Cover To Cover | Ep. 272 | 12 July 2019

The podcast of the recent ‘Winter’ edition of Cover To Cover is now available. The program was broadcast on Vision Australia Radio on 12 July, repeated 14 July, and features wintry pieces written and performed by Elwood Writers. So if you missed the original transmission, you can find the program here.

We’ll be adding the recording to our podcasts page shortly.

Happy listening!


Cover To Cover is recorded in the studios of Vision Australia Radio in Melbourne. Producer: Tim McQueen.

Launch: The Sky Falls Down | An Anthology of Loss

Carrie Tiffany will launch The Sky Falls Down: An Anthology of Loss at Readings Bookstore, Hawthorn on Saturday 13 July at 2:00pm. The book features ‘Benjamin’ by Jennifer Bryce of Elwood Writers.

For more on the launch, visit the link below:

https://www.readings.com.au/event/book-launch-the-sky-falls-down

“This beautiful collection of writings explores the landscape of loss. It will meet you where you are. You’ll find yourself reaching for particular pieces that somehow articulate how you’re feeling, even before you’ve found the words to express it yourself … May this book become both a friend and a warm companion.” Petrea King, Quest for Life Centre.

Update: Special winter edition of Cover To Cover | Friday 12 & Sunday 14 July 2019

There was a problem with our calendar and we initially gave the wrong dates for the special upcoming winter-themed edition of the weekly literary program Cover To Cover on Vision Australia Radio. The program will be broadcast on Friday 12 July at 8.00pm, repeated Sunday 14 July at 1.30pm and will feature the members of Elwood Writers performing their own work. There’s poetry, including haiku, from Helen, and stories by Jennifer, Margaret, and Barry.

Cover To Cover can be heard on the radio in Australia or online from anywhere in the world. For frequency and other information and to access online listening visit the station’s website below:

https://radio.visionaustralia.org

A podcast will be available shortly after the broadcast, and we’ll add it to our podcast page here on the Elwood Writers website, so if you don’t get a chance to tune in on the day you can listen at your leisure.


Cover To Cover is produced by Tim McQueen and recorded in the studios of Vision Australia Radio in Melbourne.

American Writers Review 2019 (San Fedele Press)

While parts of the northern hemisphere are currently experiencing very high temperatures, it’s midwinter here in the lower reaches of the southern hemisphere. This afternoon may not be too cold (16C), but it’s gloomy and wet and windy. Ideal conditions for being bookish. And there’s something especially soothing about finding a book that becomes a friend to accompany you through the long wintry nights.

And we’ve found such a book in the brand new American Writers Review (San Fedele Press). We’ve been excitedly dipping into this year’s edition and stumbling across numerous treasures. The bar was set high with last year’s AWR, and the team have done it again. Prepare to be unexpectedly distracted – this is certainly a book to lose yourself in.

We’re very pleased that three members of Elwood Writers have their work included in this year’s edition. You’ll find memoir from Margaret (The Poultry Farm; Yin and Yang), poetry by Helen (In Retreat; Stark against the Sky), and short fiction from Barry (The Birthday). A trifecta of Elwood Writers!

So whatever the season where you are, get hold of a copy of this book, cancel your plans for the evening, plump up your cushions and put your favourite beverage at your side, take your phone off the hook (we’re old school), and prepare to be delighted and moved for hours on end. There really is something in this pleasingly hefty volume for readers everywhere to enjoy. Open its pages and allow yourself to become lost in the many wonderful stories.

Happy reading, everyone.

Special winter edition of Cover To Cover | Friday 12 & Sunday 14 July 2019

Elwood Writers was in the studios of Vision Australia Radio in Kooyong on Thursday morning to record their pieces for a special upcoming winter-themed edition of the weekly literary program Cover To Cover.

The program features poetry, including haiku, by Helen, and stories by Jennifer, Margaret, and Barry, and goes to air on Friday 12 July at 8.00pm, repeated Sunday 14 July at 1.30pm.

Cover To Cover can be heard on the radio in Australia or online from anywhere in the world. For frequency and other information and to access online listening visit the station’s website below:

https://radio.visionaustralia.org

A podcast will be available shortly after the broadcast, and we’ll add it to our podcast page here on the Elwood Writers website, so if you don’t get a chance to tune in on the day you can listen anytime at your leisure.


Cover To Cover is produced by Tim McQueen and recorded in the studios of Vision Australia Radio in Melbourne.

This post originally showed the dates of the program as Friday 5 July and Sunday 7 July 2019. This was incorrect, and the information has been amended.

Poetry for Public Transport

Elwood Writers’ Helen is published in Poetry for Public Transport #27. Poetry for Public Transport is a regular publication that makes poetry easily available to the many passengers travelling each day on our public transportation systems.

What a wonderful way to spend your journey: reading and contemplating a poem or two while on the bus, tram, train, ferry, or whatever form of transportation you choose to get around. Pop your smartphone away, unplug from social media, and arrive at your destination calm and refreshed. Or maybe you’ll be inspired to seek adventure, go right past your intended stop, and see where the day takes you.

