Sunday, 22 November 2015

Police psychologist turned crime author to give talk at Molesey Library

Former police psychologist John Marzillier will be the guest speaker at the next Author Event organised by the Friends of Molesey Library.

John’s talk will take place on Tuesday January 26th 2016 at the Library following the Friends’ Annual General Meeting, which will start at 7.30pm. His talk is entitled To Hell and Back and will reflect his work as a clinical psychologist and psychotherapist.

John, who is now retired and working as a writer, was employed for many years by the Thames Valley Police Force as their Force Psychologist. He has extensive experience working with people who have been through major traumas and has written a number of books on the science of trauma and on the many and varied psychotherapies available to trauma sufferers.

You are warmly invited to join the Friends of Molesey Library Committee for a drink at our Annual General Meeting and find out more about how the group is supporting Molesey's local library.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Stop press: Vanora Bennett author evening postponed

The Author Event planned for next Tuesday has been postponed as Vanora Bennett has been admitted to hospital. Those who had already bought tickets were notified immediately by phone. It is a shame as I think many of us were really looking forward to the event especially as our June event was also postponed because of the uncertainty with staffing at the library.

Our next event will be on Tuesday 25th November so please put the date on your calendar and you will receive further details in due course.

The Friends started a KNIT and NATTER session this month. These sessions are planned for the third Tuesday afternoon each month from 2.00 onwards. The first event was very enjoyable. Everyone is welcome so do come along or if you are unable to come yourself, please spread the word. Next session is Tuesday 20th October 2015.

A reminder that the drop-in Coffee Mornings every Friday are very popular and a bargain - just £1.00 for coffee/tea & cake!  Do come along if you can.

Please remember that we can always use volunteers to help at these events if you have a little time to spare. We look forward to seeing you soon.

Kind regards,
Pauline Morozgalska
Chair of the Friends

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Next Author event: Vanora Bennett: an obsession with Russia

When the autumn nights start to draw in, why not head over to Molesey Library for one of our popular Author Events?

The first of the new series will be held on Tuesday September 29 at 7.30pm and will feature Vanora Bennett, who admits to having ‘an obsession with Russia’.

Vanora started her career as a journalist, working in Paris, Cambodia, and parts of Africa and finally landing in the country which stopped being the Soviet Union three months after she arrived. She spent much of the early 1990s in smoky taxis in the Caucasus mountains, covering a series of small post-Soviet conflicts that built up to the war in Chechnya. As an afterthought, she started writing books.

She now has eight books to her name, including two novels set in Russia or about Russians - The White Russian and Midnight in St Petersburg. She has also written two works of non-fiction about Russia - Crying Wolf, about the start of the post-Soviet war in Chechnya, and The Taste of Dreams: An Obsession with Russia and Caviar, which is a travelogue through the wilder parts of newly capitalist Russia in the 1990s.

When she comes to the Library, Vanora will look at the fate of Russia’s White EmigrĂ©s after the 1917 Revolution in a talk entitled Down & Out in Paris & London.  Signed copies of her books will be available to purchase on the night.

Tickets cost £5 – which includes a glass of wine or soft drink – and they can be purchased at Molesey Library. Alternatively, you can send a cheque (made payable to Friends of Molesey Library) with a stamped addressed envelope, to Author Event, Molesey Library, The Forum, Walton Road, West Molesey, KT8 2HZ.

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Molesey Library gets a vivid portrait of the life of Jane Austen

We'll all be seeing a lot more of Jane Austen as the famous author - beloved for classics like Pride & Prejudice and Sense & Sensibility - appears on £10 notes from 2017.

And at Molesey Library guests had an opportunity to discover more about Jane's life and times and settings for her novels, courtesy of the immensely knowledgeable Elizabeth Proudman, vice chairman of the Jane Austen Society and a life-long enthusiast for the author.

Elizabeth gave a talk at Molesey Library in April and painted a vivid portrait of Jane and her life and, in particular, of her attractive and talented family.

