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24 September 2014

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June 2003
Writer - Joan Wallace
Joan Wallace - Writer
Joan Wallace - Writer
Joan's writing, including four historical novels set in Nottingham, has been locally and nationally published in newspapers, magazines and broadcast on radio.
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Writer profile
Joan has lived in Nottingham all her life.

She has written short stories, which have been locally and nationally published in newspapers, magazines and broadcast on radio.

Her four historical novels, set in Nottingham have been published, together with a book of humorous poetry.

She has also written plays and sketches, which have been performed on stage, radio and at the Edinburgh Festival. An award-winning play has been televised and her work has been performed in Australia.

There is an audio version of one of her novels for use by the blind and some of her work has been accepted for study purposes by the universities of Bristol and Arizona (USA).

Writer's Work - Raleigh Bike
Friday afternoons – condensed Christmas Days. I never remember it raining; the sun always shone on Dad’s lovingly polished Raleigh bike.

Factory men, let out at half past four - released from sentence of hard labour they filled the streets, a laughing, whistling flood.

Recognition – ‘Here I am, Dad. Been good at school not had to stand in a corner today and I was Jane Eyre in a play.’

Dark brown eyes mirroring mine, tired eyes that stared at shiny bicycle pedals all day lit up as they smiled into the mischief in mine.

You scooped me up, my little girl legs jerking like a rabbit’s till they were astride the saddle which was polished with the seat of your overalls.

I leaned against you – familiar reassuring smell of oil and factory grease that ate its way into my soul, lubricated the beating of my heart.

Sixpence from torn-open wage packet, all my wordly goods my family I endow – you leaned the bike against the wall, your substitute for cowboy’s horse, gentleman’s carriage, bank manager’s Riley – waited patiently whilst I spent my fortune on gobstoppers, liquorice-stick and khali.

Bike wobbled home, cobbled road coaxed faint jingle from bell, saddlebag held greaseproof ‘snap’ paper recycled through necessity, not ecology.

Sunday mornings – shiny spokes cleaned with Brasso and old dusters, rubber inner-tubes stretch tightly around my memory – specks of rust, chicken-pox red on black frame and painted Union Jack, on pump that squeaked and made me laugh.

Mam gave your bike to the junk-man when you died – perhaps it went to a young lad who resurrected the youth you sacrificed on the altar of family commitments and furniture on HP.

Scrap of metal, twisted into beauty – when it rained you covered your bike with an old mackintosh; Sir Walter Raleigh covered a puddle with his cloak Raleigh bike and puddle have both gone down in history.
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