2005-02/Feb 1, 2005
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NEWSLETTER EARLY THIS TIME
Whereas last month's newsletter was 2 weeks late, I am afraid February's newsletter is arriving 2 days early as I will be on a plane to the exotic and mystical East on Feb 01. Hope this finds you all well.
NEVIL SHUTE SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENT RECRUITED BY QANTAS
Ben Lawrence, who received a Nevil Shute Foundation scholarship to assist with his pilot training, has written to Heather Mayfield, Nevil Shute's daughter and a Nevil Shute Foundation Board member, with great news. Ben writes:
Since gaining my CPL, I have finished my degree in Business, and shortly afterwards underwent the selection process with Qantas for a place in their "stage two cadetship" scheme. I am thrilled to say that just yesterday received a call from Qantas, and I have been accepted!! The cadetship runs for roughly 6 months, during which I will complete my multi IFR rating and ATPLs, then a multi crew course. Once this is completed, cadets are offered 1.5 - 2 yrs "industry experience" with smaller regional airlines, flying anything from Brazilias in Australia to A320s out of Singapore. Then cadets are offered positions on Qantas mainline, long haul. I could be flying either the 747, A330, or the new A380 from 2007/2008!!! I would like to take the opportunity to say thankyou to the organisation for your support. In awarding the scholarship to me, you subtly let me know that I had the right attitude to go all the way and follow my dream. I stayed focussed and committed, and now I have a fantastic opportunity laid down in front of me. There will be a lot more hard work to come (probably more intense than much of what I have already undertaken), but I will be content in knowing that my efforts will be perfectly tailored to achieving my goal.
Editor's Comment: I am sure we all wish Ben the best of luck with the next stage of his career. What next? Flying The Queen around?
AIRSHIP DOCUMENTARY SHORT ON SHUTE
Derek Hill from NW AUTFOD writes:
Hi Cinematographer Extraordinaire
NO HIGHWAY BEGETS AIRFRAME?
Julian Stargardt of Hong Kong writes:
I just read Michael Crichton's Airframe which in subject matter, incident and plot seems inspired by and loosely based on No Highway.
Editor's Comment: I like to think that Michael Crichton was unconsciously influenced.
READING SUGGESTIONS FOR SHUTE FANS
Jim Cavanaugh from Whidbey Island, Washington, USA writes:
I am a great fan of NSN books. I re read them every 3-5 years.
Editor's Comment: I am sure our readers will shower Jim with Shute-like authors.
SHUTE'S SERVICE CHOICE
Jim Cavanaugh then wrote again with:
Why did NSN serve in the RNVR during WWII?
Editor's Comment: Shute had been a dedicated yachtsman since Oxford and I suspect he well knew that flying in a war was a young man's game. Above all he sought NOT to fly a desk. This was why he was so angry when, only three days into his naval war service, while hoping to get command of a naval trawler or a minesweeper, he was drafted into a desk job with the DMWD.
DREAMT-OF SHUTE FILMS
Tony Woodward from Ottawa, Canada writes:
I was looking at the list of films on your site at http://www.nevilshute.org/films.php.
Editor's Comment: Yes. You were dreaming.
SHUTIST EXITS MID-EAST FOR MID-WEST
David Vaughan, who has enjoyed his time as Professor of Business Communications at Qaboos University in Oman, is currently moving back to the USA.
Teri Souter of Huntsville, Ontario, Canada writes:
I thought I read the following quotation in a Nevil Shute novel, but I have reread the dozen or so I have and cannot find it. Can anyone help?
Editor's Comment: Does this ring any bells with anyone?
ILLNESS OR FATIGUE-ALTERED CONCIOUSNESS
Mike Naugle writes:
I'm exploring one theme in Shute's fiction, and, since it takes about three months for me to read a novel in Braille, I was wondering if you might be aware of any other of Shute's novels that employ a certain technique.
Editor's Comment: None springs to mind but you can see a simpler form of this in Requiem For A Wren in which the narrator reads the dead Wren's diary and so understands her deepest feelings. Shute seemed to like the idea that the narrator and the chief protagonist were two different people as it gave him more perspectives from which to relate the story. Mike then replied with:
I'm reading Round the Bend now, and while it doesn't involve a narrator whose consciousness has been altered for the sake of the protagonist's story, Round The Bend does fit in with what you said regarding Shute's liking of a narrator who exists separate from a protagonist. It's becoming more and more clear as I read that Connie, introduced as a youth and as a friend of the narrator Tom Cutter at the start of the novel, is turning into a prophet and is likely to be at least as important, if not more so, than the narrator is. Again, Shute's ability to carefully weave intricate strands together impresses me greatly, and makes me wonder how he could have been dismissed as a writer of what you have termed "airport" novels.
