*A calendar of upcoming literary and short story conferences, festivals, retreats and other writing-related events.
Literary Agent Madeleine Milburn has a well-established track record of launching new writers internationally in a variety of media. In her talk she will consider the question “Why do I need a literary agent in the digital age?”. Admission: £5, 7:30pm. Free admission for members of Hampshire Writers’ Society and all students. See website above for further details.
Creative Writes: Love Writes - London
Suitable for writers of all abilities, Creative Writes aims to be a supportive, motivational and tailor made writing experience. This workshop will draw on themes of love letters, personal stories and fictional love. Cost: £25 (Advanced booking only)
The Reader National Conference 2013 — London
The Reader Organisation’s fourth annual conference will explore how their pioneering shared reading project, ‘Get Into Reading’, addresses the need for social inclusion, meaningful activity, and better health in communities across the UK. Cost: £130.
18 May — Derby
Crime — Fact or Fiction?
The University of Derby have teamed their Creative Writing Department with their Forensic Science Department to offer a day long course on crime writing. This innovative day will examine real science and provide expert advice on how to write authentic crime fiction. There will be a key-note speech by Steve Dunne, author of three crime fiction novels published by HarperCollins. Special rates available to students. For more information and to reserve your place, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Glasgow Children’s Writers Workshop — Glasgow
Featuring sessions led by Victoria Campbell, Liz Rettig, Lynne Rickards and Wendy Storer, this full-day workshop aims to help you perfect your writing and explore ways to get get your work published. Cost: £50
TheWriteDay — South West England
This day workshop gives you time to focus on your writing in a peaceful and creative space, with the support of other writers. Taking place at Cafe Divas in Frome, Somerset, writers will work from 10.30am — 5.30pm, with breaks to eat, drink and talk about writing. Cost: £30.
21 May — 23 May
Creative Writing Workshop: Space To Write — South East England
With a mixture of workshops and one-to-one support, this residential writing retreat is designed to help you recharge and get the flow going, sending you home with a renewed commitment to your writing. The weekend takes place at the ancient manor of Oxon Hoath, set in the heart of the West Kent Rural Conservation Area, and sitting in 73 acres of gardens and parklands. Cost: £290, including all workshops, a half hour tutorial session, two nights’ accommodation, all meals and refreshments.
23 May — 27 June
Off The Page — London
Working with writer Gemma Seltzer, participants of this course will spend time playing with words in the form of fiction, poetry and memoir, and experimenting with text — writing on postage stamps, writing love letters to strangers and finding new ways of sharing your work. Bring a pen, paper and a burst of energy - and explore the concept of kindness and consideration through a range of creative writing activities. FREE.
Wild Ways To Writing — South West England
Led by writer Helen Moore, this workshop will draw on the work of diverse writers and the world around us to build participant’s writing skills and confidence. The session will feature guided writing exercises and feedback. Lunch will feature shared food — so please bring something to share and come equiped for the outdoors. Cost: £25 — places limited, early booking advised.
27 — 31 May
Participants will be in the company of poet Janice Fuller, who will be available every afternoon to discuss work in progress. Open to writers of all genres, the retreat is designed to give writers peace and quiet to get on with work in progress, in an inspiring and supportive environment. Cost: £395 — all food included.
28 — 30 May
MMU Reading And Writing Crime Fiction — Manchester
Run on an intensive, residential basis at MMU’s Manchester campus over three days, this creative writing course investigates the genre of crime fiction and gives students the opportunity to study, discuss and write crime stories. Particuarly suites to those to like to read widely, wish to expand their knowledge of various crime fiction sub-genres and would like to try writing their own short crime stories. All students will be expected to participate in creative writing exercises led by tutor Gregory Norminton. Cost: £300 or £1,00o for those who wish to complete and submit assessed coursework at the end, with additional one-to-one writing and tutorial support to gain 40 master’s level credits which can be taken into a full-length creative writing masters programme.
Writing On The Move Writing Workshop - London
A site-specific writing workshops for all abilities, featuring a walk and exploration of The Old Vinyl Factory site at Hayes. Participants will use the site as inspiration for writing and will work with their senses to develop atmosphere, character and plot. Cost: £14. Note: Suitable footwear essential - areas of the site have uneven surfaces.
3 June — 15 July
Suitable for writers at all levels of experience, this six session workshop will look at using images, clothing, objects and identity as tools for building a character’s voice. The workshops will also explore ideas of setting, story and personality. Sessions run from 10am-12pm. Cost: £77.
3 June — 15 July
Telling The Truth With Alison Dunne — Leicester
Suitable for all genres and all levels of experience, this six session workshop will seek to explore ways in which accessing your own ‘truth’ can be used as inspiration for all types of writing. Alison will lead you through lots of writing exercises to create work based on your own real, remembered experiences. Sessions run from 7pm-9pm. Cost: £80.
