Wivenhoe Bookshop Magazine & Newsletter | Wednesday 22 October 2014

Writers’ Courses

Coming soon – a new writing course for Sept 2014!

Tutor Petra McQueen

Advanced Creative Writing 

a 10 week course

With Petra McQueen

Mondays 11.00am – 12.30pm from 22nd September 2014

at the Wivenhoe Bookshop

Tutor Petra McQueen will be leading a 10 week Advanced Creative Writing course from September at the bookshop.

This course is aimed at those who write on a regular basis yet wish to improve.  Looking at the work of Vogler and McKee, amongst other practitioners, we will explore possibilities in theme, style and language.

Students will be supported in any long-term writing projects they may have.

Petra is a published writer with twenty years of teaching experience. She believes that given the right encouragement and support, everyone has the ability to write well.

 The group will meet on the following Mondays - 22nd, 29th September, 6th, 13th, 20th October, 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th November, 1st December.

The fee for this 10 week course is £100.00. For further details or to book ‘phone 01206 824050 or send us an email

PREVIOUS COURSES

Life Writing 

a 10 week course

With Petra McQueen

Mondays 11.00am – 12.30pm from 12th May t0 21st July

Tutor Petra McQueen will be leading a 10 week ‘Life Writing’ course at the bookshop from May.

This class will explore using the self as as starting point for memoir, autobiography, and auto-fiction. We will read, discuss and most importantly write about the self. The class will be supportive, challenging and fun.

Petra is a published writer with twenty years teaching experience. She believes that everyone has the ability to write well and encourages students to recognise their strengths and helps them to find their writing voice. She also hopes that they all will have lots of fun!

The group will meet on the following Mondays 12th May, 19th May, break for half term 26th May, 2nd June, 9th June, 16th June, 23rd June, 30th June, 7th July, 14th July, and 21st July.

The fee for this 10 week course is £100.00. For further details or to book ‘phone 01206 824050 or send us an email

PREVIOUS COURSES

10 Week Short Story Writing Course

With Petra McQueen

Mondays 11.00am – 12.30pm from 13th Jan – 24th March

A good story cannot be devised; it has to be distilled.

Raymond Chandler

Join writer Petra McQueen for this ten week course on short story writing. The class will be looking at characterisation, plot, setting, description, and dialogue within short stories.

Petra’s classes are always focused, lively and fun. Suitable for all students – from the beginner to the more experienced writer.

The group will meet on the following Mondays –  13th, 20th, 27th Jan, 3rd, 10th Feb, break for half-term on 17th Feb, 24th Feb, 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th Mar.

8 Week Creative Writing Course

with Petra Mcqueen

Mondays 11.00am – 12.30pm from 30th Sept – 25th Nov

This writing course is for people of all abilities: those who write regularly and those who have not yet dared.

Through writing exercises, exploring literature, and supporting each other in our writing aims, this class will invigorate and inspire.

Petra McQueen is a published writer with twenty years of teaching experience. The course will take place at the Wivenhoe Bookshop.

The group will meet on the following Mondays –  30th Sept, 7th, 14th, 21st Oct  (Half Term break) 4th,11th, 18th, 25th Nov.

Read Petra’s recent Guardian article here.

8 Week Wild Writing Course

Wild Writing Course with Dr James Canton

Into the Wild East

Writer’s Workshops

Wednesday afternoons 2.30pm – 4pm, from 30th May to 18th July

This exciting new course will be a chance to write on our local landscape and environment, through a series of eight workshops, and will be tutored by Dr James Canton (pictured left), from the University of Essex’s Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies.

Students will be encouraged to explore the natural world and frame a series of responses in writing to their own encounters with the wildlife, flora and fauna which inhabit this world beside us. Field wanders will certainly be recommended. Creative non-fiction, memoir, poetry and fiction will all be valued as forms of personal response.

James Canton teaches at the Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies at the University of Essex. He studied at Exeter and Essex universities, gaining a PhD in literature. He has taught the MA in Wild Writing at the University of Essex since its inception in 2009, exploring the fascinating ties between the literature and landscape of East Anglia. His book From Cairo to Baghdad was published in 2011. He is currently working on Out of Essex, a collection of writing inspired by rural wanderings in the county.

Recommended reading (not required, merely recommended!):

Mark Cocker, Crow Country, London: Jonathan Cape, 2007

Paul Farley and Michael Symmons Roberts, Edgelands: Journey’s into England’s True Wilderness, [2011] London: Vintage, 2012

Kathleen Jamie, Findings: Essays on the Natural and Unnatural World, London: Sort Of Books, 2005

Kathleen Jamie, Sightlines, London: Sort Of Books, 2012

Richard Mabey, The Unofficial Countryside, [1973] Little Toller Books, 2010

Robert Macfarlane, The Wild Places, London: Granta, 2007

Alice Oswald, Dart, London: Faber, 2002

Iain Sinclair, London Orbital, London: Granta, 2002

Graham Swift, Waterland, London: Heinemann, 1983.

