Friday, 7 October 2016

Gull Stones & Cuckoos launches!

An anthology of compelling and passionate stories, Gull Stones and Cuckoos is to be launched in three rural libraries in Norfolk this October; celebrating the results of a unique creative opportunity for women living in isolated rural communities.

The anthology has grown out of Rural Writes, a partnership between Norfolk Library and Information Service and Words and Women supported by Arts Council England. Women of all ages and backgrounds from Gorleston, Watton and Swaffham were invited to attend 10 weeks of life-writing sessions in their local libraries led by two professional writers, Belona Greenwood, co-organiser of Words and Women, and award-winning poet Heidi Williamson. The project was coordinated by Anna Brett of Create Projects.

The result, illustrated by Rose Cowan and edited by Lynne Bryan and Belona Greenwood, is a bold, honest and vivid narrative of local lives. Published by Unthank Books, it tells of
lost halls, early morning walks, stillness, fairy-light skies, telescopes on allotments, the loneliness of grief and the adventure of new places in rural Norfolk. The writers in this book are new to writing but their stories and observations are compellingly authentic.

The collection will be available to borrow from all Norfolk's libraries and to buy. 

‘This project shows how vital libraries are in bringing communities and people together.  The women who joined were strangers until they signed up to try their hand at writing. They have made friends, supported and inspired each other. The book itself, is fantastic but the fact the women’s groups are continuing is enormously important and heart-warming,’ said Belona Greenwood of Words and Women.

The book launches will take place in Watton Library at 6.00 pm on October 26th, Gorleston Library at 6.30 pm on the 27th and Swaffham Library at 6.30 pm on the 28th.

Rural Writes doesn’t end with the book, all three writing groups continue to meet in their local libraries and to post on the Rural Writes blog.

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