Allowing myself to free with my creativity saved my life. I don't mean to be overdramatic and silly (although I'm sometimes both), but when I was at my lowest ebb, desperately suicidal and ill, I had nothing, I couldn't make sense of the world and I felt I had no purpose. One part of my recovery was to reconnect with my creative urge. We all have a creativity in our soul; whether it's baking cake, playing minecraft or putting together a business presentation. They all go down the same neural pathway as sculpture, poetry and song. I concentrate on writing a stepping stone to other diciplines. Namely because I have a degree in screenwriting, so I feel confident in the technical aspect of constructing stories that work. The skills can be used in all walks of life, and through my own practice I've started to branch out into other aspects of creativity myself.
My whole 'mission statement' is that everyone can be creative, in any field. The two biggest stumbling blocks are:
1. LACK OF CONFIDENCE
2. PERCEIVED RULES ABOUT HOW TO DO THINGS
These have held back my students and creative friends for as long as I've been doing these workshops. What I do is simple yet invaluable. I provide a listening ear for peoples ideas, I give prompts and tasks, but more importantly I listen and feed back; above all I make sure THINGS GET DONE! My sessions can be 1-on-1, in person or online (via phone or skype). I charge a flat fee of £10 (in advance) per a 50 minute session. This includes:
- A conversation (from session 2 verbal feedback of previous task)
- A Task
- A deadline
- Written Feedback
It's as simple as that. I have taught creative writing at AgeUk (both in Barnes and Twickenham) and managed to convince people who had lived 80+ years thinking that they're no good at writing to take up creative writing! So what are you waiting for. Contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org if you're interested. NOTE: Can only do IRL sessions in Edinburgh, U.K.
‘I first met Simon Jay when he came to take a course in Creative Writing at the AgeUK Centre to which I belong. Although I was very keen to attend I was also very nervous as I had never had the courage to attempt such a project before.
Simon put all the attendees at ease immediately and under his gentle guidance managed to bring us all out of our shells, and me especially out of my initial shyness. He had the capability of inspiring his students to write in spite of their reserve. He not only has an engaging personality but also has empathy with his students whatever their age group. He has that gift of being able to inspire which is so important in engaging people to learn new things.
I think Simon is an imaginative and talented writer himself and I would not hesitate to recommend him to anyone interested in taking a creative writing course.’
– Eileen Roy, former student
‘ I met Simon quite magically, through someone I wouldn’t have expected to lead me to a writer.
He was introduced to me as a brilliant writing teacher. I told him I was a bit stuck and needed a bit of a boost, a bit of redirecting , and we met for several sessions. In cafes, on the Southbank & in the poetry library.
He is so full of ideas. So young and vibrant. Through him I got to read my poetry at the Poetry Cafe in Covent Garden. I had not even known such a place or event existed.
He encouraged me , praised me, and led me to a far better publisher than the one I had. He changed my writing life.It was so refreshing and revitalising to have my stuff so admired by someone much younger than me. Renewed my self belief which was pretty much near dead.
We had fun and laughs and he was always different and full of surprises. I still can’t believe he liked my writing so much.
And I know he is sincere because he was not backward in telling me where I was going wrong.
A very strong, talented, and multifaceted young man.’
- Pamela Pickton, Author and former student
‘I was searching for a creative input to a couple of writing projects and I was lucky enough to find in Simon an amazingly resourceful playwright and comedian.’
- Rich Barker, Creative Entrepreneur and former student