Critically acclaimed Verbose is back with more words in the ’burbs

“From literary heavyweights to emerging talents, this monthly night has them all” – Manchester Evening News

Live literature night Verbose is back from its summer break on Monday 28 September, with special guests from the Centre for New Writing at the University of Manchester: Ian McGuire, John McAuliffe and Geoff Ryman – “a stellar line-up”, according to the current issue of The Skinny.

Ian’s much anticipated second novel is out in spring 2016 while John’s fourth collection of poetry is launching at Manchester Literature Festival in October, so this is an opportunity to get a sneak preview of both artists’ new work. The September event will also be celebrating the launch of this year’s edition of The Manchester Anthology, a showcase of the work produced each year by students of the Centre for New Writing’s Creative Writing MA, some of whom will be reading on the open mic.

Now on its seventh outing with its popular new look, Verbose was recently named by The Skinny as one of the best spoken word nights in Manchester. Verbose invites writers who collaborate on projects and publications, and so far the night has welcomed acclaimed writers including Jenn Ashworth, Elizabeth Baines, David Gaffney, Nicholas Royle and Emma Jane Unsworth, and Man Booker Prize shortlisted author Alison Moore.

Taking place on the fourth Monday of the month at Fallow café in Fallowfield (2a Landcross Road, Manchester, M14 6NA), Verbose is free entry and doors are at 7.30pm. See http://verbosemcr.wordpress.com. Email verbosemcr@gmail.com.

or8-design-vebose-2

Elbow Room Competition – Deadline Extended!

We would like to start this blog by saying thank you to everyone who has helped spread the word or entered the Elbow Room Competition. Due to the amazing amount of activity you have all generated a lot of people have only just found the competition and expressed sadness that they don’t have time to prepare their entry. We know exactly how annoying it is to find something you really want to take part in only days (or even hours) before the deadline. This got us thinking. In life there are deadlines we cannot change or control. This is not one of those. This competition is as much (if not more) about you as it is about us. We want everyone who wants to enter to have the chance to. It is with this in mind that we are extending the deadline until midnight Friday 21st August. We know it’s not long but we hope it is long enough. It should give everyone a chance to get his or her creations to us while still leaving us ample time to give your work the consideration it deserves.

See our website for more details on how to enter www.elbow-room.org/competition

We will be at our emails and computer ready to answer any and all questions until then.

Best Wishes and Good Luck

Rosie, Zelda and Lauren.

Short Story Workshop with Sean Preston, Editor of Open Pen Magazine, Mon Aug 10th, London.

IMG_2993

How you begin your short story goes a long way when submitting work to journals/magazines and entering competitions, so we’ve invited in Sean Preston, editor and publisher of Open Pen Magazine, to offer us his tips and guidance.

You don’t need to submit to attend this workshop, but if you send us your first 500 words of a short story by 7th August, your submission is guaranteed a review by Sean!

After individually reading your submission, Sean will then present notes on each one and tell us why they really work for him, but also how they might be improved. Feedback, folks! How novel.

If you miss the submission deadline to Sean, don’t despair, this session will still deliver plenty of general advice on how to open your next story (or edit a previous!).

Buy tickets and submission details.

This is a great opportunity to get pro feedback, so don’t be shy!

Word Factory #35 & Masterclass – 25th July – London

wordfactory-logo-300x88
Join the Word Factory for readings, conversation, masterclasses and publication with the most inspiring short fiction writers.

Story in Motion: with Jane Feaver

Jane Feaver is a novelist and short story writer, whose a collection of inter-linked stories, Love Me Tender, was shortlisted for the Edge Hill Short Story Prize. Read more about Jane.

‘…the essence of the story is motion. Do not let your chair be “a straight chair, with no arms and a hard wooden seat.” Let your heroine go over and take a firm hold of the back of a straight wooden chair, because at the moment it is stronger than she.’ Shirley Jackson ‘Notes for a Young Writer’. Jane Feaver, the novelist and short story writer, will explore the use of gesture and motion in the short story with reference to the work of Flannery O’Connor. Raymond Carver and more.

This workshop will study the gesture in the short story and some of the ways we might put ‘moveable articles’ to effective use. Suitable for writers sending work out and published, a chance to write and pay attention to detail.

