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Using Your Senses in Writing

with Judith Lindbergh & Michelle Cameron

February 5, 2012
Sparkhouse, South Orange, NJ

It truly was "a feast for the senses" at The Writers Circle's latest Speaker Series workshop, Using Your Senses in Writing, held Sunday, February 5, at Sparkhouse in South Orange, NJ.

Judith and Michelle stayed true to The Writes Circle's highly interactive approach as they isolated each of the senses - sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch - through a variety of hands-on, noses-on and even tongues-on experiences.

An enthusiastic group of writers wrote through the afternoon, inspired by unusual imagery, evocative music, the rich scents of fresh herbs, and an eclectic selection of objects and foods to titilate fingertips and tongues.

The prompts elicited some spectacular writing. As participants shared their work aloud, they expressed amazement at how simply evoking the senses could awaken long-buried memories and bring exquisite descriptions to light.

"The instructors were skilled in directing and moving things along at a comfortable place – not too fast or slow," said one of the participants. "The response of the writers in attendance were obviously inspired."

As a finale, Judith and Michelle led writers in "peeling a clementine", a carefully observed three-part exercise that merged all five senses and solidified the lessons of the afternoon. The writers applauded the focus on slowing down and observing in minute detail. The end of the workshop focused on how to apply sensory experiences to works-in-progress. The writers left excited to weave sensory detail, memory and awareness into their own writing.

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What Participants Had to Say

"Very enjoyable and thought provoking"

"The writers in attendance were obviously inspired."

"Excellent start for me.  Great back to basics.  Eye opening."

and read this wonderful blog post from participant Karin Abarbanel!