I think that the coolest thing about reading at Sparks is the privilege of seeing how someone has visually interpreted your story. I feel very lucky that my story ended up with Nikki Acott of Maverick Photography.
The dynamic Jo Mortimer seeks good quality fiction submissions for her fabulous short fiction night in Brighton. Details here at Sparks Blog – have at it!
There are writers who thrive on reading their words to an audience. I’m not one of them, however, I was once persuaded by Jo Mortimer to stand on a stage and read a story to real, live people. ( Eeek.) Jo Mortimer is a very persuasive person! Truth is I had a blast. It was rather intoxicating and I can see how some writers get addicted to that thrill.
Jo’s flash fiction night – Sparks – is a fantastic, buzzy, creative event. She selects cool stories and commissions a unique photo for each one which becomes the backdrop to your reading. The next night is on November 3rd Upstairs at Three and Ten and you could be part of it. If you wish, you may submit a story of 1,000 words or less to firstname.lastname@example.org but you’ll have to get a wriggle on as the deadline for subs is October 15th.
And if you are reading this and thinking yeah, yeah, all very well but I live in America (for instance), never fear, Jo will accept two stories per month that can be read by someone other than the author.
Hmmm. Weird one this. Sparks was filmed, and videos of some readers are now up at Beat the Dust.
Mine is here
Very strange to look at myself doing that. It doesn’t seem to be me, it does not sound like me. It seems like a jolly, fat lady channelling Joyce Grenfell has got up on stage wearing my clothes, and ENUNCIATED her way through my story.
The others are far more appealing:
I loved Sparks, it was such a cool event. Big thanks to Jo Horsman, a real make happen kinda gal. It was her idea to hold a flash fiction evening in Brighton, and to marry the words spoken with a visual, she chose the perfect venue too.
Initially I was terrified of the stage and microphone and lighting and eeek, all the “proper” stuff. It was my very first time reading, and I was a mass of babbling nerves. The other readers (listed in my previous post) were thankfully very cool and reassuring.
So: good stories, good readers, good photographs, good venue, good people = plenty o’ good.
I think I did ok reading, people were kind and laughed in the appropriate places. There is a review by James Burt here, which has made me smile quite a bit!
In the end, apart from the anxious bits, I had a lovely time, and today feel proud to have been part of the very first Sparks. Keep an eye on Jo’s blog for details of the next one.
Edit: New review at The Badger
I’m far too moany about the books and stories that I read. I always hope to find good things though. ( I do start from a point of optimism, but mainly I am disappointed.) I have worked with Jo Horsman at the Fiction Workhouse, and am delighted to see her rather wonderful story “Sparks” has just been published at Red Peter.