I have been making up stories in my head for most of my life but I only started writing them down over the last ten years. I have taken a number of creative writing courses including the Open University which was an interesting if slightly detached experience. I have started two novels, neither of which I have managed to finish, yet. Short stories and in particular flash fiction fascinate me both as a writer and reader.
I have had work published in magazines, anthologies and translated. As part of Short Story Week I set up ‘Telling Tales and Taking Tea’ where short story readings were organised in local community centres and libraries reading a range of work from well-known and first time writers. My story ‘Colours that Suit’ won the Creative Writing section in the City Lit Between the Lines 2009. I also have had a piece published by English PEN in support of Zhu Yufu who has been in prison in China for as long as The Casket of Fictional Delights has been in existence.
I started The Casket of Fictional Delights at a time when there were few outlets in the UK for short stories and even fewer for flash fiction. One of the guiding principles has been to provide new writers with a platform to showcase their work. I created the TubeFlash project combining my relish for flash fiction with my love of brooches.
I have been collecting brooches for over 30 years. I was given my first piece of jewellery by my grandmother when I was six years old. It started a passion that has not diminished in over fifty years. I don’t remember which was my first brooch but I used to wear them on my business suits. Back then ‘business’ dress was the order of the day. The only way I could show any individuality was a fancy brooch on the lapel. I started in a small way with a discrete gold pin but as time went on they got bigger and bolder. Now my collection is vast and continues to grow. I wear a brooch every day, sometimes two, three, four…