Fabulous February


With Irish poet, Neil McCarthy at his book launch in Vienna this weekend. Stopgap Grace, Publisher: Salmon Poetry

This weekend, both the creative writing and the short story programs began here in Vienna. A very busy time for me, getting to coach an intriguing bunch of international people. Nations represented:

  • Canada
  • UK
  • United States
  • Bolivia
  • Italy
  • Austria
  • Romania
  • Australia
  • Croatia

I might even have missed a county or two.  As you might imagine, the writing in both workshops reflects this wonderful cultural diversity.

Also went along to a book launch: Irish Poet, Neil McCarthy has just launched his fabulous book of poems: Stopgap Grace. Publisher: Salmon Poetry. Grabbed myself a signed copy, got a photo with Neil, and listened to him read a few poems from the collection. Great music too, from his musical “troubadour” friends from both Austria and Ireland.

Sharing your writing


“Hey, wait up! Don’t you want to hear my poem?”

People write for any number of good reasons—from cornering strangers in an elevator to demand they listen to a poem (this happened to me) to plumbing the depths of the human condition like a pebble sinking into a very deep lake. What might lie at the bottom?

A creative writing session is a journey of the imagination—the curious mind ranging afar, its way illuminated by the heart. “So this is what is means to be human!” the pen says in a myriad of delightful ways as it scribes the page. Little wonder people want to share such discoveries.

Isn’t there something you’d like to share with the world?

One way of sharing your writing with the world is by publishing it. If you write a short story or a novel, publishing is a good way of sharing your writing with others. Another way is to read to an audience. Poets often do this. They gather to read their poems. Some stand tall and have a booming voice; others murmur as they hold their trembling page. Such readings can be a great deal of fun.

I went to a whisky and poetry session the other night. An Irish poet, Neil McCarthy hosted the event at The Laden in Vienna’s 8th district. People tasted whisky, read their poetry, played their songs, and had a rollicking time. The evening also had an intimate feel: people had bled their hearts onto the page and were offering it like wine (or whisky) to a room full of strangers. This takes courage and trust.

If you’ve never shared your writing with the world but have often dreamt of doing so, its never too late. If you’re feeling particularly inspired (and brave) you can check out my writing boot camps.

And if you have a poem to share with the world, why not get yourself along to your nearest poetry evening. If you’re in Vienna, you can find out what Neil is up to here: https://www.facebook.com/neil.f.mccarthy?fref=nf