SOLD OUT

Short Story Club – 4.15-5.15pm
Roald Dahl: The Great Automatic Grammatizator

Join us in July when we will read a dark and twisted (but bitingly funny) short story – The Great Automatic Grammatizator – by the brilliantly playful Roald Dahl. The story, written in 1954 (but still alarmingly relevant) imagines a world where stories are written by machines. This will strike a wry chord with all writers out there…

Email Sophie Haydock for more details and a copy of the story: sophie@thewordfactory.tv

The Word Factory #35 – the intimate short story salon – 6-8pm

Book your tickets here.

Join us for an unmissable evening of storytelling with award-winning children’s author Michael Morpurgo; short story champion Jane Feaver; and one of the UK’s best short story writers Stuart Evers, chaired by Word Factory founder Cathy Galvin.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS – LIARS’ LEAGUE SPECIAL EVENT: PARENT & CHILD. Deadline Sun 31 May

hand feet

CALL FOR STORIES – LL SPECIAL EVENT: PARENT & CHILD Deadline Sunday 31 May / Event Tue 23 June

Liars’ League London & Leeds seek short stories themed on PARENT & CHILD for a special simultaneous charity event on Tuesday June 23 at The Peckham Pelican (London) and the Crowd of Favours (Leeds) in aid of The CATS Foundation, which is a charity funding research into the devastating genetic childhood diseases Tay-Sachs & Sandhoff.

We need five brilliant stories for this special theme, and as ever our winning writers will be rewarded with free entry, books and booze. Cheerful tales welcome (but not obligatory) and stories don’t have to be child-friendly, especially since the events are taking place in a pub … However we do ask that you don’t submit stories about incest, child abuse or dead/dying kids please (we know how your morbid writer minds work!)

What we’d love to see is any creative interpretation of the theme, which could include being a parent (or child), adult children, adopted or foster families, people who want kids, people who don’t, same-sex parents, kids rebelling against parents, parents rebelling against children, babysitters, divorced or one-parent families, unusual families (communes, kids raising siblings), substitute children, metaphorical or allegorical takes on the theme, sci-fi, fantasy, magical realism, humour, horror … you get the picture.

Send your 800-2000 word unpublished stories to liars@liarsleague.com by 11.59pm on Sun 31 May, and good luck!

Tragic Summer: come and fly too close to the sun

Stand Up Tragedy have  lined up four shows in London for 2015, plus we’ll be taking the tragedy back up to the Edinburgh Fringe in August. Sprinklings of tragic seasoning will spice up the performance calendar, with Tragic Winter, Tragic Spring, Tragic Summer and Tragic Autumn each exploring a different theme. Three acts of tragedy, one of which will be guest-curated by a favourite performer, culminate in a series of tasty shows that feed your appetite for the terrible and the sublime.

Print

Print

The tragic sun will be putting on its hat by the 6th of June when Tragic Summer comes to the Hackney Attic. An evening dedicated to summertimes when the living isn’t easy; when summer lovin’ ends in death; when there’s poison in the last of the summer wine. In the first act, Sajeela Kershi (who recently won the Arts and Culture Award at Asian Women of Achievement 2015), the amazing spoken word artist Bridget Minamore, and the hilarious stand-up comedian Joz Norris share some summer holidays you’re glad not to be going on. Then for Act 2, science writer Alice Bell will guest-host some performers she’s gathered together to talk about climate change. And the final activity of the night will be Tragic Leisure, featuring an unrelaxing mix of true storytelling, comedy and poetry. At 10:30pm, everyone’s invited to join in a cathartic sing-a-long, and if people want to stay, there’ll be tragic dancing into the early hours of the morning.

‘takes in everything from music to comedy and is characterised by an emphasis on truth’ –The Independent

‘an entertaining bunch of melancholic oddballs’ –The London Word

WHAT: Stand Up Tragedy: Tragic Spring

WHERE: Hackney Attic, Hackney Picture House, 270 Mare St, London E8 1HE

WHEN: 7:30pm-late, Saturday 6th June

HOW MUCH: £5 in advance, £7 on the door

Stand Up Tragedy aims to make audiences laugh until they cry and cry until they laugh. It’s a regular live show and podcast where people stand up and tell tragedy. We make you sad; we make you think; we make you smile. Expect music, comedy, fiction, spoken word, true stories and more, all playing up to the tragic form but not always taking it too seriously. The night ends, not with a whimper, not with a bang, but with a cathartic sing-a-long.

