New Creative Writing Class!

babyIt’s taken 9 months of procrastinating and faffing around gestation but finally, my baby is born: I’ve taken the plunge, booked a venue and started marketing my new, daytime Creative Writing class in Moreton-in-Marsh, starting on 18th April.

I don’t have a clue if anyone is going to sign up but I have 14 spaces and it’s up to me to fill ‘em!

Of course, I’ve taught Creative Writing before BUT it was always through a college and they did all the stuff like taking the money, providing a room and recruiting the students! So, we shall see.

Mind you, they also inflicted the dreaded ‘Yellow Books’ on us all, which involved the students filling in ‘what I learned’ at the end of each session and me taking them in to read their comments and write my own. It was a kind of ‘adult ed. pass-the-parcel’ which I will be VERY glad to dispense with!

Anyway, fingers crossed I will get my recruits! I will keep you posted….

Short Story Competition Organisers

I have been grumbling for a little while (not to you, but on a Facebook group that I belong to and to just about anyone who will listen), about inefficient competition organisers! Bah!

Southport Writers Circle were a little tardy, shall we say, in publishing the results of their Short Story competition, which closed on 31st October 2012. (If I still had my ‘naughty list’ they would be popped on it).

Winners were informed in December and they’ve just, after a bit of nagging, published the winning stories on their website.

Obviously, I knew I wasn’t a winner by now but I like to see the results of competitions I’ve entered and – this is a bit OCD-ish – but I like to update my spreadsheet! Good news is, the results are there now and I have to say I loved the winner, ‘Citizen Khan’, by Tony Matthews. Have a read here and see what you think.

There are some good organisers out there though! Just this week, I’ve had a personal LETTER from Country Life magazine, thanking me for entering their short story competition (I’m assuming everyone who entered had one, which is rather nice) AND when I emailed my entry to the Choc-Lit competition a couple of days ago, I had an email from a person (not automatic), telling me that my Paypal payment and my story had been safely received.

That’s what I like to see!

Soul & Spirit Magazine Writing Competition c/d 15th March 2013

If you are into all things a bit ‘spooky’ (or, as they put it, if you are a ‘budding spiritual writer’) then you might like to enter this new 500 word ‘short story competition’ (inverted commas because I’m not sure if it’s fiction or non-fiction!) in Soul & Spirit Magazine.

It’s free to enter BUT, be warned, all entries will go on their website and there will be a vote to decide the winner (boo!).

The winner gets a one-to-one writing workshop.

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16 Responses to New Creative Writing Class!

  1. Best of luck with your writing class! From experience, participants will appreciate the freedom from bureaucracy – does ANYBODY enjoy form filling?? and you will be able to respond to their needs and not be tied to a pre-subscribed curriculum or too many rules and regs! Looking forward to hearing about it!

    • Thanks Josephine, I agree about the bureaucracy! I only had to follow a prescribed curriculum in the first year I taught but that was bad enough, so yes, freedom is good and I plan to organise the class around what the students tell me they want (let’s hope they don’t want 14 completely different things!)

  2. Good luck with that Helen, you’ll soon fill those places. I also think choc lit are good at replying and displaying the winners as well. Off to have a look at those links now.

  3. Well done on getting that class off the ground! I’m sure it will go down a treat.

  4. Downith says:

    Good luck with the course!

  5. Hayley Jones says:

    Good luck with the class! Bureaucracy drives me mad too – rumour has is that every couple of years at my old university, they changed the number of contact hours because that’s what students wanted. So they would add a couple of hours per week as a result of some student satisfaction survey, then take them away a year or two later… I bet the same proportion of students wanted more/less/the same number of hours every year and their ‘fixing’ it annoys each set of students in a neverending cycle!

  6. Keith Havers says:

    Good luck with your new venture, Helen.
    Totally with you on the poorly run comps. Some organisers just seem to lose interest after they’ve taken your money. When I find one that’s been well run I like to drop them an e-mail to pass on my appreciation.

  7. Tracy Fells says:

    Firstly I realise that I’ve been entering all the same competitions! And secondly I’m just as grumpy about some of the admin – I’d given up checking Southport, but it’s a bit annoying when a competition promises results by a certain date and doesn’t deliver – you don’t quite know if you can re-enter the story elsewhere. Yes – also got the personally addressed letter from Country LIfe (sweet as I did enclose a SA postcard which they didn’t send back).

    Well done on sorting out your own writing course. Wishing you all the best for this in April.

    • Tracy I’ve vowed never to enter Southport’s competitions again! Might seem like cutting off my nose… but on the other hand, there are plenty more competitions out there, willing to take a 5 or 3 entry fee from me!! Good luck in the competitions.


  8. Clare Banks says:

    Hi Helen. Would you be able to ping me details on your class? As you know, Moreton is almost my neck to the woods, so I’d be quite interested in signing up.

  9. johny141 says:

    Hi Clare, I do hope that you sign up in Helens,s Creative Writing Class and I personally can recommend that you will enjoy the the course ,,,Learning with a smile,,,is a nice experience.
    Helen is a naturally gifted Teacher, one who enjoys and shares that joy around easily,,as a former pupil I regret that Solihull is a little to far to commute otherwise I would be back for more (I need it)

  10. johny141 says:

    Helen, if you can find me a Guiness flavoured Bounty then thats great but the usual ones are a bit “sweety” for me,, I have to keep up my Street Cred (Big beefy baritone) ps Jelly when writing poetry,,Lol

  11. Linda says:

    Good luck with the course, I’d sign up if I lived a lot nearer!

  12. Would love to join your writing class Helen, but I think it’s a bit too far from Kent 😦 Good luck with it! X

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