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Details of those present and apologies received preceded the sharing of stories given for January’s homework. The subject in question was ‘Midsummer Murder’ which was intended to be about a murder in Stonehenge. As ever, the stories were varied in their content but all were considered to be a good attempt.Following this Rose produced a flat iron and we were asked to note down all the memories of such an object which were brought to mind then, a little later to produce a very short story, using the memories experienced. There was a strong similarity between parts of them – most of them about grandparents – while still being varied as a whole. A discussion followed about other household things we remembered from our youth, very stimulating. The only one out of synch was Trish who shared her surprise at being such a ‘women’s libber’ as she hadn’t been aware of this side of her character.
The book we would like to produce was discussed briefly and it was decided that all future stories should be printed with double spacing and using TIMES NEW ROMAN, font size 14. Next months topic is a historical story, 1-2000 words.
January 20th 2020
January 16th 2020
The minutes for the last meeting were read by Rose and agreed.
Following this we had a discussion about Copyright with a warning that
although Copyright remains with the creator for pieces written by ourselves – and for ourselves – if we agree to our work being published in a journal or book, then Copyright would automatically pass to the publishers. U3A already holds its own Copyright for
writing or other creative materials made public in its own publications or on its web site.
Last month we discussed George Orwell’s ‘A Nice Cup of Tea’ and it was decided that we should each write an article on ‘How to …’ , each member to choose
their own topic. We produced a varied number of ideas, and discussed whether
a separate file attached to the website titled ‘How To …..’ may be a practical
activity, although nothing concrete was decided.
The rest of the meeting was in Barbara’s capable hands as she introduced us to
the art of writing poetry. We learned the difference between poetry and prose
and how to write a sonnet. When writing poetry we were told to write rather
than try to construct a form first, then reshape with as many drafts as required. The title may be used as a trigger or can determine itself as the poem progresses and be added at the end. When writing poetry, there is a popular and memorable form, with 10 syllables and 5 stresses to each line, (known as iambic pentometer), which apparently fits in well with the English language and ties in with the heartbeat (de dum de dum de dum de dum de dum). However, there are no rules and writing poetry is dependent on
personal choice. The emphasis of a poem may be a narrative or not, abstract
or not, symbolic or not, but thoughts, feelings and empathy can underline a
natural line break and make it more memorable, as does rhyming. Clichés should be avoided.
Our ‘homework’ for next month we will be to write a short story about a ‘Midsummer Murder’, although any poems would also be welcomed.
New members are always very welcome, you might surprise yourself!
December 19th 2019