Thursday 11 July
This is an opportunity for members to share their experiences with their writing. Not an evening of read work, but what the writing has led to, tips for others to follow, pitfalls for others to avoid. Where their inspiration has come from and what it has led to.
An evening sharing the writing world in all its glory and possibly its less pleasant side too. An opportuinty to find out more about fellow members and find your own inspiration for future writing projects.
Summary of the meeting
Ian introduced five different members of WSW to talk about their writing journeys. Writers’ experiences that turned out to be as varied as their writing. The common theme could be that there is no one way to be a ‘successful’ writer, indeed what counts as success for one person can be very different from another’s aim.
Simon Davey – Scilly Birding etc.
Simon told us why his account of a 1984 birdwatching trip was not published until 2013. We learned about what can go serendipitously right, and about the very great deal that can go wrong when producing and selling a book. In 2015 Simon published two books - ‘Is No Problem’, which he thought had not been a success, and analysed why, and ‘The Lichens of Jersey’, which he wrote with his wife, Amanda, which has been well received. Simon is working on a book about Francis Rose.
Amanda Davey – It’s warmer down below
Amanda’s grandfather was a pioneering tunnelling engineer who died in 1986, leaving a manuscript – Tunnelling History and my early involvement. Amanda started work on her grandfather’s memoir in 2013. Amanda described the process of finding out how to produce and market a book as not so much a learning curve but more a learning tree, or even triffid. Her account of how she eventually got her grandfather’s memoir into print, and in front of the public, justified her metaphor. To see the book go to www.tiliapublishinguk.co.uk .
Audrey Lee – ‘a rank amateur’
Audrey has always loved language. But family, house, garden, earning a living have had to come first through most of her life. Now in her eighties she feels well, and enjoys many creative forms, she gave us examples including self-publishing, songs, performance poetry, letter writing, and more. She concluded by telling us that she was a ‘Sunday’ writer/painter/performer but would always be a full-time family carer.
Sally-Claire Fadelle – Life and writing intermingle
Sally thought a writer could write about something they know nothing about, so imagination can run free, OR, do thorough research and become interested. The latter is what she is doing for her present project, a novel about Sir Humphrey Davy. Much of her work is rooted in her mixed-race heritage, her poem using the Jack and Jill windmills to reflect on her heritage is being published in ‘Hidden Sussex.’
Lawrence Long – assorted episodes
Lawrence was for many years a committee member and chair of WSW. In a wide ranging talk he told us about some of the strange places and circumstances in which he has had work published. He told us that there are more markets for writing than we might think, and described some of them.
Pam Weaver’s remarks – about competition entries and short stories in general.
Pam Weaver (https://pamweaver.uk ) has published more than twenty five novels, as well as 150 short stories and more than two hundred articles – see her website for more information. She not only judged the short story competition and provided detailed individual feedback for contestants but also gave general advice about what makes a good (publishable) short story.
Members can find a full account of all these talks in the members’ section of the website.
WAS, 16 July 2019