Creative Writing MA student Neil Hudson has just had his short story ‘A Relic of Millia Maslowa’ published in the ‘Treasure’ edition of Colp journal. You can read this strange and disconcerting slice of fiction at www.gypsumsoundtales.com . I recommend it highly -well done, Neil!
Call for Gothic, Supernatural and Horror Writing for New Magazine set up by recent York St John Graduates
From campfire ghost stories to eldritch screams on lamplight streets, the uncanny and supernatural have haunted bookshelves for the past century. Unhomely is the second anthology from GreenTeeth Press, introducing more fresh authors to the industry!
The full submission details are on www.greenteethpress.com/submit and submissions should be sent to email@example.com
There is a revised deadline for submission for York St John students of 7 November 2019
This is the link to the form you can use to express your interest in writing and/or editing for the exciting and dynamic YSJ Creative Writing Blog –
Please complete this form if you are interested in writing for The CWB (The Creative Writing Blog.)
These are the options available to you:
Be a Staff Writer: We occasionally identify topics to be covered or events to be reviewed. These are first offered to our Staff Writers (typically a staff writer will contribute 3-5 pieces to the blog per academic year).
Be a Sub-Editor: In addition to writing regularly for the blog, co-editors also format and upload work by other students, workshop ideas for features and series and recruit fellow students to the blog team. They are also a friendly, informal point of contact for new writers.
Be an Assistant Editor. PLEASE NOTE, THIS ROLE IS ONLY OPEN TO POSTGRADUATE APPLICANTS. As an Assistant Editor you will work closely with the blog editors to shape the character and content of the blog. You will be responsible for managing Sub-Editors and commissioning and editing new posts. This is an excellent role if you are looking to acquire experience in publishing or journalism.
Submissions Now Open for 2019
Hosted by the international art and culture publication Aesthetica Magazine, the Award is a celebration of excellence in Poetry and Short Fiction, and one of the UK’s most prestigious competitions. It presents writers with the opportunity to further their involvement with the literary world.
Prizes for the Creative Writing Award include:
- £1,000 for each winner (Poetry and Short Fiction)
- Publication in the Aesthetica Creative Writing Annual
- Consultation with Redhammer (Short Fiction Winner)
- Full Membership to The Poetry Society (Poetry Winner)
- One-year subscription to Granta
- Books courtesy of Bloodaxe and Vintage
Entries are open for the Aesthetica Creative Writing Award, presenting an opportunity for writers to showcase their Poetry and Short Fiction to international audiences and further their involvement in the literary world.
Prizes include: £1,000 for the Short Fiction and Poetry winners, publication in the Aesthetica Creative Writing Annual, consultation with Redhammer Management, membership to the Poetry Society, one-year subscription to Granta and a selection of books courtesy of Bloodaxe and Vintage.
Submit here: http://aestheti.cc/5xdj7
The Northern Fiction Alliance is an exciting collective of publishers joining together to showcase publishing in the North of England. Manchester’s Comma Press and The York Centre for Writing here at York St John University are delighted to host the first #NorthernFictionAlliance Roadshow in Yorkshire, following the sell-out success of the inaugural Roadshow event in Manchester last year. This event will see the members of the Alliance – some of the most innovative and exciting indies in the UK – showcasing their work. Come along to hear from some of the most interesting writers and publishers currently working in the UK.
Publisher and authors reading on the night will include:
- And Other Stories, with Northern Book Prize winner Amy Arnold
- Bluemoose Books
- Comma Press, with Gaia Holmes
- Dead Ink Books, with SJ Bradley
- Peepal Tree Press
- Tilted Axis Press, with Hamid Ismailov
- Valley Press, with Nora Chassler
This event will serve as an opportunity to establish new contacts and to celebrate the new work being produced in the North of England. Please book your free ticket here.
Our students also have the opportunity to attend free masterclasses with NFA writers.
2.30-3.45pm: Workshop: Novelists SJ Bradley and Northern Book Award winner Amy Arnold on research and writing. Book your free ticket here
4-5.30: Workshop: Poet and novelist Nora Chassler and poet Gaia Holmes discuss place and writing. Book your free ticket here
Don’t miss this great opportunity to make connections with publishers and to hear from some exciting new writers!
