2019 has been a rather turbulent year for the Writers' Circle. One treasured member, Derek Knight, was bereaved when his wife, Audrey, passed away and was not in the best of health himself. Recently, we heard the sad news that Derek had died; he will be much missed by the community. He was a leading light of the Hayling Lions, the Hayling Choir and the bell ringers. He worked tirelessly for charity, after a successful career...his death an end to a memorable chapter.
On a happier note, we have acquired two new members who are extremely promising writers, although without a great deal of experience in the art.
I have also written some reviews for an online jazz magazine, which were published. This was due to the stimulus provided by being a member of a writing group.
It is vital for groups to renew and refresh themselves as much as possible and the U3A writers have continually realised their hopes and dreams through the medium of fiction.
We currently meet in different venues, all in members' homes, but without a permanent base. This situation may change in 2020.
To sum up this year, we have experienced loss and renewal but we continue to derive fellowship and inspiration from meeting each month and sharing our thoughts.
Each month the writers look forward to a very entertaining morning, listening to a reading of the creative writings of their fellow authors. We do also chat and drink coffee, of course, but our main business is to share our writing and hopefully, give and receive a little constructive criticism. Our July meeting took place in the Kench, due to the generosity of one of the members who also provided us with lunch on that occasion!
At present we are six, due to ill health and bereavement affecting two of the members, but we have a new prospective member and are happy to welcome anyone else who feels that this is the group for them.
(Don’t miss Maggi’s short story at the end of this newsletter ! -Ed)
This is an article published in the Christmas 2018 edition of the Hayling Island U3A newsletter….
The Writers' Circle has undergone a few changes recently. We have lost two members, but have gained one, which means that we still have one vacancy... so if you would like to explore your imagination and share your writing with like-minded people we would be delighted to welcome you to the group.
For the Christmas newsletter I have added an example of the highly colourful writing of Gill Heather which you can read under the And Finally item on the main newsletter page (click here)…….enjoy!
The year began well with a full complement of writers in the group. We can accommodate a maximum of eight authors due to limited space at our host's house and we had been short of two members for some time.
We now are forging ahead, sharing our writings and our opinions and thinking about new projects. At the end of November there is a Portsmouth Writers' Hub 'Dragon's Den’ event in which budding authors will be invited to pitch their novels in the making. Literary agents and editors will be in attendance and will give job offers on the day. One of our members will be taking up the invitation, so we wish her well and think she is very brave!
For our October meeting, I had invited a published author to come to talk to us. She had managed to change direction from writing non-fiction to writing novels and has been very successful. Her talk was fascinating and she was keen to hear what we were doing and listen to some our work. She recommended various digital 'tools' to help writers organise their work - one she was particularly in favour of was a programme called 'Scrivener' and she also directed us to a website called 'Literature and Latte'. We were all inspired to think more about publication.
At the moment we have two names on our waiting list but unfortunately no vacancies. I shall advertise on the website if there should be a vacancy in the future.