Welcome to the Fiction Kitchen of Berlin!
The Fiction Kitchen is the spiritual successor to the ‘Berlin Fiction Writers Unite’ Meetup. I changed the title as I always felt the original name was a tad too much… besides there is something about the name “Fiction Kitchen” that speaks to me. I guess it’s apt in a way as we do cook up stories and share/discuss the ingredients of what makes a story great.
Another big change is our new focus on micro fiction (300 words max), flash fiction (1,000 words max), and short stories (2,500 words max). Up until now, we have invited authors working on full length novels to read excerpts from their work (called ‘Read Aloud’ sessions) – but this has proved to be too unwieldy due to the short time and quantity of authors at each meeting. As of the next meeting, we will be focusing on the above categories only, with emphasis on stand alone, strong-voiced pieces that showcase a writer’s true talents.
Another big change is our new focus on micro fiction (300 words max), flash fiction (1,000 words max), and short stories (2,500 words max).
I am also aiming to utilize this site more by allowing authors to post their stories here. My hope is to fill the site with new and emerging voices coming out of Berlin! Again, the new focus on micro, flash, and short stories is a perfect fit for the site and makes sense for me as I’ve written very little else but flash stories for the past year or so. Watch this space!
Another feature I am aiming for is the introduction of writing and storytelling workshops. So far, I’ve been reluctant about reaching out to the writing community here, but I feel the time has come to start making new connections. These would be paid workshops exploring key issues relevant and important to writers – both new and advanced. To be decided over the course of the meetings based on feedback.
I am happy to announce that my writers group has now, as of July 2019, reached a grand total of 550 members. Over the course of the past twelve months, I have seen some people come for one or two sessions before (unfortunately) disappearing afterwards… however, the majority have come back – and keep coming back! Indeed, some of the original members from the very first meetup are still around! The reason I am mentioning this is that I get a lot of messages from people worried about coming. The reasons are many but the main culprit is always the same:
“Hi Shane, I am into writing but I haven’t published anything yet… can I still come to the next session? I will just sit in the corner and not bother anyone.”
People who say this have my complete sympathy as I went through it before, thinking that I wasn’t a real writer until I had something published. Maybe we all go through it at some stage? Truth is that my meetup contains a diverse motley crew of both published and non-published authors (the latter is actually more common). A lot of people come to hear – and learn – from other writers, and end up staying for the craic. Should you be on the fence about coming – don’t! We are an open and friendly group and welcome everyone. Come and find out for yourself 😉
We will be meeting again in September 2019 at the same venue (Castle Bar in Mitte). Looking forward to cooking up some stories with you in the Kitchen!
Article written by Shane O’Halloran. Feel free to reach out to him via this blog, or on Twitter and Instagram under @SomeOddHat.