Oct 16-18 : Oct 23-26 : Oct 30-1 Nov

Writing Workshops at Deer Park

Janet Thomas

 October 2015 Writing Workshops at Deer Park      

Travel Writing—Friday, October 16 -- Sunday, October 18

In both travel, and travel writing, the outer journey needs the depth of the inner journey, and the inner journey needs the boldness, the craziness, and the comic relief of the outer journey. Travel writing reminds us who we are, where we've been, where we're going--and why it matters. From the convenient travel tip to the inconvenience of facing ourselves at-large in the world, travel writing is a trip in itself. It offers the writer and the reader both information and inspiration. It brings the world home.

The Art & Craft of Writing a Memoir—Friday, October 23 -- Monday, October 26

When we reclaim our lives in memoir, we get to live our lives twice, complete with the grace of hindsight as well as with the honesty that makes each life compelling and true. This memoir workshop is about diving into the depths of our lives—where our own unique story reflects a universal truth: “The deeper you go, the more universal you get.” Our stories save the world. When we write a memoir, and let the writing lead the way, we enter our lives in ways that deepen our appreciation of our own story, and one another's stories. We broaden our relationship to the world within and the world without—for ourselves and for the reader.


Retreat, Reflect & Write—Friday, October 30 -- Sunday, November 1

In these few days together we explore the ways in which our writing is nurtured by silence, nature, and reflection. All writing—whether it is prose, poetry, fiction, non-fiction, or science-fiction—requires the attention of our expansive mind. And in order to find its own unique way into language and writing, our expansive mind needs the spaciousness of the natural world and its non-verbal wisdom. We will also explore the work of Nature Writers from around the world.



Language Note for Writing Workshops: In these writing workshops, I strongly recommend that participants consider writing, first of all, in their first language. If we experienced our early lives in a language other than English, it is often that first language that leads the way into our deepest truths and memories. When writing is shared within the group (always voluntarily), it can be shared in the first language and then loosely translated into English. This gives writers access to the freedom and the rhythms of writing that come naturally through the body as well as through the reflections of the mind. Writing can always be translated into English, and grammar can easily be fixed, but to be fully recognized, the memories of heart, mind, and body often need expression through their first language of experience.



Janet Thomas has been teaching yearly workshops at Deer Park since 2009. Her books include, The Battle in Seattle—The Story Behind and Beyond the WTO Demonstrations, and Day Breaks Over Dharamsala—A Memoir of Life Lost and Found. She has written plays and poetry and was the editor of a travel magazine for five years. She lives and writes on an island off the coast of Washington State in the U.S.