Literature inspired by family zoom calls brought joy and laughter during lockdown

Literary inspiration came thick and fast for an Ettrickbridge woman through her Sunday night zoom calls to her daughter and sister during lockdown.

Carol Beveridge points to the book in a bookshop window.
Carol Beveridge points to the book in a bookshop window.

Seventy-six-year-old Carol Beveridge, daughter Jude Beveridge, 53, who lives in Cumbria and Carol’s sister Sandra Petrie, 80, living on Vancouver Island in Canada, decided to launch a family writing group to keep themselves sane and inspire each other in April last year.

They soon found their flights of literary fancy, partly fact and partly fiction, had them all in fits of laughter.

Those stories and poems, which they continue to write, helped them laugh their way through lockdown.

Working Our Way Through Lockdown.

Now they have collected their musings in a book - Writing Our Way Through Lockdown.Carol said: “This brought us a lot of fun and much needed laughter and made the three of us feel closer throughout lockdown.

"My daughter set up the zoom meeting and it was just chit-chat about politics, about covid, about our hair getting longer and we thought we can’t meet every week to talk about that because it was depressing really, so we started there and then and said ‘let’s do a writing group’. The intention was never to write a book.

"What we wrote was just for fun. It’s unpolished but it’s fascinating to see the individual creativity we put into these pieces of writing.

“We’ve included 35 tasks we set, an example of which was ‘when the dog hair starts to pile up’, we were given that sentence to write on and we were also given certain words and phrases to include in a piece of writing.

"It is interesting to see where three different minds take those ideas.We were in hysterics and it really brought lightness into lockdown.”

Carol, a Melrose-born retired speech therapist, did write a couple of novels two decades ago.

Sandra is a retired teacher and Jude has just finished training as a counsellor and is a mentor for young people.

Carol added: “It’s just been an absolute joy. We’re not writing it to make money it was just to encourage others to take up creative writing in this somewhat silly way.”

The book costs £14 and £1 from each copy sold will be donated to a mental health charity.For more information go to www.wowtl.big or email [email protected]