Connect to Nature Creative Writing Class

26.08.2020

Glinting and Glimmering Minnows – A day on the lakes and rivers.

Hello everyone,

This is the very last creative writing class for the blog. This week’s theme is inspired by taking a walk around The University of York Lake last week with one of my class members and looking at all the beautiful wildlife. I have also been spending time walking along the river banks in York and visiting the park lake near my home. I wrote this class whilst thinking about the possibility of starting to bring my group back together in person which feels very very exciting! For all those who usually attend Kathy and I will be in touch to catch you up on plans.

For anyone reading this outside of York, please do email me to let me know if you would like me to email you with any future opportunities for Connect to Nature Writing. You can reach me at e.mckenzie1@yorksj.ac.uk

So here goes!

Task 1: (5 mins) Speckled with Sparkles! Foamy, frothy bubbles glinting at the edge of the water! My little girl and I had fun playing with alliteration and making up words to describe a little shoal of minnows that we saw in the park lake.

Your task is to think about a little shoal of minnows glinting in shallow water. Describe their movements in ten words.

Task 2: (5 mins) Gliding Gracefully! Whilst on my walk at the University Lake I was very lucky to see swans nesting. The contrast of the white swan feathers agains the water looked stunning and created a beautiful contrast to the grey /blue water. Can you find words to use describe a beautiful swan. Set a timer for one minute and see how many you can come up with. When you have done this use them in a paragraph of writing to describe what you imagine in your minds eye. (Even better, if you can get out to see a swan – describe their movements as you watch them).

Task 3: (10 mins) Dragonflies. I was told a legend once about the dragonfly. It described us as humans like dragonfly larvae. If you told a larvae at the bottom of a pond that he would one day break through the surface and have beautiful shimmering wings he would never believe it. The folklore states that when we leave this life we are like a dragonfly emerging from the pond. With this in mind imagine that you are a dragonfly hatching. You take your first flight around the waters. After spending the first part of your life in a muddy pond how does it feel? (It’s good to remind ourselves that we are describing our environment that we already have when we write this task and it helps remind us how lucky we are with this beautiful world that we live in).

Task 4: (5 mins) Ducks and ducklings…..It’s been nice watching the Mummy ducks with their little broods of baby ducklings over summer. All adults show their young how to get along in the world. Write a letter to the generation being born today. Tell them about their world, help them to see the beauty in nature and the gift that they have been born into.

Or…write about a day in the life of a duckling! You can make it as fun or as serious as you like. Where do you live, do what do you look forward to, where do you nest?

If you have enjoyed this session look out for Friday’s letters – I will show you more pictures of my lovely walk.

With best wishes,
Emma

Published by Emma

Hi my name is Emma! I am a writer and artist. I work for the NHS at Converge (www.yorksj.ac.uk/converge) and I am also an MA graduate in Creative writing and am currently studying for a PhD in Humanities. I have been leading a creative writing class at the beautiful St Nicks in York (www.stnicks.org.uk) for the last five years. When I am not at work I'm on my allotment or at Base Camp (my home) planning new adventures.

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