The Discovery Hub, Co/ Converge, York St John University, Lord Mayor’s Walk, York, YO317EX
Manager: Emma McKenzie – Discovery Hub Team Lead. firstname.lastname@example.org 07785607771
The Discovery Hub is funded by Tees Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust (TEWV) and is based within Converge (www.yorksj.ac.uk/converge) at York St John University. Converge offer a range of educational courses to people who have lived experience of mental health illness as part of a recovery journey re-claiming skills and identity.
The Discovery Hub supports access to Converge from secondary mental health care services and also uses York St John as a launch pad to community learning and educational opportunities for those wishing to branch access other educational environments across the city.
We are looking for a post graduate intern with training in creative writing to support the development of partnership project working for the Discovery Hub and Converge. The graduate intern will be responsible for supporting and delivering staging ground creative writing classes in the local community that act as a step towards enrolling with Converge creative writing classes. These classes are aimed at building confidence, communication and trust with a view to stepping into new opportunities and maintaining well-being. TEWV are also developing a ‘trauma informed care’ aspect to their delivery of recovery focused work. This involves exploring ‘what has happened to a person’ rather than ‘what is wrong with the person’. There will be the opportunity for a graduate intern to support the creation of a project to explore trauma informed care – primarily in supporting the delivery of a memoir and autobiographical writing course and on a secondary basis making links with Storying Sheffield (www.storyingsheffield.com ) to develop storying workshops across the city.
The current classes that run in partnership with community organisations are:
- Ecotherapy Connect to Nature at St Nicks. St Nicks is a 24 acre nature reserve. The team leader for the Discovery Hub has successfully been running a series of creative writing courses over the last three years that promote connecting to nature for well-being. The Graduate Intern would support the development of this class and support the team leader building an anthology of work for publication with St Nicks.
- St Leonards Creative Writing – Last September we piloted a creative writing class at St Leonards hospice in York supporting people experiencing bereavement to make new connetions and to learn a new skill. The pilot was highly successful. The Graduate Intern would support running this course again with a Converge creative writing tutor Helen Kenwright.
Pending courses due to run in 2019:
- Memoir and autobiographical writing course: A course aimed at exploring personal stories and narratives. This course will also investigate the craft of writing memoir and autobiography and look at the practical and ethical implications of this genre. The graduate intern will support the development and running of the course alongside the Discovery Hub Team Leader.
- Storying York: A set of workshops run from health buildings exploring individual identity through creative writing and promoting Converge and Discovery Hub opportunities as a service to support recovery.
- Previous experience of working with Converge either in a paid or voluntary capacity.
- Experience of mental health illness, either through your own lived experience, or in support of others – either personal or through paid employment.
- The ability to support others in an individual capacity during course sessions. In particular helping students who are anxious and nervous about engaging in creative writing classes.
- The ability to engage with community partnership projects to support existing staging ground creative writing classes. This would involve liaising with other community programmes and establishing strong working relationships and developing creative writing opportunities.
- A good working knowledge of existing Converge Creative writing classes so that a smooth transition can be made between classes from the wider community into Converge.
- The ability to support developing individual talent within Converge creative writing opportunities. This may involve aspects such as helping an individual to explore a writing genre, seek out formal higher education opportunities, or to assist in bringing together written work for an anthology.
Nobody can quite prepare you for the volume of work organising a cover for an anthology is, combined with the task of then having to select readers for an event as grand as the York Literature Festival: Beyond the Walls launch. It was a big ask, and an even bigger weight of pressure, made greater by the continual praise of our module director, Dr. Kimberly Campanello, for the previous year’s hard work and success on the module. The reputation of our predecessors was upon us, and we weren’t about to be the team that couldn’t maintain it. But amidst all of that pressure, we pulled it off and in doing so learnt a little about the industry and gained some valuable skills for the future.
