Staff Directory


Contact Details


B.A. (Hons), Sussex
Dip. Lib. (with Distinction), North London
D.Litt. (University of Glamorgan), 2007


My teaching is in creative writing (especially writing for young people and poetry), with special interest in deepening the writing workshop experience, in mapping the creative process and making it available for reflection, and in using collaborative work to free up creativity and release us from the narrowness of simple self-expression. (The best thing that a poem or story can do for its writer is surprise them.)

Winner of a hat-trick of major awards within the last few years – the TS Eliot poetry prize for ‘The Water Table’, Wales Book of the Year for ‘I Spy Pinhole Eye’ and the CLPE Award for children’s poetry for ‘Off Road To Everywhere’. Philip’s later collection, Deep Field, shortlisted for Wales Book of the Year 2012, is an exploration of his refugee father’s loss of language to aphasia in the last years of his life. That story is brought to an end with a consideration of death and mourning in Later (2013). Two new collections followed in 2015 – the poetry/art collaboration A Fold in the River (with Valerie Coffin Price) and Love Songs of Carbon – with A Bright Acoustic due in June 2017.


Course director, Masters/PhD in Creative Writing


A Bright Acoustic, Bloodaxe Books, forthcoming June 2017
Love Songs of Carbon, Bloodaxe Books, 2015
A Fold in the River (with artist Valerie Coffin Price), Seren 2015
Later, Bloodaxe Books, 2013
Deep Field, Bloodaxe Books, 2011
The Water Table. Bloodaxe Books, 2009
I Spy Pinhole Eye (with photographs by Simon Denison). Cinnamon Press, 2009
The Egg of Zero. Bloodaxe Books, 2006.
The Abstract Garden (with engravings by Peter Reddick) Limited edition from The Old Stile Press, 2006
Mappa Mundi, Bloodaxe, 2003.
Changes of Address: Poems 1980–1998. Bloodaxe, 2001.
Poetry for young people:

Off Road To Everywhere. Salt. 2010.
Scratch City. Faber, 1995.
The All-Nite Café. Faber 1993.
Manifold Manor. Faber, 1989.

Novels for young people:

The Storm Garden. Oxford University Press, 2006.
The Lastling. Oxford University Press, 2003.
Going For Stone. Oxford University Press, 2002.
Psylicon Beach. Scholastic, 1998.
The Song of Gail and Fludd. Faber, 1991.

Creative Writing Pedagogy:
Voices In The Forest: three ways of conceiving of a work in progress (with selected pieces from Evi and the Devil) in Axon: Creative Explorations, Axon: Creative Explorations, Vol 4, No 1, July 2014 (print) and Issue 6: Poetry: Writing, Thinking, Making (web)

(With Wyn Mason) Surface Tensions: framing the flow of a poetry-film collaboration, in New Writing: The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing
Caves of Making, in Chatterjee, A, (ed) Creative Writing: Writers on Writing, 2012
Then Again What Do I Know: reflections on reflection in Creative Writing in Marggraf Turley, R. (ed), The Writer in the Academy, 2011
Creating Space in Cremin, T, Myhill, D (ed) Creating Communities of Writers: Writers’ Voices, 2011
Writing Alongside, in Poetry and Childhood ed. Morag Styles, Louise Joy and David Whitley, 2010
Small Worlds, in Donnelly, D. (ed), Is The Writing Workshop Model Still Working? 2010
Giving Houseroom to our Waifs and Strays: Questions for the Writing Workshop and the Writing Self, in Creative Writing: Teaching Theory & Practice (1:2) 2010
Through The Eye Of The Pinhole: An Experiment In Looking, in Writing in Education, (49), 18-23 2009
The Tale of Silly and Boring: Matters Arising from a Simple Storytelling Game, in Butt, M. (ed), Story: The Heart of the Matter, 2007
Taken As Read? Creative Writers and the Trouble with Reading, in New Writing (2:2) 2005.


Fellow of the English Association
Fellow of Academi
Fellow of Higher Education Academy
Society of Authors
National Association of Writers in Education
Poetry Society


External examiner: MSt in Creative Writing, Cambridge University
Frequent external examiner for creative writing research degrees.
Professorial Fellowship: University of Wales Aberystwyth


Member of management committee, Society of Authors 2011-14
Steering group, Transforming Writing project
Frequent judge of international poetry and other competitions, including Hippocrates Prize 2014, Manchester Writing for Children Prize 2014, University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor’s Prize 2014, Medicine Unboxed Creative Prize 2014.


Writing poetry (for adults and young people).
Cross-arts collaborations (writing with visual arts, music, dance).
Writing novels for older young people.
Writing for radio (short stories, poetry for radio)

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