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Creative and Life Writing MA

Goldsmiths, University of London

  • September, 2020 Start Date

  • 2 years Duration

  • Part Time Study Mode

  • £3495.00 Course Fee

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Course Description

Have you got a story to tell? A collection of poems that you can't wait to get down on paper? This degree will help you develop your creative writing practice. You’ll experiment with a wide variety of forms to help you discover your preferred mode of writing.

  • You may be writing regularly; you may be returning to it after focussing on your career. Whatever your background, if you're serious about your writing, we can help you to develop your practice.
     
  • Our students bring with them a lively range of interests, cultures and experiences. We welcome students of any age who share the drive to take their writing seriously.
     
  • You’ll have the chance to experiment with different forms – poetry, the novel, short story and life writing - as well as to specialise in one of those areas -  and you will receive expert guidance in each field. Read work by our students.
     
  • Some seminars will be taken by visiting writers who will talk about their work, introduce you to different theories of creative writing and engage you in discussion about their writing. Recent visitors have included Ali Smith, Caryl Phillips and Daljit Nagra.
     
  • We regularly host panels of literary agents, editors, organisers of literature schemes and projects as well as weekly readings and discussions organised by our Writers Centre. 
     
  • Several graduates of this programme, including Jack Underwood and Emily Berry are published by Faber, long regarded as the pre-eminent poetry publisher in the UK. They join a list of Faber publishees that includes TS Eliot, Seamus Heaney, Philip Larkin, Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes. Many of our other students are published authors. In fact, over 80 of our students have published their work.
     
  • In 2018, the Royal Society of Literature elected 40 new fellows under the age of 40 – in effect selecting the leading young British writers today. Six of them – Ross Raisin, Evie Wyld, Lucy Caldwell, Sophie Collins, Amy Sackville and Emily Berry – are Goldsmiths creative writing alumni. No other university creative writing programme comes close to matching that.
     
  • Awards won by our creative writing alumni include the 2019 Desmond Elliott Prize, The Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year award, Authors’ Club First Novel Award, John Llewellyn Rhys Prize, Betty Trask Prize, Rooney Prize for Irish Literature and the Desmond Elliott Prize. There have also been shortlistings for the Costa Prize (in both the poetry and fiction categories), the Encore prize, the Orange Prize for Fiction, the Orange Award for New Writers, the Dublin International IMPAC Prize, The Miles Franklin Award, the Commonwealth Writers Prize, The Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award, the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, the Dylan Thomas Prize, the TS Eliot Prize and the Forward Prize for Poetry.
     
  • The Pat Kavanagh Prize is presented annually to an outstanding graduate from the programme. The £500 prize, created in memory of the much-admired literary agent, is awarded by a team of her colleagues at United Agents. This has been the catalyst for publication by several previous winners.

Have you got a story to tell? A collection of poems that you can't wait to get down on paper? This degree will help you develop your creative writing practice. You’ll experiment with a wide variety of forms to help you discover your preferred mode of writing. You may be writing regularly; you may be returning to it after focussing on your career. Whatever your...

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Course Content

There are three main components of the Masters:

  • Creative and life writing workshops
  • Contemporary Contexts for Creative and Life Writing
  • One-to-one tutorials

There will be two core modules: a two-term workshop in creative and life writing, and a one-term Contemporary Contexts for Creative and Life Writing seminar module.

Workshop in Creative and Life Writing

All students attend this two and-a-half-hour compulsory workshop – part-time students attend in their first year. In the first term you will be encouraged to experiment with a variety of genres in creative and life writing, and then in the second term to develop your individual interests in poetry, fiction, autobiography and biography, or perhaps a fusion of those genres.

Each term you submit a piece of your own writing together with a critical account of how you have structured and developed it. Presentations of your work to other students with an account of your aims and approaches form an additional important element.

Some workshops will be taken by visiting writers, introducing you to a range of practices, concerns and techniques. The workshop also enables you to debate issues raised in the Contemporary Contexts module in relation to your own practice.

Contemporary Contexts for Creative and Life Writing

This is a two-hour seminar module, made up of informal talks by visiting speakers, followed by a seminar. These talks might be by practising writers, biographers, critics or philosophers (from both outside and inside Goldsmiths).

Our notable visitors have included Ali Smith, A L Kennedy, Daljit Nagra and Jon McGregor. Wide-ranging topics have included: the role of the writer and politics; writing the self; the relationship between contemporary fiction and biography; the relationship between fictional and non-fictional autobiography; writers and their readers; the publishing world; contemporary ideas about language; gender and writing.

In both the Contemporary Contexts module and the workshops you will be asked to consider works by significant contemporary writers in relation to your own writing practice. Assessment is by a critical essay on a writer or literary issue. Full-time students take the Contemporary Contexts module in their first term and part-time students in their second year. 

There are three main components of the Masters: Creative and life writing workshops Contemporary Contexts for Creative and Life Writing One-to-one tutorials There will be two core modules: a two-term workshop in creative and life writing, and a one-term Contemporary Contexts for Creative and Life Writing seminar...

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Available Dates

Location Start Date Price  

Classroom

New Cross, London

Full Time, 1 year

September, 2020

£6990.00

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Classroom

New Cross, London

Part Time, 2 years

September, 2020

£3495.00

Send Enquiry

Entry Requirements

You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least second class standard in a relevant/related subject. 

You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level.

International qualifications

We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.

If English isn’t your first language, you will need an IELTS score (or equivalent English language qualification) of 7.0 with a 7.0 in writing and no element lower than 6.5 to study this programme. If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.

You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least second class standard in a relevant/related subject.  You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate...

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Assessment Methods

Assessment is by the submission of four pieces of writing of 5,000 words each – either an essay, or, for workshops, a piece or pieces of creative or life-writing – plus a critical account of how you have structured and developed your work. You will also be assessed on a portfolio (maximum of 20,000 words) containing a piece or pieces of creative or life-writing together with a critical account of how you have structured and developed your work. In all cases, the number of words applies to prose. 

Assessment is by the submission of four pieces of writing of 5,000 words each – either an essay, or, for workshops, a piece or pieces of creative or life-writing – plus a critical account of how you have structured and developed your work. You will also be assessed on a portfolio (maximum of 20,000 words) containing a piece or pieces of creative or life-writing together with a...

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