MA Creative Writing Crime Fiction

The two year, part-time, low-residency Creative Writing MA in Crime Fiction at UEA provides the opportunity to create a full-length novel under the guidance of award-winning crime writers and experienced creative writing tutors – without having to relocate or give up work. The course is delivered via a specifically designed, highly inclusive online platform, and three short residential periods per year. These incorporate a mix of creative and critical workshops and seminars, and a masterclass from a leading crime writer. Those involved include Lee Child, Melanie McGrath, Mark Billingham and Ian Rankin. Visits from literary agents and editors also take place during the May residential period.

Modules delivered by distance learning include tutor and student lead group presentations, discussions, workshopping, and one-on-one Skype tutorials. Course material, including original recordings, is easily available on the programme’s specific web pages.

Overview

Crime Fiction, A Global Success

The Creative Writing low-residency MA in Crime Fiction at UEA provides the opportunity to create a full-length novel under the guidance of award-winning crime writers and experienced creative writing tutors – without having to relocate or give up work.

The course is delivered over two years via a specifically designed distance learning online platform, and three short residential periods per year, in September, January and May. Students can stay at UEA’s on-campus hotel.

All residential periods incorporate a mix of creative and critical workshops and seminars, and a masterclass from a leading crime writer. Visits from literary agents and editors of crime fiction lists also take place during the May residential period.

Modules delivered by distance learning include tutor and student lead group presentations, discussions, workshopping, and one-on-one Skype tutorials.

Course material will be easily available on the programme’s specific web pages, while the course director and technical support will be on hand during working hours. 

Crime Fiction and Facts

Crime/thriller fiction is the most popular literary genre in the world, with UK sales alone rising by 80 per cent in the last decade. UEA is at the forefront of both critical and creative study within the genre.

Creative Writing began in the UK at UEA over 40 years ago and the university offers a number of highly regarded creative writing programmes.

MA Creative Writing (Crime Fiction) builds on our world leading expertise, presenting a unique opportunity for those who wish to further their knowledge and skills within the crime/thriller genre.

Critical crime fiction modules are now firmly embedded throughout all levels of taught study within the School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing, while doctoral research and supervision in the area is growing at the university.

UEA is also a founding partner in ‘Noirwich’, Norwich’s annual Crime Writing Festival, which takes place in September, to coincide with the September residential.

People

We have exceptional links with leading crime writers, critics, publishers and agents. Ian Rankin will be UEA’s UNESCO Visiting Professor in autumn 2016.

Other writers associated with UEA and the ‘Noirwich’ festival include Lee Child, Val McDermid, Megan Abbott and Sophie Hannah.

You

We are seeking writers and readers with an interest in exploring the particularly broad and dynamic crime fiction genre.

Our admissions process places an emphasis on both the quality and potential of the writing in the applicant's portfolio (in this case 5000 words of fiction, though not necessarily crime fiction), and commitment.

While a good first degree is desirable, it is not essential.

Course structure

MA Crime Fiction comprises five modules, designed specifically for the course, but following the same creative and academic integrity of the school’s other Creative Writing MAs.

Creative Writing will be supplemented with the critical study of landmark crime texts, while practical and theoretical issues of creative writing, and writing within the genre, will address, among other things, characterisation, place, plot, and suspense.

Assessment

During the first year, students will complete the three creative, critical and practical/theoretical modules. There is continual (formative) assessment, with marked (summative) assessments occurring at the end of the academic year.

In year two students will undertake one module, the completion of a full-length, market ready, work of crime fiction. Again this will be assessed throughout the year, and marked at the end of the course.

A final module requires attendance at the residential days. For more details see the Course Profile tab. 

Contact

For more information please contact the course director, Henry Sutton, Henry.Sutton@uea.ac.uk.

01603 592738

Course Start Date: 15 September 2016
Course End Date: 30 September 2018

Course Modules

Students must study the following modules for 70 credits:

Name Code Credits

A CREATIVE APPROACH TO CRIME WRITING 1

This module will comprise the planning and plotting of a crime novel. The students will be directed throughout the year to the formation of this proposal, through online group workshopping and one-on-one tutorials, and a greater understanding of the commercial market place in the UK, the US and key other territories around the world. Formative work, largely comprising of draft outlines, research plans and chapters, will be assessed throughout the year. Summative work will be the first 5000 words of your novel. THIS MODULE IS FOR STUDENTS ON THE MA CREATIVE WRITING: CRIME FICTION ONLY.

LDCC7018Y

20

A CRITICAL APPROACH TO CRIME WRITING

This module will comprise the study of key crime fiction texts and accompanying critical essays and papers. The students will study the history of the genre, and formulate their own critical response. Formative work, largely comprising online presentations (these may be by Powerpoint, or Word document, and are not 'live'), will be assessed throughout the year. Summative work will be a critical essay. THIS MODULE IS FOR STUDENTS ON THE MA CREATIVE WRITING: CRIME FICTION ONLY.

LDCC7014Y

20

A PUBLIC APPROACH TO CRIME WRITING 1

This module will comprise the attendance of three residential periods to enable students to attend the masterclasses, seminars, tutorials, meet the visiting writers and professionals, enhance a peer community spirit, and further their employability/career prospects (three further residential periods will take place during Year 2 of the part-time course). THIS MODULE IS FOR STUDENTS ON THE MA CREATIVE WRITING: CRIME FICTION ONLY.

LDCC7019Y

10

A THEORETICAL AND PRACTICAL APPROACH TO CRIME WRITING

This module will comprise the theoretical and practical study of devices employed in the writing of fiction (such as suspense, pacing and prose style), while looking at a variety of fictional and critical texts. Formative work, largely comprising writing exercises, will be assessed throughout the year. Summative work will be a contextualising essay, situating the creative project. THIS MODULE IS FOR STUDENTS ON THE MA CREATIVE WRITING: CRIME FICTION ONLY.

LDCC7016Y

20

Students must study the following modules for 110 credits:

Name Code Credits

A CREATIVE APPROACH TO CRIME WRITING 2

This module will comprise the writing of a crime novel. The students will be heavily supervised throughout the year, by numerous formative assignments, online workshops and tutorials.

LDCC7022Y

100

A PUBLIC APPROACH TO CRIME WRITING 2

This module will comprise the attendance of three residential periods to enable students to attend the masterclasses, seminars, tutorials, meet the visiting writers and professionals, enhance a peer community spirit, and further their employability/career prospects. THIS MODULE IS FOR STUDENTS ON THE MA CREATIVE WRITING: CRIME FICTION ONLY.

LDCC7021Y

10

Disclaimer

Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Entry Requirements

  • Degree Subject UK BA (Hons) 2.1 or equivalent
  • Special Entry Requirements Sample of work - see below

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students whose first language is not English. To ensure such students benefit from postgraduate study, we require evidence of proficiency in English. Our usual entry requirements are as follows:

  • IELTS: 7.0 (minimum 6.0 in each section and 7.0 in writing)
  • PTE (Pearson): 68 (minimum 55 in each section and 68 in writing)

Test dates should be within two years of the course start date.

Other tests, including Cambridge English exams and the Trinity Integrated Skills in English are also accepted by the university. The full list of accepted tests can be found here: Accepted English Language Tests

INTO UEA also run pre-sessional courses which can be taken prior to the start of your course. For further information and to see if you qualify please contact intopre-sessional@uea.ac.uk

Interviews

Promising candidates will be invited for a Skype interview with a member of the Creative Writing faculty and we aim to inform candidates of the outcome within five working days. Unsuccessful candidates are welcome to re-apply, though not within the same academic year. Successful candidates will either be offered a place for the forthcoming academic year or a place for the following academic year (if it is felt that they need more time to develop as a writer). Once the forthcoming year is ‘full’ candidates will be offered a place on our reserve list with the option of a place for the following academic year if a place does not become available.

Please note that those candidates offered a place on the course for the forthcoming academic year will not be able to defer their offer to the next year if they are unable to take up the offer of a place, however they are welcome to reapply the next year.

Special Entry Requirements

Candidates will be expected to submit a portfolio of writing for assessment of between 3000 and 5000 words, which could be part of a novel in progress or a piece or pieces of short fiction. This does not have to be crime writing focused but must be prose fiction.

Intakes

The School's annual intake is in September of each year.

Alternative Qualifications

If you have alternative qualifications that have not been mentioned above then please contact the Admissions Office directly for further information.

Fees and Funding

Tuition fees for the full two years part-time course for entry in the academic year 2016/17 are:

  • UK/EU Students: £7,150
  • International Students: £14,500

Scholarships and Awards:

There are a variety of scholarships and studentships available to postgraduate applicants in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities. For further information relevant to the School of Literature and Creative Writing, please click here.

How to Apply

Applications for Postgraduate Taught programmes at the University of East Anglia should be made directly to the University.

You can apply online.

Further Information

To request further information & to be kept up to date with news & events please use our online enquiry form.

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances prior to applying please do contact us:

Postgraduate Admissions Office
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515
Email: admissions@uea.ac.uk

International candidates are also encouraged to access the International Students section of our website.

    Next Steps

    Need to know more? Take a look at these pages to discover more about Postgraduate opportunities at UEA…

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries:
    admissions@uea.ac.uk or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515