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12 September 2018

Introducing the Marian Keyes Novel-Writing Scholar

Liz Xifaras, Marian Keyes novel-writing scholar
by Katie Smart Course News

We are thrilled to announce that Elizabeth Lee is the winner of the Marian Keyes Novel-Writing Scholarship. Liz has joined the 6-month online novel-writing course, taught by Lisa O’Donnell, which kicked-off this week.

We received over 200 applications, the most that we’ve ever had for a scholarship place, and competition was hot! We are immensely grateful to everyone who applied and were overwhelmed by the quality of writing. We would also like to thank Marian Keyes for her generosity and her support of aspiring authors – you can read our exclusive interview with Marian and find out more about her passion for supporting emerging talent here.

We were instantly impressed by Liz’s unique style and her original story. Set against the backdrop of witchcraft and paranoia in 17th Century Lancashire, her novel Beautiful Wretches is a compelling combination of romance, history and fantasy. When a young woman marked with a devil’s bite identifying her as a witch meets a local farmer’s son, a better future seems possible. However, the arrival of an ambitious new magistrate and a savage murder threaten everything Sarah loves, and she must find a way to escape the hangman’s noose.

We are pleased to welcome Liz to CBC this September and can’t wait to see how her novel develops.

Liz told us that: ‘having reached the shortlist for a Curtis Brown Creative scholarship once before, I was encouraged to apply again, when I saw that Marian Keyes was sponsoring a place I had to apply. Still, I was surprised and thrilled to hear that this time I’d been successful. Writing can be a solitary business and I’ve always found the company and support of others, through writing groups or courses, invaluable.

I would encourage anyone reading this and wondering whether to apply next time a scholarship becomes available to seize the chance. And if you don’t succeed the first time, as with all aspects of writing, persevere.

To Marian Keyes and the Curtis Brown Creative team I am truly grateful for this opportunity, and looking forward to making the most of it.’

Curtis Brown Creative are committed to finding talented writers and helping them to get the best out of their novels. We are keen to promote diversity in our student groups and to find talented writers through the provision of scholarships and bursaries.

HW Fisher are sponsoring a scholarship place for a writer of limited financial means on our upcoming 3-month London-based novel-writing course with Charlotte Mendelson. Find out more about the HW Fisher scholarship.

If you’re a BAME writer with low income working on a novel for children or young adults take a look at the Sarah Quinn BAME Writing Scholarship for YA and Children’s Fiction.

You can also check-out all of our current scholarship opportunities here.

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