The Writers' Greenhouse
Summer of Writing: Saturday workshops

What the workshops are like

University Parks avenue Hollyhocks at Freud Coffee and writing in pub gardens Swan on the Cherwell University Parks pond Shadow of a fountain pen Perch bench Poetry at the Perch Salad packed lunch with a little jar of dressing Sunlit sheltered pub garden Writing equipment by the riverside The Perch boat University Parks pond table Michaelmas daisies Writing on a drizzly day Perch meadow gate Swan on the Thames University Park daisies University Parks avenue Hollyhocks at Freud Coffee and writing in pub gardens Swan on the Cherwell University Parks pond Shadow of a fountain pen Perch bench Poetry at the Perch Salad packed lunch with a little jar of dressing Sunlit sheltered pub garden Writing equipment by the riverside The Perch boat University Parks pond table Michaelmas daisies Writing on a drizzly day Perch meadow gate Swan on the Thames University Park daisies University Parks avenue Hollyhocks at Freud Coffee and writing in pub gardens Swan on the Cherwell University Parks pond Shadow of a fountain pen Perch bench Poetry at the Perch Salad packed lunch with a little jar of dressing Sunlit sheltered pub garden Writing equipment by the riverside The Perch boat University Parks pond table Michaelmas daisies Writing on a drizzly day Perch meadow gate Swan on the Thames University Park daisies University Parks avenue Hollyhocks at Freud Coffee and writing in pub gardens Swan on the Cherwell University Parks pond Shadow of a fountain pen Perch bench Poetry at the Perch Salad packed lunch with a little jar of dressing Sunlit sheltered pub garden Writing equipment by the riverside The Perch boat University Parks pond table Michaelmas daisies Writing on a drizzly day Perch meadow gate Swan on the Thames University Park daisies University Parks avenue Hollyhocks at Freud Coffee and writing in pub gardens Swan on the Cherwell University Parks pond Shadow of a fountain pen Perch bench Poetry at the Perch Salad packed lunch with a little jar of dressing Sunlit sheltered pub garden Writing equipment by the riverside The Perch boat University Parks pond table Michaelmas daisies Writing on a drizzly day Perch meadow gate Swan on the Thames University Park daisies University Parks avenue Hollyhocks at Freud Coffee and writing in pub gardens Swan on the Cherwell University Parks pond Shadow of a fountain pen Perch bench Poetry at the Perch Salad packed lunch with a little jar of dressing Sunlit sheltered pub garden Writing equipment by the riverside

The people Each workshops runs with 4-12 people at my home in Upper Wolvercote. Some people have been writing for a long time; others are relatively new to it, are returning to an old love, or have decided they want to pursue it more. Small classes mean I can give more attention to everyone and help create a friendly, supportive atmosphere.

The teaching My teaching style is based around discussion, activities, and games designed to introduce the various ideas and principles, and allow you to try everything out. You'll do some activities on your own and others in pairs or small groups, depending on what's appropriate. I never put anyone on the spot and you don't have to read any of your writing aloud to the group. In some workshops, you do have the opportunity to share your writing, but I make sure this is optional or in small groups, and am sensitive to people's comfort levels.

The day structure I ask people to arrive 10-15 minutes early, so you can have time for a coffee or tea, and to meet the other students - you'll also get to know each other through the activities. The workshop is usually divided into four sections, each with its own focus and set of activities. We have a break mid-morning and mid-afternoon, for tea or coffee and biscuits, which I provide. We take an hour's break for lunch (usually 12:30-1:30) which we eat in the conservatory or the garden, weather depending. I suggest people bring a packed lunch; there's also a Londis and M&S garage nearby. I provide plates, cutlery, and napkins, as needed. You're welcome to bring something that needs heating, but do note that I don't have a microwave!

The handouts Because the workshop time is very active and hands-on, there isn't much time to take notes, so at the end of each workshop I give you a little booklet covering everything we've done, including the writing prompts. You'll also take home the assorted handouts you've used, as well as your own writing of course.

