as featured on Dovegreyreader] and the kids' cast-off jeans and tops), and get on a train and actually WHIZZ down the country (a countryside wreathed in mist all the way, which was both disorientating and mightily exciting for your necessarily agoraphobic and home-stuck writer), and actually WALK DOWN SOME LONDON STREETS FILLED WITH PEOPLE! and GO IN A PUB! and meet up with two great writer friends!! Honestly, the headiness of it all!
And The Luxe in Spitalfields, where we were doing the reading, turned out to be just that: a really plush space. And what a great evening it turned out to be - a great audience and superb readings from the talented bunch of women writers I was lucky to be joining. Jay Merill, who organized and presented the whole event, kicked off by reading 'Little Elva' from her great Salt story collection, God of the Pigeons:
She was followed by Catherine Smith who read us a striking story about an unusual house-hunter, from her new collection , The Biting Point, published by Speech Bubble. After a short break, Sarah Salway read from her wonderfully wry story collection 'Leading the Dance':
and then Tania Hershman read us a series of her amazing science-inspired flashes, some from The White Road and Other Stories (Salt) and some new and unpublished:
In the final third, Susannah Rickards read beautifully from her Scott Prize-winning collection Hot Kitchen Snow (Salt):
and, since the event was part of a women's arts festival, I read my story about two sisters, 'Holding Hands', from Balancing on the Edge of the World:
And then I had a fabulous chat to the others and all the lovely audience members who included writers Debi Alper, Emma Darwin and Judith Amanthis.
Thank you to the others for their great readings, to all who came and made a great audience, to Jay especially for organizing and inviting us, and to the Wisewords Festival.
Next day I actually had a DAY OFF (in London)!!
Weird. (But fabulous.)