The Department of English and Modern Languages at Oxford Brooks University hosts Writing Fellows from the Royal Literary Fund (RLF) in London. The RLF is a charity which supports professional writers through a variety of schemes, and Oxford Brooks University was one of the pioneer hosts for the RLF Fellowship scheme.
The RLF scheme places experienced writers into higher education institutions to offer confidential one-to-one tutorials to undergraduate and postgraduate students on any aspect of writing and presentation, whether creative writing, academic assessed and non-assessed work, exam writing or seminar presentation. All Oxford Brookes students are entitled to sign up and consult with one of the Fellows, who are available across four days each week.
The Fellows’ office is T4.04 (Tonge Building) on the Gipsy Lane Campus. Students can make appointments by emailing the Fellows directly. The Royal Literary Fund Fellows only work between weeks 1 and 12 each semester.
Penny Black is an award-winning translator (from the German), writer and dramaturg. Her love of theatre started in Vienna, where she lived for five years and completed her acting training. She has translated and adapted plays for the Royal Court, Gate Theatre, Arcola Theatre and the National Theatre amongst others. A highpoint was Sports Play by Nobel Prize winner Elfriede Jelinek, which toured the country in 2012 and was read in its five-hour entirety as a Cultural Olympic Pop-Up Event. Her first original play Sudden Silence, a look at the effects of stroke, was seen at the Arcola Theatre; Making Babies, a farce about fertility, was produced in Heilbronn,Germany and will be produced in Istanbul later this year.
Alongside her European work, Penny Black spent several years working with Arabic-speaking playwrights, and is presently working with Scottish-Iraqi writer Betool Khedairi on an adaptation of her novel Absent. Other dramaturgical work includes Ode to My Sisters, a play based on interview with UK Muslim women, Simon McBurney’s The Magic Flute for the DNO/ENO, and Lilac Wine for the Roundhouse/RVT. She is president of the Dramaturg’s Network 2016–2018.
Penny lives in London but enjoys travelling and networking, and is part of an international network of theatre-makers called The Fence. She is published by Oberon Books.
Deborah Bosley is the original author of the Rough Guide to California and the Rough Guide to San Francisco. She has published three novels under her own name and ghost-written both fiction and non-fiction for others. She is currently the editor of two small-town websites in the Shires and is composing the memoirs of a politically engaged canine.
Max Eilenberg writes mainly for children. He is the author of original picture books (Cowboy Kid and Squeak’s Good Idea) and retellings of classic fairy tales. His stories revolve around simple emotions and anxieties, and play with language, rhythm and humour. He particularly enjoys the craft of making picture books, working with illustrators so that text and pictures support, develop and amplify one another in a seamless whole; and the critical response he most values is when a child says – again, read it again!
In addition to his children’s books, Max has published essays on a range of subjects including art, epilepsy and contemporary American fiction. Most recently he has been working on a book on the history of the representation of Magna Carta, tracing the background of the document and its political uses and abuses over the last 800 years.
Max studied English at York, followed by research and teaching at Oxford, before making a career in publishing. He held senior positions at Heinemann, Secker & Warburg and Methuen, and has worked with many prize-winning authors. He continues to act as a freelance publishing consultant and editor. He lives in north London, plays guitar in a pub band, ranks Bob Dylan and Thomas Pynchon among his literary heroes, and clings to the hope that Arsenal will one day win the league again.