For more than 40 years a Ripon group has provided a platform which has enabled writers, ranging from novices to published novelists, to develop their talent and share their thoughts with like-minded people.
Now, with the disruption of covid lockdowns behind it, Ripon Writers Group is looking to attract new members to the twice-monthly meetings it holds at St Wilfrid’s Community Centre. The next meeting is on Wednesday evening (February 8).
RWG was launched in 1982 by Daphne Peters whose stories and poetry for children, published under her maiden name of Daphne Lister, gained international acclaim.
Following her death in April 2020, long-term member and award-winning author Maggie Cobbett said:
“Daphne was always interested to hear what the rest of us had been working on and unstinting in her encouragement.
“I loved to hear her reading her own poems, whether comical or whimsical, in her own inimitable style and will miss that very much.
“Ripon Writers’ Group will never be quite the same without Daphne, but I know that she will be counting on us to continue what she started all those years ago.”
RWG continues with Ms Peters’ husband Joe as its president and Ian Gouge as chairman.
Publisher Mr Gouge (pictured above), who is also writer in residence at Ripon Library, was the 2022 winner of the highly-prized Swanwick Short Story Competition.
In liaison with fellow committee members, he has introduced new elements to the events programme, including a ‘flash fiction’ activity called All Write on the Night.
Mr Gouge, said:
“The aim is to make our meetings thought-provoking, stimulating and enjoyable and create an atmosphere in which all attendees gain from the the shared experience.”
Two-time Swanwick prize winner Ms Cobbett, whose latest book My ‘Extra’ Life was published in August, added:
“We are a friendly group seeking new members from the Ripon area and beyond .
“Whether their interest is in poetry or prose, novels, short stories, plays, wacky humour or, a more analytical style of writing, they will be made most welcome.”