The group met again on Friday October 4th at The Dolphin/Mercure Hotel to exchange news, discuss matters of interest, and tackle any writing problems raised.
Pat has started up a small press with two of her own publications, and she will produce small runs for other poets or writers of short books. It is called Silverfinger Press.
Josephine has an article in Everton News, and there is to be another about eight men aged seventy-plus who went around the world in two Suzuki Jimney vehicles. She also has a short article in the newsletter The Voice published by Wessex Writers, and others are planned.
Mo gave a reading from her book A Blues for Shindig at The Wool House in Southampton, which went well and was enjoyable. She has a monologue in which the actress Celia Imrie has shown interest, and they are meeting soon to discuss possbilities.
Jacqueline passed round the proof copy of her short story collection, Bottles and Pots; she is hoping to sell copies at some of the fairs at which Writing Buddies will have stands. It was pointed out that buying a physical proof copy is more expensive than proofing digitally, but she felt the need to check the complete product before publication, as it's her first with CreateSpace.
Ray's memoir From War to an Iron Fighter is still doing well, and will be featured shortly in a local magazine. He has volume 2 ready and will be launching it soon.
New member Simon has just left university, and is features editor for a magazine showcasing students' writing. 3000 copies are distributed among the students.
Ann has entered a short novel competition and awaits results and a critique.
Penny has arranged stalls for Writing Buddies at various markets in the area, and would like members to let her know of any in which they are interested. So far these have been at Winchester and Hedge End; the latter was especially successful, and the event may be repeated. The day was organised by Tudor Roses Ladies' Barbershop Chorus. Apparently there are regular craft fairs at Hedge End Village Hall.
Although Richard was not able to be at the meeting, we were told that he and his wife are exhibiting their artwork with the Nomansland Art Group at the Hanger Farm Arts Centre in Totton until November 1st.
Mailchimp was discussed as a way of sending email messages to people on address lists. It's free, and once learned it's easy to use and reliable. The programme will also reveal who opened the information and who did not!
Lisa reminded us that she mentioned the Rubery short story competition on our information loop. Also, the Richard and Judy Search for a Bestseller competition is open - the first 10-12k words of a novel, which need not be finished. Closes January, free to enter.
Penny and Lisa had been to a Bizpedia breakfast networking meeting near the airport. The meetings are free and attract business people of all kinds. They also hire out a working/meeting room for £10 per hour, including reception facilities (special offer via gift card in Staples).
A possible additional page for our blog was mentioned, relating to reviews of our books by others. Josephine and Penny will discuss.
Our hosts at The Dolphin told us about an afternoon concert and cream tea they are holding on October 20th at 3.30. £5 including the cream tea - more details are on this blog below.
As it will be the Writing Buddies' fifth anniversary in May, we are still thinking of ways to celebrate. The group came up with a number of suggestions including an evening of book and/or poetry readings, some performance, appearances on local radio, and a second anthology competition. Any further thoughts can be sent to Penny.
Friday November 1st at The Dolphin/Mercure Hotel, High Street, Southampton, 2-4pm. We are a mixed bunch where writing is concerned, and anyone with an interest in writing is very welcome to join us.
Blog notes by Jacqueline Pye.