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 Blog wk 55

On a recent visit to Exeter, I went to the Exeter Story Prize and Trisha Ashley Award presentation at St Stephens Church, Exeter. The event was organised by Creative Writing Matters founder Cathie Hartigan and her team: Sophie Duffy and my sister, Margaret JamesTrisha Ashley came along to present the first Trisha Ashley Award for a humourous short story.

This was a new kind of event for me. I had the pleasure of meeting many authors for the first time.

Sophie Duffy, Cathie Hartigan, Trisha Ashley, Juliet Greenwood, Su Bristow, Rosemary Anne Smith and Linda Mitchelmore are not only wonderful authors but OAPSchat contributors too! I also met authors Celia Joy Anderson and her husband and had a super chat with Laura James Su Bristow and Jan Cascarini

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From left to right The Panel - Juliet Greenwood, Trisha Ashley, Cathie Hartigan and Linda Mitchelmore, Niall Duffy MC

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Margaret James and Sophie Duffy

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Simon Kettlewell, winner of Trisha Ashley Award and Trisha Ashley

 Blog Week 55

From left to right Winner of the Exeter Story Prize, Richard Buxton, Elizabeth Heery 2nd prize, Alex Swinburn, 3rd Prize all being congratulated by Margaret James on their fine achievements

The turnout was good. Sophie's husband Niall was Master of Ceremonies. He introduced the panel and questions were asked by various members of the audience. The authors all gave individual and group answers on a wide range of topics, including writing stories for magazines and entering writing competitions. They stressed that writers should NEVER give up!

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Cathie Hartigan congratulating Richard Buxton and Elizabeth Heery 

The prizes were then presented to the shortlisted authors who were all given goodie bags and the outright winners each had a super trophy.

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Celia Joy Anderson and Margaret James 

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Rosemary Ann Smith, Yours truly and Juliet Greenwood

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Yours truly, Cathie Hartigan, Margaret James and Jane Skinner, two pairs of sisters!

We enjoyed a wide range of refreshments and there were lots of opportunities to take photographs. All in all, it was a very enjoyable afternoon. More details about the event can be found here on the Creative Writing Matters website.

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Scrumptious desert!

On Sunday my younger son, Derek and I ate a very tasty lunch at Côte Brasserie. Derek had veal, Matthew had pork and I had lamb. All the dishes were excellent. Derek could not manage a sweet, but Matthew and I indulged in a creme brûlée for him and frozen berries with white chocolate sauce for me.

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Exeter Cathedral

Walking around the cathedral grounds and a spot of window shopping followed. All too soon, we were on the M5 and heading back to Hereford. Exeter is a lovely city and I would urge you to visit if you are ever heading south west.

Devon is very much like Herefordshire as regards the countryside and scenery. The people are extremely friendly and welcoming. You won't be disappointed!

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