The Wight Fair Writers & Artists Circle

A Place for Isle of Wight Authors, Writers and Artists

Jonathan’s Jottings 3rd March 2017


7:00pm Friday 3rd March 2017, Costa Ryde. Large Latte, Old Paradise Street blend, lemon muffin. Both much admired. Tasty.

Next meeting

7:00pm Friday 7th April 2017, Costa Ryde.


Maggie, Jonathan, Tony, Piers, Freda, Aidan, Fiona, Irene, Martin, Sue, Fred, Lucy, Diana, David and 4 new members Connor, Zoe, Krissy and Anna but not necessarily in that order.

Maggie’s Announcements

If you haven’t yet done so, please send recent blurb and photo so you can appear in the Members page.

You can also send any writing you would like to appear on our new page, Fair Members’ Shorts. Several people will read each item.

Maggie thanked Jamie, our webmaster, for all his hard work, undertaken for love rather than money. She gave him a mini-hamper on our behalf, and he was pleased.

Maggie also mentioned that so many people have asked to join that she has closed the door for the time being. So all of us are lucky to have arrived in time. She’ll keep a waiting list in case people leave.

New members

Connor has always written, and has a wild imagination. He is a Youth MP for the island, and was one of those rare people who manage to go straight from a pupil at a school to a job there. He works with younger children in a support role. He’s working on his first novel, set in a fantasy world with various creatures who are controlled by an alien intelligence. He wanted to know how we plot our books and whether we plan or allow them to grow and take charge of themselves. The answer is, of course, both, or some entirely different way. Our advice was, as always, to write, and keep writing, and he’ll find out how it works for him. Good luck, and welcome.

Zoe is an illustrator of children’s books, and works for an Island publisher. She met Maggie at the IoW Literary Festival, and financed her first solo book through crowdfunding. We were all fascinated. It’s called ‘The Lighthouse Keeper: A Cautionary Tale’. Google it on She wants to write longer books. Welcome too.

Krissy started writing from a very early age too. She recently found her very first effort, ‘Crumble Castle’ after years in hiding, and thinks it’s not bad, really. She’s led a full life, in PR and Marketing, she works for West Wight Sports Centre, she worked for a time for Caroline Sheldon, well-known literary agent, and spends a long time on social media. She’s restarting her writing now, and that’s why she joined us. Welcome too.

Anna works at local libraries. She has an English Literature degree and finished her first YA novel. She’s interested in writing a trilogy, and also writes poetry. Welcome too.

Current members

Tony wrote (and illustrated) this month’s Musings. They were excellent, and showed that inspiration can come from anywhere, even someone’s continuous suffering. He has been busy working with a group in Sandown Bay to paint derelict buildings. So far he has created art on an empty kebab shop and a toilet block, and he has works up and planned in various galleries. I really like the shark that can be seen on social media.

Piers is getting on with his novel in four parts about an old guy who likes boats. He wanted to talk about what software to write with, and how to send out parts into the world for people to read. There was a lot of discussion about this, with most people most easily copy-and-pasting into Word, and attaching to email. But there are many ways…

Freda stated that she has no contact with social media and ignores the preconditions of publishers but just sends it in anyway. She believes in Magic. She’s not going to write any more novels, but will continue with her poems.

Aidan is working on his second novel. He has contributed three short pieces to his facebook website and is hoping to invite submissions from other writers soon.

Fiona is continuing to work on her ghost-written travel book, completing chapters and beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. 60,000 words completed so far.

Irene has been a member for 10 years, and is returning to regular attendance because she is writing a one-act play. She has a published book called ‘One Wren’s War’, about a friend and neighbour. She has dedicated a lot of time recently to her drama group in Brading, and expects to spend a lot less time writing legal documents and more to plays.

Martin is working on the second draft of his second novel, also Horror, involving insects with hive minds.

Sue has written 103k of her third book, and spent a whole week thanking people on social media during her blog tour to raise her profile ‘out there’.

Fred is 60,000 words into his third novel, a family saga set in Bournemouth. He’s loving it, but wondered how he could interest publishers in taking it up without social media. The consensus was that you’ve got to be on social media nowadays to get any attention at all. Not everyone agrees totally with that, but most do.

Lucy has just finished her YA time travel novel. It came in at 75,000 words. She’s going to let it rest for a while, then reread it before starting to market again. We wish her luck.

Diana talked about her books for princesses with pony obsessions, and plotting. She talked about her experience in animation and storyboarding, and explained further about her course and next book about plotting, using a wild young plot to illustrate the process. She talked about her website –, and her hopes for a service to create websites for authors.

David is still writing ‘silly poetry’, and read us one of his latest ones about hats.

Jonathan is still writing his weekly column for, and occasional reviews, and these jottings, and hasn’t yet begun writing anything else. He is enjoying his reviews on

End notes

A fantastic meeting, with new members, lots of discussion and new information.

Fred has agreed to provide next month’s Musings, and Freda the month after, so she can bring it the April meeting to be typed up.

I can’t wait. See you next meeting.

As always, if you’ve been mis- or under-represented, please let me know and I’ll correct it next month.

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