MOTHER FORCES SON INTO ADDICTION
Neil Kermode from Bournemouth in The UK writes:
I have been an avid NS reader since my mother hooked me with Most Secret when I was at school in the 70s.
Editor's Comment: From memory, In Requiem, Janet's father trains as an Observer for D-Day at The Royal Bath Hotel. I have asked Neil for the photo, preferably one from WW2 but he may need a Tardis for that. (US readers may not know that the Tardis was Dr Who's time machine. For a full explanation go to BBC's Dr. Who website )
Brian Flanigan of Australia writes:
It seems the suggestion on the website can regrettably no longer be followed.
Editor's Comment: I couldn't find them either. Maybe some of our readers in the publishing world know what has happened.
BEACH ON DVD
I recently found a DVD of On The Beach (1959) on sale in Sydney, Australia. It's nice to see that distributors are still bothering to put at least some of Shute's films into the latest formats.
RESTORATION APPEAL / THE ONLY SHUTE MEMORIAL?
St. Thomas' Anglican Parish in Langwarrin, whose church building Nevil helped to finance and who hosted the Nevil Shute memorial service during the OZ2001 conference, is holding a fund raising event to pay for repairs to the church building. One of the beautiful stained glass windows, along with its casement, has been damaged and is in need of repair. The ladies of the parish, those who worked long and unpaid hours as receptionists for us at OZ2001, and who also hosted our refreshments at the Dandenong picnic and the memorial service, are helping to raise the money through cook book sales. The cost of the book is $15 plus postage and handling $2.50 within Australia.
Editor's Comment: As there is no grave of Nevil Shute, the font at St Thomas is, to my knowledge, the only existing memorial to Nevil Shute. I have no doubt that any surplus money raised will be well spent, in Shute's memory, on good works in his chosen community.
David Argent writes:
I am friends with an elderly author now residing in Western Australia.
Editor's Comment: What was Shute like?
Matt Shields from, I assume, Australia writes:
I recently inherited from my grandfather a set of books, Nevil Shute complete works.
Editor's Comment: I am not sure if Matt's set is complete or not as Shute wrote 24 or 25 books depending on how you count them. The best way to check is to go to the Bibliography section of the website and see what is missing.
MORE SHUTE MUSIC
From Perry Zamek :
I just found the Nevil Shute Foundation website, and I thought I'd add another item to the "Shute Music" article.
Editor's Comment: In Australia in the early 1960s, I remember standing up while they played God Save The Queen at the movies. Apparently, by then, this was not even done in England.
WEBSITE UPDATE - FAVORITE NEVIL SHUTE NOVEL VOTE
Regular readers will know that on our website we have a tally of favourite Nevil Shute Novels.
1st place Trustee From The Toolroom with 255 votes 2nd place Round The Bend with 232 votes 3rd place A Town Like Alice with 227 votes
However you have the power to influence this. Click on http://www.nevilshute.org/Reviews/favbooks.php to find out more and place your vote.
REQUIEM PLAY MOBILISES / SHUTIST GROUP PLANS INVASION
Jenny Knowles of the UK writes:
Wading in the thick mud of Beaulieu River I came across a buried saucer. I wiped the mud from the rim. The saucer was still white except for an orange, iron oxide stain below the glaze along one side. On its base I found the maker's crest stamped in green and below it the words 'G. VI R. 1944'. Looking up I could almost see the Wrens working on the hard, dressed in oily overalls, getting their tools together for the next trip in a small boat down river to service the landing craft guns. Then the idea came to me, 'why not stage a play of Nevil Shute's novel Requiem for a Wren in the places where the action actually happened?'
Editor's Comment: Jenny also wrote that the play would run on June 3,4 and 5.
NEW NORTHWEST SHUTE GROUP
are forming a new Nevil Shute book group in the Pacific Northwest of The USA.
It's Summer here and the month of January is a traditional holiday time in Australia.
That completes this month's newsletter.
Nevil Shute Norway Foundation
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