Thursday, 19 September 2013

From One York to Another

What a difference a year makes. Last weekend I went to my second Festival of Writing in York. I spent the year in between working on what the book doctors told me last year, completing the Open University's Creative Writing module, and realising that my novel needed to have a dual narrative written in. So I'm writing it now and it's not too far from completion.

This time around at York I had my 1-1s with literary agents and the feedback I got was excellent and very encouraging. But what I learnt in the workshops, particularly Characterisation with Nelle Andrew and Plotting and Structure with Jeremy Sheldon, made me realise that I can, and must, make everything so much better. But rather than feeling daunted by this, I feel inspired and motivated to edit and edit again to make it the best that it can be. I can't wait to get started.

But wait I have had to. As a year has made a huge difference in my life in other ways too. This week I moved onto a canal narrow boat and have been busy realising that I have a lot to learn about that as well. But I'm taking each day as it comes and everything is starting to make more sense. So, Monday is when the writing and editing begins in earnest.

Luckily I have also started a new business venture that's all about creative writing and in the coming year I'll be running a series of writing retreats that also feature author-led workshops on different aspects of creative writing. So I'll be learning more and improving all the time. And my new life travelling the waterways of the UK means I'll be experiencing new places, people and sensations to inform my writing too. Things can only get better.

So by the time the next York rolls around, as it has a place on my calendar every year now, hopefully I'll have some really good novel news to announce. Watch this space for regular news about the novel's progress to final completion and submission stage; and life on the canal waves as it happens.

7 comments:

  1. Good luck with the editing, Amanda. I'm so fascinated by the fact that your living on a boat. What an awesome experience that must be! Looking forward to reading more about that too.

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    1. Thanks Corrine. It's very exciting to be living in a different way. Will keep you posted :-)

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  2. Encouraging to read of your progress; this was my first FoW and I do feel energised by it, and aware that next year will be vastly more so because of not being so fogged by the newness of the experience. I'll watch with interest, too, for news on the Yorkshire Dales retreat.

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    1. Hello Sandra. Yes the first York is an overwhelming experience! Hope to see you there next year and there should be Yorkshire retreat dates available soon :-)

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  3. Thought about you yesterday, Amanda when I had a tour around my mum's narrow boat where she's on holiday for a couple of weeks. It's soooo clever, all the dinky little hidey- holes and the way they've thought of everything, including a disappearing table. I couldn't believe they had a double bed AND two singles in there. Talk about a tardis. So excited and intrigued by your new adventure so keep us posted and keep up with the writing and editing. It was great to see you at York, truly wonderful weekend.

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  4. My boat is not quite as tardis as that! Enough room for me, John and the cat to live very comfortably. Looking forward to setting sail once the wood burner is in place later this week. Watery tales to follow!

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  5. What an exciting time for you, please keep us posted! It was great to see you at York xx

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