The Creative Writing Workshop in the Virtual Space

Conference: The Paris Conference on Arts & Humanities (PCAH2022)
Title: The Creative Writing Workshop in the Virtual Space
Stream: Arts - Literary Arts Practices
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation
Alana Leilani Narciso, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong


The first of its kind and the longest-running workshop in Asia, the Silliman University National Writers Workshop in the Philippines, initially patterned after the Iowa Workshop, has offered over six hundred fellowships to writers for sixty years now, becoming a ‘rite of passage’ for the country’s finest writers. It has endeavored to serve writers uninterruptedly until the onset of the pandemic. After one-year hiatus, it recommences its yearly workshop in 2021 but via the online space. This paper, part of a longer project, explores how the online set-up and space affects the discussions in the workshop, whether the virtual space enables or disables. Whereas the physical workshop reveals a community and a space of negotiation (censorship versus expression, cultivation of creativity vis-a-vis regulation of it), meaning-making, and consensus, the virtual creative writing workshop remains uncharted. This paper hopes to contribute to the exploration of literary arts practices in the new normal.

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