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Writing Workshop & Retreat (Researchers who were ‘1st generation students’)

UCL Writing Lab

Wednesday, 5 June 2019 from 10:00 to 16:00 (BST)

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General Admission Ended Free  

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Event Details

UCL Writing Lab hosts a writing day for UCL staff & PhD candidates, consisting of a workshop in the morning with poet Keith Jarrett on using creative writing to develop our academic prose, and then, after a lunch together, a writing retreat. The event aims to improve our academic writing skills through the insight and support of an accomplished poet, and to help each of us be productive and healthy in our writing practice and academic lives. This iteration of the day creates a space for researchers who were ‘first generation students’ to meet and work together.


10:00 – 12:15 Creative Writing & Academic Prose Writing Workshop with poet Keith Jarrett

12:15 – 13:15 Lunch (provided)

13:15 – 16:30 Writing Retreat, Facilitated by Dr. Kerry-Jo Reilly, Writing Lab Convenor


UCL Writing Lab is hosting this day, which is in two parts. In the morning, we are very lucky to have poet Keith Jarrett lead a workshop on Creative Writing and Academic Prose. We will apply creative writing theory and praxis to practice of academic writing, thinking about how writing is approached, how we might think of ourselves as writers, and how being creative within academic writing is beneficial. We will cover ideas such as clarity, specificity, structure, imagination and editing – all crucial to great academic writing – and the workshop will involve fun practical exercises.

Lunch will be provided. We will have the chance to meet each other as fellow scholars and writers, and share experiences / advice around being the first generation in our families to attend university, and navigating the environment (e.g. ‘the academic precariat’, costs, etc.)

The afternoon will be a writing retreat, facilitated by the Convenor of the Writing Lab, in which we will all work on our own writing. The aim of this part of the day is to help us keep positive about writing, minimise the loneliness of writing, and foster a community of writers to help each of us be productive and healthy in our writing practice and academic lives.

This is an event for UCL staff and PhD candidates, so please register with your UCL email address. 

Keith Jarrett

Keith Jarrett is a poet and fiction writer. He is currently a PhD scholar at Birkbeck, University of London, where he is completing his first novel, exploring the migration of religion from the Caribbean to London.

Keith is a former UK Poetry Slam Champion; he also won the International Slam Championship at FLUPP in Rio. His short stories have appeared in anthologies and magazines, including Attitude and Tell Tales IV, with influences ranging from Caribbean trickster figures to Latin American surrealism. He has written poetry in both English and Spanish.

His play, Safest Spot in Town, was performed at the Old Vic and on BBC Four in 2017 as part of the Queers series. His book of poetry, Selah, was published by Burning Eye Books.

Keith has set up poetry workshops for schools and taught Spanish at Primary level (KS2). He was one of six initial Spoken Word Educator trainees teaching at a secondary school in East London while researching Creative Education for an MA at Goldsmiths; the project was the first of its kind in Europe.


This activity is a Researcher-Led Initiative that has been funded by the UCL Research Staff Development Programme

Do you have questions about Writing Workshop & Retreat (Researchers who were ‘1st generation students’)? Contact UCL Writing Lab

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When & Where

Room 221
Bentham House
4-8 Endsleigh Gardens
WC1H 0EG London
United Kingdom

Wednesday, 5 June 2019 from 10:00 to 16:00 (BST)

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UCL Writing Lab

The UCL Writing Lab is a free service designed to enhance students' academic writing, critical thinking and research skills. Our tutorials and workshops are delivered by Writing Lab tutors who are experienced writers and researchers, with a diverse range of expertise, and are largely UCL doctoral students. 

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