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Thursday, 12th September 2019

Classes for budding writers in Ardgillan Castle

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Ross Campbell.

Ever thought you’d like to write a novel? Here’s your chance to unleash that story within you and get feedback on your writing at a course in Creative Writing for adults which is presented by Ross Campbell in the beautiful surroundings of Ardgillan Castle, Balbriggan.

Various aspects of writing are covered on the course including fiction, memoirs and descriptive writing.

“The short story section will involve aspects such as creating characters, plotting, setting and dialogue. Editing and polishing your work is also included” said Ross who has a BA honours in English Literature from UCD and has also taught Creative writing classes to in community schools for nine years and writes for newspapers and magazines.

Pat, one of the participants on the course, said he had learnt the important techniques in writing, such as how to plan a piece, or using dialogue or creating characters.

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“I’m interested in writing historical fiction and I have written a number of short stories set in a bygone era” Pat said. “Sometimes I would over embellish my writing and wander off the point, but after doing these courses I’m less likely to do that.  I now recognise more of where my mistakes were. It’s good to have someone point them out to you.

“The feedback you get on the course is very useful. Before doing the courses I wouldn’t have had the same opportunity for regular feedback as I got from being able to share my writing with others” he said.

“The class is relaxed and informal and is located in the sumptuous exhibition room overlooking the parkland and we have a coffee break in the lovely tearooms downstairs” said Ross.

“The emphasis is on encouragement and building on the skills and abilities of the participants rather than criticism. It takes a lot of courage to submit work to a writers group.

“Participants who are new to a writing class may be anxious about how their work will be received. A lot of it has to do with confidence, that’s why it’s important to be very encouraging so as not to damage the participant’s confidence. Students don’t have to worry about feeling exposed to criticism of their work. Students do not read out their work to the class, it is circulated to the others by email.

The course takes the form of a workshop. The tutor gives writing assignments each week to the class to do for the following week for discussion.  Participants email their pieces to the tutor beforehand and he then circulates their pieces to all the other participants by email. This system has the big advantage that everyone will have been able to read each other’s work before coming into the class to discuss it.

“As well as discussing the students work the tutor also teaches the skills of writing. We analyse passages from well known novelists and short story writers and examine the techniques that they use in their work.” Doing a course like this is well worth the time and investment and sure to be a rewarding experience.

For more details or to book your place please contact Ross at 085 1395 320 or Email: ros1_@hotmail.com.  Fee for the 10 week course is €120 and classes start on Thursday 26th Sept for beginners from 10.30am - 12.30.

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