Writers Read’s guest from October 2011, Roddy Doyle, encourages deprived children to write with his workshop, Fighting Words.
It is a Monday morning in the heart of Dublin. In a light, airy room situated in the shadow of the city’s looming Croke Park stadium, two dozen schoolgirls in matching navy blue jumpers sit attentively on coloured beanbags. The room is lined with bookshelves. High up on one wall there are a series of framed posters entitled “Ten Rules for Writing Fiction”, compiled by different well-known authors. In Anne Enright‘s rules, there is the warning: “Only bad writers think that their work is really good.” Number One in Richard Ford’s list is: “Marry somebody you love and who thinks you being a writer’s a good idea.”
The girls, aged eight, nine and 10, are not at that stage quite yet. They gaze around the room wide-eyed, cowed into silence by the excitement of unfamiliar surroundings and a morning off school.
“Does anybody know why you are here this morning?” asks a woman standing at the front.
A tentative hand goes up. “To write a story,” comes the reply from a pupil called Sophie.
“That’s right – and we’re here to help you.”
Read more at The Guardian.