. Luckily the physical education class was during first lunch so I used to take a double lunch. Nobody noticed, I even received reasonably good reports for sport. I probably would have gotten away with it right the way through but after a year I felt guilty and went back, then they wanted to know who I was. I was given two weeks detention, a couple of teachers became concerned as I never gave them any trouble in my other classes. I told them I was fine, just not very good at sport. This was a lie, a pattern I was to repeat many times over the coming years.

Sport was never my forte, once playing hockey, well I say playing it was actually standing looking awkward and freezing my fingers and toes to the bone, some misguided individual passed the hockey ball over to my side of the pitch, it came to a stop so I picked it up. I know I was supposed to pass it on but that’s not the worst of it, there was a wasp on the ball. My hand was stung very badly and it swelled to the size of a catcher’s mitt, I was sent to the nurse’s room, treated and sent home. I have never liked sport since that day, to be truthful I never liked it at all.

During my high school years Mum came back to Morpeth as her husband had become very abusive and violent towards her. She moved to Pegswood near Morpeth town centre.

Even though Mum had moved back to the North East it was felt that my interests were best served by staying with my Grandparents. I think they were right. Mum started drinking quite heavily. I used to visit at weekends and frequently there was trouble. At one point my brother and I ended up in foster care.

My Grandparents went to court and my Brother and I became wards of the court with my Grandparents acting as our legal guardians. This took its toll on me, I felt like piggy in the middle, both sides hating each other and me loving them all and not wanting to hurt or upset anyone. This set up another lifetime pattern, taking the path of least resistance.

During the high school years I took part time work, one of the positions was at Boots the Chemist. I loved this job. I felt grown up and was treated with respect for the first time. However yet again fate was there to deliver a hurtful blow. The area manager came to the store and I was working on the Pharmacy counter. Remember I told you about my protruding ears, because of these I used wear my hair to my shoulders to cover them. The manager was horrified and said I had to tie it back. I went home in tears. My Grandma spent hours trying to tie my hair back so that it would still cover my ears. I became so self conscious and upset that she took me to see the GP. He told us that I could have surgery to “pin” them back. I got the surgery and everything was perfect.

This all happened during the run up to my ‘O’ levels so before the operation I made audio tapes of my course work and took them to hospital with me. I enjoyed my ‘O’ level years, even gaining some confidence thanks to my media studies teacher who persuaded me to help at the local hospital radio station.

I did OK at ‘O’ levels but not well enough to sail into ‘A’ levels. I wanted to take Mathematics, Economics and Computer Science. The latter two were no problem, I had performed well in these subjects but Mathematics I scraped a C. One of the ‘A’ level Mathematics teachers and my form tutor felt I should take sociology as I had performed much better in this subject. However I did not see how sociology would help me be a computer programmer. I spoke to another mathematics teacher, who was later to become my favorite teacher, she said that she would tutor me in my free periods, I agreed.

I passed all my ‘A’ levels, yes even the Mathematics and applied to University. My grades were not quite what I hoped so I had to go through clearing. Dundee University came to my rescue and I was now ready to leave home for the big bad wide world.

This book is my story. Use it as a guide to help you through the wilderness. Let me be a soldier - someone who has traveled the rocky road and who may be able to shed light on a somewhat smoother path. Do not however think that this means your road will be easy – even with the information I provide you with it WILL take time to find what is right for you.

The opinions in this book are my own and do not in any way take the place of professional medical opinions. As you progress through the book I will be pointing out areas in NHS processes/policies that I think are outdated or simply incomplete, but apart from my own I will not mention any individual, only job titles or relationships to me. This is a no blame culture book – let’s work together to achieve best practice. As the King of Pop stated, “Change starts with the Man in the Mirror”.

You may be wondering where the title “LITHIUM FRY – A Superhero for the future” came from, no, well I am going to tell you anyway. The original working title for the book was “Surviving Cancer, Living with Depression”. At that point I had not been given a diagnosis of Bipolar. I was talking to a friend about the book and he thought the title sound too much like a self help book which, as we established earlier, this is not. He said “When you were describing the book you mentioned Stephen Fry saved your life, now that’s a title for a book. So that’s what it became, with the other title as a sideline. I then joined a creative writing group and again when I talked about the book to them they said if I wanted it to be light hearted as well as informative they thought the title was too dry and needed to be wittier. Over the next few days I played around with characters from Stephen Fry’s extensive repertoire.

I wanted a reference to Stephen Fry as he was my hero and the program “The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive” really helped me come to terms with my illness. Then on the way up the stairs to bed, it happened, EUREKA! LITHIUM that’s the drug I am on for my Bipolar, FRY, that’s Stephen Fry. Why not create a character called Lithium Fry? Then I began to think, who is this character, well like Mr. Fry he is a hero, and there you have it – “Lithium Fry, A Superhero for the future”.

