Excellent article in The Australian by Tegan Bennett Daylight about creative writing workshops. It really encapsulates my own teaching philosophy of opening up the craft of the subject – without getting bogged down in technicalities – to help each aspiring author to improve and grow in their own way. When it comes to completing a first, second – tenth! draft, it’s down to each individual to find the tenacity and self-belief to keep on learning and writing.
I was very thrilled last night to attend the launch of Jane King’s beautiful memoir ‘Is it Tomorrow Today?’
Jane attended my memoir workshop at the NSW Writers’ Centre more than three years ago and was absolutely determined to embark on and complete this book. She joined my 12in12 mentoring programme and completed the first draft and then there was a long period of gathering all the photographs together and editing the draft.
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Just finished a two-day ‘Extreme Writing!’ school holiday workshop for budding young writers – always a heap of fun – and have another running in Avalon next week.
I’m always blown away by the imagination and enthusiasm of young writers, although it saddens me how often they ask if they are ‘allowed’ to do something a different way. Unfortunately our school system is geared towards assessments – not creativity. It’s very special to be able to help them break out and write from the heart.
It’s pretty intense keeping everyone engaged and on task without overwhelming them.
I’ve managed to fine-tune the workshop so ideas are delivered in snappy bites with lots of hands-on tasks. They’re kept very busy and are usually shocked to find four hours have passed.
Love seeing them all with their heads down, silently writing.
I was really delighted with the feedback from the students – here’s a sampling:
Did the workshop meet your expectations?
Definitely! I thought that because there was less children it might not be that advanced but boy was I wrong!
Yes – over my expectations.
Yes it was so good!!! It was way better than my expectations – it was soooo much fun!!!
It went above and beyond my expectations.
Yes and more – it was great
YES! It was great! x3
I never thought I’d be the one to say that a mere app has dramatically changed my life – but it’s true.
When it comes to writing, I lean towards old school, not exactly back to the quill but inclined to be dismissive about specialist writing software programmes that purport to make it easier to write. Writing is difficult enough without having to learn some new fangled software. It might feel easier, but doesn’t make you a better writer.
Evernote doesn’t make you a better writer either but definitely a more efficient and organised one.
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