Mud, Glorious Mud: Worcestershire, Walking & Writers

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This morning we finally decided to go and walk Bonnie somewhere that was recommended to us about …erm.. 3 years ago: Elmley Castle. Isn’t that a cool name for a place?

It’s just over the border in Worcestershire, about 20 minutes’ drive away. It’s a beautiful village, sadly without a castle these days but – even better – there’s a dog-friendly pub with a roaring log fire: the Queen Elizabeth Inn (named after Bess herself, who stayed in the village in 1575).

The walk (3 miles) would, I’m sure, have been lovely (apparently there are fabulous views of the Cotswold Hills) but it was not only misty (OK then, foggy. Is it autumn already?), so we couldn’t see more than about twenty feet ahead but then it started to rain and, worst of all: there was MUD everywhere! Really thick, gooey, pull-your-wellies-off mud.

We managed not to fall over in it but we were completely covered and splattered and the dog had to be dunked in the stream before we dared venture in a ‘pub-wise’ direction.

Yuck. So much for that great idea. We will go back one day and do the walk again but only once the whole place has dried out!

Tomorrow I am off to Worcestershire again – to Evesham this time – to a free event at Evesham library (11am, if you’re interested) when four writers – Juliet Bell, Ali Bacon and Debbie Young – will be talking about their books and the writing life.

Yes, four writers – you read that correctly. ‘Juliet Bell’ is actually the pseudonym of Alison May and Janet Gover, who write collaboratively under that name. Here’s an interview with them on the RNA website.

Their first joint novel – The Heights – (a modern retelling of Wuthering Heights, set in the 1980s) was published earlier this year and is definitely on my ‘to read’ list and they’re currently beavering away on their second ‘retelling of a classic’ (not sure if I’m allowed to tell you what that is but there was a clue on Twitter today…’someone’s in the attic…’).

I am fascinated by the process of writing with another person. I’ve blogged about it before – here – I’m dying to find out how they work together (and I will report back after tomorrow!)

But it’s not all about Juliet Bell! The other writers sound fascinating too. In addition to writing the Sophie Sayers Village Mystery series, Debbie Young set up the Hawksbury Upton Literature Festival in the Cotswolds (it’s on 21st April 2018 this year and it’s free to attend!).

And Ali Bacon’s not only written two very well-received novels: another of her claims to fame is that she won last year’s Evesham Festival of Words short story competition – here she is, receiving her prize from Prue Leith, no less (Prue is the one in banana yellow).

Hmm, I think I’m going to have to raid my piggy bank before I go to Evesham tomorrow. So many books, so little time…..

PS: If this is all sounding a bit ‘Midlands-centric’ and you live further South (Kent?) then you might be interested in the Kent Festival of Writing, which is THIS SATURDAY, 14th April! Have a look here.

This entry was posted in Bonnie, Books, Cotswolds, Events, Novels, West Midlands and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Mud, Glorious Mud: Worcestershire, Walking & Writers

  1. Patsy says:

    I’ve written a non fiction book with someone else (about writing). That worked well as we both covered different topics.

    I can’t imagine writing fiction other than on my own, yet it does seem to work for some partnerships.

  2. juliathorley says:

    The only time I’ve collaborated on a writing project was when I did a book with Sharron Davies, Actually, she did most of the talking and I did most of the writing. Ruth Jones was on Radio 6 Music the other day talking about collaborating with James Corden, when they wrote ‘Gavin & Stacie’ together. She said every partnership has a pacer and a typist, so I take it I’m in good company!

  3. Wendy Clarke says:

    I had to laugh at your lovely (!) day out. Reminds me so much of us and our Bonnie walks. Dogs + mud = misery.

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