The Hidden Words Hidden Worlds project kicked off on August 5th with a creative writing methodologies workshop, led by James Byrne of Bone Will Crow fame at the Last Leaf Gallery on Upper Pansodan Street.
17 published Myanmar writers, from experienced like Dr Khin Myint Oo and young blood such as De Novo (Pen Name) were selected by a H2 project committee made up of Myanmr writers, editors, publishers and distributors, and spent four days training on how to deliver a short story creative narrative workshop.
James, using excerpts from classical Western literature such as James Joyce’s The Dubliners and Myanmar short story specialists explored aspects of teaching creativity in the classroom with sessions on benefits on inclusivity and group work, how to encourage original expression, possibilities of genre and style, methods of creating a supportive environment for students and classroom technical skills such as whiteboards and internet, time management and administrative measures.
At the end of the workshop, a Live Literature night was held with over 65 media representatives and invited members of the art community (including the poetess Eaindra) crowding into the Last Leaf Gallery, for a sweaty hour of music from Hosea on the keyboard and three live readings from the workshop participants.
There was a brief introduction David Maynard, the acting Country Director of the BC who then introduced novelist San Lin Tun who read from the short story he produced as part of the workshop process. James then came on to explain his role in the project and the importance of the workshop before making way for writer and Journal Editor (Union Daily) Dr Khin Myint Oo read from a new short story. Last, me, as the project creator and co-ordinator explained what will happen next for Hidden Words, Hidden Worlds before the final reading by Let Yar Tun, former political prisoner and executive editor of Popular News read from a recently published story of his time in prison.
See here for a Myanmar Times article on the project.