I recently applied for a place in a 10 day Poetry Masterclass at Varuna, The Writer's House, in the Blue Mountains with Australian poet Vanessa Kirkpatrick. The class was a week long residential class with a all meals provided dedicated to the craft of writing poetry. It sounded like heaven to me!
To apply I had to gather ten of my poems and write a statement of intention. It was hard choosing the poems and knowing what to put in. Poetry is so subjective and I didn't know who would be judging the entires or the standard of the other writers. In the end I picked a range of poems in different styles and on different subjects as well as poems well received by my poetry group plus a couple of my favourites.
Then I waited as the deadline for notifying applicants came and went. I sent some emails and made a couple of calls and still no response. Someone finally answered my call and I found out I hadn't got in. By then I had pretty much figured that was the case anyway. I was still disappointed.
The funny thing with my writing is at the time of writing I love my poems but then after a while I look at them and think, oh that's no good. The rejection coincided nicely with the moment of despair over my writing. Or perhaps it triggered it. Who knows?
Luckily there's always a silver lining or two if you look hard enough. (Thanks Pollyanna for this lesson! See, reading kids books is good. But I digress...). In this case the silver lining was the statement of intent I had to write as part of my application. It laid out neatly all the things I wanted to achieve and learn during the residential masterclass.
Once I'd come to terms with the decision I set about writing up what I wanted to learn in dot point form and turned it into a poster using Canva. It's now sitting above my desk where I can look at it and focus on what I want to achieve with my writing.