By Lee Wright
On Wednesday 8th May 2019, the first ever "Dissertation Day" took place, as part of the MA in Creative Writing at Leicester. The day included workshops, presentations and roundtable discussions in which everyone shared ideas for projects. The day acted like a taster menu, featuring novels, short stories, poetry collections, non-fiction pieces, and plays.
The day opened with a guest writing workshop by Sue Dymoke, poet and Reader in Education. This was followed by a presentation by PhD Creative Writing students Dan Powell and Karen Powell, who talked about how they managed and planned long creative research projects. Finally, all the MA students sat around a table and, in turn, spent time talking about their practice, research and explaining what they were trying to achieve in their dissertations. Everyone in the group shared ideas, reading suggestions and practical advice. The lecturers on the Creative Writing programme, Jonathan Taylor, Nick Everett and Kevan Manwaring, were on hand to listen and provide an idea of how students might proceed with their dissertation projects. They recognised that sometimes you need a person to point you in a different direction and say, “Try this other way” - making you think, or see something that wasn’t necessarily clear before.
The day was an important addition to the course, based around a framework of encouragement. After all, a problem shared is a problem halved.
About the author:
Lee Wright’s short stories, articles and poetry have been published by Fairlight Books, Headstuff.com, The Black Country Arts Foundry, The New Luciad, Peeking Cat Anthology, Newmag and Burning House Press. Lee is in his final year of a part-time MA in Creative Writing at the University of Leicester.