Detail of a painting by Augustus Egg

"Words are a lens to focus one's mind." Ayn Rand

At a glance:

  • Evening Class
  • Mondays 12:00 (noon) - 14:00
  • 10 weeks: October to December (starts Monday 7 October)
  • 2 hours taught time per week
  • Tutor: Dr Claire Griffiths
  • Fees from £105 to £200
  • Location: West Norwood Picturehouse and Library, 1 Norwood High St, West Norwood (London), SE27 9JX
  • NB: Although taught in the daytime, this course is designated an evening class in terms of contact hours and fees. Via below booking link please ensure you click on "Evening 10 weeks" to register for the correct course.
Booking Link - although this is a daytime class, please select "Evening 10 weeks" when booking.

This class is not taught at Imperial College. The teaching sessions will take place at the West Norwood Picturehouse and Library, 1 Norwood High Street, West Norwood, London SE27 9JX. 

On this course we will explore how stories can be told in original and creative ways through writing. Led by novelist and short story writer Claire Griffiths, we will think about different types of writing and different audiences, and look for the best way to decide how our own stories and experiences can be translated from our thoughts and feelings into appropriate words.

The course assumes we all have a story to tell (and hopefully several stories) even if we are unaware what of what those stories might be or what form they will take. At the start of the course we will be introduced to exercises to encourage our sense of creativity, and begin to look at how we can begin to write and share our writing with others.

The class is timed so you can enjoy the company of other creative writing students and engage in writing activies before collecting children from school, or other daytime or evening tasks, and by the end of the course you will have:

  •    looked at a variety of writing styles and use some of them to explore your ideas;
  •    written original creative pieces and shared them with the the other students;
  •    benefitted from constructive and supportive feedback on your work;
  •    developed a plan for further development of your creative written work.

The class is friendly, informal and supportive, and Claire will work to ensure there is a strong sense of community within the writing group.

You do not need to have any previous experience of creative writing, or any academic qualifications, and you do not need to think of yourself as someone who is a 'writer' or 'creative'. This course is open to all.

Course Information

Course Programme

The course programme will start with an introduction to creative writing and an exploration of the indiidual interests of each of the participants.

Following on from this the programme will be tailored to the individual needs of each student, and the group dynamics.

The weekly sessions will be supported by reading material which draws from a diverse community of writers. Information regarding how to get published, poetry magazines, competitions, venues, websites, small presses and literary development agencies will be distributed if and when they arise.

You are advised to bring your own pen and paper or laptop to the workshops.

Additional Reading

There is no requirement to undertake specific reading for this course, but your tutor might recommend you look at specific texts during the course.

Your Tutor

Photograph of Claire GriffithsDr Claire Griffiths is a writer of short stories and novels, and an enthusiasic and highly knowledgable tutor of creative writing. She has taught creative writing at the University of East Anglia, University of Creative Arts and the University of Westminster.

After graduating with a First for her BA Hons degree in American Literature with Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia in 2007, Claire was selected for the institution’s renowned Creative Writing: Prose MA programme, for which she received a Distinction. This was followed by a scholarship-funded PhD in Creative and Critical Writing, completed in early 2015.

As a writer of literary fiction, Claire has had short stories published in several major publications, and has been shortlisted for and won awards including the Bristol Short Story Prize. Her work has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and her new novel The Lagermuseum is currently in preparation for publication.

Course Fees and Rate Categories

HoursWeeksInternal rateAssociate rateStandard rate
20  10  £115    (Early Bird rate: £105*) £155    (Early Bird rate: £140*)
£200    (Early Bird rate: £180*) 
* Early Bird fee rate is valid for enrolments made via the website between 1 August and 30 September only   |   All fee rates quoted are for the whole course.
Term dates 1

 Internal rate

  • Applies to current Imperial College students and staff (incl. Imperial NHS Trust, Imperial Innovations, ancillary & service staff employed on long-term contracts at Imperial College by third-party contractors).
  • Current Centre for Languages, Culture and Communication (CLCC) staff, current CLCC PhD students, Science Communication (Sci Comm) postgraduate students, and students enrolled on an Imperial College 'Language for Science' degree programme should email evening before completing the online enrolment form.

Associate rate

  • Students (non-Imperial College)
  • Alumni of Imperial College and predecessor colleges and institutes
  • City & Guilds College Association members
  • Members of Friends of Imperial College 
  • Friends of the South London Botanical Institute
  • Members of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP)
  • Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Council staff
  • Harrods staff
  • Historic Royal Palaces staff
  • Natural History Museum staff
  • Science Museum staff
  • Victoria and Albert Museum staff
  • Royal Geographical Society staff
  • Royal College of Art and Royal College of Music tutors and other staff
  • Santander Bank staff (Imperial College Walkway branch only)
  • Austrian Cultural Forum staff
  • Staff of Exhibition Road Cultural Group (Discover South Kensington) organisations
  • Lycee Charles de Gaulle staff
  • Tutors and other staff of other universities and higher education institutions
  • Tutors and other staff of institution members of the Association of Colleges
  • Residents of postcodes SW3, SW5, SW7, SW10 and W8

Standard rate

  • Applicable to all who do not qualify for any of the above rates (Internal or Associate Rate).

Late enrolment

It is possible to enrol on many CLCC Evening Class and Lunchtime Learning programmes after the course has started, subject entirely to agreement by the tutor delivering the course. If you want to join a course late do bear in mind there might be work you will need to catch up on, particularly in language courses.

Applicable terms & conditions

Please read the Evening Classes & Lunchtime Learning terms and conditions [pdf] before enrolling on any course.

Term Dates

HoursWeeksAutumn termSpring termSummer term
 20  10 7 Oct - 12 Dec 2019 (10 weeks) n/a n/a

Enrolment Process

Web enrolment starts 1 August

Enrolment & payment are through the Imperial College eStore. Please use above booking link noting below instructions:

  • Our rate categories are explained on this page and your applicable category must be selected on the eStore
  • First-time eStore users please create an account by entering an email address and password. These credentials should also be used for future bookings. Imperial College users please note the eStore is not a single-signon College system
  • The booking process involves entering payment details before your course choice and applicant details are queried on an in-built questionnnaire which completes the process
  • The following email notifications will be sent
What is sentWhen is it sentWhat does it contain
1. Payment confirmation Instantaneously following submission of your online application
  • Confirms your payment, date of payment and order number
  • Should not be treated as a course-enrolment receipt and therefore does not show your course however these details are sent to us via the system
2. Enrolment confirmation Sent in due course but likely not before the end of September. Please treat your payment confirmation as confirmation that your applicant details and payment have been received
  • Confirms your course choice
  • Shows the programme your course is part of as well as the term dates
  • Confirms your course' day of the week & time
3. Programme information Usually sent Friday late afternoon the week before term starts
  • Contains further course details incl. classroom location and teacher contact information
  • Provides further general programme details
If you need further help with the above information please ring 020 7594 8756

Certificate of Attendance

Although no credits are offered for this very part-time course, an attendance certificate is presented to students who attend at least 80% (8) of the taught classroom sessions. Eligible students receive their certificate by email after the end of the course.

Any Questions?

Questions regarding the content and teaching of the above course should be addressed to the Manager for Evening Classes, Dr Michael Paraskos, at

If you have enjoyed this course, why not look at other arts and humanities evening class courses at Imperial College. This includes courses on the history of western art from ancient Greece to the nineteenth century, Understanding Modern and Design, the history of film and cinema and Greek and Roman mythology in art. We also run practical courses in art and photography and creative writing classes, and a growing programme of science based evening classes.

Other West Norwood Adult Education Classes