So, here’s how we did it:
The process of selecting the cover started on the rocks. The call for submissions showed us that even though there is a wide community of artists at York St John, to begin with not everyone was as excited about Beyond the Walls as we were. Initially, we didn’t receive very many submissions, but thanks to the hard work of the Promotions team, we eventually had a total of 27 artwork submissions, all of a high standard, meaning that our decision wasn’t an easy one. We were presented with a variety of styles and forms of art work for the cover, meaning that we had to decide what the overall vision we wanted for this year’s cover was going to be, in comparison to last year’s. Once we had decided, we compiled a list of our first choice down to our last to be reviewed by Kimberly and our Subject Director Dr. Naomi Booth who agreed our choice:
The winning design above was sent across to Jamie McGarry, who integrated it into Valley Press’s house style, producing this result:
When the final choice was made, our work was by no means over. Preparations for the event itself were well underway and with the main attraction out of the way we were then tasked with selecting five readers for the launch event. Which in itself was difficult because all of the work included in the anthology as selected by Editorial team 1 was of a very high standard. This was an important part of the process as we had to ensure that we selected a nice range of both forms and styles. Being involved in the event first-hand meant that we were able to see the event start to come together at the dress rehearsal, and hear some of the beautiful work from the anthology spoken aloud.
We thought we would also use this opportunity to briefly discuss the Publishing Production and Performance module and the valuable information we have learnt about the industry over the course of the semester. For anyone in first year joint or single honours creative writing, we would highly suggest selecting this module in your second year. Not only do you learn so much from guest speakers who vary from writers, to publishers and agents, but you also come away with a better understanding of running events, writing cover letters to publishers and the importance of literary movements. All of this helps to shape your own writing through a better understanding of the publishing industry.
This module forces you out of your comfort zone in the best sort of way.
The contact with independent publishers such as Valley Press, who we have been collaborating with to publish the anthology this year, was an enlightening experience and introduced us to the pressures that publishers face regularly to create high-quality events and products. It feels rewarding for all of on the module to have this opportunity and knowing that at the end of it all we were part of creating a successful launch and a beautiful anthology. What other module on the English literature or creative writing degrees would allow you to work first hand with a publisher and even visit their headquarters?
Editorial Team 2
Beyond the Walls 2018
I’ve never been very good at sharing. I’ll be polite to your face during tapas but when you take the last olive I will abandon you quicker than I dropped my plan to wax at home on a weekly basis (pretty much immediately).
With this in mind, I applied to be part of University Camarade. This show is part of a wider event called The Enemies Project, that is being curated by SJ Fowler (www.stevenjfowler.com). The project is about ‘Contemporary poetry in collaboration, Innovative live literature and Performance Art’ (www.theenemiesproject.com). It’s basically poets sharing; their experiences, knowledge and performance space.
I was accepted onto the project and together with Tom Young, David Yeomans and Joe Shaw, we were paired with a student from another University and asked to create a five-minute experimental poem to perform in London.
What the Chuff is Experimental Poetry?
Good question. Apparently, a lot of things could be classed as experimental poetry: lists or streams of consciousness or shouting a nursery rhyme while sitting on a melon thinking about George Osborne.
The lovely thing about this genre is that you get to throw the ‘traditional’ rule books out the window. You can chuck your stanzas and your enunciation and your commas. Experimental poetry, for me, is all about the experience of the performance and the process reading of a non
The Weekend in London Town
‘Kimberly Campanello’s love of books is more contagious than impetigo’, is a well-known phrase in the Creative Writing department (made up by me, just now).
As part of the weekend, Joe, Tom, David and I were accompanied to London with Kimberly and shown some of her favourite sights around the city. We visited the British Library, The Poetry Library, had half a pint at The French House (they only serve halves so it takes longer for all the writers to get pissed) and went to the alley where Dryden was stabbed to smile for a selfie.
This may sound strange for a Creative Writing student, but before I applied for this course I didn’t read a lot. I used to read when I was at school: I was avid and would write quotes on my bedroom walls in silver pen and I could spend hours in a book shop or library. When I read I felt clever, worthwhile and bloody marvellous.
Little by little I stopped reading. I worked. Ate. Had a baby, turned on the tv. I stopped being curious.
But then I went to London at the weekend with some writers and an engaging tutor. That young, intelligent girl I’ve kept stuffed full of reality tv and Maltesers got to peep out. I was spoken to as a writer and I felt encouraged and valued and really fucking happy.
I ended the trip in a bookshop. I bought myself something random just because the cover looked interesting and I bought my daughter a book about amazing women to read to her bedtime. I’ve hardly watched any tv since.
The University Camarade Process
Tom (partnered with Michael Sutton from Edge Hill University): “We had the balance of getting on with our own things but we came back and wrote in response to each other.”
David (partnered with Kieran Wyatt from Edge Hill University): “We emailed our poems back and forth with increasing frequency. I found I was looking forward to each new draft.”