The fee for this 8 week course is £72.00. For further details or to book ‘phone 01206 824050 or send us an email

Writing from Life

Monday mornings 11 – 12.30 from 16th January – (no meeting on 13th February)- to 12th March

Petra McQueen will be running this course in the Bookshop shed every Monday morning  for 8 weeks from 16th January.

Petra is a published writer with twenty years teaching experience. She believes that everyone has the ability to write well and encourages students to recognise their strengths and helps them to find their writing voice. She hopes that they all will have lots of fun

Petra describes the course:

We all have a story to tell.

This writing course will focus on the use of memory in fiction, poetry, and autobiography.

Take a look at Petra’s blog here.

The fee for this 8 week course is £72.00. For further details or to book ‘phone 01206 824050 or send us an email

The Building Blocks of Crime and Thriller Writing

A writer’s workshop with Mike Ripley

Saturday morning 9.30 – 1.30pm October 29th

A creative crime writing seminar for discerning readers and potential writers  looking at the basic building blocks of Plot, Suspense, Characters, Setting, Pace and Humour in the most popular genre of fiction.

We are delighted to offer this workshop with award-winning writer Mike Ripley.  He is the author of 18 novels, including the award-winning ‘Angel’series of comic thrillers, the series editor for Top Notch Thrillers, and has written for radio and television including for the BBC series Lovejoy. He has reviewed crime novels and thrillers since 1989 and was the crime critic of the Daily Telegraph for ten years, and written about crime fiction for, among others, The Times, The Observer and Guardian.

He has appeared at numerous literary festivals and conducted interviews with Colin Dexter and Minette Walters for theatrical audiences. He currently teaches the Creative Crime Writing course for Cambridge University’s Institute of Continuing Education, has lectured at Cambridge and the University of Surrey, and writes the monthly‘ Getting Away With Murder’  column for the Shots magazine website.Structure

*The seminar will discuss the main ‘building blocks’ of the crime novel and thriller in order to provide a useful framework for both the budding writer and the avid reader.

* All participants will be encouraged to discuss their favourite crime novels and writers.

* There will be practical tips for would-be crime writers and readers will discover new authors and new types of crime writing.

* The seminar includes a short, fun writing exercise – so bring pen and paper.

* Please NOTE that this seminar will deal primarily with books rather than film or television adaptations of novels, and work first published in English rather than in translation.

VENUE: Wivenhoe Bookshop

TIMINGS: Sat 29th October 2011 from 9.30am – 1.30pm

FEE: The workshop fee of £35 includes coffee and biscuits

To book your place tel 01206 824050 or send us an e-mail.

This Autumn we offer budding writers two courses, both with experienced tutors – one during the day and an evening course.

Monday mornings 11 – 12.30 from September 26th

Creative Writing for Beginners

Petra McQueen will be running a course in the Bookshop shed every Monday morning from 11 – 12.30 for 6 weeks from 26 September.

Petra is a published writer with twenty years teaching experience. She believes that everyone has the ability to write well and encourages students to recognise their strengths and acknowledge what stops them achieving their best.

In this course, the class will concentrate on short fiction. Petra will teach the class how to structure a story, how to create a fully rounded character and how to find a writing voice. Future classes will be dictated by students’ needs and desires. She hopes that they all will have lots of fun.

Petra also works with Wivenhoe’s ‘Words Down the Line’, part of the innovative ‘Off the Rails’ arts project based at Wivenhoe rail station. Petra says:

In collaboration with local writers and groups we have a long-term, rolling collection of  poetry and prose that travels down the line in the form of a leaflet that can be picked up at the ticket office at .

WE ARE ALWAYS LOOKING FOR NEW WRITERS. If you have any work you would like to send us, if you have any good ideas for promoting the work of Wivenhoe writers, or if you would like to be involved in any way at all please email petramcqueen@gmail.com for more information

For further details, and to book, ‘phone 01206 824050, or email us at the bookshop.

Wednesday evenings 8.00 – 9.30pm from October 5th to November 9th.

Creative Writing for Beginners

Thorunn describes her course:

This six week creative writing course will provide you with the tools to get you writing. No previous writing experience is needed, as everyone has the ability to write, and with a little support, people can find their ‘inner writer’ and discover the joy and satisfaction of writing for pleasure.

The course will introduce you to different kinds of creative writing, with the main emphasis on fiction and short story writing, and you will learn about plot, characterization, voice and setting among other things.

