Making Music With Words

Here’s a snapshot at a few of the things you will experience if you come along to our Writing Boot Camp for Teens.


Many believe a writer’s voice to be unique, innate, and therefore uncontrolled. This two hour workshop will focus on the controlled and deliberate craft of making music with words by learning to listen, to reimagine and to remix a short piece. Through progressive exercises, we’ll cover:

  • reading with an ear for music
  • making decisions about style and structure
  • using punctuation to control rhythm
  • varying the beat of words and sentences
  • using similarity, assonance, contrast and rhyme to smooth or trip the tongue
  •  playing with repetition (chorus), build up (ascension) and climax (crescendo)
  • writing with an ear for music.

On conclusion, writers will have developed better control over voice as an instrument, and an appreciation of the purpose of rewriting and editing: to make words sing.

Vikki Wakefield’s first Young Adult novel, All I Ever Wanted, won the 2012 Adelaide Festival Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction, as did her second novel, Friday Brown, in 2014. Friday Brown was also an Honour Book, Children’s Book Council of Australia, in 2013. Among other awards, it was shortlisted for the prestigious Prime Minister’s Awards, in 2013. Vikki lives in the Adelaide foothills with her family.


The workshop is designed to teach young writers how to use their body and voice to enhance the public reading of their work.

The workshop focus on four different areas:

  • awareness of breath, voice and body
  • overcoming resistance
  • preparing the text
  • reading with intention

Breath, voice and body is where performance begins and so this workshop begins with deep breathing exercises, vocal warm-ups, diction and basic body warm ups that are used in theatre. Writers are encouraged to play, enjoy their voice, and to be self aware, including areas of resistance. The second half of the workshop focuses on preparing the ‘script’ or poem/story that participants will perform for the rest of the group.

Caroline Reid has been writing for over twenty years, and been commissioned to write plays for a number of companies including Black Swan Theatre Company (WA) and Urban Myth Theatre (SA). Her play Prayer to an Iron God was published by Currency Press in 2010.

She has worked alongside young people, artists with disabilities, school communities and independent artists. She has written for a range of publications including Lowdown, FELTspace, Seizure, Spineless Wonders, apt, 4W and Review of Australian Fiction. She is currently a participating writer on the Manifold Portrait in Berri and teaches creative writing at Mockingbird Lounge. Caroline has been the recipient of two Arts SA grants and is a proud member of the Australian Society of Authors. She is currently working on her first novel.

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