The girl who reads (And sometimes writes) poems standing on her head has had a book of her poems published. Creative Walden took the opportunity to launch the book at the recent Poetry recital in Saffronm Walden Town square (1st September 2023). Vivien is an exceptional writer with a keen eye and a sharp wit. Her prolific output is full of imaginative stories and poems and her cheery character fills the room at the Fairycroft House writing sessions.
A special thank you to the National Lottery for helping to make it happen.
Storm Vivien by Alice Bromell (Writer’s Room tutor)
It’s hard to cast my memory back to Writers Room before Storm Vivien; there she was, an 8-year-old that declared herself to be a writer, despite having never before written a poem. One hour, several full notebook pages and at least five complete poems later, it was clear to see that she was, and is, in fact a writer. She continues to write a minimum of five poems every Wednesday evening, and each one carries the rare kind of artistic skill that most poets pour over a singular piece of writing for weeks.
In between her scurried writing, Vivien treats us to outbursts of the character behind the pen. This often includes handing out ‘detentions’ to me, Paul and Lee, usually for failing to satisfy a writing challenge she has set us, and always delivered to us with crossed arms, dramatic eye rolls, and a vivaciously drawn smile across her face. Since joining the Writer’s Room, Vivien has turned up with jars of homemade writing prompts, initiated rhyming, drawing and handstand competitions amongst her fellow young writers, sang on stage, and recited in church. In fact, she recited a poem in Church that she had written just moments before, as I had managed to leave behind the piece of writing she had planned to read. Perhaps that time I did deserve a detention! Naturally, I was far more panicked by this than she was; Vivien simply tore off the back of the programme to use as paper, demanded a pen and then scribbled out a couple of lines on the spot. Ten minutes later she was at the front of the church reading into a microphone to an audience of strangers. Of course, she shot me many eye rolls throughout the service, which she had great pleasure in doing, and was both amusing and reassuring to me.
Whilst I hope my ability to be organised and prepared greatly improves, I do hope her ability to spontaneously whip up a masterpiece of words is never lost.
Vivien is the epitome of the reason we are so proud to run the Writer’s Room. Without the space to come and write freely, who knows how many years it could have been before she discovered her statement to be true: a writer she is indeed, and a glorious one at that. She writes poems on her head and keeps Writers Room on its toes – here is to the marvellous mind of Vivien, her paper and her pen.
Alice Bromell – Summer 2023