The latest Creative Writing News The latest Creative Writing News

Safe by Ryan Gattis

Safe is the new novel by UEA alumnus Ryan Gattis and has just been published in the UK by Picador. Ryan was born in Illinois, USA, and raised in Colorado. He gained a BFA in Creative Writing from Chapman University in California in 2001 and graduated from the UEA MA in Creative Writing (Prose Fiction) in 2002. He published his first novel Roo Kickkick and the Big Bad Blimp in 2004. This was followed by Kung Fu High School in 2005 and two novellas, The Big Drop: Homecoming in 2012 and The Big Drop: Impermanence in 2013. All Involved: A Novel Of The 1992 LA Riots was published in 2015. Ryan was a founding member of the publishing collective Black Hill Press, and taught English & Creative Writing for ten years at Chapman University. He currently lives in Los Angeles

Sam Riviere in Penguin Modern Poets 5

UEA alumnus Sam Riviere is included in the recently published collection Penguin Modern Poets 5 alongside Frederick Seidel and Kathryn Maris.  Sam began writing poetry at the Norwich School of Art and Design and gained an MA in Creative Writing at Royal Holloway before completing his PhD in Creative and Critical Writing at UEA in 2013. He was a recipient of a 2009 Eric Gregory Award, and his debut collection 81 Austerities (Faber & Faber, 2012) won the Forward Prize for Best First Collection. His second collection Kim Kardashian's Marriage was published by Faber in 2015. His standalone pamphlets include Standard Twin Fantasy (Egg Box Publishing, 2014) and True Colours (After Hours, 2016). Safe Mode, a full-length prose text, was recently published by Test Centre. He runs the limited edition poetry press If a Leaf Falls from Edinburgh, where he currently lives.

The Impossible by Mark Illis

The Impossible: Book 1 is the first novel for teenagers by UEA alumnus Mark Illis and has just been published by Quercus Children’s Books. Mark graduated from the MA in Creative Writing in 1987 and has published four novels for adults: A Chinese Summer (1988), The Alchemist (1990), The Feather Report (1992), and The Last Word (2011), which was shortlisted for The Portico Prize.  He is also the author of a collection of short stories, Tender, and has written extensively for TV, including EastEnders, The Bill and Emmerdale.  

Kathy Stevens wins Bath Short Story Award

‘This Is All Mostly True’ by UEA Creative Writing student Kathy Stevens, has been announced as the winner of the £1,000 first prize in the 2017 International Bath Short Story Award, judged by AM Heath literary agent, Euan Thorneycroft. Kathy (pictured) gained a BA in English Literature from Bath Spa University before joining the MA in Creative Writing (Prose Fiction) at UEA in 2016 as the inaugural recipient of the Kowitz Scholarship. Her short fiction has appeared in Litro, Prole, Supernatural Tales Magazine, The Literateur, The Cadaverine, Patrician Press and Firefly, as well as the Bath Short Story Award 2016 and Bath Flash Fiction Award anthologies. She is currently completing her first novel and will graduate from the UEA MA in September.  

Annetta Berry wins First Novel Prize

The Binding Frame by UEA Creative Writing student Annetta Berry has been announced as the winner of this year’s £1,000 First Novel Prize. Annetta (pictured) is one of the inaugural cohort on UEA’s new MFA in Creative Writing, from which she will graduate in September. Annetta previously gained a BA and a PhD in History of Art from Cambridge University, a Jesus College Foundation Scholarship, Jesus College Academic Prize and a British Academy Award. While working at the National Gallery, her work was nominated for two Interactive BAFTAs. She has also worked at Tate and freelance for the Royal Collection, and his currently a Writer-in-Residence at Houghton Hall in Norfolk. The Binding Frame was also longlisted for the Bath Novel, as was Translation by 2014 Creative Writing MA alumna Lily Meyer.

Kid Normal by Greg James and Chris Smith


Kid Normal is the debut children’s book by Radio 1 DJs Greg James and Chris Smith and has just been published by Bloomsbury in the UK. It is the first book in a projected series and is also being published in Australia, the USA and several other countries around the world. Greg (pictured) graduated from the BA in Drama at UEA in 2007 and received an honorary doctorate in 2015. Throughout his time at UEA he presented shows on the Student Union radio station, Livewire, and joined BBC Radio 1 in the summer of 2007.

The Bedlam Stacks by Natasha Pulley


The Bedlam Stacks is the second novel by UEA alumna Natasha Pulley and is published by Bloomsbury in the UK today. Natasha was born in Cambridge and studied English Literature at Oxford University. She graduated from the UEA MA in Creative Writing (Prose Fiction) in 2012, after which she completed a nineteen-month Daiwa Fellowship in Tokyo, Japan. Her first novel The Watchmaker of Filigree Street was begun during her MA and published by Bloomsbury in 2015. It received a Betty Trask Award and was shortlisted for the Authors’ Club Best First Novel Award.

January - Blood Orange by Harriet Tyce

Blood Orange, the debut thriller by UEA student Harriet Tyce, has been acquired by Wildfire in the UK and by Grand Central in the USA. It will be published simultaneously in the UK and US in January 2019.  Translation rights have meanwhile been sold in ten other countries, with more deals expected to follow. Harriet (pictured) is one of the inaugural students on UEA’s groundbreaking online MA in Crime Fiction and will graduate this September. She studied English at Oxford University and subsequently practiced for ten years as a criminal barrister in London

Avani Shah shortlisted for Guardian 4th Estate BAME prize

‘Greed’, a new short story by UEA alumna Avani Shah, has been shortlisted for this year’s Guardian 4th Estate BAME prize, which was established in 2015 to find ‘fresh compelling writing’ by minority ethnic writers to address the poor representation of black and Asian writers of fiction in the UK. Avani (pictured) graduated from UEA’s BA in English Literature with Creative Writing in 2011 and from the MA in Creative Writing in 2015. Earlier this year she was one of four young writers selected for the Word Factory apprenticeship scheme, for which she will receive a year’s free access to all Word Factory events, plus career development opportunities and mentoring. The winner of the Guardian 4th Estate BAME prize will be announced on 13 July and will receive £1,000, a one-day workshop with 4th Estate editorial, publicity and marketing teams, and will have their story published on the Guardian website.

Faye by Meadhbh Ní Eadhra

Faye is the third young adult novel by UEA alumna Meadhbh Ní Eadhra and has just been published by LeabhairCOMHAR in Ireland.  It was the winner last year of an Oireachtas Irish language literary award while still in manuscript. Meadhbh graduated from the Creative Writing (Prose Fiction) MA in 2013. She is the author of two other award-winning Irish language books for young people, Rua and Fáinne Fí Fífí, and was the winner of the 2013 Moth Short Story Prize. Last year her short story ‘Friday’ was shortlisted for the 2016 Over The Edge New Writer of The Year award. She is shortly to begin a PhD in Creative Writing at the National University of Ireland Galway.