Sunday, 14 October 2012

Creative Writing Lectures

Four weeks in and lectures are in motion, and now that I've not got the flu and my cough is subsiding (somewhat) I can fully enjoy them. 

Advance Fictional Writing is exactly how it sounds. I feel that it's repeating a lot of the stuff I learnt in first year. While it is handy, it's also boring. I know about character now, with all my character profile sheets, I really know about character. Plot, structure, setting and dialogue are all second nature to me now and it's not interesting to listen to it all again.
Luckily, that's not all that is involved in the lecture. The other part includes a talk about marketing and publishing. This is more interesting as it is about what to do after you have written your masterpiece. It's also interesting because I have considered going into marketing before and part of me wouldn't mind being an editor, either. So that's always something to look into.
BBC's adaptation of Fingersmith
The most annoying this about this lecture is the reading list. They didn't post it until after the summer so I had no idea we even had to read anything. It now means that for the past four weeks I have been struggling to catch up, and finish the books we were meant to have for lecture a week late. For example, we were supposed to have read Fingersmith by Sarah Waters for Tuesday the 9th of October and I only just finished it today. I have another book to read by this Tuesday coming as well. However, this one is a lot shorter so I will probably manage it, for once. That's another thing, these books aren't even short, they're like 500 pages long. Even for me that's rough!
The final part of the lecture involves work shopping our creative pieces. As I missed the first lecture due to flu I was a little behind. Everyone already has ideas and at least 500 words. My mind is so focused on my ECP at the moment that I hadn't given a thought to all the other creative pieces I would have to do. But then it occurred to me, I could use this lecture as an opportunity to start my Margaret Jones novel. So on Tuesday I took the beginnings of the story in and my group seemed to like it. They even laughed and were surprised when I said she would stumble upon a drug lord's stash. Hopefully my lecturers will like it as much.
So overall, out of ten I would give Advanced Fictional Writing a six. Interesting, but not too inspiring.

My second lecture of the week is Writing-History-Fiction. Yes, written like that. Supposedly it means different things to if it was written Writing History Fiction. This is the lecture I look forward to most in the week. Not because of the topic or content but because it is the only lecture in which I have friends. It totally makes up for the fact that it's rather boring. I think the main problem is that I suck at history. I know nothing about it. And honestly, don't really care. Don't get me wrong, I find some parts really fascinating but they're not something I want to write about. Actually, I have no idea what I want to write about. I only chose this module because I thought my boyfriend would finally read something I wrote and like it, as he studies History at the university. Another problem is my lecturer, bless her. She's not technology savvy, like most lecturers, but she insists on using it. She sounds like Professor McGonagall but acts like Professor Trelawney. I think that says it all. And the books! The books are even worse than Advanced Fictional Writing. I've already mentioned Wolf Hall before, but my God, I just cannot read it.
Out of ten, this module receives a seven. All right, but my friends make it much better.

My last module of the week (I only have three this year, as I have my ECP) is Comic Books and Graphic Novels. It sounds like it is going to be lots of fun, and over the summer I really got into comic books. But I actually find it rather tedious. My lecturer is nice enough but he's so airy fairy and laid back. There doesn't seem to be any structure. On Friday we watched the first 20 minutes of the 1960's Batman movie with Adam West, which by the way is totally ridiculous. It is fun, I just wonder about the money I'm spending on tuition fees to watch Batman. That makes me sound like such a spoilsport.
The one style of writing I was glad to give up was scriptwriting, and guess what, comic book writing is pretty much just like scriptwriting. I'm dreading the creative piece. The first assignment was a choice between an essay, Is Batman: The Dark Knight Returns a successful novel? or a parody of Batman. Everyone has chosen to do the parody, but I'm so anxious about it that I chose to the essay. That might have also been a bad choice. I worked out that I haven't written an essay since the Textual Intervention II piece back in March. (You remember  I aptly named it the Worst Essay Ever.) Anyway, that was eight months ago! This essay is certainly going to be a challenge.
For this module I give it a seven out of ten. Enjoyable, yet flat.

Overall this term isn't too inspiring. I think I may just knuckle down with my ECP, which reminds me, I have a meeting with my ECP supervisor tomorrow about it. I sent her the first 3,000 words. I really hope she likes it, or at least has something constructive to say. Finger's crossed. 

No comments:

Post a Comment