This workshop welcomes writers with disabilities and our allies, to practice our own writing in different formats, individually and in group compositions, building upon each others’ work and existing disability literature. 

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Time: two Sundays, 12:30 to 15:00

Duration: 24 January - 31 January, 2021

Location: Online via Zoom

Description

This workshop is open to all.

  • Are you seeking to explore how writing exercises in fiction, poetry and non-fiction can open up insights and fresh approaches in your chosen genre?
  • Do you want to try collaborative composing with a mix of writers, including peers with disability, chronic illness or neurodiversity?
  • Are you curious to dig into how marginalized body-mind realities could resonate to spring your writing off from, and connect with community across a diversity of experiences?

This workshop welcomes writers with disabilities and our allies, to practice our own writing in different formats, individually and in group compositions, building upon each others’ work and existing disability literature.  Each session will be two and a half hours, with activities for forty-five minute periods, and breaks in between.

Before the workshop begins: 

  1. Please read the essay (takes approximately twenty minutes; advance pages using the “forward” link at bottom) https://samizdatpress.typepad.com/hal_magazine_issue_twelve/my-arrival-at-crip-by-sandra-alland-1.html on “Poetic Histories of Disability, Neurodivergence and Illness in Tkaronto/Taranton/Toronto, 1995-2007”
  2. Contact the facilitator at squesting@pm.me with any questions about participating, specific access needs if you have them, and one thing related to writing about an embodied or cognitive experience that you’d like to try.

The first session, we’ll go over agreements that support the shared online space being accessible for everyone to participate.  We’ll discuss the magazine essay and start with some prompts from Poetry for the People for free verse writing grounded in sensory descriptive detail.  We’ll go to haiku, and some other structured verse poetry models to experiment with, then create a group poetic text drawing on a technique for anonymously gathering Zoom chat.

In between the two sessions:

  1. Please read the essay (takes approximately twenty minutes) https://gay.medium.com/the-pleasure-scale-369a620c6691 – note: references to abuse, graphic references to sex and medical crisis. 
  1. Contact the facilitator with one new idea you have regarding your own writing goals, after reading the journal essay.

The second session, we’ll discuss how fiction or non-fiction formats offer different worthwhile possibilities depending on our goals.  We’ll create some short prose pieces from prompts with the Amherst Writers and Artists Method and begin drafting a group mixed reflective essay (which can include fictional sections), punctuated by haiku.  We’ll conclude with a practice to translate a piece in one genre into another form, and with participants’ next steps for future body-mind inspired writing.


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Workshop leader

seeley quest is a trans disabled writer, organizer, and environmentalist. After spending over 16 years in Oakland California, seeley has been in Montreal since 2017.  Sie has made literary and body-based performance since 2001, toured and presented in Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa, and many US cities and colleges.  Sie has poems in the book Disability Culture and Community Performance: Find a Strange and Twisted Shape and in the journal Fiction International, and sie has a script forthcoming in At the Intersection of Disability and Drama: A Critical Anthology of New Plays.  Montreal appearances include the Centaur Theatre, MAI, and le Salon du Livre, and workshops facilitated for QPIRG-McGill and articule. 

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