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The short story

“A short story is a love affair, a novel is a marriage. A short story is a photograph; a novel is a film.” - Lorrie Moore 

Write the love affair and take your photographs with words, learn to create your narratives in the short story form.  This 8-week course will explore a number of different short stories through group discussions. In a nurturing and friendly environment, we will identify the ingredients of a short story, investigate what makes a successful short story, and plan and develop our own ideas for our short narratives. 

London based poet and creative writing tutor, Agnieszka Studzinska has an MA in creative Writing from the UEA, and is currently working towards her PhD at Royal Holloway. Her debut collection, Snow Calling was shortlisted for the London New Poetry Award in 2010.  Her second collection, What Things Are is published by Eyewear Publishing. She has had poems published in various anthologies and is currently working on her third collection called, The Branches of a House. 

Dates and Times

The course will run from 10am – 12.30pm on:

Course dates coming soon.


The full cost of this 8 week course is £155


Week 1 & 2: Getting a Grip with the Genre – What are the essential building blocks for the short story? We read and discuss the tricks, secrets and insights into short fiction.

Week 3 & 4: Short Story or Flash Fiction? What is the difference between a Short Story and Flash Fiction or Very Short Fiction? We will explore the different forms and generate writing through a series of writing exercises.

Week 5: Beginnings and Endings: Hooks, Twists, Surprises, Ambiguities. We will explore examples of different beginnings and endings of a short story.

Week 6 & 7: Writing from Photographs: Creating characters and settings. 

Week 8: A Critic of One’s Own- Extended critical feedback session.


There are no requirements to enrol on this course apart from a love of the written word.


Upon completion of this course students are issued a St Mary's University Certificate of Attendance as well as a portfolio of creative writing.