Kenneth Steven Advises Poets to Take Sanctuary

The Reading Room (Seòmar Leughaidh)

GE DIGITAL CAMERAIn a quiet corner within Skeabost Country House Hotel, on April 28, poet/writer, Kenneth Steven, told a group of poets to find what he calls ‘cloister time’:  ‘To be able to write in a totally unselfconscious way, it is best to have untrammeled time. Establish a place of quiet. Take the time–draw on the time you are most inspired, as a lark or owl.’


Can you call yourself a poet if you haven’t been published? ‘Many poets choose not to publish.’

Kenneth applied in triplicate to the Writers’ Union of Iceland, and won a place to write in a cabin, in the ‘far reaches of Iceland’. His intention was to concentrate on Celtic Christian hermits, but the location was too isolated for his comfort. Instead, he stayed on, ‘near the hot spring activity’–a self-professed lover of these–where he wound up writing his novel, Glen Lion.


The Reading Room books sales…

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The Reading Room on Cuillin FM

In case you missed it last Friday and Sunday (or in case you listened and want to hear the stories and poems again), the winners of this year’s Baker Prize, along with interviews and music, will air again at 2:00pm (Eastern Daylight Savings Time). Thanks again to Charlotte, who hosts the radio program, and to all the organizers of The Reading Room on the Isle of Skye, and The Baker Prize.

You can lifestream the show here:

Women’s Aid

This is a follow-on to yesterday’s reblog of Council House Publishing’s post. Here’s The Thorn Tree, getting ready to head across the water to Women’s Aid in Elgin. Hope readers there find a home in this book’s pages as they rebuild homes within themselves. Thanks to Council House Publishing for the original post and idea.
The Thorn Tree for Women's Aid

Interview with Stephen G. Eoannou

Interview with Stephen G. Eoannou.

Women’s Aid and books.

I’m putting copies of The Thorn Tree in the post in the morning. Thanks for this wonderful suggestion.


We left the Isle of Skye three months ago. On 5th January we loaded car and van with no real clue where we were going or how we would get there. I had plans in place but with all the Councils and Estate Agencies  closed for Christmas it was impossible to really be sure. I knew we had the use of a caravan high on a hill for as long as we needed. I knew Moray Council knew we were coming. I knew Women’s Aid knew we were coming.

Because of the circumstances, we were offered refuge in the Women’s Aid shelter in either Dingwall or Elgin, but the dog and the cat couldn’t come. They would have had to have been fostered out. I couldn’t have coped with that. I couldn’t have put Niamhy-Woof, my 15 year old lab/ collie cross and most loyal friend into foster care. So…

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WordPlay: Teaching ESL writing through play, movement, & joyful experimentation

Next Friday, April 10th, I’m teaching a workshop (playshop, really) for teachers of English as a Second Language. Very excited about this chance to bring the sense of joy and play I feel about language and writing to teachers. Here’s the blurb. There’s a link below to sign up. AND, if you’re far, far away (or the date doesn’t work for you), there may be an opportunity to take the class virtually. Stay tuned for more details.

When we learn language as children, we approach it with a sense of play and open curiosity, experimenting with sound and form; learning is a byproduct of our joy and sense of play. Learning English as a Second Language can offer the same opportunities to find joy and playfulness along the journey.

There are so many ways to make writing fun and interesting in the ESL classroom…but are you fresh out of ideas?  Come enjoy an afternoon of exploring GREAT writing ideas for your students of all levels with writer and teacher Heather Marshall.  We’ll explore wordplay, including rhythm and rhyme and alliteration; we’ll experiment with the order and length of sentences, tenses and point of view; we’ll embody our verbs to help build vocabulary.

As always, English for Life trainings are a combination of up-to-date, practical strategies and tools for teaching, and time to connect with other teachers in our community.  Following the training, I hope you’ll plan to join us at Red Bowl to catch up and enjoy sushi happy hour.

Sundays at 2 (tomorrow): Author in the Galleries

Many thanks to the folks at the Greenville County Museum of Art for inviting me to read. The event will take place in the gallery that in which photographer Owen Riley’s work is currently exhibited. I’ll be making connections between  text and image, people and place. Details below.
Mar 22, 2015

Sundays at 2: Author in the Galleries

2 pm – 3 pm

Join local author Heather Marshall as she reads excerpts from her most recent book, The Thorn Tree, along with short selections from other Celtic writers. Listeners will be invited to make connections between the words and visual images in the gallery.

All Sundays at 2 programs are free and are presented by Duke Energy.

420 College Street, Greenville SC 29601

 864.271.7570Content ©2015. Greenville County Museum of Art. All rights reserved.