Until fairly recently, I had dreams of taking a Doctorate in Creative Writing.
After the utter implausibility of finally mastering a Master’s through much trial and error (plus a decapitated mouse which appeared in my first, futile attempt at short fiction), I thought, ‘why not?’
I duly collected leaflets about available courses and being a mature student. I scanned blogs of those gone before, downloaded information and looked into funding. I even attended a Postgraduate Student Fair and found myself surrounded by kids I was old enough to parent. But. I could do this?
I’ve read the case studies. Bright-eyed eager (young) people with many, many awards under their belts and obscure research titles to their names. I’ve read the tiny success rates about securing funding and have looked in to alternative sources of funding, i.e. living like a pauper for six years, existing on Super-Noodles and crackers.
I would love to surrender my life to this dream over the next three years, or six years part time as I still have to work. I want to be immersed in writing and carry a notebook confidently into the nearest cafe, flick open a fresh page and jot down suitably astounding and genre-defying remarks.
There’s not much funding out there for a getting-on-for-mature MS blogger who fancies herself as the next Sylvia Plath.
So, I have a brand-new, shiny idea.
After much googling and sending-off-for-information, I have decided to retrain (perhaps) as … a carpenter.
Brimming with excitement, I laid out my life-altering plan to The Boss, aka My One-Time Best Friend over a coffee. After he stopped laughing, he asked why.
Well. After project-managing many building projects, I felt confident that I could carry out such an artisan craft, all by myself. And a training course would merely solidify all that I have learned these last years?
I like the word ‘artisan’ and pictured a future workshop where I would wood-turn and create dove-tails and suchlike. It would be a dusty, arty place, with deliberately mismatched chairs, a Scandinavian name and hand-thrown pottery mugs.
He mentioned that I could already cut architrave, lay floors and use a drill. I was even a passable tiler (praise indeed from The Boss, although I am an excellent tiler, if the space is small enough and I can sit down).
He queried my MS – would I be able to cope with the course? Yes – he could be my helper, if needs be. This didn’t go down so well, so I won’t be telling him when I go for the interview.
What do you guys think? Have I got enough drive to cut it in the World of Wood?