Archive for the ‘festivals’ Category

Zoos. Reviews.

Saturday, August 13th, 2011

I came home from a lovely (very damp) week away to find that Cold Light has been nominated for this year’s Guardian’s Not the Booker.

Two years ago A Kind of Intimacy made the short-list, which was just splendid. So if you read Cold Light and you liked it you send me to the short-list again by clicking this link here and following the instructions. You need to write a short review to make your vote count.

If you didn’t like Cold Light, don’t let that stop you from voting. It almost always turns into a nice on-line scrap and there’s nothing like it, is there? There are some brilliant books on the long-list. Perhaps I’m supposed to vote under a series of aliases for myself, but my vote went to the book I nominated: Russ Litten’s Scream if you Want to Go Faster – and you can read my mini review of it here. I would have voted for Michael Stewart’s King Crow, also long-listed – a beautiful, startling, odd book set in Salford and Cumbria – a sort of Fight Club meets Kes – but Russ’ book just pipped it to the post by being so well constructed and unpredicatable. I wish I’d been allowed to vote twice.

I wrote on the ‘about’ pages of this blog that I don’t do book reviews. As ever, please refer to the title of this blog as an explanation for my recent review of David Whitehouse’s Bed which appeared in the Guardian Review last month.

I don’t know if reviewing is going to be a bigger part of the work I do in the future or not, yet. It is still something I have very mixed feelings about. I would, wouldn’t I? It’s strange and a bit not-on being the animal in the zoo as well as the person selling tickets at the gate, isn’t it? But reading is such a huge part of my working and thinking and writing life that it seems peculiar I rarely mention my opinions about the books I read in public. I will think on this more.

The next nice thing was hearing that Cold Light has been chosen by the Birmingham Books Festival to be their official Book of the Festival. I’ve appeared at various Writing West Midlands gigs over the years both as a writer and a reader and I have always been impressed by their events. I’ll be doing various things with the festival this Autumn, including an event on the 16th October. If you’re a bit skinty, the festival bods have just opened a competition where you can win two tickets for the event. All you need to do is write a short review of the book, and the best reviewer will be awarded the tickets.

Rabbit Hole

Monday, June 27th, 2011

I think a summer blog silence is becoming a bit of a habit. Last summer, I had a newborn and was busily finishing the edits and copy edits of Cold Light. The summer before I was writing Cold Light. And the summer before (I think) I was ‘on the road’ with a shed load of events for A Kind of Intimacy that didn’t leave much time or space for updating everyone on what I was up to.

A bit of deja-vu then.That’s all right. Except I’ve been teaching a few blogging workshops recently and keep guiltily overhearing my own voice talking about regularity of posting. As I say and not as I do.

I have finished a first draft of the Book In Progress and took June ‘off’ to do some more research, visit Utah (more about this some other time, I’m sure) and generally have a bit of a rest. The remainder of the summer will be spent on events, rewriting, planning my courses for the autumn teaching, working with my select and beloved set of Writing Smithy clients and waving at my offspring every now and again. Cold Light has been doing just fine without my interference, and is on its second printing already.

As I don’t have a lot of words for you today, here are some from others:

There’s a review of Cold Light from Book Munch by Amy Pointon and another at Jamie Fewey’s blog. A very recent one at The View From Here from the wonderfully named Grace Read (bet you a Polo she’s never heard that one before…). One more by Ben Myers at 3am Magazine and finally some nice words from For Books’ Sake.

And while I was away in Utah, a few appeared  in the print press too, which you can read here.

I also have some events booked. So if you wanted to see me reading from and talking about Cold Light or ask questions about writing, publishing, blogging or any of the other things that I do, then you could turn up at:

Hale Library at 7pm on Wednesday 29th June

or St Anne’s Library at 7pm on Wednesday 13th July

or Lancaster Oxfam Bookshop (Penney Street) at 3pm on Friday 15th July

or  at Bury Library at 7.30pm on the 18th July for the Bury Library Literary Salon

or Bolton Waterstone’s at 5pm on Thursday 28th July

Bye for now. I am booked for a very important engagement with a cup of tea and a piece of shortbread. Can’t be late for that.

