Christmas Fayre

The Sea Scribes attended a Christmas fayre at Heene Road Community Centre in Worthing on December 2nd with plenty of different books for sale, some of which were Christmas themed and would make excellent presents. Our festive stall was well attended but there was so much entertainment going on and such wonderful cakes for sale that many people just smiled and passed by. Friends who already had some of our books came to say hello and say how much they enjoyed our work but how could we compete with donkey rides and a £300 bottle of champagne (in the raffle) ?  It was very festive and a credit to the organisers.

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Bookmarks

New bookmarks purchased, with illustrations of book covers on, rather than my photo. While I was out I bought a display stand for the events that are coming up.I may not be writing but I shall be talking and (I hope) selling, in the next few months.My next task is to find some sketches for a spring event. I have looked on line and they just don’t seem funny. I think the secret may be to make them very local and topical but I will research Victoria Wood as she was very gifted that way. We want to mix music and words and give the takings to charity.I just hope my record player is loud enough for the hall next week as I am delivering a talk that includes recordings from the Voice of Progress. I’ll have a rehearsal as I do think having to use apparatus when public speaking is dodgy.IMG_0121

Preparing talks

I have two very different talks in the next two weeks. One is for Worthy Words, the writing group run by Wendy Hughes at Worthing Library. Here I am going to tell the group about a course on radio drama that I have just completed.

The following week I am talking the Worthing Friendship Centre members on “From Manuscript to Microphone,”explaining how I went from being a novelist to recording a talking newspaper for the blind. I have some CDs with examples of the kind of thing the Voice of Progress produce. I also have some information about the Calibre audio library as they have the first of my novels.

I have not recorded any other books although I have read some poems for the listeners. I just hope they enjoy the pantomime in December.

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Preparing for a talk

I have just spent the morning searching through CDs to find examples of the talking newspaper that I can include in my next talk.

I usually tell people about my life and the books I have written but this time the title is “From Manuscript to Microphone” and I am going to talk about how recording my first novel led to being a reader for the Voice of Progress and the recordings I have done over the last six years, culminating, of course, in this December’s pantomime.

The first part of each recording is a round up of local news, taken from newspapers in the area and the second part is a magazine, compiled by one of the readers which can include an interview, travel experiences, history or music. I often read a poem or two.

I only have one booking for 2018 but as I am no longer willing to drive in the dark perhaps that’s a good thing!

Another poem

Living in Worthing we have had a company digging up our roads to give us new plastic gas pipes and this has caused me to write this silly little verse.

Today the corner of our street sprouted another barrier

They’re such a pretty apple green but make the road much narrower

Behind this simple plastic fence are tunnels deep and wide

And showing, when the digger’s gone, bright yellow pipes inside.

For every road in our fine town has gas pipes to replace-

The pavement’s blocked and little signs warn people there’s no space.

The cones, like sentries, guard the holes and keep the cars away

How glad I’ll be when they’ve moved on, leaving the pavements grey.

The patchwork footpath now looks odd but maybe it is good-

Pink paving stones can crack and lift – and it is time we should

Be grateful to the company for making it all neater

As long as it does not demand we have a new Smart meter!

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.