Thursday, 19 August 2010

People Poems, Rant and Review

Attendance at this week's meeting was 17. It's amazing how consistent attendance has been this summer.

Before the meeting started Nick announced that he was to be interviewed on Radio Europe by Hannah Murray.
Nick also read out an extract from an agent's blog about story issues.
Rob read out a winning story of a competition from a staff magazine which although it was a good story was extremely badly written and highlighted many of the issues which had been listed in the agent's blog that Nick had just read out.

Jane asked if she could go first with the member's readings as it was a poem remembering her son whose death anniversary it was at the weekend. This was as you can imagine a very personal piece of writing appreciated by all.

John Major gave us the conclusion of his story about an expat family in the Middle East being arrested by security forces. There was a good blend of humour as well as being tense but it was suggested that it required more information and emotional content which would also heighten the tension.

John McGillvary's offering was a poem, written from a woman's point of view, about various blind dates that she had been on. It's title was "I don't give a Fig about a Date". This was very cleverly written with every line being a pun and was well received.

Douglas told the story of a memorable weekend about making a fool of yourself doing a party piece as part of a cabaret act. This was an item that most had heard before.

Mary K's piece was a rant in the form of a poem about a news item from England that a single old man was to be removed from his house in which he had lived for 74 years because of under occupancy and this made Mary irate at his treatment. Everyone sympathised with the man's predicament.

Ian provided a book review of "The Book Thief" and suggested that others could do the same (good or bad) as it was interesting to know what other members read and their thoughts on the material. He recommended this particular volume to the members because of its storyline and innovative style.

Brenda read a partially rewritten piece from "The Diaries" having taken on board previous comments to try and show the mixed emotions of her main character. She had achieved this to some degree but a number of suggestions were made about the introduction of a new character.

Last but by no means least Heather gave us the beginning of a novel about infidelity and lottery ticket winnings. The majority of members found the piece very confusing with too many strands of the story being presented in too short a space. It was suggested that she slow the pace down by providing more detail on the characters, their backgrounds and surroundings.

That was all for this week but remember it's a "Hot Pen" next meeting.

Ian C

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