Tag Archives: Local Events

Cheltenham Poetry Festival 2017 begins on Thursday 4th May

27 Apr

CPF brochure 2017It’s just one week until the Cheltenham Poetry Festival kicks off with appearances from UoG’s own D.D. Johnston and Tyler Keevil. They’ll be talking from 7pm to 8pm at Smokey Joe’s on Thursday 4th May, and you can book your tickets here.

But, wait, it gets even better. Stick around! After that, it’s the turn of some of our many talented students. They’ll be reading flash fictions full of laughs and tragedy, in the same venue, on the same night, from 8:30pm. Admittance to that event is free, but space is limited so please reserve your place here.

And that’s just the first night of the 2017 Cheltenham Poetry Festival! Here are three other UoG-related events to look out for: on Thursday 5th May, English Literature lecturer John Hughes will be discussing how to analyse poetry, in Oxfam Bookshop at 11am; on Wednesday 10th May, there’s a chance to see PhD student Howard Timms’ play Oscar Wilde’s Women at 7:45pm at the Cheltenham Playhouse; and on Thursday 11th May, Anna Saunders (an alumni of our Creative Writing MA and the Festival director) will be reading alongside three other poets at the Cheltenham Playhouse at  8pm.

But that’s just a small sample of what’s on. The Poetry Festival runs until May 15th, with an exciting and eclectic range of big stars and local talents. So be sure to check out the full list of events here.

 

 

News Flash: Flash Fiction Event Tonight!

9 Feb

A quick last-minute announcement about a event this evening: the wonderfully named ‘Flasher’s Club’ open mic is back, and will be held at Smokey Joe’s from 7.30.  Here’s the lowdown, from their blog:

Flashers’ Club is a quarterly flash fiction open mic night. Writers read original short fiction pieces between 100 and 1,000 words. There is a small entry charge, all of which goes to the charity First Story. Bring something to read, or just bring your ears!

We welcome all writers: published writers and unpublished, seasoned readers and debutants. The atmosphere is friendly, supportive and inclusive: no need to fear if you’ve never read before! We want to hear you. We like to bribe our readers with free literature (last time we had short story anthologies from indie publishers The Fiction Desk, this time litmags by Prole), so there’s a good incentive to get up behind the mic.

Previously UoG Creative Writing lecturer Lania Knight has contributed a guest reading, and at tonight’s event BA Course Leader Tyler Keevil will be doing the same.  So if you’re free, come along and take part, or just support the event and enjoy the show!

cropped-20160824_103519_resized-11

 

How to land a book deal worth millions

21 Sep

chloe-j-espositoYou know how we’re always saying that nobody gets rich through writing fiction? Well, once in a while someone does. This year, that someone is publishing sensation Chloé J. Esposito. If this is the first time you’ve heard of her, rest assured it won’t be the last. Chloé has just sold the rights to her erotic thriller trilogy, Mad, Bad, and Dangerous to Know, in a deal that’s already worth over £2million. In addition to that, Universal have bought the film rights and there’s already speculation that Jennifer Lawrence or Emma Stone might play the protagonist. All this and the first book won’t even be released until next summer.

So how do you land a multi-million-pound book deal? Damned if I know. But Chloé does, and she’s coming to the University to share her whirlwind experience with University of Gloucestershire students. This is an extraordinary opportunity to hear first-hand one of the most sensational stories the publishing world has known in recent years, and it’s a rare chance to meet a global superstar writer before she’s insanely famous. Chloé will be talking at Francis Close Hall Campus, in TC001, at 6:30pm on Tuesday 4th October. The event is free and everyone is welcome.

You can read more about our guest here, and find the Facebook event here. Don’t forget to book the date!

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.

Last Creative Writers’ open mic night, this Tuesday

2 May

Don’t panic – it’s not the last one ever, but it will be the last one this academic year. Of course, for some people who are finishing their degrees before moving away, it may indeed be the last one, even though the tradition will last. That said, the last one was supposed to be the last one, so this one’s kind of like an encore. So I hope there are plenty of readers – let’s make it last! It starts at the Frog and Fiddle at 7:30pm on Tuesday May 3rd (don’t be the last to arrive) and lasts until late. Last thing, please see the FAQs below.

open reading my last seranade

Q: Is this seriously the last one?
A: For this year yes, but there will be more open readings next year.

Q: I haven’t been to any other open readings, can I still come?
A: Of course. If you haven’t been to any during the year this is your chance.

Q: Do I have to read?
A: No. Only if you want to. Open readings are just as much for the listeners as for the readers.

Q: Will there be another one word story?
A: There will be two.

