As an opportunity for fellow writers to have greater exposure, this section of my website is reserved for those wishing to make a written contribution to its pages.
Each month, a fresh third party will be given the chance to list here a submission of their choice, together with a suitable image for the piece of work. If you are interested send a message via the mailing address below, and we'll go from there.
Content will be scrutinised to ensure that it fits in with the rest of the site's tone and appearance, but every effort will be made to accomodate those wanting to take part.
Submission length is limited to no more than 5,000 words, and a suitable spellchecker should be used to remove errors beforehand. A personal photograph should also be included (no avatars please), together with a brief biography.
Mailing address is: firstname.lastname@example.org
Neville Harvey was born in York in 1962. He grew up under the watchful eyes of his parents and his older sister, and enjoyed all the usual boyhood pastimes such as getting into trouble indoors, getting into trouble outdoors (with the added bonus of collecting various injuries on the way) and getting into trouble at school. Nothing really spectacular happened during Neville’s school days, and his education was pleasant enough, achieving six GCE ‘O’-level and two ‘A’-level passes.
Of all the subjects at school, English was not a favourite. Neville was a reluctant reader unless it was a work of reference that was put before him. Fiction was avoided at all costs, and so it was a blessing for Neville when his ‘O’-level course was one based on writing a dozen or so essays on various subjects, with the grade being derived by marking the ten pieces which most exemplified the student’s style of writing.
Neville has always been a chatterbox, right from a very early age. Always one to talk and often reluctant to listen, words have always played a major role in Neville’s life. Text messages are always composed like letters, and why bother with a brief email when a lovingly crafted letter (even to complain) will hit the spot?
Over the years, Neville developed a passion for the English language, verbally berating all and sundry in the media for grammatical howlers, especially the continued abuse of the humble little apostrophe.
Being a devotee of the bass guitar, Neville played in various bands in York for about fifteen years, during which time he wrote numerous song lyrics. Nothing to rival any of the classics, but somebody had to write them; otherwise the band would have only performed instrumentals!
Working in warehouses began after leaving school in 1980, and continued until 2009 when Neville was struck down with chronic abdominal pain which forced him to give up his job. Unable to work for almost four years, attention turned to writing. Parodies of popular songs were first, followed by observations on everyday life. This gave Neville a taste of how all-consuming the joy of writing could be. A few attempts at something larger were abandoned through lack of direction or experience, but then in 2015 one short story was written which paved the way for a much larger work to evolve.
My Note: Neville cracks me up when he does things like this. His is a hunour fuelled by frivolousness and dry wit - even a torrential thunderstorm would struggle to dampen it. Read and enjoy these latest two short pieces to spring from his imagination:
CopyRight Against Plagiarism (C.R.A.P.)
Registurd office: No.2 Brown Alley
SH 1T 2DO
(Or log on to our website)
3 Platts Avenue
Heanor DE75 7XD
Date as postmark
Dear Mr Neale
We are currently acting on behalf of our client, a Mr. John Esus. Mr Esus has brought it to our attention that some 2,018 years ago someone took it upon themselves to write his biography, and that it was included in a collection of works known as “The Bible”. This collection was published by G. Odd Books of Heaven, and was granted divine copyright.
As the title is also under copyright, we have been instructed to act against anyone who has published any book or books using the word “the” in any part of its text.
Having reviewed your oeuvre, it would appear that you have used the word “the” on some 985 occasions, and so it is our duty to inform you that your infringements will be cosidered both retrospectively and subsequently, and therefore you are to pay G. Odd Books a sum of thirty pieces of silver, which when backdated to 1 A.D. should cost you, by our calculations, a total of 13,767,458 pieces of silver.
Based on the current prices of precious metals, it looks like you are going to be well and truly crucified (financially).
Now, unless you can come up with a scheme for curing all ills with a touch of your hand, or catering for a football stadium with a few fish cobs, I suggest you start saving (or begging), as our agent Mrs. Jude Ass will begin collecting your weekly payments from April 1st, 2018.
This is nothing personal; anyone who has ever written a book will receive a similar letter within the next few weeks. As the postage for all of these letters will be crippling for my client, we would be grateful if you could reimburse us by including the cost of a stamp with your first remittance.
NB: Any usage of the word “the” in this document has been permitted by our client.
Sue Theass (Department of Easy Money)
Have you ever had one of those moments when you realise that an enormous penny has dropped? It happened to me recently, and let me tell you, it sounded as if the entire contents of the Royal Mint had come crashing down on my head.
My wife and I were taking a walk in the countryside and the weather was good. There were sunshine and fluffy white clouds as far as the eye could see, and the birds were singing; it was definitely a spring day.
In the distance, on the top of a hill, there was a newly-built wind farm. The one thing that occurred to me at that precise moment was that there was no wind. The trees and the grass were all completely still, and so were the huge rotor blades.
It took a few seconds, but then I realised the truth after all these years. If one sees a field full of sheep, the farmer will be producing wool and/or meat; it is a sheep farm. If the field had been filled with cows, then it is either a beef farm or a dairy farm. Some chickens give you the clue that you are looking at a poultry farm.
By that logic, if you see a number of turbines you are looking at a wind farm… a farm which produces wind. If the blades are rotating and you feel a breeze, it will be those dirty great rotors generating the moving air. No rotation… no wind.
In the olden days we had to rely on temperature changes and air pressure and all that sort of ‘organic’ nonsense. If the Met Office drew lots of lines close together on a map, you got wind. Now it’s so much easier; plug in an eighty-foot diameter fan blade and off you go.
I cannot believe I had been so dumb for so long.
Next week on ‘Obvious Things You Never Knew’: Photographic evidence proving that the world was black and white until the 1940s.