Writing the city

A creative writing workshop on urban landscapes and the literary flâneur/flâneuse

Applications are now closed for summer 2022

Any questions please contact: internationalsummerschools@glasgow.ac.uk

A practical, one-week creative writing course that enables you to develop your own original literary work in response to the urban environment. We contextualise the writer in the city by examining such concepts as the literary flâneuse as urban explorer and the poetics of place, as well as exploring some of the narratives of the built environment and the ways in which the wild takes root in the city. It is a chance to learn about the wider context of urban and experimental writing through seminars, workshops and the production of literary non-fiction, fiction, poetry or hybrid work.

Glasgow is a vibrant creative city with a thriving artistic scene that embraces numerous forms and disciplines – especially writing. It is also a city with incredible built heritage, including medieval houses from the 15th century, an atmospheric Victorian necropolis, enough parks to earn it the literary nickname ‘the dear green place’, hidden murals by Alasdair Gray, and the stunning Gothic university at which this course is based. The Creative Writing programme at University of Glasgow is the oldest and most prestigious in Scotland, with a strong ethos of encouraging a supportive community of writers and an openness to form and genre.

What will you learn?

Key themes/topics to be covered:

  • Creative writing in non-fiction, experimental and hybrid genres
  • Close reading of short texts/extracts from relevant works
  • Urban fiction
  • The flâneur and flâneuse; cities and gender
  • The poetics of place
  • Experimental writing 
  • Writers and the city

On completion of this you will be able to:

  • Describe and analyse the role of place in informing literature relating to the urban environment
  • Evidence skills in the composition of original creative work
  • Critique samples of creative work through close reading and discussion

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

  • GPA of 3.0 (or equivalent)
  • you should be currently enrolled at an international higher education institution.

If your first language is not English, you must meet our minimum proficiency level:

  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module overall score of 6.0, no subtest less than 5.5
  • we also accept equivalent scores in other recognised qualifications such as ibTOEFL, CAE, CPE and more.

This is a guide, for further information email internationalsummerschools@glasgow.ac.uk

Teaching pattern and assessment

Teaching pattern

Over one teaching week:

  • 5 x 1 hr seminar
  • 5 x 2 hr workshop
  • 1 x 0.5hr tutorial.


The assessment consists of one of more pieces of creative work (3000 words or equivalent for poetry or hybrid forms) plus critical commentary of 300 words

Formative assessment and feedback:

Extensive tutor feedback and peer critique will be given on at least one piece of work in progress in workshop classes. Each student has a dedicated 30 minute tutorial at which to discuss portfolio submission.

Course and accommodation costs

Course costs: £650.00

Cost includes:

  • Tuition
  • Transcript
  • Orientation and welcome events
  • Scottish cultural immersion programme
  • Trips around Scotland
  • Social events
  • Scottish ceilidh.

* Students from a partner university receive a 10% discount on tuition costs

Accommodation cost: £206.60

The cost of accommodation is additional to your course fee and is shown as a separate charge on your student account.