I made an arts council funding application back in Feb for time out to write the novel. Had made a previous one which got rejected because the public engagement section was wanting. To be honest I had no idea what to put there as it seemed more related to a finished product ie a published book so I was disappointed but not that surprised, as knew this section was pretty damn weak. Anyways moving on. I met with an arts council rep who highlighted some of the areas I needed to expand on and think about – it turned out that I was being far too modest (well we are aren’t we) and not putting everything I did re readings/workshops/interested parties down. Apparently you can look at the public engagement as research and development ie doesn’t have to be totally about your target audience/public once published, can be about what is happening now whilst it’s still being written/edited/polished. So it got me galavanised to maybe up my game and look at getting involved in some writing festivals and so I snook in a few proposals at the 11th hour to some local festivals and lo and behold it yielded fruit 😉
‘Sheffield Hallam Writers’ are a confirmed listing at the Wakefield Literary Festival in September. Our slot ‘To do or not do? What a creative writing MA can lead to’ is on the opening weekend Sat Sept 20th 2-3.30 at the wonderful stately Orangery (which does look stupendously cultured). I’m hoping we do the event and and the venue justice. Am sure we will as our group has an awesomely eclectic line up. We’re all graduates of the MA in Writing from Sheffield Hallam. so there’s me – Northern Writer Award Winner, best-selling author Susan Elliott Wright, Beverley Ward another Northern Writer Award Winner, Russ Thomas who goes by his writer name James Russell won a Waterstones Bookselers Bursary Award and last but by no means least Marion Iseard writer of poetry and prose winner of an epublishing contract for her children’s books.
So if anybody fancies coming along and hearing us read and chat about our individual journeys re writing successes;) and failures 😦 feel free!
Just waiting on Sheffield’s own Off The Shelf. Hopefully we will get listed there too.mI’m learning that the more you put out the more you get back. It’s all about give and take. You got to knock on doors, get your fist stuck into a few pies. And it isn’t that difficult. It’s the first step that’s always the hardest. Like starting that diet, asking someone out, going on that course, writing that first chapter. But if you don’t begin there’s no story, no journey and that’s torture.