Open Meeting: 24th August

Like a phoenix rising from the ashes of the riots (or perhaps a sleepy-eyed armadillo peeking a nose out from its shell) we’re back! First of all I’d like to welcome Terri who joined us for the first time last night. Nice to meet you!

Just one piece of sad news: there were no biscuits. But on with the show . . .

We had eight people attending with five pieces of work discussed as follows:

  • Chris presented his short story Coin Operated Girl. With a number of graphic scenes throughout, this story certainly stirred up quite a debate about society’s (sometimes rather disparate) attitude towards the sex trade. Everyone enjoyed the writing, several people said they disliked the protagonist and Kate got the Amanda Palmer reference. A few people weren’t sure about addressing the reader, the manilla folder and perhaps the ending–but what an eyeball-kicking story.
  • Rob presented another chapter from his post-apocalyptic novel. This story also caused quite a debate–about tea. Early Grey versus Ordinary or just ‘ordinary’ or just tea. We agreed to disagree (but I’m writing this post and I say ‘ordinary’ is fine, so there!). Several people enjoyed the bike ride to Didsbury though a couple of people thought it was a little over-long. There was a discussion about the naughty scene (I’m not using the S-word again for fear of the Google spiders) and a little tittering from someone about black bras.
  • Kate presented the first chapter of a novel she has recently finished called Body of Dwaal. Everyone seemed to enjoy this: the imagery, the characterisation and the sweating–even those people who don’t normally read this sort of thing. Several people said they wanted to read more. There were a few comments about Whirr and whether there should be more or less description or whether it was about right. A few people also said they wanted a little more from our protagonist Beli–either making him a  little nicer or a little nastier.
  • Donald presented the start of a short story based in Glorantha (hurrah!) called Political Affairs. Several people said they liked the dialogue and I think everyone wanted to read the second piece to see where this was going to end up. There were a lot of characters in this piece and, with a few issues over a drifting point-of-view, that made for a slightly confusing read. This is a complex piece and could prove challenge to polish to its completion.
  • Andrew presented his short story We Also Feel. This story invoked comments on a whole host of film references from the robots in AI to the Cylons to Skynet. Several people commented on the robot protagonist’s empathy and that this was both interesting and unique. Several people said they felt this was the start of something–possibly something much larger.

Unfortunately I had to head home straight after the meeting so I didn’t go down the pub, though I think several of you did. Feel free to add some comments to this post about your discussions.

Next month we’ll be back to our usual schedule with a meeting on the second Wednesday (14th September). See you there!

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