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High-profile author to reveal secrets of turning life into writing

6 — 10 July 2009

Sophie Parkin, one of the UK’s most entertaining writers, is to lead a summer school at University College Falmouth that aims to help people turn their life experience into published writing.

Sophie Parkin, one of the UK's most entertaining writers, is to lead a summer school at University College Falmouth that aims to help people turn their life experience into published writing.

The Turn Your Life Into A Book Summer School, from Monday 6 to Friday 10 July, will focus on using material from your own experience to write in both non-fictional and fictional forms. Areas covered will include beginnings, finding your voice and shaping your material for publication. Places on the summer school are being snapped up fast, but there are still a few remaining.

Sophie herself has drawn extensively on her own colourful life story for novels including Dear Goddess and the Life and Loves of Lily series, as well as for memoir pieces published in Virago's Sons and Mothers and Mothers by Daughters. She has also written for numerous magazines and newspapers, broadcast on national radio and TV and appeared at many literary festivals.

"The summer school should be a lot of fun - for me as well as the participants," Sophie says. "It's always incredibly rewarding to help people discover how they can turn the raw material of their lives into art, or at least into something that they'll enjoy writing and others will enjoy reading. I'm really looking forward to the week in Falmouth - I grew up in Cornwall, and it's always a wonderful part of the world to come back to."

In the same week, the Introduction to Professional Writing Summer School will offer opportunities for budding writers to stretch their abilities and find out how to turn their talents into paid, published work. Building on last year's success, the five-day course will be taught entirely by successful practising writers and will cover areas ranging from telling compelling stories and creating convincing fictional characters to copywriting for business and pitching ideas for feature articles and non-fiction books.

Tutors running one-day workshops for the Professional Writing Summer School include the award-winning novelist, Tim Pears; freelance writer and editor, Susannah Marriott, who has published more than 20 books on subjects ranging from complementary medicine to folklore; Jane Pugh, a scriptwriter who has worked on television series including Peak Practice and Ballykissangel; Oliver Bennett, a prolific features journalist and travel writer; and the leading copywriter, Piers Alder, who has written for many major UK and international brands.

Both summer schools will be taught at University College Falmouth's attractive Woodlane Campus in central Falmouth from Monday 6 to Friday 10 July. Places on each are limited and cost £380 (not including accommodation).

For more details and to book a place on the course, please visit http://www.falmouth.ac.uk/summerschool or call Heidi James on 01326 370476.

For further information about MA(Hons) Professional Writing at University College Falmouth, visit www.falmouth.ac.uk/professionalwriting, email admissions@falmouth.ac.uk or telephone Admissions on 01326 214374.

University College Falmouth is the only independent Higher Education institution in Cornwall with the powers to award degrees in its own name. It has two campuses in Cornwall - at Woodlane in Falmouth and Tremough in Penryn (which it owns, and jointly manages with the University of Exeter) - and a third campus at Totnes in Devon, following its merger with Dartington College of Arts in 2008.

This merger created a new institution focusing on the expansion of Falmouth's expertise in Art, Design and Media and Dartington's expertise in Choreography, Music, Theatre, Art and Writing. The Devon-based courses will relocate to a new, high-specification Performance Centre at Tremough in 2010, paving the way for a new specialist Arts University in Cornwall by 2012, that will be unique to the South West.

The College is a founding partner in the Combined Universities in Cornwall (CUC), a unique initiative to promote regional economic regeneration through Higher Education, funded mainly by the European Union, the South West Regional Development Agency, and the Higher Education Funding Council for England, with support from Cornwall County Council.