Welcome to another edition of WWG NEWS. As I said yesterday, I’m serialising The Titan Kiss, by Clark Nida in 3,000 word instalments from Chapter 16 onwards, and you’ll see these as posts either side of this NEWS bulletin. That will last us for 24 days, at the end of which I’ll start serialising Anitra’s Petition, which takes up the tale of the Star Children from where The Titan Kiss leaves off, and will keep us going for a further 25 days. As I approach the end of that, I’m hoping it will provide the impetus to draft further instalments, since the novel is 85% complete and requires only the allocation of time plus a high enough priority to finish it. Please do feel free to comment on each instalment as it gets posted. Even comments like “What the dickens was that all about?” will enjoy a fair and considered reception.

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I was out in the sunshine today, to see if the Co-op had taken delivery of any more bread (…some hopes!) Not that I’m short of grain to eat in one form or another, but my beans-on-toast isn’t quite the same without toast. I walked through the park, watching the squirrels play among the daffodils, and then along the harbourside and sea front, seeing only a few people out and about, who were easily kept clear-of.

That certainly wasn’t the case yesterday, when I went out shopping for basic provisions at the Co-op. People flocked along New Quay Road and as far as Pier Road, although little if anything was open. I see no harm in getting some fresh air, provided one isn’t actually obliged to self-isolate, but folk were crowding together much too close for comfort.

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At the last meeting of WWG, Lesley showed me some handouts from a creative writing course she had attended. They were on the topic of writing memoirs, which I know is of interest to some of our members. I’m not sure how to scan and publish them – or even whether I should (they are not my intellectual property). But if any member would like to see them, I shall happily put them in an envelope and mail them to you.

There is nothing on any of the sheets to identify the course they were handed out at. But the topics covered in 6 sides of A4 impressed me: the material going quite deeply into some important matters. There is a difference between an autobiography and a memoir: for a start an author can write several memoirs. Plus the focus can be different. Thus an autobiography, as the name tells you (if you know enough Greek), must be about yourself – whereas a memoir can be anything but. Which tells me that Maxim Gorky’s My Childhood – although listed in Wikipedia under Autobiography – is really a memoir because it tells you little or nothing about Gorky himself and everything about the people he came in contact with.

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Reluctantly I’ve taken the step of cancelling future face-to-face meetings until further notice. An email has been sent out to members to that effect. In amongst all the tendentious and downright mendacious advice we’ve been treated to, surely the brief information on the NHS website has to be the most objective and authoritative. Nothing about drinking colloidal silver there. A careful reading of the aforesaid information discouraged me from further justifying to myself the arrangement of any activity which would bring people into proximity with one another.

Now I’ve written that, I propose in this NEWS to avoid writing anything more to do with COVID-19: the need for sound information about which is well catered-for elsewhere. But of course it’s impossible to avoid talking about the effect on our lives, which is wall-to-wall.

Cancelling future meetings TFN doesn’t mean that WWG should simply roll over and die. With everybody’s cooperation, we could all keep in touch through our existing channels, including this website, which would leave us in a good position to spring back to life like so many re-hydrated water-bears once the country decides it’s safe to return to normal. But I would welcome news items from members to publish in this bulletin, to help keep the life-force throbbing in our veins.