Workshops and Presenters July weekend

Scroll down to see details of all the fantastic workshops on our festival weekend, 14th-16th July. Three, four or five workshops to choose at each session on Saturday and Sunday. Seven workshops in all. Eight if you include the half hour Word Cricket session for the whole assembly with Vanessa Gebbie on Saturday morning. Also, extra pre-festival workshop on Friday. Booking open now We sort out which workshops everyone want to attend when booking is closed in June and everyone is likely to get their first or second choice.

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Kathy Fish

READY! SET! WRITE! Pre-festival workshop with Kathy Fish Friday 14th July, 2.00 – 5.00 pm

NB: This workshop is extra to the the main festival workshops. Pay via paypal button here

“In order to be creative, you have to know how to prepare to be creative…” ~Twyla Tharp

I’m a big believer in the value of pre-writing as a necessary first step to drafting new work. Over the years, I have developed some exercises and activities aimed at immersion and deep work before beginning the joyful task of creating new art. The result? Fresh, original drafts of surprising depth and beauty. In this engaging, interactive three-hour session we will begin with a series of fun and interesting activities and prompts that will prime our brains for creative expression. From these, we will put together “toolboxes” for story writing, equipping ourselves with our own unique word banks, vocabulary, images, characters, settings, even titles. In the last hour, we will draw on these tools to draft rich, resonant stories that might not otherwise be written had we not arrived at the page primed, prepared, energized, and inspired.

How Do I Land This Thing? The Pleasures & Perils of Writing a Great Flash Fiction Ending, with Kathy Fish

Kathy will run this workshop twice, once on Saturday and once on Sunday at the festival

Your draft is in great shape! Well, it nearly is. That ending, though. It’s just not quite “there” yet. It’s the part you’ve fussed over the most. Written and rewritten. You’ve reworked it so many times you’ve lost your way entirely. And you just read a story online that absolutely nails the ending. How did they do it? In this 90 minute session, we will read, analyze, dissect, and ponder the great endings in literature and film. There really are no hard and fast “rules” to landing your story but you don’t want to fall flat nor do you want to crash and burn! Worst of all, you don’t want to make your reader go, “huh?” I’ll provide tips and strategies for writing a powerful, resonant ending and we’ll write to a fun prompt aimed at skill-building. Participants are welcome to bring in their own troublesome draft to work on in the session as well.

Kathy Fish has published five collections of short fiction, most recently Wild Life: Collected Works from 2003-2018. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in Ploughshares, Copper Nickel, Washington Square Review, and numerous other journals, textbooks, and anthologies. Fish’s “Collective Nouns for Humans in the Wild,” was selected for Best American Non-required Reading 2018 and the current edition of The Norton Reader. Her newsletter, The Art of Flash Fiction, provides monthly craft articles and writing prompts and is free to all. Subscribe here:

Nancy Stohlman

Pop Lit: Elevating the Mundane to the Miraculous with Nancy Stohlman

Inspired by the Pop Art movement, this workshop will engage with unexplored or under explored avenues of potential inspiration including pop culture, art, music, movies, trends, fashion and more. We will actively blur the distinctions between low brow and high brow art and elevate the mundane to the miraculous. As always, come with an open mind and expect to play.

Literary Piracy–Plundering Structure and Stealing the Gold with Nancy Stohlman

As writers, we “plunder” existing treasure when we study and emulate someone else’s brilliance, and by paying attention less to content and more to structure and scaffolding, we can learn how something works and why we like it. In this workshop we will plunder and steal like a true literary pirate, bringing in a sense of playfulness and delight as we start turning over our own literary gold.

Nancy Stohlman’s new flash novel, After the Rapture, is forthcoming from Mason Jar Press in 2023. She is a fan of the short and the strange, and she has been a leader and advocate in the flash fiction literary movement for more than 15 years. Her book Going Short: An Invitation to Flash Fiction won a Reader Views Gold Award and was recently re-released as an audiobook. Her other books include The Vixen Scream and Other Bible Stories, Madam Velvet’s Cabaret of Oddities (finalist for a Colorado Book Award), and her avant garde operetta The Monster Opera. Her work has been included in the Norton anthology New Micro, The Best Small Fictions, and adapted for both stage and screen. She teaches at the University of Colorado Boulder and runs creative workshops and retreats around the world.

