NEW writers are celebrating after their short stories have been published in a new anthology.

Almost 60 budding writers attended an eight week Write Time, Write Place creative writing course for beginners at Halton's four libraries.

Workshops looked at topics such as setting the scene, building a character, using dialogue and designing a plot.

All the writers were invited to have a go at turning the theory into practice.

The anthology includes stories about:a desperate woman’s attempt to escape from prison; buying a Mother’s Day present from pawning old comic, and a theatre impresario called Doctor Godzilla.

Workshop leader Charlie Lea said: “It was such a pleasure to run this course of creative writing, meeting like-minded people and listening and sharing their ideas for stories.

"The course is not just there to teach writing skills but to bring about people who share the same aims, ambitions and zest for taking part in a practical cultural activity such as writing."

Although the course was designed for beginners, organisers said they had several people who were more advanced in their writing and were able to share their experience.

Throughout the course they heard some very funny tales mixed with true stories of sadness.

Rebecca Jones, one of the authors, said: "Attending the creative writing course has been one of the highlights of this year. It has allowed me to fulfil a bucket list moment of having a piece of my writing published in an anthology.

" The course was very informative and interesting, and the course leader was very friendly and helpful. "I would recommend it to anyone with a dream to be a writer as it's a great starting place to begin.”

At the launch Charlie gave a short speech to the writers, friends and family and the public before some of the new authors read extracts from their stories.

The anthology will not be for general release but several copies will be added to the catalogue of Halton’s libraries so that people will be able to take them out and enjoy reading them.

The course was funded mainly by Arts Council England with support from Halton Libraries and was run by Charlie Lea from the literacy company Read Now Write Now.

Read Now Write Now is a literacy company which runs creative writing workshops for adults and children.