Coming in 2020
Booking pages available via the links in the titles of each class
Writes at the Museum
* Sunday 26 January 2020, 2pm-5pm Food: Bigger Than The Page, at the Victoria & Albert Museum (inspired by the V&A’s recent exhibition Food: Bigger Than The Plate)
This workshop explores new ways of thinking about food as inspiration for our writing. We’ll investigate how food activates all the senses, and we’ll also consider its symbolic powers and collective energies. We’ll talk about food writing as a literary genre, and look at the wider uses of food in fiction and poetry. And most of all we’ll write: cooking up memories, recycling recipes as poems, and harvesting stories from the compost of our desires.
Four Elements workshops
In conjunction with Words Away, at London Bridge Hive.
* Saturday 8 February 2020, 9.45am-5pm Water Ways: A Four Elements Workshop on Feeling, Tone and Perspective ::: Water is the element associated with emotions and the mysterious world of the unconscious, and in this workshop we shall tap into memories, dreams, and the workings of our inner lives to bring greater feeling into our writing by:
charging our work with powerful symbols and representations of Water
shifting tone and perspective to change the pitch of a story
crafting sentences that convey a range of feelings
balancing Water with the elements of Fire, Earth and Air to ensure that emotions are channeled purposefully throughout
Also in the studio will be resident wavemaker Sally Kindberg, comic-strip maker and author/illustrator of over thirty children’s books. She will introduce us to practical techniques from illustration that will add feeling and fresh insights to our work.
* Saturday 21 March 2020, 9.45am-5pm Earth Works: A Four Elements Workshop on Description and Action ::: The element of Earth, identified with our experiences of the material world, brings characters and settings to life through an effective balance of description and action, and in this workshop we’ll pay special attention to:
symbols and representations of Earth in writing
detailed use of the senses
the grounding power of nouns and the moving energy of verbs
the ways in which Earth interacts with Fire, Water and Air to create dynamic stories – using bodies and boundaries, sex and violence, and abundant forms of pleasure and survival
In the studio we’ll be joined by resident earthshaker Claire Dale, dancer, coach and author of Physical Intelligence. She will show us how understanding the physical workings of the body can change not only how we write, but what we write.
* Saturday 16 May 2020, 9.45pm-5pm Writing On Air: A Four Elements Workshop on Structure, Form and Focus, with guest aeronaut Bhanu Kapil (more info and booking link to come)
* June 2020 (date to be confirmed), 9.45pm-5pm The Four Elements of Editing (more info and booking link to come)
Finding Your Fire: A Four Elements Workshop on Theme and Voice
9 November 2019
This workshop intuitively explores the symbolic power of Fire in our writing and creative process. We’ll consider how Fire can:
sustain the creative energy of our writing practice, from initial spark to final draft
help to deepen the intention and draw out the theme within our writing
bring life to aspects of craft such as voice, dialogue and characterisation
not only fuel conflict but also critique its role in our stories
Everyday Magic: The Four Elements of Creativity
28 September, 2019
Would you like to add a spark of magic to your writing? We’ll explore a variety of writing practices, inspirations, and departure points, including meditation, memory, fairy tales and the tarot. Summoning new powers to free our intuition, we’ll bring depth, texture, and balance to our writing by working holistically with the Four Elements:
Fire – to power our voices and strengthen our intention
Water – to evoke feeling and connect with readers
Earth – to embody all the senses with detail and action
Air – to bring focus and structure to our stories
During 2018/2019 I ran a sequence of six one-day craft masterclasses with Words Away, designed to use intuitive approaches to the craft topics that might be covered in seminars for an MA or MFA in creative writing: Plotting; Voice; Character and Setting; Prose and Literary Style; Space and Time (advanced techniques in fiction); Revising and Self-Editing. We hope to repeat these again in the future.