Creative Writing and Screenwriting courses for beginners and improvers.
Into The Woods...
March 30th 2020
We live in uncertain, troubling times, but writing can be a wonderful antidote to anxiety and boredom.
In light of social-distancing I’ve devised some short, online creative writing courses to help occupy fraught minds and bridge a creative gap. I’ve kept course fees to a minimum to reflect all of our altered circumstances.
Each course will consist of two, hour-long, information, advice and feedback sessions. The sessions will be conducted via email and you’ll be able to share questions and (in week 2) your assignment outcomes.
WEEK ONE: TOPIC - resources, information, Q&A and task.
WEEK TWO : YOUR ASSIGNMENT FEEDBACK - shared with me, or the whole group - or not shared… It’s up to you. And a final topic-related writing prompt to keep you motivated.
All email addresses will remain data protected, but you can choose to share work online with the group (I’ll include first names only).
You can also opt to share your contact details with members of the group if you so wish.
The therapeutic benefits of writing are well-documented and some of the best works have been created in isolation. I’ll be publishing a different topic-related course every two-weeks.
The first course - on FLASH FICTION - starts on Thursday 2nd APRIL at 11am.
Whatever you decide, please keep writing until we’re out of the woods.
Stay well and safe
MINI COURSE - FLASH FICTION
2 X One-hour online-support sessions, plus resources, information Q&A and a Flash Fiction task to be shared in week two. Further information on booking page.
THURSDAY 2nd APRIL
& THURSDAY 9th APRIL
11am - 12 noon.
After attending both courses, I now feel I have a solid screenwriting foundation on which I am excited to build! The courses provide students with the essential tools required for screenwriting whilst also developing creative ideas. Margy is a fantastic tutor with a wonderful energy. She creates a collaborative space to workshop ideas and encourages everyone to learn from each other. She generously shares her knowledge, and her film/tv analysis sections are particularly informative.
I can’t thank Margy enough for running these courses as the experience has improved my confidence and been life changing. As a result of Margy’s continuous support and encouragement, I have applied to LJMU to take part in their MA Screenwriting programme.
In the words of Marvellous Margy “Do it, just do it!”
NINA THOMSON (Screenwriting For Improvers - February 2020)
I'm coming to the close of the 6 week beginners scriptwriting course and it has flown by. I had struggled to gain focus and clarity to get any sort of words on paper prior to this course so it's been a real delight to have two short, full drafts under my belt. This is thanks to Margy's benevolent energy and generosity and the varied group dynamic and feedback in class. Margy really roots for your own version of excellence, which encourages you to be confident and discerning with your creative choices. Thank you Margy and the rest of the group! Highly recommended.
ALICE ( Screenwriting For Beginners - February 2020)
A high standard from the start... Passionate, honest, direct, knowledgeable. Best two hours of the week...
DAVID OFOEGBU (Screenwriting For Beginners - February 2020)
It's a really engaging course and Margy is great teacher. I learnt the importance of visual storytelling, picked up lots of tips, and feel inspired to keep on writing. Would highly recommend to anybody who's got a passion for writing.
SAMANTHA ROBINSON (Screenwriting For Beginners - February 2020)
Brilliant course. No bullshit-approach. If you want to learn the basics of screenwriting, this is a must.
ANTHONY GERRARD (Screenwriting For Beginners - February 2020)
This course has unlocked ways of thinking that I thought I'd forgotten.
I've learned how to produce a professional-looking screenplay...
and how to criticise my own ideas, and iron out problems to produce a streamlined finished product.
JIM NORTH (Screenwriting For Beginners - February 2020)
Margy's knowledge and enthusiasm were excellent. I'd recommend attending her course..
ROB JONES (Screenwriting For Improvers - February 2020)
An enjoyable course with an engaging teacher.
SEAN CRAVEN (Screenwriting For Improvers - February 2020)
Very enjoyable course! Workshopping my screenplay idea and script pages in a group was very beneficial, as was Margy's expert feedback.
MARI JONES (Screenwriting For Improvers - February 2020)
I attended the taster session and learnt new skills in just one lesson. Margy’s passion is clear to see which makes for an informative yet fun lesson. I signed up for the full course straight afterwards!
SAMANTHA ROBINSON (Screenwriting For Beginners - Taster Session)
An excellent journey into screenwriting.
JODIE GWATKIN (Screenwriting For Beginners - November 2019)
Thoroughly enjoyed the course! Margy is an inspiring teacher, and I'll definitely continue screenwriting.
BETH THOMPSON (Screenwriting For Beginners - November 2019)
Margy’s energy and passion for screenwriting is infectious. The course content was fantastic… a brilliant and insightful introduction to screenwriting.
Informative, enjoyable and really helpful. An attentive tutor, always happy to give feedback and offer screenwriting tips.
Margy’s course has introduced me to a whole new way of thinking about writing, and how we learn so much through visual clues and suggestions.
Just returned fired up, enthusiastic and full of ideas for writing after attending Margy’s taster session at the Atkinson. Margy creates a relaxed and supportive atmosphere which inspires you to feel confident and comfortable and able to contribute.
Thoroughly enjoyed my Taster session into screenwriting today. Margy's passion for her art gave me a taste of learning new writing skills and her enthusiasm and charisma had me hooked wanting to learn more .
