“Creative writing begins with reading” - an unexpected contact with Jonathan Meades for AcWriMo
A collection of seven book covers which represent favourite book of the author, the titles are described in the blog text
As part of AcWriMo I am actively trying to record what I read as part of my day to day work and my leisure time.  I have been concentrating on working my way through the lovely book “Creative Writing for Social Research : A Practical Guide” by Helen Kara and Richard Phillips as I really enjoy creative writing but don’t do it anymore.  I want to do it, and if I can make it work in an academic context that would be wonderful, amazing, marvellous and every other word for “good” in the thesaurus.
In perusing the book I noticed in the section on lists there is a reference to an extract by Jonathan Meades, who describes the inventory of a local store in the example.  Several years ago my colleagues and I shared our top seven books in one of those internet challenges which was around at the time.  My top seven included a book by Meades which is a compilation of various TV scripts he has written (Museum without Walls).   Most of my top seven is related to planning and heritage:
-Northern Pride, John Grundy
-Tasting India, Christine Manfield
-The Weirdstone of Brisingamen, Alan Garner
-Unknown Brighton, George Aitchison (illustrated by Stella Langdale)
-Trains and Buttered Toast, John Betjeman
-Adventures in Architecture, Dan Cruickshank
-Museum Without Walls, Jonathan Meades
Why are these relevant to #AcWriMo?  Well, these are all authors who I admire in some way (the Unknown Brighton one has a different significance for me, which is for a later story, the illustrator is a relative of mine).  Whenever I need a little boost I find that reading any of these adds to my day productively. I admire the author voice of Grundy, Meades and Cruickshank
The less planning related ones are still rooted in place; Tasting India is a reminder of my travels and a treat for my culinary repertoire, Weirdstone of Brisingamen is a book I read over and over again when I was little and the picture it paints of the Alderney Edge landscape is very vivid.
I may or may not still have a lucky amulet which I harness the power of (thanks Susan, in the Garner book)… here’s hoping I can make lots of books and publications which others may one day put in their top seven.

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