On Monday 7th June 2010, I ran a creative writing workshop for MIND in Abingdon, Oxfordshire. This is part of a well-organised and innovative creative arts programme being run at the centre. We looked at what makes a good picture book (for 3-7 year olds) and then had a go at writing our own stories.
Eleanor Baylis and Jade Sullivan (Community Resource Project Workers for MIND in Abingdon and Wallingford) have been working with a group of writers on poetry, memoir and short stories and asked book artist Frances Kiernan to help them produce an anthology of the best work.
Fran designed and laid out the material for them and provided brightly coloured covers and we spent a fun and informative two-hour session making books with the group.
Called Mindful Musings, the anthology contains an inspired selection of writing from poetry to a series of hilarious “It was a dark and stormy night…” stories. Fran showed us how to make Japanese Stitch Books. After a few false starts and wrong stitches, we were all the proud owners of our very own beautifully smart Mindful Musings anthologies by the end of the session.
When Fran told the group that we had known each other since Art School in the 60s, a bright spark asked “Which one of you is Laurel and which one Hardy?” Shortly followed by “…and who gets whom into a fine mess?”
I think it had to be me that day as for some reason I gave Fran the wrong directions back to London and she ended up on her way to Bicester instead!
Apart from that hiccup, a really great day was had by all.