The Words & Worlds project was commissioned by Newcastle City Council in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and led by artists Natasha Haws and Elijah Young from September 2020 to March 2021.
The intention of this residency was to help people from different community groups share their lockdown experiences through creative writing.
Over the course of six months and several versions of lockdown, all those involved have participated in weekly workshops, phone call sessions or via email and all of their written work has culminated in the creation of an anthology titled “Listen for The Birds” which has been made digitally accessible on this website.
Over 40 people were involved in the project with the youngest participant being 13 and the oldest being 85. All of different ages, backgrounds and writing skills. They have shared their experiences of the pandemic but also given us, and you as a reader, an insight into their own life stories.
Some work in this anthology is deliberately unedited to celebrate the uniqueness of every individual voice. Some pieces are credited with pseudonyms or anonymously to allow the participants to write freely and honestly. We believe each and everyone of them are now writers in their own right.
Designed by Isabella Tessier and Amber Fox
Elijah Young and Natasha Haws are two artists living and working in the North East.
Elijah Young is a playwright and theatre maker originally from Teesside.
Natasha Haws is a creative freelancer working in theatre, music and community arts.
Natasha and Elijah have worked on many projects together but this was their first joint commission.
It has been their honour to facilitate the Words and Worlds project 2020-21 and they are so proud of each and every participant involved.
Newcastle City Council, Alison Flannigan-Wood, Newcastle Arts Team, Changing Lives, Your Homes Newcastle, Elders Council Newcastle, VOICE UK, Youth Justice Service, Trinity Academy, Martintype Photography, Issy Tessier, Amber Fox.