Winchester Writers’ Festival Writing Workout
On 14 November, 30 keen creative writers gathered at the University to flex their writing muscles at a day-long Writing Workout. Six sessions led by experienced tutors allowed participants to exercise their imagination and extend their skills, fuelled by plentiful supplies of coffee and cake. Each 45-minute session focused on a particular aspect such as developing character, investigating setting, creating drama, intensifying language and writing strong dialogue.
The day was suitable for beginners as well as more established writers, working in any form or genre. The tutors included University of Winchester lecturers and writers Judith Heneghan, Judy Waite and Dr Julian Stannard, along with guest Shelley Harris, author of Jubilee (shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book Prize, a Radio 4 Book at Bedtime and a Richard and Judy Summer Book Club selection) and the recently published Vigilante.
Attendees responded to each session with commitment and enthusiasm. As one participant commented, ‘What I learned will be a great help in my writing and already I am looking at how I write in a different and more positive way.’ The Workout was fully booked, and Festival Director Judith Heneghan says ‘We’ll be planning similar days in the future. It’s wonderful to be able to welcome writers to the University to experience what we do, gain inspiration and access techniques to sustain them through the often isolating experience of crafting new work.’