Course Structure

Two writers in the workshop room at The Hurst

What happens on an Arvon course? You’ll live at one of our writers’ houses with group of up to 15 other writers, and working with two tutors.

Arvon courses have a comfortable, friendly and informal atmosphere. The structure of each course type differs slightly, you can find out more about that below.

Want more information on course structure? Take a look at our FAQs for information on choosing a course that’s right for you, or contact us to ask any questions you have.

5-Day Course Structure

Monday: Arrive in the afternoon, settle in,  enjoy dinner and the tutors’ introduction to the week.

Tuesday: Each morning the tutors lead workshops to help you explore writing ideas, forms and techniques. Afternoons are your time for writing and one-to-one tutorials. You will have two 20 minute tutorials during the week (one with each tutor), to consider your writing in depth. Tutors read from their work in the evening.

Wednesday: Morning workshops led by tutors. Afternoons are your time for writing and one-to-one tutorials. In the evening the guest speaker joins the group for an evening reading or talk, with questions and answers afterwards.

Thursday: Morning workshops led by tutors. Afternoons are your time for writing and one-to-one tutorials. You are free to spend this evening as you wish.

Friday: Tutors lead the final workshops in the morning. In the evening everyone gets together to share and celebrate their work.

Saturday: The week comes to a close after breakfast. Have a tissue handy to say your farewells to the group.

Note: One evening during the week you will help cook the evening meal, as part of a team. You’ll also help with some washing up during the week.

5-Day Tutored Retreat Structure

Monday: Arrive in the afternoon, settle in, enjoy dinner and the tutors’ introduction to the week in the evening.

Tuesday: From Tuesday to Friday the focus will be on individual work and one to one time with the tutors. We guarantee an hour with both tutors spread over the four days. On Tuesday evening the tutors will give readings from, or talks about their work followed by Q&A.

Wednesday: From Tuesday to Friday the focus will be on individual work and one to one time with the tutors. On Wednesday evening the guest speaker will join you for a reading and Q&A.

Thursday: From Tuesday to Friday in the mornings and afternoons, the focus will be on individual work and one to one time with the tutors. This evening is free to spend as you wish.

Friday: From Tuesday to Friday the focus will be on individual work and one to one time with the tutors. On Friday there will be the customary sharing of work produced – or honed – during the rest of the week.

Saturday: The week comes to a close after breakfast.

Note: One evening during the week you will help cook the evening meal, as part of a team. You’ll also help with some washing up during the week.

4-Day Short Course Structure

Monday: Arrive at lunchtime; afternoon workshop; after dinner the tutors read from their own work.

Tuesday: Morning workshop; one to one tutorials and time to write in the afternoon; after dinner evening workshop or group session.

Wednesday: Morning workshop; one to one tutorials and time to write in the afternoon; after dinner group celebratory readings.

Thursday: Depart after breakfast together.

Note: Unlike our 5-day courses, there are no cooking responsibilities during short courses.

3-Day Short Course Structure

Friday: Arrive at lunchtime; afternoon workshop; after dinner the tutors read from their own work.

Saturday: Morning workshop; one to one tutorials and time to write in the afternoon; after dinner evening workshop or group session.

Sunday: One to one tutorials and time to write in the morning; lunch and celebratory readings. Departures by 3.30pm.

Note: Unlike our 5-day courses, there are no cooking responsibilities during short courses.

Online Writing Week

Monday:
Your Arvon Host will welcome you and the tutors to Arvon’s Zoom Writing House in the afternoon, giving you an overview of the week, technology support, and some ideas for making your writing ‘cocoon’. You’ll get to meet everyone, ask questions, and settle in. Your tutors will ask you to start thinking about your writing, perhaps setting an exercise. There’s likely to be some homework for tomorrow morning

Tuesday:
Everyone meets online for the morning workshop around 9:30am, which includes writing exercises, discussion and comfort breaks. From 2pm there will be one-to-one tutorials lasting about 20 minutes each. You have one tutorial with each tutor during the week; the rest of the afternoon is your time to think and write. There will also be an evening session where both tutors read from their work and take questions.

Wednesday:
The timing is just like yesterday…Morning workshops, afternoon one-to-one tutorials and an optional evening check-in. You’ll also get a free ticket to the Arvon Wednesday Live Guest Reading at 7:15pm.

Thursday:
Morning workshops, afternoon one-to-one tutorials and an evening session hosted by both tutors.

Friday:
Your final workshop will take place in the morning, followed by more tutorials in the afternoon. Friday evening culminates with a celebratory reading where you have the chance to share some of your new writing. Expect laughter, tears and a huge sense of pride for all you have learned, written and achieved this week. There’ll be plenty of virtual hugs.

ARVON WEEK BLOGS

My Arvon Week: Sarah Corbett – Bodies Lined with Gold

25 Nov 2021 / My Arvon Week

Bodies Lined with Gold: Lumb Bank, The Arvon Foundation, August 1996 by Sarah Corbett
Sometime early in 1996 a…

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My Arvon Week: Cat Brogan – Queer Poetry

18 Nov 2020 / My Arvon Week

‘The image doesn’t know it’s a metaphor – don’t … control it’ (Caroline Bird)
We feel for Billy Collin’s ‘light switch’*…

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Peter Papathanasiou – My two writing births

18 Jul 2019 / Lumb Bank

I’ve had two writing births in my life: the birth, and the rebirth. My time at Arvon in 2013 was part…

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Peter Leyland – What we did on our holidays

11 Dec 2018 / #Arvon50

What do marketing analysts, postgraduate history scholars, Information Technology librarians, and recently retired teachers have in common? Answer – they don’t…

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