Back for an eighth year, the National Creative Writing Industry Day is the largest conference of its kind taking place in the north of England, drawing over 150 delegates annually.
This year’s keynote speech comes courtesy writer and poet Vanessa Onwuemezi, recently shortlisted for the prestigious BBC National Short Story Award 2022.
Run by Manchester’s Comma Press in partnership with Manchester Metropolitan University, the conference takes place at Man Met’s Manchester Writing School and is designed for new writers, particularly novelists, heading towards publication. They are promised an insight into the publishing industry, with experts on hand to offer up advice and help hone their skills.
This year’s keynote speech comes courtesy writer and poet Vanessa Onwuemezi, recently shortlisted for the prestigious BBC National Short Story Award 2022. Based in London, Vanessa won the White Review Short Story Prize in 2019 with her story ‘At the Heart of Things’ and her work has appeared in Granta, frieze and Prototype. Her debut story collection, Dark Neighbourhood, was published by Fitzcarraldo Editions in 2021 and was named one of the Guardian’s Best Books of 2021. It was shortlisted for both the Republic of Consciousness Prize and the Edge Hill Prize in 2022, and it was the piece ‘Green Afternoon’ which made the BBC National Short Story Award list.
Vanessa also joins the panel From Print To Publication, alongside Kim Moore, a lecturer in creative writing at Manchester Metropolitan University, whose second poetry collection All The Men I Never Married (Seren, 2021) is currently shortlisted in the Forward Prizes for Best Collection. They’re joined by agent Julie Gourinchas of Bell Lomax Moreton and Genevieve Pegg, publishing director of HarperNorth, the Manchester-based imprint of HarperCollins, to look at the journey taken by manuscripts to get accepted, edited and marketed.
A second panel, Writing Through The Climate Crisis, brings together broadcaster Anita Sethi, Manchester Writing School lecturer Anjum Malik, writer Nicola Penfold and poet Emily Oldfield, who’s currently working on Scraps, which follows her footsteps through the East Lancashire/West Yorkshire edgelands.
Head of Writing Services at The Literary Consutancy Joe Sedgwick is running a workshop on how to write a synopsis and there will also be a number of drop-in sessions with experts on the day. You’ll also have the opportunity to sit down for one-to-one appointments with agents and editors to seek advice on your work-in-progress – there’s a choice of specialisms from crime to creative nonfiction and from short stories to YA.
In the afternoon, join one of a number of workshops, including Nature Writing with Anita Sethi, Food Writing with Anjum Malik, Marketing Yourself as an Author with Jordan Taylor Jones or Publishing your work with Adam Lowe from Peepal Tree Press. That should keep you busy!
Advance booking only - one-to-one sessions are organised in advance. Attendees will be emailed their timetable and all relevant information the week of the conference.
The National Creative Writing Industry Day at Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester