It seemed a bit harsh to leave the Westley Literary Group in limbo, so here is the second chapter in their rebirth as Westley Writers and their first attempted meeting under their new guise. (full chapter under ‘Writing, Westley Writers’ – link at end of post)
‘So we’re free then. Taken back control. On our own. Sailing into a bright blue entrepreneurial sunrise of opportunity.’ Ashby said.
Stephanie raised a perfect, if nowadays little too highly set, eyebrow. Straker offered a thin smile,
‘We lost the readers section John. It’s not as if Lillian Dobson is Donald Tusk is it?’
‘Not as attractive.’
‘That’s sexist John.’ Stephanie chided without rancour.
‘Fair enough. Sorry love.’ Ashby said. He was of a generation and inclination which translated ‘PC’ into ‘Police Constable’ on a good day, but in reality that meant ‘policeman’ to him. The world of WPCs and Police Officers lay in a distant neverland of unimagined horror for John Ashby. Gender neutral language was on a list of works in progress that never seemed to get any shorter or accumulate ticks in any of the requisite boxes.
‘Besides,’ Straker said trying to divert Ashby from riding off on one of his many hobby horses. ‘We may have a few published authors, but we aren’t exactly brimming over with JK Rowlings or Paulo Coelhos are we?’
‘Who?’ Ashby said
‘I thought you’d have read all the Harry Potters John.’ Stephanie said.
‘Cheeky mare. You know I meant that Kwayloo bloke. It is a bloke is it Jules?’
‘Brazilian author. Wrote the Alchemist?’
‘Never heard of him.’
‘He speaks very highly of you.’
‘All right clever clogs why would we want him anyhow?’
Straker hesitated a moment, thinking of how best to explain Coelho’s work. The exploration of personal legend probably wasn’t going to sell anything to John, and the critical reviews of much of Coelho’s later works in particular would not be helpful. But of course there were the sales, the way to Ashby’s heart.
‘Because he’s made about four hundred million dollars.’
Ashby stared. ‘Bloody hell.’ he offered after a few seconds. ‘Bloody hell.’
‘Words into gold.’ Stephanie said.
Julian smiled. ‘Maybe we should write a joint effort called ‘The Philosophers Stone’ and see how much we can make.’
‘Back to Harry Potter.’ Ashby said
Continued here https://gfarrish.wordpress.com/writing/westley-writers/