I run a little social enterprise called Global Words.
Basically, I provide help and services to writers who need it. Then I put any money from that into community writing projects.
I run six week workshops, teaching groups of marginalised people how to write memoirs and short stories. Then, at the end of the workshop I publish those stories in a book, which we do a book launch for at our local Waterstones. (The UK version of a Barnes and Noble).
This means that the people who take these workshops with me have the opportunity to become published writers. Some of them have never put pen to paper before. Some have been writing privately for ages and are just coming out of the stationary closet. Some want to try something new, some want to share a story but haven’t known how.
Watching the people who go through this process is truly awe-inspiring. I watch them go from nervous, I-don’t-know-what-to-say, to reading their published work in front of an audience. It humbles me.
On Sunday we launched Peace by Piece, an anthology of women’s stories. These are women who use the Nottingham Women’s Centre. They’re a varied, diverse group, and working with 25 of them was a wonderful experience. Listening to them read, watching them sign their books, and laughing with them before and after reminded me why I love what I do, and about the importance of words in our lives.
We all have stories–some we tell others, some we tell ourselves. The words we choose in the telling can have enormous impact in the way they are received.
The book is (will be by the end of this week) on sale at Amazon, and at Waterstones in Nottingham as well as at Five Leaves bookshop. All profits go to the Women’s Centre.
Tell your story. Every one is important.