Robin Gilbert

Robin Gilbert's 'Hamlet, Prince of Wenlock' pastiche is one of five winning poems published in Lighten Up Online issue 54.  You can read it here.


Cheltenham Radio - new podcast

Cheltenham Radio is a local podcast radio station for news, events and more, started 3 months ago.  A new feature is a monthly podcast called Cheltenham Radio Book Club with the aim of reading mostly authors from the South West and inviting them to a Q & A session about the book which has been discussed.

If you are interested in the book club, you can join here


Bryony Pearce - novelist and short story writer

Bryony lives in the Forest of Dean, having moved there from Cheshire six years ago.

Bryony has sold eleven books to publishers and has had nine Young Adult titles published (mainly dark thrillers and horror).  Her adult debut 'The Girl on the Platform' is a domestic noir thriller and came out in April (with Avon HarperCollins).  The next comes out in Spring 2022. She also write short stories for science fiction anthologies.

To find out more about Bryony and her work, please visit her website here or follow her on Twitter or Instagram @BryonyPearce

Her books can be bought from Amazon, or ordered from all bookshops.

To Dads- with love, ed Aurelien Thomas

To Dads- with Love is a poetical journey celebrating fathers and fatherhood.

Congratulations to all the poets, especially those from Gloucestershire and South Gloucestershire whose work is featured including Angela France, Susannah White, Sharon Larkin, Michael Newman, Catherine Baker, Frances March and Christine Griffin.

To Dads- with Love is available in paperback from Amazon.  Details here


Read our June 2021 newsletter here

The GWN News June 2021

Hello and welcome to this month’s newsletter.

The Gloucestershire Writers’ Network Writing Competition 2021

Supported by The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival

There is still time to enter our competition.

Theme: Signposts

Closing Date: 30th June

Prose Judge: Debbie Young. Entries up to 750 words.

Poetry Judge: Carrie Etter. Entries up to 50 lines

Full details http://


Writing Places, Writing Faces

Has your writing group started to meet up again? Have you had a change of venue? Let us know and we can put it in our newsletter and on the website so that other writers can find you.


Writer’s News and Successes 

1.Erbacce Pamphlet Competition

Frank McMahon from Somewhere Else Writers in Cirencester has just received a Highly Commended recognition in this year's event.
He was one of 100 from a total entry field in excess of 12,500.
His poems will be published in Journal 68 of Erbacce.


2.The Roundhouse’s Poetry Slam

Open to young poets, aged 18-25. An opportunity to showcase your talent in front of a live audience and to win a cash prize.

Apply: Poetry Slam Call Out


3.The Phare Writing Competition.

Theme - COAST. Short fiction up to 2,000 words, or creative non-fiction up to 2,000 words. Submissions window June 1st to July 25th.


  1. Evesham Festival of Words Limerick Competition

Opens for entries on 1stJune. Light-hearted and fun, silly or even nonsensical, entries from anyone over the age of 12 are welcomed. For more details of their programme go to their


  1. GWN need a new webmaster

We are looking for a webmaster. If anyone has an interest or expertise in this area and would like to help out, please get in touch at The role involves posting information in the Calendar and News and Reviews sections of the website while Livvy Howarth continues as website administrator. Training is available if needed.


6.OH Crumbs 'evening of letters' Thurs 3rd June

Oh Crumbs 'an evening of letters'

'K' or an invite - a declaration of love

a recipe, directions.....Zoom letter box 603 854 102 pw 018454

please pass it on....


Useful information

The Society of Authors have set up an Authors’ Emergency Fund to provide grant assistance for writers in financial difficulty.  Details at


🔊Call out to all our readers

As we return to some normality over the next few months, please can you make sure the information we have for your groups, including contact details, is up to date and let us know when we can begin to post your live events on our calendar.

We would love to hear more about what you are writing, where you are writing, who you write with, what inspires you, your successes and failures or if you have an amusing tale to tell. Send it to


To Contact Us

For general enquiries about the GWN and if you wish to be put on our mailing list please contact:

If you would like information to be posted on the website about a relevant event, article, workshop etc. please send it (the deadline is the 28th of each month for inclusion in the next newsletter)


Our Facebook Group (GWN -- Gloucestershire Writers’ Network) and our Twitter account (@GWNgloswriters).


And Finally

A picture can speak a thousand words, but a thousand words can paint you a thousand pictures. Evy Michaels

Enjoy your “painting”

Sharon (for GWN).


If you wish to subscribe or unsubscribe to the newsletter let us know


Oh Crumbs sourced from the Forest of Dean, no. 35, Thursday 20th May (appears every 2 weeks)

It is an evening of words tossed above and propelled from lungs.

There will be poems, stories, songs, performances from many different places

and many different people.

Last time we featured the powerful words of award-winning poet Tess Biddington.

