I’ve finished the first term of my second MA year. It’s been a reading term and once again my horizons have been broadened both as reader and writer with an eclectic mix of contemporary fiction and an excellent tutor. Next is an essay, which I am looking forward to writing (I loved the two books I’m focusing on) but am also slightly apprehensive about; I hope it’s up to scratch. It’s been such an intense period of prescribed novel-reading over the past three months it is rather liberating to be once again choosing something from my own ‘to read’ pile of books. However, I will miss the reading lists from my course, novels that have shown me ways of writing I might not have otherwise discovered. All the while my novel has been on my mind and with the added inspiration I am already looking forward to shaping my own prose alongside my cohorts during next term’s workshops.
A while back I wrote about my visit to Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights, and promised to return with a note on Will Self’s set-up. It all started with this book:
A gem of a find, ArtWork: Seeing Inside the Creative Process comprises short essays on how artists working in different mediums go about the creative process. It includes a profile of Will Self, who inhabits an office surrounded by a sea of post-it notes. It’s an impressive sight in the book:
I like this idea so have taken tentative steps and done a bit of story mapping via the medium of sticky notes. Handy when there are different sections involved if only to remind myself of something. Or shift things around a bit. All of which I know I can do on digital cork boards and the like, but sometimes it has to be a pencil and paper. A kind of miniature homage to Mr Self’s yellow wall display. He’s a clever man. Here’s hoping some of that rubs off.