Station Stories 2

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011

Here I blogged about my difficulty in finding a story for the Station Stories project – the performance date fast approaching. Your own Station Stories choo-chooed in and, eventually, mine arrived too. It was midnight the night before I needed to report back to the group I am collaborating and performing with – but just in time is better than late or not at all.Thanks for the inspiration. You were all Top Bananas.

Here’s a little bit more about how we’re going to perform the stories written for the project – from the Manchester Literature Festival website:

Audiences are linked to the writers’ microphones by headsets using wireless technology, making the event unobtrusive and ensuring the audience hear every single word, whilst still experiencing the live ambience of the location. A musician accompanies the writers and improvises music using sampled live sounds from the station, manipulating these sounds and playing them into the audience’s headsets between and underneath the text. The writers interact with passing members of the public who may be unaware that a performance is taking place.

Station stories will explore the day-to-day life of the station – its platforms, its workers, the journeys people take, the waiting, the encounters, the thrill, the loneliness, the joy. It will express the peculiar, unique qualities of this marginal, in-between world, where anything can happen and often does.

We’ve all chosen the part of the station where our stories are set. We’ve met the sound technician, Rory and the musician, Dave, that will be working with us. We’ve discussed space, movement, sound and themes. We’ve wandered around the station (and I deserve a special medal for my wandering, as I did it while carrying McTiny and sporting a fat lip from where he slapped me in the face with a heavy duty rattle…)

My story is going to contain photographs, shoes and a mad dash to platform ten (I think). I’m not going to say any more, but if you want to see me and the others then book your tickets soon – we’re doing three performances per day between the 19th and the 21st of May.

Choo Choo!

Writing Tips # 10 (Money for Old Rope)

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

The post on the practicalities of extracting money from the people you work for is a-brewing, but while you’re waiting for it, here are a few more thoughts on the work of being a writer.

If you do (expect to) get paid, at least do your client / employer the courtesy of treating it like a job. If you don’t want to be a hobbyist, don’t act like one. If you turn up pissed, late or are otherwise flaky you’re stealing from the person who has paid you and you’re making the rest of us look bad.

While it is true that an array of shocking behaviour is often tolerated and maybe even expected from ‘creative’ people, event organisers do chat to each other. I know, because I used to be one. And the idea that making things up gives you the right to be late, sullen, lecherous or otherwise rude really gnarls my chizzle.

I refer you back to Nicola Morgan’s post about Author Events. It’s true that once you start getting out there talking and reading and signing, many events will leave a lot to be desired. I travelled (unpaid) to do an event at a library which will remain nameless (not one belonging to the service I used to work for) to find there were no books for sale, my name had been spelled wrong on all the publicity, I wasn’t offered so much as a glass of water during the two hours I was there and at the end of the event was sneered at (we all earn as much as Dan Brown…) when I insisted on being reimbursed for my travel expenses. And during the break the organisers badmouthed the last writer who’d done an event for them…*

Nicola’s advice to organisers is spot on, but my advice to the writer on the receiving end of shoddy treatment is to be gracious about it. You can be polite and professional while insisting on a fee and a decent lunch break. You can be respectful without being a doormat. You don’t need to go back if it was that awful  (in fact, it would be better if you didn’t and there are polite and direct ways of letting the organiser know why you won’t accept any future invitations), but a bit of courtesy on the part of the writer goes a long way.

Many festival organisers and event administrators seem consistently surprised by the fact that I am punctual, send thank you notes, reply to my emails or put my out of office on, let them know in advance that I am nearly phone-phobic but pick up my email regularly and do my very best to remember their names. I am fanatical about deadlines and submission guidelines. And I am absolutely not meaning to sound smug. I have only come to this conclusion by making mistakes and noticing what happens when I do. I have a plethora of failings – and the I’m terrified so I’ll have a little drink…oops! trap is one I’ve fallen into more times than I should have.

But still. To be praised by people who are paying me for what seems to me to be a basic level of professionalism and politeness makes me wonder how bad some of the other writers are. Tip in miniature: don’t be one of those writers.

* see the title of this blog. Details have been pushed into fiction to protect the guilty and prevent them from recognising themselves. Because being polite is important to me.

The Tips for Writers posts are part of a series.

Imaginary Sandwich. Cold Light Blurb.

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010


In  break from my ranting about cash, here are a few things to look at while I’m busy Checking The Proofs.

