Courses and Workshops

Experiment with Fiction – Sharlene Teo

Are you a fan of experimental fiction? Or perhaps you just feel stuck in a rut and want your work to get weirder, wilder, freer? Join rising star Sharlene Teo on Saturday March 3rd for a creative writing workshop that will shake up your writing practice. Featuring dreamstorming, Emojis, story bags and inanimate narrators, the workshop will strengthen your unique writing voice through free association, play and experimentation.

Over the course of the workshop, Sharlene will guide you through a series of writing prompts inspired by the wild, glorious evolution of experimental fiction- from Georges Perec to Tom McCarthy and Can Xue. This is a supportive environment perfect for creating surprising, original material. It will be challenging and rewarding in equal measures! Fun guaranteed. No experience necessary – writers of all levels welcome.

Sharlene Teo is a Singaporean novelist based in London. She won the Deborah Rogers Writer’s Award for Ponti, her debut novel due to be published in April 2018 by Picador (UK) and Simon & Schuster (US). Ponti will also be translated into six other languages, including German, by Aufbau-Verlag. She was
shortlisted for the Berlin Writing Prize and is a recipient of the Golden Point Prize for Poetry and the Booker Prize Foundation scholarship. She holds fellowships from the David TK Wong Foundation, Sozopol Fiction Seminars and the University of Iowa International Writing Program.

January 23rd – *Free* Poetry Workshop with Nick Makoha

In association with The British Council, and hosted by Sharehaus Refugio, we are delighted to welcome you to a special event with award-winning UK poet Nick Makoha.

In the run up to the 2018 British Council Literature Seminar, Nick will be running a poetry writing workshop for adults on 23. January 2018, 18:30-19:30, followed by an informal reception and a chance to talk with Nick and the other participants. The event is aimed at all poetry lovers who would like to discuss and develop their poetic voice in a safe and stimulating environment.

Nick Makoha’s first full length collection ‘Kingdom of Gravity’ was shortlisted for the Felix Dennis Prize for best first collection (Forward Prizes for Poetry) and he was the 2015 winner of the Brunel University African Poetry Prize. He toured the UK with his solo show My Father & Other Superheroes. His advice to young poets is advice that he has himself received and found helpful: ‘Poetry works best when you serve it daily with reading, writing and conversation. Read what you like, read what you don’t like, read what you know and read what confuses you.’

Join us for an engaging and thought-provoking evening and a chance to flex your poetry writing muscles. No experience necessary.

The workshop is free but places are limited. Registration is obligatory. Please bring a notepad and writing materials with you.

Please sign up here:

For all enquiries regarding the workshop, please send an email to Lucy Curzon at

Poetry Workshop



Telling Tales: The Art of Creating Stories

Stories can entrance, engage, even possess us.  Every one of us has a story to tell; factual or fictional, cool documentary or heartfelt family journey, practical travelogue or sparkling flight of the imagination.  But to become an accomplished storyteller one needs time, a conducive environment, and a sensitive guide to direct and refine individual talent.

In May best-selling author Rory MacLean will lead an exclusive, two day, weekend creative writing workshop in Berlin.  Participants – to a maximum of sixteen – will be guided and supported on their creative journey.  Both amateur and professional writers are invited to apply.  No experience is necessary.  The only requirement is the passion to tell a story.

The course will include morning talks on the craft of narration and introductory workshops on gathering material, note-taking, voice and structure. Rory will underline the importance of writing from the heart, using honesty and personal experience to fill one’s creative work with feeling and excitement.  Afternoons will be dedicated to exercises and — if possible — one-to-one discussions or project pitches, helping to draw out individual skills.  Together Rory and the participants will unpick the transformation of our ordinary encounters, epic journeys, family histories and imaginative quests into prose. Whether you aspire to writing journalism, a blog, memoir, personal essay or documentary, take this rare opportunity to work with one of the Reader’s favourite writers and most popular tutors.

To sign up we are asking for a deposit of €30 to reserve your spot. Email to book your place.

Rory MacLean is the author of more than a dozen books including the UK top tens Stalin’s Nose and Under the Dragon as well as Berlin: Imagine a City, a book of the year and ‘the most extraordinary work of history I’ve ever read’ according to the Washington Post.

He has won awards from the Canada Council and Arts Council of England and written about the missing civilians of the Yugoslav Wars for the ICRC, on divided Cyprus for the UN’s Committee on Missing Persons and on North Korea for the British Council.

His works – wrote the late John Fowles – are among those that ‘marvellously explain why literature still lives’. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, he divides his time between the UK, Canada and

Find Your Muse – An Expressive Writing Workshop

Dimitra Didangelou is a novelist and psychologist who works with writers to free their creativity. Procrastination and avoidance affect beginners and published authors alike; second-guessing and self-criticism can sabotage all of us. Join Dimitra for a workshop that focuses on overcoming the blocks that inhibit writing freely, connecting with inspiration and expressing your voice without fear of criticism. Over four hours in a friendly and supportive environment, Dimitra will guide you through exercises, lead discussion and impart valuable tools that will make your writing practice more productive.

To sign up to this workshop, please email Dimitra directly at

DIMITRA DIDANGELOU is a psychologist, science journalist and author who aims to help people gain insight and enhance their creativity through expressive writing.

Alongside with campaigning to raise public awareness about mental health issues, she is the founder of “Expressing MySelf”, an Institute which offers online workshops promoting creative living. Her training includes Advanced Study in Therapeutic Writing (The Center for Journal Writing in Denver, CO, USA), an MSc in Psychology and the Mass Media, a BA in Psychology and a Certificate in Philosophical Counseling and Psychotherapy.

Dimitra is a published novelist and author of many short stories.

Photograph: Tilman Vogler


Advanced Fiction with Ben Fergusson

Led by award-winning novelist Ben Fergusson, this exclusive weekend seminar is designed
for writers who are ready to take their fiction to the next level. Covering both long- and short-
fiction, this session will focus on discussions, practical exercises and prompts to help you
hone your sentences, develop character and iron out the bumps in your writing. (more…)

Kickstart Your Writing 25th/26th November

On the weekend of November 25th and 26th, Jane will be running The Reader’s acclaimed two-day introductory course, covering the basics of fiction writing. Suitable for new writers or offering a shot in the arm for those who want to reinvigorate their writing practise, the course will cover establishing a writing routine, with exercises to kickstart the imagination and tuition on characterisation and dialogue (more…)

Eat Your Words: A Workshop of Food & Writing

Eat Me. Drink Me. and Counter Service present:

Eat Your Words: A Workshop of Food & Writing

Don’t be fooled into thinking this is a “food writing” workshop. It’s a writing workshop that
uses food as a tool and looks at it as a place of access and entry into writing about memory,
experience, shame, desire, nostalgia, etc. All the good stuff. (more…)