An Introduction to the Memoir – fully booked!
12-week online writing course begins Monday 20 September 2021.
Do you want to tell your own story? Life stories have resonance for others and are a gift to be shared. In this course, led by Jenn Ashworth, author of Notes Made While Falling (New Statesman Book of the Year) and Ghosted: A Love Story, you will develop an understanding of the how memoirs are put together, and the ways shame and taboo might hold you back from writing.
You’ll be exposed to a wide variety of memoirs told through a range of forms – from memoirs written in first person, or even second person point of view, to memoirs told in snapshots, experimental montage, and even graphic memoirs. A substantial portion of the texts used in this course will be written by non-professional writers, so, whether you’ve got previous writing experience or not, you’ll find work written by people easily relatable.
Classes are capped at 15 places to ensure a high-quality experience. Book quickly to secure your place.
This course is designed for writers aged 18+. If you’re looking for courses suitable for younger writers, check out these online workshops!
To join the waiting list for this course, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Special offer: All creative writing online courses include a free 12-week digital subscription to Granta Magazine!
What the course covers
- Why Write Your Story?
- Looking Back/the Reflective Voice
- Shame vs Vulnerability
- Point of View and hybrid memoirs
- Being Ready to Write
- Composition and Form
About your tutor
Jenn Ashworth was born in Preston and studied at Cambridge and Manchester. In 2019 she published a memoir-in-essays, Notes Made While Falling which was a New Statesman Book of the Year and was shortlisted for the Gordon Burn Prize. Her first novel, A Kind of Intimacy, was published in 2009 and won a Betty Trask Award. On the publication of her second, Cold Light (Sceptre, 2011) she was featured on the BBC’s The Culture Show as one of the UK’s twelve best new writers. Her latest novel is Ghosted: A Love Story. She lives in Lancashire and is a Professor of Writing at Lancaster University.
‘I’ll be surprised if I read any better memoirs-that-aren’t for a long while.’ – Olivia Laing, Guardian, on Notes Made While Falling
‘It’s thrilling that books such as Jenn Ashworth’s Notes Made While Falling – an intelligent hybrid of memoir and criticism that explores afresh how we might process trauma – exist in the world.’ – New Statesman
‘This exceptional book cracks open the complexity of human experience, exploring how to live and inhabit a body in the aftermath of trauma and loss. Ashworth expertly weaves the broader world into her story, threading art, writing, philosophy and history, from Dickens to Mantel, Freud to Anne Boyer. Notes Made While Falling is an evocative and profound meditation on living, art and survival.’ – Sinéad Gleeson, author of Constellations
‘Piercingly human and darkly funny’ – The Times on Ghosted, Top 100 Summer Reads
Image (c) Martin Figura
How it works
All you need is a computer and an internet connection. You can find out more about the requirements here.
The twelve-week course is divided into six fortnightly modules. Participants will analyse extracts from a range of memoirs – including graphics memoirs to memoirs told in snapshots, montage, and verse – before discussing them with the tutor and fellow students.
The modules are posted fortnightly. Every two weeks you will submit an assignment to your tutor, who will then respond with constructive feedback and advice.
This is a practical and engaging course with direct, expert tutor feedback.
Designed by the University of East Anglia and the National Centre for Writing.