Friday, January 24, 2014

Writing it right - Knowledge Is Great

Given a chance I would like to take up a course in creative writing in one of the best universities in the UK. This write-up is aimed at answering the Why’s.

Why Writing?

The written word for me goes beyond a mere channel for communication. It is the means that fits me best when it comes to articulating my thoughts and expressing my feelings. Added to this framework, a well-stocked bookshelf ever since I learnt to read and write naturally led me to the point of picking up my pen and having my say on paper. I have been writing since I was twelve, the thrill of having one of my first stories published in a children’s magazine, adding to the magic that I had already attributed to this wordy vent of mine. I continued to write articles, the occasional story and the everyday journal that kept getting fatter with each year.

I wrote my way through teenage, high-school drama, lots of moving around, heartbreaks, betrayals, and peer pressure. I continue to write my way through the reality of adulthood and the big bad world. Halfway through my post-graduation, a path that was supposed to land me a life-time career dressed in a lab coat, wading through the research portals of science, I woke up to consider a career in writing. I began writing my first book, a novel, whilst working towards an M.Tech degree and with each day, found myself being assembled on the other side, one piece at a time. When I graduated, I knew I wanted a future with words, something I wish I had realized sooner.

I took up a job in the content industry, where I currently work as an Instructional Designer and I know I chose right. I published my first novel a year ago and I read 100 books in one year for the first time in 2013. While the journey was fantastic, I understand it is but a mere step in the right direction. My induction into the world of literature can only be validated if I can nurture the spirit and love for writing within me. It is to this effect that I would like to take up a postgraduate course in Creative Writing in the UK.

Why study Creative Writing?

While being a blogger and a book reviewer gives me ample incentive to write, these regular bytes of script are capable of doing only so much justice to the art of writing which in reality is hard work. Being a writer, aside from possessing a rich imagination, takes tremendous discipline and commitment that the occasional blog post chooses to relax. I view a course in creative writing as the means to bridge the gap between wanting to be a writer and learning the nuances of being one.

A structured course in writing would set ground rules for the business, present a framework that I would need to weave a tale, one when I become accomplished I would have the liberty to challenge or bend. Writing, as a course would put my talent, potential and commitment to the grindstone; a test to prove I have what it takes to showcase my voice out there amongst others. A course in creative writing would also expose me to an extremely talented peer group, both tether and cut my inner writer-animal loose and instill in me the ability to look at and judge my work from multiple angles.

I would like to experience firsthand the genius that is the MA program in Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, UK.

Why UEA?

What could be more prestigious and exciting than being accepted to one of the most sought after MA programs in the UK, one that was initiated by the legendary Malcolm Bradbury. The course was also recently awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education and with a stellar faculty, remains my number one choice. The school is set to conduct the third edition of its creative writing workshop in India, later this year. Aside from the elite alumni list that includes the likes of Kazuo Ishiguro, the course won me over with this description – “The MA should be viewed as a time of experimentation and play, an opportunity to make mistakes and learn from them.” The icing on this wonderful cake is the fact that Margaret Atwood and James Lasdun will be joining the teaching faculty as visiting professors beginning Spring!

These facts when combined with an automatic attraction towards the people and culture of the United Kingdom, born out of an inevitable history they share with my people, the wry British wit, the beautiful landscape, the diverse population and the plethora of career and learning opportunities available have indeed made me curiouser and curiouser!

I would love to be able to study writing in a country that is represented in the literary world by the likes of Douglas Adams, Neil Gaiman and Zadie Smith. 

This post was submitted to the Knowledge is Great contest on Indiblogger. To know more about studying in the UK visit