Residential Creative Writing Course — Scotland
Featuring stimulating workshops and lectures, this two-day residential course is suitable for experienced and new writers. The course will explore several aspects of writing, including how to tap into our senses, point of view and creating believable characters. Participants will have the opportunity to walk, talk and enjoy the wonderful landscape of Dumfries and Galloway. Cost: £295 — includes 2 nights 4* B&B, lunches and evening meals.
5 June — 10 July
Writing Your Own Story With Maxine Linnell — Leicester
Suitable for all levels of writing experience, this workshop is aimed at people who like to write about particular life events, memoir, for a blog or for family and friends. A series of writing exercises will help you find ways of getting your story onto the page, whilst addressing the issues of memoir writing and developing personal style. Sessions run from 10am-12pm. Cost: £80.
6 June — 18 July
Aimed at developing a YA project already in development, you will being to receive and give feedback to help advance your writing. This course is informal and friendly and will feature a series of writing exercises to build material and focus on particular writing areas. Sessions run 7pm-9pm. Cost: £80.
The Literary Conference 2013 — London
This two day literary conference is aimed at writers working at all levels, and explores how writers can make the latest tools, platforms and opportunities work for them in the new digital age. The Literary Consultancy have assembled a wide range of industry leading-partners and will feature a keynote oppening address by Audrey Niffenegger, author of ‘The Time Traveler’s Wife’. Cost: £234 (Some early bird tickets available)
8 — 14 June
This week-long residential workshop at the Horta Writing Centre will help you to bring the past to life in your fiction. Looking at the role and power of research, finding a voice within the writing, the relationship between fact and fiction, language and dialogue and structuring a novel. Tuition will take place in workshop groups and one-to-one tuition, and participants will have the chance to share their individual writing problems with the rest of the group and help others with the challenges they face on the page. Cost: EUR 950 for a shared room, EUR 1,150 for a single room. All fees include accommodation, excursions and meals.
14 June — 16 June
Writing The Wild with Dr Geraldine Green — North West
Consisting of gentle writing exercises, prompts and a variety of stimuli, this workshop is designed to encourage you to write and share your writing in a safe environment. Aimed at creating new writing, constructive feedback will be given on participants work. Some of the activities will take place outdoors in the beautiful gardens and grounds of John Ruskin’s home, Brantwood, so waterproof clothing and suitable footwear are essential. Lunch, evening meal and refreshments are provided. Cost: £212.
Flash Fiction Workshop With Emma Lannie — Leicester
A one day workshop that looks at the increasingly popular writing style of flash fiction. Using a number of writing exercises, you will explore the varied approaches to flash fiction, including editing down a longer story, writing in short bursts, and writing to a specific word count. Cost: £15.
Publish Your E-Book In A Day With Pippa Hennessy — Leicester
A one day course designed to introduce you to the process of publishing your writing as an e-book. You’ll learn about different formats, how to format text and how to publish your e-book to the most commonly-used outlets. The course is aimed at anyone interesting in self-publishing their work, and you don’t need to know anything about e-books and HTML to take part. Cost: £77.
15 — 16 June
An enjoyable and highly practical weekend course led by short story writer Vicky Grut (Asham Award finalist) and novelist Kathy Page (‘The Story of My Face’ longlisted for Orange Prize, ‘Alphabet’ shortlisted for Canada’s Governor General’s Prize). Using a mix of exercises, feedback and focused discussion, the course will experiment with characterisation, pace, story, structure and theme. Cost: £150.
How To Write Flash Fiction — North West England
Led by author David Gaffney, this workshop will explore ways of telling stories in less that 1,000 words. Focusing on how to tell a story and reveal character within a restricted word count. Cost: £5
A one-day conference on the short story from two keynote speakers, Paul March-Russell and Jonathan Taylor. This conference seeks to explore the increasing importance of the up-and-coming fictional form ‘how short is short’, and invites papers from academic researchers and creative writers. Find out the topics here. Abstracts of 300 words and a short biographical note (max 100 words) should be emailed to H.Cousins@staff.newman.ac.uk by Monday 20 March, 2013.
21 — 25 June
Featuring 15 workshops, 15 master courses, 55 talks, 17 competitions and 700 one-to-one appointments with literary agents, commissioning editors, novelists, poets and playwrights. Registration essential.
22 June — 10 August
Facets Of Fiction Presents Three ‘Writing Days’ — Cumbria
These three day-courses run by Mike Smith will feature seminars and workshops, with lots of time for actual writing and will be based around different themes: Stories in time and place (22nd June), Fictional characters (27th July) and Storylines (10th August). Each day stands alone, but all three days will offer an insight into the fundamental building blocks of story. A light lunch and refreshments will be provided. Cost: £50 per session — a 10% discount applies to those booking all three workshops. For more information and to book your place please email: email@example.com
Led by Louise Swingler, this one-day creative workshop held in the peaceful Friends Meeting House in Airton, Yorkshire, will explore how you can use simile and metaphor to build a compelling world where your plots and characters can live and breathe. Cost: £40 — including a delicious home-made lunch and snacks.
