Writing group

Bank Street Writers: Scene

Larry sat down sweating, whilst his younger host picked cold blackberries from a bowl of fruit, ignoring the hot dish beside it.

‘How do you plan to bring him out?’ Larry asked. He wasn’t answered, and the younger man began chewing noisily.

‘I’ll get him out’ he eventually replied. ‘Don’t concern yourself with anything else.’


His host stopped eating and put a berry he was carrying back in the bowl. ‘If you really need to know,’ he said. Larry nodded. ‘What I’ll use has a reputation’, he raised his finger stopping Larry who was about to interrupt. He leaned back in his chair, stared down at the table and began tapping it with his finger. ‘If there was a Nobel prize for creating panic in our children, wives, you, me and everyone else, then it would win each year.’ He picked up another blackberry. ’So, don’t worry; I’ll bring him out.’

‘With what?’

‘Fear. I’m going to fill every corner of his house with it.’

About the above scene

Initially, I was going to publish a post about the benefits of writing groups, but I decided to publish this scene instead, which I wrote in a session at Bank Street Writers. The purpose behind sharing this is to demonstrate the type of writing that can come out of exercises at writing groups: under-produced but still possessing an idea that can possibly be expanded upon. To explore this point, and since I won’t continue the above piece in any way, I would like for you to leave comments below with what you think could’ve happened before and after the scene.

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Magic City Hippies – Magic City Hippies

Magic City Hippies coverLabel and release date: New World Music Group (2013)

If any band has captured the feeling of Miami or life in the sun it’s Magic City Hippies (previously known as Robby Hunter Band), and they do so with ease, but not after some perseverance by band leader Robby Hunter in search for permanent band members, later to be multi-instru​mental​ists Pat and John, to join the Hippie Castle and release their début album, Magic City Hippies.

The opening track is an energetic introduction to the sound of indie-funk and the life of Miami bohemian citizens, whilst the songs that follow expand on the Magic City Hippy lifestyle. Every track on the album is positive, cool and slick, but despite their loose and enjoyable feel they are all delicately crafted. Book I Never Read, Never Say No and Hard on Me are all examples of this, whilst tracks like Corazón, Treat You Right and T.Y.A Interlude fuse rock, hip hop, dance and disco. Unsurprisingly, these are some of the best songs on the album, but they don’t steal the appeal from the immensely good tracks Prime, Fire and the most lyrically entertaining song on the album, Bust.

Magic City Hippies has been described as “oozing with funk”, and for good reason: this début has cemented the band’s unique sound and is enough to keep any listener satisfied until the band release their next full-length album.

  • Reasons to listen to: a great album that’s fun to listen to with songs that can be played again and again without losing their colour or appeal.
  • Where to get: Bandcamp

Magic City Hippies:




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A Creative Writing Degree: To do or not to do?

Many of the most exceptional writers have not been educated at degree level or its equivalent (Ray Bradbury, Maya Angelou and H. G. Wells are a few examples), and creative writing courses have been brought into question by writers, to an extent, because of this, which is what occurred during my time studying creative writing at Edge Hill University.

Amongst the students I studied with, whenever it was discussed whether creative writing should be a standalone degree, or a degree at all, the responses given were either nods of approval followed by comments on how and why it is a subject worth learning at higher education or head shakes in disagreement with statements explaining why it was just another Mickey Mouse subject. From my own experiences, time spent studying creative writing can be tremendously useful for new writers or writers who want to improve their ability: (more…)

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Submissions, and Two Years of Inkposts

During the past two years Inkposts has had contributors submit consistently, but we would like to have more submissions following the site’s second birthday this September.

As well as this, we want our readers, and potential contributors, to know more than ever that Inkposts is a space for enjoying writing, and not only the work of those who run the site, but, hopefully, of many more. Our submission guidelines can be viewed here.

Following our second anniversary, Inkposts will be undergoing a few changes:

  • Your Week Fictionalised (YWF) will no longer be a feature on the site.
  • We will attempt to add a new post at least once a week (we are a team of three and our ability to contribute varies).
  • We are also going to bring a slightly new dimension to the site with the writing we review and explore outside the original work on Inkposts. There will be updates on this in the future.

The past few years have been entertaining and extremely educational. We are glad to have the readership we do, and we look forward to keeping this space a place for enjoying writing.

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A CUTting Experience

CUTCut A Long Story (CUT) is a website for lovers of short story fiction and a place for writers to sell short stories. It is run by a team of ten of people and was launched in 2014 with the help of the National Association of Writers in Education and Sleeping Giant Media.

CUT’s unique selling points are the ease in which authors can upload their work, the simplicity behind the publishing process and the way payment is calculated and made to the author – without there being any production charge on the author’s side. As well as this, each story is proof read by a member of the CUT team before it is published. I’ve now had my work available on CUT for a few months, and I’m glad it’s there. (more…)

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Dredd2012PosterDirector and writer: Peter Travis and Alex Garland. Cast: Karl Urban, Olivia Thirlby, Wood Harris, Lena Headey and others. Studio: DNA films. Release date: 2012

Dredd is the latest big-screen adaption of the long-standing comic strip and comic book Judge Dredd. The previous film released in 1995 is a baby-soft interpretation in comparison to 2012’s cult movie, which features Karl Urban as the titular character: Judge Dredd, Olivia Thirlby as Judge Anderson, Lena Headey as villiain Ma-Ma and Wood Harris as Kay, Ma-Ma’s right hand man.

One of the most impressive qualities of Dredd is Mega-City One. It brings Dredd’s world into reality; the graffiti, the demographic makeup and behaviour of the city’s inhabitants as well as the judges and unsettling conditions that people in Mega-City One live in feel real. The violence of Dredd adds to this reality, and the effects make it seem less like gore and more like art in slow motion thanks to the drug that keeps Mama’s purse fat: Slow-Mo. (more…)

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Major Notes – Nu African Disco Vol 2

Nu African Disco Vol 2Label and release date: Lossol Entertainment (2015)

Major Notes emerged some time ago in the years of UK funky house. Since then, his sound has evolved into something more original and, most importantly, unique.

At the moment, afro house has yet to reach the UK audience the same way UK funky did, but Major isn’t troubled by this and uses the African-driven form of house/bass, as well as elements of UK funky, bass music and afro beats, to spearhead his new EP (Nu African Disco Vol 1 was similar in direction also and his most popular release to date). This makes Nu African Disco Vol 2 a medley of African sounds – and it works tremendously well. (more…)

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Immortal: The Life and Legacy of Thomas Dean

ImmortalPublisher and release date: Susan Dean (2014)

Immortal is the collection of writings by Thomas Dean put together by his family following his death in 2013. Part of the proceeds from the book are donated to the Thomas Dean Memorial Fund, which was set up after Thomas Dean’s passing to help young people fulfil their college aspirations.

The book starts with the powerful, titular poem Immortal and is followed by several poems, essays, short stories and insight from family and friends.

Thomas Dean’s writing in Immortal contains several themes, but religion and loss are prominent. Pieces like Dead as What Made Us, Exodous Story and Jewish Literature are examples of this. Some of his best writing extends beyond those themes, such as in April and Thoughtsonwordswordsonthoughts – which are about love and connection, but not all of Dean’s writing is well executed as many pieces are ambiguous in a way that I thought showed the writer’s writing was still developing. Dean’s essays cover many topics and give the best insight into his mind, whilst the exceptional stories Patriot’s Shame and Insurgency demonstrate his storytelling skills. (more…)

Stump by Jared Smith

The Man in the Tree

His head protrudes like the top of a bust, only he’s trying to free himself before the silent executioners terrorizing the city reach him and his home; the tree.

Every morning he sticks out a little further. He watches us for help, and his head turns as we walk past him, voiceless and in pain. He looks exhausted, afraid and trapped.

We debate whether we should help him or not. Whether we should gather our tools and creep out of our houses at night before the executioners get to him. Whether we should free him, save his home and reward his efforts.

By the time we decide to take action there’s nothing left of him but a stump. We look down at the rings left by his soul and go back home knowing he may have been the last one we could have saved before the overseers create a reason to cut us out too.

Eternal Love Suradej by Chuephanich 2

A Love for Honesty

You tie people together,

and I cherish the release you bring,

but your passion is striking,

sometimes cruel – I can hate you for it

as the truth is a heavy load.

But without it my relationships are skin deep and open to pain.

Maybe you’re better left


. . .

but I wouldn’t want anyone to hide you from me,

for I know how much I love you,

and I know how much of a burden it is to keep you away.

Under the bridge by Marco Zak

A Love for Dishonesty

You are my safety net.

A guilty pleasure I shouldn’t come back to . . .  but I’m attached to you.

I fall back on you when I can’t explain

or reach for you when I need to hide from others and myself.

You conceal my thoughts, my secrets and

you let me get away with my worst actions.

You’ve saved me several times, and you’ll continue to do so.

My dear white lie,

my dear sin,

without you this life would be insurmountable,

for honesty is a weight none of us should have to carry alone.

I love you,

but our relationship is a secret.

One I will always deny exists.

Mannequin 3


My wife asked me to come to the mall, but I wasn’t in the mood for its crowds or life-like mannequins. “Careful,” I said, “last time one of them tried to grab me.” She laughed, left and never came back.

I reported her missing: “She has a green handbag and a scar on her forehead,” I told police. “She’s beautiful.”

They promised to find her. They never did.

Sometimes, I pass the store where she was last seen; one of its mannequins carries a green handbag and has a mark on its forehead. For a piece of plastic, it’s beautiful.

Note on Mannequin

I wrote Mannequin for Off the Shelf’s competition Retail Tales, which was made in partnership with Meadowhall shopping centre in Sheffield. The word limit was 100 words. It came runner up and appeared on the Off the Shelf Festival of Words website.

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Watch & Wait: A Timeless Anthology

Watch & WaitPublisher and release date: Cybermouse Books (2014)

Watch & Wait is an anthology put together to raise awareness of the cancer lymphoma (even the title of the collection is named after what patients do between treatments: watch and wait), and as Illness can be personal but still effect the people closest to us, it’s fitting that many of the stories in it revolve around relationships.

The opening story, Jungle Palace, by Angela Robson, explores people’s potential for brutality with ease and is one of the most memorable stories in the book – despite feeling like a snippet of a larger story. The following tales are less graphic and have different themes but are in no way less enjoyable. Bryony Doran’s Suppose I was to tell you . . . is an excellent look at a different culture through the eyes of a character that is watching from the outside in. Robson’s Wedding Pictures and Jemma Kennedy’s Fig Tree also touch on this theme to good effect. Further in the anthology recurring themes of support, love, isolation and jealousy are explored in stories such as The Enemy Within, Red Stripe Candy and Ghost Baby. Ian McMillan and David Swann also bring humour to the collection with their stories Mr Mason’s Story and Cock of the Block, the latter being immensely entertaining and one of the highlights of the book. (more…)

2014 In Review

WordPress have created a 2014 annual report for us, so take a look enjoy the stats! And we would like to say thank you to everyone who follows us.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 4,800 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 4 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.