Friday, 26 March 2010

New Look for TWC

You know me and computers!

Google offered some new template layouts so I went for it....

Perhaps this will inspire us to even greater literary achievements.

Rob Innis

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Hunky monkeys and raging bulls, not to mention ferrets under a blanket

Twenty three people attended today’s meeting. Anne Potter, one of the instigators of the Torrevieja Writers' Circle about 10 years ago attended. Anne F told us about sending an email to Michael Winner in response to his avowed intention to leave his house to the nation, saying that she was changing her name to T.H.E. Nation and to please remember her when he was updating his will. He printed her comments in his column. Nik read out his review of Heinke’s book, which stated that it was written with a surreal eye and was a truly original travel book. It can be purchased via Amazon or more cheaply through Heinke. Nik mooted the possibility of producing an anthology of the circle’s work through Lulu.

Alan G read out a short piece on the subject ‘Are we there yet?’ about him and a mate going out for the day to Weston Supermare.

Glyn continued his story, this week concerning Sheree the lady who works in the NAAFI and the apprentices’ attempt to impress her with their intelligence. Their main purpose in talking to her was to look at the wondrous sight of her heaving chest. As she walked away they watched her rear saying ’You could crack walnuts with that!’ The juke box was playing ‘Poetry in Motion' by Johnny Tillotson, which summed up their thoughts on Sheree. Very amusing as usual! We wondered how Sheree knew that the boys were watching her rear, as she couldn’t see it, and Heinke said “Maybe her cheeks were burning.” This punnitis is catching! I wonder if you can get tablets for it.

Brenda continued the part of her story about the second diary and Belle’s search for Minerva. Belle asked her older sister if she had heard of Minerva and discovered that her sister had had a mastectomy. She went to visit her and was impressed by her sister’s courage. Brenda received some good advice on how to improve the story.

Ian had written a short poem about colours, instigated by the redecorating he was doing at home. It was a clever mix of colours and emotions.

Mary K read out a story she was considering sending to People’s Friend, following the guidelines they require. It was about a lady going to work in a café near the beach. A man comes to the beach every day looking for his wife who drowned in the sea. She plucks up courage to speak to him and tells him how she used to be sad but now enjoys her work in the café. The next day he comes into the café and says “What time do you finish work?” It was thought that as there was scope for quite a few more words, there was room for a little more dialogue early on in the story.

TJ read out his article that has been printed on the blog of the Inland Magazine. It was a clever story connecting Ernest Hemingway, bull running at Pamplona and Sally the Satnav. TJ had set his satnav to remind him where hotels were by a tone mooing like a cow. It culminated in him following the bulls with his girlfriend in the car beside him, and the satnav calling out ‘moo’ and him thinking that the bulls were coming back to get him. He never knew there were so many hotels in Pamplona!

Pat read out a poem about Pussy Willow chasing after Hunky Monkey (don‘t ask!), finding Hunky Monkey in a caress with Wilma, a fire starting and her ending up in the arms of a fireman. Ooh I love a man in a uniform!

Douglas continued his story, which turns out to be something to do with nuclear clean energy. Kaplinsky arrives at an office building that says SCIENCE on the door. Dr Lester Brook, who he is giving the info to, turns out to be blind. Later on the security man looks at the tapes and sees 2 lab assistants leaving the room and going to the accommodation block. Dr Brook needs to be found. We await the next installment. It was thought that Douglas cleverly gave out information leading to the reader’s realisation that Dr Brook was a blind lady.

Another good meeting finished with a few people left over to read next week. Let’s hope it is enough to prevent us having a lot of time for hot pen!


Platinum Page

The creative writing magazine Platinum Page now has a web site at

Why not take a look and consider a submission?

Rob Innis

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Soldiering On Through Last Night´s Dream.

Heinke Woodbridge (pictured peering out from behind her front door) has at last had her book "Camping With Wolves" published! Congrats Heinke. Have a copy at my bedside and will begin reading anon.

The other pictures are supposed cleverly to represent the themes for this week, which were "Soldiering On" and "My Dream Last Night. Not that we are expected or obliged to write based on the weekly subjects but it can help when you´re desperate for inspiration.

Cynthia wrote on the "Soldiering On" theme. It was a very moving piece about a war widow of today who is treated with heartless indifference by the military authorities following her husband´s death on duty in Afghanistan.

Chris´"Soldiering On" described people growing older and carrying on in the face of disappointment and disillusionment.

John´s poem "Prime Cut" described a dying soldier in Afghanistan. Very good, it was thought.

The dream theme was tackled by:

who wrote a poem in short, breathless phrases, which was more a nightmare than a dream. Made you get goosebumps.


