Sunday, 12 May 2013

Back to normality (and I don't like it...)

The courses are both finished. The final assignment was sent in yesterday, and I'm trying to get used to being able to do what I want. I'm feeling guilty writing the blog, as I'm so used to using it as a diversion from studying. I've been looking back on what I suspect are going to be my two favourite OU courses - so, what have I learnt?

Creative Writing: Never to write poetry again. I didn't do too badly on that assignment, scoring 75%, but I felt a fraud and a bit of an idiot writing it. It made me think of a guy I used to work with, who published his own poetry. The other bookshop staff and I read it, and asked what it meant, to which he replied that if we didn't understand it, it was because we were uneducated and didn't have poetry in our souls. Henceforth, he was known as The Pompous Tosser. He was actually sacked after a month of 'work' as he would turn up at lunchtime saying he'd been up till 3 that morning writing, which was much more important than selling books to ignorant peasants. The other thing I learnt about writing was that (and I really hope this doesn't sound arrogant) I knew pretty much how to do it anyway. I just hadn't really sat down and written since school, and probably would never have done so without the course. I needed that strict timetable to actually do some writing. What's helped me most with Creative Writing was not the course, but reading hundreds of books. 

Children's Literature: I desperately need to read the whole 'Mortal Engines' series by Philip Reeve. I love 'Treasure Island' and hate 'Junk'. Apart from that, I learnt a heck of a lot about the history of childhood and how every book (irritatingly) seems to have a hidden agenda in there somewhere, even if the author emphasised that it didn't. I learnt that Patrick Ness can get away with not describing his characters, even if I can't. I've always loved children's picture books, but I've learnt a lot about their history and how they they're continually evolving. I learnt that I love illustrations by Molly Bang, and must buy a book with more in:

Name that fairy tale...

I have learnt tons of booky things, and it's been money well spent, even if it's just to keep the brain working. 

Now, I have a huge pile of books awaiting, so better get started...

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