Helping spread the word…. you can too! Get those pens out and be creative!
The Blank Screen – Productivity for Creative Writers – A workshop at ‘Book to the Future Festival’ with William Gallagher.
Rushing into the city last night I barely arrived on campus in time for William’s workshop, add 20 minutes wandering around in the dark and generally in the opposite direction to the Arts Building (and that was with a map I had the foresight to print!) I was rather late for this session and they were already on Point 5 …. fortunately I can email William today and not only get the notes but apologise for the late arrival and sharp exit … I was performing in Jan’s Phenomenal Women (see previous post)!
I have found that in the last 2 workshops I haven’t learnt anything new (due to my own hard work researching and finding the information) – but they have confirmed that I am doing the right thing, that my own research and learning has taken me in the right direction. I am just as eager as I was at the beginning of the year to attend as many workshops as I can and hear from writers who are doing it for real.
My notebook gets filled with a few extra scribbled names or books to seek out if nothing else.
William Gallagher is a great speaker and if you get a chance to attend any of his events or better still buy his book then I would recommend it. He has a humorous, relaxed approach and I wish I had managed the entire hour of his talk.
I have to retract the previous statement of not learning anything new – in the short amount of time I was in the workshop I have picked up on new knowledge. New actions that I am attempting to put into place this morning. Especially email… yes, William, I am one of those with 1600+ in an inbox and having opened several new accounts to offload the problem have only compacted it – with new addresses storing up to a 100 emails!
So thank you for your wisdom and insight. A great workshop!
It was a fantastic evening, a great mix of performers – stand up, music, monologues, story telling and of course, poetry.
It was also my 3rd return to life behind the mic. The atmosphere was wonderful and the audience very receptive. Somewhere between the first poem and the end of my set I found my confidence … nerves vanished and in an almost out of body experience way I heard the voice of a lioness come from deep within.
That performance poet who has sat on a shelf gathering dust since 1998, reappeared! It went really well and I received positive feedback.
As if the night couldn’t get any better… I had a chance to speak to other performers and met Tessa Lowe, a fellow poet who told me about a festival at the university, which I hadn’t come across. It is the first year they’re attempting it and advertising isn’t as widely posted as many other local events. (They could have ridden on the coat tails of Birmingham Literature Festival, I will email the organisers with ideas for next year as far as promotion and marketing – although I suppose the faculty has a limited budget!)
Last night I ventured back into the City, walked around campus feeling my old student spirit rise to the surface. That home within a home feel that I never really felt when I was studying for degrees, but 14 years into the real world, campus is a safe place I yearn to belong to.
After searching the web for a while I found the festival programme and read that Jan was interested in hearing from other performers. I dropped her an email, along with Andrew Kileen and Katharine D’Souza whose events I had missed over the weekend.
Before lunch my 4th performance this month was confirmed.
Even the hot flushes of nerves seemed to have diminished by this evening, although they may have been helped by the open window! And the familiar environment of a lecture hall.
It was a great night with some fantastic performances. Inspiring. I read many more poems that I had planned, as we all got a second bite of the Apple. I also found out that the theme was family – none of us knew that… Not many of us connected our material…. I opened with a poem I had just scribbled whilst Jan introduced the evening. It was about and for my great aunty Sheila who celebrated her birthday with us on Sunday but whose actual birthday was Monday.
Great night, next gig is Wednesday!