Free Writing

Another busy meeting at Reading Writers this week, which featured a fun exercise in opening up the old creative pathways. 

Led by our co-chair, Claire Dyer, the purpose of the evening was to show how you could use a prompt to promote free writing. By using an object and free-associating connections from it, you can be led in some surprising directions.

Claire asked us to bring in an item that connected us to Reading. The group brought in everything from Huntley and Palmer tins to winners medals from the Reading half-marathon. My object? A Reading FC scarf that I found abandoned in a hedge and brought home safely.

The stories we came up, sparked off by the associations our objects inspired, ran a wide gamut. Julie Cohen recounted the tale of how she was beaten in a race by a camel (oh, alright, two blokes in a camel suit). Meanwhile, Vera Morris told a bittersweet story of the last days of the Huntley and Palmer factory. New member Evie McLoughlin (welcome!) won the prize for most random connection–from her son’s birth certificate, she came up with a story about a harmonica-playing hamster. She’s going to fit in nicely here.

In other news, Vera and her fellow scribblers in the Jeeves writing group announced the publishment of their new anthology: Aphrodite’s Picnic. A set of iinterlinked stories with themes taken from the Greek gods, it’s a packed trick-bag of goodies. We’ll throw up a purchase link soon.

Stories galore, and tons of inspiration for both our spring competition and this year’s anthology. Now that’s how you spend a rainy Wednesday in January!