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Light work – Lizzie Harwood
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Light work

Lizzie Harwood / Pep Talk  / Light work

Light work

It’s been a while since my last confession (er… post). Forgive me, dear Reader, for I have been physical and metaphysical miles away: in London, in my head, holding Bunkeroo’s small hand walking about Paris meeting Santa.

I cropped the above photo for reasons of anonymity and copyright, as Santa may not like me posting his photo since getting Him actually on camera will make all the other fake posing Santas look bad. But that’s Him meeting Bunkeroo – note Santa’s tanned forearm, Bunkeroo clutching her favourite doudou x 2 (lovey or security blankets in this case, pigs), Bunkeroo’s small hands compared with Santa’s professional gloved hands, her smile, his beard cascading. These are the important elements of a great photo with Santa.

Apart from meeting the big guy, I’ve been lying low waiting to hear word on my book from various parties (namely agents). I’ve twigged that the agenting world has changed from the last time I looked for one in 1999. It’s tougher out there. But that’s a positive thing because it only makes us write tougher in response to it. Or write smarter. Or write with more heart. Or all of the above.

I was surprised yesterday to learn of Curtis Brown’s Creative Writing Course that they are setting up, where the large UK literary agency Curtis Brown will offer a short course to 15 writers four times a year for £1,600 each to attend some workshops and one-off talks with industry professionals in order to make ‘unbelievable contacts’ with agents and maybe — just maybe —- be signed up by an agent. The comments on Jonny Geller’s post here sum it up. I for one am not signing up.

All these thoughts have been converging in my mind: Santa and Christmas wishes, looking for an agent for my manuscript, realising I need to rewrite my manuscript again (Draft 5 is stirring in the corner of the room, practising some Darth Vader heavy breathing), and the current state of publishing where a literary agency is now charging writers just to leapfrog the slush pile a bit…

And it’s all saying that more work needs to be done and I’m up for that. Maybe if I imagine an extra pair of white, gloved hands helping me write Draft 5 then the work will be light and magically spring from my fingertips and brain cells.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.


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