Tue 21 May 2024
About the Writers Compass
NAWE aims to put creativity at the heart of education. NAWE is a charity funded largely by its members fees and donations.
About the Writers Compass
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The Writer's Compass

Helping you build and sustain your writing career

The Writer’s Compass is the name for all NAWE’s professional development services for writers. It brings together NAWE’s professional development programme with the free information and advice services for all writers formerly offered by literaturetraining.  

Our aim is to help writers in all genres, and at all stages in their development, to steer a course through the complexities of the writing life and build and sustain their careers.

We offer:

Information Services


  • A listing of books and other media on creative writing, writer development and other aspects of a literary career
  • A wide range of NAWE guides, information sheets, ‘how to’ factsheets and other resources designed to help you develop as a writer and writing tutor

Career Stories: "How Did I Get here?"

  • A collection of articles in which writers at different stages in their careers talk frankly about who and what has helped them get to where they are today

One-to-One Services: "Compass Points"

We work in partnership with a wide range of organizations and institutions. In the last three years these have included The Arvon Foundation, Lapidus, Litfest, LitNet NI, NALD, Scottish Book Trust, Writing West Midlands, Ledbury Poetry Festival, Poetry by Heart, Bath Spa University, Creative Scotland.

Please email Philippa Johnston if you have an event or opportunity you would like to appear on The Writer's Compass website and bulletin. We focus on information that has a professional development element and are happy to receive details of training, conferences, competitions and submissions, funding opportunities, and of course jobs. Read more.

The Writer's Compass (formerly literaturetraining and before that the New Writing & Literature Consortium) was established in 2001 as part of CreativePeople, a network of what eventually numbered 110 organizations providing information, advice and guidance on professional development in the arts. The initiative was instigated to address an identified need for improved provision for professional development within the arts.

The five founding partners of the Consortium were NAWE; NALD; writernet; The Federation of Worker Writers and Community Publishers and Lapidus. They were later joined by Survivors’ Poetry, Apples & Snakes, Scottish Book Trust, Academi and renaissance one.

Funding for the Consortium’s pilot phase came from Arts Council England, the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation and the Scottish Arts Council with subsequent funding coming from Arts Council England Grants for the Arts, Central Managed Funds and finally from Arts Council England Yorkshire via NAWE as lead partner.