Me, Clare Dudman and Nicholas Royle at our Rainy City stories event chatting away about place and wilderness and reviewed for the Manchester Literature Festival Blog by Words & Fixtures Clare. I love the picture she’s chosen for it. Our Nick is offering me an imaginary sandwich and you can’t see my face. Hooray!

Second, my lovely publisher Sceptre (if you’re reading this, I am not blogging but Checking The Proofs I SWEAR DOWN I am I am I am) have put up the Official Blurb on their site and published a short blog post by me about what made me want to write a strange novel about television, flashers and Preston on their blog. Read it.

Writing Tips #9 (Money)

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

It’s been a while since I posted one of these tips. The half-serious, half-tongue in cheek series is something that I wanted to continue over the summer, but what with one thing and another, I let it fall by the wayside.

I want to start it again by referring you to this post from Jane Smith on How Publishing Really Works (along with the accompanying comments) and Nicola Morgan’s response (plus more comments) on Help! I Need a Publisher. I’m a bit late to the party to weigh in, but these posts are well worth reading and my two penn’oth is below:

It’s not okay to work for free. If you can afford to work for nothing, that’s great – but unless you’re getting something else that is valuable you should charge a fee anyway (especially for teaching and editing/appraisal/consultancy) otherwise you’re unfairly taking work from a writer who can’t afford to work for nothing – which is the vast, vast majority of writers. (Insert depressing Soc of Authors figures here) Donate it to a charity if you’d prefer to, but make sure you get paid.

Work includes: writing a story, article, review, or report. Reading and commenting on someone else’s unpublished writing*. Delivering a workshop. Helping someone design a workshop which they will deliver. Researching. Reading from your writing to an audience who has paid to come and see you. Doing a Q and A. Fundraising. Giving a talk or a lecture to a book group, writing circle etc. Hosting, organising and promoting events.

Even if you have a day job and you do these things in your ‘spare’ time, it is still work. Even if your day job is really well paid. Even if you’re a millionaire. Even if you really, really like doing it. Even if you worry that you’re not as famous as they think you are. Whatever. It is still work and a renumeration is appropriate.

BUT this renumeration might not only come in cold hard cash (although never decline this – even if you’re getting an advance every couple of years, publishers don’t offer pensions). In the past I’ve worked for a very reduced fee or even for no cash at all because the ‘fee’ or the benefit to me has included one or more of the following:

Chance to gain experience in a sector or with a client group that I haven’t worked in or with before.

Chance to work with another writer that I’d really like to meet / work with / pick the brains of.

Publicity / promotion / networking opportunities. Prestige, reputation and other forms of stroking (though be careful of this – if the work was that prestigious, they’d be able to pay you).

Raising funds for a cause I believe in (in this case, I’d expect to be offered a fee, and the choice to waive or reduce it would be mine to make as I see fit).

To support a fledgling organisation / event with the understanding that they were aiming to pay writers for their work in the future – in effect, I’d be helping other writers get paid somewhere along the line, and if I had faith in the organisation and was able to pay my rent otherwise, I might agree to that.

In exchange for services (I am very happy to work in exchange for services – never be afraid of asking me this as it’s something I’d like to do more of).

I have also, very often, done things that I usually get paid for, for free, because a friend has asked me, because no-one’s getting paid, because I think it will be fun, because it will give me an excuse to go and have a night out in a new place, because I want to, because I feel like it. In this case, I put the event under ‘social life’ rather than ‘work’.

I’m flagging up Jane’s post even though in blog-time it’s almost old news because I know a lot of the people I teach writing to eventually find their way to my blog and I’d like to give them a nudge towards these posts and urge them to think all about these issues – which are not old news and not likely to become so. Even if you’re just starting out with informal readings at live lit nights, ocassional volunteer placements, internships etc it’s still important to think about how much your labour is worth, and to whom.

(Yes, writing is labour. Reading to an audience is labour. I’m as working class as they come but even if you don’t sweat or get dirty it is still work.)

I made loads of mistakes when I was starting out – saying yes to everything and feeling grateful that someone would want to offer me work at all. It took two sets of mentoring, a couple of stern talking tos from a good friend of mine and a lot of soul searching before I was able to put a number on what I do. It is still something I find difficult sometimes – perhaps because I come from the public sector and am used to being badly paid for my skills, perhaps because I’m still working out the worth of my various labours myself, perhaps because when your work is so close to your heart putting a number on it feels very much like putting a number on youself.

