Thursday, 14 February 2013

Manuscript Evening with Kate O'Hearn: 11 February 2013

It was another busy evening for the Group on Monday 11 February, with again, very good attendance.  We started with a treat. Marcus Towner read us his winning entry for the 2012 Catherine Cookson Cup, our major annual short story competition. ‘Perhaps an Indian Summer’ is a gentle and evocative love story – an ideal topic with Valentine’s Day so close.  Following that relaxing interlude, it was down to work – a session on how to get the best from our Manuscript Evenings, led by Kate O’Hearn with help from Stephanie Gaunt. Firstly, we talked about how best to express our comments to our colleagues, to enable them to take on board what we say. Next, we looked at the presentation, style and content of people’s writing, and the areas we could usefully address. Kate reminded us that everyone’s view was both valid and valuable. We are all readers as well as writers, and all have a feel for what works for us as individuals.
     Next, two people courageously presented extracts from their work in progress, so we could practice our new skills. Maurice Haken took us through a new short story ‘A rewarding Co-incidence’, and new member Kate Giles presented an extract from a historical novel she is currently working on. Both pieces generated much lively discussion.

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