There are already new publications in preparation, new links with the Whitechapel Gallery, new university lecturer networks and new partnerships.
April 29th – at the Whitechapel Gallery, a most generous sponsor , the Whodunit group meets with the university lecturer network and we write together. Some have not written together before, some are writing together for the 30th time in 4 years – for some the collaboration goes back further. We are a community of enquiry. In order to reflect on what we have learnt, we use the writing ‘stem’ – ‘when I write ...’ and it elicits a rainbow of insights from the assembled writing teachers. Here’s one:
When I write, as I glide over the surface of the paper, it is like looking down from the gunwales of a boat into the waters below and the weeds waving beneath. There are creatures down there. There is treasure. There are wrecks – maybe too hard to salvage. I knew, and didn’t know, this would happen.
Each writer found different metaphors, different ways of describing the act of writing, different discoveries from their experience in groups, classrooms and on their own. In discussion afterwards, we accepted the need to provide young writers with structures, but wanted to insist on freedom to explore the complexity and provisionality of authentic writing for which no rules exist.
Barbara Bleiman of EMC - another generous partner to NWP - tells me that the response to 'unguided writing' on National Writing Day, 21 June, has been tremendous. Click here to find out more - and participate!