Sunday, May 31, 2009

With nothing to do . . .

It is feeling really strange, not having a deadline to get something written down.

Towards the end of my course, ill health had dogged me, and it took me everything I had to keep going, and to get that final TMA, and then the ECA, written and sent off. But, now it's all done, I feel quite empty, and am already looking forward to the beginning of A363 in October!
I received my registration papers today for this, have signed them, and will post them forthwith on monday, so at least I know my place is guaranteed now.

To keep myself involved, and as busy as I can be at the moment, I decided to do the rewriting on my 'And There Is A Right Way' story, adding the dialogue that my tutor felt it needed to be complete and, now I've done so, I see exactly what she meant - it brought a good story alive, and I'm so pleased she pointed it out to me.
I finished editing it for any mistakes and tweaks it might need, at silly-O'Clock in the morning, this morning and, rather than pick, pick, pick at it, until it is changed beyond recognition, I bit the bullet, and sent it off as a submission to a magazine that was asking for short stories of a sci-fi/fantasy genre.
Now I do what all prospective writers do, and wait to see if it's acceptable! Lol.

I also received a letter in the post this morning (saturday), asking me to submit my 'On The Trapeze' poem for an anthology. I won't be paid for it, but then, neither do I have to pay, so I decided to go ahead, especially as I keep the copywrite for it and, you never know, someone might read it, and be interested in all the other stuff I've written over the years! (We can all dream, can't we?) Lol
This will be my sixth poem to be published in an anthology, and I guess my ultimate dream, would be to have an anthology all to myself - just me!

And, in the meantime, I shall do as was recommended in the BRB, and just keep on writing every day so that, hopefully, by the time I start my new course, there will be plenty of ideas written in my notebook!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

My 05 results are in!

My results for my TMA 05 came in today, and it was with some trepadation that I went to extract them.

I had written my very first sci-fi story, a bit of a risk, but it was a story that needed telling, as it had been buzzing insistently in my head, ever since I had written the outline for it in activities 11.3 & 11.4.

I extracted my results, and opened them, silently breathing a prayer that it wouldn't have too low a mark then, much to my amazement, I saw that I had received 86% as my mark!

I confess that I double-checked that it was actually my story written there - but there was no mistaking it, and I sat for a second, mouth agape in shock, before letting out a relieved whoop!
My husband came rushing into the room, and once glance at my madly grinning face showed him that it was good news, and he was delighted for me that I'd got such a mark, although I don't think it touched how I felt! Lol

There were a couple of glitches with my story: I had let slip the indents needed for each new paragraph, something I'm amazed I didn't notice in my final check-up. And I hadn't used any dialogue in the story, which my tutor felt made it a little dense in places.

I'll have to work on that for the competition I'm planning on sending the story to, now that I know it was liked by my tutor.

I did have other favourable responses to it from friends and family before I had sent it off, but I had trusted my tutor to give me an unbiased view on it and, as she wished me luck with the competition in her notes to me, I'm taking it that, with that little addition of dialogue, she feels it's professional enough to submit - so hold this space, folks, and I'll let you know in August if I get anywhere with it! Lol

Now that my final TMA is back with me, all I have to wait on is the results of my ECA, which will also let me know on what level I have passed the course entirely.

So now the waiting commences . . .

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Well, that's 05 off!

I was never so glad as when I pressed the button that sent my TMA 05 over the aether, and into the postbox of my tutor (hopefully!), for it to be dissected, and marked - hopefully, with a light pen! {g}
I had started getting quite obssesional with it, so felt it was time I sent it off, before I changed it out of all recognition!
So I breathed a sigh of relief when it was gone, and now all I have to do is the last few tweakings for my ECA.
This won't be easy, as the work on my TMA hadn't been, because the Fibro-fog that plagues me regularly has been a constant companion this last few weeks, and it's been a real pain to try and concentrate on anything, let alone the two most important essays of the whole course!
But I've managed it and, if my work isn't up to the standards I'd like, at least they will get me a pass - I hope! Lol

I've thoroughly enjoyed these last two essays, despite the health problems and, for the first time since I started the course, had a good insight into what was needed in editing terms in order to enhance my work, although I've no doubt that my tutor will find plenty to comment on, as she is very good at gently guiding us all along the path of self-knowledge - one of the main things I've found is needed if you are at all serious about writing. :)
I'm just waiting for some forms to arrive, and then I will be finalising my ECA, finishing off the commentary, and tidying up my references, and then I will be printing three copies of it, and sending them by post - for the first time since starting with the O.U. - and then comes the wait to see whether I've passed and, if I have, what sort of overall mark I'll get.

I'm really hoping to get a Grade 2 pass, as I did for my last course. I've given up hoping for anything higher, as my memory just won't let me absorb, and retain, enough information to get anything higher. But a grade 2 will make me a very happy bunny!

So now my thoughts will start to go on to my next course - A363: Level 3 Creative Writing, where I will be introduced to the joys (I hope) of scriptwriting, something I'm really looking forward to.

I've promised myself that I will try and get something that I've created this year into print if I can, and I've already earmarked a few competitions and magazines that I'll be sending stuff to, so wish me luck, and keep your fingers crossed for me, would you?

Monday, May 04, 2009

Preparing for TMA 05.

I've been reflecting on all that I've learned so far with this course, and am actually amazed at the depth and breadth of the things I have learned - about myself, my thought processes, and what I'm capable of writing with the right prompts.

I had many expectations on starting A215, and they have been met and, in some cases, exceeded, so I am starting on the processes of my last TMA with some sadness at the nearness of the end of this journey.

There is this TMA - which I have got in hand at last, after a frantic search online to find a suitable magazine with which to prepare a story for submission - and then there will be the final submission - our ECA, or end-of-course assessment, which is worth 50% of the complete course grades (a rather nerve-racking thought if I ponder on it too much!).

So, I am relishing the writing of my penultimate story - my very first sci-fi/fantasy story -and am savouring every day that I have to write it, then will get on with the commentary, where I need to explain the processes of my search for, and preparation of, the work for this suitable magazine. Once this is completed, I can then leave it to simmer for a while, so that I can go back to it with fresh eyes, and edit it as needed, until it is as professional as I can make it. I will then submit it, so I can turn my mind to the final ECA, which will take every bit of skill and learning for me to submit something worthy enough to get a decent grade.

I have enjoyed this process so much that, come October, I will be starting the Level 3 Creative Writing course - A363 -which, I am pleased to see, also has Radio, Film and Play writing among the things that I will be learning - something I'm looking forward to enormously, although with an inward tremour, as this will be my first Level 3 course, so I'm nervous of the level of writing expected of me!
But, whatever happens in my journey of exploring my own creativity, I can honestly say that I wouldn't have missed all of this for the world.