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Although there was only time to look at a couple of poems from each collection, we all had a go at picking our favourites.
but of course that’s not always the case, and writers will always have their setbacks and critics.
I was really encouraged by what Catherine Wilcox (who writes as Catherine Fox) said about her fourth novel, which publishers described as ‘unsalvageable’ and ‘a valid failure’.
I was also stunned by David Cain’s poems, from his collection Truth Street, which focuses on the Hillsborough Disaster, and mesmerised by Niall Campbell’s poem ‘Clapping Game’, in which he uses asterisks to indicate where the reader should clap their hands.
It felt somehow surreal, yet also perfectly normal for a room full of people to read a poem together out loud, interspersed with claps.
MMU also prides itself on strong partnerships with businesses and organisations at a regional, national and international level, and which include the BBC and IBM.
Many of its degree courses include a year-long work placement with these organisations – something the university believes aids its high employment rate for graduates.
There’s something inspirational about spending time with other writers, sharing a mutual interest in words and stories, poems and punctuation, and last week I attended the MMU Creative Writing Summer School – the perfect finish to my MA, after two years of study and creativity.
I just have one final assignment to complete – a collection of 300 lines of poetry – and that will be it!
Initially developed as a centre of Technology, Art and Design, the roots of Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) date back to 1824; it was founded as a University in 1992, with the modern institution comprising eight specialist faculties.
MMU receives the third highest number of student applications in the UK and is home to more than 36,000 students, making it one of the largest student populations in Europe.