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Hypnosis for Writers: a Workshop
A General Description
I begin each workshop by explaining what hypnosis is, how it works, and how it can help writers. I then guide participants into a trance state. I give suggestions and guided imagery to allow them to release any blocks that could get in the way of writing and creativity. From there I guide them into creating an inner writing room, a place they can revisit any time they want to connect with the Muse or their inner writer. Once they have imagined their inner writing room, I lead participants into an in-trance writing exercise to help them generate fresh material that can be used for poetry, fiction, and possibly memoir. I value a supportive environment and encourage participants to share some of the writing they produce.
These topics have all been popular. I am also happy to design a workshop to meet the needs of a particular group.
Automatic Writing in Trance–an adaptation of a technique used by the Surrealist poets to access original imagery from the subconscious.
The Key to Character. I bring in my collection of skeleton keys for this workshop. Participants enter trance with a key in hand and tap into the subconscious to create a history for the key, imagining the people whose hands it has passed through and the door it once opened.
Creating Story through the Senses. Our senses are heightened when in a trance state, and in this workshop, participants explore sound, smell, and touch to create setting, story and character.
Music and Writing. For this workshop, participants listen to music while in trance and let the music inspire the writing—personal or creative.
Creating a Multi-Faceted Character. While in trance, participants, in this workshop, are guided to create a character and to explore the character's internal conflicts and motivations. Participants may choose to work with a character they have already begun to develop.
Writing with the Tarot. Tarot cards, like hypnosis, are a wonderful tool for tapping into the subconscious and finding inspiration for writing. Like all of the workshops, this one begins with the ritual of taking participants into trance to release blocks and get in touch with their inner writers. The rest of the session focuses on using tarot cards for creative or personal writing exercises. I have lots of different decks for participants to play with.
A Treasure Trove of Story Ideas. For this workshop, I bring in ephemera and other treasures that I have collected from antique stores: old letters, canceled checks, pages from Last Wills and Testaments, portrait photos, a yearbook from 1942, and a photo album from the 1920's. Participants will be guided into trance where these items from the past will inspire story, character, and setting.
Transforming Personal History into Fiction. For this workshop, participants are asked to bring two small ordinary objects that hold emotional or symbolic significance for them. (No photos.) They are then guided into trance to write about their connection with these objects, and to create a story where the objects take on an alternative history and a new meaning.
How Hypnosis Helps Writers
Now and then you'll hear a writer say that the Muse was with them or that it felt like a piece wrote itself. As a hypnotherapist, I would say that a writer who has had that experience knows what it feels like to write in a trance state.
In a trance state, we naturally suspend critical judgment, block out distractions and solely focus on our writing. Through the trance state, we can also access our subconscious mind—the part of the mind that produces dreams and stores our memories, our feelings and intuition—a wellspring for the imagination. You don't have to wait for a blue moon for a gift from the Muse. You can learn to enter this state at will. Come to the workshop and let me guide you!
***I also offer hypnotherapy sessions for individual writers. Click here for details.***