Recently Sally Allen participated in Fran Dorf’s “The Healing Art of Writing” workshop. Check out Sally Allen’s article “Essential Tools for Writers at Westport Writers’ Workshop” at Westport’s Hamlet Hub!
“I recently participated in a one-day workshop at the Westport Writers’ Workshop that engaged in this exact work. Entitled “The Healing Art of Writing,” the workshop was led by Fran Dorf, a psychotherapist and writer (the novels “Saving Elijah,” “Flight,” and “A Reasonable Madness”). In just three hours under Dorf’s direction, we generated ideas, wrote, shared our writing, and learned elements that create compelling writing (whether fiction or memoir), from word choice and sentence structure to narrative cohesion. Exacting and also kind, Dorf shared examples of writing that works and, more importantly, knew how to explain why it worked. I couldn’t help but wonder how much would be accomplished in one of Westport Writers’ Workshops eight or ten-week sessions.
I’m a tough customer when it comes to writing workshops. I taught writing for eight years at New York University while earning my Ph.D., and the rigorous program emphasized craft to a degree I had yet to experience, with attention paid to the elements of writing such that the writer moves equally between language use and idea development. Until the Saturday session at Westport Writers’ Workshop.”