Friday, July 16, 2010

Lovely pre-birthday present

Yesterday, J was telling me he'd heard the head of the Arts Council being interviewed about the huge reductions in their budget, and I said to him: Ok, I've resigned myself to the fact that I'm not going to get a grant.

Famous last words.

This morning, 24 hours before my birthday, I get a large envelope from the Arts Council and... whoo-hoo, they've awarded me a grant to work on a biology-inspired short story collection!!

This is not just an amazing boost financially, it is a real validation to me that they think I'm doing something worth funding. And it is a vote of confidence both in short story collections and in science-inspired fiction. Yay! And.. now I feel like what I'm doing's a "proper job". Amazing.

My project is for a collection of short stories inspired both by current research in several biology-related labs in Bristol University and a fictional response to a 100-year-old biology text book. I won't go into more details about that now, but over the next 18 months, I'll reveal more, as I get going. I have been in a kind of limbo ever since I submitted the application 5 1/2 weeks ago, not feeling I can really get stuck into anything. And now I can, which is the best part. I have the "next thing" I've been waiting for, really since my book came out, which is almost two years ago. Ok, got to get to it!

28 comments:

Tim Jones said...

Excellent news - and the collection sounds fascinating! I'll be in the queue (well, the virtual queue, anyway).

Debi said...

I am utterly thrilled and delighted for you! xxx

Tania Hershman said...

Thanks Tim - better be a virtual queue, it's going to take a while!

Thanks, Debi! Can't wait to read your blog post about last night's Brit Writers Awards ceremony...!

Nora Nadjarian said...

Brilliant news!!! Tania I am SOOO happy for you xx

And Happy Birthday :)

Cathie said...

Well done and well deserved. I love your stories! Happy Birthday too.

TOM J VOWLER said...

BRILLIANT. BRILLIANT. BRILLIANT.

Tania Hershman said...

nora - thank you, and huge congrats on your great news!

Cathie - thank you!!

Tom - thank you so so much for all your help, couldn't have done it without you!

Teresa Stenson said...

Aces!

And - Happy Birthday for tomorrow. You HAVE TO celebrate in a big way.

And - new blog design is luv-er-ly.

Miriam said...

Well done! And happy birthday to you and my mum, who's 98 tomorrow.

Tania Hershman said...

Thank you, Teresa! Will definitely be celebrating enormously! So glad you like the new design, that was me time-wasting yesterday, I rather like it :)

Miriam - happy birthday to your mum!

TOM J VOWLER said...

You're very welcome. Still reckon I'm behind in favours owed :) Happy Birthday x

Sarah Hilary said...

Best news ever! Congratulations!

Elisabeth said...

Congratulations, Tania.

At a conference I attended recently in Brighton, England I went to a short workshop conducted by Ruth Padel, poet and ?'great' granddaughter of Charles Darwin.

She has recently written a book of poems based on Darwin's Creation. Wonderful stuff. I thought of it when I read about your biology short stories. Good luck with it all.

Sara Crowley said...

Wonderful news, Tania.
Whoooooo hoooooooooooo ; )

Vanessa Gebbie said...

Fab news, me dear!

virginia said...

this new design is a better fit - i love everything about it, from color to font choice.

happy birthday, and congratulations on the grant!

two years - you must have thousands of words just waiting to find their way to paper.

Jenzarina said...

Fantastic news!
And have a Happy Birthday!
Jen x

Nik Perring said...

That's terrific news, T! Huge congrats!

Jills said...

It really is wonderful to be validated by an arts agency such as this. Congratulations. A birthday present from the universe.

Tania Hershman said...

Thanks, Sarah!

Elisabeth, I met Ruth Padel at Jewish Book Week last year, been meaning to get her poems. Very interesting!

Sara - as always, your whoo-hoo is the icing on the cake!

Thanks, V!

Virginia, I write very very short stories so it's probably more about the right words rather than the amount of words!

Jen and Nik - thank you!

Tania Hershman said...

thank you, Jill, definitely a birthday present from Up on High!

jonathan pinnock said...

Fantastic news - very much looking forward to reading the result!

Lauri said...

How wonderful is that!!! Congrats! Can't wait to read that book given my own love for short stories and science.
Also love the new look of your blog. Where did you get this artwork?

Rachel Fenton said...

As we say in new Zealand, AWESOME!

So so pleased for you! And happy birthday - does this mean you are a leo (like me)? Grrr power if you are! That sounds very twerpy now I read it back but if it makes you laugh who cares - it's your birthday! A birthday is for one day, a book is for life! What a great prezzie. I really must go now.....

Tania Hershman said...

Thanks, Jon!

Lauri, I'm intrigued to see what kind of biology-inspired stories I end up writing. Making this up as I go along... of course! And the blog design was something I found by googling "blogger templates", nice eh? There's a link to the designer if you scroll all the way to the bottom of the blog.

Rachel, thank you!! And no, I'm Cancer, just slip in there before Leo. I'm very crabby, it's pretty apt.

Pippa Goldschmidt said...

wow brilliant news!!!! and happy birthday!!!

Dorothee Lang said...

great news! what a wonderful birthday present!

annie clarkson said...

Wow, brilliant, I just read this (catching up with blog reading!) Bloody well done, that's so exciting!