Three boys home and a house full of flowers…
I travelled home on the train from London this morning and it was packed with people carrying flowers, most of them No doubt on their way home to see their mothers. It was a heart warming sight. I was rushing home myself to cook for my own dear Ma and Pa, my Uncle and his wife and my boys. I was greeted with kisses and flowers. I can’t think of anything lovelier to come home to.
I’ve not posted in a while – but been madly busy writing, so it’s all good.
I spent yesterday on a writing workshop organised by Spread The Word with the wonderful Alison Macleod. I first made contact with Alison after I read her incredible story The Heart of Dennis Noble which was runner up in the BBC Short Story competition last year. I thought (think) it’s the best short story I’ve ever read. I wrote and told her how much I enjoyed it and we consequently became facebook friends. She posted a link to this course and I enrolled immediately.
The day was every bit as good as I expected. We spent the morning discussing her story and also What we talk about when we talk about love by Raymond Carver, another (of course) superb story. Both are interrogations of love, so similar, yet also very different. Alison was generous in discussing the writing of the Dennis Noble story, her research, her blending of fact and fiction, her handling of several narrative threads and their back story and the seamless melding of them all. She even shared with us some early drafts! I managed to ask all the questions I wanted to and Alison answered them all.
After lunch we completed three writing exercises and I really enjoyed them. Those precious seeds have already grown and budded into two exciting story ideas and I’m raring to get on with them. That’s what I call value for money.
I’ve also been attending a six week poetry course with the wonderful John Gallas at the Writing School, Leicester. Each Monday class has left me totally inspired and desperate to get home to write. John has been encouraging us to begin writing a collection of poems. I’ve been wanting to do this for a while but I wasn’t sure of a theme. John got us to think about what we liked, what we didn’t like and why, in both our own writing and others.This collection could be as loosely or tightly themed as we wish and the theme could be anything we like. Our poems could be linked by form, subject matter, narrative, style, or anything else we could think of.
I’ve decided to write a series of sonnets – I’m aiming for 40! And I’m going to illustrate them!
Their linking theme will be clothes, but they will be about love life, religion, family, sex drugs and rock ‘n’ roll as much as about frocks.
An enjoyable challenge.
Written 10 so far… Way to go!
I’ve also written quite a few new stories and have decided to enter some competitions this year. There’s about 6 this month. Wish me luck!
I entered the Fish Short Story competition for 2011 and found out last week that I was selected for the long list. That was really encouraging for me, specially as I have re-edited that particular story since and it’s now much better.
I feel I’ve recently turned a corner and my writing is improving a great deal. I’ve finally learned how to self edit. Cutting great chunks of text that you love is actually quite liberating when you finally understand how it benefits the story. Working closely with the man helps of course…
My guilt about not blogging finally got the better of me today, hence this post. I’ll try to write a little more regularly again. Promise. See you soon x