Janet Thomas – Retreat, Reflect & Write
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 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.