Former nurse and now successful artist/writer Fi Bailey brings her uniquely engaging and therapeutic writing workshop to Outwith on 7th September. We asked her what people can expect from Cut Out:

AS: What was the inspiration behind Cut Out?

FB: I wanted to complement the festival’s musical offering with a technique often used when writing lyrics.  Playing with words that already exist gets rid of an intimidating blank page for some.  There’s no right or wrong in the cut-up process, which levels the playing field a bit and fits with a festival that encourages diversity and inclusivity. Also, chopping up text can be a shortcut when writing decisions feel overwhelming, I named the workshop after a CUT up, of OUTwith/Cut Out

AS: Can you describe the format of the Cut Out workshop?

FB: It combines writing activities people rarely find time for – chopping up or scribbling out words to make something new.  There are some examples of the cut up process that have gone viral on Twitter recently; Jessica Salfia’s, First Lines of Emails I’ve Received While Quarantining, and several of Brian Bilston’s poems, using cut up newspaper headlines.  Anything goes really, people are welcome to bring along any reading material lying around, or just select something from my collection.

AS: What class, experience or piece of advice have you found most useful in your own writing?

FB: The most valuable learning probably comes from nursing, and being so close to the extremes of human experience.  Even though I left over 10 years ago, the words of the patients and their loved ones visit me often, especially while I’m writing. I don’t take writing time for granted, it’s precious.

Cut Out is at Abbot House Workshop at 6pm on Wednesday 7th September. Tickets cost just £5 plus booking fee and you can get yours here. For more information about this and all the other events on at this year’s Outwith, click here.