Varied writing exercises will help focus your creativity, but you’ll be free to take things at your own pace, and share ideas in a relaxed and supportive setting.

The six week evening course takes place  on Wednesdays between 8 and 9.30pm,  starting on Oct 5th 2011, and the fee is £54.

Thorunn, pictured above,  is an Arvon  qualified Writing Coach, and founder of  Raven Creative Writing.

For further details, and to book, ‘phone 01206 824050, or email us at the bookshop.

TAKE A LOOK AT EXAMPLES OF PREVIOUS WORKSHOPS BELOW:

Short Story Writing Course

with Thorunn Bjornsdottir Bacon

Is there a story in you? If you’ve been dreaming about writing for years, or are already writing but feel stuck and in need of some inspiration and encouragement, this is the course for you

This six week creative writing course will provide you with the tools to get you writing. We will explore the elements of fiction and short story writing, including plot, characterisation, voice and setting. Writing exercises will help focus your creativity, but you’ll be free to take things at your own pace, and share ideas in a relaxed and supportive setting.

The workshop is run by Thorunn Björnsdottir Bacon (MA Creative Writing) Thorunn is a member of LAPIDUS (Literary arts in personal development) and NAWE (National Association of Writers in Education)

The course begins Friday 25th of February 2011, 11-12:30.   Cost is £54.  For further information and booking, please contact Wivenhoe Bookshop on 01206 824050 or email.

Thorunn is founder of Raven Creative Writing

Take a look at previous courses below.

Memory- Place- Belonging

with Thorunn Bjornsdottir Bacon

Here at the bookshop we run courses for writers on a regular basis, and one of our tutors is Thorunn Bjornsdottir Bacon of Raven Creative Writing., pictured right. Memory – Place – Belonging is the latest of these, and Thorunn describes it here:

“Memories are what binds us to a place and gives us a sense of belonging.  This six week course will use creative writing to explore our relationship to Wivenhoe; drawing on our own, archives, local history and local myths.  Weather permitting; there may be some walks around Wivenhoe, as well as delving into archives to unearth a wealth of inspirations lurking just under the surface.

We will be reading examples of writing dealing with memories, place and the search for belonging.

Whether you are new to Wivenhoe or have lived here all your life; are new to writing or a seasoned writer, this course gives you an opportunity to explore and write in an exciting new way, and more than anything to have a lot of fun with your writing in a supportive environment and meet like-minded people.”

The course takes place on  Fridays from 11 – 12.30, from 24th of September and runs for 6 weeks. the venue is the bookshop’s lovely shed.

The course fee of  £54 includes coffee and biscuits.

Find out more about Thorunn Bacon and Raven Creative Writing

Creative Writing for Beginners

with Thorunn Bjornsdottir Bacon

 

Thorunn has previously run creative writing courses, which she describes here:

“A good place to start is our introduction to creative writing. No previous writing experience is required, just a willingness to explore the creativity of writing, and be open to new horizons. You will be encouraged to identify your strengths and interests as a writer and value your own resources of memory, observation and voice.

Different aspects of creative writing are considered but the main f ocus is on fiction, and the aim is that by the end of the course participants will have written a short story. Course participants will be encouraged to interact by sharing ideas and writing in a relaxed, supportive and encouraging environment.”

Getting Your Work Published – A Workshop For Optimists

with Charmaine Mckissock

We’re constantly adding to our repertoire of courses for readers and writers, and on 11th September 2010 we held a one-off 1/2 day workshop with published author Charmaine McKissock.

The emphasis in the workshop was on practical advice in a supportive setting.

Charmaine McKissock won the ‘Observers Young Writer of the Year’ award when she was fifteen, despite not enjoying school very much. She later studied Literature, Linguistics, Art & Design, Social & Community Work, Education, and finally Anatomy & Physiology. She set up the first Literacy project for homeless young people in London; then became Head of Basic Education at Morley College; the Adult Special Needs Advisor for Essex County Council; and Head of a London University Dyslexia Unit.

More recently, whilst living on a windswept island in the Orkney Isles, she started to write and illustrate ‘Great Ways to Learn Anatomy and Physiology’, after struggling immensely to learn this subject herself. Since then, she has helped countless students find ways to learn more easily and succeed in their goals.

She currently runs the ‘Good Learning Practice’ in Wivenhoe, working as a trainer, writer and learning therapist.

The course took place in the function room at The Greyhound, High St, Wivenhoe from 10.00 – 12.30, and the fee, including refreshments, was £30.It was a great success, and participants gave a lot of positive feedback. If you are interested in joining future courses,

call 01206 824050, or email us.

Visit our online shop here

Wivenhoe Bookshop – Feed Your Head

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tagged as: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a comment