About Arvon            5     Courses & Retreats
Welcome                6
                            Starting to Write    30
The Arvon week         8
                            Fiction              38
Short courses         10
                            Poetry               75
Choosing a course 12
                            Non-Fiction          97
Centre facilities     14
                            Writing for
Our centres         18–23   Children/YA         111
Course fees           24    Playwriting/TV/
How to book           26    Film/Radio          119

Grants              26–27   Other               130
                            Retreats            138
More about
Arvon      142–153          Course Index         162   3
Terms and                                       –165
conditions      154–161
                           Step into an Arvon writers’ house and experience
                           the transformative power of community, creative
                                     support and freedom to write.

                          Arvon has been inspiring generations of writers for 50
                          years as the UK’s home of creative writing. We have
                          three centres in the beautiful rural landscapes of Devon,
                          Shropshire and Yorkshire. Our residential courses and
                          retreats, led by highly acclaimed writers, span poetry to
                          playwriting, song to screenplay, fact to fiction, starting to
                          finishing – and we offer grants to help with course fees
                          for those who need it.
4                                                                                         5
                          Each year, over 40 of our courses are with vulnerable
    “It’s been the most   groups and schools, from young people who have
                          experienced bullying to adults recovering from an
    productive writing    addiction. We also work closely with teachers to support
                          their professional development. We rely on donations
     week of my life.“    from charitable trusts and individuals to ensure our
                          doors stay open to all. If you’d like to support Arvon,
         —Iain Rowan
                          please see page 149.

                          We provide a space where anyone, regardless of
                          writing experience, can break away from their normal
                          routine, immerse themselves in the creative process,
                          be inspired by experienced writers and release their
                          imaginative potential.
           Ruth Borthwick, Chief Executive
                and Artistic Director

    Arvon is always thinking of new ways to support writers     We often hear how valuable writers find the one-to-
    developing their craft and we are proud to say that         one tutorials on our courses. So we are excited to be
    this year’s programme is the most varied we have ever       launching Arvon 1-1: online tutorials where you can
    offered.                                                    get personal feedback from an Arvon tutor on your
                                                                writing, delivered via Skype – see p.143
    We have 92 courses and retreats to spark you to write
    and keep you writing. Our backbone of fiction, poetry       And if you’d like more time to focus on your own
    and playwriting is always well represented, and, with       writing, The Clockhouse at The Hurst offers comfortable,
    our fingers on the pulse, we have several new courses       expansive space for up to four writers to work to their
6   this year: Folk Fiction, Hybrid Writing, Creative Writing   own schedule.                                              7
    and Wellbeing, and two courses for those Preparing
    for Publication. Arvon offers much more of course, for      2018 was Arvon’s 50th birthday, and the wonderful
    example, writing for young adults, film, TV comedy and      anthology The Golden Book is full of inspiring stories
    radio, as well as support for beginner writers with our     and poems from Arvon tutors and alumni. See p.11 for
    famous Starting to Write weeks, and Work-in-Progress        details on how you can buy the book – all proceeds go
    courses in many genres for those of you who are further     to support Arvon’s charitable work.
    down the track.
                                                                Whichever variety of Arvon you choose, you will find
    If you can’t wait for spring, we have our Winter Warmers    a warm welcome at the home of creative writing.
    short season in January, February and March with five
    courses to kick-start your new year.

    We are also expanding our Short Course programme,
    with six courses running at Lumb Bank and The Hurst.
    The Short Course offers you the chance to come to
    Arvon for a more concentrated writing experience either
    Monday to Thursday, or Friday to Sunday.
       On 5-day courses, you’ll be with a group of up
     to 15 other writers, working with two tutors, from
    Monday to Saturday. Most Arvon courses follow this
      structure (although retreats are a little different):

    •	Each morning the tutors    •	On Tuesday evening
       lead workshops to help        the tutors read from
       you explore ideas,            their own work.
       forms and techniques.
                                  •	On Wednesday evening
    •	Afternoons are your           the guest speaker joins
       time for writing and          the group.
       one-to-one tutorials to
8                                                               9
       consider your writing in   •	On Friday evening
       depth. You’ll have two        everyone gets together
       tutorials (at least 20        to share and celebrate
       minutes long), one with       their work.
       each tutor.
                                  •	The week comes to
    • 	On Monday you arrive         a close on Saturday
        between 4.30pm and           morning, after
        6pm, settle in, enjoy        breakfast. Have a tissue
        dinner and attend the        handy – you may shed
        tutors’ introduction to      a farewell tear or two!
        the week.
                WRITING COURSES
     We have captured all the essential elements that make the
     Arvon week unique and distilled them into a short course.

     We offer two types of short courses (3-day or 4-day),
     where you will be one of 14 writers, each with a single
     room. There will be two tutors running the course.
     Significant departures from our classic Arvon week
     include no midweek guest and no cooking duties, so you
     can enjoy additional time to write while our centre staff
     cook delicious meals for you each day.

     See courses on pages 49, 66, 69, 92, 93 and 101.
10                                                                          THE GOLDEN BOOK                               11

       4-DAY COURSE                  3-DAY COURSE                In honour of Arvon’s 50th anniversary we are proud to
       Monday – Thursday             Friday – Sunday             release The Golden Book, celebrating 50 years as the
                                                                 UK’s home of creative writing.
       Four-day courses run          The long weekend
       from Monday lunchtime         course begins on Friday
       with departure after          lunchtime with departure    This landmark anthology brings together stories, poems
       breakfast on Thursday.        mid-afternoon on            and memories from just a few of the thousands who have
                                     Sunday.                     come through Arvon’s doors. Contributors include Simon
       The course includes                                       Armitage, Mark Haddon, Tim Firth, Patience Agbabi,
       ten hours of workshop-        The three days includes     Esther Freud and David Almond.
       based group tuition;          eight hours of workshop-
       each student gets two         based tuition; each         We’ll be giving a free copy to course participants who
       one-to-one tutorials and      student gets two one-to-    come to our centres in 2019.
       there is a celebratory        one tutorials and there
       reading night on              is a short reading to end   The Golden Book is available to buy at
       Wednesday.                    the course.        - all proceeds go towards
                                                                 Arvon’s charitable work.
     Our courses are designed with writers of all levels        For the more experienced writer, we recommend:
       of experience in mind. If you’re unsure which
     course is right for you, feel free to call our team on     Work-in-Progress
           020 7324 2554 to discuss possibilities.              For writers who already have significant experience and
                                                                would like to receive project-specific feedback as well as
                                                                the space and time to write. We have Work-in-Progress
     Starting to Write                                          courses in several different genres. Work-in-Progress
     If you have a burning desire to write but feel you have    courses include workshops and one-to-one tutorials.
     little experience – perhaps you are returning to writing
     after a long time away, have writing experience in one     Tutored Retreats
     field but are keen to explore a new genre, or maybe        Like our Work-in-Progress courses above, but without
     you are a complete beginner – then a Starting to Write     morning workshops. Instead you will have more time for
     course would be ideal. The Starting to Write courses are   one-to-one tutorials. We have Tutored Retreats in several
     designed to build your confidence within a supportive      different genres.
12                                                                                                                              13
     environment, providing you with the tools to inspire and
     develop your writing. We offer Starting to Write courses   Centre Retreats
     in specific genres, and more general Starting to Write     The time and space to write with a group of up to 15
     courses that include fiction and poetry writing.           other writers, sharing one of our three historic houses –
                                                                The Hurst, Lumb Bank or Totleigh Barton. No workshops,
     Open Courses                                               no tutorials. We also offer retreats with activities,
     We have a wide range of courses in specific genres such    including yoga.
     as Fiction, Playwriting, and Short Story. Writers of all
     levels of experience are welcome on these courses. The     Writers Retreat at The Clockhouse
     weeks will all have a focus on generating new writing      Choose between four or six days in your own apartment
     rather than getting feedback on work-in-progress. Open     at The Clockhouse, tucked away in the peaceful grounds
     courses include workshops and one-to-one tutorials.        of our Shropshire centre. Write, plan, walk, think, dream,
                                                                edit, in solitude, away from it all with no distractions. The
                                                                Clockhouse has four apartments in total. Writers Retreats
                                                                are untutored. See p.144 for more information.

