As a PhD student, I have attended and presented at a number of conferences, seeking to establish connections with other writers and scholars, and to present my work to a larger audience. Below is a list of conferences I have taken part in, and some further information about workshops that I delivered.
NAWE Conference, York, 2018 – ‘Authenticity: Historical Research for Writers of Fiction‘
I presented a twenty-minute paper among a panel of three. This was the abstract:
The question of authenticity is central to the work of historical fiction writers. Yet, depending on the author’s intentions and philosophy, levels of accuracy – and depth of research – will vary from one volume to another. This paper will examine some of the differing attitudes toward historical research, as well as some of its underlying principles. Why does authenticity matter? What does historical accuracy achieve for the reader? Through the careful examination of my own creative research process, this paper will aim at answering those questions, as well as highlighting some of the challenges and rewards that a writer might encounter while doing historical research.
ESF (English Shared Futures), July 2017, Newcastle – ‘Reflections on Time and Place: The Creative Writing PhD in Historical Fiction’
This was a panel I organised with Laura McKenna (University College Cork), Fiona Whyte (University College Cork) and Paul Pattison (Anglia Ruskin University), chaired by Sean Baker (Anglia Ruskin University).
NAWE (National Association for Writers in Education) Conference, Stratford-upon-Avon, 2016 – ‘Writing in Time’ in collaboration with Claire Williamson
Claire and I ran a 90-minute workshop on historical fiction, including various exercises. Below is the workshop abstract:
A first attempt at historical fiction can seem incredibly daunting, whether the writer lived through the time concerned or not. How does one evoke successfully the era they are writing about? How can a writer achieve the right balance between fact and fiction? This workshop will aim at demystifying historical writing through a series of playful, creative activities, and will explore the variety of way in which personal materials can be used in historical writing.