City of literature journey: The writing life
From the daily process of creating art to the practicalities of publishing and the pleasures and pitfalls of prize culture

It is with regret that we announce that Norfolk & Norwich Festival 2020 (and the City of Literature Weekend) has been cancelled

For a full statement, please visit the Norfolk & Norwich Festival website.

This year the National Centre for Writing has put together a series of literary journeys that will guide you through our exciting City of Literature programme at Norfolk & Norwich Festival 2020.

With a programme of fresh and original literary voices, along with award-winning writers and publishers, we invite you to celebrate Norwich as a UNESCO City of Literature and a home to writers, thinkers, storytellers and readers. Browse the curated journeys we’ve suggested and book all four events together to get a £1.00 discount per ticket.

Our third City of Literature journey, titled ‘The writing life’, looks at the nuts and bolts of being a writer – from the daily process of creating art to the practicalities of publishing and the pleasures and pitfalls of prize culture.

The writing life


Portrait of the Writer and Artist

Friday 22 May, 5.30pm, National Centre for Writing, Dragon Hall, £7.50

Sara BaumeWhat does it mean to be an artist? A fascinating glimpse into the daily process of making and writing from Sara Baume (Spill Simmer Falter Wither) and Elizabeth Macneal (The Doll Factory). Through writing, sculpture and ceramics, they will offer perspectives on isolation, motivation, nature and beauty.


Small but Mighty: Galley Beggar Press

Saturday 23 May, 5.30pm, National Centre for Writing, Dragon Hall, £7.50

Preti TanejaGalley Beggar Press is the ‘revolutionary’ (Telegraph) Norwich-based independent publisher taking the literary awards circuit by storm. Co-founders Sam Jordison and Eloise Millar are joined by prize-winning authors Alex Pheby and Preti Taneja to celebrate the mighty power of the small literary press.


Common People

Saturday 23 May, 4.30pm, National Centre for Writing, Dragon Hall, £7.50

Kenny KnightJenny Knight and Eva Verde both featured in the celebrated anthology Common People: An Anthology of Working Class Writers, edited by Kit de Waal. Together, they will explore common themes of loss and love in their writing, and the process of working towards their full-length debuts.



The Winner Takes it All?

Sunday 24 May, 10.30am, The Adnams Speigeltent, Festival Gardens, £8.50

Evie WyldWho decides what is prize-worthy, and how does prize culture fit within the state of society today? We’re joined by Anjali Joseph, Preti Taneja and Evie Wyld to discuss and debate whether the current prize model is working, and how judges may need to adapt in order to survive.


Tickets are available from the Norfolk & Norwich Festival website. A discount of £1.00 per ticket will be automatically applied to your basket when you book these four events together.


City of Literature creative writing workshops

Why not book on to a creative writing workshop during the Festival and hone your craft further?

Writing Children’s Fiction with Mitch Johnson

Friday 22 May, 10am – 12pm, National Centre for Writing, Dragon Hall, £35 / £25 conc

Mitch JohnsonChildren’s literature is a diverse, exciting and popular genre. Join Mitch Johnson, the award-winning debut writer of Kick, as he offers his expert advice on how to write bold, authentic stories for adventurous young readers aged 8 – 12 years.



Life Writing Workshop with Cathy Rentzenbrink

Saturday 23 May, 10am – 12pm, National Centre for Writing, Dragon Hall, £35 / £25 conc

Cathy RentzenbrinkCathy Rentzenbrink, author of the Sunday Times-bestselling memoir The Last Act of Love (shortlisted for the Wellcome Book Prize), will share her top tips and techniques for writing about personal memories and experience. A friendly, informal session featuring discussion and writing exercises.


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