Well, that was fun. Even if was a bit nerve racking to walk into a room full of strangers who are already welded into a unit, but they were warm and interesting and I learned a lot from them. The topic was looking at world building in fantasy, even if the only thing that isn't 'real' about your world is one tiny detail. We looked at Incarceron by Catherine Fisher who managed to create two fantasy world in just one book. There's a review here, by The Bookbag.
No wonder so many fantasy books are so long. You have to create the rules for your world and then convince your reader of those to make the story credible. The tutor set us homework, a scene that introduces a character and the world/rules of a fantasy story. Tall order in just 800 words, and the thing is to be workshopped next week so we have to get on and do it over the weekend. So off to a flying start. It's good to be working on something again, there was this breathing space between the assignments going in and the modules starting that felt like a vacuum, my imagination seemed to go on holiday for ten days (I imagine it went skiing with son, no. 1 because he has written loads since he got back.) Anyway, it's back, and it's flying. The session gave me an interesting idea for the book which I'm playing with. Not to mention some ideas for the poetry and the course blog.
Meanwhile, the EMA for my Open University course needs some consideration, and to avoid a complete workload pile-up in May I'm getting on with the last one of those assignments now. It's difficult to switch gears between the courses, it's so much easier when they are in the same area like the poetry.