Third anthology launched

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Local writing group Stoney Screivers launched their third anthology “An Excitement of Possibilities” at Stonehaven Community Centre last week.

The group of talented writers, ranging from teenagers to pensioners, held a successful busy launch evening last Tuesday (November 20) with guest speaker and author Wayne Price.

The evening, which was attended by Councillor Graeme Clark, Councillor Peter Bellarby and Councillor Raymond Christie, consisted of some of the writers reading out their short stories and poems as well as a talk by keynote speaker and lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Aberdeen Wayne Price about his thoughts on the anthology.

The book, written by members of the Stonehaven Community Learning Creative Writers Group, has work from members aged 15 to 80 who, albeit from many different background, all share a love for creative writing.

The idea came together five years ago after an interest was expressed by students with a background in literacy, but the group attracts people with a wide range of abilities and experiences.

They meet together every Thursday evening at Stonehaven Community Centre and share ideas for creative writing as well as stories about their past they feel would be of interest to other members.

Alistair Guthie, who organises the group said: “When I was young my mother told me lots of wonderful stories about real people and real places and I soon came to realise that creative writing was what was in my head, situations through my life.

“Anybody can do it, everyone has imagination, stories, rhymes in their heads and this is proof of it, and I’m so proud of all of you.”

Wayne Price, author and lecturer in Creative Writing said: “Real poetry and real writing comes from living experience. It’s the living first then the feeling fuels the words.”

He described some of the work as “wild leaps of imagination, very atmospheric” and said it was a “really lovely experience to read it”.

Gráinne Smith, one of the authors included in the anthology said: “It’s a very good group where I get lots of ideas from other people’s stories and think about things I would not normally think about. It’s quite a fun group and there’s such a wide range of people from different age groups, backgrounds and countries.”

Isobel Davidson, Chair of Aberdeenshire Council’s Education Leisure and Learning Committee Councillor, said: “I would like to congratulate the group on the launch of their third anthology and the fantastic work they have produced over the last five years.

“As well as its commitment to fostering expressive and communicative skills, the group has promoted the growth of self-confidence and a sense, for its members, of having a voice in their community. This has been achieved over its lifetime by publications, public readings of members’ work, radio broadcasts and public exhibition of that work, theatre visits, visits to various writers’ events and readings and even to other writing groups.”

Claire Thomson from Community Learning, thanked Mr Guthrie for all his hard work.