2015/2016

Tuesday 8 November 2016

What Editors Look For in a Submission (And How to Make Your Novel Stand Out)

Clare Hey, currently Senior Commissioning Editor with Simon & Schuster, soon to be Publishing Director with Orion. Clare started with HarperCollins with such bestselling authors as Tracy Chevalier, Conn Iggulden and Bernard Cornwell, and now works with Simon & Schuster with equally famous writers such as Jane Costello, Milly Johnson, and Santa Montefiore. Tonight she explains what it takes to sell that magnum opus of yours.

Special Guest: Joanna Lane, author of ‘Mother of a Suicide’.

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Tuesday 11 October 2016

Poets and Their Poetry

 Maura Dooley has published several collections of poetry, most recently Life Under MauraDooleyLifeUnderWaterWater and edited verse and essays including The Honey Gatherers: Love Poems and How Novelists Work.

Maggie Sawkins won the Ted Hughes Award for New Work in Poetry 2013 with Zones of Avoidance. Her two poetry collections are Charcot’s Pet and The Zig Zag Woman.MaggieSawkinsZigZag

Special Guests: Isabel Rogers, Hampshire Poet 2016 and Hugh Greasley, local poet and ceramicist.

Competition: ‘Inspired by Hampshire’ up to 50 lines of verse.

Adjudicator: Isabel Rogers

The evening will incorporate a short AGM which will start at 7.15pm


Tuesday 13 September 2016

Children’s Publishing ….How To Do It.

barryCunninghamBarry Cunningham is Managing Director of Chicken House bringing us Cornelia Funke’s Inkheart series and James Dashner’s Maze Runner and one of the best known names in publishing after he signed up J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.

Black-Powder-AW-2-195x300[1]Also, debut author with Chicken House, Ally Sherrick.

Our special guests are: Karen Stephens, Maggie Farran, Catherine Griffin and Sally Howard self-published authors of “The Secret Lives of Chandler’s Ford”.

The competition is to write, in 300 words only, two characters meeting in a foreign setting.

Adjudicator: Robin Mukherjee, award-winning screen writer.

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Tuesday 14th June 2016 

Gala Evening & Book Fair for Published HWS Authors from 6pm

Chris Cleave and Clare Morrall

Chris Cleave  Author of Everyone Brave is Forgiven

Clare Morrall, author of  When the Floods Came

Special guest: Professor Joy Carter – DL, Vice Chancellor of the University of Winchester

 Competition: A lover’s reunion (300 words)

Adjudicator: Adrienne Dines – author and creative writing tutor


Tuesday 10th May 2016

katemosse_2752171bKate Mosse – novelist

‘Legend, Folklore and Taxidermy’ – sharing her writing trade secrets: old legends and ancient Sussex folklore, taxidermy, bird mythology; how landscape and Gothic fantasy can provide the backdrop for a novel

Special Guest: Joan McGavin – poet and lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Winchester

Competition: Write a narrative of a viewpoint character in a historical novel solving conflict (300 words)

Adjudicator: Dr Peter Middleton – Senior Lecturer in English at the University of Southampton.

Read the report here.


Tuesday 12th April 2016

kate walkerKate Walker – romantic novelist

‘Kate Walker’s 12 Point Guide to Writing Romance’ – how to craft a novel for the romance genre

Special guest: Judith Heneghan – Director of Winchester Writers’ Festival, Lecturer in Creative Writing at the university of Winchester

Writing competition: Write a steamy love story (300 words)

Adjudicator: Alison Spencer – author of Tug o Love, best debut novel, Romantic Novelists’ Association

Read the report here.


Tuesday 8th March 2016

SimonTrewinSimon Trewin – Literary Agent, Head of the London Literary Department of WME Agency, an international organisation

‘The Work of a Literary Agent’ – how to approach a literary agent and how to aim to succeed.

Special guest: Councillor Roy Perry – Leader, Hampshire County Council

Competition: A single page synopsis, any topic – 350 words

Adjudicator: Becky Bagnall – Literary Agent, Lindsay Literary Agency

Read the report here.


Tuesday 9th February 2016

Jude_2Jude Evans – Publisher at Little Tiger Press

‘Writing for the Children’s Market’ – a talk about the varied and challenging world of the children’s book.  As a publisher who invests considerable amount of her time and energy developing new authors, Jude will discuss how to go about writing books that a publisher will choose.

Special guest: Angela Hicken – Literature Development Officer, Hampshire County Council

Competition: Write the narrative for a children’s picture book, age 3-7.

Adjudicator: Jude Evans and editors

Read the report here.


Tuesday 12th January 2016

RobinRobin Mukherjee – scriptwriter for TV, film, theatre and children’s drama

‘The Craft of Screenwriting’ – a talk about the tricky issue of structure alongside anecdotes from his life in screenwriting

Writing competition: Write the opening words of a short story based on a song (300 words)

Adjudicator: Glenn Fosbraey

Read the report here.


Tuesday 8th December 2015

640-null_voake_steveSteve Voake – novelist

‘Writing for the Young Adult’ – a talk about the processes of writing in this fascinating genre

Special guest: Dr Vanessa Harbour, Senior Lecture in Creative Writing, University of Winchester

Writing Competition: Write the opening of a story, beginning with the moment when the main character discovers a secret (300 words)

Adjudicator: Ali Sparks – children’s author

Read the report here.


Tuesday 10th November 2015

Della Galton – author and short story writer

‘Writing Short Stories to Sell – What do Editors Really Want?’ – a talk about the processes of writing the short stories that the market is seeking

della galtonDella Galton is a novelist, short story writer, and journalist; she is also the agony aunt for Writers’ Forum and has been writing and getting published for over twenty-five years. (1500 short stories sold to date). When she is not writing she enjoys walking her dogs in the beautiful Dorset countryside where she lives.

Writing Competition: Write the introduction for a general woman’s novel (300 words)

Adjudicator: Judith Murdoch – Literary agent

Read the report here.


Tuesday 13th October 2015

gkSQ6DirJames Barclay – high fantasy author’The World of High Fantasy’ – a talk about the processes of writing outside your comfort zone: fight scenes, creating realistic dialogue, and developing new worlds

Competition: Write a ghost story (300 words)

Adjudicator: Carolin Esser-Miles – Medievalist, Senior Lecturer, English Language, University of Winchester

Read the report here.


Tuesday 8th September 2015

M.J. Alridge & James Marrsion – crime novelists

‘A Night of Crime and Darkness…’ – Two purveyors of crime and mystery talk about how to weave a dark and compelling tale.

Special guest: John Hayes, Director, Winchester Short Film Festival, editor of the satirical magazine Smug.

Competition: Write a scene in which the victim of the crime is found (300 words)

Adjudicator: Carl Major – Waterstones, Southampton

Read the report here.

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