How much would I charge for looking after my children? My childminder manages to work out a business model that works, we had to put a figure on it when buying life insurance recently** and I have learned that it’s okay to be cold hearted about your writing when it comes to talking invoices and contracts.

Don’t be surprised when people are shocked or even offended that you want a fee. Tough it out, pretend you aren’t blushing and say, ‘this is what it costs.’ While it is true a lot of events run on goodwill and volunteers (who are, I would argue, getting work experience, contacts etc) the writer, without whom none of it would be possible, is expected to work for nothing too. I often wonder where, in that case, all the ticket fees go to.

People will say things like this:

‘You do it for the love of it, though, don’t you,’

Yes. I love my job. I bet my web-designer and my accountant and my agent and my editor love their jobs too. They certainly approach their respective tasks, like I do, with enthusiasm, creativity and dilligence. Why is it okay they get paid fairly and promptly but I don’t? I bet my landlord loves getting his monthly check from me***. I bet the supermarket loves how much money I throw into their tills each month. (Cheesy peeps!) It isn’t only people who hate their jobs who deserve to get paid.

‘Well, so and so will do it for free…’

Okay. Go and ask so and so then. I’m sure if so and so were that good, they wouldn’t need to do it for free. You get what you pay for. This is my job. There’s a difference between a hobbyist and a writer and I am a writer. (I know it is hard to say this.)

‘It’ll be a brilliant promotional opportunity for you,’

Question this. How brilliant is brilliant? Exactly. Be an arse about it if you have to. If they are expecting loads of people through the doors, and those people are paying a ticket price, then they can afford to pay you. If ticket sales aren’t that great, you’re not getting that much exposure. Do they mean book sales? First, book sales at events are over rated and can be unpredictable. I’ve sold and signed over seventy books at a well attended local event at a near-anonymous venue (that I was also paid to attend) and three books (which I suspect were pity buys) at one of the most well known book festivals in the world (yes, that one – although I was also paid to attend, and very fairly at that.)

And second, so what if it’s a brilliant promotional opportunity for me – you’re charging people to come and see me, not come and see my book. If I’m not preparing for this event, travelling to this event or doing this event, I could be earning money doing something else. If the musician who plays during the break and the graphic designer who did the posters and the man who sells the tickets and the woman who dishes out the half-time wine get paid, I should be getting paid too.

‘It’s all for a good cause..’

That’s for me to decide, thank you very much. I have not got a heart of stone. If I want to donate to your charity or support your organisation, I will do it without being guilted into it.

So this is my writing tip: do not undersell yourself. If you insist on a fee, you generally get treated better than if you’re willing to turn up for free. If you decide to waive your fee because you’re getting some other benefit, make it clear you are waiving a fee that you would usually charge AND make sure you get your train fare.

*if you email me your great unpublished novel, I will email you my consultancy fees list, no probs.

** aha! So that’s why banana skins have been appearing at the top of the stairs at Ashworth Towers these days…

***despite refusing to fix my rickety windows for nigh on two years now.

If you enjoyed this, you might also enjoy my other Tips for Writers. Although they are worth more or less exactly what you pay for them. Comments and questions welcome.

EDITED TO ADD: this link to Daisy Baldwin’s post on voluntary work and internships – required reading for the arts grads amongst us.

Edge Hill + Keswick + Wirral + Manchester

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

A mad week that started with a lovely trip over to West Lancs for a reading at Edge Hill’s Rose Theatre – where I read from A Kind of Intimacy and the first chapter of Cold Light. I don’t get nervous about A Kind of Intimacy any more, although I do still get tempted with the red pen when I open that book, but it’s a scary prospect reading Cold Light. It’s still so new and I’ve not got a thick skin about it yet.

Still, it went well and I sold all my books which would have been an excellent thing, except it meant when I ran out of diesel on the A59 and had to call a taxi, I tumbled out of my car when he arrived in a short skirt, shiny-high-heels-reading-confidence shoes, and a purse full of crumpled fivers. I may have given the wrong impression, (I am an author, honest!) but I got home okay in the end and back there safe the next morning to give two workshops to the second year undergraduates who were a lovely and well-read lot. Hooray for Edge Hill!

