Suffolk Writers Group


Do you like writing stories or screenplays?

Would you like to discuss ideas and work on improving your craft?

Do you dream of having your work read and loved by others?

If so, you might like to join my new Tuesday night writing group (starting 6th Feb 2018) Each one will take place at my home in Ipswich from 7.30pm to 9.30pm. 


Click here to see a video about the weekly group sessions.


To book a place and/or ask any questions email me at or phone me on 07943 068033.

About Me (Mai Black)

I love helping people to improve the quality of their writing as well as making the whole experience of being a writer more enjoyable, sociable and creative.

I have a degree in English Literature, am a trained teacher and have been studying creative writing on a formal basis for six years. I’ve won competitions for short stories, travel writing and poetry with my work appearing in ‘Best’ Magazine, ‘Let’s Talk’, ‘Suffolk Magazine’ and ‘The Telegraph’. I’ve also had published a variety of English and History materials for primary age pupils.

I’ve been running a variety of writing groups in Ipswich for six years. Currently I have a regular Thursday night group and am seeing a number of writers on a one to one basis. I am in the process of setting up a regular Tuesday group and am actively seeking enthusiastic and determined writers.

Damselfly Writing Group (Every Thursday 7.30 – 9.30pm)

Sessions are held at my home in Ipswich which has a large enough dining table to comfortably seat up to twelve members per evening. Having a home setting helps to create a cosy, friendly environment. This group is currently full but if you can’t make the Tuesday one, let me know. I can then email you when a space becomes available.

A typical evening’s format

  • Ten minute discussion of what everyone has read or written in the week
  • Free writing task
  • Discussion of a piece of writing – either from a group member or a professional piece
  • Input on a chosen subject e.g. characterisation, settings or similes
  • A break for drinks, biscuits and general chatting
  • A time to write individually based on the input provided
  • A time to share work and get feedback from myself and the group

(It’s lovely when people read their work aloud but it’s OK if you choose not to.)

Costs for Group Sessions

Each two hour session costs £10 per session. (You can also pay £35 per month by direct debit). New members to the Tuesday group get a 25% discount on their first session.

Individual Sessions

Some people prefer to work one to one. I can offer support with formulating new ideas, help with grammar and layout and overall feedback on your work.

New clients play £30 per hour with reduced rates for block bookings.

Here’s some lovely feedback  I’ve received from someone I’ve been working with.

IMG_0336 (3)

“I’ve really enjoyed working one to one on my novel. Mai’s helped me with plotting, characterisation, style and theme.  Most of all she’s helped to give me the motivation to get the job done!” – Carl, Ipswich

Editing and Proofreading

If you’d like me to edit or proofread your work via email, send me a short extract of two hundred words and we can discuss a fee based on the style, content and accuracy of your work. Typically, I charge £30 per hour.

Individual Achievements of Group Members

  • Lesley won two hundred euros and had her travel piece published in The Telegraph.
  • Adam and Kelly wrote ‘Highly Commended’ pieces of Flash Fiction for the weekly Microbookends Competition.
  • Gem and Kelly from Thursday’s Damselfly group launched a hugely successful reading blog The Book Eaters.
  • Kelly achieved joint runner up in Felixstowe Short Story Competition.
  • Kelly won our concept competition and received very encouraging feedback from agent Meg Davis.
  • Anna had an article about Montessori education published on
  • Gem was a runner up in a competition for Dystopian World stories
  • Aaron won our synopsis competition to receive feedback on his work from literary agent Meg Davis
  • Teresa had a story published in Your Cat magazine.
  • Elliot had his story published in Fiction Vortex Magazine
  • Graham has written a variety of interviews and record and theatre reviews. He says there’s a lot more to come so watch this space.
  • Megan has had a romantic novel published on Kindle at Amazon
  • Tim has published two novels on Amazon: The Buried Man and Clockwork Hearts
  • William won a competition to be one of Suffolk’s Young Poets of the year and read his work alongside Allan Ahlberg
  • Ipswich Writing Group published ‘Four Word Stories’ on Amazon
  • Teresa, Jay, Carl, Ann and Samantha have had work published on the Ipswich Town and Waterfront website.
  • Kes has had an article published on the Ipswich Town Talk website entitled ‘Town’s Last Premiership XI – Where Are They Now?’

Examples of Recent Activities

Each week we have a dedicated silent time to write by ourselves. Everyone is then given the opportunity to share their pieces. (It’s fine if you choose not to).

working hard at Damselfly.jpg

Sometimes we work together to discuss characterisation in successful books

Harry Potter Character Map
An analysis of characters from Harry Potter

Sometimes we try out the famous ‘cut up technique‘ as used by David Bowie and TS Eliot-

A mini poem/story based on the Ipswich Waterfront

Sometimes we discuss ideas about writing in pairs and small groups.

Kes and Harry
Poet Kes discussing his work with me.


2 thoughts on “Suffolk Writers Group”

  1. Hello Mai,

    My name is Rhys Moffat- I am a 26 year old history teacher who has recently moved to the area.I would like to use my summer to get into writing and in the long term attempt to write a novel. I was wondering whether the Suffolk writers group would be a good opportunity to meet like minded people. I am a complete novice though, so may well be out of my depth early on.

    I look forward to hearing from you,

    Kind Regards,


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