I held my first writing workshop in years yesterday after the fallow years of The Plague.
There was a very satisfying turnout and I held it in the large two storey community room of my building which worked out very well. As I kept the workshop private, we had no "spectators" which happens frequently if tenants are aware of something interesting but only want to observe and not participate which I discovered to my chagrin at another group meeting. Discomfiting to say the least.
The ambience there is quite lovely with a huge library, a propane stove in the corner, and large windows and glass doors over looking the garden and golf club behind it and upholstered window seats with a piano and a well supplied kitchen and bathroom. I will take photos next week.
I took most of a week to get everything ready - it's a group sharing effort with prompts from me, a 10 minute exercise to flex those writing muscles and reading of individual pieces which are distributed to each other for critiques to be presented the following week.
There's a ten minute break half way through for tea and buns and getting-to-know-you interaction.
It went far better than I anticipated. Some written pieces were extraordinary in their emotion.
The group - some of whom had never met before - seemed to get along really well. The relaxation was almost visible.
There's a lot of trust involved in sharing writing. And I observed the empathy develop. And the enthusiasm.
I truly love doing this. And I'm sure it shows.
I took this picture of my dear late friend R playing in the sand. I presented him with the bucket and spade when he stayed with me out here on The Edge. I love this image as his outer demeanor was normally so serious.