Find the Means to Express Yourself this Summer

by Bob Hughes on April 26, 2016

Bob Hughes · Education · April 26, 2016

Pendulum in Action, Art Workshop International, creative writingOne of the most rewarding things in the world is to be able to write something that conveys a feeling, a sensation, a thought, a message. Yet many people hesitate to put pen to paper (figuratively speaking – most writers today tap away at keyboards), because they fear to reveal themselves. Or they worry that they can’t write well enough to put across what it is they really want to say.

But to reveal yourself doesn’t mean you’re giving away your secrets. It means you’re demonstrating the strength of your character, your convictions and your point of view about the world. And you can be taught to write well.

I help people to write well. My colleagues and I are in the business of working with people so that their message gets spread, so that what they want to say is said in the best possible way.

This summer, I will also personally help people to shape their message, to refine their words – to unleash their creativity. I’m teaching a course in Italy – at the Art Workshop International, a renowned gathering of regular folks who all want to express themselves – in words or pictures. And who want to do it while vacationing in Assisi, a beautiful hill town north of Rome in the Umbrian countryside.

Art Workshop International was founded 36 years ago by artists Bea Kreloff and Edith Isaac-Rose, and has become a cherished summertime institution for travelers who wish to combine a relaxing vacation with stimulating cultural appreciation.

Art Workshop International offers a range of courses such as visual arts, creative writing, art appreciation, Italian language and culinary classes. Previous teachers have included such great writers as Frank McCourt, Tony Kushner, Grace Paley, Michael Cunningham, Dorothy Allison, Marilyn French, Maxine Hong Kingston. Vivian Gornick and Philip Lopate. This year’s artist-in-residence is Edmund White. White has written more than 25 celebrated works of fiction and nonfiction, and has edited several highly regarded anthologies. His latest novel, Our Young Man, has just been published to wide praise – the New York Times called it “fresh, wily and unexpected.” White is also known for his celebrated biography of French writer Jean Genet, for which White won the National Book Critics Circle Award.

During his residence in Assisi, Edmund White will give readings from his works, discuss his creative process, meet with students and also sit in on my course – I’m teaching memoir and fiction, but I can help you with anything you need to help you find your voice. This is a rare opportunity to spend time in the company of one of America’s most influential authors.

The prices are reasonable (all the information you need is there on the website), but the experience is unforgettable.

I hope you can join me – and join others who have learned to find their voice and express themselves, while reveling in the beauties of Italy.

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