As 2018 draws to a close and I sit here, once more wondering where on earth those twelve months disappeared to, it’s as fitting a time as any to look back over a year in writing.
After the birth of Baby #2 in summer 2017, it took me a little while to get started again. I never really stopped writing; as any writer knows, it isn’t something you can turn on and off at will! The poems and short pieces which I scribbled down onto the back pages of magazines and TV guides during those first crazy post-birth days may not be the most literary things I’ve ever written, but they captured the emotions I was going through at the time and provide me, and my daughter, with a truly personal and honest memory of everything that was going on at the time.
In January 2018, I returned to Lockerbie Writers group meetings, and was delighted three months later when I was appointed to the role of Events Manager. This year I have helped to organise an author talk with local author Sara Maitland and an open mic night (both of which events were incredibly well-attended and received fantastic feedback), and assisted with the second year of the Castle Loch and Lockerbie Writers’ Children’s Writing Competition.
January also marked the beginning of Lockerbie Writer’s sister group, A Novel Approach. It has been my absolute joy to be an integral part of this group from the beginning, whose aim is to support novel writers at any stage of the process. Thanks to this wonderful little group, I found the motivation to begin work on the novel which I’d been working on in the back of my mind since the late stages of my recent pregnancy. I am now approaching 30,000 words and the half point of my first draft, which – considering all the other demands on my time at the moment – is a sizeable achievement for me over one year.
It has been a quiet year for publications as most of my effort has been going into my novel or work for Lockerbie Writers, however I have had another project on the go. In October 2018, after months of deliberation, I finally took the momentous decision to declare myself as a self-employed writer. One of my greatest loves is participating in creative writing workshops and hearing the snippets of writing which others come up with on the spot, and I hope that over the next few months I will be able to turn this passion into a career. I have my first workshop set for Saturday 19th January, with another four more in the diary during February/March. More details coming in the new year – or email me for details!
What a year! As ever, I am grateful to the writers at Lockerbie Writers, A Novel Approach, and all of those other writers I have worked with over the year. I am equally grateful to those who have read my drafts and offered constructive criticism, and to anyone who has read and enjoyed anything I have written, this year or in the past. I hope you will continue to support me in my new endeavours in 2019.
Happy new writing year!