I know no-one ever takes advice but if I had one piece for students it would be, think ahead, don't just react to the course as it goes along. Treat assignments as if they were commissions. Find out as soon as you can what's involved and start thinking, planning, researching. So when the assignment comes around and you go blank, at least you made some notes when your brain was halfway normal. A363 has an ECA, so does the MA in the form of the dissertation. I know I will have the option of writing a substantial piece of fiction or a critical essay for the MA, I know I will take the fiction option. I know in advance I will take the beginning of a novel option for A363 too. So, even this far back in the process I am looking at what I can start writing for these important assignments. Unlike A215, when building my confidence was important, A363 just needs a good pass for my sanity, I can live without the 90+ marks I was going for before. I just want to do well on the MA, I don't need a distinction. I mostly want to create a good advanced draft of a novel.I've decided to look in detail at the YA novel I started, work on that.
I'm feeling strangely homeless as we wait to hear if we've passed our checks, if we can go to Winchester and rent a house there. The process has been so difficult. I'm wondering what it will be like to set up a separate home, to walk into a university full of people the same age as my children, and face a cliff face of learning how to write, how to read differently. I've asked my daughter to stay a couple of extra days, to help me pack the right things to make the house good for the boys, for me.
Meanwhile, the writing has stalled, in the practical difficulties. So, today, I get back on with writing new stuff. I've set myself the task of writing some new words, even a first draft of a short story or poem, that's actually new rather than redrafted old stuff. My magpie rescue is declining gently, and I have to make the decision to put him down, soon. All part of moving to Winchester, I suppose. I am going back to basics, and writing a freewrite about the bird.