Digital Sabbath

We take lovely time out along Long Bay beach

We take lovely time out along Long Bay beach

Social media is frenetic and changing constantly. The weight of the information passing through can be over whelming.

I spend a lot of my time as a social media consultant educating my clients on how they can reduce or manage their social media marketing in balance with their other small business needs.

Social media is a lot like being a manager of a student radio station. You need to make sure the station is ‘on the air’ at all times. Everyone does a lot of listening. We weren’t designed to work 7 days a week.

So I started having a no social media, no computer, no interactive on line electronics day. A day off from devices.

Thanks the The School of Life video’s on You tube, I’ve learnt its called a digital Sabbath. It helps me stay grounded and I’ve learnt if something really important happens, then my friends will tell me, to my face. Try it. Turn off your phone, such down your computer and switch off your Ipad one day a week and just relax.

 

Melodic comedy at Andover Afternoon Poetry Cafe

Two comic Hampshire poetry giants, Syd Meats and Ivor Bundell are the March guest for the Andover Afternoon Poetry Cafe.

Ivor Bundell former secretary for Big Up Words is the founder of Secret Poetry at www.secretpoetry.co.uk. It is a website which publishes free downloads, an occasional e-zine and sells poetry online. Ivor was M.C at the Poetry cafe pilot at the Bridge in 2012. He’s best remembered for his humorous poetry about carrots.

Ivor has produced three albums with his brother Kevan and a solo album entitled ‘Heart & Stone’. A poet, singer-songwriter and near novelist, Ivor hails from the Meon Valley and writes about the natural world and local history.

Guest musician Syd Meats is Romsey songwriter and poet.  In Syd’s early career he worked for the BBC writing songs for Nottingham BBC local radio.

In the 90’s he fronted surreal indie band Meet The Vicar, and also wrote and performed a one man show Meats Saves The Planet which was a mixture of songs and spoken word.  During this period his brushes with the famous included having a cup of tea in the same room as Barbara Windsor and speaking to Ernie Wise on the phone twice.

His musical Christmas guest spot at the Teapoet Collective was called a triumph. In a recent street performance in Andover, he re-wrote the town’s history to include a Viking founder with the unfortunate name of Eric The Hippopotamus. Not only have Syd’s songs been heard on local and national radio, but they have also been used to teach English in the Sudan and Natural History in the UK.

“We’re really excited to have such a fantastic talent coming to Andover,” said organiser Cat Randle.

Andover Afternoon poetry cafe is held on the second Saturday of the month at The Rendezvous Cafe, 8 Union St, Andover, SP10 1PA. The first half of the afternoon is reserved for local poets, entertainers and acoustic musicians. The guest spots are after a tea break with cakes supplied by The Great British Tea & Cake company.

“We picked the Rendezvous Cafe because it is has excellent disabled access. We are able to accommodate wheel chairs because it’s all on the level. I’m amazed at how well it’s doing. The big surprise was the special needs poets. One lady, Rosie, has come to every cafe and last time got up and performed a poem from memory. She even wrote us all our own copy so we could understand what she was saying. It was brilliant! “ said Cat Randle.

The cafe organisers are grateful for the support of  Pat West councillor grant and Hampshire County Council.

Andover Afternoon Poetry Cafe, March 28th from 1.30pm to 3.30pm at the Rendezvous Cafe, 8 Union St, Andover SP 10 1PA.

Syd Meats having a cup of tea.

Syd Meats having a cup of tea.

Ivor Bundell musing on Meon Valley

Ivor Bundell musing on Meon Valley

Ivor Bundell returns with secret poetry.

Ivor Bundell musing on Meon Valley

Ivor Bundell musing on Meon Valley

Ivor Bundell former secretary for Big Up Words is the founder of Secret Poetry at www.secretpoetry.co.uk. It is a website which publishes free downloads, an occasional e-zine and sells poetry online.

Ivor was M.C at the Poetry cafe pilot at the Bridge in 2012. He’s best remembered for his humorous poetry about carrots.

Ivor has produced three albums with his brother Kevan and a solo album entitled ‘Heart & Stone’. A poet, singer-songwriter and near novelist, Ivor hails from the Meon Valley and writes about the natural world and local history.