     An Arvon centre is your home for the week. The
     accommodation is welcoming and comfortable.
     The centre staff will be your hosts, ensuring a relaxed,
     friendly and informal atmosphere. Each centre has
     a living room, a well-stocked library and other quiet
     spaces, as well as an inspirational landscape to explore
     beyond the house. See pages 18–23 for details of
     bedrooms and bathrooms at each centre.

     You do not need a computer on our courses, but you
     are welcome to bring your own laptop. We have a few
     computers and a printer at each centre, which you
14   can use for writing and printing out your own work         15
     (a donation for printing is requested).

     Due to the rural location of our centres, mobile phone
     signal can be poor (pay phones are available at Totleigh
     Barton and The Hurst). We do not provide an internet
     connection or Wi-Fi – so you can immerse yourself in
     your writing without distraction.
Accessibility                                               Food
     Arvon welcomes writers with disabilities. If you have       Throughout the week, all your food and drink is
     any specific access requirements, please discuss them       provided, except for alcohol, which can be purchased
     with us prior to booking and we will do our utmost          from a local wine merchant on arrival and delivered
     to accommodate your needs. Communal spaces,                 early in the week. We’re firmly committed to buying
     including workshop spaces, are accessible to people         seasonal and local produce.
     with mobility issues. Each centre can accommodate a
     personal assistant or carer if required, and if there are   You’ll help yourself to breakfast and a tasty lunch is
     suitable rooms available. Accessibility to bedrooms and     provided for you every day by centre staff. Each evening,
     bathrooms varies depending on the centre. The Hurst         a different team of writers takes a turn cooking dinner.
     is the most accessible of our centres, with a lift to all   The recipes and ingredients are provided and there’s
     floors and 16 en-suite rooms – see pages 18–19. All of      lots of help at hand. Cooking teams also take turns to
     our centres have a portable loop system available on        do the washing-up.
                                                                 On short courses and Clockhouse retreats, all food is
                                                                 provided for you, including dinner.
16                                                                                                                           17
                                                                 If you have dietary needs, for ethical, religious or
                                                                 medical reasons, we’re happy to cater for you – when
                                                                 you book, it’s important that you let us know.

                                                                 All of our centres can be reached by train. On booking
                                                                 your course you will be sent a full booking confirmation
                                                                 by email. Check our website for detailed information on
                                                                 how to reach our centres.
         The John Osborne Arvon Centre, Shropshire

     The Hurst is the ideal place to find your voice. Formerly
     the home of the playwright John Osborne, the recently
     renovated 19th-century manor house is set in the
     Shropshire Hills, a designated Area of Outstanding
     Natural Beauty. Explore the 26 acres of inspiring
     woodland, unwind by the spring-fed lake, or simply sit
     and enjoy the view while you write.

     The centre is fully accessible, with a lift to all floors and
     16 single, en-suite bedrooms.

18   Situated in the grounds of The Hurst is Arvon’s dedicated                                                              19
     Writers Retreat at The Clockhouse. It consists of four          “There is something about the natural beauty at The
     apartments, each with a bedroom, study and en-suite             Hurst which supports the endeavour of writing, which
     bathroom, and all food provided, for six-day and four-              makes wanderings and musings inevitable.”
     day writing retreats. For more details please see pages
     144–145.                                                                         —Grant recipient

     The Hurst, Clunton, Craven Arms, Shropshire SY7 0JA

     Telephone: 01588 640 658
     Twitter: @hurstonthescene
        The Ted Hughes Arvon Centre, West Yorkshire

     Lumb Bank is an 18th-century millowner’s house set in
     20 acres of steep woodland.

     The house once belonged to Ted Hughes and has
     a breathtaking view to the valley below – a Pennine
     landscape of woods and rivers, weavers’ cottages,
     packhorse trails and ruins of old mills. It is half a mile
     from the historic village of Heptonstall and two miles
     from Hebden Bridge.

     There are 14 single rooms and one shared room. One
20   bedroom has a specially adapted bathroom for people                                                                 21
     with mobility issues and can also accommodate a               “I think I speak for all my young writer companions
     personal carer.                                              when I say that you do not leave Lumb Bank the same
                                                                                person as when you arrived.”
     Lumb Bank, Heptonstall, Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire
                                                                                    —Louisa Rhodes
     HX7 6DF

     Telephone: 01422 843 714
     Twitter: @Lumb_Bank
                 The first Arvon Centre, Devon

     Totleigh Barton is a 16th-century thatched manor house
     in one of the most peaceful and idyllic parts of Devon,
     two miles from the village of Sheepwash. People have
     lived at Totleigh for nearly a thousand years.

     There is a beautiful garden and orchard, with access to
     walks along the River Torridge nearby. The renovated
     barn offers a comfortable space for evening readings.

     Totleigh Barton has 12 single and two shared rooms.
     There is a wheelchair-accessible bedroom with en-suite
22   bathroom.                                                                                                        23
                                                               “To step over the threshold into Totleigh Barton has
     Totleigh Barton, Sheepwash, Beaworthy, Devon                 always been to step into a world of writing.”
     EX21 5NS
                                                                                —Penelope Shuttle
     Telephone: 01409 231 338
     Twitter: @TotleighBarton
2019 FEES

     5-day courses single room                                   Writers Retreat at The Clockhouse

     – The Hurst (en-suite room)                         £835    6-day retreats (Tues – Mon)
     – Totleigh Barton and Lumb Bank                     £795
                                                                 – 1st floor apartment                             £750*
     5-day courses shared room                            £745   – 2nd floor apartment                             £710*
     (only available at Lumb Bank and Totleigh Barton)
                                                                 4-day retreats (Thurs – Mon)
     5-day Tutored Retreat single room
                                                                 – 1st floor apartment                             £500*
     – The Hurst (en-suite room)                         £835    – 2nd floor apartment                             £470*
     – Totleigh Barton and Lumb Bank                     £795
24                                                                                                                         25
     5-day Retreat (untutored)                                   *Price includes VAT @ 20%

     – The Hurst (en-suite room)                         £684*
     – Lumb Bank                                         £648*   Course and retreats fees cover

