January – writing workshops in Tavira

The “Writing in the Algarve” group held its first meeting of 2016 at Tavira Library. Monday’s (4th January) meeting looked at story, plot and theme.

New members mingled with familiar faces. After introductions we went straight into the first writing exercise, a set scene, involving a psychiatric hospital, a windfall and an ill-tempered character.
The task was to write for 5 minutes using this framework. The ideas that came through were spontaneous, lively and bold.

After a short explanation of the distinctions between story, plot and theme, we all plunged into a longer exercise that required the group to choose components for a story from set lists.

The lists, covered theme, character, setting and props.

It was a challenge.

Just the mere attempt at this exercise is a boundary pusher. Humour, pathos, isolation all emerged within some clever lines.

Why are exercises of this kind of importance to a writer? It is because they allow free rein for the imagination to delve or soar. There is no time for censure. There is no time to reference a dictionary or Roget’s thesaurus to help choose a suitable word.

With this type of exercise, whatever we judge as quality in our work is not the focus. What these exercises do, is try to unlock creativity, editing comes later.

Notes about plot and story were shared, but the main purpose of these workshops is reflective “doing.”

Next Meeting,18th January, at 2:30pm, Tavira Square, outside the Camara Office, near the fountain. The long term forecast suggests that the weather maybe cloudy, but that should not stop us observing with the aim of creating compelling and convincing characters. The idea is to find your own space, cafe or muse and outline a character or two.

An exercise with some ideas and prompts will be sent by email.


writing workshop logo

We will meet after the exercise at 3:05 (ish) in the Alvaro de Campos Cafe/Restaurant, but not the Alvaro de Campos Association Cafe as previously suggested. The Alvaro de Campos Cafe/Restaurant, is not far from the square at 47, Rue da Liberdade.

Also check out the “Writing in the Algarve” Facebook page for tips, writing prompts and encouraging articles.

Writing in the Algarve workshops are the idea of Sue Hall & Mary Jezzard

For more information email sue@suehall.net

POV – Point of View Tips Link

Third person omniscient Link

How to choose the right POV Link

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