Last summer, with nothing better to do in a seaside coastal town in the south of England, and money in my pocket begging to be spent frivolously, I spent £5 seeing a psychic to tell what I had in store for my future. I had never experienced such a "reading" before, and was curious to see what it was like. The softly spoken woman picked up on a few vague details of my character that anyone, psychic or not, could pick out in anyone really and could guess with enough vagueness. Surprisingly, she however picked up on the fact that I was creative, and was on the verge of making real progress, but I would need to find a mentor to assist me on my way to break through with making my creativity my strength.
Whether you perceive the reading as just mumbo-jumbo claptrap or not, the fact is there is always room for improvement and advice in the happy world of writing. For the last year, I have been enjoying listening to podcasts from a number of sources, but for the writing ones, there are a number of podcasts I always listen to for guidance, so you could count these as the writing gurus I have turned to.
Today I'll give you two, and save a few others for another time.
The first I'd like to suggest to you is The Creative Penn. Joanna Penn is a British writer who started writing in December 2008, when I also re-started writing, but unlike me she has pursued her writing career relentlessly and now is a full time author. She is an inspiration and every Monday morning it's great to download the podcast and enjoy after watching the latest episode of Star Trek: Discovery (priorities, sorry; I'm hooked on the adventures of Michael Burnham). If she can do it in just ten years, so can I! The format of the show is a monologue on various news and updates, followed by a big interview with a writer, usually on a relevant writing topic.
The other recommended writing podcast today is So you want to be a writer with Valerie Khoo and Allison Tait (Val and Al). An Australian duo that are just hilarious, they exchange witty banter about various news items and articles in the world of writing, with a weekly competition and to finish up, there is an interview, usually with a major Australian writer, Val's favourite bit (and mine) is the word of the week. Al never sounds impressed, but you can hear the sheer joy in Val's voice as the explores the etymological origins of obscure words in the English language. There is also a delightful and active community on Facebook where you can hang out with other writers and even Val and Al.
There you have it, two brilliant podcasts that are an absolute must for me every week. Enjoy!