Writing Historical Fiction

Fri 18 August 2023 - Sun 20 August 2023
Tutors / Rebecca F. John & Susan Stokes-Chapman
Course Fee / From £250 - £350 per person
Genre / Fiction
Language / English

Join Costa-shortlisted Rebecca F. John and The Sunday Times bestseller Susan Stokes-Chapman to explore the exciting world of long-form historical writing. We will delve into the past to look for information about real people and occasions, whether in snippets of newspaper clippings, diaries or family letters passed down from generation to generation, or perhaps from history and our legends’ most well-known events and characters. These stories could be your inspiration to create riveting new fictional work, but to what extent do you have creative license to re-imagine the past? Through participative workshops, we’ll debate this question and more.

During this weekend, you’ll discover effective ways to create convincing characters, shape believable worlds, and plot and pace your narrative. Each workshop will lead you – through discussion, writing exercises, and consideration of (light) theory – to gain confidence in your writing and develop new skills and techniques which will enable you to tell your stories in your own unique voice.


Rebecca F. John

Rebecca F. John grew up in a small village on the south Wales coast. She is the author of one short story collection, Clown’s Shoes (Parthian, 2015); three novels for adults, The Haunting of Henry Twist (Serpent’s Tail, 2017), The Empty Greatcoat (Aderyn, 2022), Fannie (Honno, 2022); and one children’s novel, The Shadow Order (Firefly, 2022). She has been shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award and the Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award. Her next novel for adults, Vulcana, will publish with Honno in May 2023. She lives in Swansea with her partner, their son, and their dogs. 

Susan Stokes-Chapman

Susan Stokes-Chapman grew up in the historic Georgian city of Lichfield, Staffordshire, but now lives in north-west Wales. She studied at Aberystwyth University, graduating with a BA in Education & English Literature and an MA in Creative Writing. Her debut novel Pandora (Harvill Secker, 2022) is a loose reinterpretation of the Greek myth Pandora's Box. Set in Georgian London, it tells the story of aspiring jewellery artist Dora Blake and her encounter with an ancient vase that her tyrannical uncle is desperately keen to keep a secret. The novel became an instant number one Sunday Times bestseller, and in 2020 was shortlisted for the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize and longlisted for the Bath Novel Award.

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