Published: 02nd October 2017
Priyanka Menon breaks down why authors are psyched about teaching young first-time writers at Paper House's Writers' Retreat in the hills
TEDx speaker Priyanka Menon, who is also a mentor at Paper House's Writers' Retreat, talks about what one can expect from the retreat that can be attended by a select group of ten writers
Imagine yourself chilling in the hills, going on treks, and sharing stories with experienced and professional writers. Sounds like a dream, doesn’t it? Well, it can be your reality. Paper House is organising India’s first experiential Writers’ Retreat at Shilla Treks in Parvati Valley, Himachal Pradesh, that will give ten individuals a chance to be mentored by experienced writers. We reckon that it's definitely going to be an experience of a lifetime for those lucky ten!
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Ideate and create — that’s the idea behind the retreat that will provide the writers access to perfect their skills, irrespective of their degree of proficiency. "The retreat is ideal for anyone who wants to find their inner writing mojo. We will go through all the applications, shortlist people based on their writing samples, conduct telephonic interviews and then choose the final list of writers," explains Priyanka Menon, an author and one of the mentors who will be guiding the selected writers. The other two mentors include master storyteller and co-founder of Terribly Tiny Tales, Chintan Ruparel and Sahitya Akademi Award winner, Janice Pariat.
Through this workshop what we aim to do is help each participant find their writing space. One-on-one sessions with mentors will help bridge the gap between what is being said and what is being understood. Ideally, after five days, participants will have learnt how to tell a story
Priyanka Menon, Author and mentor at Writers’ Retreat
Talking about their aim to create a space where ideas flow freely beyond one's comfort and imagination, Priyanka adds, "The workshop is an attempt to cover every aspect of writing – from ideation and plotting of storylines to creating characters that fit within the fabric of the story, and the nuances of publishing. I will be working on plot and character development — focusing on how each evolves at a pace that accommodates the other.” Apart from waking up to nature in all its glory, the retreat promises some fascinating insights into the world of writing.
But what is the difference between a writing workshop and a writing retreat, we wonder. "Well, a workshop comes with a certain set of mandates and is required to cover a particular segment or theme. A workshop can get crammed with details, which can be spaced out over a period of days during a retreat. Moreover, a retreat invariably comes with an idyllic setting — a setting that will enable the evolution of the ideal writing mood. The setting and ambience are imperative when it comes to finding a rhythm," Priyanka avers.
For the chosen ten, October 10-15 will see their dreams come true. But if you miss this one, don't worry, Paper House will be back soon with more such retreats.