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Young Writers’ Summer: Write Outside

It’s the holidays! Get creative and get outdoors with our free virtual programme for young people aged 12-19.

Introducing our free summer programme for young people

Summer 2020 looks a little different to normal, but we’re excited to launch Young Writers’ Summer: Write Outside, our first ever virtual summer programme for young people!

This programme is completely free. We’ll be uploading exciting new activities every week of the summer holidays and you can take part as much or as little as you like.

To join in you just need access to a computer or phone and your imagination! Sign up now

Why did we call it Write Outside?

After many months stuck indoors, we hope the summer holidays will be a chance for us all to relax, get outside, and enjoy a bit more freedom.

Through different writing exercises you will start to look at and write about the world around you – whether that’s an urban street, the isolated countryside or even the view outside your window.

Many of us won’t be going on holiday this year, but luckily the natural world is all around us and there are no limits to the imagination!

Inspired by our wider climate change work, we hope to encourage you to pay close attention, to appreciate nature and see how it can inspire your writing.

This programme is for everyone who is interested in writing, creating, playing with words or expressing themselves. Some of us may already write a lot at home, while others are just dipping their toes in the water.

Be brave and have an adventurous summer with us!

How does it work?

Prior to the programme starting* you will be sent an email telling you how to access the Young Writers’ Summer area on our website.

Every Monday from 20 July there will be new workshops and exercises for you to take part in, covering fiction, poetry and writing for theatre.

You might choose to concentrate on one of these genres or try out all three – it’s up to you.

The programme is run by the Young Writers team, three lead writers and a weekly guest writer. Across the six weeks the writers will introduce you to different exercises and techniques to develop your writing in a fun and inspiring way! You can also connect with other people your age who enjoy writing. And at the end of the summer everyone who wants to can share the work they have created.

Ready? Let’s go!

*Don’t worry if you don’t sign up before Young Writers’ Summer begins, you can join in at any time!

How much time does it take?

You can pick and choose which workshops you’d like to work on and there’s no time limit, so you can fit your writing in around other summer plans.

It’s okay if you join late or if you need to miss a few weeks for a holiday!

If you would like the opportunity to write in a structured way and get feedback from writers on your work, we will be running optional Zoom workshops every Saturday from 11am-12pm during the programme.

You will be sent information on each Zoom workshop and how to access it once the programme starts.

Staying connected

Everyone who takes part in Young Writers’ Summer aged 13+ will be invited to join our online community.

This will be a private space for you to chat about this week’s prompts, share ideas and inspiration. If you want to, you can also share your writing with your peers and our lead writers.


What happens at the end?

We will work with you throughout the summer to find ways for you to share your work publicly, if you would like to. As an example, this could include collecting your pieces of writing into a group anthology, or creating voice recordings of your work to contribute to a group animation.

We will also do our best to let you know about ways to keep developing your writing after the summer – this could be by joining one of our Young Writers’ Groups or another group in your local area; letting you know about our Young Northern Writers’ Awards and other competitions; or identifying other ways to support you.

Meet our lead writers!

FICTION: Lucie Brownlee

Lucie is an award-winning writer, tutor, and blogger. Her work has been adapted for TV, selected by Richard and Judy for their Book Club, and selected in various competitions. She writes everything but poetry (but she’ll give anything a go!)

POETRY: Bob Beagrie

Bob  has published numerous collections of poetry and several pamphlets, most recently Civil Insolencies (Smokestack 2019). He is a founder member of the experimental poetry and music collective Project Lono. He lives in Middlesbrough and is a senior lecturer in creative writing at Teesside University.

THEATRE: Ruth Mary Johnson

Ruth is a theatre maker from the North East who directs, performs, writes, and facilitates. Her recent credits include directing The Winter’s Tale for young audiences for the National Theatre, and writing, directing and performing Chicken Licken: a Tale Jam, Perfectly Norman: a Story Gig, and Izzy Gizmo: a Story Gig.

Sign up now!

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