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Maccwriters Blog – July 2014

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I learnt some interesting facts this week in regards to the Dictionary of the English Language (I must have had one of those hours of free-surfing where one digs up all sorts of useless trivia). As many will be aware (or not), the first one was devised by writer and essayist Samuel Johnson in 1755. According to the repository of all knowledge that is Wikipedia, during his work on it, the erudite Mr Johnson developed facial tics and odd gestures, posthumously diagnosed as Tourette’s syndrome.
A later effort to re-write the English Dictionary over a century later in more modern language was compiled by a Scottish Grammar teacher called James Murray. Murray used a number of contributors, the most prolific of which was William Chester Minor who did so from his cell in Broadmoor Asylum for the Criminally Insane after being convicted of murder.
What this says about people who dedicate themselves to the minutiae of the English language remains unclear.

Also this week, some of the newspaper reviewers have been casting their opinions across the pond in consideration of the Great American Novel, or GAN, as it is now popularly called (got to love those acronyms). Strange how these things go across the board isn’t it? For me, my favourite GAN will always be ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’, the merits of which were not spoilt by being forced on us as a compulsory read in school, which says a lot really. This raises an interesting point, in that it is widely held that the purpose of the GAN, so they say, is to uphold and embody the American dream and values, yet most of them highlight the inequalities and faults in the fabric of American culture, so seem to contradict this. Any views out there? Any one else think of a GAN they may have read and care to air their opinion of it? Send me your ideas.

This brings me to Maccwriters’ own summer reading challenge. This is for those who will miss their regular dose of literary hopefulness and banter in our weekly gatherings. After 31st July, the Maccwriters will take their Summer break until September 4th. On the last meeting, it was proposed we bring in some books of our choice to swap, read and review during the break. The original proposal was to compile a Richard and Judy style list for this, but obviously the above solution is kinder on the pocket!

The Maccwriters Group meets on Thursdays 2pm – 4pm upstairs at Macclesfield Library, £3 charge per session. Do you write stories or poems? Do you think you may have an idea for that one book that’s in us all? Come and join us and find out.

Macc Reads at the Chapel 01: Joy Winkler, Belonging

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On Thursday 3rd October at Macclesfield Unitarian Chapel we held a reading of our anthology Macc Writes. This highlighted the success the group has achieved over the last few months.

The anthology is available to purchase on Amazon. Over the next few weeks, videos of the night will be posted to Youtube. Please feel free to like and share.

The first video is of our founder, Joy Winkler, who is currently touring with her production of the poetry drama, Town. Here she performs the original poem, ‘Belonging’ – an introduction to the themes throughout the anthology.


Macc Writes – A Reading

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Macc Writes Cover 2

Place: Macclesfield Library

Date: Thursday 30th May 2013

Time: 2pm – 4pm

Cost: This is a free event but books will be available to purchase.

Refreshments will be served.

The Macclesfield Creative Writing Group invites you to attend a reading of work included in their first anthology.

‘Macc Writes celebrates the first two years of the Macclesfield Creative Writing Group. This anthology of poetry and prose has moments of pathos and reflection mingled with honest humour.

The pieces explore humanity and the relationships we share – they celebrate life and the world around us in this truly original anthology.’ [FROM THE BACK COVER]

Come along on Thursday to hear a selection of poetry and prose and support your local Macclesfield writers.



Portico Poetry Prize

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 I stumbled across this competition on the internet, thought a few of you might be interested.

Maximum 40 lines, to be linked to the work of Charles Dickens, closing date 31st July.

More details go to

Margaret H.

Festival of Firsts, Margaret H.

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Just rec’d email from above mentioned, and my poem will be displayed in ‘Gallery Hoylake’,  it will be on display in a shop window,  (don’t know which one yet)

It’s a bit eerie isn’t it?  Or is this going to be a theme for me?  Any how, I’m really pleased.

Bolton Arts Trail, a visit today by Margaret H.

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Went into Bolton this afternoon and it was busy, but couldn’t get to see all of the poems, and indeed only one of mine as a lot of the independent shops were closed and shuttered, but the ones I saw were good.  The one I saw of my own was in  Subway, and the staff loved it, I have been photographed next to it, (which you might eventually get to see)  they just had one concern, (but weren’t that fussed as it was on display,)  they informed me that they were an Halal Subway and didn’t serve bacon, so not all Subway’s are the same and adequate research is essential, note to self, and message for others!

Mgt H Rambles on

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Love the library display.  Think everyone enjoyed setting up for the exhibition, and it looks good.  I’m sure it’ll be a good fortnight.



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