For me January 2019 has been the best when it comes to making progress – in previous years January and February have been a dull and gloomy time for me to endure. I have not written a great deal this year so far, but I have begun to explore a new form of Therapeutic Creative Writing. I chose “Therapiece” as a name for a group of Therapeutic Creative Writers – it is based on a co-counselling (CCI) model. The group co-created (what else would you expect?) a framework document that outlines the process – Therapiece
So far, we have had two meetings on group video-conferencing and also a physical meeting. The plan is to have these two sorts of meeting every month. I have agreement from the Therapiece members to report progress here and have everything in place for an initial trial of six months.
The first part of each meeting includes a group writing experience. Thereafter equal time for each author is key.
The author is in charge of the reviewing of their writing process – they have the choice of including the content of a written piece and then they outline the contract for the rest of the group listeners. The contract can invite exploring the writing or the authors feeling or both. Or they can just ask for the others to listen.
The initial feedback is that this approach encourages confidence to explore and also can be very freeing. I think feeling good about creative writing is similar to any form of feeling good about yourself, but it allows a rich set of tools and dimensions for you to do this. There is a risk that if you are not in a good place it could spiral down and be destructive; however, Therapiece helps prevent this by providing a safe space – this has been in the feedback so far.
I feel the jury is out in terms of if the group is more writing or therapeutic centric. Indeed it might be possible for different members to feel that this changes from meeting to meeting. For me I will return to my writing group while still developing Therapiece. I have already been back to the Cutting Edge Writers group and taken some ideas from Therapiece – and received a friendly response! Watch this blog if you are interested to see what happens during the rest of 2019. I’m also looking at the influences on my writing in more detail and will work on this web site and use these in both of these groups.