Nan, who wrote about a man whose invention of a pill to replace food caused more trouble than he´d expected. Everyone felt that, although it needed to be worked on and altered, it was an interesting and important theme and Nan was encouraged to go back to the drawing board.

The other members wrote on different subjects.

Glyn continued his army apprentices saga featuring Pauline of the lazy eye, whose tears ran down her shoulder when she cried, and the diverse accents of the group of lads. As usual, hilarious.

Alan G gave us another episode in the life of Spike the dog, describing his relationship with the local slapper bitch, Mabel, and the love of his life, Mandy (a spaniel, I think?). Very funny.

Lisa had written a beautiful piece about a woman who has had cancer meeting her daughter and grandchild for a picnic.

Mary S and Mary K have become confused in my notes ( Sorry Ladies!!) so I´m not sure who did what. One wrote a poem called "Woman of the World" and the other wrote a short eulogy to Heinke on publication of her book, called "Tall Story" about two giraffes dancing the Tango.

With his unerring ability to make a groan-like joke, Nik remarked " You´ve got a neck".
( A pause for a collective slow handclap and hiss....)

Stan gave us a spot-on nostalgia piece where a grandad, talking about how he met his wife, describes Teddy Boy attire, DA hairstyles and the local dance.

Douglas had us all wanting to hear more with his private eye tale - to be continued next week.

A good meeting.

Chris J

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Free online access to Writers and Artists Yearbook

The above tome is now available for free online - you need to register then you can search

Rob Innis

Thursday, 11 March 2010

None Of The Following Is Disposable Copy.

I´ve been having a bit of bother with my computer lately and felt like expressing my feelings as the puppy is doing. Wish I could be as laid back as the kitten.Talking of laid back, that was the feeling in the group this week. Very relaxed and pleasant and a good time had by all.

Not so many present as last week but a good number - about 15, I think.

Nik spoke about competitions and handed out copies of this month´s to those without a whizz box. If you don´t have stamps (which have now gone up to 56 pence), then don´t send a
SAE . Simply say that your offering is disposable copy.

Heinke´s book has come out and looked very attractive, I must say. She, however, is not a happy bunny as she has so far found over 50 typos and, if I understood properly, nothing can be done about it now - the printing process has gone too far. I´ll bet she could do a puppy all over the printers, who´ve messed up her baby. Never mind, Heinke. Keep all the faulty copies - you´ll be able to sell them at an enormous profit on Ebay when you´ve won your Nobel Prize.

Nan wrote on today´s subject "Are we there yet?". Hers was a nostalgic piece about day trips to the seaside, back in the day. Many an eye misted over at the descriptions of crunching into cheese sandwiches with sand in them and dresses tucked into knickers before paddling in the freezing water.....

Gerry continued his ghostly tale of the trucker trying to make sense of his weird experience in the mountains meeting people who´d been dead for years in places which no longer exist. Very gripping. Gerry´s writing, it was agreed, had come on no end. Good on you, Gerry!

Alan declared that he felt his true metier is that of a repressed Daily Telegraph leader writer and gave us a really fascinating piece called "Dropping Pennies". This was also nostalgic, describing the uses an old penny was put to and what it could buy. This could be expanded, it was thought. Nik even remarked that it could do so well that Alan could coin it in. ( You may groan...)

Ann F gave us another of her diary extracts, this time about Facebook and a dead friend. Really good, Ann!

Chris followed on last week´s description of her flatpack Hell with a piece on IKEA, its founder and the products, which all have names. Hence Billy the bookcase and Stubborn the spatula!

Mary K tried her hand at a story this week instead of her usual poetry. It was actually an incident, which she is hoping to get published in People´s Friend. Quite touching, it was - about two people meeting briefly on a plane journey.

Ian read a story he´d reworked from some time ago about the Troubles in Northern Ireland. It was a good story but it was felt it had passed its time and would be more saleable if it were brought up to date and the events recalled as a flashback or something similar. Good writing though - too good not to do something more with it.

As we´d had quite a lot of discussion there were several people who didn´t read so next week Glyn, Stan and John have first go.

Poetry is often discussed in the group and it isn´t everyone´s cup of tea. However, I´m sure the following will give you all a good chuckle.

Chris J


1. My darling, my lover, my beautiful wife,
marrying you has screwed up my life.

2. I see your face when I am dreaming,
that's why I always wake up screaming.

3. Kind, intelligent, loving and hot,
this describes everything you are not.

4. Love may be beautiful, love may be bliss,
but I only slept with you 'cause I was pissed.

5. I thought that I could love no other,
that is until I met your brother.

6. Roses are red, violets are blue, sugar is sweet, and so are you,
but the roses are wilting, the violets are dead, the sugar bowl's
empty and so is your head.

