Sue Hall's Blog

Words and chatter from here and there

Bringing the churches to life – A Igreja Matriz de Santiago, Tavira

Igreja Santiago cmt

“Igreja” in Portuguese means “church” and today the A-Z writing challenge is I, so I am drafting a post about a couple of the churches in Tavira. Not all churches in Tavira are used for religious practice. Some have metamorphosed into museums and from that has developed an initiative called “Music in the churches.” These events are organised by the Council (in Portuguese – Camara) or by the Academia de.. Read More

Make Hay

Panorama-Square-2 Hay

The Hay Festival programme is out. Details arrived by email on Saturday, which is fortunate as the next letter of the A-Z writing challenge is H. The Hay Literature Festival is more than a book event. It is two weeks of stimulation and reflective entertainment. This year the dates are 26 May to 5 June We are not going to make the trip to Wales, but that does not stop me.. Read More

G is for Gertrude and Gardening

Monseratte

“There comes a day towards the end of March when there is little wind….. The sun has gained much power so that it is pleasant to sit out in the garden or better still in some sunny nook…….” Gertrude Jekyll Gertrude Jekyll’s appreciation of colour within her flowering schemes is renowned. She knew what to do and when to do it. Further south from her England, there is what could.. Read More

Fracking, flowers and water

Wildflowers 2016

It is the time of year when the wildflowers overtake the hill. Yellows, purples and green intermingle with red and orange. I have just been sitting among the flowers, thinking about this post. The theme is supposed to be fracking. It’s an unpleasant word with destructive consequences. I do not want to write about it, but I will mention what is going on, as fracking in the Algarve could potentially.. Read More

Egyptian Mummies, CT scanning & Scams

Dr. Campbell Price, the Curator of Egypt and the Sudan at The Manchester Museum is in the Algarve this week, hosted by the AAA, the Archaeological Association. He spoke to an intrigued audience, highlighting how science is revealing what is under the wraps of mummies without having to unwind the ancient linen bandages. The Manchester Museum is home to one of the largest and most important collections of ancient Egyptian.. Read More

Defectors – by any other name

“Kim Philby, Britain’s most notorious cold war traitor, told an audience of East German spies after his defection, that he was able to avoid being rumbled for so long because he had been “born into the British governing class.” So says the Guardian – His exploits, along with those of Burgess, Blunt, and Maclean make for dramatic reading. Known as the Cambridge Spy ring, it turns out that they may.. Read More

Corvina, calories, courts and climate change

As it is day three of A-Z of Blogging, I want a word beginning with C, so Corvina is a possibility. We cooked Corvina for dinner last night. It is a chunky white fish and cost about 12 Euros for just over half a kilo. Eating fresh fish is part of the pleasure of living in the Algarve. With few calories and packed full of nutrients, it could be a.. Read More

Blogging from A – Z

Most mornings I lie in bed thinking I should be writing. I feel guilty. This morning after making a fruity breakfast, I checked Facebook, and email, read the favoured online papers and avoided editing a story. I discovered another editing avoidance opportunity when I read about Blogging from A to Z. During April, participants write a blog post every day for 26 days. Sundays are free, hence 26 days. I.. Read More

Outline and Editing – Writing workshop – Monday 29 February

The upcoming writing workshop on Monday, 29 February 2:30 pm at Tavira library will consider the joint themes of outline and editing. Over the last few weeks, we have looked at scene, dialogue, description character and more. The last workshop focused on descriptive exercises within a scene. Some timed writing exercises were attempted, completed and shared. This next session will suggest ways of critically assessing our work and how to begin.. Read More

Writing workshop – Description and Scene

In the last writing workshop on February 1st, we talked about the role of dialogue as a technique to develop plot and move a story along. Regina Shrimpton created a couple of dialogue exercises and we worked through them to compress and improve. Some writers believe great dialogue should be a chain of poetic or comic gems, zingers of brilliantly crafted one-liners. Some believe it should be exactly like everyday speech. The key.. Read More