Why creative writing at UWE Bristol is inspirational.

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By Déborah Ribas, Creative and Professional Writing student

Our Creative and Professional Writing student, Déborah, tells us how she chose to study Creative Writing at UWE Bristol. She shares her experience of the course and her international work opportunity in The Gambia.

Why I chose to study Creative Writing at UWE Bristol

In 2017, I joined UWE Bristol’s mixed Arts Foundation course. I must confess, I did not intend to stay. I had one focus – come to Bristol, complete the foundation year and then go to another university. But as the year passed, I found myself more and more involved with my course at UWE Bristol.

In the middle of my second term, I attended some classes of my chosen subjects, along with the other Foundation students. I went to the Creative and Professional Writing class, and that was it. That was enough to make me stay in Bristol.

I fell in love with how the course was taught. I didn’t expect it to be so complete – which other universities offer a course solely focused on writing? The course is structured to give students a variety of tools to thrive in the industry.

“The Creative and Professional Writing course is inspirational. It will give you the tools to thrive in any industry and as a content creator.”

My course modules

In the first year it was about the creative process – how can you use other Arts to feed your own and how to tackle the writers’ block – as well as poetry and writing essays. The second year was about adaptions, adapting a novel to the cinema and the theatre. And in the third year… I’m about to find out. 

There are three main modules: scriptwriting (cinema, TV, radio and theatre), narrative fiction, non-fiction and copywriting. There is also a fourth module that changes every year.

I was fascinated by modules like Myths and Fairytales, which involved dissecting fairytale stories and discussing their origins and evolution over time.

Creative lecturers and masterclasses

Our lecturers are published authors, theatre company owners, scriptwriters, professional copywriters and all of them add a unique flair to the lessons. We also have masterclasses throughout the year, from established authors, scriptwriters, theatre directors and poets.

We have briefs from real companies who give us a taste of what the work environment could be like. You can also attend other course masterclasses too, for example, the filmmaking course has masterclasses with directors and producers.  

“You have every opportunity to make contacts and interact with people from different industries.”

My work experience in The Gambia

Within the course, you also have several work opportunities. Earlier this year (in January), I travelled to The Gambia to work on The Daigo Project. This project focused on providing education and skills development to the Youth in The Gambia.

I was part of a group of 22 UWE Bristol students from different courses and faculties. There were five Creative and Professional Writing students in the group, all from different years. It was an intense experience, no doubt about that!

We had training in the UK and then we spent two weeks in Banjul, The Gambia’s capital city. I was part of the filmmaking team and took a journey into the life of an artist in The Gambia. We interviewed a range of artists, makers and teachers about their work.

What I loved about my work opportunity

I had the chance to be in a real work environment, with people I didn’t know previously. Plus I was in a foreign country, where the work conditions were very different from those in the UK. That definitely gave me a taste of one of the many employment routes I can pursue with my course.

I had the opportunity to put into practice all the techniques of storytelling, interviewing and copywriting that I had learned. Although I have no idea what my job after Uni will be, I am confident that I am a skilled professional and that my education has a huge impact on that.

Find out more about Creative Writing courses at UWE Bristol.

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