Monday, 14 May 2012

Poetry Matters (20): Heidi Williamson's 'Writer in Residence' Course

Heidi Williamson (supplied by Heidi Williamson)
I had a nostalgic train ride to Norwich - the 'Fine City' of my teenage years and new UNESCO City of Literature - on Saturday to attend another of Heidi Williamson's excellent courses for writers. Readers of this blog may recall that some weeks ago I had the opportunity of joining Heidi's course on preparing a first poetry collection. You can read about that day here.

This last Saturday's course on 'Becoming a Writer in Residence', was every bit as challenging and wide-ranging. Heidi spent two years as Poet in Residence at the Science Museum's Dana Centre and is currently Writer in Residence at the John Jarrold Printing Museum in Norwich. She also holds a residency here in Ipswich for the Arlington's Cafe Poets.

Heidi brings not only bags of enthusiasm grounded in personal experience to her courses but also meticulous preparation, borne out of incisive thinking and careful planning. There is always a good balance of 'input' and 'discussion', not forgetting time for personal note-making along the way. So am I hoping to follow this through with a residency? Well, who knows: ideas are brewing, so watch this space ... 

Heidi's collection, Electric Shadow, was published by Bloodaxe and is available here. Heidi's excellent courses are popular: they attract writers from a wide area, so do keep an eye open if you feel they might be for you!

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