At Stand Up Tragedy, we combine established performers like Stewart Lee, Robin Ince, Josie Long, Grace Petrie, Sara Pacoe, Rob Auton and Andy Zaltzman with new and upcoming acts to create long-form evenings of tragic variety. Performers often write new material especially for our nights and relish the opportunity to put a tragic spin on what they do. The nights are recorded and put out as a podcast.

In the press:

“Laugh? I Nearly Died: The Rise of Stand-Up Tragedy” (Independent, July 2012)

“Stand-Up Tragedy” (London Word, January 2013)

One of the Guardian’s “Ten Great Storytelling Nights” (March 2014)

“Stand-up comedy with Sophocles and Justin Bieber during World Cup football” (John Fleming, June 2014)

Hear our origin story here: https://soundcloud.com/standuptragedy/selected-tragedy-vol-1-tragic-origins

Re/Place – stories that are right up your street

As part of Chorlton Arts Festival 2015, six critically acclaimed and award-winning writers each sharing an interest in psychogeography and urban exploration have penned pieces about ghost places and the re-appropriation of spaces. Sarah Butler, Sarah-Clare Conlon, Claire Dean, Kate Feld, David Gaffney and Nicholas Royle will perform their site-specific short stories and present postcards from the past at this special event, Re/Place. Supported by Arts Council England. The event will also include a screening of private home movies shot in Chorlton in the fifties and sixties, provided by the North West Film Archive.

Proof, Manchester Road, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester, M21 9PH. Wednesday 20 May 2015. Doors 7.30pm. Free entry.

or8 design - replace small

Arachne workshop and readings at Clerkenwell Lit Fest – Word on the Street

Saturday 9th May  2-3:15 Writing with Your Ears: a workshop hosted by Cherry Potts, author and owner of Arachne Press, exploring how fiction and poetry can be inspired and supported by live music, with live music from multi-instrumentalists and folk singers, Ian Kennedy & Sarah Lloyd, who collaborated with us on the same workshop at Solstice Shorts. Come and discover how your own writing can flourish. Option to perform your story with Arachne Press authors later in the day:

3:30 – 4:30 Readings of London-based stories and poems from Arachne Press authors, Inua Ellams, Dizz Tate, Joan Taylor-Rowan and David Bausor, plus participants in the Writing with Your Ears workshop, with music from Ian Kennedy & Sarah Lloyd.

joan observer spoof (3) photo dizz tate copy Inua Ellams

ian & Sarah

London Metropolitan Archives, 40 Northampton Rd, Clerkenwell, London EC1R 0HB

readings £5, workshop £10,  combined ticket £12

Word Factory #33 & Masterclass – 30th May – London

wordfactory-logo-300x88
Join the Word Factory for readings, conversation, masterclasses and publication with the most inspiring short fiction writers.

The Only Rule Is Yes with Stella Duffy – 1-4pm – SOLD OUT

Stella Duffy won’t teach you how to write the great British novel, provide you with a step-by-step structure with which to write a bestseller, or spend hours reading aloud the works of others so that you can compare your own writing (unfavourably). She will help you acknowledge your writing fears and enthusiasms, find delight in being brave, take the big steps you’ve been dreading and the small steps that feel even harder, and help you remind yourself why you wanted to write in the first place.

Editor’s note: Unfortunately Stella Duffy’s writing workshop is now sold out, however there is time to book your places for Michèle Roberts and David Almond‘s masterclasses at the Tablet festival in Birmingham on 19th June or experience Word Factory at the London Short Story Festival on 21st, June. Take note to be online at 9am on 15th May when we will make tickets available for Neil Gaiman‘s masterclass Q&A with Cathy Galvin taking place on 27th June.

More information and booking here.

