Creative Writing Festival returns to Sunderland

David Mark will host a workshop at the festival
David Mark will host a workshop at the festival
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City scribes are preparing to put pen to paper for Sunderland’s second Creative Writing Festival.

After the sell-out success of 2016, the festival is back throughout the month of March with a range of workshops and talks for writers of all abilities and at any stage of their writing journey.

Highlights include Writing Young Adult Fiction with Sally Green and Matthew Crow. Sally is the author of an internationally-acclaimed trilogy of young adult fantasy novels, the first of which, Half Bad, broke the Guinness World Record for Most Translated Book by a Debut Author, Pre-publication with 45 different translations before its publication.

Meanwhile, Turning Fact Into Fiction with David Mark looks at how to turn everyday situations, normal people and half-formed ideas into an outline for a killer novel.

David has written five novels in the McAvoy series and has recently completed a stint as reader in residence for the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival.

The festival closes with a panel discussion, chaired by David Callaghan, about writing comedy with comedians Amy Gledhill, Chris Cantrill and Joby Mageean, who have experience of writing for TV, radio, sketch shows and stand-up.

Then the doors of Independent in Holmeside open to the public for a night of comedy compered by Matt Reed, in which each of the comedians will do a stand-up gig.

Festival director, Iain Rowan, said: “Our festival takes a broad approach to creative writing with events for people interested in writing novels, plays, comedy, poetry, interactive fiction, audio drama, and more.

“We aim to provide opportunities for people with an interest in creative writing, whether as beginners or early professionals, to gain insights, to develop their skills, and to build networks with other writers.”

All events are free but are ticketed due to restricted venue space. Some events are sold out already, however, there are waiting lists in case any additional tickets become available.

For the full schedule visit