‘Towards Writing Better’ Seminar for Aspiring Salesians

By Asp. Adrian Manansala

“Don’t be ‘a writer’, be a writing” – Oscar Wilde

The aspirants and prenovices underwent a short but comprehensive writing workshop which was facilitated by Fr. Donnie Duchin Duya, SDB at the Tanghalang Seminaryo of the Don Bosco Prenovitiate Community.

The workshop, which had a theme of “Towards Writing Better,” aimed to help us become more aware of our writing styles and thus, improve our writing skills.

The workshop took off with some motivations and tips on how to start the actual act of writing. I personally liked one of Fr. Donnie’s tips of letting our pens run on the paper or our fingers go wild on the keyboard without stopping them. He told us that when we write, let the ‘editor’ in us sleep, so that the ‘writer’ in us is set free. Grammar and other technicalities were the problems of the editor, not the writer.

After the motivation, some formands became nervous while others became excited as we moved on to the next activity: evaluating the works we submitted beforehand. We commented on each other’s work as we tried to correct the syntax and semantics of the text.

As we worked through the different entries, we couldn’t contain our laughter and teasing when we discovered the author of the work being evaluated since the names were removed. To conclude the workshop, we had a writing activity which had us writing continuously for three minutes without lifting the pen up. When we would encounter a writer’s block, we were supposed to write “I’m stuck” repeatedly until we had something to write again.

In the end, some formands went out of the venue feeling satisfied, while the others wanting for more. A few aspirants expressed their dissatisfaction with regards to the time and how they longed for more writing activities. Others felt great and inspired as they learned new ways wherein they could start and improve their writing. Others were also encouraged to write as they gained knowledge regarding the technicalities and different formats in writing.

All in all, Fr. Donnie helped us in our life as a formand as he gave us a chance to venture out into a new endeavor wherein we could find ourselves and God.

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