WHAT ANNOYS – DELIGHTS – AND IS OFTEN UNEXPLAINED.
What is ANNOYING me this week?
What is DELIGHTING me this week?
Someone Special’s Birthday.
Soho Session – Peter Green’s Splinter Group.
SOME OF MY DOINGS.
This last week has been busy working on the Poetry Trail workshops, with finalising the content, promoting and following up potential poets who want to attend and organising the local experts who will come along to share their knowledge and experiences in their given field.
At the time of writing there are still some aspects of all of these activities that still need to be finalised. We have 18 people signed up to attend the workshops so there are only now 2 places left. The Tamworth Herald did a feature in last Thursday’s paper and this has seen a few calls from interested people.
I am still awaiting the confirmation of the local experts they are all identified and have agreed to come along, it is just tying down which workshop will feature which experts. The experts will talk about subjects ranging from working in the coalmine, the history or Pooley Hall once the home of the poet Sir Aston Cockayne and more recently the soul singer Edwin Starr. Other subjects will bring in the nature reserve which has been recognised as such since 1959. There will also be someone from the Park Rangers who will talk about managing the country park where nature and industry converge.
The content is finalised I just need to document it into a plan that I can follow so that we remain on track. Whilst there are four workshops, this is still a short amount of time to cover what is needed to achieve the required results.
I am still reading around some of the topics, which is something I always end up doing as I never feel I have enough knowledge to get across the subjects, the risk is that I over do it and then confuse everyone with half knowledge. Still I have used most of the material before and I am building on previous workshops where subjects were introduced but time did not allow them to be explored and put into practice.
The Runaway Writers have often discussed this when considering who we would like to invite to deliver a workshop to the group. Quiet often experienced writers deliver workshops by coming along with the same exercises, some of which we could easily do for ourselves. Such as here is an object describe it with out mentioning what it is and what purpose it serves. It is usually a brightly coloured pot that was picked up on market stall in Ibiza or Marrakech.
Don’t get me wrong this is an excellent way to get beginners to start thinking about objects and using their senses to describe something. Objects and pictures are standard methods used in creative writing workshops to get people writing. Unfortunately the resulting pieces whilst often pleasing are most likely to drip with prose or poetry that says this was the result of a workshop exercise.
How many times do you need to do this type of exercise before you get it? Once, in my opinion.
Having said that not all workshops are like this, I have attended a good number of excellent workshops where there have been new approaches and different types of exercises, Jacqui Rowe’s Making Poetry, Steve Bowkett’s using the unconscious mind and James Nash’s Performance workshops come to mind, these are the one’s I tend to remember and put to good use.
Bearing all this in mind I want to offer something that delivers exercises into new realms, so that the poets attending the workshops can use the techniques in a practical way, such that they end up writing a defining piece and not something that is clearly the result of an exercise in a workshop.
We shall see how it goes when the workshops start on the 26th Feb and I will share my experiences as to what approaches work and which need tweaking in my future blogs.
I have not been to any readings during the past week and I will miss Spoken Worlds in Burton on Friday due to other commitments. I have two new poems that I want to try out and so a reading would have been good for this week. Also after my performance at the Tin Angel which I described in my last blog, I want the chance to get back into the place where the words floated of my tongue. I still have that uncertainty that can get back there and do it again.
Spoken Worlds – Third Friday of the month at 7:30pm – at Rangemore House, Rangemore St, Burton-on-Trent. See Gary Carr if you want to read.
COMING SOON DOINGS
NEW POETRY FILMS
Once the Poetry Trail workshops are completed, I will be working on three new poetry films.
I have been approached by three poets who want me to work with them the create films of their poems. These are all at different stages at the moment; one is well into the planning using Terri Jolland’s Dark Terrain poem. The second is a collaborative poem created by a group of young carers led through workshops with Nicola Timmis and the third is still in discussion as to which poem to use with Dea Costelloe.
Filming will start in the Spring. All of these films will be shown at the Polesworth International Poetry Film Festival in November.
As a consequence I am not taking on any more film work for the time being including producing films of my own.