Walking The Wild Woods

Walking the Wildwoods takes places over 3 years and is made up of 4 week-long residentials. There are also quests to complete, riddles to solve and exercises to be undertaken in between which form an intrinsic part of the training.

Shonaleigh welcomed her first cohort to the wildwoods in 2009 after her son pointed out that “If you fall off a cliff Mum, the whole tradition goes with you!”. Shonaleigh’s aim is to pass on the Drut’syla midrash method and, by sharing it, to keep it a living tradition that will enhance the work of other creatives. This course is suitable for anybody – from librarians to storytellers – who hold narrative at the heart of their practice.

People keep reinventing the wheel, but if we learn from tradition we can use a wheel we know works to reach new places.

This course invites participants to walk with the Druts’yla tradition and discover a new way of thinking about story. We will investigate key points of the midrash and learn how stories are held, unpeeled, understood and internalised on both a practical and holistic level.


Due to the nature of the course, Wildwoods is by invitation and application only. If you haven’t trained with Shonaleigh before, click here to be taken to Word Dancing – the introduction to the midrash technique. To apply or if you would like to discuss your application with Shonaleigh, click here to get in touch.

Walking the Wild Woods – Course overview.

Year 1: Root to Branch
  • Seeing the extraordinary in the ordinary
  • Folk Tale
  • 12 Tasks
  • Midrash 1 & 2
  • August residential


Year 2: Branch to Bud
  • Seeing the ordinary in the extraordinary
  • Wonder Tale
  • 12 Quests
  • Midrash 3 & 4
  • November Residential


Year 3: Bud to Bloom
  • Walking the bridge between
  • Myth or Legend
  • 12 Missions
  • Midrash 5 and re-visiting 1, 2, 3 & 4
  • August Residential


Graduation: Seeds on the Wind
  • Final project piece