Friday, December 22, 2006

And so the end is near...etc

I know it's customary to say, "didn't that year fly by" at this time of year, but I don't think this one has. It's gone quite slowly for me. This last week has really dragged. I can't wait to get finished this evening and chill out for the Christmas festivities.
I was pleased to see that the genius that is Bondbloke has returned to the blogging world. Bondbloke is a man of strong opinions and they're always delivered with an admirable upfront honesty. Not only that, he's proven his brilliance by choosing to come and visit York prior to Christmas. Hope your enjoying yourself mate. It's fair to say York is heaving this year. Apparently it's been a bumper build up to Christmas in the city. Lots of effort has been put into promoting the annual festive jamboree here and it appears to have been paying off in "No Vacancies" signs at the bed and breakfasts and kerchinging cash-registers. I'll try and get a few pre-Christmas York piccies over the weekend.
That aside the writing has been going really well this week. The novel is cracking along at a fair old place. I can see much that needs improving within it, but my principal aim is actually manage to complete a first draft. That goal looks likely, possibly by the end of January which would be great. I'd like to have something reasonable to submit with the Masters application which I'm going to make roundabout April I reckon. I've not really got any ambitions for publication of this one to be honest. It's more of a learning exercise. It's about getting the discipline in place, learning to think about what I'm trying to produce and where it's going. Hopefully, I'll then be in a good position to begin the Masters in October. Part of my reason for wanting to get the Masters course under my belt is that I'd like to be able maybe to lead creative writing courses with marginalised groups - the homeless, prisoners, the mentally ill etc. I want to put my meagre talents to more socially useful ends than I do currently. I might not be the next Henry James or Ted Hughes, but I might just be able to help someone gain some insight into their lives or their condition. Masters courses tend to be the gatekeeping qualification to that kind of work for those of us who are not Martin Amis. Aside from the workaday journalism, I've just had another couple of poems accepted for publication. I think I'm getting near the point where I should perhaps start thinking about pulling them together and approaching publishers about a collection. Maybe in the New Year. Submitting poetry is always a real trial. It's the most concentrated and personal of all the writing I do.
We've got the weekend and then Christmas day and then Rach is back at work on Boxing Day. Sadly, the clients she works with don't get a respite from their conditions just because it's Christmas.

1 comment:

Alex Bordessa said...

Yes - get your novel down as best you can, then go back and fix it. I think that's the best way to go at things, though it doesn't suit everyone. I am aware of others who get stalled by trying to make it wonderful the first time round, and insist on doing it that way. Not surprisingly, things don't get produced very often. So keep going, then go back and edit/rewrite. I find it quite rewarding if I can look back and see where it needs improving - proves I am learning and have a critical eye :-)

Just seen the York Writers' programme. Unfortunately, there's nothing in my range till April (Stella Whitelaw) will look out for you then. Though might go on 31 Jan, mostly to pay my subs, ensure they're not worried I've run off the cup, and find out about the internal comps :-)

Hope you had a great Christmas day, and trust you've plenty to occupy you (more writing?!) till Rachel comes home.