Linda Cracknell – Tutor
Rose Condo – Guest Reader
Guest Reader
9th – 14th July 2018
Course Date

This course will help develop your fiction writing, whether short or long form. Structured workshops with Linda will focus on craft skills such as writing dialogue, editing, character development and structure.

There will be personal writing time as well as the opportunity to discuss works in progress, explore how we find our stories, and nurture new ideas in a supportive and stimulating environment. Whether you are just setting out or want to revitalise an existing project, you will leave with a sense of having moved forward.

Participants are invited to submit 1000 words of their writing in advance.

Linda Cracknell - The Garsdale Retreat

Tutor: Linda Cracknell – Writer

Linda Cracknell’s first love is short fiction, which has led to two published collections and a number of stories broadcast by BBC radio since 2000. Her novel, ‘Call of the Undertow’, about a cartographer who exiles herself to northern Scotland and her relationship with a strange boy, was published in 2013.

She also writes creative non-fiction and radio drama and is a self-employed teacher, mentor and facilitator of creative writing in various settings at home and abroad. Linda lives in Highland Perthshire.

Rose Condo - The Garsdale Retreat

Guest, Wednesday evening: Rose Condo – Writer/Performer/Spoken Word Poet

Rose Condo is a writer, performer and multiple slam winning spoken word poet who hails from the Canadian prairies.  Longlisted for the inaugural Jerwood Compton Poetry Fellowship, Rose has featured at festivals and events across the UK, including Lindisfarne Festival, the Ilkley Literature Festival Fringe, the Huddersfield Literature Festival, performances for Amnesty International, and supporting Shane Koyczan (presented by Apples & Snakes and Say Owt in York) and Hollie McNish (presented by Evidently in Salford).  

Rose has written and toured two solo shows – The Geography of Me & How To Starve An Artist (Runner Up Best UK Spoken Word Show – Saboteur Awards 2017).  Her slam wins include Manchester’s Word War Slam Championship, SLAMalgamate in Newcastle, the Axis Slam in Crewe and the Say Owt Slam in Edinburgh.  Rose has competed at the Lingo Spoken Word Slam in Dublin, the BBC Slam in Edinburgh, and at the Hammer & Tongue National Slam Final at London’s Royal Albert Hall (2016 & 2017). 

Rose programmes and hosts Queenie’s Coffee House Nights at the Lawrence Batley Theatre in Huddersfield, and runs creative writing workshops for young people and adults.

Photo: Dominic Simpson

PRICES Fee includes all day and evening tutored workshop sessions, readings, accommodation and full board (not including alcohol).

Single – En-suite room £760
Single – Shared bathroom £710
Shared Room (2 Beds) £660
Non-residential (inc. lunch and evening meal) £500

TO BOOK £150 deposit payable on booking by PayPal, bank transfer or cheque, to secure place, balance due six weeks before start of course.
Please see Terms and Conditions.
Accommodation Professional Tutor
Meals Sheets & Towels
Boots/outdoor shoes/trainers suitable for walking on rough paths.
A waterproof jacket or coat.
Warm Clothes
Writing materials: your personal writing preference – laptop, paper, pens etc.
USB memory stick: for printing your work. (We do have air printing)
Musical instruments and drawing/painting materials – sketchbook, pens, pencils, watercolours etc. (optional!)
Drawing/painting materials – sketchbook, pens, pencils, watercolours etc.
Cash: for books written by the tutors, alcohol, taxis or sundries. The nearest cash machine is in Hawes, seven miles away.
START TIME Please arrive between 4:00 pm and 6:00 pm on Monday 9th July 2018.
END TIME After breakfast, 10:00 am on Saturday 14th July 2018.
LOCATION The Garsdale Retreat, Clough View, Garsdale Head, Sedbergh, Cumbria LA10 5PW

Nearest station: Garsdale – direct line from Leeds.


The Garsdale Retreat provides an inspiring place to develop as a writer. Our courses offer opportunities for new, emerging and experienced writers. The tutors, all professional writers, lead workshops and also give one-to-one tutorials to help the individual student. In the remote and beautiful setting of The Yorkshire Dales, The Garsdale Retreat gives a wonderful opportunity to escape from the daily stresses of life and to draw inspiration from fellow students, tutors and the landscape itself.
All courses start on Monday afternoon, arrival time 4.00 – 6.00pm and finish after breakfast on Saturday, 10.00am

Course Structure

Although there will be slight variations, according to the type of course, students can generally expect the following outline:

Each day begins with a morning workshop at 9.30am where students explore particular aspects of the chosen genre and take part in writing exercises to further their understanding and expertise. Tutors also write alongside the students, sharing and developing work with participants. The immediacy of hearing or reading an expert’s emerging work gives invaluable insight and inspiration into the art of writing. All students have opportunities to share their work with the tutor and fellow writers in a safe, supportive and nurturing environment in which individual work is respected and confidence developed.
There is a mid-morning coffee break and the session finishes at lunchtime (1.00pm)
After lunch, participants are free to do whatever they like, such as: relax, go for walks, enjoy The Dales, draw, paint, read or work on individual writing projects.
All students have at least one individual tutorial which usually takes place in the early evening after tea and homemade cake.
Each evening there is an after-dinner event. The precise nature of this varies according to the type of course but participants can typically expect a tutor reading on Tuesday followed by a reading from a guest writer on the Wednesday evening. There is an informal activity on Thursday such as a student ‘open-mic’ night, or a tutor devised activity. On Friday, students and tutor take part in a reading of their work from the course-produced anthology.

All courses end after breakfast on Saturday.

Poetry Course Anthology

An integral part of poetry courses is the production of an anthology of writing produced in the week. It is, of course, accepted that work may not be completely polished and there is an element of work-in-progress about it. However, the aim of the anthology is to reflect a flavour of the work accomplished on the course by both tutor and participants and to provide them with an attractive record of their time at Garsdale. The Retreat stores copies of anthologies in the library, providing pleasure and inspiration for future students.

Fiction-Writing - The Garsdale Retreat