Tag Archives: Lania Knight

UoG Creative Writers’ Successful Autumn

1 Nov
Flash fiction literature Crawl

Bewigged students read flash fictions at Libertine’s Barbers Shop

It’s been a busy Autumn for the Creative Writing staff and students at UoG – go team! The new academic year started with the Cheltenham Literature Festival and for the second year in a row, students did an amazing job performing flash fictions as part of the LitCrawl. The quirky show involved visitors hearing private readings of micro-fiction from bewigged performers in a barbers shop. Different!

And our course’s involvement with the Festival was cemented by drama lecturer Miranda Walker who, as this year’s Writer in Residence, starred in a range of events, including a Writing Funny workshop at Parabola Arts Centre, the Young Writers Showcase, and the Famous Five Story Trail. She also wrote the brilliant Wishing Fish Clock picture book, which sold out at its launch! (It’s on general sale, available in Regent’s Arcade and Waterstone’s, from November 11th).

Wishing Fish clock book Miranda Walker

Cover for Miranda’s Wishing Fish Clock picture book

Speaking of dramatists, huge congratulations are also due to one of our alumni, Chloe Biggs, who recently won the BBC Essex Playwright of the Year Competition. Her winning play was broadcast on the radio – go Chloe!

The Hill by Angela France cover

Cover for Angela’s poetry collection, The Hill

The poets have been busy too. Lecturer Angela France won an Arts Council Grant to tour the UK with her new collection, The Hill, which was published by Nine Arches Press in July. The book has already garnered critical acclaim, with Sheenagh Pugh writing “Everyone knows somewhere like the Hill, though few could memorialise it with such verbal energy. Exuberant, controlled, angry, elegiac, this is a poetry of landscape, politics, witness.”

Congratulations are also due to recent graduate Charlotte Appleby and current student George Helder who both had poems published in Ink, Sweat and Tears this August. And huge congratulations to two of our new first year poets: Caroline Juskus and Callie Walsh have both published poems on I Am Not A Silent Poet. I’m sure there will be many more successes to come from this bright year group!

Speaking of bright, well done to 2nd-year student Carol Hilton who has won an Ede and Ravenscroft Scholarship in a university-wide competition recognizing outstanding academic achievement. And there is exciting news from one of our MA students, Carina Mitchell, who is launching her Vineleaves Publishing business with a short story competition – more to come on that soon!

E and R-scholarships

Carol Hilton and other scholarship recipients with staff at Park Campus

Last but not least, the prose writers have been busy too. Lania Knight is celebrating the UK release of her brilliant first novel, Three Cubic Feet. You can get it here! Senja Andrejevic-Bullock, a drama lecturer wearing her prose hat, has published her short story ‘The Party’ at Storgy Magazine.

Three cubic feet

Cover for 2nd Edition of Three Cubic Feet

And it’s only fitting that we should end by celebrating the achievements of our newest member of staff, Bea Hitchman. Bea has recently been one of the judges, along with Philip Hensher no less, for the Bath Spa Flash Fiction competition ‘A Place in Words’, which challenged entrants to write a novel in 25 words. The competition attracted more than 1500 entrants from all over the world, and the prize was awarded by Jeremy Irons at a special ceremony at the London Library. Bea has also written a chapter for a forthcoming book on Sylvia Plath, ‘Plath in Context’, to be published by Cambridge Uni Press in 2018, discussing lesbian contexts for The Bell Jar (there are, she informs us, a surprising number). Congratulations to everyone!

Remember that it makes us incredibly happy to hear good news, so if you have a success to share please drop a line to mjohnstone@ you know the rest.

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Join the 2017 Chelt Litcrawl!

4 Oct
litcrawl 2017This Saturday evening, staff and students from the University’s Creative Writing programme invite you to take a seat in the barber’s chair, for a literary event with a difference. They’ll be providing entertainment at one stop on the Cheltenham Literature Festival’s 2017 Lit Crawl. For one night only, the Literature Festival will take over a section of Cheltenham for a fast-paced evening of pop-up events and quirky literary happenings. It’s a chance to get drunk on words, and it’s all completely free. Created in San Francisco in 2004 and now in Boston, Brooklyn, Portland, Chicago, New Zealand and beyond, Lit Crawl blends a bar crawl with bookish content – a riotous evening of the written and spoken word in some surprising venues around town.http://www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/literature/festival-village/lit-crawl-/
 
You can catch the University of Gloucestershire staff and students at Libertine’s Barber Shop on Bennington Street, from 5pm-6pm, on Saturday October 7th. Lecturer Mike D.D. Johnston, who is organising the performance, said “The students performed flash fictions at the Cheltenham Poetry Festival in May, and their set went down a storm. We’re doing something similar this time, but with a twist that makes use of the quirky venue.” Subsequent stops include the chance to see UoG Lania Knight performing as part of the “Who do we think we aren’t?” event at 7:30, a Harry Potter quiz at 8:15, and ‘Feminism, Poetry and Gin at 9pm. The Litcrawl continues until late and ends with a party at Hotel du Vin, where you can hear music from the brilliant Kansas Smitty’s House Band. Checkout the Facebook event here.

