The Writers’ Gym Podcast

Build creative confidence and grow your writing world with Dr Rachel Knightley and Emily Inkpen. Every episode, we’ll discuss key writing topics while exploring the goals, exercises, tools and techniques necessary to discover what you really want from your writing — and what your writing really needs from you.

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Episodes

6 days ago

In this episode of the Writers' Gym Podcast we're joined by actor, comedian, novelist and poet Nigel Planer for a discussion about his writing life and the challenges of working on a memoir. 
To find out more about Nigel Planer and to purchase copies of his books as discussed in today's podcast please follow the links below
Website www.nigelplaner.co.uk
Patreon https://www.patreon.com/NigelPlaner
To order a copy of Nigel's novel Jeremiah Bourne In Time from Unbound please go to https://unbound.com/books/jeremiah-bourne-in-time 
Find Nigel on Twitter and Instagram @NigelPlaner1
Nigel will be appearing at
Cymera Science Fiction festival on 1st June  in Edinburgh   https://www.cymerafestival.co.uk/cymera2024-events/2024/4/4/time-travels-with-poppy-kuroki-amp-nigel-planer
Westbury Festival on 18 July https://www.westburyfestival.org.uk/events/an-evening-with-nigel-planer-and-friends/
Holt Festival on 25 July  https://holtfestival.org/programme/
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released.  

Inspiration Versus Perspiration

Wednesday May 15, 2024

Wednesday May 15, 2024

In this episode of the Writers' Gym Podcast with Dr Rachel Knightley and Emily Inkpen we're looking at inspiration and perspiration and whether one or other of them is the predominant force in the lives of our presenters.  As usual we have advice, anecdotes, ideas and a writing challenge that listeners can participate in
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
 
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released.  

Wednesday May 08, 2024

In this edition of the Writers' Gym podcast we are joined by the award-winning novelist Gareth L Powell to talk about his work across several genres.  Known primarily as a science-fiction author, Gareth has also written thrillers and fantasy. His guide for writers "About Writing : A Field Guide for Aspiring Authors" (Gollancz 2022) was described as "Brilliant" by The Guardian.  In this conversation with Rachel Knightley and Emily Inkpen we discuss Gareth's career and hear his advice for writers wishing to focus on a single genre or expand their writing into new genres.
To find out more about Gareth and his work and buy his books please visit his website https://www.garethlpowell.com/
To buy a copy of Gareth’s “About Writing” as mentioned in our discussion please click here https://www.garethlpowell.com/about-writing/
Follow Gareth on social media 
X, formerly Twitter https://twitter.com/garethlpowell
Instagram https://www.instagram.com/garethlpowell/
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released.  
 

Music and Writing

Wednesday May 01, 2024

Wednesday May 01, 2024

In this edition of the Writers' Gym Podcast with Rachel Knightley and Emily Inkpen we'll look at the relationship between music and writing.  We'll explore music as inspiration and motivation, music as a creator of moods and as an accompaniment to your work and books inspired by or suggested by music. 
 
Artists mentioned in this podcast include 
Thomas Bergersen
Mogwai
David Bowie
Sigur Ros 
Allen Stroud and his soundtrack for The Dex legacy 
Pink Floyd 
The soundtracks to Fantasia, Lord of the Rings, How to Train Your Dragon and Wind River.
The Soundtracks of Nick Cave and Warren Ellis
The soundtracks of Jonny Greenwood 
Rachel would like to add Penguin Cafe Orchestra to the list of artists that have inspired her 
 
Books mentioned in this podcast include 
Exile Music by Jennifer Steil 
Espedair Street by Iain Banks 
Utopia Avenue by David Mitchell 
Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes 
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released. 

Character Building

Wednesday Apr 24, 2024

Wednesday Apr 24, 2024

In this episode of the podcast we’ll be looking at the art of generating characters for your fiction.  We’ll look at the secrets of creating believable and authentic characters that can drive your story forward.  Emily and Rachel will talk about their own characters, the inspiration behind them and the ways in which they have shaped events in their fiction. 
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
 
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
 
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
 
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
 
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
 
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released.  
 
Join us next week for a discussion about music and writing.  Do you listen to music while you write?  Does music inspire you to write or get you in the mood to continue with your work in progress?  

