Chudleigh Literary Festival

How time flies it’s nearly two weeks since the Chudleigh Literary Festival took place and I’m still trying to absorb everything I learnt at the workshops.



We started with character building with Patrica Fawcett. We had to create a character from a photograph. I know it’s quite a common teaching aid but I’m always surprised by the way the characters evolve when I begin writing. Naming the character can be difficult and until you decide what their social status is – I always think of Hugo as being a bit snobbish so if my character is from a social housing estate then I’d call him something else.

Then we looked at place specific writing led by Oriana Ascanio. She took us like a crocodile of school children into the churchyard to write about a burial from the point of view of a huge pine – again a change of perspective is always challenging. The next exercise was to imagine you are a saint and part of you is kept somewhere in the Church. Some people did some amazing things with that being the patron saint of lost things was one, but I found imagining my self as a saint a bit difficult.

Our next workshop was on how to write your memoir. Sophie King encouraged everyone to try write their life story as she believed we all have something to tell the next generation. She asked us to think about the major events in our lives and write about one. Again the group came up with some really interesting stories. Then it was poetry with Jennie Osborne. I haven’t written poetry for some time but listening to the sounds of your writing are important if you write prose. Again it was events from childhood that provided the most inspiration for the pieces we wrote.

The final event of the day was a ‘Meet the Authors Supper’ when about fifteen authors came and had supper with us. Their was a lot of laughter and exchanges of writing experiences over a meal and a glass of wine.

Chudleigh Writers' Circle Stall

Chudleigh Writers’ Circle Stall

About scribblingadvocate

Born in Lancashire, Law degree from Sheffield University and MA in Creative Writing from Exeter. A barrister for twenty five years, who appeared in the Crown Courts in and around London. When I retired we moved to live in Devon, first on Dartmoor, more recently overlooking the Exe Estuary. After twenty years I still feel an exile from London. Married, no children but own an affable Springer Spaniel. I love reading, walking and travel. I completed an MA in Creative Writing at Exeter University and have written three books, Crucial Evidence, Reluctant Consent and Legal Privilege, all set in London. You can email me

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