RE: Generate showcase, June 8th

3 Jun

Never mind the ballots, don’t miss this! Our final event of the 2016/2017 academic year will feature readings and discussion with poet Lesley Ingram, short story writer Daisy Johnson, and novelist Sarah Walton. They’ll be speaking at our afternoon panel at 3pm in FCH TC002.

Then, in the evening, those authors will read from their work alongside UoG students at the Frog & Fiddle, from 7pm. Both events are free and open to the public. See you there!

Regenerate poster

America, America, WTF America?

8 Nov

Students, remember: this is what happens when you don’t read books. Tonight, as the world’s most powerful country goes to the polls, join the Creative Writing Society for The Great American Quiz at Smokey Joe’s, and listen online to American-born Senior Lecturer Lania Knight’s thoughts on the impending catastrophe.

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The country that has given us Mark Twain, Herbert Melville, Walt Whitman, F Scott Fitzgerald, John Steinbeck, Kurt Vonnegut, Grace Paley, Ursula le Guin, Thomas Pynchon, David Foster Wallace, and Toni Morrison is also a country that has confined political debate, privatised education, and celebrated unfettered capitalism. Democracy has for a long time meant nothing more than a quadrennial choice between interchangeable neoliberals – and now they can’t even get that right. What’s most frightening about the US election, and what was most frightening about the Brexit election, is how fervently some people cling to their hatred. We send greetings and kind thoughts to our American students and to our alumni who have returned to the US. We’d suggest you flee back over here, but the standard of debate that surrounded the Brexit referendum is evidence that British society faces all the same problems.

Still, here’s a consolation: tonight, Tuesday 8th November, join the Creative Writing Society for The Great American Quiz. They say: “It’s a quiz. It’s American themed. It’s election night. It’s at Smokey Joe’s. Aka, it’ll be great and you should Be There™. Its £1 per player!”

And, as preparation, why not listen to Lania Knight’s election-based interview on BBC Radio Gloucestershire! Lania is on at 02:09:30.

Writers Research Riot – this Wednesday!

6 Jun

wrr flyerThe sun is shining, summer is here, and it’s nearly time to head for the beach, metaphorically and actually. But before you go, we have one more brilliant day of writing-based fun. This Wednesday, 8th June, 2nd-year students and Lania Knight have organised the Writers Research Riot. The first event from 3pm to 5pm in TC002 at Francis Close Hall Campus, features surrealist-novelist and film critic Alan Bilton, acclaimed short story writer and novelist Joanna Campbell, and talented poet and short-story writer Anna Lewis.

Then, from 8pm at the Frog and Fiddle, there’s a chance to hear performances of new work from 2nd-year students. It promises to be a brilliant way to end the academic year. Everyone’s welcome, and we hope to see you there. For more information, please see the Facebook event page.

A warm welcome to Dr Lania Knight!

15 Sep
Lania Knight

Lania Knight

We’re delighted to announce a major summer transfer swoop. Before the transfer window slammed shut (and nobody ever thinks to close it gently), we secured the services of Dr Lania Knight, signed from Major League outfit Eastern Illinois University. Lania is a novelist and short story writer, whose novel Three Cubic Feet was a finalist in the 2012 Lambda Literary Award for debut fiction. Her essays and short stories have appeared in the Missouri Review, New Stories from the Midwest, PANK, Midwestern Gothic, Jabberwock Review, and elsewhere. Manager Tyler Keevil commented, “We’re delighted to welcome Lania to the team. Obviously it’s a great boost for us. She brings a wealth of experience and energy to the squad. We wanted to add strength and depth, but also bring in some real quality, and Lania absolutely fits the bill.” Meanwhile, Lania has spoken of her delight at joining the University of Gloucestershire. “As soon as I spoke with the gaffer I knew it was the right move for me. Obviously it’s a massive club, and I’m looking forward to getting out there and doing my talking in the classroom.” Welcome to the magnificent seven, Lania!

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