On Saturday I was very proud to host Lisa Blower at Hanley Library for a very special City Voices meeting. Lisa was reading from and talking about her first short story collection, It’s Gone Dark Over Bill’s Mother’s”, which is a charming collection of stories that have won, been listed, or highly commended in various prestigious competitions over the years. To have them all in one volume is a treat. Lisa is an advocate – and wonderful exponent of working class fiction. One of her influences is Alan Bennett, and it certainly shows. She has his wit, his observation, his ability to cut down into the marrow of ordinary characters and allow them to tell their extraordinary stories through language and human quirks.
She read ‘Chuck and Di’, which was very reminiscent of a Bennett monologue. Wonderful stuff.
We had a nice informal Q&A after (in that we did it not from the stage but sitting in our seats in the audience, with Lisa casually chatting from her chair). I always worry that no one will ask anything at a Q&A. but there were no issues – everyone had a lot to say and ask, and it all went very well.
City Voices members also did some readings from their own publications, and there was plenty of time during the morning to buy their books, and of course Lisa’s, which she signed. All in all a very brilliant morning. Thanks to everyone who came out and made the day very special. It is always a huge pleasure to have Lisa at our events, and we hope to see her again in the not too distant future.
You can buy Lisa’s collection, along with her other fiction, by clicking on this link here. We wish her the best of luck with it.