Tag Archive | assignment one

Making progress

I’ve just realised we’re half way through the 5th month of the year, and I’ve read I think 1 maybe 2 books all year.  That is terrible.  If to become a writer you have to read read read, looks like I’m not going to get there.  I blame the writing course.  I also blame my job for the hours for not giving me time to read.  I did have a long list of silly things I blame, but I didn’t think it was really funny enough to take up the space.  I MUST READ MORE.  That’s the long and short of it. 

The problem is, if I start reading a book, whenever I do that I’m going to feel guilty about not doing the course.  I need to prioritise.  Or find more hours in the day?

I sat down at my desk this morning and decided I’d do some work on ‘Holiday’.  I opened word and started typing.  Wow.  I had so many ideas.  I planned on writing a brief on the main characters, which I did start, but I got so many other ideas while I was there I’ve now got about 5 different sections on the document with different ideas of things that can go here or there.

I keep getting ideas, but then evolving them so changing them, but then really like the 1st idea.  How do I decide on which one to use?  I am terrible at making decisions when it comes to cutting things out.  Take the 1st assignment for my writing course.  It started as a review of the Science Museum Lates, the first draft was 500 or so words over – not too good when it should have been about 500 total.  But I wanted to keep it all in rather than cut bits, so what did I do?  Start another review of somewhere else, keep in the word count and use that instead.  Another thing I need to learn!

When taking a break from ‘Holiday’ I found a blog on here with a ’10 minute writing’ prompt (http://thesunlitdesk.wordpress.com/2009/05/14/free-writing-exercise-2/).  I did that and am quite impressed with what came out.  I do love these writing for small lenght of time things.  It worries me it’s because I don’t have to finish them and  I think I’m pretty scared of finishing things.  The main thing I need to concentrate on is that I’m writing.  That’s the most important thing at the moment.  🙂

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Assignment one – passed!

‘Passed’ is really the wrong word.  My writing course isn’t the not the kind of course you pass or fail.  But my tutor’s comments were on the whole very positive.  Such a relief – it means I have hope of doing something with writing.  If you are so bad they think you would never be able sell anything they let you know, and you can’t carry on with the course.  Big relief.  I have potential.

I’ve also finished the modules I have to read before I start the next assignment.  I’ve now read it, and I am scared.  I need to review a magazine I would like to sell articles to – ok.  Not easy, but do able.  Then I need to write a 150 word brief of an article I would write for that magazine.  Ahhh.  But not the worst thing.  I then need to write the article.  Ahhhhh.  Really ahhhhhhh.  Hopefully will be a lot less scary once I’ve done the review of the magazine.  I’m going to focus on doing that, not even think of the next two sections.

I’ve now done a blog on a Sunday.  The sun’s shining.  It’s a good day 🙂

*Forgot a title – again!*

I’ve started reading lots more of my writing course. The current module is about selling articles to magazines and papers and things like that. I am really petrified of this idea. I have no idea if I actually can write anything that would be bought by a magazine or paper. I guess I’ll find out. I need to do all the prep now for it – find out about magazines etc and research them. Then as I get further into the course I can look at selling stuff. They said Assignment one wasn’t about getting me to a level I can sell stuff, but about finding out if I’m observant. I don’t know if I am. My boyfriend thinks I am the least observant person ever, which kind of worries me. How can I be a successful writer if I am unobservant? I’m going to work hard on this. I waste so much time on the tube and bus a day, I should spend that time OBSERVING! I read something today about someone who has two jobs and still manages to write 1,000 words a day. 1,000. I have one job (not worked in the Pizza place for weeks now, maybe even months – have asked to do a couple of shifts though), and don’t seem to be able to ‘find the time’ to do any (very little I should say). This is down to inefficiency. I spend way too much time doing nothing. And going to bed too late because I’m doing nothing. I could quite easily get up an hour early and spend that hour writing/doing my course. I should make an effort to change this. No, I will make an effort to change this. I’m just about to sign up for the Race for Life 5k race in May/June/July and want to sign up for a 10k one too (my first – eek). So that’s going to mean training – less time for writing. There must be a balance! I must find this balance. One thing I really need to do is write down my dreams as soon as I wake up. I forget thinking I’ll do it later, but by the time I do I’ve forgotten half (or more) of it.