Jude Higgins

Why submit to Magazines and Literary Competitions Anyway? with Jude Higgins, Diane Simmons and Karen Jones

A panel and group discussion chaired by Jude. Our panel, experienced in administering, reading for and editing competitions, anthologies and magazines, as well as being successful in contests and submissions themselves over many years, will lead an audience discussion on the subject. Many writers at the festival will have been successful in contests, been initial readers for magazines and contests or judged prizes. We will all share our knowledge, tips, advice, do’s and don’ts and answer the question, ‘Why submit to magazines and literary competitions anyway?’

Jude Higgins Jude founded Bath Flash Fiction Award in 2015, co-runs The Bath Short Story Award since 2013 and directs the short short fiction press, Ad Hoc Fiction. She has read thousands of short fictions and hundreds of novellas over the past eight years for Bath Flash Fiction Awards and Ad Hoc Fiction and has been final judge for Mslexia flash fiction. Jude has also been placed, shortlisted and longlisted in many contests. Read her full bio on our festival team page.

Karen Jones

Karen Jones is an editor for New Flash Fiction Review where she recently wrote a very useful guide on submitting and the National Flash Fiction Day Anthology. She has judged many flash fiction contests, including The Bath Flash Fiction Award in 2022 and The Propelling Pencil Award and has won first prize in Reflex Flash Fiction Prize, The Cambridge Flash Fiction Award, as well as being shortlisted and placed in numerous awards including the Bath Short Story Awards and Bath Flash Fiction Awards on many occasions. Read her full bio on our festival team page

Diane Simmons has been Co-Director of National Flash Fiction Day since 2018, administering the anthology submissions and micro contests. She has been an editor for FlashFlood, judge for Flash500 flash fiction contests, Micro Madness for National Flash Fiction Day, New Zealand and Flash Fiction Festival competitions and was an editor for the flash fiction festival anthologies Vols 1-5. She recently won second place in the Reflex Fiction Prize and has been placed or short listed in numerous flash fiction Awards, both for novellas and individual flashfictions. Her flash fiction collection Finding A Way on the subject of grief, was published in 2019 by Ad HocFiction and shortlisted for the Saboteur Awards for Best Short Story Collection. Her novella-in-flash, An Inheritance was published by in 2020 was also shortlisted for the Saboteur Awards Best Novella category. Diane was a co-director for Flash Fiction Festivals from 2018-2022.

Roberta Beary

How to Haibun with Roberta Beary and Lew Watts

Memoir, fairytale, short story, travel journal, and dream sequence are terms that have been used to describe haibun. A prose poem which includes haiku, haibun continues to evolve and can encompass anything within the writer’s experience or imagination. Roberta Beary will explore what makes a good haibun, highlighting how the holy trinity of haibun, title, prose, and haiku, link to form a whole which resonates with the reader.

Special guest and haibun editor Lew Watts will share how haibun is created through the release of five bursts of insight, or “sparks”, and will explore examples of how to break the rules by experimenting with form, voice, rhythm, pacing, and focus.Participants will learn writing techniques emphasizing succinct prose and evocative micropoetry.

For the haibun curious and seasoned practitioners.

Roberta Beary identifies as gender fluid, and writes to connect with the silenced, to let them know they are not alone. After 60 rejections, their prose poem ‘After You Self Medicate with Roethke’s The Waking Read by Text to Speech App’ won the Bridport Prize. Their work appears in The New York Times (Modern Love/Tiny Love Stories), Rattle, and 100 Word Story. The longtime haibun editor at Modern Haiku, they divide their time between the USA and Ireland.

Lew Watts is the haibun co-editor of Frogpond and the author of Tick-Tock (Snapshot Press, 2019), a haibun collection that received an Honorable Mention in the Haiku Society of America’s 2020 Merit Book Awards. His publications also include the novel Marcel Malone, the poetry Collection Lessons for Tangueros, and a forthcoming collection of haiku and haibun from Snapshot Press. Born and raised in Cardiff, Wales, he lives in Chicago with his wife, Roxanne Decyk. His other passions are fly fishing, rugby, and gin martinis.

