Earlier this week, we were in Varna, Bulgaria to run some workshops for writers at the LECTI (Language Education Culture Tolerance Information) centre, a project that works in developing links between cultures and languages across Europe and beyond. Our workshops were on short-form writing (fiction and non-fiction – why should flash fiction writers have all the fun?) and on the arts of editing. It was a delight to work with a small, diverse group of talented and enviably multilingual writers – one participant was writing in her fifth language.
In the workshops, we looked at generating ideas, at how good writing arises out of the writer’s own idiosyncratic experiences and perspectives, and at how through writing it is possible to bring to light both the differences and commonalities in human experience.
It was a real pleasure also to spend time with some of the workshop participants and the wonderful people behind LECTI after the events, to explore Varna together, and to extend our discussions of writing, culture and education long into the evening.
We’re now heading to Sofia, where we will be undertaking a mini-residency at the Sofia Literature and Translation House. Whilst in Sofia, we’re also meeting with a number of NGOs who work at the conjunction of the arts and social justice, to explore areas of mutual interest. We’ll post more about this in a few days’ time.