I also NEED to post assignment one. If I could’ve emailed it I would’ve sent it off WEEKS ago. At least I will be able to email the rest of the course – should get it moving a bit faster.

Goodbye Assignment one

Yes, that’s right.  After all this time and talk, assignment one will be posted this weekend.  As soon as I can get it printed that is.  Woo hoo.  I think I’m quite happy with it.  I guess my tutor’s comments will tell me whether I should be happy with it or not.  As they say though, this isn’t about trying to get work published – this is about seeing how observant I am.  Or am not?

This means A. I can start my Marian Keyes book; and B.  I can start on Assignment two.  Or so I thought.  I actually can’t as I have to read three modules of the course before I can start it.  Before I read that I must to that first, I accidentally started to read the assignment.  It sounded scary.  It said analyse a magazine you read all the time.  Eek.  I didn’t read any more, but that alone scares me.  Hopefully once I’ve done these three modules it will be less scary than I am currently thinking it is.

I feel like I’ve not done any writing this week.  All I’ve done is editing the 1st assignment.  I should do some writing.  NOW!  I should stop writing this and do some other writing.  That sounds silly but you know (I know) what I mean.

I’ve had an idea.  It just came to me the other day.  I was reading a magazine and they were talking about how they have a readers panel.  They invite four readers per issue to come in and give their views on the magazine.  What a great experience that would be.  Going in to a magazine and seeing how it works.  Woo.  I just need to convince them that I’d be great for it.  I need to send them ‘fun facts’ about myself to get the gig.  FUN FACTS?  Ummmmmm.  It’s going to take me a while to think about them.  I originally thought I’d say about the writing course I’m doing, but then thought they might not like that – they might feel like I was trying to get in to get ahead in selling articles (Me? As if!), so have deleted that.  Other than loving cooking (and therefore the magazine for having recipes) and being healthy/gyming I can’t think of anything fun about me.  Don’t think they’d go for ‘I love going to clubs/bars/pubs’.  Damn.  Need to become ‘fun’. 

I’m going to do some writing now.  I don’t know what about though.  This could be a problem.

Why am I doing this?

This question is the other half of the first assignment of my writing course. Why do I want to write? What do I want to gain from the course? What are my plans for the future? I know, I’d already started answering this question – but this time I’ve done it properly (as I forgot the 2nd and 3rd parts last time).

It’s really hard to answer these questions. I want to write because I always have wanted to. Not really a very good answer. And not really 300 words. I’ve done it anyway. It’s not going to be ‘marked’ anyway – it’s just so they can set me up with a suitable tutor. And so they know what I want to get from the course. But me being me has to make it perfect. I suppose that’s a good thing though.

I think I’ve made a decision that I’m not going to put my work on here. I know I’m doing this to see how I get on and improve etc but think I want to keep the actual work separate. Or maybe I’ll add it once I’ve had it back from the tutor. What I will do though is add the work that I do, but am not sending off. So I think in the next few days expect a review of the Science Museum – LATES. Yes this means I have (nearly) decided I’m sending the Ked Kandi review for my first assignment. I think. I had decided I would, but now it’s in black and white I’m thinking maybe I should send the Science Museum one. I am so bad at decisions. I’d also forgotten the potential 3rd option of the Museum I’m going to tomorrow night. Ahhhh.

On another point, I’ve started reading Lady Chatterley’s Lover again. I had kind of got a little bored of it. It doesn’t seem to be going anywhere and I don’t think I care that much anyway. But I think I should persist. I guess. No, I should read lots and read varied things. This is defiantly varied!

