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Today brings September and with it the official beginning of my new life. Had I continued as before I would be facing the return to teaching work next Tuesday and a series of lectures soon after that. As it is, neither will be happening, at least for this academic year, and, as a result, I have had a restful and compositionally productive summer. The latter is usually the case, I must admit, the former not always so.

I set a few notes down yesterday, but spent the majority of the morning hunting for texts. There is a competition out there for a decent sized commission, and I think I will have a bite at the cherry. I continued hunting for texts this morning, hammering various ideas into shape until, slowly but surely, the outline of a complete piece came into being. By lunchtime I think I had managed to produce something workable, something which conforms to my general ideas of being just not quite specific enough, rendering it immediate and, ideally, repeatable. I now need to set one of the sections to music and have decided upon the most universal text. This means that I would be able to use this as a standalone work in the highly likely event that my submission for the commission is unsuccessful. That is one alternative – the other is to be optimistic and keep the whole idea (including the completed music) until the right commission lands in my lap. I think, successful or not, it has the potential to be a decent piece, as long as my writing is up to the mark, of course.

I also spoke yesterday to the composer of the work I have been editing for the Parliament Choir and finally managed to put that project to bed, so that’s my summer project done. I’ve had all sorts of information about this from various sources, so I’ve needed to remind myself that it was the choir who asked me to reset the score and not anybody else.

I also received a cheque today for some work done in August, about which I had entirely forgotten (the cheque, that is, not the work). Having been through a not so slight panic about finances last week, it now seems as though I shall make it through September at least before I starve. Having ‘gone freelance’ twice before I am aware that there is a period before the work kicks in, like a bungee jumper waiting for the cord to pull them back up. Like that jumper, I wonder if the cord will either snap or support the burden of my expectations. I think that the next four months will tell me whether this is a change of life or merely the year’s break for which I have always hankered. To be honest, I had always wanted a year off, but I never thought it would involve leaving jobs rather than asking for breaks.  I do hope my rampant ego hasn’t got a little too much in the way.

I am enjoying my writing immensely at the moment and can’t wait for people to get back to their jobs so I can get dug in. It is September, at last. Let’s go writing.

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