In one word, writing. You may have heard me mention it before, but for those of you who don’t know, for the past two years I’ve been working towards an MA in creative writing at City University here in London.
To graduate they make students write a novel, which is the reason I applied to the course in the first place. I’ve always wanted to write one, but never had the confidence or the impetus to get started.
So, here I am coming to the end, and I have a first draft. It’s called Walking Distance. It still needs a lot of work, which I have to complete by the beginning of September. It’s been far more difficult than I thought it would be, hence my lack of posts, but it’s been worth it.
Not only does the university guide us through the process, we get taught by some great know-it-alls, such as Jonathan Myerson (the award-winning playwright, novelist and our course director) and my mentor Sadie Jones (of The Outcast and Small Wars fame).
And it’s not just about writing the novel either. Each year a collection of our work (the first 5,000 words) is published and sent to agents and publishers in the hope that someone might pick us out of the pack.
We’re also forced to stand up and read from our novel in front of a roomful of industry people, teachers, family and friends at the annual showcase. (This happened a couple of weeks ago, and for the more fashion obsessed among you, this green tiered Jaegar dress is what I wore. Delish, right?)
Anyway, since I’ve been neglecting you, I thought you might like to see what was published in the anthology. It makes me more than slightly uncomfortable to share, but I’m putting on a brave face – getting people to actually read your work is half the battle. I’d love to know what you think. No, really, I would. And if you like it, feel free to pass it on to any literary agents or publishers you might know.
To kick things off, I’ve included the short blurb. The PDF is linked below. Enjoy. Pretty please.
Theodore, a hedonistic cobbler of no fixed abode, has spent the better part of his fifty years causing trouble in rural New South Wales. Annie is a young woman and mother with questionable knife skills and a taste for self-reinvention. Both are on a mission to make up for past transgressions. As the narrative shifts between the two, the secrets that bind them are revealed. Set in the harsh Australian outback, the affluent Northern Beaches of Sydney and the perilous streets of Port Moresby, this novel shows that you can run away, but never fully escape your past.
All images © Kate McAuley