Friday, 2 October 2015

Creative writing with Creative Industries Trafford

 I'm looking forward to meeting writers on the Creative Industries Trafford writing workshops starting on Tuesday. The CIT course, in partnership with Comma Press, gives new and emerging writers the opportunity to develop their craft with the aim of writing and workshopping a story for submission to the new Comma Press showcase anthology La Nouvelle Espionage.

At this first session, we will discuss the short story and explore what makes the genre unique. We will think about how we craft short stories and how they work. And we will compile a toolkit of ideas and stimuli for writing short fiction.

When I'm leading a session, I always learn so much from meeting and working with other writers. Sometimes, writing can feel like a very solitary job and it can be easy to get stuck in the same ways of thinking about and processing story. Talking to others about how we write is incredibly refreshing. Where do you get your ideas from? What is your starting point - an image, a moment, a character, a place? By unpicking the tricky knot that is story making, we can learn so much about how we tie it well. Allowing ourselves time to explore those processes, the way we form and sculpt can help reframe the way we work, giving new energy or direction.

Yesterday, I went to see my absolute writing idol, Hilary Mantel speak at MMU. She gave two readings and she answered some questions. One of the things she said about the process of writing short fiction that really resonated with me was that because of the nature of short stories, you have to battle the feeling that you are constantly observing the form; the way you are structuring the thing, and that this can be stifling. Her response to how she overcame this was ' to just write it down as if it is true. Then the form will take care of itself.'

This is something I hope to bring to the CIT course and the participants; that we will learn to write it down as if it is true, inviting our readers into the imaginary space we create. I'm really looking forward to getting started.

There are still a couple of spaces available on the course. For more information or to sign up click here. Any questions, please do get in touch!


  1. Hi Sarah,

    I'm attending both this and the follow-on course (Nouvelle Espionage). I'm really excited about it and keen to start. Take care and I look forward to meeting you and other fellow writers soon.


    1. Andy! It was fantastic to meet you. Looking forward to the Espionage course now. Just putting a reading list together - exciting stuff!

      See you soon,