I wrapped up a “Secret Doorways” workshop yesterday at the West Vancouver Memorial Library. In this workshop, I had students of different ages and interest levels in writing and reading, so I was glad I chose to focus on inspiration rather than writing technique.
One of the main things I always try to demonstrate in my workshops is that writing is not just sitting at your computer or staring at a piece of paper, hoping for a lightning bolt to strike you in the back of the head and inspire greatness in you.
I believe the best way to get ideas is to “do.” That means using your hands: drawing, doodling, or—in the case of the Secret Doors workshop—constructing.
Or, to put it another way: Brainstorm!
After a quick Mr. Wiz Quiz (in this case, we did “So You Think You’re a Wizard?) to break the ice, I led the students in a presentation about famous doors in literature and mythology. I also showed them the door that I had built for Kendra Kandlestar and the Door to Unger.
Then it was time to get to work. The students used a simple brainstorming sheet to solidify their ideas, and then rolled up their sleeves and got to work with their actual building, using pre-cut miniature doors and shapes.
I’m continually amazed by the results! Being St. Patrick’s day, we had a few shamrock-inspired creations!