Last evening we welcomed Lynne Mortimer, much-loved columnist with various newspapers in the Archant family. For those of you who were unable to attend, you missed an amusing and inspirational talk from Lynne about her 25 years as a journalist. Lynne gave us a comprehensive ‘heads-up’ for how to tackle the next competition for the much-coveted Colin Sutton Cup for Humour. In view of the number of absentees I hope you will find this information useful and I encourage you to enter even if you were not there last evening.
Her first job was as a mature mum of 35, writing for the Evening Star in Ipswich. During her children’s teenage years she wrote under a pseudonym to save their blushes! Lynne spoke about the panic of working to strict deadlines and of having to come up with 1,000 words every week on a different topic. She explained how her inspiration comes from her own life, the importance of writing the truth at the core of every column and how she scours newspapers for ideas when she is stuck!
In the past her stories have covered Waspi Women, weight-loss, public toilets, the Menopause (both female and male), the abuse of Parent & Child parking spaces, grammatical errors, energy saving light bulbs, her husband, grandchildren and her mother-in-law! But never Brexit, religion, death, disability or mental illness. She certainly has her own “red lines” and always tries to keep her columns light-hearted and entertaining.
“Take one small frustrating life incident and expand it into a humorous article of 1,000-2,000 words. It can draw upon similar frustrations or veer off somewhere else, but at the end of the piece it should return to the original incident, featuring a final pithy sentence or two.”
The deadline for entries is Tuesday 7th May, which is our next Manuscript/Critique evening. If you are unable to attend please be sure to mail or email your entry to our Competitions Secretary Marian Pearson. Details can be found at this link.
Good luck everyone!
On a different topic, your committee will be meeting next Tuesday to agree the arrangements and menu for the Olga Sinclair Open Short Story Competition Launch Night on Tuesday 16th April, when we will be offered gin tasters courtesy of sponsor Black Shuck Ltd of Fakenham, and meet our adjudicator Piers Warren, author of Black Shuck: The Devil’s Dog. Do bring your partners and friends to our party. £7 door fee for non-members includes light buffet with wine, teas and coffees.