I had no grand plans for today. I anticipated a moochy day at home, nothing special.
I am so glad that non-plan got turned on its head.
The phone rang at about 9.25am. It was someone from the library, telling me the workshop I’d put my name on the wait list for (and forgotten about) had a last minute cancellation, so I could go if I wanted to.
Brilliant! Who’s running the workshop? Catherine Deveny. Hoorah, yes of course I’ll come. It starts at 10! Scramble.
Bed to library in 20 minutes – including coffee made and enjoyed, and the application of make-up. And clothes.
The workshop was phenomenal. Catherine was great – down to earth, telling us not to give a fuck what WE think of our writing, let alone what anyone else thinks. I’ll have to work on whether I totally concur with that one, but I know where she was coming from.
Nineteen people, Catherine in a grouse red and yellow poncho, one room, and five hours. What a trip. What a rush.
We talked and did writing exercises and watched a few clips on her lappy. We drank coffee and shared ideas and thoughts. We asked questions, found answers, saw the light and wrote about our teeth.
It made me want to cry several times – and in the end I did. I frickin’ love words and people who grapple with writing them.
I want to kill all the self doubt and the shrinking back and the obsession with formula, genre and worth, and stamp out the reasons why we let others pour water on our creative embers.
I wanted to shake and smack almost every person in the room, then hug them and encourage them to JUST KEEP GOING!
What a precious thing it is to find others who are like you, and not. Who love what you love, through their own prism and filters.
So, while my head is pounding with ideas and exhaustion, I just wanted to say – get thee to a workshop!! It could be about rebuilding classic cars, or geology, or Franco-Italian ceramics – seek out the people who share your passion and put yourself in a room with them for five hours.
It might just change your life.
Thank you to whoever dropped out today, your loss is truly my gain.
PS I cried in front of Catherine Deveny. I did. I welled up and told her I want to kill everyone and then bring them back to life. And I think she knew what I meant. How amazing is that?4