Newsletter: October 2012
Monthly Meeting 25th October 2012
Tricia welcomed the smallish meeting, possibly due to the uncertainty of the weather. She expressed the meeting’s sympathy for committee member Ivo Chunnet, whose wife had died suddenly. But said how glad she was to see Sylvia at the meeting after her recent major surgery.
She said that the previous two weeks had been the most devastating in the history of Port Alfred and that volunteers were needed to help with flood relief work. They should contact Elridge Baatjies at the Fire Station on 046 624 2077, even if members were only able to heklp with donations of food or clothing. To this end a col ection bottle had been placed in the Settlers Park office for donations which would be forwarded to a responsible body for control of distribution.
Tricia said that we should really not let her arrange outings, as first the Nguni farm visit was cancel ed and now the visit to Hamburg, where the road conditions had been too bad, even before the floods. The committee decided that a local visit in Port Alfred would be more appropriate, but with landlines stil out of order it was felt too hard to arrange and thus decided that instead of an outing we should make a donation to flood relief. She asked the meeting their feelings on U3A giving a donation of R1,000 to the Settlers Park Flood Relief Fund. This was enthusiastical y adopted by the meeting.
The speaker on 22nd November would be Prof. Jan Neethling who would speak on Conflicts between Religion and Science, which should be thought provoking. We wil finish the year being serenaded by the delightful Allegra Singers and a special tea on 6th of December.
Tricia expressed a big thank you to Clare Meiring and Jan Brown for the boxes and boxes of ‘stuff’ for Keiskamma and, of course, Sue and Trevor Langley who always come to meetings heavily laden. I know the folk in Hamburg wil be delighted. Thanks are also due to Trish Versfeld who is providing storage space.
P Bag 2125 Port Alfred 6170
Tea Convenor & Armchair Travel: Sylvia Spenceley
Shel ey Goulding addressed us about the non-profit programme which she is introducing to
schools in our area. It uses volunteers to undertake the mentoring of one or two grade one
children in basic reading and writing on a weekly basis. No experience is needed as full train-
ing and all books and study aids are provided at the training seminar which volunteers attend
beforehand. The training session for Port Alfred wil be held on the 21st of November, and if
you are able to help this really worthwhile cause you can contact Yvonne Surtees on 046 624-
5570 or 072 476-1950
Fractured Time: Robert J Knowles
Wel -known Talk of the Town journalist, Rob Knowles had the small audience in fits of laughter
with his repartee and delivery, when he spoke about writing, publishing and sel ing your own
novel. Had we been able to bend time as his recently published novel “Fractured Time” de-
picts, we would have been able to let him go on and on as I thought it one of the most amus-ing and yet insightful lectures we have had. Although I found some of the theoretical science which he explained as part of his motivation for writing the novel rather hard to grasp, he is obviously passionate about what I think is called “The space-time continuum” and very amusing and yet practical in his encouragement of people to get out there and write. Whether a novel or an article, or even starting with a blog on the internet, his contention is that we all have a story to tel for future generations, and that we must just do it!He started his career in writing with an article called “Idle jottings of a pregnant father” which
was published in Living and Loving while he was stil in the computer industry, where he was involved in writing programs for C.A.D. (Computer Aided Design). He thus discovered the tal-ent which he has turned into a two pronged career. The first, as a journalist and the second as a published novelist. He pointed out however, that being a journalist is more of a hindrance than a help when writing a novel, as the two styles are so different.
He gave us some really good practical advice to getting published, and said that self publishing has become really viable these days, and that having a short print run done at your own ex -pense, with copies distributed to friends could also lead to wider publishing should a copy land up in the right hands.
But the main thing he stressed, was that one must be motivated by passion and not the desire for wealth or fame, neither of which were likely to result from most writing. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org in case you want to contact him, or order copies of his book which sounds most interesting if somewhat baffling (to me)!
Professor Neethling has had to cancel for November so Len Steinhardt wil take up the chal enge to be
the speaker. We have had some very fascinating talks by him before so we are sure he wil not
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