School of English
   
   
  

Creative staff


Our creative writing and drama staff are all experts in their field. You’ll find published authors, poets, and playwrights wanting to share their experiences, critique your work, and encourage you to develop your own voice.

We set them all the challenge of summing up their approach to teaching and learning in 100 words or less. See what they came up with below!

Creative staff

Supporting and inspiring
your creativity

 
 

Chris Collins

Assistant Professor in Drama

I strive to create an environment where we can all express our thoughts
 
ChrisCollins
 
My 100 words...

As an enthusiastic teacher I enjoy making concepts understandable and relatable to everyday life.

Right at the heart of both my teaching and research is the importance of free-thinking and exchange.

I strive to create an environment where we can all express our thoughts about drama, theatre and performance; be that through seminar discussion or practical exploration in a workshop.

 
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Sarah Grandage

Lecturer in Drama, Performance and Language

I believe students learn differently by ‘doing’, not just reading!
 
SarahGrandage
 
My 100 words...

My approach to teaching drama, especially Shakespeare, is to explore it collaboratively ‘on its feet’. I believe students learn differently by ‘doing’, not just reading! It’s great to watch students start to understand the difference between what a play text means and how it means.

So, I encourage them to consider how meaning lies not just in the printed words of the script, but in the interplay of the words with actors’ bodies and voices, scenography and soundscapes, spaces and places of performance, and the influence of the socio-political context in which a play is created and received.

 
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Spencer Jordan

Assistant Professor in Creative Writing

It’s important that students are confident critiquing their creative work
 
Spencer Jordan
 
My 100 words...

For me, the key to teaching creative writing is a small workshop where the focus is very much the student work, whether it’s a script, poetry or prose.

It’s important that students are confident critiquing their creative work, as well as each others. This means establishing a sense of trust and professionalism across the workshop.

If I can achieve this, the sky’s the limit in terms of how the students can develop and improve as writers.

 
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Peter Kirwan

Associate Professor in Early Modern Drama

I create the space for students to find their own voice
 
Peter Kirwan
 
My 100 words...

Every person who sees a play brings fresh eyes and a unique perspective to it. Theatre is infinitely changeable – every performance is different to the one before; every audience responds uniquely. My teaching aims to build each student’s confidence in their own responses to a text, helping them find the tools and language to express their own discoveries.

A classroom, like a rehearsal room, establishes collective trust so that talented individuals can take risks, experiment and collectively learn more about a text than they could alone. In my teaching, I create the space for students to find their own voice.

 
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Thomas Legendre

Lecturer in Creative Writing 

I enjoy drawing from work in other disciplines
 
Dr Thomas Legendre
 
My 100 words...

In my teaching I am interested in helping students to produce fiction of all shapes and sizes. In particular I enjoy exploring the subtle but crucial use of narrative voice and distance in relation to point-of-view, the self-generated structures of narrative, and the unexpected renderings of character dialogue, setting, and plot that lead to engaging stories and novels.

As a writer of fiction and drama I enjoy drawing from work in other disciplines, exploring the subjective underpinnings of apparently objective material.

 
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Lila Matsumoto

Assistant Professor in Creative Writing

I am committed to connecting the practice and study of creative writing to wider research culture
 
LilaMatsumoto
 
My 100 words...

I am committed to connecting the practice and study of creative writing to wider research culture, in particular through small press publishing and organisation of literary events.

I am on the steering committee of the poetry festival Outside-In/Inside-Out which takes place in Glasgow from October-November, and am the organiser of the Women Translate symposium taking place in Edinburgh in November 2016. My publications include the collections Soft Troika (If a Leaf Falls Press, 2016) and Allegories from my Kitchen (Sad Press, 2015).

 
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Jon McGregor

Professor of Creative Writing 

I aim to strip away some of the mystique which accrues around the publishing process
 
Jon McGregor
 
My 100 words...
My work in the School draws extensively on my ongoing professional experience as a fiction writer. I aim to strip away some of the mystique which accrues around the publishing process, but also to encourage students to complicate and diversify their thinking about writing and publication, and about their roles within literary communities.
 
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Jim Moran

Professor of English Literature and Drama 

I find it a genuine pleasure to explore literature and drama with a diverse range of students
 
jamesmoran
 
My 100 words...

I first developed a serious interest in drama as an undergraduate student, when I ran a small theatre troupe and had a brief but glorious acting career, the highlights of which included being cross-dressed for a role in The Taming of the Shrew, and being cast as a non-speaking corpse in Richard III.

Today, I find it a genuine pleasure to explore literature and drama with a diverse range of students both inside and outside the university.

 
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Gordon Ramsay

Lecturer in Drama and Performance 

I try to encourage lots of playfulness, experimentation and draft work
 
Gordon-Ramsay
 
My 100 words...

I try to encourage lots of playfulness, experimentation and draft work – from quick writing exercises where you can catch yourself out to the opposite – the reworking and crafting that is so important to the writing process. 

Being able to reflect on the work of peers, to ask pertinent questions and to make helpful and constructive questions in a supportive and encouraging environment can only be a good thing for the writer in developing a similar level of criticality and analysis with their own work.

 
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Jo Robinson

Associate Professor in Drama and Performance 

My interests are theatre history and contemporary theatre practices, theatre audiences, and place, space and memory
 
joannarobinson
 
My 100 words...

My interests in theatre history and contemporary theatre practices, theatre audiences, and place, space and memory are reflected in my lectures and seminars on nineteenth and twentieth/twenty-first century theatre and performance.

I think my favourite moment is in first year modules when students get to try out different arrangements of space and audience in workshops and realise that the impact of humour and understanding can be directly affected by such relationships.

 
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Lucie Sutherland

Assistant Professor in Drama 

Collaboration with both colleagues and students informs and propels much of the work I do
 
Lucie Sutherland
 
My 100 words...

As a teacher, I am really motivated by working in a School of English where the practice, history and theory of performance are all explored through a range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses, inspired by a rich variety of research work.

Collaboration with both colleagues and students informs and propels much of the work I do, and that focus on collaboration is, for me, one of the very best things about working at Nottingham.

 
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Matt Welton

Assistant Professor in Creative Writing 

I see my students as fellow writers
 
MatthewWelton
 
My 100 words...

I am a practising writer, and have published two collections of poems with Carcanet Press and a pamphlet with EggBox. My teaching is designed to support students in developing their control of poetic conventions and techniques.

I see my students as fellow writers and, although I have more experience in writing and publishing, I believe the challenges which they face are the same as those which confront me: we are all trying to create work which is meaningful to us and, we hope, to other people; and we are all trying to get better at what we do.

 
 

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The University of Nottingham
University Park, Nottingham NG7 2RD

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fax: +44 (0) 115 951 5924
email: english-enquiries@nottingham.ac.uk

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