New Writer’s Club opens in Ayr

By Ella Thompson

A brand new writer’s club funded by Open Book, a charity based in Edinburgh, will be starting on the 4th of October 2022. It will be held at Carnegie Library and will make for an exciting opportunity for any aspiring author aged 16+ to refine their skills and meet fellow writers. Open Book has organised many of these workshops for years around Britain, running over 1200 shared reading and creative writing sessions. The meet-ups are designed to be relaxed spaces for discussing reading material and using it ‘as a launchpad to spark new creativity in your own writing’ Michael Malone explains.

Michael J. Malone is a local published author from Ayr with 12 novels, 1 nonfiction book and two collections of poetry to his name. He spoke with me about his involvement with the charity and his career surrounding the world of writing.

When asked how he came to be involved in the project, he said: ‘Open book are an organization based in Edinburgh and so they have groups like this throughout the country actually. So what happened was the Carnegie Library wanted to start one off locally. So the first thing they did was approach Open Book for their support and then they put the word out that they were looking for a writer to lead the sessions. So I applied and got the gig.’

‘Open Book is a charity. And it aims to sort of encourage reading and writing,’ Michael clarified. ‘So the part that I’m doing, the creative writing part- is a monthly session. So basically I’ll have arranged some excerpts for us all to read and discuss.’

He went on to say that it will depend on funding to see how long Open Book’s Creative Writing workshop will run for. ‘If the library are happy to fund it, then I’ll carry on doing it for as long as as they like because it’s I mean it’s it’s fun, and it’s once a month. So it’s not too much of an imposition on my time.’ He said. While organising these session part-time, Michael shared that a new thriller from him is currently ‘with an agent’ and during free time he is busy writing a new novel.

The library’s first Creative Writing session will begin Tuesday 4th of October 2022 at 5.30 and will continue on with monthly meetups thereafter.

Carnegie Library, Ayr.

After going along to the event myself, I can say that the experience was a great way to be retrospective toward your own writing. Malone put together a spread of poems and short fiction samples to discuss and use as a way to gather prompts for the member’s own writing snippets. Audrey McGinley, one of the participants said: ‘It was really enjoyable. The writing prompts open the mind.’

Meg Wagner, another prolific writing club attendee, said: ‘I thought it was very interesting, showing you different ways of writing.’ She went on to express how enjoyable it was to meet up with fellow writers.

Michael J Malone’s Twitter

Open Book

Carnegie Library

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