Another Ship Tanks And The Reasons I Do This

Another ship went belly up today. I wrote to UEA to prompt them to give me an answer re funding and they replied….. One of those “the competition was strong this year” bla blas. So, without funding, I’m not doing a PhD. Newcastle is the only university yet to reply. If they turn me down for funding too, I’m going to give up on the whole PhD thang – I’m just not going to get there without a first and I can’t afford to self-fund *(they’ve all offered me self funded places).

Also, today, I received an email from a fellow UEA MA graduate. She was congratulating me on my recent win and commendations. She also asked me what I thought these competitions gave me re my writing/career. That got me thinking and here’s the answer:

a) It encourages and motivates.
b) I get published in literary magazines.
c) Money, if I win.
d) It keeps me on my toes and hones and polishes my writing skills.
e) It helps me build up a portfolio just in case I’m ever offered a collection.
f) It gives me an edge when applying for bursaries, residencies, funding etc..
g) It might bring  the attention of agents.
h) Short stories are something I can work on when time is limited.
i) One of the agents who visited UEA on our MA said its important to build up your writing ‘credits.
j) Agents are human and sometimes don’t trust their own judgement, so wins and commendations give you that ‘seal of approval’/credibility.
k) It reminds me I”m a writer.

L)It’s a better displacement activity than making a cup of tea.

M) It helps in the applying for writing jobs game.

And in light of a ship tanking, I launched another one, sending off a radio play of mine to the Sussex Playwrights’ competition.


About suehealy

Award-winning Irish writer/playwright Sue Healy’s work has been supported and developed by Dublin’s Abbey Theatre, the Peggy Ramsay Foundation and Arts Council England. Her full-length stage plays include Cow (Etcetera Theatre, 2017) and Brazen (King’s Head Theatre, 2016), funded by Arts Council England. Sue’s work has also been performed at the Hackney Attic and Sterts theatres and festivals including the Claremorris Fringe (New Writing Award winner), the Brighton (Sussex Playwrights’ Award winner) and the UEA Contemporary European Drama Festival, Norwich. Autumn 2017 will see her work showcased at the Finborough, Arcola and Criterion theatres in London. Radio work includes nine plays broadcast on BBC Radio 4 (Opening Lines winner), WLRfm and KCLR96fm. She has been a finalist for BBC Scriptroom 12, Eamon Keane Playwriting Prize, Nick Darke Award and the Old Vic 12 New Voices. Sue's prose has won the the Molly Keane Award, HISSAC Prize, Escalator Award and has been published widely. Sue has been writer-in-residence on Inis Oírr, Aran Islands, and at the Heinrich Boll Cottage on Achill Island. She has also benefitted from juried artist residencies at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, and at Ginestrelle, Assisi in Italy. Sue is a UEA Creative Writing MA alumna. She spent eleven years in Budapest, editing Hungary A.M. She is currently London-based, completing a Ph.D. on the Royal Court Theatre. Sue is an Associate Lecturer in Playwriting at the Universities of Lincoln and Portsmouth, and tutors Creative Writing at City Lit. She is Literary Manager at the Finborough Theatre. View all posts by suehealy

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