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Be Part of a Beautiful Story About Beautiful Stories.
Anne Beer is a delightful 79 year old lady who has had a eventful life, filled with every emotion both happy and also deeply tragic. As a small child she was often confined to her room with very little other than pencils and paper. Consequently she spent a lot of time either drawing or writing stories. She has become exceptionally good at both these things.
She has held successful art exhibitions and her short stories have been included in magazines and have won prizes in writing competitions. Yet one ambition she is yet to achieve is to get a book of her writing published. She told us she dreams of seeing her work in print before her 80th birthday which is towards the end of 2020 so the clock is ticking.
Anne has an assistance dog named Ellie who helps not only to keep her calm in social situations but has also saved lives and comforted those in distress.
In recent times, Anne has had some misfortune that has meant she has very little money and relatively few posessions. She does not own a computer or a smartphone and she would not know what to do with them if she did.
As a result, she is in absolutely no position to pay for printing a book, or to help with the production or promotion of the book, but myself and the other members of the Ilfracombe Writers’ Group want to make this book a reality if only to see her face light up when she sees it.
You see Anne also suffers from a very low self-esteem. Despite being a brilliant writer and painter, as well as a rather good photographer, she oftens says that she is worthless and that her opinions don’t matter. It’s not all doom and gloom though and she can have cheerful times. She is quick with a pun and always immensely kind.
(All the photographs here are from Anne’s camera, including the one used for the cover of the book.)
The book is a collection of stories written for various writing groups of which Anne has been a member, notably the South Molton writing group, and creative writing therapy sessions that she attended in the past.
When she moved to Hele she could no longer get to South Molton easily and so it was very fortunate that at that time the Ilfracombe Writing group was started which gave her something to look forward to each month during what was a very dark time for her.
The Book Cover
I asked Anne if she had any ideas for the cover art. We had decided on the title “Inspiration” some time ago and I wanted an image that was the pictorial personification of that word. I was thinking, perhaps, of a beautiful sunset.
Anne was way ahead of me, however, and had snapped this feisty determined poppy growing out of almost barren rocks on a beach scarcely above the high water mark.
It was perfect. Not only does this image encapsulate the word “Inspiration” but also it evokes the spirit of Anne herself, although she would probably dismiss that notion.
A beautiful and delicate flower forcing its way up to bloom and glow in the sunshine despite all the stumbling blocks and obstacles placed in its way.