5 — 12 July
Word Theatre Writers’ Workshop and Retreat — Edale, England
Led by internationally acclaimed writer David Means, the week will see a series of workshop sessions, hosted meals and conversations with an inspiring array of guest speakers. As well as some personal time for reflection and creativity in this stunning setting. For further information, visit the link above, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
With an incredible selection of panels, readings and workshops to choose from, all for one ticket price, there’s bound to be something for any fan, reader or writer of genre fiction! Confirmed guests of honour are Mike Carey, Tricia Sullivan and Stan Nicholls. Cost: £25 (includes access across all events). To book, go here.
Featuring a day-long programme of workshops and seminars led by best-selling crime writers, publishing industry professionals and real-life crime experts. 9am-6pm. Cost: £99
21 July — 9 August
Creative Writing In Cambridge — Cambridge
Taught and led by the National Academy of Writing’s director, Richard Beard and by Fiona Sampson, this course offers a unique opportunity for those with a commitment to developing their writing to meet and work with leading practitioners. The course will explore aspects of effective narrative writing, the generation of ideas and methodologies for editing. It is aimed at those with a good background in creative writing, looking for inspiration regarding the practise and art of writing.
21 — 26 July
Samuel Beckett Working Group — Barcelona
At the Working Group session presenters give short resumes of their work, followed by a lengthy discussion period (each presenter has 45 minutes in all). The Working Group topic will be ‘Samuel Beckett in the Twenty-first Century.’ Visit the website for detailed topic areas. If you are interested, send a title and a short abstract by 31 December 2012 to Julie Campbell: email@example.com. Papers (length 5,000 words) are to be distributed by the end of May 2013.
29 — 30 July
Great Writing: The International Creative Writing Conference — Imperial College London
Launched almost 15 years ago, the Great Writing International Creative Writing Conference is a place to share creative and critical work, to explore Creative Writing, and to discuss those explorations with Creative Writing colleagues from around the world. Home to some truly magnificent presentations, this is a friendly, open conference where the focus is entirely Creative Writing and the many ways we can undertake it and understand it. It is also plays host to the annual New Writing International Creative Writing Lecture. Register your place now.
16 August — 23 August
Editing Your Own Prose With Maxine Linnell - Leicester
A week-long summer school course featuring two hour sessions each day, designed to help you make a draft the best writing it can be. Looking at the essential editing skills needed in a writer’s toolkit. Each participant will need to bring a first draft of their writing (either fiction or memoir), between 3–5,000 words. Writers will be given time each day after the session to work on their draft. Cost: £65 — 10% discount available for those booking before July.
Sense And Place: Creative Writing With Poetry — North West
Led by tutors Dr Geraldine Green and George Wallace, this residential course aims to explore how place influences your poetry. Workshops will comprise of a series of writing prompts and a variety of stimuli enabling you to create new poems in a supportive environment. There will be both group and tutor feedback sessions, as well as one-to-one tutorials. Some sessions will take place outdoors, so appropriate clothing and footwear is essential. Cost: £212. Includes refreshments, lunch on saturday and lunch and dinner on friday and saturday.
13 — 15 September
Festival Of Writing 2013 — York
This three day festival of writing at the York University Campus celebrates the craft of writing and features best-selling authors, book doctors, top agents and publishing legends. Featuring a key-note speech from author Adele Parks, the event is an excellent way to get serious, professional advice on the craft of writing and publishing. Cost: £525 — Full festival ticket. (Other tickets available)
This masterclass is an invaluable opportunity to get expert advice and feedback on 4000 words of your work. Part workshop and part manuscript consultation, this day-long course is designed to help you analyse the qualities and techniques that make a piece of writing particularly strong. Aimed at intermediate and advanced level writers. Cost: £65/£55 concessions.
13 October — 20 October
Collecting The Colours Of Autumn — Lazio, Italy
This week long writing retreat, run by Sheree Mack, will use the breathtaking Italian Autumn to inspire, stretch your imagination and supply a rich vein of new writing. Over the workshop participants will take a writers’ tour of the area and write poems and naratives exploring the colours of the season through a variety of exercises. A free place is available for one lucky applicant. For more information please email firstname.lastname@example.org Cost: 595 Euros.
The Short Story Residential Weekend — Northumbria
Aimed at new writers looking to be published for the first time, this residential weekend features one-on-one sessions designed to give short story writers in-depth appraisals of their work, advice on re-writing and editing, with a view to helping them craft prize-winning short stories. The weekend runs from 6pm on friday to 2.30pm on sunday, cost: £180.00 (Includes meals).
4 — 9 November
Arvon Short Story Course — Devon
Prof Alison MacLeod, author Robert Shearman and guest speaker A. L. Kennedy host a week of story writing for writers with a little short story experience. The course covers the essentials of writing and the dynamics that give the form its power. £680 (grants available for those on low-income).
9th Annual Pint Pot of Fire — Hants
16 — 19 July 2014
13th International Conference on the Short Story in English — Vienna, Austria
A conference bringing writers of fiction in English, and writers who have had their work translated into English, together with scholars of the short story form — with reading sessions, roundtable discussions and panels, and translation workshops.
A month by month listing of literary festivals
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