Hello again, fellow writers! The days are longer, the weather is fairer, and yesterday we had our first meeting after the group's Annual General Meeting. One of the things that was decided in this AGM was to provide collectively a series of prompts or exercises for us to work on. We have got our suggested exercises box full now, and will be taking one out of it at every first meeting of each month so that those who so wish can give the exercise a go.

We are going to share the prompts here in this blog so that you can try them too. And if you want to share the results, you're welcome to do so!

Here it goes then:

Prompt #1

"I listened to the distant thunder, the clatter of approaching hooves, a bodiless whinnying."

Happy writing!

Show, don't tell

This is one of the writers' tenets, but it can be difficult not to succumb to the temptation of simply saying what we want the reader to see. In the article Ten Tips to Help You Avoid Telling Writing, you'll find some interesting, useful suggestions to put it in practice.

Happy writing!

Let's talk style

When we're talking literature, you know that form is important. First, you make sure you are using the grammar and punctuation properly so that it isn't just you (provided you do) understand what you have written, so that readers can enjoy the power of your words.

Another aspect is the choice of words: repetitions, ambiguities, cacophony... are some of the effects you want to avoid in order to make the reading more pleasant. Look out for those. Whereas you may feel proud of having produced a 500-page manuscript, if most of it is straw it isn't that great.  Less is more. So get armed with some knowledge about what you can do with words. To begin with, here is an interesting list of superfluous bits that we tend to add to our writs. They're like sugar, the more you use the more you want to use, but then comes your guest, tries your dish, and the shock sends them into an insulin coma. Measure your ingredients.

It's that time of the year again...

We're having our 2016 AGM in a couple of weeks, and we're excited about it, because we want it to be meaningful and productive. We're going to review what we've been up to, we're going to plan what we're going to do next, we have some interesting stuff lined up... We want the group to be more active and take initiatives, starting with the small bits -hoping to upload an updated group photo soon!- going on with the meaty parts, creating activities for development that will help our meetings be useful tools to keep our creative juices flowing; and then bigger stuff: events. We're preparing something special, so stay tuned to know more about it.

In the meanwhile, remember you're invited to join us in the fun at St Sidwell's every first and third Thursday of each month at 6pm. Refreshments provided!

Hoping to see you around soon.