Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Creative Writing Courses at Diwan in May

Important change of date to Heliopolis course! The Heliopolis course will now start Saturday 18th May - register in advance to ensure your name is booked in.  (The Zamalek course starts as planned on 13th but yesterday there were only 2 places left on that course so get booked in there fast!)  :)

Register in advance at the store that you wish to take the course in; and be aware that places go fast!

All details are on the poster (remember the Heliopolis date is now different from that on the poster!) :)

Monday, 15 April 2013

It was AMAZING!!!

I am just back from the fabulous residential writing course I just ran in Bahareya, Egypt. 

 It was an amazing experience for us all; such sheer beauty and tranquility in the deserts and oases; so many riches available for one's writing.

I can't wait to do the next one and will start planning soon!

Huge thanks to the great work from Cresco - Dalia Abou Senna & Claes Raben who organised the travel, tours, accommodation and bliss and the wonderful, beautiful people who came along on the course: Mehra Magd, Hanaa Hammad, Mona Yassin, Hanna Sistek, Mohammed Yahia, Mirette Baghat, Nora Tee, Ola El Ababby, Mina Sonbol, Myriam Rizkillah. 

You can view the whole set of photos here:

and you can read about what the course comprised of from an old post here:

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Short Story course starts April 17th at Diwan Zamalek - Register now!!

Hi All, the next roll out of the Short Story course starts April 17th at Zamalek - Register in the Zamalek store as soon as possible as places will probably go quickly!  See you there!  ;)

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

The Desert Writing Trip This Weekend!

Sooooooooo looking forward to the Dreams & Writing desert trip this weekend!!!

The course content is fantastic (say so myself!) and we are going to be in astounding nature as well as some pampering in a lovely hotel. Add into the mix great people. What's not to LOVE?! :))

Monday, 8 April 2013

Salon Amour

Well, the latest Salon was a long time waiting in the wings as the months went by.  Incredible; the various realities of time.  So, with all the catastrophes and gloom in the world what better focus to have than Love.  Hence Salon Amour, which was a writers' and artists' salon with the theme of Love - and all that it is and all that it is not.

The Salon was amazing, profound and a treasure of excellent work and expression.

You can see the photo album here:


Monday, 1 April 2013

Short Story Course at Diwan Zamalek starting April 17th

Short Story Course
with Linda Cleary

for those who completed the 4 week Creative Writing course or who have proven writing skills.

This course focuses on work on character, voice, atmosphere and plot and we continue with further creative writing expansion techniques.

We also read published short stories for discussion and understanding format, focusing on the necessary elements for each student to produce a final draft of a 1000 word narrative.

Course hours

4 weeks (8 hour course)
One session per week on Wednesdays (2 hour session)
at Diwan Zamalek

Starting Wednesday April 17th

Maximum number of participants: 10 people

Age group: for adults (17 yrs +)

Price: 480 LE
Go into Zamalek store to register in advance

A Few Places Still Left on the Bahareya Desert Writing Trip!!!

a few places are still available on this course! 
Please contact me as soon as possible on: 
to arrange your booking.  

'Dreams & Writing'
a 3 day residential creative writing holiday with Linda Cleary
in Bahareya oasis and desert
April 12 – 14, 2013

Your Leap to Inspiration

This is your perfect experience!

  We want you to experience a true time out from busy Cairo, where you find relaxation, enjoy the scenery, expand your horizon, and most importantly take the time out to WRITE!


Dreams & Writing Course
The residential writing course will look at how to use the alchemy of our own dream tapestry to weave into our creative writing. We can use our dreams to work on theme, characters and archetypes, dramatic structure and plot. We will also look at how Jung dealt with dreams and drama. And importantly given the fabulous natural environment we will be in we will look at Dreamtime totems and the dreaming of landscape.

Over the course of 3 days you will receive 9 hours of writing tuition (one 3 hour class per day) as well as experience the inspiration and beauty of the landscape with tours into both the Black Desert and White Desert and other areas of significance.

It is a fantastic itinerary of writing class, desert camp and tours, exclusive hotel, meals and all transport included.

Only 12 people maximum on the course, so register soon to ensure your place.