Jane’s father George had a handsome and charming man and her mother was witty. Jane’s sister Cassandra was her lifelong friend and, although little is known about her brother George, who lived with a local farming family, her five other brothers were all extremely talented and successful. Francis was a serving officer in the navy for 81 years and ended up as admiral of the fleet. Charles similarly had a long naval career and became a rear-admiral.  Edward, adopted by relatives, became a very wealthy man while Henry was a member of the militia and, for a time,  a successful banker who lived a very grand life.  James was an Oxford scholar before following his father into the Church.

In her talk, Elizabeth acknowledged that Jane Austen had only a fairly short formal education but argued that her life with her family more than compensated for this and gave her a wide range of travel and experiences which she was able to draw on when writing her books. She said she had no doubts about Jane’s authorship of her books – contrary to the views of West Molesey author Nicholas Ennos (who was in the audience for Elizabeth’s talk) - who at a previous author event put forward his controversial view that the novels were written not by Jane herself but by her cousin and later sister-in-law, Eliza de Feuillide.

Elizabeth defended Jane’s authorship by pointing out direct links between Jane’s experiences in her own life and references and incidents in her books.

Elizabeth concluded that it was a fitting tribute to Jane Austen that she will join a distinguished line of great Britons who have adorned the nation's banknotes.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

The great Jane Austen debate continues at Molesey Library this April

Elizabeth Proudman
The next Author Event at Molesey Library – on Tuesday April 28th at 7.30 pm – will see a welcome return visit from Elizabeth Proudman, formerly Chairman and currently Vice-Chairman of the Jane Austen Society.

Elizabeth came to the Library a year ago when Molesey author Nicholas Ennos gave a talk putting forward his controversial view that Jane Austen’s novels were written not by Jane herself but by her cousin and later sister-in-law, Eliza de Feuillide. Nicholas’s talk provoked a very lively debate in which Elizabeth mounted a staunch defence of Jane’s authorship.

We are very pleased that Elizabeth has now agreed to return to give us further insight into Jane Austen. Her talk, entitled ‘Who was Jane Austen?” will tell us about Jane and her Hampshire family. Elizabeth will also include more about Eliza de Feuillide, her relationship with the Austen family, and the reasons why she is completely convinced that Jane wrote her books and that Eliza did not!
Nicholas Ennos doubts Jane Austen is the true author

Elizabeth is a lifelong lover of Jane Austen’s books and for much of her working life was a Blue Badge tourist guide. For over 10 years she led an annual 10- day tour of the Austen sites in England for JASNA (Jane Austen Society of North America). She believes that it is fair to say she has been everywhere Jane knew or wrote about!

This should be a fascinating evening. Tickets for the event are £5 – which includes a glass of wine or soft drink – and they can be purchased at Molesey Library.

Alternatively, you can send a cheque (made payable to Friends of Molesey Library) with a stamped addressed envelope, to Author Event, Molesey Library, Walton Rd, West Molesey KT8 2HZ.

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Allotment provides fertile soil for guest author Robert Irvine's murder mystery

In an entertaining talk at Molesey Library, Twickenham-based author Robert Irvine told us about his recently published first novel called “A Row of Beans – An llotment Murder Mystery” and the trials and tribulations of getting it in to print.

Robert explained that, when embarking on the novel following his retirement, he had heeded advice to write about what he knew. Hence his decision to set the plot in a church parish on the outskirts of London, as he himself has held many voluntary positions in the Anglican Church, and to locate the murder in an allotment, as he and his wife are keen gardeners.

His central character, detective Alistair MacTavish was also, as Robert explained, developed from a casual holiday acquaintance.

Whilst writing the novel was a challenge in itself, it was as nothing compared to getting it published!
Robert told us about his repeated approaches to literary agents and the depressing litany of rejection slips. Even after having decided eventually to pay for self-publication, the path was by no means an easy one. A duplicitous Mr X ran off with his money, the edited typescript disappeared for months into the hands of a company liquidator, and the first copies off the press were littered with typos and lay-out errors.

Fortunately, things are looking brighter now. Robert told us about his success in selling the book in California and the approaches he has received to turn it into a film or radio play. Undeterred by the problems encountered in publishing his first novel, he is now well into writing his second.