     5-day Retreat with activity                                 – full-board accommodation (not including alcohol)
     (single room only)                                          – all tuition (where applicable)
                                                                 – a writing desk
     – The Hurst (en-suite room)                         £725
     – Totleigh Barton and Lumb Bank                     £690    You can apply for a grant towards a course if you
                                                                 cannot afford the full fee (please see pages 26–27).
     4-day courses Monday – Thursday
     The Hurst (en-suite room)                           £560
     Lumb Bank                                           £545
     3-day courses Friday – Sunday
     The Hurst (en-suite room)                           £530
     Lumb Bank                                           £515
HOW TO BOOK A                                           GRANTS FOR WRITERS
                  COURSE/RETREAT                                 1. Download a grant pack from our website, or ask us
                                                                 to send it to you. It contains full details of the application
      Bookings can be made online at
                                                                 procedure and an application form.
     You can also book by credit or debit card by calling
                                                                 2. Reserve a place on your chosen course, either online
     the centre where your chosen course/retreat is held.
                                                                 or by phoning the centre hosting your course, and make
     To secure your place, you will need to pay a deposit of
                                                                 sure you indicate that you wish to apply for a grant. You
     £200 at the time of booking (unless you’re applying
                                                                 do not need to pay a deposit at this stage.
     for a grant). You are welcome to pay in instalments via
     our online booking system. The full balance of your fee
                                                                 3. Complete the application form and send it along with
     is payable no later than six weeks before the course or
                                                                 your supporting documents to your chosen centre within
     retreat starts.
                                                                 a week.

26                                                               4. Within seven days we will assess your application,            27
       HOW TO APPLY FOR A GRANT                                  contact you with a decision, and finalise your booking.
                                                                 If you have any questions, please contact the
     If you are a UK resident and cannot afford the full         appropriate centre.
     course fee, we encourage you to apply for one of our
     grants, which are awarded on the basis of financial         See page 29 for how to support the Grant Fund.
     need and not writing ability.

     Last year we were able to provide a grant to over 120               GRANTS FOR TEACHERS
     writers. Priority is given to those coming to Arvon for
     the first time. You may apply for any amount up to the      Arvon supports the professional development of
     full course fee. The average grant we awarded in 2018       practising teachers, who may apply for a special fixed
     was £420. We offer higher amounts only in exceptional       grant of £200 towards a course fee. You will need to
     cases. To help us support as many people as possible,       send evidence that you are a practising teacher at a
     please apply only if you’d be unable to attend the course   UK primary or secondary school, or further education
     without a grant, and ask for the minimum amount you         college. Teachers’ grants are limited in number and can
     need. You are encouraged to apply by January 2019, as       be applied for in addition to the usual grant if further
     the Grant Fund is limited. Grants are only available for    financial assistance is needed.
     those booking a course, not a retreat.
GIFT VOUCHERS                                            #OPENTOALL
        Do you have a friend with a flair for fiction? Or      A donation to Arvon’s Grant Fund gives the
     a relative who is harbouring a desire to pen poetry?     opportunity for those on low incomes to attend
      An Arvon Gift Voucher is an inspirational present.                     Arvon’s courses.
     Arvon Gift Vouchers can be made up to any amount
      – perfect for a friendly nudge or a grand gesture.     Arvon has played a formative role in the careers and
                                                              identities of thousands of writers for over 50 years.
     To find out more, visit       Currently we can only support the equivalent of one
     or call 020 7324 2554.                                    person on a low income to attend each of Arvon’s
                                                            courses. You can help us double our support by making
                                                                       a donation to Arvon’s Grant Fund.

                                 G IF T N                                                                                29
                                       HE R

                                                             “I’ve been a student on two Arvon courses and I’ve
                                                             taught nine. I know how life-changing they can be
                                                            for aspiring writers. It is absolutely vital that they are
                                                             equally accessible to everyone who might benefit.”
                                                             —Mark Haddon, Arvon tutor, author of The Curious
                                                                     Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

                                                                   Mark has made a donation to help keep
                                                                 Arvon open to everyone. Join him by visiting
                                                            or contact
                                                       , 020 7324 8906.
                WINTER WARMER:             STARTING TO
                STARTING TO                WRITE
                WRITE                      9–14 September
                14–19 January

                                           Lumb Bank, Yorkshire
                Totleigh Barton, Devon     Tutors: Mark Illis &
                Tutors: Tiffany Murray &   Gillian Allnutt p.36
                Luke Wright p.32
                                           STARTING TO
                STARTING TO                WRITE
                WRITE                      21–26 October
                20–25 May                  The Hurst, Shropshire
                Totleigh Barton, Devon     Tutors: Kerry Hudson &
                Tutors: Ross Sutherland    JJ Bola p.37
                & Laura Barnett p.33

30              STARTING TO                                         31
                WRITE                      STARTING TO
                8–13 July                  WRITE FICTION p.47
                Lumb Bank, Yorkshire       STARTING TO
                Tutors: Hollie McNish &    WRITE FICTION p.54
                Malachy Tallack p.34
                                           STARTING TO
                STARTING TO                WRITE A NOVEL p.64
                19–24 August               Short Course
                The Hurst, Shropshire      STARTING TO
                Tutors: Graham Mort &      WRITE FICTION p.69
                Jo Furniss p.35            STARTING TO
                                           WRITE NON-
                                           FICTION p.110
14–19 January, Totleigh Barton                                  Totleigh Barton, 20–25 May

                WINTER WARMER:                                               STARTING TO WRITE
               STARTING TO WRITE                                                Capturing ideas
            Finding the key to your writing                        A fun, creative and supportive course for those who
                                                                   are just starting out on their journey as authors and
     You have ideas. You may even have some words on a             poets, taught by two writers who are a little further
     page. But where do you go from here? We will discover         along the road. We’ll use short, inspiring exercises
     new ways to sift and structure your thoughts and              aimed at generating and capturing ideas, and then
     material. We will spark your imagination and allow you        find the building blocks to explore them on the page.
     to experiment with form and storytelling. This week will      Expect to open up new channels of creativity within
     be supportive, productive, creative and fun. You will be      yourself, and to leave refreshed and ready to tackle
     given the space to fall in love with writing, and the tools   your next writing project.
     to carry on.

                  Tiffany Murray is a Hay Festival Fiction         Ross Sutherland was shortlisted for the
32                Fellow and Director of Hay’s Writers at Work.    Art Foundation Award for Poetry. He has                 33
                  Her novels Diamond Star Halo and Happy           four poetry collections and is a regular
                  Accidents were shortlisted for the Bollinger     contributor to BBC Radio 4. His podcast
                  Everyman Wodehouse Prize. Her most recent        Imaginary Advice won Gold at the 2018
                  is Sugar Hall.                                   British Podcast Awards.

                  Luke Wright is the author of two books of        Laura Barnett’s first novel, The Versions
                  poems, two verse plays and ten poetry stage      of Us, was a number one bestseller; her
                  shows. He has toured his work all over the       second, Greatest Hits, was published in
                  world and his work is regularly broadcast on     2017 with an accompanying soundtrack
                  the radio.                                       album by the musician Kathryn Williams.

