While the lively world we’ve inhabited shifts into a state of suspended activities and self-quarantine to cope with COVID19 it seems increasingly likely that PWS will need to be rescheduled. As we consult with our principals and stakeholders about possibly postponing our event to September 6-10 (continuing our alignment with Calabash Literary Festival) or another suitable date, we want to thank all those who registered for what we’re increasingly thinking of as PREE’s first writing festival.
As we embarked on this leap into a new (ad)venture for PREE we had hoped for 15-20 paying participants. Together with the grant we received from the Prince Claus Fund this would have allowed us to mount a small but heavy-hitting writing event. Instead by the time the deadline for applications came to a close we had 40-45 people willing to pay to participate in this very special event. In the week following our February 29th deadline the applications continued to roll in and regretfully had to be turned down.
We were elated to have our intuitive thinking on how to run a writing studio vindicated: assemble seven superlative writer tutors who could go toe to toe with the best writers globally and the rest would follow. Quality speaks for itself and the calibre of emerging writers who recognized the opportunity we were offering has been heartening.
Our thinking has been that bringing together a critical mass of the best writers this country and region has produced would create a ferment, a spontaneous combustion, with cascading benefits for all concerned. Jamaica and the Caribbean could rightfully draw attention to the diversity of its cultural product, and our sponsors and partners could pat themselves on the back for helping to build valuable new intellectual property, the blue chip stock of the 21st century.
We hope that if and when we reschedule most or all of our participants and scholarship winners will be able to join us to make PREE’s inaugural writing studio the resounding success it’s shaping up to be. Continue to watch this space.