All 5 entries tagged Writing

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February 01, 2012

Writing & Recuperation

Writing about web page

The last year has been a difficult one for writing. Full of bereavement for my family and too many of my friends, it left little space for writing and even less for creativity.

I hoped 2012 would be an easier writing year, little suspecting that a car accident at the end of 2011 would mean that the new year would begin writing-free too. My right arm was badly damaged, although miraculously it didn't break. Being right-handed, to say this has been frustrating would be an understatement.

However, not to be defeated, I bought a Dragon voice-recognition system and started to use that to get some writing done for uni. Using it has been fun, fascinating, and infuriating. At times it's like trying to get a voice recognition system to tell you the showing times of a film you want to watch rather than the one the speaker thinks you want to watch. Sometimes I end up shouting at the computer screen and at other times, I wonder how on earth something I said got translated into what appears on the screen! It reminds me of Chris Moyles and his team messing about with the BBC voice recognition system: they say a person's name and see who the machine tries to connect them to.

It would be fun if I had the time to play, but with an eye to the sands of time pouring through the opening into the 'lost' pile, I'm anxious to writing. I still have 30,000 words to write for uni. As my writing matures, I wonder if the 10,000 words I wrote last year for submission for Writing Fiction Workshop 2 will now be good enough. I'm trying to be positive: even if I can't use it as it is, and even if I can't use it at all for the submission, they are 10,000 words that can be redrafted/edited. If I can't use them, then I can still learn something: don't write like that again!

As my body continues to heal, especially my hand and arm, so the number of words I manage to write increases. I am really excited about rekindling my love affair with writing. Writing helps me to escape while I'm house-bound, and a very welcome one too. I wonder where I'll escape to tomorrow...

February 17, 2011

A Couple Of Writing Exercises

Writing about web page

A couple of writing exercises to try.

Exercise 1: Showing Character Through Their Eyes

Write in the first person perspective.  Your character walks into a bar.  What does he/she notice? 

You can show what your character is like through the things they see and notice.  The exercise helps to capture the detail and gives an indicator of what kind of person they are.

Exercise 2: Hidden Fury

2 people are sitting at a table. A is furious with B but not telling them. Write a short dialogue between them in the 1st person point of view of A.

Hope the exercises were useful.  Thanks to Maureen for setting them for her MA in Writing students!

Raj K Lal

December 16, 2010

Call for Book Donations for raise money for Anthology of Student Writing, MA in Writing, Warwick Uni

Writing about web page

The Ma in Writing students are producing an Anthology of their writing.  In order to do so, we need to raise enough money to cover all costs incurred.  If we don't raise enough, we can't ahead.  Simple as that.  So we need lots of fundraising ideas and activities.

One idea is to contact writers and publishers and see if they would be able to donate any books - especially signed ones - to help us raise some money. 

These are some examples of how the books may be used to raise money:

1) help sell pre-order vouchers - at each event where vouchers are sold, a book will be offered as a prize in a prize draw

2) if possible, and if we manage to get some big names involved, we may be able to auction books

3) books may be offered as raffle prizes

4) any excess books may be sold at launch or other fundraising events

Are there any writers and publishing houses out there willing to donate some books to us?  Please help us if you can! 

We will try to credit everyone who's made donations even if it's a general 'thank you' rather than a specific mention (which we'll do if there's enough space!). 

Many thanks to the generosity of those who have donated already.

December 06, 2010

What I've Learned So Far

Writing about web page

Well, I've written about the weather, the snow, the travel delays and the early starts but only a little about what I've learned. 

There have been writing exercises, tips, lots of things learned from my fellow students, among them internet rules and suggestions of books to read and films to watch, and peer feedback - some constructive and some not.  And with it all, lots of laughter along the way, and cakes and mince pies and cup cakes, lunches eaten together and discussions and singing over late lunches and cups of tea and on the buses.

I'll try to share some of these.

November 21, 2010

Polished Mirror

Writing about web page

I can't remember where I read these words, but today, I came across 'polished mirror'.  The first thing that popped into my head was:

My writing is like a polished mirror.  If there's no foundation, there is nothing to polish.  There has to be a rough sketch, a starting point.  If I don't sit down to write, then I will not have anything to polish later through editing and redrafting. 

I've known that you have to write something, no matter how bad it seems.  If there's nothing there, there's nothing to improve.  The 'blank screen', the writer's nightmare.  In the hardest of times, a few lines written are better than no lines at all.  Those few lines can act as prompts at the next writing session, and so the cycle will progress until you're able to write with greater fluidity. 

I just never thought of it as a polished mirror before.  I like that image.  I want to remember it so that the next time I hit a block, I hope the phrase will help me, spur me on, deliver me from the dark, fuzzy mirk of writer's block.  I want the clarity of that polished mirror. 

Is your writing like a polished mirror?  How do you deal with the fuzzy mirror?  

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  • Email me in regard to this I may be able to help with a couple of donations. Thanks by Rebecca on this entry
  • I will also share a few thoughts. For the first time I have realised how similar "laughter" and "dau… by Sue on this entry
  • Hi David, Thanks for your comment. Dad's loss continues to be hard for all of us. It's his birthday … by Raj on this entry
  • This is a beautifully written account of scattering your father's ashes. I'm very sorry this has hap… by David Morley on this entry

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