Today I went to the Redding Writers Forum monthly meeting at All Saints Episcopal Church. Most monthly Forum meetings are either writing workshops or guest speaker presentations. These are always good meetings for writers to learn a little more about the craft, and to network with other writers.
Today was the Redding Writers Forum bi-annual ‘Read Around’. Twice a year, in June and December, the monthly meeting is dedicated to forum members reading from their own writings. The Read Around has become one of my favorite parts of the Writers Forum meetings. Every member who wishes to read signs up for a five minute slot in which to do so. Typically fifteen or twenty writers sign up to read.
Today we had fifteen readers, and as usual, the types of writing shared was a showcase of the Forum membership’s diversity. We heard readings from fiction and memoir, haiku and motivational. Members shared from works in progress. One member shared from her recently published book. Another member shared a recent sample from her regular column in a local newspaper. We had fantasy fiction involving a magical sword, auras, and strength of will. Another fiction piece gave us the point of view of a betrayed wife seeking revenge on the ski slopes. One member shared a selection from her hard boiled lady lawyer mysteries. Her staccato delivery fit the prose well. Another member shared a piece ready to be published that was a tongue in cheek commentary on water wasters, a particularly touchy subject here in drought stricken California which she addressed well with humor. We heard from a World War Two veteran and former seminary student as he shared his life long search to an answer to the question “Where is God?” A published author read a selection from a work in progress, a historical fiction piece set in the German army outside Paris in World War One. Another contemporary issue was addressed in one man’s satirical piece on immigration, suggesting we solve the problem by invading Mexico. (Maybe you had to be there to hear it. It worked well! :)) We heard memoir samples from three different writers about a new neighbor’s roses, life on a Backcountry trail crew, and being kidnapped as a young girl.
What a great day!