So, after further investigating UW’s English department, I realized they really don’t offer the array of writing classes I want. I’d spend most of my time there taking literature classes, which isn’t necessarily terrible, but I want to be writing, and not just analytical, critical essays. I have three semesters left if all my credits transfer, and I don’t want to have to put writing on hold for that long while I get my degree. What irks me to no end is that UW offers these “extension” programs aimed at the working adult, and they have extension classes in everything I want to take – memoir, creative non-fiction (as in articles and essays), screenwriting, genre fiction, literary fiction. Such a delectable selection! But of course, when I asked the English department, I found out that in no way can any of the extension classes be taken for credit.
The school isn’t out of the question. I mean, they are well-respected academically, and tuition might be doable because I’m a state resident and I could get help from the Services for the Blind (for those unfamiliar, these blind-people agencies are state-run and vary considerably from state to state). It’s also in a city, which is something I want, and to boot, a city I know pretty well. So, like I said, not out of the question, but I am looking elsewhere. I decided I’m going to aim to transfer next fall, which’ll give me almost a year to thoroughly investigate schools, apply, save up money, prepare to move.
And the search continues. I think one of the best things is that I pretty clearly know what I want. I want to be somewhere with an array of writing classes in different styles and genres. I want to be somewhere with internship possibilities in publishing or teaching. I want to be somewhere urban. For one thing, living on my little island is making me a bit stir-crazy, emphasis on the crazy, but more importantly, since I don’t drive, I want available public transit. I’m also way too old to live in a dorm (hated it when I was the right age), so somewhere where I can realistically commute to school. So, I’m continuing to look, do college searches, read up, and so on.
In the meantime, there’s a screenwriting class being offered on the island. It runs from the end of Sept through the end of March, with a scene reading in April. The class is based on adapting Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods for the screen. I’ve never done screenwriting before, but have contemplated it for awhile. It scares me because it’s so visual, and I’m visually-impaired, but then again, when I get story and book ideas, I always sort of see them like movies anyway. I think it could be challenging and great. It’ll definitely be somethign to add to my writing resume, put on college applications, etc. This class is also supposed to be very rigorous, so it should give me a taste of what I’ll be getting into with school.
All in all, my goals for the coming six-eight months or so:
-Write a screenplay based on A Walk in the Woods
-Research schools, apply, figure out where I want to be next year at this time
-Save money. Gotta build on that as much as humanly possible, especially considering I live in a remote place that gets dead in the winter, and already my work hours are declining. Must brainstorm. Note to self: Topic for another blog.
-Finish revising my book and send it out to agents. Linda and I have changed our target date from the 15th of this month to the 30th. We each want to finish the next draft of our manuscripts by then, then exchange, read each other’s, comment, return, make any changes (with some time in between there to get some fresh perspective), and then send out. I have those leads from the PNWA conference to start with.
As for today, a reunion with an old writing group that no longer meets, and work.
I’d better get going. I have a big chocolate lab who is going to be very pissed if I don’t walk her soon!
“The Song is Over” – The Who (God, I love this song, and the whole album, Who’s Next?)