Changing gears a bit – I will return to my Wales saga tomorrow …
Seven years ago I began participating in a different kind of writing program – it’s not a creative writing course and there are no critiques. It’s purpose is to encourage us to write our life’s stories. We all have stories. “J’écris ma vie” was started by Olivier Fillion, a Frenchman in Quebec. The seed for “J’écris ma vie” (literally, “I write my life”) was probably planted during his years in public relations where his work included meeting with retiring staff and writing something about their life. From that Fillion went on to develop an outline for tapping into one’s memories to produce family stories for the next generation.
He developed it as a two-year program, meeting every two weeks to share stories. At each session a guide or ‘prompt sheet’ is distributed with questions – it is not intended that we necessarily write on every point; they are merely an aid to help nudge the memories loose. The program starts with the early years, looking back to our ancestors, values and beliefs, brothers and sisters, and moves through childhood, adolescence, love and romance, parenting and family life to retirement and the golden years. A member of our community took it upon himself to translate Fillion’s program into English and W.I.N. – Write it Now – came into being.
A ‘”two-year” program that has kept both me and my husband engaged with an interesting, fun, humorous and sometimes sad, sympathetic and empathetic community of new friends for seven years. It re-awakened my joy in writing and gave structure to my jottings.
A simple prompt from the first sheet, The Early Years: “What early memories do you have of your grandparents?” prompted me to write the following: Continue reading “Changing Gears”