On Saturday we had the latest of the Brighton Creative Writing Sessions workshops, on Writing and the Tarot. Ellen and I were very excited as we had a guest tutor for the event, poet and tarot-reader Naomi Foyle.
The tarot has an interesting history as a tool for writers. Italo Calvino described it as a "machine for telling stories", and used it as the basis for his book The Castle of Cross Destinies. (Apparently there was supposed to be a third part of this book, called the Motel of Crossed Destinies, which was never written).
The workshop explored the Major Arcana and Fool's Journey. We played with relating the archetypal symbols on the cards with stories. For me it was most interesting to see how different people interpreted the cards, and the way these symbols could be used, something I want to continue exploring. I was also fascinated to learn that Ted Hughes collection, the Birthday Letters can be analysed in terms of the Major Arcana – more information here.
I had a fascinating day – thank you to Naomi for running the workshop, and to Jake for providing the space. Ellen and I are now planning 2011's workshops. We have a Top Secret session planned for January, and Writing Brighton in February. Details to follow!