Writer's retreat

Writer's retreat

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

A Christmas story - or The tale behind the tale

Back in 1998, members of Solihull Writers Workshop were asked to bring in items relating to Christmas. We then had to write something inspired by one of the items. I can't remember what I took, but my attention was taken by the beautiful velvet jacket brought by Mary. It has a pattern of large flowers whose outlines are illuminated by gold thread.

It spoke to me of Christmas at home in the Cotswolds where I would often provide a relief organist to one of the local church services either on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning. I remember one Christmas morning when my mother was playing in one church, I was playing in another and my father was ringing bells at a third!

Those times are past, but they can still provide settings and "flavour" to a story and thereby be preserved and shared. Can you work out which village it is?

This story has been a long time coming to fruition. The original version, where the main characters were both university students was rejected by The People's Friend as not being suitable for their readership. Mary kindly critiqued it for me afterwards and made some helpful suggestions. I then "left it hanging in a cupboard" for seven years and have now dustied it off and made some alterations. I hope you enjoy the finished article.


  1. Thank you for the lovely Christmas and Yuletide stories. I've enjoyed them immensely, and, as always, I'm very impressed with your writing.

  2. Thank you, ICQB, your thanks and praise makes all the hard work of writing and honing my stories worthwhile. Happy New Year!

  3. Sarah

    How good to see your writing. It's wonderful.

    And how nice to know you are an organist. I am too and spent our Christmas Carol Service playing the organ, leading the choir and trying to keep my three-year-old perched on my knee where he had fallen asleep. Multi-tasking eh?