beyond the hearts and flowers

Filed under: courses

beyond the hearts and flowers

I’m back from the course I was teaching with Kate Walker.

What a great weekend!

It was an awesome group of writers–every one of them 100% committed to making their writing the best it could be. We laughed and worked and drank (a little) and ate chocolate and generally had a blast. Kate mentions that one of the highlights was when I was leading a session on how to write a sex scene, and a man came in with the heater we’d requested earlier…of course by that time we didn’t need it! He was a little bashful (I wonder why) and hightailed it out of there, even before I’d put up my overhead about “bodacious ta-tas”.

Some of the main highlights for me were these:

…Seeing and working with the marvellous Kate. We write quite differently and it was great to be able to demonstrate two entirely different ways of approaching writing: I analyse things, and Kate writes from instinct, and yet both approaches work. Team teaching is great fun and it was really useful to always have an expert there to enrich what I was doing.

…Meeting the twelve participants. Everyone was so friendly and so excited to be there. The bar was hopping on Friday and Saturday nights (even though we were asked to be quiet for the lecture going on next door)!

…Getting Jane and Pat to solve the my book’s plot problems in the bar!

…Doing a crit session and going around the table and praising each other’s writing. For some people this was the first time they’d shared their writing and it was wonderful to be able to assure each and every person that she had talent and potential. And then asking each person what she’d change about what she’d done, and seeing that everyone had geniunely taken things in and were able to turn what we were saying into concrete strategies for making their writing stronger.

So thank you, Kate; and thank you, Sue, Gray, Melanie, Karen, Pat, Jane, Jacqui, Jo, Lara, Marie, Sarah, and Liz; and thank you, Arts Training Council for making this happen.

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  1. And bless you and thank you Julie and Kath for pouring out so much of yourself for us. I learned such a lot and am still buzzing. Roll on Dallas!


  2. YAY Julie and Kate! I’m glad it went so well, and I’m happy for the participants that got to pick your brains!


  3. Phewwww!!! Thank goodness you never mentioned the strawberries!! 😉

    Gray and I are still reeling from everything we’ve learned – was it really only a weekend?!

    Thank you SO much for giving us SO much. *Hug*



  4. Sounds like a fab time was had by all! I bet you loved going home to Fecklet, though :) And LOL at the bodacious ta-tas.

    Jess x

    PS. If your statcounter shows you someone searching through all your breastfeeding-related posts, it wasn’t a random perv — it was me! I wanted to get an electric pump (which I did yesterday) and was looking for the post with all the milk-supply advice on it.


  5. Ugh! Not a breast pump!!

    I hope yours is not as cringeworthily awful as mine were (all 3 of them). Though one fact about the weekend I didn’t report was how I set up my double breast pump near my bed at the uni (not to actually get any milk, but so that my milk wouldn’t dry up after three days away from Fecklet) and someone came in to make my bed on Saturday morning and must have seen it set up, flexishields, long bits of tubing, and all.

    I wonder what they thought it was…


  6. LOL at leaving your pump out!

    My first one was a manual pump, which was good but very hard to multitask with. I’ve got a Medela electric now. It’s noisy as hell but v. efficient. I also bought some of the Milkmaid Tea and it really does work, doesn’t it?! Also tastes v. nice. Happiness all round.

    Jess x


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