The Katy Sara Culling Tribute is ready in e-Book form http://chipmunkapublishing.co.uk/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=2326 Charity/Bipolar

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Vampyros


Member

Posted Mon Oct 18th, 2010 3:23pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

Love your writing Bay and KS you know I am a superfan of yours. Can you remind me what I need to send for Reflective Reflections - been paid and I will paypal it to you today.

Vx

The Katy Sara Culling Tribute is ready in e-Book form http://chipmunkapublishing.co.uk/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=2326 Charity/Bipolar

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katysara


Moderator

Posted Wed Oct 20th, 2010 7:58pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

I'll PM you details

I am an administrator on this site.

"Having a great intellect is no path to being happy."
~ Stephen Fry

See my website: www.katysaraculling.com

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Vampyros


Member

Posted Thu Oct 21st, 2010 4:12pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

Thanks KS

The Katy Sara Culling Tribute is ready in e-Book form http://chipmunkapublishing.co.uk/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=2326 Charity/Bipolar

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UnsettlingLife


Member

Posted Fri Oct 22nd, 2010 8:54am Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

Vampyros - I see many similarities between our situations, I guess it's the same for everyone. I too was a very moody child and have often wondered what my life would have been like if I'd been diagnosed and treated earlier. Then again, all those years ago few people understood and even fewer were interested in finding out. I wish us all well.
David


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katysara


Moderator

Posted Fri Oct 22nd, 2010 12:45pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

I'm glad I wasn't medicated as a kid, not whilst all my bits were developing, especially my brain, oh lordy no. I'm ambivalent about my medication NOW because of all the side effects.

Seeing my psych on Mon. He will prob try and lower my sleep meds which are what I need the most so I wont let him do that, instead I want to lower/lose some other things (and I'm taking my GP and CPN to back me up). Also they are talking about giving me speed, yes I'll say that again, SPEED, to help me lose weight.

That'll do my insomnia no end of good. And since I wrote 2 books in the last 3 months I'll probably try and beat that... but I wont, both of those I had been preparing for some time.

Also, (warning rant) what is it with spiders and me? I hate hate hate them, they make me want to vomit. I've had two in my bed this year, dozens on my walls, and once whilst sitting typing one crawled up my back and I didn't notice till it was sat all fat and juicy on my shoulder and I screamed and smushed it.... but worse today. I was driving and as i am a good driver I use my mirrors. Nearly at my destination thank banana, I saw a huge one sat on the side of my head so whilst trying not to crash I grabbed at it and tried to throw it to the floor. Once I stopped I looked for it, no spider. Sat up, looked in mirror, spider right on top of head about to crawl down face. Screamed, grabbed spider and made sure I got it, then smushed it with a bottle of water. Yuck yuck yuck. What am I like some spider magnet or what?

Rant over.

KSx

Edit: ended up on fewer sleeping meds and not on speed. poo!

I am an administrator on this site.

"Having a great intellect is no path to being happy."
~ Stephen Fry

See my website: www.katysaraculling.com

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Vampyros


Member

Posted Fri Oct 22nd, 2010 3:21pm Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

I don't know whether medication as a child would have helped. But I wish there had been more support and people noticing that something was wrong and encouraging me to get help.

Even just someone to say it wasn't my fault.

Vx

The Katy Sara Culling Tribute is ready in e-Book form http://chipmunkapublishing.co.uk/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=2326 Charity/Bipolar

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Wilde Woman


Member

Posted Wed Oct 27th, 2010 2:33am Post subject: WRITERS THREAD

Do poems count here. I had a couple published in an a few anthologies. The darker ones strangely don't seem to be of interest to most people though...

GHOSTS
In this,
All things skeletal,
Objects trigger poised memory;
Fragmentary shadows,
Life remnants -
A living ghost stalks.

In this,
All things skeletal,
Fathomless clues convulse,
Pain cloaked,
Murk haunts -
Skin and bone walks.

It's about watch my Mum getting so lost in her illness I couldn't reach her as my Mum anymore. And this is another one about her.

STONE KISSES
I awoke screaming your name.
You hear pity flashed from safe distances.

I rush my return to your side.
You gaze distantly through me.

I try catching your eye.
Your distress is fixed in foreign lands.

I hold you; my arms are empty.
My kiss hits you like a stone.

I won't be sharing this on my blogsite as there the intention is to help and keep people motivated. Unrealistic really. The lows are unavoidable. Don't know why I thought I could change that.

My Blogsites:
http://mindwalking-ajournalofdiscovery.blogspot.com/
It's the one who haven't been assessed I'm scared of!

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