Short Biography of the Tutor
Linda Cleary is a poet - writer – performer, originally from UK with a theatre background and Diploma in LAMDA Speech and Drama. As well as her own work as a writer, actor and performer she has been delivering workshops in creative writing, theatre and related arts for many years; working in Holland, Czech Republic, Australia, UK and Egypt and currently provides courses at Diwan and El Mesaha Arts & Culture Center in Cairo, Egypt. She is also Director of The Writers' Centre.


Tour itinerary, travel & accommodation arranged by CRESCO. CRESCO means: to grow, to expand, to spring in Latin. CRESCO help bring vision to reality by offering a bespoke service towards creativity and expression in unique settings; for Writers, Photographers and Artists through CrescoArtist. Begin your CrescoLife!



One Night at the White Desert is located between the Bahariya and the Farafra oasis.
One Night in Bahareya’s most exclusive Qasr Al Bawity Eco Lodge

Bahariya Oasis is set in a depression of 2000 square kilometers, surrounded by black hills. Bahariya is known for its hot spring wells and incredible monuments.

About Qasr El Bawity
Qasr El Bawity is an ecolodge set in the middle of a lush palm grove in the heart of El Bawity, the capital of Bahareya Oasis. Built and decorated in the traditional style of the oasis.

About the White Desert
The White Desert covers an area of about 6,000 square kilometers on the southwest of Cairo. It is known for its white sands and strange shaped large rock formations. The considerably high chalk-colored hills make it look like an Arctic landscape contrasting with the deep blue sky. It is an open museum for geographical phenomena, fossils, and wild life and a natural reserve not only for its white sands, but also for being the land of rare plants, acacia trees, calcified trees, and springs. The White Desert is the home for many animals on the verge of extinction; there you can see Egyptian gazelles, white gazelles and rams. It also hosts monuments that go back to the era before Christ and the Roman era and is a location for rare caves, graveyards, as well as mummies and carved inscriptions.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1
08:00 Leave Cairo and drive to Bahareya oasis (350km)
12:30 to13:30 Arrive Qasr El Bawity eco lodge, welcome drink, check-in, and lunch
13:30 Take backpacks and head to the Black Desert
14:15 to16:00 Trekking in the Black Desert
16:00 to16:30 Leave Black Desert and arrive at the White Desert camping site, checking the ancient spring on the way
17:00 to 20:30 Dreams & Writing 1st Session with Linda Cleary
21:00 BBQ Dinner (any allergies should be specified)
Night Camping in the Desert

Day 2
07:00 to 08:00 Wake up and breakfast
08:00 to 10:00 Visit Crystal Mountain on way to hotel
10:00 to 11:00 Arrive Qasr El Bawity eco lodge
11:00 to 13:00 Golden Mummies
13:00 to14:00 Settle in rooms at the hotel
14:00 to15:00 Lunch
15:00 to 18:30 Dreams & Writing 2nd session with Linda Cleary (including sunset at the mountain at18:20)
19:00 to 20:00 Dinner, relax, hang out around the fireplace

Day 3
08:00 to 09:00 Breakfast
09:00 to 10:00 Walk to the mountain by the lodge with views of Bahareya plateau
10:00 to13:30 Dreams & Writing 3rd session with Linda Cleary
13:30 to14:30 Time at the hotel and collect bags
14:30 to19:00 Drive to Cairo (lunch box in car)

The above mentioned tour includes:
Transportation from and to Cairo by Coaster bus
Jeeps when in Bahareya (Toyota Land Cruisers)
Meal plan as mentioned in the program – tea and coffee during session times
Accommodation 1st night White Desert camping, including all camping gear
Accommodation 2nd night at Bahareya – Qasr El Bawity
Satellite phone, and GPS
First aid kit
Mineral water during the camping days
Professional desert Guide /Driver

The above mentioned tour excludes:
Drinks at hotel or restaurant
Personal expenses and extras at the hotels or tour
Alcoholic drinks
Any other item non-mentioned above

Practical information:
Insurance: All cars and participants joining our tours are insured against accidents.

Participants should bring:
Hats, sun glasses, sun cream, prescription medicine
Passports/ IDs and copies
Sandals, bathing suits, sweatshirts and trousers for night time
Shorts and t-shirts for mornings, scarf, flash light
Paper and pen in case your laptop runs out of battery in the desert
Your dreams!

Payments and rates
Full cost per student inclusive of all stated above = LE 1,690

Payable in full on registration (cash only). To arrange your booking please contact Linda Cleary at:

  “The desert smiles and there is no place worth living but the desert”