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Summer Readaround Wednesday 2nd August 2023

Savouring the – Variety Pack

A pesky power cut almost scuppered our penultimate Readaround of this summer – Ayr had no internet! Would our Ayr members, including our Readaround host, miss out? Thankfully, the problem was fixed in the nick of time. Laptops and iPads buzzed to life and Carrie was able to log-on to Zoom to greet us, after all.

We had seven readers, one listener, and eight pieces of writing were shared.  Like a variety pack of crisps, we had a fine selection of genres to savour.

First up an atmospheric flash fiction with a dystopian theme, followed by an amusing and relatable monologue on modern problems then, from a children’s novel, a magical chapter with a fabulous twist that would definitely appeal to kids.

After a quick refreshment break, we heard: a thought-provoking poem lamenting climatic changes to our winters, a poem capturing the poet’s experience with an Italian “angel”, and a poem with a powerful plea for self-acceptance.

Our final two readers shared a problematic chapter from a contemporary crime novel, and a fantasy flash fiction inspired by Scottish folk lore.

Feedback from the group was, as always, helpful and positive. We admired the wonderful imaginations of our writers and enjoyed the language used, the emotions evoked, and the use of vivid imagery in their work. Advice was given to tighten up a poem, and to improve the crime novel chapter. We discussed the sticky problem of selecting the right title for our poems/stories, pondered on how the flash fictions could be expanded into longer stories or used as a prologue for a novel and debated on how not to ‘info dump’ but instead weave relevant information through the narrative in an engaging way.

And that was us finished for another night. Thanks to Carrie for hosting and keeping the evening running smoothly.

Next Readaround, 23rd August, is the last one for this summer. Why don’t you polish up your piece, get on to Zoom and join us? Looking forward to hearing your work!

Linda Brown

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