Andrew Cowan

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFollowing the recently announced change in our current programme, on 20th May we welcomed Andrew Cowan to Norwich Writers’ Circle.

Andrew is the Director of the Creative Writing Programme at the UEA. In addition to his role at the University Of East Anglia, our latest visiting writer’s novel, Worthless Man, was shortlisted for the EDP East Anglian Book Awards 2013/14.

Our new guest speaker held an interactive workshop on characterisation and structure. During the well-attended meeting Andrew used a couple of exercises from his acclaimed book The Art Of Writing Fiction in order to think about these key creative points in detail.

The first fun exercise involved choosing a picture from a selection that the visiting writer presented to us. Once everyone had chosen a photo that we had connected with emotionally, we were then asked 18 questions, to which we then had to write down the answers in-character.

After the first excerices was completed Andrew then explained to us the difference between and plot. Following on from this, again in-character, we had to write one sentence about are chosen person’s day. Much to our surprise, we were then asked to pass our sentence to the person sitting next to us who would continue our tale. This exercise was then repeated until we had a total of 7 sentences, comprising of a beginning, middle and end.

The enjoyable evening concluded by hearing a selection of our newly-written pieces of flash fiction. Many of these stories, which varied from dark to daft, led to much discussion within our writing group.

To see an exclusive gallery from this meeting please visit our Facebook page.

NWC next meets on 3rd June when Alexander Gordon Smith will be returning to adjudicate our Young Adult Competition.

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