2020 applicants

Creative writing

Creative writing at Essex focuses on the theory and practice of becoming a writer.

Creative writing

You're a born creator.

You're a dreamer. And you're inspired by the world around you. To write well is to read widely and listen closely – you’re good at that. It makes you a better storyteller. You wake up in the night to note your ideas, characters and plot lines. You like to experiment and tweak. But you’re not sure it’s ever quite finished. There’s always room for more.

Our courses

We offer BA Creative Writing as a single honours. If joint honours are more your thing check out  BA Film and Creative Writing and BA Literature and Creative Writing.

Why study here?
  • We have been the home of great writers, including Robert Lowell, Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott and Booker Prize winner Ben Okri.
  • You will be taught by practising writers with real experience.
  • We encourage both artistic expression and critical discernment in our unique literary conservatoire.

What our graduates say

"I definitely enjoyed film production and film theory modules. But I feel like third year was the year where I got to delve into the areas which particularly intrigued me: independent film production, analysing the human psyche, learning about the development of mental illness, propaganda in the 1900s and now, and sci-fi writing. Quite the combination, yes. I think the freedom to work independently on topics or stories that I'd created, with professional supervision is something incredible and something that I will never take for granted."
Egle Evergreen Radziute BA Film and Creative writing, 2018

Read more from our graduates and find out about career prospects and opportunities while you study. 

Man writing in a notebook
Competition launched for creative writers

We've jointly launched a new international short story competition alongside literary journal Short Fiction. The competition gives budding writers the chance to see their work published, with first place also winning £500 and second place winning £250.

Read more about the competition

Nurture your creativity

Published writers help you progress your writing and understanding of your chosen form, including poetry, literary and genre fiction, creative non-fiction, playwriting and performance art.

Our staff are academics and practitioners, with a lot of experience in the creative industries. We offer MA Creative Writing, MA Wild Writing and MA Scriptwriting.

Why study here?
  • Explore connections with other art forms alongside world-renowned scholars and writers.
  • We have been the home of great writers, including Robert Lowell, Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott and Booker Prize winner Ben Okri.
  • We encourage both artistic expression and critical discernment in our unique literary conservatoire. 
Creel 3 cover art
Showcasing the best postgraduate writing

Take the opportunity to feature your writing in Creel, the annual anthology of creative writing produced by current postgraduate students in our department.


Interdisciplinary research is at our core  

Whether your project involves poetry, fiction, theatre, screenwriting, or another form such as psychogeography, you will benefit from expert supervision by experienced writing practitioners in our Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies.

Expertise and supervision

Our interdisciplinary natures means you can gain expertise from film-makers, American Literature experts, professional theatre practitioners and more. Our active and interdisciplinary research community that will challenge you intellectually and artistically.

To find out more about us read our biographies and then use our research finder to find a supervisor.

Why study here?
  • We regularly invite writers to give talks, readings and masterclasses to our students as part of our Writers at Essex series.
  • We run weekly research seminars with speakers from around the world and host major conferences and symposia.
  • Our research students also organise and present at our annual PhD conference.
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