a few kind words – testimonials

Thank you to all the writers and adventurers, foragers and flaneusers – who have provided such enthusiastic feedback.

Here are a few kind words –

I was so pleased to find a course that focused on generating writing and found it very useful for unblocking creativity – which was exactly what I was looking for.

I think I got the most out of the Wellcome exhibition in terms of work created. I think that I probably enjoyed the BL/crime day most though.

It was great to discover so many places I had overlooked even though I thought I knew the area well.

This is such an innovative course that is quite unlike the usual creative writing class. Each day was very well planned and the writing prompts were well thought out too.  Jeanette


Best bits – What were your highlights this term?

I have enjoyed each and every week so far hugely. Highlights for me – discovering the unexpected fun to be had from writing based on historical research at the Watchmaker’s museum – the invitation to go into small art galleries – as I have never thought/dared to press their doorbells and go in before, the excitement and nerves of reading out our work, especially listening to what the others have made having shared the same instructions. Even though writers are solitary, this is collaborative.

In Your Own Words… How would you describe what we get up to, and what you get out of it?

I like your term ‘urban foragers’, though you’re the real forager and we come along and rifle through what you have unearthed. I am glad you are so firm with timing, assignments and, particularly, with the feedback and reading sessions, as they could so easily fall apart into digressions and chat. The blog is a lovely thing to take away from it. Jess


Best bits – What were your highlights this term?

Hard to say, it was all great. I loved listening to the organ recital when we went to St. Laurence Jewry in the city, and the fact that all that huge music was produced by two blushing sixth formers. I enjoyed looking at the objects in the Wellcome Museum, and the flights of fancy that followed. I liked the day on crime fiction, and that people laughed at my monologue.

But I also liked that first day when we walked around in the unexpected sunshine and just being in those odd places like the Finsbury Health Centre.

Hard to pick out best bits really.

In Your Own Words… How would you describe what we get up to, and what you get out of it?

What we get up to is having a lovely surprise every Tuesday, not really knowing where we’re going and why, plus lots of stimuli to write about these places and things in whatever way suits us.

What we get out of it is an extraordinary, self-indulgent day with a group of friendly like-minded people (and a chance to eat lunch in the Bedford Hotel, and other unlikely places!) Janet


Best bits – What were your highlights this term? – I love the trails going back to Mary Ward e.g via The Place and the Horse Hospital last week. (I’d seen the Horse Hospital before, but did not know I could go in and see an exhibition). The best venue was perhaps St Lawrence Jewry and the Guildhall…I’ve been to them before but forget to check out new exhibitions  – and the stimulus e.g. about ‘time’ makes all the difference.

And what could have made the course (even!) better? – Sometimes I get confused following the maps as some roads are not clear, but that is no problem really when I remember to bring my A-Z as well!

In Your Own Words… How would you describe what we get up to, and what you get out of it?

We meet at unusual London venues, where we are given a stimulus for our writing (a poem, idea, quote etc). Then we observe, make notes and follow a trail back to the Mary Ward Centre, where we write for about an hour, in any form we like, using our notes and read the work back to the class, getting positive feedback and encouragement.

I need the stimulus to think of ideas and get down to writing. I also need the encouragement of good feedback to keep on writing. I would like to write better short stories and poems and find this class is helping me improve. Kathryn


Best bits – What were your highlights this term?

The Hunterian. But it was hard to decide.

And what could have made the course (even!) better? Nothing

In Your Own Words… How would you describe what we get up to, and what you get out of it?

We convene at a place unveiled the previous week. It might be a museum, a church, The British Library. Who knows? Or, it might be somewhere you’ve heard of or passed by but never visited. There will be something that immediately catches our attention as an exhibition or as a sight. But that’s where the story starts. Claire’s prompts are there to provoke and inspire, and there’s never just one idea behind them.  Suggestions, secondary visits, routes and red herrings abound. These sessions are such fertile hunting grounds for fascinating places and for sharpening our perceptions of London. It’s astonishing to get back to Mary Ward at 3.30 and to listen to everyone’s very diverse and imaginative pieces of writing, having all visited the same places. Astrid



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