Born an Essex girl I graduated to a Kent Lady in 1998, where I live with my husband Roger and little dog, Teddy. I have three children and three grandchildren who keep me on my toes. In my previous life, I have done a variety of jobs from teaching horse riding to the disabled to arranging funerals. After a spell at Bible School in 2000, I worked in India and Nepal as a missionary. I started writing in 2012 when I retired and have been on an exciting journey ever since. My first book was a memoir piece of how my life changed when I became a Christian, at age thirty. It’s called, I Met Him at the Well. I then wrote a children’s book called Peter the Pony, which encourages children to know they are all special and loved. I had the pleasure of doing book readings in the local primary schools, sharing Peter’s story. These books are both on Amazon. Currently, I am writing a longer fictional piece based in the village of Lyminge where I live. I am not sure whether it will make the status of a novel but certainly a novella. I also love to write poems and draw inspiration from life, nature and my faith in God. You can see this on my blog at kateguk.wordpress.com I have just done a course as a volunteer news reporter for Academy FM and am looking forward to seeing what may develop from this. I belong to several writing groups but particularly enjoy the Write by the Sea group as it gives the opportunity and space to learn about different aspects of the arts.
Hi, first of all I hope you are keeping well and safe. A few things have been bubbling away in the background and I would like to share the Zoom meetings with you that Tony has undertaken to host for the group. Thank you Tony.
I am struggling with this lockdown so not really up for much at all, in fact I keep thinking I should be writing about all this as it will eventually be history that our future generations will read about and learn, but the motivation and thoughts are just not there.
Here is the message from Tony about how to connect with us tonight.
Firstly, if you have not already done so, please make sure you have downloaded Zoom:
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The meeting ID is 788-8834-9662
The meeting Password is 132655
You may not have to use these figures.
I will open things up at 6.55pm.
I have now purchased a monthly subscription to Zoom, so there should be no issues about the meeting stopping suddenly.
That said, we can break again around 8pm in order that, those who wish to, can express their support for key workers.
I am planning now that we are joined each week by one or more local creatives to entertain us. This week, I am delighted to say that we have two popular artists for the price of one.
Some of you may know Helen Finn (Finn to her friends), owner of YoYo’s Street Food stall on the Old High Street. She is also a talented singer-songwriter, as well as fine interpreter of others’ work, and she will be singing and playing for us this evening.
In addition, I am so pleased that we will have Anthony White from Poets’ Corner reading his latest poem, “Isolation April 2020”.
With the 75th anniversary of VE Day on the following day, I invite attendees to read anything relating to the Second World War that is meaningful to them – poem, speech, personal reminiscence. Frank Butler and I are currently planning to read from the poets from that conflict.
It would also have been Robert Browning’s birthday, so if anyone wants to read from his work, they will be very welcome.
Ultimately, you are invited to read anything – a favourite poem, extract from fiction – or something you have written.
And if all else fails, I have another light Coronavirus inspired quiz for us to do!
Finally, if anyone would like to invite friends to join us, it would be great to see them too.
Look forward to seeing you this evening!
Hi everyone, I have been through the competitions and picked out the best ones for the group, good luck and let us all know if you enter so we can cheer you on from afar.
Carol is not only a singing star from the 60’s but also a very good writer and is such a knowledgable lady about so many things. She was our musical director for our door at the living advent calendar plus we had her choir there for a couple of carols.
This book is available on Amazon here.
SPONSORED BY THE CHAMBERS &KAREN’S WORLD
Hi, I’m Trevor Twohig and I was born in South East London. I was never great at school, except English. Throughout my life I have created novels, novellas, poetry and lyrics. For a large part of my professional life I have been a teacher and Head of English as creating a desire to write in the next generation is something I believe strongly in.
I write for a number of companies and websites in the business sector and was commissioned to write an independent screenplay in 2015.
I appeared at the Folkestone Book Festival in 2016 where I discussed my journey and promoted my novel ‘Sunny Sands,‘ which was released in December 2018.
I have been working on my first children’s novel and this is completed and slated for a 2020 release.
In January 2020, I will start work on the follow up to ‘Sunny Sands.’
This is going to be a very interesting evening as if you have ever wanted to send your stories to magazines then this is just for you. Jane will be talking about how to pitch your ideas and stories.
Jane has written many books with her latest The Big Five-0 just published.
Please note the change of date as the rehearsal is now on the 14th at The Chambers coffee shop at 6.30pm
I know I must accept that you are gone,
But I will look for you in rain and snow,
Where pilgrims trod through Black Boy Alley,
Up Castle Hill and Minor Canon Row.
I still sense your warm breath upon my cheek
In College Yard, The Vines and Blue Boar Lane;
Each whispered female voice renders me weak,
And shock of dark brown hair inflames the pain.
Thick Medway mud mocks my unavailing search
And careless castle pigeons torment me,
But La Providence provides brief release
And no shortage of shops for books and tea.
I pass where Estella taunted poor Pip,
As bat and ball collide on King’s School field,
Reminder of what I loved most till you
Bowled me over and my devotion sealed.
