The one where I’m shortlisted for a writing prize

As some of you may remember I attended a six week writing course from October to November 2015 at Waterstones Nottingham. My tutor was author Megan Taylor and the classes were an introduction to short story writing. I attended them because I wanted to know if my writing was on the right track, as I tend to look at sentences and think about what I can cut rather than what I should add in, and I was wondering if I was writing enough.

Megan has a gift for writing scents, textures, atmosphere and detail without wasting words, which is what I wanted to learn from her. I was nervous attending those classes, as it was the first time I’d really put my writing in a place where it would be judged by a professional author. Megan was kind, generous and pushed boundaries. She encouraged me to be brave, dig deep and write fearlessly, so I did.

She also challenged me to write in the second person, which I’d never tried doing before and a piece called An Education flew out. I showed it to Megan and she recommended that I send it somewhere. In the end I entered the full piece into the annual Galway RCC writing competition, which I spotted on author Paul McVeigh’s Facebook timeline, and this week I learned that it had made the shortlist. I did cry when I opened that email, to know that a writer like Celeste Augé appreciated my story was an amazing feeling and has boosted my confidence. Entering this competition has also introduced me to some great writers as I congratulated my fellow nominees on Twitter. Whatever happens I will keep writing and putting my work out there.

galwayrcc-flashfic-2016

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9 thoughts on “The one where I’m shortlisted for a writing prize

  1. Being short listed is a real validation. It means your writing has reached a standard where it it can be treateds seriously and your idea, or your treatment of an idea, was orginal and special…winning is more about luck, about matching the judge’s taste at that particular moment. So, whatever the final outcome, take heart from this Pam. You’ve done something mighty!

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