I’m in the final week of Jericho Writers’ Self-Editing your novel course run by Debi Alper and Emma Darwin and all I can say is if you’ve written a first (or even a twenty-first) draft of a novel and you know something’s wrong but you can’t put your finger on it, or you’ve had agent(s) ask for a full manuscript but they’ve decided against taking your work on at the final fence, then this is the course for you. (Jericho Writers run lots of other writing courses, but this one is the biz.)
I’ve done an MA in Writing and many shorter courses in writing fiction but never ever have I done a course with such practical application. It’s (relatively) easy to write a novel by instinct when it’s all going swimmingly, but when it goes wrong you need to know the questions to ask yourself. Now I know the structural, vocal, point of view, psychic distance (do the course and you’ll discover), character-in-action and many other questions to ask and in the new year, by the end of March I hope, I’ll have a final redraft I’m finally proud of.
And the thing I’d love to have invented in a parallel universe where time is infinite and all things are possible this month is Atlas Obscura. It’s a travel-guide website, but it’s much much more than that. As they say:
Our mission is to inspire wonder and curiosity about the incredible world we all share.
Click on Random Place to be taken to destinations you’d never thought of travelling to. Or try Gastro Obscura to discover wondrous food to explore and enjoy from anywhere in the world. Why not give it a go this Christmas?