I blogged a while back about how I’d been short listed for a competition, and results would be announced at NAWGFest in September; well, today is that day.

I’ll be honest, I’d been harbouring some guilt about going at all. The venue is 140 miles from home and it’s the last weekend of the summer holidays so I really didn’t want to leave my kids. My husband was really supportive about me going, though, and so I suggested maybe having our holiday in the area in the week leading up to it. We’ve had a grand time exploring Stratford-Upon-Avon and the Wye Valley, but still I felt bad as the big day loomed. I shouldn’t have; at 9:30 in the morning my 9-year-old son suggested dumping me here so they could ‘go swimming’. His 5-year-old sister gleefully agreed.

IMG_0436[1].JPGSo, shriven of all guilt I got to the campus after lunch, a few hours too early to check in. Although I’d had visions of finding a shady spot and being terribly creative, it was tipping down with rain so instead I grabbed a panini and a coffee and did some much needed admin. A profile for an anthology coming out later this year, Hour of Writes marking, that sort of thing.

IMG_0442[1]The hour or so flew by, I checked in to my accommodation and went to find the NAWGFest check in desk. There a surprised awaited me, because shortlistees like myself were invited to the Chairman’s Drinks Reception before the meal. How lovely!

I’ve whiled away a peaceful afternoon, world building for Wonderling. I have a delightful evening ahead, and the unaccustomed experience of a night, alone. No husband. no children. Will I sleep?

I have no expectation of winning, but it’s been wonderful to have got this far and to be part of something like this. To feel like a ‘real writer’ (whatever that is) and do writerly things. The perfect end to a summer holidays where my family have been my focus, something to set me on track for next week and getting back to 6 hours a day for work, work, work.

Yorkshire Story, Alfie Slider (one and two!), Wonderling and, oh, did I mention a girl named Sasha Stone? No? Oh, well…watch this space 🙂