Story Factory at Shambellie: Writer’s block, multi-writing and generating new ideas, July 2019

Do you suffer from writer’s block? Need some help coming up with new ideas? And what on earth is multi-writing?! Participants at our sell-out workshop were about to find out …

It had been a sunny week to say the least, with the year’s hottest temperatures so far recorded only a couple of days earlier. Shambellie House, New Abbey, can take a little while to warm up during our winter workshops, but we had no such worries on 26th July 2019 when we headed there for our one-off summer school workshop!

Despite the fact we’ve now visited the house for a number of workshops, this was the first time that I got to see the sun properly shining down on us.

Myself and fellow tutor, Steph Newham, greeted participants to this sell-out workshop. After introductions and an icebreaker, we began on our real mission of the day: to help the writers generate new story ideas.

The weather meant we could make the most of the house’s beautiful grounds, and participants had the opportunity to complete one of the writing exercises outside in the sunshine.

How idyllic to find a spot on the grass or a bench and simply write!

Shambellie House provides us with not only a spacious and historic inside space, but also beautiful and tranquil grounds – all perfect for relaxing the mind and inspiring our writing.

After lunch, we chatted about topics including writer’s block, with lots of ideas around the table about the best ways to overcome it. Steph then chatted about multi-writing – essentially, having a number of writing projects on the go at once – and the benefits of this approach.

The afternoon ended with the opportunity to read out a couple of pieces of writing each. As ever at these type of sessions, we had laughter, gasps, and even tears.

Thank you to this enthusiastic and friendly group who made myself and Steph’s day go by so quickly with their insightful comments and honest writing.

Thanks, as ever, also go to the whole team at Shambellie House Trust for their hospitality. We can’t wait to return!

Are you interested in attending our next Story Factory workshop? We are currently in talks over autumn dates for Shambellie – please keep an eye on the Facebook page for updates coming shortly.

One thought on “Story Factory at Shambellie: Writer’s block, multi-writing and generating new ideas, July 2019

  1. Yes, indeed, a great day spent with new and returning writers. Always a delight to hear such a wide range of stories produced by the prompts and to share in such animated discussions. There is nothing better than hearing writers giving voice to their thoughts and ideas.


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