                  Guest Guy Gunaratne is a writer,                 Guest Eley Williams’s collection of prose,
                  filmmaker and video journalist. In Our Mad       Attrib. and other stories, was awarded the
                  and Furious City is his first novel. It was      Republic of Consciousness Prize 2018 and
                  longlisted for the Man Booker Prize and          shortlisted for the James Tait Black Prize
                  shortlisted for the Gordon Burn Prize and the    2018.
                  Goldsmiths Prize.
8–13 July, Lumb Bank                                         The Hurst, 19–24 August

             STARTING TO WRITE                                                STARTING TO WRITE
     Telling your stories in poetry and prose                                 Becoming you, the writer
     Writing can be daunting. It can also be one of the most       How do you face the blank page? In our supportive
     enjoyable ways to spend your time. Join these two young       community, we’ll transform any trepidation into
     authors, whose works and loves span poetry, prose, fiction,   exploration and exhilaration. This course suits writers
     fact and live touring, to explore new – and sometimes         who are beginning to work in fiction or poetry but are
     challenging – ways for your thoughts to spill on to the       searching for voice, style and confidence. We’ll consider
     page. There will be tips to get you started, advice on how    the fundamentals of writing: how to engage the reader
     to shape and edit your work, as well as the opportunity       in rhythms, actions, sounds and silences; how to realise
     to share in this welcoming setting. We’ll help you build      language as experience. We’ll look at deepening themes
     confidence and enthusiasm for your writing and guide you      and characters to create work that resonates. Your writing
     towards finding your own voice, style and stories.            will be enriched by an understanding of how stories
                                                                   connect us through webs of meaning. The blank page has
                                                                   never looked so enticing!
34               Hollie McNish is author of three poetry                                                                        35
                 collections, one short play on UK women’s
                 football and one poetic memoir, Nobody            Graham Mort is Professor of Creative
                 Told Me, for which she won the Ted Hughes         Writing at Lancaster University. His latest
                 Award.                                            books are short story collection Terroir and
                                                                   poetry collection Black Shiver Moss.
                 Malachy Tallack is the award-winning
                 author of two works of non-fiction – Sixty        Jo Furniss is the bestselling author of
                 Degrees North and The Un-Discovered               domestic thrillers All the Little Children and
                 Islands – and a novel, The Valley at the          The Trailing Spouse. A former BBC journalist,
                 Centre of the World.                              she has written, studied and taught on three
                 Guest Michael Pedersen is a Robert
                 Louis Stevenson Fellowship winner, a              Guest Nick Makoha was shortlisted for
                 Canongate Future 40, a John Mather’s              the 2017 Felix Dennis Prize for Best First
                 Trust Rising Star of Literature and is            Collection for his debut Kingdom of Gravity.
                 co-founder of Neu! Reekie!
xxxxxx     9–14 September, Lumb Bank                                        The Hurst, 21–26 October           xxxxxx

                STARTING TO WRITE                                           STARTING TO WRITE
                   Ways into writing                                    Turning inspiration and ideas into
     During this enjoyable and supportive course we’ll use
                                                                               stories and poems
     a variety of inspiring exercises to develop your skills in
                                                                    How do you take the seed of an idea and make it a story
     creating both fiction and poetry. If you have trouble
                                                                    or poem that will capture the imagination? If you are
     starting or you have trouble finishing, we’re here to help.
                                                                    new to fiction and poetry and wish to take your first steps
     You’ll develop characters, explore a sense of place and
                                                                    into writing, come and be nurtured by two experienced
     learn about structure and form. You’ll discover how to
                                                                    tutors. This inspiring and lively course will give you the
     let your words find shape in sound and on the page.
                                                                    ideas and building blocks you need to start exploring
     Throughout the week we’ll listen – to each other, to
                                                                    creative writing. Exploring both fiction and poetry, varied,
     ourselves and to the voices of stories and poems within.
                                                                    stimulating exercises and conversations will set you on
                                                                    the road to your own unique writing journey.
                 Mark Illis has written five novels for adults
36               and two for teenagers – most recently The          Kerry Hudson was born in Aberdeen and is                       37
                 Impossible and The Impossible: On the              an award-winning novelist. She is currently
                 Run. He has also written a prize-winning           writing Lowborn, her first work of non-fiction,
                 screenplay, radio drama and for TV.                and a companion column on poverty in the
                                                                    UK for The Pool.
                 Gillian Allnutt’s ninth poetry collection,
                 wake, was published in 2018. She was               JJ Bola is a writer, poet and educator, with
                 awarded the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry          an MA in Creative Writing. He is the author
                 2016.                                              of three poetry collections and a debut
                                                                    novel, No Place to Call Home.
                 Guest Adelle Stripe’s debut novel, Black
                 Teeth and a Brilliant Smile, was shortlisted for   Guest Ali Land’s debut novel Good Me,
                 the Gordon Burn Prize. She teaches Creative        Bad Me is an international and Sunday
                 Writing at York St John University.                Times bestseller and has been translated
                                                                    into 24 languages.
               WINTER WARMER             STARTING TO
               FICTION: TUTORED          WRITE FICTION
               RETREAT                   29 April–4 May
               4–9 February              Totleigh Barton, Devon
               Lumb Bank, Yorkshire      Tutors: Mark Haddon &
               Tutors: Stephen May &     Molly McGrann p.47
               Jane Harris p.43
               WINTER WARMER:            6–11 May
               FICTION                   The Hurst, Shropshire
               11–16 March               Tutors: Andrew Taylor &
               The Hurst, Shropshire     Claire Fuller p.48
               Tutors: Kirsty Gunn &
               Meaghan Delahunt p.44     SHORT COURSE:
                                         SHORT STORY
38             FICTION                   Monday 6–Thursday         39
               15–20 April               9 May
               Lumb Bank, Yorkshire      Lumb Bank, Yorkshire
               Tutors: Samantha          Tutors: Vanessa Gebbie
               Harvey & Jason Hewitt     & Tom Vowler p.49
                                         EDITING FICTION
               FICTION                   27 May–1 June
               22–27 April               Totleigh Barton, Devon
               The Hurst, Shropshire     Tutors: Ellah Wakatama
               Tutors: Jenn Ashworth &   Allfrey & Tom Bullough
               Adam Foulds p.46          p.50
WRITING A NOVEL            FICTION                     FICTION: WORK-IN-          SHORT STORY:
     3–8 June                   29 July–3 August            PROGRESS                   TUTORED RETREAT
     The Hurst, Shropshire      Lumb Bank, Yorkshire        2–7 September              7–12 October
     Tutors: Maggie Gee &       Tutors: Diane Setterfield   The Hurst, Shropshire      The Hurst, Shropshire
     Patrick McGuinness p.51    & Russ Litten p.55          Tutors: Nicholas Royle &   Tutors: Courttia
                                                            Liz Jensen p.59            Newland & Joanna
     FICTION: WORK-IN-          WRITING A NOVEL:                                       Walsh p.63
     PROGRESS                   TUTORED RETREAT             CRIME FICTION
     17–22 June                 5–10 August                 9–14 September             STARTING TO
     Totleigh Barton, Devon     The Hurst, Shropshire       The Hurst, Shropshire      WRITE A NOVEL
     Tutors: Jacob Ross &       Tutors: Toby Litt &         Tutors: Dreda Say          7–12 October
     Clare Fisher p.52          Rachel Seiffert p.56        Mitchell & Adam Hamdy      Totleigh Barton, Devon
                                                            p.60                       Tutors: Chibundu Onuzo
     FICTION: TUTORED           FOLK FICTION                                           & Rob Doyle p.64
     RETREAT                    12–17 August                FICTION
     24–29 June                 Totleigh Barton, Devon      16–21 September            FICTION: WORK-IN-         41
     The Hurst, Shropshire      Tutors: Adam Marek &        Lumb Bank, Yorkshire       PROGRESS
     Tutors: Lisa Blower &      Zoe Gilbert p.57            Tutors: Christopher        14–19 October
     Leone Ross p.53                                        Wakling & Cathi            Lumb Bank, Yorkshire
                                FICTION: TUTORED            Unsworth p.61              Tutors: Amanda Smyth
     STARTING TO                RETREAT                                                & Chris Cleave p.65
     WRITE FICTION              19–24 August                FICTION: WORK-IN-
     8–13 July                  Lumb Bank, Yorkshire        PROGRESS                   SHORT COURSE:
     The Hurst, Shropshire      Tutors: Diana               23–28 September            FICTION
     Tutors: Jo Mazelis & Wyl   Evans & Rajeev              Totleigh Barton, Devon     Friday 18–Sunday 20
     Menmuir p.54               Balasubramanyam p.58        Tutors: Kamila Shamsie     October
                                                            & Gillian Slovo p.62       The Hurst, Shropshire
                                                                                       Tutors: Isabelle Grey &
                                                                                       Abir Mukherjee p.66
Lumb Bank, 4–9 February

