Illustrated by Almond-eyed wanderer

When I was 14 years old and looking for a summer job, I came across an ad seeking a local pet-sitter. It read:

Wanting to sound all grown-up for the role, I got my older sister to phone the number on the ad. When she hung up, I could hardly believe my luck. I had gotten the job!

The very next day, I took a bus to the countryside where my new employer, Lesley, lived.

She was a striking woman. At 6 foot, she towered above me…


Finding magic in everyday life

I’ve always wondered what a writer’s home looked like. Rooms full of libraries, books that span across shelves, a reading corner, a warm fireplace, something a little reminiscent of the Beast’s library.

A few months ago, I got a chance to see such a home with my very own eyes, to live and breathe the space where a writer once worked.

Let me describe to you every breathtaking detail from the drive up the long winded driveway, to the little speck of dust on the kitchen counter.

It was as if we had stepped into a house that was waiting…


Two years ago, I had the worst dating experience with an Austrian man.

We met while staying at a backpacker’s lodge on Christmas Eve. He seemed fascinated about history, especially Chinese history. The more ancient it was, the better. We got to talking, and surprisingly, I found it really easy to open up to him.

We caught up a few times afterwards at his place, and that’s when I began noticing things, niggly things that started bothering me.

My point of view

We’d order takeaway online and instead of offering to come to the store with me, he’d sit on…


I was in my last year of high school when I experienced my first bout of writing anxiety. A sudden, overwhelming panic that I couldn’t write, that I wasn’t good at writing.

I was sitting the end of year exams. The all-important exam that would get me into university. Halfway through, I realised that I had interpreted the question wrong. There was half an hour left on the clock. The essay I had written was brilliant, but it didn’t answer the question correctly. So I scratched out the entire essay and decided to rewrite everything.

That decision cost me my…


Eight weeks. 20,000 words. 20% pay cut. Wishing I had something that couldn’t be taken away from me.

This advice is for the 9-5ers out there who want to make something happen, but don’t have the time.

Receiving the news that I would get a 20% pay cut during lockdown was honestly alright, compared to other people’s job loss stories. But I had to work extra hard during most of those eight weeks to meet competing deadlines, while facing mounting stress and experiencing burn-out at the end of the day.

The only self-inflicted pain amongst all of this, was that…


Every morning, to get to work, I drive past a lagoon. At exactly 8:00 a.m the surface of the lagoon is 180 degrees, flat and calm, producing a mirror-like effect.

I've driven past this lagoon at different times of the day: 8:15 a.m, 9:00 a.m, 12:00 p.m, and 5:45 p.m, but at no other time does the surface look as close to a mirror than at 8:00 a.m.

This is the lagoon's magic hour.

From the road, you can easily glance at the lagoon and become mesmerised by it, forgetting that you are driving during peak traffic hour. …


Financing my writing career

If I quit my job today, I will have enough money to last me 6 months. If I sell off all my assets, I will have enough money to sail into the sunset for 3 years and 6 months.

I have always had a bigger purpose for the money I’ve earnt. Some people save for the next high, others for a fancy car. I have been saving all my life to finance my dream of becoming a writer.

Growing up, I was told that writers only have two options: to struggle or to give up.

Being…

Almond-eyed wanderer

Finding magic.

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