We’ll start with the animal world, getting up close to what we find here in Garsdale in June. We’ll look at the four-footed, two-footed, no-footed… including animals no longer with us. To give voice to these creatures, we’ll draw on our own anima, the inner creative drive from which poetry arises.
Once we have poems, we’ll breathe life into them, animate them by polishing vocal skills in our presentation and mic use workshop. Working from the anthology we’ve put together during the week, our end of course celebration will see us give life to our creatures through the spoken word.
Tutors: Susan Taylor and Simon Williams – Poets
Susan Taylor (www.susantaylor.co.uk) has eight collections, her two most recent being Temporal Bones, from Oversteps Books and The Weather House, co-written with Simon Williams.
She has an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University. Originally a farmer, she received a Tarka Country Award for her show Reclaiming the Myths of Dartmoor and is currently working on a solo show, La Loba – Enchanting the Wolf, which incorporates unusual elements, like shadow puppetry and origami.
Her poetry “offers a whole range of: delicate patterns and connections and glimpses, very present and alive, full of watchful pleasure.” – Ted Hughes
Simon Williams (www.simonwilliams.info) has eight published collections, his most recent being A Place Where Odd Animals Stand, Oversteps Books and The Weather House (www.indigodreams.co.uk/williams-taylor/4594076848). The Weather House is also touring as a performance show.
Simon was elected The Bard of Exeter in 2013, founded the large-format magazine, The Broadsheet, co-produced the well-received PLAY Anthology and is developing a one man, science-based poetry show, Cosmic Latte.
|PRICES||Fee includes all day and evening tutored workshop sessions, readings, accommodation and full board (not including alcohol).
Single – En-suite room £845
Single – Shared bathroom £795
Shared Room (2 Beds) £745pp
Non-residential (inc. lunch and evening meal) £605
|TO BOOK||£150 deposit payable on booking by bank transfer, PayPal or cheque, to secure place. Balance due four weeks before the start of the course/tutored retreat/untutored retreat.
Please see Terms and Conditions.
|WHAT TO BRING||
Please arrive between 3:00pm and 5:00pm on Monday 7th June 2021
Tea and cake 4.30pm
Introductory Workshop 5.45 – 6.45pm
After breakfast, 10:00am on Saturday 12th June 2021
|LOCATION||The Garsdale Retreat, Clough View, Garsdale Head, Sedbergh, Cumbria LA10 5PW
Nearest railway station: Garsdale, on the Leeds – Carlisle line.
For directions, see Find Us section on the Contact page.
The Garsdale Retreat provides an inspiring place to develop as a writer. Our courses offer opportunities for new, emerging and experienced writers. The tutors, all professional writers, lead workshops and also give one-to-one tutorials to help the individual student. In the remote and beautiful setting of The Yorkshire Dales, The Garsdale Retreat gives a wonderful opportunity to escape from the daily stresses of life and to draw inspiration from fellow students, tutors and the landscape itself.
All courses start on Monday afternoon, arrival time 3.00 – 5.00pm. On this first day, tea and cake are at 4.30pm followed by an introductory/ice-breaking workshop 5.45 – 6.45pm. Dinner is at 7.00pm. All courses end after breakfast on Saturday (10.00am).
Although there will be slight variations, according to the type of course (see below), students can generally expect the following outline:
8.00 – 9.00am: Breakfast
9.30 – 11.00am: First workshop – Students explore particular aspects of the chosen genre and take part in writing exercises to further their understanding and expertise. All students have opportunities to share their work with the tutor and fellow writers in a safe, supportive and nurturing environment in which individual work is respected and confidence developed.
11.00 – 11.30am: Coffee break
11.30am – 1.00pm: Second workshop
After lunch, participants are free to do whatever they like, such as: relax, go for walks, enjoy The Dales, draw, paint, read or work on individual writing projects.
4.30pm: Tea and cake
5.30 – 6.30pm: Third workshop
All students have one individual tutorial of 30 minutes with the tutor in the course of the week which usually takes place at a mutually agreed time, usually in the afternoon.
Each evening, at about 8.30pm, there is an after-dinner event. The precise nature of this varies according to the type of course but participants can typically expect a tutor reading on Tuesday followed by a reading from a guest writer on the Wednesday evening. There is an informal activity on Thursday such as a word/literary game. On Friday, there is a reading of work produced during the week.
Poetry Course Anthology
An integral part of poetry courses is the production of an anthology of writing produced in the week. It is, of course, accepted that the writing is essentially work-in-progress. However, the aim of the anthology is to reflect a flavour of the work accomplished on the course and to provide participants with an attractive record of their time at Garsdale. The Retreat stores copies of anthologies in the library, providing pleasure and inspiration for future students.
These follow the same basic structure as above except there is only one workshop in the morning and participants will have a daily tutorial, four per week.
The only formal structure of the week is determined by meal-times (see above), allowing participants to concentrate totally on their own writing. After dinner, participants in conjunction with the course director sometimes organise evening read-rounds of their work /open mics/music /word games. However, participation in such events is entirely voluntary and people are free to continue with their writing in the evenings if they prefer.