write with the hw

It’s still a surprise to me that I enjoy teaching so much and that I seem to be pretty good at it. Before 2000 I’d never imagined myself as a creative writing tutor. I thought my own writing would suffer, that I’d resent the time looking at other peoples’ work at the expense of developing my own.

I couldn’t have been more wrong. The reality is that when I teach I am inspired to write. A gift that most students don’t even realise they’re giving me.

During the past thirteen years I’ve taught both accredited and non-accredited creative writing courses (poetry, fiction and creative non-fiction) for the Adult Education Service, the WEA, and the University of Kent. In 2004 the University awarded me the Faculty of Humanities Teaching Prize for innovative and inspiring practices in the teaching of poetry, the first creative writing tutor ever to receive the prize.
AppleHouse Poetry
Between 2004 and 2007 I designed and directed a programme of poetry workshops – AppleHouse Poetry – to support apprentice and published poets in the South East of England. Weekly groups, Saturday workshops and master-classes were held at a studio in the middle of an apple orchard at my home in Kent and were lead by some of the UK’s most notable poets: Ros Barber, Stephen Knight, Roddy Lumsden, Sean O’Brien, Maurice Riordan, Catherine Smith, Susan Wicks, and Tamar Yoseloff.

You can have a taste of the Applehouse Poetry Workshop experience by visiting AppleHouse Poetry Workshop Online where you'll find four years' worth of prompts, poems and practical writing exercises to browse through and try at your leisure.

I have also designed and delivered creative writing, Inset Day and personal development workshops for teachers and educators at a number of schools in the South East of England, including a course for teachers at the renowned Benenden School in the UK, ‘From Inspiration to Presentation’, as well as themed workshops for young people and students between the ages of 10 and 16.  

I'm currently a free-lance tutor working in schools and with private organisations and individuals. If you have any questions, would like more information about mentoring or my fees for designing and leading writing workshops, you can contact me here.

Some testimonials:

My genuine response is that not only are you gifted but you have the ability to imprint your knowledge with clarity and enthusiasm, and your love of words is inspiring…

…within three months I went from wondering whether I could write poetry at all, to knowing that I had found the new direction that I wanted for my future life.

I have been on some writing courses (at Arvon and Cheltenham Festival) which were excellent – but nothing like as good as what you provided, encompassed and stimulated last night.