Current Programme

Being able to see inside a life amazed me and made me more curious.’,

Our InRealLife programme for the academic year 2019/20 is now on hold because of COVID19.

We have been researching and developing Extension Projects, as part of a long-held ambition of making offers to young writers who might not otherwise enjoy the possibility of our workshops on the ground. We are exploring ways in which the unique nature and structure of our Imagining History UK workshops can make the shift into the virtual world.

The first of these projects is called Times Shifting and is an important and innovative response to the current overwhelming events of Covid19 and the international adaptation to it.

Times Shifting is a month long, mentored creative writing workshop, focused on the creation of a piece of Imagined Historical Fiction – a piece of writing from a point of view in an imagined future looking back at these times of historic change. It is also a historical archiving project, inviting young writers to collect, observe, note what is happening now, creating Time Capsules that will in future years be an important witness to this time of astonishing changes in our world.

It is co-led by our Historical Adviser, Dr Dina Gusejnova Assistant Professor in International History at LSE University of London. Excellent historical fiction is grounded in real events. Dina’s guidance makes sure that writers on Times Shifting keep their focus on the way History is moving through every day of our lives right now.

IHUK holds to the original aim of Sir Walter Scott, who wrote Waverley, or ’tis sixty years since as an imagined historical exploration of the 1745 uprising in his native Scotland. He wanted his readers to realise both the good and the bad inherent in historical events. He based his writing on what he was able to glean from those who had lived through the momentous events of those past years.

Read more here

The second is still in development. It will use images from the last 4 years of real-life workshops as the starting point for taking teenage writers into the deep and extensive worlds of their own imaginations.

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