The first writing/publishing-related workshop I attended was at the Huddersfield Literature Festival ’16. I was a music student looking to branch out into other creative mediums and so my friend and I decided to book places on the two workshops (unfortunately placed at the same time) offered by HLF. My friend went to a creative writing class, and I went to learn how to edit. Perhaps we should have swapped, as my friend actually had a novel to edit at the time and I was still in the process of writing mine, but by splitting up we could share notes afterward.
I sat in the classroom listening to the tips and examples of editing, scribbling in my notebook every word that was said, and finding myself completely fascinated. We were told humorous stories of famous writers and their editing processes, and even had a chance to share our own writing for feedback. So many people in that room were writing their own novels and I loved the buzz of passion in the air.
Not long after, I applied for a masters in publishing and even though I now take classes at the university, I still attend workshops wherever I can.
Only last week did I sit with aspiring self and indie authors at Nottingham Writer’s Studio. Teika Bellamy, of Mother’s Milk Books, delivered an information-packed ‘All Things Indie’ workshop, which took the audience through the history of publishing and the world of independent publishers today.
Each workshop I have attended has been valuable to me in one way or another – they have taught me something new or shown me a different perspective, and simply the talk of publishing and writing inspires me. I always leave craving a pen and paper, desperate to get back to writing.
Although I’m still terrible at editing, I’ve found other aspects that I enjoy. Marketing, book cover design, launch events, social media promo… I’d love to do it all one day, and with each workshop, I get closer and closer to achieving my dream.