Friday, 17 December 2010

Term, End of

I have not had a smashing good semester on my MA course. My results have been wishy-washy and my confidence has plummeted into the Seine. The Creating Narratives module puts emphasis on rigorous decision-making and being ruthless with stories. I haven’t been able to start anything because I bore holes in all my ideas and dismiss them as rubbish.

My only choice is to, well—not bore holes in my ideas and dismiss them as rubbish. Otherwise I won’t write shit. Word up. You must remember I am, first and foremost, an idiot. *

Anyway. This module has been a dizzying overload of information and the emphasis on pre-writing preparation has been stifling. I tend to generate ideas as I write things and obsessive pre-planning is not the easiest muffin to bake. Hence the suckifarious results on the suckifarious assessments. On the non-complaining side, the technical writing advice has been invaluable, and my only enemy remains, as ever, my limited intelligence. (Working on that. I have tools).

Also on the non-complaining side, the Creative Non-Fiction module looks amazing. Sadly, it requires reading aloud in groups and discussing things in groups, so a certain volume of nightmarish misery will have to be endured for the greater good. It’s never good towing the status quo. You have to fling yourself into bowel-dropping terror from time to time. I did this last night when I went to see the Human League. Horrible.

I still haven’t figured out what to do with French or Russian literary theorists. Maybe I could start a support group called Friends of Theorists for those struggling to incorporate the unfathomable verbiage of eggheads into their personal writing philosophies. Number: 1-191-HELPTHEORY! Or not.

* Since I wrote this post yesterday my confidence has improved. Funny thing, confidence.


  1. When I was at the RCA in the 1970's, the head of Graphic Design had a 'great' approach.
    In the 1st year he tried to destroy his students.
    In the 2nd year, he rebuilt them in his image.
    In the 3rd year he wondered why few had stayed and were mainly non-entities.
    Both my brother and then, later, I took our MAs there - and we both told him where to shove his approach. It was a lesson in survival.

    Ever since, I've viewed all 'creative' courses with suspicion.
    You don't mold people, you nurture them.

  2. Jolly good too. Sounds like a horrible man. The best teachers allow their students to unlock their full potential. Sounds horribly sickly but if you don't unlock it then you'll never get his job later on.

  3. Creating Narratives was mostly fun, though I do feel odd about the 'there's no right or wrong way' turning prescriptive.

    I wouldn't worry too much about the group stuff. It's a really small class, don't forget. Maybe I could sit next to you. We could plait each other's hair.

  4. That sounds amazing. I'll grow it long and dye it pink.