So, finally, FINALLY after what seems like a clichéd eternity, I am coming to the end of my degree. I only have two more assignments to do, and then freedom! A lot has happened during the last six years, some positive, some overwhelmingly negative (not that I am labouring this point or anything…) but everything has been character building in one form or another.
A lot of this degree has been a bit like the old tale of the boy caught smoking his Dad’s cigars, or Brewster’s Millions – I have done so much reading and writing that I feel I need to take a break from it all for a while. Now, I know that this is not something a budding writer should say; we should be devouring books like our lives depend on it. But there is a big difference in reading for fun or enjoyment, or reading to a deadline in order to write an assignment on it. When I read a book that I enjoy, I remember it and I want to read it again and again… but when you read a book to force the information into your head on a very tight schedule, the fun goes out of it. I love cars and driving, but if I were a taxi driver for a living I’m sure that would become a chore too.
But, on the other side of this, I have gained a much deeper appreciation of the craft, and now know what to look for in good and bad books. I know how to analyse texts, plays, scripts and so much more – I even think that after a bit more practice, I could turn my hand to other aspects of the art as well as novels, such as screenwriting. Or maybe, just maybe I have been watching just a little too much Californication.
Also, let’s pretend that there is not a mini-mortgage known as student debt hanging over my middle-aged head!