Writing Workshops


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Thread: Writing Workshops

  1. #1

    Writing Workshops

    Has anyone attended, or led, any? I am supposed to be leading a workshop at the local arts festival at the end of this month. I have no idea what I'm doing. I was supposed to be the organizer but like these things go, well I got wrangled into doing costumes, organizing the literary corner and procuring sponsorship. Did I mention I work two jobs and have three kids? I am so insanely stressed right now, it's almost 3 am and I can't sleep. I'm still trying to figure out how to make a Cheshire Cat head for a very large man.

    The literary corner is adjacent to the gallery. The main idea is to do some kind of picture driven workshop with the art displayed in the gallery but beyond that.

    So if you've attended one, what things did you enjoy, what was the most helpful, what did you not enjoy, is there something that just drove you insane?

    And if you've led one, any tips on organization, thoughts on directing focus, scheduling the time?

    It is open to all ages and I have 30-45 minutes scheduled. Any helpful hints at all?
    Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. ~Plato

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  2. #2
    Honoured/Sadly Missed The Backward OX's Avatar
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    If you're feeling brave, here's a link where you might be able to obtain some pointers from some of the people involved, if you ask nicely:
    West Cork Literary Festival Sunday 3 - Saturday 9 July 2011

  3. #3
    Literary Festival - a féte worse than death. I have been coerced into taking part in such a few times.

    Editor: We need you to be there.
    Reporter: I'm not a 'literary' writer.
    Editor: Did I mention the Chief hasn't made up his mind about the series?
    Reporter: I'm sure I'll have a great time.

    Good luck.
    El día ha sido bueno. La noche será larga.

  4. #4
    Honoured/Sadly Missed The Backward OX's Avatar
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    A féte worse than death to a reporter maybe, but not to the participants. And perhaps there's a slight difference between a lit'ry festival in Podunk, Missouri and a literary festival in Bantry, Co Cork.

  5. #5
    I'm talking about literary festivals in New York, New Orleans, Chicago, and Miami. Deadly dull proceedings attended by the 'Oh I'm so precious' crowd.
    El día ha sido bueno. La noche será larga.

  6. #6
    Honoured/Sadly Missed The Backward OX's Avatar
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    Yes, well, you're the guy says he can't write fiction. Maybe if you clicked on the main link and on some of the programme links down the left-hand side you might see how the Irish perhaps take teaching the art of writing a tad more seriously than do Noo Yorkers or Chicagoans. From what I hear, the precious ones in Co Cork don't make it past Wednesday evenings at the local library.

  7. #7
    I am well acquainted with how the Irish teach writing. I was taught for the first 11 years of my life by my Irish grandfather who disliked (you might say) the English but was devoted to the proper use of the English language. The good life I've enjoyed as a journalist I owe to him. And yes, a literary festival in Co. Cork would be a very different affair. There no doubt would be a shortage of people pretending to be the re-incarnation of Truman Capote.

    As for fiction, I'm trying very hard to learn. I've had no luck so far, but I keep hammering away at it. My lack of imagination, my inability to create characters who are unlike people I've known, or settings in places I've never been, are the big stumbling blocks. Ask me to write about Saigon just before the fall, or about life 50 years ago in a rural Mississippi community, or about the civil war in El Salvador, and I can take you there, but those have all been done to death with thousands of pages, hundreds of books, already written. I want to write about something different, and I don't know how.
    El día ha sido bueno. La noche será larga.

  8. #8
    Baron
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    I don't see how the discussion on Irish writing is helpful to the OP. Perhaps this thread could be brought back on topic. It has given me an idea for a new section on the home page though.

    http://www.writingforums.com/content...78-events.html

  9. #9
    Honoured/Sadly Missed The Backward OX's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by garza
    As for fiction, I'm trying very hard to learn. I've had no luck so far, but I keep hammering away at it. My lack of imagination, my inability to create characters who are unlike people I've known, or settings in places I've never been, are the big stumbling blocks. Ask me to write about Saigon just before the fall, or about life 50 years ago in a rural Mississippi community, or about the civil war in El Salvador, and I can take you there, but those have all been done to death with thousands of pages, hundreds of books, already written. I want to write about something different, and I don't know how.
    Creating Characters 101:

    One does not attempt to create characters unlike people they've known. Why attempt something as difficult as that, when a far easier way is at hand?

    I believe I'm correct when I say every character I've created had in them a little bit of either me or someone I've known.

    It's that easy.

    In my time, I've written about a yokel visiting the big city, a nymphomaniacal Vermonter, a story-teller crossing swords with a hooker, a cab-driver attempting to convince his plumber mate over a cold beer not to take up cab-driving, a hormonal thirty-something Australian female with a thing for older educated men, a writer selling himself to a publisher's agent, a married woman embarking on an affair with a younger single man, an English grifter working the crowd in British Honduras, a teenage retail hardware assistant putting one over a snobbish woman wanting a European crystal cruet set ...

    None of those characters were me or my acquaintances, but there were bits of me or my acquaintances in all of them.
    Last edited by The Backward OX; April 17th, 2011 at 02:30 PM.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Kat View Post
    Has anyone attended, or led, any? I am supposed to be leading a workshop at the local arts festival at the end of this month. I have no idea what I'm doing.
    Hey Kat! Long time no see. How are you? Apart from frazzling yourself with organising writing workshops and other things that is.

    No idea about your questions because I've never done or been involved in anything like that. Sounds like fun but also a big responsibility. Ouch. Good luck with the Cheshire Cat head.

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