Here’s the blog of Kathryn Aalto – a designer, writer and speaker who invited me to the Maynard School in Exeter.
Good First Monday of Spring 2014.
I am a little wistful about the final instalment of “This Writer’s Life” at The Maynard School. A fab diverse series it was with such bright and sensitive girls asking brilliant questions. Last Friday we heard the beautiful singer Alex Hart, a Devon native, talk about the art and craft of song writing. Relaxed with a voice both golden and bluesy, she sang five original songs — several set in Devon — and talked about how her songs originated, the process of writing, and ways she arranges music to a story. All her songs were very good — she has a record deal for a reason, folks — but I especially liked “Bad Boy Bill” which takes place in the fishing town of Brixham. Have a listen: https://twitter.com/AlexHartMusic.
She also took a real interest in the musical backgrounds of the girls — they all play piano, violin or classical guitar — and their own original song writing efforts. Her warmth and openness made us chocolate brownie gooey inside. And we decided we must! have! Alex! back! at The Maynard for the entire Sixth Form to enjoy, and Leaver’s Day in Summer Term seems ideal. I am working to make that happen, girls.
The series was such a success that we four have decided to take a cue from Alex and go on the road the way we writers know — school tours and workshops, that is. As writers of non-fiction, fiction, journalism, poetry and song writing, we each bring our own craft to life, describe the different ways in which we work, and ways we approach writing issues. We have many years of teaching and performing (award-winning, even) between us.