One of the most popular aspects of our Literary Festival has always been the Open Mic session. In our first year, 2011, it took up a large part of the afternoon. And we learned some valuable lessons. Not least to limit the time for each reader and manage the order of speakers so the long sad story that’s guaranteed to bring the audience down is sandwiched between shorter, preferably funny pieces; performance poets are very good for that! We also learned the value of children. That first year, there was a pupil in the local Primary School who was short-listed in a national competition. She got up on stage and read her story beautifully. There wasn’t a dry eye in the marquee. And, as every concert organiser will tell you, having a child on the programme is a great way to build an audience, as friends and parents pile in to support him/her – even if they do get up and walk out as soon as the adults take to the stage!
Since that first year, we’ve played around with timing and for the past couple of years, we’ve settled on the lunchtime slot. It makes for an informal setting, with a fairly small audience, but most of the readers prefer it that way. They don’t need to bother about a physical microphone, and are sure of a warm, encouraging reception from their fellow writers who love hearing other people’s work.
Once again, CWC Chair Peter Whittle will host this part of the Literary Festival. Depending on the number of people reading, you will have between three to five minutes to air your work. There’s no formal critiquing at this point. It’s a celebration of your work more than anything. But there will be plenty of time for some informal feedback during the networking in the afternoon. So if you would like to take part in the Open Mic session at the Chudleigh Literary Festival on Wednesday 11th July, do get in touch. Places get booked up pretty quickly. You can find all the details and the booking form here.
T P Fielden Visits Chudleigh
Those wonderful folks from Friends of Chudleigh Library have been in touch to tell us about their latest event. On Wednesday 6th June at 7pm, the author T P Fielden will be at the library, telling us about his Miss Dimont crime novels, set in the 1950s, in a fictional South Devon town, situated somewhere between Torquay and Newton Abbot. FOCL say their most popular events seem to be Crime Writers and locally set books and this time we have both with one author. Tickets are the usual £2, to include light refreshments and are available now from the Library (01626 852469).
On the same night, just before the event, they will be unveiling the third of the mosaics that have been appearing around Chudleigh. They have been organised and sponsored by Chudleigh Amenity Society; and designed and constructed by the children of Chudleigh Primary School, working with artist Monica Shanty Brown. This final one in the series will be on the outside of the library and depicts the history of the building as a school.