Helen Shipman

Director and tutor

Helen has been teaching writing for more than 25 years. She’s written and delivered courses from evening classes for recreational writers to masters degrees in universities.

She has also been devising and teaching online writing courses since the internet was invented — well, almost.

Her graduates are international prizewinners and have published adult, young adult (YA), children’s fiction and non-fiction, and have had screenplays produced. They cite her down-to-earth approach and clear instruction as key to their progress.

A fiction writer herself, Helen was finalist in the Independent on Sunday short story competition in 2005 and her novel A Place of Drowning is with her agent. She is currently working on her second novel The Engraver, a contemporary thriller about a child’s murder.

Students taught

Years experience teaching writing

External examiner

On BA creative writing courses


Avoid over-elaborate metaphors in your writing. If your reader has to wrestle to find the meaning, something isn’t working. Sometimes, the simplest description works best.