Joe (partnered with Jennah Fletcher from Kingston University): “It was a challenge with distance and communication, but it’s made me learn about my own writing process and style.”
Me (partnered with Vilde-Valerie Torset from Kingston University): “I worried we wouldn’t have any common ground but once we started talking the process became easy.”
The subject matter for our poems varied: David and Kieran wrote about entrapment and enclosure, an intelligent piece conveying characters in contrast to one another.
Tom and Michael focused on their train journeys home (this is a basic description for what was an ELECTRIFYING performance – put your tea down and watch it now, right now).
Joe wrote about Sophia the Robot and how it has got Citizenship when a lot of humans don’t have that basic right. Jennah’s subject matter was different but their performance together was cleverly timed and delivered so that the poems became one entity.
Vilde-Valarie and I wrote about the performances we do as women, she from a young person’s point of view, me from a married mother’s point of view.
Was fucking terrifying. The microphone looked enormous and I could hardly look up from my piece of paper.
Having said that, there was nothing but encouragement and support from the audience and fellow poets. Looking back at the performance, you can’t even tell I’m shaking and now I can’t wait to get back on stage and do some more poetry.
I will know for next time that microphones aren’t that intimidating and that five minutes is not a long time once you’re up there. If you get the chance to be part of this project you really should (even if it’s just to visit a library with Kimberly – that was worth it in itself).
As Tom so succinctly put it: ‘can we do that all over again?’
To view all our trip photos on Twitter click here.
This year we are already hard at work advertising the Beyond the Walls 2018 anthology, which will be published by Valley Press. So, here’s a quick update of what we’ve done, what’s coming up and how you can stay involved.
Just to let you know that the deadline to hand in your creative work for this anthology is 16th February. You may submit work previously written for your modules. The submission guidelines are:
- You must provide a cover letter that includes your name, programme and year of study.
- The max word count for prose (fiction or non-fiction) is 1200 words.
- The max number of poems is 3.
- The max number of images as JPEGS or a link to a portfolio is 3.
- You may submit in more than one genre/form.
You can email your work as attachments to: email@example.com
Our job as the promotion team is to promote the creation of the book and then the event that launches it. So, for now we are focusing on promoting the submission itself. To do this we had team meeting to create our social media.
First, we looked at previous years’ accounts and made the goal to have a stronger presence on these sites. The Facebook we created has already reached this goal.
Come join on Facebook at YSJ Beyond the Walls 2018.
Our Twitter has also gained a following and even appeared in the SU:
Follow us at @beyondwalls2018
And last but certainly not least is our Instagram account, which you can find by searching: ysjbeyondthewalls2018.
We knew it was important to get the word out, so we decided to come into lectures and speak to you face to face. Over tea and toasties, we organised who was going where and how we would inform you. We’ve already visited a few lectures and it has been and will continue to be a successful venture.
In the future we will be using our social media accounts to promote the launch which is part of York Literature Festival. This free event will take place on 21st March 2018 at 6.30pm in The Basement (City Screen). It includes readings by Valley Press authors Nigel Forde and Nora Chassler. Don’t forget to book your free tickets here.
We can’t wait to read your work so please remember to submit before the deadline the 16th February.
York St John University Creative Writing students on the 2nd year Publishing, Production and Performance module are seeking submissions of writing and art for Beyond the Walls, an anthology showcasing work by YSJ students.
The anthology will be published and distributed internationally by Valley Press. Additionally, we will select five of the published writers to read from their work at the Beyond the Walls launch event on the 21st of March at The Basement at City Screen as part of York Literature Festival. Selected readers will share the stage with Valley Press authors Nora Chassler and Nigel Forde.
This is an outstanding platform to showcase your work.
We are looking for fiction, poetry, and creative non-fiction on any subject or theme. You may submit work previously written for your modules.
We are also seeking visual art, photography or design images for the cover. Last year’s gorgeous Van Gogh-inspired cover was designed by BA (Hons) Design student Ellen Shaw.
Please provide a cover letter along with your submission identifying your name, programme and year.
1. max 1200 word count for prose
2. max 3 poems per submission
3. max 3 images submitted as JPEGS or with a link to portfolio
4. You may submit in more than one genre/form
Email work as attachments to firstname.lastname@example.org
The submission window opens on Friday, January 26 and closes at 11:59 pm on Friday, February 16.