Date(s) - 17/03/2020 - 05/05/2020
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
The Hewett Academy
Introduction to Creative Writing
With Cara Marks
What makes a good piece of writing and what does it take to be a writer? This is a course designed to introduce you to different forms of writing — non fiction, fiction and poetry — as a way to help you explore new techniques and approaches.
In each class, we will look at short texts and think about how different writers use language to achieve their particular effects. Learning to read as a writer is a key part of the journey.
The sessions will include a carefully curated series of tried and tested creative writing exercises, so you will leave each week with a new idea for a story, a character, a setting; a brilliant new line of poetry or a great opening sentence for a piece of prose.
The main aim of this course is to inspire your writing practice in the most enjoyable way.
Week 1 — Introductions and Free Writing
Weeks 2-3 — Exploring Personal Writing
Weeks 4-5 — Exploring Poetry
Weeks 6-8 — Exploring Short Fiction
Beginning with personal writing, we start to think about the ways in which our every day experiences and individual memories can become starting points for writing. We will think about the many different ways in which a single subject can be approached in literary form and how to get to the heart of a non-fiction story.
Writing poetry is a great way to get a sense of the possibility and playfulness of language. We will experiment with form and lyric and voice, all in the spirit of exploration.
Short stories do a lot with very little. How do you get a fully-formed character, a tangible sense of place, a narrative arc and perhaps even a whole life into so few words? In these final sessions, we’ll be thinking about the restrictions and the freedoms by which the short story lives and breathes, whilst making good use of all that we’ve learned in the earlier part of the course.
About the tutor:
In 2017, I earned my MA in Creative Writing Prose Fiction from the University of East Anglia, with Distinction, as a recipient of their North American Bursary. Prior to this, I earned my BA with a Major in Creative Writing and a Minor in Philosophy at the University of Victoria in my native country, Canada. I spent last year living and working as Writer-in-Residence at Queenswood School in Hertfordshire, where I taught Creative Writing. My professional training allowed me to develop my skills as a writer in both a North American and a British literary tradition, across genre and style; teaching at Queenswood allowed me to pass my knowledge and enthusiasm onto a future generation of writers.
My short stories have been long-listed for the 2018 Exile Writers Carter V. Cooper Short Fiction Competition, the 2017 Australian Book Review’s Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize, and the 2016 Mogford Food and Drink Writing Prize. My work has appeared in the Commonwealth Writers’ literary journal adda, Suffragettes Stories, The Nervous Breakdown, and my work is forthcoming in the Carter V. Cooper Short Fiction Anthology and Leslie Magazine.
I have also been working as a freelance instructor for the National Centre for Writing, leading workshops for groups of 10-15 participants, aged 11-13 and 14-17.