     28 October–2
                               SHORT STORY
                               25–30 November
                                                            WINTER WARMER FICTION:
     November                  Totleigh Barton, Devon           TUTORED RETREAT
     Totleigh Barton, Devon    Tutors: Cynan Jones &        New horizons, fresh perspectives
     Tutors: Catriona Ward &   Carys Davies p.71
     Natasha Pulley p.67                                You don’t need another workshop. What you need are
                               WRITING A NOVEL          fresh insights, together with the space and time to work
     EDITING FICTION           2–7 December             on your manuscript. Through supportive tutorials, we’ll
     4–9 November              The Hurst, Shropshire    help to give you the necessary propulsion to reinvigorate
     The Hurst, Shropshire     Tutors: Mike Gayle &     your work. We’ll look hard at your narrative voice, your
     Tutors: Rachael Kerr &    Freya North p.72         characters and your structure, in order to give you a clear
     Emma Jane Unsworth                                 road map for the way ahead. You’re invited to submit up
     p.68                      EDITING FICTION          to 2,000 words of a work-in-progress plus a 300-word
                               9–14 December            synopsis, to by 7 January 2019.
     SHORT COURSE:             Lumb Bank, Yorkshire
     STARTING TO               Tutors: Alexa von
42                                                      Stephen May has published four novels,                        43
     WRITE FICTION             Hirschberg & Jake        including Life! Death! Prizes!, which was
     Monday 11–Thursday        Arnott p.73              shortlisted for the Costa Book Award (Novel).
     14 November                                        His latest book is acclaimed literary thriller
     Lumb Bank, Yorkshire      FICTION: TUTORED         Stronger Than Skin.
     Tutors: Nikesh Shukla &   RETREAT
     Emylia Hall p.69          9–14 December            Jane Harris’s novels are published in 20
                               Totleigh Barton, Devon   languages and have been nominated for
     FICTION: WORK-IN-         Tutors: Alison MacLeod   prizes including the National Book Awards
     PROGRESS                  & Tim Pears p.74         and the Orange Prize. She has taught fiction
     18–23 November                                     writing for Guardian Masterclasses and
     Lumb Bank, Yorkshire                               University of East Anglia.
     Tutors: James
     Scudamore & Beth          WRITING FOR              Guest Linda Green is the author of nine
     Miller p.70               CHILDREN AND             novels, which have sold more than a million
                               YOUNG ADULTS p.111       copies in the UK and been translated into
                                                        a dozen languages.
11–16 March, The Hurst                                        Lumb Bank, 15–20 April

         WINTER WARMER: FICTION                                                   FICTION
          Re-energising your creativity                                Unlearning rules, building instinct
     Do you want to create novels and short stories that are       We write from unseen places within ourselves. Rules can
     distinctive and fresh? Do you want to make your prose         help as waymarkers, but unhelpful rules often get in the
     interesting to read and stimulating to write? Then this is    way of that inner propulsion: our instinct. What is it that
     the week for you. We will show you how to think about         makes you want to write? What is it, really, that you want
     fashioning your short stories and novels to make them         to say? Which conventions might help, and which might
     individual and particular and we will guide and inspire       hinder? We’ll spend this week engaging in free and bold
     you to discover your writer’s voice. As the days become       writing practice. This is an intermediate course, for those
     longer and winter recedes, join us for a warm, playful        who’ve started writing a work of fiction. We want to help
     and stimulating week.                                         you connect with the initial urge that set the process
                                                                   going and explore approaches that allow that urge to
                                                                   take its best form.
                  Kirsty Gunn has written five works of
44                fiction. Translated in over 12 territories and                                                                 45
                  widely anthologised, her award-winning           Samantha Harvey is the author of four
                  books have been broadcast, turned into film      novels, most recently The Western Wind,
                  and dance theatre. A regular contributor         which was published in 2018. She is a
                  to newspapers and magazines, she is also         Reader in English and Creative Writing at
                  Professor of Writing Practice and Study at the   Bath Spa University.
                  University of Dundee.
                                                                   Jason Hewitt’s debut novel The Dynamite
                  Meaghan Delahunt is a novelist and short         Room was longlisted for the Desmond Elliott
                  story writer. Awards for her work include a      Prize for New Writing, while Devastation
                  Commonwealth Prize and a nomination for          Road was longlisted for the Walter Scott Prize
                  the Orange Prize. Her most recent book is        for Historical Fiction. He is also a playwright.
                  Greta Garbo’s Feet & Other Stories.
                                                                   Guest Darcy Nicholson is Commissioning
                  Guest Tony White’s latest novel is The           Editor at Transworld (Penguin Random
                  Fountain in the Forest. Formerly Writer-in-      House). She works across fiction and non-
                  Residence at London’s Science Museum, his        fiction, and her authors include Rebecca
                  previous novels include Foxy-T.                  Reid, Katie Khan, Jessica Pan, AA Dhand
                                                                   and Lauren Bravo.
22–27 April, The Hurst                                     Totleigh Barton, 29 April–4 May

                      FICTION                                          STARTING TO WRITE FICTION
           Technique and tenacity: a good                                 Finding fresh connections
               first draft and beyond                                This course, aimed at beginners, will be tailored to your
                                                                     unique and varied needs as a new writer. Workshops will
     A structured, focused course that will propel you onwards
                                                                     inspire fresh writing; the natural environment will offer
     with your writing project. We will help turn several sparks
                                                                     relaxation and new perspectives. You will come to know
     into a substantial fire by delving deeply into character
                                                                     not only the value of your own skills but the importance
     creation, plotting, point of view, editing and improving.
                                                                     of living, working and eating together as a community
     With plenty of time to write, you will leave surprised at the
                                                                     of writers, finding confidence and sustenance in these
     progress you have made.
                  Jenn Ashworth’s first novel, A Kind of
                  Intimacy, was published in 2009 and won a          Mark Haddon is the author of three novels
                  Betty Trask Award. On the publication of her       and one short story collection. He has also
46                second, Cold Light, she was featured on the        written for the stage, television and radio.                47
                  BBC’s The Culture Show as one of the UK’s          His latest novel, The Porpoise, is a response
                  12 best new writers. Her latest novel is Fell.     to Shakespeare’s Pericles.

