Ormskirk Writers' & Literary Society - OWLS - was established in 1963 by Dora Doyle to promote local writers. Founder member Ron Bartholomew contributed to the Waverly Encyclopaedias and was widely published in Practical Mechanics Magazine. A successful playwright, he opened his house to us for weekly meetings and served us with tea and home made cakes for many years. As Otis lifts Chief Engineer he also designed the press button control boxes used in lifts to this day. ALT="Ormskirk Writers' & Literary Society">

Thursday, 21 October 2010


Next meeting: 1st November. A poetry night – bring any of your poems to share with the group. (please note, this date has swapped with the Jo Cowell night, which is now scheduled for the 15th Nov)

Minutes by Sara 18th October 2010

Present: Margaret, Cec, Alex, Tim, Tricia, Ishbel, Sarah, Saime, Carol, Ben (Visitor-1st time)

Apologies: Julie, Michael, Susan, Liz, Graham, Jean H, Jean G, Judy

Special thanks to June Beach for the delicious cakes! We loved them.

Manuscript night.

Ishbel read us ‘House Moves’, a memoir piece exploring the six different houses Ishbel lived in before her early teens, then the seven moves in Iran before eventually settling in Greetby Hill. A fantastic piece based on research into social mobility, and how people historically have moved around an area, following work and family ties.

Tricia shared ‘Baby Snatch’ the tale of Hetty and her friend Peggy who are coping with difficult experiences in a home for Mothers and Babies. The story was set somewhere between 30s and 50s. And was based on Tricia’s research on a mothers and babies home in Southport.

Tim read some more from ‘2173’; a further part of the memoir section from the main character’s father. Some fantastic descriptions of life on the new planet – including native plants and ‘suspenser’ lights. Owls enjoyed the creativity of an entirely new world.

Carol read to us from the start of her new novel ‘Buried’, including the reworked prologue which occurs six months before the main story begins. A ten year old girl, Lily, has been abducted and is found six years later. The second section Carol shared was from the opening chapter. The police have given up on Lily’s case and cannot discover where she has been. Lily’s parents are seeking help from Jenna, a private detective. The story leads on from the first Jenna detective novel – ‘Love and Hate’ which is currently with Carol’s agent.

Alex shared ‘The Same Again?’, a poem based on a revisit to the area described in his poem ‘Bluebells’, but in a different season. Owls especially liked “A unique déjà vu”. When requested, Alex was able to recite ‘Bluebells’ for us, too.

Cec' read us ‘The Asylum is Run by the Loonies’ a cleverly written comedic poem that we all enjoyed. It discussed the nature of ‘free’ products and sparked a lively discussion about the cheat that is ‘buy one get one free’ and other similar offers.

Margaret shared ‘Holiday Blues’, an entertaining tale about Carol and her memories of disastrous holidays with her Aunt Jane who leaves a trail of chaos wherever she goes. A wonderful tale with a fun twist at the end.

Ben read us an extract from ‘The Nameless Adventure’ a children’s tale set in a surreal circus. OWLS were enchanted by the Elipig called Alfie, who is a cliff dweller with suckers on his feet, and loved the image of the sink plunger, and the clash of inter planet cultures and experiences.

Cec read a second poem, ‘I Remember Wolverhampton’, a moving and poignant poem with reflections on memory and Enoch Powell.

Margaret shared a second story, ‘The Two Wives’ a lively, entertaining ghost tale featuring Catherine and Ann, two of Henry VIII wives, on a mission to haunt tourists. An amusing story to end a great evening of creativity.

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