"A Place for Writing"

Some news from our neighbours in Oxfordshire..


"A Place for Writing"  One-day Writing Course

Buscot Park, Oxfordshire, SN7 8BU


Tuesday 9th June 2020  9.30am – 5.00pm   £ 90.00   Course fee includes buffet lunch

More details & Booking  http://www.buscotconcerts.co.uk/writing.htm


This is a one-day professionally-led course in the idyllic surroundings of Buscot Park, Oxfordshire.  The insights offered on this one-day course will enhance your understanding of writing and help you develop your writing skills.. A combination of writing exercises, text analysis, and group debate will form the basis of the day.  The emphasis throughout is upon developing an individual voice and a confident style while working in a wholly supportive environment.  Students will be encouraged to share and discuss their writing. As such, they will gain creative and critical skills which will bring a fresh perspective to the writing experience. Absolute beginners and practicing writers are equally welcome.

Designed by two professional writers with long experience of teaching at university level, the programme will address the writer’s art and craft in ways both practical and thought-provoking, involving both writing and the discussion of writing.

The programme’s focus will be broad, making it useful to writers of poetry, fiction or creative non-fiction.


*The tutors


Professor Jem Poster and Dr. Sarah Burton have led Creative Writing courses at the Universties of Oxford and Cambridge and developed and ran the Master's course at Cambridge until 2017. They continue to teach for Cambridge University's Institute of Continuing Education, [ICE], Guardian Masterclasses and the Oxford Literary Festival.  Between them they have written novels, non-fiction, children's fiction, plays and poetry. Their tried-and-tested supportive and informal but focused approach is designed to provide stimulation and ideas for writers of all levels of experience.


Dr. Sarah Burton:

Sarah currently teaches on weekend courses, day schools, online courses and the International Summer Programme. Until 2017 she was Course Director of ICE’s Master’s programme in Creative Writing; she now convenes ICE’s Writers’ Retreats. She teaches fiction, non-fiction, writing for performance and writing for children and also writes in all these genres.

Sarah's publications are diverse, including two critically acclaimed biographies, Impostors: Six Kinds of Liar (2000; translated into Korean, Japanese, Czech and Spanish) and A Double Life: a Biography of Charles and Mary Lamb (2003; shortlisted for the Mind Book of the Year award); a children’s book, The Miracle in Bethlehem: A Storyteller’s Tale (2008), a page-to-stage guide, How to Put on a Community Play (2011) and a spoof, The Complete and Utter History of the World By Samuel Stewart, Aged 9 (2013). Sarah has also written and produced seven community plays.

Emeritus Professor Jem Poster:

Jem Poster worked as an archaeologist, surveying and excavating a range of sites on behalf of the Inspectorate of Ancient Monuments, before taking up an administrative post with Cambridge University's Institute of Continuing Education in 1987. From 1993 to 2003 he was University Lecturer in Literature with Oxford University's Department for Continuing Education and a fellow of Kellogg College. From 2003 to 2012 he was Professor of Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University, and is now Emeritus Professor. He is the author of two novels, Courting Shadows (Sceptre, 2002) and Rifling Paradise (Sceptre, 2006), as well as a collection of poetry, Brought to Light (Bloodaxe, 2001), and editor of a volume in the six-volume Oxford University Press Edward Thomas: Prose Writings (OUP, 2018). He has won prizes in major poetry competitions including first prize in both the Cardiff International Poetry Competition in 1995 and the Peterloo Poets Open Poetry Competition in 2001. He has been Chair of the editorial board of Wales’s leading literary journal, New Welsh Review, and Programme Advisor to the Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education’s MSt in Creative Writing; he is currently Director of its International Summer Programme in Creative Writing, and is an Affiliated Lecturer of the Institute. He is also Director of Academic Programmes for the Financial Times Oxford Literary Festival.


Paper Nation introduces Writing Producers' Scheme

Writing Producers’ Scheme

As part of Paper Nations’ ongoing quest to establish the South-West region as a place for writers, we are launching the Writing Producers’ Scheme.

