2021: Celebrating The Writers' Greenhouse 10 YEAR anniversary!
The Writers' Greenhouse
2021: Celebrating The Writers' Greenhouse 10 YEAR anniversary!

Course reviews: what my students say

Read course reviews from the Daily Info and snippets of feedback from my students. To add a Daily Info review of a course or workshop you've been on, click here.

Recent reviews (April to Aug 2020)

These reviews come from Oxford's Daily Info. The full list of reviews can be seen here.

I recently participated in two weekend writing workshops with The Writer's Greenhouse, moved from in-person to Zoom because of social distancing requirements. From start to finish, they were a 5 star experience!

Megan is a fantastic teacher - warm, friendly, inclusive. The workshops, being held on Zoom, could have been very intense, but Megan presented a varied programme, which was very enjoyable and balanced. The sessions were brilliantly planned, with bang-on timekeeping, and included small group discussions, preparation exercises, writing, a bit of whole group work and reminders to stretch - very important!

The workshops all sounded interesting, but, after much deliberation, I chose workshops about setting and description. I was hoping that these workshops would teach me some skills while giving me a gentle push towards actually starting on a writing project. Though some of the participants mentioned current writing projects, at least one was like me, looking at the workshops as a launchpad. I did find them very inspiring - the other participants were friendly and supportive, the technical writing exercises really stretched me, the different approaches Megan used for settings and description were illuminating and taking the time to really analyse the purpose of description was extremely helpful. To be honest, I hadn't expected I'd learn so much in such a short time!

Megan is a very generous teacher. She organised an introduction to Zoom before the workshops, for anyone who lacked experience. I had a question about resources which she promptly answered via email. Indeed, once you get involved with The Writers' Greenhouse, you have access to frequent writing prompts and ideas from Megan and a wealth of writing resources. At the end of the workshops, Megan emailed a booklet with all the relevant information so that we wouldn't have to take notes. She will also post it out to the participants. I haven't yet had the privilege of an in-person workshop with Megan, but she obviously put a lot of effort into adapting her workshops to go online. During the late spring/early summer, she also canvassed those interested about subject choices and how people would like the workshops to run, ie timings and cost, and kept us all informed about her decisions and how she had made them.

I can't recommend Megan and The Writers' Greenhouse highly enough and look forward to my next workshop!

Adele 24 Aug 2020

I took part in 2 writing courses given recently by Megan, on "Place is Story" and "Purposeful Description". They were both done via Zoom.

The courses were very informative and entertaining. Megan provided a lot of information and tips, with opportunities to write on one's own and in small groups. She handled the Zoom sessions with great competence. She provided humour and insight into the course and a number of colourful examples and suggestions.

Brian 24 Aug 2020

I have been going to creative writing workshops for a while but I found Meghanís courses a mile apart from the others. She has a way of teaching which is unique and itís all about getting students to find their own feet. Students learn by discovering topics and techniques for themselves thatís why I think itís so successful. It also covers plenty of technical tips and exercises which are then summed up in a handy leave-behind.

After the summer workshops, I canít wait to join the courses she runs periodically throughout the year.

AC-K 19 Aug 2020

Another superb workshop with Megan at The Writers' Greenhouse! I booked this as I realised that my work needs place, and true to form this workshop weekend taught me everything I need to know... Now all I have to do is apply it! Megan runs these workshops so brilliantly, timed well, clearly thoroughly planned and thought out and they bring out the best in me (and everyone else judging from the discussions we had in our groups).

I find the positivity invaluable and I've never ever felt like someone who isn't a writer when I'm on these workshops. Super inclusive, Megan has created the best 'safe space' for writing I've ever encountered. I'm a fan as well as a repeat attender!

I have so many useful prompts, tools and ideas to work with coming out of this workshop that I can't help but feel newly invigorated and will be placing my work in progress this week!

Great work Megan!

MrsGammo 18 Aug 2020

I booked six of the summer workshops as I was in a creative slump over lockdown and missed speaking to other people about things I love.

I'd already attended various of Megan's workshops in person, and knew how welcoming and practical they were, but have since moved away from Oxford and so pounced on this opportunity to participate from a distance. I didn't know any of the other students before the workshops started, but Megan creates a collaborative and relaxed environment online where everyone is supportive regardless of how advanced they are (or are not, in my case!), so that didn't matter at all. Can't wait for the next one!

