Creative Writing

What is Creative Writing ?

Another form of expressive therapy where each individual forms part of a group. It can give you a chance to express your thoughts on paper and share them with others in a safe supportive environment. Sharing allows others to hear our stories and to understand what we have been through.

No experience in creative writing is necessary and spelling; grammar and punctuation are of no importance.


It can improve self-esteem and promote a sense of well-being and personal growth.

Letter to Aileen, Bernie, Fiona, Josephine, Moya and Mary, fellow-members of our Creative Writing Group 2007

When Phil first mentioned the Healing Pen course, I had no idea what it was about or in what way it would be a help to me but Phil had recommended it so, as I had every confidence in her judgment, I decided to give it a go.

When I came in, there were two other males but, unfortunately, they did not stay with us. So I was the only man and was also coming to the journey from a different direction from my female friends who had all been diagnosed with various types of the dreaded monster and had undergone various treatments. I had been a carer to somebody who had fought a good battle but who had failed to make it. So was the creative writing group going to work for me?

After the first couple of weeks, I surprised myself in the way I was able to get involved in the discussions that were prompted by the various pieces that all of you had written, with the help of Mary. I can now see where creative writing could help, as it encourages us to put our feelings and thoughts on paper and, when we read the pieces to the group, they prompt discussions, which I find so enlightening and helpful.

Ladies, through writing, discussion and kindness, you have helped me to face what I have gone through. I hope that, coming from the other side so to speak, I have helped each of you see the journey from your partner’s and family’s point of view. If so, then I feel good.

When I want to reflect on what we have done, I will pick out your pieces in the Anthology to read. The writings that come to mind that have particular relevance for me are: Bernie’s Fear and I Love; Josephine’s Life and The Future; Eithne’sHealing and Hope; Moya’sFear, Fiona’s Light and Shadow; Aileen’s The Perfect Day, particularly the last two lines; and not forgetting Mary’s handouts, Raymond Carver’s Fear and The Cancer Patient Talks Back by Molly Redmond.

I have enjoyed my time among you, as you are all very brave people. I hope you continue to fight and come out on the right side. Hopefully, we will not lose touch and will meet up from time to time.

Thank you, Ladies.

Thomas McQuillan

A Creative Writing Workshop took place in July 2010, an experience that was thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended. On evaluation the following comments were made:

‘I most enjoyed the writing, the talking and listening to other people’

‘This is the first time I ever wrote anything other than school essays.’

When a client was asked what part of the workshop was least helpful, the reply was

‘Nothing, all of it was good’

Finally one client wrote:

‘Give us more please’