Each month, more than 20 community groups or individual members enter their stories and updates from the Forest Lake Community. This makes up our valued group of Community Contributors. Below are our two articles for the Arts and Entertainment categories below, featuring the Forest Lake Photography Club and FLAIR (Forest Lake and Inala wRiters club)
Forest Lake Photography Club
By Steve Roberts
The Heritage Bank Slideshow Award for February was won by Tony Ryder for his beautiful photo of a Cattle Egret and her chicks. Congratulations Tony!
The club meets on the second Tuesday of every month at 7:15 pm at the Forest Lake Community Hall and visitors are most welcome. At the March meeting, one of the professional photographers in the club gave us a presentation on Photoshop. Thanks Marigold, you really make it look so easy. We also had an outing during the month to the Brisbane Botanic Gardens. Even though it was such a hot day, we managed to keep in the shade and take plenty of photos.
If anyone is interested in learning more about our club, see the website forestlakephotographyclub.com.
Forest Lake and Inala Writers (FLAIR)
By Bill Youatt Pine.
I write because I can. I know all the alphabet by heart. Capitals and smalls. All the punctuation, even the ellipsis. I started learning it back in 1943 and I have been writing ever since.
I also know the mechanics of the English language and I know how to employ them. For instance, I know when to use its and it’s, I know why we don’t say “For my mother and I…”; I know why the plural of potato is not potato’s; I can tell my active from my passive, and my subjunctive from a tin of herrings. Therefore, I am competent to write.
My cat is another factor. To him, the conglomeration of stuff in my study is like Aladdin’s Cave: things he can walk over, sit on, poke at and sniff till the cows come home. Whenever I see him sitting outside my study door, I know I ought to be writing something. He is the itch that finally we must yield to, and scratch. Having thus succumbed, I open the door: the Portal to Another World – in the way of all good science fiction tales. Not that I am a science fiction buff, I leave that to others. I am fixed solidly in the here and now, even if the here and now is not 2023 but 1883, or 1954, or 79 AD which is when Vesuvius blew up. I have a story about that too, involving oysters.
Portal now closed firmly behind me, I am in a world of limitless senses, situations, emotions, actors and outcomes: all of which are subject to my whim and fancy. The Government can’t intervene, nor the CIA start nosing around. I can do marvellous things: I can create and destroy, I can cloak and reveal, I can move time, move mountains, move any number of geographies, and if they don’t suit, or if I get fed up with them, I can change them back again with a single tap on a key.
What is it that gets me started on a piece of writing? Well, obviously you must have an idea, and we all have those. Some of us are more garrulous and self- opinionated than others. It’s very seldom I am stuck for words.
But what if you are devoid of an idea? Well, I can construct a story out of any four words – if I sit at the keys long enough – such as custard, influenza, lightning and revolution. Straightaway. I can see how they might all be connected, sharpened and spruced up by my ability to write, and eventually turn them into something that is at least halfway readable.
And what’s the payoff for all this? What do I get out of it? Well, there doesn’t have to be a payoff. Not everything is predicated on money, you know: however much the banks tell you otherwise. Nevertheless, there is always the off chance that a publisher will pick you up and give you one million dollars for a book that he can turn into a film script (and don’t
scoff: this actually happened to a friend of mine in 2004, though he was slightly shy of a million: a famous publisher gave him a cheque for $981,000, which proves that lightning can sometimes strike in the right place.)
Besides the financial aspect, there is the power trip, the creative factor, the all- knowing and all-powerful, that I mentioned before.
Then, if today’s news isn’t optimistic for the future of humankind, you can delve into your own world and float around inside it, like in a comfy sauna or on a day at the beach: refreshing and for a while at least, in oblivion. That might be the coward’s way out of the trials of modern living, but it is still valid. It’s called “Escape”.
Just before closing, I should warn you that writing can be a solitary occupation. That’s where FLAIR comes in. If your family and friends have nothing more constructive to say about your writing than “Oh, that’s nice” – remember FLAIR awaits you, ready to give you the kind of help and encouragement that you need. Bring something of your own contriving to read out to us, which is not nearly so terrifying once you have seen others do it (as my sister-in-law said when she gave birth to twins). Enjoy the free morning tea that the generous Brisbane City Council provides through their friendly Library staff and have fun! The possibilities are endless.
Remember: even William Shakespeare had to buy his first typewriter.
FLAIR meets on the first Tuesday of the month. 9:00 am until noon. For more information call Tom on 0402019612.