The nattily titled Frome Library Self Help Writers Group met on Monday for a session on Surrealist writing techniques session led by Rosie Jackson who runs writing workshops too. From her I discovered a great-fun website which scrambles your words on the principles of Tristan Tzara into a Dada poem -"infinitely original and endowed with a sensibility that is charming though beyond the understanding of the vulgar."
Here's one of mine:
Looks sick, like diet like. I know. yes, would
about the you feels me olives? I like. I does the yes,
slow on I figs. drizzled but me look be a always of
What ask but don't You say that hold I a don't honey,
what forget bitter say sapphire rainbow. You warm
say, about like. I me, and bite make soft what briny wine.
You breeze. I remember. like? You of seas under
and love love talk then cerulean ask ask sky.
You love tastes can't calm say, what the pine-scented
what say, me say what love sweet forget storms?
Love You don't
That was one of my rare romantic poems & I'm slightly disturbed by the outcome in view of TT's confident assertion "The poem will be like you."
Bruton is the smallest town in England, Tim Bates tells me tonight as we wander round on a sumptuous evening before the inaugural Poetry Slam of the Bruton Festival of Arts. It's possibly the smallest slam in England too, but a great event, every poet showing and sharing personal passion and commitment to their craft. Tracy Wall of Glastonbury takes the gold, awarded her champagne prize by host Tim, himself a worthy bronze winner. Rose Flint's evocative and sensual readings give her the silver.
Let's-talk-about-me corner: writer Clare Dudman has blogged a great review of my novel - thanks Clare, and what generous & responsive comments you're collecting. All that renewed interest in Frozen Summer got me checking out used prices on amazon, which vary from usual 1p to an intriguing £48.48p.
Bet-you-didn't-know corner: last year's world-wide best-selling sensation "Short History of Tractors in the Ukrainian" was rejected 36 times. Asked in the Guardian if she ever 'doubted her dream' author Marina Lewycka replied: "I doubted it all the time but writing was a compulsion. Lots of very good writers never get published." Salutary thought. (Copies of Short History start at 39p but peak at £1.00 so I'm not sure what that means except tht amazon transcends normal marketing logic.) Marina says she likes to treat serious subjects in a comic way, she says, which reminded me of Shaw's maxim: Life does not cease to be funny when people die any more than it ceases to be serious when people laugh.