New! Poetry workshop in Kinlough, and more…

Spring 2019, Kinlough, Co Leitrim: This term I’m offering:

  • a new series of workshops on Thursday evenings: ‘Poetry: the Art and the Craft’
  • my regular Tuesday workshops: ‘Writing: the Art and the Craft’, for writers of fiction, memoir and creative non-fiction
  • plus my regular ‘Women Writing Together’ workshops on Wednesdays

Full details at Places are limited, so advance booking is advised.

Makes me write instead of thinking about writing.” – J O’C



“When we neglect the artist in ourselves, there is a kind of mourning that goes on under the surface of our busy lives.”

Pat Schneider, founder of the Amherst Method, in ‘Writing Alone and with Others’, OUP.

Women Writing Together, Kinlough, Co Leitrim, Autumn 2018: Explore your creativity, develop confidence in your voice by writing with other women in a warm and encouraging environment. The workshops will be led by award-winning writer and Amherst trained writing group leader Monica Corish. For more info go to / contact / 087-6414185.


Autumn Writing Workshops, Kinlough

Writing: The Art and the Craft – Tuesdays – Kinlough, Co Leitrim

typewriter-vintage-old-vintage-typewriter-163084Develop your writing skills through free-writing and craft exercises, constructive critique and insightful feedback. Seven x 3 hours: Tuesdays, 7 – 10 pm, Sept 11 & 25, Oct 9 & 23, Nov 6 & 20, Dec 4 2018. Cost: €125, early bird concession €100, before Tues Sept 4.

Numbers limited, advance booking essential. For more info and payment options go to www.monicacorish/workshops

Women Writing Together – Wednesdays – Kinlough, Co Leitrim

my labyrinth smallExplore your creativity  and develop confidence in your voice by writing with other women in a warm and encouraging environment. Seven x 2.5 hours: Wednesdays7 – 9:30 pm, Sept 12 & 26, Oct 10 & 24, Nov 7 & 21, Dec 5 2018. Cost: €105, early bird concession €90, before Tues Sept 4.

Numbers limited, advance booking essential. For more info and payment options go to www.monicacorish/workshops

In Memoriam Andy McLaren

Love this piece by Tom, in memory of a good friend.

Tom Sigafoos

Andy McLaren 1943-2017

It’s been a year since Andy McLaren died. My tribute to him appeared in today’s edition of the Donegal Post (4 July 2018):

Andy McLaren died shortly after midsummer last year. He spent the last week of his life in the Intensive Care Unit of Letterkenny General Hospital, where only immediate family members were permitted to visit. A sympathetic nurse carried messages back and forth. Andy was on a breathing apparatus, and he didn’t want me to see him under those circumstances. He said that he’d let me know as soon as he was better, but his lungs were too damaged and his resistance was too low. He died on Sunday, July 2.

I miss Andy. I miss hurrying into Linda’s Diner to find him sitting with one eye on the clock and the other on a rumpled newspaper, halfway through a cup of coffee and wondering how late I…

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Collage your Personal Soul Cards – A Workshop for Women

Create your own Soul Cards with card, glue, images and  imagination. Collage — a creative and playful method for intuitive, artful self-discovery and self-expression — is accessible to everyone, even those who think they have no artistic ability.

Where? Lakeside Centre, Belleek Road, Ballyshannon, Co Donegal
When? Saturday, July 14, 11 AM – 5 PM
How much? €75, all materials supplied
Early bird concession: €60 before July 6 
Questions? Contact

What they said about previous workshops: “Surprisingly easy.”  — “A window into my interior, amusing, surprising and fun.”  — “A restful day of creative play and unexpected connections.”

three cards together
This workshop is based on the SoulCollage® process developed by Seena B Frost, and on the Art to Heart methods taught by Jole Bortoli.

Lunch, teas, coffees will be available at AJ’s Wine Bar and Restaurant, Lakeside Centre.

“Eight Tips on How to Write a Great Story”

Tom Sigafoos

Again from Brainpickings, which I urge you to read and support, here are “Eight Tips on How to Write a Great Story” — guidelines from Kurt Vonnegut (Slaughterhouse-5, Cat’s Cradle, and many fine short stories):

  1. Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.
  2. Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.
  3. Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.
  4. Every sentence must do one of two things — reveal character or advance the action.
  5. Start as close to the end as possible.
  6. Be a Sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them-in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
  7. Write to please just one person. If you open a window…

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