It seems remarkable what we covered in two hours. Margy provided the framework, gave the guidelines, showed the techniques and helped us analyse a short film before setting us free to unleash our creativity in a stimulating practical exercise. Thank you Margy for an excellent taster.'
I really enjoyed the taster session at the Atkinson. Margy’s enthusiasm and knowledge brought the world of screenwriting alive and inspired me to want to know more!
'I left the screenwriting taster session feeling energised and inspired, immediately booking myself a place on the course. After only one session with her, I could see that Margy's passion permeates her teaching. She created a fun, warm and welcoming atmosphere in which all writers felt free to express themselves and share their work.'
"I attended the screenwriting course run by Margy McShane in 2012. It was my first introduction to the art of screenwriting and I found it invaluable. Whilst on the course I was inspired to write a short film script "Part Vampire". The script was workshopped and chosen to be made into a short film. This gave me a great lift and inspired me to move forward with other projects. I have just completed a screenplay : "The Hoodie & the High Rip Gang". Since my time on Margy's course I have had plays performed at the Epstein Theatre. I would strongly recommend this course to any writer who is serious about learning the craft"
"Margy McShane is an excellent creative writing tutor. Her sessions are energetic and informative, participants will leave with a renewed passion and better direction through any writing project. When she delivered on our Write to Work programme she was able to engage the participants in interesting conversations around storytelling and character and worked with them to draft strong and intriguing ideas, many of which they developed independently. If you need to kick-start your writing project or are blocked with a draft, Margy will be able to reengage you with the passion and impart her expertise to enable you to tackle any kind of writing project.”
Project Manager & Creative Enterprise Officer - Writing On The Wall
Margy led an engaging and constructive session and we were bowled over by her energy, enthusiasm and professionalism throughout. She engaged with every person present, gently drawing out ideas and formulating story outlines as themes emerged from the exercises she gave us. We would be very happy to ask her to lead another session in the future.'
General Manager & Financial Controller -
The Somerville Foundation
I taught with Margy McShane for several years in Liverpool John Moores Creative Writing department and she is an excellent tutor, much loved by the students. Margy is an engaging teacher with a broad knowledge of ‘film language’ and screenwriting techniques. Students always find Margy’s sessions to be informative, imaginative and creative. It’s great to watch writers emerge from her sessions buzzing with ideas and new approaches to their scripts. If you’re interested in discovering where ideas come from and how you develop those ideas into compelling stories for the screen I can think of no better guide than Margy. Her understanding of the creative process and her insights into screenwriting craft are second to none!
TV, THEATRE & RADIO WRITER
COURSE LEADER LJMU
My Curriculum Vitae
Work And Qualifications
SESSIONAL TUTOR - CREATIVE WRITING & SCREENWRITING - LJMU
Teaching the following modules:
Observation and Discovery
Introduction To Screenwriting
SESSIONAL TUTOR - DRAMATIC SCRIPTWRITING - MMU
Teaching the following module:
TUTOR - SCREENWRITING & CREATIVE WRITING - W.E.A
Teaching Creative Writing in a variety of community based-learning venues.
Anthologies produced at SWAN Women's Centre
TUTOR - CREATIVE WRITING - WRITING ON THE WALL
Creative Writing Tutor - Write To Work project
Creative Writing Tutor - What's Your Story? project
MA (Distinction) Screenwriting - LJMU
Diploma for Teaching in the Lifelong-Learning Sector (DTLLS) - Liverpool Community College
TEACHING OBSERVATION GRADES ETC
W.E.A. - OTL A - 2012 (Observation of Teaching & Learning) - Grade OUTSTANDING
W.E.A. - OTLA -2013 - Grade OUTSTANDING
W.E.A. - OTLA - 2017 - Grade OUTSTANDING
W.E.A. - OTLA - 2018 - Grade OUTSTANDING
AMAZING TEACHER AWARD NOMINATION - LJMU (Introduction To Screenwriting) 2015
(Images courtesy of FACT)
Sessions will take place in a conference room at Liverpool's iconic FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology).
88 Wood St, Liverpool, L1 4DQ
Free WIFI and entry to all exhibitions held at FACT included.
Complimentary tea and coffee.
'We believe that by providing spaces for people, art and technology to meet we can nurture and develop innovative minds, inspire creativity, support emergent talent and transform people’s lives.'
'A place to eat, drink, meet and explore our art galleries, cinema, café and bar.
You will find us nestled within the heart of Ropewalks - Liverpool's independent quarter.'
Text courtesy of The Atkinson
THE ATKINSON (SOUTHPORT)
The Atkinson is Southport’s home for music, theatre, art, literature and history.
Located in the middle of the iconic Lord Street and just 3 minutes’ walk from Southport train station.
We offer an exciting and varied destination for families, cultural tourists and arts enthusiasts alike, with a full day and night time offer. Significant investment has been made in refurbishing our stunning 19th Century buildings to create a welcoming and accessible multi art-form venue with a strong contemporary feel.
Our traditional Theatre and dynamic Studio space present an outstanding programme of music, comedy and performing arts from some of the UK’s foremost musicians, actors, performers and companies.
The Atkinson is also home to an impressive collection holding over 3,500 artworks and over 25,000 pieces of social history, which are displayed on rotation across our museum and galleries.
To be a regional centre for excellence and enjoyment of arts, culture and heritage, where residents, visitors and communities can be entertained, develop inspiration, learning and wellbeing.