Tag Archives: university

I don’t have Writers Block!!

31 Jan

I felt I needed to write another post in response to a comment about me suffering from writers block in my last post, Reflections of the toffee type.

Maybe I am in denial, but I really do not believe I have writers block. Let’s roll back the clock somewhat and see what I have achieved in the past 12 months.

Now I know many busy people have children so I am not saying ‘look at me, I’m a mummy’ but I do believe it is a valid point to be noted when we look at work levels.

So the first half of 2011 saw me completing my degree, which resulted in a first class honors and I am immensely proud of what I achieved. During that time, I completed A Simple Guide to Self Publishing, and tried real hard to promote it blah blah blah.

I also had a ten thousand word creative writing project in which I started my first novel. The result was the first three chapters and a full synopsis. Eager to continue I worked out full character bio’s, and a ‘post it note’ scene breakdown. Shortly after completing my degree, my computer died and I temporarily lost my work which by that time was at 20 odd chapters. Several months later when the work was recovered, I had lost heart in the story. If I am honest, during this time I didn’t have writers block, just writers depression. The part where you decide you cant do it, feel the effort is not worth it and wonder why you ever started.

Being sensible, I didn’t dwell on it, just chose to take a break.

During this time, I had started acting as editor for several writers, a role which I continue still.

By the end of August, I had found employment, and other than those precious hours of an evening, I didn’t get time to write.

It was at this time that ‘A Cuppa’ came along. Spotting a worthwhile project, I grabbed it with both hands and worked non stop (at least three hours every evening, on top of the kids and my day job). This finished in December and I think it is fair to say I collapsed. I had done too much, too quickly.

But I still wasn’t writing. Now we are on the eve of February, and I still haven’t put pen to paper.

That doesn’t mean however that I have writers block. Far from it. The recent posts that have been based around food (unintentionally) have been more about me getting back into writing, blogging, just testing the water. How much time can I commit? What should I allow my limit to be? Am I ready to go again?

Take a deep breath, yes, yes I am. And I am really quite excited.

I have two projects burning away, just waiting for me to say go. This time I have had has provided me with some fantastic thinking time, without pressure, and the stories and ideas have developed gradually.

The first project will involve you. It is still formulating, and I need to gather some more research and prepare a study plan. But it is looking promising. Whether it will work only time will tell but I am rather quite excited.

The other project will be a script, a series for TV. It is based in a uni, think the Inbetweeners but older, but from the staff point of view. If my idea continues to develop as it stands, the basis of the uni will become less of a factor, as the characters really do tell their own story.

Am I mad sharing my idea? Will somebody steal it? Well, if they do then I will take it as a compliment. As they say, no idea is original, it is the way you tell it that’s important.

I haven’t been a writer for the past six months or so, and this does not worry me. Sure I have had wobbles, slight panics that the dream was sliding out of sight, but there is always more to be had. Writing takes time, but it isn’t just the telling of the story, it is the formulating, the preparation, the time to watch the world.

Anyway, I am here, I am dipping in and out but I am thinking, always thinking. I hope you are too.

What will you do if your Son ends up Gay?

17 Jul

In my daily life, the one that most people know me in , I am greeted on a daily basis of useless information and comments. Most of which, I find highly insulting.

You see, most of the people I find myself around, just aren’t like me at all. They come from a planet that I fear I may once have lived on, but never truly felt that I belonged. I have fought my way out of that life on a mental basis, but physically moving myself away – I doubt I will ever do that.

So how do you handle these people with such different views to your own? Display the British stiff upper lip and just keep quiet, react with a counter argument and basically criticise these people for their way of life (not so good because then you are just as bad as they are for trying to instill your own thoughts), discuss from a logical point of view (when people have lived their life a certain way for so long they don’t want to consider the other side), walk away and never see these people again (well if it is family there is no chance of that and mutual friends are just as hard).

Sometimes I have to wonder if my ideals are warped. So today, I want to run these past you. Have I lost the plot? Really, is this acceptable?

It’s OK to claim job seekers allowance – you need to earn your stamp.

This was followed by:

Stay at home and look after your kids, they are your life now.

Money isn’t everything – your happiness is.

OK, now the above comments quite obviously come from a person who has no concept of who I am. Put simply, I always thought I would be a stay at home Mum, but I can’t be.

a) I need to earn money (I want to buy my kids what they need, as well as be able to treat them. My son is desperate to go to Disney World, I know he would love it, so somehow, I will get him there).

As I upload this image I think of many negative comments I have heard made about this place - it is amazing. If it wasn't, it wouldn't be so popular.

b) I didn’t go to University to sit on my backside watching Loose Women whist drinking tea with other Mums whilst the kids play in the garden.

c) being at home with the kids all day drives me insane. My son now gets to thursday and begs to stay at home all day. He doesn’t want to go to the park, or visit his friends, he just wants to relax. The problem is, I have to be busy but my kids get too tired. When they were in nursery more often, they would ask to go more. We enjoy each others company, but we also know when enough is enough.

