Write Practice – A creative writing course for zen students


A course for those interested in the art of writing from the Zen perpective. It explores the links between creative practice, meditation practice and mindfulness. Co-created by Dr. Livi Michael (lecturer in creative writing) and Daizan Roshi.


Can writing be used as a tool for spiritual growth? Yes!

Write Practice is a course for those wanting to learn the art of writing. It explores:

  • The links between creative practice, meditation practice and mindfulness
  • Writing from ‘first thoughts’ and generating ideas
  • Creative flow
  • Establishing a writing practice
  • Paying attention and training your observation
  • Reading as a spiritual and artistic practice
  • Writing about emotions
  • Using a model for your writing
  • Experiment and energy
  • Drafting and editing
Establishing a writing practice Generating ideas Creative flow Drafting and editing

The course consists of filmed conversations between Daizan Skinner and Dr. Livi Michael about writing, and a course manual complete with exercises and tips. It’s split over 7 sections (chapters), each building and developing on the previous chapters. You will be invited to commit to a minimum of 5 minutes writing practice a day, taking the course at your own pace over a period of a few months. The course assumes no previous experience in creative writing and you don’t need to have a project on the go before you start. All you’ll need is a pen and notebook, and the willingness to begin a practice of writing. You will also get access to a private online forum for sharing your writing and commenting on work from others who have taken the course.

By the end of the course, you will have a complete and polished piece of work, but also skills that you can use in future writing and exercises that you can return to, to help you to develop as a writer.

Livi MichaelDr Livi Michael is the author of 7 novels for adults and 12 for children. She has won or been nominated for several awards, including the Arthur Welton Prize, the Faber Prize, the John Steinbeck Prize, the Nestle Children’s Book Prize, the Blue Peter Awards and the Mind Award. The Whispering Road was Borders Book of the Month throughout the USA in 2005. Her work has also been translated into several languages.  

Livi’s short stories have been published in various places including: Granta, Metropolitan, The Manchester Review, and The City Life Book of Manchester Short Stories (Penguin). She has taught creative writing for over 30 years in Higher Education, colleges, and schools.

Livi joined Zenways in 2015 and has been on several retreats, and completed her Meditation and Mindfulness Teaching Certificate in 2020.

Daizan Skinner is the founder of Zenways and the author of several books related to the practice of Zen. He is also a published poet.


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