I’ve always liked the idea of being a writer – work when and where you want to, write about things you’re interested in, get to do things that other people don’t, and so on. However, I realise that I might not like the reality as much as I like the idea. Having constant deadlines, having to write in a way an editor wants me to rather than the way I want to, trying to sell my work, and so on. But unless I try I’ll never know. A few years ago I started to think more seriously about this and managed to get paid £100 for a 200 word article I wrote for the Times Educational Supplement. Then life got incredibly busy again and I never got round to writing anything else. I’ve always kept travel diaries, but haven’t really written anything else. So if I do get seriously involved in writing I think it would have to be travel writing in some form or other (I would include outdoor activity type writing in with this though).
A friend who lives in Bali has been writing for her local paper for years. She’s written on education in past, but mainly writes a review and what’s on type column these days. She’d like to get more involved in writing and has found a correspondence course with the London School of Journalism that she is interested in doing. I had a look at the course online and there is a travel writing version of it which sounds really interesting. I don’t necessarily think a course would be a guarantee for me becoming a wonderful writer, but it might focus me and give me some direction in styles and markets.
I was fully intending to apply for this course in the summer when my web design course finishes, but then I got the opportunity to do a post-graduate certificate in specific learning difficulties which is paid for by the TDA. After a bit of thought I decided to go for it. How often do you get the chance of free education these days? And it’s an area I’m interested in and may open up more job opportunities for me in the future. It’s an awful lot of work on top of everything else I’m doing, so now I have to decide whether I can really take on the travel writing course as well. There’s no point doing it if I’m not going to do it properly. But I don’t really want to postpone it by a year. So in the next month or two I have a big decision to make.