one-day workshops

SCROLL DOWN FOR 2018 DAY WORKSHOPS
(more tba)

PLEASE NOTE THAT ALL WORKSHOPS NEED TO BE BOOKED IN ADVANCE (BOOK VIA THE CONTACT FORM, BOTTOM OF PAGE)

***

PRESENCE: haibun, haiku, and the natural world

blue cranesbill
Sunday June 24th 2018
11am–4pm
£35 Or attend both this and the following for £58 total, payable on booking
Higher Beenleigh, Nr Totnes, South Devon
Refreshments provided; please bring veggie lunch to share, and something to sit on outdoors (if at all wet bring sturdy boots and waterproofs). Directions given on booking

BOOKINGS: see CONTACT FORM at bottom of page

In this midsummer solstice outdoor workshop, in the spirit of both animism and Zen-influenced writing, we’ll bring a quality of attention to each passing moment and its inhabitants, and attempt to capture it in words, using two forms very much associated with Zen mindfulness practice (scroll down to bottom to see more information on wild mindfulness, which forms part of this day).

The Zen approach to poetry engages a deep engagement with the natural world and a pleasure in capturing it through a pared-down sensory appreciation.

There’s no need to be familiar with these forms or with Zen – come and experiment, at this turning point of the year, indoors and out (weather permitting).

PLEASE BRING WARM/WATERPROOF CLOTHES (in case), non-slip shoes (essential) and SOMETHING TO SIT ON.

***

ALL OUR RELATIONS: Tongues in Trees

gardoussel-leaf-canopy

Sunday July 8th 2018

11am–4pm
£35 Or attend both this and the one above for £58 total, payable on booking
In beautiful woodland at Druid (yes, really) where the Wellwood project is homed above Ashburton on the edge of Dartmoor (directions given on booking)

Refreshments provided; please bring veggie lunch to share, and something to sit on outdoors (wear sturdy boots and warm clothes/waterproofs)

BOOKINGS: see CONTACT FORM at bottom of page

Each time I’ve led a tree-spirit medicine workshop people have experienced it as transformative, utterly changing the way they relate to trees. Working in this way deepens and grounds our relationship to the other-than-human, and trees themselves both botanically and through their presence and qualities offer us much in the way of tranquility, harmony, uplift and an immune boost.

I will be setting you tree tasks, and we’ll use writing to explore and express our experience, plus some impromptu land art.

kate-compston-web

***

LIVING WATERS, SACRED SPRINGS

gardooussel water

October 14th, afternoon, on Dartmoor; time & venue tbc

This is an outdoor collaboration between myself with my Wellkeepers programme, and Sam Wernham of River Dart Wild Church, whose emphasis this year is on water.
Details tbc


***
STILL TO BE ARRANGED:

SOUL MEDICINE
The Time of Late Harvest

umbellifer
Dartmoor OR Nr Totnes, Devon, dates 2018 tba
10am – 4pm

At this time of the earth’s abundance of fruits and colour, we can learn much from aligning our lives to be in harmony with the turning season.
What have you harvested in your life from this year? What has to be given away? As well as being a treat for the senses, this one-day largely-outdoor retreat is nourishment for our inner lives, stocking up ready for the dreaming of autumn.
Come and be present with yourself, each other, and the stories of the animals, birds, plants and trees of this little lush corner of Devon as we deepen and write towards the slowing of the year.

Please bring a seasonal veggie dish to share.
Tea & coffee etc will be provided.
BOOKINGS AS BELOW

***

STORYMAKING
NOVELISTS’ BOOTCAMP

CNW cover

venue & dates 2018 tba;
8 places only

Would you like to make a leap forward in your fiction writing?
Are you partway through writing a novel? About to begin? Finished first draft? Stuck?
If you’d like a top-up of inspiration, technique and general expertise from this very experienced writer and tutor in a small group with time for individual feedback, this weekend might be for you.

The days will focus on core theme, central questions, the arc of the plot, brief synopses, opening and closing pages, keeping the story going, viewpoint, and the demands of character and dialogue.

The course is based on my book above, which itself grew from a series of workshops for novelists I’ve been leading since the 1990s (featured in The Guardian in 1998). This now generally takes the shape of an online course, for which the feedback is excellent. Many of my students are now published.

TO BOOK: see CONTACT FORM at bottom of page

AS THIS IS A SMALL & FOCUSED GROUP, EARLY BOOKING WITH FULL FEE IS ESSENTIAL

***
WHAT YOU HAVE MISSED IN 2018

 

THRESHOLDS AT IMBOLC
SEASON OF RENEWAL
PERSONAL DAY RETREAT

snowdrops

NEW FOR LATE JANUARY/EARLY FEBRUARY 2018
For more than 20 years I’ve offered THRESHOLDS as a group experienc e in the shape of an annual day course. Many people have repeated this course with me, often over and over.

I’m delighted to announce that as of 26th January this year, 2018, it is now available as a 12-page download for a personal one-day intensive retreat.

Explicitly designed for Imbolc, 1st-2nd February, the contents are relevant in the northern hemisphere up until the vernal equinox in March, so you can choose a day to suit yourself.

