But, there is a link – I do have some notices for you about a few short story competitions!
If you live in the East Midlands (Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Rutland, Leicestershire or Northamptonshire), there’s a free short story competition here, which Writing East Midlands is running in conjunction with the Lincolnshire Echo.
That counts me out – shame – but there must be some of you out there for whom it’s relevant!
There are loads of other events and opportunities on the Writing East Midlands website that I don’t have space to promote so if you live in that region have a look here.
We have a similar organisation in the West Midlands – see here – and they’re running a short story competition as part of the Birmingham Book Festival, on the theme of ‘clocks’ and with a closing date of 31st January 2012. It costs £5 per entry but there’s nothing in the rules about having to live in the region in order to be eligible to enter. If that sounds interesting, there are more details here.
And finally, I’ve written about ‘Write Invite’ before (here) but just in case you didn’t see that, you might like to know that it’s a ‘live’ writing competition that takes place on the internet every Saturday between 5.30pm and 6pm. It’s fun!
There’s a prize of £50 for the winner and it costs £4 to enter. But the good thing is – your first entry is FREE – I’ve been assured by the organisers that this should happen automatically when you register on the site – have a go and see what happens. So even if you just have one go and never do it again, it’s a bit of fun and good writing practice.
I didn’t enter this week because I was busy with a story to send to my writing buddy (we swap every fortnight) but just for your info, this week’s themes (they pop up at 5.30pm and then you have to choose one and submit your story on that theme no later than 6pm) were:
3. A Parting Of The Waves
So if you think you’d have been inspired enough by one of those titles (and it’s amazing how your brain can focus when time is tight!), then have a look at the Write Invite website and maybe have a go next weekend? It’s only half an hour of your time and it gets the brain cogs whirring!
Now, back to that ‘Yes’ concert. I must admit, I’m more of an Abba, Take That, Bucks Fizz kinda gal (OK, maybe not Bucks Fizz, but you get the idea).
But my beloved had bought me a ticket and – as he pointed out – he ‘goes to lots of poetry events’, so I couldn’t really argue.
“Never mind,” I said to my friend earlier that day, “I’ll get a nice drink in the interval.” I had a big, sparkly G&T in mind (this was in Birmingham’s Symphony Hall and believe me, they do serve G&Ts! This is a place that even has its own poet-in-residence!) but guess what? There Was No Interval!!
No – just two and a half hours of happy-clappy, hippy ‘progressive rock’ (sorry if you like ‘Yes’. And if you do – where were you on Friday? You could have taken my place). I put myself into a trance – well, as much as I could because every few seconds, high-powered beams swept around the ceiling and – because we were right up at the top – zapped me straight in the eye.
Half way through I leaned over. “I promise I will never make you go to another poetry reading,” I said. Sweetly.
At last, it was over. We filed out of the Hall with all the other denim-clad oldies. I glanced hopefully in the direction of the bar.
But wait! There was a woman at the exit, handing out leaflets for a ‘future event’. I should have wrestled her to the ground with a cry of “Nooooo!” but I was too slow.
He took one, grinned and held it up like a trophy. “Great!” he said. “’Jethro Tull’!”
And the moral of this (not-so-wondrous) story is: it’s good to have separate interests.