I worked too long in academia for September not to feel like the start of a new year of work, and although we are still in August, two things happened recently to make me look back and take stock of where I am with my writing. First of all I was fascinated to read on Scottish writer Catherine Czerkawska’s blog that, despite her many successes with plays, poems and other creative writing, her true aspirations are as a novelist. I could relate to this, since although I’ve had a lot of fun, and some success, this year in submitting to magazines and short story comps, it still feels like a kind of intermission in my main writing life.
Soon after I met with a fellow writer who like me has given up on her current novel but is doing a rigorous rewrite of an exisiting MS and making plans to send it out. This initally brought only another sigh from me, as my mission to rewrite The Water’s Edge following its brief outing at Winchester also seems to have foundered on the rocks of indifference. But as often happens, the mutual moan got me thinking. Here I am with a completed novel that has never been seen by only two agents and not a single indie publisher. As someone who aspires to get a novel published, how stupid is that?
So with my personal New Year on the horizon, I’ve decided it’s time to get myself and Ailsa back in harness so that I can at least report back on how she fared in the outside world. Other projects can wait. It’s one thing to put a novel in the drawer if it has been rejected, but after three years of work, I think it deserves an outing first!
Finally, a big thank you to writer and teacher Linda Lewis (aka Catherine Howard) for her generous critique of Preparing for Winter which she recently awarded third prize. Don’t forget you can also read this story on the Writespace site and in the SlingInk Shorts e-zine.