It was a bad new good news good news week.
It began with bad news. The (very awesome) agent who'd asked to read the whole novel, wrote to say no thank you. She said (and I paraphrase) that she just didn't love it as much as she'd hoped. The good news was the timing. The rejection freed me to submit a section of the novel for consideration in the 2014 Undiscovered Voices publication.
In the past 10 days I've travelled from Amsterdam to Calgary to Cabo and back to Calgary again. Ostensibly the trip was to visit friends and to attend a wedding but... the entire time my (often bizarre) brain has been occupied with inventing aliens.
It turns out that alien invention is a team sport.
The only thing that could make this writing week better would be a book contract.
What a week. Sitting down to write this blogpost all I could think of was how lonely a writing week can be and how this week was anything but lonely. It was filled with amazing writers and illustrators, bookbinders, fiction-writing angels (those wonderful folks who organise events) and my writing group. It was the people who made my week, so this will be a blog about those people.
I was speaking this week with a mom whose teen was facing the big decision – what to study at university? The teen was seriously considering enrolling in a creative writing degree at university. As someone with a Masters Degree in Creative Writing and a bucket full of undergraduate courses in the same, my response was disturbingly ambivalent, edging toward hostile. It was a big fat warning... NOOOOO!
When I started studying writing at university the first thing I learned was how much I didn't know. I sat in my first ever Creative Writing Class with Fred Wah, Governor General's Award winner and Canada's current Parliamentary Poet Laureate, with my pencil ready eager to record his gems of writing wisdom. Instead I filled an entire page with literary words I had never heard of before. Things like ostranenie and duende. What the heck? I was terrified. And in those pre-Wiki days it wasn't so easy