                  Adam Foulds is an award-winning poet and           Molly McGrann is a literary critic, poet
                  novelist. His latest novel, Dream Sequence, is     and novelist. A former contributing editor at
                  published in 2019.                                 The Paris Review, she is the author of three
                                                                     novels, 360 Flip, Exurbia and The Ladies of
                  Guest Tor Udall began her career in                the House.
                  theatre and dance. Her critically acclaimed
                  debut A Thousand Paper Birds was                   Guest Sophie Mackintosh won the 2016
                  longlisted for The Authors’ Club Best First        White Review Short Story Prize and her
                  Novel Award.                                       fiction has been published in Granta and
                                                                     The Stinging Fly, among others. Her debut
                                                                     novel, The Water Cure, was longlisted for the
                                                                     Man Booker Prize 2018.
6–11 May, The Hurst                               Lumb Bank, Monday 6–Thursday 9 May

                    FICTION                                       SHORT COURSE: SHORT STORY
       Finding your way through the woods                         Unlocking the mysteries of this dazzling form
     Writing fiction is always a journey of exploration. This    A good short story is gloriously deceptive. Within its
     week is designed to give you the essential tools and        limited word count is a complete world inhabited by living,
     techniques to help you on your way. We will discuss the     breathing characters whose lives open up to us for a
     main elements of fiction in a series of workshops, from     pivotal moment. Building stories is a challenging process
     character and theme to setting and narrative; examine       – we will work together to unravel some of the mysteries
     the variety of fiction sub-genres and their commercial      of this most fantastic form, supporting you as you create
     considerations; and you will receive one-to-one guidance    your own unforgettable characters, vibrant settings and
     from each of the tutors.                                    wonderful stories. This packed few days at beautiful Lumb
                                                                 Bank will enrich and sharpen your writing skills. Designed
                                                                 for beginners to intermediates, more experienced writers
                 Andrew Taylor is an award-winning crime         will also benefit and be most welcome.
                 and historical novelist. His 40-plus books
48               include the number one bestsellers The                                                                        49
                 American Boy and The Ashes of London. His       Vanessa Gebbie has won awards
                 ‘Roth Trilogy’ was adapted for television.      for fiction, non-fiction and poetry and
                                                                 teaches widely. Author of seven story and
                 Claire Fuller’s first novel won the Desmond     poetry collections and a novel, she is also
                 Elliott Prize, and her second was shortlisted   contributing editor of Short Circuit: Guide to
                 for the Encore Award. Her third is Bitter       the Art of the Short Story.
                 Orange. Her stories have been shortlisted in
                 and won several major competitions.             Tom Vowler is an award-winning novelist
                                                                 and short story writer. His debut collection,
                 Guest David Hayden’s debut collection of        The Method, won the Scott Prize. He’s a
                 short stories Darker With the Lights On has     commissioning editor with Unthank Books, and
                 been published on both sides of the Atlantic.   his latest story collection is Dazzling the Gods.
27 May–1 June, Totleigh Barton                                       The Hurst, 3–8 June

                   EDITING FICTION                                             WRITING A NOVEL
                   Now to make it sing                                        The art of crafting a world
     You have spent months, maybe years, working on a               A novel is a world in itself, a place on the page where
     novel or a collection of stories. How do you make that         the reader goes to be amazed, enlightened, excited
     final leap and bring it to a publishable level? This course,   or moved. But to make this world work, the writer
     led by an editor and a novelist, will look at character,       must learn to manage the nuts and bolts of structure,
     plotting, setting, tightening scenes and sharpening            character, story, setting and plot. Does your novel have a
     images. It will show you how to step back from your work       voice? Does it hold together? Do the plotlines, the people
     and allow you to see it afresh. It will also give you solid,   and the places fit? This week we will address the basics
     professional advice about the next stage: submission to        that remain the writer’s hardest challenges: how to begin
     an agent or publisher.                                         and how to maintain momentum. Whatever kind of novel
                                                                    you are writing, we will try to help you make it better.
                  Ellah Wakatama Allfrey is Publishing
                  Director of The Indigo Press. She has judged      Maggie Gee’s last novel was Virginia Woolf
50                                                                                                                               51
                  the Dublin International Literary Award and       in Manhattan. Her 15 books include The
                  Man Booker Prize, and has been Deputy             White Family, the memoir My Animal Life,
                  Editor of Granta magazine and Senior Editor       and Blood, a black comedy, forthcoming in
                  at Jonathan Cape.                                 2019. She is Professor of Creative Writing at
                                                                    Bath Spa University.
                  Tom Bullough is the author of four novels,
                  most recently Addlands. He is the Royal           Patrick McGuinness’s memoir, Other
                  Literary Fund Fellow at Swansea University        People’s Countries, won the Duff Cooper
                  and a Visiting Fellow at the University of        Prize, and his first novel, The Last Hundred
                  South Wales.                                      Days, won the Writers’ Guild Prize for
                                                                    Fiction. Throw Me to the Wolves will be
                  Guest Jenny Hewson is a literary agent            published in 2019.
                  at Rogers, Coleridge and White. Authors
                  she represents include Sarah Perry, Melissa       Guest Louise Doughty is the author
                  Harrison, Thomas Keneally, Christos Tsiolkas      of nine novels, including the bestselling
                  and Amy Sackville.                                Apple Tree Yard.
17–22 June, Totleigh Barton                                       The Hurst, 24–29 June

      FICTION: WORK-IN-PROGRESS                                        FICTION: TUTORED RETREAT
         Developing your narrative craft                               The end is nigh: plotting your finish
     How do you write, develop and revise compelling works          Often writers get stuck because they don’t consider their
     of fiction? How do successful writers exploit narrative        work in the context of its ending. Where are you headed
     structure, setting and character to create work that           and how will you know when it’s done? You’ve heard
     shines? This course is for those who have already              of a ‘killer first line’ – we’ll consider that killer last page,
     started a work of fiction, be it long or short. Participants   how to bring your plot together and what it takes to
     are invited to submit up to 1,500 words of a work-in-          return to page one and edit language. This tutored
     progress, to be sent to by            retreat is for beginner and intermediate writers with
     17 May 2019.                                                   a manuscript. Participants are invited to submit up
                                                                    to 2,000 words plus a 500-word synopsis specifying
                  Jacob Ross is Associate Fiction Editor at         form, genre and a summary of the work-in-progress, to
                  Peepal Tree Press, author of several story by 24 May 2019.
                  collections and editor of five short story
52                                                                                                                                     53
                  anthologies. His latest novel, The Bone           Lisa Blower is an award-winning short
                  Readers, won the inaugural Jhalak Prize           story writer, novelist and lecturer. Taking
                  and was shortlisted for the Association of        inspiration from Alan Bennett’s work, her
                  Caribbean Writers Award.                          books Sitting Ducks and It’s Gone Dark
                                                                    Over Bill’s Mother’s are Potteries-based
                  Clare Fisher is the author of the novel All       political fiction.
                  the Good Things, which won a Betty Trask
                  Award, and the short story collection How         Leone Ross is an award-winning novelist,
                  the Light Gets In. She lives, writes and          short story writer, editor and teacher. Her
                  teaches creative writing in Leeds.                latest book is the short story collection Come
                                                                    Let Us Sing Anyway.
                  Guest Patrick Gale’s works include the
                  Richard and Judy bestseller Notes from an         Guest Tom Rachman is the author of four
                  Exhibition, the Costa-shortlisted A Place         works of fiction, including the international
                  Called Winter, and, most recently, Take           bestseller The Imperfectionists and his latest
                  Nothing With You.                                 acclaimed novel The Italian Teacher.
8–13 July, The Hurst                                      Lumb Bank, 29 July–3 August

