November always makes me feel like a failure. Not only am I incapable of, and not terribly well disposed towards, growing a moustache to make it a charitable #Movember, but then #NANOWRIMO pokes up its clever, superior little head and makes me feel bad about my attempts to write as well.
Expressive writing - also known as therapeutic writing - is the process of letting your thoughts and feelings flood onto the page, without stopping to censor, judge or perfect. It's a free-flow process that allows the thoughts and feelings to pour out, like water from a tap.
What humbling results! The future looks bright in such caring and compassionate hands. We chose to theme this year's National Young Writers' Awards around 'the future' because it opens up so much potential for a child's imagination.
The A Level in Creative Writing is due to come to an end this year. Other arts A Levels, such as the A Level in Art History, have, since the decision to close the A Level in Creative Writing was taken by the government, been saved.
Tarell McCraney, the writer of the play which is the basis of the film Moonlight which was last night's Oscar winner for
Just as vulnerability is helpful in the right doses, so is failure.
While it is seductively easy to solve a short term cash flow problem and close a course, it is much harder to open a new one, and so the decision to close should never be taken lightly. In these situations, it is a public interest focussed judgement. Arts education is not just good for society, it is civilization optimising and more should be done to ensure it is celebrated and protected.
I'd be quite lost without such distraction offered by the world outside or life online. Those daily chance encounters and random diversions often offer a route out of trouble when a story hits a dead end.
Romance writers are often reluctant to talk about formula, for fear of cheapening the genre or making something creative sound mechanical. There is, however, a cast iron formula used by every one of them, from the best to the worst, and which will never let you down whether you're writing a magazine story, a Mills and Boon novella or a full length novel....
I haven't abandoned London entirely and will continue to make frequent visits for meetings, gigs and catch ups with best pals, but for now, I'm committed to making this fine city of Nottingham my home and place of wild creative abandon. I do hope Nottingham is as excited about my arrival. Nottingham, can you hear me...?