This is an initiative well worth supporting, so if you spy a copy of the publication, please pick it up and read it, then share with your friends, colleagues, and other loved ones.

Poetry for Public Transport #27 | Please do not litter. Recycle.

Where Do You Write? | Margaret McCaffrey

My local café recently changed its seating arrangement. Oh no. Not because of me, I hoped. Me, sitting at the big table by the front window, trying not to spread my papers and books about too much, but wanting to get my work done.

Under the new configuration I was forced to sit at a table for two, allowing barely enough room for my ‘stuff’. But it’s a lovely café and I determined to make do. It has been a godsend to me as I go through the latest phase of ‘where-I-work’.

When I first took up writing, I rented a small room in the CBD. Having just finished working, I couldn’t imagine not going into the city every day. But soon, it dawned on me that I couldn’t catch the tram in my dressing gown, which is what I wanted to do. Plus the office rent kept going up.

Next, I settled for working at home. Some days I barely moved from my bed. I began the day by journaling and went straight from there into writing. Tessa, our dog, patiently sighed at the end of the bed looking up every now and again in wait for her walk.

Natalie Goldberg is an author who says she loves Paris because there you can write in the cafés. I’m not sure this is still the case. But the message is, if you like a café and feel welcome there – anywhere in the world – then make the most of it.

People will tell you where to write, what your office set-up should be, how things should look and so forth. But I say: create a space that’s right for you.

Update: I visited my local favourite café last week. The long table had been returned to the front. Order had been restored. I know my secret, quiet, little coffee shop will not remain so forever. But while it lasts, I plan to write and luxuriate as much as I can.

Poetry and Place

How do we write?  And, importantly, where do we write?  Each of the Elwood Writers has their own method, quirky or disciplined.  Some are methodical, setting aside regular precious hours to pen papers, while others wait for inspiration to strike and write ‘off the hoof’ – and that would be me.  I find Place particularly important – ideas and images come randomly; when I’m out walking, in the middle of a busy cafe, or regularly at 4 am.  It’s handy to have a notebook or even a smartphone to capture those fleeting thoughts.  It can be a chaotic process.

I write poetry and have just returned from a wonderful, enriching two weeks in Japan, the spiritual home of haiku.  Never was a sense of place more powerful to me than being in the land of the rising sun during both Sakura – the spring cherry blossom season – and the last of the winter snowfalls.

Finding myself mentally free from the entrapments of daily chores and routine, I felt creatively open to these unique sensory experiences.  In Kyoto I visited the 17th century home of Mukai Kyorai, the great haiku master Basho’s most famous disciple. I even dared to write a Sakura haiku and post it in the dedicated haiku letterbox.  The timing was serendipitous, as it was close to International Haiku Day.

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The home of Mukai Kyorai in Kyoto

Where I live in country Victoria we have a monthly poetry-reading afternoon, Chamber Poets.  In the very week when I was trudging through four inches of snow on a mountain pass on the ancient Nakasendo Way, my haiku, which seemed to spring effortlessly into my head day after day, were being read aloud at Chamber Poets as that important day was celebrated. The joy for me was in being able to relay that wondrous sense of place to my fellow poets so many thousands of kilometres away.

Earlier in March I had the privilege of being the featured poet at Chamber Poets.  Our meetings are held in the local RSL (Returned Servicemen’s League) Club.  I read a short memoir piece about my English grandfather’s experiences in the trenches as a 17-year-old foot soldier in World War 1, and I was both comforted and overwhelmed to share his history in that most appropriate of places.

Poetry and place; the words bind us, wherever we are.

What’s occurring?

2018 was an industrious and fruitful year for Elwood Writers. Among other events, we hosted and thoroughly enjoyed presenting our work at our first public soiree, in August at St Kilda Library, and in November provided the material for the Armistice Day Centenary edition of Cover To Cover on Vision Australia Radio.

We’ve more exciting group projects planned for 2019, kicking off with an excursion to Adelaide for Writers’ Week in March. We’re thrilled to have been invited to collaborate with Tim McQueen and the team at Cover To Cover for another themed program on Vision Australia Radio, and will post more about that closer to the time. Also in the pipeline is another soiree, possibly towards the end of the year.

And of course our individual projects continue, with material regularly workshopped within our fortnightly group meetings.

With so much going on and coming up, from time to time it can be useful to consolidate and reflect. In that spirit, we’ve created a dedicated page on the website for recordings, mostly podcasts, of our group radio programs. All our programs for Cover To Cover beginning with Starting Over in January 2015 can now be accessed easily in one place, here, or by clicking on the link below:

We look forward to updating this podcasts page with the recording of 2019’s radio program later this year.

There’s much to look forward to, and always so much to write about. Here’s to a peaceful year; happy reading, listening, and writing.

Best wishes from Elwood Writers.