Let me see!

Now a problem. I have been sent a webmail file that my computer won’t open. This security business gets worse.It has a time limit on it, too so I’ll have to warn the sender that I can’t read it.

As it was the first example of the panto recording and I am the producer I need to hear it

Meanwhile, here’s another holiday photo. I can’t tell you about my writing because I haven’t done any but we did display some copies of books and they sold well.IMG_0377

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Public Speaking

Public speaking is almost as enjoyable as writing. Having been a schoolteacher I don’t get nervous talking to a crowd and I get a real kick out of hearing people laugh.

I have just had my second booking for 2018 and hope to find more readers for my books. I am reluctant to book evening meetings now but all days up to September except Thursdays and Fridays are free at present – until I book a holiday! Luckily I have just ordered some more copies of the poetry anthology and am planning to get some more bookmarks. The first 100 copies of “Reflections, Then and Now,” will not last until Christmas as we are taking them away for a weekend where the folk know us and usually support our writing.

I have a talking spot in the Southern Bookshow planned for March and I am planning a topic that others may not use. ( With a plan B in case that doesn’t work!)

Writing Group

On Wednesday 13th September the writing group run by Wendy Hughes at Worthing Library returned from their summer break. Wendy asked us all what we had been writing and our plans for next year. I was happy to tell them I only had 14 copies of the poetry anthology left and will be starting a new course at the end of the month.

Wendy then gave us some insight in how to approach historical novel writing, where to do research and where to find information about times we know little about. She sited children’s books as an example.

We were given a short exercise in historical writing to do and then we moved onto manuscript reading. Each of us had the opportunity to read something they had been working on or the previous ‘homework.’

We were given lists of competitions and outlets and homework ( optional) for next month. This is the perfect stimulus for writing and all comments are encouraging and positive. I recommend writing groups.

Reciting poetry

Some poems cry out to be read aloud while others are just for private consumption. Our poetry anthology has both and I had the pleasure of reading out a couple last night at the Willows folk club in Arundel. This time I read one by our friend Bryan as that was more likely to make people laugh and it did. I get a real kick out of making people laugh. I can see why comedians enjoy their job.

I bought a copy of Pam Ayres’ verses from a charity stall last month and found a new favourite. Although I like “I wish I’d looked after me teeth,” there’s one entitled “Heaps of Stuff” which is so true I feel I want to find somewhere to recite it, just to get a reaction! Mind you, I can’t do that lovely accent so it might not be so successful.

The book is “The Works” selected poems, and the quality varies so I won’t do a review.She said herself her verses were written to be spoken out loud and she sounds great performing them.

Productions

Excited because I only have 20 copies of “Reflections, Then and Now” left so I am tempted to get some more printed. I didn’t realise men would like the book as much, if not more, than women. I have never had such good feedback from anything I have written.

Also looking forward to the panto casting session on Tuesday – twelve people coming for ten parts. Being a producer, even if it is only in audio,is a daunting task. It’s a bit like judging a beauty contest – I’m bound to upset somebody.

At last I am beginning to communicate on wordpress. I thought only folk in America and India read my blog but, hooray, welcome Pete and Pete’s friends.

Another sample poem.

Autumn Thoughts

Now, in the Autumn of our years we wait to see what Winter brings

While russet beauty calms our fears, chill Winter hints of sufferings.

We’ve savoured all the joys of youth, forged paths through lifetime’s verdant Spring

The love and laughter constant proof Summer is time for blossoming.

Now Autumn sees us slow – and taste the harvest of our earlier years,

Determined that we should not waste the lessons learned from hopes and fears.

But all the wisdom garnered then cannot protect from Winter’s cold.

There’s no escape the fate of men to live the seasons and grow old.

Review. The Night Strangers

Well. I finished the fiction book first. The author is Chris Bohjalian and for most of the story I was gripped by the characters and their plight. I enjoyed the spooky house and the ‘herbalists’ but found it a little more difficult to cope with the ‘ghosts.’

(spoiler alert)

I was , however, very disappointed with the ending. Why do so many writers rush the endings? I would have liked to hear the group planning how they were going to get away with what they had done and I lost empathy with the hero in the epilogue.

Now to finish the non fiction.