There’s a British oral story-telling tradition stretching back across millennia. Think about the tale of King Arthur and other old legends. Like every writer, I love reading – corporate thrillers, crime, suspense, horror and romance all hit the spot – but sometimes, just sitting back and listening to a well-told story is sublime.
The flash fiction and corporate thrillers I write today follow naturally from the never-ending stories I used to tell my siblings as a child. Never written down anywhere, the tales entertained for hours, days, months, years on end. Audiences today are far more sophisticated, of course. Every word of a poem or short story has to count, but the buzz when listeners are clearly gripped by those words is unbelievable. I’m grateful to the bookshops, coffee shops and bars that host live performances, and to the media for fostering a story-telling culture, for example through radio readings and You Tube. (You can find me on YouTube reading stories like The Cuckoo And The Phoenix.)
The superb Sophie Sparham and Katharine D’Souza are joining me and other writers at Brewsmiths in Birmingham to read sparkling short stories tomorrow evening, Monday May 10th . You can book free tickets here. It’ll be a great night, so do come along if you’re in Brum.
I’m also planning to drop into Bristol’s Let Me Tell You A Story, Jack! on May 14th. I might even be reading a tale or two. STOP PRESS: THIS HAS BEEN CONFIRMED! Will you be around? It would be lovely to see you!