Sunday, 31 May 2009

Notes on a maturing student? Thinking of re-naming it to those of one regressing...I have stopped in whatever tracks I may have been making and cannot find the motivation to continue with this whole being a student again when I should really be thinking about my future - pensions, rocking chairs and the like.

It all started with a presentation of my novel for the MA - I cannot present. That is what I have always told myself and so that is what I believed. Except this time I secretly whispered to myself that it would be different - I am a grown woman for goodness' sake with four children and a hefty mortgage; I can do this. I prepared, I thought a lot about it and made loads of notes, whittled them down and practiced saying my spiel out loud. I even enlisted the help of a talented friend from the Fine Art BA course to provide some beautiful pictures. But it just wasn't enough.

My hand shook when trying to double click on the tiniest of arrows magnified enormously on the screens behind me to progress my carefully crafted presentation. That was okay, because it was keeping my shaking voice company along with my quivering lips and forced cheeriness. Relieved to have finally finished I turned to the panel in the hope of a few gently probing but ultimately encouraging responses about my proposed story only to be met with: "I don't get it?"

Instead of responding maturely and calmly talking through the points that could have brought a knowing look of illumination and appreciation for such a fantastic idea, I recoiled, retracted and almost agreed that I didn't get it either!

Oh to have the maturity to match my years and my natural hair colour. Maybe the fact that I had decided to disguise it only days before, resulting in a less than attractive orange which then had to be severely cut short to minimise its impact had something to do with it. Sadly, the repercussions are ongoing - not with my hair, that will grow to be dyed another day. My confidence is snuffling around way below floor level as my poor show means I lose the chance to present my idea to an invited agent, but that's okay as I'll get to watch all the really good other less mature students do it instead.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Put your pens down

Time flies when you're busy not writing blogs. The sweetest words were said to me today - don't write anymore until I say so. First I claim to have sought permission to write and now I am looking for permission to stop. Just for a day at least. And I've made good use of the time - I made a dalek with Harry out of cardboard, plastic bottles and a whisk - the whisk was a nice touch. Harry loved that. Have you seen the gun on a dalek?

This is the same Harry that fell back onto the pavement at the weekend and cracked his skull. Shaking, the pair of us, he asked me sorrowfully if he was going to die. Not today darling, was as much as I could say. Once he had had Calpol and cuddles and a trip to casualty ruled out, he rallied enough to show disappointment that he wasn't actually able to see where his head was cracked open.