Saturday, 10 May 2014

Although I have been VERY distracted from writing here, I have been very busy writing for my MA. I'm studying my Creative Writing MA part time, which means I will study over two years. The first of those 'years' is now finished - a university 'year' passing much more quickly than those outside of it

Certainly having an MA in Creative Writing is not a prerequisite for being successful writer, and no guarantee of it either, but it has given me a framework within which to explore my writing, and I've benefited hugely from the very generous support of my tutors and fellow students. I've had a fantastic time and I'm already looking forward to starting again in the Autumn - although I am most definitely looking forward to the rest of the spring and the summer in between

When I started out on this writing ramble, I worried I wasn't creative enough to generate enough 'interesting' ideas to actually write about. I now realise that having the confidence to play around with ideas is just the first step, one I've become really quite good at. However, it's not the ideas themselves but what I do with them that really makes a difference, and studying on the MA has helped me start to understand how I might shape my ideas, and it has forced me to actually commit and actually complete work on a number of them. 

I'm not heading for any kind of fame and fortune any time soon but I do feel like I'm making progress in my writing.

That first step - the generating ideas, was one that actually took me an inordinate amount of time. I think it's been about developing the confidence to have a go. It's also about starting to accept that playing around with pens and words is a legitimate activity, not only legitimate but one that must be prioritised. 

The next step? Knowing what to do with the ideas. Here's my biggest stumbling block *considers endless possibilities and never really executes a plan to the finish*. This is where the MA is definitely paying off. One - there's lots of exploration about how other writers shape their ideas; the choices they make and the impact that has. Two - because it has presented me with deadlines. We have had almost as many workshop sessions as 'input' sessions and we MUST submit for workshop. Further, a significant part of the formal assessment is based on our creative writing pieces. I have simply had to make choices, execute them and complete. It's not always been pretty but it has galvanised me into action and the pay off has been that it has allowed me to peek into my possibilities.