Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Wizards, Writers and Workshops

I'm in the middle of preparing for two upcoming classes, so I'm taking today to offer two shameless plugs:

The first class is my Hidden Treasures Writers' Workshop, which I am repeating at the Franklin Public Library in Franklin, TN on March 2 at 2 p.m.. If you've already been to this workshop, sign up and come again; there will be more treasure objects in the treasure bag and that means more ideas for your stories! If you never have tried out my treasure bag, come and discover the stories hidden in the objects around you. The class is open for writers ages 12 to 18 (parents and teachers are also welcome). Check with Phillip McAndrews, the Young Adult Librarian at the Franklin Public Library to register. This workshop is free to all attenders, but space is limited.

The second class is for fans of fantasy— particularly fans of a boy by the name of Harry Potter. Nothing occurs in a vacuum, and Harry Potter is no exception. J. K. Rowling borrowed from legend, myth and history to create Harry and the wizarding world. Her books are sprinkled with classic (and even more recent) allusions, some obvious, some cleverly hidden, but all fun to discover. Come find out about the tales that inspired The Boy Who Lived, in Myth & History Behind Harry Potter, Boy Wizard, offered March 4 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at The University School of Nashville in Nashville, TN. For more information or to register go to www.eveningclasses.org. There is a fee for this class, and space is limited. (And if you come, you'll learn about my own family connection to the wizarding world...)

If you're interested in having me lead a readers' or writers' workshop for your school or organization, visit my website at www.howardshirleywriter.com for more information.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Story Starter Challenge #2

Here again is another treasure I spotted not too long ago in a journey through the woods. Now, you tell me how it came to be there; what is the story of this object. Think about your questions: What is it? Where is it? Who put it there? And most importantly why?

For an added challenge, go back to Story Starter Challenge #1 and combine these two into a single story. The more elements you have, the stronger the story becomes.

And don't forget to share your story with others! A story that is not shared is a story that has not been told.

--- Howard Shirley