The Wight Fair Writers & Artists Circle

A Place for Isle of Wight Authors, Writers and Artists

Trudy’s Talkback June 2013


trudy draperWight Fair Writers might not be the biggest group in the world but its members don’t hang back when it comes to talent and enthusiasm.

The June meeting illustrated this point when members explained what they had been up to since the group last met.  And the group is always evolving with four new members joining in the fun this month.

Chairman, Maggie and Carol, one half of the successful crime novelist duo who write the D.I. Dylan crime series (the other half is ex police chief Bob) will be meeting Gilly Jenner next week to talk about the group’s involvement with Island Arts and the winter writing competition.  Organisation for this event starts months in advance and dates, venue, benefitting charities and how our group will be involved all has to be decided.  Many thanks should go to all who put in the time to organise this popular event.


Hugh Harrison, new member, has been writing for some time and two of his latest projects are a radio play and a novel about the Mau Mau uprising.  Hugh is not only writing from a factual basis but also an emotional one as his parents were there at the time of the killings.

Caroline Whittle, the second new member, is a well know commercial artist well known for her illustrations.  Caroline admitted to a 10 year passion for writing children’s story books with guinea pigs taking on the human form in the fairy tales – an interesting combination.

We talked about ideas on how members should approach agents and publishers and possible ways to promote our creative work; this was very informative and gave all many good ideas.  Carol reminded us of her invitation open to all of us that she could print short stories in the Bridgestock website and also the Q and A’s section gave a unique window for people to reach a wider audience – the site has a 40,000 following.  Check out for all the details of friends’ interviews, the blog tag and WFWC stories that have been printed.  I recommend everyone take advantage of this very generous offer; it can only do your writing career good.

Jacqueline Gazzard, the third new member, of Jacques, is a well travelled commercial branding advisor for charities is busy working one two books – a romance and a children’s story.  One is based on a girl working in the press office at Hampton Court and another is a story about the Tower of London.  Her knowledge of the area  is impressive as she works there

Michelle Angel, our fourth new member, was the winner of the summer competition and on Monday will appear on the Tom Stroud show with Carol and other winners of the contest.  Michelle is busy researching an historical novel set in the Regency period, which she is thoroughly enjoying.

Trudy, not a new member but one of the original people who started the group after our college course, Skyped from Sussex (not Kent Bob!) and updated the group about Abbott’s Bay our group novel set on the island and up to chapter 23 and nearly 30,000 words.  Trudy, Chris and Louise were asked to form a sub committee to complete the novel.  Trudy decided to back out of the committee as the 70 mile distance between members of the group was too far as round the table chats were needed to push the project forward.  So over to you two and good luck!  Trudy is to revamp a novel written some years ago and try and find a publisher.  It is a tale of a family, who are hit by tragedy and fight to change of the law of the land to help get through their grief.

Anne, is busy working on short stories she might send to Alfie Dog site or women’s magazine.  Anne and Maggie reported on a course they attended run by Jamie The Computer Geek who supports us on our club website.  The informative course covered internet security on Facebook and other systems and social networking sites.  Carol told our new recruits the background of how the group was formed; how it raised money for charity through competitions and how it encouraged children to write; also the origin of the website and the recent joining up with Island Arts.

Anouska, is busy with her job as a magician/children’s entertainer; also proof reading her story Dimensions and revisiting a story she wrote in her twenties.  And well done to Anouska who has won first prize in a local art competition and her entry is being displayed in Ventnor at the Rembrandts Gallery between June 24 and 29.  Excellent news!

Carol and Bob are going from strength to strength with their third book in the D.I. Dylan detective series, White Lilies, number three in the Amazon paperback charts for British detectives and number four in the Kindle version.  This is such an achievement and means sales are really doing well and continue to do so.  And they are not sitting on their laurels as their fourth book in the series, Snow Kills, will be published later this year – the cover is being designed and the final proof readings are taking place.  They are rewriting their fifth book Reprobates and at present writing books six and seven.  And in their spare time – do they have any?  – Carol and Bob are working with Sally Wainwright on a new BBC police series as storyline and police procedure advisors; also working with Red Productions as advisors on a long running ITV series about detectives so watch out for RC Bridgestock in the credits.  How do they fit it all in; they can’t be on the island very often as some meetings are in Manchester.  Glad you are retired Bob; you must be busier that when you were solving real murders.    Carol added to her comments on her website to tell us about Top Tips for Writers and how to develop characters.  So do click on the site to find lots of ideas to help your writing.

Maggie has had a six week nightmare with her internet providers and been offline just because she wanted to change companies.  Maggie now has seven short stories published on Alfie Dog – a great achievement – and she explained development and improvements to the short story site happening soon.  In addition, industrious Maggie has submitted a short story to People’s Friend and Woman’s Weekly and slogging ahead with her rewrite of her novel and we all know how hard that is.

Other matters of interest and worth a look – Crooked Cat website, Relaxed Writers facebook page and the Mslexia site who are running a story competition.

Please note, Bob was at the meeting – it was at his house after all – beavering away in the background, he made the drinks, served  food, took some brief minutes and typed up the first version of the minutes (Carol typed the second).  Our sympathy to Irene who couldn’t attend the meeting as a couple of hours earlier had had to have her cat put to sleep and we all know how sad it is to lose a family pet.  Our thoughts are will you, Irene.

NEXT MEETING is 12th July at Godshill – please let chairman Maggie know if you cannot attend and everyone keep writing.


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