Old writing skills: new uses for real life problems

Notebooks, map, timer on a desk
Planning a writing course gets serious

Oh, help, my summer writing school is less than two weeks away! I’ve been preparing seriously for a couple of weeks. Now it gets super-serious, tick tock!

“Write into life” brings a brand new emphasis to my work. I’ve taught writing skills to thousands of people — for poetry, fiction, plain language, digital writing, corp comms, editing, and so on and so forth. We’re talking experience and authority here, oh ho ho, yes we are, I’m not a newbie.

Except… I’ve stepped into foreign territory where the words write and life have equal weight. These workshops lock writing to life, in a very positive and deliberate way.

Writing is a multi-purpose tool for life skills

As bloggers, you already know just how powerful writing is, and the many ways it helps the writer. (I’m not talking about money or fame.)

A few examples: when we write, we discover, clarify, develop, review, analyse, and prioritise our own thoughts. We confess, confront, explore, examine, purge, revise, and modify our feelings. We — oh stop, I could go on all day, and you could instantly give me another 50 ways that writing helps us in our lives. (I’d like to hear them!)

Writing skills for particular life issues

Anyway, I’m preparing three completely new workshops within this Write into life framework. I need to make sure that participants really do gain new writing skills; and that those skills are useful not only for them as writers, but also for them as people. I need to deliver for writers with a life.

Each day has a topic, and the three topics are:

  • write over your troubles
  • a writers’ group that works for you
  • write into the bonus years.

As I get each day’s programme clear, I’ll let you know more. Meanwhile, I’m very interested in what you think about all this. As you see, I’m starting from scratch— I could do with some tips!

Here’s an outline of the 2018 summer school.

16 thoughts on “Old writing skills: new uses for real life problems

  1. The workshops sound great. I think the “write over your troubles” topic in particular will appeal to many people. As you said in the schedule, it is helpful to be able to frame, re-frame and tell our own stories to make sense of certain things or so we can be the hero in our stories :).

  2. I’m actually not a great writer – I muddle my tenses, mess the grammar, leave essential words out, misspell others and generally make a hash of things – add to that a hand disability or two that means the keyboard moves about – but for me “that is me” – I’m never going to be top dog either but I really don’t care anymore. I have to write “reflections’ regularly on my life and more importantly on where my art has/is going. Most of it never sees the light of day…

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