Saturday, 18 August 2018

Zzzz - time to reflect

Reflections, the lake at The Hayes, Swanwick
Swanwick 2018 is over. Goodbyes have been said, addresses exchanged and social media details shared. Brigadoon-like, the Writers’ Summer School has disappeared into the mist. It’s magic will not be seen again until it emerges twelve months later into the bright sunshine of August 2019.

Waking up the first morning after Swanwick was a little disconcerting. I reached for my programme to find out what exciting courses are happening today and where I should be and when, only to realise I’m no longer at The Hayes. Instead I started reading through my notebook to remind myself of just some of the many things I have done, seen and learned this last week. 

One particular phrase that stuck out was one used by Bradford novelist Amit Dhand, the guest speaker on Sunday evening. When events weren’t going well, or seemed stuck in a negative pattern, his father would “change the narrative”. He would do something unexpected. Amit told of the time his father shared a beer with local youths who, up to that moment in time, had been regularly throwing stones at the windows of the Dhand’s corner shop. His actions ‘changed the narrative’. 

I shall continue to dwell on that lesson. I can’t rewrite my history. But I can do something to alter my future. So when I get bogged down, whether in my writing or in actuality, I will do something to ‘change the narrative’. 

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