Telling Historical Stories in Poetry
with Jay Bernard

Join acclaimed poet Jay Bernard in this practical workshop on how to use archives as a basis for writing poetry.

History provides a lot of material for writing. Whether it’s an event from ages back, or something more recent that you have witnessed, accessing archives (both public and personal) will help you add depth and develop new imaginative approaches to your writing.

If you have ever daydreamed about experiencing a moment in history, witnessed something that you wish to revisit or wanted to write about a person, possession or experience in a new way, this workshop will provide the tools and space to do so.

What will you do on the course?

In this hands-on workshop Jay will guide you through the basics of accessing both public and personal archives, and developing imaginative approaches to your material. You will look at a range of media, including film, newspaper cuttings, political ephemera and audio clips from a number of London-based archives, which you will then use to re-think and re-imagine your approach to the past.

Who is it for? 

This course is suitable for beginners to historical research, archiving and writing.

About Spread the Word’s discounted rates
London Writers Network members receive a 10% discount on Spread the Word’s paid programme of activities, and access to two free specially programmed London Writers Network events a year. You can find out more about the London Writers Network scheme here. If you are a London Writers Network member please login to receive your discount.

To see if you are eligible for a concessionary rate, please take a look at our concessions policy.

Jay Bernard


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Jay Bernard is a writer from London. Works include a short documentary film, Something Said, and a forthcoming collection of poems, Surge, both based on the New Cross Fire of 1981. Jay's pamphlet, The Red and Yellow Nothing, a queer-techno-medieval misadventure, was shortlisted for the 2017 Ted Hughes Award.


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