Tania Hershman, Photo by Grace Gelder

Giving Yourself Permission: Giving Yourself Permission. Workshop inspired by the Fuel Flash Anthology: with Tania Hershman

What is it you might not be allowing yourself to do in your writing? How might you be stopping yourself from telling the stories you want to tell in the way you want to tell them? Often we don’t know our own taboos, our preconceptions of what a story “should” be, what can and can’t go down on the page. Using writing exercises taking inspiration from the diverse and surprising selection of first-prize-winning flash stories from the FUEL charity anthology that Tania has put together (and will be introducing on Friday evening) – from forms, shapes, genres, titles and first lines – you’ll start to give yourself permission to let your writing roam free!

Tania Hershman is the editor of Fuel: An anthology of Prize-Winning Flash Fictions Raising Funds to Fight Fuel Poverty, which will be published in Feb 2023. Her second poetry collection, Still Life With Octopus, was published by Nine Arches Press in July 2022 and her debut hybrid novel, Go On, by Broken Sleep Books in Nov 2022. Based in Manchester, Tania is also the author of three short story and flash fiction collections, three books of poetry, a hybrid book inspired by particle physics, co-author of Writing Short Stories: A Writers’ & Artists’ Companion (Bloomsbury, 2014), and founder of the short story hub ShortStops. She is co-creator of the @OnThisDayShe Twitter account, co-author of the On This Day She book (John Blake, 2021), and has a PhD in creative writing inspired by particle physics.

Electra Rhodes

The Oceans Eleven Theory of Story – Fantastic Fundamentals of Fabulous Fiction with El Rhodes

Want to write compelling prose that nails the key elements of feisty fiction? Of course you do – and this is the workshop for you. A mix of craft talk, prompts, opportunities to write, and reflective exercises to help you look at your work in new ways, you’ll come away from this class ready to pull off the heist of your life and get the girl/boy/cephalopod of your dreams.

Electra Rhodes is an award winning writer and teacher. One of the 2022/23 ‘Emerging Writers’ with the London Library, she has published more than 200 pieces of short writing, is widely anthologised, and has recently been commissioned for a story in the BBC Radio4 Short Works series. Her craft book on writing, part of the Master Craft Series from Ad Hoc Fiction is forthcoming. She tweets extravagantly on writing, archaeology and her elderly dad @electra_rhodes

Christopher Allen

Nailing the Sound of Flash with Christopher Allen

Nailing the flash narrative is not merely a matter of fitting a story into the box of 1000 words or fewer. The best flash feels like a brief piece of art, like music or sculpture: something solid like a gem. In this workshop we’ll look at specific ways to effect the urgency, rhythm, and cadence–the sound–of the flash narrative.

Christopher Allen is the editor-in-chief and publisher of SmokeLong Quarterly and the 2023 judge of the flash fiction portion of the Bridport Prize. Allen has been a teacher for almost 30 years, most recently leading workshops on writing compelling flash narratives (stories under 1000 words). His work has been published in over one hundred publications including The Best Small Fictions 2019 and 2022, Booth, Split Lip Magazine, and Flash Fiction America (Norton, February 2023). Allen’s debut collection of flash fiction–Other Household Toxins (Matter Press)–came out in 2018. 

Deborah Tomkins

Writing Climate Change with Deb Tomkins

We are living in a climate crisis. Earth’s climate is rapidly and irreversibly changing, faster than even climate scientists expected only 10 years ago. But at the same time a lot of work is happening out of the public eye, to prepare for the future and to mitigate the worst effects.
Although most climate fiction focuses on the disasters – from being displaced by flood or storm, to running out of food, to disruption in energy supplies, to war and conflict – in this workshop we will look at other ways of approaching the climate crisis, where hope, generosity and ingenuity are deployed in unexpected ways.

Deborah Tomkins mainly write fiction, plus occasional articles. She writes about climate change, in novels, novellas and stories. Her short stories and flash fictions have been published by small presses, both online and in print, and have also won prizes. Her novels and novellas have reached the long lists and short lists of international competitions. Long lists include the Mslexia Prize (2015), the Eludia Award (2020), the Bath Novella-in-Flash Award (2018, 2019). Shortlists include the Siskiyou Prize for New Environmental Literature (2018), the Yeovil Prize (2019), the Sandy River Novella Award (2020).In 2017 she founded Bristol Climate Writers, a local network of writers of all genres, from poets to travel writers, novelists to journalists and is a member of ClimateCultures, an extraordinary world-wide network of artists and scientists.Deborah is represented by Matthew Smith at Exprimez Literary Agency.Website:

