Victoria McNulty

With the preparations for Paisley Book Festival 2022 well underway, it’s been a pleasure to discover the city and its local community groups through my Writer in Residence role.

After weeks of planning and connecting, I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to get my own creative juices flowing. Exploring locally, taking pictures and notes of interest, reflecting and delving deeper into Paisley’s rich history and spirit.

This week I was lucky enough to join the Renfrewshire Writer’s Forum, facilitating a Creative Writing Workshop exploring themes of authenticity and personality in our story telling. The forum was originally set up as part of last years festival and has been a valuable space for local writers to attend workshops and engage with guest speakers.

In keeping with the theme of this year’s festival ‘Stories Mak Us’ we dissected ways writers can discover our own creative voices. How to uncover hidden meaning and connections in our stories. We talked about reflection, language and performance. It was wonderful to share thoughts with such engaged writers. Mulling over our personal practice and experiences is so important in developing our unique voices. It was particularly interesting to discuss how our stories take on new meaning as we distance ourselves from them. I certainly feel I’ve learned a few tips to take forward, so thank you to everyone who came along!

In the coming weeks I will be facilitating workshops with a host of local groups including Evolve, Barnardos Threads and the Tannahill Centre. Each week I will share my experiences with each group, and participant contributions. After such a vibrant introduction, it is only right to celebrate the community stories that are front and centre of Paisley Book Festival’s ethos.