Deakin University, and a lesson from a Holocaust Survivor

2018 has been an amazing year! Rocky at times, but utterly amazing right now. I’m excited to have been accepted into a postgraduate course in creative writing at Deakin University for 2019! It will be part-time over two years, and I can’t wait.

After my manuscript assessment in September, I decided to really rip my book apart and rebuild it from scratch. It was okay, but it wasn’t the story I really wanted to tell. It wasn’t the story that was whispering to me furiously at 3 AM, refusing to stay silent. I didn’t know that until I’d written it, though. So even though I’m a little frustrated to see so many thousands of words going down the drain, it’s bringing me closer to the true core of my real story.

I’m digging deeper, going in layer after layer, trying to give the legacies of the stories of the Holocaust survivors and victims the honour they deserve. And because it’s such an important legacy, I’m prepared to research harder, think harder, work harder, feel harder.

I am totally immersing myself in my character. One powerful thing I did recently was to watch the video testimony of a Hungarian Jewish underground resistance fighter, Judit, which was recorded as part of the University of Southern California Shoah Testimony Collection. I cried so many times throughout the two hour video, and can only hope my character is as brave, dignified, and courageous as Judit was. 

I am learning so much every day. At times my heart absolutely breaks at the horror of humanity, at times it sings with the beauty of how kind and strong some people were in times of terror.

Judit’s message to the world was: “Never Again let it be repeated.”

Never Again.

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