Nora Nadjarian

OMG! – Oh my gods and goddesses! with Nora Nadjarian

Could you retell the epic tales of the Amazons or the kidnapping of Persephone in the form of a micro or flash? Join me on a creative odyssey exploring some of the famous – and infamous – characters and adventures of the Greek myths and legends.
In this fun and generative workshop we will encounter terrible creatures, people-eating, fire-breathing beasts and the heroes who battled them. We will explore, re-imagine and rewrite battles, homecomings and messy love affairs.
These sweeping tales have transcended generations and continue to fascinate us today. They are full of lessons about life and morality, offering insights into the human condition – and will no doubt inspire you to retell them in unexpected ways. Will you dare to open the Pandora’s Box of your imagination?

Nora Nadjarian is a poet and writer from Cyprus. She has been commended or placed in numerous competitions, including the Reflex Fiction Flash Fiction Competition and the Mslexia Poetry Competition (2021). Her work was included in Europa 28 (Comma Press, 2020) and she represented Cyprus in the Hay Festival’s Europa28: Visions for the Future in 2020. Her short fiction has appeared, among others, in Sand Journal, FRiGG, MoonPark Review, Lunate, Ellipsis Zine, Milk Candy Review and was chosen for Wigleaf‘s Top 50 Very Short Fictions of 2022 (selected by Kathy Fish).
She has led successful creative writing workshops for the Flash Fiction Festival, the Cheltenham Poetry Festival, Beyond Form, Flash Cabin, Retreat West, as well as the Bonington Gallery and Nottingham Trent University’s Postcolonial Studies Centre. 

Alison Woodhouse

Reading as Writers: With Alison Woodhouse

Great flash fiction leaves a very strong impression but the danger is we simply inhale it and move on. How often do you bring your critical faculties to the reading experience, analysing what the writer has done, in order to improve our own writing of flash stories? Do you keep notes (a reading journal) about the flash that pops up daily on your screens? Ask yourself what draws you to a particular story and why? Is it exciting language, playful or clever structure, metaphor and symbolism, character and story, or (usually) a mixture of these? Often I find I’m hit by an emotional response and then I go back to see how the writer has achieved that in terms of craft, rather than topic. In this class we will read a selection of flash with an analytical eye, looking under the hood if you like, in order to deepen our appreciation of the stories we’ve studied. There will also be some writing exercises to see if we can bring some of what we learn into our own stories and a chance to share your work.

Alison Woodhouse is a writer and teacher. She runs a weekly writing group and offers workshops for The Crow Collective, Flash Cabin and elsewhere. Her flash fiction and short stories have been widely published and anthologised, including In the Kitchen (Dahlia Press), With One Eye on the Cows (Ad Hoc Fiction), Leicester Writes 2018 & 2020 (Dahlia Press), The Real Jazz Baby (Reflex Press), A Girl’s Guide to Fishing (Reflex Press), National Flash Fiction Day Anthologies and Life on the Margins (Scottish Arts Trust Story Awards). She has won a number of story competitions including Flash 500, Hastings, HISSAC (flash & short story), NFFD micro, Biffy50, Farnham, Ad Hoc Fiction and Limnisa and been placed in many others. In 2019 she was awarded an MA with Distinction in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University. Her debut novella-in-flash The House on the Corner was published by Ad Hoc Fiction in October, 2020. Her flash fiction collection, Family Frames was published by V.Press in September, 2021. Twitter: @AJWoodhouse

Carrie Etter

Where Are You From? Selfhood, Place and Prose Poetry, with Carrie Etter

How do the places we’ve lived inform our sense of ourselves, our identities? In this workshop we will look at prose poems that explore how different authors relate place to identity and draft our own prose poems investigating that connection.

Carrie Etter is the author of four collections of poetry, most recently The Weather in Normal (UK: Seren; US: Station Hill, 2018), and a chapbook of flash fictions, Hometown (V. Press, 2016). Her work has appeared in Iowa Review, The Guardian, The New Republic, The New Statesman, The Penguin Book of the Prose Poem The Times Literary Supplement, Westerly, and many other journals and anthologies internationally.
After teaching at Bath Spa University for many years, she is now a member of the creative writing faculty at the University of Bristol.

