Monday was my last class and we were all very sad to say goodbye to each other. This course runs every semester and most of the attendees are returning participants.
We had 4 readings that evening and I have found it very difficult to critic other people’s work for 2 reasons:
a) I feel that they are much more accomplished and advanced than I am. Their writing felt more evolved and less fumbling. Most of them have been quite far in their story already…
b) They were all in genres that I don’t particularly read (historical drama) and although I enjoyed what they wrote, I just didn’t know how it fared against other, more established writers in that genre. For me, generally it had too many descriptions and too much introspection.
Still, I enjoyed the exchange of ideas and the warm support that the group gave each other. Everyone was keen to keep the group going for the next term but unfortunately not all of us can or want to attend. It’s in October and on a Saturday afternoon. I have time to change my mind, depending on how far I get with the current story. I feel that signing up to this one if I don’t progress, will be a waste of my time and money. I probably would have benefited more from the class if I had a better formed story. So, this time, I will wait and maybe I’ll join the following class (January 2015).
In the meantime, I have started a mind map on mindmeister (free app with Google – I love free stuff and at this stage, I don’t want to buy software) to help my plotting and I have got quite a bit of material to work with now, which may change but at least I have a frame to work with – although I still don’t have an ending.
I have signed to participate to CampNaNo, which is the summer version of NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) which has been held in November for the past ten years. It starts on 1st July and ends on 31st and you set up your own writing target (which is the difference with NaNoWriMo where the target is set at 50,000 words). The aim is not to edit as you write but to write daily. I have set my target at 20,000 for the month, which is roughly 650 words a day, which is quite achievable I think. I believe that I can do it (I am known for my unwavering optimism)…the problem is to write 650 words that make sense and work together in one story! If I manage it, I’ll try NaNo in November as well, which will then give me material to do the advance class again.