• Sophie Buchaillard

Why a creative workshop is for you?

Updated: Mar 19, 2020

"What do you do?" the elderly lady in the gym asks me in between two rounds of chest compression.

"I am a writer," I reply, catching my breath.

"That's great. I wish I could write. I have so many stories to tell."

"Why don't you?" I ask, knowing what's coming.

"Oh, no. It isn't for me. I am not creative at all."

And there you have it. The invisible division between the haves and the have nots. Except if you have a child or have ever watched young children play, you know that we are all born with the ability to imagine castles and battles, fairy kingdoms and mythical animals. So, then what happens? An impatient school teacher. A jealous older sibling. A professional rejection. In all my years as a creative coach, working with people who believed themselves not to be creative, there is one constant. A story that marked the day when creative confidence took a blow. I've been there.

In The Nine Rights of Every Writer, Vickie Spandel wrote: "When a child takes his first tentative steps and falls, we applaud the walking and cheer for him when he gets up. We never say, 'Well he is not a walker, that's for sure.' We know - we believe - that he will not only walk but run, climb mountains, ski the steepest slopes, dance the tango." You will hear those who tell you that not everyone has talent. Ignore them. I am not suggesting that everyone will become a writer. What I do believe is that we all have the ability to express ourselves creatively and that if the idea of writing appeals to you, even a little, then you should definitely listen to your guts and give it a go. you might surprise yourself.

Think of creativity like a muscle. The more you exercise it, the stronger it becomes. There might be some discomfort along the way, you might experience doubt, you might think it isn't for you. That's when the workshop comes in. A creative writing workshop is a small group of people who meet to talk about reading and writing, explore together, share pieces, support each other, all on an equal footing. What a workshop provides is a community of like minded people who experience the same doubts, wrestle the same questions, experiment with solutions which might work for you too. A workshop is where you can get encouragement, support, feedback to grow your creative muscle stronger. A bit like joining a friendly community gym or a running club. Of course, you might see yourself more as a lonesome runner. After all, nobody can do the work of putting pen to paper for you. Everything else, we can do together.

New five-week Introduction to Creative Workshop in Penarth after Easter. Please go to Contact and sign up to express your interest.

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