Writing Lives: Mastering Memoirs, Autobiographies and Biographies (weekdays) - Nottingham Trent University



Do you want to write a memoir, autobiography, or a biography, but don’t know where to start? Embark on a journey to unravel the intricate strands of your life story or bring the story of your family history to light through the power of the written word and acquire practical techniques to craft a compelling and captivating personal narrative for a manuscript. Whether you’re an experienced writer or a complete beginner, this course is your gateway to chronicle yours or another’s life into a written manuscript. This course will equip you with indispensable tools and the expert guidance you need to start writing a life story, enabling you to join up the dots and chronicle stories for future generations to read and savour. Along the way you’ll experience the great joys of telling your story, as you delve into your own experiences and unleash the power of memories and records onto the pages of your manuscript. Immerse yourself in a series of hands-on creative writing exercises that will introduce and reinforce elements of the life writing principles and engage in constructive feedback on your writing from your tutor and your peers, designed to help you to refine your work and empower you to embrace your abilities as a life writer. During this course, you will: • identify pivotal themes, impactful moments and significant events in your life to weave in your writing • develop and cultivate an authentic voice and distinctive style that reflects your personality and experiences • use vivid sensory details and evocative imagery to breathe life into your memories or family records • navigate the ethical challenges of writing about real people and events • structure your narrative in a way that engages readers and creates a satisfying arc. Above all, this course is designed to help you relish in the sheer pleasure of writing and the profound satisfaction of sharing your finished book with others. You’ll leave with an understanding of the genre of life writing and will have already started writing your story by the end of the course – as well as being well on your way to completing it – with a collection of drafts and exercises to continue working on your writing after the course. Life stories deserves to be remembered, and this course is your launchpad to making that happen. Tutor profile: Christopher Lomas has been working as a life story writer for the last ten years, first as an in-house editor and ghostwriter for Trigger Books helping first-time authors tell their mental health survival stories, and is currently a freelance ghost writer, and a Story Terrace writer. He’s ghostwritten and edited around 40 books and been published by Routledge, Big White Shed, Sharpe, and Greenleaf Books. He’s written for clients who wanted to tell their life story including TV sports presenter, Ali Douglas, and ex-Blue Peter and Sky Sports presenter, Simon Thomas, which the Daily Mail called their most moving book of the year in 2018. But Christopher’s path into writing started in the drains… Fresh from university he entered the exotic world of drainage and wastewater as features editor for the internationally subscribed, and Have I Got News For You guest publication, Drain Trader Magazine! After Christopher cleaned himself up, he went into freelance writing, and speechwriting. As the speeches got longer and longer, he realised he was essentially writing and editing clients’ books for them, and made the transition into a life story writer.

What's included in the price?

You will be studying creative writing in a UNESCO City of Literature, and be based in the School of Arts and Humanities on the City Campus. You will find modern teaching spaces and quiet study environments to develop your ideas and writing. You will receive an email one week before the course starts with joining instructions on where to go for the first day. You’ll also have access to our library to use outside of your short course; whilst you can’t reserve or take away books, you are welcome to use them as a resource for research and referencing. During the sessions you’ll be taught the basics of structuring your story, with tasks and activities to complete with support from the tutor. This course will be delivered in person on Nottingham Trent University city campus. You will receive 25 contact hours of quality tuition with an experienced tutor. On successful completion of the course you will receive a certificate of attendance.


5 days

Cancellation policy

Medium - Cancellation and a full refund can be obtained up to 4 weeks before the course starts


Suitable for

  • Adults
  • Seniors
  • Wheelchair users
  • Vision impaired
  • Limited mobility
  • Intermediate level
  • Public transport
  • Suitable for beginners
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Nottingham Trent University, City Campus, Nottingham, 50 Shakespeare Street, NG1 4FQ