This course is suitable for writers arriving with a blank page as well as those bringing a project they have already started work on. Whether you are interested in writing a novel or a short story, this course is for you.
Course participants will spend the week developing their prose fiction style. Mornings will be structured around a series of exercises and writing prompts with the aim of improving our understanding of how to write effective scene, character and plot. In the early evening workshops, participants are encouraged to share work in progress and there will be guided discussion considering ways in which to develop your material further.
By the end of the week you will be equipped with skills and techniques to help you refine your prose and you will have the support of fellow writers to encourage you beyond the workshop as you continue your writing journey.
|Tutor: Hannah Vincent – Novelist/Playwright
Hannah is a playwright and novelist and experienced workshop leader. Her first novel Alarm Girl was published by Myriad and her second The Weaning is published by Salt. She is currently working on a collection of short stories. Hannah teaches Creative Writing on the Open University’s MA and she teaches life writing on the Autobiography and Life writing programme at New Writing South.
Hannah is Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the University of Brighton.
Photo: Bosie Vincent
|Guest, Wednesday evening: David Morley – Poet
David Morley won the Ted Hughes Award for New Poetry for The Invisible Gift: Selected Poems and a Cholmondeley Award for his contribution to poetry. His poetry collections, all from Carcanet, includeThe Magic of What’s There, The Gypsy and the Poet, Enchantment and The Invisible Kings.
David is a Fellow of The Royal Society of Literature.
Photo: copyright Graeme Oxby
|PRICES||Fee includes all day and evening tutored workshop sessions, readings, accommodation and full board (not including alcohol).
Single – En-suite room £790
|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.
|WHAT TO BRING||
|START TIME||Please arrive between 3:00pm and 5:00pm on Monday 8th April 2019.
Tea and Cake 4.30pm
Introductory Workshop 5.45 – 6.45pm
|END TIME||After breakfast, 10:00am on Saturday 13th April 2019.|
|LOCATION||The Garsdale Retreat, Clough View, Garsdale Head, Sedbergh, Cumbria LA10 5PW
Nearest railway station: Garsdale, on the Leeds – Carlisle line.
For directions, see Find Us section on the Contact page.
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 3.00 – 5.00pm. On this first day, tea and cake are at 4.30pm followed by an introductory/ice-breaking workshop 5.45 – 6.45pm. Dinner is at 7.00pm. All courses end after breakfast on Saturday (10.00am).
Although there will be slight variations, according to the type of course (see below), students can generally expect the following outline:
8.00 – 9.00am: Breakfast
9.30 – 11.00am: First workshop – Students explore particular aspects of the chosen genre and take part in writing exercises to further their understanding and expertise. 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.
11.00 – 11.30am: Coffee break
11.30am – 1.00pm: Second workshop
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.
4.30pm: Tea and cake
5.00 – 6.00pm: Third workshop
All students have one individual tutorial of 30 minutes with the tutor in the course of the week which usually takes place at a mutually agreed time, usually in the afternoon.
Each evening, at about 8.30pm, 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 word/literary game. On Friday, there is a reading of work produced during the week.
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 the writing is essentially work-in-progress. However, the aim of the anthology is to reflect a flavour of the work accomplished on the course and to provide participants 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.
These follow the same basic structure as above except there is only one workshop in the morning and, depending on the size of the group, participants will have between two and four tutorials per week.
The only formal structure of the week is determined by meal-times (see above), allowing participants to concentrate totally on their own writing. After dinner, participants in conjunction with the course director sometimes organise evening read-rounds of their work /open mics/music /word games. However, participation in such events is entirely voluntary and people are free to continue with their writing in the evenings if they prefer.