Even before heading off to Paris for my third visit, I’m planning on what I want to see and where I want to go. However, the fact I’m using my newest fountain pen and a notebook from St. Pancras means, essentially, some of these places are now an extra luxurious, non-essential expense.
My secondary aim of this trip to Paris is to gather as much cultural association as possible. This is to enable me to write my ‘big piece’ for the first year of my Masters at the end of May. It’s going to be an overnight trip again and one where I’ll be meeting up with my girlfriend; the purchaser of this fine navy-blue Ted Baker notebook.
What I should be doing is reading two chapters of my on-line text book. I could then set aside the time to write my first assignment. The tutor marked assignment is, in real terms, the starting point of in my journey for the remainder of this academic year. It will enable me to express my style of writing in the creative nonfiction genre and allow myself to gauge where I am in relation to the marking of the work by my tutor. This in turn permits my levels of dissatisfaction and disappointment to be overcome before the emotional turmoil sinks in for the remainder of the year.
Why did I choose CNF as my primary interest? The reason startles me, to be honest. It’s simply so I can learn more. Yes, I love fiction; so many ideas in my head. But that is quite a big section of my problem. The ideas in my head can’t really be written down as they flitter from one scene to the next, like an incoherent drunk uncle retelling a story. If I were to somehow put them down on paper, I believe either my family or my peers would have me in a padded room faster than Houdini could escape from the straight-jacket that they’d have me wearing as they waved me off. That meant all that was left to keep interest going was Religious Studies. But the Open University weren’t doing a Masters in that. This left me with very little option left. I could easily have attempted a business-like qualification but seeing as the firm most likely wouldn’t pay, thank or reward me for passing, I left that idea in the prospectus. I decided I would pay to learn and advance my own personal self with Creative Writing in the nonfiction sense. The Batchelors degree was in the vain hope of becoming a secondary teacher. My end result was far from great and the reduction in salary to train would leave me with two years of mortgage arrears.
Creative nonfiction is where I am now. And again, allowing myself a little self-reflection, I’m glad. It won’t make me any better, but it will allow me to know my errors.