Topics guaranteed to get fifty thousand notes, based on a survey of my posting history:
- Social anxiety
- Men in high heels
Men in high heels feeling anxious about meeting bees guaranteed to take tumblr by storm.
If anyone reading this is an artist, I will pay you $100 to draw a picture of men in high heels feeling anxious about bees.
Have you guys seriously not heard about Eddie Izzard?
Oh my god this is so perfect
Anonymous said: I'm writing a book, and it's centered in London, unfortunately I haven't had the chance to travel there. But. I was wondering, how would flats be set up? The same as apartments, or different?
Flats in London are very expensive so it depends how much money your character has. I imagine they vary.
Have a look on here for some inspiration.
I can answer questions of shared flat living in London, it’s practically my specialist subject - feel free to send me questions :)The answer above is probably the most important thing you need to know! Of course non-wealthy people do live in flats in London but they’ll be farther out from the centre. London is divided into zones: zone 1 is the centre, zone 2 is a ring around that, zone 3 is a slightly further-out ring etc (http://www.pluslondontravel.com/languages/eg/images/TubeMaplarge_000.jpg). As an example, I’m on a good professional wage and I live in zone 3 - I wouldn’t really expect to be able to live any closer in. You pay rent to your landlord, and then you’ll have various bills like, electricity, gas, internet and TV licence.
First off, some terminology: we don’t say ‘room mates’ here, we say ‘flatmates’ or ‘housemates’. If you’re in a multi-story building (See below), it might have an elevator – but we call them lifts. When you’re travelling around you’ll likely be using London the Underground – always referred to as the Tube or the Underground. There’s also overground trains (referred to, imgainateively as ‘the Overground’) or the bus. If you’ve missed the last tub, you’ll be on the night bus.
Travel is very expensive. Beer is very expensive. Everything is expensive.
As for the flat itself, these come in three main types of buildings. Firstly, one within a modern block of flats. At the moment I live in a flat in a low-rise (meaning, a block of flats about 4 stories high in a row of three identical blocks). The block was probably built in the early nineties at a guess. Damp windowless bathroom, walls like cardboard (if I understood Italian I’d know every detail of my flatmate’s life from her endless Skyping to family coming through the walls), but otherwise sound.
Previously I lived in a ‘mansion block’ in Shepherd’s Bush. Lovely though not as posh as it sounds - it’s basically a Victorian equivalent of the above: brick-built blocks about 4 or 5 stories high). A bit draughty and … mousey. But lots of character and high ceilings.
In both of these, there’s a main front door to the building, and then separate front doors to the flats.
I’ve also live in a flat in a house - i.e. it was built as a house, bought by a property developer and converted into two separate flats. We had the upstairs flat and a family lived in the garden flat below.
In blocks of flats, there’ll be a caretake, though I’ve never actually met one. Someone gives the stairs the occasional sweep and bins old post, though. There won’t be a doorman except, I assume, in EXTREMLY posh apartment blocks (apartment in Brtiain sometimes being used to denote a very nice, spacious flat) inhabited by the super-rich.
All the flats I’ve lived in these have been 2- or 3-bed-flats (i.e., they have 2/3 bedrooms). I’ve always been lucky enough to live with friends I already knew, though plenty of people move in with randomers via Gumtree and stuff. We have a shared kitchen, sometimes a shared living room (often landlords convert this into another bedroom to get more rent per flat), and a shared bathroom and toilet (really annoying when these are in the same room as each other because there’s ALWAYS someone showering when you want to use the loo).
That’s a pretty average number of people to share with. You’re lucky if you can find an affordable 2-bed-flat, much less a one-person flat. But people get lucky sometimes. I’ve a friend who pays about £550 a month for a one-bed flat in Belsize Park (a very up-market area in North London) so miracles do happen.
It’s a big city, but tightly-packed even in the outer zones. Rooms are small and houses are closely packed. Odds are you’ll have noisy flatmates and/or noisy neighbours.
A redeeming feature is that there WILL be big local parks. As a rule, you don’ have to walk ten minutes from any residence in London to find yourself in a nice park with plenty of green, a playground for the kids and often a little coffee hut somewhere in the middle. They are well used and loved.
A really good show to watch to get the feel of London flat-sharing is Spaced. In Spaced they live in a flat in a big house converted from single-occupant use which as I mentioned above is common. The fact that their landlady lives in one of the other flats in the house is slightly more unusual, I’d say – I know some people who have had this setup but very where I’ve lived the landlord has owned several properties and has often lived abroad.
When you move into a flat it will tend to be furnished by the landlord (meaning it will have a bed, a wardrobe, a chest of drawers, maybe a desk). Usually in a mixture of junky old furniture and Ikea stuff. You will then make the ritual trip to Ikea for cheap lamps, rugs, duvet covers etc to make it feel a bit more homey.
As a massive city that has absorbed many villages as it expanded, the different parts of London have massively different characters from one another. The dominant immigrant population also affects this massively. For example, I currently live in Turnpike Lane, which is really Turkish-dominated. Any area you can afford to live in will tend to be on the run-down/vibrant side. The nature of London means that these poor areas will be right next to incredibly posh areas. You can be on the most expensive street in England in Notting Hill, turn a corner, and be in a run-down council estate.
On the whole you’ll be on streets dominated by Polski Skleps, Turkish supermarkets (which often have 24-hour opening), knock-off KFCs, the occasional Tesco Metro (mini market), halal butchers, take-aways, newsagents (like a drug store I think). The more upmarket the area is, the more chain coffee shops there will be.
There’s also pubs of course. There’s normally two or three pubs per shopping street, as well as others dotted around. They vary widely in character. Some are very blokey/football fan-y. Some are far more welcoming to all. Some are massive – ex coaching inns, gin palaces, some are dinky. Your ‘local’ isn’t necessarily the pub closest to home, but a near-by-ish one you opt for because you like the atmosphere/staff/beers/quiz etc. You often get quite friendly with the barstaff if you’re in there two or three nights a week. There might be a snooker table, dartboard, stack of tatty board games and/or a telly for showing the football.
Phew. That’s what immediately springs to mind!
— Dreadful_Kata in the comments of Mark’s review of Sandry’s Book: Chapter 2. This is quite possibly the most beautiful, and most accurate, description of the Circle books and Tammy’s writing ever. (And Dragonlance for that matter, lol. Definitely oil paintings.) http://markreads.net/reviews/2014/10/mark-reads-sandrys-book-chapter-2/#idc-cover (via meridok)
Aw cool I’ve been quoted :) Tamora Pierce writes like an absolute dream. The Circle books are the gold standard of YA for me.