Wednesday, 28 January 2015

New Page On Website

There is a new page on Worcester Writers' Circle website called 'Samples' where you will find examples of members' writing. Visit:

Members are invited to send examples of their work to the web editor.
Don't miss WWC's Mark Billen's first collection of stories: Tales From The Forest – Mark says ‘You won’t find The Forest, Whytteford, Humbury, Salchester, or any of the villages, on a map.’ His wonderful locations in which ‘Tales from the Forest’ is set include Whytteford, with a church in ‘a rather isolated spot in a hidden valley,’ and Brookford, where Great-Aunt Brenda lived.
As a successful playwright, Mark continues to have his plays for children such as ‘Cinderella’s Sisters’ and ‘The Love for Three Oranges’ performed worldwide.
You can get copies of Mark’s first book of short stories direct from Black Pear Press
 The paperback book and the eBook are also available on Amazon.

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Malvern’s Mad March Book Promoters Present...

Jill Peer
Jill has sent us details of the Mad March Malvern Book Promoters Month and Mad March Book Promotions:

Malvern Book Promoters Mad March Month of Promotions
Please read on and mark into your diary all our events.

The programme for each of the following events will vary so you can come to all of them and enjoy a different session with equally inspiring uniqueness.
Come join us lift your spirits and perhaps get an original, personally signed locally made, book.
Contact Jill Peer on 07754950939 to let us know you plan to come along. ADMISSION FREE unless stated

Malvern’s Mad March Book Promoters Present

at Cafe H20 Walwyn Rd Upper Colwall WR13 6PL  
on Monday 10th March, from 1.30pm 

TUNES AND WILD WORDS FROM OUR BOOKS come and enjoy a drink with us at Wetherspoons, Worcester Road, Malvern WR14 4QS 
on Thursday 12th March, from 7pm      

at Cafe H20 Walwyn Rd, Upper Colwall WR13 6PL
on Friday 13th March 3.20pm–4.20pm Children's promotion only with puppets and short tales

SPOKEN WORDS AND SONGS TO SHOP WITH including The Hat–Making Ladies Blues! at the Lyttleton Rooms, SPRING CRAFT FAIR, Chuch Street, Malvern on Saturday 14th March
a small presentation of our rhymes, tales and songs at the craft market.
10am till approx 3pm

and finally...

a small charge for free refreshments at the Book Co–operative shop St. Ann’s Road, Malvern
Tuesday 24th March from 7.30pm 

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Latest News from Worcester Writers' Circle

Kevin Brooke

Kevin's short story 'The Jogger In The Park' has been selected for the Black Pear Press Competition Anthology 'Seaglass And Other Stories' – congratulations Kevin from all at WWC.
Kevin's story 'Running Away' has won first place in the 2014 Erewash Writers' Open Short Story Competition 2014.

The Judge, Malcolm Welshman, chose Kevin's story for first place and said "Running Away was...superbly written. So much so it outclassed the rest and so headed my list."

Congratulations Kevin especially as this comes hot on the heels of his successful new book Jimmy Cricket see below.

Kevin launches new book - Jimmy Cricket

Kevin Brooke’s book launch at The Hive, Friday 26 September, saw a full house listening avidly to extracts from this story about a boy.

Jimmy is fifteen. His parents have been killed in a motorway accident. When he’s forced to move over a hundred miles to live with his nan, Jimmy struggles to cope with the upheaval in his life. His one real friend, Dean, has even bigger problems than Jimmy, and together they can’t seem to stay out of trouble. Then they are arrested for shoplifting. While all this is going on, a girl called Dayla arrives on the scene to complicate things further. 
Jimmy becomes involved in a bereavement club with a difference, he is given the chance to find some stability at last.
The question is—will he take the opportunity?

On the back of recent successes – both highly commended and runner-up in two separate national short story competitions – Kevin Brooke launched the publication of his new book, Jimmy Cricket, aimed at early teens.

