To set the structure for the class, I created this contract. Most items apply well to life also!
Write Your Life
with T. Dean Adams
Class Contract ©
I, _____________________________________________, on this ______ day of _____________, 20__, do bravely enter into this agreement, with myself, to treat myself to the soul-filling creative experience of a writing workshop.
1. While in class I will honor my intentions of writing by turning off my cell phone. I will not check email, or social media or text messages or voice mail. Nothing is more important than writing during the workshop.
2. I agree to keep my pen moving during all timed exercises, even if I completely run out of things to say, because if I stop writing I might start judging and editing.
- I will feel free to write absolute drivel, or “I have nothing to say.” Over and over. I will write whatever I am thinking even if it’s “I don’t know what to write…”or I don’t want to be here…”
- If feeling stuck, I will boldly attempt to jump start my writing by beginning sentences with: “I remember… I don’t remember… I want to write about… I don’t want to write about…”
3. Without hesitation I will write my first thoughts even if they’re not neat and tidy. These ideas are uncensored, sincere and usually things I really need to write out of my head and onto paper.
4. At no point will I bother with such trivial matters as grammar, punctuation or spelling. I will let go of such ridiculous worries as likes and views, sell-ability, or old traumas such as grades, red pens, permanent records and concerned phone calls to my parents. I will write 100% for myself, not at all concerned for anyone else’s opinion or to entertain or impress anyone else.
5. Should I ever decide to, I’ll “pass” on reading out loud without scorn from my classmates or shame from myself.
6. I absolutely, positively, swear I will not apologize before reading my writing out loud.
- This includes masked apologies such as “It’s really not very good,” or “I’m not a good writer, but I’ll read anyway.”
- I will honor the class motto of “Never say you’re sorry.”
7. Upon receiving a compliment I will graciously accept it without one iota of deferral, and I will take at least one entire moment to bask in the pleasure of receiving praise.
8. No matter what topic is suggested I will always be true to my heart and mind and follow my pen where it leads me.
9. I will help create and honor this class as a “safe psychic space” which means it is free of emotional and mental abuse.
10. Simply by being present I commit to honoring other’s privacy. What happens in class stays in class.
11. My mind will remain open to experiences and beliefs different than mine.
12. In all ways I will be kind, encouraging and supportive to others and to myself. This includes giving or receiving applause after writing and/or reading aloud.
By signing below, I agree to the above, so I, and those gathered with me, might find great joy in writing, creating, exploring and playing.
Name and Date