The comprehensive material covers Imbolc and its place in the mythology and calendar of the Celtic Wheel of the Year; a story relevant to this emergence towards spring; some practical suggestions for this season; and many questions designed to guide you in a psychospiritual journey towards restoring a sense of balance, wholeness and joy in your life as we come towards spring in the outer world.

At this renewing time of Imbolc – snowdrops, lambs, the re-emergence of the spring goddess, and the cracking-open of the earth towards the new cycle – this is an opportunity to take some time to reflect on your last year and on what you would like to invite in to the forthcoming year; to notice the gap between how you would like to live and how you actually live, and to consider how you might address this. Here’s the blurb:

Using writing as a tool, here’s an opportunity for you to look at your last year: its joys and losses, the things that worked, the things you’d like to change, what you need to let go of. I shall be prompting you to question the balance in your inner and outer lives; how much you nurture the different aspects of being: work, relaxation, friends, family, solo time; and attention given to physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health.

What kind of year would you like to create for yourself in 2018?

This has been carefully designed by a very experienced and supportive facilitator, but happens in your own quiet space.

The download costs £15 sterling, and you will need to find me (roselle[at]fire-in-the-head[dot]co[dot]uk) on Paypal. (Please replace the square brackets with the usual symbols.) NB: If you don’t have a Paypal account, you can still pay me this way and it’s a safe way to transfer money, though I need to charge you an extra 75p, so please add that on. Contact me via the form at the bottom of the page if you’d rather do a bank transfer.
NB IN EITHER CASE PLEASE EMAIL ME TO LET ME KNOW TO SEND THE PDF.

‘I wanted to tell you how how blest I was by your Thresholds Retreat, which I spent a day over. I’d been looking for some way to reconnect with the seasons’ rhythms and also battling with some personal issues…and this was the perfect thing. It spoke volumes to my heart and soul and fed my mind too…thank you xxx’
(J, February 14th 2018)

Because it’s intense, one word of warning: if (for instance) you’re especially vulnerable, say recently bereaved, you might want to think about asking a friend to accompany you on this journey, or leave it till next year.
 

***

MINDFULNESS WALK AT GREENWAY

kwan-yin
Wednesday 28 February 2018
11am – 1pm

In the beautiful woodland gardens of National Trust Greenway Devon. I had the privilege of being writer-in-residence at Greenway at the end of 2017. I love the place: its woodland garden tumbling down to the Dart, and in addition to offering lots of writing-related events I wrote a lot there. My final essay can be read here. Come and walk among the trees; visit Kwan Yin in her tranquil pool; listen to the birds beginning to call spring; feast your eyes on the camellia blossoms. We’ll walk slowly, in silence, and I’ll offer your prompts for writing. Oh yes, bring a notebook!

Booking essential, via Greenway

***

WILD MINDFULNESS, WILD WRITING
Bringing yourself back home
Sunday May 6th
2–5pm


£15–£20 according to your means (includes refreshments)
Higher Beenleigh Barn, Diptford, Nr Totnes TQ9 7ND
NB you don’t need any previous experience in either mindfulness or writing

stone-and-shoot---columba's-bay

This session is about falling more deeply in love with this planet, our life and the other lives on it. The session will emphasise waking up in and to the present moment, and also our natural affinity and close relationship with nature. The last few years, I’ve been leading mindfulness walks in the Devon countryside, and people seem to have ‘dropped deep’ with them.

We’ll use brief guided outdoor meditations to:
~ increase a sense of inner spaciousness and stillness
~ attune ourselves via simple exercises to a deeper sense of relationship with the natural world of which we’re a part, and
~ to enhance our powers of observation & imagination.
From this, peace and clarity can emerge, and we can leave behind ‘monkey mind’ and its chatter and clutter. Then we’ll write.

Much of the afternoon will take place in silence, whether walking, standing or sitting, and I will encourage you to be barefoot for part of the time.

We’ll be practising outdoors even in rain (at least for part of the afternoon), so please come prepared, including with sturdy non-slip waterproof footwear, a coat, and something sit on, even if only an old carrier bag.

This afternoon event is to be the first of several mindfulness-for-writers sessions. This session will take place in a private garden and field near Totnes, with a woodland margin and abundance of wildlife. Others will happen on Dartmoor, and possibly in a canoe on the Dart. Next dates: Sunday June 24th, see above; Sunday July 8th, see above

BOOK VIA THE CONTACT FORM, BOTTOM OF PAGE

PLEASE BRING WATERPROOFS AND STURDY BOOTS, and SOMETHING TO SIT ON.

~~~

Please note that these workshops usually incorporate many ways of writing: reflective, therapeutic, writing for inner-world exploration and mindfulness, and eco-awareness, as well as for creative expression.

This is not the case, clearly, for workshops such as the Novelists’ Bootcamp

HOW TO BOOK: contact me here below, and please read the small print

I will give you the necessary info and pencil you in if you want to join us. As the groups are small, to guarantee you a place I then need the full fee immediately.

AND THE SMALL PRINT:
Please note that this is non-refundable if you cancel within a month of the workshop; if you cancel more than a month before I will refund half of your fee. If for any reason I cancel the workshop then of course your full fee is refunded.