His most recent work includes the newly discovered and translated ‘Winchester Tales’, a natural history of butterflies ‘Moments of Delight’ and ‘Randall –  A Triptych: Untold Tales, A Narrative Odyssey, The Existential Comedy’.

Andover Afternoon poetry cafe is held on the second Saturday of the month at The Rendezvous Cafe, 8 Union St, Andover, SP10 1PA. The first half of the afternoon is reserved for local poets, entertainers and acoustic musicians. The guest spots are after a tea break with cakes supplied by The Great British Tea & Cake company.

 

Bobbie Coelho inspirational poet.

Bobbie Coelho winner of the Andover section

Bobbie Coelho winner of the Andover section

When Bobbie was 11, she wrote a poem about a cowboy. Her teacher said, “There’s real feeling here.” Bobbie comments “I got a good mark for it.”

As she enters her third age, Bobbie’s poetry is helping her educate people about another passion, Parkinson’s disease.  In her poem ‘Control Freak’ she says;

She comes and goes when she pleases
and never makes life easy
It’s usual for hijackers to be jailed
Mrs P not easy to curtail

Bobbie was working in Tidworth Library as a library assistant when she was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2002. Parkinson’s disease is progressive neurological condition.

People with Parkinson’s don’t have enough dopamine because some nerve cells in their brain have died. The chemical dopamine is produced naturally in the body and functions as a neurotransmitter. It is part of the pleasure and reward pathway of the brain and is involved in memory and motor control. Symptoms of Parkinson’s include depression, shaking, moving slowly and stiffness.

Bobbies first reaction to her diagnosis was a private prayer of “God don’t make me bitter,” She decided to become a good finder. Bobbie is adamant poetry has helped her retain a sense of who she is and it has not let the Parkinson diagnosis eat her away.

At a difficult time where a lot of people would be afraid to go out in public Bobbie became a staunch crusader for people suffering from Parkinson’s. She has written two poetry books “Finding the light” and “Reflecting the light” to raise money to fight the disease.

Bobbie’s poetry crusade started in 2003, when an intuitive friend said ‘I’ve a vision of you as a poet.’ Bobbie went home, wrote a poem and just left it on the computer.  But after writing her second poem ‘Freak’ she realised life had changed.

“I’m quite proud of the book. The best part of putting the book together was choosing the cover. I write when I feel like it, so it’s not every day or every week. I tend to write about things that inspire me.”

Bobbie’s poetry is accessible, connecting with her audience at a visceral level.  She is very good at capturing emotionally charged moments in time. Her poetry is easy to understanding, using rhyming schemes that her fans enjoy. Bobbie’s audience can read her poems and immediately connect with the subject or character she is writing about.

“I started showing people my poetry and the more I showed, the more I wrote. Then I did some little booklets and handed them out. But I wanted to reach a wider audience.”

Bobbie has been through a major change and acknowledges she’s gained as well as had things taken away.

“It’s given me a deeper insight into human nature. I’d like to think I’m more compassionate. When you met someone all you see is their clock face, you don’t’ see the real person. People are very quick to judge but don’t know the whole story. I have seen people look at the blue disabled badge on my car, and they watch me step out in high heels. I can see them thinking ‘why does she get a badge if she’s got high heels?’ but they don’t see the days I’m crawling around the house because I can’t walk.”

Andover and Hampshire audiences enjoy her poetry. She is a regular speaker at WI groups. You can find her books in many varied places around Andover as diverse as Beaker Button wool shop in Weyhill Fair to the Vine Trust Christian bookshop in central Andover as well as Amazon.

“It’s important to promote the books but it’s a double edged sword. I’m raising money for Parkinson’s and spreading awareness. I hope I’m not too pushy but on the other hand it’s the most important thing in my life.”

Bobbie has been a consistent supporter of the Andover Poetry competitions when it ran from 2011 to 2014. In the first competition she placed second overall and in the last she was 1st in the Andover section. You can still buy her 2011 winning poem as a post card on the Travelling Bookstall.

Bobbie will be performing at Andover Poetry Cafe on February 14th at the Rendezvous Cafe, 8 Union St, Andover SP10 1PA. The cafe starts at 1.30pm. She will also be performing at Books and Words at The Lights Andover on February 14th between 12 and 12.30 pm.

