This roundtable will explore the benefits and challenges of doctoral studies in Creative Writing, with input from faculty members who supervise PhD by practice, graduates of these programmes, and students currently pursuing their PhDs. Bringing together pedagogical, creative, practical, and academic questions, the objective of this roundtable is to assist those involved in PhD by practice in their various roles, and to uncover new approaches to incorporating Creative Writing as a discipline in academic life. Chaired by Irish poet and scholar Julie Morrissy, the roundtable will take an interactive form with discussion, Q&A, and short readings from the panellists. Attention will be given to practical elements of Creative Writing programmes, including formal requirements of the degree, supervision and assessment, and how these elements differ both between different practice-based programmes, and in comparison to traditional PhDs. The roundtable will include panellists from programmes in both fiction and poetry, thereby giving a broad view of the ways in which these programmes can work, the benefits for practitioners, and the challenges for supervisors. Questions of particular interest include: are supervisors equipped with adequate specialist training for PhD by practice? Are graduate students in agreement with the assessment and submission requirements? Does PhD in Creative Writing require more flexibility in order to be meaningfully catered to within the academy? How are critical/academic writing and research incorporated into PhD by practice? How does PhD by practice prepare students to participate in research environments?  

Roundtable Participants:

Dr Mary Jean Chan is the author of the pamphlet A Hurry of English (Poetry Book Society Summer Pamphlet Choice), published by ignition press (2018).  Her debut collection Flèche is forthcoming from Faber & Faber (2019). She is an editor of Oxford Poetry, an editorial board member at Brookes Review, a member of the international research group RAPAPUK and an advisory board member at the Poetry Translation Centre. Born and raised in Hong Kong, Chan currently lives in London and is a Lecturer in Creative Writing (Poetry) at Oxford Brookes University.

Julie Morrissy is a poet, critic, and activist. Her first collection Where, the Mile End is forthcoming in February 2019 with BookThug (Canada) and tall-lighthouse (UK & Ireland). Her poetry pamphlet I Am Where (Eyewear 2015)was shortlisted for Best Poetry Pamphlet in the Saboteur Awards 2016. Morrissy holds graduate degrees in Creative Writing (University College Dublin 2013), and Literature (Ryerson University 2014), and a bachelor’s degree in Law (University College Dublin 2006). She was Vice-Chancellor Research Scholar at Ulster University from 2015 to 2018.

Katharina Maria Kalinoswki is a bilingual poet and a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow at the Universities of Cologne, Kent, and University College Dublin. She pursues a trinational PhD in Creative Writing & English Philology with a focus on ecopoetics and translation. Her recent publications include Magma 72, Epizootics, and The Transnational: A Literary Magazine.

Liz Quirke is a second year PhD student in Creative Practice (Poetry) at NUI Galway. Her debut collection The Road, Slowly was published by Salmon Poetry in 2018 and her second collection How We Arrive In Winter is expected in 2020.

Kathy D’Arcy is a Cork poet (Encounter 2010, The Wild Pupil 2012) currently completing an IRC-funded Creative Writing PhD in UCC, where she teaches with the Women’s Studies department.  In 2013 she received an Arts Council Literature Bursary for her poem Camino.  In 2016 she won the Hippocrates Prize and was longlisted for the Ivan Juritz prize for experimental poetry.  She was 2016 editor of the Cork Literary Review and 2018 editor of Autonomy (a women-led collection of writing due for publication in the Spring).  She is involved in the Irish Pro-Choice campaign and was Chair of Cork Together for Yes.

Niamh Prior is from Kinsale in Co. Cork. Her work has appeared in publications including Revival, Quarryman and The Stinging Fly. She holds an MA in Creative Writing from UCC and is currently completing a PhD there, funded by the Irish Research Council.