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Not-the-Election Salon Winning Stories

Posted on September 21st, 2017 by Tony-Oulton

We received many brilliant entries to our Word Factory short story competition. Writers explored exploring ideas of belonging and identity in response to our theme for this year, Citizen: the New Story.

Zoe Gilbert and Sophie Haydock selected seven winning stories and invited two special guest readers to the Not-the-Election Word Factory special salon on June 7: Tamsin Cottis, who was highly commended in the Word Factory apprentice scheme 2017, and Rowena MacDonald, the novelist and short story writer, who read from her new novel, The Threat Level Remains Severe. Read the selected stories here.

Special guest:

Rowena MacDonald

The Threat Level Remains Severe

Sadiq Jaffery

The Neighbourhood Muslim Watch

Alex Reece

Abbott's Bystander

Alan McCormick


Tamar Hodes

Zeta, Zara and the Fridge Test

Special guest:

Tamsin Cottis

The Locals

Pete Maguire

Pockmarked Travesty

Stef Pixner


Jamilah Ahmed

Such Fools We Are

Flash of the Month: September 2017

Posted on September 21st, 2017 by Eloise Wales

The 2017 apprentices Avani Shah, Durre Shahwar, J. Fergus Evans and Melissa Fu enjoyed the opportunity to be guest judges for the Word Factory Flash of the Month Contest, exploring the themes of citizenship, identity and belonging. For our September winner, we chose ‘Flip-flops’ by Anita Goveas. We appreciated the humour and pathos of the voice in this piece, as well as the nuance and layers. In particular, it stood out for being a story where the thing being talked about wasn’t the only thing that was going on. There is more…

A Word Factory Interview with Kit de Waal

Posted on September 18th, 2017 by Eloise Wales

Kit de Waal author photoEarlier this month, Word Factory’s Rupert Dastur spoke with international bestselling author, Kit de Waal. Don’t miss her masterclass, ‘Flash Fiction Genius: How to get an entire story into 250 words or less’ on 29 September. Tickets available here.

Hi Kit, thank you for speaking to us at the Word Factory. In an interview with The Bookseller you mention that it wasn’t until your late forties that you arrived at writing. Perhaps I could begin by asking what it was like setting off on the literary ladder at this relatively late stage and what advice would you offer others in a similar position?
I would say that it is never too late to do something new. It doesn’t have to be writing, it could be anything that you always wished you’d tried or even something you never thought about before. I never thought about being a writer before I tried it although I was a great reader. There is more…

Word Factory Showcase, 9th September

Posted on September 5th, 2017 by Eloise Wales

Come and support an evening showcasing some of the UK’s leading short story talent – the winners of the 2017 Word Factory Apprentice Award.

Durre Shawar (co-founder of the Welsh BAME writers’ group Where I’m Coming From), Avani Shah (Shortlisted Guardian 4th Estate BAME Short Story Prize), Melissa Fu (founder Spilling The Ink writing courses) and J. Fergus Evans (Associate Artist, the Albany). There is more…