We write for an audience! Whether an audience of one or a sell-out in the West End, we write for an audience and as writers we want that audience to enjoy, appreciate and react positively to our work.
Yesterday was my 4th visit to Tremethick House, and my most nervous, as I planned to read my performance pieces to each resident who had provided me with their work-related stories.
I started with Sylvia, who had inspired me to write 'The Three-Teated Cow', about her less than successful attempts at milking on the family farm. To my delight and relief, Sylvia remembered telling me the story and then laughed in all the right places as I read to her. A great start!
Moving on to John, I had a bigger audience as his wife and a friend were visiting. And so I read 'Value for Money' about John's working life as an agricultural fitter. The piece went down well with requests for copies to show other family members.
The rest of the one-to-one readings - including a haiku - went equally well, with useful feedback that will all help as we move toward the big peformances in November.
Reading back to the residents about their work experiences, as well as collecting more, only served to underline how important art is to health, how it enriches the moment.
Then I sat in on the Halloween Quiz run by Tremethick's Activity Manager, Josie. The afternoon was a perfect example of how moving into and living in a residential home IS about LIVING. Fantastic day. Fantastic community.