The Convergence Series brings together widely varied streams of intellectual and spiritual knowledge within the context of open-heartedness. As converging creeks create a mighty river, this integration of different ways of knowing yields something that is stronger, deeper, and more complex than any single watercourse. Convergence wisdom is creative, rooted in relationship, and designed to change individuals, inspire communities, and help heal the world.
Here’s the chronology for Convergence Writers’ Weekend since 2012:
CONVERGENCE WRITERS WEEKEND
“We Will Not Be Separated”
©2017 Sean Arthur Joyce
Friday, June 16 and Saturday, June 17, 2017
Knox Hall, 521 6th Avenue, New Denver, B.C.
“A house divided against itself will fall,” goes the old proverb. Our house—our world, our community, even our self—is threatened with many issues of ethical dislocation, injustice and dis-ease that can divide or paralyze our forward momentum. Some of these things are new, some have been with us throughout history. Whatever threats face us, one of our most powerful tools for motivating connection, social progress and justice is the written word.
Every day the world discovers more and more how everything is interconnected. Our Convergence 2017 theme, We Will Not Be Separated, will focus on exploring positive connections we can make with and through our own creativity, spirituality and activism. We will learn from and encourage one another. We’ll look at how the world is, and how the world could be. New and seasoned writers are welcome.
Convergence 2017 offers registrants a chance to work on their writing with either Carolyn Pogue or Gary Geddes in Saturday workshops. You can hear them speak Friday evening at a session open to the public. And Saturday night an optional session provides the opportunity for registrants to read from their work and to discuss what they’ll take away from Convergence.
Registration fee of $45 plus GST = $47.25 covers all events Friday and Saturday.
Friday’s session is open to non-registrants by donation.
CONVERGENCE 2017 SCHEDULE
Friday, June 16, 7 p.m., Knox Hall:
Opening presentations by Gary Geddes and Carolyn Pogue
Open to public by donation
Saturday, June 17, Knox Hall and Denver Siding:
Workshops: 9 a.m.–12 p.m.
Lunch on your own: 12–2 p.m.
Workshops: 2–5 p.m.
Dinner on your own: 5–7 p.m.
(optional) Readings by workshop participants & discussion: 7 p.m., Knox Hall
FINAL DEADLINE for REGISTRATION: June 1, 2017
SUBMISSIONS DEADLINE for persons wishing feedback on their writing in the GARY GEDDES WORKSHOP: May 19, 2017
COMMENTS FROM PAST PARTICIPANTS:
“Here’s the heart of what I want from any workshop, and what I got in this one. I want a chance to meet good words written or spoken by others, and to take away something—large or small—that will help me live my own life more fully.”
—Anne Voegtlen, Convergence 2016 participant
“The Convergence 2016 Writers’ Workshop in Silverton has been a high point in a year of many memorable occasions for me. The theme, The Spirit in the Landscape, was a draw for me to the workshop. It is a theme that has pleasantly haunted me for a long while… I will return for more of the way of the Convergence next year.”
—Richard Peppinck, Convergence 2016 participant
“I didn’t know what to expect, but this has exceeded any expectations I might have had. Excellent all the way round.”
—Verna Relkoff, Convergence 2012 instructor
Or read what Carolyn Pogue, a Convergence registrant last year and instructor this year, had to say on her blog: ucobserver.org/pogue_blog/2016/06/mothers_calling
Carolyn Pogue believes that pens are indeed mightier than swords and that words can help heal and transform us. Her work includes world travel, support for Indigenous justice, co-founding The Art of Peace: A Camp for Kids and Ecology North, presenting writing workshops for writers aged 10 to 100, and writing several books, both fiction and nonfiction. Her latest publications are Sorry: Why Our Church Apologized (follow-up to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission) and Rock of Ages: A Cosmic Love Story (about the oldest rock on Earth). Carolyn writes her Sightings column for The United Church Observer online twice each month. The descendant of a British Home Child, she has also written two Young Adult novels on this little-known aspect of Canadian history, Gwen and West Wind Calling. For more on Carolyn, see carolynpogue.ca.
She says of her Convergence workshop: “The Write the Spirit workshop will encourage seasoned and beginning writers to explore how the world is and how the world can be. Using ‘free fall’ writing, discussion and a variety of exercises, we will explore some possibilities for peace, justice and healing within ourselves, our country and our planet. Work in any genre you choose. We will share experiences, create and recreate stories that encourage us to help heal our troubled world.”
This workshop does not require submission of a writing sample.
Gary Geddes is a renowned Canadian poet, author and teacher who’s written or edited 50 books and won a dozen national and international literary awards. His latest book of poems, The Resumption of Play, is a narrative sequence that explores, using the much-neglected long poem form, the injustice of Canada’s Indian residential schools. Learn from Geddes how political poetry and prose can also be well-crafted and breathtakingly beautiful.
Registrants in Gary’s poetry workshop will learn about line breaks, how to make a poem nest in the ear without depending on rhyme and metrics, or how to turn a local image into a structural component in the poem. “I’d like to show you how to write up a storm, not a perfect storm but one that resonates at the levels of sight, sound and idea.”
Those who prefer to explore non-fiction will benefit equally from Gary’s tutelage. In Drink the Bitter Root, he recounts his explorations of Rwanda, Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia and Somaliland in ‘A Search for Justice and Healing in Africa.’ His new book Medicine Unbundled: A Journey Through the Minefields of Indigenous Health Care draws on four years of research interviewing First Nations Elders about their experience in segregated hospitals in B.C.
For more on Gary, see http://bcbooklook.com/2016/01/21/54-gary-geddes/.
Gary will spend an hour or so in the morning and afternoon sessions doing a few exercises to get you writing and then a couple of hours critiquing work that has been submitted in advance. Deadline for writing samples is May 19 for registrants wishing to receive a typewritten page of comments on their work. Workshop registrants will be asked to read aloud their poem or a short sample of their non-fiction piece for group discussion.
This workshop requires the submission of a writing sample for registrants wishing to receive a typewritten page of comments on their work. Maximum length of sample should be three to five pages, double-spaced. All writing samples are due by May 19th, 2017.