Ingrid Jendrzejewski

Finessing Fiction: What Prose Writers can Pinch from Poetry

The focus of fiction might be on the story, but if we don’t pay attention to how we’re using language, we’re missing a trick. In this session, we look at what we can beg, borrow and steal from poets to improve the quality of our prose.
We’ll go through a grab bag of tools that poets use and think about how we can use them to craft sentences and paragraphs with more intentionality and finesse. We’ll look at diction, rhythm, syntax, sound, and structure.
The focus of this session will be a discussion of techniques with examples, with a sprinkling of brief writing exercises.

Ingrid Jendrzejewski is a co-director of National Flash Fiction Day. She currently serves as the Editor in Chief of FlashBack Fiction, and a flash editor at JMWW, and has served as both non-fiction editor and editor-in-chief of the Evansville Review. She has published over 100 shortform pieces and has won multiple flash fiction competitions, including the Bath Flash Fiction Award and the A Room of Her Own Foundation’s Orlando Prize for Flash Fiction. Her short collection Things I Dream About When I’m Not Sleeping was a runner up for BFFA’s first Novella-in-Flash competition. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, Vestal Review’s VERA Award, and multiple times for Best Small Fiction.

Emily Devane

Mind The Gap – Writing Flash Fiction From Liminal Spaces; with Emily Devane

Liminality is about being between, or belonging to, two different places or states. Limen literally means ‘threshold’. It might be used to describe physical, emotional or metaphorical transitions. Liminal stories explore moments where characters are on the cusp of change – this makes them compelling, and sometimes unsettling for the reader. In this generative workshop, Emily will share stories that deal in gaps and spaces. Through a variety of examples and prompts, she will encourage writers to create their own liminal stories.

Emily Devane is a writer, editor, bookseller and teacher based in Ilkley, West Yorkshire. She has taught workshops and courses for Comma Press, Dahlia Press, London Writers’ Café and Northern Writers’ Studio. She has won the Bath Flash Fiction Award, a Northern Writers’ Award and a Word Factory Apprenticeship. Emily’s work has been published in Smokelong Quarterly (third place, Grand Micro Contest 2021), Best Microfictions Anthology (2021), New Flash Fiction Review, Lost Balloon, Ellipsis, New Flash Fiction Review, Janus Literary, Ambit and others. She was a BIFFY50 editor in 2020 and is a founding editor at FlashBack Fiction. Emily co-hosts Word Factory’s Strike! Short Story Club. Last year she was shortlisted for the prestigious Mogford Prize for Food and Drink Writing, and she also won second place in the Bath Short Story Award. She judged the October 2022 round of the Bath Flash Fiction Award

Anita Goveas and Farhana Khalique

Biryani Flash: Building up the layers of your flash fiction’ with Anita Goveas and Farhana Khalique

What’s the difference between a biryani and a good flash fiction? One has lots of layers, and the other one is cooked in a pot! 😉 In this workshop, we will discuss how to layer your flash fiction in order to add more flavours and resonance. We will refer to various features and tools, such as character, atmosphere, structure and figurative techniques. There will be a mixture of reading, writing and discussion, and you will leave with several ideas and tips for baking these into brilliant flashes. We will also mention our own writing processes and how we use these techniques in our work.

Anita Goveas is British-Asian and based in London. She’s on the editorial team at Flashback Fiction, an editor at Mythic Picnic’s twitter zine, and she’s an editor for the Flash Flood. She was one of the teachers on Dahlia Publishing’s ‘A Brief Pause’ writer development programme, and she’s taught workshops with the Crow Collective and the Stay at Home Lit Fest. She also runs a writing group for unpaid Carers for Wandsworth Carers centre. Her debut flash collection Families and Other Natural Disasters was published by Reflex Press in September 2020: Find Anita at @coffeeandpaneer and

Farhana Khalique is a writer, voiceover artist and teacher from south-west London. Her writing has appeared in Best Small Fictions 2022, 100 Voices, This is Our Place, and more. She has been shortlisted for The Asian Writer Short Story Prize and she is a former Word Factory Apprentice. Farhana is also a submissions editor at SmokeLong Quarterly and Litro magazine, and she is the editor of Desi Reads.