Beating the Blank Page

Wednesday Apr 17, 2024

Wednesday Apr 17, 2024

In this episode of the Writers’ Gym Podcast we will be thinking about starting to write.  Writing the opening  page of your story needn’t be a battle against that glaring white first page and all the psychological demons it implies.  Rachel and Emily offer tips, advice and hacks for starting to write and share examples and anecdotes from their own writing lives.
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released. 

Write What You Know: A Discussion

Wednesday Apr 10, 2024

Wednesday Apr 10, 2024

In this edition of the Writers’ Gym Podcast with Dr Rachel Knightley and Emily Inkpen we take a look at one of the most common pieces of advice offered to writers: “Write what you know”  We examine this advice to consider what it means for our writing and consider how it works in the worlds of science fiction and fantasy as well as in general fiction. 
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
 
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
 
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
 
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
 
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
 
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released.  Join us next week for a discussion about unreliable narrators in fiction.

Unreliable Narrators

Wednesday Apr 03, 2024

Wednesday Apr 03, 2024

In this episode Rachel and Emily look at unreliable narrators and how to create and use them in your writing.  With examples from literature we look at the ways in which unreliable narrators can give your stories depth, authenticity and a plot-twist or two to keep your readers guessing. 
The references in today’s episode include  
Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov
The other lives of Miss Emily White by AJ Ellwood
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
The Debt to Pleasure by John Lanchester
The Collector by John Fowles
The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
The Dex Legacy (audio drama) by Emily Inkpen 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym. 
 
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
 
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Layout and Formatting

Wednesday Mar 27, 2024

Wednesday Mar 27, 2024

In this episode we look at the art and science of laying out and formatting your writing.  We ask when you should begin to format your work, how you should go about doing it and explore a few good reasons for starting the process early …or indeed later.  We look at some of the formatting skills and techniques you’ll need for getting your manuscript ready if you’re self-publishing including some thoughts on cover design and format. 
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
 
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released.  Join us next week for a discussion about unreliable narrators in fiction.

Worldbuilding

Wednesday Mar 20, 2024

Wednesday Mar 20, 2024

In this episode Rachel Knightley and Emily Inkpen look at the process of worldbuilding for fiction writers.  Normally associated with science fiction and fantasy writers, world building skills can also be applied to real places adapted for fiction.  
 
In our conversation we mentioned the map creation services of Dewi Hargreaves who you can follow on twitter  https://twitter.com/Dewiwrites
 
Rachel’s map and prop were made in 2009 by Jude Claybourne, who these days can be found at Past Imperfect: the Alchemy of Transforming Trauma: https://open.spotify.com/show/6XG8ZlvGfWZb4rMKdD9FJV?si=lpfJowJbQ8aE2RSZVzoMjQ
 
Read Emily’s blog on “Building a World out of Walls” here https://www.emilyinkpen.com/blog/buildingaworldoutofwalls
and a further blog on the ways in which worlds relate to characters https://www.emilyinkpen.com/blog/how-does-world-relate-to-character
 
Rachel apologises for the Douglas Adams misquote which should have ended  “widely regarded as a bad move.”
 
Join the Writers’ Gym and book your next writing workout at https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/
 
Book onto the Alternative Stories “Writing for Radio and Podcasts” online workshop on 21st March with Chris and Emily https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/writing-for-radio-and-podcasts-tickets-832128888907
 
The Writers Gym Podcast is an Alternative Stories production for The Writers' Gym.  
 
Find out more about The Writers' Gym and Rachel Knightley by going to https://www.rachelknightley.com/
 
Find out more about Emily Inkpen and her work by going to https://www.emilyinkpen.com/
 
And learn more about Chris Gregory and Alternative Stories here https://alternativestories.com/
 
Subscribe to The Writers’ Gym in your favourite podcast app to be notified of all new episodes as they are released.  
 
New episodes of The Writers’ Gym will appear every Wednesday 

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Conversations about writing with Dr Rachel Knightley and Emily Inkpen

Join us on The Writers' Gym Podcast for conversations about the process of writing with experienced authors Rachel Knightley and Emily Inkpen.  Alongside Chris Gregory of the spoken-word production company Alternative Stories, Rachel and Emily pick a different topic each week and discuss their experiences and share writing advice.   As well as interesting and entertaining discussions, Rachel offers a weekly writing challenge based on our topic at the end of each episode of the podcast.

Find out more about Rachel and her work here

https://www.rachelknightley.com/the-writers-gym/

For more about Emily and her writing go to 

https://www.emilyinkpen.com/

and for Chris and Alternative Stories go to 

https://alternativestories.com/

 

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