Q: Can I bring my flatmates?
A: Yes. And you should.

Buzzwords Poetry Event Featuring UoG Alumni Dan Sluman

30 Apr

Dan SlumanFor those who are eager for poetry and can’t wait for the huge line-up of great events at next week’s Cheltenham Poetry Festival (see our previous post, and get with it!) then a brilliant warm-up event is taking place tomorrow night, at the regular Buzzwords reading and open mic night.  This will be taking place at the Exmouth Arms, where UoG BA and MA Alumni Dan Sluman will be running a poetry workshop from 7 p.m., and reading at 8 alongside other contributors.

The TerribleDan is the author of Absence Has a Weight of Its Own and, more recently, The Terrible – two tremendous collections from Nine Arches Press.  He has received wide critical acclaim for his work and was named one of the Top 5 British Poets to Watch in 2015 by the Huffington Post.  So come along and support the event – and join the workshop if you’d like to sharpen your poetry skills.

The 2016 Cheltenham Poetry Festival, Featuring UoG Staff, Students, and Alumni!

28 Apr

There are so many amazing events going on in the last few weeks of term we’re going to have to bombard this blog with announcements.  To start with, we wanted to shout about this year’s Cheltenham Poetry Festival, since you can grab discounted tickets if you pick them up in advance.  The fest runs from May 6th to 15th and is organized by UoG Creative Writing Alumni Anna Saunders.  The fest always features a stellar line-up of professional poets, and Anna has been brilliant about including past and current students; this year schedule maintains the tradition of featuring Team UoG on the bill.  Below you’ll find some festival highlights, well worth checking out, and if you want to find out more or pre-book those discounted tickets, follow this link.  Looking forward to seeing you there!

  • Saturday 7th May, 5pm, St Andrew’s Church hall Paul Innes is giving a talk on Shakespeare’s Roman Plays £6/4
  • Sunday 8th May, 2pm at The Strand, MA alumni Lesley Ingram will read from her Cinnamon Press poetry collection ‘Scumbled’. Reading with novelist Martin Lytton. £6/4
  • Monday 9th May, 8pm at The Strand, Angela France will read new poetry exploring Cheltenham’s radical heart. Reading with novelist Kim Fleet. £6/4
  • Tuesday 10th May, 8pm at Smokey Joe’s, Tania Hershman with UoG students give a micro-fiction showcase £6/4
  • Thursday 12th May, 11am at the Oxfam bookshop, John Hughes to give a talk on Bob Dylan £7/5
  • Thursday 12th May, 6.30pm at The Frog and Fiddle, Lania Knight reading poetry with Pete Mullineaux and Alice Merry. £6/4
  • Thursday 12th May, 8pm at The Frog and Fiddle, MA alumni and Poetry Festival founder/director Anna Saunders will read from her new collection as part of an Indigo Dreams showcase £7/5
  • Friday 13th May, The 6th Cheltenham Poetry Festival Slam, 8pm at Smokey Joes. Performers include UoG students Mathias Pedersen and Dani Shlosser £7/5
  • Saturday 14th May, 3.30, Oxfam bookshop, Nigel McLoughlin is giving a talk on the WB Yeats poem ‘Easter 1916’ £6/4
  • Saturday 14th May, 6.30pm at The Wilson, a poetry reading by Nigel McLoughlin and George Szirtes £8/6

poetrylogo

Cheltenham Poetry Festival Preview Featuring UoG Students!

14 Apr

Hot on the heels of a very successful Open Reading on Tuesday night, students from the UoG Creative Writing Programme will be taking part in a Cheltenham Poetry Festival Preview this Saturday, along with some established industry professionals.  It’s a packed day taking place at two venues, with lots to offer for all poetic tastes: check out the flyer below, and drop in to any or all of the events.  Our Team UoG poets feature in the 2 p.m. slot.  Hope to see you there!

Event

Creative Writing Society Open Reading Tuesday at Smokey Joe’s

10 Apr

This Tuesday the Creative Writing Society is hosting what promises to be a brilliant Open Reading.  It will be the last of the Semester (and thus the very last for some of our 3rd years – which is hard to believe!).  So come along to read your work, or just to listen and support the cohort.  The fun starts at 7.30 p.m. at Smokey Joe’s.  You can find out more via Facebook here.  Hope to see you there!

Smokeys12

Show, Don’t Tell Launch this Tuesday: An essential pre-Easter party!

4 Mar

8 CoverDon’t miss the last magazine launch of the year, with free copies of the magazine and student deals on food and drinks. It’s at Smokey Joe’s this Tuesday, and it’s going to be awesome, and it’s extra special because it’s the last magazine produced by Charl & Ash.

