The Corruption of Truth

The written word has now become so unreliable that it would take a Hogarth to demonstrate Truth as a Prostitute – attended by Social Media, Television, Newspapers, Petitions and Tweets.

From not being concerned about accuracy in schools, to sloppy research and dependence on hearsay, the art of Journalism has become corrupted far beyond the lurid headline to the realms of fake news and disinformation.

We all know that editors of newspapers have their own political agenda – read the Daily Mail, the Guardian and the Evening Standard and somewhere in their pages you might glean the truth, but honest, factual reporting does not sell newspapers and even Presidents resort to threats and challenges instead of rational discussion.

How, then, are we to expect sensible negotiations to result in amicable agreement?               Has the ability to see the other person’s point of view been lost for ever?                               Must we erase everything from the past that we disagree with?

Is it not our task to learn from the mistakes of the past, adjust to circumstances, change, evolve, improve? Where is the honesty, the willingness to listen and communicate with tolerance and understanding?

If life carries on in the present direction there will be no truth, no belief and no humanity.

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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!)

Not many left

We are down to the last fifteen of “Reflections,”with orders still coming in. Maybe I ought to concentrate on writing and publishing poetry instead of trying to learn script writing. I was worried about not having an ISBN number but selling person to person seems to be my forte.

May be off line for a while soon. Trying to write a short story but the plot is sliding away from me because it is based on fact. Some people can mix the two but I find it almost impossible. ( Except in ” A Lesson for the Teacher”) Booking up for a book fair in March – had to buy a new diary!

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.

anthology success

I have had the books for three days and have almost sold the first 50 copies. Who says poetry doesn’t sell? Mind you, I did target folk who have read our stuff before. Some even thanked me for approaching them! This is so much easier than trying to shift novels. Thanks for all the advertising. Sorry I can’t send any to the States. It would cost more to post than they were worth and I’m not ebooking them. Now to concentrate on the pantomime!

Another Story

I didn’t realise how much what I was reading influenced what I was writing until this week.

I read a short story to our writing  group and accepted that the ending was weak. That’s what these groups are all about- helpful criticism to encourage improvement.

But, at home, I was reading Philip Dick short stories which resulted in my turning a gentle romance into a fatal time travel story. I read this to the group yesterday and they all complained that the heroine should not have been murdered. I blame Philip Dick.

I’m not sure I’ll rewrite it again. Each time I read it I find flaws. I’ll leave it and investigate scriptwriting courses. It’s time I had a go at something new.

Interview

“What can I do for you. Mrs Walsh?”

“It’s a bit delicate, doctor. You know my husband’s condition?”

“Yes, but apart from a missing limb he’s quite well, isn’t he?”

“He’s very fit. He’s enjoying working with children. He makes a fine teacher  -but that’s part of the problem?”

“I don’t understand. You are getting on well together, aren’t you?”

” In a way – but he is asking me when we can try for a child of our own.”

“And you don’t want to?”

“It’s not that I don’t like children. If I could be sure our baby would be all right I’d love to start a family.”

“What makes you worry that it wouldn’t be?”

“My father. He isn’t very clever and he has serious hearing loss. If our child was like him I don’t know if I could cope.”

” Mrs Walsh, there’s no reason to believe such things are hereditary and even if they were they are much more manageable that a lot of other inherited problems. Is your father happy?”

” Yes, my mother is a great support and they have a good social life. I just remember how hard it was when I was growing up. Other children teased me about him and it took him a long time to find a job.”

” Have you discussed this with your husband?”

“No. I don’t think he’d understand. He thinks every disability can be overcome with enough willpower – typical soldier- and he wouldn’t like to think I was worrying unnecessarily. He wouldn’t know what to say. I don’t want to admit how I feel. It would upset him.”

“Think of it like this – any child can be born with problems but there is nothing to indicate a child of yours would have any greater chance of a disability than any other child. In fact, with a strong young father like Ryan there’s more likelihood of it being a strapping youngster. We’d keep an eye on you through the pregnancy. There’s absolutely nothing to worry about. Go ahead while you are still under thirty. You are more likely to have a healthy child while you are young.”

“Thank you, doctor. I do feel a bit better,now. I’ll talk to them at the clinic. I know my mother would love a grandchild.”

“If you want me to talk to your husband, I will, but I’m sure when you think it through you will make the right decision.”

( The characters in “Lane’s End” “Unstable Lane” and “The Third Lane.” after the trilogy has ended.)