I was absolutely thrilled to be awarded The John Walter Salver by Author Wendy Clarke at the Society of Women Writers and Journalists Christmas Celebration in December 2015. Here we are with SWWJ Patron Sir Tim Rice.
Normally, I am quite shy and hide myself in photographs by bending my head and looking down at the written page, you only have to look at my profile picture!
But as I am struggling with writing an academic essay I keep returning to this event as a prompt to continue with the work. I started the MA in Victorian Studies as an aid to writing my novel and before I can return to my characters who are currently filed away in sections in many notebooks, I need to learn more about the period so that I can bring them to life with authenticity.
In embarking on an MA I have had to re-order my life and my bookshelves. The moderns have had to be rehoused to the Oxfam bookshop to make way for the books I need to or intend to read. Pencils have had to be sharpened as no pens are allowed in The British Library. Even my wardrobe has had to change as hours of work mean less walking outside and more staring at the ceiling whilst thinking of the correct word. I agonize over detail knowing that 'I' does not matter as concept as the 'other' and more learned point of view is the most valuable one.
As I draft, write and then re-write my essay, I know that my creative writing will need the same approach in much the same way as the submission needed for this competition. I only hope that the rest of this journey will have a positive outcome.
So one moment of joy amongst days and nights of academic stress and self-doubt.