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Write Around Town: An Online Writing Course (15 Jan - 19 Feb)

Write Around Town: An Online Writing Course (15 Jan - 19 Feb)


urban writing explorations

15 January - 19 February, 2020, £195

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Inspiration is everywhere. Start your year with a boost of inspiration.

This 6-week course will prompt you to venture out and create stories in your regular haunts as well as in unexpected places around town. Reinvigorate your creative practice through close observation and, through insightful feedback, gain a clearer sense of what makes your writing voice unique.

Write Around Town is a practical and thought-provoking online writing course to deepen your understanding of place in fiction and creative non-fiction. The course will introduce you to new ways of turning the urban landscape into stories, and look at how to use what's around you to enrich what you're working on already.

This online course is devised to stimulate your creativity and keep you writing. The course will include practical exercises, critique, craft tips, and a close look at relevant literary texts. You'll also receive three city Writing Maps to inspire you beyond the duration of the course.

The course is particularly suited to writers looking for feedback on their work, and who are interested in generating a substantial amount of writing in a relatively short period of time.

"...fiction depends for its life on place." Eudora Welty 

Write Around Town is an opportunity to look closely, through your own writing, at the importance of place in the creation of characters. Whether it's for you or your characters, you'll be encouraged to walk, paddle, eat and write in any city you're in.

You'll use the city itself - its cafés, art galleries, waterways and sidestreets - as a rich resource for personal and fictional stories. No matter where you live or what time of day or night you like to write, Write Around Time will be an adventure to inspire and surprise you.

For the six weeks of the course, you'll receive weekly writing prompts and exercises. The exercises will teach you how to map a character's (or your own) journey through the city; look closely at the ways in which an environment impacts on psychology; and explore the symbolism in various aspects of the urban landscape.

Whether you're working on fiction, non-fiction or memoir the writing exercises are devised to suit all genres and cities

“Sense of place is the sixth sense, an internal compass and map made by memory and spatial perception...” Rebecca Solnit 

You'll be able to share your work with other participants, and will receive regular feedback from the course tutor, Shaun Levin. The course can be done in real time, or you can save the exercises for when you're ready to write. Follow the exercises and prompts in the city you live in, or take them with you on your travels. All course content will be relevant to any urban environment. 

Writers in remote or rural places are very welcome to join.

Together with generating a significant amount of writing, we will also look at extracts from the works of writers who have used the city as setting and inspiration, and, in turn, explore ways of using those texts to roam the city in the name of adventure, discovery, and a deeper connection to the places we know (or think we know) well.

Participants will be invited to share work on the course's private site. The course is aimed at writers of all levels who are looking for feedback on their work, as well as for new ways of writing about the city, or who have a particular interest in a sense of place in fiction and non-fiction, or who just need that extra nudge to keep writing. 

All participants will:

  • get weekly exercises and prompts
  • contribute to the course's dedicated site
  • receive detailed feedback from the tutor throughout the course
  • participate in conversations with fellow writers
  • receive 3 city Writing Maps

limited to 12 participants 

Course tutor: Shaun Levin is the creator of Writing Maps and is the author of Seven Sweet Things, A Year of Two Summers, and Snapshots of the Boy, amongst other works. His short stories have been anthologised alongside writers such as Ali Smith, Nadine Gordimer, and Edmund White. He has taught writing for over twenty years in colleges and other settings, and run workshops in cafés, art galleries, bookshops, parks, a cemetery, and a zoo.

Shaun is passionate about exploring art and the urban environment as a way to enrich our stories and take writing to new and unexpected places. He has lived in London, Tel Aviv, and now lives in Madrid, and continues to make the city an integral and important part of his work.

Dates: 15 January - 19 February, 2020 (6 weeks)

Venue: Online

Fee: £195

Previous participants said:

  • "I like the exercises, they have ample content but are not too rigid, a nice balance."
  • "I really like the fact it encourages me to go out and about to write and explore new places and see how new ideas emerge through that."
  • "I love that it's online as I can fit it into my daily life." 
  • "The feedback to one another is very helpful and an interesting variety of people/writers contributing." 

How beautiful it is to get up and go out and do something. (Kurt Vonnegut)