We had a run through of our readings in Wednesday evening’s class. I’m currently second on the bill so was one of the first to get up and read. I chose what I think will be the eventual opening of the book — the firing scene. This is a lively scene but difficult to read as it has three characters and some narration — to do it proper justice I need to read in four slightly different registers. I have a cunning plan to try and help me with this BUT I got some extra inspiration from one of the contestants on last night’s Britain’s Got Talent.
He’s Mark James from Barnoldswick and performed a duet from ‘Phantom of the Opera’ in the auditions — where he had a costume split down the middle — one female side and one male. He stood facing different directions when singing the appropriate part! Complete rubbish — and even worse when last night he did Elton John and Kiki Dee which was a much more interchangeable duet so he was forever spinning round. (I was a bit gutted the extraordinarily talented pole dancer went out tonight.)
But — maybe that’s my solution — perhaps I dress in some sort of split female (for Kate the HR woman) costume on one side and a male costume for James and his boss Will (Will is balding so maybe when I’m James I can put a wig on or something)? Then perhaps for the narration I take the mic and hide behind the lectern — very omniscient.
I’m sure all the literary agents would remember that sort of performance?
Emily was ill, which was bad luck for me as I had a tutorial scheduled with her to discuss chapter 5 and other stuff. However, Emma Sweeney was a very capable replacement — she teaches at various places like Cambridge University and New York University (London campus) — a bit more exotic a version of our curiously named Bedford University Buckinghamshire campus that does nursing teaching, presumably for Stoke Mandeville (see below). To digress even further when I Googled her name, I found a syllabus for a course that someone called Emma Sweeney teaches, or has taught, (could be a different person but it’s not so important as the following goes on to say I found a good idea) at a U.S. university that Â includes a module on ‘sex and the body’ — a potentially awkward subject that I’d guess causes writers more anxiety than anything else and I’m really wondering whether I should make myself write something similar for my last workshop reading. It might be difficult but it would be a good learning experience.
Mind you I say that as someone’s whose writing always seems to veer towards the smutty — to the extent that other students like to insist I mention that one of my male characters is ‘sex mad’.