‘There’s no more exciting yet terrifying time in your life than early to mid-teens,’ he said. ‘Seen through the eyes of the main character, Jimmy Latham, this story shows how teenagers can, with the right support, survive just about anything. Set just after Jimmy’s fifteenth birthday and a year after the death of his parents in a car accident his life is in disarray. But then…he’s given the chance to focus on something positive.’

We asked Kevin to tell us more about the main character and the story.
‘Does he get himself into trouble along the way? Oh yes. Does he get involved with things that he shouldn’t? Of course he does. Does he fall in love? Try and show me a teenager who doesn’t. Does he finally, with the help of those around him, sort himself out? Well, you’ll just have to read the book and find out the answer!’

Although aimed at teenagers, Black Pear Press is convinced Jimmy Cricket will be successful as a crossover book; a spokesperson said, ‘It’s a rare opportunity to support a local author who knows his target audience so well. When we read Jimmy Cricket we couldn’t put it down; it has great ‘PTQ’ (page turning qualities).
‘I think adults will enjoy the story as well,’ Kevin added. ‘It may even give the parents the opportunity to find out what their sons and daughters are really getting up to…’

Jimmy Cricket is published by Black Pear Press

Sue Pritchard
Writing as Frances Bennett, Sue's first thriller Seeds of Destruction was published and launched recently.  The novel features celebrity chef, Hester, whose orderly life is thrown into chaos by her stepson,Simon. Hester views Simon with maternal affection, unaware that he harbours a dangerous obsession. 

The seeds of destruction have their roots in Simon’s bitter and lonely childhood. On the death of his grandfather he becomes wealthy enough to abandon his teaching job and, with ruthless determination, plans to remove anyone who stands between him and the attainment of his dream. Gradually losing all touch with reality, his behaviour becomes increasingly bizarre, with terrifying, destructive consequences. 

Seeds of Destruction was launched Sunday 12 October, 16:00-18:00 at St Swithun’s Institute, to considerable acclaim.
For your copy go to:

Front Cover Seeds_edited-1

Polly Robinson
Polly has two poems exhibited in the basement of Croome Court as part of the 'Soul to Sole' project, the first is about the 2nd Earl's wife, Anne Somerset, Countess of Croome, and the second is about the head gardener in the 18th century, William Dean, who wrote the Hortus Croomensis. Polly was pleased to be invited to continue her association with Croome as one of the 'Croome Poets' who will be doing walking tours and performing poetry in Croome Park in 2015 and will publish booklets of their poetry about Croome.
Her latest publication successes include two poems in the Paragram Poetry Anthology 2014.  

Alan Durham
Alan launched his first novel The Hen Race Sunday 26 October at Benedictos in Sidbury, Worcester - a great success.

Young Tom York is growing up in a railway community. An idyllic childhood sees Tom learn about hens, trains, ballroom dancing and the folly of climbing onto the pig sty roof.  In due course, Tom discovers the truth of the situation, his parents are struggling to cope with scars from WWII. This is a time of mangles and tin baths, love, laughter and crises, when strong communiti
es worked together to achieve the near miraculous. Based on a true story, The Hen Race is a celebration of survival, of modest heorism and the extraordinary courage of ordinary people. 

Alan says, 'I'm an old bloke who writes a bit.' He enjoys writing short stories and the occasional rhyming thing. He's happily married to Tana.

The Hen Race has 'been floating around' in his mind for over forty years; some would say its publication is long overdue! It's set in the 1950s, a decade roughly coincidental with the early years of Alan's life. He was brought up in the East Riding of Yorkshire and now lives in Worcestershire.

Mark Billen
This year, 2014, Mark has had two plays published.

Cinderella's Sisters ... happy ever after? is published by Lazy Bee Scripts
A production has been booked by Dreamaker Drama Education Centre, Beijing for January 2015. (That's how they spell Dream Maker!)

Aladdin's Arabian Nightmare is published by Comedy Plays.

The Henry and Fred series now has twelve titles. The latest is 'Martin and Miriam's New Friend'. The Henry and Fred books can be purchased at the Henry and Fred website.

Mark's well-established play Seeking Sleeping Beauty will be performed by the University of Derby Students' Union Theatre Society 5th and 6th December 2014  in Derby UK.

