amanda-carterDo you remember your first Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook?

Mine was a shy courtship that began during my GCSEs. Story snippets were starting to leak from the margins of my school books. My English teacher, on discovering yet another, said if I was really serious about wanting to be a writer then I should seek out the Yearbook.

Eternally grateful, I scurried off to the library.

A feeling of reverence came over me as I took the Yearbook in my arms. I didn’t quite swagger like a boxer parading a trophy but I did make sure the title was prominently on show at all times. Look – I’m going to be a Writer or an Artist, I felt like saying to the elderly librarian but I didn’t like to disturb his glower at the new-fangled computer.

I often visited the Yearbook in various libraries, bringing with me gifts of scuffed notebooks in which to jot down addresses and nuggets of wisdom. By the time I began University I was ready for commitment and a Yearbook of my very own.

 Since then every creative job has been guided by the advice dispensed annually within its pages – from illustrating stories to selling handmade cards, from tax information to writing for the internet and magazines. I am now seeking its wisdom again with my first novel and often suspect my house is held up by Yearbooks. My English teacher would have been proud.

To be asked to blog for the website is such a treat. To celebrate I am off to the library to do some silent swaggering.

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