The Writing Producers’ Scheme will support writing producers to create, expand, and sustain writing initiatives. We’ll do this by mentoring writing producers to develop their writing project ideas, create sustainable business plans, and write proposals for financing and grants.

The application process is open and can be found at the bottom of this page. Please share this call with anyone who you think may be interested.

woman with short hair at a laptop, taking notes  Notebook with balled up paper and a pencil on top.  Hand writing in a notebook.

We are looking for:

Producers with ideas and proposals that will contribute to the development and sustainability of a ‘place for writers’ in the upper South-West region of England.

Writing producers are simply those who create or help to run writing initiatives. Producers may come from a strictly writing or publishing background or they may have produced events or schemes in another industry. They could be entrepreneurs, workshop leaders or other kinds of writing educators.

A Place for Writers is a region where writing and storytelling are nurtured, and where diverse voices are developed and valued. As part of this we are supporting the development of villages, towns, cities, writing destinations, and communities. We’re also working closely with creative industry partners to incubate community interest companies, social enterprises and micro businesses and SMEs that support writers.

How could the Writing Producers’ scheme help me?

Successful applicants can propose ideas for writing initiatives and projects. You may have a project that you want to launch or an existing initiative that needs support. We will help candidates make this project happen by providing a sponsored 1-2-1 mentoring session as well as a place on our 2020 Dare to Write? Academy Habit Camp. Producers can use the scheme to incubate ideas, and get mentoring and support for writing funding proposals.

All successful applicants will receive an events pass, gaining free access to events provided in collaboration with the Dare to Write? Academy. You will also be able to access a coworking space in Palace Yard Mews, central Bath.

In addition to providing mentoring support, producers will have the option to be added to a database of writing producers within the upper South-West region. The database may be shared with other organisations who have paid opportunities for writing producers and/or educators.

How do I apply?

Applicants can fill in an expression of interest (EOI) form using the button at the bottom of this page. The EOI form will take about 15 minutes to complete. It asks applicants to tell us about themselves, their experience, and their project idea.

Applications close at midday on Thursday 12th March. Successful applicants will be informed in April 2020. More information on the application process is available in our downloadable FAQ, which is available below.

two men working in a coffee shop, chatting  woman with notebook and pencil, thinking wryly  writing for all launch event - whole room shot

Who can apply?

Those who apply for this scheme must value creativity and be organised, with a practical mindset. They must also believe in our vision to make writing accessible to everyone and be able to contribute to our mission to establish the South-West as a Place for Writers.

This call is open to people from all backgrounds but we are keen to broaden the range of voices in the world of writing and publishing, to hear from people from backgrounds that are not currently well represented. These include: people of colour, working class people, people from areas of rural or coastal deprivation, people who have experienced homelessness, refugees, people from the LGBTQ+ communities, people who have survived abuse, disabled people, and people with chronic health conditions.

You must live and work in Wiltshire, Gloucestershire (inc. South Glos), or Somerset to be eligible.

What do you mean by a writing project or initiative? How do I know if my idea ‘counts’?

Writing initiatives and projects could be any number of things. We don’t wish to be too specific as we would like to support a range of different ideas. Your project could be purely creative writing-based, or it could be interdisciplinary (take, for example, the way in which the Maths Poems project blended poetry and mathematics).

Your project could involve a series of workshops or events, or you could build something like an app, website, or resource that will serve the writing community. It could be mentoring-based, focused on developing networks and partnerships, or offer showcasing opportunities such as publishing. It could be enterprise-focused, like helping charities or local start-ups write about the work that they do or it could aim to be an established writing business, like The Good Literary Agency. Or it could be more of an installation. Your concept could be large or small, for a specific demographic, or be open to everyone. The options are endless.

What do we expect from successful applicants?

We will ask you to keep journals of your progress and document your work through any of the following: written reports, blogs for the Paper Nations website, and quotes to be used on public-facing media.

Your experiences will be showcased as part of our Writing for All events planned for 2020-2021. You will be expected to demonstrate the impact of the commission on your creative practice. We will provide templates and support to help you do this.