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Short Story Competition 2014
  • The first Black Pear Press (BPP) Short Story Competition is now open
  • Closing Date Friday 26 September 2014
  • Send us your short story maximum 1500 words
  • Entry fee: £5 per story
  • For rules see below
  • Judges: Authors Rod Griffiths, Tony Judge and novelist and award winning short story writer Alison May
The first ever Black Pear Press Short Story Competition!
We’re looking for short stories of 1500 words or fewer to be submitted to us before 26 September 2014.
Competition Rules
  1. Closing date is 26 September 2014.
  2. The maximum word limit is 1500, not including the title (no minimum).
  3. Authors may submit as many stories as they wish.
  4. Submitted pieces must not have been published elsewhere, must be the entrant’s own original work and available, if selected, to be published in the anthology.
  5. Translations of anyone else’s work are not eligible. Copyright remains with the writer.
  6. Entries may be published on the BPP website and may be included in an anthology.
  7. Entries must be in English.
  8. Submit entries by email to
  9. The subject line of the e-mail must read: BPP Short Story.
  10. Entries should be attached as a Word or an RTF document. Give your name and contact details in the body of the email, as well as the title and word count of your submission(s) and a circa 50 word profile of the writer in the third person. If you are paying by PayPal, your receipt no/transaction code should be included. Do not put your name or email address on the entry itself. Entries should be single spaced, in a clear font, 12pt.
  11. The winners and runners-up will be announced on the BPP website and on the BPP Facebook page.
  12. There is no theme. All styles and genres are welcome.
  13. No correspondence will be entered into regarding the outcome of this competition.
Entry into the competition is taken to be acceptance of these rules.
All entries will be judged anonymously.
Judges: Rod Griffiths, Tony Judge and novelist and award winning short story writer Alison May
Results announced 14 November 2014.
First prize: £75
Second prize: copies of two BPP publications
Please note that entries sent without the entry fee will not be considered and stories should be submitted only once.
All entries will be acknowledged within 48 hours of receipt of your payment. If you have not heard from us within a week please contact us. It is your responsibility to confirm your entry has been received.
No alterations can be made after receipt, nor fees refunded. The judges’ decisions are final and no correspondence can be entered into. No entrant may win more than one prize.
Due to the anticipated number of submissions, we cannot accept any that do not follow submissions guidelines and rules.
Good luck!
PayPal for your entry here: btn_buynowCC_LG
Enquiries may be forwarded to

Friday, 8 November 2013

Worcs LitFest & Fringe Christmas Fayre

Worcester Writers' Circle are delighted to show you a wonderful event organised by LitFest - a Christmas Fayre at Bromyard Road Methodist Hall, 10-4 Saturday 7 December.

Here's your chance to get unique gifts for friends and family.

  • Gorgeous handcrafted jewellery, cards, calendars and cosy knits
  • Fascinating books, novelty toys and festive decorations
  • Seasonal cakes, sweet treats and stocking fillers
  • Skin care and beauty products
  •  Stunning mounted photographs
  • Art prints
  • Wooden clocks and rubber ducks!

And more …
  • Activities for children
  • Delicious food
  • Face painting
  • Christmas Carols
  • Maybe a visit from a special Christmas guest ...

Call in for a hot drink and a bit to eat – tasty snacks will be served through the day

A warm welcome awaits you :)

Tenbury Mistletoe Festival

The date to launch this year’s Mistletoe Season has been arranged for Friday 22nd November when the town Christmas Lights are switched on by Tenbury High School’s Head Girl, aka Tenbury’s Mistletoe Queen. 

This year the festival will include events such as the Regal Trust professional pantomime to be performed over the weekend 21st & 22nd December.

The main event is the Mistletoe Festival and the date has been fixed for Saturday 30th November, which has been designated as the Festival Day.
This day will also promote ‘Taste of Tenbury’ highlighting the link to kissing and mistletoe; professional dancers, musicians and storytellers will perform alongside members of the community to entertain the audiences between 10am and 4.30pm - don't miss out - be there!

And here is news of a special event with the nations Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy: