Online: Writing Memoir with Ivy Bannister Irish Writers Centre Dublin Writing Courses

Online: Writing Memoir with Ivy Bannister

Starts: Thurs 15 Oct 2020
Time: 6.30pm – 8.30pm
Duration: 6 Weeks 
Cost: €165/€150 Members

Course Level: *Emerging

All Irish Writers Centre remote courses take place on Irish Standard Time (GMT+1)


*Emerging:   exactly where you are as a writer will not matter as much as your commitment to giving the six weeks your best shot.


This course aims to provide the participants with the skills  – and the encouragement – to get their unique stories down on the page in a cheerful and safe environment.  Each class will consider a particular aspect of good writing, with examples from the masters; but the focus will be on the new work that you bring in weekly.

Participants should come to this class ready to listen to one another, to talk and  – of course –  to write.  It’s expected that everyone will bring new writing with them from weeks 2 to 6.  For the first session, it will be enough to have a working title for the essay or book that you hope to write, and a readiness to talk about yourself and what you hope to achieve.  Also bring the title/titles of any memoirs that have made an impression on you.


Week 1 

Where to start.  Titles and their importance.  Structure simplified.  Good habits (Read a lot, write a lot).   First memories.

 Week 2

Characterisation, and a little more about structure.  The giornata.

Week 3

Creating a world:  time and place, also known as setting.  Keeping organised.

Week 4

Voice, the engine that will drive your memoir.  Letters, journals and dialogue.

Week 5

The Sanctuary Lamp:  reaching for the stars...  and more about structure!  Managing the new material that occurs to you as you write.

Week 6

How to keep going with the finish line in sight.


Participants should emerge with new work on the page, and with the habits, structures, and (most of all) the belief in themselves and their story, that will keep them going.

Ivy Bannister has written a memoir, a book of short stories, a poetry collection, several plays for RTE radio, and more than fifty pieces for Sunday Miscellany and The Living Word.  Awards include the Francis MacManus and Hennessy awards.


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