Creative Practice classes are through, and I also finished to write my project. It was a long path – attending the workshops, doing research, writing down everything and, finally, try to squeeze everything in 2000 words (I have written approximately 2200). I have listed everything I wanted to include in my piece at least ten times. It was hard. I interviewed John Chambers, one of the guides of The Jack the Ripper Tour. And I have read a lot about this case, so everytime I started typing, a huge flow of words, sentences and periods would come out – and of course, I needed to slow down. Select what was relevant, interesting, possibly funny.
I also have done some research at the Bishopgate Archives, and before starting to write down my project, I decided to have a long, last walk in Whitechapel by night. I did it with a friend, because I was a little scared to do it alone. He is a friend visiting me from Italy, and he had never been there – so you can imagine how I felt when he told me “Let’s hurry up, I don’t like it here.” … I bet you don’t.
As you know, I have written about Jack the Ripper. I know it is a very stereotypical subject, and so many interesting books and essays have been written about it – but I hope I gave my own view on this mystery: it can teaches a thing or two about stories that remain untouched by time. Isn’t writing unforgettable stories the aim of every writer? A few details, the rough sketch of a great character, a strong name and a gloomy, dark setting. The story of Jack the Ripper has fascinated generations of tourists and Londoners. I am one of them.
I know that writing about the infamous murderer of Whitechapel may seem cheap, so I considered a challenge to try to write something “different”. Maybe I managed to do it, or maybe not. The point is that studying this case helped me figure out many flaws of my own writing. Some features that I could improve. And this is what a creative practice course is all about, right?