Michael Loveday

A Blast From The Past!: Generating Ideas for Historical Novellas-in-Flash with Michael Loveday

Would you love to write historical flash fiction, if only you had ideas for what to write about? At this workshop, through a mixture of writing, reflection, and discussion, we’ll generate possibilities for novellas-in-flash (or flash fiction sequences) that explore aspects of history. We’ll connect the personal with the political, and learn new ways to frame our characters within a broader socio-historical context. We’ll identify possibilities for historical research to enrich your writing without you disappearing down endless research rabbit holes. And the workshop will also provide a reading list of historical novellas-in-flash to enjoy, explore, and be inspired by.

Managing the Inner Critic

This workshop will help you release your creative power by developing a better understanding of your inner critic – the (sometimes loud!) internal voice that creates resistance, friction and self-doubt within us, blocking pure creativity. In this workshop, you will: find out more about the unique qualities of your own inner critic; learn to negotiate with this obstructive internal voice;learn tactics for taming it; direct yourself towards flourishing fully as a creative individual.

Michael Loveday has spent twenty years as a fiction writer and poet. He Said/She Said, his debut poetry pamphlet, was published by HappenStance Press in 2011. His first full work of fiction (the hybrid novella-in-flash Three Men on the Edge, was published by V.Press in 2018) was shortlisted for the 2019 Saboteur Best Novella Award and his second flash fiction collection (a manuscript-in-progress) was longlisted for the University of East Anglia’s New Forms Award in 2019. His craft guide to the novella-in-flash form, Unlocking the Novella-in-Flash, was published by Ad Hoc Fiction in spring 2022 and was supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England. His fourth publication, was published in November 2022 from Bamboo Dart Press.

Susmita Bhattacharya

Parlour Games: with Susmita Bhattacharya

In this fun, generative flash fiction workshop you will enjoy a game of consequences, where each participant contributes to writing a prompt and play musical chairs – where you will listen to a piece of music while going round a circle of chairs. When the music stops, you will sit on the nearest chair and start writing a flash piece inspired by the music and a prompt on the chair. Winner receives a prize!

Susmita Bhattacharya is an Indian-born British writer. Her novel, The Normal State of Mind, was published in 2015 by Parthian (UK) and Bee Books (India) in 2016 and was long listed for the Words to Screen Prize, Mumbai Association of Moving Images (MAMI) Film Festival in 2018. Her collection of short stories, Table Manners, was published by Dahlia Publishing in 2018 and won The Saboteur Prize in 2019. She teaches contemporary fiction at Winchester University. She was Writer-in-Residence at Word Factory in 2021. She lives in Winchester.

Vanessa Gebbie

Writing Games and Prompts with Vanessa Gebbie

To highlight Vanessa’s new craft book, 51 and A Half Stories, Ideas for Writers forthcoming from Ad Hoc Fiction and launched at the festival,Vanessa will offer writing games and prompts, from fun to weird and wacky to thoughtful. 90 minutes to come and create as many drafts as we can cram in!

Vanessa will also offer The Biggest Game of Word Cricket in the Whole Wide World

Our traditional Saturday morning half an hour warm-up session for the whole assembly in the dining room.

Vanessa Gebbie has won multiple awards for both prose and poetry, including a Bridport Prize and the Troubadour. Her flash publications include Ed’s Wife and Other Creatures (Liquorice Fish Books) and the weird/irreal collection Nothing to Worry About (Flash: The International Short Short Story Press at Chester University) 2018 as well as many individual publications online and in print. She is author of three short story collections (with Salt and Cultured Llama), a novel (Bloomsbury), and two poetry publications (Pighog and Cultured Llama). She is also commissioning and contributing editor of Short Circuit, Guide to the Art of the Short Story (Salt). She teaches widely.

Stephanie Hutton

Mining Your Unconscious for Gems: with Stephanie Carty

We will explore why flash fiction can be the perfect form for accessing the unconscious for both writer and reader. Then we will use multiple methods for mining layers of your own unconscious to unleash the creative power of gems that lay buried beneath the surface.

Stephanie Carty is a writer and Consultant Clinical Psychologist / NHS Head of Psychology in the UK. Her short fiction is widely published. She has been placed and shortlisted for many competitions including the Bristol Short Story Prize, Bath Short Story Award, Aesthetica Creative Writing Award and Bridport Prize. Her novella-in-flash Three Sisters of Stone won Best Novella in the Saboteur Awards 2019.

