Try to write something to read out at each weekly session, whether it is an ongoing story or novel or something new. If you’re stuck for an idea, then try one of the following themes - poem/short story/article - for reading out on the date specified. These themes are not cast in stone; if the theme doesn't inspire you, then write something else.
The main thing is to write something to be read out so that you can gain insights on your written work from the group's comments.
The more you write, the better you become at writing. We shall read around the table in sequence, irrespective of the written topic.
Remember that the best writing is re-writing.
Allow time to polish your written work before presenting it to the Circle.
Maximum word-count 1,200 or 40 lines for a poem.
Thanks to all those who suggested themes.
For those who don't know, a Hot Pen is a session where all attendees are given a word chosen at random from a book and asked to write a poem, story or article inspired by that word. The time limit for writing is 10 minutes, afterwhich all are read out, whether finished or not. It's surprising how many hot pen efforts have gone on to become stories and articles and even been sold!
Writing Magazine April competition - ‘Growing old gracefully -750 words’
6 The secret or The tower
13 Less said the better or Changes
20 Hot Pen
27 The reward or Rejection
Writing Magazine May competition - ‘Adult fairy story’
3 The meeting place or The invitation
10 First sentence: ‘I opened the door to find...’
17 Panic stations or The longest day
24 Hot Pen
Writing Magazine June competition - ‘... He wasn’t best pleased, having to stump up 500 quid’
1 To die for or The free gift
8 ‘I never said anything of the sort...’ Or A blog/blogger
15 Include the words aloof, astrology, honey, cockroach
22 Team spirit or Deep river or Hope springs
29 Hot Pen
Writing Magazine July competition - ‘Crime story’
5 East and West or A religious festival
12 Ten minute radio play for 2 or 3 voices or Good housekeeping
19 A political scandal or By popular request
26 Hot Pen
Writing Magazine August competition - ‘Love story’
2 First sentence: As I sat waiting for a return phone call, I reflected on...’
9 Book review (250 words) or The library book
16 Driving lessons or The coach trip or In the fast lane
23 Life would never be the same again or The allotments
30 WLTM or Must Love Dogs
Writing Magazine September competition - First line: ‘To be honest, I am not very fond of my own company.’’
7 First sentence: ‘She burst into tears at the news...’
14 Suddenly all the lights went out... Or Chance encounter
21 Dear John or The postman
28 Hot Pen
Writing Magazine October competition - ‘Long time no see - meets relative after 25 years’
4 The last hidden beauty of the world or Soft option
11 If only I hadn’t drunk so much... Or The crisis
18 ‘I know he was only a dog, but...’ Or Doom and gloom
25 Hot Pen
Best of luck, Nik