As Rockaway Writers' Workshop approaches its first anniversary, I am beyond delighted to announce that we are ready to launch Exquisite Corpus, our community outreach branch. The name comes from exquisite corpse (or cadavre exquis), a style of writing or drawing in which participants build on on the unseen work of a fellow artist to ultimately create something entirely unique. The cadavre, or corpse, represents a form or figure stitched together and electrified by creativity.
I believe that when we come together, we are doing more than finishing what our fellow artists start. A corpse is a body; a corpus is a body of artistic work. Exquisite Corpus breathes new life into the surrealists' idea of collaboration. We are not resurrecting monsters... We are reviving our better angels.
The heart of my Exquisite Corpus initiative is a program called Creative Righting. This monthly workshop adapts my writing therapy program for less formal and more flexible implementation. Creative Righting encompasses writing techniques such as journaling as well as discussions about how writing can improve our everyday experience of the human condition. We will work together to turn the page on past and present trials, using our stories and creativity to "right" ourselves as we plot a course for life's new chapters.
These workshops will have loose themes designed to generate discussion, but each meeting will progress according to the needs of the group.
Creative Righting workshops are funded by optional donation. There is no "suggested" donation minimum, and no one should feel pressured to give. Donate if you like, but the most important present is your presence.
Creative Righting respects the privacy of its participants. Sharing will be encouraged for some exercises, but no activities will depend on verbal participation. Each workshop will begin with a discussion about privacy so that everyone is on the same page about protocols.