Stephanie’s writers’ craft book Inside Fictional Minds: Tips from Psychology for Creating Characters was published in June 2021. Her short fiction collection The Peculiarities of Yearning was published February 2022 and her novel, published in February 2023 Shattered ,is now available from Bloodhound Books and Amazon.

Judy Darley

Unlock Your Fairy Tale Toolkit, with Judy Darley

A workshop where ancient story motifs offer the chance to shine new light on modern day darkness.
Fairytales originated thousands of years ago and many don’t involve fairies at all. Instead they often feature a protagonist with a problem to obstacle to overcome, and, usually, an element of magic that either helps or hinders. They offer the chance to explore the darkness in every life and allow us a space in which to reconsider the familiar. Fairy tales can even equip us to make some kind of sense of an inexplicable world. Discover how you can utilise the ‘fairy tale toolkit’ in your own writing.

Judy Darley is a flash fiction writer, journalist and occasional poet from Bristol, UK. Her fiction has been described as ‘shimmeringly strange’, possibly because she can’t stop writing about the fallibilities of the human mind and often uses fairy tale tropes to do so. Her words have been published and performed on BBC radio and harbor walls, as well as in bookshops, museums, cafés, caves, pubs, a disused church and an artist’s studio. Judy is the author of three fiction collections: The Stairs are a Snowcapped Mountain (Reflex Press), Sky Light Rain (Valley Press) and Remember Me to the Bees (Tangent Books). Find Judy at;

John Brantingham

Finding Magic in Nature

This workshop will discuss how to use the experience of nature and a critical study of flora and fauna to create meaningful flashes and scenes. We will write about the microcosm and macrocosm of the natural world in which we live.

John Brantingham was Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks first poet laureate. His work has been feature in hundreds of magazines. Writers’ Almanac and the Best Small Fictions 2018 and 2022. He has nineteen books of poetrym nonfiction and fiction including Life Orange to Pear and Kitkitdizzi, both from Bamboo Dart Press. His is the founder and general editor ofThe Journal of Radical Wonder. He lives in Jamestown, NY.

Rosaleen Lynch

52 Stories for readers and writers: with Rosaleen Lynch

Rosaleen will take us through some stories and exercises from her new collection/workbook; a year of themed weekly reading and writing practice for individuals or groups.

Rosaleen Lynch is an Irish youth and community worker and writer in the East End of London with words in a number of journals, including New Flash Fiction Review, HAD, Fractured Lit, Craft, SmokeLong Quarterly, Jellyfish Review, EllipsisZine, Mslexia, Litro and Fish, and has been shortlisted by Bath Short Story Award and the Bridport Prize, is a winner of the HISSAC Flash Fiction Competition and the Oxford Flash Fiction Prize, Her collection/workbook will be published Ad Hoc Fiction in 2023. She can be found on Twitter @quotes_52 and

K.M. Elkes

Alternative To Prompts – Creating An Ideas Grid: with K M Elkes

Working from prompts is a great way to stimulate flash stories, but is it the only way? In this workshop we will look at an alternative method of creating ideas for stories that can be used for flash (and longer forms). The Ideas Grid emphasises character, setting, action and complication, while also encouraging story ideas to have those particular and peculiar aspects needed to engage readers.

K.M. Elkes is the author of the short fiction collection All That Is Between Us, which was shortlisted for a Saboteur Award in 2020. His flash fiction has won or been placed in various competitions, including Bath Flash Fiction Award, Reflex Fiction Prize, Fish Publishing Flash Prize and the Bridport Prize. He is a Pushcart Prize and Best Microfictions nominee. He has also been longlisted for the BBC National Short Story Award and individual short stories have been successful in international writing competitions including the Manchester Fiction Prize, Bridport Prize and the Royal Society of Literature VS Pritchett Prize. His work has appeared in numerous literary anthologies and journals, and has featured on school curricula in the USA, India and Hong Kong. He is a short story tutor and runs his own writing workshops and courses online (details via He has guest-lectured at Bath Spa University and Sheffield Hallam University, where his book has featured on the MA Creative Writing course module. KM Elkes is a writer from a rural working class background, and his work often reflects themes around transience, isolation and family trauma.