Charl and Ash have done amazing things with Show, Don’t Tell, and this is a chance to thank them for all their work while toasting the future of the magazine.

The evening will also feature a fun book swap. To take part, simply wrap up a book, write some keywords about it and bring it to the launch! You’ll get a ticket you can use to swap it for another book.

They’ll also be introducing the new editor of Show Don’t Tell and there will be some fun wordy games. It starts at 7:30, at Smokey Joe’s on 16 Bennington Street, on Tuesday 8th March.

See you there!

The Book Swap.jpg

Lecturer D.D. Johnston talking at Suffolk Anthology Bookstore this Tuesday 17th November

12 Nov

Cheltenham is lucky to have a lovely new independent bookstore – Suffolk Anthology. Situated in the leafy Suffolks/Montpellier area, Suffolk Anthology is a relaxing spot selling great books and great coffee. Charming and elegant, with a Victorian fireplace and a sunny conservatory, it’s also one of the few places in town that sells genuine Moleskine notebooks – an essential item for any bohemian author! But if you’re still looking for a reason to visit, why not head up this Tuesday for UoG lecturer D.D. Johnston’s talk on his new novel, The Secret Baby Room, and everything he’s learned about writing in the last ten years. The talk is at 7:30 on Tuesday 17th November at 17 Suffolk Parade. Tickets cost £3 (which covers a glass of wine or two) and can be reserved from the shop by phoning 01242 361 362 or emailing info@theanthology.co.uk. More information follows below.

dd johnston talk logo

In 2004, when he’d never have done anything as pretentious as call himself by his initials, D.D. Johnston realised it was his destiny to write. The fact he knew nothing about literature and had never demonstrated any facility with written language was unimportant; only in writing could he adequately express how alone he felt in this cruel world. He produced an eighteen-volume magnum opus of bad love poetry, a grand Künstlerroman, which he imagined was the 21st century’s answer to The Sorrows of Young Werther. But it wasn’t. It was crap.

Then, one day, he saw something that changed the direction of his literary oeuvre.  He was living in Manchester, where, because he was unemployed and had no money, he used to wander the city. One day he saw a woman cradling a baby in a boarded up council housing block. Why would anyone take a baby into a boarded up council housing block that was primed for demolition?

So he began to work on the plot of a crime thriller, The Secret Baby Room, which was finally published in 2015. The struggle to complete and publish his novel was painful but life-changing – it lasted slightly longer than the Trojan War. Along the way he published two other novels: Peace, Love, & Petrol Bombs was a Sunday Herald book of the year in 2011 and has been translated into Spanish as Paz, amor y cócteles Molotov; The Deconstruction of Professor Thrub was a Morning Star book of the year in 2013 and was longlisted for the Goldsmith’s Prize. Today he is a Dr of literature, a senior lecturer in Creative Writing, and the founder of onlinewritingtips.com. Along the way he’s learned a thousand things about writing, and he’s now ready to share everything he wishes he’d known in 2004, so that nobody need ever again take a decade to finish a book.

Compass Anthology Launch & 2015 UoG Novel Contest Results

12 Nov

2015-10-28 07.58.31It’s been a whirlwind couple of weeks here at UoG, with a plethora (big word alert) of exciting events and happenings.  One of the biggest was the launch of the Compass anthology, the latest addition to the New Writing series showcasing the best work by students on our BA, MA, and PhD programmes.  The event on campus included launch promotions and readings by nine brave contributors, and the turnout was tremendous.  Afterwards a large portion of the audience trekked across Cheltenham for further fun, food, and drinks at The Swan pub.  The editorial team – MA students from last year’s HM7106 module – wanted to thank all those who supported the event, and helped make the night such a success.

Phil BowneCoinciding with the launch was the announcement of the results of the 2015 UoG Novel Writing Contest.  The selections were sent to us by literary agent Becky Thomas, now of Johnson & Alcock, who picked the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prize winners.  In what was a very close competition, graduating student Meg Paul received 3rd prize; MA graduate Keely O’Shaughnessy earned 2nd prize, and the 1st prize went to graduating 3rd year Phil Bowne.  Each received a cash prize (£25, £50, and £100 respectively) and feedback from Becky regarding their novel entries.  A big congrats to our three winners, those who made the shortlist, and all the other entrants.

Next year’s anthology will be opening its editorial office soon, and the novel contest is an annual event so keep your eyes firmly fixed to this blog for news about the 2016 submission call in the spring.