Short Story Club – 4.15-5.15pm
Tessa Hadley: One Saturday Morning

Tessa Hadley is a British writer whose short stories appear regularly in the New Yorker. She has published many novels and two short story collections, and she read at the Word Factory salon in February 2015. Her stories have been described as ‘novels in miniature’ and also as ‘domestic fiction’, conjuring as they often do the minutiae of comfortable lives, where subtle shifts and minor observations can take on huge significance. Her stories may tread comfortable territory, but they leave a long-lasting impression of disquiet with the reader.

In ‘One Saturday Morning’, published in The New Yorker in August 2014, ten-year-old Carrie’s piano practice is interrupted by the arrival of Dom, one of her parents’ bohemian friends. We follow her as she tries to make sense of the adult news and events that define the rest of the day. Is this a story in which nothing really happens, or does it illuminate a pivotal coming-of-age moment? Come and discuss this subtle, affecting story with us.

Email Sophie Haydock for more details and a copy of the story: sophie@thewordfactory.tv

The Word Factory #33 – the intimate short story salon – 6-8pm

Book your tickets here.

An unmissable evening of Irish lyricism and fire. Join acclaimed new Irish talent Danielle McLaughlin, recently published in the New Yorker; Belfast-born Word Factory associate director Paul McVeigh; author and power-house Stella Duffy (Ireland via New Zealand) and Dubliner Evelyn Conlon for new work and conversation focused on the enduring strength of the Irish short story. Blarney-free discussion guaranteed, chaired by Cathy Galvin (Ireland via Coventry) .

Redcliffe Future Way 2015

Are you ready to Write the City? Future Way is public installation art project seeking to engage the community of Bristol in Redcliffe’s redevelopment through a playful and exciting exploration of the area.

Working with The Redcliffe Neighbourhood Development Forum in collaboration with published authors, budding writers, artists, architects and community groups, Future Way reveals a series of virtual fictions which immerse the reader between worlds and creatively challenges the way we view our city.

“The Redcliffe Neighbourhood Development Forum is a community group whose mission is to re-imagine and re-make Bristol’s Redcliffe Way.” Redcliffe Forum

Stories are “tagged” to locations within Redcliffe forming a series of fictional trails to be followed through the physical city. These tags can be scanned via QR codes, and accessed via a password located on the tag. Follow the Future Way Map to discover locations.

King of Christmas Steps

Future Way stories have been selected through a month long competition with winning entries by four hugely talented local authors: Angela Brooks, Grace Palmer, David J Rodger and Judy Darley.

The installation will be launched at 1pm on Friday 1st May outside the North Entrance of St Mary Redcliffe Parish Church and will be running indefinitely over the bank holiday weekend and into the coming months.

So explore, play and enjoy as you discover a new magic to Redcliffe and unlock its hidden futures. What does your future Redcliffe hold?

For more information on Future Way visit www.bristolstorytrail.wordpress.com/redcliffe-future-way/ and follow on Twitter @DoaSLiveFiction

Tragic Spring has sprung:

Stand Up Tragedy have lined up four shows in London for 2015, plus we’ll be taking the tragedy back up to the Edinburgh Fringe in August. Sprinklings of tragic seasoning will spice up the performance calendar, with Tragic Winter, Tragic Spring, Tragic Summer and Tragic Autumn each exploring a different theme. Three acts of tragedy, one of which will be guest-curated by a favourite performer, culminate in a series of tasty shows that feed your appetite for the terrible and the sublime.

 

SUT-SPRING-Poster

 

Tragic Spring will sprout on the 25th of April at the Hackney Attic. Spring is a time of change and transition: for new shoots to grow, old shoots must die! We’ll start the night with an act of Tragic Beginnings featuring BBC Poetry Slam Champion, Sophia Walker. Next we’ll have an act of Tragic Bodies, guest hosted by comedian, writer and journalist, Mathilda Gregory. And the night will end (as many nights do) with an act of Tragic Sex: stories about clitoris cults, phone sex and more, featuring award-winning playwright/performer, sex activist and educator, Cameryn Moore, who’s stopping off in London as part of her UK tour. At the show’s 10:30pm conclusion, everyone’s invited to join in a cathartic sing-a-long or show off their tragic dancing into the early hours of the morning.