Next, a drive up to Keswick for the Words on the Water festival to take part in the North West Voices showcase, hosted by Ra Page of Literature Northwest and Comma Press. I got to listen to a whole afternoon of wonderful readings including a very distrurbing but brilliantly written story by Annie Clarkson. We also got our lunch in a nice upstairs room overlooking sunshine, green grass and water. It felt like the first day of spring and our small but loyal audience was very kind, even when I read the bit out of A Kind of Intimacy where Boris slags off Keswick which is actually in my top ten of nice places to visit. Naughty Boris.

The final slot of the day was a discussion session about ‘Surviving as a Writer’ – there was a nice question from an audience member about discipline and writing routines and me, with my new-found to-do-list method said I needed to treat it like a job, and do it if I felt like it or not, and Jackie Hagan, the wonderful poet and performer from Skelmersdale, said she only wrote when she felt like it – and couldn’t force herself. I wondered aloud if this was to do with form and the time it takes to write poems compared to novels, but I don’t write poems and I know they take longer than I think, so I wouldn’t like to assume. It’s a shame, but we didn’t get a chance to talk about this as much as I’d have liked to.

I can’t MAKE myself have an idea, but I can sit and force myself work on an idea I’ve already had – and generally, when I get an idea I need to make it last a few thousand words. Maybe it’s different for poets? There was a little discussion about life-style – about how chaotic, energetic, vital poetry is often fueled by a chaotic life. I certainly need order, nights in alone and a to-do-list to make my books but I don’t think my books are dull. I think my life is dull so my books don’t need to be. People have asked if children get in the way of being a writer – but actually being forced to live the house-bound, ordered existence of a mother-to-Small-Fry (tea-bath-teeth-story-bed like a metronome shaping each evening forever) has been the best thing I could have done for my writing.

Next was a day out to Liverpool, a trip across the Mersey on the ferry (yes, they did play the song…) and a walking trip around Seacombe, Birkenhead, Rock Ferry, Rock Park and Tranmere. All very interesting research for a storytelling and blogging project I’m doing over the next couple of months with Liverpool Binenial. I’m sure I’ll be blogging more about this during the weeks to come. I also have pictures and lots of ideas about tropical fish, wedding dresses and stolen mussels for outside picnics. It’s going to be brilliant.

And finally, a little reminder about the event I’m doing with the Manchester Centre for New Writing – you can catch me and Jen Hadfield reading at the Whitworth Gallery on the 22nd of this month – tickets available to book here. I’ve been reliably informed that A Kind of Intimacy is being studied at two universities in the region (god help us all) so if you’re there because you’ve got to write an essay, I’m sorry – come and say hello and I will apologise in person. 

Would you think I was mad if I told you I sketched out a possible plan for Book Three on the train back from Liverpool Lime Street yesterday night? And even though I desperately needed eats and sleeps, stayed up FAR too late last night tinkering with it?

Today, mainly inside the house at my desk quiet work and a cup of ladies’ tea this afternoon.

The image of the rascal van is supposed to represent all the driving about and travelling I’ve done recently – although I don’t actually own a rascal van, I will one day – just as soon as I can convince Himself this is an excellent idea and a vehicle I could both park AND live in, I’ll be the proud owner of one of these things.

Nearly There!

Friday, October 16th, 2009

Less than a week to go! This getting very near finishing the novel is exciting. If you’d like a sneak preview of what I’ve been doing with myself, you can read an extract of Cold Light here – it’s a chapter from the first third of the novel, and I’ve called it ‘Same Old’.

The editor of The Manchester Review, the poet John McAuliffe, told me that in the extract, Lola makes ‘whole family’ sound like a swear-word. There isn’t, I don’t think, any other way to say those words.

Other interesting things this month included the third meeting with my mentor. We talked a lot about my characters, and their motivations for doing the things they do. I have a very self-absorbed first person narrator, but I didn’t want her lack of interest in the people around her to mean that the other characters in the novel were pale and insubstantial. Working that out took a few long conversations and some fairly brutal rewriting – but I think I’m nearly there now.

We also talked about where to go next – and what to do once I’m finished with Cold Light. I have an idea for another novel, and some ideas for ways to make money while I write it – but I can’t have a mentor forever. I need to figure out a method for writing and living as a writer where I can hold my own hand through the tough bits and cheer myself on when it is crap and also give myself the much needed kicks up the arse, when needed. I’ve already learned some good techniques for managing my time and working out how to do a really, really big project without going mad, so I’m sure I’ll work this out too.

