Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

MA Creative Writing Alumna inspires students with her writing exploits

Tuesday, 06 February 2018


Linni Ingemundsen was a special guest at a recent seminar, where she read excerpts from her debut novel The Unpredictability of Being Human and gave insights into publishing.

Linni drew on experiences from her own small hometown in Norway to create a fictional town as a backdrop for the novel. We are shown life from the perspective of a 14 year old girl, Malin. We are introduced to her family, philosophy and sometimes questionable friends as she navigates through adolescence.  It is described by her publisher (Usborne) as ‘darkly comic’ and is the first in a two book deal in its Young Adult section.

Linni shared her writing journey with the students:
“The voice came to me first; then followed by the character and then the story. I had not written anything for years. From that base, I developed to 20,000 words at the end of my course in 2015. I had never done that much before. At times it was a long slow process, but I was determined to finish”. She also said that ‘writer’s block’ was eased, by the opportunity on the course to write in a completely different style or context, before returning to her novel.

Dr James Hawes, Reader in Creative Writing who teaches on the MA and hosted the event said:
“I saw a distinct tone of voice in Linni’s work and quickly had the feeling that there was greater depth to the story. I wanted to spend more time in the company of Linni’s heroine. Linni subtly created the sense that there was a lot more to come.”

Linni also gave some insights into her writing process - creating a ritual of writing first thing in the morning, dragging the laptop straight into her bed. She also talked of the inspiring places to write in Oxford, including being surrounded by books in the Bodleian Library.

On reflecting on her dream career, Linni revealed: “There were times when I stared at a blank screen, but there was also a distinct moment in my studies when I realised that this is exactly what I was meant to do. Since graduating, it’s all happened so fast. As a child I said that I would be an author. I’ve had so many jobs since then. It’s comforting to know that what I said a child, has come into being”.

Find out more about student publication success and the MA Creative Writing course at Oxford Brookes.