Somewhere Else Writers was a launch pad for Clare Finnimore after Dr Rona Laycock’s excellent creative writing classes.
Clare gained a merit in the Creative & Critical writing MA at Gloucestershire University in 2015 and then went on to study Scriptwriting at Bath Spa University. Her first radio play ‘When Will it Be Me?’ written in collaboration with three others, received a four star review at Burdell’s Yard Theatre in Bath. She is currently writing a docudrama for radio and working with actors at Bristol Old Vic.
Clare has chosen Strawberry Road to be her featured piece of writing.
‘Oh, it’s all out there’ says Sue nonchalantly, whilst preparing mangoes, bright red dragon fruit and melons for breakfast just outside on the deck – the dark wood still steaming from last night’s rain. The deck drops away to a clearing of fat bladed grass and purple Tibouchina flowers amongst vertiginously tall trees with silvery trunks stretching up into the canopy of green, bright rays of sunlight arcing through in patterns.
Arriving in a hired car last night we stepped out into the blackness of a tropical Australian night, and later, after too much wine, I stretched out beside my husband sleeping soundly whilst I lay there luxuriating on a wide bed feeling the intoxicating heart beat of the forest with its cicadas, frogs and beating rain like standing in a full on shower, separated only by insect screen and slats of window blinds. Purest musical notes, lyrebird and boobook, harsh rooster cries, & cacophony of kookaburras wakes me soon after dawn and I laugh delightedly to myself at the sense of belonging – four people & 2 nearly adults in a house, just other creatures in a teeming world.
Sue & I visit the gentle white hens chortling quietly together in their hen house down the garden next afternoon. For days they found one empty shell in the run beside the straw nestling eggs, until, calling later one evening, Mike chanced on a mass of coils digesting a small piece of life – a huge carpet python.
As the days stretch, we weave our threads of journey up Mount Tamborin and above the crashing waves of Burleigh Heads and back down to evenings with our friends – Mike playing until late into the night songs from the great American songbook – Bill Evans, Monk and a calypso I half recognize, his fingers improvising over the keys as I sit barefoot close by. I file memories away against the time of cold and snow I know we will find back home in the UK.