I wish Creative Writing MA courses covered this kind of thing. I should probably write an extra module…

I’ve been doing lots of outsidey things this month too. Readings at the Chester Literary Festival and the Liverpool Chapter and Verse festival at the very swish Bluecoats. An interview with a Swedish journalist and creative writing workshops in Morecambe and Freckleton as part of the Lancashire Library Service’s Adult Learning Festival. A Special Word Soup for National Poetry Day in Blackpool, and planning another one which will be tomorrow, in Preston – and specially Spooky for Halloween.

If you feel like seeing Jenn in the flesh, I’ll be reading (again, from Cold Light) at the Manchester Blog Awards on Wednesday, at Lancaster Literature Festival on Friday and at the Birmingham Literature Festival on Saturday. In-between, I’ll be sleeping and frantically writing.

And buying wedding shoes…

Discussion Time

Friday, August 28th, 2009

I’m back home safe, you’ll be pleased to know. Reading at the Edinburgh International Books Festival was Top Banana. And such a beautiful city. I wish I could have stayed longer. The hotel was pretty swish too. There was even a mini-bar, with mini bars of Green and Blacks (the Small Fry was very appreciative of this, and said I should go away for ‘book-fings’ more often.) The booksigning afterwards was also very civilised: someone gave me a box of Shortbread in exchange for a signed book. You can’t say fairer than that, can you?

A Kind of Intimacy got through the first round of voting for the Not the Booker and is now, along with the other five short-listed novels, up for discussion on the Guardian Books blog. If you’ve a burning desire to comment on anything you found interesting, or not – about Annie and her antics, then this is the place to do it.

I love and adore the picture Sam Jordison chose to go with his review. It is almost exactly how I imagine Annie’s new house to look like. All it is missing is her nice row of ornaments on the windowsill and Lucy’s bloody primroses. They’re probably there, behind the hedge.

For now, I’m back to the writing schedule. Next on the list of tasks is a day trip to Morecambe this weekend. I’ve brushed off my cagoule in preparation. I did invite the Mr, but after my last set of day trips to Fleetwood, he’s less than keen. Book number three is going to be set somewhere hot and swanky, I think.

On My Travels

Monday, August 24th, 2009

A little post before I’m off on the train tomorrow to Edinburgh to read at the Writers’ Retreat tomorrow evening, alongside Ray Robinson. I’ll be reading from and talking about A Kind of Intimacy and Ray will be reading from his second novel The Man Without. Apparently, the two of us write ‘superb and unsettling fiction about damaged individuals and their effect on others.’ So now you know.

I’m kind of excited about this one. Would you believe I’ve never been to Edinburgh before? I’m not going to have time to stay for more than a night because we’re in the getting ready for new school and uni terms frenzy here at chez Jenn, but I did manage to bob into the Debenham’s sale to get a new dress.

It is spectacular (as was the fact it cost me only 9, yes NINE of your English pounds) and will also be the outfit of choice for Word Soup #5 – not until the 22nd September but already shaping up to be a top night with another great line-up. Ace!

Something else that is exciting is the 2009 Manchester Blog Awards. Can’t believe it is that time of year already. I remember last time, short-listed for the Best Writing on a Blog Category and reading a draft extract from Cold Light that had just appeared on my blog. A Kind of Intimacy hadn’t even been published yet.

This time, I’m going back as part of the entertainment (which makes it sound like I’m dancing, or telling jokes. Neither of which I’ve been asked / am able to do.) I could read a bit of A Kind of Intimacy, but I know that lots of people in Manchester have already heard me read it, so I might opt for something different this time. I’m quite excited about Cold Light, so it might be time to give that its first proper outing.

Hmm. Thinks thinks.

Nominations for your favourite blogs can be made via this link. There are several categories, and you can nominate blogs in more than one of them. It isn’t a vote, so if your blog has already been nominated (or you’ve nominated it yourself – it is allowed) then there’s no need to get all your friends to do the same. Can’t wait to see you all there.

And no, don’t ask me about how my shiny new writing schedule is going. When my mentor comes back from her holiday, I am going to be For It. I’m sure she’ll have some crazy punishments up her sleeve, but nothing is as bad as the guilt.

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