Tuesday, February 21, 2006


I have too many things needing attention this week, including my first real deadline for the Film Journalism course and the need to write a feature proposal for my Goldsmiths Journalism class. I resume my twice-weekly trips to Soho after a welcome half-term break, and I am really struggling with my piece on unemployment for 'Silkworms and Snow' The language issues which bedevilled my days in the office and which should make for a funny piece seems not only ponderous and flat but really difficult to organise. In fact, I'm going to print it off so I can see it more clearly in print than just scrolling down the screen.

The Film Journalism task is quite difficult - to write three opening paragraphs of a review on the same film but in different styles, depending on which publication it is meant for. The materials pack provides some examples which don't really seem varied enough, although two are quite distinctive - a rambling account full of personal anecdote, for a website, and a piece of short headings and one-sentence paragraphs for the Daily Mirror. The others seem very similar.

I got up early this morning and started on a new review, of 'Lady Vengeance', but I think it will save time to use a film for which I have already written a review - 'Hidden' (Cache) directed by Michel Haneke. I've already posted this to the Writewords Review Page and to the BBC Collective. The deadline is next Monday but I can see it is going to take a lot of thought to define characteristics of style and then write the pieces. That's what makes me think I'd better choose a film I'm familiar with already - then I can go sraight into the writing, with a little extra research on the director for the more scholarly piece. I'll take another look at the examples first, I think.

I'm tempted to say I won't go swimming with Roy this afternoon - I usually drive over to the baths at Beckenham and by the time we get back we've only just got time for dinner before catching up on two episodes of Coronation Street,recorded whilst we were out playing Bridge last night. I will go swimming, becase I feel so sluggish. It's odd - I was optimistic about the book only a week ago and now I'm dragging it along like a big iron ball on a chain, trying to kick it into something more attractive and thinking it's hardly worth it. Still, this is the time for resolution and gritted teeth.

I also sent off a query to Central Lancashire University in my home town because my next project will be based on researching life in cotton factories from c.1938- 1978. That about covers the span my mother worked in the mills. I was thinking of moving to Southport for a year, despite Roy's protsts, because as well as being near the research area I can also see more of my sister, who is now retired in Preston, but maybe just a few weeks at a time will be enough. It could be costly to rent a place, although relatively cheap compared with the summer.

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