       STARTING TO WRITE FICTION                                                        FICTION
     Secrets and lies: exploring the imagination                                      Fuel for the fire
     The engine of fiction is a combination of carefully            How can we, as writers, transcend our initial influences
     constructed lies that unfold like secrets and set off the      while still harnessing the thrill that first inspired us? In
     imagination in both writer and reader. You will explore        this course, we will investigate how we can use our
     the many possibilities of fiction, free up your imagination    reading life as fuel for writing. We’ll look at style,
     and create structures for your work of fiction. In a           technique, tone and content in existing texts and explore
     supportive and enthusiastic atmosphere you will find           various ways we can absorb the influences that excite
     your voice and a passion for further writing. This week is     us and still arrive at our own unique writing voice. You’ll
     suitable for beginners and those who wish to refocus and       come away having developed your individual craft and
     find new inspiration for their work.                           eager to carry on writing.

                 Jo Mazelis is a prize-winning novelist, short      Diane Setterfield is the author of The
                 story writer and poet. Her novel Significance      Thirteenth Tale, a number one New York
54                                                                                                                                 55
                 won The Jerwood Prize. Her third collection        Times bestseller, filmed for the BBC.
                 of stories, Ritual, 1969, was longlisted for the   Following the genre-defying Bellman &
                 Edge Hill Prize.                                   Black, her latest book, Once Upon a River,
                                                                    is storytelling at its most spellbinding.
                 Wyl Menmuir was longlisted for the Man
                 Booker Prize for his debut novel, The Many.        Russ Litten is the author of the novels
                 As well as novels, he writes short stories and     Scream If You Want To Go Faster, Swear
                 journalism, and teaches creative writing at        Down and Kingdom. His first short story
                 Falmouth University.                               collection We Know What We Are was
                                                                    published in 2018. Russ runs writing
                 Guest Carys Bray is the author of a short          workshops in prisons, schools and
                 story collection and two novels. Her work          community centres.
                 has been shortlisted for the Costa Book
                 Award (First Novel) and the Desmond Elliott        Guest Libby Page’s debut novel, The Lido,
                 Prize, and she won the 2015 Authors’ Club          was published in 2018 and was a Sunday
                 Best First Novel Award.                            Times bestseller for five consecutive weeks.
5–10 August, The Hurst                                    Totleigh Barton, 12–17 August

              WRITING A NOVEL:                                                 FOLK FICTION
               TUTORED RETREAT                                        Looking for life in fantastical places
           Re-energising your writing and                          Writers like George Saunders, Angela Carter, David
             supercharging your novel                              Mitchell and Margaret Atwood combine the fantastic
                                                                   with the everyday to explore human truths. How can
     Where are you with your novel? Has it been too long           you bring elements of science fiction, folklore, fantasy
     since you’ve had some really focused feedback? Or             and the uncanny into your own fiction to create deep
     some detailed analysis of your story, characters, structure   meaning that speaks to readers? Together we’ll explore
     and voice? Or some insightful suggestions about new           practical techniques for making the surreal convincing,
     approaches you might try? The middle of a novel can be        and writing fiction about human drama through the lens
     a very lonely place. Whether your draft is the final or the   of the weird. This course is for dreamers, fantasists and
     first, we will help you get it much closer to what you know   wonderers of all levels.
     it can be. You’re invited to submit up to 2,000 words of a
     work-in-progress to by 6 July 2019.        Adam Marek is the award-winning author
56                                                                                                                             57
                                                                   of two short story collections: Instruction
                 Toby Litt teaches creative writing at Birkbeck    Manual For Swallowing and The Stone
                 College, London. He is the author of four         Thrower. His work has appeared on BBC
                 books of short stories and 11 novels, including   Radio 4 and in The Penguin Book of the
                 Notes for a Young Gentleman and Corpsing.         British Short Story.

                 Rachel Seiffert has published four novels         Zoe Gilbert won the Costa Short Story
                 that have been shortlisted for prizes             Award 2014, and her first book, Folk, was
                 including the Booker Prize, and longlisted        published in 2018. She is completing a
                 three times for the Women’s Prize for Fiction.    Creative Writing PhD on folk tales in new
                 In 2011 she received the EM Forster Award         fiction.
                 from the American Academy of Arts and
                 Letters.                                          Irenosen Okojie’s debut novel Butterfly
                                                                   Fish won a Betty Trask Award. Her short
                 Guest Kirsty Logan is the author of two           story collection Speak Gigantular was
                 novels, The Gloaming and The Gracekeepers,        published in 2016.
                 and two story collections, A Portable Shelter
                 and The Rental Heart & Other Fairytales.
19–24 August, Lumb Bank                                          The Hurst, 2–7 September

         FICTION: TUTORED RETREAT                                       FICTION: WORK-IN-PROGRESS
               Finding your way                                              Next steps in the journey
     A story is a journey, a puzzle, a forest, and it’s all too easy   Starting is one thing, but finishing is another. It’s common
     to get lost in the woods. If you have a novel or short story      in the writing process to find yourself stuck, hesitating
     that’s refusing to cooperate and need help finding your           between projects, or simply wondering where to go
     way, this could be the course for you. We will provide            next. In a course designed to give you a nudge in an
     one-to-one feedback on process, character, style, structure       exciting forward direction, we’ll offer you new ways of
     and editing, though you will have plenty of time to work          thinking and exercises designed to get you going again.
     in solitude and to enjoy the company of fellow writers for        You are invited to submit up to 1,000 words to
     additional empathy and support. This course is aimed     by 5 August 2019.
     at writers who have a work-in-progress. Participants are
     invited to submit up to 1,500 words of their writing in           Nicholas Royle is the author of three short
     advance to by 19 July 2019.                    story collections – Mortality, Ornithology
                                                                       and The Dummy & Other Uncanny Stories –                        59
                  Diana Evans is the award-winning author              and seven novels, most recently First Novel.
                  of Ordinary People, The Wonder and 26a,              Reader in Creative Writing at Manchester
                  which won the inaugural Orange Award for             Met, he also runs Nightjar Press.
                  New Writers. She began her writing career
                  as a journalist and continues to write for the       Liz Jensen is the author of eight novels,
                  national press.                                      including the bestselling The Rapture, the
                                                                       Hollywood-adapted The Ninth Life of Louis
                  Rajeev Balasubramanyam has a PhD in                  Drax, and, most recently, The Uninvited. She
                  English and Creative Writing. He is the prize-       has tutored regularly for Arvon since 1997
                  winning author of In Beautiful Disguises and         and in 2005 was awarded Fellowship of the
                  his latest novel is Professor Chandra Follows        Royal Society of Literature.
                  His Bliss.
                                                                       Guest Sarah Winman has written three
                  Guest Nuala Ellwood was chosen as one of             books: When God Was a Rabbit, A Year of
                  the Observer’s New Faces of Fiction 2017 for         Marvellous Ways and Tin Man.
                  her novel, the bestselling My Sister’s Bones.
                  She teaches Creative Writing at York St John
9–14 September, The Hurst                                   Lumb Bank, 16–21 September