7. I want to feel your sweet embrace,
but don't take that paper bag off your face.

8. I love your smile, your face, and your eyes,
Damn, I'm good at telling lies!

9. My love, you take my breath away,
What have you stepped in to smell this way?

11. What inspired this amorous rhyme?
two parts vodka, one part lime.


Thursday, 4 March 2010

Prepositions,Plans,Planes,Parties and Pampering

I think the title for this week's blog just about covers the range of subjects tackled by the members. If it doesn't, then I apologise although I am sure we could find some link albeit tenuous.

There were eventually 23 in attendance increased to 25 by the introduction of possibly 2 new members, John McGregor and Graham Strachan. It's good to see an increase in the numbers of men attending as this brings a balance to the group.

Nik announced that he had sold his 4th western book to Robert Hale.

Consideration may be required to be given to increasing charges as funds continued to diminish.

TJ has a new mobile telephone number and members should amend their lists accordingly.

This week's suggested subjects were: "Are We There Yet?" or No. 52 Bus.

Glyn had 2 short pieces to read out. The first was a humorous item on prepositions and participles and their use, or not, as the case may be as they could cause confusion. His second reading was even more hilarious as this dealt with the nations of the world's attitudes to war/terrorists threats. No nation was spared. It also reminded me of the poster, "BE ALERT!" then someone had written underneath, "YOUR COUNTRY NEEDS LERTS!".

Mary M gave us a sad tale of an aunt awaiting the arrival of her niece, whom she had not seen for many years, at the airport only for the aircraft to crash into the sea and the aunt left there alone.
This gave thought to those who find themselves in a similar situation as everyone concentrates on the victims but what of those who are left waiting and wondering.

Ian's poem was based on the subject "Are We There?" and dealt with the frustration/annoyance of a father at his twin offspring on a car journey.

Newcomer Graham detailed a very well observed piece about a man ( Graham?) accompanying his wife shopping and it being a no win situation. I'm sure all the men present were able to empathise with the feelings expressed.

Jenny provided an insight to TJ's housewarming party held last Friday where the food was scrumptious, the booze flowed freely and the conversation may have led to outsiders considering that those attending were all arty, farty. Surely not?

Douglas had rewritten his short story about a bungled robbery. This was based on personal experience and while well written it was suggested that he had to divorce himself more from it to be a piece of fiction.

Mary K's poem "A Sinking Ship" was a rant at the expats who for no good reason, were returning to the UK. The sting in the tail was that these people had never grasped the language. An opportunity to rhyme expats and rats was missed despite the poem's title.

Anne F told the tale, in her own inimatable style, of "Creative Time Wasting" and pampering herself. This was a very visual piece of writing and no doubt many on hearing its various elements could sympathise.

Chris gave us "A DIY Experience" or "Flat Pack Hell" which everyone has experienced. Pieces missing, unfathomable diagrams and sheer frustration. IKEA take note!!! Still every cloud has a siver lining and the inevitable domestic dispute means that partners do not need to talk for several days.

Jane also took this week's subject "Are We There Yet?" to tell her tale of the narrator's mother suffering from dementia and the trials and tribulations that this disease causes when it strikes. Everyone thought this a poignant story with good use of imagination. It should be pointed out that this was NOT autobiographical.

Alan's item was a story called "The Best Laid Plan" and told of two families brought together by unscrupulous scheming. The families however are at war with each other leading to the deaths of two young lovers. Undertones of Romeo & Juliet here.

Stan's short story was about an abduction told in his own style. Stan's regional accent always gives the story life.

Last, but by no means least, our other newcomer, John, gave us a piece entitled, "Gordon Is A Moron" and told the tale of two couples having an evening out together where the conversation between the two men, meeting for the first time, is somewhat stilted and lacklustre due to Gordon's attitude. The twist to the story is that Gordon's career is based in customer relations.
Again some of us there have possibly been in a similar situation and have come away thinking that "Gordon" is a moron.

That's it for this week. Hope you all enjoyed the meeting and to the two newcomers we hope to see you back.

Ian C

Monday, 1 March 2010

Bibliomaniac Page

The Inland Magazine, published in Alicante, regularly contains contributions from Rob Innis (TWC Deputy Chairman)

The March edition contains some articles from Rob, including one illustrated by his photos, and a new feature:

'Bibliomaniac Page' (under Rob's pen name, on Page 10) with news, reviews and Costa Blanca author profile, this month featuring Nik Morton (TWC Chairman) and a chance to win one of Nik's books, signed by the author, in a free to enter competition.

The magazine can be viewed online below (just click) if you can't get hold of a copy