Making Old Bones Live: Researching and Writing Historical Fiction - SOLD OUT

Making Old Bones Live: Researching and Writing Historical Fiction - SOLD OUT

Please note this event is now sold out.


When writing historical fiction, researching the relevant period can be absorbing, but it can also threaten to overwhelm the project. The demand for authenticity can so easily override the delight and energy of the story. We find the bones of the past, but how do we bring them to life in our story? This masterclass will explore ways of using the results of research most effectively and creatively in writing historical fiction. Through discussion, participants will be given some tools for organising their research; ways of discerning historical mindset, and ways of negotiating the accuracy / storytelling dilemma. Above all, through writing practice, participants will be encouraged to bring life and energy to character and narrative. Bring a notebook, pen, questions and ideas.

Robyn Cadwallader lives among birdlife and vineyards in the country outside Canberra, Australia. She has published a poetry collection, i painted unafraid (Wakefield, 2010) and a non-fiction book about virginity and female agency in the Middle Ages. In response to the government’s punitive treatment of asylum seekers, she edited a collection of essays on asylum seeker policy, We Are Better Than This (ATF, 2015). Her two historical fiction novels - The Anchoress (HarperCollins, 2015) and Book of Colours (HarperCollins, 2018) - were published to critical acclaim. Robyn is the reviews editor for the online literary journal, Verity La. 

Tickets are priced at £35 which includes lunch and tea / coffee.

This event is now sold out. To join the waiting list please call Reception on 01244 532350 or email

Please note that tickets for this event are e-tickets. Book online and have your ticket emailed directly to you – then save the environment by bringing along your e-ticket on your phone or tablet and have it scanned as you enter the event. If you would prefer to print your ticket, black and white is fine.

A print and collect service is available to those without access to email facilities for a small charge to cover our admin costs. Call 01244 532350 or email for more information. Printed tickets will be available to collect from Reception before the event.