I offer a number of different workshops from starting to write workshops for all ages to workshops that focus on nature, ecopoetry and the emotional impact of climate change. If you'd like to book one for your school, writing group, festival or any other group or event, please do get in touch...
Saying the unsayable
Writing in the face of environmental catastrophe and ecological collapse
Almost two decades into the twenty first century, it is becoming increasingly clear that without serious change in our behaviour as a species, we are headed towards environmental catastrophe and ecological collapse.
Yet with governments and businesses seemingly inert or unwilling to act, many feel a profound sense of helplessness. A form of grief for what has not yet been lost but which we feel in our bodies will soon be.
And yet it is this grief itself that paralyses us. What we know of grief from psychological models is that it has seven stages — shock, denial, anger, bargaining, depression, testing, and acceptance. But because of our sense of helplessness, most of us are stuck in one of the first five stages.
This workshop explores this grief and how as poets, as humans we can face darkness, and in doing so achieve acceptance and a space within our own consciousness where positive action can then be taken.
Who needs Wordsworth Anyway?
Questioning the relevance of traditional nature writing in the 21st century
Over the centuries, nature writing has played an important role in our culture’s understanding of the world we live in and how we treat it. Writing that gives us a sense of the world without the interference of humanity.
But is there still value in writing that brings us closer to the natural world without questioning human infringement upon it? Or are we now only capable of urbanis urban whimsy, pastoral nostalgia, "a solidly bourgeois form of escapism".
This workshop seeks to ask this question, to weigh up the relevance of the traditional nature ‘canon’ in today’s world and explores new forms of nature and Ecopoetic writing.
Reconnecting with nature through writing
It is the narratives we tell to ourselves that define the decisions we make, the lives we lead and the people we become. And in the western world, one of the most powerful narratives we tell ourselves is that of our separation from the natural world and our ownership of it.
This workshops explores poetry that imagines humans not as separate from the natural world but as part of it. It looks at ways in which we can reconnect with our natural environment and how poets and writers can create new narratives that put nature at the centre of humanity, not as a side note.