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In April this year The Hysterectomy Association launched it’s third annual Hysteria Writing Competition with three categories, Flash Fiction, Poetry and Short Stories. This week, I’d like to introduce you to Helen Chambers – Flash Fiction winner. Helen’s winning entry can be found in Hysteria 3, the anthology of the top ten winners for each category. Helen is is currently studying for an MA in Creative Writing at the University of Essex, where her 50-second play ‘Revolution’ was recently performed as part of Essex’s Fiftieth Anniversary celebrations.

The Helen Chambers Interview

helen chambersWhat is one thing that no-one would usually know about you?

It’s only very recently that I started ‘admitting’ I was a writer. I was incredibly secretive about it. No-one, except my husband, knew for years. Winning this competition has encouraged me to ‘come out’ and confess how I spend much of my time!

Do you have any hints or tips for aspiring writers?

Never give up. Keep on writing! And read, read, read!

How do you remain sane while working?

I’m a fresh air freak and need to be outdoors for a while every day. I play tennis and walk regularly – and often have some of my best ideas when I’m outdoors, on the move!

What is the best excuse you have ever come up with for missing a deadline?

I don’t miss deadlines!

Where do you find your inspiration?

Sometimes in the newspaper I find an article or see a photo which inspires me. Overheard comments can be good, and often a writing exercise with a stimulus I haven’t chosen myself will lead me in surprising directions.

What is the book that you wished you had written?

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce. It’s a beautiful story and the writing is such a pleasure to read – the author’s use of language and ‘outdoor descriptions’ are spot-on. I go back to it when my writing is feeling sterile.

Tea, Coffee, Water, Juice, Wine or Beer … which do you prefer when writing?

I’m not sure if it was Oscar Wilde who said ‘write drunk, edit sober’ but I’ve generally found I write rubbish with a glass of wine as a companion, so I tend to drink water and tea – and save the wine as a treat for when I finish for the day!

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Where can I find more about Helen Chambers?

Hysteria 3You can meet Helen on her website at: about.me/helen_chambers

Hysteria 3 – the anthology of winning entries from the Hysteria Writing Competition is now available to order in Kindle format on Amazon here:

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Why ‘The Thursday Throng’?

These posts are called The Thursday Throng in honour of the throng that waits eagerly outside the book store when a new author is doing a book signing event or appearance. On this website it takes the form of a ‘Meet the Author‘ online event with some information about our author’s latest book and an interview. If you would like to take part in the Thursday Throng then why not visit Thursday Throng Author Interview Guidelines to find out more.

Linda Parkinson-Hardman

Social Entrepreneur and Founder of the Hysterectomy Association; Social Media Strategist at Internet Mentor; Speaker; Writer and Author of Eight Books; Blogger at http://womanontheedgeofreality.com and all round diva. Phew what a lot for a Thursday afternoon :-)

You can find out more about me (and perhaps connect) at http://www.linkedin.com/in/lindaph

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