Friday, 25 February 2011

Meeting Report: 21st February 2011

On Monday 21st February, all HWG members who had entered the first competition of the year waited with bated breath for the judge, Brion Purdey, to give feedback and announce the prize-winners. As he said, judging the entries had been a challenging task as the standard of entry was high. Each entrant had written a piece on a writer who had inspired them, and chosen authors ranging from EB (Enid Blyton) to EB (Emily Bronte). Mr Purdey, former Principal Library Manager for the Hastings area, local historian and member of many, many literary groups, proved to be an entertaining and informative judge. His individual critiques were interspersed with fascinating facts about writers and local history. Finally, he announced the winners, and a well-deserved first prize went to Mark Towner for his sincere and honest account of how Isaac Asimov had switched on his hitherto dormant interest in literature and writing. Second place went to Jill Fricker for a very detailed and powerful description of Don Paterson’s influence on all aspects of her life and poetry. Third prize went to Laura O’Brien for her moving evocation of the comfort and clarity gained from Walt Whitman’s ‘Song of Myself’. Roz Balp came fourth with her personal homage to D H Lawrence. Our thanks go to Brion Purdey for executing his judgely duty with such admirable conscientiousness and aplomb.The next meeting will be held on 7th March, when member Richard Holdsworth will be running a workshop 'Words from a Bygone Era'. Visitors may attend this open evening at a fee of £3. Please contact for further group information.
Roz Balp, Membership Secretary

Meeting Report: 7th February 2011

Monday 7th February was this year's first Manuscript Evening at Hastings Writers’ Group. These evenings give members the opportunity to air their work, which might otherwise gather dust in drawers, and read it out so that other members can give constructive criticism. First, Laura O’Brien read out her Catherine Cookson Cup prize-winning story, ‘How Not to Leave’, a tense and harrowing account of a relationship in trauma. Then, we were treated to some superb poetry from Lynn Ward and Jill Fricker. So well-crafted, moving and beautiful were these pieces that some less poetically inclined members were inspired to seek out their own muses. In complete contrast, Mark Towner gave us an excerpt from his autobiographical novel, a tale so fascinating, it demands to be told. This was an auspicious start to a year of mutual support and inspiration; we look forward to more home-grown goodies in 2011.For enquiries about activities and membership please contact the membership secretary at or visit our website:
Roz Balp, Membership Secretary