NB. This group session is designed for my writing group in Lanzarote but can easily be adapted for other regions.
Give out the first instructions the week before the session, preferably e mail for the links.After the example of the NYT piece on the undersea statues off the coast I would like everyone to prepare something on one or more of their favourite places to visit on Lanzarote in brief note form.
Look for a few ideas about a little more than just the more famous tourist sites, or for a new angle on those.
Some of the statues on display before being placed in the water.
If possible members need to look up before the session some facts about favourite places on the island. You might want to google ‘blue flag beaches on Lanzarote’ for example or volcanologists on Lanzarote, wine making, crafts, flora and fauna, bird-watching and wildlife eg:
Very brief notes are fine at this stage and we will start the session by asking each person to state three things only about their favourite place. We will try to guess where it is which should give us some idea how well the points have been chosen.
- Ask everyone to share their 3 facts and guess each other’s places.
- Ask everyone to write down up to five pointers to what they think makes a good travel piece.
Discuss in small groups (3) what it is important to include in a travel piece.
Feed back to the whole class and discuss:
Do we simply want to tell the reader how beautiful a place is or do they want more than that?
Can we include some interesting historical detail?
Is there something worth including about the ecology?
Is the site of archaeological or scientific interest for any reason?
Is the place chosen protected in any way? If so, how and why?
Is it an important place for the economy of the island?
Is there any information that you should include about how to get there?
Think about these points and any others that come up.
3. Ask the members to write their journalistic pieces (200-350 words)
Share and discuss the results.
Invite members to type up their piece for editing for the blog.
Monumento al Campesino