Inspiring, fun, wise. I booked onto two Zoom group workshops with The Writers' Greenhouse about creativity and they were fantastic. The teacher organised the time into really fascinating activities that taught me a lot. I came away having practised some creative writing experiments and also having learn something about the science and practice of creativity (who knew!) (obviously not me). I didn't think it was possible to be so vivid and practical about creativity and I learnt a lot about my own processes and when and where I'm creative plus I got lots of new ideas too. I'll be going back for more!

Dee 18 Aug 2020

Megan is such a fabulous teacher and sheís so inspiring. Iíve done both the Meddling with Poetry course online with Megan and the ongoing Summer of Writing. I booked both courses because I wanted to re-energise my creativity and rediscover my love for poetry and writing. Iím enjoying the process so much and Megan runs incredibly organised and fun workshops online - so much so that I completely forgot they were online. These are a great, friendly way to meet like-minded people and explore writing. I can not recommend Megan and these courses enough.

RoseH 12 Aug 2020

I enrolled for the Meddling With Poetry course hoping to learn more about different poetry forms and to improve my writing. I did both and have recently submitted a poem to a journal for publication. My confidence as a writer of both poetry and prose has increased greatly and weeks after the course I am referring to the content from it constantly to assist me as I write. The course was intensive, one student who has a degree in creative writing said that an eight week course with Megan is like a year of an undergrad course and I can believe it, she covers so much that is of a high standard.

You do need to commit and concentrate to get the most out of the teaching and the positive and detailed feedback that she gives you on your own work. However, people lead busy lives and there is no pressure, you can go at your own pace.

The classes are incredibly enjoyable, they became the highlight of my week. Megan is very positive and encouraging and devises all sorts of fun exercises and activities to illustrate her teaching, demonstrating her vast knowledge and experience as a writer and tutor.

As this was an online course the content was posted out to us weekly and that worked really well, especially as she supplied binders for us to keep it in order and to build an invaluable resource for future reference. I was uncertain whether or not the dynamism and enjoyment of her classes could work online, but they do. Megan is very engaging and her classes so well paced and structured that I did not feel I was missing out by not being in her tutoring room.

Yes I did miss the candle-light and the tea and biscuits but Megan looked after us all by sending us candles and her own Writers Greenhouse blend of essential oil to put us all into the writing mood. A WhatsApp group for all of us attending kept us feeling part of a group and I am now joining a writers group as a result of contacts made on the course. I cannot recommend Megan Kerr and her courses highly enough.

If you are serious about writing and want to improve your writing fast then do sign up for one of her fabulous courses. She runs half day summer courses that would be a really good introduction to her teaching.

Clare 17 Jul 2020

Just completed the Meddling with Poetry course with Megan at The Writers Greenhouse. The course, adapted for the Coronavirus restrictions, proved delightful and lively and the content assured and comprehensive. Megan does a superb job in sharing her love and enthusiasm for poetry which worked well for a poetic novice such as myself. Great course!

David 30 Jun 2020

I had actually participated in the very same course a year or so ago and was hoping it would really just act as a stimulus to get me writing again. However, it did so much more.

I found that I engaged with the material on a higher level. The [Meddling With Poetry] course is so well taught that a total beginner and an experienced poet can gain insights and new and creative learning opportunities are offered at every level seamlessly.

The current pandemic also meant that most online courses are being offered without thought or access to stimulating resources. Megan created I am sure very painstakingly weekly packs with all you can imagine in and more inside. Not only that but as a shielded student I was completely reassured by her amazing regime to keep packs COVID free.

If you are thinking of doing a course with Megan, my recommendation is go for it. You wonít find anyone better out there!

Carolyne 30 Jun 2020

I attended the Starting Points course in March 2020, and it exceeded all my (already high) expectations. Megan is a brilliant teacher - reassuring, motivating and fun, and she creates a welcoming environment in which it's clear that all levels are genuinely welcome. It's also pretty remarkable that the course was able to seamlessly shift into online delivery (thank you, pandemic), without leaving me feeling that I'd missed out in any way. I hesitated for a long time before booking onto Megan's course, and I now have no idea why. If you're at all apprehensive or nervous (as I was) I suggest you just go for it - you definitely won't regret it!

Anna 23 Apr 2020

This is an excellent course that is well worth the money. I have quite complex disabilities but could not fault Megan in the effort she made to accommodate me. This course has a good balance of actual writing skills and methods of enhancing your creativity and has finally got me properly writing instead of just making random notes in book. I would definitely recommend it and will be returning for further courses in the future. Even though its an 8 week course Megan also helps you to continue writing after that with all the free prompts on her website and she helps you to connect with other writers.

Louise 14 Apr 2020

Megan is one of the best tutors I have come across. She makes the classes interactive, fun and they offer great learning thus stimulating your own creative juices.

