Feedback, Local Theatre, and Reviews

Image Credits:-
All images from Pixabay/Pexels unless otherwise stated with many created in Book Brush. Book cover images from Chapeltown Books and Bridge House Publishing. Screenshots taken by me, Allison Symes.
Busy week this time with a trip to the theatre and running a flash fiction group online coming up. Both will be fun though.


Facebook – General

Posting early today as have a meeting tonight. Will also post again early for the next few days. It is just one of those weeks but at least the sun came out today and Lady got to play with her friend, a smashing Aussie Shepherd. Both dogs had a fab time.

Writing Tip: Never worry about how much time you’ve got to write. Just get something down. I’ve talked about using pockets of time before but I have to do this a lot and it does pay off. I have had several blogs drafted, stories written etc doing this. It would’ve been too easy to have missed the chance to write those things down, yet alone then go on to do something positive with them.

May be an image of studying

Lovely start to the day (and Lady got to show off her running skills to her older pal, the lovely Hungarian Vizler we know) and then by lunchtime it was pelting it down. One thing you can say about the weather in Britain – it is variable!

Have a busy week ahead with my visit to the theatre on Thursday and running the Flash Fiction group on Zoom for the Association of Christian Writers on Wednesday. Both will be great fun. (And I know I’ll get a review out of one of them and I suspect some draft flash fiction out of the other!).

Talking of reviews, remember these don’t have to be long and they are a great way of helping an author, so do bear that in mind. One from a review of Tripping the Flash Fantastic reads “Allison Symes can pack more into 100 words than most people can into 1000. Politicians take note!”

I wonder if I can make use of that given local elections are coming up soon!

Tripping The Flash Fantastic - by night

It’s St. George’s Day today (in England) and the birthday (also probable day of death too) for William Shakespeare. Have enjoyed watching several of his works thanks to National Theatre Live. Must try and get to see more.

Watching stories (stage or film) is another great way of taking in tales. My late mother would have been pleased about this. She tried to get me into the works of the Bard for many years. Would probably wonder why it took me so long! And the basic plots are often the basis for other stories – The Lion King is loosely based on Hamlet. His stories have inspired classical music too (The Love Theme for Romeo and Juliet being just one example).

Am off to local theatre later this week to see Spring Trio by The Chameleon Theatre Group.

Have never been tempted to act though I always admire those who do this well. It always has been the story I’ve been interested in. Doesn’t come as too much of a surprise that, does it?!

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Hope you are having a nice weekend. Off out for a lovely meal out later. Looking forward to that. Nice not having to cook!

I’ll be looking at How-To Guides (writing ones) for next week’s Chandler’s Ford Today post. I have used a few in my time and have found the ones I used (and still use) incredibly helpful. No one writer can know it all and a well written guide or two, developing networks of writer friends, and going to writing events are all invaluable for helping you learn your craft.

I use Scrivener for my writing and find both the inbuilt tutorial and the Scrivener for Dummies book by Gwen Hernandez to be great aids.

Link up for CFT post on Friday as usual.

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Facebook – From Light to Dark and Back Again

Many thanks for the great comments coming in on Going Home, my most recent tale on Friday Flash Fiction.

Feedback is much appreciated, especially for the short forms of writing. In the past where I was submitting something for a competition, if there was the opportunity to get feedback, I would take it. Usually there was a small additional fee (it is something towards the judge’s time) but I took the view it was worth it to get “soundings” back on my story. I always found this useful.

Sometimes I would then resubmit the story elsewhere and had it published then, having taken on board comments made. Didn’t always take the advice given – sometimes I had good reasons for disagreeing with it. But that was still useful. It made me work out why. And then there were those times when the commentator flagged up something so useful I wondered why I hadn’t spotted it in the first place! This is the way of these things.

Screenshot 2023-04-21 at 09-47-09 Going Home by Allison Symes

It’s Monday. It has been pouring down in my part of the world. It’s getting dark early due to the weather. It’s still Monday. Definitely time for a story then. Hope you enjoy my latest YouTube video – The Best. Not me being boastful (honest!) but see if you would do what my character does here faced with what she is facing.

One of the joys of going to things like The Writers’ Summer School, Swanwick, is getting to explore their wonderful Book Room! I’ve come back with flash collections and other books to enjoy many a time.

Don’t forget if you would like signed copies of either From Light to Dark and Back Again or Tripping the Flash Fantastic, please contact me and I will happily oblige! Payment is via bank transfer. Please contact me via the form on my website –



I was chatting about flash fiction and its benefits as part of an ACW meeting this morning. Always good to spread the word about the benefits of flash, no matter what else you write. I know it has brought on my editing skills a lot!

Sunday afternoons is often when I write a lot of flash. Always look forward to that. (I end up doing other bits and pieces on flash during the week whether I’m writing about it for blog posts or preparing for future books etc).

Above all, flash led me to having my own books published so will always love it for that alone!

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Goodreads Author Blog – What I Like about Reviews

All authors would like reviews, ideally good ones of course. What I like about reviews I read is when they give me information and a sense of what a book is about without giving away too much of it. These are the kind of reviews I try to write as well.

Other than buying a writer’s book, giving them an honest review is the second best thing you can do to help the authors in your life. We can share the fact we have had reviews in (which encourages people to take a look at those and hopefully our books too). It gives us a much needed morale boost. Bear in mind we are at our desks alone for a lot of the time. It is also a form of validation and most writers appreciate getting that every now and again.

So if you’ve read books you love, do review them. Reviews don’t have to be long. They don’t take much time to do and they really do help writers. And where better than to spread the word about the usefulness of well thought out reviews than at Goodreads?

Screenshot 2023-04-22 at 17-40-22 What I Like about Reviews





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