Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Literary Merit

     Season's greetings to my readers...I wonder how many there are ? When at Primary school Friday afternoons I was sent round the classrooms telling stories. I made these up as I went along. Mainly short stories, seldom continuing ones. With titles like 'The Dragon and the Dragonfly'. I missed needlework on those Friday afternoons, but they already knew that I was making my own clothes aged 10, so aprons and pin cushions were not so important to me !
      I unexpectedly failed my 11plus exam ( I broke a tooth that morning ! ). So I went to the local Junior Secondary School , where they were piloting O grades and spent 4 very formative years, receiving the best education from the top teachers in the school. It was a rounded education not only for the grades but included extra-curricular activities and opportunities. My form teacher gave us elocution, dress sense, first aid, flower arrangements, public speaking, debating, writing, acting and much more. The needlework teacher provided tuition in deportment, personal care, laundry etc. The geography master took us on trips and field camps. The music teacher encouraged us to perform, play instruments, sing .... the list goes on.
    Aged 16  I received a bursary to enable me to continue my education at Aberdeen Academy. At this point I must tell you that my former education helped a great deal at this new school, and I say provided education enough to carry me forward to H grades. So at this Academy I was no longer top pupil, but just one of hundreds and I recall the English lessons ( that I'd so enjoyed ) were taught in a very drab and uninspiring room overlooking the city graveyard ! I continued to write voraciously ..essays, compositions, short stories...poured out. However the English master thought my work mediocre and wrote on a few pieces..." No literary merit - Woman's Own stuff ! " Well. I thought ...not too bad really as people make a living from writing such 'stuff ' - not to be sneezed at !
     So in my box of archives rest some of these writings, still with red ink comments - but I enjoyed writing them and I am proud of them !
        " No literary merit " - - INDEED !



Steve Rowland said...

Kath, on average 50/60 readers on a regular basis - but numbers are not a measure of merit. I love your blogs - keep them coming. Thank you.

Adele said...

I love the way you write. Just like having a wonderful conversation with you Kathleen. Hope to share many more of your lovely tales in 2016. Happy New Year!