Monday, 29 April 2013

Back to basics ...

Join Room to Write and Read's 

Back to Basics Workshops at 2pm on May 1st 

with Wendy Robertson and Avril Joy

I’ve always said that teaching is the best way of learning. After so many books and so many years I still have stuff to learn about the fascinating process of writing. So it’s with the delight of anticipation that for the last couple of weeks I’ve been working very hard with my friend Avril Joy preparing for the first of a series of four writing workshops at my old stamping ground, Bishop Auckland Town Hall Library.

We have called this series Back to Basics 
with the idea that in any craft of skill going back to basics is a refreshing and inspiring process for both experienced and new practitioners.

So, as  well as being a refresher course for existing writers who want to look at their method
and process, these workshops have been designed for absolute beginners. These starter workshops are intended to give them confidence to make a start whether their aim is fiction, memoir, family stories or factual writing there will be something inspiring here for everyone.

We will explore the role of writing in everyone’s life even if they don’t consider themselves yet to be a writer - letters, diaries, reports, for instance. We will show the value of normal use of language in speaking, recounting, telling stories. We will talk of the necessity for more experienced writers to audit their skills and practices and go back to basics to evaluate their work, to refresh and rediscover their style.

This first workshop will involve three different and intense writing experiences which will be productive for all writers, from absolute beginners to those who have poems, stories or even books in their literary folio.

These workshops will not involve individuals reading out their own work, as I’ve come to think that this process is time-consuming and more suited to some writers than others. I know that reading out is a convention in workshops but I sometime think that reading out loud at an early stage can be destructive for some people. In the latter of this series fo four workshops we will find other ways of sharing work

So if you happen to be reading this and are in travelling distance of lovely old Bishop Auckland come along and join Avril and me and learn how to develop your writing by going Back to Basics.

As I said at the beginning I think that teaching is the best way of learning so I am sure we will learn lots from you as well.

The workshops start on
Wednesday 1s May at Bishop Auckland Town Hall 2 -4.30
The workshops are free to you but BATH will charge you £2 for the tea/coffee and biscuits includedas a the treat to keep us going.

Workshops Start at 2pm May 1st Bishop Auckland Town Hall. Ring to reserve a place.



Address: Market Pl, Bishop Auckland, County Durham DL14 7NP
Phone:0300 026 9524

Friday, 5 April 2013


Join Writers, Avril Joy, winner of the inaugural Costa Short Story Award 2013 and John Price,
reading from their work in the recently published
Iron Press anthology
Root, Wednesday 10th April, 7.00 pm,
Bishop Auckland Town Hall Library
Free Event

For further details contact BA Town Hall (01388)602610

ROOT is an anthology of new short fiction from writers based in North East England. Edited by novelist and award- winning short-story writer, Kitty Fitzgerald;
‘a writer of stylistic daring who cuts her own furrow.’ – The Scotsman

• Writers include: Avril Joy (winner of the Costa Short Story Award 2012), Fiona Cooper, Amanda Baker, Rob Walton, Angela Readman.

Root is a collection of short stories, which re-affirm the North East’s status as a vibrant area for new writing. The subjects of the 13 stories on show here range from the domestic – family relationships, gardening, bullying, adoption and loss – to the plain bizarre: a circus bearded lady, a woman who morphs into Elvis, and an insight into what God wears to work.

Kitty Fitzgerald was born in Ireland, and now lives in Northumberland.
She has edited two previous anthologies of short fiction for Iron Press: Iron Women: New Stories by Women (1990; ISBN 9780906228340) and Biting Back: New Fiction from the North (2001; ISBN 9780906228760).

Her short-story collection Miranda’s Shadow, which will be published by IRON Press in June 2013