Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Meet the Writers: Bob Collins

 Robert (Bob) Collins is a Sheppey poet and is published in Arrival Press, Anchor Books  and Poetry Now, a Christian Press.  Bob was born on Sheppey and is proud to be a Swampy. Widely travelled both painting and writing his subjects include,  the Colosseum in Rome, Bernkastal in Germany, Keukenhot Gardens in Holland and poems entitled  Weald of Kent, Puddles and The Boy Who Traps The Sunshine, now out of print, but ever writing as is evident by taking part in A Roof Over Their Heads project.    

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Meet the Writers: Bill Anthony

Retired and qualified Mechanical Engineer in Project Engineering. B. Sc degree from the Open University. Lived and worked in India, England, Ethiopia, Zambia, Saudi Arabia and Botswana. Mixed and mingled with 20 plus nationalities to date. Widely travelled in Western Europe, Central Africa and South Asia. Activities and interests: Local and Foreign affairs, DIY jobs, gardening, socializing, into short story writing, poetry, drawing, sketching and painting.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Meet the Writers: Lisamarie Lamb

I was five when I wrote my first short story - it involved a car going over a cliff, Jessica Fletcher and the Phantom Raspberry Blower. It didn't have much of a plot (he did it, she solved it) but it did have rather colourful (crayon) illustrations and it did make me realise that writing was for me.

At 12 I wrote my first novel during the school summer holidays. Loosely based on the Famous Five, with a bit of James Bond thrown in, it was an adventure story and my English teacher made me read some of it out in class. And that's when I realised that I wanted people to hear my stories and read my work.

Over the intervening years, I have written various short stories, plays, poems and novels in different genres, including romance and children’s books. I have a blog in which I showcase flash fiction (www.themoonlitdoor.blogspot.com).

I have self-published a horror novel, Mother’s Helper, and a collection of short stories entitled Some Body’s At The Door. I am also part of the anthologies Satan’s Toybox: Demonic Dolls, Satan's Toybox: Toy Soldiers, Skeletal Remains, and At The Water's Edge.

I have been accepted into eight more anthologies due to be released throughout 2012.

I promise I’m better at plots now, and I use my own characters, but the excitement, fun and just a little wonder are still there. My crayon skills have not improved.

Meet the Writers: James Apps

I describe myself as a writer, a poet and an artist no longer subject to the everyday work grind, with a degree in English Literature which really equates to being a well educated bum. I like to be known as a Wandering Poet or as an Island Artist, raving loony and cat lover. I drifted toward the Isle of Sheppey where I found some friends and a reason for using my camera, writing about the place and getting involved in projects such as A Roof Over Their Heads.  I would like to be a grumpy old man, but I cannot be bothered.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Meet the Writers: Jo Eden

I have started writing stories at the Sheppey Writer’s Group for the first time since I left school, though I have always written poetry.  I am an artist, I love singing and drama, and I enjoy composing songs.  I like photography, in particular I take shots of Sheppey’s lovely nature spots.

Meet the Writers: Geof Reed

I am a long-term resident of Sheppey with a background in performance and community writing, including the scripts and performances of “Flights of Fancy”, “Who Killed Mayor Greet” and “A Possible History of Shrimp Terrace”, a winner of the Swale Arts Bursary for Creative Writing and with extensive teaching experience.

Flora Wisdom” is one of a series of creative reconstructions of people who lived and worked in “Shrimp Terrace”, Sheerness and was originally performed as a part of the 2011 Promenade Festival with Sally Reed playing Flora.

Monday, 9 January 2012

A Roof Over Their Heads - What Is It?

A Roof Over Their Heads is a new project, thought up by Geof Reed, to find local writers and involve them in a workshop. But that's not the end of it. There will be a final product (or rather, a number of them); a physical book, an eBook, a film, a radio slot... And we're working on more.

It all started with an idea. And that, surely, is how all the best plans begin. The idea was Geof Reed's, and he wanted to showcase the area in which he lives, gather a group of like-minded writers together, and create something.

The something was undecided as we held our first meeting in The Big Fish Arts shop in Sheerness back in October 2011, but it soon became clear that we all wanted to create something, to come up with something that we could be proud of, and which would be a tangible product of the area...

The main idea of A Roof Over Their Heads was to choose a building, place, even an historical person or event, related to the Isle of Sheppey, and to write a piece of fiction about it.

There were no limits other than those we put on ourselves. Any type of writing was encouraged, any genre. As long as the work was related to the Isle of Sheppey, we could do what we liked, and write how we liked best.

Research was key. The Internet, as incredible and wonderfully useful as it undoubtably is, cannot beat local knowledge. It cannot describe the area with any passion, or with any love. It cannot explain, only tell.

But Sheerness Library can. With its raft of knowledge housed not only within its large collection of local interest books and historical newspapers, but also within the librarians themselves, it proved to be a vital resource for all of us.

Little by little, bit by bit, we pieced together our stories.

Together, we have come up with an exciting, fascinating, and unique slice of Sheppey life, from ancient copperas makers, through Victorian temptresses, and on to lovers meeting during World War II.

In the next post, the mysterious 'we' will be revealed!