WHAT: Stand Up Tragedy: Tragic Spring

WHERE: Hackney Attic, Hackney Picture House, 270 Mare St, London E8 1HE

WHEN: 7:30pm-late, Saturday 25th April

HOW MUCH: £5 in advance, £7 on the door

 

Call for Submissions:

Earlier this year we relaunched the SUT blog with an updated look and a new focus. Like its raucous live counterpart, the Stand Up Tragedy blog will be a place find the humour of hurt, the tickle of tragedy and mirth of misfortune. Selected work will posted each Friday beginning 1st August and promoted via the Stand Up Tragedy London monthly events, the podcast and at the Edinburgh Fringe.

What: short stories (fiction and non-fiction), flash fiction, poetry, and experimental form (that can be digitally distributed) that fits with the theme of tragedy. Or tragicomedy. Or comitragedy.  Ideal length is 250-1000 words, though shorter pieces, and longer work that can be serialised, will be considered. Editorial support or feedback can be offered to those who request it.

Format: Word doc or docx – double spaced—name and title on every page and paginated, please.

Deadline: Rolling.

Please email to akshoosmith@gmail.com with “SUT Submission” in the subject line.

 

In the press:

“Laugh? I Nearly Died: The Rise of Stand-Up Tragedy” (Independent, July 2012)

“Stand-Up Tragedy” (London Word, January 2013)

One of the Guardian’s “Ten Great Storytelling Nights” (March 2014)

“Stand-up comedy with Sophocles and Justin Bieber during World Cup football” (John Fleming, June 2014)

Word Factory #32 & Masterclass – 25th April – London

wordfactory-logo-300x88
Join the Word Factory for readings, conversation, masterclasses and publication with the most inspiring short fiction writers.

Performance, confidence and voice with A.L. Kennedy – SOLD OUT

Booking for our masterclasses are now available online through to June. Word Factory regulars have already booked their tickets for A.L Kennedy’s April class – but don’t miss the chance to work with Stella Duffy at her workshop in May where the only rule is yes. Our masterclasses are also travelling to Birmingham in June with Michele Roberts and David Almond. Click the links above to book your place.

In June Neil Gaiman will also be giving an exclusive class and reading: details on our website soon.

Short Story Club – 4.30-5.30pm
Italo Calvino: All at One Point

Calvino’s The Complete Cosmicomics is a collection of stories, all narrated by the character Qfwfq, each of which takes a scientific fact as a starting point for a fantastical narrative.The first translated edition (from Italian) won the National Book Award in America, and it is one of Calvino’s best known works alongside If on a Winter’s Night A Traveller and Invisible Cities.

In ‘All at One Point’, Calvino takes the notion of the universe’s matter all being concentrated at one point before it began to expand, and imagines Qfwfq and other characters dealing with this situation. It combines a scientific flight of fancy with a familiar-feeling tale of neighbourly tensions, as at the inhabitants of the point clash over gossip, opinions and shared attractions. This is a story which does not fit contemporary expectations. Do you find it satisfying, silly, or wondrously clever? Come and discuss ‘All at One Point’ at the Word Factory Short Story Club in April.

Email Sophie Haydock for more details and a copy of the story: sophie@thewordfactory.tv

The Word Factory #32 – the intimate short story salon – 6.30-8.30pm

Book your tickets here.

Celebrate spring with award-winning authors and fresh talent at The Word Factory. A.L. Kennedy leads our perfomance skills masterclass before joining international star Yiyun Li, our mentor Adam Marek and apprentice Kerstin Twachtmann for readings at the evening salon. The conversation will continue with Director Cathy Galvin, co-founder of the Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award.

Word Factory #31 & Masterclass – 28th March – London

wordfactory-logo-300x88Welcome back to an exciting year of readings, conversation, masterclasses and publication with the most inspiring short fiction writers at the Word Factory.

Broadcast News: Winning Stories and Writing for Radio – 3-4.30pm

For over a decade Di Speirs has championed the short story form in Britain. At the BBC, she has commissioned and produced short stories for Radio 4 and 3 and she runs the internationally acclaimed BBC National Short Story Award.

In an exclusive Word Factory Masterclass, Di will guide you through everything you need to know to ensure your work gets noticed and commissioned. What are the key do’s and don’t for submitting work for the award or general broadcast? What does every writer need to know about how an editor thinks? And what new trends do writers need to keep in mind? Our session will allow enough time for Di to talk about her work and take questions.

