Bestselling author to inspire budding history writers in First World War workshop

Wednesday, 12 September 2018


Oxford Brookes University will run a one-day history writing workshop with British bestselling author Richard van Emden on Saturday 22 September

The workshop is based on Richard’s book The Quick and The Dead: Fallen Soldiers and Their Families in the Great War and is open to members of the public with an interest in history and writing non-fiction.

Richard van Emden is a well-known historian of the Great War, having interviewed 270 veterans and written, so far, twelve books, including the Top Ten Best Sellers The Trench, The Last Fighting Tommy and The Soldier’s War. He said: “I am delighted to be leading this exciting workshop, appropriately timed in the run up to the commemoration of the centenary of the Armistice in 1918.

“It is a thrill to be working with published and aspiring authors and sharing my experiences of twenty years’ research and writing twenty books on the Great War.”

A trained journalist, Richard has also worked as an associate producer on the award-winning Roses of No Man’s Land and Veterans for Testimony Films, and for the BBC on The Trench, making documentaries for BBC1, BBC2, BBC4 and Channel 4. These include Britain’s Boy Soldiers, What did you do in the Great War, Daddy? and Horror on the Home Front. He also co-presented The War Revolution, a Timewatch programme for BBC2.

Also contributing to the day is Stephen Barker an independent military historian and museum education specialist. He was a trustee of the Battlefields Trust, working particularly on its educational materials. In 2009, he published Lancashire's Forgotten Heroes, a history of the 8th East Lancs in the Great War.

Stephen explained: “By the end of the workshop, you will understand how Richard and I went about developing our books and learn our top tips about writing. You will also have a chance to hone a publishing pitch for your own First World War project and discuss possible methods of publication.”

The workshop takes place from 10.00am – 5.00pm on Saturday 22 September, in the John Henry Brookes Building on Oxford Brookes’ Headington Campus.

The cost is £65 (including tea/coffee and lunch) with a special rate of £60 for Western Front Association members.

For more information on the event contact: