Blogs

Bernard MacLaverty (2002) The Anatomy School.

I’m a fan of Bernard MacLaverty’s writing. He makes it seem so simple (try it at home) which is the mark of a craftsman. I was well into this book before I realised I’d read it before. There’s no harm in reading a good book again. It’s a coming-of-age drama. The narrator, Martin Brennan is still at St Colum’s school in Derry. Londonderry if you’re a Prod. It’s set just as the troubles in Northern Ireland were kicking off. He has to re-sit...

Simon Sebag Montefiore (2003) Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar.

Simon Sebag Monefiore won the British history book of the year with his portrait of Stalin and his followers. They were always one step away from being shot, tortured in the Lubianka, and beaten to death. Their families facing the same fate, or being sent away to the gulags. Stalin only wanted true believers in Stalinism, in Marxism, in Leninism, in his leadership to a mythical Bolshevik and true socialist revolution. Self-taught, a voracious...

Happiness is a warm keyboard=I live to and love to write

The golden sunshine gleams off the cars ahead of me as brave birds dart across my line of vision flying from stoplight pole to tree limb. It’s a perfect day outside. I lower my visor to block the glare as I keep the required car lengths/per mph distance behind the car in front of mine. This has become the new way I take a walk, using my car and, with the amount of traffic increasing everyday, I must not be alone in this change of walking mode. I...

Darkest Hour, BBC 1, BBC iPlayer, Director Joe Wright, Writer Anthony McCarten.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000j4wd/darkest-hour Gary Oldman won an Oscar for his portrayal of Winston Churchill. A snapshot of the leading Tory M.P’s gilded life in May 1940. The phony-war stage at Blighty, where the British bulldog is the underdog. War had been declared and troops had been sent off to fight in France and Belguim, before falling back to Calais and Dunkirk. German Panzer division and blitzkrieg tactics roll through...

Story and Poem of the Week and Inspiration Point

Lots of good stuff again this week and, again, lovely to see lots of new writing talent joining us.

Story and Poem of the Week and Inspiration Point

Lots of good stuff again this week and, again, lovely to see lots of new writing talent joining us. Story of the Week goes to the ninth chapter of Sooz006's series 'Break The Child'. I'm thoroughly enjoying these stories, which are so rich in characterisation, and this one, 'Melting', goes straight to the heart. Please do read the rest of them, if you haven't already: https://www.abctales.com/story/sooz006/break-child-chapter-nine-melting Poem...

2020 Cerasus Poetry Olympics

Does anyone remember the 2012 Poetry Olympics?

Creative Life In The Virus Age (Why don't we all just stay at home?)

15/4/20 Why don’t we all just stay at home? Why do we need to work so hard? If we all worked just a little bit less, we might just have a bit more time for other pastimes, hobbies! There would be cultural enrichment. I read somewhere that during a period when ‘the plague’ was visiting London and the theatres were closed William Shakespeare wrote three of his best plays ‘Anthony and Cleopatra’, ‘Macbeth’ and ‘King Lear’ in 1605/06. He stayed away...

Story and Poem of the Month

Our Story and Poem for the month of April have been picked by Noo: Hello, I hope everyone is well and getting through our current, strange lives. It's really great to see so many people turning and returning to writing as a way of keeping communicating with the world. Quantity has not compromised quality either and there were lots of pieces that were contenders for picks of the month in April. My choices are as follows. For our Story of the...

Free writing session #2

Prompt #1 'A chorus of disapproval' (20 mins) When I announced my wedding plans to my mother, I wasn't exactly met with a chorus of disapproval (how could I be, she is only one woman) but her expression made it extremely clear what the thought-train running through her head was. Jeff was 10 years my senior, a pub landlord who drank almost as much as he made and didn't really seem to be especially keen on me, truth be told, so it wasn't like I...

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