Cost: £35 per person (please purchase Salon tickets separately). Book your place here.

Short Story Club – 4.30-5.30pm
Shirley Jackson: The Lottery

When The Lottery was first published in The New Yorker in 1948, readers were so horrified they sent hate mail; it has since become one of the most iconic American stories of all time.
Shirley Jackson was born in San Francisco in 1916, and went on to earn a reputation as “one of the 20th century’s most luminous and strange American writers”. She is a master of Gothic suspense (her novel, The Haunting of Hill House, once called “the greatest haunted house story ever written”, was turned into the classic horror film The Haunting). Joyce Carol Oates described her as “one of those highly idiosyncratic, inimitable writers… whose work exerts an enduring spell”. Jackson published six novels before her death, at the age of 48, in 1965.
The Lottery is Jackson’s best-known short story: Jackson draws us in to the dark, unsettling world of a small farming village, who come together for a terrible game of chance…

Email Sophie Haydock for more details and a copy of the story: sophie@thewordfactory.tv

The Word Factory #28 – the intimate short story salon – 6-8pm

Join us for an unforgettable evening of readings with Polly Samson and Louise Doughty. Share in the joy of new work from our apprentice Uschi Gatward and her mentor Nicholas Royle. The conversation will continue with Director Cathy Galvin, co-founder of the Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award.

Book your tickets here.

Words And Women Celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8th

 

Words And Women is celebrating International Women’s Day, Sunday March 8th, with the double launch of their latest showcase collection of short prose by women writers in the East of England and the first public performance of their About new writing commissions.

Womens day eflyer 2015 A4 300dpi (2) - Copy - Copy

The event, held in the heart of Norwich, is traditionally a vibrant and eclectic programme of readings, music, film and theatre.  This year, Words and Women’s competition winner, Lora Stimson will read her story, Cornflake Girl, alongside other writers included in the anthology, Julianne Pachico, Anna Metcalfe and Holly McDede. Singer-songwriter Meg Burrows will bring her rich singing voice.

Words And Women: Two published by Unthank Books, builds on the success of last year’s inaugural competition and anthology, shortlisted for the national Saboteur Awards 2014. It has been praised as “a bold and insightful collection containing much vigorous writing…’’ RM Bond-Webster, Eastern Daily Press.

This year the winning entries embody vivid imagination and ambiguity, delicate and subtle prose coupled with strong images and deep emotions.

The ‘About’ texts, supported by Arts Council England and written by Jenny Ayres, Lillie Ferrari, Tess Little and Thea Smiley, bring to life the voices of Jane Sellars hung in Norwich for being ‘idle at Trowse’, a woman who walks the Bungay Straight on a pilgrimage of grief, 18 year old prostitute ‘Anguish’ locked up in a mental asylum for life and Station Mistress Appleton and her wartime fight for the right to wear a company coat. The extracts are performed by Hetty Rance, Etta Geras, Isabelle King and Jenny Ayres and directed by Adina Levay.

‘The writers, performers and musicians have put their hearts into this year’s event. As always, it is going to be very special,’ said Belona Greenwood, Co-organiser, Words And Women.

The event is between 4 and 6 pm on Sunday, 8th March in Fusion at the Forum, Millennium Plain, Norwich. NR2 1TF.  It is free to attend and open to all. Men, women and children.

 

Bristol Story Trail Needs Writers!

Calling all doodlers, ponderers, writers, poets and dreamers!

Get ready for the Bristol Story Trail (starting 15th Feb 2015) brought to you by Dream of a Shadow, an online project bridging the gap between reality and fantasy through storytelling.

Dream of a Shadow is collaborating with published authors and budding writers in Bristol to map the city through the magic of storytelling in an event running alongside Bristol Storyfest 2015.

The more creative minds, the better. So we are currently looking for short story submissions from you – these can be as little as 50 words, or up to 1000 and should be based in Bristol (loosely in the area around Spike Island).

So take a moment and get involved in writing the city!

