Thursday, 26 August 2010

Learning about Writing

When I was doing my MA I asked if we were going to have any talks on craft techniques.  'Oh no,' came the lofty answer.  'We assume that anyone on the course already knows that sort of thing.'

Well, I thought I didn't, but it effectively shut me up at the time.  Now I think, what utter nonsense.  Learning about writing is an on-going process.  There isn't a finite set of answers that you can work your way through, ticking boxes, and by the time you get to the end of the list that's it - bing! - you know it all.  

I'm always learning.  It's one of the things I like about writing.  There's always something new.  Every time I read a book, or go to a lecture or hear another writer speak I learn something.  Sometimes it's a new approach to something I already know.  Sometimes it's a reminder.  And sometimes it's something completely new to me.  I love it!  

An acquaintance recently asked me what I did apart from writing, what my hobbies were.  I felt very dull indeed when I said I didn't have any, I just read and wrote.  (I remembered afterwards I do Pilates, but too late to redeem my terminal dullness. And I go to the cinema a lot, but I usually analyse the scripts in a rather nerdy way so I think that counts as writing related too.)  Thing is, unlike the director of the MA, I think there's so much to learn about writing you could never learn everything.   But it's an awful lot of fun finding out. 


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