Robert Irvine’s talk was the latest in our popular series of Author Events at Molesey Library. The next one will be held on Tuesday April 28th when we shall welcome Elizabeth Proudman of the Jane Austen Society.

Sunday, 11 January 2015

MP Dominic Raab to speak about his published work at the Friends of Molesey Library AGM

A message from Pauline Morozgalska, chairman of the Friends of Molesey Library, about this year's annual general meeting on Tuesday 27th January, 7pm.
"The last 12 months have been good for the Library and the Friends have supported manager Jo Ryan and her team in a variety of ways. Come along and find out what we have been up to. For those who think AGM's are boring - think again as we are delighted to welcome guest speaker, Dominc Raab MP to talk about his interest in writing. He writes regular newspaper articles and has had several books published. The evening is a Meet the Author freebee combined with a little business so do come along and you will find a warm welcome."

Author Robert Irvine to give a talk on his allotment murder mystery A Row of Beans

Twickenham based author Robert Irvine will be at Molesey Library on Tuesday February 24th to discuss his allotment murder mystery 'A Row of Beans' and his approach to writing. Tickets are available from the library now.

Friends of Molesey Library: Committee Meeting report back

The Friends held their first committee meeting of the new year at Molesey Library on Tuesday January 6th.
Among the topics discussed were arrangements for the AGM later this month, and purchases to improve the garden area and the popular author evenings. Present were chairman Pauline Morozgalska, library manager Joanne Ryan and committee members Steve Bax, Nigel and Elizabeth Cooper and Carol Parker.
Matters arising: A number of plaques have been purchased for the outside benches to let people know that they have been provided by the Friends of Molesey Library. We'll also be buying some tables for outside so that the garden area can be better used in the warmer months.
A long term aspiration of the Friends is to extend the library building, probably with a conservatory, again to make the most of the garden. The next task will be to discuss with Surrey County Council whether it would have any objection in principle to extending in the way proposed, before the FOML goes to the expense of commissioning detailed drawings.
The guest author evenings held at the Library in 2014 were very popular with the local community and it is hoped that this year's line-up will continue the success. John Coope has organised and compered many of the evenings, which last year included travel writer Jonathan Buckley, an insight into the Mafia by local author Francesco Scanella, and a conspiracy theory on whether Jane Austen was the true author of her books, by Nicholas Ennos from West Molesey.
Nicholas' talk put the cat among the pigeons, particularly among members of the Jane Austen Society, and its chairman Elizabeth Proudman will be speaking at Molesey Library as part of this year's line up. Author evenings booked so far are:

  • February 24th: Robert Irvine, an allotment murder mystery
  • April 28th: Elizabeth Proudman on the real Jane Austen
  • June 23rd: TBC
  • September 29th: Vanora Bennett, Russian novels
  • November 24th: TBC

It was felt that a microphone and PA system would be a wise investment, to ensure attendees at guest author evenings are able to hear (particularly at the back). John has costed options ranging from £140 to £220. A storage space was identified at the meeting for the kit and speakers.
The Friends discussed arrangements for the Annual General Meeting on Tuesday January 27th, 7pm. Pauline will give a report on the year just gone and the committee will be appointed for the year ahead. It is hoped that the formal business can be concluded quite quickly so that we can hear from the guest speaker, who this year will be Dominic Raab, MP for Esher & Walton. Dominic has written three books to date (The Assault on Liberty, After the Coalition and Britannia Unchained) on the state of the UK, its relations with the EU and his thoughts for the future - and will speak about how he combines his duties as an MP with being an author.
Liz Cooper, Friends' treasurer, confirmed the bank balance is currently healthy and stands at £1,523 with no significant spends to report.
Other matters: The Friday coffee mornings continue to be popular and profitable but it would be a great help if volunteers can be found to assist with baking cakes. The Friends are prepared to pay somebody to supply two cakes per week - if you are interested please leave your name at the library.
The date of next meeting will be Tuesday March 3rd, 2015.