Show Don’t Tell Issue 6 Launch

5 Oct

Launch Poster 6For those who haven’t heard about it (and who hasn’t?!) Show Don’t Tell is the UoG Creative Writing society magazine, by the students and for the students.  Begun last year, it has become a barnstorming success, so we’re incredibly excited to announce the forthcoming release of Issue 6.  This special edition has a Freshers focus, and includes tips on the town, its bookshops, and the Lit Fest, as well as an interview with new UoG Creative Writing Lecturer, Dr. Lania Knight.  Come on out to join the celebrations at the launch tomorrow night, on Tuesday Oct. 6th.  Things start up at Smokey Joe’s at 7.30 p.m.  See you all there!

New play written by UoG MA students premieres at the Everyman Theatre this Saturday

2 Jun

DymockAs part of this weekend’s UoG Fringe, we’re delighted to announce that a few tickets remain for the premiere of Voices from the Forest – a play written collectively by MA students at the University of Gloucestershire. Students Ash Hartridge, Chloe Biggs, Matthew Pinnell, and Senja Andrejevic have combined their skills with those of lecturer Lucy Tyler to develop a new play exploring the lives and times of Gloucestershire’s celebrated Dymock Poets. The matinee performance at 2pm on Saturday 6th June is open to the public and a small number of tickets remain. The play will be staged at the Everyman Theatre and tickets can be booked by telephone on 01242 572573 or in person at the box office. Tickets are £4 for students and other concessions and £8 full price. Book soon to avoid disappointment!Fringe logo

Remember that this is one of ten events on the UoG Fringe Programme. It promises to be an amazing weekend and it all starts at 6pm in TC001 on Friday 5th June. Check out the full list of events here.

This is the best thing to ever happen at the University of Gloucestershire or anywhere in the South West or maybe even ever in the world

30 Apr

Fringe logoIt’s just five weeks until the start of the UoG Fringe Festival, which is going to be rib-ticklingly, jaw-droppingly, biscuit-crunchingly brilliant. From the 5th-7th of June, Cheltenham will host a weekend of events organised by second-year Creative Writing students. We have quizzes and debates and poetry and music and art and film and drama. We’ve even got an event for children under eight. We’ll be living it up on campus and off, from the SU to TC001; in the Frog, the Feathered Fish, Copa, Cheltenham Library, and the Everyman Theatre. The second years would love your help to make these events successful, so if you’d like to get involved, please contact them via Facebook, Twitter, or at uogfringe@gmail.com.

Below is the events timetable and more information will be shared here in the coming weeks.

Fringe Fest timetable

The 2015 Cheltenham Poetry Festival is here!

21 Apr

2015 poetry festival logoIt’s spring, the sun is shining, trees are blossoming, and it’s time for the 2015 Cheltenham Poetry Festival! This wonderful event is back with another varied and imaginative programme, and student tickets are available from a discounted rate of £4. There’s loads to see and hear, and the full programme is available via this link, but here are some of our picks if you’re not sure what to attend.

Wednesday April 22nd: Cheltenham Poetry Festival Launch Event 6pm-7:30pm in Smokey Joe’s. See a performance piece described as ‘a work of genius’ by John Cooper Clarke, hear some 50s songs, and listen to poetry from Rick Vick. Plus, perform your own poetry and short prose at the launch’s open mic!

Friday April 24th: Little Machine, 8:30pm-10pm at The Wilson. This is an amazing way to experience poetry – Little Machine are a poetry band described by Carol Ann Duffy as ‘The most brilliant music and poetry band I’ve seen in decades.’

Saturday April 25th: The Other Side of Sleep, 2:30pm-3:30pm at Oxfam. The Other Side of Sleep is an anthology that explores the narrative poem, and the event will feature readings from contributors, including our own Angela France.

Saturday April 25th: The Minotaur is Not a Monster – Myra Schneider & Anna Saunders plus the launch of Dear World, 4pm-5:15pm at Oxfam. Another of our high-achieving alumni, Anna Saunders (‘a poet of quite exceptional gifts’), will be reading at this event, which also includes the launch of an anthology of poems on environmental themes.

Saturday April 25th: The Contradictions of Flesh – Sonia Hendy-Isaac & Clare Ferguson-Walker, 7:30-8pm at Smokey Joe’s. It’s a chance to complete a hat-trick of UoG alumni poets in one day! Sonia Hendy-Isaac, who previously studied and taught at the University of Gloucestershire, will be reading from her debut collection which has been described as ‘fiercely sensual, shamelessly witty, drunk with life’ (Alison Brackenbury).