I turn up Boley Hill by Northgate arch
For sanctuary under cool Catalpa tree,
Spreading its graceful arms on holy ground,
I sit down and let my mind roam free.
For one perfect moment I see your face,
Hear your voice, smell your hair and taste your mouth,
But it’s all a foolish afternoon dream
In cathedral doorway in Keats’ warm South.
When I wake, to adjoining gardens I go
Where sun shines bright and birds sing oh so sweet;
Yellow roses wave in warm, gentle breeze,
But there’s no one beside me on “our” seat.
I know I must accept that you are gone,
But I will look for you in rain and snow,
Where pilgrims trod through Black Boy Alley,
Up Boley Hill and Minor Canon Row.
By Tony Quarrington on WordPress
This was one of our author talks we held last week, they are fast becoming a well-known event in Folkestone. Mark Stay is a fantasy writer with a background in publishing so we all picked his brains with loads of questions. I really think we could have carried on all night.
We had new people turning up again so the word is getting around about our new group. I have lots lined up for next year and will be giving you the dates of the events at our group meeting.
I would like to take this opportunity of thanking Mark for coming and giving a brilliant, insightful talk.
Behind the clean, efficient counter of the lost property department at Euston Station lurks a dense jungle of paraphernalia left by passengers, including mobile phones, sunglasses and purses.
And a vast and assorted collection of umbrellas.
The office has been closed for hours, and the last train has long left the station.
All is quiet – until four of the department’s, hopefully temporary, residents break away to the furthest corner and engage in earnest conversation.
The first umbrella, a Liberty print ladies version, opened the debate by stating that “you won’t believe how I ended up here. My owner brought me from North Wales on a shopping trip. By early afternoon she had accumulated designer bags from Harrod’s, John Lewis, Harvey Nichols and many other high-end stores. She turned down the offer of a bag to put me in, as it was raining steadily outside at the time, and I was called into immediate action.
I had a premonition even then that, in the panic and confusion that was bound to accompany the train’s arrival at Crewe for her connection, I might be left behind. And so I was, though I did get an extra trip back to London.
I suspect the half bottle of Prosecco she drank on the journey didn’t help”.
A foldable child’s Peppa Pig design replied “mine was a young mother with two kids, both with their own umbrellas. I “belonged” to her five-year-old daughter, and the six-year old boy carried one in the shape of a particularly ugly frog. Their mum had brought them to London for the day from Hemel Hempstead to visit the Natural History and Science Museums.
The day was going well until it was time to catch the train home. As they gathered their belongings for the return journey, mum discovered that one of the umbrellas was missing and harangued her daughter for leaving it somewhere, the precise location and timing being a total mystery at the time.
Well, I can exclusively reveal now that I was left in the ladies’ loo opposite Platforms 1 and 2.
Oh, and by the way, that blasted frog survived the ordeal”.
At that point, a multi-coloured beach brolly interrupted, insisting that “they’re both conventional ways of being left behind. My abandonment was much more interesting. They brought me, along with their two teenage boys, from Watford Junction on a day trip to the seaside. I spent five hours on Viking Bay Beach at Broadstairs, shielding them from the whistling wind and intermittent drizzle, I blew inside out at least twenty times (fortunately my spokes are strong and I didn’t suffer any lasting damage), and how did they repay me?
Left me to go round the entire Circle Line three times, being pushed from seat to seat (I nearly gone thrown onto the platform at Shepherd’s Bush Market), before a kind commuter picked me up and brought me here”.
A large, black, Ministry of Defence affair with hand-carved ash handle had been listening to these laments with increasing irritation. He could not restrain himself any longer and haughtily exclaimed “that’s all very interesting but incredibly boring. My owner is a senior civil servant currently employed on top-secret government business. It is as highly stressful as it is well remunerated and requires high intelligence and discretion. He needs to relieve himself – literally – on occasions or it would all become too much.
So, his Tuesday afternoons are set aside for visits to a professional lady along the road from here at King’s Cross. To cover his tracks he always walks from his office in Whitehall and, due to today’s inclement weather, I was recruited to join him. We arrived at the appointed time and he promptly disappeared to carry out his business. At least he had the good grace to prop me by the door to the flat rather than condemn me to witness the proceedings from the inner sanctum.
At the customary time of four in the afternoon, the door opened and, as immaculately attired as he had been when he arrived, he took his leave. However, with the sun strenuously trying to penetrate the tattered curtain in the lady’s bedroom, thus restricting his vision, he omitted to collect me on his way out.
So how did I get here, I hear you ask?
It transpired that, rather than, as I would have expected, she resided in the hovel that hosted the afternoon’s divertissement, the lady in question actually commuted to her place of work on a daily basis, just like the office workers and retail staff that frequent the concourse here from the early morning until midnight.
After attending to three more gentleman callers, she duly took the 18:57 to Birmingham New Street, but not without making a short detour to this establishment to place me in its safe custody.
I must say I was surprised but equally gratified, to learn that the entertainment industry is as subject to gentrification as any other these days.
It makes one proud to be British”.
By Tony Quarrington