This guest post has been written by Gill Farrington, a librarian and literature lecturer who runs courses and gives talks (often food-themed) around the North Herts district, in order to to share an insight into her work.
Reading takes you round the world, through time and into people’s minds. Gill, a passionate reader all her life, has been fortunate through her career as a professional librarian to share her enthusiasm with others.
For a while Gill lived in Malaysia, working in an orphanage. On her return to England she promised to continue fundraising. Over several years she has developed a series of talks which she delivers to groups for a charity donation and has raised thousands of pounds.
If you are tempted to hear her speak her next local engagement is at the Letchworth Festival on Monday June 19 at Mrs Howard’s Memorial Hall from 2pm. More here.
To compile a talk Gill reads often as many as 20 contemporary novels, on her chosen theme. She then selects by writing style, entertainment and creates a programme introducing five or six novels including dramatic readings.
Here are what previous audiences have thought:
- Sue from a Women’s Institute: “Yes, I came for the chocolate tasting but went away with a list of several books I want to read.”
- Simon from a community group: “I didn’t know there were so many stories about honey, I have learnrf about bees and heard enchanting honey stories from many countries.”
- Jan from Ventures group: “Modern novels with a tea theme all washed down with an opportunity to taste 14 different tea varieties. I travelled so far on the pages of these books and have made some recommendations to my reading group.”
- Don from Rotary: “Not all men read crime or science fiction, this was a refreshing introduction to so many varied styles of writing and the cheese and wine enhanced the whole evening.”
- Sandra from a LitFest12 event: “There are so many more novels than cup cakes, with psychological drama and even murder, fascinating. There was a request to start a reading group , and what better than this list for first ideas. I can recommend the lemon drizzle cake.”
With a degree in English literature and her professional qualification Gill is well-qualified to present longer lecture series, usually with a duration of eight weeks. Her speciality is contemporary fiction and she is offering her next course, Modern Novels with an Art Theme, at The Settlement in Letchworth starting on September 17 at 1.30pm. Each week two novels are introduced and the lectures include literary criticism and art history.
Some comments from previous lecture series:
- Sarah from Stevenage Arts: “I been stimulated to go to several galleries and exhibitions and am enjoying selecting my favourite artist to read more. The screen showing of paintings discussed was invaluable.”
- John from Buntingford: “The artists came alive in these novels and their ways of creating gave me a new insight into styles and techniques.”