About us

About Us

We’ve supported thousands of students to write more with more joy…

Write like a Grrrl is a collective of writers who are passionate about supporting marginalised genders and sexualities to develop their writing craft and confidence. Creating community is what we’re all about! Founded by Kerry Ryan in 2015, our courses run or have run in Russia, America, Australia, Mauritius, India, Iceland and Ireland. In the UK, WLAG courses and workshops have sold out in Edinburgh, Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, Norwich, Brighton, Bristol and all across London!

We’re very proud of the supportive community we’ve created and the thousands of students who have graduated from WLAG across the world.

We’re absolutely committed to access and inclusion and ensure our courses and workshops are low cost and accessible for all. We always use inclusive language so no student feels excluded.

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Our history

Write like a Grrrl began in 2015 in a room with a leaking roof at the Feminist Library. From that small beginning, WLAG has grown into a worldwide network of writers supporting writers.

Our courses are taught or have been taught in Moscow, St Petersburg, Kazan in Russia; Australia; Mauritius; the USA Ireland, India and Iceland. We’ve worked with New Queers on the Block, Spotlight, Performance Space, Take Up Space, STUC, Creative Folkestone, Arts Emergency, Faber and others to deliver writing workshops and courses. We’ve published a WLAG poetry anthology with Signal House Press and an anthology of graduates’ writing will be out in the world in 2022 published by Grind and Bearing Press.

With the excellent Claire Askew and Jane Bradley of For Books’ Sake, we curated Grrrl Con in 2016 and 2017 in Edinburgh and Manchester. Grrrl Con was a three-day festival of writing for emerging writers and a whole lot of fun! Our 2016 programme featured keynote talks from Scottish Makar Jackie Kay, award-winning crime writer and playwright Denise Mina, acclaimed literary agent Jenny Brown and more. The weekend also had practical, interactive workshops, including sessions from Lucy Ribchester, Helen Sedgwick, Khadijah Ibrahiim and Marjorie Lofti Gill. The 2017 programme featured Monique Roffey, Jenn Ashworth, Patience Agbabi, Leone Ross and many others.

For many years, our UK courses were sold and marketed through the wonderful For Books’ Sake. Our courses are now bookable on writelikeagrrrl.com and we still regularly collaborate with For Books’ Sake to produce and promote joint events and workshops so keep an eye out for those!

Why not sign up for our newsletter below and keep up-to-date with all our latest happenings?

Our Students

Many of our students have gone onto publish novels, poetry & short story collections, write plays and graduate with Masters and PhDs in creative writing. They’ve been published by Hodder & Stoughton, Penguin, Borough Press, Random House and many others.

Yet what’s most important for us at WLAG is that our graduates have found joy in their daily writing practice, creating with compassion and pleasure, strengthening their craft while shrinking the inner critic, and all with the steadfast support of our brilliant community.

Our Tutors

Kerry Ryan is the founder and director of Write like a Grrrl. She writes plays, poems and prose & has been published in the Kenyon Review, Manchester Review, Custom Labs, Queerlings among others. She won the Spilling Ink short story prize and was shortlisted for Myriad First Editions. Her play ‘Trust’ ran at the Gulbenkian in 2020.
She was creative writing columnist for Dear Damsels, has been a fiction editor for various publications and is currently editing two upcoming anthologies. In 2021, she was awarded Arts Council funding to support her creative practice. She has a Masters and a PhD in Literary Studies.

Jo Flynn is WLAG poetry tutor and our Strategic Communications Lead. She is co-director of For Books’ Sake. Jo has been writing about the Manchester arts scene for more than 5 years. After winning the Roy Fisher Prize for poetry in 2013 endorsed by the Poet Laureate, Jo’s debut poetry collection Swallowing Sand was published and she’s since been featured at the National Poetry Library in London for short form poetry, shortlisted for the Jane Martin Poetry Prize at Cambridge University, published by the likes of Dear Damsels and The Writer’s Cafe, and recently made the Emma Press longlist for her poems on ‘Illness’. With an MA (Distinction) in Creative Writing, Jo just hopes to make sense of the world with words. And dogs.

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Isha Karki is a writer and PhD student based in London. Her short fiction has won the Dinesh Allirajah Prize, Galley Beggar Press Short Story Prize and Mslexia Short Story Competition. She has been shortlisted in competitions such as The White Review, Desperate Literature, and London Short Story Prize and her work has appeared in publications including Augur Magazine, Extra Teeth and Lightspeed. She is a 2019 graduate of Clarion West and currently a judge on the 2021/22 Galley Beggar Press Short Story Prize. You can find her on Twitter: @IshaKarki11 

Elspeth Wilson is a writer, poet and researcher with a background in Gender Studies and public health. Much of her work considers the question of how we live in our bodies and she is particularly interested in disability and sexuality. Her work has been shortlisted for Canongate’s Nan Shepherd prize for underrepresented nature writers and Penguin’s Write Now editorial programme. She loves spending time with her elderly dog and can usually be found in or near the sea. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

Meg Sattler has spent her career working to create spaces to raise the voices of others. She has helped women and youth from vulnerable communities tell their stories via international platforms including the UN General Assembly, media and other forums. Her own non-fiction, fiction and poetry has been published in media and journals in Europe, Asia, Canada, Australia and the USA, read at events and universities and shortlisted in competitions. She was a finalist in NYC Midnight. Meg is editing her first book, a collection of stories on women’s relationships. She loves writing groups, the dorkier the better, and thinks that all women and girls have stories worth sharing – if only they had the time. She has degrees in arts/professional writing, journalism and humanitarian management, and is based between Vienna, Austria and Castlemaine, Australia.

Alexandra Sheppard is a children’s author from London, UK. Her debut YA novel ‘Oh My Gods’ was published by Scholastic and featured in Buzzfeed, Refinery29 and The Guardian’s Summer Reading List. It was also shortlisted for the Bristol Teen Book Award 2019. Her short story was featured in the 2020 Knights Of anthology ‘Happy Here’ and her debut middle-grade novel is coming soon.
She has led creative writing workshops for Write Mentor, Writers & Artists, Ruckus Retreat and dozens of secondary schools around the UK.

Sara Sherwood is a writer based in Leeds, West Yorkshire. Sara’s short stories have been featured in Dear Damsels’ anthology Let Me Know When You’re Home: Stories of Female Friendship and Test Signal, an anthology of best new northern writing published by Dead Ink and Bloomsbury. Her short story Likes was also Highly Commended in the Bridport Prize in 2018. Sara has an MA in Creative Writing from the Manchester Writing School and loves creating supportive, caring and creative environments for writers of all abilities, backgrounds and ambitions to thrive.  You can follow Sara on Twitter and Instagram: @sarasherwood 

Write like a Grrrl: Russia

Write Like a Grrrl Russia works in partnership with the publishing house No Kidding Press. Hundreds of students have graduated from courses in Moscow, Kazan and St Petersburg and we are so proud of the brilliant, supportive work the Russian tutors and course conveners do. In addition to courses and events, WLAG Russia has published three collections of WLAG writing: “Without permission”, “A small book of stories about sexuality” and “Friendship”.  Check out WLAG Russia and all the fantastic work they do…

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