Start of the Magical Realism workshop The start of the Magical Realism workshop, with the workshop outline and the books to explore laid out, looking through the kitchen to the conservatory and garden beyond.
Creativity writing workshop A creativity workshop in full swing, with all the felt-tips out, exploring Tom Phillips style creations
Plotting writing workshop A plotting workshop, playing Plot Layering Snakes and Ladders, with prompt cards - and of course, grapes!
Handouts for the Magical Realism workshop Handouts for the Magical Realism workshop - the Ideas Menu, the handouts for different sessions in jars with their instructions tied on, and the booklet with all the multicoloured handouts.
Decor for the Magical Realism workshop Wild decor for the Magical Realism workshop - partly to set the mood and partly because people always look around a room for ideas, and magical realism needs lots of ideas, so I filled every available surface with unexpected stuff.

Reviews of Summer of Writing workshops

These reviews come from the Daily Info, where you can also read reviews of the other courses and workshops.

I attended two of Megan's one-day summer-writing workshops and absolutely loved them. I desperately wanted to attend them all, frankly, because I knew just from one phone conversation that she is a rare gem of a teacher: the kind of person who imparts inspiration, wisdom, expertise and hard-headed advice in equal diplomatic measure. She brings out the very best in each student on the course, and we all benefited from the interactions with each other, the games and the brain-busting exercises that Megan had devised.

What a buzz in the room! So much creative energy! I think every one of us left with the impetus and resolve to write more and write better, and Megan's courses certainly delivered the tools for this in spades. I speak as a publishing professional - having been involved in fiction editorial for more than twenty years - and also as a published author. It was so humbling and fantastic and brilliant to discover how much more there is to the world I've inhabited for so long.

If I lived in Oxford, I'd be a regular student, and will certainly be keeping an eye out for more of Megan's weekend workshops. Her passion and vitality translate into the most innovative and informed writing programmes I've ever seen, and her generous spirit will leave you completely inspired to achieve whatever you drives you - whether it's just having fun with like-minded people, or completing the next bestseller.

Sam 31 Oct 2017

Expand Your Repertoire - Genuinely Inspirational!

I came to the Expand Your Repertoire one-day workshop having not written anything for 5 years. I left with a booklet full of ideas, renewed confidence in my writing, and some good friends to boot.

Megan is an excellent teacher, and every second of the full-day course was used to brainstorm, plan, introduce new ideas and angles, and then play around with them in our own writing.

I've been on a number of courses in London and Oxford, and this was certainly the best value-for-money of them all. So much so that, once I've finished this review, I'm going to carry on writing ;-)

I would heartily recommend Megan's courses to anyone considering creative writing; the mixture of people range from people who are new to the discipline, to people who have published several novels. Everyone got a lot out of the day. I can't wait for the next one.

Robin 21 Aug 2017

I've now been to three Writer's Greenhouse workshops and each turned out to be a really fun day, filled with playful, thought provoking and inspiring activities.

I'd not been on any writing workshops before, but after these I will definitely look to doing more in the future. As well as meeting new people from a whole mixture of backgrounds, each session left me with interesting ideas and new ways of working to take away.

I would say the summer of writing workshops are great whether you already write or are just thinking about beginning and want some fun exercises to give you food for thought or a gentle push.

On top of all this I've discovered some great new books and new writers through the extracts Megan uses - I'm looking forward to doing lots more reading and writing!

Katherine 17 Aug 2016

If you want more detail about what the workshops are like, you can read more about my teaching style. You're also welcome to email me at megan @ thewritersgreenhouse.co.uk with any questions you have.

5 full-day creative writing workshops in July, August, and September

When?

Summer Saturdays, 10am – 4pm

  • Sat 28 July: Writing in Scenes
  • Sat 4 Aug: Characters Unlike You
  • Sat 11 Aug: Orientating the Reader
  • Sat 25 Aug: Hone Your Style
  • Sat 1 Sept: Beyond First Draft

Where?

Upper Wolvercote (North Oxford). There's free parking, a great bus route (#6), and beautiful canal-side walking routes.

Fees

The workshops start at £65 each; the more you book, the less you pay per workshop.

1 workshop £65 each
2 workshops £60 each
3+ workshops £55 each

Contact me

Email me with any questions.

 


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