I’ve been working on a community art project this winter. It’s called ICEBOX: Art in the Heart of Winter. It’s kind of like a mini Burning Man, but replace the sand and sun with ice and blowing snow. Then put all the art installations inside brightly-coloured huts, to protect them from the cold. Then picture that in a town that looks like Stars Hollow.
As the designated ICEBOX writer this year (other artists are working in mixed media of all types), I’ve had the opportunity to run a couple of community writing workshops with the people in my town.
I’ve collected their hand-written stories to make an art installation that will be open to the public for two weeks.
Most of the people who came to my workshops didn’t identify as “writers.” This was a new experience for me, to write with so many civilians at once. I have to say, it was wonderful to see everyone participate so energetically.
I mean… people just came to write for fun!
We need to take ourselves seriously as writers, or we’ll never write our books.
Writing can be a hard work: we spend hours alone, practicing our craft and form, revising our drafts to turn a raw beautiful mess into a refined and flawlessly structured story (we hope).
But what happens if we don’t enjoy writing our own book?
If we take ourselves too seriously, we won’t have any fun.
Joy comes from our most meaningful work. Take pleasure in your writing.
“I feel the Story Intensive has been instrumental in helping me trust my voice and doing the work of showing up at the desk day after day after day. The emphasis on free writes and writing by hand were just as important in that regard as the course reader with its stellar selection of contemporary fiction and the masterclasses with Karen Joy Fowler, Margaret Atwood, George Saunders and others.”
— Susanne Stitch
We are starting to fill classes for the Story Intensive 2019 right now.
Every year, people who take this program tell me it transforms their writing. If you want to take it this year, it’s best to plan ahead and get in early. Questions about how it will change your writing? Talk to me before you register: Schedule an appointment.