Last night was the Summer event for Needle Writers, an evening performance event held in the lovely café of Lewes’ Needlemaker’s Centre.
Every quarter, three writers are invited to read, and last night was a HUMDINGER.
Sarah Salway led the field, with a double-whammy – poetry and a short story. The poetry centred round an addiction that many women suffer – ‘acquisition as love-object’ is how it came over to me. The poems were very sensual – I will look at shopping in a new light from now on! She then read ‘Toad in the Hole’, a short story from her collection Leading the Dance about a boy suffering group bullying. She whisked us into the world of young boys taunting each other, a world in which a single incident labels a boy for life in the heads of his peers, but more importantly, in his own mind. I already have Sarah’s collection, but it isn’t signed, and I didn’t take it along. So I bought another copy, and some lucky person will have a pressie soon!
Andie Lewenstein was up next, a striking poet, who read a selection of her work. Andie has a series based on images from old European fairy stories, but not as children would see them now. She span the images up and out so that the well-known merged into something totally different. She read several other works, written on a writing retreat in Iona, including a very moving piece about mourning her father. A gifted lady.
Here’s her bio from the event sheet:
Andie Lewenstein has published poems and stories in anthologies and won the Ware Poets sonnet prize. She is currently drawing inspiration from fairy tale and the forest where she lives. She has taught creative writing in Adult Education, on Emerson College’s Word Work course, and she was co-director of the annual Poetry Otherwise conference in Forest Row.
And lastly, but by no means least, Julie Corbin, whose psychological thriller Tell me No Secrets was shortlisted for the Daily Telegraph Novel in A Year Competition, and is now the first publication in a three book deal with a top publishing house.
Julie had banned her husband and kids from the event. It was her first public reading – and all I can say is – she was absolutely terrific.
She held the room spellbound with the prologue and part of the opening chapter of Tell Me No Secrets and a third part based on one of the characters.
She hadn’t bought enough books… and what she had brought sold out within a few minutes of the reading finishing.
If you would like to read the prologue and first chapter of the book, visit her website (HERE) where you can download the pdf.
(Pics of Sarah Salway and Julie Corbin are taken from their websites, linked above.)