Young Writers Festival at the University of Cambridge

Young Writers Festival at the University of Cambridge

As part of the First Story scheme, our students recently took a trip to the University of Cambridge for the Young Writers Festival. 

First Story is a year-long creative writing course. We have a writer in residence who guides our students through various writing tasks culminating in an anthology at the end of the year. 

The event was hosted by the poet Khadijah Ibrahim, who introduced a publisher, Habiba Desai and a lecturer, Dr. Phil Knox. Each speaker talked about the importance of writing.

The author Patrice Lawrence is the First Story ambassador, she is a multi-award-winning young adult author. Three schools were asked to chair a question and answer session with Patrice, we were lucky enough to be one of those schools.

Ash chaired the session. Our questions focussed on Patrice’s novels that feature characters from broken homes, blended families and their links to social services. Ash also asked Patrice to talk about the music in her novels – and even gave Patrice an idea for a future story.

Our students attended two writing workshops, one with the poet, Dan Simpson and one with the writer Xanthe Barker.

There was the opportunity to buy books, not only novels by Patrice Lawrence and Angie Thomas and a host of poetry books.

Patrice took the time to sign everyone’s books. She was really friendly and we all had lots of questions. 

We had a tour of Newnham College, including their fantastic library.

This is the magnificent dining hall. It’s used for special occasions, and all the students have to wear their graduation gowns for dinner.

The Cambridge students also gave us a tour of the grounds, the buildings are the college halls of residence. 

We finished the day by hearing everyone’s creations from earlier in the writing workshops. 

We had a brilliant day, First Story gives you many fantastic opportunities as well as making a point of difference on your C.V.

You can read more about the Young Writers Festival over on First Story’s website: