Monday, 4 September 2017

Our prose competition launches!

Our annual prose competition launches today with two major prizes: the East of England Prize and our National Prize for Women Writers over the age of 40.

Emily Midorikawa and Emma Claire Sweeney
(c) Rosalind Hobley
This is the fifth year our competition’s been running and this year we’re proud to announce that we don’t have one guest judge but two! Emily Midorikawa and Emma Claire Sweeney are the authors of A Secret Sisterhood: The hidden friendships of Austen, Brontë, Eliot and Woolf. They also co-run, a website that celebrates female literary friendship. They’ve written for the likes of the Guardian, the Independent on Sunday and The Times. Emily is a winner of the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize, Emma is author of the award-winning novel Owl Song at Dawn, and they both teach at New York University, London. 

Emily and Emma will be looking for compelling voices from the entries, ‘voices that combine a sensitivity to the musicality of language with a story that holds the reader's attention from beginning to end. Narratives that are nuanced, complex and unusual will make us sit up and take note.’ 
The national award, generously sponsored by Hosking Houses Trust, offers women over the age of 40 the opportunity to win £1,000 and up to a month-long writing retreat at Church Cottage near Stratford-upon-Avon. 

The East of England prize offers the winner £600 and a mentoring session with Jill Dawson of Gold Dust. 

Both national and regional winners will be published in The Words And Women Compendium which will be launched on International Women’s Day, 8th March, 2018.
They will also have the opportunity to read at this event too.

All competition entrants will be offered a special discount for Gold Dust, the high calibre mentoring scheme for writers.

For more information on the prizes see our dedicated blog page  comp prizes and for details on how to enter see our dedicated blog page   comp entry details.

But in short: entries should be 2,200 words or under.  Fiction in any genre, memoir, life-writing, essays and creative non-fiction on any theme are all welcome. Extracts from longer works will not be considered. The competition is open for entries from the 5th September and the deadline for entries is 15th November 2017. Winners will be announced in January 2018.

Saturday, 19 August 2017

Writing Sundays: new autumn writing workshops by Words And Women

The Old Hospital Chapel
venue for the workshops
Words and Women is running a series of Writing Sundays in Norwich to support their bid to raise funds for a virtual office and new website.

The series of exciting women-only writing workouts, designed to be an energizing dip into creativity and held on 3 Sundays in September and one on the first of October, are led by professional writers in prose, poetry, scriptwriting, and devised theatre. Learn how to kickstart your first novel with Sarah Ridgard, join poet Julia Webb on the theme of family and childhood in poetry, devise theatre with Hannah Walker and transform a Suffragette text into a contemporary script with Belona Greenwood. Book up for all four or fix on one that sparks your imagination. 

The workshops take place in The Old Hospital Chapel, Fellowes Plain, Norwich, NR1 4DL all between 10 and 12 a.m (except for week 3 which will run between 9.45 – 12.15). The Chapel is on Wessex Street and has disabled access, loos and a café. 

Please see the dedicated blog page Writing Sundays for registration details and additional information. 

If a workshop doesn’t appeal then Words and Women are asking supporters to dip into their pockets and support their crowd-funding appeal. Click here for more info. 

We're seeking to raise £3,500 by the end of September 2017 by asking people to become supporters offering donations of £5 and £25.

In return for their generosity, £5 supporters will receive advance notice of events and competitions planned for 2018.  The supporter’s name will also appear on the sponsors’ page of a new 2018 publication, the Words & Women compendium.

Become a Super Supporter for £25 and receive all of the above and a free copy of the compendium which will be published on the 8th March, International Women’s Day. Their name will also be entered in a prize draw for a bumper selection of books by women writers, published in the UK.

Thursday, 13 July 2017

We need your help!

Words And Women is at a crucial stage in its development. It’s been in existence for 6 years and is gaining in reputation and profile and, as usual, we’re working hard to develop its activities to ensure its continued success. We have great plans for 2018: the Year of Publishing Women and the Centenary of Women’s Suffrage in the UK. But we need your help to realise these plans.

By becoming a Words And Women Supporter for £5 or a Super Supporter for £25  you can enable us to continue on our journey. Everybody who donates will receive a little something from us by way of a big thank you!

PLEASE HELP  BY DONATING TODAY! See our dedicated blog page for more details

And below is a list of our achievements so far. A reminder of the fabulous work we do.

Words & Women: Six years

Readings and International Women's Day Events

6th June 2017 - Launch of Words and Women: Four at La Raza, Cambridge, with Jill Dawson and DiDi
8th March 2017 – Going High, street performance, Norwich City Centre
7 – 11th March 2017 - City of Women, a week of words, book, print, art, voice, Nunns Yard Gallery and 13A Gallery, Norwich
26 - 28th October 2016 - Watton Library, Gorleston Library, Swaffham Library  - launch of Gull Stones & Cuckoos
21st April 2016 – The Library Restaurant, Norwich
8th March 2016 - International Women's Day, Norwich, 5th anniversary event, in aid of Women For Refugee Women, Norwich Arts Centre, Norwich

2nd June 2015 - Hot Numbers Cafe, Gwydir Street, Cambridge

8th March 2015 - International Women's Day, The Fusion Digital Gallery, The Forum, Norwich, Norwich - shortlisted for Best One-Off Event, Saboteur Awards

29th October 2014 - Meet the author Jane Harris, Forum, Norwich

10th October 2014 - New Gothic Fiction, Sound & Vision Festival, Norwich

3rd October 2014 - Prose competition launch, Book Hive, Norwich

24th September 2014 - Wymondham Words, Wymondham

3rd June 2014 - Hot Numbers Cafe, Gwydir Street, Cambridge

25th May 2014 - It's Your Festival, St Gregory's Green, Norwich

24th May 2014 - Art, Gardens & Words, the first Chelsea Fringe garden event for this region, Plantation Garden, Earlham Road, Norwich

8th March 2014 - International Women's Day, The Lounge, Norwich

15th October 2013 – Dos and Don’ts panel discussion with Trezza Azzopardi, Jean Hogg, Hayley Long and Sarah Poulton, Apple Tree Café, Norwich

8th March 2013 - International Women’s Day,  Fusion Digital Gallery, The Forum, Norwich – event included a girls’ reading and a drawing exhibition

8th March 2012 - International Women’s Day, The Norwich & Norfolk Millennium Library, The Forum, Norwich  & The Bicycle Shop, Norwich
8th March 2011 - International Women’s Day, The Norwich & Norfolk Millennium Library, The Forum, Norwich 

Anthologies, published in conjunction with Unthank Books

Words & Women: One, 2014
Words & Women: Two, 2015
Words & Women: Three, 2016
Gull Stones & Cuckoos, 2016
Words & Women: Four, 2017

Special Projects

Our annual prose competition has been running since 2013. In 2016 we received sponsorship from Hosking Houses Trust which meant we were able to offer a national prize for a woman writer over the age of 40 of £1000 and a month’s writing residency, in conjunction with our usual regional prize of £600. Gold Dust mentoring supported our regional prize by offering its winner a mentoring session with Jill Dawson the best-selling novelist.

Rural Writes, launched August 2016, a partnership between Norfolk Library and Information Service and Words and Women supported by Arts Council England. Women of all ages and backgrounds from Gorleston, Watton and Swaffham were invited to attend 10 weeks of life-writing sessions in their local libraries led by two professional writers, Belona Greenwood, co-organiser of Words and Women, and award-winning poet Heidi Williamson. The project was coordinated by Anna Brett of Create Projects. The writing resulted in the anthology Gull Stones & Cuckoos.

Arts Council supported project About was launched in August 2014. Women writers based in the East of England were invited to submit a proposal for a short text of 4,000 words or half-an-hour long exploring the life of one woman and her relationship to place. The award-winning scripts are published in our anthology Words And Women: Two . Extracts from the scripts were also performed at our IWD event on 8th March 2015 at The Fusion Digital Gallery, Norwich.

Young Writers’ Project, launched in May 2014 with the support of the Co-Op Community Fund. Meg Rosoff, award-winning author of the widely-acclaimed How I Live Now, Just In Case, The Bride’s Farewell and There is No Dog, spent a day with 50 girls at the Hewett School in Norwich. Rosoff delivered two masterclasses on voice. These masterclasses were followed in the autumn term by an ambitious series of workshops where students explored short fiction and poetry.

Space is a short film made by Words And Women in conjunction with Jean Hogg of Campbell Cloud Films. It was shown at The Lounge, St Benedicts Street, Norwich, at Words And Women's International Women's Day event, 8th March 2014. It was also shown on the Norfolk And Norwich Millennium Library screens and Norfolk On-line.


Shortlisted for Best Anthology 2014, Saboteur Awards
Shortlisted for Best One-Off Event 2015, Saboteur Awards
Shortlisted for the Women in Publishing New Venture Award 2015 & 2016