Saturday April 25th: Hip Hop & Freestyle Cabaret with Martin Daws, Petra Vita, and Davey Evans, 9pm-10pm at Smokey Joe’s. One of our very top picks from the festival, this night promises laughs, beats, music, and wordplay. There’s a UoG connection too – Brandon Landis, one half of Petra Vita, will be known to many of our Creative Writers, and the evening will be hosted by our own Davey Evans.

Monday April 27th: Nine Arches – Jo Bell & Robert Peake, 6pm-7pm at The Strand. This hour of poetry comes with special recommendation – not to be missed!

Wednesday April 29th Chris Hemingway & Myfanwy Fox – Sarcasm and Stanzas plus open mic, 9pm-10pm at Smokey Joe’s. This event explore sarcasm and poetry and affords all the chance to perform their own work, whether it be sarcastic or sincere.

Friday May 1st: Nine Arches Poetry Show Case – Bobby Parker, Dorothy Lehane, 1pm-2pm at The Everyman Studio Theatre. This is another event that comes with special recommendation – two exciting voices from the spoken word scene. If you don’t have a class at that time then this is the place to be!

Friday May 1st: Joe Duggan & Rowan Middleton, 5pm-6pm at The Everyman Studio Theatre. One of our very top picks from this year’s festival – an absolute must! Joe’s work chronicles Irish pub life, politics, bingo, and failing exams. He’s joined by one of our tutors (and graduates) – the brilliant Rowan Middleton. Rowan’s work mixes myth and modernity to muse on landscape and environmental issues.

Saturday May 2nd: Lines of Return – the Poetry of T.S. Eliot, Robert Frost, and Others, 3pm-4pm, The Everyman Studio Theatre. Poet and critic Stephen James unlocks the secrets of poetic craft – a great event for poets and students of literature.

Saturday May 2nd: How to Perform your Poetry, with Elizabeth Tyrell, 6pm-7:30 at The Everyman Studio Theatre. This is useful, not just for poets, but for any authors looking to improve their stage presence and performance skills

Saturday May 2nd: Breaking Bard – The Cheltenham Poetry Festival Slam 8pm-9:30pm at The Everyman Studio Theatre. 12 poets go head to head in an exhilarating X-factor style poetry battle!

Check out the full programme and find booking links here 🙂

Open Mic: World Book Day Special

4 Mar

world book day logoThursday March 5th is World Book Day, and thanks to Kayleigh Moore we’re marking the day with a special event for everyone involved in Creative Writing at the University of Gloucestershire. Come and celebrate the written word with an evening of performances from your lecturers and yourselves!

It’s at the Frog and Fiddle pub from 7pm on Thursday March 5th.

The lecturers will start things off with some readings from their work, and then the floor will be turned over to you to perform your prose, poetry, and plays.

It should be a night to remember, so whether or not you choose to read, come and enjoy yourselves.

Launch party for issue 4 of Show, Don’t Tell

23 Feb

Show dont tell launchTomorrow night (Tuesday 24th February) we’ll be celebrating the launch of the new issue of the brilliant Creative Writing student magazine Show, Don’t Tell. Everyone is welcome to join us raising a glass to the new issue. You can pick up a copy for free and, who knows, this might be the night that Randall finally gets on the pole. If you haven’t been to one of these launches before then be sure not to miss this one – it promises to be a lot of fun. It starts from 8pm at Yates on Tuesday 24th February. See you there!

Creative Writing open mic – tonight!

27 Jan
Photo by Ed Schipul

Photo by Ed Schipul

We’re looking forward to the first open mic of 2015 tonight (Tuesday 27th January). Your host for the evening will be the very talented and funny Davey Evans.  There’s a birthday theme, so feel free to wear a party hat, if you’re that way inclined. As always, it’s a chance to share your prose, poems, and plays with students from different years. Alternatively, you may just want to have a listen and have a drink. It promises to be a laid back and fun night, with no pressure to perform. We hope to see you there!

Where? In The Barn at the Frog and Fiddle Pub.
When? Tuesday 27th January starting at 7:30pm.
Is there a Facebook event? Yup, right here.

Show Don’t Tell Issue 3 Launch!

17 Jan

Show Don't Tell CoverTo ring in the new year, and kickstart Semester Two, the Show Don’t Tell team are launching their highly anticipated 3rd issue.  Much of the content is still being kept under wraps, but rumours abound.  There is allegedly more writing tips, thoughts on flash fiction, help with writing dissertations, the latest in the series of interviews with your writing tutors, and the submission call for this year’s Compass anthology.  It’s shaping up to be even better than the previous issues (if that’s possible) and the team would love to see you at Yates’s for the launch on Tuesday, January 20th, at 8 p.m.  In the meantime, check out the editor’s brilliant video preview.