Helena Blakemore

Helena Blakemore

Senior Lecturer

Quality Leader

Department of Music, Writing & Performance , School of Arts and Creative Industries

Helena Blakemore is a Senior Lecturer, teaching on BA Creative & Professional Writing, and is also the Quality Leader for the School of Arts & Creative Industries.

In addition to these roles, she is also the UEL co-ordinator for the Royal Literary Fund Fellows, who offer academic writing support to students across the University, and is a Senior Fellow of Advance HE. Helena is a long-standing member of the Higher Education Committee of the National Association of Writers in Education (the Creative Writing subject Association) and has delivered conference papers in the UK and the USA on professional development, post-graduate research, student diversity, and pedagogy as they relate to the study and teaching of Creative Writing. She is also on the Editorial Boards of the two NAWE publications, WRITING IN EDUCATION and the peer-reviewed journal WRITING IN PRACTICE: THE JOURNAL OF CREATIVE WRITING RESEARCH.

Areas Of Interest

  • Contemporary fiction and hybrid writing
  • Creative writing practice and pedagogy
  • Media and cultural relationships
  • Literary and cultural value
  • Employability and diversity issues
On This Page

OVERVIEW

My professional activities outside the University have included a range of academic engagements, of which the following are indicative:

2014: As Vice Chair of NAWE HE Committee, initiated and progressed discussions to develop professional a  relationship between the two organisations, including research projects with EACWP (European Association of Creative Writing Programmes) - attended Paris Symposium, June 2014

2013: NAWE Annual Conference panel with Randall Albers, Patricia Ann McNair, Shawn Shiflett (Columbia Chicago), and Steve May (Bath Spa): Is This the Best We Can Do? -  exploring the myth of  "best practices" as it pertains to Creative Writing programmes.

2013: Participated in NAWE research project commissioned by HEA for report Beyond The Benchmark (published November 2013), which explored recent developments in the subject.

Invited speaker for HEA Workshop and Seminar Series: "Subjectivity in Creative Writing Marking: Practical Strategies for tutor/practitioners" (Keynote, Bath Spa University, 2012, with Professor Tim Liardet) and "Workshop for Early Career Lecturers" (King's College, 2010)

October 2008: co-author of first Subject Benchmark Statement for Creative Writing, published by Higher Education Committee of National Association of Writers in Education.

 "Whose Stories? Diversity and Development in HE Teaching" in Writers in Education (NAWE Journal), issue 44, Spring 2008

"Writers in the World: professional development for Creative Writing students" in Writers in Education (NAWE Journal), issue 44, Spring 2008

External roles

CURRENT EXTERNAL ROLES

  • 2021: External Examiner for Doctorate by Publication (Creative Writing), Winchester University
  • 2019-present: External Examiner, Leeds Trinity University (Creative Writing single honours and combined degrees at BA and MA level)
  • 2015-present: Member of the Editorial Board, Writers in Education (NAWE members' journal)
  • 2014-present: Member of the Editorial Board, Writing in Practice: The Journal of Creative Writing Research (NAWE peer-reviewed journal, ISSN 2058-5535)
  • 2009-present: Elected member of Higher Education Committee, National Association Writers in Education (Subject Association for Creative Writing in the UK)
  • 2019: At QAA request, formal approval of revisions to updated Benchmark Statement for Creative Writing (due to retirement of previous Chairs), published December 2019
  • 2016: Co-author of first QAA Subject Benchmark Statement for Creative Writing

PREVIOUS EXTERNAL ROLES

  • 2013 : External Examiner, BA Creative Writing (Distance Learning), Goldsmiths, University of London
  • 2009 -2104: Member of the Editorial Board, Writers in Education (NAWE journal)   
  • 2014-2016: QA panel member for national Benchmark statement, Creative Writing (published February 2016)
  • 2009-2014: Elected Vice Chair of the Higher Education Committee, National Association of Writers in Education (Subject Association for Creative Writing in the UK)
  • 2014: Validation panel member, Access to HE Diploma (Creative Writing, Literature, Journalism), Norfolk Adult Education
  • 2012: Consultant to AQA Examining Board for development of Creative Writing A Level (launched September 2013)
  • 2011: External Advisor, BA Creative Writing (Distance Learning),Goldsmiths, University of London
  • 2010: External Examiner for PhD in Creative Writing by Publication, University of Bangor
  • 2009: 'In Sanctuary' (poetry) published in Writers in Education (NAWE journal), Issue 48: 'Word and Image'
  • 2007-2010: External examiner, BA Creative & Media Writing, Middlesex University
  • 2009: External Advisor, Foundation Degree in Professional Writing,Weston College (Bath Spa University)
  • 2008: External Reviewer for BA/BSc Creative Writing, University Review Panel, Roehampton University

CURRENT RESEARCH

  • Summer 2009: Guest editor, Writers in Education, Issue 48: 'Word and Image'
  • October 2008: Co-author of first Subject Benchmark Statement for Creative Writing, published by Higher Education Committee of National Association of Writers in Education

Poetry

  • May 2010: Poetry reading at Hearing Eye Press/Torriano House, London NW5
  • Summer 2009: 'In Sanctuary' in Writers in Education (NAWE journal), Issue 48: 'Word and Image'

Reviews

  • 2012- Peer Reviewer for darkmatter
  • 2011- Peer Reviewer for Write4Children: The International Journal for the Practice and Theories of Writing for Children and Children's Literature - www.write4children.org/
  • 2010- Peer Reviewer for New Writing: The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing
  • Review of Story: The Heart of the Matter (2007), ed. Dr Maggie Butt (London: Greenwich Exchange) in Writers in Education (NAWE journal), Autumn 2007

