Creative Writing Workshop: Flash Fiction 21.02

Heart weeps.

Head tries to help heart.

Head tells heart how it is, again:

You will lose the ones you love.  They will all go.  But

even the earth will go, someday.

Heart feels better, then.

But the words of head do not remain long in the ears of


Heart is so new to this.

I want them back, says heart.

Head is all heart has.

Help, head.  Help heart.

Lydia Davis wrote one of the most powerful little pieces in fiction and it’s only 71 words long. And what would you do with such a small number?

Our first event in The Green Room at The Grand was a Creative Writing workshop ran by Katie Szyszko PhD, or, in the Beton world, Cementa. 15 brave writers came to our first class and together we studied texts of Lydia Davis seeking inspirations for our own pieces. But there was one more writer present in the room albeit only for a flash. Michel Faber, the author of ‘The Crimson Petal and the White’, ‘Under the Skin’ and ‘Listen’ (coming out October 2023), appeared to read his ultra short story, ‘A Million Infant Breaths’ which provoked a series of bold questions.

What would happen if the story was longer?

We spend significant part of the workshop diving into our own pieces and the way in was led by three of my exercises. It was a fascinating process to observe how each writer approached the exercises. Some made their stories playful, while others invited poetry. What I love about working with these exercises myself is that every time I do them, they awake something new in me. Often, an emotion I have been ignoring; other times the courage to experiment with the form. Even when everybody but me and Gravel left the room, I could still see the words floating around.

This workshop is a series of Creative Writing workshops I run regularly in The Green Room. Check our events page to find out when you can join the next one.


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