City Writes is City, University of London’s termly writing event, showcasing the best of City Short Courses writing talent.

Hosted by longstanding short courses tutor, Rebekah Lattin-Rawstrone, and into its third year, City Writes provides an opportunity for the best new writers from the City Short Courses community to read an extract of their work, sharing the stage with one of our published alumni or tutors reading from their new or award-winning publication

Enter our City Writes Competition

For an exciting opportunity to read alongside our published guest speaker at the City Writes event, short course writing students and alumni are invited to take part in the City Writes termly writing competition.

To be considered, applicants must submit 1,000 word of fiction writing (we also accept creative non-fiction, such as memoir or travel writing, and though we do accept young adult, we don’t currently accept children’s fiction) on any subject. Competition and submission guidelines can be found here.

The next City Writes event will take place via Zoom Thursday 1 April. 

The showcase for Short Courses creative writing talent is back on Zoom this Spring with our very own Visiting Lecturer, Kiare Ladner, headlining. Kiare is an alumna and teacher on the Novel Studio and her debut novel, Nightshift (Picador), set in London’s liminal world of nightshift workers, comes out this February. We’re delighted she’ll be able to join us on Thursday April 1st 2021.

As a child, Kiare wanted to live on a farm, run an orphanage and be on stage. As an adult, she found herself working for academics, with prisoners and on nightshifts. Her short stories have been published in anthologies, broadcast on the radio and shortlisted in competitions, including the BBC National Short Story Award 2018. Nightshift is her first novel. She is based in London.

If you’re keen to join Kiare on the online stage, all you need to do is send us 1,000 words of your best creative writing (fiction or non-fiction, YA but sadly no poetry or children’s fiction) by Friday 5th March 2021. Full submission details are here.

If you can’t wait to sign up to hear Kiare and competition winners read, do register for the free event which will be held on April Fool’s Day – well, it suits the times – here. If you want to catch up on the online events you’ve missed, check out the blog for links to videos of the Autumn and Summer events of 2020. You can do that here.

Don’t forget to send your best 1,000 words by midnight Friday 5th March 2021. Competition winners will be announced in week 9.

We look forward to reading your work!

If you have any questions about City Writes, please email Rebekah Lattin-Rawstrone.

Past guest speakers have included:

Imogen Hermes Gowar signing books at the City Writes event

  • Emma Claire Sweeney, author of Owl Song at Dawn and Visiting Lecturer at City Short Courses
  • Luiza Sauma, author of Everything You Ever Wanted and City Short Courses alumna 
  • Greg Keen, author of Soho Dead, and City’s Novel Studio alumnus
  • Imogen Hermes Gowar , author of The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock and City Short Courses alumna
  • C. G. Menon, author of Skin Deep and short courses alumna
  • Cherry Potts, author of The Dowry Blade, publisher and Visiting Lecturer at City Short Courses
  • Harriet Tyce, author of Blood Orange and City’s Novel Studio alumna
  • Anna Mazzola, author of The Unseeing and The Story Keeper and City’s Novel Studio alumna
  • Rosamund Davies, editor of Story Cities and City’s Novel Studio alumna, with other alumni published in the flash collection: Evleen Mann, Maire Malone, Jayne Buxton and the publisher and Visiting Lecturer, Cherry Potts.
  • Shahrukh Husain, author, screenwriter, editor of e.g. Virago’s The Book of Witches, and Novel Studio alumna
  • Deepa Anappara, author of Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line and City Novel Studio alumna

City Writes Competition Submission Guidelines 

City Writes is City Short Courses most prestigious writing event. For the opportunity to read your work alongside our published guest speakers at our spring event, past and present students email their 1000 word fiction or creative non-fiction story or extract to Rebekah.lattin-rawstrone.2@city.ac.uk.

  • Your story doesn’t need to follow a theme, it just needs to be the best 1000 words you can send us.
  • Your email should state your name, the title of your story/extract and the name of the City Creative Writing Short Course you took or are taking.
  • Your story should be attached as a word (doc. Or docx.) rich text or pdf document and should not include your name to allow us to judge the stories anonymously.

Please do not submit more than one story per term. Multiple submissions will not be read.

You will be informed of the outcome of your submission by the end of week nine of teaching. No comments or feedback will be given on unsuccessful submissions.

Thank you and good luck!