Alan’s first workshop for us chimed (quite literally once or twice!) with some of our members greatest passion – music. He spread out on the table in the middle of our ‘magic’ circle the titles of every number one single for the last fifty years and everyone had to choose one to inspire them. As you can imagine, some of us were moved to burst into song, but they were dealt with quite speedily and we got down to work.
The next twenty minutes resonated to the scratching of pens on paper, interspersed with the occasional agonised moan, so, business as usual, I guess. As always, the read-backs were fascinating. We had three superb poems: The tide is high triggered a lyrical seascape, Silence is golden a musing on the ups and downs of extreme quiet, and Last lover a poignant but funny exploration of the one woman’s love life.
The stories that were read were as varied as ever. To mention just a few, Wooden hearts gave us a fairy tale, Diamonds provoked an extremely weird but highly entertaining story, Stand and deliver a hilarious saga of a highwayman who meets the headless horseman, I can’t find the moonlight took us to a chaotic film set, and House of fun was definitely not!
And in among the fiction were some delightful reminisces. Two tribes evoked a childhood coloured by some benevolent gang warfare, and The fly a school prank played on an unsuspecting nun. There was a fascinating story about the last man on earth (Message in a bottle) and, oh, loads more. An occasional sketch, a visit to Butlins, some witchcraft – a typical Shorelink evening, really. Thank you, Alan, you did good.