Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

I'm using the anger!

I think I should write more late night emails. Getting my worries and frustrations off my chest has made me feel a lot better. But also all three recipients of my emails have replied to me and are (once more) looking into the issues I raised. You may remember I have been campaigning about a safer route to school and the injustice the pedestrians of Pool Hill (the abomination that I loosely refer to as a 'foot path' and road that leads to my daughter's school) has received from the council by them backtracking on their promises to make the road safer for the pedestrians.

When I couldn't sleep a few nights ago I sent off emails to two councillors and the police officer who have been involved. The one councillor has sent my email to the council's road department (Oh joy - I'd love to be a fly on the wall when the council read that one! I am quite sharp with my opinions on them!) and the other councillor is also making enquiries. The police officer is planning to meet with me soon so at least I feel I have done something to keep the ball rolling on this issue.

That's the problem when you are dealing with community matters. You have to keep badgering on and on and on and make a real nuisance and noise so that the people who can make the changes listen to you. A lot of people would have given up by now and believe me I have considered just shutting up and moving my daughter to another school where I can walk her more safely to school. A lot of people don't even bother to stick their heads above the parapet and stand up for their own safety and speak out about issues in their community that are affecting their quality of life. They prefer to leave it to people like me who will!

This issue has also given me several writing opportunities and I have met some pretty impressive people alongside some people who aren't doing their jobs properly and are quite happy to let pedestrians risk their lives by walking to school! It beggars belief it really does. I think we should get involved in community matters and I have an article in a local free mag encouraging people to do just this, plus more articles in the pipe line for a similiar magazine.

It's easy to get writing ideas if you just stick your head out of your window and listen to what people in your locality are talking about. Read the local newspapers to see what local people are up to. Could you make that small piece about a local man who has done something in your area to improve it into a full article adding bits about other people who have also done something?

Some local issues can be used for short stories too. I recently wrote a short story based on plans for an open mine to be situated in Telford. I made up a town name, added some characters with opposing views on the mine, added a bit of friction and romance, and the worlds your lobster! So it pays to keep your ear to the ground and who knows - you may make some money out of a local issue that is annoying you - you might not get anything changed but you'll feel better about it!

Julie xx


Carole Anne Carr said...

And as you say, wonderful material for a short story. Keep it tight and it's just what they are looking for! Hugs...xx

Olivia Ryan said...

That's great, that you've had replies to three of your e-mails. I bet you put your feelings across really well by writing them while you were so angry! Good luck with continuing your campaign. I'm afraid it's always true that while people like you are prepared to stand up and fight, others will sit back and let them! I used to get the same thing in my place of work - and it wore me down, eventually. xx

Julie P said...

It's very frustrating, isn't it, Olivia! Still they're on the case so I shall be waiting to hear what they have to say for themselves!

I'm always on the lookout for story ideas in everyday life, Carole, it's so fascinating!

Julie xx

The Buddhist Conservative said...

Getting the attention of political leaders is obviously no easier in the UK than the USA! As you say, most people don't want to get enmeshed in dealing with the doublespeak that these people have perfected to an art form.

Keep badgering them and see if you can find other brave souls to join in the fight. Angry constituents is the worst nightmare for a waffling politician.

Life is full of stories some wonderful and some not but your advice is spot on that we just need to be aware.

Namaste and good luck!