As for the comment about earning your stamp, I believe the key word there is EARN.

Other comments I have heard of late,

Look at [son], what will you do if he ends up gay?

Are you serious? Just for that comment alone if my son comes to me and says he is gay I will throw a party to make sure that everyone knows that there is no shame in it what so ever. (On a side note, my son plays with all the usual boys toys, but he also likes to push round a doll in a pram, just like his dad pushes his sister. My son likes to play ‘make-up’, just likes his Mummy. When at his friend’s house, he will play whatever game the girls are playing – the favourite this week has involved carrying handbags and pretending to chat on the phone. I take it as a compliment that my son re enacts the actions of his parents).

I have worked for six weeks now. The novelty has already worn off.

Spoken by one of the great long-term unemployed. So yes, lets pat them on the back for getting a job but hello, the novelty? You have three kids. Grow up and get some sense of responsibility.

I want to write more of these, but I don’t want to go in for overkill. For each of these I have smiled and nodded, except for the gay comment. To which I just said, ‘Well, could be fun to go shopping.’ You see, how to react in these situations is hard. Keeping everything ‘light’ allows the moment to pass that much quicker. But am I wrong, is it me just being high and mighty? Are these ‘views’ acceptable?

Just to add to this query of the way people act, I have been recently thrown into this pit of favouritism. Whether that be parents scowling at children other than their own because they have hurt ‘precious’, or within families where one child is more ‘special’ than others. I am not just talking of small children here, even grown siblings with children of their own are subject to this favouritism – is this normal? Is this right? Do you do it? This subject makes me cringe because I deplore it – I hear your excuses – it’s still not acceptable (oh and for you managers (let’s face it favouritism in the workplace is rife) etc that like employees that agree with everything you say and therefore get the promotion – you’re not very good at your job!)

So come on then, share your thoughts. Am I wrong? What comments make your blood boil? Or are you just happy-go-lucky and just think ‘each to their own.’

It’s never too late to fulfill your dreams.

30 Jun

Have you ever done something that has totally blown your mind away. Achieved the impossible? Fulfilled the dream?

Let me tell you a story.

There was once a ten-year old girl whom upon learning she had failed her eleven plus, begged her parents to pay for her to go to the local all girls private school, or at the very least, appeal the result. Her parents said no, and that girl found herself attending the local secondary school, with a bunch of general idiots (too harsh but it is fitting) whom the girl and her best friend (now training a qualified doctor) said at best certain boys in the group would amount to bin men (not a role scoffed at these days).

Photo from before learning the results of the eleven plus.

At sixteen this girl signed up to the sixth form college, she would study leisure and tourism, after all, she did love her holidays. By the time her exam results came through, she had a confirmed place, and the worst results. That evening the girl cried, life just wasn’t fair. Finding new resolve the girl wrote in a small notebook:

* Go to uni

* Backpack around the world

* Do a parachute jump

Within the first two months of being in the sixth form, the girl had quit, having secured a job in a travel agents, and then quit that position to return to the sixth form. However, there was a problem. Upon working in the travel agent, the girl realised immediately that she did not want to work in that industry. A much more suitable approach would be to study business. Upon returning to the sixth form, the decision was taken out of the girls hands, she was to continue with leisure and tourism. Determined to succeed, the girl in her second year signed up to re-sit her GCSE maths, she was going to need that!

Having finally achieved the required grade in maths, and only securing a merit in the leisure and tourism (where there’s no heart…), the girl applied to four University’s. She would be a teacher.

That wasn’t meant to be. Without a place offered, the girl applied again to University through clearing, to secure a marketing course, returning to the idea of business once again. It was a well-known, rather valued University that accepted her on their course, but the girl was distracted, and did not enrol that September.

The girl found herself working mostly minimum wage positions, barely making ends meet. Her dreams were dead, the notebook lost and forgotten. She had created a massive hole for herself, and she would have to learn with making the worst decisions ever.

Or were they?

If you haven’t realised from the picture (oh it is awful I know – this was in the days before the veneers had been sorted), that girl was me. Fast forward ten years since that decision to not attend that course, and you are reading the words of a married woman, with two children a boy of three and a girl of one, and a degree, BA (Hons) Writing and Media Communications 1st Grade.

OK waving hands furiously here as the shock of the results is still buzzing.

That’s right, the girl who decided that to start uni at the age of 26, with a ten month old, and then thought, oh here’s a plan, have another child in-between semesters, got a first!!!

Normally, I would be a bit more gracious. Not shout out so loudly at my achievement, but this time, I will enjoy my moment.

I not only fulfilled my dream of going to university, I achieved more than I ever believed I was capable of. 

Now, just to start earning the money that will allow me to take a year out whilst I go backpacking…

Where first? (Click the image for site I have borrowed the image from)

(Oh, and the parachute jump? You can forget that.)