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Kate Dempsey
Poet, Short-Story writer
Discussion with Writer, Creative Writing Workshop, Master Class
Age Group
8 - 18
Primary, Post Primary
Works in English ONLY
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
Mornings, Afternoons

Publications/ repertoire/
productions & background experience

 My poetry has been widely published in Ireland & the UK. I have read at many festivals & other events, including Poetry Ireland Introductions Series, Cavan Windows Introductions & The Electric Picnic Festival.

My short stories have appeared in The Sunday Tribune, Do the Write Thing (anthology, Poolbeg 2007) and broadcast on RTE Radio. I have also contributed pieces to The Quiet Quarter on Lyric FM.

My play, The Last Cowboy in the East was produced by The Red Kettle Theatre Company in Waterford.

I was shortlisted for the Hennessy New Irish Writing award for both poetry and fiction, as well as winning the Cecil Day Lewis Award for a one act play, & for poetry.

I have been awarded bursaries & travel awards for the Tyrone Guthrie Centre & for the Overpfälzer Kűnstlerhaus in Bavaria.

Experienced workshop leader in primary & secondary schools, libraries, festivals and in the National Gallery.

Session Details

I have developed a series of creative writing workshops which, with some minor variations, work as well with primary as with secondary schools.
45 to 60 minutes long, depending on the age of the class & the timetable. They can be presented on a one off basis or as part of a series, building from week to week over an extended period.
Typical class size 12 to 30.
Requirements: writing materials, board.

Workshops include:

1 Structure of a story. Talk about traditional fairy story structure, hooks, conflict & resolution. Fairy stories told from another point of view.

2 Describing using the 5 senses. A piece of writing about memories of places & special events gives a good opportunity to write sensitively & evocatively.

3 Poetry with similes and metaphors. Describe people by comparing them to animals giving reasons why. What can you compare yourself with?

4 Onomatopoeia. Sound words are always fun. Use a mindmap to gather your thoughts & describe an animal.

5 Haiku poems capture a moment, thought, idea briefly. Read some examples, learn about syllables, do some counting and develop some season words together.

6 Characterisation. Create a character from a group of objects, description, past history and secret thoughts, put them in a tricky situation & write about their reaction.

7 Drama. Show don’t tell. Portray an emotion through movement & dialogue. Write a piece of drama & perform to the class.

8 Write a story in the round. Start a story based on a season, swap around the class for each of the seasons, then using editing techniques, rewrite.

9 How To. Start by writing instructions to make me a cup of tea. Move on to instructions on how to fly, how to become invisible, etc.

Age Group Details

8 to 18 years

Availability Details

Available one day a week

c/o Poetry Ireland, 32 Kildare Street, Dublin 2
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