I am really looking forward to this event in November, I love the Folkestone Book Festival but this year it will be even better as our group is having an event as well.
We are going to welcome up to twenty authors, poets, publisher, agent to our venue The Chambers, Sandgate Road, Folkestone, Kent on the 21st November from 2pm until 6pm. They will be set up downstairs with a table each where you can buy their books and have them signed but also have a chat to them. This is a free event and everyone is welcome.
These are the competitions for August so if you get a bit bored over the summer then send something of as you never know.
There is another screenwriting one that looks very good.
We have our group meeting on the 11th July. We will be discussing the Folkestone book festival, also a new wine and writing event, which sounds so good, I am really looking forward to telling you all about that. There will be our brain wake-up mini exercise, news from the book world and please bring along any work you would like to share or talk about. This starts at 6.30 so give yourself time to go downstairs to get a drink before we start the meeting. See you Thursday.
On a night like this, the Cote d’Opale
Might as well be a thousand miles away.
It is a calm, quiet, otherworldly evening
After a dank, dreary December day;
Sky and sea present an ashen canvas.
Tonight it is impossible to tell
Where one ends and the other starts.
Despite slimy conditions underfoot,
I elect to descend from
The well-lit comfort of the Leas
To the chilly Channel seashore.
Barely a whisper from the surf tonight.
I cannot even hear Matthew Arnold’s
“Grating roar of pebbles
Which the waves draw back”,
So faint is nature’s melody this evening.
Across town, an artwork springs to mind,
Above Tontine Street’s old post office
Proclaims that heaven is a place
Where nothing ever happens.
Because nothing is happening tonight
In this desolate speck of paradise.
But then, everything is happening.
To the east, the lighthouse blinks
Through the thick, enfolding gloom;
A tuneless, abandoned church bell
Hangs silently suspended above
Where once stood rotunda, swimming pool,
Boating lake and fairground rides.
A dalmatian puppy snuffles among
The seaweed encrusted pebbles
On the dark shoreline, while its
Fretful owner punctures the peace
With impassioned and fruitless pleas
To follow her back across the beach,
To the refuge of her Range Rover.
A lone fisherman sets out his stall
For what appears a long night ahead,
Reminding me of all night sessions
With my teddy boy uncle fifty years ago,
On the shingle beach at Dungeness.
I wonder now why I ever went,
I was never interested in fishing!
Pastel hued beach chalets are now
Padlocked up for the winter,
Along with the Mermaids Cafe Bar,
Welcome pit stop on the promenade
From Folkestone to its upstart neighbours,
Sandgate, Seabrook and “posh” Hythe.
I defy anyone to assert that they
Do not like to be “beside the seaside”;
And I look forward to a first full summer
Season in my coastal home next year.
However, it is at moments like this,
With the cold, dark sea alone for company,
When enjoyment is such a feeble word
To evoke the effect of this magical place;
I can only equate it to a profound love,
Both infatuation and long term comfort.
By Tony Quarrington