Since the lockdown and classes continuing electronically Megan has continued to provide materials for us to keep focused if we choose.

Thank you Megan for the chance to understand a little more about the world of writing. Look forward to another course sometime soon.

SuzanB 14 Apr 2020

Megan is a wise, knowledgeable and inspiring teacher. Her venue is lovely, the atmosphere is lively, and itís great meeting a diverse group other writers.

Iím a big fan of Meganís courses and have done others already. They were so good that I figured this probably would be too - and it was.

The course was exactly the way it was described on Meganís website. Itís an assortment of exercises and tasters of a wide range of types and methods of writing, tied loosely together by the theme of creativity. Itís less systematic and sequential than the other courses and some things were more relevant to my own writing than others, but that was expected given the diversity of topics.

The classes are fast-paced and interactive. Lots of fairly short activities. Lots of discussion. Lots of stimulating ideas. Lots of different exercises to suit different learning styles.

We moved online for the last couple of sessions because of the coronavirus and Megan did a brilliant job of adapting the course for this, organising classes on Zoom (and a tutorial on how to use it) and mailing out worksheets etc.

Benjamin 14 Apr 2020

This was such a fantastic course from a passionate and inspirational teacher. I was a little apprehensive at first as writing can be so personal but Megan put everyone at ease right from the start. There's so much excellent content but still a lot of time to practice what you learn, and tasks to complete at home between lessons. This was one of the best courses I've ever taken and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it anyone thinking about taking their first steps into creative writing.

Ben 14 Apr 2020

I cannot rate this course/workshop highly enough or Megan as a teacher. It started as a face to face group of 12 at Megan's house and due to current COVID19 restrictions transitioned smoothly to online with very little fuss but no less enjoyment.

As someone new to creative writing and therefore very nervous, I found Megan to be, kind, encouraging, incredibly knowledgeable, and most importantly fun. She put us at our ease and no question was too stupid to ask.

You did not need to know technical terms, have read all the classics or ever written creatively before. I'd say just inquisitiveness and a love of words required. Although really appreciating notebooks helps. The course is set up in such a way that you are prompted to be creative almost without noticing. Tasks are set for outside of class, which was no hardship, and helped me see my place in the world very differently.

I highly recommend. If you have ever had an inkling or a sliver of a thought that you might, perhaps one day, maybe write something, then this is the place for you.

Manoo 14 Apr 2020

Just finished the Starting Points course with Megan Kerr. Her course came recommended to me and I now recommend it wholeheartedly to you. Lively and perceptive, Megan delivers a friendly and lively course, and, unphased by the current social distancing protocols, she moved seamlessly to on-line sessions, which were just as successful. Thinking of starting to write - start here!

Older not wiser 3 Apr 2020

 

Conservatory in daylight with tables set up Premise circles Felt-tips, grapes, sharpies, scissors, and sequins The conservatory at night with fairylights Collage of colourful decor for the magical realism workshop Three hands reaching in to brainstorm on one sheet Grapes and handouts on a table Tables, plants and paintings - the workshop space for summer workshops Handouts on pale yellow paper rolled and tucked into jars, with instructions tied on with string Writing on coloured post-it strips Collage of differently coloured handouts in jars and lying on the table Conservatory by night with fairylights, from a different angle Felt-tips, handouts, and several Tom Phillips style exercises in progress Conservatory in daylight with tables set up Premise circles Felt-tips, grapes, sharpies, scissors, and sequins The conservatory at night with fairylights Collage of colourful decor for the magical realism workshop Three hands reaching in to brainstorm on one sheet Grapes and handouts on a table Tables, plants and paintings - the workshop space for summer workshops Handouts on pale yellow paper rolled and tucked into jars, with instructions tied on with string Writing on coloured post-it strips Collage of differently coloured handouts in jars and lying on the table Conservatory by night with fairylights, from a different angle Felt-tips, handouts, and several Tom Phillips style exercises in progress Conservatory in daylight with tables set up Premise circles Felt-tips, grapes, sharpies, scissors, and sequins The conservatory at night with fairylights Collage of colourful decor for the magical realism workshop Three hands reaching in to brainstorm on one sheet Grapes and handouts on a table Tables, plants and paintings - the workshop space for summer workshops Handouts on pale yellow paper rolled and tucked into jars, with instructions tied on with string Writing on coloured post-it strips Collage of differently coloured handouts in jars and lying on the table Conservatory by night with fairylights, from a different angle Felt-tips, handouts, and several Tom Phillips style exercises in progress

 

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