I don’t have an idea of my own but I am a project manager or producer with skills to offer. Can I apply to work for Paper Nations?

If you are a writing producer without their own concept, who is looking to work on and support Paper Nations’ own projects you should fill out this separate EOI form.


Cornium Radio Opportunities

Below are dates that are still available for anyone interested in talking about writing, sharing their work, publicising books/gigs/workshops etc.
Please contact Rona Laycock if you are interested  writersinthebrewery@yahoo.co.uk
More info on the sessions is below the dates.

April 16th , 23rd,  30th.

May 7th, 14th, 28th.

Writers Room

We meet in the foyer of Cirencester Library, The Waterloo, Cirencester GL7 2PZ  at 11am on the day of recording.

The library is situated at the back of Bingham House and can be reached via the little alleyway that runs down the side of TSB in the market place. Once the alleyway opens out into a road you will find the library on the right.

Work that is to be read on community radio has to be acceptable to a wide range of listeners so we ask that there is no explicit violence or sex and not too much swearing - certainly not the stronger swear words.

I will chat to you about what inspires you or what sort of writing you like to do etc.  If you have a website or have published a book you can publicise that as well. The programme is approximately 26 minutes long so we have plenty of time for readings as well as the interview.

The sessions are recorded so that any mistakes we make can be edited out.  If you make a mistake just stop and go back a couple of sentences and the programme producer will sort it all out during the editing.

The programme is now available to be sent out as an audio file via email so you don’t have to wait until it is broadcast to hear your performance!

It also features on the ‘Listen Again’ page of Corinium Radio’s website.


Writers and Performers News

Writers and Performers News - Congratulations all !

  • Rona Laycock’s poem “Sleight of Hand” has been published in the January edition of the Acumen Literary Journal.
  • Sheila Johnson has been accepted onto the MA Creative Writing Course at the University of Gloucestershire.


We love to share good news :

If you have celebratory news youd like to sahre please contact us on info@gloswriters.org.uk

News from our friends in Evesham

Reminder, our 2020 Short Story Competition is now open.

Coming soon: Workshops: Stepping into Social Media Workshop with Ellie Stevenson - Monday 10th Feb, 10.30 am - 1.00 pm, and Developing Your Novel (Editing) with Alison May - Saturday 7th March, 10.30 am - 4.30 pm. Still places available for these two workshops. Cost £15 and £25 respectively)

Monday 2nd March, Tony Conder will be talking about Gloucestershire's Chosen Trio (Poets Ivor Gurney, Herbert Howells and FW Harvey). Tony's talk is at Holland House, Cropthorne, and follows a 2-course lunch. Arrive 12.30 for lunch at 1.00 pm. Tickets £18 direct from Holland House (tel: 01386 860330).

Since the last update we have added in two new events: Alice May will be talking about The House That Sat Down. Tuesday 23rd June, 2.30 pm, at a new venue for the Festival - Cavendish Park Care Home, Offenham Road. Its a fabulous venue, and Alice's talk will be followed by afternoon tea. Saturday 3rd October, 7.30 pm, we have Words and Music of The Vale with local singer/songwriter, Colin Pitts and friends. Venue: Unitarian Chapel, Oat Street.

Details of all events can be found on our Festival website. We are currently working on the Festival Brochure, which should be in print by end of March.

Our new Evesham Festival of Words Book Club was launched in January. It was a fantastic evening, much enjoyed by all who came, with so much lively and friendly discussion. Contact Helen Yendall if you are interested in finding out more (email: helenyendall@yahoo.co.uk).

Tickets for all 2020 events are now available and can be booked via me - email: info@eveshamfestivalofwords.org, or tel: 0787 1285606; via our Festival website (www.eveshamfestivalofwords.org) with payment by Paypal, or through the Almonry Museum & Tourist Information Centre (tel: 01386 446944). Note workshop tickets are not available through the Almonry.

We have a great line up for 2020 and no shortage of ideas. We would like a couple more people on the Steering Group. If you are interested, then do get in touch. Note that I will be abroad on holiday from 8th - 20th February with email but no phone access.

