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Dear eager ones. We thank you for your patience, or alternatively your dogged persistence, but you shan't be needing either of them anymore. The results of the Coffee and Chocolate Competitions are published beneath.

Coffee:

Winner:

‘Aged 3, an Italian coffee bar, Pembrokeshire… ’ by Simone Mansell Broome

Runners up:

‘Coffee Haiku’ by Anna Caddy

‘Culture’ by L M Myles

Commended:

‘Time Tunnel’ by Sue Anderson

‘The Latté Literalist’ by Kenneth Shand

‘Nice’ by Peter Rolls

‘Filtered’ by Lynne Taylor

‘Stained’ by Sally Flint

‘Coffee to Go’ by Jan Petersen

‘Coffee, Kahwas and Orchids’ by Waldo Gemio

‘Morning Coffee’ by Angelina Ayers

‘Coffee Culture’ by David Miah

‘On It’ by Philip Taylor

‘That Which Prevents Sleep’ by Gertrud Gustafsson

‘Last Sunday’ by Ben Barton


Chocolate

Winner:

‘The Conspiracy of Thinness’ by Sarah Evans

Runners up:

‘Friction and Fondue’ by Amy Mackelden

‘The First’ by Carmen Ali

Commended:

‘Just a Ride’ by Janet Thomas

‘Chocolate’ by Kate Noakes

‘Just One More’ by Bethan Hole

‘Wagonwheel’ by Maire Cooney

‘Leave to Cool then Cut into Squares’ by Juliette Hart

‘The Halstead Chocolatier’ by Jeremy Dixon

‘Chocolate Super-Woman’ by Naomi Carter

‘Substitute’ by Dianna Robin Dennis

‘Hot Chocolate’ by Emma Hardy

‘Choc Talk’ by James Nelson

‘Zucci’s’ by Marie Gallagher

‘The Memory Box’ by Beverley Clarke

***

Well. There we go. Congratulations to all who entered and especially to all the above types. The listed entries will be published in a Coffee and Chocolate themed anthology that we're hoping will be available by the end of April. 'The Better Craftsman and Other Stories', by the way, which is the next anthology in the offing, remains on course to be out by the end of this month.

Next I need to put this jolly info on the website, but the editing device is a tad bust. It refuses to connect to the server. Mostly I'm saying this out loud here so you know it isn't my fault, but also in the hope that the very much offline-at-present Gav might hear me and fix it.

Sam.

 

Dear Readers. I know there is a typo in the addendum to the newsletter. I know this because two people have... kindly... written to tell us. And to offer their proofreading services. An Unnamed Member of the Team has... thoughtfully... passed on my name to them as the one responsible, which is nothing more than the truth. I know also that it's fairly important that, being a publishing company, we try reasonably hard not to come off as unduly illiterate. I apologise, therefore, and grovel, and primarily acknowledge my abject failure. At life. At copywriting anyway. Though also, admittedly, at life. Other people - if you're better qualified for my job than I myself am, and quite frankly, you patently are... go for it. It will lessen my ALMIGHTY SHAME. Seriously though. I'm genuinely debating whether or not to bank my next paycheque.

If I'd been The Guardian, probably I would've misspelled all the names in the dog breeds chart that they somehow managed to get right.

Anyway. Mostly what I'm saying is, though I'm appreciative of the learnin' and that, please don't write to tell me about it ever, ever again. Not never.

There's good fellows.

Sam.

 

And actually (cf. Gav's post beneath, which you ought to read if you're desperate to hear the results of the Chocolate and Coffee comps - not that it contains them), I was writing a post at the same time that Gav was fundamentally altering the means in which we make posts to this blog.

The post:

During vast swathes of yesterday, I databased. Gav also databased. Today, Ceci is databasing and reports that her brain is somewhat dying. It's a thing that each member of the Leaf Team is obliged to do at least once a week, but we do it, I think, with good cheer. And a merry heart. And sometimes we say slightly rude words about it.

It's not beyond our powers to use the whole databasing experience, what is fundamentally integral to our working lives, as a sort of a learning process. Life-enhancing. No less. I, par example, have been learning that some people write their telephone numbers in a format quite alien to me, namely 0123 456 7890 as opposed to 01234 567 890. I was under the impression that regional codes consisted of five numbers and then the personal bit was essentially the remaining six, but this seems to suggest more of a four-seven split. For a while I assumed you were all being contrary and remade your telephonic choices for you. But I've got over that. I guess you all know what you're doing.

(Please staple your manuscripts together, but not to the entry form. Thank you. I hope that was sufficiently sublimin(ab)al.)

Also I have a favourite postal addres, but you're not to hear of it. I'm not one to be loose about the data protection act. But if you've written to us and have an amusing (and faintly ironic) postal address, I'm probably talking about you.

Sam.

 

Our extreme apologies to all the coffee and chocolate entrants waiting to hear if they’ve won. We’ve almost arrived at a long list and hopefully a final meeting on Monday will result in the decision of a couple of winners.

In other news:

Production of The Better Craftsman and Other Stories is well underway.

Umm Matt or Sam is much better at writing these things. Once they emerge from their computer induced trances I’ll get them to write a better post.

gav.

 

Hello. Yes. Hello. And it's undeniably a sign of neglect when you have to start a post with hello, especially twice. It's not entirely that I've nothing to say. Mostly you should interpret a lack of blogging as a sign of immense in-office productivity. Oh, the things we've been doing.

- I've been editing the contents of the upcoming short story anthology, which we've decided is to be called The Better Craftsman and Other Stories. I have been reading entries. I also have a couple of short-story critiques on t' boil.
- Matt has been editing my edits and will shortly be making a book.
- Gav has been reading novellas and doing website things.
- Both Matt and Gav have been working most hard on the launching of... secret, special things. I don't know if I'm allowed to say. Probably not. You shall have to await their own blog posts for further info, which is always good because it means you might come back.
- Ceci has been doing EVERYTHING, including accounts and organising our entire working lives and restocking the office with paper and right now she's sending some books to Trinidad. And Tobago.

Also we had a pleasant meeting. Ceci made a very good joke about Brazil nuts.

Sam.

 
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