Room to Write at Ceridwen

“Take part in a variety of exercises, discussions, readings, tutorials, group sessions, games, walks and other adventures to stretch both brain and body!” said the blurb for Room to Write at the Ceridwen Centre in Wales. The weekend certainly lived up to that promise.

Marcus Moore and Sara-Jane Arbury (working together as Spiel Unlimited) moved the sessions on at a cracking pace and kept a perfect balance of challenge and encouragement for us eager participants. Meanwhile, Ceridwen was a perfect venue: gorgeous surroundings, comfy lodgings, plenty of space for the workshops, friendly staff and superb vegetarian food. One of the participants had been married at the Centre in May and she and her mother loved the place so much they had decided the writing weekend would be a fun way to return.

Some of us were fairly new to creative writing, some more experienced, but the weekend catered skilfully for all – no one bored or defeated. It also managed to be both challenging and yet feel safe enough for us to all write and to share. The activities were varied including a couple of walks, after dinner Taboo (and after a couple of glasses of wine, too), poem genesis, monologue, character building, role play and a guided (because Sara-Jane charmed them) tour of the National Wool Museum. (Thanks to the Dales writing group’s ferocious Articulate games a couple of weekends ago I was Taboo queen when we played. Has to be a first time for everything. (And probably last, in this case.))

Here’s a quickly scribbled poem cycle from our walk around the farm. Inkcaps were emerging in a lawn. Apparently they only last a few days; it seemed fitting they appeared just in time for a writing weekend.

Ceridwen inkcaps
pale toad stools in autumn grass
spores as poetry

spores as poetry
ink phrasing in DNA
form stands test of time

form stands test of time
man and nature coexist
Ceridwen inkcaps

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