The Readers’ Day held at the Brindley Arts Centre on Saturday was a great success: it seems that guests, organisers and workshop facilitators all enjoyed themselves and found it inspiring, interesting and informative.
We started the day with a ‘Reader Recommends’ panel, where each of the panel members – consisting of members of The Reader Organisation team and local author Caroline Smailes and poet Rebecca Goss – recommended their favourite ‘Mind and Body’ read. These included ‘Janet’s Repentance’ from George Eliot’s Scenes of Clerical Life, the poem ‘Trout’ from Seamus Heaney’s collection Death of a Naturalist and D. H. Lawrence’s novel The Rainbow. After lunch was a Readers’ Clinic, where members of the audience posed questions about personal or social problems and concerns to the panel, with books and poems being prescribed as ways to assist. These sessions were great fun, helpful and really tested the memory skills of our team!
The workshops that were run throughout the day were thoroughly enjoyed by all involved and included a diverse choice of options for guests: discussions about specific texts, including Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility, Tennyson’s In Memoriam; a film/novel workshop based on the powerful The Diving Bell and the Butterfly; a journey from birth to death through poetry; how authors write about memories; an introduction to The Reader Organisation’s Get Into Reading project and much more besides.
Thank you to all those involved in the organisation and facilitation of the day – and to all the guests, some of which travelled some great distances to attend – for making it such a pleasurable and memorable day. Don’t just take our word for it though, here are some comments from Readers’ Day guests:
“I was reminded of the joy of being read to and it introduced me to new works that I hope to read in the future.”
“Great to meet other readers and to hear about great books.”
“Make it longer!”
“The workshops are always very stimulating – I have enjoyed the opportunity to talk to others.”
Also see Caroline Smailes’ blog to read her (and others’) thoughts about it.