Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Creative non-fiction workshop

Two–Day Creative Non-Fiction Workshop
Saturday 30 July and Sunday 31 July 2011

Toto Funds the Arts (TFA), in association with British Council, Bangalore is pleased to announce a two-day workshop titled “Writing True: Non-Fiction and the Creative Writer”, which will be conducted by Annie Zaidi.

Venue: British Library, Prestige Takt, 23 Kasturba Road Cross (Opp: Visvesvaraiah Industrial & Technological Museum), Bangalore

Dates: Saturday 30 July and Sunday 31 July 2011

Time: 10 a.m. to 5.30 p.m., both days.

Fee: Rs 1800, inclusive of lunch, tea/coffee and refreshments

The workshop is open to anyone above the age of 18. Basic competence in English is a necessity. Since the workshop will have not more than 15 participants, we will accept applications on a first-come-first-served basis. Your application, either sent by post to the address below or emailed to, should include the following: postal address, email ID, phone numbers (landline and mobile) AND a paragraph on why you wish to join this workshop.

Once you are selected, your cheque for Rs 1800 made out to Toto Funds the Arts should be couriered to H-301, Adarsh Gardens, 47th Cross, 8th Block, Jayanagar, Bangalore 560082. Ph. 26990549, 9880623357.

ANNIE ZAIDI has worked as a newspaper and magazine journalist for 11 years, reporting from urban and rural areas. In 2006 she was awarded a Charles Wallace India Trust scholarship towards a writing residency at Stirling University, Scotland. She won first prize for poetry at the Prakriti Festival, and has won prizes for poetry and flash fiction at the Kala Ghoda Festival. Her plays have been shortlisted for The Hindu Metro Plus Playwright Award. Known Turf: Bantering with Bandits and Other True Tales, a first collection of essays drawing upon reportage, travel and personal history was published by Tranquebar Press (2010). The Bad Boy’s Guide to the Good Indian Girl, a series of interlinked fictional narratives, has been written in collaboration with Smriti Ravindra and will be published by Zubaan in the summer of 2011. Crush, a series of illustrated poems in collaboration with artist Gynelle Alves, was published by Jaico (2006). Other essays, poems and short stories have appeared in a number of anthologies, including Women Changing India (Zubaan); First Proof: 2 (Penguin India), 21 Under 40 (Zubaan, India; ISBN, Italy), and in literary journals including The Little Magazine, Desilit, Pratilipi, The Raleigh Review, Mint Lounge, Indian Literature (Sahitya Akademi) and Asian Cha. She continues to freelance for a number of magazines and writes a weekly column with the DNA (Daily News and Analysis).


Writing True: Non-Fiction and the Creative Writer.

Day 1

Session 1: Introductions
Workshop leader and participants get introduced to each other.
This is followed by an introduction to the many sub-genres of non-fiction with brief samplings and some fun exercises that require no prior preparation.

Session 2: Confessions
This session will examine ‘true’ narratives. Why are we so compelled by the media, news, or true stories that lend themselves to fiction? What does this mean for us as writers/artists? And when does one decide that a certain story needs to be told as it is, without the fig leaf of a fictional disclaimer?

Session 3: Step One
This session will guide participants towards sources of inspiration, so that they can go looking for true stories they want to tell.

Session 4: Step Five
This session will be a quick exercise in ascertaining quality, and differentiating judgment from personal taste. Participants will be exposed to a wide range of reading material in the process. They will also be given a task to finish and bring back the next day.

Day 2

Session 1: Subjectivity
This session will focus on choosing a person as a subject, then populating the world of your writing with details, and establishing perspectives through the life of that subject.

Session 2: Following up
This session will follow up on the exercise that participants had been asked to finish the previous day.

Session 3: Creative Borrowing
This session will be devoted to figuring out how many tools a non-fiction writer can borrow from other genres of writing, and how they can be best applied to making their work more literary, more creative.

Session 4: Structure
The last session will briefly discuss how to devise a coherent structure for longer, or book-length, non-fiction.

And finally, tentative step towards what could be the truest thing you ever wrote. A set of exercises will help you begin a piece of writing that will be personal in tone and style. It will lead participants into an essay, or even an investigative report (though it may well lead towards something else in another genre).

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