A Breath of FreshAyr

FreshAyr opened with a rollicking start last week aided and abetted by various members of Ayr Writers Club, Scottish Screenwriters and many friends and associates.coffee

There were readings and sketches, music and coffee and it all went down a treat. Even the sun shone to help it on its way.

Robert Singer, the powerhouse behind it all, is hoping to develop the area into a creative arts centre showcasing the work of local artists, musicians and writers.general view

Herborg Hansen, the project coordinator, commented that,

the event showed a lot of support from creatives and set an example of what can be achieved by collaborating in reviving Ayr’s culture and town centre.

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Some of the actors in a sketch

FreshAyr is still in its very early stages and is run as a voluntary organisation. But we are expanding and recruiting and before long we hope be a charity organisation that turns café profits into creative action. But we depend on the collaboration from the community and urge people to get in touch regarding future exhibitions, performances or even if people want to get involved in supporting the project going forward.

janiceThere was a lot of enthusiasm and interest shown by the Saturday shoppers in the town who ventured in to see what was afoot.

I did a couple of sessions for kids, one a deliberately noisy session with Miss Hullaballoo  who insisted that everyone, including parents, join in a singalong of Rock-a-Bye-Baby and Sing  Song of Sixpence as loudly as they could.me FreshAyr

For the grown-ups, among others, Jennifer read her award winning story, Magda, Carolyn read a monologue and I met Robert Burns in heaven in my piece. Martin Bone, Douglas Skelton and Gail McPartland read extracts from their recently published novels while other members read short stories and poems.

And we even sold quite a few books!20170805_123554

my booksFreshAyr’s Facebook page is here for further information on upcoming events.

 

Take a Leaf out of my Book

 

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It’s a while since I posted here but I’ve not been lazy, just busy and one of the results of that busyness is my collection of short stories, Take a Leaf out of My Book.

These are 12 stories that have all been prizewinners in various competitions in the last few years. I haven’t published them as they don’t fit into the usual woman’s magazine style of story (I do write for them too) and I’ve always wondered quite what to do for them. Publishing them myself makes perfect sense and I hope that you and the other readers enjoy them.

Three of them, the title story and A Man’s a Man for a’ That and The Darkness before Dawn were all winners and runners-up in the Imprint Writing competition run by East Ayrshire specially for Ayrshire writers while the others were similarly placed at the Scottish Association of Writers conference, the title story winning there too, or in club competitions.

They’re all different; crime, or perceived criminal behaviour, seems to feature in quite a few of them from the inept gumshoe in Dougan’s Last Case to Secrets, Bramble Jelly and Knitting for Joyce  while Half a World Away is historical and set in Australia and Some Things Never Change starts there before returning to Glasgow. Ped Xing and Are You Listening? are psychological thrillers and the last story, Peach Melba was inspired by my experiences of having a loved one in a nursing home.

Its available for Kindle here and the paperback version will be out shortly too. But enjoy them and please let me have your feedback.