 

On the 4th day of Christmas…4 fantastic books

Sally Startup has 4 novels for young adults and FINALLY the 2nd in the Tree Speaker series Spice City has arrived. If you have a teenager who is into fantasy, the power of friendship, animals, or rock ‘n roll then Sally will have a book for you. You can buy these books off Smashwords or buy them from the R.A.W stall at the Rendezvous Cafe in Andover on Friday mornings. For more info her is her website http://www.sallystartup.co.uk/

A young child learns the value of friendship

A young child learns the value of friendship

A comming of age novel about a trials of starting a rock band

A comming of age novel about a trials of starting a rock band

Long awaited 2nd book in the Tree Speaker series

Long awaited 2nd book in the Tree Speaker series

Sally Startup's excellent fantasy novel

Sally Startup’s excellent fantasy novel

Performance opportunity at Michaelmas Fair

IMAG3489The Travelling Book fair will be at Michaelmas fair, Weyhill Fairground on Saturday September 20th from 12-4pm and Sunday September 21st form 12-4 pm. We’ve negotiated 8 outdoor performance slots of 15 mins just for you. Music, poetry, funny skits and comedy is what is needed. Remember its family friendly so nothing naughty or rude. Outdoor performing is hard work but people at the fair are friendly and fun.

All money raised will go to our two new projects, the performance and poetry cafe and a marketing pilot to find out what book groups want to read.

Interested? Email us at bigupwords@gmail.com and tell us what you’d like to perform and which day.

Calling anyone who wants to help

We’re currently fundraising to relaunch our poetry cafe. We have been very lucky to be able to bag pack and Asda. Basically we turn up, this time 4 pm on Thursday 28th. Then we stand at the end of the isle and offer to pack bags. Half the time people don’t want us to  pack bags but they will give us change.

But here’s the thing. It’s a great way of talking to people who don’t know we exist. This time we’ll be handing our flyers about the 3 events we are holding in Chapel Arts in September and we’ll be taking membership forms.

Because you don’t know where the next great reader or great writer is coming from. Asda are even going to let us run the Travelling Bookstall downstairs if we have any takers. So turn up 4pm this Thursday so we can help relaunch our poetry cafe in a place that is accessible and will be safe for teenagers and fragile folks.

If you want more info contact us at www.bigupwords.co.uk or txt 07760993597

A tale of steampunks, pirates and poets, brought to you by Big Up Words


Steampunk pirate poets

I entered the pirate drinking-den to find a mechanical maid was serving… tea? 

Steampunk pirate poet performance

Poet pirates performed. They were joined on stage by the mechanical maid.

Sally and Ivor, steampunk pirate poets I helped Erik the Viking pirate and musical pirate Ivor to organise games of the mechanical maid’s devising.

Ivor, Erik and Sally, steampunk pirate poets.

Poor Erik slumped a bit under the weight of responsibility.

But, shiver-me-timbers, a jolly fine time was had by one and all.

All images by www.fizit.co.uk 

 

Arrgh one day away from the Steampunk, pirates and poets party me hearty

We are excited. We’ve sorted out 5 piles of prizes for the costumes. We’ve arranged for a photographer to take photo’s. Here’s his site,

We’ve worked out at LEAST three Steampunk party games! The Bundell Brothers and Syd Meats have piratey songs. And David Gandy has cancelled so there is more space for poets. The Travelling bookstall will be there for your bookish needs. The pub are ready for us and yes me hearties they will be selling rum!
Here be the co-ordinates for yeah Tom-Tom navigator The Globe, 23 High Street, Andover, Hampshire  SP10 1LJ and we be opening the doors up stairs at 7.20.
Be ready to party me hearties!

The poets of the Steampunk pirates and poets party.

The party has an open mic and we can now announce that Mr Carrot aka Ivor Bundell, Paul Owens (one of this years winners of the Andover poetry competition), Steve Scholey (1st prize in 2012) and David Gandy have all booked slots. We do have about 4 spaces but that doesn’t incude the ones we will have reserved on the night. So the poets are all in force. Waiting to hear back from the pirates.

Paul Owen when he's not a pirate

Paul Owen when he’s not a pirate

Steve reading out his poetry at Andover Celebration of  National Poetry Day
Steve reading out his poetry at Andover Celebration of National Poetry Day

Ivor sailing the high seas!

Ivor sailing the high seas!