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Watermill writing tutor Jo Parfitt


Jo Parfitt

Course dates

Course completed

Write Your Life Stories

Learn the secrets of writing your life story in a delightful setting in the heart of rural Tuscany – brilliant teaching and exquisite Italy all wrapped up in one fantastic week!

Jo Parfitt’s course is the perfect first step for any writer wanting to develop the skills and confidence necessary to move into writing memoir, non-fiction, articles or blogs. It’s designed to help both enthusiastic beginners and more experienced writers. Many of her students have gone on to publish full-length books.

You’ll explore writing about childhood, people, place – and how to write with humour. Above all, you’ll discover how to write complete stories and to find the 'red threads' that will turn your work into a compelling memoir. Among other things, you’ll discover the secret of SPICE, the seven steps to writing life stories, and put this into practice right away.

The ethos of the course is creativity and enjoyment, but if one of your aims is to sell your work, you will also learn how to provide manuscripts that are more likely to be accepted by publishers. You will have plenty of opportunity to quiz Jo about this too. As a published author and journalist, she knows the ropes. The personalised attention you will receive and the daily critique of your work are worth more than the cost of the course! In addition, all students will receive a free copy of Jo's Just Write notebook and a copy of her Write Your Life Stories workbook.

Jo Parfitt is an author, journalist, teacher, blogger, conference speaker and poet. She has published 32 books herself, has helped more than 250 authors get into print and more than 2,000 to get writing. She's an inspiring, compassionate and encouraging teacher: her motto is 'sharing what I know to help others to grow'.

The Write Your Life Stories creative writing courses are designed to help you produce your best work, to find your true writer's 'voice' and to write authentically.

Jo says: "Each course at the watermill will provide a safe haven in which to unlock your creativity, write from your heart and hone your writing craft. It will also help to remove blocks to your writing. Sessions at the mill will empower students to write in a compelling way that makes real experiences come to life."

Writers will be invited, but not obliged, to share their work during class and to receive feedback. It is the group feedback that ensures everyone grows as a writer and increases in confidence.

In the week you will explore several methods and genres and is perfect for anyone wanting to write about their own lives for an effective journal, memoir or blog. If you would enjoy an injection of inspiration in a safe and supportive environment this course is for you. It is appropriate for students of any level.

You can find out more about Jo on


It was just wonderful. The setting magnificent, food sublime, and our hosts charming. The attention to detail and beauty are a sure recipe for a wonderful stay. This week has been an absolute delight. Your hospitality has known no bounds, and Jo has been an inspirational teacher. I am heading home with a head full of writerly plans. SR

“I can honestly say it's been life changing for me and the setting could not have been more perfect.”

“Jo was a quite delightful teacher. I found a happy atmosphere permeating the Watermill, and I particularly liked my room.”