All stories submitted will be included in the Bristol Story Trail alongside several other writers as well as in exhibitions later in the year, with any contributors fully credited and promoted. For more information, or to email your submissions contact livingfictionbristol@gmail.com

Don’t have time to contribute? No worries – you can still get involved and discover the city of Bristol through some wonderful short works of fiction! Follow us on Twitter to find out how, and spread the word… @DoaSLiveFiction #BristolStoryTrail #WritingTheCity and keep an eye out for new stories on the Bristol Story Trail website

 

150206 Story Trail Poster

Word Factory #30 & Masterclass – 14th February – London

wordfactory-logo-300x88Welcome back to an exciting year of readings, conversation, masterclasses and publication with the most inspiring short fiction writers at the Word Factory.

Devil in the Detail with Tessa Hadley – 1-4pm

Big ideas and a broad sweep in storytelling are often anchored in the smallest details. Don’t miss an exclusive opportunity to learn from one of the few UK writers regularly published by The New Yorker.
Tessa Hadley, Professor at Bath Spa University, will focus this workshop on observation and detail in the short story form and how it can transform your own writing. Expect to write, be challenged, and to learn from Tessa’s craft and the authors who have inspired her. This workshop is suitable for any writer passionate about the form.

Cost: £60 per person with free entrance to the evening reading included. Limited to 12 places. SOLD OUT

Short Story Club – 4.30-5.30pm

Hilary Mantel: The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher

This month we will be reading the most controversial short story of 2014: Hilary Mantel’s ’The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher’. The story springs from the two-time Man Booker prizewinner’s “boiling detestation” for the politician – Mantel recalls how she once spotted the former Prime Minister standing unguarded near her Windsor flat in 1983 and imagined shooting her. The action begins when a woman in her Windsor flat opens the door expecting a plumber… Have a read and make up your own mind – is this tale as damningly provocative as certain papers would have us believe?

Email Sophie Haydock for more details and a copy of the story: sophie@thewordfactory.tv

The Word Factory #28 – the intimate short story salon – 6-8pm

Our Valentine’s salon with stories exploring the joys and perils of love with stories from Tessa Hadley (who will be leading our workshop during the day), Zoe Gilbert and exclusive new work from Jon McGregor. Cathy Galvin will lead a discussion on the craft of short story writing and you’ll have the chance to ask your questions too.

Online tickets – £12 | Concessions – £8 | On the door – £15 Buy your tickets here.

Selected Tragedy, Submissions Call and (Tragic) Winter is Coming

You may be interested in helping the Storylines team create theatre from News on the first Friday of every month and if you are follow @ampersandmedia on twitter and get involved. The next Storylines is on 6th February.

***

Stand Up Tragedy has been taking a break from our live shows but over on the podcast we’ve been producing  Selected Tragedy which are themed collections of highlights from three years of tragedy:

 

Our next live show will be Tragic Winter at the Hackney Attic on Saturday 28th February.

Stand Up Tragedy aims to make audiences laugh until they cry and cry until they laugh. It’s a regular live show and podcast where people stand up and tell tragedy. We make you sad; we make you think; we make you smile. Expect music, comedy, fiction, spoken word, true stories and more, all playing up to the tragic form but not always taking it too seriously. The night ends, not with a whimper, not with a bang, but with a cathartic sing-a-long.

At Stand Up Tragedy we combine established acts like Stewert Lee, Josie Long, Eddie Pepitone, Grace Petrie, Rob Auton, Sara Pascoe and Andy Zaltzman with new and upcoming acts in an evening of tragic variety based around a theme. Performers often write new material especially for the night and relish the opportunity to put a tragic spin on what they do. The nights are recorded and put out as a weekly podcast.

Call for Submissions:

Earlier this year we relaunched the SUT blog with an updated look and a new focus. Like its raucous live counterpart, the Stand Up Tragedy blog will be a place find the humour of hurt, the tickle of tragedy and mirth of misfortune. Selected work will posted each Friday beginning 1st August and promoted via the Stand Up Tragedy London monthly events, the podcast and at the Edinburgh Fringe.

What: short stories (fiction and non-fiction), flash fiction, poetry, and experimental form (that can be digitally distributed) that fits with the theme of tragedy. Or tragicomedy. Or comitragedy.  Ideal length is 250-1000 words, though shorter pieces, and longer work that can be serialised, will be considered. Editorial support or feedback can be offered to those who request it.

