Wednesday, 16 October 2019

Thames Valley Writers' Circle

Thames Valley Writers' Circle

EACH year members submit their short stories for judgement by Iain Pattison, author and national short story judge.

Not only does Iain pick his first three but also gives a critique of every entry. This year’s theme was nursery rhymes.

As the stories are sent to Iain anonymously, he does not know the identities of the authors.

It is apparent, however, that the work of David Burnell is very much to his taste because, for the second year running, he selected David’s entry as the winner, something that has never been done before.

David’s story, Game, Set and Match, tells of a fire in the Houses of Parliament, revealing a competition in which MPs rewrite nursery rhymes about each other.

Iain called it one of the most imaginative and ingenious short stories he had read in years. In second place was Francis Brindle with Star Bright. A take-off of Star Light, Star Bright, this was a science fiction tale about a love triangle in space caught up in a falling capsule.

The lovers sever the link and drift off into space.

Iain couldn’t separate for third place the stories by Brian Ennion and Les
Williams.

In Brian’s entry, Georgie Poor Gee, a serial killer has murdered George McIntyre and then the desperately poor Gee Botherden.

Putting the names together shows Inspector Ragglewitch the next victim would be called Pudding.

Les William’s Dreams of Home tells of a soldier in the American Civil War who had fallen asleep on guard duty awaiting his sentence by quoting nursery rhymes.

Dick Sawdon Smith

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