We were a small group this week, only the four of us, that being said there were some very interesting pieces being read. Also discussions on picture book structure, whether you should address the reader and submission letters kept the group engaged.
First up to the reading stand this week was Marc. He had been working on a new short story for his collection. This WIP has a working title of Book of Relatives. The writing style and descriptions in this piece portrayed the Victorian setting beautifully. From the yellowed dim light and the ticking of the clock in the sitting room to the aromas that enticed the reader deeper into the story. We only heard a section of this piece, but everyone would like to have read more. There were a few minor tweaks to be made to some of the turns of phrase. A really lovely piece of work.
Next up was Lucy. We started by discussing last week’s piece and how the structure might be changed to make it more effective. Lucy then gave us a chapter for the pov of another character which clarified the changed needed in the previous one. This section was clearly written, each character was defined and the dialogue balanced. As always there were some beautiful turns of phrase that made us all smile. This is shaping up to be a very different book. I'm loving it.
Alan surprised us with his first attempt of writing a picture book working title Rex the Guard Dog. This was a great idea. He had worked hard to keep the wordage down and still kept the story. Picture books are one of the hardest things to write as you have to make every work count. We discussed how he could give Rex a little more zip about himself and we ended up panting and living a young dog experiencing life to the full. With a few tweaks and a bit of clever writing, this will shape up well.
Then it was my turn. I read the last of my picture book texts that I have already submitted. It was well received – they liked its quirkiness. Off the back of this we discussed the structure of picture books and then went on to briefly covering submission letters.
Unfortunately, we’ll have to wait two weeks to hear more from these authors as it is the competition next week, for which I already have three entries. I however, haven’t even started my entry, which could be rather embarrassing if I don’t get my finger out.
Over all a very satisfying evening.