In the future we will share the moving songs of acclaimed Irish folk singer Tommy Sands.

This week Thursday 20th May from 8pm we open the gates for all comers.

It is one of our lively, unexpected OPEN MIKE concoctions including -

regulars storyteller shepherd Darren (still lambing after all these weeks) Hoskins, Forest bard (new book out very soon) Maggie Clutterbuck

Charlie Markwick - the French connection and stir it up with Leonard Custard ....

Zoomed from screens far and near (603 854 102 pw 018454)

You are welcome to speak your piece or slouch in the corner sipping the brew ....

Write Here… online novel-writing course - discounted places

Write Here online novel-writing courses have contacted us with the following offer.  If you would like to know more please email them -
You can let them know you have found out about the offer on the GWN website.  We don't have any experience of the course but hopefully it will be worth you having a look at.

We're very aware that with just six people allowed to meet indoors at the moment, all writing groups have been severely affected by the Covid outbreak, so – in order to keep Gloucestershire Writers' Network writing – we'd like to offer you a discounted place on the forthcoming Write Here… Online novel-writing course, which you can take from the comfort of your own home, if you sign up by midnight on Monday 31 May.

Write Here… Online is an eight-week course, taught by expert editor and Two Piers Agency literary agent Rufus Purdy, which takes writers from those tentative early planning stages right through to submitting their finished manuscript to literary agents and publishers. Featuring masterclasses on plot, characterisation, dialogue and all the other essential aspects of novel-writing, the course also involves all-important sessions on editing and pitching your novel. The final week will also involve a Q&A session in which Rufus directly answers students’ questions directly.

You can see all the information on the course and sign up for the discounted fee of £89.10 (rather than the full price of £99) via the link below…

Write Here… has also just launched a dedicated How To Write Fantasy or Speculative Fiction course, which costs just £79 for six weeks…

If you have any questions, please email

The Write Here… team

Barry Faulkner's latest book in The Gold Digger series

The second book in the Ben Nevis and The Gold Digger series NATIONAL TREASURE hits the shelves and Amazon on May 7th. This time Ben is mixed up in European drug gangs and a kidnapped actress. The paperback is in 'easy-read' 14 point font'.  For more information about Barry's work see here


Stroud Short Stories 10th Birthday Event

Formed in 2011, Stroud Short Stories is celebrating its 10th Birthday with a new event entitled 'Sharp Stars And Old Magic and Other Stories'. The event is free and unticketed and will be available on the SSS YouTube channel via links on the SSS website ( from 7.30 on Sunday 9 May.
90 Gloucestershire writers submitted 125 stories for the event. Co-judges Chloe Turner and John Holland chose ten writers to read their brilliant stories - Nimue Brown, Cheryl Burman, David Goodland, Mhairi Gray, Diana Humphrey, Jason Jackson, Sally Jenkinson, Kate Keogan, Nastasya Parker and Sean W. Quigley.

Evesham Festival of Words - Latest News

Here is the latest news from our friends in Evesham

Festival Programme:

The updated programme for 2021 is available through the website There are two exciting new zoom events coming up. Saturday 12th June, a half day event 'Focus on Wellbeing' with three tremendous contributors: Alice May, who some of you heard recently talking about her house that sat down; Rachel Kelly, a nationally renowned mental health campaigner, who was last with us in Evesham in 2017; and Cat Weatherill delivering a great workshop 'Pilates for the Pen'.  Charge is £10 to cover all three events. Book via the website. Do pass on details to anyone you know who may benefit from a really uplifting and inspiring morning.

Another new zoom event is Meandering the Orkneys with Paul Gillingham on 6th July. Paul is a great speaker and this is a fascinating talk.

Coming up in May, a great zoom poetry event 'Home and Away', with readings from Anna Saunders, Ben Ray and Zoe Brookes, followed by an Open Mic session. Free event but you need to email me to register - all open mic slots are now taken.

Note that our Photography Exhibition 'Music in Monochrome' originally due to be held in the Regal Cinema in June has been moved back to September.

Those of you who have joined us for zoom events will appreciate that up to now we have not made any charge, though there is inevitably a cost to the Festival. From August we will still be running some zoom events and will be making a charge of £5 per event - given the quality of the zoom events we've put on so far, I'm sure you'll all agree its excellent value for money.

And then later in May, Wednesday 26th, our first live Festival event of 2021, when we will meet up with TV producer, David Parker in the village of Slad for a guided walk/talk In the Footsteps of Laurie Lee. David is a firm festival favourite and this is an entirely outdoor event. Tickets £12 via Festival website.


1st May sees the launch of our very popular Six Word Story Competition. Rules are on the website, and the Competition runs to the end of May. See what gems you can come up with!

In the Spotlight:
In the Spotlight this month is Philip Douch, Stroud based short-story writer and performer. See the website - enjoy!