Skip to Content

Workshop leaders

Sophie Buckingham is a CHASE-funded PhD student and Associate Tutor in the department of medieval and renaissance literature at UEA. She’s interested in poetic reworkings of Ovid's Tristia in 16th-century England, with a particular focus on exilic resonances in the works of Thomas Wyatt, Thomas Churchyard and Edmund Spenser. She is a founding editor of the Brief Encounters journal and trained peer reviewer. Her favourite play is Shakespeare’s Richard II.


Linda Horsnell originally gained a degree in Science, but her love of Literature brought her back to university and she is a now PhD candidate and an Associate Tutor, teaching the Literature in History II module.


Michael Lengsfield is a screenwriter and lecturer at UEA, with a particular interest in the theory and practice of dramatic adaptation.  A native of the United States, Michael has written screenplays for Disney, Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Productions, Lot 49 and others. He wrote and directed Short Term Bonds, a segment for the "HBO Director's Workshop".  The film was later screened at the Sundance Festival and was awarded a CINE Golden Eagle.  As a story analyst, Michael worked for Imagine Entertainment, Icon Productions, Initial Entertainment and Showtime Networks.


James McDermott is a Norfolk based writer performer. He graduated from UEA with an MA (Distinction) in Creative Writing. He participated on The Royal Court Writers Group 2017 and Soho Theatre Writers Lab 2016. His extremely popular plays include 'Fast Food' starring Jude Law (Lyric Hammersmith), 'Man Hug' (Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds; Winner of Anglian Voices Playwriting Competition 2017) and 'Rubber Ring' (national tour) which James is currently adapting for TV for Hat Trick Productions.


Bali Rai is the author of many best-selling and popular teenage novels including (un)arranged marriage, City of Ghosts and The Last Taboo. At the age of 11 Bali read the book that would inspire him to write: The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole by Sue Townsend. From that point writing became an important hobby that he practiced almost every day and he aspired to create the sort of literature that many school students who don't normally read would enjoy. He now spends a large part of the year doing events, promotions and creative writing classes - which he loves. Many of his books have been shortlisted for prizes, including(un)arranged marriage, Rani &Sukh and the Harder They Fall, nominated for a Carnegie Medal this year.


Hayley Scott Hayley writes the Teacup House series for Usborne. After completing the MA in Creative Writing at UEA, she won an Escalator Award from Writers Centre East and a Grant for the Arts to write her first novel, Jar Baby (Dexter Haven, 2012). She writes for children as Hayley Scott and for adults as Hayley Webster and has had articles featured in Grazia and The Observer Magazine. Hayley lives in Norfolk with her daughter.


Joy Taylor loves words in all their forms – whether they’re fictional or factual. She studied them at school and university before seeing where her fascination for words could take her in her work. She’s written scripts for television, been a professional speechwriter, and worked as an advertising copywriter. Joy completed the MA in Creative Writing at UEA in 2001, and she’s taught writing to undergraduates at UEA and University Campus Suffolk.


Alexander Gordon Smith is best known as the author of the ‘Escape from Furnace’ series, and is also the author of The Fury and two creative writing handbooks, Inspired Creative Writing and Writing Bestselling Children’s Books, a number of screenplays that are currently in development, several non-fiction books and hundreds of short stories and articles. The founder of Egg Box Publishing, an independent, non-profit imprint designed to publish and promote talented new writers and poets, he is also co-owner of a film production company filming its first feature.  In 2009 he was named by the Courvoisier Future 500 as one of the most promising young entrepreneurs in the United Kingdom. He is also Patron of FLY.