I hope everyone is OK in what is the 7th week of lockdown I think now? I imagine there have been batches of bread, a plethora of Zooms and other manners of activity and also perhaps some longer lie ins and afternoon naps!
I'm going to be letting you know all the Creative Writing news but I'm also bringing a more personal touch to the newsletter.
So, being a self employed person in the Creative industry, lockdown hit me hard economically. The market has become flooded with free content from funded organisations which is great for customers but difficult for those of us who are unfunded and income dependent. However! As a tenacious soul with a mainly optimistic and entreprenurial disposition I began to take two business webinars a week, look at what I could do to grow elsewhere and invest in some website updates and upskill myself in some areas.
One income stream that remained was my work as Publishing Lead for Hypatia Trust, and though only 24hrs per month it is something I am busy with and I also still have 3 hrs per week working with clients with dyslexia and dyscalculia for adult education. Whilst working through my own lockdown challenges I was also helping my 86 year old mother from afar, she's in Manchester, to get onto the vulnerable person scheme and receive some help and support – that took five weeks!
I haven't been hit by any feelings of loneliness - maybe because I am used to living alone and also as a writer I am often inside my mind. But like everyone I have had times where I have felt that anxiety is only a step away and my way of keeping it at bay has been to feel I am doing all I can to help my future and to keep connecting with creative people and my own creativity.
A wonderful thing has been that the week before lockdown I was fortunate to be taken on as a mentee by an literary industry professional who I approached in the first instance and then was able to secure funding for her fee by Cultivator. I am learning a lot under her guidance. Amazing fact: she was responsible for publishing Jeanette Winterson's first book Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit – so being guided by her is a big deal. Cultivator are also providing me with business support and digital guidance.
Other than this I've been also working on my own writing, looking at revisiting an old project https://youtu.be/cu5iXlK3r14 and enjoying, as ever, all the valued interactions I have with writers and those interested in writing and the arts, all over the world.
So! Let us come to writing news:
Coaching for Writers
I have now added a dedicated tab to my website https://www.freewriterscentre.org/coaching.html where you can read all about my Coaching practice and how I can help and support you in your writing journey no matter where you are on it.
Coaching sessions can take place via Zoom and have been going very successfully using that medium. I worked with a client some weeks ago who is based in Cairo and our session was easy, enjoyable and without any technical issues – it really is a great way to connect! As an incentive to writers at this time Zoom mentoring sessions are one hour at only £15.
You can also read about my full range of Editing Services via that page.
Classes and Courses
In the Online Store
I have added to the menu of downloadable self paced products and now you can enjoy:
Online Live Classes
These can be scheduled as 40 minute classes for groups (minimum 3 people) for £5 each.
OR take a class privately for one hour for only £15.
Follow up sessions for each live group or individual, going over the writing you have produced, can be scheduled as required.
The topics to choose from are below:
Two Part Return - explores the theme of identity, distorted reflections and doppelgängers
Flowers for Frankenstein - ways to create, develop and bring your characters to life, especially anti heroes, also handing over techniques to help improve text and imagery.
Death of the Idea - what do we do when we feel we have nothing new to bring to the table? When we feel our ideas, our ways of being are outmoded or absent? What do we do when they way we thought of ourselves drops away and we have no comfortable new skin to step into? In this workshop we will discuss such experiences and situations and then create (write) characters and scenes exploring the theme.
Spectacular Bridges & Fabulous Beasts - following the theme of creating (in narrative) your own bridge between the worlds, a fabulous creature that travels across it and a love story of those separated in a physical sense but who can communicate between worlds.
Two previous live classes Point of No Return and Mindfulness & Creative Writing are now products in the online store for £10 each.
***Contact me in the first instance if wanting to take a Live Online Class***
If able then please consider donating a small amount here https://www.freewriterscentre.org/store/p12/Donate.html to help with the everyday costs of marketing, printing, website management, research and development. Your help and kindness is greatly appreciated.
Thank you all and bye for now! Linda