Within the writer’s life, there’s a different kind of taking a break.
My online course with the UnthankSchool has finished. I’ll miss it, the weekly challenges, reading the other students’ work, getting advice from them and my tutor.
I’m making progress on working with a professional editor on my memoir – only now, I’m told, it’s a bio-novel. I’m fine with that.
I cannot pick up the novel I was re-writing on the above course. It is the wrong time to be doing nothing but write. And to write a novel that is just what you have to do. Get your head down and do nothing else. Writing is not compatible with family life, or having holidays or seeing friends. Writing a novel requires uninterrupted months, preferably in a long, dark, wet winter. It is May. Suppose to be early summer. I have ahead of me plans to see my family and friends and to take holidays already booked and in the diary. All of which mean fragmented time. Snatched hours, or, if I’m lucky mornings, when I can polish or submit work.
Luckily I have a collection of short stories waiting for attention. Most, but not all, of them have been submitted and rejected. So plenty of words to be re-written. One story has just been rejected but no matter. Now I look at it, it is out of date. It’s set in a village in the fifties. Can I bring it into today’s world, setting it in London? I try. It works. It’s faster paced and more interesting. My work on short stories over the next few months has begun.
Here are some of the organisations and events I aim to submit for:
The Fictive Dream – 500-2K words at any time. Done 15/5/18
The Bridport Prize – no more than 5K words by 31 May.
The Fiction Desk – 1-7K words by 31 May
The Yeovil Literary Prize – various categories by 31 May
Bird’s Thumb – 1-3K words by 1 June
The VS Pritchett Prize – 2-4K words by 29 June.
(click on the name for a link)
Those are my challenges. Let’s see if I make them all.