Flash Fiction Without the Pain with Writer’s HQ, Kathy Hoyle

Bring a little joy to your flash fiction practice with a playful exploration of the fun side of flash!
Flash fiction is a powerful medium for meaningful writing but all too often it can be a channel for emotional truths that leave both writers and readers reeling. But it doesn’t always have to be that way! Flash can still delve into deep, truthful, impactful subjects without ripping out our hearts. What about joy, laughter, love, hope, peace, friendship, spiritual nirvana – all the stuff that gives us the warm and fuzzies, makes us laugh or leaves us with a glow of human understanding? Because sometimes to truly process the dark stuff, we need to look for the light, too. So if you’re in need of a little sweetness to balance out the catharsis, join Kathy Hoyle and Writers’ HQ for a fun, generative one-hour workshop to help you tap into your joyful, surreal, or downright silly side.

Kathy Hoyle’s work can be found in publications such as Spelk, Virtualzine, Lunate, Ellipsiszine, Reflex Fiction, The Forge, Emerge Literary Journal and The South Florida Poetry Journal. She previously won the Retreat West Flash Competition, came second in The Edinburgh Flash Fiction Award, and the HISSAC Prize. third in the Cambridge Flash Fiction Prize. Other stories have been listed in competitions includingThe Exeter Short Story Prize, the Fish Publishing Flash Fiction Prize, Flash 500, and Strands International.She won the Bath Flash Fiction Award in oct 2022 l holds a BA (hons) and an MA in Creative Writing and lives in a sleepy Warwickshire village in the UK with her crazy labradoodle.

The (sub)Mission Workshop with Audrey Niven

A one-hour inspiring, interactive workshop to up your submissions game, whether that’s for journals, competitions, collections or novellas in flash.
We’ll look at the practical and emotional pitfalls of submitting including:

Where to submit;
What to submit;
Tracking and spreadsheets (but in a good way);
How to overcome your personal submission demons.

Based on Audrey’s successful quarterly SubClub, this session will get you out of a rut, over the hurdles, mixing up your submission goals and your metaphors like an ace!

Audrey Niven is a writer and coach who splits her time between London and the Campsie Fells in Scotland. She was Highly Commended in the Bath Flash Fiction Award in 2021 and has been published in multiple anthologies and journals including NFFD, Reflex, Lunate, Ellipsis and Twin Pies. In 2021 she established The Propelling Pencil competition and in 2022 was invited to judge the Mslexia Flash Fiction Competition. Having been mercilessly teased about her submissions spreadsheet, she now regularly coaches other writers on how to get on top of their submissions.

Cheryl Markosky

Walk•Listen•Create with Cheryl Markosky

Do you get your most foot-tastic ideas while out walking? I bet you do. So, take a step towards toe-wriggling, ankle-arching, sole-searching flash in a fun-filled festival hour. And walk away with prizes when you enter Walk•Listen•Create’s upcoming competition!
Walk•Listen•Create is also planning activities for Friday’s flash fiction fete and giving away copies of last year’s Walking chapbook.

Cheryl Markosky wanted to be a lighthouse keeper, but it was tricky in the Rockies. So, she became a TV producer and journalist. Canadian-born, she now splits her time between England and the Caribbean. Cheryl’s work can be found in EllipsisZine, New Flash Fiction Review, Mslexia, Urban Tree Festival, Retreat West, The Cabinet of Heed, Janus Literary, and National Flash Fiction Day and Flash Fiction Festival anthologies. Cheryl’s proud to be Walk•Listen•Create’s flash fiction writer-in-residence for 2022/23. @cherylmarkosky

Transmute: How to transform your emotional experience into flash fiction (aka Alchemy 101), with Alison Powell

Alison Powell

In this session you’ll dive into your life experiences and hold them up to the light before finding ways to channel them into your creative work. You’ll look at examples of emotional truth in literature – exploring extracts from poetry as well as flash – to provide you with the foundations you need to alchemise your own emotional truths into gold. There’ll be space to express, transform and share your words in this workshop.

Alison Powell is a freelance writer and creativity coach. Her fiction has appeared in various anthologies and magazines, including Project Calm, Mslexia and The National Flash Fiction Day Anthologies. She holds an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa and is one of twenty emerging Welsh writers on the Hay Festival Writers at Work programme. Competition wins and listings include: Bath Short Story Award, Bridport Prize, Mslexia New Writing, Janklow & Nesbit Prize, Reflex Fiction, TSS Creative Non-fiction Falsh and, of course, the Bath Flash Fiction Award. On social media as: @hellowriteclub

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