              CRIME FICTION                                                           FICTION
     The essentials of murder and mayhem                                           Brave new words
     This week will cover the essentials of good crime writing:    This course will help turn your will-to-write into
     how to come up with an original and convincing plot,          compelling fiction. We’ll explore all aspects of story
     develop compelling characters, deliver realistic dialogue,    writing – from sources of inspiration, starting well,
     manage pace, setting and narrative techniques. We will        plotting and characterisation, to the discipline of self-
     also make suggestions as to how to incorporate factual        editing – through practical workshops packed with
     crimes into fictional stories. While ideal for those who      examples and exercises. And we’ll help apply the
     already have a criminal idea they want to put on the          theory to your own writing through one-to-one tutorials.
     page, this week will also help those who know they want       Whether you have a full draft or half an idea - come
     to write in the genre but are uncertain how to get started.   prepared to look at your work afresh.

                 Dreda Say Mitchell is an award-winning,           Christopher Wakling’s seven acclaimed
60               bestselling crime writer, broadcaster,            novels include, most recently, Escape and                   61
                 campaigner, and journalist. She is the author     Evasion. He runs novel-writing courses for
                 of 11 novels, with her debut awarded The          Curtis Brown Creative and writes travel
                 Crime Writers’ Association John Creasey           journalism for the national press.
                 Dagger. She has been a frequent guest on
                 television and radio, and has presented BBC       Cathi Unsworth is the author of six pop-
                 Radio 4’s Open Book.                              cultural noir novels, three of which are
                                                                   fictionalisations of true crimes: That Old
                 Adam Hamdy is the author of the                   Black Magic, Without the Moon and Bad
                 ‘Pendulum’ trilogy. He also works as              Penny Blues.
                 a screenwriter for producers on both
                 sides of the Atlantic, and studios such as        Guest Louise Beech has been writing since
                 NBCUniversal, BBC and ITV.                        she could hold a pen. She’s the author of
                                                                   four novels: How to be Brave was a Guardian
                 Guest Imran Mahmood is an author                  Readers’ Pick, and Maria in the Moon was a
                 and barrister. His 2017 debut novel, You          Sunday Mirror ‘must read’.
                 Don’t Know Me, draws on his 20 years of
                 experience at the criminal bar in London.
23–28 September, Totleigh Barton                                     The Hurst, 7–12 October

      FICTION: WORK-IN-PROGRESS                                          SHORT STORY: TUTORED
          Building fiction brick by brick                                          RETREAT
     It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the different
                                                                       Exploring the magic of short stories
     components that go into a piece of fiction – plot,
                                                                    An up close and personal course aimed at the experienced
     character, setting, dialogue. Each one has to work for the
                                                                    short story writer, entirely made up of tutorials with
     story or novel to be successful. During the week we’ll take
                                                                    an optional masterclass. We’ll set tasks and exercises
     your work-in-progress back to basics, breaking down
                                                                    focused on each writer’s particular practice and help
     several of these components into distinct ‘building blocks’
                                                                    you mine theme, character and emotional development.
     and helping you to explore them, refining and clarifying
                                                                    We’ll also discuss the role of place in fiction, routes to
     your text along the way.
                                                                    publication and the resources that can help you sustain
                                                                    yourself economically and creatively. And of course, this
                 Kamila Shamsie has written seven novels,           all takes place on the idyllic grounds of The Hurst, an
                 including Burnt Shadows, Kartography and           ideal environment to explore the magic of short stories.
                 Home Fire (winner of the Women’s Prize for         Participants are invited to send up to 1,500 words of a      63
                 Fiction). She was one of Granta’s Best of          short story to by 6 September 2019.
                 Young British Novelists in 2013.

                 Gillian Slovo is the author of 13 novels and       Courttia Newland is the author of seven
                 a family memoir. Ice Road was shortlisted          books. His short stories appear in many
                 for the Orange Prize for Fiction and Red           anthologies, including Best of British Short
                 Dust became a Hollywood film. Gillian also         Stories 2017.
                 produces verbatim plays.
                                                                    Joanna Walsh is the author of seven books,
                 Guest Rupert Thomson is the prize-winning          including three short story collections:
                 author of 11 novels, including The Insult, Death   Vertigo, Worlds from the Word’s End, and
                 of a Murderer and The Book of Revelation, and      Grow a Pair. She also works as an editor,
                 the memoir This Party’s Got to Stop. His latest    literary journalist and university teacher of
                 novel is Never Anyone But You.                     creative writing.

                                                                    Guest KJ Orr is the author of the short
                                                                    story collection Light Box. She won the BBC
                                                                    National Short Story Award 2016.
7–12 October, Totleigh Barton                                  Lumb Bank, 14–19 October

      STARTING TO WRITE A NOVEL                                     FICTION: WORK-IN-PROGRESS
     Lessons on voice, character, plot and setting                           Digging deep
     Writing a novel can be a daunting process. Writing a          An inspiring week to focus on a work-in-progress and
     chapter is a more achievable task. Writing a page is          how to bring it to completion, with practical guidance
     almost manageable. This course is for writers who have        and workshops to help navigate the challenging and
     started novels but have had trouble finishing – or for        exciting process of developing your narrative. We will
     those who are at the very beginning. We break down the        explore the bare bones of writing fiction – sourcing ideas,
     novel into its parts of story, character, plot and setting,   plot, character, setting, dialogue and point of view. This
     working with participants to refine each component as         structured, focused course will send you away knowing
     they start, or re-start, their writing journey.               what you need to do to finish your fiction project, and
                                                                   leave you feeling surprised at how much progress you’ve
                 Chibundu Onuzo grew up in Lagos. She is           made. Come with your curiosity and ideas.
                 the author of two novels, The Spider King’s
                 Daughter and Welcome to Lagos. In June            Amanda Smyth’s first novel Black Rock won
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                 2018 she was elected as a Fellow of the           the Prix du Premier Roman Etranger and
                 Royal Society of Literature.                      was selected as an Oprah Winfrey Summer
                                                                   Read. Her second novel A Kind of Eden was
                 Rob Doyle’s debut novel Here Are the Young        published in 2013. She is currently writing
                 Men was chosen as one of the ‘Twenty              her third novel, Fortune.
                 Greatest Irish Novels 1916–2016’ by Hot
                 Press magazine. His second book is This           Chris Cleave’s award-winning novels have
                 Is the Ritual. He is the editor of a major        been published in 30 countries. His most
                 anthology of Irish literature.                    recent novel Everyone Brave Is Forgiven was
                                                                   published in 2016. He is currently writing
                 Guest Mick Kitson is a novelist with previous     screenplays.
                 careers as a newspaper reporter and English
                 teacher. His debut novel, Sal, was published      Guest Rosie Garland is a novelist, poet
                 in March 2018.                                    and singer with post-punk band The March
                                                                   Violets. She is author of The Night Brother,
                                                                   Vixen and The Palace of Curiosities.
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