The Challenge

In commemoration of the 100 years of the First World War, I’m going to be doing something a little bit out of my comfort zone.

Since I started this blog, I’ve had several people ask me about what creative activities I get up to on a daily basis. So I’ve decided to answer them here to give you all an idea of what my boundaries are:

Do I write fiction? 

Yes, absolutely. I love writing short stories and novels and have done ever since I was a child. I still have a copy of the first story I ever wrote at the tender age of 5 about a clown called Billy who was essentially stalking a girl named Jess…. Not my most inspiring work, but I will try to dig it out for a later blog post.

What about films?

I absolutely live and breathe films. This year alone I have written two full-length screenplays and I am currently playing around with a third. I have also directed four short films and I will discuss them at length in future posts. I have worked in the film industry in various capacities and worked on documentaries, promotional shoots, wedding videos, music videos… you name it, I’ve probably had a go at it somewhere along the line. I am probably at my happiest when stood on a set looking through the viewfinder of a camera.

Theatre?

I started off in theatre, working as a stage manager for a youth theatre company in Surrey. Since then I have worked in various places, including the National Theatre, and co-founded two youth theatre companies by the time I was nineteen. I have directed several theatre productions, although I have never gone so far as to attempt to write a theatre piece yet. I also work as a musical director; in a few weeks time I will be off to Kent for two weeks to write songs for a musical theatre piece with young people. But I will come back to that next week!

Non-Fiction

Article writing is something that I’ve started doing very recently. I currently spend a lot of my time pouring over magazines to work out whether there is a potential for any article I have to offer to be published. I currently have five proposals under consideration so I’m hoping to be able to report back here with some good news over the next couple of months. I write articles about history, film making and dogs, with occasional random extras chucked into the mix just to keep it fresh. My Friday Fact postings will usually have something to do with an article I am writing at the time.

Painting?

This is my major stopping point. I can draw and I can paint, but I find it ridiculously difficult to do so. I like my art to be as realistic as possible and I simply haven’t got the talent to get my artwork anywhere near where I would like it to be. For that reason, I definitely do not consider myself to be a physical artist of any sort.

Poetry

No. I have never attempted poetry in it’s purest form. Obviously, by the nature of occasionally doing song writing for theatre productions, I have the ability to create verse, but these tend to be comical in nature.

At no level would I ever call myself a poet.

Which is where this post has been leading to. My comfort zone.

My comfort zone definitely does not include writing poetry and it doesn’t include illustrating. So I have decided to use the 100 years anniversary of the start of the First World War to try to break out of my comfort zone and into a form of creativity that I would normally steer well clear of.

We are currently in July. I am challenging myself to write a book of war poetry by the 11th November, Armistice Day. This book will consist of twenty poems, complete with illustrations drawn by myself and will be made available as an ebook.

That is 20 poems, with illustrations, in 114 days!

I will be writing some very short posts (I’m talking one of two liners here) every Tuesday which will update you on how I am progressing with the poetry book. Will I fail miserably? It is certainly possible! But what’s life without a few little challenges.

Spread the word. Heckle me if you will.

The challenge is on!

 

 

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