In a unique scholarship, we are building opportunities for 6 ambitious young writers to come together, create, discuss and develop their nature writing. 

Developing nature writing

As part of our series on nature writing, including our Nature Writing Seminar  and workshops in Munich, we are offering 6 ambitious young writers from the UK and Germany the chance to take part in our Writing Nature Scholarship programme.

Earlier this year, we received an impressive number of over 90 applications from striking young writers with backgrounds in fiction writing, creative non-fiction, journalism, poetry, science, mental health and much more. We were delighted to award the scholarship to the following three British and three German writers: Dan Ryder, Polly Roberts, Katie Harrison, Sophia Klink, Monika Schuster and Hanna Lisa Paetow. Congratulations all! 

We'll be publishing their work soon so make sure to follow us on Twitter for updates. 

Introducing Nature Writing at #BritLitMunich

As the first step in the scholarship programme, our writers came together to take part in an introductory workshop and participate at our British Council Nature Writing seminar. Hear how they experienced their times in Munich:

"It was so beautiful to be surrounded by the words of fellow nature writers; the way they think and talk and see felt familiar, enthralling, enlightening and inspiring. I wish I could live surrounded by these ideas, conversations and emotions around nature [...]" - Polly Roberts

Learning about nature writing, in nature: at the introductory workshop our scholarship holders first met each other and heard from our experts Torsten Schäfer and poet Helen Mort. 

Background and overview

Background

Nature writing as a genre in Germany is recently coming into the spotlight, with a new substantial annual prize, the ‘Deutscher Preis für Nature Writing’ having been set up in 2017. British literature has been powerfully reshaped by a surge of reaction to the living world, and the last two decades in the UK have seen an extraordinary resurgence of what has become popularly known as nature writing.

This scholarship seeks to harness the growing momentum surrounding nature writing in Germany, with scholarship holders gaining experience and expertise from UK and German nature writers at the forefront of the genre.

Overview

In association with ‘dasumweltinstitut’, the British Council is offering six scholarships to ambitious young writers based in the UK and Germany who have a particular interest in and/or experience of writing about nature.

They will be given the chance to come together and discuss seminal texts by British nature writers, as well as create, discuss, develop and present their writing within a network of other nature writers and to German school-age pupils, raising the profile of British nature writers and the genre of nature writing in Germany. 

The scholarship will comprise: 

  • an exclusive workshop on the background and practice of nature writing with Dr. Torsten Schäfer, director of ‘dasumweltinstitut’ (the Environment Institute), and British poet Helen Mort, (14:30-17:00, 7 June, Munich)
  • a travel and accommodation grant of up to €750 (dependent on location) and a free ticket for the British Council Literature Seminar on Nature Writing worth €100 (7-9 June 2018, Munich)
  • a four month period of writing and development, under the remote supervision of Dr. Torsten Schäfer (June-October 2018)
  • a travel and accommodation grant of up to €450 (dependent on location) to the scholarship’s culmination event in Bremen during the week of 22-26 October, during which scholarship holders will present and discuss their work with each other, as well as undertake an outreach element with local school pupils.#

Terms

Scholarship holders will commit to:

  • producing a body of work between June-October on the topic of nature writing
  • writing short reflection pieces about their experience on the scholarship for the British Council’s communication channels
  • engaging in outreach work in Bremen with high-school-age pupils.

"The seminar for me was like diving into a sea of thoughts that grounded me in my belief that nature writing has nothing to do with romantic transfiguration. I was happy that there was a wide range of minds and positions, and that there was a welcoming atmosphere, open-minded, that brought people together who are interested in nature writing and in discussing its issues and challenges." - Monika Schuster