I’m keeping up with reading the papers too. I read The Independent and The Guardian every day. Well, I read the interesting articles from the 1st half of each. I’m now not feeling as out of my depth with them, I can read and take it all in. Also some times I am reading the Times online (the interesting articles I find on that). All good reading.

I can’t remember if I mentioned this before, but I feel like I need to know (remember) more words for ‘said’. So, I’m going to skim read through a book (probably more than one) and highlight all the words they use instead of ‘said’. Then copy them all into a notebook, or word document or something so I’ve got this reference. I think this is the best way of doing it, because it will also help with seeing the type of language used in the type of books I want to read. Obviously I’ll be using chick lit. I’m starting with ‘PS I love you’. Great book. Shame about the film – such a disappointment.

Add another choice?

My boyfriend called me last night and mentioned that another museum had a lates night this week. It’s the London Museum’s turn this week. Sounds like a plan for Thursday. However this leaves me with a dilemma. Do I wait to submit my assignment because I could write an article on this, or go with the one from the Science Museum or Hed Kandi? Decisions decisions. I re read the review of Hed Kandi today, and personally I think it is quite good. I’ve not looked at the Science Museum review (I must admit, I am still a little scared at reducing the length). Does this tell me something? Should I go with the Hed Kandi one and ignore the museum one? Or is that just giving up and I should persist? Or, should I try again on Thursday and hope this is even better (practice makes perfect and all that). I don’t know.

I don’t even know anything about the Museum of London (MOL – might as well shorten it as it seems I’m going to write it a lot) so I don’t even know if it’s something that will interest me so don’t even know if that is a good idea.

Ok, so took a break to find out what the MOL is and it seems like something that would interest me. It’s about the history of London (I guess it didn’t take a genius to work that one out!). ”Transport yourself back half a million years, when lions and hippos roamed Trafalgar Square” – sounds interesting. However, it also has a section on roman stuff (I won’t be using that sentence if I do a review, don’t worry), which my boyfriend is quite into (if his love of Time Team is anything to go by). This doesn’t interest me as much (in fact hardly at all). Maybe this isn’t a good idea. I was thinking that he’d looked at it and offered to take me because of this new found love I have of writing about anywhere I go – now I’m wondering if he’s doing it for himself or me. Mmmmmmm. Either way, I’ve now got a plan for Thursday (and it’s free – my favourite price).

Too many choices

I found out this weekend that more people read my blog than just my other half. This really excites me, but also really scares me. People are reading what I write. This is the thing that scares me about writing – other people reading it. This is the reason that only the man and my Mum know about my blog. This could create a little problem when trying to sell writing and novels. How can I be scared of my biggest ambition? I do worry myself sometimes. (Thanks to the people who are reading this – hopefully over time I will conquer this fear!).

I’ve now done 2 different versions of assignment one. Over the weekend I went clubbing to Pacha (Hed Kandi – woo hoo!) and for the whole night I couldn’t get the thought out of my head about what I would write if I was reviewing the night (the assignment is to review a place I visit that interests me). I wasn’t sure if reviewing a club would be appropriate for a writing course, but then realised that people do review club nights in magazines, so why not give it a shot? So yesterday I wrote assignment 1 – mark 2. This time I managed it in the right number of words (just – only by cutting out the last sentence).

Now I need to decide which version I should send as my assignment. Decisions decisions. I’m going to read through them both tonight (maybe re write the Science Museum one to cut down the words – maybe go through cutting out words) and see. My problem will come if I read them both and like them both. I have never been good at making decisions on things like this (I can’t think when I would have been in the position to make that kind of decision before). If something’s good I want to use it. Lets just hope one of them isn’t good.

My other problem (I swear I just make them up for myself) is knowing whether to ask other people’s opinions on the articles to see which they think I should send in (or what they think of them). I really think I should make the decision myself as the course is all about me so I should be deciding. But I want opinions. But then if I get opinions I might change things to go with their opinions, which might make the course pointless as they are giving me judgement and help on my writing, not someone else’s.