a new start

In two days time I’m moving away to university. I’ll be living in a brand new city, and starting a brand new life. I’ll meet a ton of new people and will be exposed to new experiences. This will be a big step for me in terms of taking my life into my own hands and becoming the person I want to be. I will be lucky enough to be able to start a clean slate and build new friendships without holding onto the past.

Not only is this giving me the chance to develop as a person, but also to develop my writing. I will be studying English with Creative Writing, so for the first time will be able to focus on doing what I love. For several years I have been busy with GCSE and A Level exams, and my writing has been placed on the back burner. Now though, with the right people and resources to harness my love of writing, I’m hoping that I can improve my work, and begin a career. From about the age of 9 I have known that I wanted to be a writer, so my choice of uni course came easily to me. With uni now just around the corner, I feel the desire more than ever to make that dream a reality.

I currently have a novel underway, and will definitely be pushing forward to get that finished and hopefully published within the years I am at university. I have also been writing a lot of poetry recently, a lot of which has been posted on my blog. Poetry is my favourite form of writing, as I find it comes easily to me. Nevertheless, during my course I hope to try out some different forms of writing such as flash fiction and scriptwriting, which I haven’t tried before.

I realise that many people aren’t as fortunate as me and do not get the opportunity to attend university or pursue an education. This makes my transition to university all the more monumental, and I feel very lucky to be beginning this journey.

Photo by Carolyn V on Unsplash

 

Hello, 2019!

Goodbye 2018, and hello 2019! Here’s to a happy and successful year.

Blank pages and new starts have always intimidated me. Starting a new year is like writing in a new notebook. Everything is fresh, clean and unspoiled, and I’m always afraid to ruin it.

Life is not like writing; the pencil lines cannot be erased, nor can words be crossed out when they don’t rhyme. Looking back on a year is like hearing someone read out your work, and listening to all its clunks and mistakes.

We all have something to say, and the truth is we can’t always say it right. But when other people read our work, they probably don’t notice the flaws; it’s the same in life. There’s no point stressing about perfection, because the mistakes don’t really matter that much. We don’t need to be perfect to carry on with our lives and be happy.

The changing of seasons

I’ve always linked a multitude of emotions to the changing of seasons, particularly to the time during autumn and winter in which the year is beginning to draw to a close, and a new one is soon to be born.

I’ve always felt a sense of nostalgia, at this time of year. I suppose that partly comes from reflecting on what I have, or in some cases haven’t, achieved over the course of the previous year. Yet I also feel a great sense of hope and happiness in the autumn and winter. Everything is changing, everything is renewing, and there is the hope that, with the change in seasons, I too will change to become a better person, to be the person I’m becoming.

Autumn and winter are, in my opinion, the most beautiful seasons. Though the leaves are dying, they go out in the brightest and most colourful celebration of nature. Then there are warm evenings spent inside, looking out at a winter landscape of frost (and sometimes snow), the joy of Christmas, a sense of hope and peace.

So many things have changed since this time last year, but many too have stayed the same. The worries and anxieties of last year seem trivial now; they have been replaced by more important things which, in another year’s time, will have the same lack of consequence. Everything comes full circle. Yet I’m still me, and the seasons still go on, and life still remains.

People and things have come and gone just like the seasons, each bringing with them a different colour of leaves, a different lesson to be learned. Like the trees let their leaves fall, sometimes, we have to let things go when they are no longer good to us.

And people say I’m changing into something I’m not. But the truth is, they never knew me before. I never even knew myself. I’m changing into who I am, the person who I’m supposed to be, the person who was always there under every disguise and throughout every season. We are all changing this way.

Yet in some ways, we never really change. Autumn is always autumn, spring is always spring. We still have dreams, though they may be alter; we still love, although who is deserving of that love may change. Life goes on, the seasons change. Everything changes, yet everything remains.

My Visit to the Brontë Parsonage Museum

‘I wish I were a girl again, half-savage and hardy, and free’ – Emily Brontë (Wuthering Heights)

Back in July I was lucky enough to go on a school visit to The Brontë Parsonage Museum in Haworth, Yorkshire. As I’m studying Wuthering Heights at sixth form this was a great opportunity to bring the story to life.

The Brontë Parsonage Museum

The museum is the birthplace and childhood home of the Brontë sisters Charlotte, Emily and Anne, and their brother Branwell. Maintained by the Brontë Society, the house is where the sisters’ famous novels including Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre, and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, were written. You can read more about the museum here: https://www.bronte.org.uk

The Museum is laid out exactly as it would have been when it was inhabited, except from being modernised with information signs etc for visitors. It was amazing to feel as if you were walking in the footsteps of the sisters, and it was especially poignant to see the couch where Emily Brontë died.

An inspirational legacy

When reading the sisters’ novels, it is easy for the authors to become dehumanised. Visiting the museum really helped me see how their lives are reflected in their work – for example, the nearby Yorkshire moors provide the setting for many their novels. It always amazes me to think that the Brontës, along with many other writers, did not experience success while they were alive. Emily Brontë died thinking she was a failure, but Wuthering Heights has since become a renowned classic. Although their subject matter was controversial, the Brontës challenged the boundaries and societal norms of the Victorian era, and that is something I admire.

Haworth – a charming town

Haworth itself is a beautiful, quaint town which I was eager to explore. Although the town is now filled with tourist shops and cafés, it is still easy to get a sense of how it would have been back in the 1800s. Inside the church is the place where the three sisters are buried, and down the road is a crossroads where Charlotte used to meet with her lover. There were so many interesting places and things to discover, it was hard to fit it into just one day!

A perfect visit

After going round the museum, I was excited to visit the shop where I bought a copy of Anne Brontë’s The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (stamped to say I bought it at the museum!) which made a perfect end to the visit. For my review of this novel, see My August Reads. Overall, the visit was amazing, and I loved having the opportunity to explore in more detail the lives of the iconic Brontë sisters.