Writers' Newletter January 2021

Writers' Newletter January 2021

Writing Ambitions Project Celebrations

We are reaching the end of our Writing Ambitions project which offered commissions to writers working with a Derbyshire-based Arts Festivals, part of Festivity. Over the coming weeks poets Ioney Smallhorne, Kazozara Oyalowo, Emma Pass and Rebecca Goldsmith will be sharing their poems, poetry films or experiences of working to commission on Arts Derbyshire’s social media platforms @artsderbyshire. Each poet will be featured for one week starting with performance poet and educator ioney Smallhorne on Saturday 9 th January. You can also view or listen to their poetry film or performance on Arts Derbyshire’s YouTube page https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCt4VLFIN_MxxbgmrHSyEV_w/featured. Please like, share or comment if you wish. There will also be a series of celebration events which you can get involved with including one-to-one sessions with poet Helen Mort.

The project was funded and supported by Derbyshire County Council, Arts Derbyshire, Junction Arts Writing East Midlands, and supported by Arts Council England with funding from the National Lottery.

One-to-one sessions for Derbyshire Poets with Helen Mort

As part of our Writing Ambitions end-of-project celebrations we will be offering one-to-one sessions with poet Helen Mort, who acted as a mentor during the project.

The sessions are available on Saturday 27th February and have previously sold out extremely quickly, so we recommend early booking. There are two options available looking at your poetry or your career development and the sessions are for people who live, work or study in Derbyshire. The sessions cost £19.99 and you can find out more or book at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/one-to-one-sessions-with-poet-helen-mort-tickets-135311230533.

Advice for Writers- Read, Read, Read

Reading widely and often is advice that many successful writers offer to writers establishing their writing career. If you haven’t already explored Derbyshire Libraries eLending offer, then it is well worth a look.

There are some writing related titles and a wide range of fiction and other non-fiction titles available for loan. Borrowbox is Derbyshire LIbraries eBook platform giving access a wide range of eBooks and eAudiobooks which you can borrow via an app on your device, phone or tablet. This is free for library customers to use, sign up here if you are not already a member;
There is access to all the eLending platforms direct from their websites here, don’t forget to sign up for a library card first; https://www.derbyshire.gov.uk/leisure/libraries/ebooks/ebooks-emagazines-and-eaudiobooks.aspx.

January writing workshops with Alex Davis

These workshops are pay what you like sessions, online, via Google Meet.

Wednesday 13 th January, 1pm-2pm  -  LIT AT LUNCH 6 – STORY STRUCTURE
Knowing how to structure a story is pivotal to any author – but how do you best go about it? This short 1-hour session will look at some of the key theories of story structure, and how you can apply them to your writing to produce more exciting and dynamic fiction. The session will include a talk, discussion points and exercises.

Thursday 14 th January, 6:30pm-8:00pm  -  URBAN FANTASY
Urban fantasy has grown increasingly popular as a genre of late, bringing some of the best-loved creatures of fantasy and horror into the world as we know it. But how do we combine those two elements successfully? This workshop will explore the definition and history of the field, look at some of its key elements and allow you to develop a new idea in the field with our writing exercise on the night.

Tuesday 19 th January, 1pm-2pm  -  LIT AT LUNCH 7 – INTRODUCTION TO FREE WRITING
Free writing can be a powerful tool for writers to unlock their creativity and gain fresh ideas – but how do you start, and how can you be sure you’re getting the best out of it? Through lecture content, exercises and discussions, this session will send you away with the toolkit to deliver your own free writing going forward.

Wednesday 20 th January, 6:30pm-8:00pm  -  HOW TO GET AN AGENT
In most cases, getting an agent is a pivotal part of landing that publishing deal with the mainstream presses – but how do you make the approach and maximise your chances? This session will explore the key elements of the cover letter, synopsis and sample text, as well as looking at what you need to research to make the right approach to the right person!


For more information, or to book these workshops, visit https://alexdaviswriting.blogspot.com/p/online-workshops.html or email alexdavisevents@hotmail.co.uk

Derbyshire Writing School
How to Write Your First Novel – Online 4-week course. Starting Thursday 7th January 7 pm - 8:30pm via Zoom. 

Everyone has a book in them. Will 2021 be the year you finally write yours? Our ‘how to write your first novel’ course is a perfect introduction for those looking to learn how to start writing fiction. 


Writing Podcast - We've launched a new podcast all about writing! Each week we answer questions and discuss writing topics. We'd love to answer your writing questions, please get in touch with us and let us know any problems you are facing and topics you'd like us to cover: info@derbyshirewritingschool.com. You can listen to the podcast at https://www.derbyshirewritingschool.com/podcast.

This is Our Village: Holymoorside Poem
This poem was collectively written by the residents of Holymoorside and near neighbours. The poem emerged during the early days of the first lockdown, as an antidote to COVID blues. Some two-dozen people from 10 to 80+ took part. The video was filmed in the village towards the end of September. The link is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZxVB_1iXV8.


Back to news