Meanwhile, look forward to seeing you at some of our great line up of events.

Sue Ablett, Chair Evesham Festival of Words

Celebrating local success...

Writers and Performers News- Congratulations all !

  • Barry Faulkner's 9th novel in the DCS Palmer and the Serial Murder Squad series, Ministry of Murder, was released in  October and made it into the top 100 medical crime books on Amazon. Faulkner sets each book in a different setting, this one is a serial murder case in the NHS Ministry of Health involving organized crime, an MP and drug price manipulation.


  • Belinda Rimmer’s “Waiting for Snow”, ZD Dicks’ “Krampus”, Cliff Yates’ “I’ve Just Invented the Tai Chi Sprout Farm Stalk” and Kathryn Alderman’s “Season’s Greetings from the Heart” were all published on Ink, Sweat & Tears website, for IS&T’s “Twelve Days of Christmas” set.


  • Chris Hemingway’s poem “Resting a Calligraphy Brush” has been published on the Dear Reader Poetry website.

Writing space available at Snowshill Manor

In 2020 Snowshill Manor and Garden is offering a space for creative workshops and courses on Saturdays and Sundays at a low day rate which includes entry to the gardens and manor house for course leaders and participants for inspiration…

The offer lends itself particularly well to writing courses as Charles Wade, who bequeathed the house and its contents to the National Trust, was himself a keen poet and welcomed a number of notable writers to Snowshill during his time here. Further details about Charles Wade and Snowshill Manor can be found on our website at https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/snowshill-manor-and-garden/features/who-was-charles-wade

I would be grateful if you could please pass this information on to your members. I would be happy to respond to any questions or queries about this opportunity.

Best wishes

Rachel Leach

Rachel Leach

Business Support Coordinator


National Trust

Snowshill Manor and Garden, Snowshill, near Broadway, WR12 7JU

01386 842810



Happy Christmas from GWN

Seasons Greetings from the team at GWN.

It has a been a fantastic year for Gloucestershire writers and it's been our pleasure to keep you updated on all Literary events and successes during 2019.

Let's hope the succes of local writers continues to bloom in the New Year.

We look forward to hearing about all local events and more success stories in 2020.

Please continue to send us details of events and competitions etc. and we will do our best to communicate these through our web site and regular monthly newsletters.

We hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and New Year.

Keep Writing!


Our best wishes from GWN






Sharon and Guy

'There's Nothing There' - Review

I'm not visiting the Black Forest now!

A review

I blame “There's Nothing There,“ a play by Black Dog Productions in collaboration with Apricity Theatre. Although there is some humour, it is scary, the plot angry, the finish extreme, shocking and  unexpected. I am left scared of the beast in the woods and the unknown, dismayed by insincerity and the disastrous consequences of a liberal amount of alcohol on the stew of mistrust, jealousy and vivid imaginations. The company use improvisation on the road to their final script. Perhaps it is this which makes the performance fresher and quite different from others I have seen or maybe it  is the emotional investment. Russell Eccleston (Jessie) , Emily Malloy (Alina) and Charlotte Turner-McMullan (Grace) wrote it and Russell Eccleston and Tiffany Rhodes (Cassie) are also among the co-founders of Black Dog.  The cast do not restrict themselves to acting, they are  writers, dancers, singers, directors. Between them there was a lot of energy and it was very enjoyable.  If I had to criticize anything it would be the excess of swearing which did not always add to the performance for me but maybe that  was just my age. It did however inspire an hilarious commentary from the elderly couple seated behind us which contributed nicely to the evening.

“There's Nothing There “

a Black Dog  Apricity Theatre  Production

at The Cotswold Playhouse

For other performances and venues check out the company website at:


Annual Glosink event

invites you to our annual reading of prose and poetry at Peppers Cafe in Gloucester
on Friday, December 13, 2019 from 18.30 to 20.30 with a half-hour interval.
Entry is free. Food and drink are available to purchase from the cafe during the event.
We look forward to seeing you there to share the art and craft of writing in a relaxed setting.