Swansea University's Creative Writing team hit the ground running in 2015.

RIAH thin image bar

Creative WritingComedy writer and screenplay specialist Nicko Vaughan kicks off a long list of performances and publications from Swansea University’s Creative Writing team throughout 2015.

On 27 February, Nicko joined Mock the Week and Never Mind the Buzzcocks comedian Mark Watson for a 27-hour comedy marathon in aid of Comic Relief at the Pleasance Theatre in London. The event was streamed live by the BBC as well as being featured during the Comic Relief evening show. Nicko’s role was to watch and commentate on bad movies for 27-hours straight.  

Next, Swansea’s new Creative Writing staff member, novelist Francesca Rhydderch has co-edited the Seren New Welsh Short Stories, to be released on March 15th.  Fran has also written the foreword to The Selected Writings of Leonora Brito (Parthian: Library of Wales) to be published  later this year.

Seren New Welsh Short Stories is  followed by the release of Jon Gower’s Gwalia Patagonia (Gomer Press) on March 31st.  Jon is also presenting a documentary for BBC Radio Cymru to mark the 150th anniversary of the Welsh in Patagonia. His book blends oral history with Jon’s own rich imagination. It takes readers on a journey meeting legendary giants, Andean condors, devil spirits and chapel-worshipers.  Jon has also edited a new collection of Welsh language short stories Clymau (Gomer), to be released on April 30th. His new novel Norte, about central American migrants is due out in the summer.

Anne Lauppe-Dunbar has been included Swansea University’s list of Inspiring Women and will appear on the university website homepage during March 2015.  Anne’s impressive first novel Dark Mermaids (Seren), will be published in September. Shortlisted for the Impress Prize, the  thriller is set in Berlin in 1990 and draws on the East German doping scam.

Jasmine Donahaye's new biography The Greatest Need: the creative life and troubled times of Lily Tobias, a Welsh Jew in Palestine, is published by Honno Press on March 19th, alongside her new edition of Lily Tobias's 1931 novel, My Mother's House, published in Honno's Classics series.  Jasmine's troubling memoir, Losing Israel, is published by Seren in May, and she takes up her prestigious Creative Wales Award, from Arts Council of Wales, in September

Throughout the year dramatist D.J. Britton will be working on a new commission for National Theatre Wales --  the first stage dramatisation of Sir Phillip Sidney’s Elizabethan poetic classic, The Countess of Pembrokeshire’s Arcadia.  His new sound work Two Financiers Running is being broadcast on Czech Radio (in Czech translation).

Swansea Creative Writing MA student Wendy Holborow has had a collection of poems accepted for publication by the prestigious Poetry Salzburg series. Poetry Salzburg is the publishing wing of Salzburg University.  The poems include three she worked on with Jasmine Donahaye in Poetry 1 last semester.  Wendy is developing her poetry further with John Goodby in Poetry 2 this semester.

Meanwhile Ricky Stevenson's  hilarious anarchic comedy Are We There Yeti? has been commissioned for production by Fluellen Theatre Company for performance at the Swansea Grand in June. Ricky wrote the play for the Radio Drama module in the Creative Writing MA and an excerpt were performed  at last year's Rough Diamonds show. 

Becky John - Creative WritingFinally, Swansea University Creative Writing graduate Rebecca John (pictured left) has been named as one of the six international finalists for the £30,000 Sunday Times Short Story of the Year award.  Becky, of Penllergaer, studied a BA hons in English with Creative Writing (1st class) and an MA in Creative Writing (distinction) between 2008 and 2012. She is the only writer from the UK on the short list. Becky's first novel will be published later this year by Parthian Press.  Read more here:  http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/culture/books/fiction/article1525599.ece / http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/mar/02/rebecca-f-john-sunday-times-short-story-shortlist / http://www.southwales-eveningpost.co.uk/Author-s-pound-30k-prize-hope/story-26107518-detail/story.html#ixzz3TJeQ9kQd