We have a creative writing group that meets 9.00 am – 11.00 am every Friday at CQU, Ooralea and you’ll learn all the ins and outs of writing. Members have, in the past, had books published. We are a self-help group and do not have actual tutors.
We begin our morning with reading our “writers’ challenge or in plain terms, homework. Sometimes just making the quorum for a meeting, and sometimes having a good roll-up seems to be the usual. We don’t keep to a schedule other than –
1. Reading our homework
3. A word exercise to assist members. This takes many forms, from a member’s problem to something someone has discovered, and on. Our members take turns taking the “chair”, doing two weeks at a time. It gives us different opinions and aspects from each of us in turn, and extends our appreciation of the work put into our writing. We welcome new members and it is always nice to catch up with past members.
Our meetings are always happy and informative. We have gone from the study of adjectives to writing about cyclones and the use of dialogue and all its ramifications.
We all seem to have great fun discussing ways and means of serious writing and what is the best way to get over what we want to say.
Writing Group members appreciate ‘having a say in running our group’. We pride ourselves in giving everyone a chance to change or keep our past ways, also we appreciate new ideas, where writing is concerned. Our group has been enlarged by new members, and they are very welcome. Appreciation for the input of information from members who have been teachers is noticeable, and with books to clarify words and their meanings and spellings, our writing is always improving. This is our group’s aim, to assist where we can, and have fun doing it.
What is creative writing? It is taking a word, like Blue, a sentence like “he fell off the boat, your honour!” or a subject like Ancient Greece or Australiana, and either writing (up to 900 words) or vocalising to express your imagination, your research, or your life experiences, so that others can appreciate your creative interpretation of the subject. It is also using English language skills and creating activities that expand knowledge of how to construct and use words. It is also the sheer joy of enjoying the world of words. If this is what you are interested in, and you would like to join our group, we have vacancies available. This will not ever be a large group as in the two hours, that we meet, 9 am to 11 am on Friday mornings at the CQ University Library board room, we like to enable everyone present to present their stories and participate in a small activity. I have been asked to become the co-ordinator of the writers group, following in the footsteps of Jenny Mayes, who has set a high bench mark, and brought to the table her wealth of knowledge,
having been a librarian in her working life. She has also held the position of co-ordinator, for many years and her encouragement and guiding suggestions have encouraged some members to continue with the group for a long time, as it is always different and stimulating. It is with great
pleasure, that I have accepted the role and encourage those who love the world of words, to consider, to at least give it a go. Thank you.
Creative writers still have vacancies. It is definitely not a boring chore and the different slants on subjects chosen by the person whose turn it is to run the sessions, are diverse and interesting, as are the small activities that we undertake after each one of us has read out our stories.
We offer a cup of tea or coffee and biscuit to help the flow. We welcome people to sit in or participate with a view to joining our group. There is no weekly fee and the time is 9.00 am to 11.00 am in the meeting room of the CQU Ooralea Campus library.
This term has been very interesting. We now have a male member to swell our numbers and add depth to our consistent four female members. For various reasons there are members who are no longer attending and we may lose another two, one moving down south and another who has family commitments. Our sessions are always light and informative, with twists and turns on the subject to hand. Some of our titles over the last four weeks have been “A weird experience.. first time someone taught you to
drive.. The Jacaranda tree.. The lake between the hills and our challenge for the 19th July was a choice of Two Points of View or My favourite pastime or my favourite season. The stories written are between 500 and 1,000 words usually, and depending on the subject some are just little anecdotes. We had a guest speaker in Daryl Barnes, who wrote four “Crazy Bird” books and is at present writing his own story.
Thanks to Lyn Coburn, information was forwarded through to us about the Hervey Bay Writer’s festival, which closes in September. This gave us an opportunity to showcase our work and at least two members will be entering, not necessarily to win, but to participate and gain experience outside our group.
We need more members interested in joining our group, or to sit in and listen to our very productive sessions, which are held in the conference room CQ University library, at Ooralea, from 9.00 a.m. to 11.00 a.m. on Friday mornings. I realise at this time of year, members drop in attendance, however with (should I say it..) aging attendees, health problems and inclement weather, this is to be expected. We do not help people write their autobiographies or delve into family heritage, we write stories
for enjoyment and to share with each other. We have lots of laughs and interaction. Our group is very interested in notifications of competitions and have in the past submitted entries into the Mackay
writer’s festival achieving a top ten rating.
Rae Halpin 0407639356
The 2019 Whale Tales writing competition is open and closing date has been extended for those who live in the outer region of Fraser Coast. – all other U3A’s.
The prize money for first place is $200, second $100. The entry rules are available on the Hervey Bay website. www.u3aherveybay.net
This year our judge, Trudy Graham, is offering a critique of any entry, not just the winners, for a small fee of $10. A great opportunity for feedback.
Please encourage your writers to enter.
Whale Tales Sub-committee
We welcomed another writer, Judi to our group this month. The subjects
chosen by the writer who is taking the group on that week, have been both
challenging and enjoyable. Subjects ranged from, describe a special place,
country not city, include a season of the year, to a choice of four
sayings to be included in a story and a story from six phrases tabled by the meeting leader of the week. So that there are different aspects of writing, one writer runs the session for two weeks and then it goes to the next person.
Each of these people also conduct the activity for the week. We have
lots of laughs and diversions and the two hours from 9 am to 11am at the
meeting room of the CQ university library, just flies and we all go away with a challenge for next week. The invitation for members to join us if only to listen to original stories, still stands.
Contact Rae Halpin 0407639356
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If you would like to join the Creative Writing Group, or just talk to someone about it, please send us a message on our Contact Page.