The different sections of this toolkit all aim to help you develop your creative writing skills, but there are plenty more resources out there too.
Here's a round-up of some of them.
Short story competitions
If you're looking to get your work published, or just want to share your writing with others, entering a short story competition is a fun way to get started. Please note, most competitions do charge a small entry fee.
Writer Christopher Fielden lists several small and large-scale short story competitions that take place in the UK on his website.
Magazines, books and websites
- Writers Online provides writing advice details of writing groups, competitions etc and publishes Writing Magazine, which is available from shops such as WH Smith.
- Mslexia is a magazine for women who write. It lists publications to submit to, competitions, writing events and groups, has articles on various writing genres, and publishes short fiction and poems.
- The Five Minute Writer by Margret Geraghty is a book of useful, fairly short writing ideas and exercises.
- The Creative Writing Coursebook: Forty Authors Share Advice and Exercises for Fiction and Poetry, edited by Julia Bell and Paul Magrs, is full of very detailed ideas and advice.
- Getting into Poetry by Paul Hyland is a useful overview of poetry writing, submitting etc.
- Bloomsbury publishes the Writers' and Artists' Companion series. Titles include: Writing Short Stories, Crime and Thriller Writing, Writing Children's Fiction, Novel Writing, Writing Historical Fiction and The Arvon Book of Literary Non-Fiction.
Books with an emphasis on writing for wellbeing:
- Write Yourself a New Life by Stephen Wade provides advice and exercises to help with self-awareness, decisions and developing creativity. It also includes information about journaling.
- Writing Works. A Resource Handbook for Therapeutic Writing Workshops and Activities, edited by Gillie Bolton, Victoria Field and Kate Thompson, includes plenty of writing exercises. These are particularly useful for groups, but many could be done alone too. It is published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers, who also publish several other books on the theme of writing and health/wellbeing.
- Kate Thompson is an expert on journal therapy/writing and writes a blog on this.
- The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron, and several of her other books, give advice on creativity and writing for wellbeing. You can find advice and sign up to her blog on her website.
- BBC Writersroom gives writing tips, has opening windows for people to send scripts twice a year, and advertises opportunities for writers.
- The Graeae Theatre Company prioritises accessibility. Founded in 1980, they use theatre, workshops and training to dispel images of defencelessness, together with prejudices and popular myths, around disabled people. They also run a yearly 'Write to Play' playwriting programme for aspiring deaf and disabled writers.
- Orton is an online resource where writers can share their writing (for TV, radio, film and theatre) and get feedback.
- The Poetry School runs online poetry courses and has a poetry social network called CAMPUS.
- The Poetry Society runs poetry competitions and is generally engaged in raising the profile of poetry.
- The Arvon Foundation runs residential creative writing courses and retreats in a number of Arvon centres and has some grants available.
- Ty Newydd Writing Centre, run by Literature Wales, runs a variety of creative writing courses, mostly residential over several days. There is a bursary pot, but it's only available for Gwynedd residents.
- The National Association of Writers in Education is a member organisation that supports the development of creative writing in all genres in all educational and community settings throughout the UK. It is open to anyone with an interest in its aims.
- Lapidus is a member organisation that promotes the practice of writing for wellbeing and the benefits it brings. It is open to anyone with a personal or professional interest in writing for wellbeing.
- The Workers' Educational Association runs face to face courses across the country with experienced tutors.