Write Beyond the Lightbulb - Lyrical Writing
The course really got me thinking about how much further I could take my writing at a sentence level. It was very inspiring. The feedback and guidance from the tutor was very thorough and I know I'll be returning to the course materials again and again.
How do we craft writing so infused with musicality that it deserves to be read out loud? How do we get a reader to speed up or slow down? How do we sustain rhythm and flow from one sentence to the next? This flash fiction course explores various tricks and techniques which can be used to lend a lyrical quality to our prose.
The course is split into two distinct halves. In the first week, you'll be encouraged to work through the course materials at your own pace. In the second week, you'll have access to a workshop space to share your writing and feedback on pieces created by other course participants.
JANUARY 2021: SOLD OUT
FEBRUARY 2021: SOLD OUT
APRIL 2021: SOLD OUT
MAY 2021: SOLD OUT
AUGUST 2021: SOLD OUT
This is a pay-what-you-can workshop. The recommended price is £75. Where this is prohibitive, please pay what you feel you can afford. As a workshop facilitator, I am committed to opening up writing opportunities to people from all backgrounds based on ability to write rather than ability to pay.
1: Tempo (sentence length and punctuation)
2: Rhythm (word stress and parallelism)
3: Sound (alliteration, consonance and onomatopoeia)
4: Motifs (repetition and echoes)
The course is presented through a mixture of reading and video material with preparatory exercises leading towards a final flash fiction challenge for each topic. As well as exploring fantastic examples of lyrical writing, we'll take short detours away from the literary world to see what we can learn from music, poetry and the mechanics of speech sound.
Each topic is designed to be worked through in roughly two and half hours. The course is flexible and fully online to allow course participants to work at their own pace and to fit the course around their other commitments.
Matt's wealth of knowledge about music combined with his keen analysis of text and always-encouraging approach to teaching make his lyrical writing workshop very special - your head will be singing!
During the course, you'll have access to a forum where you can connect with other participants, discuss readings and share the micros you'll be creating in each topics' preparatory exercises.
In the second week, course participants will be invited to take part in a workshop where you can upload between one and four flash fiction pieces created as part of the course. This is an opportunity to give and receive feedback from other course participants in a low-pressure, friendly environment.
You'll also get detailed feedback (a 300-400 word structural summary plus in-line comments) from the workshop facilitator on two flash fiction pieces.
Matt is a writer and editor based in the East Midlands, UK. His short fiction has appeared in Bending Genres, Cheap Pop, Craft Literary, FlashBack Fiction, Fictive Dream, Lunate, Spelk, Splonk, and elsewhere. He has been listed in various writing competitions including Bath, Flash 500, Reflex and Leicester Writes, and he won the Retreat West "Abandoned" flash fiction competition in June 2020. His story 'Life in the Colliery' was included on the Biffy 50 list for 2019-20 and another story 'a list of things that are white' was included in Best Microfiction 2021. He has also been nominated for Best of the Net, Best Small Fictions and the Pushcart Prize.
He works as a freelance editor and workshop facilitator, and runs the Betas & Bludgers writing groups. Away from writing, he is a qualified languages teacher and studied at a music conservatoire in a previous existence. He now uses this blend of experience to inform his workshops on lyrical writing.
This stellar course made me rethink how I write, how my writing sounds, how each word is part of a symphony. I knew Matt was a great editor; he's also an awesome teacher! The workshop was generative, but also shared new self-editing techniques that go beyond the lightbulb.
The course is designed for writers of all levels but, to get the most out of the materials, it is suggested that you should have some prior familiarity with reading and writing flash fiction. While the course is geared towards the study and generation of flash, the techniques and skills acquired should also be useful for writing longer form and non-fiction pieces.
The course is hosted on a Google website using Google groups and Google drive to enable the forum and workshop elements . To access materials, participants will need to have a Google account. If you don't already have one, you will be sent information on how you can set one up following sign up for the course.