Feeding the wild writer:Colm Keegan at Mountains to Sea Festival.
I attended a short workshop with Colm Keegan last weekend at the DLR LExicon in Dun Laoghaire for the Mountains to Sea Festival. It was a packed workshop, over 18 people but Colm handled and facilitated it well. I have read some of Colm’s short fiction and poetry and really liked his style and writing. He is also a very cool performance poet as well and has great things said about his classes so I was looking forward to it.
We looked at some different examples of what he thinks is wild writing. First, we looked at Chuck Palahniuk who is most famous for writing Fight Club. We read an excerpt from his short story/fiction type novel, Haunted. Certainly, we have full-on themes and ideas in this piece and the class got into a discussion on taboos. We explored the fact that there are many Huge taboos in writing that can shock readers but it is often the small, quiet taboos that no one likes to admit to speaking about that need airing.
After reading a piece from Dave Lordan’s First Book of Frags, we took part in a series of writing exercises. We wrote about something we had thought about in the last 24 hours, week and just now! It was good to write without censoring or stopping myself to edit. Colm added a simple piece of advice-write everyday and don’t edit or critique the writing. It could be complete rubbish or badly written and it may often not go anywhere. This type of free writing brings up creative connections and associations which can lead to a writing flow.
The workshop was full of cool people tha I would have liked more time to get to know and it was brilliant to get recommendations on new reads as well as simple, honest writing advice. Colm is very encouraging and makes it all look very easy!
The workshop flew by! At two hours, I feel I have only started to see what a good teacher Colm is. I am definitely going to look out for his day workshops and retreats. His blog can be found here along with information of the workshops he is running. http://uiscebot.wix.com/colm-keegan#!kingfisher-writers-retreat/c23we