In these simple yet revolutionary creative writing workshops, which happen at our special storymaking headquarters at Skainos Square in East Befast, we lead groups through a writing adventure: Everyone works together and individually to begin a brand-new story.
Volunteers are the magic dust: A team of trained mentors work one-on-one with the young writers; these intuitive, meaningful interactions help students start to find their voices by testing and trusting their own ideas.
We're cooking up some digital workshops for the new school year, and will start in-person sessions again as soon as it's safe to. If you would like to request a free creative writing workshop for your primary or post-primary school class or youth group, fill in the form here.
1. A group begins to talk about stories — ones they love, then ones they imagine. They dream up characters, setting and conundrums; wishes, fears and obstacles. They vote, they quibble … and then they begin to write.
2. The front wall of the room becomes a blank page (thanks to a projector). Various voices join in, captured by the facilitator and typist, and the first chapter of this story takes shape. Meanwhile an illustrator brings the new characters to life visually.
3. Each writer continues the story in their own way and their own words. Volunteer mentors give any support they need.
4. Now there are many stories in the room. We hear some of them aloud. Often it’s the quietest ones at the start who stand up to share their work at the end.
5. Everyone leaves with a personalised storybook with space to keep on writing.