A couple of years or so ago I travelled down to Exmouth on the south coast of England. No, I wasn’t there on holiday although I enjoyed strolling the beach in warm sunshine, pretending not to ogle bathing beauties. My main intention was not to visit the home of my dad and Rosemary, who’d lived in the town for a few years although I went along to spot any of his outdoor potted plants and chatted to their new owner about how my dad was doing having moved to Berwick-upon-Tweed before he moved again to Ledbury, and again to Peebles. No, I was there to meet up with Dave Haslett, the originator (with his wife, Kate) of Ideas4Writers, a great site full of ideas, writing engines, and a forum. We had both been judges of short story competitions and had entered many ourselves, winning some. I’d just completed judging the Helen Whittaker Prize – a tough job as there were 9 rounds amounting to judging and writing a critique on hundreds of stories of many genres. Dave and I thought it would help other writers to pool our experiences. He brought a microphone and tape recorder and we set them up in the dining room of the hotel I was staying at in Exmouth. After judicious editing, and the inclusion of a sample story by the gifted Jonathan Pinnock, the booklet is ready to distribute to would-be competition winners. Get your copy on Kindle here. You can freely download a program to run Kindle books on your PC or Apple.
A pdf version is available from Ideas4Writers here.
Okay, now for another unexpected angle. The cover art has a story too. The medal is knitted. It was photographed with a page from Jonathan Pinnock’s winning tale as the background. Only at the point of publication did Dave notice the word tosser could be read. Not wishing to offend it has been sufficiently airbrushed – haha.