13 May 2019
13 May 2019
Lynne McVernon, author and theatre director who director me in several productions at the Young Vic Theatre celebrating Shakespeare’s birthday. She is also very generously talking about other productions I was in, as well as those she directed. The Young Vic was a truly wonderful time in my life. Thank you, Lynne.
Dear Will – whether on not you wrote the plays, you have been a major influence on all of us who ever read painfully aloud from A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM at school or scratched furiously through an essay on ‘The significance of gender and power in Othello’, or some such spurious twaddle, at university. You would probably be appalled – or amused.
Three examples from schooldays stand out in my mind. My first was the reading aloud one. The second was playing Trinculo in a snippet from THE TEMPEST at an end of year drama competition. My best friend, Lesley, played the monstrous Caliban and won the school Drama Prize because of it. It was an all girls school, so not such extraordinary casting. That said, she was an olive-skinned, half-Italian beauty which made her achievement in convincing the audience of the creature’s lumpen ugliness all the more praiseworthy. Incidentally…
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The news about the killings of Christians in hotels and churches in Sri Lanka was devasting and upset me as it did millions of people. However, as I had planned, I went to the Easter Day service at St. Mary’s Church in Lutterworth. I felt sad before I went, but the service was absolutely wonderful. Not only was it moving but it was incredibly uplifting. Afterwards, I took a stroll through the churchyard to see my mum and dad’s grave. The grass had been cut and although I had forgotten to take flowers it looked fine. I have no children or grandchildren so I can feel lonely on days like this. But not today. Walking home in the glorious sunshine I saw my friends Geraldine and David Tew in Costa Coffee. They beckoned me to join them and when they left another friend arrived. It was lovely to catch up with her and made what could have been a lonely time a really happy one. When I got home I had a sandwich and took a glass of chilled wine into the garden. When I’d fed the birds and the fish, I pottered in the garden before writing the backstory that was needed in my current novel.
As I said, what a lovely Easter Day this is turning into.
Oh, before you go. I spotted a beautiful white flower on a succulent that has never before had a flower. Fantastic.
Delighted to be Guest Writer on Lynne McVernon’s fabulous Blog today
Asked which plays I liked and which playwrights had influenced me after I had auditioned for a place at E15 Drama College I said, without a second thought, Shelagh Delaney. I was lucky that, without realising it, Shelagh Delaney had connections with E15 through E15 director Maggie Bury who had worked for many years with Joan Littlewood at Stratford Theatre, London E15.
In 1958 at the age of nineteen, Shelagh Delaney wrote “A Taste of Honey”
Twenty years after Shelagh Delaney wrote A Taste Of Honey I used it as an audition speech. In those days we had to perform three audition speeches; a standard English, a Shakespeare and a working class. Most of Jo’s lines are short, so I had to be creative by putting them together. It worked for some directors but not others.
Another favourite audition speech of mine was Cyrenne in Rattle of A Simple Man by Charles Dyer. When I got too old to play Jo, Cyrenne became my working-class character. Happy Days.
I am now a writer. As well as articles and poems, I have written seven novels. They are all character driven as well as plot driven. The way I approached the characters I played as an actress in the theatre has greatly influenced the characters I write about in my novels.
This isn’t it, but it’s a start. The church is my church: St. Mary’s at Lutterworth, the tree is one that was blown down last year in the gales, and the woman in the photograph is my lovely mum.
I have now written those inimitable words, The End. I didn’t want to push my luck when I was getting close but now, tis done. My current novel is a stand-alone sequel to The 9:45 To Bletchley, Ena Dudley’s story and the fourth novel in my Dudley Sisters’ Saga. This novel is a spy thriller, working title Cold Case, set in the 1950s, early in the cold war. I hit 80k plus words while I was on retreat in Fishguard, adding 10k to that this week. I am now editing and expect to lose 5k words tightening and cutting what my mentor calls, ‘the guff.’ Off to do some editing right write now.
It gives me the best, the warmest, feeling when someone tells me they enjoyed one of my books. But chosen as one of The top 50 Indie writers that readers need to be reading, by Bloggers (and authors) @calebandlindapritle.com is absolutely wonderful. Thank you so much, Caleb and Linda Pirtle.
Madalyn: You have been chosen as One of the Top 50 Indie Writers that Readers Need To Be Reading. Here is the link for your social media:https://calebandlindapirtle.com/madalyn-morgan-one-50-top-…/
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