Format: Word doc or docx – double spaced—name and title on every page and paginated, please.

Deadline: Rolling.

Please email to akshoosmith@gmail.com with “SUT Submission” in the subject line.

In the press:

“Laugh? I Nearly Died: The Rise of Stand-Up Tragedy” (Independent, July 2012)

“Stand-Up Tragedy” (London Word, January 2013)

One of the Guardian’s “Ten Great Storytelling Nights” (March 2014)

“Stand-up comedy with Sophocles and Justin Bieber during World Cup football” (John Fleming, June 2014)

 

Verbose brings words to the ’burbs with live literature in Fallowfield, Manchester

Live literature night Verbose is being relaunched for the new year, with a new host and new format. Taking place on the fourth Monday of the month at Fallow café in Fallowfield, the event will feature performances by special guests from the worlds of flash fiction, short stories and poetry, along with an open mic, when audience members are encouraged to take to the stage and read their work. It’s free entry and doors are at 7.30pm. Fallow café is at 2a Landcross Road, Fallowfield, M14 6NA. See also http://verbosemcr.wordpress.com.

or8 design - vebose 2

Confirmed for the first Verbose of 2015 on Monday 26 January are members of the Inklings writing group: critically acclaimed and Johnny Vegas-endorsed “master of flash fiction” David Gaffney; award-winning novelist and short story writer Elizabeth Baines; Salt Modern Voices poet Adrian Slatcher; fiction author Sian Cummins, launching her new book, The 2p Pusher, and Salt Prize winner in the flash fiction category Sarah-Clare Conlon, also the event’s host.

David Gaffney More Sawn Off Tales cover copy

White Rabbit’s new family show at Knole

fox in the snow

We’re delighted to be creating a new family story telling show at beautiful Knole House in Sevenoaks, Kent,TN15 0RP – home to the Sackville- Wests, and surrounded by wildlife and ancient parkland.

As well as our new stories, you get hot chocolate and a crafting workshop suitable for all the family.

Show dates: 20th and 21st December 2014

Times: 11am-12 midday, 12.30- 131.30, 13.30-14.30

Tickets: £10 (Children £10; family ticket £35) / 01732 462100

“Imagine a winter so harsh that the animals who live in Knole’s ancient parkland are invited into the house at Christmas time. Snow leopards, deer, foxes and many more share their stories with the family in this magical Christmas tale told by Bernadette Russell and Gareth Brierley”

to find out more about us, visit https://shortstops.info/white-rabbit-live/

or www.thewhiterabbit.org.uk

Deer

Word Factory #29 – Our FREE Christmas Party – 13th December, London

wordfactory-logo-300x88

It’s been an outstanding year for the Word Factory. Readers in 2014 include AS Byatt, Toby Litt, David Almond, Tessa Hadley, Ben Okri, Evie Wylde – and our masterclasses have been led by truly great talent including David Constantine, Joe Dunthorne, Peter Stothard and David Vann. Join at Waterstones Piccadilly for our final event of the year – our free Christmas party!

Short Story Club – 5-6pm

This month: John Burnside – Slut’s Hair

In December we are reading ‘Slut’s Hair’, by the Scottish writer John Burnside. As a short story writer, Burnside has published two collections Burning Elvis (2000) and Something Like Happy (2013), from which this story is taken. Burnside is unflinching in his bleak portrayal of “unpleasant” subjects – cruelty, domestic violence, outright loneliness – and this spotlight on the darker side of human nature has earned him a reputation as a Scottish Raymond Chandler. ‘Slut’s Hair’ is archetypal Burnside. In it, a woman in Dundee tenement is stuck in an unhappy and unforgiving relationship. Then she reveals she has toothache, and they can’t afford a dentist…

Simply email Sophie Haydock for more details and a copy of the story: sophie@thewordfactory.tv

The Word Factory #29 – the intimate short story salon – 6-8pm

Join us for an evening fizzing with  festive fun and celebration. We will be pulling names out of Santa’s hat to read on the night. If you want to take part, bring a story no more than ten minutes long and, as you arrive, give your name and the story’s title to Alexa on the door. We will be listening – and we will be filming!

Register for your FREE tickets here