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MA in Creative Writing: Poetry or Prose Fiction

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  • Entry requirements
    This MA is a broad but intensive programme, designed for those who want to develop their skills as imaginative writers. The accent is on your own creative production, though you will be supported in regular meetings of a group made up of fellow students and staff.
  • Academic Title
    MA in Creative Writing: Poetry or Prose Fiction
  • Course description
    You will participate in workshops at which the group will critically discuss your work, and you will be expected to re-draft and edit your material in the light of such feedback.You will also benefit from individual supervisory sessions.

    You may already have decided that you are particularly interested in either fiction or poetry, but you will initially be expected to attempt a wide variety of writing. You will be encouraged to try new forms, genres and sub-genres, and to explore the writer’s craft and profession from various perspectives. In the second semester you will begin to focus on your specialism. This will be either fiction (novel, novella or short stories) or a collection of poetry.


    -Portfolio Module 1: Introductory Workshop
    -Literary Forms
    -Portfolio Module 2: Specialist Workshop
    -The Writer’s Practice
    -The Book Club
    -Final Portfolio


    Students may choose to follow one 20-credit module from another MA degree course.

    The Final Portfolio, comprising18,000 words of prose fiction or a collection of 25–30 poems, is worth 60 credits. Students also submit a writer’s journal (2,000 words). All other modules are worth 20 credits.

    There are no formal examinations: all modules are assessed by coursework, usually a portfolio of creative writing or an essay.

    You will be taught practical skills by members of staff who are professional writers with many prizes and awards to their credit: Cliff Forshaw, Bethan Jones, David Kennedy, Christopher Reid and David Wheatley.

    A stimulating programme of workshops and readings by visiting poets and novelists complements modules (recent guests have included Andrew Motion, Ciarán Carson, Alan Hollinghurst, Jackie Kay,Toby Litt, Nicholas Murray, Carol Rumens, Anne Stevenson and John Hartley Williams).

    Publishers and agents will tell you how to market your work.The Philip Larkin Scholarship, currently worth £750, is offered to a student whose work shows exceptional promise.

    As well as their own creative output and interests in contemporary poetry and fiction, members of staff are active as editors and researchers across a wide spectrum of topics, including myth, elegy, poetic form, story structure, Irish literature and translation.

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