Just published - buy it now!
£8.50 (£10 inc UK p&p)
A Long Run in Short Shorts is the first book published by my own imprint: Storyworks Press. It's a collection of my own personal tales. Some are short, some very short. Some I've told, some I haven't. But I hope these mini-memoirs show how our personal tales are an essential part of how we create the story of ourselves.
To buy a copy simply click here on A Long Run in Short Shorts and follow the instructions.
An ideal Christmas present, you will also be able to request for copies to be sent direct to family and friends.
Latest post in my Storyworks Blog
Storytelling Starters ~ Tell it/Write it
The differences between writing and telling a story are well worth thinking about – and from both points of view. Here are some of my observations.
A told story can feel long-winded if it’s written in the same way as it’s told. In the telling, it has to feel like no uncomfortable gaps are made in the narrative of it. So for a start, if you’re writing it down, it’s best to prune out the ‘ands’ and the ‘buts’ you'd commonly use to fill the gaps when you’re telling. I learned this back in 1990 when I was putting together Time for Telling, the collection of children’s stories from around the world I’d been asked to make by Kingfisher Books. I assembled the collection by asking practising storytellers from all kinds of cultural backgrounds if they’d send me a favourite best story. A really good one that arrived from Scottish traveller storyteller, Duncan Williamson, needed to be pared quite a lot. He was, par excellence, a teller.
Conversely, when you’re writing a story, you can afford to elaborate in the description, perhaps using more studied and literary phrases than when you’re in the act of telling. Telling, you’re taking the kind of pace that allows people to visualise things as you go. You want to leave room for them to see things for themselves. Writing, you can afford to do something different. You want to give your story the distinctive character that can only come from you. I've often observed this when writing down stories I tell, often to give as reminders to people in workshops or for the purpose of this blog. In those situations, I tend to keep the story to the minimum, emphasising the action. If I were writing the same story for a published book, I’d expect myself to beautify it, giving free rein to my own visualisation of it.
Click here to go to more of my Storyworks Blog
And now some news of myself
I'm a professional storyteller and author. I used to experience some difficulty moving from one to the other. By now, I find they enhance each other. My new book, A Long Run In Short Shorts, is a product of both ways of doing things,
A Long Run In Short Shorts consists of 40 short personal tales. Some are stories I've told to friends or on storytelling occasions. Others I have never told. What made me start writing them was an out-of-the-blue email from a woman wanting London stories for an online magazine. Although I wrote back asking what sort of stories she wanted, I never heard from her again. But by then, all kinds of memories were flooding into my mind - London encounters, coincidence tales, extraordinary people, wise and moving things people have said. The foreword to my book explains why I stopped at 40.
For me, it is extremely exciting that A Long Run in Short Shorts is published by Storyworks Press, the new press my husband Paul and I have created for the purpose. The book embodies one of the strong beliefs which has long been at the heart of my Storyworks philosophy - and my storytelling workshops - namely the value and interest of the personal tale both for us as individuals and as part of social communication.
On the storytelling side of my life, I'm currently getting ready for what will be the second Enchanted Evening performances of songs and stories that Paul and I will have given at Peppers in Fishguard. This one is Winter Enchantment. It happens on Thursday, 8 December, starting at 6.30 p.m. You can either book online at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone on01348 874540.If you wish, you can also book for the delicious supper that will follow.
Other special performances of mine this year have included a return visit to the Chiltern Welsh Society, a performance of From the Land of the Magic/O Wlad yr Hud at Waterstone's in Piccadilly and a Welsh story for Welsh learners in Maes D at the Welsh National Eisteddfod which this year was held in Abergavenny.
I'd also like to draw your attention to my Storyworks Blog, part of which appears at the top of this website. I publish a new posting each Saturday and it delights me to say that I have subscribers as far afield as Australia and India. If you wish, you can easily become a regular (and free) subscriber yourself - see where to sign in on the blog itself - and I'd be delighted to welcome you there.
For a full list of my publications, including Shemi’s Tall Tales, my children's novels and books on storytelling with children, please click on My Publications in the menu on the left hand side of this website. There, you'll find full details on how to purchase any of my titles directly from me
For further information on my storytelling career, including the Lifetime Achievement Award
I was given in 2013 by BASE (British Awards for Storytelling Excellence) please click on Read more about me
. And to know more about what I can offer you, whether it's a performance, a workshop or a school visit, please
click on What I Can Do For You. .
And do please contact me
if you'd like any further information about my work.