Feb 072014

It has been one of those weeks where I’m not sure where the time has gone. Is it really Friday again so soon?  I don’t seem to have had any ‘quality time’ to sit and write this week and have, instead, tapped out a few poems and lines in between cooking supper and marking books.

The week started with two shakes of the head. The Emma Press did not accept any of my poems for their Motherhood anthology (although I was unsurprised at this) and I also did not get anywhere with the Magma poetry competition I entered (again, not surprised – I entered a 3-liner!). So, all a bit of a no-no…

However, I have written some poems that I was pleased with and have the bones of others to chew on.

snoopy rejection letter

I did, inadvertently, teach myself a valuable lesson today. I recently had a conversation with Michelle at The American Resident about the differences between British and American writing and set myself the challenge to write like an American. I should explain, each week I enter a flash fiction competition run by an American site and I have noticed that the winners each week are quite similar in writing style and decided to have a go at writing in that same style and see if it improved my chances of accolade.

I tried my best and was pleased with my finished piece, ‘Ta-da!’ I thought, ‘I’ve done it!’. Until I re-read it later for editing and realised it is, undoubtedly, in the same style as my other pieces. The lesson that I learned was not about flash fiction or how to write more descriptively but that I have a style. And I like it. Useful as it is to practise different ways of writing, in the end your style comes through. It may not be to everyone’s taste, it may not be accepted for submissions or win competitions (harumph), but it is yours to treasure, to develop, to keep.

I am looking forward to a weekend of reading Amanda Jennings new novel, The Judas Scar.  I am lucky enough to have the gorgeous Amanda send me a proof copy. When I read her first novel, Sworn Secret, I literally could not put it down. I perfected the art of making tea one-handed and persuading my husband to put the kids to bed while I ‘finished my chapter…’. So I am desperate to read The Judas Scar and it has been sitting on my bookshelf for two days now, taunting me. I knew I did not have the time to surrender over the last few days but, yahoo!, it’s the weekend and tonight I plan to drink wine and read, read, read….

Linking up again with Beautiful Misbehaviour’s Writing Warriors.

  3 Responses to “A bit of a no-no”

  1. Commiserations on the rejections and congratulations on your writing style – it is original and yours 🙂 *cheers to that* I have never read The Judas Scar…just about to start The Sagas of Iceland…700 pages of Vikings and Nordic gods

  2. I think I would recognise your work if I had to pick it out and this is certainly a good thing! I don’t feel I have a style yet but I hope to find it this year by really investing in a daily writing habit. You are way ahead of me there!

    I would be interested to hear more about how you found your writing style, or was it always just there? I certainly seem to be wondering about at the moment with mine!

  3. I’ve just finished Stewart Ferris’s book How To Be A Writer. He talks about finding your own style, which lots of people struggle with. If you have it already then don’t fight it. Embrace it – you’ll get there in the end. All the very best of luck #WritingWarriors

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