Book chapters

  • 2002: Appendix 10: "Gender Bias in Publishing and Reviewing" in Bestsellers: Popular Fiction Since 1900, ed. Clive Bloom, Palgrave, pp. 252-253; ISBN 0-333-687437
  • 2001: "Eyes on the Prize" in Literature, Politics and Intellectual Crisis in Britain Today, ed. Clive Bloom (London: Palgrave), pp. 94-118; ISBN 0-333-77833-2

Journal articles

  • Report on AWP Chicago Conference (promoting UK Creative Writing PhD) in Writers in Education (NAWE journal), issue 56, Spring 2012|
  • "Whose Stories? Diversity and Development in HE Teaching" in Writers in Education (NAWE Journal), issue 44, Spring 2008 |
  • "Writers in the World: professional development for Creative Writing students" in Writers in Education (NAWE Journal), issue 44, Spring 2008|
  • Online article/case study: "Working in the Culture Industries" in collection Case Studies of Employment Related Practice, for the Media Employability Project at University of Sunderland - director & commissioning editor Prof. Sue Thornham

Conference papers

  • March 2012: Conference paper for panel "Creativity in Crisis: What's the Future for the Imagination in University Writing Programs?", AWP Annual Conference, Chicago IL, with Steve Mayand Tim Middleton (Bath Spa), Nigel McLoughlin (Gloucester), and Barbara Large (Winchester)
  • November 2011: Panel contributor "Making It: What a Degree in Creative Writing Has Done For Me", with graduate Danielle Jawando; also Workshop Convener, with Maggie Butt - 'The Creative Space', NAWE Annual Conference, Northampton
  • February 2011: Paper and Panel discussion - 'Why Creative Writing Research Matters: Creative Writing and Today's Academy' at AWP Annual Conference, Washington DC, with
  • Graeme Harper and Nigel McLoughlin
  • November 2010: Workshop convener, with Maggie Butt - 'The Creative Space' at NAWE Annual Conference, Cheltenham
  • April 2010: 'Ebb and Flow: The Evolution of the Creative Practice Doctorate' (collaborative research project with Christina Reading, University of Brighton), presented at AWP Annual Conference, Denver
  • November 2009: Panel chair -'Writing the Visual'; workshop convener with Stacey Pogoda - 'Stories that Play' at NAWE Annual Conference, Hampshire
  • February 2009: 'Can you do Monday…? The role of part-time tutors' on NAWE panel 'Qualifying for University Employment in Creative Writing', at American Association of Writers & Writing Programs Annual Conference, Chicago
  • January 2009: invited chair of workshop at Creative Writing and Part-Time Teaching: No longer just an apprenticeship? (Cardiff University, organised by the English Subject Centre)
  • November 2008: 'Developing the Subject Benchmark for Creative Writing' (with Steve May and Patricia Debney) at NAWE Annual Conference, Manchester
  • January 2008: Paper on professional development opportunities for creative writing students on NAWE panel 'Old York, New York: a picture of the UK's literary culture' at AWP Annual Conference, New York
  • November 2007: Paper and panel member for discussion 'Writers in the World – Professional Development for Writing Students', and paper 'Whose Stories? Teaching diverse student groups' at The Way Ahead – The Future of Creative Writing in Education, annual conference of National Association of Writers in Education (NAWE), The Hawkhills, York
  • June 2004: Participated in London Biennale 2004 [www.londonbiennale.org], culminating in an exhibition of artwork at The Foundry, London EC1
  • November 2003: co-writer/presenter of paper entitled "The Kindness of Strangers: Contexts and Connections in Teaching, Learning and Creative Practice", with Sylvie Prasad at Beyond Two Digits - Media Practice Education for the 21st Century, Association of Media Practice Educators (AMPE) 2003 Conference at the University of Sunderland

Research papers

  • June 2008: 'Teaching Diverse Student Groups' for Diversity & Inclusion Research Seminar - Education: Policy, Pedagogy, and Practice Research Group, School of Social Sciences, Media & Cultural Studies, UEL
  • January 2009: 'Developing Subject Benchmarks' for Education: Policy, Pedagogy, and Practice Research Group Seminar, School of Social Sciences, Media & Cultural Studies, UEL

Guest Speaker

  • November 2010: 'Teaching English Literature and Creative Writing: A Workshop for Early Career Lecturers': invited speaker and workshop convener at two-day event organised by the English Subject Centre, King's College London
  • September 2010: 'What will Creative Writing teaching look like in ten years time?': keynote speaker at English Subject Centre's 10th Anniversary celebration, King's College London

PUBLICATIONS

  • 2016: Co-author of the QAA Subject Benchmark for Creative Writing.
  • Key publications pre 2001: Book chapters: 1993: "W.H. Auden" in The English Critical Tradition, ed. Gary Day, Insight series (London: Macmillan)
  • 1993: "Leslie Charteris and The Saint" in Twentieth Century Suspense: The Thriller Comes of Age, ed. Clive Bloom, Insight series (London: Macmillan)
  • 1990: "Acid - Burning A Hole In The Present" in Readings In Popular Culture, ed. Gary Day, Insight series (London: Macmillan)

TEACHING

BA (Hons) Creative and Professional Writing

At UEL, we're building a community of writers and artists with something to say about themselves, and about the world. Join us on the creative and professional writing course to be part of this innovative work.

Find out more

MODULES

  • Module Leader: CC4100 Critical Approaches to Creative Writing
  • Module Leader: CC5102 Story and Myth
  • Supervisor,  CC6100 Research Dissertation for Creative Writing
  • Tutor, CC4101 Creative Practice 1