Courses

Guided Writing Week and Weekend Workshop

4th to 11th November 2022

space, inspiration, and support

Rushay is an Arts & Crafts country house set in its own gardens and grounds, with nine beautiful bedrooms between the house and cottage. With three further sitting rooms, the house provides plenty of space for quiet work and reflection. It stands a mile from the Dorset coast, on the edge of the Marshwood Vale.

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced writer, we want to inspire you, and fire your urge to work and create. 

What a week! I am buzzing and grinning all over my face. Rushay was the perfect environment in which to bathe in words and writing … I feel I unlocked something at Rushay, thanks to many things, not least the chance to air ideas with new people.
MB
writer

Rushay Guided Writing Week: 4-11 November 2022

A weekend workshop with a follow-on week of guided writing 

Part I: A Novel in Two Days with Jason Goodwin & Greg Mosse

 10am to 5 pm, Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th November 2022

‘A Novel in Two Days’ is a dynamic, collaborative story-development workshop, weaving a compelling outline for an original, unwritten novel, devised from ideas produced by the people in the room.

Jason and Greg have each more than 20 years’ professional experience working with novelists, playwrights and screenwriters. Among their many writing credits, both have published thrillers and mysteries.

Each day is divided into four creative objectives, including original writing tasks and lots of time for questions.

Day One

Session 1 Your characters are your plot – what they do reveals who they are

Session 2 Your plot challenges your characters – it puts them under pressure

Session 3 Your protagonist & your climax – the heart of the drama

Session 4 Your subplots – all the competing objectives

Day Two

Session 5 Your dialogue – saying just enough but not too much

Session 6 Your locations – in time & place

Session 7 Your timeline – how everything connects

Session 8 Q&A – review of ‘A Novel in Two Days’

Part II: The Guided Writing Week (Monday 7th-Friday 11th)

After completing the weekend workshop, residential writers stay on for the week of private writing, mentoring and conversation. 

We want to inspire you to progress with your own fiction or non-fiction. Whether you are a new writer or an established one, we think that you will draw energy from the relatively informal mix of support, guidance and peaceful writing time.

Jason will lead an daily group discussion, covering issues like character, dialogue, plot, pace, setting and research. We’ll be talking about different forms, including fiction, memoir and travel writing. The sessions are voluntary but should be entertaining and informative.

During the week, Helen Corner-Bryant of Cornerstones Literary Agency will host a Q&A session on shaping and editing your work.

Hands free
You won’t have to lift a finger. No cooking and no washing up. Supper from the best fresh local ingredients will be served in the dining room at 7.30 for 8 every evening. Breakfast and lunch will be at 8am and 1pm, with snacks, tea and coffee available all day to power you on. 

Bridlit Talks

You can attend author events at the 2022 Bridport Literary Festival, to hear a wide range of interesting authors discussing their work. Not least, Jason will talk to Greg Mosse about Greg’s new eco-thriller THE COMING DARKNESS on Monday 7th.

Walks
Weather permitting, we’ll have some (guided) walks in the surrounding countryside: solvitur ambulando is a writing precept, ‘it is solved by walking.’ You might also want to explore the Dorset/Devon borders, or go fossil-hunting on Charmouth’s famous Jurassic beach. Bridport and Lyme Regis are each under fifteen minutes away by car, and Charmouth has two pubs and a café. 

Rooms
All the rooms are king size or doubles, except for the attic bedroom which is a two-bed dorm room, and a twin in the cottage. They are all set up with writing desks and power outlets, with lovely views, and there is fibre broadband and wifi throughout the house and cottage and much of the garden, with good 4G phone reception on all networks.

Getting here
There is ample parking at Rushay, and a taxi from the nearest railway station (Axminster) costs about £15. Axminster is on the Waterloo-Exeter mainline.

Prices

Weekend only (non-residential, with lunch) £250 

Whole week (full board):

Master bedroom and green bedroom (king size beds) £1200

Double bedrooms £1100

2-dorm and cottage singles (sharing) £800

Bursary available, see below

Writing feedback

Jason is available for one-to-one consultancy sessions, reading and discussing your own work. You’ll need to submit a chapter or up to 3000 words in advance. Fee tbd.

Application

Thanks to the generosity of a previous participant, we can offer a bursary to a writer who would benefit from the week or weekend but cannot currently afford the rates. If that’s you, please email us with a brief description of your work and your situation.

Contact details below.

An exceptional location. An incredibly gracious host. I would do it again, in exactly the same format, in a heartbeat.
CG
Writer

Mentors

Jason Goodwin is an award winning writer, whose works of fiction and non-fiction have been translated into more than 40 languages, including Albanian and Korean. He won the coveted Edgar Award for Best Mystery Novel but the roots of his writing are in travel and history. He also writes a monthly column for Country Life Magazine.

Jason has taught creative writing at West Dean College, and given masterclasses at the South Bank and The Guardian. 

Greg Mosse worked for almost a decade in comprehensive inner city education. He helped his wife, Kate Mosse, develop an innovative readers-and-writers website, and co-created the Southbank Centre Creative Writing School. He has produced writing workshops for Guardian Masterclasses, Edinburgh Book Festival, Cheltenham Festival, Chichester Festival Theatre and many others.

His eco-thriller, The Coming Darkness, is published in November.

The most wonderful and inspirational week…Thank you for restoring my confidence in my writing. FW
FW
Writer