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Folkestone Book Festival: Student Writing Workshops

Folkestone Book Festival: Writing Workshops

As part of this year's Creative Folkestone Book Festival, we are proudly offering tailored writing and broadcasting workshops to all further and higher education students and staff.

Students and participants are invited to choose from 2 morning and afternoon sessions to explore and learn about overcoming writing obstacles, uncovering the truth and more.

Choose from:
Morning sessions: Mastering Your Inner Critic OR Live Broadcasting
Afternoon sessions: Writing for Soundwaves OR Techniques of the investigative journalist

Sessions are free to book. Priority booking for students and staff until 15 October; open to all thereafter. Please email to register your interest.

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Mastering Your Inner Critic with Samenua Sesher

This workshop will explore what your inner critic is doing and why it is so strong. It will look at why you need your inner critic to help you do the best work you can and most importantly how to ensure it doesn’t ruin your masterpiece/bestseller. You will leave knowing yourself better and feeling freer to create. 

Samenua Sesher OBE is a consultant, trainer and coach of over twelve years. She’s on the faculty for Oxford Cultural Leaders and is also the founder and director of the Museum of Colour. 


Live Broadcasting with Audrey Green Oakes

What is ‘live broadcasting’? How do you prepare for it? Who can do it? What makes a good live broadcast? What can go wrong or worse, be a disaster? How do they make it look or sound so easy? Could you be a live broadcaster, for money? Audrey Green Oakes’ workshop will explore the different forms of live broadcasting, explain what is going on behind the scenes and show you how to prepare yourself if you ever have to ‘go live’.  

Audrey Green Oakes has worked in broadcasting for most of her career. Starting as a radio reporter in Scotland she soon discovered that decision-making was being done ‘behind the scenes’ and moved into Producer and executive producer roles in London on national BBC Radio and TV news and documentaries. She won an award in 2015 for producing films showing asylum seekers risking their lives crossing the Channel hidden under lorries. She’s worked on Live Broadcasts abroad and in the UK including on events, elections and disasters. 


Writing for Soundwaves with Ben Cottam

Have you ever fancied writing an audio drama or podcast? Learn about the processes of writing specifically for soundwaves. 

This workshop will look at ways of telling stories without visual aids, explore how to use soundscape as a tool, discuss qualities unique to radio and suggest ways of getting started in this exciting medium. 

Ben Cottam is a prolific writer of audio dramas, sitcoms and podcasts for the BBC and Audible, as well as a presenter and producer of radio features and documentaries.


Techniques of the Investigative Journalist with Tom Sanderson

Open-source intelligence (OSINT) is the process of identifying, harvesting, processing, analysing and reporting data obtained from publicly available sources for intelligence purposes. This workshop will provide an overview of this field, covering a range of techniques, including:

Advanced searching
Social media analysis
Finding eyewitnesses, experts, sources
Verification, geolocation, air and marine traffic tracking
Profiling public figures

There will be exercises for students – please bring your laptop.

Tom Sanderson is Deputy Director at the Centre for Investigative Journalism where he leads on all aspects of training provision and oversees the development of funded projects and initiatives.


We would like to thank our principal sponsor Saga and our education partner Canterbury Christ Church University.

Folkestone Book Festival 2023 is also supported by Arts Council England, Folkestone and Hythe District Council, Kent County Council, Le Shuttle and The Roger De Haan Charitable Trust.


Mill Bay,
CT20 1BN

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Time and date



FREE, booking required
Priority booking for students

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