• Francine Cunningham

Life: mid-summer version

Lets see, my summer so far has been writing, swimming, reading, painting, gardening and binge watching TV shows. And then a two week intense writing residency in which I focused on fiction.

Speaking of said writing residency, sometimes I forget to appreciate the fact that all the writers I know, and who I am lucky enough to call friends, are pretty awesome and are putting some pretty awesome work out into the world. I have also had the opportunity, during my time at UBC, to work with some of the best writers in Canada and for that I am extremely grateful. This summer I took a fiction workshop with Michael Crummey, a writer from Newfoundland. I just started to read his book Galoreand so far I am hooked! He also gave me some great insight into my own writing and craft. Things that seem obvious, like the simple act of bringing out the emotionality of a scene and connecting that to a character, that I have overlooked in my work, I am now more attuned to looking for. Those opportunities that present themselves in the text but I ignore for who knows what reasons, I am going to start to focus on more. I love when things like that get pointed out to me because it will only make my work stronger.


So all in all, I have to say that so far, summer 2015, has been awesome.

But, that being said, there is this tiny voice in the back of my skull reminding me that summer won't last forever and I need to start prepping myself for my next major project (a new novel that I have been planning, plotting, and researching for a year and half now) and trying to find a way to make space for a time part job or, as I would prefer, some great contract work as I start freelancing as a writer and educator. 


I will be handing in my complete thesis (YAH!) in August and will therefore cease to be a student in the fall. This is mildly intimating, I have been a student since I was five. I'm not sure if I'll know how to navigate a world without school and I may end up longing for it again. If that is the case then for sure you'll be hearing about me applying for Ph.D programs (I do have plans for getting one but in my dream world I would go back in 3-5 years after I've experienced life out of school a bit.)


But as of today, I have left myself open to any and all possibilities come the fall. By the end of the summer I'll start sending out my YA novel to publishing houses, I'll continue to apply for writing residencies around the globe, and I will see what happens. I am excited, scared, and hopeful. I guess that's a pretty good place to be in.


Updatingly yours,

FRancine

FC

ILLUSTRATIONS AND WRITING BY

FRANCINE CUNNINGHAM

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