Past Meetings in 2013
September 2013 - Make Your Short Stories Stand Out
A lively meeting was held in September as members took part in short exercises and discussions led by committee member, Adeline Wong, on making your short stories stand out from the crowd.
Adeline demonstrated how to choose titles, themes and characters carefully to ensure that they will grab an editor’s attention. She also gave tips on what the short story market is currently looking for and when to start work on seasonal stories.
We were left with the challenge to write a story and send it to an editor by the next meeting. Fingers crossed…
August 2013 - Turning holidays into articles
Member Vera Franklin spoke to us at the August meeting on travel writing. She said that, although it was very difficult to get into the freelance market for serious travel writing, there are several magazines which will accept short pieces about holiday experiences. Unusual destinations, activity and special interest holidays, good and bad experiences and especially humour are the type of ‘stories’ found in the popular magazines.
Write in a chatty style, include any specialist information, links to websites etc. and above all check the magazines guidelines.
Our writing exercise this month was to write a short anecdote about a holiday experience. All those read out showed that even the most ordinary sounding holiday can throw up an amusing or interesting story.
July 2013 - The Changing Face of Journalism
Former journalist and new Writers’ Circle member, Hilary Gavin, generated a lively discussion with her talk about her life in journalism and how things have changed since she started out. The Internet has had a tremendous impact but she felt that there was still a place for print journalism. She outlined the best way to present a news item or feature article to catch the eye of an editor.
Several members read extracts from their work, including Roz Ryszka-Onions who gave us a chapter from her book ‘Hidden Evil’. The spooky tale led to much discussion about ghosts and members’ own experiences of paranormal phenomena.
There were eight entries for the Tanka Prose competition. Don’t forget the ‘Memory’ competition to be handed in next month.
June 2013 - Memories
Our speaker at the June meeting was local writer Joan Moules who spoke to us about using our memories in our writing. She said that we all have at least one story to tell and even if we are not well-known sometimes our stories are just as interesting.
We can keep a memory book for our children and grandchildren or write it as a bit of social history. But we can also use our memories and our own experiences in our fiction writing.
Joan set us an exercise to write a short anecdote from a holiday which we read out afterwards, producing several unusual and amusing pieces.
May 2013 - Tinkling With Tanka
The May meeting of Chichester Writers Circle proved to be both thoughtful and instructive. Our speaker, Geoffrey Winch, explained the requirements of the Japanese verse form, Tanka, and its derivative, Tanka Prose.
We were set an exercise to make up some Tanka lines ourselves. This produced some very good results even though none of us had ever tried this before. It just shows that we all need to try and stretch ourselves now and again. It could surprise you!
A welcome break halfway though let us catch up on the progress of writing projects and keep up-to-date on current writing competitions and publishing opportunities.
All-in-all, a good evening.